ABOUT LAW FIRM WEBSITE DISCLAIMERS
We suspect few people actually read law firm website disclaimers, which are found on most, if not all, such websites. You, then, are one of the curious few. We’d like to take a moment to explain why these disclaimers are so ubiquitous.
WE STRONGLY URGE YOU TO READ ALL OF THIS PAGE.
Some people may joke about legal ethics being an oxymoron. But in fact lawyers, our insurers, and state attorney regulators take ethical rules very seriously. We can be disbarred for violations.
Open communications with the general public, particularly if they provide free and useful information and/or invite dialogue on legal issues, can cause legal malpractice insurers and attorney licensing authorities to worry. They let their imaginations run wildly through all theconceivable "what-ifs."
- What if someone chooses an incompetent lawyer because they are impressed by a slick advertisement or website?
- What if someone reads information on a lawyer’s site, takes action based on it, and then learns the information was incomplete or
- What if such a reader is located in a place where the lawyer is not licensed to practice law?
- What if someone emails a lawyer from a website, discloses confidential information, and then winds up suing the lawyer’s long-time client, causing a conflict of interest?
For these and similar reasons, law firm websites normally contain disclaimers such as those below to protect against a variety of problems that keep our insurers up at night.
THE FOLLOWING STATEMENTS CAUTION YOU REGARDING IMPORTANT CONSIDERATIONS, AS RECOMMENDED BY STATE ATTORNEY REGULATORS, ETHICAL EXPERTS, OUR INSURANCE CARRIER:
- The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements, including a website.
This statement must be included because attorney licensing authorities continue to be concerned that attorney advertising and marketing may unduly influence individuals under the stress of a situation requiring a lawyer. No matter how urgent the need, this important decision should be considered very carefully.
- All information provided by this site, including summaries and articles on legal topics, is general in nature and provided for informational purposes only. This information is not intended as legal advice, and should not be taken as such. Legal advice involves an attorney’s application of legal knowledge and judgment to specific facts and circumstances presented by a client. Before providing specific advice, a lawyer may need to conduct legal research and/or obtain additional facts. Nonlawyers should therefore not draw conclusions about what may be legally required, permissible, or advisable based solely upon consultation of general sources of legal information, including this and other law firm websites, without first seeking appropriate legal advice.
- This site links to other resources on the Internet that we have identified as potentially helpful and of interest. However, the linked websites are not under our control, we are not responsible for the accuracy of their content, and we make no representation concerning such content's quality, currency, accuracy, safety, or suitability for a particular use. This statement must be included to remind you that the Internet consists of billions of interlinked pages, most of which have not been subjected to any peer review or formal fact-checking process. This is another reason not to take action based on Internet research without seeking appropriate legal advice.
- The information on this website may not reflect the most current legal developments, and is not guaranteed to be correct, complete or up-to-date. We have made every reasonable effort to create an accurate and useful website. However, labor and employment law is often complex and rapidly changing, so what is true today may no longer be true days, weeks, or months from now. This is another reason not to take action based on internet research without seeking appropriate legal advice.
- The information on this website should not be taken as a promise or indication of future results. This statement must be included to remind you of the fundamental risks inherent in the American justice system, as a result of which no lawyer, no matter how skilled, can predict the outcome of any matter with certainty.
- Use of this website and/or transmission of information to and from the attorneys of this firm from this website and/or by email is not intended to create, and does not create, an attorney-client relationship. No attorney-client relationship is created with the firm or its attorneys absent an express agreement to create such a relationship. This means that generally information you provide us is not subject to the attorney-client privilege and the attendant duty of confidentiality until we have clearly and mutually decided to initiate an attorney-client relationship. Until such time, you should therefore refrain from communicating highly sensitive or confidential matters.
- At this time our routine email communications are not encrypted, a fact you should take into account in communicating highly sensitive or confidential matters. In our judgment, email is generally a very secure means of communication. However, for maximum security, contact us to arrange for encryption or use other means of communication.
- Missouri does not license attorneys based on their legal practice area specializations. Neither the Missouri Supreme Court nor The Missouri Bar reviews or approves certifying organizations or specialist designations. We can truthfully say we have each devoted the great majority of our legal careers to practicing labor and employment law representing employers, and have each developed substantial expertise in this area of the law. But the ethical rules do not permit use of the word "specialist."
- We cannot represent clients in states or jurisdictions in which we are not licensed. The states in which each attorney is licensed are indicated on their individual pages within this site.If this website does not comply with all laws and ethical rules of the state or jurisdiction in which it is viewed, including rules governing communication of legal services, we will not engage in any representation resulting from such viewing. The information on this site is not intended to constitute legal advice or to substitute for obtaining legal advice from an attorney licensed in your state.This statement reflects the unfortunate dissonance between state-by-state regulation of the practice of law and the reality of interstate and international communications and transactions.Efforts are underway to address this issue of "multi-jurisdictional practice," but they have not yet come to fruition.
- To the extent the attorney professional conduct rules in your jurisdiction require us to designate a principal office and/or a single attorney responsible for this website, we designate Chesterfield, Missouri, USA as our principal office, and George L. Lenard as the attorney responsible for this website.
When you use this website, you consent to the use of your personal information by Harris Dowell Fisher & Harris, L.C. under the terms and to the extent specified here.
This site uses a tool which collects your requests for pages and passes elements of them to search engines to assist them in indexing this site. We control the configuration of the tool and are responsible for any information sent to the search engines.
Harris Dowell Fisher & Harris, L.C. collects "personally identifiable information" and "automatic information" through this website.
We do not collect any personally identifiable information from you (e.g., name, address, telephone number, email address) unless you voluntarily choose to disclose such information to us, including by mail, telephone, fax, or electronically.
If you wish to change any information you voluntarily submitted to Harris Dowell Fisher & Harris, L.C., or if you wish to opt out of our mailing list, please contact us by phone, fax, or email.
We collect some automatic information through our web server (which may be hosted by a third-party), such as the identity of your internet service provider, the type of browser you use, and your computer’s IP address.
We do not direct this website to children under thirteen (13) years of age. Individuals under eighteen (18) should consult with their parent or guardian about the use of this website.
Use Of The Information We Collect
We will use your personally identifiable information for the purpose(s) for which you provided it: to respond to your request for information; to provide you with a newsletter or legal alert; or to consider your request for consideration of employment with Harris Dowell Fisher & Harris, L.C.
In addition to using personally identifiable information for the purposes for which you provided it, we may also use it to send you publications, invitations, and other marketing materials related to our legal services that may be of interest to you.
We will not sell, trade, rent, or give away your personally identifiable information to third parties.
We may disclose personally identifiable information or use IP addresses to identify a user when we have reason to believe this is necessary to protect our rights or property, or that of others, or as may be required by law.
This policy applies only to Harris Dowell Fisher & Harris, L.C.'s use and disclosure of information we collect from you. To the extent you disclose personal information to other sites, you subject yourself to the privacy customs and policies of such sites. We therefore encourage you to familiarize yourself with the privacy policies of any third-party websites you visit before you disclose any personal information.
Protection Of Your Information
We maintain firewalls, passwords, and other security measures designed to provide reasonable security to all information we receive and maintain.
Unfortunately, no data transmission over the Internet can be guaranteed to be 100 percent secure. As a result, while we strive to protect your personal information, we cannot ensure or warrant the security of any information you transmit to us or any information provided online, and you do so at your own risk.
Harris Dowell Fisher & Harris, L.C. will not be liable for disclosures of your personal information due to errors in transmission or unauthorized acts of third parties.