With this year whizzing by so quickly, we have stopped to take a quick look back at the last 9.5 months.
During this time we have seen Karla Brown and Deanna Lastrina admitted to the Supreme Court of Victoria and are now full time lawyers at Danaher Legal. Both Karla and Deanna started at Danaher Legal as law students working on reception and have progressed through the ranks to be valued members of the Corporate/Commercial and Private teams. It has been a real thrill to see them develop their legal and customer services skills and to watch them grow in
confidence and identify opportunities every day at Danaher Legal.
Joshua Gouw joined the team in April. Josh came to us from a Tasmanian law firm and has proven to be a real strength for the Corporate/Commercial team.
We are also thrilled to have Kirsty Brealey join Danaher Legal. Kirsty comes with a wealth of experience in Family Law and Estate Planning. Kirsty will initially manage our Private team, covering Bianca Apollonio, who will commence maternity leave in December. Kirsty will then stay on board upon Bianca’s return mid-2019 and work on creating new business opportunities for Danaher Legal.
Danaher Legal Functions
Our annual Golf Day was held in March at Sanctuary Lakes. Once again we were blessed with fine weather and some impressive performances. We were fortunate to have Nathan Grima, former North Melbourne and Essendon AFL plyer, to talk at the event and answer some questions about the current and future state of the game.
Danaher Legal was thrilled to host our Women in Business Lunch at Hellenic Republic in August.
We had three wonderful speakers, who candidly spoke about their experiences as ‘Women in Business’. Each of our speakers has had a different journey and a different story to tell.
Danaher Legal’s own Bianca Apollonio, who has practiced law for almost 12 years and is a mentor to many of the junior solicitors at Danaher Legal, discussed the confidence gap that many women face and how she has addressed this throughout her career.
Valeria Ignatieva, Co-founder of Work 180 shared the challenges of being a single mum and working two jobs in the early days of starting Work180, which has ultimately led to her sitting at the helm of a now global organisation fighting for gender equality in the workplace.
Marie Cerchiara, who has worked in the banking and finance sector for 30 years and has recently started up her own broking business Pride Financial, was open about the struggles she faced juggling her family commitments with her work, but how she overcame this and never took no for an answer.
A key driver for Danaher Legal in hosting this lunch was to create a network of professional women who can connect with, support and mentor each other. The room was buzzing with energy, and it was wonderful to see this network in action as our clients, referrers and staff talked and laughed over lunch and shared their own stories.
If you are interested in getting involved in this network, please click the link below and let us know.
Danaher Legal also hosted a Football Lunch recently and we heard some interesting and hilarious stories from former Collingwood players – Chris Tarrant and Simon Prestigiacomo. Dennis was in his element, revelling in the possibility of a Collingwood premiership, not so much at the moment.
On 12 March 2018 the Medical Treatment Planning and Decisions Act 2016(Vic) (the Act) came into force.
The new Act aims to simplify and consolidate medical treatment laws in Victoria and encourages people to think about what may happen once they lose capacity to make decisions regarding their medical treatment.
The new Act focuses on patient-centred care and empowers people to make legally binding directives about their medical treatment, so they can continue to influence treatment decisions, even when they can no longer actively participate.
The Act also allows people to nominate who they would like involved in making decisions about their medical treatment, should they experience an injury or illness which means they are unable to make decisions, either temporarily or permanently.
One of the most significant changes brought about by the Act is a person’s ability to make what is known as an “Advanced Care Directive” (ACD). To make an ACD a person must have “decision making capacity”, which is defined in Act, and which is consistent with the provisions of the Powers of Attorney Act 2014 (Vic).
ACD’s allow people to express their wishes, preferences and values when it comes to decisions regarding their medical treatment and can contain either or both of the following:
An Instructional Directive
Contains legally binding instructions/statements about a person’s medical treatment. In the instruction/statement a person may consent to, or refuse the commencement of, or continuation of particular medical treatment, which can included life-sustaining treatment.
A Values Directive
Documents a person’s values and preferences for future medical treatment and care, and any outcomes they regard as acceptable. Whilst a Values Directive is non-binding, it should be complied with if possible.
The Act also allows people to appoint a Medical Treatment Decision Maker (MTDM). A MTDM steps in when a person loses decision making capacity, and must make decisions they reasonably believe the person nominating them would have made. A MTDM must consider, amongst other things, any ACD (if one has been made) or any other values or preferences a person has expressed. More than one person can be appointed, however only one person may act at any one time.
If a person has not appointed a MTDM the Act sets out a hierarchy of people who can make decisions regarding a person’s medical treatment if they have lost decision making capacity.
Advance care planning is part and parcel of a person’s health care. It is important for people to openly discuss what their values and healthcare preferences are so that they can be respected at a time when they cannot voice their opinion or make their own decisions.
If you would like more information about the new Act or advanced care planning please contact our office on 1300 363 314.
Let’s face it – no one likes going to a see lawyer. The only reason most people seek a lawyer is because they have a problem and need the perceived protection that a lawyer can offer. You have to protect your position right?
What types of lawyers are there?
However no 2 lawyers are alike. There are different types of lawyers. There are:
The bull dog. Good in a fight.
The Top Tier Lawyer. Generally thought of as required on the big deals or where you want to scare the other party.
The good bloke lawyer. You don’t like using lawyers, so if you use one you might as well like them whether male or female.
The Commercial lawyer. They get it done.
The “black letter” lawyer. They will pour over every document with a fine tooth comb.
How do you know if you are getting a good one? One that is right for you and right for the job you need? Many times it is a hit and miss decision or luck, so to speak because quite often you are making a decision based on factors that may not be the best in determining which lawyer to use.
How do you choose your lawyer?
In our experience people choose their lawyer based on the following:
Reputation. A person is recognised (or more accurately perceived) to be the best lawyer in the space that you require action. Sometimes reputations are not accurate.
Price. A good question to ask yourself in deciding on price is whether price equals value. The old adage of you “pay peanuts you get monkeys” is still relevant today.
A glossy website. You know the one where the lawyers look serious. There is a black and white photo of young hip lawyers (I’m thinking Harvey Spectre from the TV show Suits)
A Brand. You see a name consistently in the press, so they must be good – because other people are using them right?
Referral. One of your other professional advisers (generally accountant or financial adviser) recommends one. Be very careful to ask – is there any referral fee?
Pot luck. All lawyers are the same right? This Denis Denuto fellow I found in the yellow pages looks good for my constitutional law claim.
Quite often it’s a lottery.
What do you need?
Every person is different and every matter has different factors that need to be considered. Yes, some are similar (I’m thinking conveyancing here, where the process is relatively standard) but invariably all clients have their own twists and turns.
The key factor in this is you. What do you want? What’s the solution you require? What’s your budget? What’s important to you in choosing a lawyer? Once you have identified this, you have to seek out a lawyer that meets the criteria – no mean feat.
And then there are the lawyers…..
It’s fair to say that lawyers as a whole are not great at telling you what they stand for, what their value proposition is and why you should (or shouldn’t) use them. Yes that’s right - “SHOULDN’T USE THEM”. What? A lawyer turning down work?
In my experience, unless your lawyer has similar attitudes and values to you – then your legal engagement is doomed at the start. Your expectations of the delivery of the legal service will not be matched by that service. End result – you are unhappy and your lawyer will be unhappy.
So what is Danaher legal about?
That gets us to us. What is Danaher legal about and why you should or shouldn’t use us? As a business we are clear in what we do and don’t stand for:
We are solution focused. You have a problem, you need an answer. You are not that particularly concerned about Section 43 of the Retail Leases Act (or whatever the relevant laws are) and you don’t care that your matter is a special case. You want a solution to your problem, so that you can sleep at night.
We minimise your risk and maximise your position. We don’t just solve your problem – we want you to be in a better position for engaging us. Yes, we can prepare your shareholders agreement but unless you adjust your asset protection structure and your finances, the effectiveness of the agreement is limited.
We are easy to talk to. We like to think of ourselves as ‘unlawyer-like’ – round pegs in square holes, so to speak. Yes, we understand the law but we can communicate with you on your level. We are clear and concise. This is your problem and you have 3 possible solutions – we recommend solution 1 and this is why.
Our engagement is clear. Clear on outcomes, clear on timing, clear on price. However, if price is your sole determining factor in using us – we won’t be the lawyers for you. We want to act for people that understand the value of what we offer. We know that clients remember the value long after the price is forgotten.
Relationships. We want a relationship and an equal one at that. We don’t sit above you or below you, but rather beside you.
Our attitudes and values. Our business is based on authenticity, being friendly and approachable, delivering value for money, building us and you, thinking outside the box, and providing the best legal solution in the market for our clients.
So what’s your next step?
Choose your lawyer wisely.
Do we share the same attitudes and values?
Do you know the key outcomes your lawyer will achieve?
Will you be better off?
If in that question your answer is Danaher Legal then call us.