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I Love Lawyers. (So You Don’t Have to)…

Posted on June 14, 2011 @ 12:28 PM in Uncategorized

Forget English, French or even Spanish. Legalese. Now that’s what North America’s official language should be.

’Swounds and forsooth!

I’ve always adored those lawyerly complicated polysyllabic prepositions and adjectives, haven’t you?

Heretofore, whereupon, aforementioned. Do they not positively reeke of gravitas?

3 Reasons Why I Love Lawyers

Reason #1. We love to spew the same anachronistic language whenever we get the chance. It probably stimulates something in our limbic, old brain. And it confuses most people, but you needn’t worry. I’m here for thee and I can explain (most of it).

Reason #2. C’mon. Can you think of any better source of lawyer jokes? These guys have heard ‘em all. I’ll tell you my fave, if you’ll tell me yours at the end of this.

Reason #3. I love the way they think. Convoluted contracts notwithstanding (ah, there’s another one!), lawyers are smart, logical and to-the-point. Meticulous and obsessed with detail. They don’t mince words or waste time. And that’s a very good thing when you’re paying their hourly rates.

Plus…They’re ethically bound to keep your confidence, even if you’re guilty as hell. You gotta love integrity in someone, if not yourself. And those of ‘em with a Quixote complex tilt at windmills to right the wrongs. All of us need a champion every once in a while. :)

What’s This Got to Do with You? Or Me?

Technology is changing faster than legislation can keep up. Lawyers everywhere are scrambling to deal with it.

Business people like you are scrambling, too. You want to take your business online but all of a sudden, you’re tip-toeing through a legal minefield. The Internet is the modern-day version of the wild and woolly, lawless frontier of the Old West.

Privacy policies? Terms and conditions?

Contest rules and regs? Testimonials?

French Language Laws? C’est what?

Earnings claims? Copyrights? Trademarks?

What do you mean, I can’t cop images and text from other websites? If it’s on the Internet, it’s free and fair game. “Public domain”, isn’t it?

Uh, no. It’s not.

But there you are online, trolling for low-cost off-shore writers to draft legal policies for use in North America (because let’s face it, the United States Federal Trade Commission is pretty much the referee when it comes to game time on the Wide World of Web, so that’s the beast to appease).

Lawyers know you’re doing this. So do I, because I’ve seen your postings on Elance and ODesk. And we sincerely commend you for trying so hard to do the right thing. But paying a couple of bucks to have a content mill writer on the other side of the world draft a valid legal document is not the way to go.

3 Ways to Save on Legal Costs

#1. You can hire a lawyer to draft your privacy policies, terms and conditions and other e-paperwork you need to include on your website. This is one of those “pay me now or pay me later” scenarios. Expensive upfront, yes, but even more costly if you don’t do it and get into legal hot water later.

#2. You can draft your own policies and have appropriate legal counsel review/revise them. For some types of policies, such as privacy, there’s now legal software available to help you. By answering the questions when prompted, you fill in a template that generates a policy suitable for submitting to a lawyer for final approval. If you don’t have the software, though, and you’re drafting these on your own, it could take you a lot of time.

#3. You could hire a writer with some experience in the legal field to draft the policies for you to submit to your legal counsel. This spares you the time of having to write this material yourself and the expense of having a lawyer write it. Instead, you’ll be paying for a fraction of the billable hours because it takes far less time to review something than to write it.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I rest my case. Time to approach the bar.

Now let’s hear your lawyer jokes!

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