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Monday, October 4, 2010

Due Diligence Helps You Avoid Shady Characters

Anyone who runs a business or enters into any type of business deal or real estate transaction (even "simple" or "small" deals) needs to hire a lawyer -- and an independent lawyer, as I'll explain below -- to help check out the other side and detect problems.

You need to know that the person you are hiring for a job, or a contract, or someone with whom you are investing money or lending money or entering into a contract with, is a legitimate person and not someone whose questionable past raises red flags.

While due diligence is not perfect, and many disreputable people are particularly skilled at hiding their past problems from investigators, due diligence by a skilled lawyer can uncover patterns of bad behavior.  A skilled lawyer may spot problems -- or see the pattern of trouble -- where others see nothing to worry about. 

When a business deal "goes bad," you can run to court, hire your lawyers, file your lawsuit, get your judgment...and still not get paid.   In the current economic and legal climate, it is relatively easy to avoid paying creditors like you.  Even if you win in court, you will have lost in many ways...and your loss could have been prevented if you hired an investigative lawyer to inspect the people or business you did the deal with.

An internet search done by many of the popular internet services will turn up only "exact" matches or "hits" between the name that you are given and the name that appears in a database.  I will tell anyone that the con artists you are worried about are skilled at defeating this screen, both by fudging the names they give you and the names that appear in certain public records -- I say this because I have spotted the discrepancies, hunted these people down and confirmed the match.   Even law enforcement and the courts get this information wrong too, but I've spotted the discrepancies and nailed people. (I am told that one particular target, a sorry excuse for humanity, is now an involuntary guest of our government.)

Had any of the New Jersey politicians now under indictment hired me to inspect -- or "vet" -- the bonafides of the strange man passing himself off as David Esenbach (whose real name was that of admitted felon turned government informant Solomon Dwek), I would bet they wouldn't be facing jail time right now. 

Eric Dixon is a New York small business lawyer who engages in business due diligence and investigative matters, and represents people in litigation, negotiations and investigations.  He can be reached at 917-696-2442 and via email at


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