Forming a corporation, LLC, and other business entities.

Forming a Louisiana business entity is pretty straightforward. The secretary of state website is very useful and contains all of the forms necessary to get your corporation, partnership, or LLC up to the proper legal status. Years ago these were things that only attorneys could do. Now, anyone with an internet connection can go to this link, fill out the proper forms, send the money, and you are now an official Louisiana business entity. All the forms you would every need for setting up your business can be found here.

Now you know where to go to create a business without consulting an attorney or an accountant. For most solo, or small family business entities without shareholders or stock value this remains a convenient and low cost way to do these things yourself . Obviously, I would encourage consulting a professional if you have any uncertainty or for more complex businesses. Much like a will, a lawyer can analyze your specific situation and do his or her best to avoid future complications.

Orleans 2012 Duty Judge Calendar

Obviously, this will only be helpful for local attorneys. I am bookmarking a link to this page to find the Orleans Parish 2012 Duty Judges more conveniently.

Some procedure for your arsenal: use of the highway statute.

I’m not sure about every law school out there, but at mine procedure was very heavily stressed. Legal procedure is all about knowing the rules, applying the rules, and ultimately creating a file that is ready to go to trial. For other lawyers out there you know that service of process (SOP) is a key ingredient from the very beginning.

While most lawyers are probably familiar with the long arm statute, a lesser known or used tactic is Louisiana Revised Statute 13:3474. Also known as the “use of the highway” statute, this rule is created for protection of the citizens of our state. Basically, this statute declares that anyone that has operated a motor vehicle on a highway within the state of Louisiana has appointed the Louisiana Secretary of State as their registered agent. This applies to nonresidents or just passers by, if you’ve driven into the state, the Secretary of State is your agent or representative.

Since this statute involves a non-resident the question of due process will likely be an issue. It is my opinion that due process is met when there is a good faith effort to make reasonable steps to notify a person. Ultimately, if someone does not want to be found they can find a way to hide. But, for my dollar I use the Long Arm Statute and the Use of the Highway Statute. I think you’ll find that the extra effort is worth the trouble.

Sometimes personal injuries are caused by negligence.

Personal injury cases tend to be negligence cases. Car accidents, dog bites, slip and falls, etc. If it is not an intentional injury, then it typically falls under negligence. In general terms this is when someone is injured due to another’s neglect of a certain “duty.” Legally, we all have a duty, which may be as general as the duty to refrain from hurting others, or which may be a more specific duty, such as a doctor or an engineer. But, this is a post on general negligence and personal injury cases.

A prospective client was explaining his legal scenario to me: he was at the grocery store and he bumped his hip on the corner where the cash register was located. He said that he had a horrible bruise on his hip the next day, but at the time he thought nothing of it. He wanted legal advice.

While I haven’t given you all the facts, I will tell you what my train of thought was. First, Louisiana does provide for recovery for injuries caused by negligence. However, there is a certain burden that must be met in order to for the statute to extend a remedy. This Civil Code article governs vices in “things,” but it sets forth the general requirements for negligence. In other words, the grocery store would only be negligent if it could be shown that 1) it knew or in the exercise of reasonable care should have known the corner of the desk would cause damage; 2) that if the grocery store exercised reasonable care it would have prevented the injury; and 3) that the grocery store failed to exercise reasonable care in this instance.

While this analysis is not applicable to all situations, it gives you an idea of what a plaintiff must prove to show that a defendant was negligent.