Solve Law Of Probability

To understand how to solve probability using the laws
S is a sample space of a random experiment then Any task of the probability events that must be satisfies the three basic laws of probability.
P(A) “0. Where A is for any event.
P(s)=1
P(AUB)=P(A)+P(B) where A and B are two Mutually Exclusive event

Example for understanding how to solve laws of probability :

A event is a subset of the sample space S.

For Example: If A be the event then the sum of their numbers are 8 in the dice.Finrd the probability for getting 8?

Solution for solve law of probability:

A={(2,6),(3,5),(4,4),(6,2)}

It is same as the outcome of rolling as (2,6) OR (3,5) OR (4,4) OR (6,2).
Then the Law for the mutually Exclusive event for addition then the Probability for happening the event A is=

P(A)= P(2,6)+P(3,5)+P(4,4)+P(6,2)
= 1/36+1/36+1/36+1/36
= 1/36.

Basic Laws of Probability Used to Solve Problems :

Basic laws used to solve probability

The sample space is made up of A+’barA’
A+’barA’ = Whole sample space.

Example for solve law of probability: Find ‘barA’ for the probability of occouring 0.4 in the event A

Solve using the basic law of probability:

P(A)= 0.4

P( ‘barA’ )=1-P(A)

=1-0.4 =0.6.

Union Law:

P(AUB)=P(A)+P(B)-P(AnB)

Ex:Solve using the union law of probability P(A)=0.46 P(B)= 0.58 P(A”B)=0.66

Solution:P(AUB)= P(A)+P(B)-P(A”B)

=0.46+0.58-0.66

=0.38

Mutually Exclusive Events:

If the events A and B does not have any common outcomes then they are called mutually Exclusive.

P(AUB)=P(A)+P(B)

Conditional Probability and Independence:

Assume the event A/D

Where D is the outcome of the event to rolling a dice.The possible outcomes of the sample space is 16outcomes that are listed in the event D.and 2 of those two outcomes are also in the event A.The events A and B are made by these two outcomes.so the probability for the events A/D is in the ratio of the outcomes that are present in A and D to the Number of outcomes in D.

P(A/D)='(2)/(16)’ ='(1)/(8)’
Solve the Example Using Laws of Probability

John draws a balls from a bag Containing 14 balls. There are 4 violet balls 5 pink balls 6 white balls. What is the probability to john draw a pink balls?

Solution:P (pink balls)= number of pink balls/ total number of balls

= 5/14

probability = 0.35

Don’t Get Lost in Legal Jargon Know When To Call A Personal Injury Attorney

Most legal terms seem deliberately designed to confuse and frustrate the layperson. Some of the jargon we call legalese is actually founded in the dead language of Latin, making it difficult for the average person to understand. Fortunately, a few legal phrases and terms are actually quite obvious. Take for example the term “personal injury.”

As its name suggests, personal injury refers to a situation where a person is emotionally or physically injured due to the negligence of another. When it is clear that the other party was at fault, the injured individual has the legal right to file a lawsuit against them in civil court. If they are successful, the judge or jury will award damages.

Common Examples

With nearly as many automobiles as people in the US, it is no surprise that there are millions of reported car accidents each year. In about one-quarter of these collisions, someone is injured. If the driver that is found to be at fault was also deemed negligent, he or she may be sued for damages. As a result, automobile accidents are easily the most common reason people contact a personal injury attorney.

It is also possible to file suits because of slip and fall incidents, professional malpractice, product liability, workers’ compensation, and many other instances where negligence or wrongdoing can be established by a preponderance of the evidence.

Why File?

When you are injured in an accident, the burden of that injury must be borne by you. That includes medical bills, lost wages from work, and physical or emotional pain. But if you were not at fault and the other party is to blame, why should you be forced to pay for it? It seems only right and just that the other party should, at the very least, cover your financial losses. A personal injury attorney can handle the grueling negotiations for you to ensure that you are fairly compensated.

Possible Damages

In most cases, it is fairly easy to calculate exactly what you lost as the result of an accident -you simply add the wages you lost from work and your medical expenses. But compensation for pain and suffering can be much more complicated number to reach. This is just one of the many reasons why you should contact an experienced personal injury attorney if you have been hurt in an accident that was not your fault.

How They Can Help

Most valid personal injury cases are settled before they go to trial. To do so, the lead attorney must often negotiate with insurance companies, who are notoriously tough customers. While it is possible for individuals to do this on their own, we strongly advise against it. Insurance agents are, after all, highly skilled at handling these negotiations, and their only objective is to pay you less than you are owed. The best way to show them you are serious is to hire a personal injury attorney to speak on your behalf.

More often than not, an experienced personal injury attorney will help you settle your case for more than you could have on your own.

When looking for an expert personal injury attorney, Mobile, AL residents visit Bell Law Firm, P.C. Learn more about our services at http://www.belllawfirm.net.

Free Consultations for the Personal Injury Law

Any person who becomes involved in an accident and other similar situations should take the initiative to familiarize him or herself with the personal injury law. Disastrous occurrences have grown to become one of the leading reasons behind accidental injuries and there are instances when these injuries are even deadly. Unlawful acts towards someone can cause the person harm in terms of physical injury and the like and so the article aims to inform people about occurrences like these.

Human rights and the fulfillment of such rights are at the center of the civil law referred to as the personal injury law. When a person acts unlawfully and causes another person serious injuries, the latter can definitely sue the former for compensation settlements for the injuries sustained. People can be charged with liability claims under this ruling when the cause of the pain and suffering is an item or an action which the former is responsible for.

People who are the victims in a case of personal injury law are called by the legal term plaintiff as the complaints are being addressed. When a victim is not present on account of being fatally injured, his or her family then serves as the plaintiffs for the particular case. The people who have acted leading to the events of injuries for the victims are referred to as the defendants in the legal case.

Following the rules under the personal injury law a victim can easily win compensation if he or she has a highly qualified attorney by his or her side. When the lawyers of plaintiffs have strong evidence against the liable party the latter experiences the burden of being proven guilty. Best be sure to get the services of lawyers experienced in personal injury trials to ensure that those responsible will pay the price due their victims.

When it comes to personal injury law, a good case can easily be established in court considering that all primary elements are in their place. Two things need to be settled first and these are in relation to the extent of the liability of the person as well as how much damage was caused by their actions. Basically, the people need to know what caused an accident to happen or what the reason is behind the injuries or damages as well as how responsible is the defendant for what happened.

Many things will need to be considered through the legal process as stated in the personal injury law before the worth of all claims filed in court can be determined. The basis for these values for settlements primarily comes from the extent of damages that resulted from an accident including compensation for pain and suffering. A victim can usually incur expenses inclusive of medical and hospitalization bills, loss of income and employment due to the inability to work, as well as pain and suffering for some.

Pain and suffering can be compensated well if a victim chooses to apply the rulings under the personal injury law. Basic human rights are possessed by people and these should not be violated in any way regardless of power and societal differences. When applied the law can provide people with the knowledge of what needs to be done in order to assure that the human rights of their fellow men are not taken away from these people.

Every person should be mindful that any form of negligence can cause significant problems to people. People should immediately handle all concerns with regards to the personal injury law because they only have a limited time allowed to pursue claims. After this allotted time period, claims would be more difficult to pursue.

The protection of human rights is made possible by the personal injury law wherein wrongful acts against other people are not taken lightly especially when significant harm is caused. To know more about the ruling and the extent of claims that may be filed a person is encouraged to seek out legal counsel. Having adequate experience in such cases are important factors to consider for the lawyers to be hired.

Create the Right Kind of Interest in Your Law Firm on the Internet

In the pre-Internet age, it was difficult for law firms to publicize their services. State laws imposed strict limits on the way law firms were permitted to advertise, and even now, law firm websites have to publish disclaimers that they are providing marketing information only and not giving legal advice.

This gave law firms only a few options to market themselves. They could place their law firm’s name in the yellow pages or pay to be listed in the Martindale Hubbell, the famous encyclopedia of lawyers worldwide.

Law firms used to rely almost exclusively on their firm’s good reputation to draw in new business. Word of mouth recommendations by satisfied clients were key to a law firm’s survival. Famous litigators never lacked for clients because they would have newspaper or television coverage of their trials, but an average law firm with a clientele of low-profile companies would be off the radar.

Before law firms began developing their own websites, unless a potential client already knew about a particular law firm’s or a particular attorney’s expertise, they would have to consult with their friends and acquaintances, explaining the nature of their legal problem, and hope that the referral they received would be a good one. The bad news is that if a law firm neglects to create a quality website or does not bother to monitor the way its name comes up on the internet, there is a good chance that potential customers doing a web search on the law firm’s name could come up with information which may be detrimental to the client’s assessment of whether to engage the firm. If only for this reason, it’s crucial that a law firm pay attention to how they use the internet to market their services. Many law firms have links on their websites to articles about the particular legal issues that they specialize in, such as estate planning or immigration law. These articles can be the determining factor for potential clients in deciding to contact the firm.

A law firm website should list where each attorney holds their bar membership or other certifications.

Many larger law firms publish lists of representative corporate clients. In addition to demonstrating the breadth and quality of their law practice, this kind of listing also helps a potential client find out whether there might be a conflict of interest in their seeking to engage the law firm. Depending upon the kind of dispute and the size of the law firm, these conflicts often can be worked out by creating filewalls between the attorneys representing conflicting parties, but only if there is not a direct conflict.

It’s important to include information on the locations of any of the firm’s satellite offices. Potential clients who need a particular kind of legal representation will be more inclined towards a firm that has nearby offices even if the firm’s flagship office is in another state.

Law firms creating or updating their websites should highlight information that potential clients want to know, such as office locations and contact numbers, succinct information about their practice area expertise, and links to attorney biographies and informational articles about the practice.

Legal Aspects Of Leasehold Apartments And True Codnominiums In Thailand

A multi-unit residential building in Phuket could be registered and licensed as a condominium building and an exact copy of the building in Koh Samui could be a leasehold apartment complex. There is no way to see from the outside if it is a licensed condo or unregistered apartment complex.

The sale and legal structure of a condominium registered under the Thailand condominium Act is completely different from sale and legal structure of an unregistered apartment complex. The main difference is that apartment complexes do not offer freehold ownership over the individual units and are not regulated by specific condominium laws. Apartment complexes are sold under various contract structures which vary from mere apartment leases (where the developer retains full ownership) to leases combined with shares in a holding company. Beware, purchasers of units in apartment complexes do not find protection in the law as with registered condominiums and the contract structures and intention of the developer of an apartment complex should be triple checked.

The main differences are:

A condominium REGISTERED under the Condominium Act offers:

1. Legally recognized government issued and administrated individual ownership title deeds.
2. Foreigners must qualify for ownership within the foreign ownership quota of the condominium.
3. The owners are free to sell, encumber and dispose of their condominium unit.
4. Co-ownership in the common areas of the condominium, including the land on which the building sits.
5. Management and control over the building lies by law with the unit owners and have a legally set democratic voting right system.
6. A condominium development is a contract controlled business and must offer minimum consumer protection.

An apartment complex NOT REGISTERED and licensed as a condominium offers:

1. Individual lease agreements over the units as part of the building.
2. Foreigners do not have to qualify for lease registration under a special law and there is no foreign lease quota.
3. Selling (assigning their interest) requires cooperation of the owner of the building (developer).
4. The occupants of the building are basically tenants and have to comply with rules set by the owner of the building.
5. Control and management over the land and building lies by law with the owner of the land and building.
6. The contract sale structure under which leasehold apartments are sold could go either way, pro lessee or pro lessor/developer.
7. These units are subject to housing and land tax.

Legally there is nothing against leasehold apartments and generally these apartments are less expensive, but these apartment structures do not offer the same protection in the law as is offered in a licensed condominium development project. One offers government control, actual ownership and protection under the Thailand Condominium Act and Consumer Protection laws, the other offers possession through a lease agreement under the Civil and Commercial Code, and if any offer individual protection through private agreements.

Becoming A Self-employed Entrepreneur The Netherlands

Registration in the Dutch trade register is compulsory for every company and every legal entity, including ‘freelance’ and ‘zzp’ (‘zelfstandige zonder personeel’ or self-employed without staff).

When you have decided to start your own business a new world is opening up, with a wide variety of possibilities. You could open a shop or start your own consultancy firm; become a full-time or a part-time entrepreneur. Clients may wish to hire you for advice or construction work.
Before plucking up which is planted, there is a time to plant. In other words: you will have to be prepared to tackle challenges as well – either as a provider of services or products, as a self-employed entrepreneur, a sole trader, an independent contractor, or as a freelancer or so-called “ZZP-er”.

The risky side of freedom and independence

Whether you offer services or products: you will do so at your own risk, expense and with full responsibility towards third parties. As well as this, being self-employed entails certain obligations, such as paying taxes and VAT and keeping records of your business activities. Preparing well is the best way to start. You are definitely not on your own; the Dutch business world offers plenty of competent assistance.

Starting point

Before you visit the Chamber of Commerce to register your enterprise, you should have considered the following:

* a permit to start a business in the Netherlands
* a business plan
* legal form and trade name of your enterprise
* taxation and necessary insurance
* business location, commercial lease
* a VAR’-statement from the Tax Administration, declaring you as a self-employed entrepreneur

Starting your own business

If you do not have the Dutch nationality, and want to start a business in the Netherlands, you will have to comply with particular IND (Immigratie en Naturalisatie Dienst, the Dutch immigration authorities) formalities. Even if you are not obliged to register with the IND (for almost all EU nationals) please do so all the same, as it may come in quite handy for other purposes.

The Dutch Chambers of Commerce are incorporated under public law and, as such, target their services at Dutch businesses across all sectors.

Dutch immigration authorities

The legal form of your enterprise makes no difference to the applicability of the rules by the Dutch immigration authorities: whether it is a one-man business, a Dutch private limited (BV), or a branch-office of a foreign company. The rules do not differ either whether you start an enterprise shortly after arriving in the Netherlands, or after having been employed in the Netherlands for some time. However, rules and formalities do differ broadly speaking for EU nationals and non-EU nationals. Please check also the IND Residence Wizard

EU, EEA and Swiss nationals

Nationals of one of the EU Member States, the EEA (European Economic Area), or a Swiss citizen, are free to live and work on a self-employed basis in the Netherlands and do not need an entry visa or a residence permit.

Even if you are not obliged to register with the IND, do so all the same, as it may come in handy in the future. For instance, when asked for proof of registration on taking out Dutch public healthcare insurance, a healthcare, housing or childcare allowance, a mortgage, or a phone subscription. Registration is free of charge. If you intend to stay over four months, you are always required to register at your local municipality. The expatdesk will help you out here.

Working on a self-employed basis when a EU, EEA and Swiss national

There are no specific IND formalities that have to be fulfilled for nationals of these states.

Different rules apply for citizens of Bulgaria or Romania as long as restrictions on the Dutch labour market remain in force. Nationals of these countries are advised to apply for a residence permit, which will be useful in a number of situations. The procedure is called “Application for assessment under the EU community law (proof of lawful residence)”.

Nationals of non-EU and non-EEA countries

If you are not a national of an EU or EEA country and not Swiss, you will need to apply for a residence permit in case you stay longer than three months in the Netherlands. A residence permit can be obtained from the IND.

If you are a national of a country subject to the Dutch visa requirement for more than three months’ stay, you will have to apply for a special visa: a provisional residence permit, an MVV (Machtiging Voorlopig Verblijf).

Working on a self-employed basis as national of non-EU / non-EEA country and non-Swiss
In this case you will have to meet several economic criteria before starting an enterprise in the Netherlands:

* You are qualified to run the business in question.
* You have a business plan.
* Your business serves an essential Dutch interest, i.e. “added value” for the Netherlands.

The IND does not weigh these criteria itself; the Ministry of Economic Affairs is requested to review your situation and to decide whether the business you intend to run will be economically interesting. If this turns out not to be the case, you cannot start your own business in the Netherlands.

Review of economic added value

* a permit to start a business in the Netherlands
* a business plan
* legal form and trade name of your enterprise
* taxation and necessary insurance
* business location, commercial lease
* a VAR’-statement from the Tax Administration, declaring you as a self-employed entrepreneur

Starting your own business

If you do not have the Dutch nationality, and want to start a business in the Netherlands, you will have to comply with particular IND (Immigratie en Naturalisatie Dienst, the Dutch immigration authorities) formalities. Even if you are not obliged to register with the IND (for almost all EU nationals) please do so all the same, as it may come in quite handy for other purposes.

The Dutch Chambers of Commerce are incorporated under public law and, as such, target their services at Dutch businesses across all sectors.

Dutch immigration authorities

The legal form of your enterprise makes no difference to the applicability of the rules by the Dutch immigration authorities: whether it is a one-man business, a Dutch private limited (BV), or a branch-office of a foreign company. The rules do not differ either whether you start an enterprise shortly after arriving in the Netherlands, or after having been employed in the Netherlands for some time. However, rules and formalities do differ broadly speaking for EU nationals and non-EU nationals. Please check also the IND Residence Wizard

EU, EEA and Swiss nationals

Nationals of one of the EU Member States, the EEA (European Economic Area), or a Swiss citizen, are free to live and work on a self-employed basis in the Netherlands and do not need an entry visa or a residence permit.

Even if you are not obliged to register with the IND, do so all the same, as it may come in handy in the future. For instance, when asked for proof of registration on taking out Dutch public healthcare insurance, a healthcare, housing or childcare allowance, a mortgage, or a phone subscription. Registration is free of charge. If you intend to stay over four months, you are always required to register at your local municipality. The expatdesk will help you out here.

Working on a self-employed basis when a EU, EEA and Swiss national

There are no specific IND formalities that have to be fulfilled for nationals of these states.

Different rules apply for citizens of Bulgaria or Romania as long as restrictions on the Dutch labour market remain in force. Nationals of these countries are advised to apply for a residence permit, which will be useful in a number of situations. The procedure is called “Application for assessment under the EU community law (proof of lawful residence)”.

Nationals of non-EU and non-EEA countries

If you are not a national of an EU or EEA country and not Swiss, you will need to apply for a residence permit in case you stay longer than three months in the Netherlands. A residence permit can be obtained from the IND.

If you are a national of a country subject to the Dutch visa requirement for more than three months’ stay, you will have to apply for a special visa: a provisional residence permit, an MVV (Machtiging Voorlopig Verblijf).

Working on a self-employed basis as national of non-EU / non-EEA country and non-Swiss
In this case you will have to meet several economic criteria before starting an enterprise in the Netherlands:

* You are qualified to run the business in question.
* You have a business plan.
* Your business serves an essential Dutch interest, i.e. “added value” for the Netherlands.

The IND does not weigh these criteria itself; the Ministry of Economic Affairs is requested to review your situation and to decide whether the business you intend to run will be economically interesting. If this turns out not to be the case, you cannot start your own business in the Netherlands.

Review of economic added value
The Ministry of Economic Affairs awards points for each criterion. You will need a minimum of 30 points for each criterion (total number for all criteria: 300).

The scoring system consists of three parts:

a) Personal experience (education, experience as a self-employed person, working experience);
b) Business plan (market analysis, product/service, price, organisation, financing);
c) Material economic purpose for the Netherlands (innovative, job creation, investments).

You should always contact the IND to find out about the procedure involved in testing the economic interest of the enterprise you intend to start. For nationals of some countries, for example Turkey, special rules apply on the basis of treaties between the EU and these countries. And when you are from the United States of America, it is important to know there is the so-called Nederland-Amerikaans’ vriendschapsverdrag’.

Taking your business from abroad

The Dutch comparative companies Act recognises all foreign legal entities except businesses owned by one man or one woman. If you run a one-person business in your country of origin and you can prove this, for example by submitting a copy of registration in a commercial register in that country, you can bring this enterprise to the Netherlands and have it registered at the Chamber of Commerce as a Dutch one-man or -woman business.

Other legal foreign entities or foreign business forms are simply registered as a foreign legal entity with commercial activities.

Please note that you will still have to comply with the IND residency rules

Starting a branch office in the Netherlands

There is a question of a branch when long-lasting business operations, which form part of the foreign enterprise, are (being) conducted in the Netherlands. A branch can be: a sales office or a production company, but also a representative office. It does not have an independent legal form, but is a part of the foreign enterprise.

Dutch law recognises foreign legal entities. In other words: the foreign legal entity wishing to start activities in the Netherlands needs not be converted into a Dutch legal form.

A business plan is essential

No matter small or big the business is, a business plan will help you identify areas of strengths and weaknesses.

Banks require a business plan when you take out a loan. Even if you do not need the latter, and financing your enterprise is not a problem, a business plan will definitely help you understand the impact of starting a business. Submitting a business plan is also one of the criteria set for non-EU and non-EEA nationals to be allowed to start their own enterprise in the Netherlands.

Get started: Write the plan yourself

Crucial questions you should ask are:

* Which legal form will best suit the enterprise?
* Which products or services will you offer?
* Who will be your clients?
* Promotional activities to get contracts?
* How to optimize visibility to your target group?
* Which prices and fees?
* Financial plan (available budgets, expected turnover, investments)?
* Which insurances do you need?
* Permits and/or licences required?
* Administrational organisation, which form?
* What should be included in your General Terms and Conditions if applicable?

Formats

Business plan formats can be obtained from various private parties that specialise in supporting starters. Just surf the internet. Small business planner at http://www.sba.gov/ is a useful site.

Employment law issue: employed or self-employed?

If you go freelance, you should pay extra attention to your situation, because the term ‘freelancer’ is not a definition recognized by law. Freelancers operate somewhere in between being self-employed and being in paid employment.

As an independent entrepreneur you pay taxes and contributions yourself, and you are not entitled to rights employers are: minimum wage, paid holidays, a holiday allowance, statutory safeguards against dismissal and a statutory notice period.

In order to designate the employment relationship while starting your business, it is important to consider different contracts and apply for a Verklaring Arbeidsrelatie (VAR) at the Tax Administration.

Employment on the basis of a contract and implied employment

Regardless of the title chosen for the contract with your client, it is considered an employment contract if the following criteria are met:

* your remuneration for the work performed can be seen as wages;
* there is an obligation to do the work yourself: you cannot send someone else to do the job for you. Having to be available for specific work, e.g. on-call service, will also be considered as work performed in employment;
* a relationship of authority: the employer can determine where, when and how the work should be carried out. This relation also exists if the work you do is an essential element in the employer’s business operations or if the employer’s profitability is at risk without you.

If the working relation does not show all characteristics of a “proper” employment relation, it may still be seen as one. This is called a notional employment relationship: although the employment relation has not been established explicitly, there is an implicit employer-employee relation. Consequently, the fee you charge is seen as wage, so, the employer will have to deduct taxes from your wages and pay national insurance and employee insurance contributions.

A notional employment relation exists if:

* you work for a client project for at least at two days a week;
* you earn more than 40% of the minimum wages for the project a week;
* the relation with the client lasts more than 30 days; a new contract within one month after the termination of the first contract is seen as continuation of the previous contract.

A notional employment does not exist if actual and practical independence can be proven, for which a VAR can be instrumental.

Commercial contracts

As a self-employed entrepreneur you or your client can initiate to formalise the contractor-client relation by entering into a commercial contract. Parties should always insist on putting down the arrangements agreed upon.
There are two types of commercial contracts:
1. Service agreement – Under this type of contract you are obliged to perform to the best of your ability, committing yourself to do your client’s work without being employed by him. The work is usually classified as services’.
2. Contractor agreement – Under this type of contract you have a specific target obligation. You commit yourself to produce a concrete, tangible object at a certain price.

Criteria for legal independence: Actual circumstances are decisive here. An official statement signed by client and yourself that the contract is a commercial one is helpful proof. Criteria are:

* the degree of independence and absence of supervision/authority;
* permanence;
* pursuit of profit;
* clientele.

Not just these criteria, but their interconnection especially plays a decisive role.

De Verklaring Arbeidsrelatie (VAR)

In order to designate the employment relationship you can apply for a Verklaring Arbeidsrelatie (VAR) at the Tax Administration. The VAR is an official statement. Based upon the applicant’s information the Tax Administration will define income as:

* Income earned in employment: the freelancer will have a VAR income.
* Income earned from other proceedings: the freelancer will have a VAR-row.
* Profit from enterprise: the freelancer will have a VAR-wuo.
* Partnership’s own risk and account: the freelancer will have a VAR-dga.

VAR-income and -row: employed or not?

With a view to the VAR-income and row, the employer will have to define and check whether he should pay income tax and employees insurance premiums, based upon the existence of an employment contract or otherwise. Explanatory assistance but no definite answer! – can be found at the website of the Ministry of Finance. The Tax Administration may conclude differently.

VAR-wuo and dga: certainty in advance

Only VAR-wuo or -dga supply the employer beforehand with complete financial certainty provided he meets the following conditions:

* The freelancer’s activities should be similar to the VAR’s description. So, the freelancer is not entitled to carry out IT work if the VAR denotes carpentry.
* The freelancer is on the job during the validity of the VAR (1 calendar year).
* The VAR should be the authentic original.
* The employer should determine the freelancer’s identity on the basis of a valid proof of identity (not driver’s licence). Copies of the VAR and proof of identity should be kept in the administration for seven years.

Having acted this way, the employer has a solid defence in case the Tax Administration or UWV may reach another verdict afterwards. So, it may be wise for both freelancers and employers to object against a VAR-income or -row.

VAR application

Bearing in mind the utmost importance of the VAR-outcome, it is obviously important to carefully fill out the VAR-form. Only the freelancer him/herself is allowed to apply for a Verklaring Arbeidsrelatie (VAR); the employer is not entitled to do this. A directeur-groot aandeelhouder (DGA) should apply for a VAR in case of external consultancy.

The Tax Administration provides a digital VAR application form; to which you will get a reply within 8 weeks. If additional information is needed, the Tax Administration will contact the applicant.

Please note the following when filling out the form: The Tax Administration considers request as a total, coherently, and takes the activities into account. If not all answers are favourable it does not necessarily mean that no VAR-wuo will be given. For example: an interim manager with two or more employers can still be entitled to a VAR-wuo.

The freelancer should write down reasonable expectations. If, however, the actual situation afterwards turns out to have been differently, this will not have any consequences as long as the deviation is within normal risk of enterprise limits. For example, the freelancer expected to have 3 or more employers, but due to a recession this turned out differently.

The freelancer has to fill out the form to the best of his knowledge and should not deliberately misrepresent the state of affairs. If this should afterwards be proven to have been the case, the Tax Administration will recover the indebted taxes and premiums from the freelancer.

Some of the questions need a yes’ or no’ only; choose the nearest suitable.

Relation employer/former employer

As a part-time independent entrepreneur / part-time employee you could get involved in a conflict of interest with your (former) employer. If you intend to provide services, comparable to the ones he provides, you better ask his permission/advice to run your own business.

Starting a business as a full-time independent entrepreneur you should be aware of a possible conflict of interests as well. You probably signed a non-competition clause within your employment contract that remains valid after termination of employment. In any case it is wise to contact/consult your (former) employer of your intentions.

Legal forms and registration of an enterprise

The Chambers of Commerce can answer your questions about the legal environment of your business. Seminars and other regular services are available.

The majority of starting entrepreneurs either choose a one-man business or a general partnership as the legal form for their business, according to their preference on doing business by themselves or in cooperation with others.

In order to accommodate the starting entrepreneur or professional, Dutch law recognizes various legal forms, such as a one-man business, a private limited company (BV), a partnership or a limited partnership. The main issues at stake are the matter of liability if your enterprise should run up debts, and which tax regime applies.

One-person business

One-person business (lit. one-man in Dutch: eenmanzak) is also referred to as sole trader or sole proprietorship or independent contractor.

If you start a one-person business you will be the fully independent founder and owner. More than one person may work in a one-person business, but there can only be one owner. A one-person business can also employ personnel.

Setting up

You can establish a one-person business without a notarial deed. Registration in the Trade Register is mandatory. As a private individual you can only register one one-man business. However, you can have more than one trade name and carry out various business activities under different trade names. These activities can be carried out at the same or at another address, as a branch office of the one-man business.

Liability

As the owner of a one-person business you are responsible for everything concerning your enterprise; for every legal act and all its assets and liabilities. No distinction is made between private and business property. Thus, business creditors can seek recovery from your private property and private creditors from your business property. If your one-man business goes bankrupt, you yourself go bankrupt as well.

If the owner of a one-person business should be married in a community of property regime, the creditors may also lay claim to the partner’s property. Partner liability can be avoided by a prenuptial or a postnuptial agreement drafted by a civil-law notary. However, since partners are usually requested to co-sign when taking a loan, the agreement may not offer the protection expected. A civil-law notary can provide more information.

Taxes and social security

The profit made in a one-person business is taxed in box 1 income tax. If the Tax Administration fully considers you an entrepreneur, you are entitled to tax allowances such as the entrepreneur’s allowance, investment allowance and the tax-deferred retirement allowance.

The owner of a one-person business cannot claim social benefits under the Sickness Benefits Act, the Work and Income Act and the Unemployment Insurance Act. Therefore, it is advisable to take out insurances to cover these risks. You will qualify for the following national insurance schemes:

* General Old Age Pensions Act
* -Surviving Dependants Act
* Exceptional Medical Expenses Act
* General Child Benefit Act

Continuation of the business activities and business succession

With a one-man business no distinction is made between private and business. If you die, both business and private property will fall into your heirs’ estate. You will need to make provisions to guarantee your business’ continuity. A tax consultant could provide more details.

B. General partnership, the “VOF”

A general partnership is a form of cooperation in which you run a business with one or more business partners. You and your partner(s) are the associates or members of the general partnership. One of the characteristics of this legal form is that each partner contributes something to the business: capital, goods, efforts (work) and/or goodwill.

Setting up

A partnership contract is not a statutory requirement for the formation of a general partnership, but it is, of course, advisable to put down in writing what you and your business partner(s) have agreed upon. A partnership contract could arrange the following matters:

* name of the general partnership;
* objective;
* contributions by partners in capital, knowhow, goodwill, assets and efforts (work);
* distribution of profits and offset of loss;
* allocation of powers;
* arrangements in case of illness;
* arrangements for a partner’s days off/ holiday.

Liability

An important characteristic of the general partnership is the joint and separate liability of the partners. Each partner can be held fully liable – including private property – if the general partnership fails to meet its obligations, even if these obligations were entered into by another, authorised partner. Creditors of the partnership may seek recovery from your business property and your private property and the property of the other partner(s). Restrictions agreed upon in the partners’ authority have to be officially registered in order to gain legal effectiveness towards third parties.

The general partnership usually has separate capital’, i.e. the business capital contributed by the partners, which is kept apart from their private property and capital. This capital is to be solely used for business purposes. Should one or more creditors seek recovery from the partnership – for instance in the case of bankruptcy – they could do so from the separate capital. If this should be inadequate to pay the partnership’s debts, creditors may seek full recovery from the partners’ private property. If so, you could hold the other partner(s) liable for having failed to meet their obligations, but only after the creditors have been paid. In private matters creditors of partners cannot seek recovery from the partnership’s business assets or the private property of the other partner(s).

Because of this partners’ broad liability it is advisable to have a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement drafted if you are married under a community of property regime. A civil-law notary could provide you with more information.

Taxes and social security

Each partner will pay their own income tax on his profit share. If the Tax Administration sees the individual partner as an entrepreneur, they are entitled to all kinds of tax allowances, such as the entrepreneur’s allowance, investment allowance and the tax-deferred retirement allowance.

As far as social security is concerned, the same rules apply for the entrepreneur partner as for the owner of a one-person business.

Continuation of the business activities and business succession

Under Dutch law the general partnership ends when one of the partners resigns or dies. In order to secure the continuation of the general partnership, the partners can include a clause in the partnership contract arranging for the other partners to continue the general partnership with or without a new partner or to terminate it.

C. Limited partnership, the “CV”

A limited partnership, the “CV”, is a special type of general partnership (VOF). The difference is that the CV has two types of business partners: general, and limited or sleeping partners. The latter are only financially involved; they cannot act on behalf of the partnership. Besides, the name of a limited partner cannot be used in the trade name of the limited partnership.

Setting up

A partnership contract is no statutory requirement for a limited partnership, but, again, partners better put down the agreements. Apart from the matters mentioned in the VOF, the contract should arrange the distribution of profit between general and limited partners. When registering a limited partnership in the Trade Register, the personal details of the general partners are listed; the details concerning the limited partners are restricted to total number and their contributions in the partnership.

Liability

General partners can be held fully liable if the partnership fails to meet its obligations. Bankruptcy of the limited partnership will automatically lead to the general partners’ bankruptcy (not applicable to limited partners). A limited partner can only be held liable to the maximum sum contributed to the partnership. However, should the limited partner act on behalf of the partnership, he will be seen as a general partner and fully liable, in which case creditors of the partnership can lay claim on his private property as well. Restrictions agreed upon in the partners’ authority have to be officially registered in order to gain legal force towards third parties.

The general partners’ liability in a limited partnership is quite broad, so, if partners are married under a community of property regime they are advised to have a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement drafted. A civil-law notary could provide more information.

Taxes and social security

General partners pay income tax on their share in the profit. If the Tax Administration sees the individual partner as an entrepreneur, they are entitled to various tax allowances, such as the entrepreneur’s allowance, investment allowance and the tax-deferred retirement allowance. As far as social security is concerned, the same rules apply to the entrepreneur partner as to the owner of a one-person business. Limited partners, who cannot be held personally liable for the enterprise’s debts, are not seen as entrepreneurs by the Tax Administration.

Continuation of the business activities and business succession

Under Dutch law the limited partnership ends when one of the partners resigns or dies. In order to secure the continuation of the limited partnership, the partners can include a clause in the contract arranging for the other partners to continue the partnership with or without a new partner or to terminate it.

D. Professional partnership, the maatschap’

The partnership referred to as maatschap’ under Dutch law differs from the general partnership and the limited partnership in that it is a form of cooperation established by professionals such as doctors, dentist, lawyers, accountants, physiotherapists etc., rather than a cooperation established for the purpose of doing business. The partners are referred to as maten’ instead of partners’. Each maat’ contributes personal efforts, capital and/or assets. The purpose is to share the income earned on the one hand and the expenses incurred on the other.
Setting up a professional partnership

A partnership contract is no statutory requirement for the formation of a professional partnership, but partners better lay down their agreements with the other professionals in a partnership contract. This partnership contract could arrange the following matters:

* contributions made by the partners;
* distribution of profits, pro rata each partner’s contribution – distributing all profit to one partner is not allowed;
* allocation of powers – each partner is entitled to perform management acts, unless agreed upon otherwise; as of 1 July 2008 the professional partnership has to register in the Trade Register. This does not apply to partnerships that only act internally, such as a partnership in which costs are pooled.

Liability

Each authorised partner can enter into a contract, thus binding the partnership: all partners. Each partner can be held liable for an equal part. If a partner should act beyond his authorization, the other partners will in principle not be held liable: the partner in question is the only partner that has bound himself. A professional partnership has no separate capital’ from the private assets of the partners. Creditors having a claim on the partnership can only seek recovery for equal parts from the individual partners; these creditors do not rank above creditors who have a claim on the private assets of a partner. To a married partner the same reservations apply as to the general partners in general partnerships and limited partnerships. They are advised to have a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement drafted. A civil-law notary could provide more information.

Taxes and social security
Each partner pays income tax on his profit share. If the Tax Administration sees the individual partner as an entrepreneur, he is entitled to various tax allowances, such as the entrepreneur’s allowance, investment allowance and the tax-deferred retirement allowance. Regarding social security the same rules apply to the entrepreneur partner as to the owner of a one-man business

Continuation of the business activities and business succession

Under Dutch law the professional partnership ends when one of the partners resigns or dies. In order to secure the continuation of the partnership, the partners can include a clause in the contract arranging for the other partners to continue the partnership with or without a new partner or to terminate it.

E. Private company with limited liability, BV’

In contrast to the legal forms described above – enterprises run by natural persons – the private limited is a legal person: a person having rights and obligations, just like a natural person. The natural person who has incorporated the private limited cannot be held liable, in principle, for the debts incurred by the private limited. The BV itself is seen as the entrepreneur, whereas the natural person who is appointed director merely acts on behalf of the BV and cannot be held personally liable for his acts. A private limited company can be incorporated by one person a sole shareholder BV or by more persons. The capital of a private limited is divided in shares.

Incorporating

This involves a number of statutory requirements, most important of which:
Incorporation takes place through a notarial deed. This should include the articles of association of the company. The civil-law notary will check the legal contents of the articles.
A certificate of no-objection from the Ministry of Justice must be submitted before the incorporation can be effected. The Ministry checks whether the person incorporating the company has ever been involved in bankruptcy proceedings or fraud cases.

The incorporation of a BV requires a minimum capital of EUR 18,000 (cash or in kind) in the private limited.

Liability

The shareholder’s liability is limited to the total sum of his participation. Since the BV is a legal person, having its own independent rights and obligations, the persons involved – directors and supervisors – cannot be held liable for the debt of the company. In other words: the company’s creditors can never seek recovery from the private assets of these officers. However, a company director or officer may be held liable as a private person if he has acted negligently or culpably. If they are responsible for the company’s bankruptcy because of wrongful or fraudulent behaviour in the company’s policy, creditors of the company may file a claim against them.

In the formation phase of the company, a director may be liable for the company’s acts. This liability ends as soon as the legal person is incorporated and the acts are confirmed by the company. As long as the company has not been registered in the Trade Register, directors’ and officers’ liability continues. In practice, limited liability often does not apply because banks require the director and principal shareholder of the company to co-sign for loans taken out on behalf of the BV.

Taxes and social security

The private limited pays corporation tax also referred to as company income tax on the profits earned. The BV’s director and shareholder are employed by the BV His eligibility for social security under the Dutch social security laws depends on the relation of authority between himself and the private limited. A relation of authority is considered not to exist if:

* the director, possibly with his or her spouse, can cast more than 50% of the votes in the shareholders’ meeting;
* two thirds or more of the shares are held by the director and/or close relatives up to the third degree;
* the director cannot be dismissed against their will.

Without a relation of authority, the director and shareholder cannot rely on the social security insurances. He will have to take out his own insurances; to him the same rules apply as to the owner of a one-person business.

Continuation of the business activities and business succession

Continuation of the company is secured by the fact that the BV is a legal person that exists independently from the persons having incorporated or managing the private limited. When the director dies, the continuation of the enterprise is not at risk, viz. the enterprise is run by the BV and a new director will have to be appointed.

A private limited can be sold in two different ways:

* BV’s shares are sold;
* BV’s enterprise (machines, inventory, stocks, etc.) is sold.

If the shares are sold, the proceeds are subject to income tax (box 2) if the shareholder has a substantial interest (holder of a minimum of 5% of the shares).

If the enterprise is sold, the BV will have to pay corporation tax on the profit or book profit on the sale. If the shareholder of the BV selling the enterprise is a BV itself, the structure is referred to as a holding – advantage of which: the holding will in principle have to pay taxes on the proceeds.

Registration of your enterprise

Before you are allowed to start your business operations, you have to register your enterprise in the Dutch Trade Register, which is administered by the Chambers of Commerce. Registrations in the Trade Register are public; everyone can check whether a particular person is authorised to act on behalf of an enterprise and which legal form it has: a one-man business, a partnership or a private or public limited.

The Chamber of Commerce could run a trade name investigation for you to make sure that the selected trade name does not infringe the rights of other enterprises. This trade name investigation is not free of charge.

Holland Gateway (the cooperation of the Netherlands Chambers of Commerce, Ministry of Economic Affairs and other official institutions) is located at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport. This bureau promotes the ease of doing business in the Netherlands.

How to register your enterprise

Registration requirements

Once you have decided upon your business’ legal form, you can have your enterprise registered at the local Chamber of Commerce. Registration should take place within a period of one week preceding, and one week following the actual commencement of business activities.

Without registration in the GBA, you will need to submit authenticated proof of your residential address abroad. The person registering the business has to submit a valid proof of identity, which document has to be personally submitted at the Chamber of Commerce. The following documents are accepted as valid IDs:

* a valid travel document (passport or European ID card);
* a valid Dutch driving licence (non-Dutch driving licence not accepted);
* a residence permit issued by the IND;
* a Dutch refugee passport
* a Dutch aliens passport

If you do not start your business at your home address but at a location you have e.g. rented, you will also be requested to show the lease to confirm the business address.

Once the registration has been completed, you will be given a unique eight-figure registration number. This KvK number should be referred to on all your outgoing mail. Free of charge, you will receive an extract of your registration, a KvK-uittreksel'(excerpt).

Who can register the enterprise

When an enterprise is registered at the Chamber of Commerce, it is of the utmost importance that the registration forms which are submitted have been signed by the right person. Depending on the legal form of the enterprise, the forms can be registered in the Trade Register by:

* the owner of the one-man business (registration of a one-man business),
* the partners (registration of a general partnership, VOF, and a professional partnership, maatschap’)
* or the general partners (registration of a limited partnership, CV’)
* If the enterprise is a legal person, a BV, the civil-law notary will usually see to the registration formalities.

The persons who should register the enterprise and sign the registration forms can also be held responsible in the event an enterprise is not registered.

In special circumstances other persons may be authorized and/or obliged to see to the registration of an enterprise. The Chamber of Commerce can advise you on these circumstances.

Registration forms

The registration forms can be downloaded from the Chamber of Commerce website. As a statutory requirement, all forms are in Dutch and have to be completed in Dutch. Translations in English of forms 6, 11 and 13 are available to assist you while filling in the Dutch form to be handed in.
Registration is not free of charge. When you register a business, a fee will be due for the calendar year the enterprise is registered in. After that initial year, an annual fee will be charged in the first quarter of each year. The total sum of this contribution depends on the legal form.

After registration

Once the enterprise has been registered, it is the owner or partner’s responsibility to keep the information up-to-date. With a BV the manager authorised to act on behalf of the BV is responsible.

Permits and Licences

Most business activities can be performed without any permits or licences, but for some activities, like catering business, transport or taxi firm, you do need a licence. And an environmental permit may be required if your products or business operations negatively affect the environment. Permits and licences can be applied for at the municipality or at the provincial authorities.

Check how you can use your degree or diploma for your business in the Netherlands. International Credential Evaluation: http://www.idw.nl/international-credential-evaluation.html

Some sectors require registration with an industry board or a product board. Registration is a statutory requirement, based on the Act on Business Organisations. An industry board is a kind of interest group for a specific sector. The same applies to a product board, which includes all enterprises in a production chain, from producers of raw material to manufacturers of end products.

Termination / dissolution of the enterprise

When transferring or selling your company, you will have to comply with a number of rules and regulations. You should also enter information about the sale into the Trade Register and reach a settlement with the Tax and Customs Administration. A business transfer within the family involves several other tax aspects.

Expatica will publish Becoming a self-employed entrepreneur the Netherlands (part 1) on Sunday 27 February.

Chambers of Commerce
The Dutch Chambers of Commerce provide information on starting a business, legal forms, registration in the trade register, international trade etc. We have accumulated knowledge, contacts and partnerships, which makes it the essential reference point for every firm doing or seeking to do business.

Drop by for specific information
Apart from general information, the Chambers of Commerce will be glad to provide you with further details regarding your specific position: either at the start of your business or while running it.

If you are located and/or interested in the Region Amsterdam:
Do call 020-5314684 for a consultation with one of our specialists of the Bedrijfsvoorlichting department.

Ca Public Death Records Free Access Over The Internet

State of California Death Records are under the safekeeping of the California Department of Public Health Office. Requests for the files can be directed to the office as well. If you want to obtain death files in other states, you will have to wait several years because only then will they become available to the public. In California, you can get them as soon as they are finalized.

The public health office offers two kinds of death files: the informational version and the authorize version. Informational versions include the basic pieces of information and are only accepted as an information aide to tell about the death of an individual. It is not accepted as an official file for any legal endeavour. On the other hand, an authorize version is contains pretty much the same information but it is recognized as a legal file that can be used in certain legal endeavours. Authorized versions are only offered to immediate family which include the spouse, siblings, parents, and their children. A text stating not a valid document for identity is printed across the page of an information version.

Any member of the general public is allowed to submit a request for death files, provided that the correct procedure is followed. A request form must be completed appropriately. Information such as the name of the dead person and your reason for requesting the death file should also be included. Send the completed request form back to the office, together with a government-issued ID and the corresponding payment. A sworn statement should also be included if you want to get an authorize version of the files. A no-refund policy takes into full effect once payment is done, whether the files are found or not.

It is crucial that you are accurate with the information that you provide when conducting a search. The normal return period is usually between 2 to 10 weeks. If you want to obtain the records sooner, providing the specific year and county where the divorce was finalized will help a great deal. Death files that date back from 1905 up to present day can be found at the Public Health Office. If you know the specific county, you can go to that place and make the request there. If not, the Public Health office can do that task for you.

Free Death Records are also offered by some online search tools. There are many search tools you can find on the Web but prior to choosing which one to go for, do a background search on them first. Figure out if they are regarded as a dependable source or not. You just have to know the full name of a dead person to start a background search.

Online search tools are either fee-based or for free. Fee-based search tools are able to provide an in-depth version of the death files. Search tools that offer Death Records Free Search can get you just the basic pieces of information. To show respect to the family of a dead person, the cause of death is usually not disclosed except to the immediate family.

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Where To Find General Transcription Training

Many people who are unfamiliar with general transcription ask where to find transcription training so they can start working at home as a general transcriptionist. Some people think you don’t need any training at all and it’s simply a matter of being able to type fast and listen well. And there are some people that are naturals; they learn quickly how to use the software and other tools and they start right in on picking up work within a few days.

And some others start in this business after learning and doing transcription on the job with a former employer. Since they have the skills already in place and have been doing transcription for a while, they simply need to adapt to being home-based and self employed.

But for many others, it’s not so simple and they really need to get back to the basics and learn additional skills before attempting to move into this business as a source of home-based employment or income because this isn’t just some “type from home and make money” scheme. This is a genuine business working with real people and real companies to earn real money.

And it’s up to you to use your best judgement and decide if paying for a transcription course is really necessary.

If you’re unfamiliar with what “general transcription” is, let me start by saying that in my opinion, there really is no way to “train” to do general transcription. There are no accredited or certified General Transcription courses and learning to use a transcription machine or software is often part of another course in business or a part of certified medical and legal transcription programs. But so far, you cannot become a Certified General Transcriptionist.

And why is that? Because general transcription fills in the gap; it is everything but medical and legal, so you can get transcription work from any industry and any individual. Unlike the medical and legal fields, there are no industry specific structured ways of typing information into specific templates.

You may do an academic transcript one day in one format on one subject, then do a podcast or general interview the next day in another format in a completely different subject. And since each client sets up their documents a different way depending on what they’re going to do with it, the same client may have several different formats they want you to use.

In fact, your clients may simply say, ‘Just set it up how you think is best,’ and you get to be creative. So you simply cannot learn to use only one or two different “one size fits all” templates. It’s much too varied.

So basically, if you decide you need hands-on training in a formal setting, you’re more than likely looking at having to take a medical transcription or legal transcription certificate program and then adapt what you’ve learned into the general transcription field. And that’s not really a bad thing because you can never have enough education.

Now if you already have a solid grasp of the English language, typing and you can learn software rather quickly, you may not need to take any professional courses to start in general transcription. But you may need to learn a little bit more about the business end of things, like what software you need and how to get clients. In this case, there are a few books and online resources you can buy.

You need to thoroughly check these resources out though to make sure you’re not wasting your money. So check for testimonials and even contact the authors. Make sure the course or book will provide a wide variety of sample document formats to use and how to set them up. This will help you learn your word processing program. But remember, these are just samples. You won’t know ahead of time what your specific clients may want, but if you get enough practice, you’ll be able to set up anything they require.

Good transcription training courses that are worth their money should also provide you with several sample digital audio files you can practice with, and where to find more samples online, such as business podcasts to download and practice with. It should also include a section that shows you how to record a webcast or podcast from the Internet using digital audio recording software, and a brief section on how to convert a physical cassette tape to a digital file.

And finally, it should show you how to use AutoCorrect and other keyboard shortcuts that will help you with your typing speed.

So, while taking a formal course in transcription training can be costly without getting a college grant, finding a decent course online or simply learning by doing does not have to be expensive. With a little research and effort, you should be finished and on your way to working from home in as little as a few months time.

And remember, having the freedom to work at home with a business that is growing in demand will provide you with the means to enjoy your family, avoid the stress of the average workplace, and give you a sense of pride that you can only achieve from being your own boss.

The Legal Hold Process

What is a Legal Hold?

A legal hold, also referred to as a hold, preservation order, suspension order, freeze notice, hold order, or hold notice, is a notice or communication issued to an organization to preserve all forms of relevant information, as a result of a reasonably anticipated investigation, audit, or lawsuit. A legal hold therefore suspends the normal disposition or processing of records.

Legal Hold and eDiscovery

With today’s technology, organizations use digital data in day to day operations. Though this may seem to be an advantage in doing tasks and in increasing productivity, the reliance on using digital data has caused a rapid growth in electronically stored information (ESI). This has lead to recent amendments in the United States Federal Rules of Civil Procedure ordering the inclusion of digital data in a legal hold (eDiscovery). The information to be preserved during a legal hold therefore is not only limited to documents in paper form, but also to electronically stored information- from word documents, excel files, email exchanges to images, audio files, website logs, etc.

More and more businesses have started to pay attention to eDiscovery and invest in ediscovery software and information management systems as litigations that required eDiscovery of files have cost industry giants millions of dollars in fines. In the famous Zubulake v. UBS Warburg case, Judge Scheindlin awarded a total of $29M to Laura Zubulake who accused her former employer UBS Warburg, one of the big names in financial firms, for gender discrimination and illegal retaliation. Despite court orders that were issued to preserve all relevant information, it was found out that the employer had willfully deleted relevant emails. The court has also noted that UBS Warburg’s legal counsel was partly responsible for the document destruction because it had failed to locate, preserve, and to timely produce relevant information. Merck & Co., Inc, a pharmaceutical conglomerate, lost $253M in a lawsuit filed by the family of Robert Ernst, a marathon runner who’s cause of death was associated with the long term effects of using Vioxx, a pain reliever manufactured by Merck. The plaintiff’s legal counsel argued that Merck rushed Vioxx to market without proper safety testing to compete with Pfizer Inc.s Celebrex, then played down potential heart risks. Discovered emails sent by Merck’s chief scientist questioning the efficacy of Vioxx contributed to the outcome of the case. Morgan Stanley, another financial giant, was ordered to pay billionaire financier Ron Perelman more than $1.4B after losing to a case related to Perelman’s 1998 sale of his Coleman camping gear company to Sunbeam. A big factor in the outcome of the case was the inability to produce requested information due to a badly performed eDiscovery.

The Legal Hold Process

A legal hold process is composed of three main requirements.

Hold notification. Once an organization learns that a pending or reasonably anticipated litigation exists, it are obliged to preserve all relevant information. An organization should notify employees of the need to preserve relevant information and should also have a written policy with regards to the legal hold process. Determining the relevance of information to be preserved partly lies with the ability of an organization’s legal counsel and its existing document retention policies.

Segregated repository for ESI. Due to the significant risks associated with deleting, losing, or not having access to electronically stored information, a segregated repository should be utilized to handle ESI.

Ongoing preservation obligation. Once litigation notice is served, all future relevant electronic communication should also be preserved as a part of the legal hold.

Chapter 15 of Information Nation Warrior: Information Management Compliance Boot Camp (Randolph A. Kahn, ESQ and Barclay T. Blair) discusses what organizations should include in developing a Legal Hold process: A policy specifically for the legal department to provide a Legal Hold notice to the rest of the organizations’ employees, an outline and updated training program for employee responsibilities and preservation procedures, a standardized method for providing the Legal Hold notice to employees, a statement from organization leader or training manuals that emphasizes the organization’s commitment to records and information management compliance, and to make sure that employees are following these policies.