Laura Greer, General Counsel
Laura, you work for a company whose products we probably all know, but it’s safe to say we don’t know the company itself. Tell us something about Ennis-Flint, Inc.
Ennis-Flint, Inc. is a worldwide leader in the traffic safety and pavement marking industry. People see our products every day but don’t think about the design, construction, and marking of the routes we travel as a necessary part of daily life. Ennis-Flint, Inc. provides the most comprehensive lineup of pavement marking solutions: from paint and thermoplastic used for the well-known white and yellow lines on the road to reflective markers, airport and airfield markings, and decorative preformed thermoplastic markings that allow cities, counties, schools, and businesses to show their pride. Most importantly, we make products that help make roads, airports, and cyclist and pedestrian areas safer for everyone.
“Practical Guidance and State Chart Builders are invaluable, time-saving tools for in-house counsel.”
What is your role with the corporation?
As general counsel and corporate secretary for Ennis-Flint, Inc., I identify and manage risk in all aspects of the business, provide legal advice to our leadership, and manage outside counsel.
“I’m a big fan of the Practical Guidance platforms and have both the Practical Guidance Home and Practical Guidance: Production and Sales dashboards in my Favorites.”
As GC for Ennis-Flint, Inc., what are your day-to-day responsibilities?
I am a solo GC with one really excellent paralegal. My day-to-day responsibilities include responding to a variety of requests for legal advice from various departments, drafting and reviewing contracts, advising on legal compliance matters, managing and directing outside counsel on litigation and patent matters, research and analysis of local laws and regulations, and numerous other things that pop up in my inbox.
Ennis-Flint, Inc. has manufacturing facilities in eight U.S. states and seven countries. We conduct business all over the world. With only two members in the legal department, I need to be able to quickly locate primary and secondary legal resources, guidance, and forms. I also have a budget that I need to meet, which limits my ability to rely on outside counsel to provide many of these resources. I rely on Bloomberg Law® for quick and easy access to statutes and regulations, forms, checklists, and concise explanations and advice for various business transactions.
“Like most in-house counsel, I appreciate a good 50-state summary, so the State Law Chart Builder tool is a great resource and alternative to purchasing summaries from law firms.”
How long have you been a subscriber to Bloomberg Law?
I have been using Bloomberg Law for just over one year. I was introduced to the company and platform at the ACC Annual Meeting in 2017. I usually don’t participate in longer product demos on the floor but did check out the Bloomberg Law platform. I was surprised by the scope of content available with the subscription, in particular the access to federal and state court dockets and the analytical tools for contracts and transactions. I previously subscribed to Practical Law and, most frequently, used their forms and training materials.
What Bloomberg Law content and/or tools do you rely on?
I am a big fan of the Practical Guidance platforms and have both the Practical Guidance Home and Practical Guidance: Production and Sales dashboards in my Favorites. I like that I can go to the landing page and quickly locate a form, summary, or checklist. I also use the State Law Chart Builder tool when advising my internal clients on issues that affect our multistate manufacturing operations. As a solo GC, I need to be efficient with tasks like contract drafting and review, so that I have time to think critically about broader issues for my company. Having access to a library of commercial agreements, as well as the draft analysis tool, makes my review more efficient and better informed. I use Drafting Guides and Sample Agreements links frequently to find sample contracts or samples of clauses I am reviewing/drafting. I have also used the step-by-step tools in connection with acquisitions.
How does Bloomberg Law compare with the competition?
I appreciate the scope of content available through the Bloomberg Law platform. Because we use outside counsel for litigation matters, a statutory and case law-focused research platform is not as useful to me as one that provides Practical Guidance through summaries, templates, and checklists. Like most in-house counsel, I also appreciate a good 50-state summary, so the State Law Chart Builder tool is a great resource and alternative to potentially purchasing summaries from law firms. And while we outsource litigation, the Bloomberg Law docket resource is a very efficient tool for me, and the no-charge access to documents that have already been requested is great.
Do our tools save you time?
I frequently get questions from our payroll team about employee requests for payroll deduction or other wage and hour-related questions. The Chart Builder tool allows me to see the relevant statutes for multiple states with one click. If I had to locate those statutes individually, the time it takes would be multiplied by the number of jurisdictions involved. So it would take anywhere from 2 to 10 times as long.
Would you recommend Bloomberg Law?
Yes. Bloomberg Law’s customer service is great. The onboarding process was very supportive and focused on my needs and anticipated use of the service. The platform provides a wide variety of content and includes resources that were new to me among legal research tools.