Category: Legal News

Solutions are our Focus!

We Focus on Solutions!!

I had an experience lately. A client paid a large Salt Lake firm more than $20,000 on a case that was valued at less than $3000 if he won the whole case.  Can you imagine that?  I was stunned and wondered how this happened. Then, I think I figured it out.  His attorneys were focused on the process, following the rules, instead of finding solutions to his problem.  There are these things in the law that most people, including attorneys, are clueless about called the Rules of Civil Procedure.  Here is a link to the Utah Rules: https://www.utcourts.gov/resources/rules/urcp/

What are The Rules of Civil Procedure?

The Rules of Civil Procedure are the rules that say how to do things in court.  There are over 100 of them in Utah.  Crazy!  These rules set deadlines for many things.  They say that no matter what you must do this and you must do that.  Some of the most costly ones are the rules governing discovery.

What is discovery?

Discovery is the process where people in a lawsuit exchange required information about the case with everyone else in the case.  This is the process that cost my friend above so much money.  Did circumstances require that much discovery in his case?  The strict reading of the rules says that you have to do it.  But, was it in his best interest to do it?  I do not think so.

We approach cases looking for solutions

Here at our firm we approach cases with a greater focus on the solution to our client’s problem over focusing on doing all the discovery we can in every case.  Some cases will require it; there is no getting around it.  Often we are able to talk to the other attorney and decide what information is absolutely vital and focus on getting that information exchanged and then we dive into finding solutions.

How is this different?

This is a different way of approaching a case than a lot of firms. It is faster, less painful, and usually results in a faster, less expensive and better outcome for our client.  For my friend I reviewed the contract that gave rise to his problem and in a couple of yours found a solution that could save him an additional $30,000 on the contract that this firm had not seen in $20,000 plus in attorney fees.

Call us! We can help!

So, if you want to hire a firm that is going to pay attention to finding the solution, you need please give us a call.  We can help! We can find solutions!

Who is on Your Business Team?

Who is on Your Business Team?

I have been thinking about business law a lot lately. I have found that too many people who go into business have been seduced by the advertising of the online “document preparers.”  It is true you can get your documents prepared by many online vendors. The issue is not preparing the documents, it is knowing the correct documents to draft.

If you are thinking of starting a business, I think you need at least a handful of advisers: lawyer, CPA or bookkeeper, marketing consultant, and web/SEO consultant.

Lawyer

You should consult with a lawyer about your business on several issues: entity choice, contracts, leases, employee policies, and how to structure your business.  With regards to entity choice, I would say that often the easiest to set up is not the best choice for your business.  My firm conducts legal checkups for free to take a quick look to see if there is anything glaring that should be fixed.

CPA or Bookkeeper

You should consult your CPA for tax election, tax planning, and employment tax compliance.  A bookkeeper can help you understand a lot about your books, such as what marketing is working, where you may be able to cut costs and what areas of your business are the most profitable.  You need to mine the data you have.

Marketing Consultant

How to market your business is such a moving target in today’s age with Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Google+, websites, phone books, radio, TV, direct mail, etc. It used to be in my business all you needed was a decently catchy Yellowbook ad and you were set.  Now if you do not have at least a website and social media presence, no one will find you.  Get a marketing consultant.

Web/SEO Team

Last you need to have a solid, and I feel local, web/SEO team.  You want to be able to sit down with them and have them help design and optimize your website.  Some businesses can benefit greatly from paying for SEO ad words on Google, Yahoo, and Bing.

We can help!

We would love to be the law firm or attorney member of your team. We have cultivated relationships with many of these other folks over the years and could help you fill in the rest of your team.  Give us a call to set up a time to talk to one of our attorneys:  435-674-2564

Why Should You Hire an Attorney?

Why Should You Hire an Attorney?

There are so many self-help resources available to people online. Some of these online resources even claim to be by attorneys with attorney help and support.   Some are even owned and run by celebrity attorneys. They all claim to be able to save you money on your legal services. Which brings us to our question – Why should you hire an attorney? I believe there are several reasons.

Attorneys have been to law school and passed the Bar Exam

This is a big deal. Quite frankly, someone who believes they can practice law without having gone through the crucible of law school is simply fooling themselves. I know a lot of attorneys will tell you that they didn’t learn how to practice law in law school, and that’s correct, law school trains the mind to think in a legal way. It is grueling and competitive. To survive law school you need brains, focus, and a great work ethic.

The bar exam is a two-day test. It is the hardest test that I’ve ever taken. One day consists of multiple-choice questions the likes of which would make any cruel teacher or professor squeal with delight due to their complexity and nuance.  One day is a series of essay and practical questions to test the test takers writing and analytical abilities.

We’ve done it dozens if not hundreds of times.

It is extremely likely when you first encounter an attorney it is the first time you have had to deal with a particular legal issue or problem. Attorneys, on the other hand, have as attorneys done multiple cases of a very similar type. Personally I have done thousands of criminal cases, hundreds of divorce cases, dozens of other litigation cases, hundreds of collection cases, as well as assisted in excess of 100 small businesses in their initial set up. I have also drafted more than 100 estate plans.  It would be safe to say that this experience gives me insights that you may not have about these issues.  All of us in our firm have a wide variety of experience that helps us to help you.

Attorneys bring an analytical mind to a problem.

There is a saying that I once heard that goes something like this “When emotion is high intelligence is low”. Being brought into the courts can be a scary, frustrating, and maddening situation. Very often you are hurt, scared, or angry. If these emotions were to be the only thing guiding your decision-making, it is likely that the decisions that you would make concerning your legal matter might not be in your best interest. One of our roles as attorneys is to bring that rational, reasoning mind to a legal problem when our clients are suffering the extremes of emotion. We can even take steps to delay or put off the case until our client is able to be thinking clearly in making their decisions.

Call us! We can help!

If you think any of the above applies to you, and you are currently in a situation that you could use the assistance of an attorney please call and schedule a free consultation at 435-674-2564. Ask for Travis. I will be glad to assist you.

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We have great attorneys!

We have great attorneys. Travis Christiansen recently was honored for his work by his peers.  He practices estate planning, divorce law, criminal defense, DUI and business law.

Attorney Travis R. Christiansen has Achieved a BV Distinguished™ Peer Review Rating™ from Martindale-Hubbell®.
Travis R. Christiansen, a lawyer based in St. George, UT whose primary area of practice is Estate Planning, has earned a Peer Review Rating™ from Martindale-Hubbell®

St. George, UT May 12, 2017 – Martindale-Hubbell® has confirmed that attorney Travis R. Christiansen still maintains the BV Distinguished Peer Review Rating™ from Martindale-Hubbell, even after first achieving this rating in 2017.

For more than 140 years, lawyers have relied on the Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings™ while searching for their own expert attorneys. Now anyone can make use of this trusted rating by looking up a lawyer’s rating on Lawyers.com or martindale.com. The Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™ are an objective indicator of a lawyer’s high ethical standards and professional ability, generated from evaluations of lawyers by other members of the bar and the judiciary in the United States and Canada. It is achieved only after an attorney has been reviewed and recommended by their peers – members of the bar and the judiciary. Congratulations go to Travis R. Christiansen who has achieved the Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rating™.

Travis R. Christiansen commented on the recognition: “The Martindale-Hubbell BV Distinguished Rating is a credential highly valued and sought after in the legal world. It used to be a sort of secret among attorneys who used the rating as a first screen when they needed to hire a lawyer they did not personally know. Now, thanks to the Internet, the Rating is a great way for anyone ñ lawyers or lay people – to use to screen lawyers. I am thankful to my peers who nominated me for this distinction, and proud to have earned this rating.”