Why Everyone Needs A Durable Power Of Attorney

It is important for all adults to have a Durable Power Of Attorney. Here is an introduction to this important document.

A “Power of Attorney” is a legal document in which one person gives another person the power to act for him, including the power to sign papers for him. The person who is giving the power is called the “principal.” The person who will get the power is referred to as the “Attorney-in-Fact” or “agent.” “Attorney-in-Fact” does not require the person receiving the power to be an attorney. Any adult can be your Attorney-in-Fact, including your spouse, children, or siblings. Broad powers are given to the Attorney-in-Fact in a “General Power of Attorney”. This includes powers to sign checks and contracts, buy and sell real estate, manage bank accounts, and generally do anything the principal can do. The power to do only one or more specific things for a principal, like selling a certain piece of property, is called a “Special Power of Attorney”.

A”Durable” Power of Attorney is one that continues to work even if something happens to the principal that causes him to be unable to handle his own finances. A Power of Attorney must contain these words to be “durable”: “This power of attorney shall not be affected by the disability of the principal.” A “Springing” Power of Attorney only works at the time the principal becomes incapacitated.

Most Powers of Attorney which people have are Durable General Powers of Attorney. That is, they give broad powers to do anything, the powers can be used even when the principal is healthy, and they can be used if the principal becomes incapacitated. However, this cannot be know by the title alone. Some Durable General Powers of Attorney are called “Durable Power of Attorney.” Others are called “General Power of Attorney.” Still others are called “Power of Attorney.” You have to read the actual words of the document to find out whether a Power of Attorney is “general” or “special”, “durable” or not, and “springing” or not.

A Durable Power of Attorney is an important part of every estate plan. The Attorney-in-Fact can do anything necessary to handle an incapacitated principal’s financial affairs, including access to bank accounts, stocks, mutual funds, and real estate. If a person becomes incapacitated and does not have a Durable Power of Attorney, there will be problems with any assets in his or her name. The family members will not be able to withdraw money or pay bills for the incapacitated person. A family member will have to retain a lawyer, appear in court, and petition the court to assign a “conservator” of the incapacitated person’s property. (The conservator used to be called a “guardian.”) After the court officially appoints someone to be the conservator, the appointed conservator will be able to withdraw money, pay bills, and handle other financial matters for the incapacitated person. However, the court will order the conservator to keep careful records of every penny that comes to the incapacitated person and every penny that is spent for the incapacitated person. The conservator will have to go back to court every year, or as often as the court orders. The conservator will have to provide an accounting of all financial activity since the last accounting each time he or she goes back to court. There will be more attorneys fees and costs each time the conservator goes back to court. A good Durable Power of Attorney will easily avoid the expense and hassle of a conservatorship, and allow the Attorney-in-Fact to handle the pricipal’s finances without court supervision, legal fees of an attorney, and having to provide exact accounting.

This written advice was not intended or written to be used, and it cannot be used by any taxpayer, for the purpose of avoiding penalties that may be imposed on the taxpayer. (The foregoing legend has been affixed pursuant to U.S. Treasury Regulations governing tax practice.)

This column is for general information only. The facts of your case may change the advice given. The information in this column should not be relied on without consulting an estate planning specialist.

A Step-by-step Method In Searching For The Ideal Employment Attorney

Litigations and disputes associated with employment are extremely complex that’s the reason why looking for the right employment attorney is of paramount importance. As such, there are just several lawyers that are experts in this kind of situation. For starters, you can rely on the services of a NYC employment lawyer with an excellent reputation.

In choosing employment lawyers, a litigant must see to it that the lawyer he is selecting to employ possesses qualities just like proficiency and knowledge in taking care of employment-related cases. Other than the years he had spent in the service, another factor to consider is if he handled the same case before. This guarantees that they’re capable of making tactics that will work in favor of their client as they already know the case pitfalls to avoid and advantages to make use of.

State and federal laws on employment are always changing. This goes to show that you need to choose NYC employment attorneys who are well aware with the changes made. Since litigations and disputes about employment problems work on the technical side, it will be a drawback to the lawyer if they don’t know the recent changes applied in the law.

One other consideration if you’re looking for an employment lawyer is the attitude. Lawyers often give free consultation during the initial meeting. It is during this time that you can assess your lawyer if he is really committed with the case that you’re into. If your New York employment attorney does not believe or care about your case, then be prepared as this whole proceeding could be unproductive. With a pathetic lawyer like that, there’s no way they can represent you professionally and effectively.

A personal meeting with employment lawyers is also the time to ask questions concerning the case. This will assist you comprehend how the legal system works, and learn more about your rights and legal options available. Included in the practices of reliable and experienced employment attorneys NYC is to place their advices in paper. As such, the legal advice should give a simple outline about the pros and cons found in your case. This way, the employee is more prepared if they’re summoned in tribunals and disciplinary meetings.

If a dispute resulted to litigations, then more time will be required for the preparation. That’s why you have to clear things about with your employment lawyer regarding their payment. In addition, the payment scheme should be clear, whether if it is on an hourly basis or through a contingency arrangement. And if there’s still a long way before your case can be resolved, it’s far better to combine hourly and contingency payment. With this arrangement, clients could pay their New York employment attorney without exhausting their finances.

As such, when you hire employment lawyers, see to it that the firm has a Lexcel or ISO 9001 accreditation. The accreditation is only offered to firms that have met the highest standards in providing the ideal legal services.

Before hiring any patent attorney check these points

A patent attorney happens to be a law specialist who helps out an individual or company to make their improvement as their patent . The patent attorneys are armed with huge quantity of experience concerning patent law and the process involved in getting a patent. It is indeed complicated to find out a competent, diligent and smart kind of patent attorney. Hence before you move ahead to appoint any patent law attorney, it is vital to check a couple of effects as discussed as under . These would simply guide you in finding a competent lawyer to deal with your issue of software patents.

Before hiring an attorney, you must try to grasp some basic skill of patent process. By knowing and understanding the basics of this issue along with exploring the aftermath actions and counteractions would help you in understanding the traits which you will be looking in any patent attorney.

The very next steps towards hunting for a right lawyer for your patent subject is to hunt out for least five special lawyers. Write down all the names in a notepad and research about them extensively. Check their expertise and experience, the lawyer should be registered, if promising try visiting their office check their professionalism extent and their team.

After you carry out an extensive study, you can think of shortlisting the one which suits you the most, this would follow fixing an appointment with the attorney to talk about your case in detail along with talking on the terms and conditions with the attorney.

Before choosing any attorney superior make sure you go for the one who has the engineering background. A combination of law and engineering can be a extreme thing for you. Also, if probable check the engineering background as well whether it matches with your patent . This will help him or her to recognize your patent in a proper way.

You should select any patent lawyer who can deliver you a proper price for the whole bill rather mere telling you effects in bits and pieces . They should be able to inspect your invention first and check the way the payment will be managed.

You should prefer an attorney which has an independent specialist patent searcher. Any search who happens to be an in-house searcher would lead a couple of conflicts of interest thus making things worse for you.

The last step would be finalizing any patent attorney for your patent application. The moment you are satisfied on all the sides, you can simply move ahead and sign a appropriate contract with the attorney for your job. With the steps discussed above, you can certainly help you in finding the proper kind of patent attorney.

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Disability Attorney Represents Client After Metlife Denies Extension Of Long Term Disability Benefit

History behind need to hire a long-term disability attorney

When John Lanier graduated from college, he became a manager and software engineer. This eventually led to a position with KPMG Consulting, Inc. which became Bearing Point, Inc. in 2002.

The company offered an employee benefits package, which included both short-term and long-term disability benefits. The plan was administered by Metropolitan Life Insurance Company (MetLife). Its core components included an elimination period, followed by eligibility for three years of benefits if an employee was unable to perform the material and substantial duties of (his) Own Occupation. The plan stipulated that after the three years, an employee would only be considered disabled if he/she couldnt perform any job for which he/she was qualified for or could become qualified for when training, education and experience were taken into account.

As a manager at KPMG/Bearing Point, Lanier was required to travel extensively. This meant he spent hours of each day walking and sitting. He regularly carried a computer with him, as well as luggage. If a destination was within driving distance, he spent long hours driving. It was a regular requirement of his position to lift 10 20 lbs., carry 10 lbs., and push or pull 30 40 lbs. every day.

Lanier had been an active man throughout college. He didnt drink or smoke and maintained a healthy lifestyle. Despite this, back pain began to trouble him within years of leaving college. He finally resorted to surgery to see if it would help relieve his symptoms. The first surgery in 1999 included a lumbar diskectomy and a laminectomy. This was followed by a second laminectomy in 2001. The surgeries failed to be effective, so Lanier applied in October 2002 for short-term disability benefits under the Bearing Point employee benefits package administered by MetLife.

Evidence demonstrating disability

As evidence of his disability, he provided the diagnosis of his treating physician. The symptoms listed included:
– chronic cervical and lumbar pain
– left lumbosacral radiculopathy
– congenital narrowing of the spinal canal in the lumbar region
– fibromyalgia-like features expressed through chronic migratory pain
– objective anatomical abnormalities with multiple impairments in the cervical and lumbar spine
– advanced degenerative arthritis in the lumbar spine at multiple levels, disc protrusion and spondylosis from C3 all the way through T2
– bilateral ulnar neuropathy at the elbows
– dysfunctional sleep-wake cycles

It should be noted that his treating physician noted that he was also struggling with an anxiety disorder and depression at the time of his application.

Short-term disability approved

MetLife approved Laniers application for short-term disability. Coverage under short-term disability fell from October 9, 2002 through April 6, 2003. Lanier then applied for long-term disability benefits. He pointed to his severe fibromyalgia and osteoarthritis in the lumbar spine, and his degenerative disc disease as the basis for his claim. MetLife approved his claim on June 4, 2003, agreeing to pay benefits for 36 months under the own occupation clause of the plan. Coverage was to begin on April 7, 2003.

MetLife notified Lanier six months before his own occupation benefits were to expire, that the insurance company had determined that they would not approve him for continuing benefits under the any occupation terms of the policy.

The disability insurance company pointed to four pieces of evidence it had used to reach the conclusion that he would be able to work in another occupation:
1.Office visit notes from his attending physician, Dr. Geoffrey Seidel, dated April 25, 2005, July 26, 2005 and August 25, 2005
2.Prescription requests dated June 11, 2005 and July 1, 2005
3.Attending physician statement dated August 25, 2005
4.Physical capacity evaluation dated August 25, 2005

Need for disability attorney arises when MetLife denies continuing long-term disability benefits.

MetLife leaned most on Dr. Seidels physical capacity evaluation (PCE) to reach its conclusion that Lanier could work in another position. This evaluation suggested that Lanier was now able to sit for six hours a day, stand for one hour a day, and walk for an hour a day. This was an improvement over a January 9, 2003 PCE that reported that he was only able to sit for four hours intermittently, stand for one hour intermittently, and walk for one hour intermittently. MetLife claimed that Laniers training, education and experience meant he could work in a sedentary job.

They provided examples of three positions that they felt he could fill:
1) chief bank examiner,
2) controller with the Department of Transportation, or 3) a credit and collection manager.

Lanier hired a disability attorney and appealed MetLifes decision in March 2006. In his appeal, Lanier included a December 5, 2005 PCE in which Dr. Seidel corrected the misunderstandings created by the way he had filled out the PCE on August 25, 2005. Dr. Seidel explained that he had mistakenly carried an answer from the first page of the PCE onto the second page. The doctor informed MetLife that this had created a significant error, which he had corrected in the December 5, 2005 PCE.

This PCE rather than showing an improvement in Laniers condition reflected deterioration from January 9, 2003. Now, two years later, Lanier was limited to one to two hours per day working in a seated position. Dr. Seidel reported that any longer than this and Lanier suffered from headaches, unbearable back pain and radicular symptoms. He also reported that chiropractic adjustments had failed to bring consistent relief.

In addition to his doctors updated PCE, Lanier also provided proof that he had applied for Social Security disability benefits as MetLife required and been approved. Included with the benefits decision was testimony from vocational expert Elaine M. Tripi, PhD of Social Security. This expert, after reviewing Laniers symptomatology and functional limitations, concluded that he was unable to perform his past or any other work that exists in the community.

He also included four objective medical tests that confirmed his disability:

1.A September 22, 2005 electrodiagnostic test that confirmed his chronic left radiculopathy and proved that no changes have occurred since a 2003 test.
2.September 28, 2005 electrodiagnostic tests performed on his left and right elbows that revealed bilateral ulnar neuropathy. Dr. Seidel pointed to this test as proof that Lanier would not be able to perform typical sedentary work.
3.A September 23, 2005 MRI of the lumbroscal spine that confirmed the congenital and chronic disc disease diagnosis and provided additional evidence of spinal nerve root compression.
4.A September 26, 2005 MRI of the cervical spine performed that confirmed the worsening condition of his multi-level degenerative disc disease and stenosis as compared to the 2003 MRI.

Reversal of decision to deny long-term disability benefits makes it look like claimant no longer needs disability attorney.

This information compelled MetLife to reconsider its decision to deny Lanier long-term disability benefits. The disability insurance company reversed its denial of benefits on June 14, 2006. Laniers long-term disability benefits were reinstated, retroactive to April 7, 2006.

At the same time, Social Security had awarded Lanier $60,440 in retroactive benefits to April 2003. MetLife claimed that under the policy, Lanier owed MetLife $55,148 of this settlement. They announced that they would be reducing his monthly benefits by the $1990 he received from Social Security. In addition, beginning in January 2006, the disability insurance company would stop paying him benefits until he repaid the overpaid benefits. Lanier settled the matter on January 12, 2006.

Disability benefits attorney steps into picture again a year later.

MetLife sent Laniers medical records to two new medical experts for review. A MetLife clinical specialist reviewed the file and claimed that the evidence failed to support Laniers disability. Also, Mary L. Hale, vocational rehabilitation consultant, reviewed the August 25, 2005 PCE and a more recent May 3, 2006 functional capacity review.

Ignoring the updated December 5, 2005 PCE, she informed MetLife that there was no evidence to support the claim that Laniers abilities were less than sedentary. MetLife responded to this information by notifying Lanier on February 6, 2007 that the disability insurance company was terminating his long-term disability benefits once again.

Laniers disability attorney assisted him with appealing the cancelation of benefits on August 2, 2007. The letter to MetLife argued that the disability insurance benefits provider was failing to consider the information provided from his Social Security hearing in his first appeal.

The disability attorneys letter also pointed to the fact that MetLife erred by relying on the August 25, 2005 PCE. Included with the appeal was a February 19, 2006 note from Dr. Seidel stating that he had not seen an improvement in Laniers health since December 2005. He included a clear breakdown of Laniers physical abilities.

Able to sit for 15 to 20 minutes before having to get up, reposition, lie down or walk for a few minutes.

Unable to work at his computer at home for more than 20 minutes due to the spasms that occur in the back of his neck.

Pain in leg increases to the point where patient has lay down if patient sits for too long.
Difficulty coping from an emotional perspective.

MetLifes doctors claim medical evident fails to support disability.

MetLife sent Laniers appeal to two medical consultants. Both physicians chose to limit their reviews to the medical records sent to them by MetLife. Neither spoke with Lanier.
Dr. Reginald Gibbons, a psychiatrist, criticized Dr. Seidels diagnosis because he had not ordered cognitive tests to evaluate whether Laniers depression and anxiety created functional limitations. Dr. Sandar Pemmaraju, a physical medicine specialist, claimed that medical evidence failed to support Laniers inability to perform sedentary work and criticized the lack of a formal capacity examination in his file. Both physicians filed their reports with MetLife on August 21, 2007.

These two reports were sent to Dr. Seidel for his response on August 24. He did so on August 28. He noted that he had only received Dr. Pemmarajus review, so could only comment on it. He noted that Dr. Pemmarajus review ignored many of the clinical findings, suggesting that he had not looked at a complete medical record. He also noted that a full functional capacity evaluation had not been ordered, because there was no one who was willing to pay for it.

Once again Dr. Seidel confirmed the impairments that a recent examination had confirmed:
1.chronic cervical pain;
2.chronic lumbar pain;
3.left lumbrosacral radiculopathy;
4.right cervical radiculopathy;
5.fibromyalgia;
6.dysfunctional sleep-wake cycle;
7.objective reduced range of motion of the cervical spine, mild reduction in range of motion of the right shoulder, objective reduction in range of motion of the lumbar spine, and objective atrophy noted in the right upper extremity and left lower extremity;
8.Radiographic evidence of advanced severe degenerative joint disease of the cervical spine and lumbar spine in excess of what would be expected for his age.

If MetLife considered this response, there was no evidence in the administrative record that it did so. On September 6, 2007, the disability insurance company sent Lanier a denial letter.

The disability insurance company gave the following reasons for upholding the decision to reverse the decision to pay disability benefits:
[W]ith the medical records available for review, we concluded that the file did not contain any severity of impairment that resulted in functional limitations and restrictions preventing you from performing sedentary level of employment beyond February 6, 2007.

In completing our review, we have determined that although you have medical conditions that support you having restrictions and limitations, you would be able to perform sedentary level work. Your symptoms and diagnoses would not prevent you from performing the alternate occupations identified with alternate employers. Therefore, our original decision to terminate your long-term disability benefits beyond February 6, 2007 was appropriate.

Further medical evidence proving disability is ignored.

Lanier heard from MetLife again on September 20. This letter revealed that MetLife had ignored Dr. Seidels letter of August 28 because it didnt include any additional objective clinical proof supporting Laniers disability. Dr. Seidel order two more MRIs and electrodiagnostic testing of Laniers upper and lower extremities to rectify this.

The nerve conduction tests confirmed the presence of cubital tunnel neuropathy in both elbows and abnormalities in nerve function in his legs. The MRIs showed abnormalities. A small central protrusion at the C4-C5 level slightly flattened the vental cord, slightly effacing the exiting right and abutting the exiting left C5 nerves. The MRI also found mixed biforaminal protrusions, with the right protrusions being greater than the left. The MRI observed a flattening of the right side of the ventral cord at the C5-C6 level.

Mild retrolisthesis and mixed broad-based displacement with a slight flattening of the ventral cord at C6-C7 level that abutted the bilateral exiting C7 nerves was also noted. All of these abnormalities were reasonable explanations for the level of pain Lanier reported.

Disability attorney takes clients long-term disability termination to the Courts.

MetLife claimed that none of this new information had any bearing on their decision to terminate Laniers disability benefits as of February 7, 2007. The disability insurance company claimed that new test results dated September 2007, despite the fact that they demonstrated Laniers inability to perform sedentary work in September, failed to prove the results failed to demonstrate his inability to work in a sedentary job in February of the same year.

Lanier and his disability attorney took action. They filed a suit against MetLife. In a separate article, we will consider how Laniers disability insurance attorney presented the case before the U.S. District Court. The primary purpose here has been to show you how disability insurance companies work. Hiring an experienced disability insurance attorney with a strong track record is one of the wisest investments you can make if you ever face making a disability claim.

Significance of Employing Employment Attorney NYC

Establishing a career in this new economy can be a challenging job. It is best to do more than what you can to land a job as the employment competition around is extremely tight. Nevertheless, businesses may suffer from recession on the later part, pushing them to lay off several staff. There is no denying that business abuse is getting rampant especially in New York. In fact, there are some workplaces that would belittle those who don’t have a stable job. /p>

There are different factors that can affect a person’s chances of getting employed. One reason for this is the so-called cronyism. Hence, people who have connections will basically have good chances of getting hired although the other applicants suit the job title better. The fact is, many New Yorkers are not having troubles finding properties; but they’re more worried about job declines. The slow progress in the job gains confirms it all. Even so, job security is turning out to be a dilemma to lots of employees.

With different issues arising in the modern working environment, having reliable employment attorney NYC becomes important. They can help employees from large companies, small businesses and nonprofit organizations regarding employment and civil litigation matters. They also provide their services internationally. They do know about how some workplaces discriminate their employees’ race, age, sex, disability and religion. With their help, workers will have better chances of keeping their job without being stereotyped.

The core employment law areas such as discrimination, harassment, breach of contract, executive compensation, partnership disputes, gender equality and sexual harassment are what the employment lawyers mostly cover. As employment lawyer NYC, they also provide counseling and advice for financial institutions and other companies in various states, assistance regarding new business initiatives, acquisitions, joint ventures and the likes, drafting and revising employee handbooks, and also other employment-related documents. To provide fairness in the workplace is precisely the main reason why employment lawyers exist. They prevent businesses from abusing their authority to merely undermine the rights of their employees. Through them, every worker would be treated with utmost professionalism. Do not forget that laws are implied as a way to defend both parties.

In addition to the aforementioned support that they can offer, they will also strengthen the professional bond between employers and employees. Several firms provide their employees “value exchange-. Through this, a fun, thriving, and fully engaged environment of a workplace is anticipated. This implies that the workplace won’t have the same dry atmosphere that you notice on regular offices. This will have a big impact to the employees given that they can have a sense of freedom that can lead to productivity.

In terms of legal issues concerning your business and job, it’s best to have the assistance of the employment lawyer NYC. Be it professional or social classes, they know as to how discrimination can cause major complications. Tiny and family-owned businesses that are caught up in legal matters with not enough financial resources can also benefit from them. Needless to say, your future is in the hands of experts that know every twist and turns in civil litigation. You can personally go to their office to discuss matters to assure the proper legal claims in all cases.

Many people put up a lot of time studying about Employment Attorney NYC so that you can have a number of sources in obtaining all the essential info that you require. But the big problem now is, do you know what to do once you’re completed getting the essential information? In times that you are uncertain, give time to assess it or ask someone’s advice. Small flaws can potentially hinder your way out. https://www.facebook.com/youngandma is the perfect spot to know more; this has been tested out by many.

Deciding on the best bankruptcy attorney is vital

Buying your decision to restore your accountability is exceedingly crucial, nonetheless will be the capability of your liquidation attorney almost as important? The complete listening and recording to procedure might be profoundly disturbing, and there’s dependably a risk your scenario will be cast out the screen by the judge. It may be brilliant to have one by your side to demonstrate to you the essentials and inform you relating to your decisions although it is totally imaginable to have the technique with no attorney. Paperwork To start with, a great bankruptcy attorney could exhort you about paperwork and the most effective paperwork that you simply must get with your event. There are various reviews which might be essential to get a clean deal, and keeping them immediately in your mind is bothersome. You’re presumably concerned about the different items that are getting ahead in your lifetime. A course that is lawful may moreover be knowledgeable about regional judge guidelines and techniques. Though these things can take place small to the actual guidelines they can suggest the difference between your case obtaining a judge to inspects the capability and unable to also defeat the doorways. Quantity and size: A portion of the ways to identify a fitting liquidation attorney for your situation would be to uncover. Numerous lawyers work-in numerous amounts of regulation without undoubtedly concentrating on any topic that is specific. You need to have a glance to what extent she or he continues to be sharpening that subject of legislation also at which graduate school the possible appropriate counsellor went along to. An extremely crucial portion that is alternate will be the number and size of the attorneyis help party. These people, provide you updates and more dependable renovations and while not legal experts, can assure productivity. Although some are most definitely not, the American Board of accreditation guarantees a couple of attorneys in liquidation. It is an inference that is fantastic that the special is indeed an authority within the selection. Larger Corporations: You will find impediments and constructive instances of heading off to a little firm, a thorough regulation workplace, or perhaps a functionality pro. Expenses that are larger usually do impose, yet may have encountered lawyers who will discover your courtroom structure that is neighborhood. With increased organizations that are tiny, you might get more tailored expertise. Littler organizations frequently do need certainly to processor away at place fields and may not need the vital adroitness inside the industry. Just like you’re not getting the concern your case merits when the authorized counsellor you choose is exhausted, you could possibly feel. It is typically good to contact sources and to exploit any free gatherings that the legal expert presents. You need to consider different specifics to settle on beyond any hesitation the conclusion is correct, when you’re buying your section 11 lawyer. Get after your senses and judgment that is specific if you do your gatherings. Your choice could present having its outcomes that are numerous.

find out more at http://www.bankruptcy-sandiego.com/ a>

How to Choose a Trademark Attorney to Register Your Trademark or Logo

For most established businesses, the most important asset is its brand. When one considers some of the most prominent brands today, it becomes clear that without the exclusive use its owner enjoys over it, by virtue of trademark laws, all goodwill that the business benefits from is lost. Whether its the main company brand, its logo, or one of the many other trademarks that a company uses in the marketplace to identify its various goods and services, protecting these valuable trademark assets is one of the most important things that any business should address.
So where does one turn to ensure that its trademarks are protected to the maximum extent allowed by law? The process of getting this protection for a trademark in the United States involves registering the trademark with the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO). There are several options.

One can turn to a law firm. This is certainly the most expensive option. Trademark attorneys at law firms generally charge by the hour and, depending on the size of the firm, hourly rates can range from $250 to $600. Given the uncertainties involved in the trademark registration process, this can add up to an unpleasant surprise when all is said and done.

Unfortunately, a lot of people use the services of so-called document filers, including the giant of the industry, LegalZoom. This is never the right choice. It is a little known fact that these services do not in fact register your trademark. They merely file an application with the information that you provide to them without any legal review or follow-up. If you are thinking of using such a “garbage-in, garbage-out” service, you might as well save your money by cutting out the middleman and doing it yourself.

One can attempt to register a trademark on ones own. In fact, anyone can represent oneself in any legal proceeding, but it is the rare individual who is willing to take on the challenge of “playing lawyer”. The trademark registration process is fraught with potential snags that only an experienced trademark attorney can navigate. An experienced trademark attorney knows the law and the “tricks of the trade”, and has had significant experience with the USPTO – thus being in a position to most accurately evaluate the outcome of choices to be made and arguments to present in order to get the ultimate prize of a registered trademark for her client.

So, now that it is clear that an experienced trademark attorney is the smart choice, how do you find one? There are many trademark attorneys with websites through which you can engage the attorney to initiate a trademark application. There are several key things to look for. A description of each of these follows.Look for a “Real” Flat Fee While many trademark registration attorneys will advertise a flat fee, be very careful about this claim. The vast majority of so-called flat fee trademark registration services excludes certain work, and will instead charge an hourly rate for this excluded work. The most significant work charged by the hour is the work involved in responding to “substantive” office actions issued by the USPTO. It is very common for the USPTO to at least issue an initial refusal to register your trademark based on one of the many statutory provisions of the trademark law that place restrictions of what may and may not be registered as a trademark. Responding to these office actions can be a very time consuming process. You want to be sure that this is included in the advertised flat fee. Virtually always, it is not. Other categories of work are similarly very often excluded from the flat fee, including submitting certain types of evidence, filing certain necessary forms during “prosecution” (i.e. the registration process) and including more than one class of goods and services in the trademark application. Be Sure That Your Trademark Will be Thoroughly Searched A necessary step in the trademark registration process is the trademark search. This maximizes the chances that your trademark will not be refused due to a prior conflicting trademark or that there are any prior common-law trademark rights owners that can take legal action against you even if you are able to register your trademark. You want to be sure that you obtain a comprehensive search that includes not only a search for identical trademarks that are registered but also common law trademarks, business names, domain names, and most importantly, any trademark that may not be identical yet nonetheless will be considered “confusingly similar” to yours. For example, in a recent decision of the court that reviews decisions of the USPTO, the trademark JOTS (for gelatin based alcohol based “shots”) was deemed to be confusingly similar to the trademark TOTTS (for champagne). Only a good trademark search performed by an experienced trademark attorney would have discovered this issue before any money was wasted on the process.Make Sure That the Attorney Has Significant Experience Registering Trademarks This is perhaps obvious but you should still be sure you know whom you are working with. Youll want to see that the trademark attorneys credentials are detailed on her website. You should also look for an attorney who is willing to provide free consultations and who offers multiple means of communicating with her (email, phone, forms, etc.). For the fixed fee, a trademark attorney should be willing to spend as much time communicating with you as necessary. The trademark registration process is a very collaborative one where the attorney will often need much information from you in order to do the job in a way that maximizes your chances of obtaining your trademark registration. This often requires a lot of back and forth between the attorney and the client. A good trademark attorney is skilled at explaining sometimes confusing aspects of trademark law and practice in a clear and concise manner for you.

Armed with this knowledge, you are ready to start protecting your companys most valuable assets.

Finding the Right Divorce Attorney

Fifty percent of all marriages in the United States end in divorce. That’s not a great statistic, but it’s true. Although divorces may be emotionally combative, most divorces do not end up in a contested trial. With a divorce attorney’s help, parties can negotiate settlements for things such as spousal support, child custody, division of property and so on. Finding the best divorce attorney for your particular case is not an easy task. As you can imagine many divorce lawyers will take your case but they have no vested interest in the final outcome. That’s why your own due diligence is so important when it comes to finding and hiring the right divorce attorney.

Divorce laws are different from state to state so you need to find a divorce lawyer in your local area to best handle your divorce case. You may know of a great lawyer in California that one of your friends or relatives used but if you live in Massachusetts, that won’t do you much good. There are many things you need to consider when choosing a divorce attorney and I’ve tried to outline what I consider to be the most important factors.

Since divorce is not an uncommon occurrence today, chances are you know someone who has already gone through a divorce. So word of mouth from family members, friends and coworkers would be one of the best ways to narrow the field down.

If you have time, you could visit your local courthouse and witness different attorneys handling their clients divorce cases. As I mentioned earlier, most divorces do not end up in trial, but if yours does, you would certainly want the best divorce attorney to handle your divorce case.

Research the attorney you’re considering with the state listing of trials and motions. Since this person will be representing you, make sure everything checks out before you make your decision.

Don’t limit your search to one divorce attorney. Interview many. Find the person you’re most comfortable with and understands what you’re looking for. Ask what kind of divorce attorney they are. Are you and your spouse looking for a settlement, or do you think your case will go to trial? If it will go to trial, you want a divorce lawyer with lots of trial experience.

You could also find out who is on the board of matrimonial lawyers in your local state and the better lawyers are usually on it.

Always have a written agreement with your divorce attorney. Do not hire your attorney on an oral agreement only. This can lead to misunderstandings and could end up costing you more time and money than you bargained for. Make sure your fee agreement, or retainer, is in writing and you understand the terms completely.

Last but not least, get references. There’s nothing more important than references.

Needless to say, this list could go on and on, but you should have a good sense of what to look for. Every case is different so make sure the divorce attorney you choose, is familiar with cases like yours and he/she has your best interest at heart.

Reasons To Hire A Social Security Attorney

If you have become disabled and are unable to work, you may be eligible to receive financial assistance through the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program. Unfortunately, the application process for SSDI benefits can be extremely complicated and most initial applications are denied. Hiring a Boise social security attorney can help ensure that you receive the SSDI benefits you rightfully deserve. Read on to learn the top 7 reasons to hire a social security attorney.

Most SSDI Applications Are Initially Denied

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is a federal benefit program designed to provide financial assistance to individuals that have become disabled and are unable to work for a living. The process of applying for SSDI includes submitting detailed applications, medical reports, and prior employment records. Unfortunately, the requirements for obtaining SSDI are very strict and nearly 75% of all initial applications are denied due to ineligibility or technical application errors.

Social Security Attorneys Are Experts in Disability Law

A social security attorney is a lawyer that specializes in obtaining social security benefits for individuals that have become mentally or physically disabled. These legal specialists are considered experts in social security law. The responsibilities of social security attorneys include educating clients, gathering necessary medical documentation, filing the initial application, and appealing denied claims.

Social Security Attorneys Can File Your Initial Application

Although hiring a social security attorney is not necessary to complete the initial SSDI application, it can greatly increase the likelihood of having your application accepted the first time. Many applications are denied due to insufficient medical evidence, technical application errors, or fraudulent claims. Social security attorneys understand how to properly fill out the initial application and gather the necessary medical documentation to effectively support your claim.

Social Security Attorneys Can Request a Reconsideration

The process of obtaining SSDI can be extremely complicated and frustrating. After the initial application is denied, the applicant has 60 days to request a reconsideration. Without proper understanding of why the initial application was denied, most reconsideration attempts are also unsuccessful. Social security attorneys understand the complicated application process and can help ensure that your application is accepted without wasting any more time with the appeals process.

Social Security Attorneys Can Appeal a Denied Claim

Without the necessary legal knowledge, appealing a denied claim can be extremely complicated and often futile. Social security attorneys are considered experts in disability law and can help you successfully appeal a denied claim. These legal specialists will closely examine your application to determine why it was denied, gather any missing medical evidence, and correct any technical errors. Social security attorneys can also help prepare your case for the appeal hearing.

Social Security Attorneys Can Represent Your Case during a Hearing
Because most denied SSDI claims are won at the appeal hearing level, it is important to ensure that your case is represented by a social security attorney who is experienced with the appeals process. A social security attorney can help you understand how the appeals process works, instruct you how to correctly answer questions from the judge, and represent your interests at the hearing. If the appeal is unsuccessful, an experienced social security attorney can take your case on to the appeal council or the federal court.

Social Security Attorneys Work on a Contingency Basis

Social security attorneys work on a contingency basis, which means they only get paid if you do. Social security attorneys do not require any type of compensation to begin working on your case and do not require payment until you have successfully received your benefits. Hiring a Boise social security attorney is a risk-free way to ensure that you receive the financial support you rightfully deserve.

Finding the Right DUI Defense Attorney Helps Reduce Effects

If someone is charged with Driving Under the Influence (DUI) in Tampa, Florida, it is important that they obtain representation from a reputable Tampa DUI attorney. A charge of DUI will not only affect their criminal record and freedom, but their drivers license, insurance rates, current employment, and possibly future employment. The penalties for DUI in the State of Florida are substantial, and a defendant needs an aggressive and experienced attorney to represent their interests.

Florida DUI Law
Florida law states operating a motor vehicle with a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) of 0.08% or higher, or under the influence of chemical substances when affected to the extent normal faculties are impaired, is in violation of driving under the influence.

Test Refusal
Florida law requires suspension of the drivers license for 12 months for the first offense and 18 months for any subsequent offense of refusing testing for alcohol or substances concerning driving under the influence.

Drivers License Suspension
Upon a first offense, the drivers license will be suspended for 6 months, 12 months for subsequent offenses, and for 18 months for a third subsequent charge.

At the time of license reinstatement, an administrative fee, reinstatement fee, license fee and an examination is required, as well as proof of liability insurance at the time of the arrest or liability coverage.

License Administrative Review Hearing
Beginning the date of your arrest, the accused has only 10 days to file for a formal review hearing before the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles or face automatic license suspension for either 6, 12, or 18 months, depending on the situation. A Tampa DUI lawyer can prepare the necessary paperwork to request a review hearing in order to obtain a temporary driving permit.

If the individual waits to reinstate their license once the revocation period ends, they will be required to provide proof of enrollment or completion of DUI School and treatment, complete required examination, pay an administrative fee, reinstatement fee and any license fee, as well as provide proof of liability insurance on the date of arrest or liability coverage and a reinstatement fee.

Ignition Interlock Device
Upon conviction, the person could be required to have installed in their vehicle an ignition interlock device upon eligibility of reinstatement for a permanent or restricted drivers license.

Experienced Tampa DUI lawyers can explain the options and guide them through the legal process. Depending on the circumstances, the charge maybe reduced or dismissed and the license returned to them as though it was never suspended.