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7 Signs You’ve Hired a Great Attorney

When it comes to hiring an attorney, trust is everything. In fact, hiring a great attorney is one of the best things you can do for yourself as a business owner. But how do you know if you can trust yours?

There are specific signs to look for when trying to figure out if you’ve hired a good attorney. And to help you out, I’ve broken down the seven common traits of industry-leading attorneys that will help you determine whether or not they are a fit for you and your company.

1. They Are Always Honest With You

If you are going to hire a lawyer, you need to trust that they are always looking out for your best interests. That means they will be honest with you and tell you exactly what they think will happen with your case.

Such information might sometimes not be what you want to hear, but it’s essential to have an attorney who’s willing to put everything out in the open so you can make an informed decision about your case.

2. They Have a History of Positive Outcomes

When it comes to hiring a great attorney, reputation is everything – well, almost. A good attorney will have experience dealing with similar cases as yours, so it’s vital that they’ve had positive outcomes in the past.

If you require the legal service of a car accident lawyer in a tort case, for example, hiring a firm with a great reputation is the only way to go. But, on the other hand, if they don’t have a reputation you can rely on, it may be a sign that they don’t have the necessary experience to handle your case properly or are new to the field of law altogether.

3. They Are Invested in Your Case

It’s easy to get lost in the shuffle when dealing with a large firm. That’s why your attorney needs to invest in your case and pay attention to all its details.

This factor is crucial because it shows that they’re not just looking at you as a client but as an individual with a specific set of needs and concerns.

4. They Respond to Emails and Calls Promptly

You can’t always predict when an emergency will arise, so it’s essential that your attorney quickly responds when you need them most.

If you email them and don’t hear back for days, that’s not a good sign, and it may be time to look elsewhere for representation.

5. They Are Transparent About Fees and Costs

A good lawyer will be up-front about their fees and costs. You should never have to pay any money upfront for a consultation, and the attorney should be able to tell you exactly how much it will cost if you hire them.

Fees should make up part of your considerations when choosing a law firm, so if an attorney is unwilling to do this, find another.

6. They Don’t Over Promise Results

Another good sign of an attorney is one who can realistically assess your case and give you an honest assessment of what they think the outcome might be.

If your attorney does not have enough experience with your type of case to give you an accurate assessment, then it may be time to look for another attorney with more experience in this area.

7. They Know the Law Inside and Out

Great attorneys understand the law and legal jurisprudence better than anyone else. They know how to read, interpret, and apply it to real-world situations.

These attorneys know what cases have been tried and won previously and how to use that knowledge to their advantage. They should be able to explain what they are doing at every step of their work with you.

Finding a Great Attorney Can Make All The Difference

Of course, it’s impossible to lay out every possible scenario here. And since not all attorneys are created equal, knowing which attorneys to trust your case with can make all the difference.

When choosing an attorney, favour experience over youth, and look for attorneys who proactively keep up with the latest legal developments in your area of law.

Consider These 6 Things When Choosing a Law Firm

When you’re in need of legal assistance, it’s important to choose the right law firm. There are many out there, and they vary in terms of qualifications, experience, and abilities. If you choose wisely, you’ll have the best chance of success, but if you don’t it could be a costly mistake. If you want to find the right law firm for your needs, consider these 6 things before making your decision.

Find A Specialist

Because the law is so varied and complex, it’s important to choose a law firm that specialises in the area of law you need help with. Some firms will have more experience and knowledge than others, and that’s why you need to do your research before making any decisions. The law firms’ websites can tell you how long these people have been in practice, and what affiliations and accreditations they have.

Mississauga is a city in the Canadian province of Ontario, with a 2022 population of 668,549. Many people go online in search of a Mississauga family law firm so they can access legal services in estate, employment, and corporate law. They also schedule free consultations, whether it’s regarding divorce, family law, wills, estates, or trusts.

Book A Free Consultation

Many law firms offer these, and they’re an important first step in finding the right one for you. You can learn how the law firm works and discover whether they’re a good fit for your needs. During a free consultation, you’ll meet with the lawyer to discuss your legal issue. They’ll ask questions to get more information and then give you some options on how to proceed. This is also an opportunity for you to ask any questions that you have about working with them.

When meeting a potential lawyer, it’s important to feel comfortable and able to communicate openly. If this doesn’t happen, move on and try someone else.

Ask About Fees

Ask each firm about its fee structure, including hourly rates and retainer fees. Also, ask whether there are any additional costs for things like postage, photocopying, or telephone calls. Be sure to enquire about disbursements, such as court filing fees or expert witness fees.

Next, get an estimate of how much your legal matter is likely to cost. Estimates can vary depending on the lawyer’s experience and the complexity of your case. However, a good lawyer should be able to give you a fairly accurate estimate of the likely costs. Fees can be negotiable, so don’t be afraid to ask for a discount or a better payment plan. Many law firms are willing to negotiate, especially if you’re a new client.

Consider Their Location

A local law firm will be more familiar with the laws in your state or city. They’ll also be familiar with the local court system, which can make a big difference in how your case is handled. If you have questions or need to meet with them, it’ll be easier to do so if they’re close by, saving you time and money.

Finally, choosing a local law firm shows that you’re invested in your community. When you use their services, you’re helping them continue to provide quality legal assistance to local people.

Consider Their Accessibility

Calls, emails, and office hours are important when considering a law firm. You want to be able to get in touch with your lawyer easily, especially if you have questions or concerns.

Make sure the firm you choose has good communication channels that work for you. Ask about timescales and response times, and discuss your chosen methods of communication.

Read Reviews And Seek Recommendations

Checking a law firm’s reviews is an excellent way to get an idea of what their clients think of them. You can find these on the firm’s own website, Google, Avvo, and Yelp. Checking reviews can help you get a sense of how responsive the firm is to its client’s needs, how well they communicate, and whether or not they’re able to deliver on their promises.

It’s also worth asking friends, family, and colleagues for personal recommendations of law firms they’ve dealt with. It’s important to choose people who’ve had similar legal needs to you.

If you consider these 6 criteria when choosing a law firm you’ll be well-placed to make a wise choice. You’ll end up with the right person, receive the right advice, and experience the best possible outcome. Whilst their services may cost you money, it’ll be worth it for the legal assistance that you’ve received.

Provisional Attachment of Ships

A provisional attachment is a legal measure imposed to ensure that money and collateral receivables can be secured. In Maritime Enforcement Law, a provisional attachment is imposed to secure marine claims, but since maritime trade has unique characteristics, special provisions are included.

In this context, the matter of imposing a provisional attachment decision about the marine claims has only consequences specific to maritime trade, such as the detention or seizure of the ship. This article has been prepared to clarify the provisional attachment of marine claims.

In order to resolve disputes arising from the provisional attachment of ships, national and international law has been tried to be uniformed. As a reflection of this, the fact that the Turkish Commercial Code, No. 6102 is regulated almost in parallel with the references to the executive Bankruptcy and Enforcement Law and the International Convention on Arrest of Ships of 1999 should be considered as an important step to significantly resolve practical disputes.

Conceptually, examining provisional attachment under the practice of International Maritime Law; the concept of restriction of a ship from sailing by the competent authorities is expressed as an arrest, while in Turkish Law, the request of the creditor due to a debt and the decision of the court find a place with the concept of provisional attachment.

It is further and clearly stated in article 1353 of TCC that the only method of securing the ship claims to be guaranteed by seizure of the ship is provisional attachment. Accordingly, a ship will be arrested due to the pursuit of receivables, the seizure measure will find its place in the legal system only with the request for a provisional attachment.

1. Applicable Law

Transactions such as provisional or operational attachment, compulsory execution sale, transfer of ownership of a ship; are subject to the law of the country in which the disposals were made. Although this provision is restated in the Turkish Commercial Code article 1350, it was implemented by extraction of the 2. article of the International Conventions on Maritime Liens and Mortgages of 1993.

In the cases of element of foreignness of the ship’s certain or provisional attachment, judicial sale, transfer of ownership, transactions and dispositions related to compulsory enforcement because of sale of the ship will be subject to the law of the country it is located. In summary, Turkish Law will apply to the procedures related to the attachment and subsequent sale of a foreign ship in Turkey. In the same way, when the Turkish ship is subject to attachment abroad, it will be subject to the law of the relevant country. However, it is necessary not to violate the legal right to be heard in relation to Turkish-flagged ships. In this context, there are procedural rules that must be followed according to article 1350 of Turkish Commercial Code.

In the case of the sale of a ship with a Turkish flag abroad through compulsory execution sale, the auction must be reported by the institution or interested parties engaged in the auction, at least thirty days before this sale;

  • a) to the Turkish ship registry, where the ship is registered, 
  • b) to the registered owner of the ship in the Register, 
  • c) to the registered owners of other rights and receivables in the ship registry; and must be declared in one of the newspapers with a circulation of more than fifty thousand and distributed at the Turkish level, provided that it is reported or its expenses are covered by the interested parties If the ship is sold abroad by compulsory execution without this notification or announcement, its registration cannot be deleted and the rights and receivables registered in the Turkish ship registry remain reserved on the ship.

During the implementation of the ship’s sequestration, some incompatibilities may arise between material law and practice. This noncompliance manifests itself due to the evaluation of ships as movable and real estate. According to Bankruptcy and Enforcement Law article 23/4, Turkish ships registered in the Register are considered immovable. In addition, Turkish ships and foreign ships that are not registered are considered to be movable. According to the decision of 12. Chamber of Court of Cassation, it is stated that “The M/V Best Line Ship with Comoros flag is not registered in the Turkish Ship Register and have a characteristic of a movable and the auction is subject to the provisions of the sale of movable goods.”. In practice, ships subject to the provisions of movable goods may be arrested, while ships registered in the ship registry may not be arrested.

2. Terms of Provisional Attachment

According to the TCC article 1352 and ff, provisional attachment of ships should be understood as a temporary and legal seizure of a ship by a court decision in order to ensure the pursuit of a limited number of real and personal rights of claim, referred to as a maritime claim and arising from a private legal relationship. In this case, the concept of provisional attachment was limited to the concept of marine claims, unlike the broad range as in real estate. A provisional attachment is also provided as a way of provisional guarantee, which gives the right to seize the ship for the follow-up of sea claims.

In order for the provisional attachment decision to be ruled in terms of Maritime Enforcement Law to be in question;

  • The claim must be due and payable,
  • The claim must be in the form of a sea claim,
  • A ship subject to the provisional attachment must be in existence,
  • The guarantee must be paid and subsequently the ceremony that concludes the provisional attachment must be performed.

In addition, although there is a rule that the claim is not secured with the hypothec to rule a provisional attachment decision; a guarantee made with the hypothec in terms of marine claims does not constitute an impediment for a provisional attachment.

Additionally, the right to exercise the right of provisional attachment is also limited; according to article 1369 of TCC provisional attachment of every ship which has a sea claim over;

  • Shipowner at the time of the arise of the sea claim will be responsible for this debt, if the person is also owner of the ship at the time of the implementation of the provisional attachment; or
  • If the person who is the tenant of the ship when the sea claim arise, is also the owner of the ship and responsible for this debt when the provisional attachment was implemented;
  • If the ship claim is secured by a ship hypothec, ship mortgage or by a real obligation in similar nature on the ship; or 
  • If the dispute is related to the ownership or possession of the ship; or 
  • A debt is possible if it grants the right of ship claimant in accordance with article 1320.

In accordance with this article, the important issue is that to be the ship’s owner, tenant, or to be responsible for this debt at the time of the arise of the sea claim. If the owner of the ship is someone else at the time of the arise of the provisional attachment, the implementation of the attachment will not be possible.

3. Claims Subject to the Provisional Attachment of Ships

The concept of “provisional attachment of ships”, which has serious consequences such as the retention and even seizure of ships; for sure cannot be expected to be requested for all types of claims. Because in the Commercial Code, attention was paid to this issue and an attempt was made to prevent the abuse of the right. Accordingly, TCC article 1352 emphasises that the claims subject of provisional attachment of ships was only possible in terms of maritime claims, and their scope could be none other than that specified in the list.

In this case, even if the parties draft it by contract, it will not be possible for the type of claims that is not found in the list to be included in hereby concept of sea claims and therefore will not ask for a provisional attachment of the ship. The common point of these claims is that the receivables originate directly from the operation of the ship or include claim rights related to the ship.

Article 1352 – (1) “Maritime Claim” means a claim arising out of one or more of the following: 

  • a) Loss of life or personal injury occurring, whether on land or on water, in direct connection with the operation of the ship.
  • b) Loss of life or other bodily harm caused on land or water directly in relation to the operation of the ship.
  • c) salvage operations or any salvage agreement, including, special compensation relating to salvage operations in respect of a ship which by itself or its cargo threatened damage to the environment.
  • d) Damage or threat of damage caused by the ship to the environment, coastline, or related interests; measures taken to prevent, minimise, or remove such damage; compensation for such damage; costs of reasonable measures of reinstatement of the environment actually undertaken or to be undertaken; loss incurred or likely to be incurred by third parties in connection with such damage; and damage, costs, or loss of a similar nature to those identified in this subparagraph.
  • e) Costs or expenses relating to the raising, removal, recovery, destruction, or the rendering harmless of a ship which is sunk, wrecked, stranded, or abandoned, including anything that is or has been on board such ship, and costs or expenses relating to the preservation of an abandoned ship and maintenance of its crew.
  • f) Any agreement relating to the use or hire of the ship, whether contained in a charter party or otherwise.
  • g) Any agreement relating to the carriage of goods or passengers on board the ship, whether contained in a charter party or otherwise.
  • h) Loss of or damage to or in connection with goods, including luggage, carried on board the ship.  
  • i) General average.  
  • j) Towage. 
  • k) Pilotage. 
  • l) Goods, materials, provisions, bunkers, equipment, including containers, supplied or services rendered to the ship for its operation, management, preservation, or maintenance. 
  • m) Construction, reconstruction, repair, converting or equipping of the ship.  
  • n) Port, canal, dock, harbour and other waterway dues and charges; 
  • o) Wages and other sums due to the crew of the ship’s, in respect of their employment on the ship, including costs of repatriation and social insurance contributions payable on their behalf. 
  • p) Expenses incurred on behalf of the ship or its owner, including loans received for the ship. 
  • r) Insurance premiums, including mutual insurance calls in respect of the ship, payable by or on behalf of the shipowner or demise charterer. 
  • s) Any commissions, brokerages, or agency fees payable in respect of the ship by or on behalf of the shipowner or demise charterer.
  • t) Any dispute as to ownership or possession of the ship. 
  • u) Any dispute between co-owners of the ship as to the employment or earnings of the ship. 
  • v) A mortgage or a “hypothèque” or a charge of the same nature on the ship. 
  • y) Any dispute arising out of a contract for the sale of the ship. 

4- Competent and Authorised Court

The competent court for applications for provisional attachment for ship claims is the Commercial Courts of First Instance. Currently, 2 Commercial Courts of First Instance in Istanbul and one in Izmir are authorised for disputes arising from maritime trade and insurance.

No court other than the competent court specified in the law has the authority to make a provisional attachment decision in respect of the provisional attachment of the ship. In the determination of the competent court, the distinction of the competent court was made before and after the case. Before the case, it is necessary to examine the ship in terms of competency separately according to the issue of Turkish and foreign flags:

Turkish-Flagged Ships : It is ruled by the court located in where the ship is anchored, attached to the buoy or vault, berthed, or sledged. In addition, the creditor may request a provisional attachment for ships registered in the Turkish ship registry in the court located in register’s location and for ships not registered in the register in the court of located in shipowner’s settlement.

Foreign-Flagged Ships : It is ruled by the court located in where the ship is anchored, attached to the buoy or vault, berthed, or sledged. In terms of foreign ships, the court located where the ship stops although for short periods, such as buying fuel, spare parts, changing ship personnel, is competent. But in terms of foreign-flagged ships, the requirement of “recess of expedition” is stipulated. According to the Montreux Convention on ships that continue their course without recess, a provisional attachment cannot be implemented by the Turkish courts unless there is a violation of innocent passage in respect of ships transferring on innocent passage.

After the case has been filed, the request for a provisional attachment related to it is also requested from the same court, in which the merits of the dispute have been seen in the Turkish courts. If a case has been filed before the arbitrator or in foreign courts for maritime claims, in this case, the above-mentioned competency rules will apply in terms of Turkish and foreign flagged ships.

5. Limit of Waiver of Provisional Attachment

In terms of ships exercising the right of innocent passage; according to Convention on the Territorial Sea and the Contiguous Zone, 1958 art. 20 and United Nations Convention on the law of the Sea, 1982 art. 28; the coastal State may not levy execution against or arrest the ship for the purpose of any civil proceedings, save only in respect of obligations or liabilities assumed or incurred by the ship itself in the course or for the purpose of its voyage through the waters of the coastal State.

Accordingly, while ships in a harmless transition may benefit from the exemption of provisional attachment; it will not be valid in terms of debts and liabilities incurred during the transition from territorial waters. In other words, to take advantage of the exemption of provisional attachment, the event that caused the debt and liability must not have occurred in the territorial waters of the country.

With TCC. art. 1355 it is stated that the provisional attachment decision of the Turkish court will only be ruled if the ship is anchored, tied to the buoy or vault, berthed, or sledged. In this case, it also occurs because of the stop of a ship with a foreign flag.

As for foreign-flagged ships passing through The Bosporus and Dardanelles; the Montreux Convention of 1936 will apply. However, the critical point is that this agreement does not contain a provision limiting or regulating Turkish jurisdiction.

For this reason, again, as mentioned above, TCC art. 1355 will find an area of application and a provisional injunction may be implemented in terms of frequented foreign ships; Turkish courts will not be able to make a provisional attachment decision on innocent passage, non-frequented or transit ships, and therefore will not be applied even if it is a decision taken earlier.

6. Provisional Attachment of Ships in Existence of Contingent Claims

According to both the Commercial Code and the Bankruptcy and Enforcement Law art. 257, the procedures to be applied in terms of undue and due debts are clearly stated, but neither due nor or undue by characteristics of the receivables are specified, which often leads to disputes in practice. In addition, an attempt by the parties to feel guaranteed by a contingent on the maturity of receivable during the contract can often create a situation otherwise.

For example, after a request for a provisional attachment is made, it is encountered that the receivable is not actually an eligible marine claim yet. For this reason, first, if the material that the sea will receive is related to the legal requirement a warning, protest, etc. must be fulfilled; otherwise, it will not be possible to request a provisional attachment for an unoriginated marine claim, if requested it will most likely be rejected. In the same way; as a rule, if the pecuniary claim provided by the ship’s mortgage is not due; a provisional attachment of the ship cannot be requested for the follow-up of the right to a direct mortgage.

7. Implementation of Provisional Attachment

The creditor must request the execution of the decision from the court’s jurisdiction or the execution office where the ship is located, within 3 working days from the date of the court’s sequestration decision. Otherwise, the preliminary injunction will be removed by itself.

1. Seizure and Restriction of the Ship

How the ships’ provisional attachment decision should be enforced is stated in TCC. art. 1366 as “All ships that have been decided on its provisional attachment relief are prohibited from sailing by the executive director, regardless of the flag and what register they are registered in.” At this point, it is important that “all ships” will be subject to the same procedure. Unlike the previous Bankruptcy and Enforcement Law, the new BEL; art. 23 puts all ships in the same set of rules as; “… movable provisions apply to all ships, regardless of their flag and whether they are registered in the register.” which is fair.

Because in the previous TCC and Bankruptcy and Enforcement Law, immovable procedures were applied to Turkish ships and movable procedures were applied to foreign ships, which in this case led to foreign ships being granted asylum both in terms of executive bankruptcy provisions.

In summary, all ships shall be deemed to be movable and shall be arrested, regardless of flag and record in case of provisional attachment. In addition, from the point of view of Turkish ships, if the ships are on a cruise, the owner, non-owner equipper or a third party responsible for the debt will be warned to provide a guarantee to the enforcement department within 10 days for the guarantee of sea claim.

If there is a situation where there is no guarantee; of course, the obligation to deliver the ship arises. Because both the guarantee is not given and the ship is not delivered in this case TCL art. 289 provisions, that is, provisions relating to the confiscation and destruction of officially surrendered property, will apply.

Although it is stated that the same procedures will be applied to all ships, the practice is not so righteous. As such, for foreign ships, so to speak, the provisions of the provisional attachment of the ship can only be implemented at the point where the ship stops.

Although according to TCC art. 1367; it is stated that the foreign-flagged ship can be stopped until Turkish territorial waters are abandoned and an order to anchor in a safe place will be given; in practice, a provisional attachment can only be implemented if the ship stops.

2. Release of Ship in Return of Collateral

Article 1370 of the TCC. regulates the matter that not implementing the actual seizure measure on the ship at all or the removal of the seizure. According to this provision, temporary legal protection on the ship continues, it is intended to provide collateral to eliminate the danger of seizure of the ship.

A vessel that has been sequestrated can be delivered to the debtor or a 3. party by providing a guarantee to be submitted to the Enforcement office at any time. Cash that meets the value of the ship, a real estate hypothec to be accepted by the executive officer, a mortgage on the ship, a bank guarantee can be used as collateral. In terms of the type of collateral, it is possible for the creditor and debtor to enter into an enforcement law agreement.

In addition, collateral can be provided in respect to the 3. party.  In this case, the provisional attachment remains, but the ship is released, that is, the danger of actual seizure is eliminated, and the ship can be operated.

ARTICLE 1370 – (1) The ship that has been provisionally attached, provided that the value of the ship to be reserved in order to be delivered to the Executive Office at any time and to ensure this, or an immovable hypotec, ship mortgage or a reputable bank surety to be accepted by the executive officer is shown may be left to the debtor; or if the ship was attached while in the hand of a third person, it may be left to this person by taking a bond.

(2) It is necessary to inform the institutions listed in article 1366 that the ship has been released and to preserve the record of the injunction in the register, provided that the provisional attachment on it continues.

3. Removal of Provisional Attachment in Exchange for Collateral

The shipowner or the debtor may require the removal of the provisional attachment by providing enough collateral for all marine claims in terms of interest and expenses, provided that it does not exceed the ship value.

From this moment on, the special temporary legal protection of the provisional attachment on the ship ends. In other words, there is another guarantee in question when removing the provisional attachment.

ARTICLE 1371 – (1) The owner or debtor of the ship may request from the court to cancel the provisional attachment by showing sufficient collateral for all, interest, and expenses of the sea receivables, provided that it does not exceed the value of the ship. After the execution begins, this authority passes to the enforcement court.

(2) It is necessary to inform the institutions listed in Article 1366 that the provisional attachment of the ship has been lifted and to delete the record of the provisional attachment from the register.

(3) At the end of the case filed for the continuation of the provisional attachment, if it is decided to pay the collateral to the creditor, other marine claimants may not place a sequestration on this collateral.

8. Provisional Attachment of the Same Ship Over Again

As a rule, it is not possible for a creditor who has previously sequestrated the ship discreetly sequestrate the ship again, if the ship is released in exchange for collateral. But there are some exceptions.

  • Insufficient Collateral
  • Incapability of Warrantor: That the warrantor being in debt, like the P&I Club, which gives collateral for sea claims and suspends the payments.
  • In cases where the ship is unjustly released, of course, it is possible to re-sequestrate the same ship in the case of approximate proof.

As a result, the provisional attachment of the ship can be defined as removal of the ship from possession of the debtor by seizure or arrest of the ship, with a decision from the court in exchange for collateral. Provisional Attachment to be implemented on ships are limited in terms of statute and international law. Unlike real estate claims, the way of counting and limiting the ship claims individually has been preferred. But when the subject of a provisional attachment in question is a ship and a ship with a foreign flag, the application of this decision differs significantly from the normal provisional attachment decision.

The type, amount of collateral requested before the provisional attachment, removal of this sequestration or re-sequestration has been established by separate special provisions of the general rules of law. For this reason, it is necessary to carefully examine risks of collateral and value of the claim.

This article was originally published in Mondaq.

7 Bradley Attorneys Ranked in Chambers USA 2022

With 10 offices located in Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and the District of Columbia, Bradley have an extensive geographic base to represent clients on a regional, national, and international basis. Bradley frequently serve as national coordinating counsel, regional counsel, and state-wide counsel for clients in various industries.

Bradley law firm is pleased to announce that six practice areas and seven partners have been ranked nationally in the 2022 edition of Chambers USA, the prestigious legal industry referral guide. 7 Bradley attorneys were highly ranked.

Bradley attorneys ranked nationally in their areas of practice:

  1. Aron C. Beezley – Nationwide: Government Contracts
  2. Lindsey C Boney IV – Nationwide: Product Liability & Mass Torts
  3. Tripp Haston – Nationwide: Product Liability & Mass Torts
  4. Amy S. Leopard – Nationwide: Privacy & Data Security: Healthcare
  5. Robert Maddox – Nationwide: Financial Services Regulation: Consumer Finance
  6. Kimberly B. Martin – Nationwide: Product Liability & Mass Torts
  7. Haydn J. Richards Jr. – Nationwide: Financial Services Regulation: Consumer Finance

“The inclusion of these individual attorneys and these practice areas in Chambers USA is a testament to the highly skilled work being done across our firm on a national and international level.” said Bradley Chairman of the Board and Managing Partner Jonathan M. Skeeters.

Bradley is a national law firm with a reputation for skilled legal work, exceptional client service, and impeccable integrity. We provide business clients around the world with a full suite of legal services in dozens of industries and practice areas.

Independent research company Chambers determines its rankings of leading United States firms and attorneys through in-depth research and interviews with law firms, clients and third parties.

Chambers assesses attorneys on attributes valued most by clients, including technical legal ability, professional conduct, client service, commercial astuteness, diligence, and commitment.

5 Labour Law Basics for Companies Expanding Overseas

Labour law is the relationship between workers, employing entities, trade unions and the government. Collective labour law relates to the tripartite relationship between employee, employer and union. Individual labour law concerns employees’ rights at work also through the contract for work.

Your company is doing well in the United States, and you are looking to expand overseas. But besides the practical logistics, what fundamentals do you need to know before you take on an employee in another country?

Once you grasp the basic differences between dealing with United States- and non-United States employees, you will foster smoother employee-employer relationships and prevent unexpected hits to your bottom line.

Following are five points to consider as you hire and manage employees in other countries.

  1. Understand that every country has its own distinct labour laws and that when it comes to employee protections, other countries tend to be more like each other than they are like the United States. The most important distinction is that there is no labour at will in the rest of the world—meaning that labour is contractual and that generally speaking, you cannot just terminate or even materially change the labour contract unilaterally without consequences.
  2. Many employee relations issues flow from the absence of at-will labour, especially when United States management is unfamiliar with the reasonable expectations that employees outside the States have about their labour relationship with companies. Since employees have the contractual right to continued labour, they are trained to behave differently from United States employees. They are entitled to ask questions, push back on instructions they disagree with, and communicate with employers in ways that United States managers may be unused to—all without fear of being perceived as “questioning” the company’s strategy. In addition, because they receive paid vacations by law, employees usually do not hesitate to take all of the vacation time allotted to them. Especially in Europe and common law jurisdictions in the Americas and Asia Pacific region, employees do not hesitate to demand their legal and contractual rights under statute, collective bargaining agreement, or contract. In many countries, poor performance also is not legally sufficient reason to terminate labour, so employers must carefully hire motivated employees or find ways to provide extra motivation for extra effort. Unlike in many U.S. states, “continued labour” is never sufficient consideration for restrictive covenants imposed after initial labour has begun, precisely because the employee is already protected from dismissal.
  3. Beware of hidden expenses. American employers often front-load employee costs in their labour offers, because they expect certain costs and termination expenses to be minimal. But outside the United States, you may want to reconsider base salary offers that are substantially over market, because the cost of terminating someone’s labour can be substantial. So, not only should budgets take into account potential termination costs down the road, but when termination pay is based on “total remuneration,” as is the case in most countries, any out-of-pocket cash benefits over base salary—including annual discretionary bonuses—will increase the severance cost when an employee does not work out. In addition, in many countries almost all employees are entitled to overtime pay—even at the manager level—so you may want to take that into consideration when pricing an offer, or take the appropriate steps to avoid unexpected overtime costs. Another potential surprise cost lies in jurisdictions that require an extra holiday “allowance” or 13th, and sometimes even 14th, month of pay on top of base salary. If you do not know about these in advance, you may get a nasty surprise when you cannot take back a too-generous offer.
  4. Did we mention that labour is contractual outside the United States? This is true even in Canada, and even if many United States employers do not realise it. So let an labour contract be your friend! It is a good thing, to have a written contract laying out the respective rights and obligations of the parties. Without it, you may not be able to enforce certain expected behaviours, the employee will always get the benefit of the doubt, and the employee will sometimes get substantially more generous entitlements that you might have otherwise been able to control by agreement.
  5. Rightly or wrongly, local employees, unions, labour authorities, and courts sometimes perceive United States employers as arrogant and wilfully ignorant of local expectations, customs, practices and laws. Given that all of those players usually play a greater role in the employer-employee relationship than in the United States, showing them that your company is looking to forge relationships and work within the system to everyone’s benefit can go a long way toward easing your path and helping you achieve your goals.

Liability of The Guarantor Partner after Their Withdrawal

A guarantor is someone who agrees to pay your rent if you don’t pay it, for example a parent or close relative. If you don’t pay your landlord what you owe them, they can ask your guarantor to pay instead. If your guarantor doesn’t pay, your landlord can take them to court.

In commercial relations, it is common for creditors to demand that a partner of the company be the guarantor of the company’s obligations. A problem may arise when the guarantor partner withdraws from the company. Is he still liable for the company’s debt?

Recently, in the judgment of Civil Appeal No. 1131703-72.2016.8.26.0100, the 26th Chamber of Private Law of the Court of Appeals of the State of São Paulo determined the maintenance of the liability of the partner who guaranteed the company’s debt, even after his withdrawal, due to the lack of extinction of the guarantee or consent of the creditor to the substitution of the guarantor, subject to any right of recourse that the latter may have against the debtor and its current partners.

In this case, the guarantor was surety in a lease agreement to which the company was party and sold his corporate participation before there was any default under the contract. On the sale, the buyers assumed responsibility for all the company’s debts.

However, it is possible that the withdrawing partner may be released from his liability as guarantor. Ideally, the contract with the third party containing the guarantee should establish conditions for his replacement in the event of withdrawal of the guarantor partner.

In the absence of such a provision, the recommended course of action is for the guarantor, together with the company, to approach the creditor prior to any default, informing the latter of his withdrawal from the company and offering a substitution of the guarantee.

If the creditor refuses, it is possible to obtain an exoneration of liability by means of a lawsuit, demonstrating the guarantor’s good faith and that the reason for granting the guarantee no longer exists.

STÜSSI-NEVES ADVOGADOS main area of practice is the so-called corporate law, meaning that we are capable of rendering all services that a company needs in order to get established in Brazil, either by incorporating a subsidiary or by acquiring an existing Brazilian company or even through a joint-venture, as well as of assisting the incorporated companies in their daily businesses and routines, in tax, contractual, corporate, labour, litigation areas, compliance and data protection among others.