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New York
July 2010
 
Legal Humor
"It's like seeing your mother-in-law drive over a cliff in your new Cadillac."


Don Barrett,
American Lawyer,
Describing his reaction when jurors found for his client but awarded no damages because they said both parties were at fault

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Our New York Landlord - Tenant Volume Debut
The June update marked the debut of our new Landlord and Tenant volume for New York. We rushed this new product through due to heavy demand from Westlaw Forms subscribers. The 88 form volume to provide all of the documents you need to handle an eviction. Additionally, we added property management forms, including leases and subleases and common correspondence, enabling you to assist the client landlord or tenant during the management of a tenancy.

Finally, we added it to the Office Practice Library at no additional cost.

Learn more about our new Landlord - Tenant volume >>

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WESTLAW Forms Now Contain Links to Westlaw
The June update also marked the debut a new feature in our automated forms—links to Westlaw for statutory cites. When you choose a document in Step 2 of the assembly process, you can click the Form Info button for a synopsis of the form. You will now find that clicking the Form Info button also reveals Westlaw links for many of the forms. You will also often find Westlaw links when you click the Explain button on various questions during an assembly session.

If you have a Westlaw account, there is no additional charge to take advantage of this feature. You can pay for each use by credit card if you do not have a Westlaw account.

And, because of this enhancement, you will notice that we rebranded West Forms to Westlaw Forms.

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Updates Review

July Web
At the time of writing this WebNotes, the only WebUpdate presently scheduled WebUpdate is for the Probate volume. We will inform you in the next edition of any additional WebUpdates that we publish in July.

  • Probate - We're updating form 1-110, Death Certificate Application (VR-66) - New York City, to match the recently revised New York City form.  

June Update
This shipment contained updates to every existing volume. We also added Westlaw links to a substantial number of forms in all of the volumes. You can now quickly view cites and commentary in Westlaw as you assemble documents and encounter questions you wish to research further.

  • Attorney-Client Matters - We added linking into Westlaw.
  • Family Law – We removed the Child Support Opting Out Agreement (OCA), form 2-135, as it is no longer a valid official form. We also added linking into Westlaw to many forms in this volume.
  • Probate –We revised the coding on the Petition for Probate and Letters (OCA P-1), form 2-110, to avoid having same persons’ names appearing in paragraph 6 and 7. This change is pursuant to customer requests—thank you! We also added linking into Westlaw to many forms in this volume.
  • Real Estate – We revised the Real Property Transfer Tax Return Supplemental Schedules (Form TP-584.1) (in form 11-105) to match changed agency form. We also revised the three HUD-1’s: HUD-1 Settlement Statement, 6-100; HUD-1 (Borrower Information Only), 6-105; and HUD-1 (Seller Information Only), 6-110, again, to add back the signature of the settlement agent—in response to customer requests. Finally, we added linking into Westlaw to many forms in this volume.
  • Wills – We added five new forms; four letters to client and one letter to a trustee; to further assist you in your day to day practice. Additionally, we revised text and coding in the identification paragraph of the wills and pourover wills to improve the language referring to children. Finally, we added linking into Westlaw to many forms in this volume.
  • Lipman's Wills & Trusts - The changes we made in this volume include:

    1. Modified and improved the tax clauses found in most wills and revocable trusts so you now have the option to include several different types of tax clauses.
    2. Modified a section found in 51 wills, revocable trusts, and irrevocable trusts to include language allowing the trustee to make an election to treat a trust which will own S stock either as a qualified subchapter S trust or as an electing small business trust.
    3. Modified the relevant language in the wills and revocable trusts to remove this limitation regarding pet trusts. New York recently amended subdivisions (a) and (b) of section 7-8.1 of the estates, powers and trusts law so that honorary trusts for pets do not need to terminate within 21 years of being created.
  • Support for Corel WordPerfect® X5 - We updated Westlaw Forms and SOS to support this word processor version.

Read more about this update >>

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Preparation for Installing the June Update
If you installed the May update, please ignore the following:

This update includes a one-time-only database enhancement. As a result, the installation process has special requirements and will take longer. Please read this and the next article carefully before initiating the installation from the CD.

The database enhancement in this update has minimum system requirements that include the most current Microsoft Windows Service Pack for your operating system. If that is not installed on your computer/server, you will not be able to complete the installation of the update.

However, you should have the most current Service Pack installed for your peace of mind. Microsoft Service Packs contain bug fixes and even more importantly, they contain patches to known vulnerabilities in the Operating System. You should have automatic updating turned on but, if not, here is your opportunity to get current.

Here is how to check how current you are with your operating system: On your desktop click Start > click My Computer > click System. On the System window, look for the Service Pack information. If the most current Service Pack version does not display as shown below, be sure to download and install the most current Service Pack before installing the May update.

Operating System Most Recent Service Pack
Microsoft Windows 2000 Windows 2000 SP4
Microsoft Windows XP Windows XP SP3
Microsoft Windows Vista1 Windows Vista SP1
Windows Vista SP2
Microsoft Windows 7 None needed

1Unlike service packs for other Microsoft Operating Systems, SP2 for Vista is not a standalone service pack. It requires SP1 to be installed. If neither service pack is installed on your Vista Operating System, first install the Windows Vista SP1 and then the Windows Vista SP2.

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REALLY Helpful Hints for Installing Your Westlaw Forms Update
If you installed the May update, please ignore the following:

If you did not install your May update you need to install your June update. The reason is that that the installation process performs a one-time update to the underlying Westlaw Forms database. If you installed the May update you can ignore the following since your update will proceed in the normal fashion.

But, if you did not install the May update, please read the following before proceeding with your installation of the June update:

Time Your Installation for the Last Task of the Day
This time only, you will need to reboot/restart your computer during the installation process. So, and particularly if your installation is on a network server, we strongly advise that you wait to run the installation until everyone else is off the network.

Lengthier Installation
This installation will take longer than a typical Westlaw Forms update. This is a one-time occurrence and we ask that you be patient with this process.

Your Computer Server Will Restart - Leave the CD in the Computer
The installation process will continue after the restart so do not remove the CD until you click the Finish button.

Installation Messages
You may encounter system messages during your installation process. Most commonly they are triggered because you have not installed all the Microsoft Windows service packs or you do not have administrative rights on the computer.

If you encounter any messages, please go to www.prodoc.com/install-2010/ to view our list of potential system messages you may encounter, what they mean, what to do about them, and who to call if you encounter problems with the installation.

Potential Issue After You Open Westlaw Forms
The registration code you entered when you installed Westlaw Forms governs how many users in your firm can simultaneously access Westlaw Forms. If your firm received a network license and individual computer licenses (to install Westlaw Forms on a laptop, for instance), it is possible that the registration codes were misapplied during the original installation. For example, if your firm registered a network server with an individual computer license (if your firm requested any), after this installation only one person will be able to access Westlaw Forms at a time. If this issue should arise, call our Tech Support team at 800-759-5418, option 3.

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Customer Questions from the Last WebNotes
The following questions were from Westlaw Forms customers like you in response to last month's Westlaw Forms WebNotes.

Q: Why can't another user from my firm find and edit documents that are specific to my attorneys, and that I've prepared in ProDoc? Can't this program be networked to encompass all our clients and documents?
A: It sounds like ProDoc is not properly installed on your network. Call our Tech Support team at 800-759-5418, option 3) for free assistance with your network installation.

Q: I recently purchased a new laptop with Windows 7 as its operating system. What must I do to stop using the old laptop and use its license (one of two) to use ProDoc on the new laptop which has no ProDoc program on it presently?
A: Go ahead and install ProDoc on the new laptop. You have 15 days in which to license that installation. Contact our Tech Support team at 800-759-5418, option 3) for assistance in transferring the license to your new laptop and transferring over the appropriate ProDoc files.

Q: Does ProDoc support Microsoft Office® 2010?
A: We're working on support for Microsoft Windows Office 2010 - watch for details about a near term release of this enhancement. We recently added support for Corel WordPerfect Office X5.

Q: I use the Lipman's estate planning volume every day. In the volume, there is a form for the drafting attorney to complete and give to an assistant to prepare the documents. The form contains a series of questions that need to be answered to draft the document. I don't like the design of the form provided in the volume. I would love for the volume to contain a form the attorney could print out and complete that would be easy for the assistant to use.
A: We passed your comments on to Mr. Lipman for his consideration of your suggestion. Meanwhile, it is quite simple to create a customized intake form using ProDoc volume questions for your use. You'll find instructions here for creating your customized intake form(s).

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ProDoc Customer Support: Save Editing Time Using Case Data Sheets
There is a faster and easier way to conduct the initial review of ProDoc-generated documents using the Case Data Sheet feature.

Your legal assistant/paralegal can quickly and easily print a Case Data Sheet after generating a document. The Case Data Sheet shows all of the document assembly and client matter choices your legal assistant/paralegal made during the assembly process. If some of the choices are incorrect, it is much easier to spot those issues on the Case Data Sheet with all of the boilerplate stripped out. This process also makes it very easy for your assistant to identify the data to be corrected and then make those revisions.

After such a review of the Case Data Sheet, when your legal assistant/paralegal presents the document(s) for your review, you can feel more confident that the major legal issues are already resolved. This provides you more time to focus on the finer legal issues.

Learn how to use case data sheets >>

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Practice Tip: Succession Planning
Leaving practice, for whatever reason, is less daunting when you have a plan in place. You'll find below a checklist for succession planning and a success story of a smooth transition in a solo firm.

Read Exit, Stage Left! A Succession Planning Checklist for Lawyers >>
Read Keys to the Succession Process: A Success Story >>

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Tech Tip: ABA's Smart Phone Buying Guide
If you're not a techy-type, you may be overwhelmed with your choices for smart phones. The recently released ABA smart phone buying guide provides a basic primer on operating system options, software applications (Apps), models and features, and coverage and carriers that you might find enlightening.

Read the ABA Smart phone buying guide >>

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Tech Tip: Using a Wiki to Promote Collaboration
What's a wiki and why on earth would our firm ever need one—both reasonable questions. However, at least one large law firm has found wikis invaluable for promoting and simplifying collaboration within its ranks. They found that the wikis in their firm were quick and easy to set up, required very little IT support, and provided benefits beyond their initial expectations.

Read Collaboration Through Wikis at Hicks Morley >>

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Tech Tip: Taming Your Email Inbox
Handy as email is, it can be exasperating dealing with the flood of email we deal with every day. With a little planning, however, you can make tame the email beast— leaving more time for everything else you would rather be doing than dealing with your email.

Read The Inbox Ninjas: Helping You Chop Through Your E-Mail Inbox >>

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Vent—Tell Us What's on Your Mind
This is your opportunity to what's on your mind. Email us your suggestions and other feedback.

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