Archive for the ‘Legal’ Category

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The decision on what kind of law to specialize is likely causing a great deal of stress to those students on the verge of entering law school. While the majority will decide to be the kinds of lawyers that work on standard law specialties like construction or will and trusts, others will choose to take a bit braver route. These kinds of lawyers – those who choose to take part in newer and innovative fields – are the kinds of lawyers that are the ones will become leaders as they advance in their fields. What kind of fields offers countless opportunities to set precedence and assist in changing the way we function? Fields like health care, energy solutions, and insurance offer this and so much more.

Emerging Kinds of Lawyers: Insurance

With the law changing so rapidly, countless new kinds of law are coming into existence and evolving so much, that most law firms can’t keep up.

A recent article in The Washington Post highlighted one law firm that is able to though. DC law firm Arent Fox has successfully positioned itself as a leader in the insurance market by expanding their insurance and reinsurance unit in New York. (more…)

Kinds of Lawyers - Joshua Just

Pick wisely! (photo: www.sxc.hu)

The decision on what kind of law to specialize is likely causing a great deal of stress to those students on the verge of entering law school. While the majority will decide to be the kinds of lawyers that work on standard law specialties like construction or will and trusts, others will choose to take a bit braver route. These kinds of lawyers – those who choose to take part in newer and innovative fields – are the kinds of lawyers that are the ones will become leaders as they advance in their fields. What kind of fields offers countless opportunities to set precedence and assist in changing the way we function? Fields like health care, energy solutions, and insurance offer this and so much more.

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Joshua Just Lawyer Fee Structures

For anyone searching for information on how much a lawyer will cost, the lawyer fee structures seem like a complicated and often misunderstood process. However, rest assured that the number one lawyer fee structure (hourly rate) is pretty straightforward. Here is an explanation of how the different types of lawyer fees are generated.

Lawyer Fee Structures #1: Hourly Billing

Hourly billing is the most common way lawyer fee structures are set up and how most attorneys make their money.  The lawyers typically get paid an agreed-upon hourly rate for the hours he or she works on a case until it is completely resolved.  This is the most common practice of lawyer fee structures because it adequately assesses all the “behind the scenes” work that goes into the majority of cases – phone calls, research, analysis, etc – that are accomplished whether a case is won or lost.  Rates vary considerably per attorney. From lawyers.com:

“Rates may vary anywhere from $50 an hour to a $1,000 an hour or more…Hourly billing rates can often depend on a combination of the lawyer’s professional experience and reputation.”

In addition, law offices may also charge for the time of other legal personnel. For example, hourly billing rates for senior paralegals and legal assistants vary significantly.

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As political robocalls get flak from the FTC lawyers, who claim they’re in violation of the Telemarketing Sales Rule, I’m reminded of when TASC sent an open letter to the FTC last fall after FTC lawyers gave testimony before the U.S. Senate on abusive telemarketing.

According to the FTC lawyers, consumers who signed up for the debt settlement services were charged money up front and promised it back if the callers failed to deliver at least $2,500 in interest rate savings. Instead of arranging reduced interest rates, the complaint states, the defendants sent consumers instructions to pay down their credit card debts early, thus saving money on interest. Consumers who complained and demanded refunds allegedly were denied outright, got the run-around, or had a $199 “nonrefundable fee” deducted from their refund.”

At the request of  FTC’s  government lawyers, a federal judge shut down the three debt settlement companies in question. Then the FTC lawyers went on to argue for stricter telemarketing laws, specifically for the marketing debt relief services.

The Joshua Just take? Joshua Just, an attorney and debt settlement specialist points out that those companies definitely weren’t acting on the up and up, and deserved to be shut down. But debt settlement telemarketing helps reach those who need help getting out of debt – it’s a viable way to let people know about services that are helping thousands of citizens with financial struggles. According to TASC’s letter, a recent survey by the organization yielded results that show that:

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According to a recent Times article, Downturn Pushes More Toward Bankruptcy, March 2010 marked the highest month of bankruptcy filings since the financial crisis started, with almost 6000 bankruptcy petitions filed each day on average. This marks a 9 percent increase from th e month before, and a 38% increase year over year.  In all, 130,000 people filed for bankruptcy in March.

Some of the most common reasons that individuals file for bankruptcy include:

  1. Unemployment
  2. Foreclosure
  3. Divorce
  4. Disruptive Health Problems

As a result of last year’s weakened economy, and its repercussions (the unemployment rate is still rising, as are foreclosure numbers) the amount of people exposed to these situations has grown larger than in the past. (more…)