KEN KIRSCHENBAUM, ESQ
ALARM - SECURITY INDUSTRY LEGAL EMAIL NEWSLETTER / THE ALARM EXCHANGE
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how does the collection process work
April 21, 2017
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how does the collection process work
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    You have several options when you consider collections.

    In-house collection practices are fine as long as you don't alienate the subscriber to the point where the subscriber becomes emotionally entrenced with such animosity that paying you is the last item on the agenda and the subscriber would, rather than pay you, pay a lawyer or go bankrupt or disappear.  You are limited to calls, letters and terminating service, none of which are particularly effective unless the alarm system is mandatory.  However even turning off service may only cause the subscriber to seek other services from your competitors.
    Collection agencies are not a good choice.  The personnel are not well suited to retaining your subscriber's business [they get paid only on what they collect, not reinstatements].  Keep in mind that the sales person you spoke to and sold you on the collection agency service is not the fellow who will be making the harassing calls to your subscriber.  The collection agency will delay engaging counsel because that cost eats into its fees which now has to go mostly to the lawyers.  The lawyers are not "alarm experts' and you're not their client, the collection agency is.
    Kirschenbaum & Kirschenbaum probably processes more or as many cases as any law firm.  We will represent you if you use our updated Standard Form Agreements.  Why do we insist on that?  Two reasons:
    We are familiar with the terms of those agreements and know that the contract terms have strong collection provisions.
    We include an arbitration provision in our Standard Form Agreements and we have chosen an arbitration forum that is reasonable in price and efficient in processing the proceedings.  Generally we start the arbitration process within a few days of getting the assignment from you.  It starts with a Demand For Arbitration [residential subscribers have to get a 30 day demand letter first] and many cases settle quickly once the demand is made.  If not settled the subscriber has 15 days to respond and generally a hearing is scheduled within 30 days.  Most arbitration cases have a $125 filing fee.  Service of the Demand for Arbitration is by mail, so there is no costly process server charges.  Except for extraordinary large cases the arbitration is conducted by a signal arbitrator and the hearing can be by telephone, video or submission of the papers.  You won't have to take a day off work for the trial.  
    Are your chances better in arbitration or in court?  They are the same.  You'll likely win the cases you should, and lose the cases you should.  In arbitration the decision is final; no appeal is permitted, so at least you have finality and the process is quick.  
    Once you have an arbitration award that award needs to be "confirmed" in court, so you will have to commence a proceeding to confirm the award [unless you and the subscriber comply with the award without having to confirm it].  That court proceeding will be brought by Kirschenbaum & Kirschenbaum if you're in NY or NJ.  In other states you [or we] will have to find a local lawyer to confirm the award.  The proceeding to confirm the award will not require a trial or your involvement at all.  There are very few reasons a court will not confirm the award.  Once the award is confirmed it becomes a regular court judgment.  
    The arbitration provision serves another important purpose in the contract; it prevents the subscriber from commencing or joining a class action against you.  
    To find out more about Kirschenbaum & Kirschenbaum's collection department go here:  https://www.kirschenbaumesq.com/page/collections#content
    To send us collection cases contact our head paralegal Kathleen Lampert at 516 747 6700 x 319 or email her at KLampert@Kirschenbaumesq.com
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WEBINARS:  Sign up for any or all of the webinars that interest you.
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FREE Webinar Series "All You Need To Know About" alarm industry issues. 
Register for one or all.  Each presentation scheduled for half hour to hour.  Not recorded.
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TitleAll You Need to know about Internet security and why is it relevant for the alarm industry 
When: April 25,  2017 noon EST
Where: Your computer for power point, live video and call in on computer or phone
What will be covered: Discussion of securing Internet devices.  Attacks by Mirai and other botnets and disruption to Internet services around the world made possible because of the millions of poorly secured cameras, DVRs and other installed network devices. 
Who should attend: Alarm company owners, general and technical managers
Presented by: Securifi, a leading router and smart home hub company, soon to be offering its own comprehensive Total Security Solution (Monitored Security + IoT Security + Parental Controls + Malware Blocking) to the alarm industry.  Rohit Somani     rohit.somani@securifi.com    855 969 7328  
Register here:  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6899604070803705091
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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
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