Overturning Mechanics Liens For Construction Projects

The economy has slowly been moving in a direction that has allowed the construction industry to pick back up. Modern homes are being constructed, and improvements on existing homes are being contracted. Mechanic’s liens are a vital tool within this process. Though most people don’t even know what these liens are, they play a crucial role in most construction type projects. Due to this, it is necessary for homeowners and contractors to understand how these liens work.

What is a Mechanic’s Lien

Mechanic’s liens are liens placed on property by contractors, suppliers, and subcontractors. These liens in effect ensure that workers, engineers and other vital characters in the construction process will be able to get their payment after all of their work is done on a property. A lien allows the claimant, also known as the lienor, to collect their owed money and sometimes even force the sale of a home to do so. It’s important to remember, however, that these liens are beneficial for everyone.

It’s quite obvious why mechanic’s liens are beneficial for contractors and subcontractors. Contractors can ensure that they’re paid by the homeowner, and subcontractors can ensure that they’re paid even if the homeowner or general contractor fails to pay them. Homeowners, however, also benefit. These liens allow construction projects to go forward without an otherwise full upfront payment. This can be very beneficial for anyone having construction performed.

Overturning Mechanic’s Liens

The best way to fight a mechanic’s lien is to ensure one is never placed on a property. This can be done by obtaining releases of lien from contractors, suppliers and subcontractors before making any payment on work that will be performed. If partial payments must be made, then partial releases should be obtained.

Before making a final payment, an individual should get an affidavit from the contractor that specifies every party that provided services or labor. The contractor should also show evidence that releases from these other parties have been obtained. Unfortunately, if these steps aren’t followed correctly, liens may exist on a property.

It is possible for a person to overturn a lien by filing bankruptcy. This is obviously a serious matter which should definitely be discussed with a qualified attorney. It is also possible to work something out with the lien holder for them to remove or waive the lien. Another obvious method of handling this is by paying off the owed debt, but there are times when liens are taken out completely dishonestly. This makes it absolutely vital to have an attorney in any of these scenarios.

Protecting Mechanic’s Liens

Contractors and subcontractors also have protections against those who try to file bankruptcy to avoid paying their legitimate debts. If a homeowner is simply trying to get work done for free, the courts can sometimes help. When bankruptcy is filed, automatic stays are put onto any foreclosure process that arises or is already in process. This means that claimants cannot collect their owed money in a court of law.

It is possible, however, for a contractor or subcontractor to file for relief from this automatic stay. This will allow them to foreclose on their lien, but this process must be done through the bankruptcy court. The claimant must show that just cause exists for this relief to be given, and this is sometimes a difficult process. Once again, an individual with a lawyer at their side has a much better chance of coming out of the mess successful. Obtaining the services of an accomplished attorney is likely the only way a contractor will be paid after a debtor files bankruptcy.

Mechanic’s liens have been in use in America since its founding, and they are a vital resource in stimulating construction projects. Laws related to mechanic’s liens, however, are fluid in a way. The need may arise for a homeowner or contractor to take steps to overturn or protect a lien, respectively. This may at times require legal help, but it’s a small price to pay to ensure a construction project is handled effectively.

For more information about mechanics lien, click here … More Overturning Mechanics Liens For Construction Projects

Advertisements

Do Insurance Attorneys Need Online Reputation Management 

These days it’s not just big businesses that need reputation management. Professionals are increasingly requiring the services of professional online reputation management firms to fix their bad reputations or that of their firm online. Among the professions in need of online reputation management services, insurance attorney’s may be in the direst need of services to repair and control their professional reputations on the web.

Why Do insurance Attorneys Need Online Reputation Management

When you’re a Florida resident and your house is severely damaged in a hurricane or other natural disaster and your property insurance wrongfully denies you coverage, you want to hire an insurance attorney that you know will get you the money you deserve. If you’re like the vast majority of American’s you’ll go to Google and search for local Daytona Beach insurance lawyers. Which one will you pick? Probably one with a stellar online reputation and an abundance of five-star ratings instead of one that’s featured on RipoffReport and has negative reviews on the BBB and Avvo. Hence the importance of online reputation management for insurance attorneys.

More insurance attorneys than ever before are using professional online reputation management services. We offer custom reputation management solutions designed specifically for insurance attorneys. If you are an insurance lawyer and want to take control of your online reputation contact us today to learn how we can help your law firm shine online. … More Do Insurance Attorneys Need Online Reputation Management 

Long Beach City Truck Runs Over Sleeping Man, $2.3M Verdict Awarded

Californians are sometimes injured by people who are working at the time of their accidents, including public employees. Both private and public employers may be held to be liable for the actions of their employees in certain situations. A recent case, Jonathan Soto v. City of Long Beach, BC 559317, that was filed in the Los Angeles Superior Court demonstrates the principle of vicarious liability for public employees.Case backgroundOn Feb. 4, 2014, Jonathan Soto, a 66-year-old man who was retired, fell asleep on the beach close to the 5400 block of Ocean Boulevard around 10 a.m. While he was sleeping, a city employee with the Department of Parks, Recreation and Marine was driving a city truck on the beach, picking up trash as a part of his job. The driver, Stanley Willie Delaney, also had a passenger in his vehicle. Failing to see Soto, Delaney ran over him. Soto was seriously injured and suffered a broken pelvis and fractures to his lumbar vertebrae numbers one through four. Soto filed his lawsuit against the City of Long Beach and against Delaney on Oct. 1, 2014.Plaintiff’s argumentsSoto argued that Delaney was negligent when he was operating the truck in the course and scope of his employment for the city because he failed to watch out for people on the beach. He also argued that Delaney was driving at an unsafe rate of speed and that he was distracted by the passenger who was with him in the vehicle. In order to prove the extent of his injuries, he called a medical expert, orthopedist Jacob Tauber, M.D., to testify at trial. He claimed special damages for his past accident-related medical expenses in the amount of $253,642 as well as non-economic losses.Defendant’s argumentsThe defendants argued that Soto was negligent for sleeping in an area that he should have known was traveled by trucks. They also disputed the extent of his injuries, arguing that he made a full recovery and had no lasting ill effects. The defendant called their own medical expert, Thomas Schmalzried, M.D., to testify at trial.Offers and demandsBefore trial, the final demand made by the plaintiff was $1,600,000. The defendant countered with a final offer of $640,000, which the plaintiff rejected. The defendant did not make any further offers during the trial.VerdictAfter a trial that lasted for 6 days, the jury deliberated for 1 day, returning a verdict in favor of the plaintiff. He was awarded a total of $2,328,954.50. Of that amount, $253,642 was for his past medical expenses. The remaining $2,075,312.50 was for the non-economic losses that Soto suffered as a result of the accident.Vicarious liability and public employeesCalifornia codifies a public employer’s liability for the tortious actions of its employees at Cal. Govt. Code § 815.2(a). Under that statutory section, a public employer may be liable when an employee’s actions or failures to act are the proximate cause of another person’s injuries if the acts or omissions would have been legal grounds for the injured person to sue the employee separately if he or she had not been working. In the instant case, Delaney’s negligence formed a legal ground upon which Soto would have had the basis to sue him if he had not been working at the time. However, since he was working within the scope and course of his employment when the accident happened, Soto was able to hold the city liable for damages.
The vicarious liability of an employer for the actions of its employees is based on a legal theory called respondeat superior. This is a Latin term that translates as ‘let the master answer.’ In order for the theory to apply, the employee must have been negligent while acting in the course and scope of his or her employment. His or her negligent action must have caused the accident, the accident must have resulted in harm to the plaintiff, and the plaintiff must have suffered actual damages from it.Course and scope of employmentIn order to prove that a worker was acting in the course and scope of his or her employment, the plaintiff must show that the worker was on the clock at the time of the accident, and that the injury resulted from the employee’s performance of an activity for which he or she was employed to perform and that the activity was one that the employer would benefit from in some way.
In this case, Delaney was clearly working at the time of the accident, picking up trash for the City of Long Beach when he ran over Soto, a task which was part of his job. The city clearly benefitted from his removing trash left behind on the beach by beachgoers.

The vicarious liability of a public employer for an employee is codified in order to help people who are injured through the fault of the employee to recover full and fair compensation for their economic and noneconomic losses.

Looking for a personal injury attorney near Long Beach? Talk to the best accident lawyer in Long Beach. … More Long Beach City Truck Runs Over Sleeping Man, $2.3M Verdict Awarded

How to Choose a Personal Injury Lawyer

Personal injury lawyers are important fixtures of society. These professionals help people develop a strong case against a person who may have caused them some form of injury. In doing so, the aggrieved party can get the financial support and equivalent remuneration that would help them heal and go back to their own lives.

Given the sensitive nature of these proceedings, it is important to acquire the services of a personal injury lawyer that one can trust. Here is a quick and easy to read guide on how to get one:

Get an Accessible Personal Injury Lawyer

While this is not a major requirement, it would be convenient to get a lawyer that you can easily go to any time of the week. These types of cases usually involves a lot of conversations, given that what had happened and what you feel should be documented in great and tremendous detail. Having someone that can be accessed easily would provide so many benefits to your schedules and would even expedite the entire court process.

Get Someone with Years of Experience in the Industry

This is quite frankly one of the most important aspects you have to pay attention to when looking for this particular type of lawyer. Settling this kind of case is difficult and challenging, given that lawyers are not only forced to deal with law and opposing circumstantial evidence, they also have to accommodate the dozens of emotions that come out during settlement or trial. It takes a special kind of lawyer to handle all of these.

A personal injury lawyer with years of under their respective belts means that they can easily and effectively handle any situation. They know how to carry themselves, what argument to use, what words to say and what strategy and technique to implement in order to get you what you need and what the other party owes you.

Get Someone Who is Passionate About Your Cause

Getting an intelligent and skillful lawyer is one thing, but to truly guarantee success, make sure to acquire the services of someone who truly believes your cause. They have to have a connection with you and actually have the intrinsic desire to defend you. When they have this, they will do whatever it takes to win the case and will continuously fight for your rights with all of the resources they can gather. This is really one of the most certain ways to make success a certainty.

Get Someone Who is Spoken Highly Of by Peers

Lawyers provide a valuable service and like any business that provides a transaction, they have previous clients. These guys can be a source of valuable information. Make sure to shoot them an email or have coffee with them. Ask how their experiences were, what the lawyers did, and how they treated the clients. These might provide insight on who you should get.

Make sure to follow these tips and you will get the best lawyer you can find. You can also visit http://sklegal.com.au/personal-injury-lawyers-sydney/More How to Choose a Personal Injury Lawyer

Simple Steps: Managing Your Reputation in an Online World | Law Practice Division

WHEN ASKED the source of their new clients or business, most attorneys simply cite word of mouth or referrals, even in the Internet age. But to receive referrals, whether from other professionals or clients, an attorney must have an excellent reputation. Clients place trust in lawyers, revealing intimate details about their lives and businesses. Attorneys often hold their clients’ futures in their hands. If a client feels that his or her attorney didn’t have his or her best interests at heart, or that the attorney didn’t do a good job, that client likely will not refer colleagues or friends. Similarly, if a lawyer doesn’t impress colleagues, he or she won’t receive referrals from them. And any lawyer who leaves others with a poor impression is not likely to find it easy to land other jobs. In short, an attorney’s professional career rests upon his or her reputation.

Before the Internet, if a lawyer made a mistake or a client was dissatisfied, the client’s close friends and associates might find out about it. Word might even spread locally, potentially causing some damage to the attorney’s reputation. But with the proliferation of blogging, lawyer performance review websites and social media, a disgruntled client or angry colleague can do a lot more damage a lot faster—and spread it far more widely.
Whether lawyers blog or participate in social media themselves, they still need to be aware that others’ online activities may affect their reputations. They need to know how to respond if and when negative comments are made about them and how to counteract such negativity. Similarly, lawyers must monitor what marketers, search engine optimization consultants and others are doing online in their behalf. All information posted about you and your practice must be correct, and comments and links must be genuine and relevant.

ETHICAL ISSUES CAN ARISE

While attorneys have every right to defend themselves against online attacks, the constraints of the ethical rules apply even after the representation has ended. This may place lawyers in a difficult situation when a former client has posted something negative online in a very public space.

In September 2013, the ABA Journal ran a story by Debra Cassens Weiss, “Lawyer’s Response to Client’s Bad Avvo Review Leads to Disciplinary Complaint.” It discussed a Chicago employment lawyer accused of revealing confidential information about a former client in a response to a negative review on Avvo, a website that rates lawyers. And if the publicity about the case wasn’t bad enough, in January a follow-up article reported that the attorney was reprimanded as a result of her conduct.

You might think this is an isolated result. It isn’t. Earlier in 2013, an attorney in Georgia was disciplined after posting confidential information about a client in response to negative reviews posted about the attorney on consumer review websites.

STEPS TO AVOID TROUBLE

When faced with a negative online review, you naturally feel that you are being personally attacked—and wish to defend yourself. But lawyers need to use caution. Discussed below are some simple steps you can take to effectively manage your reputation online.

Monitor your own online presence.

Begin by ensuring that the information you, your firm and anyone on your behalf posts about you online is professional, accurate, informative and up-to-date. Then monitor your name and your firm’s name online through Google Alerts and other services so that you are notified when your name or your firm’s name is mentioned online. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that if you have no online footprint, you won’t get negative reviews. There are plenty of online rating websites, including sites specifically for rating lawyers such as Avvo and LawyerRatingz, that allow consumers to rate attorneys, whether the attorneys participate or not. Monitor those websites and check periodically to ensure you don’t miss any potentially problematic reviews.

Don’t add credibility to negative reviews.

If you do receive a negative review, stay calm. Don’t overreact, and don’t respond immediately. Resist the urge to tell your side of the story. Doing so got the Chicago lawyer, mentioned above, into trouble, at least in part. Often, telling your side of the story reveals some level of client confidentiality, which is strictly prohibited.
Responding substantively will likely do more harm than good. The more you protest, the more credibility you give to the comment, the more attention you bring to it and the more others reading the review and your response will think the client’s complaint has some merit. Don’t fall into this trap, especially when a review is written by an unrealistic or out-of-control client who exhibited irrational behavior during the representation. The client may see any substantive response as an invitation to “prove” that you performed badly in the matter.

Respond briefly, with concern.

If the review is factually true or merely expresses an opinion, look at it as an opportunity. Remember that your response to any negative review is mostly for people who may come across the information in the future, when they are looking for a lawyer, and less for the person who posted the bad review. Perhaps the best approach is to respond with concern, assure the client that you’re investigating the matter and, if you were not previously aware of the problem or have not already addressed it with the client, ask the client to contact you directly so that you can resolve the issue.

Or, if you know who the client is, contact him or her promptly—but don’t make assumptions. You may think you know which client wrote a given review, but often reviews are unsigned, so you need to be careful when resolving such issues.

Don’t ignore comments or respond negatively.

You don’t want to ignore the comment in most cases. Failure to respond may further anger the client or give future website visitors the impression that the client’s dissatisfaction is justified or that you don’t care enough about your client’s concerns to address them. If you have already addressed the issue, a simple acknowledgment of the comment and an expression of regret that the client had a bad experience may be enough.
Under no circumstances should you bad-mouth the client. When you respond badly, you take the risk that your negative response will be shared or even “go viral,” thereby accomplishing the opposite of what you intended.

Recognize that some negative reviews may derive from clients with unrealistic expectations—clients who would never be satisfied, regardless of the quality of the representation they received. Other clients simply aren’t rational. This comes across in the review in many instances, and the review can paint a worse picture of the reviewer than it does of you. Readers recognize such comments for what they are, especially if you have other, genuinely positive reviews from clients on the site.

Encourage positive feedback.

Asking clients for feedback, or asking them to post reviews after engagements end as a matter of course, can build up your positive reviews online. However, check your jurisdiction’s ethical rules to ensure that client reviews or testimonials are permitted before requesting any such feedback. Don’t post fake reviews or hire anyone else to do so, including a “reputation management” company. ABA Model Rule of Professional Conduct 7.1 prohibits lawyers from communicating “false and misleading” information about their services, and Model Rule 8.4(c) clearly states that it is professional misconduct for a lawyer to engage in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation. In addition, Model Rule 5.3 requires lawyers to supervise nonlawyers who work for them to ensure they do not violate the ethical rules.

Fake reviews are, by their very nature, false and misleading.
The digital world can be a scary place, but following these simple steps can help you to keep your online reputation intact. … More Simple Steps: Managing Your Reputation in an Online World | Law Practice Division