Archive for August, 2009
Every company needs legal advice from time to time. Most managers are unsure about the management of the relationship with a business lawyer. Here are some hints from someone who spent over thirty years practicing law.
Lawyers generally get paid by the hour and respond to requests. They will initially respond as requested but may want to do more. This places a burden on the client to handle the relationship in a thoughtful and structured way.
There are certain issues on which you will need legal guidance. You may not know what all these issues are and you will have to receive objective advice on what needs a legal review. Nonetheless, you should control the relationship. The lawyer needs to identify to you the information you need to know to make your business decision according to your values and business acumen. Lawyers are paid to advise, but beware of the lawyer who gives business advice not legal advice. Lawyers advising you should not be telling you what decision to make, but informing you of the consequences that will occur depending on your decision. Therefore, it is misleading and unwise to ask a lawyer for specific legal advice and then ask for general business advice.
It is reasonable for you to expect that the lawyer is familiar with the area of law in which you have an inquiry and will not be charging you for research that is essentially basic information about the topic that an experienced lawyer should know.
As the economy turns South crime will rise; it always rises with higher unemployment figures and more foreclosures. Some believe that this is because people who are out of work have extra time on their hands and/or have no money to buy things, so they make do with stealing from you; oh, great you say? Indeed, and you have to protect yourself against crime, for instance get a good security system. You need to do this for a couple of reasons.
One, you can scare criminals away, and two you can get a lower price on business insurance if you have a solid alarm system. Some insurance companies now will give you discounts if you have an alarm system with automatic video launching motion sensors, false alarm deactivation, or a system that talks to the criminals with a digital voice warning them that the video system will start in 2 minutes if they do not leave the property.
No, you cannot entirely stop crime, after all, we’ve been trying to do that since our nation was founded, but you can reduce it. Consider the crime triangle, like the fire triangle, but instead of “heat-fuel-air” you have “criminal-opportunity-location” and if you take any one of those items away, the criminal moves on to another target.
So, if your alarm system takes away the opportunity, the criminal leaves and there is no crime. If you make your location unworkable, the criminal goes away. If your security system helps catch the criminal the police lock him up and it’s a done deal. Thus, you can see why insurance companies are happy to lower premiums for businesses that have their act together. So please consider all this.