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Attorneys
How to Find the Right Community Association Professional

ISBN: 978-1-59618-059-8
2012, 52 pages
Author(s): Loura Sanchez, Esq. & Melissa M. Garcia, Esq.
Product Format: Book
Item #: 0598
Members: USD $15.00
Non-Members: USD $25.00
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Community association law is not simply a specialized area of real estate law. Attorneys representing community associations must be experts in many legal specialties including real estate, contracts, corporate law, premises liability, director’s liability, construction warranty, architectural and design review, insurance, environmental and water regulations, collection and foreclosure, employment and taxation issues.

That’s why, next to selecting an association manager, selecting an attorney is the most important decision a community association board can make. It’s a significant decision with long-term implications, and volunteer boards should be well informed before they make it.

This guide will not only inform your decision making, it will lead you through the steps necessary to find—and work with—the best possible attorney for the association. It will answer questions like:
• What should we do if the attorney doesn’t seem to be performing to expectations?
• When is it appropriate to use more than one law firm?
• How do we terminate one firm and hire another amicably?
• How do we identify and find the kind of attorney we really need?
• What questions should we ask in an interview and why?
• How can we get the most from an attorney and still control legal fees?
• Is it better to use an attorney or collection agency for serious delinquencies?

This guide also includes six appendices with sample forms, checklists and documents.

CONTENTS

Chapter 1—About the Community Association Attorney
           Before the Pink Slip
           Terminating a Relationship
           Working with the Attorney
           Who is the Client?
           Using More than One Law Firm
Chapter 2—The Search Process
           Who Conducts the Search?
           What Kind of Attorney?
           The RFP—A Written List of Needs and Services
           Develop a List of Candidates
           Select Attorneys to Interview
           Conduct Interviews
           Check References
           Select the Best Attorney
Chapter 3—Fee Structures and Cost Issues
           Billing Methods
           The Representation Letter
           The Cost of Termination
           How to Minimize Legal Expenses
           Using Collection Agencies

Appendix 1—Sample Form: Request for Proposal
Appendix 2—Checklist: What to Include in a Request for Proposal
Appendix 3—Sample Interview Questions:
                       What to Ask When Interviewing Prospective Attorneys
Appendix 4—Sample Form: Evaluating Prospective Attorneys
Appendix 5—Sample Form: Law Firm Billing Statement
Appendix 6—Sample Rules of Conduct: ABA Model Rule 1.5 of Professional Conduct

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