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WHAT ADVICE SHOULD WE GIVE A MEMBER WHO HAS LEGAL PROBLEMS?

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WHAT ADVICE SHOULD WE GIVE A MEMBER WHO HAS LEGAL PROBLEMS?

  1. 1. WHAT ADVICE SHOULD<br />WE GIVE A MEMBER<br />WHO HAS LEGAL<br />PROBLEMS?<br />Melvin L. Otey<br />August 15, 2011<br />
  2. 2. Christians don’t<br />have legal problems,<br />do they?<br />domestic abuse? drugs? theft? murder?bankruptcy? DUI? tax problems?<br />
  3. 3. Christians shouldn’t<br />have legal problems,<br />should they?<br />auto accidents? L&T? business disputes?<br />divorce and custody? <br />sexual harassment?<br />
  4. 4. Christians with legal<br />problems need sage<br />counsel, but first a<br />little counsel for<br />potential advisors:<br />
  5. 5. “Remember two principles from<br />1 John 2:1”<br />
  6. 6. PRINCIPLE #1<br />Teach Christians to avoid breaking the law: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”<br />
  7. 7. Legal problems arise<br />from lack of respect<br />for the law, unsavory influences, character<br />flaws, and misguided notions of success <br />
  8. 8. Each of these hazards are addressed by Christian doctrine and influence<br />
  9. 9. PRINCIPLE #2<br />Teach Christians they can recover if they do break the law: “It’s not whether you get knocked down. It’s whether you get back up”<br />
  10. 10. I.<br />GENERAL ADVICE<br />WHEN LEGAL<br />TROUBLE ARISES<br />
  11. 11. “A loose tongue<br />can get you into<br />a tight place”<br />
  12. 12. “The person who represents himself has<br />a fool for a client”<br />
  13. 13. “Never write or sign anything you don’t<br />fully understand (even<br />for your lawyer)”<br />
  14. 14. II.<br />LEGAL ADVICE<br />WHEN CRIMINAL<br />TROUBLE ARISES<br />
  15. 15. “Get a (good)<br />lawyer, and be honest<br />with him/her”<br />
  16. 16. “Make sure your<br />lawyer explains EVERYTHING to you.<br />It’s your life!”<br />
  17. 17. “You can remain<br />silent, but<br />you cannot lie”<br />
  18. 18. “Pretrial diversion programs can protect your criminal record” <br />
  19. 19. “Acceptance of responsibility is often rewarded”<br />(cf. 1 Jn. 1:9)<br />
  20. 20. “Palpable repentance (remorse + restitution + rehabilitation) often merits a lesser penalty” <br />
  21. 21. “While honesty and contrition are generally rewarded, dishonesty and pride are typically punished” (cf. Rom. 13:3)<br />
  22. 22. III.<br />LEGAL ADVICE<br />WHEN CIVIL<br />TROUBLE ARISES<br />
  23. 23. “Civil suits are generally about money, but money isn’t everything; consider spiritual implications”<br />(1 Tim. 6:10; MK. 8:36)<br />
  24. 24. “Be very careful<br />and holistic as you think about what<br />it will mean to<br />‘win’ the case”<br />
  25. 25. “Right living before God is more important than earthly riches”<br />(Prov. 16:8, 28:6)<br />
  26. 26. “A good reputation for integrity is far more important as well”<br />(Prov. 22:1, 19:1)<br />
  27. 27. “Count carefully; the financial, temporal, and emotional costs in civil litigation can be very high”<br />
  28. 28. “Pursue ADR options (e.g., negotiation, mediation, arbitration)”<br />(Mt. 5:25)<br />
  29. 29. WHAT ADVICE SHOULD<br />WE GIVE A MEMBER<br />WHO HAS LEGAL<br />PROBLEMS?<br />Melvin L. Otey<br />August 15, 2011<br />

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