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Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Does the University provide legal assistance for personal matters for faculty, staff and students?
A. No, The University is our client, and therefore, we cannot provide legal advice or representation to faculty, staff or students regarding personal legal issues or matters.  For faculty and staff, the Bar Association of Lackawanna County and North Penn Legal Services offer lawyer referral services that provide for an initital consultation and referrals to local attorneys.  Students should contact The University of Scranton's Student Affairs office.
Q.  Who can provide legal advice for the University?
A.  The General Counsel and the Associate General Counsel serve as legal counsel for the University and represent the University as a corporate entity in legal matters.  All matters requiring legal advice and/or legal action (including, for example, contracts and agreements, lawsuits, subpoenas, correspondence raising legal claims, issues of government regulatory compliance, taxation, and real estate) must be referred to the Office of the General Counsel.  The General Counsel is responsible for coordination of all legal services for the University, and must approve in advance any engagement of outside counsel to advise or represent the University.
Q.  I have a personal document that requires notarization.  May I come to your office during normal working hours to have it notarized?
A.  Yes, our legal assistant is a Notary Public.  She is available to notarize University documents as well as personal documents of University faculty, staff and students at no additional charge. Please call extension 6213 to schedule an appointment to have your document notarized.  Be sure to bring a state or government issued I.D. with you and do not sign the document until in the presence of the Notary.
Q.  I teach a course that includes field work off campus.  Often students are asked to sign  a release before participating in off campus activities like this.  Should the Office of the General Counsel review this release?
A.  Yes, if students are required to particiapte in field trips or other activities off campus, the Office of the General Counsel should be contacted and any forms provided by the off campus site submitted to the Office of the General Counsel for review.
Q.  I have a contract that needs to be reviewed by the Office of General Counsel.  Do you have a check list or form that I can complete prior to sending the contract to your office?
A.  Yes, our office has a contract review request form that should be completed prior to sending to our office.  Additionally, the contract review check list should be reviewed and any changes and/or additions to the contract should be made before sending to our office.  Making sure the contract has the information that you agreed to or making any edits to the contract prior to sending to our office could provide a quicker turn around time.  Generally, turnaround time is 4 weeks.
Q.  I have a contract that has been reviewed by the Office of the General Counsel.  Who has the authority to sign the contract on behalf of the University?
A.  Contracting authority, according to the University's Contracting Policy, is given by the President to each of the Vice Presidents of the University.  The Vice Presidents in turn delgate signing authority to those individuals  wilthin their division they deem appropriate. If you do not have signing authority you cannot sign contracts on behalf of the Univeristy.  If you are not sure if you have signing authority contact our office or your divisional vice president to verify.  If you do not have signing authority and your divisional vice president would like to delegate that authority to you, ask your divisional vice president to contact our office to prepare the appropriate paperwork.
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