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contract you need for alarm.com / company name on contract March 27, 2018

KEN KIRSCHENBAUM, ESQ
ALARM - SECURITY INDUSTRY LEGAL EMAIL NEWSLETTER / THE ALARM EXCHANGE
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contract you need for alarm.com / company name on contract
March 27, 2018
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contract you need for alarm.com
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Ken
    quick question.   I do alarm systems in New York and I use DSC with Alarm.com. I purchased alarm contracts from you but an associate of mine happened to mention that I should have a second liability contract for using Alarm.com.   is that true?   Thank you.
BK
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Response
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    Your have the 
Residential All in One and it protects you as much as a contract can.  Because you use alarm.com you have other contract issues.  In order for you to use alarm.com for your customers you had to sign up as an alarm.com dealer.  Last time I checked, as an alarm.com dealer you
       *   agreed to indemnify alarm.com
       *   agreed to get your customers to sign alarm.com's terms and conditions
    So you do have to have two contracts signed.  Yours and alarm.com's.  Why both?
    Because alarm.com's terms and conditions protect alarm.com, not you.  Additionally, the alarm.com terms and conditions are not the same as the provisions in the 
All in One agreements.  I think the All in One agreements provide better contractual protection, so I am not willing to use the same provisions as alarm.com.  
    Since alarm.com is app based [as far as I know - but I don't use it] I don't know why alarm.com isn't satisfied having the end users "accept" the terms and conditions on the app.  [as far as I know that's not the procedure - but I am not able to get onto the alarm.com website as a dealer and see what's required].  
    Here is how we handle it.  We have prepared a Rider to the 
Residential All in One [would be same for Commercial All in One] where we attach and incorporate the alarm.com terms and conditions, making it clear to the end user that the alarm.com rider applies to alarm.com only, not you the dealer.  Your protection is found in the All in One Agreement.  
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company name on contract
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Ken,
    Our Corporate name is Alarm Company Inc., our legal DBA is ACI Alarms.  Is it OK that are contracts are written as ACI Alarms? 
    Thank you,
RR
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Response
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    First of all, I changed the names for the question - so if I used your company name, sorry.  
    What name to put on the contract is a question we get almost daily because most companies use a trade name and not the legal entity name.  Our advice is consistent:  Put the trade name on the top of the contract and use that name throughout the contract.  At the signature put the name of the legal entity with the dba.  So the contract signature would be Alarm Company Inc., dba ACI Alarms.
    Why?  What's the big deal?
    Failing to disclose the proper legal entity name could violate your licensing laws, subject you to fines or more, and can unnecessarily expose you to personal liability.
    Licensing laws generally require that the legal entity name be displayed along with the license number or other licensing information.
    Liability law is another issue.  The principle of  law I have in mind is that "an agent signing for an undisclosed principal is personally liable".  If you don't list your proper legal entity name then the listing could be construed as "undisclosed".  Whoever signs for that undisclosed entity could be sued personally.  We do it all the time in my office - suing the individual who signs a contract for "Joe's Candy Shop".  When we sue Joe who signed the contract first thing he claims is that it's Joe's Candy Enterprises Inc that he works for and who should be on the contract.  Well, then that's the name Joe should have provided.
    You may say that well, in our state we can file a dba [doing business as] or trade name, and then it's permitted to use that name in place of the legal entity name.  That may very well be the case, but I am not as comfortable as you are with that.  So unless you are crystal clear on that, I suggest you use the legal name on that contract somewhere.  
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THE ALARM EXCHANGE

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Ken Kirschenbaum,Esq
Kirschenbaum & Kirschenbaum PC
Attorneys at Law
200 Garden City Plaza
Garden City, NY 11530
516 747 6700 x 301
ken@kirschenbaumesq.com
516 747 6700
www.KirschenbaumEsq.com