Standard Terms and Conditions

 

Introduction

 

  1. The engagement letter, instruction or brief (the Engagement Letter) and the Standard Terms and Conditions together is the agreement (the Contract) between Riaan Geldenhuys (RG) and the addressee/s of the Engagement Letter, being the instructing solicitor and the client (both referred to as “you” in these Standard Terms and Conditions).

 

Services

 

  1. I will provide the services described in the Engagement Letter (the Services). 

  2. You are responsible for determining that the scope of the services is
    sufficient to meet your needs. 

  3. Unless specifically stated to the contrary in the Engagement Letter: 

    1. the services do not involve an audit or examination conducted in accordance with New Zealand auditing standards and I will not express an opinion on any financial statements or information taken as a whole, not provide an opinion on the achievability of prospective financial information;

    2. I will not express an opinion on any financial statements or information;

    3. I will rely on the information that you provide and will not verify
      that information; 

    4. if the services or your reliance on the services depend upon laws,
      regulations or interpretations by the Courts or Government agencies,
      I am not responsible for any changes in those laws, regulations or
      interpretations (whether or not having retrospective effect) which
      occur after the date of our report and are not required to notify you of
      such changes; and

    5. I am not responsible for the work of any other person who you
      engage to perform work in conjunction with my services.

 

Client responsibilities

 

  1. You agree that you will:

    1. provide all information, assistance and facilities
      that I required to provide the services;

    2. provide information that is true, accurate and not misleading; and

    3. use the results of the services only for the purpose for which the
      services are provided.

 

Reliance on my work

 

  1. The work is provided to the addressee in the Engagement Letter.

  2. Any oral comments made or drafts provided prior to final written advice or other final product do not represent a final conclusion and should not be relied upon. 

  3. A report or other final product of the services should not be relied upon
    by management of the addressee of the report, or advisers to the addressee,
    in their personal capacities, or any person other than the addressee.

 

Disclosure of my work

 

  1. The services are provided for your use only and I accept no responsibility
    or liability to any other person other than those who have engaged me and
    to whom I report. 

  2. You must not disclose any advice or other information provided as part of
    the services to any other person without my prior written consent.

 

Fees and disbursements

 

  1. Unless otherwise agreed, my fees are calculated on the basis of time spent
    at the agreed hourly rate. In addition goods and services tax will be added where applicable.

  2. I will issue interim invoices, usually monthly, and on completion of the matter or termination of our engagement.

  3. Invoices are due for payment upon receipt. If payment is not received
    within 14 days I reserve the right to suspend provision of the services
    and/or charge interest on the outstanding amount at a rate of 3% above the
    current 90 day bank bill rate.

  4. You may request a fee estimate at any time.  Any fee estimate is given in good faith but is not contractually binding. Quotes and estimates exclude GST.

 

Liability limitation

 

  1. My liability for any loss or damage that you suffer caused by a breach of
    contract, tort (including negligence), breach of fiduciary duty or other
    actionable wrong of any kind shall be limited as follows:

    1. I shall have no liability for any consequential or indirect loss or loss
      of profit;

    2. my liability for loss shall in no circumstances exceed the amount of 7 times the total fees paid in the case of non-recurring work or 7 times the annual fees paid in the case of recurring work.

 

Indemnity

 

  1. To the maximum extent permitted by law, you agree to indemnify me, and to hold
    me harmless against any liabilities, losses, expenses and other costs,
    including legal costs and the cost of my professional time
    reasonably incurred in connection with any claims, inquiries, investigations
    or similar matters whether made against me or you by any third party
    arising out of or in any way connected with the services.

 

Confidentiality and Privacy

 

  1. Subject to any need to make disclosures required by law or professional
    ethical obligation, both parties agree that information or documents
    received by or provided to the other for the purposes of the Contract and
    provision of the services, or are marked confidential or are manifestly
    confidential (confidential information) will be treated as confidential,
    except if the information:

    1. is or becomes generally available to the public other than by a breach
      of the obligations under the Contract, 

    2. is known to the parties prior to entering into the Contract, or

    3. is received from a third party who owes no obligation of confidence in
      respect of the information.

  2. You agree that I may disclose confidential information: 

    1. for the purpose of providing the services and on a “need to know” basis to my insurers;

    2. once a matter is no longer confidential, we may cite the performance of the services to clients and prospective clients as an indication of our experience;

    3. to the extent necessary or desirable to enable us to carry out your instructions;

    4. to the extent required by law;

    5. as expressly or impliedly agreed by you;

    6. as necessary to protect our interests in respect of any complaint or dispute;

    7. if necessary to meet any legal request from a New Zealand or overseas
      governmental agency.

  3. To the extent that I use contractors or suppliers located in New Zealand and overseas to assist me in providing services, you agree that I may transfer information provided to me by you or on your behalf (including personal information and confidential information) to those contractors and suppliers, provided they are bound by confidentiality obligations.

  4. We each agree to take reasonable precautions to protect our own information technology systems, including implementing reasonable procedures to guard against viruses and unauthorised interception, access, use, corruption, loss or delay of 

electronic communications.

 

Documents, records and information

 

  1. The working papers that I produce in the course of performing the services is my property and I have no obligation to disclose the working papers to you or to any other person.

  2. You acknowledge that I may, after a period of time, destroy the working papers, reports and other records relating to the services, including any of your documents that have come into my possession, in accordance with my standard procedures relating to document retention.

  3. I will keep a record of all important documents which I receive or create on your behalf on the following basis:

    1. I may keep a record electronically and destroy originals (except where the existence of an original is legally important such as in the case of wills and deeds);

    2. At any time, I may dispose of documents which are duplicates, or which are trivial (such as emails which do not contain substantive information), or documents which belong to me.

    3. I am not obliged to retain documents or copies where you have requested that we provide them to you or to another person and I have done so, although I am entitled to retain copies for my own records if I wish to do so;

    4. I will provide to you on request copies or originals (at our option) of all documents to which you are entitled under the Privacy Act 1993 or any other law. I may charge you a reasonable costs for doing this. 

  4. Where I hold documents that belong to a third party you will need to provide me with that party’s written authority to uplift or obtain a copy of that document. 

  5. Unless you instruct me in writing otherwise, you authorise me and consent to me (without further reference to you) destroying (or delete in the case of electronic records) all files and documents in respect of the Services (7 years after our engagement ends (other than any documents that I hold in safe custody for you or are otherwise obliged by law to retain for longer). I may retain documents for longer at my option.   

  6. I own copyright in all documents or work I create in the course of performing the Services but grant you a non-exclusive licence to use and copy the documents as you see fit for your own personal or commercial use. However, you may not permit any third party to copy, adapt or use the documents without my written permission.


 

Circumstances outside the Parties control

 

  1. Neither party will be liable to the other for any failure to fulfil obligations
    caused by circumstances outside their reasonable control.

 

Sub-contractors

 

  1. Where you are using third parties in connection with the Services, you will ensure that you have appropriate agreements with them.  Unless agreed otherwise in the Engagement Letter, you will be responsible for the management of those third parties and the quality of their input and work.  

  2. Where you require me to contract the services of a sub-contractor specified by you, you accept responsibility for the work to be performed by such subcontractor.  You will be responsible and liable for, and will indemnify me against and from any liability which I may occur to any person against all claims, demands, proceedings, damages, losses, costs and expenses made against, suffered or incurred by me, directly or indirectly as a result of or in connection with the work performed by such sub-contractor. 

 

Assignment 

 

  1. Neither party may assign, transfer, charge or otherwise deal with their rights
    or obligations under the Contract without the prior written consent of the
    other party.

 

Termination of Contract 

 

  1. The Contract may be terminated by either party by written notice.

  2. You will pay me for all services provided up to the date of
    termination. 

  3. Where you terminate the Contract before I have completed the services,
    you will pay any additional costs that I incur in connection with the early
    termination. 

  4. The provisions of the Contract which expressly or by implication are
    intended to survive its termination or expiry will survive and continue to
    bind both parties. 

 

Entire agreement

 

  1. The Contract forms the entire agreement between the parties. 

  2. To the extent permissible by law all warranties, conditions, representations
    and liabilities or terms other than those expressly stated are excluded. 

  3. If any term of the Contract is held to be invalid the enforceability of the
    remainder of the Contract will not be affected.

 

Resolving disputes

 

  1. The Contract is governed by New Zealand law.

 

Law Society’s client care and service information

 

  1. The Law Society’s client care and service information is set out below.

  2. Whatever legal services your lawyer is providing, he or she must:

    1. act competently, in a timely way, and in accordance with instructions received and arrangements made;

    2. protect and promote your interests and act for you free from compromising influences or loyalties;

    3. discuss with you your objectives and how they should best be achieved;

    4. provide you with information about the work to be done, who will do it, and the way in which the services will be provided;

    5. charge you a fee that is fair and reasonable, and let you know how and when you will be billed;

    6. give you clear information and advice;

    7. protect your privacy and ensure appropriate confidentiality;

    8. treat you fairly, respectfully, and without discrimination;

    9. keep you informed about the work being done and advise you when it is completed;

    10. let you know how to make a complaint, and deal with any complaints promptly and fairly.

  3. The obligations lawyers owe to clients are described in the Rules of Conduct and Client Care for Lawyers. Those obligations are subject to other overriding duties, including duties to the courts and to the justice system.

  4. If you have any questions, please visit www.lawsociety.org.nz or call 0800 261 801.


 

Important client information

 

  1. Please note the important client information in relation to the Services published at www.riaangeldenhuys.co.nz/client-information

 

Lawyers Complaints Service

 

  1. If you have a complaint about the services you have received from me, please do contact me.

  2. If I have been unable to resolve a complaint or concern, or if you prefer not to contact me in the first instance, you may contact:

 

The Lawyers Complaints Service

Phone: 0800 261 801

Website: www.lawsociety.org.nz/for-the-community/lawyers-complaints-service/concerns-form

Email: complaints@lawsociety.org.nz

0275921389

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