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FOUNDERS STORY – THE BIRTH OF QUICKLAW

This is to draw back the curtains and show our customers our journey as a legal tech company, from inception till date.

WHO ARE WE?

Quicklaw Limited is an online legal platform aiming to position itself as Nigeria’s leading online legal support company. You can think of us as a legal assistant that creates innovative, cost-effective and time-efficient legal services. We achieve this through a pool of experts who ensure that all your legal issues are handled professionally and in your best interest. 

WHAT WE OFFER

We offer a diverse range of legal services for matters ranging from consultation on starting a business to property management and personal injury matters. 

Our platform effectively combines access to legal services, legal agreements and free legal information. We prioritize ease of access and do this by utilizing our 24-hour chat line, where you can make inquiries and even receive free legal advice. 

Our services ;

  • Start a Business
  • Property Matters
  • Personal Injury
  • Protect your Ideas
  • Plan your Estate
  • Commercial Transactions
  • Employment
  • Others (letter writing, drafting and reviewing etc)

HOW WE STARTED

The idea for Quicklaw was formulated during my time in the Nigerian Law School. From discussions with members of my  immediate community, I was able to identify that there was some difficulty experienced in securing and trusting in the services of a lawyer at an affordable rate. 

It soon became apparent that this was a challenge faced by a great deal of people as I interacted with a wider group consisting of different socio economic backgrounds. 

Quicklaw’s primary intention is to bridge the gap between individuals/businesses and legal services by providing the access. The three key principles that underpin our product are – affordability, accessibility, and speed. 

We liken Quicklaw to a marketplace where qualified legal practitioners and individuals can meet to exchange value.

Secondly, we effectively connect the end user to a host of qualified lawyers to render the service. Also, we combine the availability of free legal information, the ability to purchase carefully vetted agreements and access to a wide range of legal services via our website.

A range of services that cater to all stages of a business cycle are duly provided. Right from company formation to winding up. These services include business registrations, copyrights, trademarks, all agreements, employment matters, taxes, policy advice and drafting and others. Outside of business law, we complement other needs such as property matters. Search reports, tenancy, sales, estate planning etc.

Navigating the Nigerian legal system can be daunting, especially for Small business owners (SMEs) and individuals who may not have adequate insight into getting legal support.

We cannot overemphasize the importance of legal support as the bedrock of sufficient protection for both small businesses and individuals. We recognize the need and are committed to fostering a community of increasingly legally astute individuals.

PLANS FOR THE FUTURE

The idea is that this will be the first of many products or solutions to come from Quicklaw and we will expand the model. Shifting from a consumer focused to a product focused organization. The end goal is to transform the way we interact with legal services by efficiently serving the entire legal ecosystem – law schools, regulators, the judiciary, private practice and in-house counsel. We will strive to innovate, bring ease to certain processes and expand beyond the frontiers of Nigeria. 

We are excited for you, our valued customer, to join us on this experience. 

Feel free to buy a vetted agreement or familiarize yourself with our range of services.

One more way you can reach us directly is to use the chat button on our website, we respond almost immediately.

The Path


Nigeria’s Independence Day Submission

By Winnie Enun Eka-Williams

Where does this crooked path lead us to ?

Like children on the backs of our mothers , we peep through her shoulder in impatience, wondering and wondering to ourselves when we shall reach our destination.

Although we might cry , complain that her wrapper is too tight on our knees , complain that we have been on this journey for 61 years and it has become discouraging to be optimistic of where we are headed.

To our wimps and scorns , she pays deaf ears.

She is our mother , we didn’t choose her.

Just like we did not choose Nigeria, she chose us.

The masses look in fear and terror of the destination the leaders are driving the car to. We beseech on them to listen to the passengers . like the same way we board a bus and tell the driver where to stop is the same way power lies in our hands to dictate the speed and movement of the vehicle.

To our demands and pleadings , we are ignored. Like a rollercoaster we go up and down on this path to development, potholes of loans from other countries and investing in non African buisness threaten to break down our vehicle and knock our engines.

It’s hard to believe your manifestos and promises when at 61 we are still swimming in deep poverty and insurgency

It’s difficult to harken to your advice when at 61 they are no basic amenities talk less of doctors working at the emergency

We the people , can only take the bull by it’s horn and be the model citizen that embodies core values of ethical conduct because as the masses we are our only hope , we are the only agency!

Nigeria: A Tale of an Endless Cycle


Nigeria’s Independence Day Submission

By Oyinkan Olaniyan

The nation called Nigeria has, since inception, been touring a cycle which seems to have no end. Since the supposed independence of the nation, there has been a continuous cycle of dependence: dependence on godfathers, dependence on other countries, dependence on politicians, dependence on ‘long legs’, dependence on corruption, dependence on tips, dependence on crimes for survival, dependence on individually generated amenities (power, water, road network, etc.) among others. The people called Nigeria have never really believed in the nation called Nigeria and it is heart-wrenching that in the times we are in, the level of faith anyone has in Nigeria is tinier than infinitesimal.

The question “is Nigeria really independent?” has consistently been asked in the past 61 years. Now we are left with the question “is it really worth celebrating?”. Is there anything to celebrate in the nation Nigeria? Is there peace in co-existence? Is there security of the lives and properties of citizens who will celebrate? Does the Naira have any value left? Is life bearable enough for the citizens to celebrate? Is the economy buoyant enough for celebration? You may not be able to give answers to these questions in the affirmative.

The average Nigerian is quick to point at the root cause of the above mentioned woes of Nigeria: leadership, governance and administration. In fact, it is very true that Nigeria has, since independence, had the problems of poor leadership and bad governance at all levels, from the military to the civilian administrations. However, we tend to forget that the followers make the leader, and a people’s leader is only a reflection of the people he is leading. The Nigerian government has indeed failed its citizens, but much more than that, the citizens are failing one another. This is why, for whatever reason, a person decides to kill or kidnap a fellow Nigerian.

The now apparent sequel to the popular saying “the grass is greener at the other side” is “when you water the ground”. Nigeria is a fertile land for good leaders as evidenced in the way quite a number of Nigerians home and abroad are beginning to represent the Nigerian dream positively. Watering the fertile ground will require being better followers and electing better leaders. That is when we can put an end to this cycle of pseudo-independence and become truly independent. However, we cannot be better leaders without first being good followers.

Happy Independence.

Nigeria’s Trajectory

Nigeria’s Independence Day Submission

By Binta Ahmad Abdulkadir

Nigeria the richest and most populous country in Africa, popularly known as the Giant of Africa. A country with diversity, unity and peace. Blessed with green land and beautiful languages. Nigeria gained her Independence on 1st of October, 196.

Nigeria has faced different challenges but was able to scale through unscathed, our father land, a rich and blessed country, gifted with Agriculture and crude oil.

In 2019 Nigeria was under recession, but grew in a fast rate. In 2020 nigeria was faced with a bigger challenge, the Corona virus case (Covid-19) it tampered with every sector in Nigeria from business, security, agriculture, education, health and so much more. Nigerian government did a great job In finding a solution, although some of the solutions were weak but it still worked.

Presently, the case of Covid-19 is under control, we are still recovering from the pandemic in a good speed.The federal government is working on the insecurity issues that has been bothering the country since after the emergence of Corona virus.

And today Nigeria is A year older, happy Independence Nigeria. To unity, diversity and to peace in this country, Nigerians keep being strong. I believe Nigeria will rise again.

Happy Independence.

Nigeria @60

NIGERIA’S PATH

Nigeria’s Independence Day Subssion

By Eyenor Oghenefejiro Blessing Chidera

If grace was the luxurious rejuvenation of the lush green on leaves, it would and should be said that a country I know, is abundant in graciousness.

If fields and their nourishment was a weapon against starvation, then it would and should be said that a country I know well, is a conqueror of famine.

If rivers and lakes were a short story of the flow of energy, then it would and should be said that a country I know well, is electric untapped.

If strength was measured by beads of sweat, then it would and should be said that a certain people, in a country I know are gods underrated.

If night and day were truly the description of man’s activities, then it would and should be said that a country I know well, is a stranger to the word ‘laziness.’

If progression was dependent on the mentality of citizens, then it would and should be said that a certain people, in a country I know are enemies to regression.

If a path was furbished for this country I know so well, it would and should be an ideology birth from the selfless thoughts of democracy.

If a path was made open to the toddlers of this country I know so well, it would and should be an investment on education and not the humans who represent it.

If a path was forged for the elderly of this country I know so well, it would and should be an assurance of a future without fear.

If a path was created for the youth of this country I know so well, it would and should be a total understanding of unity and opportunities on the leader boards.

If a path was built for religions and ethnicities of this country I know so well, it would and should be peace to every step taken by its people.

If a path was to be established for this country I know so well, it would and should be constructed with blocks of the future, not bricks of past failures.

If a path to greatness is one to be erected, it would and should be built now. For now is the future, and now the right time.

If a path is to be assembled, likened to the stars of a pretty night sky, it would and should be built for the country and certain people I know well. For though unbelievable to souls blinded by ignorance, the people are more than ready for a change and the government is beyond empowered to do so.

The people I know well are Nigerians and the country is Nigeria.

THE REMOVAL OF THE DIRECTORS OF FIRST BANK NIGERIA; A POWER CLASH?”

The decision of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to dissolve the entire board and management of the First Bank of Nigeria Limited and FBN Holdings Plc attracted various questions and commentaries about the power of CBN to appoint and disqualify a director of its choosing and the legal implication of the decision. The concern on everyone’s mind was whether the CBN had the power to do this, and if so, was such a measure the least severe measure, if not was it appropriate?

To understand what led to the decision of the CBN Governor, a little bit of background is needed. It all started in 2016 when the First Bank came under CBN’s close surveillance as result of significant increase in the bank’s non performing loans. The apex bank believed that the high incidence of non performing loans with the bank was as a result of “bad credit decisions, significant and non-performing insider loans and poor corporate governance practices”; thus, the apex bank felt it imperative to take steps to protect the interest of shareholders and customers of the bank.

One of the steps taken by CBN was to supervise the change of management team which led to the appointment of Sola Adeduntan as the new Managing Director/ Chief Executive Office in January 2016. It appears that Sola Adeduntan served as CBN’s check on the activities of the board of First Bank Limited with respect to the insider loans, and this must not have gone down well with Oba Otudeko, the Chairman FBN holding Plc who also doubles as the Chairman of Honeywell Group, one of the companies alleged to have non performing loans with First Bank of Nigeria.

According to Nairametrics in its article titled “Why CBN sacked board of First Bank”, the move to remove Sola Adeduntan came after the bank received instruction from CBN on the 26th of April, 2021 stating that the bank had failed to perfect its lien on the shares of Mr. Oba Otudeko in FBN Holding Plc which served as collateral to the restructured loan for Honeywell Flour Mill contrary to the terms of the restructuring. CBN further directing the bank to ensure the repayment of the Honeywell Flour Mills loan within 48 hours or the apex bank to take regulatory measures against the insider borrower and the bank.

As expected, the directives of CBN didn’t go down well with Oba Otudeko, and in response, the decision to remove Sola Adeduntan was hatched. Despite the opposition of the CBN Governor to the removal of Sola Adeduntan, the board went ahead with the removal which was announced on April 28, 2021 much to CBN’s disapproval. By the 29th of April 2020, the CBN Governor announced the removal of the all directors of FBN Ltd and FBN Holdings Plc and the appointment of new directors in FBN Ltd and FBN Holdings Plc, as well as the reinstatement of Sola Adeduntan as Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of First Bank.

It’s important to note that the activities of all financial institutions in Nigeria is governed by Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act (BOFIA) 2020, and virtue of Section 34 of BOFIA, the CBN may direct the removal of a manager or officer of a bank where after an examination, it is satisfied that the bank is in a grave situation. The power of the apex bank under Section 34 of BOFIA is quite discretionary and only two requirements are proposed; that an examination is carried out and the situation of the bank is grave.

Since non-performing loans are detrimental to the financial stability of any bank, we could argue that the bank’s situation was indeed grave thus necessitating CBN taking steps to protect the shareholder’s interest even if it meant removing all directors who in the opinion of CBN were complacent of the situation of the bank with regards to its non performing loans. However, according to the FBN Audit Committee’s Financial Year report for 2020 on insider-related transaction, the audit met the CBN standards and was signed off by the CBN and dated March 8th, 2021. If this is the case it blurs the narrative. Could the action of the CBN Governor be a result of character clash for not simply obeying the pecking order?

The Implication of Derek Chavin’s Conviction

The Derek Chauvin case has been described by academics as a watershed moment in United State history for police accountability. Before now, the American police department had systemically been granted immunity for civilian deaths resulting from acts taken in the line of duty. This article discusses the implication of Derek Chauvin’s conviction and how the events leading up to the verdict of Derek Chauvin has created a lot of mixed emotions.

Firstly, in the days following the death of George Floyd, the chants amid the Black Lives Matter protesters was ‘defund the police’. In Minneapolis, the council member responded by declaring its “commitment to end policing as we know it”. This looks to create police accountability and decrease the use of excessive force by police officials. When the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act 2021 is enacted, it would create a new standard for police. It is yet to be voted on by the senate, where it would be subjected to political opposition.

The most surprising occurrence at the Chauvin trial was the testimony of the law enforcement officials. It was unusual to see a number of officers from the department of an accused give testimonies that were detrimental to his defence. A fact that was synonymous in their testimony was that he had used an unauthorised amount of force. This has raised the question of if police testimonies, against each other, would be credible and have the same effect in similar cases. The US Police Union have a reputation for being resistant to change and leveraging political pressure to protect the interest of their members. However, the response from the police department has been quite unprecedented.

Yale Professor Tracey Meares in an interview with NPR pointed out that the video was very compelling evidence and was pivotal for the jury! Over time, we have seen similar cases where video evidence was not compelling evidence. An example of this was the case of Ahmaud Arbery. However, let’s not forget that each case should be judged on its merits, as it is based on a unique set of facts.

The narrative of the prosecution team centred around a rogue cop, who went over and beyond what was reasonable. The gravity of the case goes beyond the isolated incidence. The bigger fight is against police misconduct, excessive force, and racial bias in policing. The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act 2021 intends to bring much-needed reform to the police justice system. It is clear that the real effort would need to go beyond the legislation and towards sensitising the police force about the culture of the people in the area they police.

How Does the Copyright Law Protect Me? Basic Facts You Should Know

The concepts of “creativity” and “creatives” have become more popular than they were a few years ago. These days, people run vlogs on YouTube, make funny skits on Instagram and Twitter, and even own podcast channels. Even music, design and photography have become more recognised than they used to be, with innovations springing up every day. The Arts and Fashion industries are not left out of the evolution as more individuals are venturing into it either as full-time jobs or as side hustles. 

With this evolution comes the challenge of protecting creative work from being stolen or copied without permission. This is why we’ve written this blog post, which is an exclusive creative work, to give you a simple guide to the Copyright Law and how it affects your work.  

What is Copyright?

Copyright has been defined by Black’s Law Dictionary (9th Edition) as a right granted to the author or originator of certain literary or artistic productions, whereby the creator is invested, for a limited period, with the sole and exclusive privilege of multiplying copies of the literary or artistic works and publishing or selling them. Copyright in Nigeria is generally protected by The Copyright Act Chapter C28 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 (Copyright Act).

What does Copyright protect?

The best way to protect your work — be it a quote, a piece of art, a word, or design —  is to copyright it. This is as long as you can prove that said piece of work was created by you or is an original work done by you. Section 1(1) of the Copyright Act states that the following  are eligible to be protected:

  • Literary works
  • Musical works
  • Artistic works
  • Cinematographic films
  • Sound recordings
  • Broadcasts

How can you enjoy the Copyright Law?

The beautiful thing about copyright is that unlike every other form of intellectual property, you can enjoy its protection without registration. You enjoy it as soon as the work is created. However,  the advantage of the registration is that the Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC) allows owners of copyrights the option to deposit a copy of their works with the NCC and in turn receive a certificate which will serve as a notification of the existence of the work to the general public. Also, registration allows for the easy verification of data relating to a piece work or its author to the general public.

How does it protect your work?

Copyright protects other people from:  

  • Copying your work
  • Distributing copies of it, whether free of charge or for sale
  • Renting or lending copies of your work
  • Performing, showing or playing your work in public
  • Making an adaptation of your work
  • Putting it on the internet

In case you want to register your copyright, you need to complete a form along with two copies of the creative work.  You will also have to provide evidence of payment of the prescribed fee. Registration can be done online or physically at the NCC office. To register online with the NCC, click on this link – Register with NCC

Know Your Rights as a Tenant in Nigeria

It is a known fact that searching for an apartment in Nigeria is an overwhelming task. Usually, you’d find that either the houses within your budget do not meet your standards or the houses that meet your expectations are way above your budget. Now, imagine going through all of that stress and not being aware of your rights as a tenant after you’ve settled for a house. Sad, right?

It’s okay if you have made mistakes in the past. This post outlines crucial rights you should know and demand if they’re not in place.

  1. Right to the issuance of receipt of payment: Once you have paid your rent, you should request for a receipt of payment signed by either the landlord, his lawyer or any authorized agent acting on his behalf. The receipt will be prima facie evidence of your right to the property you have rented. It should show the amount paid and also the location of the property. In Lagos, for instance, failure to issue a receipt of payment is an offence under the Lagos Tenancy Law.
  1. Right to a written agreement: Even though the law permits for oral tenancy agreement, it is advisable to opt for a written agreement because that way, it is easier to prove in the court of law. Be careful, however; ensure the written agreement is fit for the purpose of the contract you plan on entering into. There’s nothing safer than having your lawyer go through it to make sure it represents all your interests.
  1. Right to exclusive possession: The minute you have entered into a contract with the landlord, you have exclusive rights to the property pending the period of your tenancy. As such, your landlord has no right to enter into your property without your permission. Doing so is considered to be trespassing. Even maintenance of the property has to be done with your approval because of your exclusive possession during the duration of your tenancy. You also have the right to use the property as you wish subject to the covenants agreed in the contract. 
  1. Right to notice to quit before eviction: This is one right you must never forget because Nigerian tenants are usually ignorant this. Before you are evicted from the property you have rented, you must be given a quit notice, and the number of days is subject to the period of your tenancy:
  • A one-year (or above) tenancy will require at least a notice of 6 months
  • A one-month tenancy will require a minimum notice of one month
  • A one-week tenancy will require a minimum notice of one week

After this, you also entitled to a 7-day notice to recover possession. If all of these steps aren’t carried out, the landlord will not have the right to an action for eviction in court.

  1. Right to habitable premises: The property which you are renting has to be fit for the purpose of which you are renting it whether it is for living or office work. All latent defects in the house have to be fixed by the landlord. This also applies to issues that have to deal with fixtures or reasonable wear and tears to the building.

Regardless of how much you paid for rent or what type of building you are renting, your landlord owes you all the rights mentioned above as the law is very clear on these terms. The safest way to avoid being manipulated by landlords is to ensure that you are armed with a lawyer and a real estate agent right from the negotiation to the conclusion stage.

Fake News: “It’s Just a Prank” as a Defence to Online Defamation

The reign of social media comes with a lot of user-generated content being posted on various online platforms. As a result, there seems to be a blurred line between what is true or not and what was intended to be malicious or not. If you are familiar with the streets of social media, especially Twitter and Instagram, you would have come across a lot of fake news being peddled around but covered up as pranks once they are flagged or called out. Hence, this question arises — Is the excuse of  “It’s just a prank” enough defence against a defamation suit?

Defamation can be defined as the act of injuring a person’s character, fame or reputation by false and malicious statements. Defamation can either be libel (written defamation) or slander(oral defamation). To determine whether a tweet or post is defamation,  it has to be shown that it is a lie; there has to be actual harm to the person’s reputation, and there must be evidence of the post. The law will view a funny skit, satire or prank as more than just a post if it is injurious to someone’s character.

Ask yourself if your “prank” falls under an established defence for spreading defamatory news. In Nigeria, a few defences have been stated as to when fake news might not be deemed as online defamation. They include fair comment, a statement made about a public person without malice or minor errors in reporting such as age, title or wrong address. As captured above, pranks are not mentioned as a defence to online defamation. You should, therefore, be careful what you post under this guise and ensure it is not defaming anyone. The cases on online defamation are very limited which means as a blogger or a vlogger or even a social media user you need to take extra precautions before posting anything online because you are not sure of the full extent of the law on this matter.

As a blogger or online enthusiast, you might consider an online post, comment, or skit to be harmless online banter, but the law views it differently if causes an injury to a person’s character. The law appropriates some degree of responsibility on the maker of the post and evaluates the targeted effect it has on the readers or viewers of the post. So, before you hit the “Publish” button, ensure that it does not defame anyone because you will be held accountable for it.