Monthly legal consultation offers cost effective financial solutions for inhouse-counseling-such as wages, working capital, workplace rental costs, compulsory insurance and other benefits for employees doing legal work of the enterprise. The solution using monthly legal consultancy services is a tendency of using the supply chain service that businesses are applying. With the advantage of lower cost – higher quality – flexibility in service use, internal consultancy has gained competitive advantage over other traditional legal services in the juridical sector.
I.What is the value of the monthly legal consultancy service?
1. Inside the organization: performing the function of company secretary such as preparation of meeting minutes and resolutions for Members’ Council, Board of Management and General Meeting of Shareholders … Advising and drafting internal procedures, operating regulations and decentralization.
2. Compliance and risk control: advising and reporting to help businesses comply with the law; advising and developing a set of risk control standards, risk warning system.
3. Labor issues: advising and drafting transactional documents, performing and terminating labor contracts with employees; advising and preparing documents on collective labor agreements, internal labor regulations and labor discipline; advising and drafting documents to restructure the business organization.
4. Business activities: drafting and negotiating commercial contracts (purchase and sale of goods, provision of services, leasing of offices, information confidentiality agreements, principle contracts …); assessing the legal capacity of the partner; advising and involving in bidding process; advising and structuring the transaction.
5. Mergers & Acquisitions (M & A): advising transactional structure, conducting due diligence in the target company of M&A transactions.
6. Settlement of disputes: Resolving disputes through mechanisms of negotiation, representation and protection of business interests in the settlement of disputes by arbitration and court.
7. Legal training: Organizing legal training and training for management and staff in the implementation of the work.
II. Method of providing monthly consultation services
1. Sitting at the office of the enterprise: using the enterprise’s internal telephone line to give oral advice on legal issues and using the internet network of the enterprise to provide necessary legal documents; and concurrently attending face-to-face meetings at request
2. Working over the internet and at the office of the enterprise when required: sending drafted legal documents over the internet from a distance, responding to legal questions over the telephone and presenting at the office of the enterprise to attend meetings when required.
Note: Appointed lawyers will provide monthly legal consultation services within the time frame and standard hours as agreed by the parties. In the case of overtime use, an additional legal fee will be imposed based on the agreement between the client and the lawyer.
III. Method of monthly legal consultation charge
Internal consultation services are usually charged based on the fixed hourly rates for standard working hours of lawyers per month. For example, the attorney’s fee is 12 million / 12 standard working hours per month, on the basis of 4 consecutive hours per day for one week or by agreement between the parties.
If an enterprise overspends the standard working hours, the enterprise shall be charged an additional hourly fee rate. This hourly rate is usually higher than the standard monthly fee.
IV. Selection of service providers and budget estimates
Enterprises should choose a legal service provider who specializes in the field of business in which they are doing business. For example, companies specializing in providing job placement services should look for law firms with experiences in labor law.
Enterprises should explore the need for legal services to select the standard working hours per month and estimate annual budget for this cost.
V. How to effectively use monthly legal consultation services
1. Appointing a contact person: The enterprise should appoint one or a few staffs at the managerial level to act as contact person(s) who will assign the works to the lawyer. In this way, the enterprise can control the workload of lawyers and their need to use legal services.
2. Assigning appropriate legal work: the enterprise should take advantage of the knowledge and experience of lawyers in those difficult and complicated work which cannot be handled by such enterprise. The enterprise should avoid assigning simple paperwork.
3. Having effective plan for efficient use of services: A long-term legal roadmap needs to be developed to exploit the legal time frame of the lawyer. For example: formulation process, regulations, legal training, etc.
4. Exploiting legal training and building up templates: There will be a lot of repetitive legal issues in the day-to-day business operation of the enterprise, so in-house lawyers can do the training of knowledge and general law required for dealing with these repetitive problems. Through legal training, departments and employees may have a common view of the same legal issues and are likely more cooperative at the workplace.