EDUCATORS & TEACHER RETAINER SERVICES IN UTAH
The current legal environment is precarious. It’s hard to believe, but the reality is a single baseless allegation can ruin your life! Having a lawyer on retainer to assist you should any issues arise is no longer a luxury, it’s a necessity. Jardine Law Offices P.C. (“JLO”) has an economical solution to this difficult issue—the PEP program.
As an educator, you probably already enjoy legal protection through professional liability insurance, or unions, such as UEA or NEA. Unfortunately, without PEP, you are still legally liable for claims of child abuse, theft, sexual abuse, DUI, etc. Make no mistake, these types of allegations will end your career, bankrupt you and possibly land you in jail, and it can happen to anyone, even the innocent!
For plans starting at $0.70 per day, you can enroll in PEP, and gain the legal protection you need when career-ending allegations arise. This affordable program was created by JLO to help educators and administrators survive the increasingly precarious legal environment by giving direct access to skilled and knowledgeable attorneys.
PEP gives you a top-rated attorney that will defend you every step of the way to prove your innocence and preserve your reputation.
PEP has 3 levels of protection, depending on your need, the price listed is a monthly enrollment. There are no other deductibles or fees that will need to be paid to retain JLO.
- Level 1 Prevent and defend criminal allegations made at school $19.99
- Level 2 Level 1 plus assist with job related injury and employment issues $29.99
- Level 3 Level 2 plus prevent and defend criminal allegations anywhere, anytime $34.99
These prices won’t last forever, but they will be locked-in for the first 1000 educators to enroll. Contact us today so you can have the confidence, protection, and peace of mind of having a top-rated Attorney in your corner.
Contact us today on this special contact form for Educators so we can expedite your request to have the confidence and protection of having a top-rated Attorney on retainer.
What is PEP?
PEP is an abbreviation for the Jardine Law Offices’ (“JLO”) Protection for Educators Program (“PEP”) – JLO’s PEP. It is an amazing and revolutionary legal protection program that is delivered directly to teachers without the involvement of middlemen, unions, or school administration. It is a program where you have direct access to a team of attorneys to protect and advise you when you need it most. There is no other program like it on the market today.
I already have legal protection through the union, administration, or insurance, do I need PEP?
PEP was created by Jardine Law Offices (“JLO”) because all other forms of legal protection fall short of fully protecting you. JLO offers to be “on retainer” for you once you are enrolled in PEP. That means the attorneys at JLO are only a phone call, email, or text message away from answering your question. If you do not have an attorney on retainer, you may not receive the legal advice you need in a timely fashion. Consider for a moment what steps would be necessary for you to actually speak with an attorney regarding an honest and legitimate concern you have. How long will it take to get an appointment? How much will you pay for that appointment? Will your current plan allow you to speak directly to an attorney, or do you have to fill out paperwork, or send in a request for approval? If the attorney agrees to help you, how much will it cost? Do you know your attorney’s name, or the firm they are associated with? If you don’t know the answers to these questions, do you really have the coverage you think you do? The reality is that sometimes you need to speak with an attorney today, not tomorrow, not next week, but today. Enrollment in PEP grants quick, worry-free access to an attorney today, and continuing access tomorrow. You don’t have to worry about permission or paperwork, you simply need to pick up the phone and ask to speak with your attorney.
Once I’m enrolled in PEP, how much do I have to pay to speak with my attorney?
Consultations are always free to PEP participants. So long as your monthly retainer is paid, you have priority access to your attorney. As the saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Sometimes 5 minutes of advice, at a critical juncture, can prevent years of suffering. If you are enrolled in PEP, don’t hesitate to contact your attorney whenever the need arises.
Once I am enrolled in PEP are there any additional fees or deductibles I will be responsible for?
No. PEP will cover all your legal expenses. Terms and conditions do apply, please read your retainer contract, or pick up the phone and give us a call, for exact details.
What is my legal exposure as an educator?
The following are a few examples of claims that educators face. Civil claims against teachers include student injuries, charges of educational malpractice, corporal punishment, and civil rights claims. Criminal claims include things like child abuse, sexual harassment, embezzlement, and inappropriate sexual contact with students. You get the idea. Without some outside assistance, educators could be held responsible for the expense of defending themselves against the child that has an accident in wood shop or during a sporting event. This could ultimately cost the educator tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees and even more in damages to be paid to the child. The same goes for any criminal allegations levied against the educator. Keep in mind that these expenses will often be incurred when the educator has been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation. Bottom line, the prudent educator will have some form of protection against these eventualities.
I’ve been asked to meet with the police to answer some questions, what do I do?
You need to contact your lawyer ASAP and seek legal protection. If you don’t presently have an attorney, find one before speaking with the police. Many cases are won or lost at the “investigation” stage. Police officers are very good at making an interview with them seem routine. Nothing could be further from the truth. Facing a police officer on your own is like giving a loaded gun to an infant. You may believe that, because you have a college degree and are good at expressing yourself, you can avoid any serious mistakes that may jeopardize your future. You may believe that “just being honest” with the officer will make all your problems go away. You may think that “you have nothing to hide” so why not talk with the officer? Please recognize that those types of thoughts and feelings have led many a fool like a lamb to the slaughter. Police officers are trained interrogators that will take your statements out of context and spin them to fit their narrative. Your only chance is to hire a skilled attorney to balance the inherent inequality of power and protect your constitutional rights. This is exactly the situation that PEP is designed to deal with. Instead of scrambling to find and vet a competent defense attorney – a process that can take days or longer – you will have a top-notch defense team at your disposal and only a phone call away. With PEP you don’t have to worry about deductibles or up-front retainer costs; once you are enrolled, you are protected at your chosen level of protection. If you are not yet enrolled in PEP, call today and get the ball rolling in your defense.
What is the difference between criminal law and civil lawsuits?
Unless you work in the legal industry, you may not appreciate the difference between criminal law and civil law. In a nutshell, criminal law deals with crime and punishment, and civil law deals with disputes that are not criminal in nature.
When a person is accused of a crime, their liberty interests are at stake. In layman’s terms, if a person is convicted of a crime, it is possible they may be punished with jail or prison time. Additionally, the person could be fined or placed on probation.
If a person is sued in civil court, and loses, the penalty will generally be a monetary award in favor of the other party. A civil court, however, cannot order jail or prison against either party except in rare circumstances.
Let me use an example that some of you may remember. In 1995, O.J. Simpson, a famous football player, was charged with the murders of his wife, Nicole Brown, and Ronald Goldman. He was defended by a “dream team” of lawyers including F. Lee Bailey, Robert Blasier, Shawn Chapman Holley, Robert Shapiro, and Alan Dershowitz; Johnnie Cochran later became the defense team’s lead attorney. In the
end, O.J. was acquitted – he was found to be not guilty of all the charges. That meant that the court could not punish him, he did not go to jail or pay any fines for these allegations. The criminal case was over.
However, after his acquittal, O.J. was sued in civil court, by the estate of his late wife, for her wrongful death. O.J. lost that trial and was required to pay $33.5 million as a penalty for his actions. The civil court took his money but did not have authority to take his freedom, only a criminal conviction could do that.
Does the DEA/NEA/UEA protect me from both civil and criminal liability?
That is a complicated question to answer. Most educators think they are covered – they are only partially right.
Generally speaking, school districts and teachers’ unions will step up and at least provide an attorney to defend civil claims against teachers. The NEA states that it will pay millions in attorneys fees and up to a million dollars in damages.
However, when it comes to criminal claims, it’s a very different story. The NEA, for example, will only pay up to $35,000 if you are accused of a crime, but there’s a catch: the NEA will only reimburse you for those legal costs AFTER you have won your case, AND your actions must have been “within the course and scope of your educational employment activities.” There is a small exception to this rule when the allegation involves corporal punishment.
What does that phrase, “within the course and scope . . .” mean? It means that your actions must be those of an educator: your actions have to be what every other educator does in that circumstance. Educators typically do not perpetrate crimes on their students as part of their job. Translation: if you are accused of committing a crime against your students, there is a real danger that you will have no coverage.
It should come as no surprise then, that over the last few years, only 15% of the educators in Utah accused of crimes received legal assistance from the NEA/DEA. So, does that mean the educator is “covered”? Well, if we put that 15% into the grading rubric, and a student got 15% of the assignment correct, it’s probably not something the teacher or the student would be proud of.
Keep in mind, that for minor crimes, $35,000 would likely cover the legal defense costs. However, for the more substantial charges, attorney fees can easily reach $100,000. In 2019 the median bank account balance for individuals was $5,300. Unless the educator is well above the median, it is unlikely that they will have sufficient funds to pay for a legal defense.
Does professional malpractice insurance have me covered?
The answer here is sometimes. Typically, insurance policies will only cover you for your negligent actions. Negligent, in this context, means accidental. Stated differently, if your actions are purposeful – if you intended the result — you will generally not be covered.
Let’s explore 2 examples. In example A, the educator trips in the classroom and accidentally hits a student on the head causing a bloody nose. In example B, the educator is angered by the student to the point that the educator punches the student in the face, again causing a bloody nose. In both examples,
A and B, the result is the same: a bloody nose. However, the means of getting there is vastly different: one act was negligent while the other was intentional. Malpractice insurance would generally cover example A, but almost never covers example B.
Likewise, the NEA, UEA and DEA provide coverage for negligent actions; however, if the actions are purposeful, i.e., “outside the course and scope” of employment, you will likely find there is no coverage. Remember, criminal acts are rarely negligent. Therefore, for almost any crime, you will not be covered.
No coverage means you are on your own. No coverage likely means that you have been placed on administrative leave. No employment combined with no coverage is a recipe for disaster.
Why doesn’t the UEA/DEA/NEA or school district protect me with respect to alleged crimes?
The answer is simple: optics. What organization wants to be associated with child abusers? What organization wants to be associated with any sort of criminal?
Once allegations have been levied against a teacher, the organization wants to create some space between the individual and the organization. Schools will put out statements of horror and disbelief that one of their own could commit such a heinous act. They want to make it clear that the act you are accused of is not condoned by them.
Imagine the headline if it were otherwise, if the administration did defend the teacher: “School District Successfully Defends Teacher Against Child Abuse Allegations!” What message would that send to the community regarding that school? No, remember, the school district is on the side of the school and the students, not the teachers.
How can I protect myself when the NEA/DEA/UEA will not?
Jardine Law Offices (“JLO”) has created the Protection for Educators Program (“PEP”). Once enrolled, PEP will defend you against any criminal allegations made against you while you are at school. This would include any allegations regarding students, co-workers, administrators, or school property. Your coverage is immediate once you retain us. There is no deductible to pay, there is no reimbursement to worry about, there is no worry. You simply pay your monthly retainer, and we do the rest. That retainer is an easy $19.99 per month.
Have you been wrongly admonished by your supervisor? Have you been placed on administrative leave? Did you injure your knee going up the stairs at school? We have you covered! If you would like to also receive legal advice and protection in the areas of work-related injuries and employment issues, the monthly retainer is still only $29.99 per month.
Did you get a DUI over the weekend? Did you get in a fight at home where the police were called? Were you arrested as part of a protest? If it happened in Utah, we have the solution for you. Coverage for all of those situations, 24/7 coverage for any issue like that within the State of Utah, is only $34.99 per month.
Contact us today to answer any questions and to start this important legal protection.
Am I eligible for the Jardine Law Offices Protection for Educators Program?
If you are currently a licensed educator or a school district employee in the State of Utah, and you are not presently under investigation or on administrative leave, you are eligible to enroll in the JLO Protection for Educators Program (“PEP”). An “educator” is defined as anyone employed by the school district, who has passed a background check, and regularly comes into contact with students: this includes teachers, teacher’s aides, administrators, coaches, janitors, playground attendants, substitute teachers, kitchen staff, etc.
Be aware that enrolling in the PEP will only protect you from the day you enroll going forward. Stated differently, if you were concerned about something that happened last week and decided you might need an attorney to help you, you are too late. PEP will not cover you for past actions, it will only cover you for future actions.
In the example above, JLO attorneys would still be willing and able to help you, but you will be required to pay a minimum of $2,500 to put JLO on retainer. If charges were later filed against you, you would then be responsible for potentially tens of thousands of additional dollars in attorney’s fees.
Given the current chaotic social environment, the prudent professional will enroll in PEP at the cost of a daily soda from a vending machine, rather than potentially paying out tens of thousands of dollars on a future claim.
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By retaining JLO, when the need arises, you can bypass all the red tape, and simply pick up the phone and talk to your attorney! Your attorney will begin protecting you immediately, and won’t stop until the fight is over. Your protection is specific to you, your needs, and the services you have selected.
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