KEN KIRSCHENBAUM, ESQ
ALARM - SECURITY INDUSTRY LEGAL EMAIL NEWSLETTER / THE ALARM EXCHANGE
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Camera signage / Auto renewal
February 13, 2019
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Auto renewal
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Ken,

             Why in your contracts you don’t have it where on non-residential Contracts for monitoring it does not have auto renew for? If it did it would Make it easier for us not having to visit customer to get a new contract.
             This particularly if its corporate and we all know what a hassle it is to get It resign.  FYI we’re in Illinois, which also makes it hard enough to do business with all of the paperwork. 
ANON
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Response
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             I’m happy to report that all of the Standard Form Agreements have a month to month automatic renewal provision.  There are some states that have automatic renewal provisions that permit longer than month to month without specific notice requirements and in those states we will modify the automatic renewal provision upon request.  Illinois is not such a state and Illinois does require a written notice.  I would therefore not recommend using any renewal other than month to month on the hunch that you’re not going to comply with the notice requirement.  The contract will continue to renew month to month.  Here is the Illinois statute.  You can check your state here:  http://www.kirschenbaumesq.com/page/alarm-law-issues
            Sec. 10. Automatic renewal; requirements.(a) Any person, firm, partnership, association, or corporation that sells or offers to sell any products or services to a consumer pursuant to a contract, where such contract automatically renews unless the consumer cancels the contract, shall disclose the automatic renewal clause clearly and conspicuously in the contract, including the cancellation procedure. If a contract is subject to automatic renewal, the clause providing for automatic renewal must appear in the contract in a clear and conspicuous manner. 
(b) Any person, firm, partnership, association, or corporation that sells or offers to sell any products or services to a consumer pursuant to a contract, where such contract term is a specified term of 12 months or more, and where such contract automatically renews for a specified term of more than one month unless the consumer cancels the contract, shall notify the consumer in writing of the automatic renewal. Written notice shall be provided to the consumer no less than 30 days and no more than 60 days before the cancellation deadline pursuant to the automatic renewal clause. Such written notice shall disclose clearly and conspicuously: 
(i) that unless the consumer cancels the contract it will automatically renew; and 
(ii) where the consumer can obtain details of the automatic renewal provision and cancellation procedure (for example, by contacting the business at a specified telephone number or address or by referring to the contract). 

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Camera signage
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Ken
            We have customers across many types of environments, retail, education, banking, manufacturing, C-store and healthcare to name a few. We have a local church that is concerned over the legal exposure of having exterior cameras on the building and that they may create a perception that the cameras are “monitored” and inviting litigation. In my experience, cameras (that are working) and in strategic locations have done more to strengthen the customer’s position in a liability case than create the exposure for a claim such as “I thought I was safe because I thought the cameras we monitored and they weren’t”……
            We would guide a client to consider signage that says “security cameras in use” versus “monitored”. Are there any cases that speak to this topic for or against?  Is there a best practice to consider beyond what I have mentioned?
            Thank you again!
David
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Response
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            Signs are likely not required.  If you do recommend or provide signs be certain that the signs do not create any sense of security to those likely to be on the premises, unless the sense of security is justified.  In almost all cases it won’t be.
            Cameras are often an after the fact tool since they are not monitored for immediate action.  Of course those that are will function like an alarm signal and cause some dispatch and response.  The sign should create an accurate, not false, sense of security.  
‚Äč            The Standard Form Contracts, the All in One agreements, include cameras.  They do not require signs.
            When premises are under 24/7 live feed professionally monitored the sign can say so.  For example, a landlord may want tenants to feel safe in the elevator or in the laundry room.  If cameras are not monitored and simply stored in a local or cloud DVR and NVR it’s not going to offer much in the way of immediate protection or safety.  Your guess on signage wording is as good as mine.  Maybe you shouldn’t sell signs and you definitely shouldn't be giving legal advice.
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Ken Kirschenbaum,Esq
Kirschenbaum & Kirschenbaum PC
Attorneys at Law
200 Garden City Plaza
Garden City, NY 11530
516 747 6700 x 301
ken@kirschenbaumesq.com
516 747 6700
www.KirschenbaumEsq.com