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"Competent, Caring and Responsive"

Archives for October 2016

Why You Need an Attorney for Commercial Litigation

Commercial litigation is often a lengthy legal process that stems from a business disagreement.  Commercial litigation may arise between a business and another individual or between organizations.  These disputes may call for the careful examination of many documents and the depositions of individuals.  A business owner may quickly become stressed and overwhelmed while attempting to navigate such a dispute; thus, for commercial litigation, an experienced attorney should quickly be consulted.

In many cases, action must be taken immediately to protect the legal rights of the business and its owners.  For example, time is limited for individuals and businesses to file lawsuits for certain claims.  If these deadlines are missed, the claimants usually lose the right to ever file a lawsuit.

In many cases, with careful negotiation between the parties, the dispute may actually be settled before a lawsuit would need to be filed.  However, if a business owner attempts to settle the dispute without an attorney, the owner may agree to terms that are unfair or unreasonable to the business or personal conflicts develop  causing bitter feeling between the parties which are difficult to overcome later on.  The objective legal advice of an attorney should be sought for such situations.  Good legal representation relieves business owners of stress and worry for the state of their organization, as a settlement is sought for the dispute.

A litigation attorney, skilled in pursuing and defending claims in commercial litigation, will know what evidence is necessary and how to obtain it.  Without their guidance and expertise, a business owner’s claims may be significantly weakened.  Early intervention with an experienced attorney would be a cost savings in the long run.

What to Tell Your Divorce Mediator

Divorce mediation in Idaho has a high rate of success, even in difficult cases.  Divorce mediation is a unique process that is quite different from a family court trial.  You may be wondering what you should disclose to your divorce mediator.In short, the answer is, anything you like.

During mediation, your mediator will first obtain information so they can understand each of your positions in the case.  The mediator will then work with the parties to explore options that may potentially work for both parties, to settle each issue.  The mediator’s goal is to help the parties settle the case in a manner that both can find suitable.  Since the mediator has no decision-making power in the case, they do not weigh the evidence, consider what is admissible in court or advocate a position.  A mediator finds out what is important to each of you and discusses ways to address each concern.

During divorce mediation, any conversation you have with the mediator is kept private and confidential.  Although it is possible that you will discuss the case in the presence of your spouse, you may request to speak with the mediator privately at any time.  The mediator will not disclose any facts to your spouse without your permission.  Therefore, if you have certain concerns that you want addressed but do not want your spouse to know have been disclosed, you will simply ask the mediator to keep these points in mind as he or she helps mediate the case.

You may also have information that you want the mediator to know before you start mediation.Most mediators request or allow for a pre-meditation statement.  In this statement each party or the party’s attorney, may providethe mediator with a property list and who should get each item.  A debt list may also be disclosed listing each debt, the total amount owed, the monthly payment, and who should be responsible for each debt.  If children are involved, you may bring your children’s school calendars for the discussion of custody and visitation, and any other items that you feel are relevant to your case.  The mediator would also benefit from knowing how the two parties communicate with each other and whether there is animosity between them.

David Johnson is an attorney and divorce mediator located in Idaho Falls, Idaho.

Construction Disputes

Construction disputes are notorious for being expensive, time-consuming, and stressful.  Experts must be consulted, lots of unorganized paperwork must be reviewed, and witnesses must be interviewed or deposed.  It is not unusual for these cases to wind through the court system for a long time, costing the parties many thousands of dollars in legal fees.

If you are involved in a potential construction dispute, you should plan to visit with an attorney experienced in handling these types of matters.  Then, begin gathering all the necessary paperwork to review with the attorney.  The attorney needs to know what the contract was between the parties.  This includes what work was promised to be done, who was providing materials, method of payment, time for performance, etc.

Contractors have several hurdles that  they must clear before a contractor has the ability to pursue collection, including filing a lien against the real property.  These requirements include licensing and registration with the state.  Certain disclosures and documents must also be given by the contractor to the owner of the property.  If some of these requirements have not been complied with, the contractor may be completely prohibited from recovering funds.

The landowner also has to do certain things before they can pursue a lawsuit or fire a contractor.  For example, the landowner needs to comply with the Notice and Opportunity to Repair Act.  This law generally requires the homeowner to provide some opportunity for the contractor to make the repairs, before the homeowner can pursue a lawsuit.

After consulting with an attorney you will have better knowledge as to what your options are and how you should proceed.  If your position is weak, common sense might dictate a softer approach. If proper licenses, registrations, notices, disclosures are all in place, the parties may want to consider alternative dispute resolutions such as mediation. Mediation may be scheduled as soon as the parties agree, whereas it may take months to have a trial date scheduled.  Trials may also be postponed for a number of reasons.  Additionally, mediation typically costs a fraction of what a trial would cost the parties.  Most mediated cases are resolved in no more than a handful of mediation sessions.

David Johnson is an attorney located in Idaho Falls, Idaho, who handles construction disputes for both property owners and contractors.  He is a trained mediator and understands how the mediation process works.  He serves clients in most counties in Eastern Idaho including Bonneville, Bingham, Jefferson, Fremont, Madison, Teton, Butte, Custer and Clark Counties.

David A. Johnson has been providing quality legal services in East Idaho. As both a private attorney and as a former Bonneville County Prosecuting Attorney, Mr. Johnson has substantial courtroom experience. Mr. Johnson has handled cases all over the State of Idaho. His primary areas of practice are in Bonneville, Bingham, Butte, Jefferson, Madison, Fremont Bannock and Jefferson Counties. In addition, to Idaho Falls, we serve residences in the Blackfoot, Shelley, Firth, Rigby, Rexburg, St. Anthony, Ashton, Ammon, Driggs and Victor, Idaho. [Read more..]