Legal Assistant’s Corner: We Don’t Know It All

I work in a small general practice law firm. Despite that description, I am not familiar with every area of law. There are dozens of areas of law, some broad in scope and others very specific. Some law firms opt to practice in limited areas of law while others, like the one I work in, practice in several areas of law. There are benefits and drawbacks to each law firm model; however, I prefer working in general practice firms because they provide diversity each day. Forrest Gump famously said, “… life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.” The same is true with general practice law firms.

Unfortunately, “general practice” commonly confuses, well, just about everyone. Friends and family members ask me questions concerning all kinds of law which is all well, fine and good except when I tell them I don’t have the faintest idea because I’ve never worked in that area of law before. They are almost always dumbfounded when I don’t know anything of substance about copyrights, patents, bankruptcy or the dozens of other legal areas I’ve failed to work in (yet). Folks apparently assume and/or believe that once someone starts working in the legal field, they are automatically bestowed with knowledge of all things legal, which couldn’t be further from the truth.

In addition to failing to know everything about law, I also don’t know everything about the following legal things:

  1. All legal procedures;
  2. All Latin terms;
  3. All laws/statutes/rules/codes;
  4. All lawyers/judges;
  5. All current events concerning the legal arena; and,
  6. On and on, ad nauseam (<— see what I did there?).

While it pains me to admit it, I don’t actually know it all. Google is my bestie, yo!

© 4/24/2018 Hunt & Associates, P.C. All rights reserved.

There Is a Stranger in My House: Texas Recognizes At Least One Exception to the “Eight Corners” Rule

In a prior article, I discussed the opinion by the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit discussing Texas’ unwavering commitment to the “eight corners” rule when analyzing an insurer’s duty to defend. Although the “eight corners” rule is sound law in Texas, there exists at least one exception to the rule.

As mentioned above, in July of 2012, the Fifth Circuit noted that Texas has had an “unwavering commitment” to the “eight corners rule.” The “eight-corners rule” provides that courts may look only to the pleadings and the insurance policy to determine whether a duty to defend exists. The allegations in the pleadings are considered in light of the policy provisions without regard to their truth or falsity.

In 2011, the Houston Court of Appeals examined a case where a company claiming to be a commercial landlord at a shopping center sought coverage from the insurance company under its tenant’s commercial general liability policy. The coverage facts are straightforward. The company that sought coverage had been sued by an employee of the tenant that was injured in the tenant’s store, and in that lawsuit, the company was identified, albeit improperly, as the landlord of the property. As such, the company, although it was not actually the landlord, sought coverage under the tenant’s CGL policy because the CGL policy provided additional insured coverage to the landlord. Specifically, the tenant’s commercial general liability policy contained an endorsement naming “all lessors of the premises leased as additional insureds under the policy.”

The employee named the wrong company as the landlord, but under the “eight corners” rule, the trial court should have been confined to the employee’s petition naming the wrong company as the lessor and the tenant’s commercial general liability policy naming all lessors as additional insureds. Yet, the trial court looked beyond the petition and insurance policy and examined extrinsic evidence to determine that the company that sought coverage under the tenant’s CGL policy was not actually the lessor, and therefore, not an additional insured.

The Houston Court of Appeals held that the “eight corners” rule exists for the protection of the insured, and because the company that was improperly named in the employee’s lawsuit as the lessor was a total stranger to the policy would not be entitled to a defense under any set of facts, extrinsic evidence was admissible. Under the Court’s rationale, extrinsic evidence is admissible to show that an alleged insured is in fact a total stranger to the insurance policy under which coverage is claimed.

LDS Corner – Know Your Religion – The Manifesto

Given that a person may have been involved with the LDS religion for more than fifty years, one might think that they had become somewhat of an expert by virtue of the fact that they have attended what seems to be countless meetings and have heard and perhaps given more talks than they can remember.

However, this reminds me of what they used to say about working on the line in General Motors car and truck assembly plants. One might say he was working there for say, 30 years and that it had taken them 3 weeks to learn the job. The other person would say that they had 3 weeks of experience then, rather than 30 years. When we stop learning, we stop growing.

It seems that in religion, we do the same thing. We believe that we know; but, somehow, we just keep re-hashing the same old things and cease to actually be growing in the Gospel. Are we guilty of simply going in circles, re-learning the same things over and over again and paying less and less attention to the lessons since we believe that we know them already?

The manifesto of 1890 is one such lesson. Some LDS members believe that there was a revelation from God which directed a cease to Celestial Plural marriage. However, they fail to take into account the revelations of John Taylor and Wilford Woodruff prior to the issuance of this so called, “manifesto”.

Sept. 27, 1886 President John Taylor receives a revelation after he had been presented with another version of a manifesto which some church leaders wanted him to sign. He was in his 78th year at the time and lived in hiding from the local law enforcement, who sought to arrest him for living with and supporting his wives and family. He took the matter to the Lord, who visited him and gave him the 1886 revelation, which became a part of the Doctrine and Covenants and was published in the German and Danish versions before being removed and hidden from the view of most members.

In the revelation, Jesus said, “Those who would enter into My glory, must & shall obey My law…I have not revoked this law nor will I for it is everlasting & those who will enter into My glory must obey the conditions thereof, even so amen.

Then on Nov.24, 1889, Wilford Woodruff wrote that he had spent several hours in prayer regarding polygamy after attending a meeting with the lawyers who wanted him to make concession to the court regarding polygamy.

He received a revelation in which the Lord says, “Let not my servants who are called to the presidency of My church, deny My word or My law, which concerns the salvation of the children of men. Place not yourselves in jeopardy to your enemies by promise. Your enemies seek your destruction and the destruction of My people.

I the Lord will deliver My saints from the dominion of the wicked, in Mine own due time and way. I cannot deny My word…

Let Mine anointed gird up their loins, watch and be sober, and keep My commandments. (See Unpublished Revelations, Volume 1, by Fred C. Collier)

In 1904, some 14 years after this so called, manifesto, President Joseph F. Smith paid a fine for still living Celestial plural marriage. Heber J. Grant had paid a fine some time after Utah became a state in the late 1890’s as well.

If you read the manifesto, you see that it is made up of several excerpts from talks given over a couple of year period and if you compare this to revelations in the D & C, such as sections 131 and 132, you will see that none of them begin, “To whom it may concern: press dispatches having been sent…” Let’s get a lot more serious about truth, shall we folks?!

Most of us are probably unworthy to live this higher law; but, at least we ought to respect those who are worthy of the higher blessings that attend obedience to all of God’s laws; you know, those who actually may be exalted. (D&C 132)

Well, friends, choose ye this day whom ye will serve;… but, as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. Isn’t that your mantra too?

Major Change and the Law of Attraction

You’re visualizing that perfect job every night and just know that the Universe is bringing you exactly what you desire. You also know that the job you are currently working at right now is not what you want. But you have to work there until the Universe brings you the job you dream of, right? Then, when you go into work the next day you learn you’ve been laid off. Most people would be upset over losing a job, but when you’re a Law of Attraction practitioner you know what this means. The Universe has something better for you coming around the corner.

It can sometimes be hard to be joyous when a major change that seems so difficult happens out of the blue. Not everyone is comfortable with change, but in order for you to obtain what you desire, change is necessary, and major change is something to celebrate.

When major change arrives it means the Universe is aligning you with your desire. You have to break a few eggs in order to make an omelet, and the same goes for a major life-changing desire. If you want your visualization to come into physical being, be prepared for major change, and once you have figured out how to practice the Law of Attraction intentionally, things will attract faster to you.

Sometimes the Universe has to align many different components in order for your desire to come into being, and aligning at that magnitude requires change on your part.

Welcome any kind of change because it means there is a shift and when the shift comes, just accept that your desire is right around the corner. The Universe is lining up the planets for you so you can have what you want out of life. Welcome the change. Rejoice in it. In fact, whenever you have a day of any kind of change, toast the day because you are on the right path to the new life you have been envisioning.

Can your desire come to you without a massive shift in your life? Of course it can, and this happens time and time again. But sometimes it takes movement to obtain your desires. It can happen both ways but just remember that when you have major change and you have been faithful in giving the Universe an exact image of what you want, celebrate that seemingly difficult change. Such change is a product of what you have been thinking, feeling, and focusing on, and the Universe is doing its job just for you. So here’s a toast to major change and the Law of Attraction.