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Sunday, October 16, 2011

CAR RACER - DAN WHELDON MEMORIES: dan wheldon

CAR RACER - DAN WHELDON MEMORIES: dan wheldon: Dan Wheldon signs autographs for fans following Pole Day qualifications at Indianapolis in 2007. Nationality British Born June 22, 1978(...

Monday, October 4, 2010

The Business Legal Checkup - Preventive Advice For the Legal Health of Your Business


More than 250 years ago, Benjamin Franklin famously said, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure". He was advising Philadelphia homeowners to insure their homes against fire to avoid catastrophic losses. Franklin's advice is just as applicable today to the legal issues of your business.

In this article, we explain a new legal service, Canadian Business Legal Checkup, an audit of legal matters affecting your business. Business Legal Checkup is a diagnostic tool most small and medium size businesses could use to verify if legal aspects of their operation comply with the law and to minimize risk, litigation and expense. When the Business Legal Checkup is completed, the business owner receives a lawyer's report red-flagging matters which need correction, improvement or further legal advice.

A closer look at the Business Legal Checkup

Your business is built on a foundation of laws and legal procedures. As a prudent business owner, you have probably considered the following legal matters:

o You had to incorporate your business. The corporation has been properly set up. All shares are properly issued. Directors and officers have been appointed. The corporate minutes and register are up-to-date.

o You and other directors of the corporation know exactly what your duties and liabilities are. All directors are protected from liability by sufficient insurance coverage.

o You have a shareholders' agreement so that all shareholders know their roles. All partners are treated fairly. There is an orderly method for valuation and termination of the corporation. You understand the minority shareholders rights requirements of the Business Corporations Act.

o You filed a business registration and have a system to renew it before expiry and you have registered any business names that you are using.

o You filed trademark, patent and copyright applications to protect the intellectual property of your business.

o Your URL (web address) is trademarked. You have audited your website to check for breaches of privacy law, defamation and technology law issues. Your online sales portal is set up to avoid legal problems with privacy law, identity theft and contract issues.

o Your licencing and registrations are up-to-date. If your salespeople have to be registered or licenced, you have a system to ensure that their registrations are up-to-date and that their regulatory requirements are being monitored.

o You have a long term lease for your plant or office. You had your lease vetted by a lawyer. You know what it says, including the extra rent the landlord can demand. You know the deadline for your right to renew.

o You use several legal standard forms and contracts in your business. These have all been vetted by a lawyer to comply with applicable laws including the PPSA, the Interest Act, the Consumer Protection Act, the Sale of Goods Act, the Mercantile Law Amendment Act and the Bills of Exchange Act and contract law.

o If you extend credit, you know that your service charges don't exceed the "criminal rate of interest".

o You know prohibitions against misleading advertising and unfair competition in the Competition Act.

o You understand the privacy legislation and you have a system to ensure that you comply each time you collect, use, or disclose personal information.

o Your employees have signed agreements which spell out the length of notice they are entitled to receive if you terminate their employment. You know who is entitled to how much and what to do if you decide to terminate an employee, whatever the reason. You understand your obligations under the Employment Standards Act.

o Your employees have all signed non-competition covenants and non-solicitation agreements to prevent them from taking away your best clients, business procedures, best employees and trade secrets if they leave to set up shop on their own.

o You have a procedure to prevent violation of the Human Rights Code and you know the protected grounds of discrimination. You also understand all of the elements of sexual harassment and you know how to deal with it.

o You know your company's rights and obligations under the Workplace Safety Insurance Act and the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

o You have liability and multi-peril insurance and you know what it covers.

o Your manufacturing and distribution processes are set up to avoid potentially devastating product liability and class action lawsuits. You have minimized risks.

o You keep up-to-date with changes in the law which affect the corporate, contractual, insurance and employment law issues in your industry.

o You have complied with the filing requirements for income taxes, sales taxes and GST. You have had your business and municipal tax assessment vetted.

o You know what precautions to take to help prevent litigation.

o If you are about to get involved in litigation, you have an action plan to maximize your chances of success and to keep the cost in check. When hiring a lawyer, you know what you need and what to expect.

Stop the presses - before we continue - do we hear you saying there are many items on this list that you haven't looked after, that you haven't thought of or which could be updated?

We're not surprised. In our experience, small and medium-sized business owners don't get around to dealing with many important legal issues involved in organizing their business relationships with partners, shareholders, customers, employees and government and in preventing or managing the risk of expensive litigation. Often, agreements are not fully thought through.

Small business owners tend to do only what they absolutely have to do to comply with the law and are reluctant to spend money for top drawer legal services when an inexpensive shortcut appears to do the trick. Your focus is getting your business up and running, getting your product to market, making sales and keeping costs down. You could be lucky and run your business for years without anything going wrong.

Fair enough, but if you disregard preventive legal measures like the ones mentioned, your business is like a driver without a seatbelt in a car that has never been serviced ---in other words, a catastrophic accident waiting to happen.

Here are two examples of business legal nightmares that could have been easily avoided with a program of preventive law such as the Business Legal Checkup. These are actual cases, decided in Ontario courts:

o A Toronto RV dealer sold a motor home to a customer. After using it for a couple of weeks, the customer complained that the salesperson had misled him about a "rental program" and brought the motor home back and refused to make any payments. The dealer sold the motor home as a used vehicle and suffered a $25,000 loss for which it sued the customer.

The Ontario Court of Appeal decided that customer was entitled to return the RV and cancel the contract because the salesman's Motor Vehicle Dealers Act registration expired and was not renewed. This made the contract illegal. The RV dealer didn't have a system to check if all their salespersons' registrations were current. The dealer not only lost $25,000 but also had to pay about $30,000 to their own lawyer and almost that much in legal costs to the customer's lawyer. A Business Legal Checkup could have saved this business most of the $100,000 and a lot of aggravation.

o A southwestern Ontario company was a wholesale distributor of car alarm systems, which started as a basement operation and developed into a successful business. The owner used contract forms he found on the internet. Why pay a lawyer when forms were right there for the taking? His standard form contracts had statements that he didn't fully understand but if they were on the internet, they must be OK. He didn't have a lawyer check them. The standard form agreements didn't create a problem for several years.

The distributor extended credit to CAG, a company owned by a Mr. Don for more than $90,000 worth of car alarms. He wasn't worried about payment because Mr. Don signed the standard form contract --- the one he found on the internet for free --- which stated that Mr. Don was personally liable for everything CAG ordered. When CAG went out of business, the distributor sued Mr. Don. The Ontario Court of Appeal dismissed the claim against Mr. Don because the personal liability clause in the standard form agreement was unclear and was capable of two meanings. The distributor didn't recover his $90,000 and had to pay legal fees to his own lawyer and costs to Mr. Don's lawyer. A Business Legal Checkup could have saved him almost $150,000 and possible financial ruin.

These examples are the tip of the iceberg. As you read this article, you can probably think of other examples that affected your business. In each case, it's more than the legal expenses that are at stake. The business owner has to devote time and sleepless nights to the legal dispute and loses time from running the business.

How does a Business Legal Checkup work?

o You will be asked to complete some forms to provide confidential information about your business.

o You will have a discussion with the lawyer to assess the scope of the Business Legal Checkup. For example, it doesn't cover tax law, environmental law or succession planning unless special arrangements are made.

o A basic Business Legal Checkup will provide a diagnostic review of the legal status of the following issues in your business: (1) Set up and governance of your corporation; (2) Relationships among the owners of the business; (3) Relationships with employees; (4) the contracts and forms used in the business; (5) Competition Law and Illegal Advertising; (6) Intellectual Property, Trade Secrets, Confidentiality and Privacy; (7) Safety and risk management; (8) Risk analysis and efficient management of existing litigation; (9) Internet Issues; (10) Regulatory licencing issues.

o A Business Legal Checkup can also be customized to meet the business owner's specific requirements. This may require consultation with outside legal experts.

o In preparation for the Business Legal Checkup, you will be asked to provide documents and information concerning each category of the analysis.

o After the documents have been reviewed by a lawyer, consultation may be required with other lawyers. Further clarifications may be required from you and other senior officers of your business.

o A report will be prepared explaining the status of each topic and red-flagging issues which require attention and indicating their level of urgency.

o When the Business Legal Checkup report is ready, the business owner may prefer to have the Business Legal Checkup lawyer or legal team present the findings orally. An oral presentation followed by a Q&A session can assist the business owner to plan the next steps efficiently.

o The Business Legal Checkup legal team will facilitate referrals to lawyers who are specialized in resolving the legal problems identified by the Business Legal Checkup.

How much will a Business Legal Checkup cost?

For a small startup business with less than five employees, operating out of a single location and having only one business entity, a Business Legal Checkup can usually be completed for about $5,000 to $7,500 if there are no unusual problems.

Who needs a Business Legal Checkup?

Every business needs to know whether its legal processes are efficiently compliant with the law. Public corporations are obliged to provide certain levels of legal compliance to government and regulatory bodies. A small private corporation does not have the same levels of mandatory compliance but failure to do so voluntarily is like the proverbial ostrich with its head in the sand.

A Business Legal Checkup is also useful for a business owner who is considering the sale of his business or for a prospective purchaser of a business. Minority shareholders could insist on a Business Legal Checkup annually or bi-annually to ensure that management and the majority shareholders are meeting their obligations to the corporation.

A Business Legal Checkup may also be a credibility tool for a business seeking financing or government contracts. Unlike a financial audit, ISO9001 and ISO 14400 compliance standards, the Business Legal Checkup is a confidential report to management only and expressly excludes reliance by outside parties. If an outside party, such as a lender or investor, will receive a copy of the report, the Business Legal Checkup legal team must be informed in advance so that concerns relevant to these outside parties can be taken into account.

Where can my business get a Business Legal Checkup?

So far as we know, the Business Legal Checkup, as a fixed-price legal diagnostic tool for private small and medium-sized businesses is a new legal service in Canada. Interested business owners are invited to contact us for information.

Benjamin Franklin's famous advice has evolved. A Business Legal Checkup can be much weightier than an "ounce of prevention". It could provide "tons" of preventive advice to save your business from damaging or catastrophic expense. The Business Legal Checkup will also provide the business owner with peace of mind which, as another saying goes, is "worth its weight in gold".

October 2008. © Igor Ellyn and Orie Niedzviecki

This article is for information only and not legal advice.

Igor Ellyn, QC, CS and Orie Niedzviecki, Partners

Ellyn Law LLP, Business Litigation Lawyers, Toronto

http://www.ellynlaw.com








Igor Ellyn, QC, CS and Orie Niedzviecki are partners of ELLYN LAW LLP Business Litigation and Arbitration Lawyers, a Toronto law firm, established specializing in dispute resolution for small and medium businesses and their shareholders.

The firm is a member of INBLF (http://www.inblf.com) and its designated Toronto firm for shareholder disputes. Igor Ellyn is a Specialist in Civil Litigation and a past president of the Ontario Bar Association. He is a chartered arbitrator and mediator and the author of many legal articles, some of which may be downloaded from the firm's website.

Orie Niedzviecki is a business litigation lawyer, whose practice includes commercial disputes, employment law, libel and slander, construction litigation and estate litigation. He is also admitted in the District of Columbia, USA.

For more information about the authors and their litigation services, please visit http://www.ellynlaw.com


Pursue Your Passion With Legal Office Technology


All the career surveys you've taken haven't helped narrow your interests. The truth is, you love law, business, and technology. Now, you don't have to choose between them. With the many legal office technology careers available, you can blend your passions into the perfect career.

Legal office technology careers offer you the opportunity to perform a wide variety of administrative and office management functions to promote the efficient operation of a legal organization. Tasks may range from scheduling trials and recording court business to performing legal work for an individual attorney. You may also be called upon to handle legal dictation and transcription, set up legal files and business records, and execute legal forms.

To better prepare for legal office technology careers, you can earn a technical certificate or associate of applied science degree in legal office technology, which may then transfer into a bachelor of applied technology degree. These programs will enable you to become a management support professional with technical and communication skills. After all, time management, problem solving, and teamwork skills are key to success in legal office technology.

Legal office technology schools provide a foundation in legal issues, terminology, and procedures for successful employment in a legal office support position. They'll also help you develop general office support skills in word processing, computer applications, accounting, and information management.

Coursework at legal office technology schools may include business communications, computerized accounting, digital input and transcription, client services, wills and probate, criminal law, business mathematics, keyboarding, word processing, administrative law and procedure, legal office technology, legal assisting, legal document processing, civil litigation, family law, legal terminology and office procedures, spreadsheets, records and database management, paralegal studies, and legal research and analysis.

In your legal office technology program, you'll become familiar with the U.S. court systems in the preparation of forms and legal documents. You may also follow a lawsuit through litigation, trial, judgment, and appeal. You'll learn the proper terminology for handling legal dictation and transcription, and you'll learn about law office administration as well as the major substantive areas of the law.

At legal office technology schools, you'll also dabble in the elements of legal research and analysis and sources of the law. You'll develop skills for identifying and analyzing legal issues and for formulating logical and practical legal arguments. Plus, you'll learn to research using a law library and computer technology.

Looking for a lucrative career in a legal setting? Legal office technology schools will get you there.








To find college and career schools near you, surf http://www.CollegeSurfing.com.

? Copyright 2007
The CollegeBound Network
All Rights Reserved

Robyn Tellefsen is a frequent contributor to The CollegeBound Network. Learn more about finding a school or career that's right for you!


Maybe the Democrats and Republicans plain Just Don ' T Like each other


Start with the history books. The Republicans have changed to fit your version in Texas, while the Democrat whined. Look at the laboratory of democracy in Arizona (courtesy Jon Stewart) methodologies. Republicans decided to better racial profile while Democrats in Washington are a way to annul the judgment. Take Glen Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity vs. Keith Obermann, Rachel Maddow, and Jon Stewart. Take the Party of no versus the Yes We Can match. You know, comes at me... maybe Republicans and Democrats simply don't like each other.

That would explain much now not? I refer to hang everything in politics is a pretty tall order. Perhaps, perhaps these two groups deeply doesn't support be one around the other. Take Healthcare reform. Not one. Count it. Not a Republican vote. Everyone really believed it was a bad deal? Or did everything just hate Democrats both thinking of voting for anything supported became disgusting. Sense.These two beasts are really different and who you are as a persona.Solía becomes politics was a dressing you could sit in the salad, now is the salad.

Take the abortion. Really do not receive many people to see eye to eye on that one, and if a Republican and Democrat, then, simply dig right into a moral stance and becomes a value judgement. Take big business versus the entrepreneur. Take the rich against the poor.Take the uninsured vs. the asegurados.Tomar minorities versus old white guys. Begins to dawn on you that Republicans and Democrats simply don't like the other guys values.

Take Wallstreet reform. Everyone agrees we need reform, but Republicans don't want even vote to come to the floor.Therefore obstructionist and say they have something mejor.Tal time do, but the truth is that these guys hate each other so much of that thinking of cooperation in something really agree is still repugnant. Watch only the cable channels and you will see how really cant Republican and Democrat stand each other. Them Duke it towards outside on the procedure, while the rest of the country more slips down the toilet.

Do you have ever to a neighbor who simply couldn't stand? And when you think of him later was something that not able to set fairly. So plant shrubs, put a fence, avoid each other, but actually has a choice: move.Most of the time someone would move.Perhaps one of our political parties must say Arizona.Pondría enough distance between ellos.Ellos could ask each other for votes and never was obliged to be in the same room.It may work.But who is going to Arizona, better carry their voting cards, documents, or at least your license.

Unless they want to call from Mexico.








Last novel by William Hazelgrove is Rocket Man.Su very praised first three novels Ripples, (Pantonne) highly recommended LJ, ALA Editors Choice, tobacco sticks (Bantam, best novels of the ninety LJ Doris Lesher, starring review PW, highly recommended) and roads (Bantam), MICA covers the scope of a majority, a drama of the courtroom in Virginia, set in the 1940s, and sets a mystery in the sur.Rocket Man is a satire about a man struggling to maintain their casa.William Hazelgrove is the writer Hemingway at the residence of the Ernest Hemingway Foundation of Oak Park.Ha written reviews and features for USA today and has been the subject of stories in the New York Times, LA Times, Chicago Tribune, USA Today and NPR ' s All Things ConsideredObtener more information may be collected in http://www.billhazelgrove.com


How to Save Money Handling Your Own Legal Matter


"Sixty percent of bankruptcies and seventy-five percent of divorces in California are done without lawyers," according to Do It Yourself Documents, a self-help legal book and kit retailer. With the availability of so many quality self-help legal resources today, it has never been easier to handle your own legal matter. I will tell you what self-help resources are available and how to use them.

Although the information I am about to give you is based on research and experience, always remember that only a lawyer is qualified to give you sound legal advice. I am not a lawyer, but I have worked extensively in this field. Use any of the products and services I mention here at your own risk.

You have several choices when trying to handle a legal matter without a lawyer. You can do the matter entirely on your own with a self-help book or kit; you can handle the matter with aid from an independent paralegal or legal assistance program; you can handle the matter through a program such as Pre-Paid Legal Services.

SELF-HELP BOOKS AND KITS

The market is saturated with self-help legal books and kits. Which ones can you trust? HALT, an organization of Americans for legal reform, has reviewed many popular self-help guides. On their website, you can find their "Do It Yourself" section, which has helpful product reviews. In general, I will save you time and tell you HALT repeatedly recommends products from Nolo Press. All of Nolo's books and software are created by lawyers and are updated constantly. I also recommend products from Alpha Publications. I do not recommend products from Info America or similar publishers.

Kits and books you want to stay away from are those that are not updated frequently and not written by experts. Make sure the book or kit has a help-line from the publisher you can call if you need assistance. Also, does the kit/book include the forms you need? Does the kit/book have a CD-Rom so you can type the forms on your computer? Remember, you get what you pay for.

Before you buy anything, however, I recommend you check your state court system's website because many states provide both forms and basic instructions for free. For a complete list of state-specific resources, try DoItYourselfDocuments.com. On the left side of their homepage, find your state on the drop down menu, then scroll to the bottom of the page for your state.

If there is a state-specific version of the kit or book you want, buy that one. For example, there are many national divorce kits intended for use in all 50 states. I have never seen one of these books or kits that was useful.

INDEPENDENT PARALEGALS AND LEGAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS

Independent paralegals are paralegals that do not work under the supervision of attorneys. In California, independent paralegals are licensed, bonded, and use the title "Legal Document Assistants." Currently, California is the only state to regulate independent paralegals. For the California Association of Legal Document Assistants, visit their website at http://www.calda.org

An independent paralegal can provide you with the forms you need for many routine legal matters and assist you with filing your documents. Typically, independent paralegals are knowledgeable about local court rules and other nuisances you may not find in a self-help book or kit. The price? Usually, 1/3 of what you'd pay for an attorney.

If you live outside of California, be sure you hire an independent paralegal with a paralegal certificate from an American Bar Association approved school. Many times, independent paralegals with 15 years of experience or more do not have these certificates because they were not needed years ago. You may want to ask the independent paralegal what, if any, continuing education s/he obtains over the course of a year to stay up-to-date on training. Also, how long, if at all, s/he worked under the supervision of an attorney to gain the required knowledge to assist you. Finally, ask if the independent paralegal is a member of a professional association or has any special certifications.

There is only one national independent paralegal franchise to my knowledge, and that is We The People. We The People does not require their owners or operators to have paralegal certificates; however, they do provide in-depth training from the company on all the types of legal matters that they cover. We The People has been in business for over 20 years.

Like the independent paralegals described above, there are also "attorney assisted" independent paralegals. These attorney-assisted paralegals typically perform the same services as traditional independent paralegals but have an attorney proofread their documents or oversee their work in some way. Prices are typically about the same or slightly higher than traditional independent paralegals.

As for legal assistance programs, most states have "paperwork helpers" in the courthouse to assist you. In California, these are called Family Law Facilitators. These programs are free to everybody; they are not legal aid, which is only available to people with low incomes. There are also occasionally programs through local civic groups, such as the YMCA, that provide similar assistance.

PRE-PAID LEGAL

There are many types of legal insurance, but the most established is Pre-Paid Legal Services ( http://www.prepaidlegal.com ) For about $25-$30 a month, you can call a "provider law firm" and get legal advice on any matter. If you decide to use the "provider law firm" to handle a legal matter on your behalf, you typically receive some kind of discount. Some programs include free preparation of a Last Will and Testament for you and your spouse. Like any insurance, you can cancel your membership at any time.

If you wanted to do a more complex legal matter on your own, you could obtain a pre-paid legal membership and call your provider law firm any time you had a concern. If desired, cancel your membership when your legal matter was resolved. Be very sure that each time you call your provider law firm, you make it clear that you are not calling about the same thing you previously called about. They will charge you if you do. Be very specific and say, "I have called about this issue before, but I have a new concern..." Be prepared to wait a day or two for the provider law firm to call you back with your requested advice or information.

Many employers offer pre-paid legal insurance as a benefit. Before you sign up, be sure to check with your employer--it may be completely free to you.

http://www.halt.org/lic/dir.php?cid=13









Sunday, October 3, 2010

2 Wall Street was really bad.

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Why me terrify to Zhu Zhu hamsters?


I was just browsing on the website of Zhu Zhu hamsters and stumbled upon a certain Hamster from Zhu of Zhu which apparently goes by the name of "The Mr doodles." As it is that Mr. Squiggles was under a lot of scrutiny lately. Mainly because it was dirty. And by dirty, I mean there were reports of overload of deadly chemicals apparently contained within its little hairy body. BIO - toxic hamsters running amok in shops of toys in the world robot are a little afraid, do not you think?

Well, there is good news at all. Mr. Squiggles is not dirty rodent once thought it was. These scientific results, known only as GoodGuide.com, was horribly wrong in their claims in a security when measured against federal standards.My personal opinion is that these groups own farms Hamster live and have fears death competitors less odor, robotic. but that only me.

In general, it seems that these rodents theft are clear according to the CPSC. They are not contaminated as the California based GoodGuide.com claimed to be. Even apologized! Of course, Zhu Zhu animal was full-force in disputing these claims.Fox News even jumped in to delete the name Zhu Zhu, between their Obama hitting and news reporting otherwise laughable. only I am glad that the followers of Glen Beck have no fears of poisonous robots bent on destroying society. Zhu Zhu owners must have voted clearly Republican.

With all the dust settled on the controversial issue of Zhu Zhu pollution, we can sleep all and best by Mr. Squiggles noche.El can laugh and play in your home page and its red layer little proudly. There are no more toxic rodents to avenge their dreams at night, unless of course you live in lower Manhattan.That is another story.

So, if you've decided to buy his son a Zhu Zhu hamster, go right by delante.No there is nothing that kill Johnny little inside the hamster, other than her lack of life and artificial intelligence based affection, which could end up his soul in decomposition.But hey, is better then a rodent species smelly sucks up the s holiday, right? Johnny can worry about his soul another time. is Christmas!








Hello, my name is dan and I like to write for fun. check out my latest site that teaches women How to talk dirty to men.


Worst ever misquote the 28th

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2008 NFL Draft


The 2008 NFL Draft coming in April, so let's look at the main selections and how rates for this project.

1 Darren Mcfadden, RB, Arkansas - Mcfadden is the player with more talent in the project, but with the Dolphins most likely first pick is that you will not select him due to the current situation there as a running back.

2 Matt Ryan, QB, Boston College - Ryan is a tall strong armed quarterback who have the skills to be a franchise in the NFL quarterback. Look for him to be selected in the top 5 selections depending on the needs of computer.

3 Andre Woodson, QB, Kentucky - I think that Woodson will be a good quarterback in the NFL, although some say that he cannot fairly has a strong enough arm to be a top 5 point.I still believe that he is worthy of this high of a score as that he led his team this year. Let's see how valued outside when it has its pro day or if you are working in combination.

4 Glen Dorsey, QB, LSU - Dorsey is the Top defensive player on board and could very well player taken in the 2008 NFL draft since the Miami Dolphins have locked and can take almost nadie.En my opinion would be better to take Jake Long to block for John Beck and Ronnie Brown next year.

5 Jake Long, OL, Michigan - Long leads this kind of offensive line for years and will be a strong start in the NFL for the years venideros.Como I said earlier, if I were more likely to them but opt for the Dolphins would try to work in the line of the defence Long O picking will probably end in New York with the Jets

Go A: http://www.draftrankings.blogspot.com for updated information on the 2008 NFL draft








http://www.draftrankings.blogspot.com


Saturday, October 2, 2010

We must take care, we know how to sell it to people

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The Impact of the "Credit Crunch" on Legal Recruitment


"The Lawyer" today reported that the credit crunch does not seem to have had an effect on law firm's trainee retention rates. In fact, the retention rates are reported to have had a 7% increase, with more than three-quarters of law firms keeping on more trainee solicitors than last year. At first glance these figures may seem like a surprise, but could this actually be a strategic move by law firms to safeguard their future, and what implications does this present for legal recruitment?

With many trainee Solicitors due to qualify this September, this announcement is sure to be welcomed with open arms, but perhaps not to legal recruitment agencies that thrive on a good staff turnover within law firms and In-House legal teams. In simple terms, Newly Qualified Solicitors present cheaper labour to law firms as; firstly, Newly Qualified Solicitors command a lower salary than more experienced solicitors; and secondly, filling vacancies internally by retaining Newly Qualified Solicitors is much more cost-effective than paying human resources costs, advertising fees and legal recruitment agency's fees. Also, if the economy were to take a further turn for the worse, it would be easier and cheaper for legal practices to make redundancies at the Newly Qualified level.

The legal recruitment agency industry has also seen Legal Executives become increasingly sought after. Nowadays it is not unusual for a law firms to advertise a job as a "Solicitor/Legal Executive" vacancy. Again, this indicates another ripple effect of the credit crunch as just like Newly Qualified Solicitors, Legal Executives also present cheaper labour than experienced Solicitors. However, unlike Newly Qualified Solicitors, Legal Executives gain their title by clocking up five years experience of working within a Law Firm; this time will generally include two years of carrying their own caseload, and on average, four years studying. This means that quite often, Legal Executives will have more experience than Solicitors, so surely employing a Legal Executive rather than a Solicitor presents a no-brainer to law firms in a time of financial crisis.

Legal recruitment agencies have also seen a record number of Commercial Property Legal Secretaries registering since the beginning of the year. Last year, experienced Legal Secretaries were in high demand with an abundance of job opportunities being advertised - especially in the commercial property sector, so it was relatively easy to place an experienced Legal Secretary that came on to the books. However, in the current situation, with commercial property work diminishing, it is the support staff such as Legal Secretaries and Paralegals who are first to take the brunt of redundancies. Many law firms are able to redistribute Legal Secretaries into different departments, but from a legal recruitment perspective, it is increasingly difficult to find job opportunities for superfluous support staff. Recruitment is a job-driven marketplace after all!

Fortunately, the credit crunch hasn't been all bad so far - despite having a huge impact on the property sector, other practice areas have been unaffected. Private Client legal vacancies, Personal Injury law jobs, Clinical Negligence job opportunities, Criminal positions and Commercial Litigation vacancies are still being advertised as these areas are still going strong. And perhaps not so unsurprisingly, practice areas such as Employment law, Civil Litigation / Insolvency law have actually picked up with a healthy number of jobs available. Sadly, the credit crunch has also seen Family law pick up as financial pressures are taking their toll on family life as has Insolvency law with many businesses struggling to stay afloat.

There remains a lot of uncertainty about how much more the credit crisis will affect the legal recruitment industry in the coming months. At present there are still jobs out there, but the pinch is beginning to be felt. My prediction is that if the current situation worsens, it will be the higher paid higher skilled legal staff that will be the most affected. Legal recruitment will see a higher volume of support staff, Newly Qualified and Legal Executives vacancies, but a smaller volume of experienced Solicitor positions. But at the end of the day, it is only time that will be able to tell.








Check out legal jobs and legal recruitment at Judicial Review.


Maybe the Democrats and Republicans plain Just Don ' T Like each other


Start with the history books. The Republicans have changed to fit your version in Texas, while the Democrat whined. Look at the laboratory of democracy in Arizona (courtesy Jon Stewart) methodologies. Republicans decided to better racial profile while Democrats in Washington are a way to annul the judgment. Take Glen Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity vs. Keith Obermann, Rachel Maddow, and Jon Stewart. Take the Party of no versus the Yes We Can match. You know, comes at me... maybe Republicans and Democrats simply don't like each other.

That would explain much now not? I refer to hang everything in politics is a pretty tall order. Perhaps, perhaps these two groups deeply doesn't support be one around the other. Take Healthcare reform. Not one. Count it. Not a Republican vote. Everyone really believed it was a bad deal? Or did everything just hate Democrats both thinking of voting for anything supported became disgusting. Sense.These two beasts are really different and who you are as a persona.Solía becomes politics was a dressing you could sit in the salad, now is the salad.

Take the abortion. Really do not receive many people to see eye to eye on that one, and if a Republican and Democrat, then, simply dig right into a moral stance and becomes a value judgement. Take big business versus the entrepreneur. Take the rich against the poor.Take the uninsured vs. the asegurados.Tomar minorities versus old white guys. Begins to dawn on you that Republicans and Democrats simply don't like the other guys values.

Take Wallstreet reform. Everyone agrees we need reform, but Republicans don't want even vote to come to the floor.Therefore obstructionist and say they have something mejor.Tal time do, but the truth is that these guys hate each other so much of that thinking of cooperation in something really agree is still repugnant. Watch only the cable channels and you will see how really cant Republican and Democrat stand each other. Them Duke it towards outside on the procedure, while the rest of the country more slips down the toilet.

Do you have ever to a neighbor who simply couldn't stand? And when you think of him later was something that not able to set fairly. So plant shrubs, put a fence, avoid each other, but actually has a choice: move.Most of the time someone would move.Perhaps one of our political parties must say Arizona.Pondría enough distance between ellos.Ellos could ask each other for votes and never was obliged to be in the same room.It may work.But who is going to Arizona, better carry their voting cards, documents, or at least your license.

Unless they want to call from Mexico.








Last novel by William Hazelgrove is Rocket Man.Su very praised first three novels Ripples, (Pantonne) highly recommended LJ, ALA Editors Choice, tobacco sticks (Bantam, best novels of the ninety LJ Doris Lesher, starring review PW, highly recommended) and roads (Bantam), MICA covers the scope of a majority, a drama of the courtroom in Virginia, set in the 1940s, and sets a mystery in the sur.Rocket Man is a satire about a man struggling to maintain their casa.William Hazelgrove is the writer Hemingway at the residence of the Ernest Hemingway Foundation of Oak Park.Ha written reviews and features for USA today and has been the subject of stories in the New York Times, LA Times, Chicago Tribune, USA Today and NPR ' s All Things ConsideredObtener more information may be collected in http://www.billhazelgrove.com


Should You Join A Prepaid Legal Plan Service?


A legal plan service or membership program, is a concept that has been around for a number of years. Legal plans became popular in Europe in the 1930's, and they remain popular and well-known there today. In America, legal plans have also become increasingly popular, as more companies have offered different plans, and individuals and business have seen their value. Legal plans work by providing basic coverage and attorney services for a membership, or a prepaid fee, that is usually paid monthly or yearly. By paying the membership fee, you have access to an attorney and their services, where without the plan you would have to pay, in some cases, a substantial fee. Having a legal plan service can make good sense, but it won't solve all your legal issues.

Most of these plans focus on preventative legal care, so you can get legal assistance and advice before you start having legal difficulties. They also cover some basic issues that many individuals or businesses need legal assistance with. You will be able to have a free consultation with an attorney at no additional cost, often initially by phone. You can usually call the attorney on as many different legal issues as you want, you will receive a free consultation for each question or issue. This can be a powerful tool, as you can often get many of your legal questions or issues handled this way.

Other services are also included in legal plans. Normally a free will will be included, with yearly updates. Many plans will also write a letter or a make a call on your behalf. This is a valuable service if you are having a dispute, as an awareness of attorney representation can clear up many issues with a 3rd party. In addition, you will also have coverage for contract or document review, where your attorney will review documents, such as agreements or sales contracts, and answer any of your questions. If you need more legal assistance, such as an appearance in court, or extra legal help, you will get a discount on the attorney's hourly fee.

There are a variety of legal plans available. The most basic plan is the individual or family plan, but many legal service plans also offer business coverage, where they provide basic legal services tailored for a business. There are even more specialized legal plans available, such as one designed just for truck drivers. A great way to join is to see if you workplace offers a plan as an employee benefit package, many do. In many cases, you can join for free or reduced cost.

There are some limitations. Prepaid legal services are not designed to solve preexisting or ongoing legal issues. There focus is on preventative care and access to an attorney for a consultation. If you have a major legal issue, such as a law suit, a divorce, or bankruptcy, a legal plan will be of limited assistance, although you will probably get a discount of the hourly rate you would normally pay an attorney. A legal plan service is a way for middle class Americans to have the access to attorneys that used to be the province of the wealthy. Having a plan is a great way to help keep yourself out of legal trouble with preventative assistance, but it won't solve all of your legal problems.








Amy Wells writes about consumer legal issues. Need legal assistance? Considering a prepaid legal plan? Get insider tips and resources about prepaid legal plans at : http://www.legalplan.yourtechtool.com


Friday, October 1, 2010

Need to Fill Legal Vacancies Quickly? Why Not Use a Legal Recruitment Agency?


It's the year 2008 and the war for "best talent" is on. So when one of your Legal Secretaries hands in their notice, a Senior Solicitor announces his retirement or one of your highest billing fee-earners is going on maternity leave - how do you find quality candidates to replace your best assets quickly and efficiently?

Gone are the days when a lineage ad in a popular weekly legal publication will attract an abundance of keen legal candidates. Whilst law firms have become more selective over the legal staff they employ, talented legal job seekers have become lazier. Ever-developing technology now means that candidates can go to a search engine, type in the title of their dream legal job; and hey, presto - generate fifty matching legal vacancies that they can apply to with just the click of a button. Why should potential legal staff spend hours trawling through countless publications, when law jobs could come straight to them?

So we've already established that a legal job seeker's life is becoming easier by the day, but is this to the law firm's detriment? With competition getting stiffer for law firms as Legal Recruitment moves predominantly to the user-focussed web, it is imperative that law firms have a strong internet presence in order for their legal jobs to be seen. This will involve setting up a variety of marketing campaigns including paying through the nose to advertise on a variety of legal job boards - which, lets be honest, will probably end up being swamped by millions of other similar vacancies. Advertising legal vacancies on a law firms own website may also be a pointless exercise as when a candidate Googles "Commercial Property Solicitor job" it is highly unlikely to be seen without the website having undergone a substantial amount Search Engine Optimization work focussing primarily on keywords such as "legal jobs" - which seems an expensive and utter waste of time seeing as the primary focus of a law firm's website is to attract new clients. Now for just a few legal vacancies, going to all of this trouble may seem an expensive and timely exercise. Relax, there is another option - why not use a Legal Recruitment Agency?

In the nineties when legal recruitment began to take off, legal recruitment agencies were seen as a waste of money - a middle man placing a one or two adverts (that lets face it, the law firm could have done themselves just as quickly) and charging a whopping great fee for the no more than adequate law staff that they attracted. Well, times have changed and the Legal Recruitment industry is working harder than ever before to earn their fee, and more often than not, using a good Legal Recruitment Agency is a far more cost and time efficient method of sourcing candidates than going it alone. Good Legal Recruitment Agencies will have more time and experience in devising marketing strategies that work, they will also have the resources to invest in a number of different advertising mediums, and a good team of consultants with a knowledge and experience of the legal profession.

With so many Legal Recruitment Agencies emerging it may seem like a daunting task finding a good one. However, in actual fact a good Legal Recruitment Agency should be extremely easy to find - they will have a good, user-friendly Legal Recruitment website; a large presence on the most popular legal job boards; and they will have good brand awareness online as well as in traditional media. All of these attributes are easy to measure by simply going to a Search Engine and searching for "Legal Recruitment Agency" in the area that the law firm is based. The best will have a good search engine ranking and a simple and effective website. The second step would be to call them up, discuss you requirements and judge how well informed they are about the legal profession, the culture of the area that you are based, and how well they have grasped your requirements. It is also worth discussing their fees and seeing whether there are any discounts for using that particular Legal Recruitment Agency exclusively, and whether there are any rebate periods. A good Legal Recruitment Agency should not charge you unless a candidate has been successfully placed with you.

Quite often, a Legal Recruitment Agency will already have a good matching candidate on their database that is readily available. Otherwise, or in addition, the Legal Recruitment Agency will place a number of adverts in different strategic locations. Depending on the nature of the job, the Legal Recruitment Agency may even look at targeting passive candidates. The candidates that the Legal Recruitment Agency sends through will be filtered and should be good matches to your initial requirements. Should you want to interview any of them, the Agency should liaise closely with you and the candidate to get this organised quickly. The Legal Recruitment Agency should also be liaising between the candidate and client until the contract of employment has been sent out by the law firm and returned by the candidate.

All in all, using a Recruitment Agency could save your Human Resources department hours of time an effort. So when you next foresee a Legal Recruitment nightmare within your Human Resources team, don't discount Legal Recruitment Agencies - you never know, the right one could actually be the answer to all of your prayers!








Check out legal jobs and legal recruitment at http://www.judicialreview.co.uk

I am fairly new to the wonderful world of article writing, but have been a copywriter for 2 years. If anyone deems any of my articles good enough for them to add to their blog/website please put my name on it and a link to my website http://www.judicialreview.co.uk and use the anchor text 'legal jobs'.


Maybe the Democrats and Republicans plain Just Don ' T Like each other


Start with the history books. The Republicans have changed to fit your version in Texas, while the Democrat whined. Look at the laboratory of democracy in Arizona (courtesy Jon Stewart) methodologies. Republicans decided to better racial profile while Democrats in Washington are a way to annul the judgment. Take Glen Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity vs. Keith Obermann, Rachel Maddow, and Jon Stewart. Take the Party of no versus the Yes We Can match. You know, comes at me... maybe Republicans and Democrats simply don't like each other.

That would explain much now not? I refer to hang everything in politics is a pretty tall order. Perhaps, perhaps these two groups deeply doesn't support be one around the other. Take Healthcare reform. Not one. Count it. Not a Republican vote. Everyone really believed it was a bad deal? Or did everything just hate Democrats both thinking of voting for anything supported became disgusting. Sense.These two beasts are really different and who you are as a persona.Solía becomes politics was a dressing you could sit in the salad, now is the salad.

Take the abortion. Really do not receive many people to see eye to eye on that one, and if a Republican and Democrat, then, simply dig right into a moral stance and becomes a value judgement. Take big business versus the entrepreneur. Take the rich against the poor.Take the uninsured vs. the asegurados.Tomar minorities versus old white guys. Begins to dawn on you that Republicans and Democrats simply don't like the other guys values.

Take Wallstreet reform. Everyone agrees we need reform, but Republicans don't want even vote to come to the floor.Therefore obstructionist and say they have something mejor.Tal time do, but the truth is that these guys hate each other so much of that thinking of cooperation in something really agree is still repugnant. Watch only the cable channels and you will see how really cant Republican and Democrat stand each other. Them Duke it towards outside on the procedure, while the rest of the country more slips down the toilet.

Do you have ever to a neighbor who simply couldn't stand? And when you think of him later was something that not able to set fairly. So plant shrubs, put a fence, avoid each other, but actually has a choice: move.Most of the time someone would move.Perhaps one of our political parties must say Arizona.Pondría enough distance between ellos.Ellos could ask each other for votes and never was obliged to be in the same room.It may work.But who is going to Arizona, better carry their voting cards, documents, or at least your license.

Unless they want to call from Mexico.








Last novel by William Hazelgrove is Rocket Man.Su very praised first three novels Ripples, (Pantonne) highly recommended LJ, ALA Editors Choice, tobacco sticks (Bantam, best novels of the ninety LJ Doris Lesher, starring review PW, highly recommended) and roads (Bantam), MICA covers the scope of a majority, a drama of the courtroom in Virginia, set in the 1940s, and sets a mystery in the sur.Rocket Man is a satire about a man struggling to maintain their casa.William Hazelgrove is the writer Hemingway at the residence of the Ernest Hemingway Foundation of Oak Park.Ha written reviews and features for USA today and has been the subject of stories in the New York Times, LA Times, Chicago Tribune, USA Today and NPR ' s All Things ConsideredObtener more information may be collected in http://www.billhazelgrove.com


Legal Fees - When Are They Deductible?


The tax law does not specifically mention legal fees as deductible items. Therefore, the deductibility of such expenditures depends on the context in which they are incurred. The absence of specific provisions for legal fees in the Code has resulted in many interesting and important developments concerning their deductibility.

Trade or Business Legal and Professional Fees

Fees Must Be Incurred in Carrying on a Trade or Business

Fees Must Be Ordinary and Necessary

Fees Must Be Reasonable in Amount

Fees Must Be Paid or Incurred During Taxable Year

Fees Must Be Paid by Person to Whom Services Are Rendered

Deductible Non-Business Legal and Other Professional Expenses

Fees Paid or Incurred in Connection with the Production or Collection of Income

Fees Paid in Connection with the Management, Conservation, or Maintenance of Property for the Production of Income

Fees Paid in Connection with the Determination, Collection, or Refund of Any Tax

Legal and Other Professional Fees Constituting Personal Expenses or Capital Expenditures

Origin of the Claim Test

Allocation of Legal and Other Professional Fees Which Are Partly Personal Expenses or Capital Expenditures

Amounts paid for legal and other professional services may, depending on the factual circumstances and the ability of the taxpayer to meet the applicable legal requirements for deduction, have the following tax consequences: (1) a deductible expense or as one of the three categories of deductible nonbusiness expenses: (2) a personal expense which is nondeductible; (3) a capital expenditure which is nondeductible, but which may be subject to depreciation or amortization; (4) a deductible loss; or (5) a combination of the foregoing.

In order to be deductible as a trade or business expense, legal and professional fees must be: (i) incurred in carrying on a trade or business; (ii) ordinary and necessary; (iii) reasonable in amount; (iv) paid or incurred during the taxable year in which the taxpayer seeks to deduct them; and (v) paid by the person to whom the services are rendered. These requirements are discussed briefly below.

A taxpayer cannot deduct legal and professional fees paid or incurred in a taxable year (even if they are shown to be ordinary, necessary and reasonable and meet the other requirements herein discussed) unless the taxpayer can show that the expense was paid or incurred in carrying on a trade or business. Whether the taxpayer's activities amount to engaging in a trade or business is a factual question.

The Code does not provide any specific definition of "trade or business." There are, however, literally hundreds of contradictory cases, which interpret the term in different ways. In general, the taxpayer must be engaged in an activity on a continuous and regular basis (rather than intermittently or sporadically) in order to qualify as engaging in a trade or business. One indication that a taxpayer is engaging in a trade or business is that he devotes a substantial portion of time to the business.

A taxpayer is engaged in a trade or business while acting as an employee. However, it is preferable for an expense to qualify as an expense that is related to a trade or business other than the trade or business of being an employee, because legal fees that are related to the trade or business of being an employee, are miscellaneous itemized deductions, which are subject to the floor and the overall limitation on itemized deductions. Moreover, a taxpayer that is subject to the alternative minimum tax is precluded from deducting certain expenses, including attorney's fees that would otherwise be allowable as miscellaneous itemized deductions.

A taxpayer is not engaged in a trade or business if he engages in investment-management activities on a full-time basis, although such expenses, including professional fees, may be deductible under the rules for expenses incurred for the production of income.

In addition to the requirement that the taxpayer be regularly and continuously engaged in business activity, the taxpayer must also be engaged in the activity with the predominant purpose of making a profit in order to be engaged in a trade or business.

In order to be deductible as a trade or business expense, an expenditure must be both (i) ordinary and (ii) necessary. Since there is no fixed rule as to what expenditures will constitute "ordinary and necessary expenses," the question is treated as essentially one of fact, and thus no broad generalizations regarding what expenditures will qualify can be made. The "ordinary and necessary" requirement should be fairly easy to meet for most legal fees, since the taxpayer will generally have good reasons for using such professional services.

Legal expenses that otherwise qualify for deduction are deductible only as long as they are also reasonable in amount. The regulations indicate that expenses coming "must be reasonable in amount and must bear a reasonable and proximate relation to the production or collection of taxable income or to the management, conservation, or maintenance of property held for the production of income."

The fact that a service provider renders or provides a legal, or other professional service to the taxpayer in a particular tax year does not mean that the fee can be deducted in that year. Deductibility depends on whether the fee is paid or incurred in the taxable year in which the deduction is sought, which, in turn, depends upon the taxpayer's method of .

Another requirement for deductibility is that the expenses that the taxpayer seeks to deduct must be those of the taxpayer and not of someone else. Thus, generally, a corporation must incur legal and other professional fees for its own benefit and cannot deduct fees incurred only for the benefit of its stockholders. Legal expenses, however, and amounts paid by a corporation in defending or settling suits against employees arising out of the business are deductible by the corporation since such expenditures are deemed to be for the benefit of the corporation. incurred for the production or collection of income. The Commissioner argued unsuccessfully that the payments were capital in nature.

The courts generally hold that a shareholder's legal and other professional fees are deductible by the corporation where the shareholder is successful as a plaintiff against the corporation, and where, by reason of state law, court order, or court-approved settlement, the corporation is required to pay the fees. Officers' and directors' legal fees in derivative suits for breach of fiduciary duty in the conduct of the corporation's affairs have also generally been held deductible. The corporation's payment of such fees is deemed to be for the benefit, and an ordinary and necessary part, of the corporation's business.

Some expenses, which are paid or incurred in connection with income-producing activities (such as investing) of a noncorporate taxpayer, are not actually trade or business expenses and also cannot be characterized as either personal expenses or capital expenditures. These expenses are deductible. Thus, legal and other professional fees which might otherwise appear to be nondeductible, are in fact deductible if they are (i) paid or incurred for the production or collection of income, (ii) paid or incurred for the management, conservation, or maintenance of property held for the production of income, or (iii) paid or incurred in connection with the determination, collection, or refund of any tax.

It should be noted, however, that deductible nonbusiness legal and other professional expenses must still meet all the other requirements of deductible trade or business expenses. Thus, such expenses must be ordinary and necessary and reasonable in amount. Instead of the standard that requires that trade or business expenses be incurred in the carrying on of a trade or business, the tax law imposes a requirement that the expenditure bear a reasonable and proximate relation to the production or collection of income or to the management, conservation, or maintenance of property held for the production of income.

The first category of expenses that are deductible comprises those paid or incurred "for the production or collection of income." It is not necessary that they relate to the production or collection of income in the current taxable year, as long as the legal expenses were currently paid or incurred. Thus, in defining "income", the regulations state that the term includes income that was realized in a prior year, is realized during the current year, or may be realized in subsequent years. The regulations further provide that the term "income" is not confined to recurring income, but applies as well to gains from the disposition of property.

Actual collection of income is not required, provided there is an effort to collect, i.e., an undertaking involving legal services pursued with the expectation of realizing income or profit. The deduction only applies with respect to taxable income; legal and other professional fees paid or incurred in connection with the production or collection of tax-exempt income are nondeductible.

Ordinary and necessary expenses paid or incurred for the management, conservation, or maintenance of property held for the production of income are deductible. Even though the property may not be currently productive and there is no likelihood that the property will be sold at a profit or otherwise will be productive of income, expenses paid or incurred in managing, conserving or maintaining it may be deductible. This is also true where the property is held merely to minimize a loss. Furthermore, ordinary and necessary expenses paid or incurred in the management, conservation, or maintenance of a building devoted to rental purposes are deductible notwithstanding that there is actually no income there from in the taxable year, and regardless of the manner in which, or the purpose for which, the property in question was acquired.

Legal fees and other expenses paid for the management or conservation of real property held in connection with a taxpayer's hobby or similar activity, or as the taxpayer's residence are not deductible. If, however, the taxpayer vacates and converts his residence to rental property, legal expenses incurred in its management as rental property are deductible.

For purposes of the rule concerning the maintenance, conservation, and management of property held for the production of income, the terms "maintenance" and "conservation" seem to refer to actions taken with regard to the property itself, such as safeguarding or upkeep, rather than the taxpayer's retention of its ownership.

An individual taxpayer is entitled to deduct any legal or other professional fee, which is ordinary and necessary and paid or incurred during the taxable year in connection with the determination, collection, or refund of any tax.

Planning for future transactions is clearly deductible.

Although the Code specifically allows a deduction for certain personal expenses (e.g., alimony, charitable contributions, etc.), as a general rule, expenditures that are strictly personal are not allowed as a deduction. Since there is no specific allowance in the Code for legal and other professional expenditures that are personal in nature, such expenses are nondeductible. Similarly, legal and other professional expenses that are capital in nature and thus not deductible in the year in which they are paid or incurred will be either nondeductible or deductible, if at all, in a taxable year occurring after the current taxable year. It should be noted, however, that although no immediate tax benefit is derived from legal or other professional expenses that are categorized as personal, capital expenditures are added to the basis of the property and may be recovered either when the property is disposed of, or as depreciation or amortization deductions over a number of years.

Because not all litigation expenses are deductible, it may be necessary to apply a judicially-developed test to determine deductibility. This is particularly true where it is unclear whether the expense is personal, capital in nature, or deductible. The courts have created the "origin of the claim" test to assist in this endeavor; the test applies regardless of whether it is the plaintiff or the defendant who seeks the deduction.

Under this theory, the origin and character of the claim with respect to which the legal or other professional fee was paid or incurred is examined to determine whether it arose from a personal or capital transaction or whether it is related to a business or profit-seeking activity. For example, legal fees incurred in a divorce proceeding to dissolve a marital relationship clearly originate from a claim that is personal in nature. Such fees, therefore, are nondeductible as personal expenditures. Similarly legal fees paid or incurred in the acquisition or disposition of, or in perfecting title to, property originate from a claim that is capital in nature, and must be capitalized.

If the transaction in which a legal or other professional fee is incurred is partially attributable to a trade or business or a nonbusiness activity and partially to nondeductible living, personal, and family activities or to capital expenditures, the taxpayer will not be entitled to deduct the entire fee. Instead, the taxpayer must allocate the fee between a deductible portion and a nondeductible portion. Thus, in filing a tax return, the taxpayer (or the IRS or a court, if the taxpayer failed to do so, or has done so incorrectly) must allocate the fees between deductible fees and nondeductible fees.

Since allocations are inherently factual, no hard and fast rules can be advanced for how an allocation must be made. Fees need not be allocated in exactly the same proportions as the underlying claims.

The IRS has indicated that it will consider the following factors when determining whether an allocation is reasonable:

(a) the time required;

(b) the difficulty of the tax questions presented;

(c) the amount of tax involved;

(d) the fees customarily charged in the locality for the services performed; and

(e) the results obtained.








Feeley & Driscoll, P.C.

Certified Public Accountants / Business Consultants


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Why Are Legal Translations Important?


Legal translation is a task that requires a lot of expertise and familiarity with linguistic conventions that apply to laws and legal cases.

Translations consist of taking a document in one language and switching it to another language whilst maintaining the same meaning. Legal translations deal with legal issues and terms. This field involves translating statutes, contracts, patents and any type of legal documentation. These documents are often used in legal proceedings where the initial original meaning must be maintained even after the translation.

Legal terminology is very complex and can vary from one country to another. Due to the fact that not every country has the same legal system, in some cases legal concepts do not have an equivalent in the target language. Codes and laws have been created to suit a particular country or culture and when the legal term does not have an equivalent in the target language, the translator needs to "recreate" the concept and the whole idea attached to the legal expression. "Transcreation" is a re-interpretation of the original concept to suit the audience of the target language in a particular time. It is very difficult to find equivalence between two terms if both legal languages refer to different legal systems.

Why Are Legal Translations Important?

Laws and codes seek to establish clearly defined rights and duties for certain individuals. The purpose of legal translation is to look for linguistic and juridical similarities between legal texts that belong to different legal systems. There are some cases where crimes might have similar meanings in two systems but are not identical; imply different connotations which lead to different sentences. The legal translator should be aware of intention of the original legal text and the interpretation (or interpretations) that has been attached to that text. The use of precedent is typical of Anglo-American common-law tradition that is built on the doctrine of stare decisis. (stand by decided matters)

Errors in legal translation could be fatal due to the effects that a legal misjudgment could have in the life and rights of individuals. It could also affect national security, diplomatic relations and lead to lawsuits.

To avoid mistakes, legal translators should be guided by standards of linguistic, social and cultural equivalence between the language used in the source text to and the target language. According to the expert on Comparative Law, Gerard-Ren? de Groot, the difficulty of legal translations depend more on structural differences between legal systems rather than on linguistically differences.

Legal Translators

To deliver accurate translations, legal translators need to understand the different law systems as well as specific areas within law such as Criminal Law, Commercial Law, Property Law, etc. They also need to be competent in legal writing and have an in-depth knowledge of legal terminology. It is critical to assign legal translations to professionals that have the knowledge and experience to deal with them. It is also indispensable to have a deep understanding of Comparative Law system which helps to comprehend basic legal terms and structures in an international context.

What is Comparative Law?

It is the study of the diverse legal systems around the world and the differences and similarities between them. Comparative Law provides the foundation to create bilingual dictionaries that try to find equivalence among the elements of the source and the target legal texts.

Legal translators have a hard job because many legal concepts were originated within a particular social and political framework and may have no counterpart in other legal system. They must look for juridical and linguistic equivalence between the terms in order to find the pragmatic and functional equivalence in the concepts.

Comparative law methods help to create a reinterpretation of incompatible legal terms and to do so technical and pragmatist aspects of legal language should be taken into account. The equation is not that simple because some specialists prioritize the technical aspects of legal translation while other put emphasis on the connotative aspects of legal language. The convergence of these two approaches can facilitate the translation of legal texts.

There are some cases where the divergence between legal terms is too big that equivalence is not an option. To resolve the problem, there are few options. One is to keep the foreign term as it is. Other alternatives are to create a new term or to paraphrase the given term. The last option seems to have more adepts within the translation industry because it facilitates the reader's understanding of the concept and the purpose of legal translation is bridging different cultures and legal systems and help them to understand each other.








Sandra Melo
Online Marketing Consultant
Quick Lingo


This is what Media issues.

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Politics and the art of Blame

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The indelible stamp the Bush-Cheney Administration has made on America and its global reputation will resonate well into the next decade. Without question, America has systematically isolated itself on the world stage and methodically perpetrated what is considered by many as the largest public relations hoax in history. This article sets aside the obvious redundancy of circumscribing the Bush family history and the Bush-Cheney ties to "big oil"; the Wolfowitz Doctrine and American pre-eminence; and American foreign policy initiatives in 1979 (i.e. alliance with the Taliban and Osama Bin Laden during the Soviet - Afghanistan War and Saddam Hussein during the Iran-Iraq War). In the past, American foreign policy has made some strange bedfellows. Instead, this article creates a context for and reviews the types of political tools the Administration has used over the past 9 years to get their domestic policy objectives met.

The Role of "Democracy": First, in today's America, there is little regard for the practice of democracy. Many eulogize the concept, but fall short in implementation. Democracy has evolved into a tool, used by the economically and politically elite to create sentiment for, and the illusion of public input into governance. In effect, one vote, one person means little when the ruling parties on both sides are really out of touch with the average person. This is the primary reason why the art of public relations and media manipulation is used - to elucidate and draw lines between disparate groups in America where there really is no commonality.

Opponents of this view of democracy will vehemently argue that everyone gets to exercise their right of enfranchisement and vote their conscience every few years, and hence there is an active and vibrant democracy in America. However, this highly spun view of democracy, touted by those who want to perpetuate this illusion, is done for a reason. Yes, there is a "free vote", and yes there are countries that do not have this, but does this mean that mouthing the words actually represents what democracy is supposed to embody? The drafters of the U.S. Constitution, upon which virtually every aspect of American society is predicated had no way of knowing the far-reaching impact that economic elitism and modern day political public relations and communications techniques and tactics would have on "democracy". Ask yourself, how much clout or control you feel you have over public policy? Do you even know how the system works? Did you know that the idea of a free press was initially planned as a measure of creating a check and balance on the Republic? Do you think it currently does?

The Role of Media: The whole notion of media as watchdog on the Executive branch of Government went the "way of the Dodo" shortly after 9/11, and likely long before. The Bush-Cheney Administration was given carte blanche after the World Trade Centre attacks to do whatever it wanted. In effect, the attacks removed any limitations on the Administration's mandate; instantaneously created an easy to leverage power base; and diminished the constitutional need to be accountable. This was evidently supported by the majority of Americans, with the ensuing political tactics used adroitly by the GOP to further the party's and its contributors own political imperialistic aims. After 9/11, the force of public opinion was easily manipulated due to the natural occurrence of fear, ego, anger, and the demand for retribution as a consequence of the attacks. The Administration simply reframed and redirected this energy into an "us and them" paradigm, which they have used ever since to justify decisions both abroad and at home. Initially, the American people were overwhelmingly "on-side" as the government positioned itself as the righteous and good, but gradually, as the trauma-induced fear, ego, anger and need for retribution subsided, clear thinkers began to question how much power the government had absorbed, was using, and how safe it was in the hands of a media that was offering no checks or balances. Unfortunately, this groundswell of clear thinking did not arise in time for the Kerry defeat in 2004.

Us or Them: To effectively use the us/them strategy, the Bush-Cheney Administration devised an America v. Terrorists paradigm (Terrorists initially defined as Osama Bin Laden and extremist Muslims). However, quickly, the term "Terrorist" was redefined to include non-American, non-Christian, non-continental, non-white, non-ally, and lastly non-supportive of American government policy of any sort - in essence, anyone or any group who did not buy into the Bush-Cheney agenda. Countries initially supportive of the United States, began to increasingly diminish in numbers as the Bush-Cheney Administration sought catharsis after 9/11. Since striking out and making meaningful gains against Terrorism was nebulous and akin to holding mercury in your fingertips, they decided to resurrect and reify an old enemy from the closet - who else but a UN sanctioned, fully-embargoed, struggling, but anti-American nation all but ostracized by the rest of the Middle East, and a sworn Bush family enemy - yes, Iraq, and Saddam Hussein. And, yes, he was a bad man.

During this period, America's trend toward isolationism was tempered only by its realization that the probability of having mass ally enrolment for its paranoiac view of the world and this "new" terrorism threat was slim. Terrorism is not new. It has just never been so present in North America. Nevertheless, the increasingly rapid beating "drums of war" amplified the message that a drastic response was required. The us/them strategy allowed the Bush Administration to attack a country unilaterally and without any good cause. Once support for this farcically contrived enemy and for the war was established, there would be no turning back. It became obvious to the Administration that they could ostensibly do anything they wanted under the guise of protecting America - no checks and balances required. So, international law was abandoned, and the country was unanimously and knowingly plunged into the conflict in Iraq.

Strategies and Tactics: So, the question remains, how is it that the Bush-Cheney Administration could have possibly gotten away with marginalizing and pitting its own citizens against one another - people of clear mind and conscience. How did they manage to subjugate free will and sound thinking in favour of draconian, self-serving energy policies which have ultimately served to benefit the most wealthy segment of the American public with the emotional support of the general public, who would be the bearers of this cost (financially and in human lives)? Moreover, how did they tactically justify these decisions and the process chosen knowing that countless numbers of its young men and women would be thrust unknowingly into "harm's way", with a nod from their mothers and fathers? The answer to this dynamic remains buried in Americana. In order to uncover the collective logic and reason, one would need to drill down into American society, and look carefully at the socioeconomic class systems and groupings as well as the education and communications environments currently in place. This activity is beyond the scope of this article. However, suffice to say, large numbers of young adults from the elite and politically powerful classes did not end up going to Iraq. To put it another way using the metaphor of a hearty all-American, bacon and eggs breakfast: "the chicken was supportive, but the pig was committed".

So, let's look at how the Bush-Cheney Administration and their advisors were able to convince the American public of the "right" thing to do. First, the us/them paradigm was so pervasively and remarkably successful, that the architect(s) of the Iraq War (Bush, Cheney, Rove) and their toadies began using the same approach domestically. In fact, the results of these strategies and tactics were so profoundly effective by the Bush-Cheney Administration that they have become the hallmark of this Presidency. An unsuspecting John Kerry and the Democratic Party were the victims of this rolling public relations us/them juggernaut in November 2004. The architects of spin painted Kerry, a decorated war veteran, as essentially a draft-dodger; a liar; an atheist; an elitist; not representative of the American public; a "flip-flopper"; and unable to be trusted to make a decision - in effect, one who could not be trusted, period. The idea surfaced at this time, that it was more preferable to hold onto a catastrophic decision than it was to change a decision, regardless of the consequences. This logic is perplexing at best, but the media essentially framed this concept and stuck to this characterization throughout the election. Bush, on the other hand, was painted as a patriot; a tough and decisive leader; a "War President"; "god fearing"; an "apple pie good 'ole boy" with good common sense and in touch with the will of the people - in effect, one who could be trusted. Regardless of the veracity of the arguments and representations, we know the history. Bush got another term and Kerry slipped back into relative anonymity.

So how do they do this? How do you take a nation of 300 million and convince it that untruths or partial truths are truths, and that truths or partial truths are untruths? Well, first, you emotionally align and link yourself with the concept of "patriot". You create a [false, but self-serving] dichotomy wherein, "if you are not with us then you are against us", or in other words, you are with "them" - the terrorists. You define terrorist as any non-American group who does not fit within your parochially and ever-changing guideposts. This strategy is particularly effective, but dangerous in that you run the risk of disenfranchising and marginalizing those who question dogma in favour of good sense and conscience. However, if the public's collective level of education, knowledge, and objective awareness is not at a sufficient level to question this logic, then you, as society, effectively place power into the hands of a few and God help you if those few are not benevolent.

Second, you align yourself with a Christian "God". Once you have made this emotional connection, you convey through the media and at every opportunity that if you are not a believer in a Christian God (which 80% of the American public in fact, do), then you are not with "us", and by definition, you must be with "them". Once you have created this dichotomy and frozen it in the minds of the public, you can always tweak it later through some other appeal to patriotism or claim of ally-ship (i.e. in the case of Saudi Arabia). Oh yes, let's us not forget that 15 of the 19 hi-jackers of 9/11 were Saudi nationals.

Third, the best defense is a good offense. Through the strategic use of ideological pundits and toadies (e.g., Ann Coulter), and media pawns the likes Bill O'Reilly and Glen Beck, you launch a crusade of smear, wherein you promote anger and outrage at every corner and shout down any good sense wherever it arises and conflicts with your agenda. You create public relations campaigns which proactively anticipate and rebut moderate responses and solutions to the complex problems being faced, well in advance. The tactics you use are: finger-pointing, blaming, side-stepping, deflecting, shouting down, sloughing off, minimizing the importance, personal attacks, and any other messaging strategy that undermines your opponent. You do all this whilst aligning yourself with a self-described and self-defined notion of what it means to be a patriotic, god-fearing, respectable, aligned, and in touch with "America". Mix this up in a crucible and keep adding the ingredients of fear, anger, and intolerance to ensure your message continues to get through loud and clear.

Democrat Impotence: Democrats reel when they meet up with these GOP guerilla marketing and public relations tactics. Instead of calling these strategies what they really are - groundless and baseless smearing, finger-pointing and blaming in an attempt to deflect attention from deficient and faulty domestic and foreign policies, Democrats feebly attempt to take the high road and become apologists for their own poorly thought through platform or lack of decision-making. Leadership takes courage - "Obama-like" courage. What does the perennially Democratic waffling do in the end? It creates an impression that the Democrats really don't stand for anything; are fearful of making decisions; are anti-American; without courage; and unable to offer cogent answers to complex problems. Why does this consistently happen? In truth, American governance has come down to weekly polling of public opinion; CNN sound bites; strategic alignment of values (even when no alignment really exists); and strategic public relations campaigns.

The Answer: There is no political accountability in America, only messaging and public relations strategies. Democratic free will and good sense in governance has been replaced by strategic media manipulation. There is only one solution to this potentially disastrous downward spiral in the American soci-political context - improve education and awareness and decry sensationalism. To be fit to lead and role model the way of progress, globally, in this century, America must responsively and dramatically open its collective eyes and minds to the creation of domestic and foreign policy which reflects the current realities we are all facing and not the anachronistic "cold war" mentality of grey haired men and their sons.

In order to move forward this century, the focus of North American education needs to make a marked shift toward an educated, balanced view and awareness of: (a) the reality of a closed global environmental system (i.e., the earth is finite and once used up, much of it is non-renewable); (b) the reality, limitations, and consequences of human evolution, consumerism, and accumulating for the sake of accumulating; (c) the threats and limitations posed by rampant extremism of all kinds (including, but not limited to: religious, economic, psychological, social, and physical); (d) the danger of unabashedly unchecked media sensationalism, public relations spins, and sound-bite mentality in the mass communication of fact and/or truth; and (e) evolving beyond intolerance, anger, ego, self-centered individualism, and us/them ways of thinking and acting and moving more toward an era of patience, tolerance, strength, and role modeling. To be the just, fair leader of civilization in the 21st century, America must begin by forsaking the entrenched smugness of "hanging its hat" on things that worked in the past on this continent, in favour of what will work in the future, for this planet. Leadership has both privileges and responsibilities. Leading the way forward requires a long-term vision and pragmatism; bringing others into the fold; and not short-to-medium-term Armageddon-based thinking or objectives. It's time for responsibility, accountability, and balance. The community of world depends on these things and on America to lead the way.








Shane Busby, MBA, is a management consultant with 16 years experience solving complex business problems and helping businesses (and ultimately people, find their way). Shane is an lifelong learner, and continues to focus his practice on business planning, OD/OB, strategy, public relations, and change management.


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Arguing with idiots


Glen Beck came out with a new book entitled "Arguing with idiots" today. I haven't read the book, but I thought that it was interesting. Several questions came to mind when I saw the title. First I thought, "what to say to an idiot first?" On second thought, "what does that you person are being discussed with and idiot?"

Here are a few seeds of thought. First, I believe that most of us would not spend our precious time arguing with someone that we think is an idiot. The problem is that often do not find this until later in the conversation. So now what began as a casual conversation is now a heated debate.Convinced that the facts are correct and the person that they are being discussed with think that their data are correctos.Desde both are so convinced that you are correct that there is no possible solution can be achieved in the debate.

Here is the second seed thought. When you begin to discuss with an idiot, that determines that one of you is the idiot. You think that the person that they are being discussed with is an idiot and think that you are the idiot. Given that there is no mediator who we have determined it is not an idiot, is difficult to know that really is the idiot.It could be that we have two idiots, arguing among themselves and because they are both idiots cannot tell the diferencia.Discutir with an idiot is a bold statement to make.If you have the courage to make such a statement, make sure that the idiot is not you.








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