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Featuring attorneys from the law offices of Bogin, Munns & Munns
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Audio Clip #1 - Advice for When Working with an Attorney
Attorney Rulon Munns

Q: Is there one piece of advice you can offer someone when working with an attorney?

A: Well I have the interesting responsibility as the managing partner of our law firm, listening to people who, from time to time, are not entirely satisfied with their working relationship with their attorney, so I can tell you what is the one most important thing that needs to be done, and I would have to say that is communication.  So often, people come to me, whether it’s one of our attorneys or some other attorney, and they’re unhappy.  And now when I ask them why they’re unhappy with the relationship, it all boils down to communication.

And sometimes, it’s the attorney that’s not communicating, not keeping the client updated, not answering the questions that are actually asked, or not answering them in a way that is understandable.  And sometimes it’s the client.  Sometimes the client doesn’t listen.  Sometimes the client doesn’t, if he doesn’t understand something or she doesn’t understand something, she doesn’t say, “Hey, clarify that for me, I didn’t get that.”

So, communication is really, really important and never, never be afraid to ask questions over and over if that’s what you need to do.

Audio Clip #2 - Workman's Compensation
Attorney Ryan Munns

Q: Should I contact an attorney concerning workman’s comp?

A: Whenever anyone is injured as a result of a workplace injury, it’s important to speak to an attorney early on.  We don’t always have a good understanding of who is responsible in a workplace injury.  If you’re employed and your employer has worker’s compensation coverage because they’re supposed to have worker’s compensation coverage, then your work-comp carrier is primary in paying for your medical bills, in paying for your wages, [and] the time that you’re off from work because of the injury.

But there are a whole set of requirements, notice requirements and cooperation requirements, that you must participate in with your carrier or comp carrier in order for that coverage to apply.  There are instances where you might not be a full-fledged employee (an independent contractor) where work-comp coverage does not apply, but you still are incurring bills as a result of working while on the job, or you’re not able to go back to work… because of a workplace injury.  It’s important to speak to an attorney to distinguish whether or not you qualify for worker’s compensation coverage, that you follow those worker’s compensation coverage guidelines, or if this is one of those independent contractor issues, or (crazily enough) if there’s somebody completely separate that might be responsible, an unknown third party that needs to be investigated.

Audio Clip #3 - When to Contact a Lawyer After an Auto Accident
Attorney Ryan Munns

Q: When is it a good time to contact an attorney after being injured in a car accident?

A: Any time anyone is injured in an automobile accident, before giving a statement to any insurance company, it is critically important to speak to an attorney.  Often, even when liability is clear – a citation was given, the officer came to the scene – that at-fault party’s insurance company is going to look for any way possible to avoid paying the full value of the damages.  If you’re injured, your life, your income-earning potential, your future medical expenses are at stake.  Before speaking to the insurance company, speak to an attorney.

Your own insurance company, likewise, might want to get a statement from you.  You have some contractual obligations to speak to your own insurance company, but still!  If you’re injured in an automobile accident, speak to an attorney first.  Know what your rights are, know what your insurance company’s own obligations to you are.  With respect to the at-fault party’s obligations, be protected, be aware that the insurance companies are first and foremost a business, trying to earn income for their shareholders and they’re less inclined and less worried about what is right, what is truly fair for you, the injured party, and the person who is suffering in an auto accident.

Audio Clip #4 - Changing Lawyers to Manage My Growing Assets
Attorney Rulon Munns

Q: As my family and assets grow, I don’t feel my attorney is keeping pace with prudent advice.  Is there a significant cost to changing attorneys?

A: That’s a really good question.  And the answer is, typically there will be some cost (I wish I could tell you that there isn’t).  But if you’ve used an attorney for a long time and you’ve had various legal dealings then he knows that background.  And for a new attorney to pick it up (if he does his job), he does need to spend a little time getting up to speed on the background and what your assets are and, you know, what kind of legal implications you’re involved with.  But I will say this, you can do a couple of things:

1. Be prepared.  Bring all the paperwork [and] everything that he would need.  And

2. Talk to the attorney about it!  Ask him, “Are you going to charge me to get up to speed on my background?”  And a lot of times an attorney will compromise and say, “Well, I’ll charge you but it’ll be a limited amount of time.”

So there is some charge, but by all means, if you think it’s time for a change, make the change.

Audio Clip #5 - Choosing an Attorney Based on Advertisements
Attorney Rulon Munns

Q: I see billboards, TV ads, and online services promoting law firms.  What is the best way to select an attorney?

A: Well I can tell you categorically that you should not select an attorney based on a billboard!  Neither should you select an attorney based on a single TV ad, or some promotion that you see on the Internet.  There’s nothing wrong with looking at these sources to make a short list of attorneys you may want to check out (that’s fine), but the only way to really select an attorney is to meet with them face-to-face, talk to him or her in a sincere and inquisitive way, and just use your instincts and your intuition and the information you gather to determine, “Is this somebody that I would feel good working with that I can trust who appears to be capable?”

And it’s ok to kind of get some ideas from media, but in the end, you need to make an informed decision based on what you have determined from your own assessment and analysis of the attorney that you are considering to use.

Audio Clip #6 - Setting up a New Business or Company
Attorney Rulon Munns

Q: Why should I go to an attorney to help me set up my business?

A: I think it’s very important to go to an attorney when you’re setting up a business or a corporation.  There are a number of reasons for this.  First of all, it’s a little more complex than some of the Internet services would lead you to believe.  There are several entities to choose from.  You could be a C-Corporation, an S-Corporation, a limited partnership, a limited liability company…

There are all kinds of different entities that could be used for setting up your business, and each one of them has different tax effects and different protections from liability.  When you respond to one of these online services or something you read in the newspaper, what you’re going to get is a simple corporation (usually a C-Corporation, which has its own tax implications).  And that’s all you’re going to get, is the article’s filed in Tallahassee, for the most part.  What you need to have is a full set of documents, a shareholders’ agreement, your questions asked, an understanding of the tax implications, and you’re not going to really get that unless you consult with an attorney.

Audio Clip #7 - Contact an Attorney When Injured Using a Car Service Such as Uber
Attorney Ryan Munns

Q: A friend of mine was injured in an accident while using a car service.  Should she seek advice from an attorney?

A: Any time you’re injured as a result of a car accident where you’ve used a car service, or a taxi service, or a bus service, it’s important to note that there are some important differences as to who might take responsibility for first paying your medical expenses.  I think it’s important any time you’re involved in an accident to speak to an attorney, but particularly where there’s a car service involved, or a bus service involved, or a taxi cab service involved, some of these no-fault PIP insurance provisions might not apply.  And who really is going to be responsible for those bills in the long term?

If there’s a situation where you’ve used a car service, where you’ve used a taxi service, where you’ve been injured as a result of public transportation, speak to an attorney.  Explain to them who’s the responsible party (Is it another vehicle?  Is it the vehicle that you’re in?) so that that good attorney can give prompt and proper advice with respect to where bills get paid, and who takes responsibility for injuries in the long term.

Audio Clip #8 - Most Important Element of the Client/Attorney Relationship
Attorney Rulon Munns

Q: I was in one legal proceeding and found it very stressful.  What is the most important element of the client/attorney relationship?

A: Well that’s an easy one for me.  There are really a lot of elements involved in a good relationship with an attorney: Is the attorney responsive?  Is he capable?  Is he experienced?  But I think the one that trumps all of them is the importance of having an attorney that you can trust.  When you go through any kind of legal proceeding, you are going to have high emotions.  There’s going to be stress.  There’s going to be pressure.  There are going to be doubts that arise from time to time.  And it’s going to be very difficult for you to make it through that process unless you’re working with someone (when all is said and done), you can sit back and say, “Well, at least I trust him” or “I trust her,” whichever it is that you’re dealing with.  And I think in the long run that the trust factor is far more important than any other element involved in [an] attorney-client relationship.

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Common Practice Areas

  • Auto | Car Accident
  • Real Estate
  • Litigation | Legal Dispute
  • Personal Injury
  • Wills, Trusts & Probate
  • All Legal Matters

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