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Month: January 2019

Documenting Legal Information Through Legal Transcription

Posted on January 13, 2019 in Uncategorized

In the world of transcribing, there may be none as important as the legal transcriptionist. Not only are they charged with the responsibility to record legal interviews for hearings, motions, pleadings, depositions, legal argument, and judgments, there are countless other topics that these transcribers must document accurately, efficiently, and without any pause.

The major reason that legal transcription is so important is because it can be used as evidence in an important case. Not only that, it can also be used for future reference for possible repeat offenders in some instances. These transcriptionists will sit for hours on end, documenting each word that is said between legal parties. While in some cases, it may be done through a recording of the legal movement; it is often times done live and without any ability to pause in typing.

Unlike other forms of transcription, legal transcriptionists often times will type on specialized transcription equipment, rather than on a computer. The major reason for this is because if the power goes out, or if there is a technical error during a court hearing, there is no way for the transcriptionist to get back any lost files, which may have actually sent a criminal to their rightful place.

While there are many freelance transcription jobs out there, legal transcription is not one of them. Legal transcription often times requires years of college education, but why? Well, with something so important on the line, there is no room for a rookie error. Typically, these people are hired after schooling and years of transcription work under their belts. However, it is possible to get them fresh out of college as well if you show potential in accuracy and speed.

If the court or company that is needing legal transcription doesn’t have an in-house transcriptionist, they will often times hire from one of the many different transcription companies housed in each state and country in the world. This is mostly because if they hire in, they do not need to pay an hourly or salaried employee when there is no work to be done in transcribing.

On the flip side of the coin, if you’re a hiring law firm or someone else who may need legal transcribing? It is quite easy to find a legal transcriptionist these days with the invention of the Internet. It seems they are a dime a dozen when you know just how and where to look.

Of course as with anything else that is for sale, whether it be time, goods, or transcribing, the prices will vary from place to place. However, just because it is affordable, won’t mean it is bad. Just like if it is extraordinarily expensive, will it be good. The most important thing to do is to look for the credentials of both the individual who will be performing the legal transcribing and the company, which employs them. Remember; protect yourself from scams, even a company with good standing in the legal world can get scammed online. Know the company that you are hiring for legal transcription!

Legal Information About the Real Estate Contract

Posted on January 11, 2019 in Uncategorized

The conclusion of final agreement between a seller and a buyer is the Agreement of Purchase and Sale. We know it as the real estate contract.

There are five mandatory requirements for a contract under contract law:

1. The name, address and contact data for the seller(s) and buyer(s).

2. A clear description of the property. We prefer the tax map and parcel number but a street address, or other clear description will do. Such as “parcel known as Hudson Farm, being 456 acres more or less fronting on west side of US Route One and County Rd. 264, being about 9 miles north of Rehoboth in Sussex County Delaware. The final description on the deed at settlement will contain the Book and Page number where it was purchased, a survey description and tax map ID. For the contract any clear description that could ONLY be the property being sold is sufficient. This can be the Tax I.D. number.

3. The price and terms of payment. For instance: cash at settlement in thirty days from the date of this contract. Here should also be noted the deposit or consideration which may be as little as one dollar BUT is normally 10% of the purchase price.

4. The date of the contract.

5. Signatures of all sellers and buyers.

Although the contract need not be written on the form provided by the Realtor, it is customary to do so. On larger properties a simple note is often written which include the above 5 items and says that a full contract will follow. Then, the short contract is followed by another formalized contract drawn up by the attorney for the buyer or the seller. That is then reviewed and usually changed to some degree by the attorneys for the other side of the transaction.

On larger and more complicated properties the contract can go to dozens or even hundreds of pages. The five items here must be included but hundreds or thousands of other items may need to be included for some properties.

Most contracts today, for residential homes, are written on the standard contract form authorized by the County Board of Realtors and provided by the purchaser’s Realtor. The deposit money, or earnest money as it is sometimes called, is usually deposited in the escrow account of the selling Realtor.

Until all of the items above are included and ratified by all parties there is not a contract but only a “contract in progress” or an “offer” as we call it. This can be an offer to sell or an offer to buy and there may be several counter offers going back and forth as negotiations continue.

When everything is finalized the fully written and agreed upon document is said to be ratified. Even then the contract is not fully enforceable until it is conveyed, and received, in writing to all parties. THEN and only then can it be said to be a full and complete and enforcable contract.

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How to Respond to Requests for Production During a Divorce

Posted on January 8, 2019 in Uncategorized

Discovery is the legal process by which parties to a law suit uncover the evidence and true legal position of the other side. It is common for this process to be used in divorces to uncover assets and determine what the other side actually wants. Every State has particular laws regarding discovery and divorce. In Texas there are four main types of written discovery: Requests for Production, Requests for Admissions, Written Interrogatories and Requests for Disclosure.

There are other forms of discovery available to the parties such as informal investigations and depositions but nothing eats up client’s time and attorney’s fees quite like written discovery. The following is a brief description of how production is used in a divorce and how to respond.

Requests for Production are written requests specifying certain documents or other tangible things that are to be produced for inspection and copying. The idea is that the other side wants to see what tangible evidence you might be using in court before you get there so they can prepare. They are also attempting to gather evidence as to the make up of the marital estate. In other words they want to find out what the parties own so it can be divided. It is important to point out that if you do not produce the document you cannot use it at a trial or hearing later.

The most important thing to remember is that you must produce the documents and things that are requested unless your lawyer tells you not to. There are objections that can be made that can protect certain items but it is best to approach production with the mindset that you are going to fully comply. If you fail to produce a document or item you can be held in contempt of court.

Having said that generally your attorney is looking to object to as many requests as possible in an attempt to limit the amount of work both of you have to do as well as restrict the flow of information to the other side as much as is legally possible.

The very first thing to keep in mind is that if you do not have the item they are requesting you do not have to produce it. This is common in divorces where one party leaves the home and documents such as tax return left behind. If you did not take it with you they can’t make you go through all of the trouble of getting a new copy.

You do not have to create anything for the other side. If their request would require that you make something from scratch you are not required to do it. They can only ask that you produce things that you have in your possession or that you have superior access to.

That leads us to the next point. If your spouse has equal access to the item you do not have to produce it. This commonly occurs with things like joint credit card bills. If they have the ability to go online to get them as easily as you do then there is no reason for you to do it for them.

In the end hiding assets or documents is rarely worth the trouble. Putting all your cards on the table will generally work out for the best. If you are involved in a divorce and do not have a lawyer the discovery process, specifically requests for production may force you to retain an attorney to avoid being trapped.

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