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Last updated: December 13, 2012
Thanks for visiting our web site at www.brucematter.com (“Site”).
This document is an agreement (“Agreement”) that describes the legal consequences of your use of the Site, and is subject to our Disclaimer. You should print a copy of our Disclaimer and this Agreement for your records.
In this Agreement “you” or “your” or “user” refer to the person using the Site. All references to “Firm” shall mean Law Offices of Bruce E. Matter, P.C., a Maryland professional corporation whose principal place of business is North Potomac, Maryland, United States of America. By using the Site you agree to be legally bound by the provisions of this Agreement. This Agreement is premised on the following recitals which form a material part of the Agreement.
A. You are not seeking to find on this Site professional advice about your personal legal situation. You merely have an interest in legal information that may be relevant to your interests.
B. This Site only offers legal information that may be of interest to you. The information offered on this Site is not tailored to your specific legal situation and may not be appropriate for you. You are encouraged to obtain advice from a competent attorney before making any decisions based on information available on this Site. If you decide to act upon any information offered on this Site, you will take sole responsibility for your actions.
C. All or portions of this Site may be considered attorney advertising in some jurisdictions and not merely a resource for legal information.
You acknowledge the above is an accurate statement, and agree to the following:
1. Scope of the Agreement
1.1. Firm may have relationships with other business entities and affiliated companies (each referred to as a “Related Firm”) and with other non-Firm service providers in connection with the Site (each referred to as a “Service Provider”). At times the Site may be hosted and operated, in whole or in part, by a Related Firm or Service Provider subject to Firm’s oversight and control.
1.2. You acknowledge that Firm has no responsibility for the accuracy or availability of information provided by web sites to which you may navigate via a link on the Site (“Linked Sites”). Links to Linked Sites are provided as a convenience to you, and do not constitute an endorsement by or association with Firm of such sites or the content, products, advertising or other materials presented on Linked Sites. Firm does not author, edit, or monitor any Linked Sites. Firm is not responsible or liable, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with your use of or reliance on any content, goods or services available on Linked Sites.
1.5. If any Other Terms conflict with the Basic Terms, the Other Terms will override the Basic Terms, but only to the extent of the conflicting terms.
1.6. At times, the Firm may amend the Basic Terms or Other Terms or both. The amended provisions will become part of this Agreement once they are posted to the Site. Your use of the Site after the amended provisions are posted to the Site means that you have accepted the Agreement as amended by the new provisions.
1.7. You shall not have any right to amend this Agreement by sending the Firm email or other documents purporting to amend this Agreement. The Firm’s employees and other representatives are not authorized to modify this Agreement orally or by email or any other form of communication. Documents exchanged between you and the Firm shall not be deemed to supersede or amend this Agreement unless the document expressly references this Agreement, is printed on paper, and manually signed by you and the Firm’s authorized representative (“Amendment”). The scope of any Amendment will be limited to the provisions of this Agreement expressly addressed in the Amendment, and all other provisions of this Agreement will remain in effect. Nothing in this provision will limit the Firm’s ability to amend this Agreement by posting new provisions to the Site as and when the Firm deems it appropriate.
1.8. You shall use the Site only for its intended purposes, consistent with this Agreement, including all Basic Terms and all applicable Other Terms, and consistent with all laws that apply to your use of the Site.
2. Unauthorized Users
2.1. You are not authorized to use the Site under any one or more of the following:
2.1.1. If you are not old enough to enter into, or are otherwise incapable of forming, a legally binding contract under the law specified in this Agreement. If you are under the age of 18 years old, this Site is not intended for your use.
2.1.2. If you are prohibited from using the Site by the laws of the United States, your residency, or the location where you are physically present when you are attempting to or are actually using the Site.
2.1.3. If you are using any form of code, script, routine, bot, web spider, indexers, robots, crawlers, harvesters, or any other similar program to automatically access the Site except for the sole purpose of gathering and updating indexing information for use in a reputable and legitimate web-based search engine such as Google, Yahoo and the like.
2.2. If you use the Site when you are not authorized to do so you will be deemed an unauthorized user (“Unauthorized User”).
2.3. Users who begin using the Site in an authorized manner and later violate this Agreement will be deemed to have voluntarily forfeited or otherwise waived, to the extent permitted by law, all user benefits of this Agreement, and will be deemed an Unauthorized User upon.
2.4. The Firm expressly reserves the right to pursue Unauthorized Users as trespassers and/or as persons and/or entities that are intentionally interfering with Firm’s contractual and business relations with its authorized users including its Service Providers, Site sponsors and Site advertisers and/or as persons who are wrongfully converting or otherwise stealing the Firm’s business assets and services. The Firm reserves the right to pursue any and all legal, equitable, administrative and other remedies and recourses against all Unauthorized Users of the Site, including, all self-help remedies and, where applicable, criminal prosecutions (including prosecutions under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986 and the National Information Infrastructure Protection Act and other applicable United States, state laws, and/or foreign laws), to block any Unauthorized User’s access to the Site, protect the Firm’s rights, and to recover all damages. Unless otherwise imposed by law, neither the Firm nor any of its Related Companies, Service Providers, Site sponsors or Site advertisers, will have any obligation to any Unauthorized User under this Agreement.
3. User Registration
3.1. Although you are not required to become a registered user to view the Site, you will be required to register on the Site to use or benefit from certain enhanced Site functions or features. To create your registered user account you may need to provide information like your name, address, telephone number, email address and/or other information that identifies you.
3.2. All registration information that you may provide on the Site must be truthful, accurate and current.
3.3. Your registered user account shall not be in good standing if you fail to: (i) provide truthful, accurate and current information when creating your registered user account; (ii) promptly update your registered user account with any changes; (iii) timely pay for all products that the Firm may offer for sale via the Site; (iv) otherwise comply with all other provisions of this Agreement.
3.4. Should the Firm determine in its sole discretion that you have failed to comply with all the provisions of this Agreement, the Firm may deactivate your registered user account without prior notice to you, treat you as an Unauthorized User, and refuse to provide you with any Site benefits.
4. Site and Site Components
4.1. The Site shall include one or more or all of the following (all jointly referred to as “Site Components”):
4.1.1. “Content” which is information in the form of text, audio and video that may be provided by the Firm, any Related Firm, Service Providers, Site sponsors, Site advertisers, accredited or licensed professionals, user testimonials, posts and comments made to the Site blog or forum features. Content should only be considered as general information about the particular topic addressed. You should never consider any Content to be customized advice tailored to meet your specific legal situation.
4.1.2. “Software Services” which are Site features and functions that facilitate your use of the Site without further assistance from the Firm, its employees or contractors, for example: (i) features that allow you to create a registered user account on the Site; (ii) blogs and forums allowing you to post comments; and (iii) a shopping cart allowing you to purchase Products.
4.1.3. “Customer Services” which are services offered by the Firm or a Related Firm or Firm contractor to answer your questions about the Site or any Site Component.
4.1.4. “Products” which are the publications and other items offered for sale via the Site. Some Products are produced by the Firm (“Firm Products”) and some may be produced by others (“Other Products”) and distributed by the Firm.
5. Customer Services
5.1. The Firm may, but shall not be obligated, to provide free Customer Services. If the Firm decides to offer enhanced Customer Services for a fee, the conditions for such enhanced Customer Services shall be set forth in an Amendment or otherwise posted on the Site. All reference to Customer Services in this document shall refer to free Customer Services. All Customer Services shall be subject to the following conditions and if you object to any of these conditions you should not use any Customer Services:
5.2. To be eligible to receive Customer Services, you must be a registered user of the Site and your registered user account must be in good standing.
5.3. The Firm’s Customer Services are offered solely to help you use the Site, Software Services, and order and use Products in accordance with the Product’s intended purpose and instructions for use. Although Customer Services representatives may offer general insights and explanations about legal issues, you shall not consider any communications coming from Firm’s Customer Services representatives as professional legal advice tailored to your specific situation.
5.4. You understand that the Firm’s Customer Services representatives are not licensed attorneys or other legal professionals. Regardless of the form of any communications coming from the Firm’s Customer Services representative, and even if such communication appears to you in the form of legal advice tailored to your specific situation, you shall not accept and act upon such communications as professional legal advice and will always consult with one of the Firm’s attorneys or another attorney of your choosing before taking any course of action based on information you obtain from the Site or any of the Firm’s Customer Services representatives.
5.5. If you desire Customer Services in connection with any Product, then you must have purchased the Product you are inquiring about through the Site and have an established registered user account in good standing on the Site. You shall not be entitled to any Customer Services in connection with Products you acquire from websites or sources other than the Firm. If your Site registered user account is not in good standing then the Firm may refuse to provide you Customer Services until your account is in good standing.
5.6. The Firm’s Customer Service representatives are not authorized (and may refuse) to answer questions about how to use any Product in a manner inconsistent with the Product’s intended use or about using any Product in combination with any other products. For example, the Firm’s Customer Services representatives are not authorized to answer and may refuse to answer questions about modifying a form agreement, applicability or duration of any statute of limitations, or how a particular negotiating tactic may affect any legal situation you are facing.
5.7. The Firm’s Customer Services representatives may not be able to answer all of your questions but will offer information to the best of their ability. When you have questions about Other Products, the Firm’s Customer Services representatives may need to refer you to the Other Product’s original producer.
5.8. Customer Services may be offered via regular U.S. mail, email, facsimile, telephone, Skype, and other communication systems at the Firm’s sole discretion. Customer Services may also be offered in the form of Frequently Asked Questions posted on the Site.
5.9. Firm shall consider attempts to obtain Customer Services under false pretenses to be a serious matter implicating a theft of services warranting possible criminal prosecution.
5.10. Nothing in this Agreement shall obligate the Firm or any Customer Services representative to provide any emergency services or referrals to you or any other person who may attempt to contact or actually contact the Firm’s Customer Services seeking emergency services for any reason.
5.11. Customer Services are not intended to provide you with professional legal advice. If the Firm determines in the Firm’s sole discretion that you are abusing the Firm’s Customer Services by contacting the Firm’s Customer Services representatives: (i) seeking personal counseling or specific legal advice; (ii) making duplicitous inquiries that are outside the scope of the Firm’s Customer Services or that have been previously handled; (iii) making repeated complaints about the Site, Site Components, advertisements or other Content that have been previously addressed in accordance with the Firm’s policies or usual and customary practices; or (iv) while appearing to be in an impaired state of mind or verbally abusive, then the Firm may refuse to respond to your inquiry, terminate your registered user account on the Site, and ignore further communications from you.
5.12. Notwithstanding anything expressed or implied to the contrary in this Agreement, the Firm reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to refuse to offer and may refuse to continue providing Customer Services to anyone at any time for any or no reason as the Firm’s Customer Services representative deems appropriate, and neither the Firm nor its Customer Services representative shall be obligated to provide you or anyone else with such reason.
5.13. In consideration of the Firm rendering Customer Services to you at no charge, you hereby: (i) acknowledge that you fully understand that the Firm’s Customer Services are not intended to perform, and that such Customer Services do not in fact constitute, any form of professional legal services or advice; (ii) waive, for yourself and your heirs and assigns, all claims and causes of action against the Firm, its Customer Services representatives, each Related Firm, Service Provider, and their respective shareholders, principals, members, directors, officers, employees, contractors, suppliers, licensors, and agents (jointly referred to as “Released Parties”) arising from or related to the Firm’s delivery or failure to deliver to you any Customer Services; and (iii) agree not to assert or initiate any court or administrative proceedings based on any claim that any one or more of the Released Parties provided or failed to provide prompt or proper legal or other services or advice in connection with the Site or otherwise.
6. Products and Orders
6.1. The Firm may from time to time offer Products for sale via the Site. The Firm reserves the right to add and remove Products from its Site as and when the Firm deems it appropriate without prior notice to you. If you have a standing order to purchase any Product that the Firm decides to remove from the Site, your order shall be canceled effective as of the day the Product is removed from the Site without prior notice to you.
6.2. Any Product recommendations on the Site are based on the Firm’s experience and general assessment of the effectiveness of the recommended Products over the course of some period of time, or based on the Firm’s evaluation and good faith belief that the recommended Product will be more likely than not to produce a positive result when properly used. The Firm’s recommendations are not based on your specific legal situation. Choosing a Firm recommended Product is your sole and personal decision.
6.3. Your decision to purchase and use any Product shall be your sole and independent self-help decision. You shall be solely responsible for using the Product for the purpose it was produced. You assume all risks associated with your independent use of the Product.
6.4. The Firm may offer a number of Products in the form of legal forms, articles, books and videos for free on the Site. Although these Products may be downloaded for free, they are still protected by the Firm’s copyrights all of which rights are reserved by the Firm.
6.5. All Products you order via the Site must be used in a lawful manner, including all Products containing materials protected by copyright. You shall not copy, reverse engineer, re-distribute, or otherwise exploit any Products in a manner inconsistent with applicable law, including all copyright and other intellectual property laws.
6.6. The Firm may offer from time to time a money back guarantee on one or more or all Products. The terms and conditions of each money back guarantee shall be set forth on the Site in connection with the applicable Product. If there are no special terms and conditions associated with a particular money back guarantee mentioned on the Site, then at a minimum the following terms and conditions shall apply: (i) the Product must be received by Firm no later than thirty (30) days after the date of your purchase transaction; (ii) if the Product is a form, book or other Product delivered in digital form, then you must also affirm under penalty of perjury that you have returned the original digital file and destroyed and copies made from the original digital file; and (iii) if it is a tangible Product then it must be received by the Firm undamaged and in like-new working condition.
6.7. Each purchase order you place via the Site or Customer Services representative shall be subject to the provisions of this Agreement including all collection and confession of judgment provisions. Your submission of a purchase order via the Site or via an email, facsimile or other electronic communication to the Firm, authorizing a purchase, shall constitute your valid and binding electronic signature. Your oral telephonic authorization shall also constitute your valid and binding signature.
6.8. If you repeatedly order and return Product for a refund at a rate that the Firm determines, in its sole discretion, to be chronic and abusive, the Firm reserves the right, without prior notice to you, to refuse to sell any Product to you and to terminate your registered user account on the Site. Termination of your registered user account on the Site shall not result in the Firm’s forfeiture or waiver of any of the Firm’s rights to enforce this Agreement against you or collect all monies you owe the Firm at the time of such termination.
7. Access to Site, Content and Software Services
7.1. Unless expressly authorized in an Amendment, you will only be able to use the Site and access certain Content and Software Services via the web.
7.2. You will be responsible for your means of accessing the Site via the web, including all equipment and means of obtaining a connection to the web and for the payment of any service fees associated with such access. The Firm shall not be responsible for any malfunctions, errors, crashes or other adverse events that may occur from your means of accessing the web.
8. User Postings and Other Obligations
8.1. The Site may allow you to upload, post, publish, transmit, reproduce, distribute information, data and other material such as text, software, audio, photographs, video and other graphics and images (“User Postings”) for display on the Site and to transmit, send, receive and otherwise share User Postings with other Site users through a Site “blog” or “forum” or other means of exchanging User Postings via Site Software Services.
8.2. Although the Firm understands that you may at times use certain Software Services to comment upon commercial products or services, including a Firm or Related Firm product or service, generally, Software Services are not intended to be used for “word-of-mouth” advertising or to otherwise promote or critique commercial products or services. With respect to Software Services, in addition to all other provisions of this Agreement, you understand and agree that:
8.2.1. All User Postings will be deemed to express your opinion on the topic of user discussions. No User Postings shall be attributable to the Firm or any of its Related Companies or Service Providers.
8.2.2. If you have a financial or regulatory interest in, or if you are paid or otherwise compensated directly or indirectly to promote or otherwise comment on, any product or service (“Commercial or Regulatory Interest”), you must disclose in each of your User Postings your Commercial or Regulatory Interest, including whether you are paid to promote or compete against the product or service, or whether you are aligned with any governmental or non-profit organization with an interest in regulating the product or service.
8.3. You represent and warrant that, while using the Site, you shall not:
8.3.1. Upload, publish, transmit, reproduce, or distribute through the Site any User Postings, code or other material that violates any provision of this Agreement.
8.3.2. Restrict or inhibit any other Site user from using and enjoying the Site.
8.3.3. Act in a manner, or encourage conduct, that would constitute a criminal offense or give rise to civil liability.
8.3.4. Impersonate another or misrepresent your affiliation with any other person or entity.
8.3.5. Without the express prior written consent of the Firm, which the Firm may withhold in its sole discretion, exploit the Site or any Site Component, including any Product or other material obtained through the Site, for your own commercial purposes, including, without limitation, creating or maintaining links from your website or any other website, displaying the Site or any page or portion of the Site in frames or other similar means on your website or any other website, or otherwise printing for publication in paper form the Site or any portion of the Site, or any Product or portion of a Product.
8.3.6. Include in any of your User Postings any endorsements, sponsored content, or other promotional or competitive materials or links to other web sites or resources that display, advertise, promote or otherwise publicize any product or service including any competitive product or service without the express prior written consent of the Firm, which the Firm may withhold in its sole discretion.
8.3.7. Engage in spamming or flooding the Site.
8.3.8. Use the Site for the purpose of spamming or flooding any other web site, internet service, person or entity.
8.3.9. Attempt to gain unauthorized access to the Site, Software Services or any other computer systems through the Site.
8.4. You represent and warrant to the Firm that all your User Postings shall:
8.4.1. Be original to you and that no other party has any rights in or to the material in your User Postings.
8.4.2. Be free of any unlawful, threatening, harassing, profane, tortious, defamatory, vulgar, obscene, libelous, deceptive, fraudulent, hateful, explicit or graphic descriptions or accounts of sexual acts (including but not limited to sexual language of a violent or threatening nature whether or not directed at another individual or group of individuals).
8.4.3. Not invade another’s privacy or otherwise disclose another’s private information.
8.4.4. Not contain a virus or other code or component that is or is intended to be harmful to the Site or another’s computer or software.
8.4.5. Not contain any advertising of any kind (unless otherwise expressly authorized in Other Terms applicable to your use), or false or misleading indications of origin or statements of fact.
8.5. You shall be solely responsible for your User Postings. You shall look solely to the original source of the User Postings when seeking any form of legal or other remedy or relief based upon or arising from another’s User Postings.
8.6. The Firm has no obligation to monitor, pre-screen, review, flag, filter, modify, refuse or remove any User Postings, and assumes no such obligation.
8.7. The Firm shall have the right to disclose any information it deems necessary or appropriate, including information about you, your User Postings, and your other use of the Site, to: (i) satisfy any law, regulation or other governmental request; (ii) operate the Site properly; and (iii) to protect the Firm’s interests or the interests of Site users. The Firm reserves the right to monitor the Site and all User Postings and to refuse to post and to remove any User Postings or other information or materials, in whole or in part, that, in Firm’s sole discretion, are unacceptable, undesirable, inappropriate or in violation of any provision of this Agreement.
8.8. Although the Firm has taken steps to secure the Site in a manner consistent with the Firm’s usual and customary security measures, and has reserved certain rights to monitor your activity on the Site and to remove materials from the Site, you understand that due to the nature of the Site and the open exchange of ideas and information exchanged on blogs and similar Site features, you may be exposed to comments and materials that you find to be primarily commercial in nature and/or otherwise offensive to you. You acknowledge that any such event shall not constitute a breach of any Firm obligation under this Agreement.
9. License to Firm – User Postings
9.1. You hereby grant to the Firm a royalty-free, unrestricted, worldwide, perpetual, irrevocable, non-exclusive and fully sub-licensable right and license to (a) use, reproduce, modify, edit, transform, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform and display all User Postings (in whole or part) that you submit to or through the Site, and/or (b) incorporate and exploit the same in other works in any form, media, or technology now known or later developed (“User Postings License”). You also hereby waive any “moral rights” you may have in such User Postings. You understand that the Firm may distribute or otherwise exploit your User Postings on the Site and through its Related Companies and Service Providers, and may alter the format of your User Postings to facilitate the transmission or other distribution of your User Postings over both private and public computer networks, including the web, and other electronic means of distribution.
9.2. You represent and warrant to the Firm that you have the legal right and authority to grant to the Firm the rights granted in the User Postings License. You agree to defend, indemnify and hold the Released Parties harmless from any and all claims, liabilities, costs and expenses, including reasonable attorneys’ fees, arising in any way from your use of the Site or your placement or transmission of User Postings on or through the Site.
9.3. You acknowledge that you are solely responsible for managing and protecting your rights in your User Postings. The Firm will have no obligation to manage or protect your rights in or to your User Postings, including no obligation to protect your copyrights or trademarks or any other form of intellectual property you may own in your User Postings or any other materials.
10.1. Upon creating a Site registered user account you may be issued a security code such as a combination of a user identification code and password that will allow you to obtain access to your Site registered user account or registration information and/or other special functions and features of the Site. You shall be solely responsible for maintaining the secrecy of your security code. You shall be solely responsible for all account transactions on the Site that are associated with your security code. If you believe the secrecy of your security code has been compromised, you should promptly contact the Firm immediately via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
10.3. By uploading, posting, publishing, transmitting, reproducing, distributing or otherwise making User Postings available on the Site, you acknowledge that the Firm will have no obligation to treat any User Postings as your confidential or proprietary information. To the extent that any applicable law might impose some obligation on the Firm or anyone else associated with the Site, you hereby waive any and all rights you may have under such laws.
10.4. The Site may contain Firm confidential information. If any Firm confidential information is disclosed to you via the Site, you will keep the Firm’s confidential information secret and shall not disclose it to others without the Firm’s prior written consent.
11. Intellectual Property Rights
11.1. As between you and the Firm, the Firm is the owner and/or authorized user of any trademark and/or service mark appearing on the Site, and is the copyright owner or licensee of the Content and/or information on the Site, including all User Postings, advertisements and sponsorship materials. Except as otherwise provided herein, use of the Site does not grant to you a license to use the Site, any Content, Site Component, or other features or materials on the Site. You may not use the Site for any commercial purposes, except as expressly approved by the Firm in an Amendment. You may not download or save a copy of any of the Content or Site screen displays for any purpose except you may, with respect to certain Site pages or information of interest to you, print one (1) copy or save an electronic copy of such Site page(s) to your personal computer solely for your personal use or records. You shall not remove or alter any intellectual property notices such as copyright and trademark notices from the Site or any Site materials you download or save. You shall not print or save an electronic copy of the entire Site, or any material portion of the Site, for any purpose without the Firm’s prior written consent. If you make any other use of the Site, except as expressly authorized by this Agreement, you may violate copyright and other laws of the United States or other countries, as well as applicable state laws, and may be subject to civil liability or criminal prosecution as an Unauthorized User.
11.2. The Firm does not grant to you any license or other authorization to use any Firm or Related Firm trademarks, service marks, copyrighted material, or any other intellectual property, used in or by the Site. You shall not use any form of mark in connection with any goods or services you may offer that is likely to cause confusion about the ownership of any mark or goods owned by the Firm, any Related Firm, Service Provider, Site sponsor or Site advertiser, without the respective owner’s express prior written consent, which consent may be refused for any reason.
11.3. The Firm may from time to time make software available for downloading via the Site (“Software”). All Software will be made available solely for installation on your computer or mobile device and subject to a non-exclusive, personal, worldwide, royalty-free, non-assignable and non-transferrable license, and such other terms and conditions as may be specified in Other Terms applicable to the Software. By downloading a copy of any Software, you shall not be acquiring any ownership interest in the Software or in any intellectual property rights in or to the Software, and thus you shall not have any right to transfer, assign or otherwise encumber the Software. You understand that some Software, once installed on your computer or mobile device, may automatically access the web to obtain and install Software updates which may include bug fixes, new or improved features and functions, or otherwise promote the Software and/or the Site.
11.4. You agree that any ideas, concepts, methods, systems, designs, plans, techniques or other similar materials that you submit or otherwise communicate to the Firm, any Related Firm or Service Provider via the Site or any Customer Services session, may be used by the Firm and its Related Companies in any manner without any notice, credit or other consideration to you.
12.1. The Firm may sell or otherwise provide advertising space on the Site from time to time. You agree to allow the Firm to work with advertisers or their agents to design specific advertisements or means of displaying specific advertisements to you based on your use of the Site and personal information you provide through the Site.
12.2. The Firm reserves the right to stop, start or modify any advertising on the Site, as and when and how it deems appropriate, in its sole discretion, and without advance notice to you. Any and all advertising revenues and other consideration received from Site advertisers and Site sponsors shall belong solely and exclusively to the Firm.
13.1. DO NOT RELY UPON THE INFORMATION ON THE SITE, INCLUDING ANY SITE COMPONENT, AS A SUBSTITUTE FOR ADVICE FROM YOUR PERSONAL LICENSED ATTORNEY OR OTHER LEGAL PROFESSIONAL. INFORMATION AND STATEMENTS REGARDING LEGAL ISSUES AND SITUATION THAT MAY APPEAR ON THE SITE OR IN USER POSTINGS HAVE NOT BEEN EVALUATED BY A COMPETENT ATTORNEY UNLESS SPECIFICALLY SO STATED ON THIS SITE. YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR COMPLYING WITH ALL LAWS IN YOUR JURISDICTION, AND WILL NOT USE THE SITE TO PURCHASE OR ORDER ANYTHING THAT WILL VIOLATE ANY LAW IN YOUR JURISDICTION.
13.2. THE FIRM DISCLAIMS ALL RESPONSIBILITY AND LIABILITY FOR PRODUCT DEFECTS OR FAILURES CAUSED BY NORMAL WEAR AND TEAR, MISUSE, OVERUSE, ABUSE, MODIFICATION, NON-COMPLIANCE WITH INSTRUCTION, AND FAILURE TO PROPERLY INSPECT AND MAINTAIN PRODUCTS.
14. Assumption of Risk
14.1. YOU ACKNOWLEDGE THAT THERE ARE CERTAIN RISKS ASSOCIATED WITH YOUR USE OF THE SITE, SITE COMPONENTS AND SOFTWARE, INCLUDING, FOR EXAMPLE: THE RISK OF THE SITE CRASHING AND BECOMING UNAVAILABLE; HACKERS AND OTHER CAUSES OF A SECURITY BREACH THAT MAY EXPOSE YOUR ACCESS CODE AND OTHER PERSONAL INFORMATION; INACCURATE INFORMATION BEING POSTED TO THE SITE, WHETHER IN USER POSTINGS OR OTHERWISE; AND SIMILAR RISKS. IN CONSIDERATION OF THE FIRM PROVIDING THE SITE, AND OTHERWISE IN CONSIDERATION OF THIS AGREEMENT, YOU HEREBY EXPRESSLY ASSUME ALL RISKS ASSOCIATED WITH YOUR USE OF THE SITE.
14.2. YOU FURTHER ACKNOWLEDGE THAT THERE ARE CERTAIN RISKS ASSOCIATED WITH YOUR USE OF ANY PRODUCTS, INCLUDING FIRM PRODUCTS AND OTHER PRODUCTS. YOUR USE OF ANY PRODUCTS OBTAINED VIA THE SITE SHALL BE BASED SOLELY ON YOUR OWN ASSESSMENT OF WHETHER THE PRODUCTS ARE SUITABLE TO YOUR PERSONAL NEEDS, REGARDLESS OF WHETHER YOU RECEIVED ANY REFERRALS, RECOMMENDATIONS, SUGGESTIONS OR OTHER INFORMATION FROM THE SITE, SOFTWARE SERVICES OR CUSTOMER SERVICES OFFERED ON OR THROUGH THE SITE. YOUR USE OF ALL SITE COMPONENTS, INCLUDING ALL PRODUCTS, SHALL BE AT YOUR OWN RISK, AND YOU SHALL BE SOLELY RESPONSIBLE FOR ASSESSING ALL SUCH RISKS PRIOR TO YOUR PURCHASE AND USE.
15. Exclusion of Warranties
15.1. SOME JURISDICTIONS DO NOT ALLOW THE LIMITATION OR EXCLUSION OF WARRANTIES SO THE FOLLOWING LIMITATIONS MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU.
15.2. THE SITE, ALL SITE COMPONENTS, AND SOFTWARE, INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, ALL SITE FUNCTIONS, FEATURES AND OTHER MATERIALS THEREON, ARE PROVIDED “AS IS” AND “AS AVAILABLE” AND WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EITHER EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, ANY WARRANTIES ON: THE ACCURACY, RELIABILITY, USEFULNESS, OR CONTENT, SITE COMPONENTS, AND SOFTWARE; DATA; DATA PROCESSING SERVICES; UNINTERRUPTED ACCESS TO THE SITE; SITE AVAILABILITY; AND ALL WARRANTIES OF TITLE, NON-INFRINGEMENT, MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. THE FIRM DOES NOT WARRANT THAT THE SITE, SOFTWARE, ANY SITE COMPONENTS, OR ANY SITE FUNCTIONS OR FEATURES WILL BE TIMELY, SECURE, UNINTERRUPTED OR ERROR FREE, OR THAT DEFECTS WILL BE CORRECTED. THE FIRM MAKES NO WARRANTY THAT THE SITE, ANY SITE COMPONENT, OR SOFTWARE WILL MEET ANY USER REQUIREMENTS. NO ADVICE, RESULTS OR INFORMATION, WHETHER ORAL OR WRITTEN, OBTAINED BY YOU FROM THE FIRM, ANY RELATED FIRM OR SERVICE PROVIDER, OR THROUGH THE SITE ITSELF OR THE FIRM’S CUSTOMER SERVICES, SHALL BE DEEMED TO CREATE ANY WARRANTY NOT EXPRESSLY MADE IN THIS AGREEMENT.
16. Limitation of Liability
16.1. SOME JURISDICTIONS DO NOT ALLOW THE LIMITATION OR EXCLUSION OF LIABILITY FOR INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES SO THE FOLLOWING LIMITATIONS MAY NOT APPLY TO CERTAIN USERS.
16.2. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE FIRM OR ANY RELATED FIRM OR SERVICE PROVIDER, OR ANY OF THEIR RELEASED PARTIES BE LIABLE TO ANY USER FOR ANY INDIRECT, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL, CONSEQUENTIAL, EXEMPLARY OR PUNITIVE DAMAGES ARISING FROM OR DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY RELATED TO THE USE OF, OR THE INABILITY TO USE, THE SITE OR ANY SITE COMPONENT, SOFTWARE, CUSTOMER SERVICES, OR ANY MATERIALS AND FUNCTIONS RELATED THERETO, INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, LOSS OF REVENUE, OR ANTICIPATED PROFITS OR LOST BUSINESS OR LOST SALES. IN NO EVENT SHALL ANY RELEASED PARTIES BE LIABLE FOR OR IN CONNECTION WITH ANY USER POSTINGS, TRANSMITTED, EXCHANGED OR RECEIVED BY OR ON BEHALF OF ANY USER OR OTHER PERSON ON OR THROUGH THE SITE, SITE COMPONENT OR SOFTWARE. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE TOTAL CUMULATIVE LIABILITY OF ALL RELEASED PARTIES TO YOU FOR ALL DAMAGES, LOSSES, AND CAUSES OF ACTION (WHETHER IN CONTRACT OR TORT, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, NEGLIGENCE OR OTHERWISE) ARISING FROM YOUR USE OF THE SITE, ANY SITE COMPONENT, CUSTOMER SERVICES, OR SOFTWARE EXCEED, IN THE AGGREGATE, ANY FEE YOU MAY PAY TO THE FIRM TO USE THE SITE OR ANY SITE COMPONENT, CUSTOMER SERVICES, OR SOFTWARE, OR THE PURCHASE PRICE OF ANY PRODUCT RELATED TO YOUR CLAIM.
16.3. IN NO EVENT SHALL ANY RELEASED PARTIES BE LIABLE TO YOU FOR ANYTHING EXPRESSED IN ANY SITE SPONSORSHIP OR ADVERTISING MATERIALS, WHETHER DISTRIBUTED TO YOU VIA THE SITE OR OTHERWISE.
16.4. IF YOU ARE DISSATISFIED WITH THE SITE, ANY SITE COMPONENT, SOFTWARE, CUSTOMER SERVICES, OR ANY FUNCTION OR FEATURE RELATED TO ANY OF THEM, YOUR SOLE REMEDY IS TO DISCONTINUE USING THE SITE, SITE COMPONENT, SOFTWARE, CUSTOMER SERVICES, OR ALL OF THEM.
16.5. THE ABOVE LIMITATIONS ON LIABILITY WILL APPLY EVEN IF THE FIRM HAS BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF ANY UNIQUE OR SPECIAL DAMAGES.
17. Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”) and Other IP Infringement Claims
The Firm respects the intellectual property rights of others, and requires that you do the same in connection with your use of the Site.
17.1. Take-Down Notice
If you believe that your work has been copied and is being used on or in connection with the Site in a way that constitutes infringement of your copyrights, trademark rights, or other intellectual property rights, please forward the following information to the Firm IP Agent named below:
Your address, telephone number, and e-mail address;
A description of the work or item that you claim has been infringed;
A description of where the alleged infringing material is located on the Site;
Your statement that you have a good faith belief that you have not authorized the disputed use and that it is not otherwise authorized or allowed by law;
An electronic or physical signature of the person authorized to act on behalf of the owner of the rights in question; and
A statement by you, made under penalty of perjury, that the above information in your Notice is accurate and that you are the rights owner or authorized to act on the rights owner’s behalf.
Law Offices of Bruce E. Matter, P.C.
Attn: IP Agent
With respect to copyright infringement claims, to be effective, your notice of claim must comply with the DMCA requirements. You are encouraged to review the requirements (see 17 U.S.C. Sec. 512(c)(3)) before sending your claim.
If material that you have posted to the Site has been taken down due to the Firm’s receipt of a take-down notice, you may file a counter-notification by submitting the following details to the Firm’s Copyright Agent identified above: (a) Identification of the material that has been removed or to which access has been disabled and the location at which the material appeared before it was removed or disabled; (b) a statement, under penalty of perjury, that you have a good faith belief that the material was removed or disabled as a result of mistake or misidentification of the material in question; (c) your name, address and telephone number; (d) a statement that you consent to the jurisdiction of the Federal District Court for judicial district in which your address is located or, if your address is outside of the USA, for any judicial district in which Firm may be found and that you will accept service of process from the person who provided the take down notice; and (e) your physical or electronic signature.
With respect to copyright infringement claims, to be effective, your counter-notice of claim must comply with the detailed requirements set forth in the DMCA. You are encouraged to review the requirements (see 17 U.S.C. Sec. 512(g)(3)) before sending your counter-notice claim.
18.1. Either you or the Firm may terminate your use of the Site in accordance with the following termination provisions.
18.2. You may terminate your use by sending written notice of termination to the Firm at the Firm’s email address specified in this Agreement. If there is an option to notify the Firm of termination of your use via the Site, you may also give the Firm your notice of termination via the Site or as otherwise specified on the Site.
18.3. Firm may terminate your use of the Site without prior notice to you:
18.3.1. If you breach any provision of this Agreement.
18.3.2. If termination is required by applicable law. The Firm may exercise its sole discretion in determining whether it is required by applicable law to terminate your use of the Site, both in view of existing or new law, and whether such law originates from the United States or elsewhere.
18.3.3. If for any reason the Firm elects to cease publishing the Site or any portion of the Site that you happen to use.
18.4. Termination of your use of the Site for any reason shall not release you from your obligations under the Agreement relating to your use of the Site prior to termination. For example, your license to the Firm and your warranties and representations concerning User Postings, the limitations on your use of any Site Component or Software and any other material you may have downloaded or purchased from the Site, the Firm’s exclusion of warranties, limitations on liability, and confidentiality provisions will all remain in full force and effect. If the Firm terminates your use of the Site for any reason, your use of the Site after the effective date of termination will be unauthorized and you will be an Unauthorized User.
19. Applicable Law, Jurisdiction and Venue
19.1. This Agreement and the relationship between you and the Firm shall be governed by the laws of the State of Maryland, without regard to its conflict of law provisions, and any applicable laws of the United States of America. You and the Firm agree that any cause of action that may arise under this Agreement shall be commenced and be heard in the appropriate court in the State of Maryland. By entering into this Agreement, you hereby submit to the personal and exclusive jurisdiction of the state or federal courts located within the State of Maryland. If you commence any action in any jurisdiction other than the State of Maryland, you hereby irrevocably authorize and appoint the Firm, as your agent coupled with an interest, to inform such court that you have voluntarily agreed to remove your action to an appropriate court in the State of Maryland.
19.2. Notwithstanding anything expressed or implied to the contrary, the Firm retains the right to seek injunctive remedies, or other prompt legal or equitable remedies, in any jurisdiction.
19.3. The Firm’s failure to exercise or enforce any right or provision of this Agreement shall not constitute a waiver of such right or provision.
19.4. Regardless of any statute or law to the contrary, any claim or cause of action you may have arising out of or related to use of the Site or this Agreement must be filed within one (1) year after your claim or cause of action arose or it will be forever barred everywhere throughout the world.
19.5. The Firm controls and operates this Site from the Firm offices in the United States of America. The Firm does not represent that materials on the Site are appropriate or available for use in accordance with the law of other locations. If you choose to use this Site from other locations you do so at your own initiative, and are responsible for compliance with all local laws, if and to the extent local laws are applicable.
20. Collection Costs and Confession of Judgment
20.1. If you fail or wrongfully refuse to pay for any Products when due, or wrongfully contest any credit card charges you previously authorized in connection with the purchase of any Products, in addition to all other rights the Firm has under this Agreement and applicable law, the Firm shall have the right to file suit against you in the State of Maryland to collect the full purchase price of the Products, all shipping and handling charges, the Firm’s reasonable attorneys’ fees and other reasonable collection costs, including all court costs, all costs of serving process, and all reasonable investigative costs, plus pre-judgment and post-judgment interest at the highest rate allowed by Maryland law.
20.2. FOR PURPOSES OF THE FIRM’S COLLECTION EFFORTS AUTHORIZED BY THIS AGREEMENT, YOU HEREBY EXPRESSLY APPOINT THE FIRM, BY AND THROUGH THE FIRM’S ATTORNEY OR OTHER AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE, TO APPEAR IN A COURT OF COMPETENT JURISDICTION IN THE STATE OF MARYLAND, ON YOUR BEHALF AND CONFESS JUDGMENT ON THE AMOUNT DUE THE FIRM IN CONNECTION WITH ANY UNPAID BALANCE YOU OWE THE FIRM FOR ANY PRODUCT YOU ORDERED VIA THE SITE OR FIRM’S CUSTOMER SERVICES THAT WAS SHIPPED PURSUANT TO YOUR ORDER, PLUS ALL APPLICABLE INTEREST ON THE AMOUNT PAST DUE AND ALL OTHER COSTS AS AUTHORIZED BY THIS AGREEMENT. YOU HEREBY ACKNOWLEDGE AND VERIFY UNDER OATH THIS CONFESSION OF JUDGMENT STATEMENT AND AUTHORIZATION SET FORTH IN THIS PROVISION, AND FURTHER ACKNOWLEDGE THAT YOUR USE OF THE SITE, CREATION OF A USER ACCOUNT, PLACEMENT OF YOUR ORDER VIA THE SITE OR FIRM’S CUSTOMER SERVICES IS INTENDED TO SERVE AS YOUR ELECTRONIC OR OTHER AUTHORIZED SIGNATURE AND ACCEPTANCE OF THE CONFESSION OF JUDGMENT AUTHORIZED IN THIS PROVISION.
21. Additional Provisions
21.1. You authorize the Firm to send you notices via email, regular mail or via postings to the Site.
21.2. If any court authorized to make legally binding decisions with respect to this Agreement determines that any provision of this Agreement is unenforceable, then the parties agree to amend, or to allow the court to amend, the unenforceable provision to the extent necessary to make it enforceable provided that it is still generally consistent with the intent of the original language; otherwise, the provision will be severed from this Agreement, and all other provisions of this Agreement will remain enforceable.
21.3. In addition to the benefits this Agreement provides directly to you and the Firm, both you and the Firm intend to bestow the status of third party beneficiary upon all Released Parties. Each third party beneficiary shall have the right to enforce against you any provision of this Agreement that runs to the third party beneficiary’s benefit.
21.4. You agree that the controlling version of this Agreement is this English language version regardless of how this Agreement may be translated into other languages. You shall assume all risk of errors in any machine generated translation of this Agreement.
21.5. The Firm may sell, assign, or otherwise transfer this Agreement in whole or in part and may delegate the performance of any and all of its obligations under this Agreement without your consent or prior notice to you.