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Lawyers and their PATENT

Discussion in 'Accounting, Tax & Legal' started by salsa, 7th Apr, 2006.

  1. salsa

    salsa Well-Known Member

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    Lawyers and their PATENT

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Recently we approached a lawyer (recommended by friends) to discuss asset protection by gifting personal assets to a "finance trust" , blah blah.
    We already knew what we wanted to do; we only saw the Lawyer coz our friends said he knew his stuff and reasonable fees so we gave him a go.
    After the meeting we thought yeah they seemed to understand what we wanted etc. we would not mind going with them if fees are OK . We then received a letter from them summarising the strategy and stating their fees which we don't think is that over the top . So far so good.


    The only problem we have is: they put these words as heading of the letter to us " FAMILY PROTECTION - BETA STRATEGY (with little tm next to it for trademark") PATENT NO .......... "

    Are they saying the strategy we discussed in the meeting is THEIR intellectual property? as we did not think it was anything special at all, we knew about it from our accountant already, just wanting someone to implement it ??
    We have not been shown or sent any document at all except the letter summarising the strategy. We did not sign any "confidentiality" paper either.

    Is this the norm or they are having us on ??

    We don't have much experience dealing with lawyers so any comments would be appreciated.
    No dis-recpect comments on them at all, just wanting to do some homework before responding.


    NigelW ??

    ta
     
  2. MichaelWhyte

    MichaelWhyte Well-Known Member

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    C'Mon guys, there's gotta be a lawyer amongst us that can help Salsa out???

    Sorry, not my field of expertise unfortunately. My intuition tells me they're just protecting their intellectual property to stop you executing the plan elsewhere if they go to all the trouble of drawing it up in detail. But I'll let the experts reply.

    Cheers,
    Michael.
     
  3. salsa

    salsa Well-Known Member

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    Thank you kindly Michael :D .
    Nigel has PM me for some further information. I am sure I will be looked after. I feel priviledged.....
     
  4. Nigel Ward

    Nigel Ward Team InvestEd

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    Hi Salsa

    Sorry for the delay. As I mentioned in pm, the Patent has been revoked.

    On further investigation it seems an appeal by the firm against that revocation was dismissed last year. See attached federal court case.

    As I mentioned to you...I was rather sceptical of this as just a marketing angle the firm has dreamed up. They should NOT be suggesting to you that the approach is patented when it is not.

    Cheers
    N.
     

    Attached Files:

  5. salsa

    salsa Well-Known Member

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    Thank you very much Nigel.
    Should I worry about the ethics/professionalism of this firm given the situation ??
     
  6. Nigel Ward

    Nigel Ward Team InvestEd

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    Salsa

    I'm sure you can draw your own conclusions about that.

    If it was me I think I'd dance on outa there :D
     
  7. TakeStock

    TakeStock Well-Known Member

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    Now here's where the true value of this site exists; professionals giving their very learned opinions on matters most of us have no idea about. Well done Nigel, your posts are greatly appreciated.
     
  8. TryHard

    TryHard Well-Known Member

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    Yeah ditto on the appreciation - good on ya Nigel, that was really interesting ... and maybe you'll get on dancing with the stars (god knows you'll be better than the current lot of contestants ;-) )

    Salsa - it makes a big difference if you feel comfortable with and trust your professional advisors. I haven't had the good fortune to use Nigel's services (yet :) ) but switched accountants to NickM (I kind of have more need for accounting than legal help !) and the "Sleep At Night Factor" is so much better when you are convinced you're dealing with competent and honest people. I'd be doing more than dancing, if a legal advisor tried Dodgy Bros. tactics like that at the start of a relationship ...
     
  9. salsa

    salsa Well-Known Member

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    By name, dancing should be Salsa's speciality.........
     
  10. Mark Laszczuk

    Mark Laszczuk Well-Known Member

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    You watch that rubbish?

    Mark
     
  11. TryHard

    TryHard Well-Known Member

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    Well I work on the wireless notebook while the missus watches it :) (that's our idea of togetherness) ... I only keep one eye on it, just in case there's a wardrobe malfunction ;-) (but not Pauline Hanson)
     
  12. salsa

    salsa Well-Known Member

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    Hi Nigel,
    You have looked that the proposed "gifting" structure, any comments or obvious -ve points you can see ? Would you recommend something similar to a client ?
    Thanks,
     
  13. Mark Laszczuk

    Mark Laszczuk Well-Known Member

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    Hahaha! Good idea Carl, I never thought of that. But I dunno.... the pain of watching that awful nonsense just in the hopes of a wardrobe malfunction doesn't really do me any favours, ahhahaa.

    Think I'll just stick to leafing through Ralph and FHM at the newsagents.

    Mark
     
  14. Nigel Ward

    Nigel Ward Team InvestEd

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    Geez Mark, we've really got to get you out a bit more! :p :D

    C'mon team, between us all we must surely know some lovely (financially savvy) young ladies to introduce to Mark???
     
  15. salsa

    salsa Well-Known Member

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    Nigel r u ignoring me ? I know my post was not any near untertaining as Mark's but.......

     
  16. Nigel Ward

    Nigel Ward Team InvestEd

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    Ignoring you. Never! Your post just requires more thought!

    I won't comment on your circumstances or the approach proposed because I don't have all the details and in investment structuring and asset protection there is no one-size-fits-all. Generally speaking you need to balance some competing objectives (in no particular order):

    1) tax
    2) asset protection
    3) achieving your future investment objectives (particularly not constraining your ability to get finance from the bank).

    Where you end up will depend upon the relative importance of those three things. What may be right for you may not be right for someone with different risk profile, exposure to claims, asset base and objectives.

    I always ask, what's the commercial rationale for this structure? I.e. is there a good reason for doing this? and what impact will it REALLY have on the above three issues. Finally how much will it cost and is it too complicated? Weighing up all those issues is how you arrive at the best approach for you.

    Cheers
    N.
     
  17. salsa

    salsa Well-Known Member

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    Thank you Nigel.
    I think you have helped me to answer my question :D
     
  18. Mark Laszczuk

    Mark Laszczuk Well-Known Member

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    Yikes! No thanks, I'm happy just leafing through magazines. No headaches! No stress! No mess!

    Mark
     
  19. TryHard

    TryHard Well-Known Member

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    My wife ? Arrives as a package with 17 month old :)
     
  20. Mark Laszczuk

    Mark Laszczuk Well-Known Member

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    Hahahahaha Carl, you better pray your wife never ever reads this forum! You might be living out in the kennel with the dogs for about ohhhh say, 5 or 6 decades!

    Mark