Tuesday, March 29, 2011

LDAs & Legislation

We have all experienced difficulty of some degree during the LDA registration process. I have encountered staff at the County Clerks' offices who have no knowledge of the LDA registration processes, or even just what an LDA is. I learned early on in my LDA entrepreneurial ventures that it was prudent to take copies of the code with me when I performed registration so that I could easily refer to actual language of the law rather than any one person's, or agency's interpretation. Today, I was refused an LDA employee card by my local County Clerk's office.

The explanation: In 2009, AB620 was chartered and it removed or changed, among other things, the allowance of employee cards and contained other provisions concerning LDAs, Professional Photocopiers, Process Servers and Immigration Consultants. When the clerk mentioned the 2009 bill I was floored. How come I did not know of this in 2009? Talk about being late!

Admittedly, I was not ALDAP's Director of Legislation during 2009, but I do believe I stay current with legislation affecting our profession. I argued my point with the clerk but she remained steadfast, and she then read me the language of the bill. I thanked her and then began my own investigation as I was completely shocked that this would have slid by my nightly bedtime reading of legislation.

My investigation proved that in 2009 a bill was chartered decreasing the minimum size of the LDA registration card. The bill also created changes to the cards of the other professions listed above, and changed a bit of County Recorder business, but DID NOT change the allowance and requirements for LDA employee cards. Those statutory provisions remain in CA B&P Code section 6405.

I called my favorite clerk and explained that the bill as chartered did contain language decreasing the minimum dimensions of the registration card but that the removal of language concerning allowance of employee LDA cards had itself been deleted from the final version of the bill. We agreed that her informational materials required update and I thanked her for her time.

ALDAP caught and implemented deletion of prohibitive language in AB 590 four days prior to the last day to amend - a late discovery. We need to review all legislation, not just that having to do with 6400 et seq. AB 590 had nothing at all to do with LDAs, but was a Civil Access to Justice Bill. And yet, contrary language concerning our profession was included in its text. I remember saying this back on August 26, 2009 and today's "rush" to the codes was a gentle reminder. We must watchdog legislation in order to protect ourselves and the consumers we serve.

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