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2 months ago Laws

How to Investigate a Potential Client’s Record

The prospect of a new client is appealing to most attorneys. A new relationship with a client comes with a number of responsibilities, all of which need to be considered before going forward with representation. During your investigation, the information you find on your client will be the decision-maker on whether you should work with them because it can help determine how successful their case could be and if it is something you are prepared for and experienced enough to go ahead with. Today, we will be looking into how to investigate a potential client’s record and the importance of doing so.

Learn How to Investigate a Potential Client’s Record

Background Check

A background check is the most popular method of looking into a potential client’s history. As long as you have their first name, last name, and some other basic details, like their current address, you can find everything you need. Putting these details into a search directory will help you find information, such as past home addresses, marital status, occupation, education, vehicle ownership, etc., through their people database. This will help you gain a better understanding of your potential client, by helping you learn about certain aspects of their past and present.

Criminal Activity

Criminal activity is something that is customary when it comes to criminal defense attorneys but can be forgotten about in every other area of law. Even if you aren’t a criminal defense attorney, it is worth looking into your potential client’s criminal history, as this could have a huge impact on the final outcome of the case. If you come across something that is outside of your field of expertise, then you will be able to point them in the right direction, instead of risking a case.

Client Confidentiality

Any information you find about your potential client should not be shared with anyone else. We all understand the concept that surrounds client confidentiality, but this rule should also apply to any potential clients. Your role is to defend and protect the people who come to you for help and advice, even if they aren’t yet a certified client. The information you find and collect will be personal and should be kept for your own record, no one else’s.

Importance of Investigating

It is a wise choice to expose yourself to all of the possible information you can find about this potential client’s background before making any decisions on representations. Their background may make or break a case and if you stumble across something that you have no experience in or would require extra training for, then you will know that you would not work well for or with this client. Avoiding these risks will benefit you as well as your client, as they will be able to find someone more suitable for their case.

At the end of the day, whether you choose to work with this client or not is ultimately your decision. If you do come across something you are unfamiliar with, but you have the right contacts and feel up for the challenge, then that is your choice. If you can’t help this client, but know someone who can, then pointing them in the right direction is much better than risking a difficult case.

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3 months ago Laws

Legal Aspects of Euthanasia in Different Regions of the USA

It is a paradox to think about euthanasia when all we hear about people dying due to different reasons without wanting it. Almost every other day there is some news which tells about casualty in some part of the world, but we all know that life is filled with complexities and we can never feel what other person is going through. Most people tell stories about how they want to live or how they plan their future, but still, we hear a lot of news regarding suicides happening every other day. No one can tell what the other person is suffering from and making things easy for the people who have a challenging life or any sort of disease, they should seek professional help regarding assisted death. Laws are being imposed legally in numerous states of America from 2016, which allow people to put up requests regarding euthanasia and end their life with external help. It is also known as mercy killing to end the suffering of people who can’t cope up with challenging health conditions or have some incurable disease. This practice allows them to withdraw artificial life support with significant measures. There are numerous psychological samples available that discuss the necessity of legalizing this act in the entire world.

Legal Aspects of Euthanasia

The case of assisted dying has been debated over decades now, and various essay examples are available online regarding euthanasia to create awareness among people. These policies need to be influenced by providing official statements. Look out for an argumentative essay about euthanasia where all sorts of issues are highlighted regarding the said topic and draw public attention to call for a change. Euthanasia is the term which has been in debate for over the years now, despite living in a progressive world everyone has their own reasons to justify this action and some still stand against it in a rigid manner. There is great confusion regarding it, but there are numerous states which stood by the right of individuals and made laws that terminally ill people can opt for. It is now legal to let someone die, and there are different forms of euthanasia accepted. Active euthanasia is legal in Oregon, Washington, Vermont, California, one county in New Mexico, and Montana, whereas passive euthanasia is practiced all over the US. In 2016, the mentioned states were allowed to legalize active euthanasia, in this case, death is brought about by an act.

Method

In 2016 it concluded, all those patients who suffer pain need relief instead of being forced to bear the mental and physical torture. Initially, these people are provided with the best treatment to ease the pain, but once things don’t work out, then they are prescribed drugs from doctors, which help them to die without much pain or they are no longer artificially preserved. Before carrying out this process, it needs to be legally regulated for the said patient; otherwise, taking someone’s life would be considered as a crime. Once the patient goes through active euthanasia, the reason is mentioned on their death certificate that they did not die a natural death and it was medically aided.

Living Will or Advance Directives

There are cases where people have seen their family members suffering from a certain disease, and they know how it is going to end for them in case they are diagnosed with the same ailment. In such cases, people wish to go for euthanasia rather than a miserable life long-suffering. If there is some disease that is unbearable and making your condition worse with each passing day, then it is better to discuss that situation with your family and doctor and go for a written directive in case things go out of control. In such circumstances, advanced directives are defined which allow euthanasia to be performed on the said by their own will, which aligns with legal policies. A written application acts as a document from the patient, which allows a doctor to provide passive euthanasia.

Euthanasia for Minors

Children from the age of 12 can also request for euthanasia, but in this case, their parent’s or guardians’ permission is mandatory. The ones aged sixteen or above won’t require any sort of permission from their parents, but this process should be carried out with their knowledge, and they should be a part of the decision-making process. All those who are above eighteen are entitled to make their own decisions without any sort of involvement from their parents.

Review Committee

Doctors are obliged to report all sorts of unnatural deaths to the respective department. While dealing with euthanasia cases, the regional review committee needs to be notified to ensure that the process carried out according to the defined rules and laws. This committee is comprised of a minimum of three people, which include a doctor, a legal expert, and an ethicist. The main purpose of this committee is to ensure transparency and the consistency of the cases which occur regarding euthanasia. Committee also accesses that all protocols were fulfilled with due care criteria.

Most of the hospitals and doctors try their best to keep a person alive. When things get out of control, patients are given an artificial life and are kept on ventilators despite being in a permanent coma. In such cases, patients opt to die due to euthanasia rather than living like a dead body. To opt for this, one should go for a living will to express their desire for active or passive euthanasia. In this case, life would not be artificially preserved. The US allows 0.3 to 4.6 percent of deaths caused due to euthanasia.

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3 months ago Laws

What Do Attorneys Use Whiteboards For?

Whiteboards are white glossy boards made usually of melamine, painted steel, porcelain, or aluminum and are generally mounted on walls and used for making nonpermanent markings. They serve many functions in various areas of application such as classrooms and boardrooms.

If you’re an attorney and are looking for a reason to buy the best whiteboard, keep reading. In this piece, we’ll look a bit deeper into how whiteboards are used in law firms.

In offices and conference rooms

1. Improved progression of cases and presentations in meetings

Thanks to whiteboards, attorneys can improve the interaction with their clients and, therefore, minimize the “case-killing errors and mistakes.” The attorney has a large surface to work on and this greatly improves the presentation of the case and significantly increases the chances of winning.

The status of the case is documented every step of the way. There are notes on the steps that have already been completed, steps that are yet to be completed, and the problems that may be causing delays in the progress of the case. Additionally, the attorney can document the full case workload at every stage of development so that he can make quick assignment changes wherever any issues have been identified.

When the attorney holds meetings with his clients in the office, he can make use of the whiteboard to present details about the case in a form that the clients can easily understand. Illustrating with diagrams is also made a lot easier.

Whiteboards have also proven to be useful tools in law firms for holding presentations.

2. Organization

Small and large law firms alike struggle with the same issues when it comes to keeping things around the office organized as a way of improving workflow. If the place is disorganized the workers don’t know exactly what to do or where to begin without feeling overwhelmed and frustrated. Whiteboards are very effective in helping people get more productive around the office.

The whiteboards also provide the legal staff with a full overview of what’s supposed to happen every day in the firm. This ensures that everyone knows what they’re supposed to be doing and at what time.

3. Brainstorming

Whiteboards are also very essential whenever employees gather to brainstorm. The boards make it possible for the team’s ideas to be quickly noted down for all to see. This helps to encourage everyone to make connections and participate. This keeps the ideas flowing.

This is especially beneficial for people who cannot absorb a lot of information simply by listening.

4. Helps them study for their bar exams

These boards help students who are about to sit their law school exams to prepare by making summaries of what they’ve learned or practiced. They’re able to break down facts, court analysis, and the professor’s notes. These summaries help the students to absorb the material fast and will give them an excellent security blanket during the exam.

Whiteboard studying is hugely underrated. It’s very helpful especially when they don’t have a lot of time to study. They can condense the term’s materials into brief straight-to-the point takeaways which forces them to read, check, synthesize and summarize. Ultimately, they’ll have grasped enough content to pass the test.

Benefits of using a whiteboard – summary

Putting down your professional tasks on the board makes your whole life easier in so many ways. Here are the two main benefits;

  1. You can see your commitments and availability for a certain period (could be a week or month)
  2. When projects are broken down into simpler tasks they become doable and don’t look overwhelming

Conclusion

Whiteboarding generally helps people see the bigger picture. A concept is easily simplified and broken down from the start with connecting arrows to the end. This makes it very easy to go a step or two back to make clarifications whenever necessary.

It’s common knowledge that legal staff have so much work piled up. It can be quite overwhelming juggling between clients and appearing in court. Sometimes as an attorney you can’t wrap your head around everything that needs to be done. A whiteboard is more than useful than you could ever imagine. Create a to-do-list for the week or month with constituent tasks clearly indicated for each project. You’ll be surprised at how much faster you can beat your deadlines. Tick off every completed task as you move forward.

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3 months ago Laws

Legal Responsibilities of Boat Operators

Most Floridians have been on a boat ride. However, they understand that it can be dangerous to be out in the open seas as there is a lot of unpredictability in what could happen. The safety of passengers and guests is usually up to the boat owner or operator and it can become a legal issue if someone gets injured on the boat. It is therefore important that boat owners and operators know what their legal responsibilities and liabilities are so that they can avoid lawsuits.

Details are discussed futher

Keeping the Boat Seaworthy

Most of the injuries that happen on boats are because the boat was not ready for the sea. These injuries may be due to loose fittings, or a ladder that is not secured properly. It is therefore important that a boat owner services their boat regularly to ensure it is ready for the sea and to minimize the chances of someone getting injured while on a boat ride.

Warn Your Guests

Some of the cases that reach the desk of a South Florida personal injury attorney are because the owner of the boat did not warn their quests of something that caused the injury. For example, the boat might have been on the sea and there was a tripping hazard that the boat owner did not warn his guests about. If you are a boat owner, it is a good idea to take a walk inside and around the boat, making note of any areas where guests can get injured. This will ensure that you know about all these hazards and can give sufficient warnings if you think a guest is likely to be injured.

Turn Off the Boat When Guests Are in the Water

Propeller strikes are quite common. They happen when people get into the water while the engine is running. It is the responsibility of the boat owner to warn people not to get to close to the propeller and if they need to go towards the rear of the boat, the owner or operator has to switch the engine off. It is also a good idea for boat owners to teach their guests how to get back on the boat safely. This will minimize the chances of injuries happening when guests are re-boarding.

Warnings About Other Dangers

Apart from inside and around the boat, dangers lurk elsewhere when a boat is out on the open seas. Injuries could happen when the boat hits a wave, as other boats are passing or when the weather changes suddenly. If the boat owner is not prepared to deal with these issues, any injuries that occur as a result of them could result in a lawsuit.

Open and Obvious Dangers

Open and obvious dangers include things like open hatches. In most cases, if someone gets injured from an open and obvious hazard, their lawsuit does not result in a ruling against the boat owner or operator. That said, it is always important to take precautions because courts have had issues interpreting what can or cannot be classified as an open and obvious danger.

A boat can be a dangerous place and when injuries happen on or around the boat, the owner or operator might be sued for these injuries. The best way to ensure this does not happen is to be aware of any dangers on and around the boat, take care of them, and warn your guests of any areas where you think they might get injured.

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3 months ago Laws

The Legal Implications Of Using A VPN

In today’s world, privacy is at the heart of many of our security concerns. We are online all the time and carry trackable mobile devices everywhere we go. Anyone who has access to our data or who is able to track out phones can do severe damage. Identity theft is rife, with millions of people losing money and opportunities due to data stolen in breaches and hacks.

Over the past few years, virtual private networks (VPNs) have become one of the first lines of defense in preventing privacy breaches. A VPN routes your connection through an external server, hiding your IP address, masking your location, and encrypting your data. This makes it far more difficult for hackers to find out where you are, let alone get any data on who you are and what you are doing.

Different VPNs use different methods of keeping you safe. If you are interested in exactly how they work, you should delve into this explanation of VPN tunneling protocols. You do not need all the extra information, but it will help you keep track of what the software is doing on your devices.

Many people have asked me whether VPNs are legal. The question mostly comes from the sense that by using a VPN, you are indicating you have something to hide. However, there is nothing wrong with keeping your private data secret.

Nonetheless, there are legal implications when using a VPN that you should keep in mind.

VPNs are illegal in some countries

VPNs are perfectly legal in the US and most other countries across the world. However, they are illegal in certain countries, including China, North Korea, Iraq, Russia, and the UAE. What all of these countries have in common is that the government attempts to control what its citizens see online. Criticism of the administration is banned, and content deemed immoral is censored.

In these countries, a VPN can give a citizen access to information that their government is hiding from them. If you are travelling to one of these countries, you can get around the ban by downloading a VPN before you get there.

VPNs are used by some for illegal activity

People generally seek VPNs for one of two reasons: they want to protect their privacy or they want access to content that is either illegal or copyrighted.

A VPN makes it easier for people to download torrents and other content they would otherwise have to pay for. For some, the privacy of a VPN provides more courage to carry out other illegal activities (or to visit illegal websites) without worrying that the FBI will know about it.

Content on streaming services is also often geo-restricted. Because of this, most video streaming services have banned the use of VPNs. However, this is unfair to the vast majority using VPNs for privacy protection, and there are VPNs which get by these bans.

Furthermore, some people use VPNs to attempt to hide criminal activity, inlcuding sex crimes, fraud, and more. This is certainly a problem, but considering our principles of freedom, I think most of us agree that the answer is not a total lack of privacy or the ability to be surveilled at all times. These individuals need to be brought to justice, but that should not come at the cost of our collective freedom.

Even though some people use VPNs for illegal activity, the VPNs themselves are legal. In the same way that you can go out at night even though thieves operate under the cover of darkness, you can protect yourself with a VPN.

Should I use a VPN?

We have established that VPNs are perfectly legal in most countries. But should you use a VPN or should you rather stay away just in case. The answer is, quite simply, that a VPN is a necessary piece of software for your security. It is almost as important as a lock on your front door. Since you face no legal issues, you should be downloading a VPN right now.

VPNs are perfectly legal, and are highly recommended for law-abiding people. It is high time you start protecting yourself from the constant barrage of potential privacy breaches.

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3 months ago Laws

All The Basic Information You Need For The Execution Of An Affidavit

You probably needed an affidavit at least once before. You probably asked yourself about it and what it means. There are different kinds of affidavits and each one has its own purpose to serve. To have a quick background on what an affidavit is, and what it does.

This article provides an overview

General Definitions

By definition, an affidavit is a written statement about a narration of facts. It is made unique by the oath done before and/or after its due execution.

An affidavit is about stating facts that an individual is sure of, he can assert its veracity, and he can testify on such facts in court.

There are standard affidavits templates that you will see all over the internet such as a General Affidavit or an Affidavit of Support. There are also affidavits that do not follow general affidavits templates.

The Requirements

In order for an affidavit to be valid, the following requirements must concur:

  • The affidavit must be made voluntarily – it must be done willingly and freely by the individual executing it. There must be no coercion.
  • The individual signing the affidavit must be of sound mind – there must be no repudiation of his mental faculties as he will be asked to testify on the truth of the facts he stated.
  • The individual who made the affidavit must also prove that he is over the age of majority.

Characteristics Of An Affidavit

There are many uses for an affidavit which is why there are many affidavits templates all over. The following are some of the characteristics of an affidavit:

  • They are used in court. Most of the affidavits that are executed are used by lawyers in court. There are some cases where the individual who executed the affidavit would need to appear in court but for others, it is needed so you do not have to appear in court. This would save time and money on the part of the individual who testifies.
  • There are also other entities that need affidavits. Most financial institutions such as banks, insurance companies, and a lot of other entities require an affidavit. The affidavit would and should show the financial status of the individual if they are asking for a loan or any other financial matters that require the credit check.
  • They are also used in planning your estate and other family law issues. Affidavits are legal instruments that are valid and may be shown in court to prove a fact. This instrument is particularly to make sure that family matters do not get in the way of property matters and estates.

What If I Lied On The Affidavit?

If you lied on your affidavit, you would have to face a criminal charge of perjury. The term ‘perjury’ means that you lied under oath. As discussed above, an affidavit is done under oath which means that any claim that is untrue is actionable in court.

Get A Lawyer

The best thing that you can do when faced with an affidavit that is very specific is to obtain the assistance of a lawyer. You may use affidavits templates on basic legal needs and even bank requirements. If the need becomes too specific, you may need the assistance of a lawyer.

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3 months ago Laws

Legal Documents For An Ecommerce Store

Whether you are starting up a drop shipping store or you are selling physical stock that you have purchased, before you set up your ecommerce store you need to consider the legal pre requisites and documents that you will need to lawfully operate. Not only are these a requirement in some states, they will also help your consumers trust that your business is legitimate which can help increase sales. So, where do you start? Don’t worry, we’re here to help!

Keep Reading To Lean Legal Documents For An Ecommerce Store

Refund Policy

Before you go live, you want to make sure that you have a refund policy in place. Your customers will expect their money back if their product isn’t up to standard, it is damaged, or the specifications don’t match what they received. Not only does it build up customer trust, it is actually a legal requirement to have this as you can’t sell products to a consumer and not allow refunds if the product is faulty. You do have some control here though; you can limit the amount of time that a refund can be asked for. Most stores give consumers a 30-day grace period to return faulty or damaged goods as long as they haven’t been used and the buyer can provide proof of purchase. Some companies offer longer refund windows, but these are often companies that sell higher end products that also have control over the manufacturing process. If you are drop shipping you can claim the refund back from the supplier, it may be more difficult if you have purchase whole sale stock to sell.

Returns Policy

Along with a refund policy, you also need to have a returns policy. Whilst it may be tempting to make the return slightly more difficult than necessary, so that your house doesn’t fill with damaged and broken goods, this isn’t good for consumers or your reputation. Having a clear, easy to follow returns policy will not only increase your reputation as a good seller, it will also help drive sales to you. Make your returns policy incredibly clear and break down each stage that the customer has to follow, this way the mistakes are limited. Again, you will want to put in reasons why returns will or won’t be accepted. If you are selling equipment, it will need to be that it is a manufacturing error rather than a misuse error, to do this you can put in a clause that the piece of equipment will be checked for heavy use prior to the return being accepted and a refund issued. With returns you may want to offer consumers a longer window if you are selling high quality goods that you trust, this way that trust will be shown to your customers.  You can also charge for returns, but that is down to your own discretion.

Privacy Policy

Customers are going to be giving you their personal information, so you need this if you’re running an ecommerce store. Make sure that your customers know how you are going to handle and process their information as well as safeguarding it. You can get templates online but make sure that it is relevant to your ecommerce store. Out of all the documents listed, the privacy policy is probably the most important when it comes to safeguarding yourself. You need to make sure that you are processing customers details correctly and responsibly and record how you are protecting them. This way, if any issues do occur, or there is a data breach you will be in the position to prove that the breach did not come from you and that you did everything in your power to keep your customers details safe and secure.

Terms and Conditions

Whilst terms and conditions aren’t a legal requirement, they may be something that is worth considering, especially if you are selling your own goods and services on your ecommerce stores. It outlines exactly what your products do and potentially protects you if anyone attempts to imitate your product or store. It will need to explain that you own the intellectual property to your store and any products that you have designed and manufactured. If you are using the drop shipping method, this doesn’t apply to you so there is no need to worry.

Final Thoughts

In order to run a successful ecommerce store, there are only a few legal documents that you need to process before your site goes live. It is easy to think of them as just another task, but actually they have the ability to increase your traffic and potential sales as customers are more likely to trust sellers that have and are transparent about refunds, returns and warranties they offer with their products. Take time in writing these policies as they can help you increase your income and keep you legal.

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3 months ago Laws

Wondering If Buying Tradelines Is Legal? The Answer Is Yes!

Unless you’re a crime lord, you may be looking for legal ways to better your credit score. The answer may be tradelines.

You may be asking if this is legal. We get that buying tradelines may seem too good to be true, but it is most definitely true.

Keep reading to learn the basics about tradelines and how something so good can still be legal

What Are Tradelines?

A tradeline is a credit account that appears on your credit report. Every account that you have that build credit (like credit cards or loans) shows up as a tradeline on your report.

Many people perceive tradelines as sneaky tricks against lenders, but there is more you should know before taking their word for it.

How Do I Buy Tradelines?

Some people ask family members to add their names as authorized users to their credit card accounts, phone bills, or other credit-affecting accounts. This may be similar to buying tradelines, but it is not the same.

When you’re buying a tradeline, you don’t know the person who is adding you as an authorized user. You are also paying for that person to add you as such on their account(s).

You can buy tradelines through third-party services that may charge anything up to thousands of dollars.

How Is Buying Tradelines Legal?

While it may be considered immoral, having tradelines that aren’t primarily yours on your credit account is not illegal. There are authorized user tradelines you can use.

Family members can legally add their relatives to their credit accounts, but some people don’t have family members to do this. For example, parents can legally add their children to their credit accounts, but some people don’t have parents that did this for them.

Many people claim that buying tradelines is a way for those without the head-start from their parents to catch up. However, buying tradelines can get you in trouble.

The point of building your credit score is to help banks and similar entities determine whether or not they should lend you money. If you’re adding your name to someone else’s account, you’re not technically the one building the credit.

We should also mention that sharing your credit information with those you don’t know can be dangerous.

The bigger question may be if buying tradelines is moral or not rather than if it is legal or not. Some people believe that the practice is unacceptable while others see it as a way of beating the system.

For those who do consider the practice to be acceptable, you should take into account the FICO Score 8 model. In 2009, this model made the effect of buying tradelines has severely dampened.

Addressing Your Credit Score

Placing another person’s name on your credit account is not a completely foreign practice. The idea applies to children and adults alike.

Whether you choosing to get tradelines from your family or others, they are technically legal and can be helpful for your credit score. We simply caution you to be careful and choose carefully.

For more finance tips, feel free to read more from our blog.

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3 months ago Laws

Bridge the language gap with certified translation services for the legal sector

The Internet has simply made the world a smaller place and we are able to connect with people in the furthest corners of the globe in just seconds.

All very well, but what about the language barrier? Surely it is a difficulty that legal firms face the world over where words are so important. With legal translation services, language problems like this can be overcome.

There are many law firms around the word handling all kinds of documents. Imagine if you have to submit some evidence and it turns out to be inaccurate because it was in a language that couldn’t be interpreted properly. When your client’s future depends on the accuracy of such a legal document it needs a 100% accurate translation.

Difficult pieces of information must be understood

It is precisely why professional language translators are in such demand – they simply open up the channels of communication, particularly in the complex legal sector.

Legal translation is a complex service as judiciary systems differ in each country. A legal translator would need a deep knowledge of the legal systems of different countries to ensure that all requirements of that system are properly explained and understood in the appropriate language.

Legal translations have to be 100% accurate to ensure all those complicated clauses are translated exactly as they should be.

Laws are also different in these countries and therefore the accurate adaptation of legal texts is absolutely critical otherwise it could lead to a lawsuit. Legal document translations have to be precise and have all the right legal terminology so that nothing is even remotely misinterpreted.

 Every word is meticulously written in your home language

Language translation and interpretation is all about ensuring you get the message across in a powerful, understandable way. The only way to ensure this is with certified translation services from language experts who are 100% clued up on the world of legal processes.

 Fast, accurate translations

Law firms rely heavily on translation agencies that handle all kinds of certified translations with fast turnarounds. These include face to face, where an interpreter is present where two parties communicate. With audio translation, for legally certified transcripts, everything is transcribed from the audio recording, and that includes all sounds and pauses.

With specialized legal translators that cover all language combinations, the best translators are those bound by a commercial confidentiality and corporate nondisclosure agreement. Every document they handle is treated as highly confidential.

Every transcript is checked and proofread before it goes back to the client, and always within the deadline.  All of this is for any foreign language or dialect. Simply ask for a quote and never look back.

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3 months ago Laws

The Legal Woes of Hiring an Uninsured and Unlicensed Contractor

Do you have some work you want to get done around your house? Does your house need painting, or you want a deck built on the back of your house? Maybe your roof has some repairs that need to be done.

How do you proceed? What most people do is go looking for someone skilled to do the job. If you can’t pull off a DIY (and building a deck or fixing a roof isn’t really DIY), then you need to find the right skilled person for the job.

So, you gather bids and want to automatically gravitate towards the cheapest bid. But hold on? What else should you consider about the contractor you are hiring to do the work?

Are they licensed? Are they insured? You might find an unlicensed contractor willing to do the work for you for less. But is it wise to hire someone who is unlicensed? The answer is a resounding no.

Read on to learn the many reasons hiring an unlicensed contractor is a bad idea.

Your Role

When you hire an unlicensed contractor, you by default become the contractor. If something goes wrong, and it could in any number of ways, you become responsible.

As the de facto general contractor you are responsible for:

  • Legal compliance
  • Safety
  • Quality of workmanship

You are responsible for what happens on the job the contractor is doing for you.

What Could Go Wrong?

There are a number of risk factors involved with hiring an unlicensed contractor.

Injury

If you have a worker who is uninsured working at your home and they are injured, you become liable. It doesn’t have to be your fault in any way.

But you agreed to hire them knowing they were uninsured, so you become responsible for the injury, care, rehabilitation because it happened on your property.

Damage and Bad Work

You hire the uninsured roofer to fix the roof leak you have. The person isn’t licensed or insured and in the process of trying to fix your roof rips off all the gutters across the back of your house.

It rains and you have a big leak in your basement because the gutters are missing.

Now, you can try to hold that worker accountable but you’re not likely to have much success. It’s hard to prove the bad work was their fault and because you can’t go to their insurance company you’d have to find a way to get money out of them.

Necessary Insurance

When hiring a contractor, not only do you want them to have some professional licensing. It tells you they have training and experience to complete your work correctly.

You also want them to be insured. A contractor should carry two types of insurance.

Liability insurance covers the quality of work they do and potential damage that might be caused because of their work.

Worker’s compensation insurance covers any potential injuries that happen while on your property.

Unlicensed Contractor: A Bad Idea

There’s a reason the unlicensed contractor is cheaper. He’s not paying to be licensed or to protect himself or his workers. Think long and hard about the many disadvantages of hiring an unlicensed contractor to work on your home.

For more legal articles like this one, visit our page often.

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