• Most Topular Stories

  • The Slippery Slope of Risk

    Simple Justice
    30 Sep 2014 | 5:43 am
    When Sean Groubert made the split second decision to pump bullets into Levar Jones for being too enthusiastic in his compliance with commands, he was fired, prosecuted and (sort of) universally condemned.  He was able to put together a sufficient excuse for his fear of the unknown, but it flopped.  For those who saw Groubert’s conduct as well beyond the limits, consider how differently this might have played out in Alabama. On March 6th, Michael Davidson, age 20, was traveling on I-85 on his way to to Seymour Johnson Air Force Base near Goldsboro, NC.  Davidson is an Airman First…
  • Motorcycles and the art of being conspicuous to avoid accidents, by Steve Knapp

    Brett Murphy
    18 Aug 2014 | 1:17 pm
    08/18/2014 - 13:17Motorcycles are a lot of fun to ride, and the rate of motorcycle ownership in the U.S. has risen dramatically recently, with a 75% increase in registrations between 1997 and 2006. The average age of riders has increased as well, from 27.1 years in 1985 to 41.0 years in 2003. However, the sad reality is that the lack of protection around the rider also means that motorcyclists are at a higher risk for serious injury or death than people riding in vehicles where metal, seat belts, and airbags provide protection.   The larger size of cars and trucks makes them more visible to…
  • Auto Accidents in Work Zones

    Farah Law Firm
    Michael Farah
    4 Aug 2014 | 6:33 pm
    If you live in the DFW area, you’re probably used to driving through work zones (and navigating the inevitable traffic they tend to cause). Highway projects in the Metroplex seem to go on for months, or sometimes even years, and you’re almost bound to encounter one if you plan on driving more than 10 miles in any direction. According to the Texas Department of Transportation, there are currently 20 active work zones along I-35 alone, encompassing nearly 110 miles of roadway. That’s the largest number of work zones TxDOT has ever had on the state’s main corridor, and it all adds up…
  • Free access to legal information imperative

    Sui Generis-a New York Law Blog
    25 Sep 2014 | 11:55 am
    This week's Daily Record column is entitled "Free access to legal information imperative."  My past Daily Record articles can be accessed here. Free access to legal information imperative One of the greatest benefits of wide-scale Internet access has been better access to legal information, both for attorneys and legal consumers. Expensive, space-hogging law libraries have been replaced by more affordable online portals that provide instantaneous access to all types of legal information. In the early days of the Internet, most of this information was hidden behind costly paywalls, such…
  • Dallas Jury Awards Transvaginal Mesh Patient $73 Million in Boston Scientific Lawsuit, Baron and Budd Reports

    Baron & Budd, P.C. | Protecting What's Right
    Baron & Budd
    11 Sep 2014 | 3:11 pm
    First Loss for Boston Scientific Creates Positive Precedent for Other Injured Women DALLAS –(September 11, 2014) –Earlier this week, a Dallas jury returned a $73 million verdict in favor of a woman who has suffered serious health problems after being implanted with Boston Scientific’s Obtryx transvaginal mesh product. Baron and Budd congratulates Matthews & Associates, Freese and Goss, Edwards & de la Cerda and the rest of the trial team on their victory. The firm hopes that this verdict helps to pave the way for positive results in other transvaginal mesh lawsuits.
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  • “Affirmative consent must be ongoing throughout a sexual activity…”

    Walter Olson
    30 Sep 2014 | 6:53 am
    California regulates college sex, in a law just signed by Gov. Brown and applying to campuses that accept state money. Key passages: It is the responsibility of each person involved in the sexual activity to ensure that he or she has the affirmative consent of the other or others to engage in the sexual activity. … Lack of protest or resistance does not mean consent, nor does silence mean consent. Affirmative consent must be ongoing throughout a sexual activity and can be revoked at any time. The existence of a dating relationship between the persons involved, or the fact of past sexual…
  • Texas “Law Hawk”

    Walter Olson
    30 Sep 2014 | 2:09 am
    More tasteful advertising, this time for a Fort Worth practitioner. Tweet Tags: chasing clients, Dallas, Texas Texas “Law Hawk” is a post from Overlawyered - Chronicling the high cost of our legal system
  • Free speech roundup

    Walter Olson
    29 Sep 2014 | 9:05 pm
    Coverage of Cato Constitution Day panel on First Amendment with Nadine Strossen, P.J. O’Rourke, Eric Rassbach, Ilya Shapiro [Concurring Opinions] And First-Amendment-oriented articles in the latest Cato Supreme Court Review: Judge David Sentelle on freedom of speech as liberty for all and not just for the organized press, Allen Dickerson on McCutcheon v. FEC, Ilya Shapiro on SBA List v. Driehaus, and Trevor Burrus on protest buffer zones; Eric Holder “the worst Attorney General on press freedom issues in a generation, possibly since Richard Nixon’s John Mitchell” [Trevor…
  • Spotting their adversaries

    Walter Olson
    29 Sep 2014 | 5:22 am
    Nicholas Quinn Rosenkranz on the significance of the IRS having targeted for unfavorable scrutiny “organizations involved in….educating on the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.” [Volokh Conspiracy] “Presidents have always sought to push against the constitutional limits of their power; but never have they targeted those who merely teach about such limits.” Tweet Tags: First Amendment, scandals, taxes Spotting their adversaries is a post from Overlawyered - Chronicling the high cost of our legal system
  • As always, reducing liberty is the answer

    Walter Olson
    29 Sep 2014 | 3:12 am
    A Connecticut state commission charged with coming up with policy recommendations after the Sandy Hook elementary school massacre is considering a draft proposal that would slap new regulations on homeschooling families. “Parents who home-school children with significant emotional, social or behavioral problems would have to file progress reports prepared by special education program teams” under the scheme. [Connecticut Post] Tweet Tags: disability & schools As always, reducing liberty is the answer is a post from Overlawyered - Chronicling the high cost of our legal system
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    Solo Practice University®

  • The Hardest And Best Decision I’ve Made – Going Solo

    Joleena Louis
    30 Sep 2014 | 5:30 am
    We’re very pleased to announce our newest columnist, Joleena Louis, a solo practitioner practicing matrimonial law in New York.  Joleena has some great experiences to share about going solo in 2014 and she’ll be sharing them with you. Sometimes you just know.  Sometimes you just have to follow your gut and go for it. By way of introduction, my name is Joleena Louis and I am a  matrimonial and family law attorney. A solo practitioner. I started my own law firm, Joleena Louis Law, in December 2013 after unsatisfying work at another small matrimonial firm. Truth is, I never had a…
  • Who Says You’re My Lawyer?

    Laura Loyek
    29 Sep 2014 | 5:30 am
    At Lawyers Mutual, we regularly see claims involving the “inadvertent client.”  This is the acquaintance who stops you at a neighborhood party or the grocery store to ask a question about a legal problem.  Based on this brief encounter, the acquaintance believes you are his attorney and will handle everything.  You assume it was just a friendly chat, and the matter never crosses your mind again. I was surprised to discover that this confusion about the attorney-client relationship can also go in the opposite direction.  In this situation, the attorney believes that she is representing…
  • So, I Said To Myself, “Self, What Do I Really Sound Like?”

    Debra Vey Voda-Hamilton
    25 Sep 2014 | 5:30 am
    A friend, who supervises a number of customer service technicians for a large phone service provider sent me a link to a website I wanted to share with you. The website is called It analyses the effect of what you say, in your materials, letters and comments, enabling you to understand how what you say is perceived by others. It provides you with alternatives that may make your message more palatable and more powerful. It was completely eye opening to me. Neither I nor Solo Practice University are affiliated with effectcheck. However, for re-zooming attorneys that are prone…
  • Why The First 30 Seconds of A Client Call Can Make Or Break Your Practice

    Susan Cartier Liebel
    18 Sep 2014 | 5:30 am
    I remember after graduating law school I had the opportunity to call the law firm of Day Berry and Howard several times (now Day Pitney) and I was instantly enamored of their phone receptionist.  I’m sure every person who called there felt the same way. She had the most incredible and memorable voice and charm to match. I can still hear her voice nearly 20 years later. This was my first encounter with the law firm and it set the psychological tone and my perception of the law firm.  Her voice made me think of ruby-red crushed velvet. I then imagined how the law firm must look, how…
  • Avoiding Common Conflict of Interest Traps

    Mark Bassingthwaighte
    16 Sep 2014 | 5:30 am
    Over the years I have tried to encourage solo and small firm lawyers to develop and consistently use a conflict system that tracks all of the information best practices currently dictate. In all honesty, I will admit that I have had limited success in this endeavor. I’ve concluded that I’m just not going to win this one and that’s ok. This doesn’t mean I won’t keep trying; but it does mean I’ve got to accept the reality of the situation because, truth be told, conflict missteps in the solo and small firm arena are not typically a “whoops, we missed that name” kind of thing.
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    Above the Law

  • Why Diligence Sucks, Why You Suck At It, And Why Robots Want Your Job

    Zach Abramowitz
    30 Sep 2014 | 2:46 pm
    Could this make your life as a reviewing attorney easier and a little less miserable?
  • Non-Sequiturs: 09.30.14

    Joe Patrice
    30 Sep 2014 | 2:13 pm
    * The world’s largest Harry Potter memorabilia collection belongs to a lawyer. His patronus is a shimmering gavel. [The Telegraph] * The FCC has ended the sports blackout rule. Expect the NFL to go bankrupt within days. [Politico] * No one expects to see “lawyer” on a Top 20 Work-Life Balance list, but there is one legal job out there coming in at number 11. [Glassdoor via Adjunct Law Prof Blog] * Want to expose the severe problems of the over-criminalization of everything? Everyone with a warrant turn themselves in on one day. Call it “Warrant Day.” See how the system copes…
  • Over- And Underrated Biglaw Practice Groups

    Brian Dalton
    30 Sep 2014 | 1:45 pm
    According to the ATL Insider Survey, these practice groups deserve more (or less) acclaim
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    Simple Justice

  • The Slippery Slope of Risk

    30 Sep 2014 | 5:43 am
    When Sean Groubert made the split second decision to pump bullets into Levar Jones for being too enthusiastic in his compliance with commands, he was fired, prosecuted and (sort of) universally condemned.  He was able to put together a sufficient excuse for his fear of the unknown, but it flopped.  For those who saw Groubert’s conduct as well beyond the limits, consider how differently this might have played out in Alabama. On March 6th, Michael Davidson, age 20, was traveling on I-85 on his way to to Seymour Johnson Air Force Base near Goldsboro, NC.  Davidson is an Airman First…
  • Of Princes and Princesses Who Say “Yes!”

    30 Sep 2014 | 4:43 am
    The Wall Street Journal noted that Princeton has hopped aboard the curtailment of due process rights for male college students.  Wesleyan University has announced that it will require its two fraternities to go co-ed. Forbes pulled down a post by MIT’s Chi Phi fraternity alumni house president and contributor, Bill Frezza, and summarily “fired” him, for writing “Drunk Female Guests Are The Gravest Threat To Fraternities.”  An editorial in MIT’s Tech disavowed his “regressive” victim blaming. California has now enacted a law, previously…
  • Half Baked

    29 Sep 2014 | 6:44 am
    Efforts to try to illuminate legal issues and problems that result in catastrophe often feel a lot like pissing into the wind.  Few who aren’t engaged in the effort get it. Many attribute it to bizarre and ridiculous conspiracies or simplistic hatred of perceived enemies easily cured by resort to a firm and resolute insistence on adherence to constitutional rights, or a well-aimed bullet. Others, often smart people who don’t realize they’re behaving like dilettantes, come up with half-baked ideas that not only fail to offer anything remotely realistic, but tend to make…
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    Law and Magic Blog

  • Northern Virginia Town Repeals Ban On "Magic Arts"

    17 Sep 2014 | 12:36 pm
    In spite of some opposition, the town council of the northern Virginia community of Front Royal repealed its ban (Fort Royal Town Code 110-17) on the practice of the "magic arts," which includes fortune telling, tarot card reading, "gypsies," and I assume encompasses palmistry, astrology, and other "crafty sciences." When a tarot card reader recently set up shop in the town (note that it was just for a day), other vendors got very upset. That's when local residents realized that the law was still in force. During the town council's meeting to discuss…
  • Another Blog That Understands Us

    17 Sep 2014 | 8:02 am
    Trademarks Are Magic. Perfect!
  • Houdini Comes To the Small Screen

    25 Aug 2014 | 11:36 am
    The Hollywood Reporter's Allison Keene reviews The History Channel's miniseries Houdini, starring Adrien Brody, here. Houdini premieres Labor Day (September 1st) at 9, 8 Central time. 
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    What About Paris?

  • The Rules

    Holden Oliver (Kitzbühel Desk)
    30 Sep 2014 | 9:00 pm
    Our world-famous 12 Rules of Client Service. Revel in their wisdom. Ignore them at your peril. Teach them to your coworkers. Argue about them. Improve them.
  • No closure on Maggie's farm.

    JD Hull
    29 Sep 2014 | 10:18 pm
    Well, I try my best to be just like I am. But everybody wants you to be just like them They say sing while you slave--and I just get bored. I ain't gonna work on Maggie's farm no more. --Maggie's Farm, Robert Allen Zimmerman (1941- )
  • American Authentic: Ben Bradlee is 93, ailing and irreplaceable.

    JD Hull
    29 Sep 2014 | 3:50 am
    You had a lot of Cuban or Spanish-speaking guys in masks and rubber gloves, with walkie-talkies, arrested in the Democratic National Committee Headquarters at 2:00 in the morning. What the hell were they in there for? What were they doing? --Ben Bradlee If you read this blog and don't know who Ben Bradlee is, you should, and so we are going pretend that you know anyway. Tons has been written about Bradlee (and will continue to be written about him) due to his colorful management style, years as a reporter, close friendship with President Kennedy and celebrated mentor-editor role in the two…
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    How Appealing

  • At midnight, this blog is moving to its new online home

    Howard Bashman
    30 Sep 2014 | 12:45 pm
    At midnight, this blog is moving to its new online home: Following nearly eight and a half wonderful years during which this blog was hosted at the web site, effective Wednesday, October 1, 2014 "How Appealing" will be hosted by Breaking Media in affiliation with its highly successful "Above the Law" blog. This blog's new address effective at midnight is Please adjust your bookmarks accordingly. Also moving to the new address will be this blog's entire archives, stretching back to May 6, 2002, and this blog's "20 questions for the appellate judge"…
  • "After Decades of Action, Supreme Court Cools on School Cases"

    Howard Bashman
    30 Sep 2014 | 12:16 pm
    "After Decades of Action, Supreme Court Cools on School Cases": Mark Walsh of Education Week has this report (registration required for full access). A graphic accompanying the article is already freely accessible.
  • "Full D.C. Circuit Weighs Contractors' Political Contributions"

    Howard Bashman
    30 Sep 2014 | 10:46 am
    "Full D.C. Circuit Weighs Contractors' Political Contributions": Zoe Tillman has this post at "The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times." You can freely access the full text of the post via Google. Update: In other coverage, Josh Gerstein of has a blog post titled "D.C. Circuit skeptical on contractor donation ban." The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit has posted the audio of today's en banc oral argument online at this link (40.7 MB mp3 audio file).
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    Legal Juice

  • Bingo Rage?

    John Mesirow
    29 Sep 2014 | 9:02 pm
    You would think a bingo hall would be a refuge of sorts. In this instance, you would be wrong. As reported by North Country Now (Potsdam, New York): A Lisbon woman faces a harassment charge following a Sept. 26 domestic incident, according to St. Lawrence County sheriff’s deputies. Ruth E. Toomey, 78, Lisbon, was charged with second-degree harassment. Deputies say the incident occurred at the West Potsdam Bingo Hall. She was released on an appearance ticket. You couldn’t just hold it in for a few more cards, or take it outside? What about your fellow bingo-goers?  Not cool.
  • Come On. It Was A Really Small Gun.

    John Mesirow
    28 Sep 2014 | 9:01 pm
    True, it was a really, really small gun. But when you’re trying to board a plane, size doesn’t matter as this gent found out. As reported by Officers with the Transportation Security Administration found a loaded gun in a backpack at Myrtle Beach International Airport. A 59-year-old Murrells Inlet man, David Joyner Kelly, was arrested and charged with carrying concealable weapons into certain restricted areas, a misdemeanor. The gun was a 9mm, loaded with two bullets. It was found in the backpack of the passenger at the security checkpoint on Wednesday, Sept. 4. Maybe…
  • Is It Any Wonder These Two Are Friends?

    John Mesirow
    27 Sep 2014 | 9:05 pm
    You’ve heard the expression “Brilliant minds think alike.” Well, what about drunk minds? As reported by Officers Matthew McAuliffe and Robert Appel responded to a report of two men who crashed into a rock wall in the area of Simpson Avenue and Whitfield Place, police said. Appel found a blue van at the the Sommerfield Avenue-Strowbridge Road intersection and pulled it over, police said. McAuliffe soon joined him at the traffic stop. Javier Fajardo, of East Elmhurst, N.Y, was driving and intoxicated when the van struck the rock wall, police said. Not an unusual DUI,…
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    Ernie the Attorney

  • Insidious abuse that doesn’t get a lot of press coverage

    Ernie Svenson
    14 Sep 2014 | 7:35 pm
    Physical abuse is getting a lot of press these, especially in the realm of pro sports. But there’s another kind of abuse that doesn’t get as much press —something more widespread and insidious. Mind abuse. As in, the crap that saps your precious attention: e.g. television “news,” social media flame wars, Facebook status updates, thoughtless emails, Instagram messages, etc. Technology is useful up to a point. But unchecked, it has a huge potential for abuse. We can blame the media, or Facebook, or our internet-connected mobile toys. But we’re not innocent victims. We are ultimately…
  • Who is censoring your information?

    Ernie Svenson
    3 Aug 2014 | 8:20 am
    Are you aware that someone is censoring your incoming mail? Okay, it’s not your mail exactly. It’s all of the information you receive. Someone is tampering with it, and you’ll be surprised who it is. The culprit is you. Or more precisely: your brain. Your human brain is constantly filtering out useless information. What kind of information is “useless”? Well, that depends on how your brain has been programmed. If you grew up in a community of religious fundamentalists you’ll filter out opposing messages that challenge the tenets of that religion. That’s a “worldview…
  • Virtual assistants that are affordable and super helpful

    Ernie Svenson
    27 Jul 2014 | 6:55 am
    What kind of virtual assistance can you get for $25 a month? Until I tried FancyHands I would have said “nothing worthwhile.” But my friend Chad Burton persuaded me to try them, and I’ve been pleasantly surprised. Under the “starter plan,” FancyHands virtual assistants will handle 5 tasks per month. Five tasks for $25 per month may not seem worthwhile, but that’s the surprise. At least if you’ve never used a virtual assistance service before. First of all, you can get more than 5 tasks your first month. FancyHands offers incentives options that, if you agree…
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    Ask the Lawyer @ Dear Esq.

  • Can I Sue My Neighbor for Water Trespass?

    House Attorney
    29 Sep 2014 | 8:10 pm
    I live in the town of La Plata, Maryland. We live downhill and when it rains we have water flow through our back yard. The water flows through the next property to a water pipe. People bought the house next to ours to flip. They did not like the natural water flow so they put up a curb which caused my yard and under my house to flood.
  • What is the Scope of My Property Easement?

    House Attorney
    26 Sep 2014 | 10:20 pm
    I live at the end of private road. Are people living at beginning of the private road allowed access to all of the private road beyond their property?
  • How Can I Modify My Child Support Order?

    House Attorney
    25 Sep 2014 | 8:41 pm
    I currently pay $500.00 a month for child support for my daughter (8-years-old). However, I have custody of my two boys (15-years-old) and don't receive any child support for them. I recently retired from the Air Force and my ex-wife gets 50% of my retirement pay.
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  • The Revolt Against Leiter

    Brian Tamanaha
    30 Sep 2014 | 3:33 pm
    Brian Leiter, in his own words:I am the editor of the PGR; I am also one of the leading Nietzsche scholars in the world, a law professor, a New Yorker with limited toleration for the fools our profession breeds, a leading figure in legal philosophy, a leading philosophy blogger, a devoted teacher and mentor (defamation of me has grown so common on this score that I've taken to putting my evaluations on-line), a husband, a son, a father of three, a longstanding opponent of cyber-harassment based on gender and race, and a defender of academic freedom and the rights of everyone from Steven…
  • Animus versus Moral Opposition: Material and Expressive Considerations

    Guest Blogger
    30 Sep 2014 | 5:33 am
    Neil S. Siegel This post is part of the Symposium on Unconstitutional Animus. Some participants in the debate over same-sex marriage are offended by the suggestion that any state ban is based upon animus.  Like Chief Justice Roberts during oral argument in United States v. Windsor, they ask incredulously, for example, “So that was the view of the 84 Senators who voted in favor of [the law] and the President who signed it?  They were motivated by animus?” Others believe that most, if not all, state bans are based upon animus.  They applaud Judge Posner for calling out a…
  • Persistent Questions About Animus

    Guest Blogger
    29 Sep 2014 | 7:44 am
    Susannah W. PollvogtThis post is part of the Symposium on Unconstitutional Animus. Animus is an enigma.  On the one hand, it is an important constitutional concept that has proven critical to judicial recognition of the rights of sexual minorities.  On the other hand, it seems that no one really knows what animus is.One might expect that, after the highest court in the nation has relied on a doctrine (animus) in an important and high profile decision (Windsor), there would be a modicum of doctrinal consolidation in the wake of that decision.  But this has not been the…
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  • At the Sugar Maple Café...

    30 Sep 2014 | 10:36 am
    ... you can talk about whatever you want.That's how my favorite tree on my lake-shore walk looked yesterday. And, by the way, if you're enjoying this blog, please consider doing your on-line shopping beginning at The Althouse Amazon Portal.
  • "The 50 Weirdest Movies Ever Made."

    30 Sep 2014 | 10:29 am
    I've only seen 2 from this list. Click for more »
  • "The Islamic State was born out of the ashes of Al Qaeda in Iraq, which was crippled by the time Mr. Obama withdrew American forces from Iraq at the end of 2011."

    30 Sep 2014 | 10:11 am
    "The civil war that erupted in neighboring Syria pitting President Bashar al-Assad against a variety of rebel organizations provided a haven for the Qaeda affiliate to reconstitute itself with an influx of foreign fighters. 'To anyone watching developments in Iraq from mid-2010 and Syria from early 2011, the recovery and rise of ISIS should have been starkly clear,' said Charles Lister, a visiting fellow at the Brookings Doha Center in Qatar. 'The organization itself was also carrying out an explicitly clear step-by-step strategy aimed at engendering the conditions that would feed its…
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    Concurring Opinions

  • FAN 34.1 (First Amendment News) — 1-A Salons and Floyd Abrams Institute join to host dialogues on free expression

    Ronald K.L. Collins
    30 Sep 2014 | 12:57 pm
    PRESS RELEASE The First Amendment Salon is pleased to announce that it has formed an association with the Floyd Abrams Institute for Free Expression at Yale Law School. The Abrams Institute is administered by the Yale Information Society Project, directed by Yale Law Professor Jack Balkin. The Institute is both practical and scholarly. It includes a clinic for Yale Law students to engage in litigation, draft model legislation, and give advice to lawmakers and policy makers on issues of media freedom and informational access. It promotes scholarship and law reform on emerging questions…
  • A Plea Bargaining Strike

    Gerard Magliocca
    30 Sep 2014 | 7:06 am
    I am seldom shocked these days, but the article in this week’s New Yorker about Kalief Browder is astonishing.  Browder is arrested for theft.  He does not receive bail.  He is imprisoned for three years on Rikers Island without trial.  Then the prosecutor dismisses the case (because the alleged victim moved to another country).  How this could go on without a successful Sixth Amendment claim is beyond me.  (Browder is now suing for damages).  The New York criminal justice system (at least in the City) should be deeply ashamed. This leads me to ask a broader question about the…
  • FAN 34 (First Amendment News) Hybrid PACS — yet another case goes to High Court

    Ronald K.L. Collins
    29 Sep 2014 | 1:36 pm
    I am posting this column a few days early since I will be traveling this week, but next week I’ll return to the scheduled Wednesday postings. Contributions earmarked solely for use in independent expenditures by “hybrid” political committees that engage in both independent expenditures and direct contributions to candidates appears destined to be a coming campaign-finance law battleground. — Judge Edith Brown Clement (2014) Dan Backer The cases seem endless — that is, all those campaign cases that are finding their way to courts. One gets dizzy just drying to keep…
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    Sui Generis-a New York Law Blog

  • Free access to legal information imperative

    25 Sep 2014 | 11:55 am
    This week's Daily Record column is entitled "Free access to legal information imperative."  My past Daily Record articles can be accessed here. Free access to legal information imperative One of the greatest benefits of wide-scale Internet access has been better access to legal information, both for attorneys and legal consumers. Expensive, space-hogging law libraries have been replaced by more affordable online portals that provide instantaneous access to all types of legal information. In the early days of the Internet, most of this information was hidden behind costly paywalls, such…
  • Lawyers and Mobile Devices Trending Higher

    12 Sep 2014 | 7:40 am
    This week's Daily Record column is entitled "Lawyers and Mobile Devices Trending Higher."  My past Daily Record articles can be accessed here. Lawyers and Mobile Devices Trending Higher Of all the technology trends, lawyers have adapted to mobile devices the most readily. Smartphone use has been on the rise for years now, tablets are increasingly being incorporated by lawyers and judges into their workflows, and wearable technology, such as smartwatches, will no doubt make inroads in the legal profession as well. The results of two recent surveys confirm that lawyers continue to adopt…
  • Virtual law firms allow practice on your own terms

    4 Sep 2014 | 11:06 am
    This week's Daily Record column is entitled "Virtual law firms allow practice on your own terms."  My past Daily Record articles can be accessed here. Virtual law firms allow practice on your own terms  For years now I’ve been an advocate of Web-based computing and have asserted that it will change the practice of law as we know it. I felt so strongly about this that I wrote a book about cloud computing for lawyers that was published in 2012, and shortly thereafter, I was hired by a legal software company that develops Web-based practice management software. So, of course you could…
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  • You Should Listen To The Goldman New York Fed Story

    David Zaring
    29 Sep 2014 | 6:36 am
    This American Life has a banking supervision story (!) that turns on secret recordings made by a former employee of the New York Fed, Carmen Segarra, and it's pretty good, because it shows how regulators basically do a lot of their regulating of banks through meetings, with no action items after.  That's weird, and it's instructive to see how intertwined banking and supervision are.  There's a killer meeting after a meeting with Goldman Sachs where Fed employees talk about what happened, and - though we don't know what was left on the cutting room floor - the modesty of the regulatory…
  • Semi-Welcome To The Blogosphere, Bull Market!

    David Zaring
    26 Sep 2014 | 12:06 pm
    UConn's James Kwak has joined Medium's Bull Market, a collection of interesting business writers doing long and semi-long form work.  His first post is here, on the Silicon Valley no-poaching litigation.  Welcome to the blogosphere!  If that's the right term for this.  Anyway, Medium has that cool design thing going on, so it will be nice to class the law professor writing on the internet median up a bit.
  • The $30 Million Whistleblower

    Christine Hurt
    25 Sep 2014 | 2:25 pm
    Earlier this week, the SEC announced that it would award $30 million to a whistleblower in an enforcement action.  Here is the press release and here is the more interesting order.  If you are like me, it may be hard to wrap your mind around a one-time payment of $30 million for anything short of selling your start-up or single-handedly producing an Avengers movie, but I guess that is what happened.  But, I think I'm not convinced this kind of award is an awesome idea.  Here are a few reasons. First, to preserve the anonymity of the whistleblower, which may not be possible anyway, all…
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    Ms. JD Blog

  • The LSAT: Understanding the Architecture of Argument (part 2)

    25 Sep 2014 | 8:58 pm
    In my last post, I emphasized the importance of understanding the argument that is made in an LR, and I said that once you understood the argument—that is, once you figured out that the speaker was saying ‘I conclude ZZZ on the basis of XXX’ and that s/he must also be thinking YYY because otherwise s/he couldn’t get from XXX to ZZZ—you’d be ready for almost any question.  So here we go: What is the conclusion?  ZZZ. What is the premise?  XXX. What is the role played by XXX?  It provides support for ZZZ. Which of the following assumptions…
  • Why We Need Men in the Conversations abut Retention of Women Lawyers

    Susan Smith Blakely
    25 Sep 2014 | 2:35 pm
    Why do we need the men?  I hear this too much when I attend conferences of women lawyers around the country.  The sentiment is that women lawyers have the power to succeed on their own, and we do not need the men to help us do it.  I hear women say that we will succeed in increasing retention rates and the number of women lawyers in positions of management and leadership by putting pressure on law firms through female general counsels of corporate clients—-a sort of “we’ll show them whose got the power” attitude. I have blogged about this before, but I…
  • Mortgage Lending Discrimination Reveals the Need for More Comprehensive Maternity Leave

    25 Sep 2014 | 11:54 am
    FirstBank Mortgage Partners (based in Jackson, TN), has agreed to pay a settlement of $35000 to rectify allegations that it violated the Fair Housing Act by denying a mortgage loan to an application of maternity leave. The complaint, filed with the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) alleged that FirstBank first approved the mortgage application, scheduled the closing, and then notified the couple that the loan was denied upon learning that the wife was on maternity leave. Sex discrimination of this sort is not uncommon; HUD has investigated 173 allegations against lenders…
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    Legal Profession Blog

  • Probation Extended

    Legal Profession Prof
    30 Sep 2014 | 8:17 am
    The Indiana Supreme Court has denied the motion of its Disciplinary Commission to revoke probation of an attorney. The attorney was suspended for six months and was granted reinstatement on conditions. He fauiled to follow the term, which required a...
  • Former KBI Official Disbarred

    Legal Profession Prof
    29 Sep 2014 | 1:34 pm
    The Kansas Supreme Court recently disbarred an attorney convicted of sexual expliotation of a child. Tokepa Capital-Journal has the details here Kyle G. Smith, a former administrator with the Kansas Bureau of Investigation, was charged Thursday with sexual exploitation of...
  • Eleven Minutes

    Legal Profession Prof
    29 Sep 2014 | 9:05 am
    An attorney retained in a domestic relations matter violated ethics rules by filing a motion to withdraw from representation eleven minutes before a scheduled hearing regarding change of custody. An Arkansas Committe on Professional Conduct panel imposed a sanction of...
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    China Law Blog

  • Registering Your Trademark In China. The Questions We Ask.

    30 Sep 2014 | 6:39 am
    I was just cc’ed on an email from one our China IP lawyers to a client. The email is essentially an introductory email to a client that just retained us for China trademark work. The email asks the basic questions to which we need answers to efficiently and effectively figure out what we should be registering as trademarks in China. Here it is: Good to meet you.I will be working on your China trademark matters. I know that you have already discussed some initial matters with us, but I like to start at the very beginning so everyone is on the same page. To that end, please answer the…
  • Vietnam Remains Attractive to Foreign Investors

    29 Sep 2014 | 12:38 pm
    No, we are not going to become the Vietnam Law Blog, but I (Dan) just could not resist using this post today. This post was written by Greg Buhyoff, who heads up our Vietnam practice and essentially commutes between Vietnam and the U.S. Greg wrote this post for our law firm blog, but when I saw it there, I realized it belonged here as well, because it relates to China and, in particular, to the “China plus one” strategy that so many companies have or are at least considering.   Having lived and worked in Vietnam for nearly ten years and continuing to act for clients in that…
  • China Employee Leaving Employment Early. Forget About Payment In Lieu Of Notice

    27 Sep 2014 | 4:48 am
    China allows employees to terminate labor contracts by giving 30 days written notice to the employer during the standard employment term or 3 days written notice during the probation period. Our clients occasionally ask us whether it is permissible under Chinese law to require an employee to pay a certain amount of money (代通知金 or 代替通知金) to an employer, when the employee tries to terminate the labor contract without prior written notice. We have received inconsistent responses from a few cities’ labor bureaus, but it seems the majority think that would be illegal, and…
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    Patently-O » Patent

  • USPTO Breaks New Ground with 300,000 Patents Issued This Fiscal Year

    Dennis Crouch
    30 Sep 2014 | 12:53 pm
      Fiscal Year 2014 has just ended for the Federal Government and – as expected – we have a new record number of US patent grants. For the first time, the USPTO has issued more than 300,000 utility patents in one fiscal year. Don’t worry, there remain more than 1,000,000 applications pending in the pipeline and more than 25,000 appeals remain pending before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board. During the fiscal year, the 8,300 patent examiners ‘disposed of’ more than 600,000 cases which in some circles will be calculated as an allowance rate of about 50%.*…
  • Doctrine of Equivalents: What Elements Are you Narrowing?

    Dennis Crouch
    30 Sep 2014 | 11:54 am
    Millipore v. AllPure (Fed. Cir. 2014) Patent cases are incredibly expensive to litigate.  However, in a series of recent cases courts have appeared more willing to dismiss cases on summary judgment or even on the pleadings.  This case follows that trend with a holding that the defendant does not infringe the asserted patent claims — neither directly nor under the doctrine of equivalents.  In a prior generation patentees could typically get to a jury with an allegation of infringement doctrine of equivalents. However, the court has simultaneously tightened the rules for DOE…
  • Patenting Software in the US as compared with Europe

    Dennis Crouch
    29 Sep 2014 | 4:27 pm
    Guest post by Shubha Ghosh and Erika Ellyne This post compares and contrasts the United States approach to patentable subject after last term’s Alice v CLS decision, with that in the European Union. The bottom line is that the EU may be now more favorable to software claims than the US. In its 2014 Alice decision, the US Supreme Court Court makes clear that a two step test applies to determination of when an invention is patentable subject matter. First, the reviewer of the patent, whether patent examiner or judge, must determine if the patent covers an excluded area from patenting, such…
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    Patent Baristas

  • FDA Warning Letters Expected to Increase in 2015

    Stephen Jenei
    30 Sep 2014 | 11:17 am
    Did you know that the number of FDA warning letters issued increased substantially by 78% from 2007 to 2013? One of the industries that accounted for the highest number of warning letters was Pharmaceutical/Biotechnology. Sparta Systems recently released an infographic that provided an analysis of FDA warning letter trends since 2007, and also gave their predictions for 2015. Here’s how these trends might affect the Pharmaceutical/Biotechnology industry. Related posts: FDA Panel Decides that Foradil Needs Warning Label FDA Bans Import of Generic Drugs From Two Ranbaxy Plants Are any…
  • IQPC’s upcoming Global Patent Strategies Summit

    Stephen Jenei
    30 Sep 2014 | 9:09 am
    EXCLUSIVE PAST SPEAKER PRESENTATIONS Global Patent Strategies Summit December 3-5 · San Jose, CA You may feel a bit like you’re grasping at straws in order to keep up with the ever-changing world of patent law. You’re not alone. IQPC’s upcoming Global Patent Strategies Summit will be your opportunity to learn from fellow patent experts who recognize the most important issues at play in the industry today. Join us December 3rd-5th in San Jose, CA to participate in the interactive forum. But first, take a look at the below presentations from speakers at…
  • Proposed IP Matter Management Invention Disclosure Scheme

    Stephen Jenei
    16 Sep 2014 | 1:50 pm
    I recently received a note form an in-house counsel asking for feedback on a proposed standard for invention disclosures.  This is an offshoot of LEDES ( by representatives from universities, law firms, companies, and software vendors. The intent is to provide an open standard for transferring invention data, typically from inventors to their patent attorneys. The LEDES Intellectual Property Matter Management (IPMM) subcommittee has presented to the LOC membership a working draft of an invention disclosure schema standard and now seeks public feedback.  The IPMM subcommittee…
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    Religion Clause

  • Successful DOMA Challengers Denied Attorneys' Fees Award

    Howard Friedman
    30 Sep 2014 | 4:25 am
    In McLaughlin v. Hagel, (1st Cir., Sept. 23, 2014), the U.S. 1st Circuit Court of Appeals held that plaintiffs who successfully challenged the constituitonality of Sec. 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act are not entitled to an award of attorneys' fees against the government under the Equal Access to Justice Act. According to the court:This extraordinary case presents the unusual situation in which the government's pre-litigation and during-litigation position was to enforce a challenged statute, but in which the government's litigation position was to argue that the challenged statute…
  • Russian Constitutional Court Upholds Ban on Promoting Homosexuality To Minors, Interpreting It Narrowly

    Howard Friedman
    30 Sep 2014 | 4:20 am
    Interfax reported last week that Russia's Constitutional Court has upheld the constitutionality of Article 6.21 of the Russian Code of Administrative Violations that bans promoting homosexuality among minors, but said it must be interpreted narrowly.  The Sept. 23 decision (full text in Russian), which was issued without a public hearing, came in a suit filed by gay rights activists who had been fined under the law. According to Interfax:the Constitutional Court decided that the legislator's purpose was to establish a balance between personal autonomy and the public interest with…
  • Arkansas Firing Range Says It is A "Muslim Free Zone"

    Howard Friedman
    30 Sep 2014 | 4:15 am
    An indoor firing range in Hot Springs, Arkansas has declared itself a "Muslim Free Zone." Jan Morgan, owner of The Gun Cave Indoor Firing Range and conservative online journalist sets out ten reasons for her decision, ranging from strange behavior recently by two Muslim patrons at her firing range to concern about ISIS and honor killings.  She says she has chosen to "err on the side of caution" since she has "no way of discerning which muslims will or will not kill in the name of their religion and the commands in their koran." Addressing the issue of religious discrimination,…
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  • THE SLANTS trademark: The CAFC reply brief

    Ron Coleman
    24 Sep 2014 | 9:37 am
    If you’re following the excitement, you’ve already bookmarked and, presumably, shared with all your friends our initial Federal Circuit brief filed in support of the appeal from the PTO / TTAB’s refusal to register the trademark THE SLANTS to The Slants (in the person of their front man, Simon Tam). You may have missed the PTO’s response, however, in which case that omission has now been made good with the foregoing link.  And it’s been made even better with this (below) — the reply brief we filed in the Federal Circuit yesterday on behalf of Simon and the…
  • Getting the timing right on copyright registrations

    Ron Coleman
    16 Sep 2014 | 8:24 am
    Originally posted 2009-09-10 21:42:19. Republished by Blog Post PromoterMarty Schwimmer: IDEA v PETA (SDNY August 298 2009): Plaintiff, no doubt aware that statutory damages are only available for post-registration copyright infringements that are not part of a continuing, ongoing series of infringing acts of the same kind as those engaged by defendant prior to the effective date of registration, alleged in its amended complaint that “Upon information and belief, PETA has commenced new infringements, and prepared and exploited new and materially different Infringing Materials since the…
  • Defamation nation

    Ron Coleman
    16 Sep 2014 | 8:24 am
    Originally posted 2008-11-26 11:48:32. Republished by Blog Post PromoterWe know a little about defamation law, but Adrianos Facchetti appears to be the go-to man in the blogosphere, so from now on, ask him!  He writes the California Defamation Law Blog, which does not appear to be limited, topically, to California law, and which includes pages called Defamation Basics and Blog Protection 101.  Wow!  Hat tip to Carolyn Elefant via Twitter. UPDATE:  Never mind.  I think it’s gone — gone as so many of them are…
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    Sentencing Law and Policy

  • Ohio AG puts onus on Ohio legislature to reboot state's machinery of death

    Douglas A. Berman
    30 Sep 2014 | 1:58 pm
    As reported in this local article, headlined "DeWine: Executions on hold until legislators change law," Ohio's Attorney General has now suggested that the state will not even seek to move forward with executions in 2015 unless and until Ohio's General...
  • Making the full case for Mitt Romney, drug czar

    Douglas A. Berman
    30 Sep 2014 | 7:54 am
    Regular readers may recall this post from a few months ago in which I highlighted the brilliant and provocative commentary by Mark Osler headlined "Mitt Romney for drug czar." Now I can post Mark's fuller explication of the ideas that...
  • Reviewing how death is different (but still being used) in Japan

    Douglas A. Berman
    30 Sep 2014 | 7:11 am
    This new piece from The Economist, headlined "The death penalty in Japan: Hanging tough," discusses the on-going debate over capital punishment in the Land of the Rising Sun. Here are excerpts: It is one of the anomalies of Japan’s approach...
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    Grits for Breakfast

  • Do sweltering Texas prisons violate international human rights standards?

    30 Sep 2014 | 8:53 am
    This morning I received a press a press release from UT Law School's Human Rights Clinic related to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights'  announcement that it "will hold a hearing in Washington, D.C. on October 27, 2014 regarding Texas' violation of prison inmates' human rights by exposing them to dangerously hot temperatures. The IACHR is an independent organ of the Organization of American States, whose mission is to promote and protect human rights in the Western hemisphere." Find the full text of the press release below the jump: INTER-AMERICAN COMMISSION ON…
  • 'Brady's Blind Spot: Impeachment evidence in police personnel files'

    30 Sep 2014 | 6:37 am
    Here's an academic article by Stanford law prof Jonathan Abel titled, "Brady's Blind Spot: Impeachment evidence in police personnel files and the battle splitting the prosecution team." It reminds me of debates surrounding the newly implemented Michael Morton Act in Texas, which bolstered defense counsel's access to prosecutors' files. Prosecutors have complained of extra expense and hassle involved in making their files available. But less attention has been paid to the fact that - particularly in the case of impeachment evidence  - that there's a gaping hole in the discovery process…
  • Secure Communities program not making communities safer

    26 Sep 2014 | 8:58 am
    One of the first comprehensive statistical analyses of the federal Secure Communities program - which engages local jailers as immigration agents to deport immigrants accused of crimes - found that the program "led to no meaningful reductions in the FBI index crime rate. Nor has it reduced rates of violent crime — homicide, rape, robbery, or aggravated assault. This evidence shows that the program has not served its central objective of making communities safer."Texas Sheriffs, take notice and cease participation in this program.H/T: Sentencing Law & Policy
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    Drug and Device Law

  • Removal May Prove Difficult for Compounding Pharmacies

    Michelle Yeary
    30 Sep 2014 | 12:20 pm
                Like pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers, it is not surprising that compounding pharmacies facing personal injury/products liability litigation prefer the typically more defense-friendly federal arena over the often more challenging (to put it mildly) state court system.  But as today’s case demonstrates, that may not be the easiest path for compounders to follow.            The case is Cruz v. Preferred Homecare, 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 132647 (D. Nev.
  • Negligence Per Se and Fraud Claims Dismissed in Risperdal Litigation

    John J. Sullivan
    29 Sep 2014 | 11:59 am
    The Middle District of Florida in Gallant v. Ortho-McNeil-Jannsen Pharmaceuticals, Inc., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 131769 (M.D. Fla. Sept. 29, 2014), recently addressed a plaintiff’s negligence per se and fraud claims in the Risperdal litigation.  It dismissed the negligence per se claim, a claim that is a bit unusual for a drug case.  While device plaintiffs often use such claims to try to avoid preemption, plaintiffs in drug cases ordinarily don’t have that concern.  But, ordinary or not, the claim remains improper.  Negligence per se claims generally seek to treat…
  • Prosecuting Alleged Adulteration Through Off-Label Use Of A Device

    Eric Alexander
    26 Sep 2014 | 10:00 am
                Our first post of the fall (and new year, according the Hebrew calendar), concerns something we do not usually post about – the adequacy of allegations in a criminal indictment.  Much like we feel about seasonal changes, we have mixed views about the opinion in United States v. Kaplan, No. 2:13-CR-00377-PMP-CWH, 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 124174 (D. Nev. Sept. 5, 2014), a review of a Magistrate’s Report and Recommendation (R&R) found at 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 124176.  The case involves allegations that a urologist,…
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    Crime and Consequences Blog

  • News Scan

    CJLF Staff
    30 Sep 2014 | 1:36 pm
    Murderer Sentenced to Life: A Massachusetts man convicted of murdering three people in 2011 has been sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.  Anthony Fay of WWLP News reports that Caius Veiovis was sentenced to three consecutive life terms for the killings, which is the mandatory sentence required under state law.  Two other men were also convicted in the murders and are currently serving life terms.  Prosecutors May Pursue the Death Penalty for Beheading Suspect: Prosecutors in Oklahoma have announced that they will likely seek the death penalty against…
  • No Word From the Long Conference

    Kent Scheidegger
    30 Sep 2014 | 10:11 am
    The expected orders list the day after the "long conference" didn't come today, as it has in prior years. SCOTUSblog has this editor's note at the top of their home page:In previous years, the Court released orders the morning after the Court's "Long Conference." It has not done so this year. Beginning last Term, the Court consistently considered petitions at least two times before granting certiorari. To the extent that practice continues -- and there is no affirmative evidence the Court intends to drop it -- we would not expect orders granting certiorari today.
  • Senate Watch

    Kent Scheidegger
    29 Sep 2014 | 4:45 pm
    At five weeks to election day, Chris Cillizza at the WaPo aggregates the election forecasting models for us.  "All three major election forecasting models saw an uptick in the likelihood of Republicans winning the six seats they need to retake the Senate majority over the past week, movement largely due to the party's strengthened chances in Alaska, Colorado and Iowa."
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  • Tuesday Open Thread

    30 Sep 2014 | 6:01 am
    Long day in Court today, which means an open thread for you. All topics welcome. [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • Hostage John Cantlie Messages: Episode 2 Released

    29 Sep 2014 | 3:02 pm
    Al Furqan Media has released the second episode of British hostage John Cantlie's video series today. You can view it here (If You Tube removes it, you can get it here.) The topic is President Obama's speech on 9/11 against ISIS. These... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • Brazilian Hotel Evacuated as Hostage Paraded on Balcony

    29 Sep 2014 | 11:09 am
    An employee at a luxury hotel in Brasilia has been taken hostage, handcuffed, strapped in a suicide vest and paraded on the balcony of a room on the 13th floor, with a gun to his head. The hotel has been evacuated and police are trying to get the... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
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    TheFunded Founder Institute News

  • Financial Tips For Avoiding Startup Failure

    30 Sep 2014 | 3:00 pm
    Too many budding entrepreneurs have endeavored to launch a successful startup only to meet failure, oftentimes before their project has even left the ground. With the nearly countless ways in which startups can acquire funding, it is also more important than ever that founders are aware of the financial fundamentals for their startups. The following blog post from Worthworm enumerates several pieces of advice to help entrepreneurs keep their companies financially stable. Worthworm is the only web-based tool that uses thousands of calculations and industry comparables to create a credible PMV,…
  • The Founder Institute’s Standard Advisor Agreement for Startups ("FAST")

    30 Sep 2014 | 2:50 pm
    As the world's largest entrepreneur training and startup launch program, the Founder Institute looks to help solve problems for entrepreneurs and threaten innovation. One significant problem that faces the Founder Institute's [total_graduates] Graduate companies and [total_mentors] Mentors is forming an advisor agreement. We have gotten literally hundreds of advisor agreements to review - and every one is different. It shouldn't be complicated to set-up a framework around a simple desire for Mentors to lend a hand, and for startups to get help.  As a result, we created “FAST”…
  • Ask Founder Institute Graduates Questions on Wednesday’s Online Graduate Q&A Panel

    29 Sep 2014 | 11:00 pm
    Have questions about what it’s like to go through the Founder Institute? Then join us for an upcoming Online Graduate Q&A Panel, where you can learn about the program from entrepreneurs who launched their companies through the Founder Institute program.  The next Online Graduate Q&A Panel is scheduled for Wednesday, October 1st, at 10:15am PDT (see local time). RSVP for the Panel The Founder Institute has over 1,000 graduate companies, and they have gone on to create over 10,000 new jobs across the globe. On this interactive webinar, you can ask graduates any…
  • Silicon Valley-based Founder Institute Officially Launches Startup Program in Estonia

    29 Sep 2014 | 8:35 pm
    Over the last two months, the Founder Institute (the world's largest entrepreneur training and startup launch program) has hosted a series of free startup events in Tallinn in order to gauge interest in a new Estonia Founder Institute Chapter. The reponse to this trial has been impressive, as our events have attracted over 150 potential applicants in Tallinn. As a result of strong demand for the program, we have some very exciting news - we are officially announcing the launch of the Tallinn Founder Institute! Applications to the program are open now, and anyone interested in launching a…
  • 9 Strategies For Launching a Consumer Startup

    29 Sep 2014 | 8:13 pm
    From beginning to finish, launching a startup is a complex and laborious endeavor. Everyday is an adventure, and problems will arise quickly. Whether you’re an aspiring app designer or seasoned engineering extraordinaire, you will have numerous questions along the journey of entrepreneurship that “Google” will not be able to answer precisely. For this reason, the Founder Institute has gathered our expansive network of entrepreneurs to solve the problems you encounter each day.  In this installment of Ask an Expert, Founder Institute graduates answer this…
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  • Federal judge limits health care subsidies

    Lyle Denniston
    30 Sep 2014 | 12:54 pm
    Deepening the controversy over tax subsidies to help lower-income workers obtain health insurance, a federal trial judge in Oklahoma on Tuesday barred those credits for individuals who shop for coverage on marketplaces run by the federal government, not by a state. That issue is already awaiting the Supreme Court’s attention, with the federal government due to file there on Friday a defense of the subsidies scheme that has so far helped nearly five million individuals to afford health coverage under the Affordable Care Act.  (That case is King v. Burwell.) In Oklahoma, U.S. District…
  • Tuesday round-up

    Amy Howe
    30 Sep 2014 | 8:47 am
    Yesterday the Justices met for the so-called “Long Conference,” at which they considered new petitions for certiorari for the first time since late June.  Once again, news coverage of the Court focuses on the cases slated for consideration at that conference, and in particular the seven petitions arising out of challenges to state bans on same-sex marriage.  Ben Winslow of Fox 13 News in Salt Lake City summarizes the story in Utah, where state officials have asked the Court to review a decision by the Tenth Circuit striking down that state’s ban.  In his Sidebar column for The New…
  • Editor’s Note

    Andrew Hamm
    30 Sep 2014 | 8:20 am
    In previous years, the Court released orders the morning after the Court’s “Long Conference.” It has not done so this year. Beginning last Term, the Court consistently considered petitions at least two times before granting certiorari. To the extent that practice continues — and there is no affirmative evidence the Court intends to drop it — we would not expect orders granting certiorari today. In association with Bloomberg Law
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    Larry Bodine Law Marketing Blog

  • Using Blog Posts to Generate Leads and New Clients

    Larry Bodine
    9 Sep 2014 | 11:52 am
    Get a free Content Review of your website today. Email me the URL of your website -- or call 520.577.9759 -- for your no-obligation content evaluation.   For high-growth firms, blogging is the single most important business development tactic – it is more effective than SEO, social media or email marketing. “What’s really important is that blogging is one of the key things that by itself will help you with your SEO,” said Lee Frederiksen, managing partner of Hinge Marketing, speaking on a recent webinar. Combined with the fact that 80% of potential…
  • Perfect Headline is Six Words Long

    Larry Bodine
    15 Aug 2014 | 5:11 pm
  • Death of the Web Conference - New Research from

    Larry Bodine
    12 Aug 2014 | 3:55 pm
    As virtual meetings become more commonplace, legacy web conferencing software is wasting an unacceptable amount of time, according to a new study from Ovum and It is based on a survey of more than 3,900 full-time professionals worldwide, regarding their collaborative behaviors and activities. The key findings from this report: Late start times are costing executives 5 days and 19 hours per year in lost time and productivity. Technical difficulties with web conferencing software is the number one cause of delayed meetings. More than 50 percent of employees report that the number…
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    Jim Calloway's Law Practice Tips Blog

  • You are not paranoid when they are watching you

    Jim Calloway
    25 Sep 2014 | 11:41 am
    Rarely would I do a blog post just to point out two other writer's blog posts. But there is such a nice connection between today's blog posts from my friends and colleagues, Sharon Nelson of Sensei Enterprises and Bob Ambrogi,...
  • What Is Your Law Firm's Social Media Strategy?

    Jim Calloway
    25 Sep 2014 | 11:11 am
    How law firm can effectively use social media is a topic open for debate. I have seen some very persuasive individuals tell audiences that a social media strategy is absolutely critical for law firms. I have heard from lawyers who...
  • What is Your Job Description?

    Jim Calloway
    15 Sep 2014 | 4:00 am
    The Law Practice Magazine Sept/Oct 2014 issue is out and the theme is law firm Finance. As always. there is lots of good content, including Starting a Financial Relationship With Your Client- Packaging your fee agreement with an eye toward...
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    Robert Ambrogi's LawSites

  • Estate Map Returns, in a Consumer-Facing Beta

    Robert Ambrogi
    30 Sep 2014 | 7:01 am
    Remember Estate Map? It launched just over a year ago as a cloud-based tool for estate planning lawyers and their clients. Then, last April, its founder, Minneapolis lawyer Joseph Henderson, announced he was closing it down. In its place, he said then, he planned to launch a new site, to be marketed directly to consumers, […] The post Estate Map Returns, in a Consumer-Facing Beta appeared first on Robert Ambrogi's LawSites.
  • Everywhere You Go, Google is Watching — and Mapping Your Location

    Robert Ambrogi
    25 Sep 2014 | 6:26 am
    I was in Chicago this week for the Clio Cloud Conference, where I sat in horrified disbelief as keynote speaker Cindy Cohn, legal director of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, described the extent of government snooping on our digital lives. As we all know, of course, it is not just the government that is tracking us. […] The post Everywhere You Go, Google is Watching — and Mapping Your Location appeared first on Robert Ambrogi's LawSites.
  • Lots of News from Clio, Including Integration with Fastcase

    Robert Ambrogi
    22 Sep 2014 | 7:42 am
      The Clio Cloud Conference kicked off this morning in Chicago with a keynote by company cofounder Jack Newton in which he made a number of major announcements. Notably, Newton announced a new integration partnership between Clio and the Fastcase legal research platform, making Clio the only practice-management application to integrate with Fastcase. (But not […] The post Lots of News from Clio, Including Integration with Fastcase appeared first on Robert Ambrogi's LawSites.
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    Wise Law Blog

  • 140 Law - Legal Headlines for Tuesday, September 30, 2014

    Rachel, Law Clerk
    30 Sep 2014 | 6:04 am
    Here are the leading legal headlines from Wise Law on Twitter for Tuesday, September 30, 2014:Toronto police officer rebuked by judge for fabricating evidenceMadoff son under scrutiny until day he died Lawyer admits records a ‘disaster,’ apologizes for bilking LAO Luka Magnotta admits to killing Jun Lin but pleads not guiltyWhen Waiving a Search Comes Back to Haunt You  Ontario farmers win tax credit for food bank donations OSC alleges Mitchell Finkelstein and Paul Azeff’s insider trading damaged reputation of marketsUS Supreme Court justices meet to consider taking gay…
  • 140 Law - Legal Headlines for Monday, September 29, 2014

    Rachel, Law Clerk
    29 Sep 2014 | 6:36 am
    Here are the leading legal headlines from Wise Law on Twitter for Monday, September 29, 2014:California adopts 'yes means yes' bill aimed at reducing sexual assaultMurder trial of Luka Rocco Magnotta set to begin in Montreal on Monday  “Strengthening” Citizenship May Weaken EconomyFrance announces world’s toughest anti-smoking laws Royal succession law stands as Ontario appeal court dismisses Catholic challengeRetirement plans may impact notice entitlements  Four Years Later, the Scars of the G20 Persist | TorontoistMcGill law students insulted by controversial Canadian Lawyer…
  • 140 Law - Legal Headlines for Friday, September 26, 2014

    Rachel, Law Clerk
    26 Sep 2014 | 8:05 am
    Here are the leading legal headlines from Wise Law on Twitter for Friday, September 26, 2014:California bans prisons from sterilizing inmates without their consentCalvin Wank arrested for public indecency Eight hours of digging in the dirt: American man describes life as a prisoner in North Korea  Amendments to Rule 48 bring major changes to administrative dismissals The Hill: Long summer of government discord with legal profession Supreme Court of Canada Justice Cromwell outlines six ways to increase access to justice CRTC vs. Netflix: Has Canada’s broadcast…
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  • New Blog Design

    29 Sep 2014 | 7:12 pm
    This post is a test of my new blog redesign. A big thank you to Aaron and Dylan Lopez at Inno Software for the redesign and revamping of my blog and website and for being so great to work with. There’s still work for me to do, but the redesign is now live.An even bigger thank you to Lance Long, who took care of my website and blog for many years before passing it on to Aaron and Dylan.
  • GC Research Club Interview about Legal Technology

    24 Jun 2014 | 6:32 pm
    William Barns Graham at the GC Research Club interviewed me a while back about technology as it relates to in-house counsel, some of my uses of technology, collaboration and other topics. The interview originally ran in two parts, but has been collected conveniently in one place, as “GCRC Interview: Dennis Kennedy, Vice President, Counsel at MasterCard Worldwide – Whole Interview” on the website, along with other interviews, all of which I would recommend. It’s nice to be able to reach an international audience with this interview.Ann Page, in her…
  • Presentation Tips for Legal Professionals: A Podcast Series

    29 May 2014 | 5:24 pm
    I’ve done a number of presentations lately in all sorts of formats – solo, duo, panels and webcasts. For the Kennedy-Mighell Report podcast on the Legal Talk Network, Tom and I decided to record an episode in which we shared some of our latest tips and observations about presenting. The result was the episode called “Presentation Tips for Legal Professionals.” After that podcast, we realized that we had barely tapped the surface of what we wanted to say on presentations, so I was able to talk Tom into recording two more episodes on presenting as part of a panel and presenting on…
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    Law Technology Today

  • The Secret to Secure Data in the Cloud? Know What You’re Up Against

    Ajay Patel
    30 Sep 2014 | 5:30 am
    The issues of data security and sovereignty have become hot topics in recent years as increasing amounts of sensitive, confidential and personal information is stored in the cloud. With these concerns have come revisions to laws in many countries and jurisdictions to keep up with the changing landscape of data privacy. The trickiest thing to legislate is managing the exchange of information across borders, simultaneously allowing the transfer of data while maintaining the maximum level of security. This requires multi-national agreements in an attempt to get different countries with…
  • Reconnecting with Your Passion for the Law

    Leah Jackman-Wheitner
    29 Sep 2014 | 5:30 am
    Tom, a corporate lawyer, was ready to jump ship. He hated his life. In particular, he couldn’t stand his job. He felt his work was meaningless, serving no greater good. Elizabeth was exhausted by years of big law time demands. She loved the idea of practicing law—working to help clients move through difficult life situations—but her passion was being crushed under the weight of pressures placed on her by a few toxic coworkers and opposing counsel. Chris had an audible tremor in his voice when he talked about his future. He felt he was trapped in a profession that sapped his creativity…
  • In Depth: Social Media

    Gwynne Monahan
    26 Sep 2014 | 5:30 am
    Surprise! Social media is not a fad. From networking to marketing to eDiscovery and picking and monitoring juries (yes, really), it plays a role in the practice of law. But what, exactly, is social media? Community. Communication. Storytelling. Social media is an elastic media, meaning it changes and adjusts the more it is used. Twitter started as a way to send quick status updates about what you were doing, and now it’s a news source and a way to organize groups–be it a friendly meetup or political uprising. Social media’s elasticity makes it useful, challenging, and…
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    Amazing Firms, Amazing Practices

  • Icebergs and Sea Monsters in Treacherous Legal Seas

    Gerry Riskin
    25 Sep 2014 | 2:26 am
      I was privileged to have been asked by the American Bar Association to write an article about the future of the legal profession for “The Annual Big Ideas Issue” of Law Practice Magazine (July/August 2014). Click on the image to read the article in full. I hope you enjoy it. Gerry      
  • Don’t Let “Age Profiling” Slow Your Firm

    Gerry Riskin
    11 Sep 2014 | 5:46 am
    I recently wrote a post for Edge International Communiqué on the perils of making age-based assumptions about our legal-profession colleagues. I share it here for those who missed it. Both older and younger lawyers can let all kinds of intergenerational nonsense get in the way of clear thinking. The misunderstandings that result can do actual damage to their firms. Older lawyers have told me that lawyers in the younger generation simply do not have the values that they did. “The younger generation expects to have it all. They didn’t need to earn it the way we did. They lack our…
  • Can You Be Too Nice?

    Gerry Riskin
    27 Aug 2014 | 6:48 am
    To most of us, courtesy and consideration are almost second nature. However, Michael Fertik — founder of — says that when we assume a leadership capacity, being “too nice” can actually be detrimental to our organizations. In a guest blog for the Harvard Business Review Fertik says: Many yield to [the instinct to be nice], because it feels much easier to be liked. Few people want to be the bad guy. But leaders are also expected to make the tough decisions that serve the company or the team’s best interests. Being too nice can be lazy, inefficient,…
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    LawBiz® Blog

  • In with the new, out with the old

    Ed Poll
    29 Sep 2014 | 8:39 am
    When I first heard the news, I was surprised that Baker Hostleter accepted the assignment from the Republican Party to sue President Obama for allegedly overstepping the boundaries of Executive Power. Why? The first reason that came to mind was that such a high profile assignment would identify them as a Republican oriented law firm. This likely would alienate half the population.  Why would one willingly toss away one-half of your prospective market? Of course, some believe that any publicity is good publicity. For example, Baker Hostetler was lampooned earlier this month when Jimmy Fallon…
  • Networking

    Ed Poll
    25 Sep 2014 | 6:00 am
    Developing your practice and business will always be a priority.  This week, Ed shares tips about how networking can help you do this.
  • Serious Challenges for the New CalBar President

    Ed Poll
    22 Sep 2014 | 10:20 am
    Congratulations to Craig E. Holden, the new president of the State Bar of California. Among other attributes, Mr. Holden is a partner in the major law firm of Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith LLP, a person of color, a former member of the executive committee of the CalBar Law Practice Management & Technology Section, and the youngest person to be elected president of the California State Bar. Each of these attributes is sufficient to give Mr. Holden a sensitivity to the needs of the average lawyer. However, taken together, they provide an appropriate backdrop for one of his major goals…
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    Innocence Blog

  • Inside Look on Freeing the Innocent

    30 Sep 2014 | 2:20 pm
    Nearly a month after two North Carolina half brothers were declared innocent and ordered released from prison based on DNA evidence that implicated another man, two people who played pivotal roles in overturning their convictions spoke about the case to North Carolina's Public Radio. Henry Lee McCollum, 50, who spent 30 years on death row, and Leon Brown, 46, were convicted of the rape and murder of a young girl and languished behind bars until the North Carolina's Innocence Inquiry Commission started an investigation into their case. Kendra Montgomery-Blinn, the Commission's executive…
  • Washington Man Compensated for Ten Years Behind Bars

    29 Sep 2014 | 3:15 pm
    An Innocence Project Northwest (IPNW) client was awarded nearly a half a million dollars in compensation at a hearing on Friday. Brandon Olebar spent 10 years behind bars after being wrongly convicted of robbery and burglary based solely on eyewitness identification. The Seattle Times reported that Olebar is the organization's first client to receive compensation under a law passed last year. He was granted $546,690 - $49,671 of which will go toward covering attorney fees. Olebar, who was joined at the hearing by his wife and newborn daughter, told the Times he plans to use the money to get…
  • Innocence Project Applauds Outgoing Attorney General

    26 Sep 2014 | 3:25 am
    Following the announcement on Thursday by Attorney General Eric Holder that he will be stepping down as the nation's attorney general, the Innocence Project commends his tremendous leadership in helping to uncover and prevent wrongful convictions. Innocence Project Co-Director Peter Neufeld had the following to say about his service: Attorney General Holder has been an outstanding advocate for justice in many ways, but under his tenure several things stand out in his leadership to protect the innocent. He took a critical first step in validating and developing scientific standards for…
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    Charon QC

  • Rive Gauche: A little bit of Lord Chancellor Grayling…and why not, indeed?

    Charon QC
    27 Sep 2014 | 4:06 am
    The Lord Chancellor, Chris Grayling, continues to amaze, but not amuse, the legal profession and others… Justice Secretary Grayling tells Scots MPs: Get off my lawn Chris Grayling, the Justice Secretary, warns of a “travesty of democracy” if Scottish MPs are allowed to have a say over English laws A senior Cabinet minister tells Scottish Labour MPs to get off his territory, in a dramatic escalation of the battle for the future of British democracy. Chris Grayling, the Justice Secretary, accuses Labour of seeking to erase England from the map of the United Kingdom as he…
  • Back to blogging and podcasting

    Charon QC
    26 Sep 2014 | 2:09 am
    Just a quick note to say…back to blogging and podcasting this weekend. In the meantime…apropos of nothing in particular, I feel that I need yellow frames for my reading glasses to add more colour. I shall go and startle some local opticians to see what they can find for me. A più tardi as we used to say down at the “Old Dog & Duck”..
  • Rive Gauche: Talk like a Pirate day…

    Charon QC
    21 Sep 2014 | 8:33 am
    Some may take the view that the gentlemen pictured below are pirates.  In the famous words of another ‘politico’ from fiction:  ”You may think that.  I couldn’t possibly comment” Read And… if you haven’t already seen this – worth looking at… Buckingham Palace dancing Guardsman may face prison Pirouetting Guardsman could be imprisoned after footage of the unnamed soldier dancing is viewed more than 1.5 million times on YouTube Watch the clip
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    UNDERDOG - Fairfax Criminal/DWI Attorney - Northern Virginia.

  • Unarmed victim of police shooting displayed top character throughout.

    25 Sep 2014 | 9:00 pm
    By Fairfax County/Northern Virginia/Maryland/Beltway criminal defense lawyer Jon Katz. Defending DWI/ DUI/ Drunk Driving, drugs, marijuana/medical marijuana/cultivation, sex cases, felonies and misdemeanors. Fighting relentlessly for the best possible results for his clients.South Carolina Trooper Sean Groubert's unjustified shooting of an unarmed man (see the police dashcam video here) retrieving his license as ordered by Groubert, underlines the need to shrink and improve the criminal justice system to have only the best police acting only at their best. The shot man, Levar Jones, is…
  • Treating criminal defendants as individuals: The military court and immigration consequence examples.

    21 Sep 2014 | 9:00 pm
    By Fairfax County/Northern Virginia/Maryland/Beltway criminal defense lawyer Jon Katz. Defending DWI/ DUI/ Drunk Driving, drugs, marijuana/medical marijuana/cultivation, sex cases, felonies and misdemeanors. Fighting relentlessly for the best possible results for his clients.Too many criminal court judges and prosecutors see criminal defendants more as numbers than individuals. To treat them as individuals might incline them to allow more time for each case in the face of bursting court dockets, and will make them have to more directly confront the human consequences of how they treat each…
  • Lawyering without borders, and as the real McCoy.

    20 Sep 2014 | 9:00 pm
    By Fairfax County/Northern Virginia/Maryland/Beltway criminal defense lawyer Jon Katz. Defending DWI/ DUI/ Drunk Driving, drugs, marijuana/medical marijuana/cultivation, sex cases, felonies and misdemeanors. Fighting relentlessly for the best possible results for his clients. When we were selling our house, our very experienced real estate agent emphasized minimizing displays of family pictures, and keeping the appearance and mood neutral, to make it easier for potential buyers to see the house as their potential house. Most hotels I stay at are neutral, even some of the so-called best ones.
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    The Legal Satyricon

  • Criminal Heterosexual Speech

    Jay Marshall Wolman
    10 Sep 2014 | 6:52 am
    Though the title of this post sounds like SEO keyword trolling, it is not. Yesterday, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court released its opinion in Commonwealth v. Sullivan (can be found here). Mr. Sullivan was found guilty of violating G.L. c. 272, sec. 53, which sets forth the statutory penalty for prostitution as well as “persons […]
  • A loss, is a tie, is a win.

    Jay Marshall Wolman
    20 Aug 2014 | 2:07 pm
    The Connecticut Bar Association voted on whether to sign onto a brief in support of a firearms law. The House of Delegates voted yes, 2-1, but there was a referendum petition. A vote was taken. By a vote of 734-729 (5 votes), the members voted to join the brief. Those opposed to signing the brief […]
  • That’s one way to do it

    12 Aug 2014 | 10:33 am
    It is a pretty common story — “christians” protest other people having fun. In this case, a church in Ohio decided that it is their business to protest a strip club and to harass its patrons. What makes the story uncommon — the strippers decided to protest the church. Filed under: misc
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    Ohio Employer's Law Blog

  • When the same actor hires and fires, discrimination is unlikely

    Jon Hyman
    30 Sep 2014 | 5:01 am
    It seems to be common sense that if the decision maker accused of a discriminatory adverse action is also the individual responsible for earlier hiring that same person, it is unlikely that a discriminatory reason motivated the latter decision. After all, if I discriminate against people of a certain race (or gender, age, religion, etc.), why would I hire them in the first place? Wouldn’t I just not hire them to keep them out of my organization? Courts refer to this as the “same-actor inference” — inferring a lack of discrimination from the fact that the same individual both hired and…
  • What does an ADA interactive process not look like?

    Jon Hyman
    29 Sep 2014 | 4:58 am
    Upon attempting to return from a medical leave of absence, an employee requests the following accommodations: an ergonomic chair, adjusted lighting in her office, and a part-time schedule for the next eight days. Instead of providing the accommodations, or even discussing their availability, the employer refuses to permit the employee to return to work, instead telling her not to return until it was with no restrictions or accommodations. The company later fires the employee (seven days after she filed an EEOC charge challenging the failure-to-accommodate), telling her that she failed to…
  • WIRTW #338 (the “can you find me now” edition)

    Jon Hyman
    26 Sep 2014 | 3:32 am
    According to a recent Harris Poll, men are nearly twice as likely to lose their smartphones than women (46% to 27%). Moreover, the younger you are, the more likely you are to lose your phone. For employees age 18-34, 60% of men report losing their smartphones, as compared to only 30% of women. My own house is the exception, not the rule. Neither my wife nor I fall into the 18-34 demo (sorry, honey), and she is much more likely to be one saying, “Have you seen my phone,” as we’re trying to leave the house. So, readers, what say you? Who loses their phones more, men or women? Here’s the…
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    Privacy Law Blog

  • Toward the enforceability of the “right to be forgotten” in Europe

    Cecile Martin
    24 Sep 2014 | 8:20 am
    Cecile Martin The European Court of Justice, in a decision rendered on May 13, 2014, held that search engines are considered data controllers under the Directive of October 24, 1995 on data protection, and as such they must provide data subjects with a “right to be forgotten.” In that ruling, the European Court outlined that an individual is entitled to request search engines to have links and URLs removed from the lists of results displayed following a search on the basis of a person’s name.  This means that to enforce the right to be forgotten, an individual does not have to request…
  • California Breaks New Ground in Education Privacy Law with K-12 Student Data Privacy Bill

    Maritza Jean-Louis
    17 Sep 2014 | 11:14 am
    Maritza Jean-Louis A substantial rise in schools’ use of online educational technology products has caused educators to become increasingly reliant on these products to develop their curricula, deliver materials to students in real time, and monitor students’ progress and learning habits through the collection of data by third-party cloud computing service providers.  Unfortunately, with these advances come the data security concerns that go hand-in-hand with cloud computing—such as data breaches, hacking, spyware, and the potential misappropriation or misuse of sensitive personal…
  • Major Barrier to E-Commerce in Middle East and North Africa is Fear about Data Security

    Laura Shovlowsky
    4 Sep 2014 | 3:46 am
    Laura Shovlowsky In a recent article published by Law 360, Proskauer litigation associate Courtney Bowman outlines how companies can make inroads in the e-commerce market in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).  Although often overlooked, the region’s relative wealth and level of internet penetration make its more stable areas attractive markets for those companies willing to undertake the steps necessary to understand the region’s cultural nuances and customer preferences.  Two of the most significant barriers to e-commerce growth in MENA is the widespread reluctance of customers…
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    Lawyers, Guns & Money

  • The Michigan football mess

    Paul Campos
    30 Sep 2014 | 10:32 am
    On Saturday, Michigan’s beleaguered football coach Brady Hoke decides to start sophomore Shane Morris at quarterback against Minnesota, over fifth-year senior and long-time starter Devin Gardner. Morris is very ineffective against a weak team over whom Michigan is favored by double digits, despite the Wolverines’ poor play this season. Early in the third quarter, Morris injures his ankle. His play goes from ineffective to catastrophic, as the injury appears to grow progressively worse. By early in the fourth quarter, Morris’ mobility seems seriously compromised, yet Hoke…
  • I’m Beginning To Think That Arthur Laffer And Stephen Moore Are Not Credible Economists

    Scott Lemieux
    30 Sep 2014 | 10:08 am
    The basic outlines will be familiar to most of you, but John Judis does an excellent job of describing the Koch-induced meltdown in Kansas, filling in a lot of interesting details. (Sam Brownback is obsessed with John Brown, which cannot be a good thing on any level.) The bottom line: After he had ousted the moderate Republicans, Brownback was able to push an ideologically pure agenda with almost no real opposition. He obtained the power to nominate judges. He reduced tax cuts on the wealthy even more: The rate for the top bracket fell from 6.45 percent to 3.9 percent, and Brownback promised…
  • Whose American Exceptionalism?

    Erik Loomis
    30 Sep 2014 | 9:12 am
    In the recent battles over the new AP U.S. History standards, standards that center nothing more than the standard narrative of most American historians in 2014, one of the right-wing critiques is that they don’t celebrate American exceptionalism, while instead instilling in our young people that they should question authority (the horror!). Among the many problems with these assertions is that the idea of American exceptionalism in service of whatever right-wing agenda is currently popular means forgetting the many ways that exceptionalism has operated in the past. Kevin Levin: Part of…
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  • Sexual Dysfunction Can Lead to Family Dissolution

    30 Sep 2014 | 1:16 pm
    I have been an attorney for 43 years and have been married for 40 years. On a frequent basis I represent individuals and families in crisis dealing with issues of domestic violence, substance abuse, pornography, infidelity, child abuse, break-up of families, and crime. Angry and depressed people engage in risky behaviors. If you are not having frequent and sexually satisfying sex in your relationship with your partner, it is just a matter of time before you will be facing one or more of these issues:infidelity, domestic violence, pornography, substance abuse, child abuse, and dissolution of…
  • Novato, others settle lawsuit over girl killed by SUV

    30 Sep 2014 | 1:09 pm
    Novato, others settle lawsuit over girl killed by SUV from Simon W. Johnson Law Office of Simon W. Johnson Martindale Avvo Justia FindLaw LawInfo LawGuru LinkedIn Twitter Facebook Serving Beachwood, Cleveland and Ohio
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    Connecticut Employment Law Blog

  • Are You a Joint Employer? It May Depend on the Court’s Test

    Daniel Schwartz
    29 Sep 2014 | 5:03 am
    Can an employee work for more than one employer at the same time? Under a theory of law called “joint employment”, the answer is yes. But how do you make that determination? Suppose a private bus company provides services all over Connecticut. It’s largest customer happens to be a very large private university in the state. The company provides both interstate and intrastate service for the university, as well as shuttle bus service for the campus. Are the bus drivers employees of both the bus company and the university?  A recent case in the federal court in…
  • Julia Roberts Would Not Be Impressed: Mystic Pizza Cited for Wage/Hour Violations

    Daniel Schwartz
    26 Sep 2014 | 5:00 am
    Oh, Mystic Pizza! In Connecticut, we all know that Mystic Pizza isn’t the best pizza in the state.  (I’m not even going to get into the argument about Pepe’s, Sally’s, or Modern in New Haven.)  One of my favorites is actually Harry’s Bishops Corner. But Mystic Pizza still has a place in many of our hearts in the state due to a film in 1988 of the same name. After all, how many movies before it were filmed in Connecticut?  (Turns out there are 81 films total. Who knew?) And better still, it starred Julia Roberts, right before she really hit it big in Pretty…
  • The Telegraph Is No More. And Neither Is the Law Regarding Telegraphs.

    Daniel Schwartz
    25 Sep 2014 | 4:59 am
    A year ago, I called on the legislature to update its employment laws to reflect modern realities.  (It’s actually something I’ve done for a number of years, but who’s counting?) One of the laws I highlighted restricted “telegraph” companies from distributing goods or messages in the overnight hours.  Because the telegraph no longer is used in the United States, it just seemed to me that it was time the legislature do something about that law. Thanks to a tip from Attorney Jay Wolman, I’m happy to report that earlier this year, the legislature deleted…
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    JD Supra Hot Docs - Newsworthy Legal Filings From the Source

  • Summit Transport Corp. v. Hess Energy Marketing, LLC: Brief in Opposition to Hess's 12(b)(6) Motion to Dismiss

    Ronald Coleman
    30 Sep 2014 | 7:35 am
    Case Name: Summit Transport Corp. v. Hess Energy Marketing, LLC Document Name: Brief in Opposition to Hess's 12(b)(6) Motion to Dismiss Post Date: 09/30/2014 Filing Date: 09/22/2014 Document Summary: Opposition to a motion to dismiss by Hess Energy Marketing and Hess Corporation regarding allegations that Hess (consisting of the business owned or alternatively succeeded to by the two defendants) breached a joint venture arrangement with plaintiff involving servicing and developing the New York City fuel oil market beginning in the 1980's.The complaint was filed in the Superior Court…
  • Opinion Corp. v. Roca Labs, Inc.: First Amended Complaint of against Roca Labs

    Ronald Coleman
    29 Sep 2014 | 8:11 pm
    Case Name: Opinion Corp. v. Roca Labs, Inc. Document Name: First Amended Complaint of against Roca Labs Post Date: 09/29/2014 Filing Date: 09/29/2014 Document Summary: Roca Labs, makers and sellers of "Gastric Bypass NO surgery®," threatened, with litigation if it did not remove consumer reviews of Roca's products, customer service and unusual (and punitive) "no negative comments or we hit your credit card" policy towards its own customers.This amended complaint tells the story and seeks some measure of relief.We teamed up with…

    christopher knecht
    26 Sep 2014 | 7:46 am
    Case Name: Knecht v. City of Cincinnati, Ohio, et al. Document Name: PLAINTIFF’S MEMO CONTRA DEFENDANTS’ MEMO IN RESPONSE TO PLAINTIFF’S OBJECTIONS TO SUPPLEMENTAL REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION Post Date: 09/26/2014 Filing Date: 08/01/2014 Document Summary: Response to defendants' unsuccessful attempt to play on words and phrases regarding their duty to maintain accurate criminal history records. Contributor: christopher knecht [Full Profile | Docs Posted]
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    Special Education Law Blog

  • Bullying of Kids With Disabilities - Part III

    Jim Gerl
    30 Sep 2014 | 8:40 am
    No Bullying sign - School in Racine, Wisconsin (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Bullying remains the hottest of hot button issues in special education law.  In an earlier installment, I explained the early cases laying the conceptual groundwork for the proposition that failure to react to bullying can constitute a denial of FAPE under IDEA.  In the last installment, I discussed the seminal decision of TK & SK ex rel LK v. New York City Dept of Educ 779 F.Supp.2d 289, 56 IDELR 228 (E.D.N.Y. 4/25/2011).  This case is important not just because it analyzes special education…
  • Weekly Question!

    Jim Gerl
    29 Sep 2014 | 6:00 am
    Bullying remains the hot button issue in special education law, and many people feel that it reflects a larger and ugly societal problem. Have you had any experiences with kids with disabilities being the victim of bullying?------- Thanks for subscribing! Jim Gerl
  • The New GAO Report on Special Education Dispute Resolution: More Thoughts

    Jim Gerl
    26 Sep 2014 | 2:04 pm
     The headquarters of the Government Accountability Office in Washington. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)A few days ago, we reported on the new GAO report on dispute resolution in special education.  You can read that post here.  The report is very controversial.  It appears to reflect a dispute between the Congress (or the GAO, an investigative arm of Congress) about dispute resolution in special education.  Apparently in talking with the state officials, the GAO came away with a conclusion that the data reporting required by the Office of Special Education Programs is…
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    Drug Injury Watch

  • Significantly Increased Risk Of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) In Children Whose Mothers Used Depacon / Depakene / Depakote During Their Pregnancy

    Tom Lamb
    25 Sep 2014 | 9:10 am
    August 2014 Label Change By AbbVie Inc. (formerly Abbott) For These Valproate Migraine, Epilepsy/Seizure, And Bipolar Medications Was Done Rather Quietly (Posted by Tom Lamb at much notice, e.g., no FDA Drug Safety Communication was issued, in August 2014 the Prescribing Information, or drug labels, for Depakote, Depakote CP, and Depakote ER (divalproex sodium), Depacon (valproate sodium), and Depakene (valproic acid) were updated by the drug company AbbVie Inc. (formerly Abbott) to add a warning about the potential risk for autism spectrum disorders (ASD). In…
  • Testosterone Drugs FDA Meeting In September 2014 Reveals That The Safety Of Products Like Axiron, AndroGel, And Testim Is Uncertain Or Unknown At Present Time

    Tom Lamb
    19 Sep 2014 | 2:35 pm
    Key Advisory Panel Member Concedes It Is Medically Plausible That Testosterone Replacement Therapy Can Be Associated With Heart Attacks / Strokes Side Effects (Posted by Tom Lamb at On September 17, 2014 members of the FDA's Bone, Reproductive and Urologic Drugs and Drug Safety and Risk Management advisory panels considered the issue of whether the popular testosterone products Axiron, AndroGel, and Testim, as well as other so-called "Low-T" drugs, are safe.  Not surprising -- but certainly unsettling -- was the outcome of their discussions, which was essentially that…
  • Summer 2014 Update YAZ / Yasmin / Ocella / Gianvi Litigation: Bayer Reports On Total Settlements And Number Of Pending Claims

    Tom Lamb
    12 Sep 2014 | 10:20 am
    Perhaps The Slow-Going Over Past Year Will Be Changed By Upcoming Mediations With Two Special Masters Appointed Recently By Judge Herndon (Posted by Tom Lamb at In their Stockholders' Newsletter Financial Report as of June 30, 2014, Second Quarter of 2014 (PDF) Bayer informs at page 54 that as of July 2, 2014: Settlements with about 8,900 claimants for total of $1.8 billion; The number of pending claims with deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and/or pulmonary embolism (PE) -- the "venous clot injuries" -- is approximately 2400; and, There are an estimated 2,600 claims with other…
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    Bankruptcy Home Blog

  • Am I a good candidate for bankruptcy?

    20 Sep 2014 | 9:49 am
    Visit for the original content posted here, Am I a good candidate for bankruptcy? Many debtors start the bankruptcy process without understanding what bankruptcy can and cannot do for them. Filing bankruptcy is a serious decision with serious ramifications, and it is not the right solution for everyone. Recently on our bankruptcy forum we … Continue reading →
  • Can I file bankruptcy on my own?

    10 Sep 2014 | 5:13 am
    Visit for the original content posted here, Can I file bankruptcy on my own? Filing bankruptcy with the assistance of a bankruptcy attorney can be expensive, especially if you are struggling to pay for your basic financial needs. But do you really need a lawyer to file bankruptcy? Is there no way for you … Continue reading →
  • Medical bills will they be gone if I file Chapter 7?

    25 Aug 2014 | 9:44 am
    Visit for the original content posted here, Medical bills will they be gone if I file Chapter 7? Given the increased cost in medical care and the new push for businesses to cut worker’s hours so they do not have to pay for medical insurance there are millions of U.S. citizens who have medical bills they cannot pay. … Continue reading →
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    Asbestos HUB

  • Radiation Therapy After Chemotherapy And Surgery For Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma Does Not Improve Outcomes In Terms Of Time To Recurrence / Relapse Nor Overall Survival

    Tom Lamb
    30 Sep 2014 | 11:22 am
    At the recent ESMO 2014 Congress in Madrid, Spain, researchers presented new data about mesothelioma treatment outcomes involving radiotherapy, also known as radiation therapy. From this European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) report about some of the research results presented that conference, “Studies report new findings on treatment options for mesothelioma”: “Mesothelioma remains a difficult disease to find better treatment options for, so we asked whether high-dose hemithoracic radiotherapy would decrease the rate or delay the time of local recurrence after…
  • Medical Study Confirms That Peritoneal Mesothelioma And Pleural Mesothelioma Can Develop Up To 50 Years After Person’s First Exposure To Asbestos

    Tom Lamb
    24 Sep 2014 | 11:46 am
    A new medical study out of Australia examined the long-term impacts of asbestos exposure and highlighted the duration of the increased risk of getting mesothelioma. Peritoneal mesothelioma and pleural mesothelioma are are almost always caused by asbestos exposure. From a news article about this Australian study, “Mesothelioma risk endures over long-term”: Researchers used conditional logistic regression to model the relationship between the time since first asbestos exposure and the risk of pleural mesothelioma and the rarer peritoneal mesothelioma. They found the rate and risk of…
  • Mesothelioma / Asbestos Lung Cancer / Asbestosis: The Basic Facts About These Asbestos-Related Diseases

    Tom Lamb
    18 Sep 2014 | 1:39 pm
    An estimated 2,000-3,000 new cases of malignant mesothelioma are diagnosed each year in the US. Malignant mesothelioma is most often diagnosed in people over 50; more often in men than women; and, the risk increases with age. There are 3 types of malignant mesothelioma: Pleural Mesothelioma, which accounts for 75% of cases and starts in the chest cavity Peritoneal Mesothelioma, which accounts for about 10-20% of cases and starts in the abdomen Pericardial Mesothelioma, which is rare and starts in the heart Workers exposed to asbestos in the past are at risk for developing mesothelioma,…
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    Real Lawyers Have Blogs

  • Why not have lawyers blog as opposed to writing content?

    Kevin O'Keefe
    29 Sep 2014 | 8:49 pm
    A discussion on Twitter last week brought home how blogging is different than writing articles. Blogging by lawyers is more about networking, more of a conversation. And much easier to maintain. The discussion kicked off when I read a post in my RSS feeds from Rocket Matter’s Tim Baran (@tim_baran). Tim shared an interview with business development consultant, Jennifer Topper, on how to get lawyers to write good legal content. The gist of the interview was that strategic content in the formm of articles, though important, is difficult to get from lawyers. Topper, who knows what what…
  • Top 10 in Law Blogs: Class Action Attorneys’ Fees, Hacked Medical Data, Joint Employers

    Colin O'Keefe
    29 Sep 2014 | 5:52 pm
    As baseball season turns to fall, just as surely does sun to rain out in Seattle. It’s quite fitting, but I think we’ll manage to adjust. But, in the realm of sports, the questions is being raised on whether or not the FCC should step in and do what it can to police the whole Washington Redskins debate. Steve Lovelady has the story. Total posts on the LexBlog Network today: 189. Live (almost) from New York, It’s the NAD Annual Conference – Amy Mudge, Randy Shaheen, Chris Crook, David Conway and Maura Marcheski of Venable on the firm’s blog, All About Advertising Law…
  • Are you publishing a purpose or profit driven law blog?

    Kevin O'Keefe
    27 Sep 2014 | 7:04 pm
    Did you start blogging because you want people to come to your site, subscribe to your blog and eventually hire you? Such blogs are solely profit driven, and they usually fail, per research done by B2B marketing consultant, Greg Digneo (@GregDigneo). The content soon reflects these motives and the blog is dull, boring, and uninspired. Traffic never comes. Email subscribers are few and far between. And in the end, the blog shrivels up and dies. Which blogs succeed in growing business? Purpose driven blogs. A purpose driven blog is one that provides unique value to an audience. The readers of…
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    Securities Docket

  • As FY 2014 Closes, SEC Brings Two Cases Based on Leaked Info From Analysts | Compliance Week

    Securities Docket
    30 Sep 2014 | 12:10 pm
    In two cases filed this week as the SEC’s fiscal year 2014 comes to a close, the SEC delivered a sharp reminder to financial analysts (and their friends!) that market-moving ratings changes by financial institutions need to remain confidential until they are publicly announced. via As FY 2014 Closes, SEC Brings Two Cases Based on Leaked Info From Analysts | Compliance Week
  • Securities Docket News Wire for September 29, 2014

    Securities Docket
    30 Sep 2014 | 5:55 am
    Six Years After AIG Bailout, Trial Asks: Was It Legal? – NBC -> Goldman Sachs bars traders from trading | New York Post -> SEC’s Secret $30 Million Whistleblower Case Won’t Improve Corporate Behavior — Forbes -> France: Airbus chief salesman goes on trial in insider trading case – -> Waiting for Dodd-Frank Clawbacks – theRacetotheBottom -> London: Former Morrison Supermarkets exec charged with insider…
  • As SEC Enforcement Cases Rise, Big Actions Are Sparse – WSJ

    Securities Docket
    30 Sep 2014 | 5:00 am
    Mary Jo White will end her first full fiscal year running the Securities and Exchange Commission able to claim an increase in its annual tally of cases, the first year-over-year rise since 2011, according to people close to the agency. It is an important benchmark for the SEC chairman, a former federal prosecutor who promised “aggressive and creative” enforcement soon after taking office last year. But some SEC watchers said the heightened activity masks a scarcity of the blockbuster actions that should be a feature of an effective Wall Street cop. via As SEC Enforcement Cases…
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  • Traffic Tickets

    David M. Gottlieb
    18 Sep 2014 | 5:51 am
    Matter of Matter of Nestle Waters N. Am., Inc. v City of New York, 2014 NY Slip Op 05609 [1st Dept. 2014] The Court of Appeals has required strict compliance with the requirements of VTL § 238(2). For example, in Ryder Truck Rental, the Court of Appeals reversed the Appellate Division and reinstated the Supreme Court's decision annulling a PVB Appeals Board decision which upheld notices of violation that failed to include the expiration date for the vehicle's registration, as required by the statute. The Court said: "The provisions explicitly prescribed by the Legislature in…
  • counsel were primarily engaged in claims handling [CPLR 3126]

    David M. Gottlieb
    17 Sep 2014 | 10:29 am
    CPLR 3126 National Union Fire Ins. Co. of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania v TransCanada Energy USA, Inc., 19 AD3d 492 [1st Dept. 2014] The record shows that the insurance companies retained counsel to provide a coverage opinion, i.e. an opinion as to whether the insurance companies should pay or deny the claims. Further, the record shows that counsel were primarily engaged in claims handling—an ordinary business activity for an insurance company. Documents prepared in the ordinary course of an insurer's investigation of whether to pay or deny a claim are not privileged, and do not become so…
  • CPLR 2003

    David M. Gottlieb
    17 Sep 2014 | 10:26 am
    CPLR 2003 Mooring Capital Fund, LLC v Bronx Miracle Gospel Tabernacle, Inc., 119 AD3d 490 [1st Dept. 2014] In the order on appeal, Bronx Miracle's fourth motion was granted. Citing CPLR 2003, the motion court (Aarons, J.), reasoned that a discrepancy between the foreclosure Referee's testimony that the property was sold on October 18, 2010 and the Memorandum of Sale on which the date of July 15, 2010 is typewritten was sufficient to set aside the sale, pursuant to the court's equitable powers to prevent fraud, collusion, mistake or misconduct. We reverse, and deny the motion.
  • This is often ignored

    David M. Gottlieb
    17 Sep 2014 | 10:17 am
    CPLR 3212 Hecht v Saccoccio, 014 NY Slip Op 05628 [2nd Dept. 2014] To demonstrate prima facie entitlement to judgment as a matter of law in a premises liability case, a defendant owner must establish that it did not create the condition that allegedly caused the fall or have actual or constructive notice of that condition (see Gordon v American Museum of Natural History, 67 NY2d 836, 837). Only after the defendant has satisfied his or her threshold burden will the court examine the sufficiency of the plaintiff's opposition (see Winegrad v New York Univ. Med. Ctr., 64 NY2d 851). On a…
  • CPLR § 5205

    David M. Gottlieb
    17 Sep 2014 | 10:13 am
    CPLR 5205(j)(2) Country Bank v Broderick, 2014 NY Slip Op 05621 [2nd Dept. 2014] The Supreme Court providently exercised its discretion in granting the plaintiff's motion pursuant to CPLR 5240 for a determination that the funds sought to be levied upon—college savings accounts established under the laws of the State of New Hampshire (see NH Rev Stat Ann, ch 195-H)—are not exempt from levy in connection with the satisfaction of an underlying Connecticut money judgment that was docketed in New York pursuant to CPLR 5402. The parties do not dispute that the protection from creditors…
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    HealthBlawg :: David Harlow's Health Care Law Blog

  • #ThinkFurther – The Future of Medicine

    David Harlow
    17 Sep 2014 | 11:08 am
    We've Moved! Update your Reader Now. This feed has moved to: Update your reader now with this changed subscription address to get your latest updates from us.
  • Waiting for HIPAA Clarity? Who Has Time?

    David Harlow
    17 Sep 2014 | 5:59 am
    We've Moved! Update your Reader Now. This feed has moved to: Update your reader now with this changed subscription address to get your latest updates from us.
  • HIMSS Privacy and Security Forum: Managing Social Media While Protecting Privacy and Security

    David Harlow
    9 Sep 2014 | 1:44 pm
    We've Moved! Update your Reader Now. This feed has moved to: Update your reader now with this changed subscription address to get your latest updates from us.
  • OCR Audits: The Skinny

    David Harlow
    9 Sep 2014 | 11:44 am
    We've Moved! Update your Reader Now. This feed has moved to: Update your reader now with this changed subscription address to get your latest updates from us.
  • Health Care Conferences This Fall

    David Harlow
    27 Aug 2014 | 9:31 am
    We've Moved! Update your Reader Now. This feed has moved to: Update your reader now with this changed subscription address to get your latest updates from us.
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    P.I.S.S.D. -- Personal Injury, Social Security Disability. Dallas Texas Lawyers

  • Major Ways to Know if You Need an Accident Lawyer

    Bob Kraft
    30 Sep 2014 | 7:16 am
    Every year, almost four million people are involved in accidents that require hospitalization. While some accidents are not the fault of anyone, many accidents are caused by the negligence of another person. In these situations, suing for damages is often good recourse for victims. Here are a few of the major ways you can know if you should call a lawyer. Intoxication, Poor Maintenance and Vehicle Accidents Vehicle accidents injure thousands of people every year in the United States. In most cases, a two-vehicle accident is caused by the negligent actions of a single driver. Many different…
  • Victim Of Medical Malpractice? What You Should Do Next

    Bob Kraft
    29 Sep 2014 | 7:15 am
    While it’s not generally like most healthcare providers to provide anything less than the optimal standard to their patients, things can still take a turn for the worst at any time. If you or someone you love is a victim of medical malpractice, it’s important to take a very specific number of first steps to recover from the error and be compensated for it. Seek Medical Attention If the physician’s error has left you injured or susceptible to illness or injury, contact a different healthcare professional right away. After seeking medical attention, report the negligence or…
  • Friday Fun

    Bob Kraft
    26 Sep 2014 | 3:12 am
    Have you ever heard a song dedicated to colorectal surgeons? No, I didn’t think so. Here’s one:
  • Ways You Can Qualify For A Personal Injury Claim

    Bob Kraft
    25 Sep 2014 | 7:34 am
    Whenever you make an accusation that someone has hurt you, you are going to need to have proof that your personal injury claim is legit. If not, you won’t be able to receive any compensation for what you’re saying happened. Sometimes this is a simple process, while other times it can be a long, drawn out battle. To ensure that you win your case, it is important that your situation truly does qualify for a personal injury claim. Defendant Fails to Uphold Duty For starters, in order for a plaintiff to qualify for a personal injury claim, there has to be some type of duty that the…
  • Cancer Group Urges FDA to Bolster Tanning Bed Oversight

    Bob Kraft
    24 Sep 2014 | 7:09 am
    The Hill “Healthwatch” blog reports that the “American Cancer Society (ACS) is urging federal officials to ‘impose greater control’ over the manufacture and distribution of tanning beds, citing an elevated risk of cancer from their use.” In a letter sent to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, the ACS alleges that for the past two years, HHS has been “ignoring the advice of an advisory panel that recommended action against tanning beds.” They are “not safe and not appropriately regulated,” ACS Deputy Chief Medical Officer Len…
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    Marquette University Law School Faculty Blog

  • Packers CEO Wants to Enhance “Fan Experience” at Lambeau

    Alan J. Borsuk
    30 Sep 2014 | 1:06 pm
    The Green Bay Packers have sold out every home game since the Fourteenth Century, right? Nothing to worry about when it comes to attracting fans and providing them a good experience, right? Not right if you’re Mark Murphy. In an “On the Issues with Mike Gousha” program at Eckstein Hall on Tuesday, the president and CEO of the Packers described in detail the team’s efforts to improve the “fan experience” and to make Lambeau Field a year-round destination for events and experiences that extend well beyond game days. Murphy told a capacity audience in the Appellate Courtroom that, as…
  • Big Tobacco Sues Uruguay

    David R. Papke
    30 Sep 2014 | 5:15 am
    Those who follow efforts to use law to reduce smoking will be aware the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia found in R.J. Reynolds v. FDA, 696 F.3d 1215 (D.C. Cir. 2012) that mandatory graphic imagery on cigarette packs was a violation of commercial speech rights. As a result of the decision, cigarette packs continue to have only prosaic warnings, which go not only unread but also, for the most part, unnoticed. Foreign countries, of course, are not bound by U.S. law, and Uruguay forged ahead with its own laws requiring graphic warnings. They include photos of decaying…
  • Snowden Attorney Praises Whistle Blowers and Journalists Who Unveil Secrets

    Alan J. Borsuk
    29 Sep 2014 | 8:09 pm
    Imagine what we would know and what we would not know without whistle blowers and journalists who have spread knowledge of actions by those within the federal government who wanted to keep secret improper and illegal things they were doing. Ben Wizner suggested doing that Monday during an “On the Issues with Mike Gousha” session at Eckstein Hall. His partial list of things that might not have come to light included CIA secret prisons around the world, warrantless surveillance of American citizens, and the abuse of prisoners by American military personnel in the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.
  • Common Sense Could Have Saved NFL from Domestic Abuse Furor

    Tyler Coppage
    29 Sep 2014 | 4:18 pm
    Ray Rice. Adrian Peterson. These names used to cause fans to wax poetic about on-field performances the previous Sunday or potential blockbuster fantasy football trades. Now, mentioning them conjures up nothing but negativity. The recent revelation of domestic violence issues in the National Football League has given the league something serious to think about. Once the beacon of how profitable and well-run a professional sports league can be, the NFL is now operating under a cloud shrouded in darkness. The league’s actions, or lack thereof, are coming under fire, and rightfully so. It is…
  • Good Time in Wisconsin: Why and How

    Michael M. O'Hear
    28 Sep 2014 | 2:45 pm
    In a couple of recent posts (here and here), I have discussed the possibility of reinstituting “good time” in Wisconsin. I have developed the argument for good time at much greater depth in a new article that is now available on SSRN. Here is the abstract: Wisconsin is one of about twenty states not offering good conduct time (GCT) to prisoners. In most states, prisoners are able to earn GCT credits toward accelerated release through good behavior. Wisconsin itself had GCT for more than a century, but eliminated it as part of a set of reforms in the 1980s and 1990s that left the state…
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    California Employment Law Report

  • Friday's Five: Five ways employers can receive requests for employees' personnel and wage records

    Anthony Zaller
    26 Sep 2014 | 7:55 pm
    Employers can receive requests for employment records of current and former employees though different ways. It is important for employers to first carefully review the request to understand what is being requested. It is important to understand who is making the request? Is the request only seeking a personnel file? Is the request only seeking payroll records? It is possible that a third party, such as a governmental agency or a party in litigation is seeking employment records for an employee. In this case, it is important for the employer to understand its obligations in protecting the…
  • Friday's Five: Five points to understand about California's new requirements for sexual harassment training

    Anthony Zaller
    19 Sep 2014 | 11:36 am
    AB 2053 was signed into law by Governor Brown, and as of January 1, 2015, employers have to comply with new obligations regarding the sexual harassment training already required for some employers under California law.  Here are five issues employers should understand about AB 2053.  1. What are employer’s current obligations to have supervisors attend sexual harassment prevention training before AB 2053 was passed? In California, employers with 50 or more workers must provide at least two hours of sexual harassment prevention training to all supervisors. This training must be…
  • Friday's Five: Five things every California employer needs to know about the newly enacted paid sick leave law

    Anthony Zaller
    12 Sep 2014 | 12:05 pm
    On September 10, 2014, the Governor signed into law a bill that requires a minimum of three paid sick days per year for employees. The new law applies to all employers, regardless of size. Here are five essential points employers must understand to begin the process of meeting their obligations under the new law. 1. How much paid sick time must employers provide employees? Starting on July 1, 2015, any employee who works in California for 30 or more days within a year is entitled to paid sick days. Employees accrue paid sick days at the rate of one hour for every 30 hours worked,…
  • Friday's Five: Five items to understand about employee personnel files under California law

    Anthony Zaller
    5 Sep 2014 | 5:17 pm
    1. Current and former employees have the right to inspect or copy personnel files. Under Labor Code section 1198.5 employees have the right to inspect or receive copies of personnel files and records relating to the employee’s performance or grievance concerning the employee. Employers are legally required to maintain personnel files for at least three years after the employee stops working for the employer. However, since the statute of limitations for wage and hour claims can extend back four years, many employers keep the files at least four years. 2. The terms “personnel…
  • Friday's Five: Top Five Points To Understand About Mediation

    Anthony Zaller
    29 Aug 2014 | 10:44 am
    Five items parties need to understand about mediation. 1. Mediation is non-binding. Mediation is a voluntary process in which litigants (or even parties prior to litigation) agree to use a private third-party to help settle the case. People sometimes confuse mediation with arbitration. Arbitration is when parties agree to use a private third-party to hear their case, much like a judge, to make decisions about the case, and eventually decide the case. Arbitration can be binding on the parties, and the arbitrator actually decides who is right and wrong as a matter of law. On the other hand, a…
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    Social Security Disability Lawyer

  • Use of Videoteleconferencing (VTC) at Your Hearing

    Maine Social Security attorney Gordon Gates
    24 Sep 2014 | 8:31 am
    Social Security recently changed its rules regarding videoteleconferencing (VTC), and is now sending notices regarding VTC at an early stage of the hearing level. The new notice requires a decision within 30 whether or not to object to a video hearing. Previously, the objection to VTC was not made until the time a hearing was actually scheduled. By moving forward the date by which an objection can be made, the issue to VTC or not is separated completely the identity of your judge or the timing of the hearing. Which in my view, makes it much easier to say no to a video hearing. The SSA likes…
  • Characteristics of a great Administrative Law Judge

    Maine Social Security attorney Gordon Gates
    24 Jun 2014 | 8:23 am
    I had a hearing recently with a terrific Social Security administrative law judge. The experience got me thinking about the characteristics you want in a judge. Here are a few: Good listener - the purpose of a Social Security disability hearing is to take testimony from the claimant. You want a judge who is actively listening, and who has not pre-judged the claim based upon the written record. Empathy - this is such an important quality. A good judge will understand what effects claimants' symptoms have on their lives. By the way, this is an important quality for a disability lawyer, as…
  • Your diagnosis is just a first step to disability

    Maine Social Security attorney Gordon Gates
    4 Jun 2014 | 7:57 am
    I frequently talk to clients and potential clients, who say "I am diagnosed with x, y, and z" so I cannot work." I hear this statement almost every day (sometimes several times a day). Here is how I respond: "Well, x, y, or z can certainly be a basis for disability. But the issue in your case, and the reason your claim for disability benefits has been denied so far, is that Social Security needs to assess the severity of your symptoms from these ailments. Your diagnosis was a necessary step, but it is just the first step. The big issue is: what are your functional…
  • The 2013 Waterfall Chart

    Maine Social Security attorney Gordon Gates
    15 May 2014 | 8:29 am
    Each Spring, the SSA releases statistics from the previous fiscal year in an easy to understand format, the "waterfall" chart. The chart shows the percentage of claims approved and denied at the various levels of review. Here is the latest chart, for FY 2013: The chart shows that allowed claims are down at every level of review, and Appeals Council remands are down as well. I have been highlighting the annual waterfall chart on this blog for 5 years. Back in 2008-2009, ALJ allowances were steady at 63%. From that baseline, we now see a 15-point reduction to 2013.  2010 was similar…
  • The deadline for new evidence - Region 1 5-day rule

    Maine Social Security attorney Gordon Gates
    13 May 2014 | 5:19 pm
    If you have an ALJ hearing scheduled for Tuesday, May 27th (the day after Memorial Day) the last business day to submit new evidence here in Region 1 is Friday, May 16th.  In New England we have a 5-day-ahead-of-the-hearing deadline for new evidence. That requirement is a remnant of the experimental DSI process in SSA Region 1. 5 days means 5 business days, which excludes holidays, such as the upcoming Memorial Day holiday. Furthermore, some judges are interpreting this rule as requiring 5 full days prior to the hearing, which effectively makes it an 8-day rule. Add a 3-day weekend, and you…
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    The Rainmaker Blog

  • Why Aren't Lawyers Getting Paid?

    Stephen Fairley
    30 Sep 2014 | 3:38 pm
    A recent LexisNexis survey of 309 U.S.-based law firms -- 75% of which were firms with less than 10 attorneys -- reports that 39% of a typical practice’s client accounts are past due. And of these past due accounts, only half are likely to be paid. That’s a lot of cash flow down the toilet. In fact, 73% of small firms say they have past due accounts and 53% of firms have client accounts where between 10% and 39% are past due. So why aren’t lawyers getting paid? The #1 reason by far cited by the lawyers in the survey (82.5%) was “client financial hardship.” …
  • How Just 45 Minutes a Month Will Net You More New Clients and Repeat Business

    Stephen Fairley
    29 Sep 2014 | 2:51 pm
    Do you (or someone in your firm) have 45 minutes each month to dedicate to a proven marketing tactic that will bring you more clients and increase your repeat business?  I can’t imagine anyone saying “no”. Then you need to participate in this FREE webinar from The Rainmaker Institute this Wednesday, October 1 at 2 p.m. ET/11 a.m. PT on The Automatic Newsletter: How to Get Your Newsletter Done in Just 45 Minutes a Month. In my many years of teaching effective law firm marketing to more than 10,000 attorneys nationwide, I have yet to come upon a more reliable,…
  • A 10-Point Health Check for Your Law Firm Marketing

    Stephen Fairley
    26 Sep 2014 | 2:49 pm
    A legal news aggregation website called recently ran a post with a 10-point checklist of how law firms can gauge the health (and effectiveness) of their legal marketing programs. Here’s the list -- how are you performing? 1.  Does your firm encourage cross-selling among attorneys?  If you have multiple practice areas and lawyers who specialize in each area, then those lawyers should be cross-selling your services.  Make sure all your attorneys understand your total offerings. 2.  Is your staff involved in marketing?  Your legal marketing efforts…
  • Watch It Now: How to Get Your Law Firm Quoted in the Media

    Stephen Fairley
    25 Sep 2014 | 3:20 pm
    Earlier this week, hosted a wonderful webinar on How to Get Quoted in the Media on a Shoestring Budget.  Jana Schilder, 30-year PR veteran and founder of, provided lots of practical ways for attorneys to spread their influence by getting quoted in the media.  She provided a few tricks of the trade that most of you are probably not aware of, but that can help you develop real relationships with reporters and editors. Here is a clip from that webinar: If you missed it, you didn’t miss out. has posted this webinar for you to…
  • Why You Became an Attorney

    Stephen Fairley
    24 Sep 2014 | 4:10 pm
    Do you remember why you became an attorney?  I’m sure it wasn’t to be the butt of the thousands of lousy lawyer jokes out there.  The profession is a real target for persecution, but it has pretty much always been that way -- at least since Shakespeare’s time, from Henry The Sixth: “The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers.” Over the past 14 years, I have worked with thousands of attorneys and there are very, very few I would wish that fate upon.  I can think of four very good reasons to practice the law: Mental stimulation.  If…
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    Defending People

  • Robert S. Bennett (Absolutely No Relation)

    Mark Bennett
    5 Sep 2014 | 11:36 am
    I’ve written about Robert S. Bennett from time to time, and I’m not impressed by him. But neither was I impressed with the State Bar’s effort to disbar him, which effort succeeded in March. Robert S. Bennett was barred: from practicing law in Texas, holding himself out as an attorney at law, performing any legal services for others, accepting any fee directly or indirectly for legal services, appearing as counsel or in any representative capacity in any proceeding in any Texas court or before any administrative body or holding himself out to others or using his name, in any…
  • ¡Justice, Sí, Safety, No!

    Mark Bennett
    4 Sep 2014 | 8:14 pm
      Harris County District Judge Katherine Cabaniss’s email pleading for votes in the popularity contest that is the Houston Bar Association’s Judicial Preference Poll (via Robb Fickman, who I hope will have something to say about it when he’s out of trial) is right across the SWRVs’1 home plate: Dear Fellow HBA Member, The Houston Bar Association’s Judicial Preference Poll will be released on Monday, September 8. I am asking for your vote. In the HBA poll released earlier this year, I was voted either “Well Qualified” or “Qualified” by almost 87% of…
  • Free to Be Stupid

    Mark Bennett
    31 Aug 2014 | 9:06 am
    You think it’s insane that Arizona allows a 9-year-old to shoot at a firing range? ABC News reports that one in Texas allows them to do so at age 6. -Leonard Pitts, Jr. So we make the leap from dumbass puts fully automatic pistol in hands of little girl, winds up dead to it is insane to allow children to shoot at shooting ranges A well-run shooting range is one of the safest places in America. The rules, which when followed provide no opportunity for firearms accidents, are strictly enforced. If the question is, “should my child learn to shoot at the range, or somewhere…
  • On Twitter, Be Your Own Censor.

    Mark Bennett
    28 Aug 2014 | 5:33 pm
    When I saw this Polygon post last month, about how Twitter “gives so little attention to the now-routine harassment experienced by so many members of the service” because “it drives engagement,” I thought, “surely there’s a market solution”: I’ve done some Twitter scripting, and the three proposed tools would, I think, be easy for a third party to implement. — Mark W. Bennett (@MarkWBennett) July 31, 2014 The three proposed tools were allowing a user to block all users whose accounts are less than 30 days old, allowing a user to block all…
  • Texas Criminal First Amendment Action

    Mark Bennett
    26 Aug 2014 | 6:45 pm
    Here’s a survey of what’s going on in Texas with regard to the First Amendment in criminal cases: Texas Penal Code Section 33.021(b) (online solicitation by explicit communication) was held unconstitutional by the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals in Ex Parte Lo. In Ex Parte Chance the Court of Criminal Appeals granted relief on habeas to someone who hadn’t raised the unconstitutionality of the statute either in the trial court or on direct appeal. Concurring, Judge Cochran stated that the petitioner was actually innocent (not argued by the petitioner). Dissenting, Judge…
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    a public defender

  • 8 Mind-Blowing Basic Things About The Justice System You Won’t Learn From The Media

    17 Sep 2014 | 4:00 am
    Mind-blowing: Literally In fact, if this is not you after reading this post, you should ask for your money back: So without further adieu, here are, in some random order, 6 basic truths about the criminal justice system you won’t learn by reading mainstream media: 1. Everyone pleads not guilty. Everyone. By everyone I mean everrrryone1. You get arrested, you show up in court, you plead not guilty. Next. It’s as routine as tying your shoelaces. Even if you were caught red handed with 47 cameras trained on you, 230 eyewitnesses, 17 confessions signed in blood and the eyeball of your…
  • More than 3.5 million reasons why the death penalty should be abolished

    16 Sep 2014 | 6:09 am
    The death penalty is crazy. It’s barbaric. It’s sanctioned murder. We should end it. Here are more than 3.5 million reasons why: 1-3.5 million: $3.5 million is how much the defense expert billed the public defender services for his work in the racial disparity hearings. Of course, the Courant when writing about it, misses the mark entirely (again) in its description of the need for this sort of work: For many taxpayers, it’s an unwelcome fact of life that they bear the cost of preserving the legal rights of convicted killers. The counter to that is that it’s the price…
  • A series of Rorschach – part one

    12 Sep 2014 | 6:19 am
    You know those “no turn on red” signs that hang from wires next to traffic signals? Some of them have holes in them. Do you know why? One theory I’ve heard is that it’s done to prevent homeless people from stealing them and using them as cover. The holes make them an ineffective blanket. Now imagine the “no turn on red” sign at your local intersection goes missing and the cops go searching for it. It’s found in the possession of the local homeless drunk/drug addict, who sleeps on the town green and was using it to cover himself at night. It’s…
  • List week: an experiment doomed to fail

    12 Sep 2014 | 6:07 am
    I am dubbing next week list week here at APD. Which means everything I post will be in the form of list, to keep up with changing stupidity levels and shortening attention spans. If you have things you want to learn about in re: criminal law, post topics here. For instance: 3 ways to not make the prosecution’s case against you easier, or; 4 rights you are in danger of losing, or; are prosecutor’s really evil? a study in GIFs.  
  • Man. Black. Guilty.

    5 Sep 2014 | 4:00 am
    seems legit “Tall”, “bald-headed” and “black male” are apparently the only identifiers of Charles Belk, who spent 6 hours in police custody last week because he fit the description of a bank robber. He was positively identified by a witness to the robbery and charged with very serious crimes. His bond was set to the tune of $100,000. Charles Belk happens to be a very successful film producer, an electrical engineer and the holder of an MBA, who was in the neighborhood to go to a pre-Emmy Awards party. Charles Belk also happens to be “tall”,…
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    Federal Employment Law Articles

  • HATFA Extends MAP-21 Pension Funding Stabilization

    29 Sep 2014 | 10:00 pm
    President Obama recently signed into law the Highway and Transportation Funding Act of 2014 (“HATFA”), which extends the pension smoothing provisions included in the 2012 Moving Ahead for Progress Act for the 21st Century (“MAP-21”). MAP-21 amended Section 430 of the Internal Revenue Code (the “Code”) to set interest rates for pension plan funding valuations at a range around the 25-year average of historical interest rates. Under MAP-21, the range was between 90% and 110% of the 25-year average for 2012, and would gradually expand to be between 70% and 130% in 2016. Under HATFA,…
  • Identify Yourself! Deadline for Health Plan Identifiers is Fast Approaching

    29 Sep 2014 | 10:00 pm
    One of the lesser-known health plan requirements adopted by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) has an initial deadline that is fast approaching, and most employers will need to take action to ensure that their group health plans remain in compliance. As discussed below, the ACA built upon an earlier directive in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) to require unique identifiers for health plans and health care providers, among others. The unique identifiers, along with data formatting standards previously adopted under HIPAA, are intended to…
  • When Misconduct at Home Turns Into Discipline at Work

    29 Sep 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Domestic violence is wrong.
  • Keeping Secrets on Social Media: Part II

    29 Sep 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Employees telling secrets online was the subject of yesterday's post, Keeping Secrets on Social Media. Today's post--a continuation of the theme from yesterday--is about "auto-expire" apps.
  • NLRB Declines to Revisit Employee Use of Company Email Systems . . .

    29 Sep 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Under current National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) law, employees do not have a statutory right to use their employers’ email systems for union organizing or for other purposes. Email systems remain employer property for now, as the Board, in Purple Communications, Inc., 361 NLRB No. 43 (2014), declined the NLRB’s General Counsel’s invitation to overrule Register Guard, 351 NLRB 1110 (2007), enfd. in relevant part and remanded sub nom. Guard Publishing v. NLRB, 571 F.3d 53 (D.C. Cir. 2009). But, in continuation of a troubling trend, the Board in Purple found yet another employer work…
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    Florida Estate Planning Lawyer Blog

  • 4th DCA and Charging Order Protection for Florida LLC

    30 Sep 2014 | 7:36 am
    In Florida, a multi member LLC, has asset protection characteristics. Prior to 2011, Florida law was not clear on whether a charging order was the exclusive remedy for a creditor of a member of a multi member LLC. Assets in a Florida multi member LLC are protected from the reach of the member's creditors so that the debts of one member do not cause harm to the other members. Once a creditor receives a judgement, they can apply for a charging order and stand in line to receive distributions that are made to that member. The problem with this is that a charging order also subjects the creditor…
  • If a person dies intestate what proof must their children show the court to prove they are the heirs to the estate?

    29 Sep 2014 | 7:36 am
    Most Florida probate courts simply accept the information contained in the pleadings that are filed with the court. These pleadings are usually signed "under penalties of perjury". Some courts (such as Citrus Count and Miami-Dade County) often require an Affidavit of Heirs.pdf to be filed along with the pleadings. There really is no other independent evidence that is required to prove who the beneficiaries are. When a rightful heir has been omitted from the pleadings, it is important to act timely. Sometimes, there are people who are included that should not receive a ​portion of the…
  • Estate Planning: Dealing with your digital death instead of before

    25 Aug 2014 | 8:43 am
    Portland company WebCease is making waves in the probate and estate-planning community by helping attorneys and grieving families locate the deceased's digital accounts. CEO Glenn Williamson aims to be the first to provide this service to the growing market of families and attorneys trying to track down digital accounts. Williamson is banking on the need for this service to continue to grow as people continue to use digital accounts for shopping, social media and traveling. WebCease searches across different vendors to determine if the deceased person had an account. WebCease then generates a…
  • Three Documents Every 18-Year-Old Should Sign

    18 Aug 2014 | 7:39 am
    As most young adults are about to return to college, most parents do not think about the fact that not that their child is 18 they are an adult in the eyes of the law. Deborah Jacobs has written an article on this in Forbes outlining two documents that are needed. Most professionals would agree that there are actually 3 that are needed. Now that they are an adult, parents can no longer make health care of the financial decisions for their children without the legal authorization to do so. If a child or young adult is injured or needs help with a financial matter, a parent cannot speak with…
  • Do I need to go through a lawyer to make a will in Florida or can I use a website like legalzoom?

    14 Aug 2014 | 11:19 am
    You can use a website or create your own will in Florida, but we find that some people do not create valid wills, or create wills that do things other than what they want. We only charge $200 for a will so an online will does not save very much considering the risks. If you want to create your own will be sure that you sign the will at the end and in front of two witnesses. There are benefits to using a self proving affidavit, but one is not required under Florida law. Of course, most lawyers will include a self proving affidavit with the will that they prepare for you. Many online wills or…
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  • Robot Lawyers

    Shaunna Mireau
    30 Sep 2014 | 6:45 am
    Since 1998 when I worked with a whiz named Russell, I have been a proponent of automation. Pushing information to myself with RSS, using autotext and macros in Word, subtotaling in Excel, and Outlook Rules have all made it possible for me to automate bits of my own work. As a law firm KMer, I builf and advocate for tools that automate, or at least reduce steps, to work done in my organization. I am certain that many Slawyers have similar stories about how the way they use computers (or phones, or tablets, or other devices) in their work has changed their life. Because of my “automation…
  • Tips Tuesday

    30 Sep 2014 | 4:00 am
    Here are excerpts from the most recent tips on SlawTips, the site that each week offers up useful advice, short and to the point, on technology, research and practice. Technology Handy Keyboard Shortcuts for Typing Superscript or Subscript in Windows Dan Pinnington Occasionally you may find yourself wanting to type superscript or subscript. You can do this through the Font dialog box, but there is a much faster way. … Research Happy National Punctuation Day Shaunna Mireau September 24 is National Punctuation Day in the U.S. Though this isn’t a statutory (or highly celebrated) holiday…
  • Tackling Technology

    Amy Salyzyn
    30 Sep 2014 | 4:00 am
    The intersection of legal ethics and technological competency has been a recurring theme in Slaw and other forums for a number of years (see, for example, here, here, and here). Exactly what type of technological competence a lawyer needs to have has been debated and, presumably, will constantly evolve as technology itself evolves (for discussion of what minimum tech standards might look like, see Mitch Kowalski’s and Omar Ha-Redeye’s previous Slaw posts here and here). There is a growing consensus, however, that all lawyers require some level of technological competence in order to meet…
  • CALL/ACBD 2015 Call for Program Submissions

    Connie Crosby
    29 Sep 2014 | 2:03 pm
    The Canadian Association of Law Libraries’s 2015 conference program committee has put out a call for program submissions. The conference is to be held May 3 – 6, 2015 in Moncton, New Brunswick. TURNING THE TIDE / RENVERSER LA MARÉE is the theme for the CALL/ACBD 2015 conference. The extended economic downturn has had wide-ranging effects on law libraries and the practice of law librarianship. We will explore ways in which libraries are confronting the new economic realities and are successfully turning the tide. We will examine ways in which we can improve all our various…
  • International Association of Law Libraries 2014

    Connie Crosby
    29 Sep 2014 | 1:17 pm
    The 2014 course on International Law and Legal Information from the International Association of Law Libraries is taking place right now in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Of particular interest are the Tweets being posted to Twitter with the tag #IALL2014. Today’s content is focussed largely on human rights issues. Related links: #IALL2014 on Twitter IALL 2014 Annual course website Full conference programme is here (PDF) International Association of Law Libraries (main website)
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    Virtual Law Practice

  • Teaching eProfessionalism to Law Students with Social Media

    29 Sep 2014 | 11:23 am
    Today I posted an article on the Legal Technology Blog, part of the Law Professor Blog Network, about the challenges of teaching eprofessionalism to law students in my Social Media and the Law course.  You can read the full post here. The trick with teaching social media to law students is that it is a personal choice the students have to make about finding the right balance between their personal lives, their friends and family and hobbies, and their soon-to-be professional lives. I give them my own choices in the use of social media as an example and teach them how to use the settings in…
  • Podcast: How to Provide Client Hand-holding in Virtual Law Practice

    15 Sep 2014 | 11:08 am
    Last month I joined in on a podcast for the ABA Journal with reporter Stephanie Francis Ward; Michelle Crosby, founder of Wevorce; and Fred Rooney, Director of Touro Law Center’s International Justice Center for Post-Graduate Development.  The topic was “How do you provide client hand-holding if you run a virtual firm?” You can listen to the podcast on the ABA Journal site or read the transcript. Ward asked the three of us this question towards the end of the podcast: [C]an the three of you give me one tip on making that personal connection and doing it online? So combining…
  • Online Legal Services Gets a Boost from ABA & Rocket Lawyer Partnership

    11 Aug 2014 | 12:43 pm
    I was thrilled to hear the news today from the Wall Street Journal Law Blog that the ABA announced its partnership with Rocket Lawyer on a pilot project to help match up ABA members with online clients. I’ve been researching and writing about lawyer collaboration with branded networks like Rocket Lawyer for the past couple of years with a focus on ethics issues and best practices. I wrote a book about the best practices for lawyers who wanted to work with these companies and make connections with clients through them. I think this partnership integrates wonderfully with virtual law…
  • ILTA Article – Teaching Tomorrow’s Lawyers Legal Tech Skills

    31 Jul 2014 | 1:10 pm
    An article I co-authored with Ron Dolin entitled Course Correction: Teaching Tomorrow’s Lawyers Legal Tech Skills, was published in the newest edition of the ILTA Peer to Peer Magazine. Ron developed the syllabus for and taught the first course on legal informatics at Stanford Law School. Several of his students from that course have gone on to find innovative paths in the legal industry, including Margaret Hagan, his co-founder in the Program for Legal Tech and Design. Ron writes about the changes he believes are critical in the law school curriculum to prepare future lawyers for…
  • LegalTech Startup Weekend – San Francisco

    29 Jul 2014 | 1:33 pm
    If you are in the San Francisco area, consider checking out the LegalTech Startup Weekend. I’ll be one of the mentors for the event along with several other founders of legal tech companies, including LawPal, Ravel, One400, Judicata, LawGives, Casetext, and more. Teams form Friday evening, August 15th and final presentations with be on Sunday, August 17th. The teams will tackle four challenges listed on the event site and compete for prizes. The intersection of law and technology presents unique challenges and exciting opportunities for growth and creativity. Recent years have seen…
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    Florida Estate Planning Lawyer Blog

  • 4th DCA and Charging Order Protection for Florida LLC

    30 Sep 2014 | 7:36 am
    In Florida, a multi member LLC, has asset protection characteristics. Prior to 2011, Florida law was not clear on whether a charging order was the exclusive remedy for a creditor of a member of a multi member LLC. Assets in a Florida multi member LLC are protected from the reach of the member's creditors so that the debts of one member do not cause harm to the other members. Once a creditor receives a judgement, they can apply for a charging order and stand in line to receive distributions that are made to that member. The problem with this is that a charging order also subjects the creditor…
  • If a person dies intestate what proof must their children show the court to prove they are the heirs to the estate?

    29 Sep 2014 | 7:36 am
    Most Florida probate courts simply accept the information contained in the pleadings that are filed with the court. These pleadings are usually signed "under penalties of perjury". Some courts (such as Citrus Count and Miami-Dade County) often require an Affidavit of Heirs.pdf to be filed along with the pleadings. There really is no other independent evidence that is required to prove who the beneficiaries are. When a rightful heir has been omitted from the pleadings, it is important to act timely. Sometimes, there are people who are included that should not receive a ​portion of the…
  • Estate Planning: Dealing with your digital death instead of before

    25 Aug 2014 | 8:43 am
    Portland company WebCease is making waves in the probate and estate-planning community by helping attorneys and grieving families locate the deceased's digital accounts. CEO Glenn Williamson aims to be the first to provide this service to the growing market of families and attorneys trying to track down digital accounts. Williamson is banking on the need for this service to continue to grow as people continue to use digital accounts for shopping, social media and traveling. WebCease searches across different vendors to determine if the deceased person had an account. WebCease then generates a…
  • Three Documents Every 18-Year-Old Should Sign

    18 Aug 2014 | 7:39 am
    As most young adults are about to return to college, most parents do not think about the fact that not that their child is 18 they are an adult in the eyes of the law. Deborah Jacobs has written an article on this in Forbes outlining two documents that are needed. Most professionals would agree that there are actually 3 that are needed. Now that they are an adult, parents can no longer make health care of the financial decisions for their children without the legal authorization to do so. If a child or young adult is injured or needs help with a financial matter, a parent cannot speak with…
  • Do I need to go through a lawyer to make a will in Florida or can I use a website like legalzoom?

    14 Aug 2014 | 11:19 am
    You can use a website or create your own will in Florida, but we find that some people do not create valid wills, or create wills that do things other than what they want. We only charge $200 for a will so an online will does not save very much considering the risks. If you want to create your own will be sure that you sign the will at the end and in front of two witnesses. There are benefits to using a self proving affidavit, but one is not required under Florida law. Of course, most lawyers will include a self proving affidavit with the will that they prepare for you. Many online wills or…
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    Native American Legal Update

  • Navajo Nation Agrees to $554 Million Settlement with U.S. Government

    Greg Guedel
    25 Sep 2014 | 9:05 am
      The US government has agreed to pay the Navajo Nation $554 million to settle a legal dispute regarding mismanagement of Tribal lands and trust resources. It is the largest payment ever made by the U.S. government to a single tribe. The settlement concludes litigation that has been ongoing for more than 50 years. The Navajo Nation is the largest Native American tribe in both population and land area, with more than 300,000 members and territory spanning four states. About 14 million acres of Navajo land is leased out by the U.S. government in a trust capacity for purposes including…
  • Tribes and First Nations Sign Historic Bison Treaty

    Greg Guedel
    24 Sep 2014 | 10:47 am
      (CTV News) As reported by the Seattle Times, Native American tribes and Canadian First Nations have signed a treaty establishing an inter-tribal alliance to restore bison to areas of the Rocky Mountains and Great Plains where millions of the animals once roamed. Leaders of 11 nations from Montana and Alberta signed the pact during a daylong ceremony on Montana's Blackfeet Reservation. This is the first treaty among the tribes and First Nations since a series of agreements governing hunting rights in the 1800s. The long-term aim of the new "Buffalo Treaty" is to allow the free…
  • Cobell Settlement Payment Update - September 2014

    Greg Guedel
    15 Sep 2014 | 8:00 am
     The following information has been provided by the attorneys handling the Cobell settlement: The United States District Court for the District of Columbia entered an Order approving Plaintiffs’ Unopposed Motion to begin distribution. This Motion obtained the final approval necessary to commence payment distribution to Trust Administration Class Members and summarizes the methodology for those payments. GCG is prepared to commence sending checks to Trust Administration Class Members where we have a current address beginning next week. We anticipate the first checks will mail…
  • #AmINext Campaign To Protect First Nations Women

    Greg Guedel
    11 Sep 2014 | 8:49 am
      As reported by the BBC, in February an Inuit woman who was passionate about ending this violence went missing herself, her body found two weeks later in New Brunswick. Her former roommates have been charged in her death. The death of Loretta Saunders has led to calls for a wider public inquiry into the high rate of murdered First Nations women, and pressure has stepped up on social media thanks to a new hashtag campaign. A Royal Canadian Mounted Police report in May found First Nations women account for 16% of female homicides and 11% of missing women despite only making up 4.3% of the…
  • Shinnecock Nation Fights for Ancestral Lands in The Hamptons

    Greg Guedel
    4 Sep 2014 | 10:57 am
      Elder women of the Shinnecock Nation - Photo by Andrew Brannan. VICE Magazine is featuring an article regarding the struggle of the Shinnecock Indian Nation to reclaim ancestral lands located in what is now known as The Hamptons, home to some of America's wealthiest people including George Soros, Howard Stern, and Sean "P. Diddy" Combs. The Shinnecock Indians have lived on Long Island's famed East End for thousands of years. Like so many other tribes along the east coast, the Shinnecocks were ravaged by disease brought by European settlers. Today, the Shinnecock Indian Nation…
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    Technology & Marketing Law Blog

  • Washington State Supreme Court Hears an Interesting Privacy Case: Dillon v. Seattle Deposition Reporters

    Venkat Balasubramani
    30 Sep 2014 | 9:35 am
    This is a super interesting case that’s working its way through the courts in Washington. In a nutshell, T-Mobile was a defendant in a breach of contract lawsuit brought by NetLogix in the Western District of Washington. T-Mobile was represented by Davis Wright. Dillon, a former VP of NetLogix, approached T-Mobile’s lawyers and said he wanted “talk about the facts.” Shutterstock / SoulCurry – I love My Privacy The next day, Dillon called and spoke with the DWT lawyers, who had a court reporter transcribe the conversation. (The court reporter and DWT lawyers were both listening…
  • Congress May Crack Down On Businesses’ Efforts To Ban Consumer Reviews (Forbes Cross-Post)

    Eric Goldman
    29 Sep 2014 | 8:42 am
    Photo credit: man’s mouth with bronze or gold metal zipper // ShutterStockImagine a dentist telling her patients that they can’t write online reviews about her. Or a hotel deducting money from a newly married couple’s security deposit if any member of the wedding party blasts the hotel on Yelp. These types of stories might sound fanciful, but they are true–and stories like these are becoming increasingly common as some businesses panic about the growing importance of consumer reviews. Recently, Reps. Swalwell and Sherman introduced H.R. 5499, the Consumer Review…
  • Trademark Owners Just Can’t Win Keyword Advertising Cases–EarthCam v. OxBlue

    Eric Goldman
    28 Sep 2014 | 10:00 am
    I have repeatedly observed that trademark owners routinely lose their lawsuits against advertisers who buy their trademarks as advertising keywords. (This is in addition to the futility of bringing trademark lawsuits against search engines, which almost no one does any more). I can’t recall the last time that I saw a trademark owner win a keyword advertising lawsuit; since the Network Automation case, those wins have been scarce. Today’s case involves two companies in the security camera business. EarthCam initiated a wide-ranging trade secret, CFAA and copyright lawsuit against…
  • NLRB Invalidates Employer’s Blogging Policy And Reverses Firing Based On Facebook Posts

    Venkat Balasubramani
    27 Sep 2014 | 11:28 am
    This is another NLRB Facebook firing case. The employer is a bar and restaurant whose employees were chatting on Facebook about owing amounts in taxes allegedly as a result of paperwork mishaps on the employer’s part. LaFrance, a former employee posted: [m]aybe someone should do the owners of TriplePlay a favor and buy it from them. They can’t even do the tax paperwork correctly!!! Now I OWE money…..Wtf!!!! The following responses ensued: You owe them money..that’s fucked up [a Facebook friend and customer] I FUCKING OWE MONEY TOO! [current employee] The state. Not Triple Play. I…
  • Jointly Editable Online Document Doesn’t Provide Evidence of Contract Formation–Turner v. Temptu

    Eric Goldman
    27 Sep 2014 | 8:00 am
    Photo credit: many hands holding paper poster // ShutterStockThe litigants discussed working together to launch a new product in the marketplace. As seems to be inevitable in situations like this, the parties’ relationship fell out. Trying to salvage something from the situation, Turner alleged the parties had formed a joint venture. As supporting evidence for the joint venture agreement, Turner pointed to conversations between the parties in a jointly edited “blog,” although what made it a “blog” wasn’t clarified in the opinion. Instead, it sounds a lot…
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    The California Employment Law Blog by Mediator Steven G. Pearl

  • Kao v. University of San Francisco: Employer Not Required to Enter into Interactive Process before Requiring Fitness-for-Duty Exam

    Steven G. Pearl
    29 Sep 2014 | 8:00 am
    In Kao v. University of San Francisco (8/2/14, pub. 9/2/14) --- Cal.App.4th ---, plaintiff John S. Kao alleged that the University of San Francisco (USF) violated the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) and other California laws by directing him to have a fitness-for-duty exam (FFD) after faculty members and school administrators reported that his behavior was frightening them, and then terminating his employment when he refused to participate in the examination. He appealed from a judgment against him after jury trial, and the Court of Appeal affirmed, holding as follows: The law did not…
  • Jimenez v. Allstate: District Court Did Not Err in Certifying Off-the-Clock Class Action

    Steven G. Pearl
    26 Sep 2014 | 8:00 am
    In Jimenez v. Allstate Insurance Company ___ F.3d ___ (9th Cir. 9/3/14), the defendant, Allstate, appealed from an order granting Rule 23 class certification district court’s grant of class certification in an action alleging that it had a practice or unofficial policy of requiring its claims adjusters to work unpaid off-the-clock overtime in violation of California law. The Ninth Circuit affirmed, holding as follows: The plaintiff satisfied the commonality requirement of Federal Rule 23(a)(2) by identifying common questions, the truth or falsity of which would "resolve an issue that is…
  • Castaneda v. The Ensign Group: Parent Corporation May Be Employer of Wholly Owned Subsidiary's Employees

    Steven G. Pearl
    17 Sep 2014 | 8:00 am
    In Castaneda v. The Ensign Group, Inc. (9/15/14) --- Cal.App.4th ---, plaintiff John Castaneda sued The Ensign Group, Inc. (Ensign) in a class action lawsuit alleging wage and hour violations. He alleged that Ensign was the alter ego of the Cabrillo Rehabilitation and Care Center (Cabrillo), the nursing facility where he worked. The trial court granted summary judgment for Ensign, holding that it was not Castaneda's employer as a matter of law. The Court of Appeal reversed, holding as follows: Under Martinez v. Combs (2010) 49 Cal.4th 35, Castaneda raised a triable issue of material fact as…
  • Sheet Metal Workers’ Int'l Assn., Local 104 v. Duncan: Offsite Material Fabricators Not Subject to Prevailing Wage Law

    Steven G. Pearl
    15 Sep 2014 | 8:00 am
    A very quick note on this case. In Sheet Metal Workers’ International Association, Local 104 v. Duncan (Russ Will Mechanical, Inc.) (8/27/14) --- Cal.App.4th ---, the Court of Appeal held that the prevailing wage law does not apply to an employee of a subcontractor who conducts offsite material fabrication if the work "takes place at a permanent, offsite manufacturing facility and the location and existence of that facility is determined wholly without regard to the particular public works project." Slip op. at 24. The opinion is available here. 
  • Cruise v. Kroger: In Absence of Arbitration Policy Applicable to Employee, Arbitration Would Be Conducted Pursuant to California Arbitration Act

    Steven G. Pearl
    12 Sep 2014 | 8:00 am
    In Cruise v. Kroger Co. (8/27/14) --- Cal.App.4th ---, the plaintiff filed suit against her former employer for harassment, discrimination, retaliation, and related claims. The trial court denied the defendants' motion to compel arbitration, and the defendants appealed. The Court of Appeal reversed, holding as follows: The plaintiff had signed an employment application that included a broadly-worded arbitration clause, which constituted an enforceable agreement to arbitrate. Slip op. at 9-10. The plaintiff's employment-related claims all fell within the scope of that…
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    Brent Britton

  • All “A Board” — The Difference between Directors and Advisors

    25 Sep 2014 | 8:36 am
    If you’re an entrepreneuryou’ve probably been told that your company needs a good board. You may have overheard other entrepreneurs speak — perhaps boastfully, perhaps resentfully — about their powerful or active (or activist) boards.  But what kind of thing is this board of which everyone speaks? It is probably one of two things: a Board of Directors or a Board of Advisors. And they are two very different things. In short: The Board of Directors oversees the CEO and sets the company’s overall direction; its members are elected by an annual vote of the company’s stockholders. The…
  • Embaggen the cat, or let it out? (to NDA or not to NDA)

    11 Aug 2014 | 8:39 am
    When first conceiving of a new startup idea, lots of entrepreneurs experience a measure of paranoia about it and start demanding that everyone with whom they discuss it sign a nondisclosure agreement (NDA). My opinion is: Don’t use an NDA until you must in order to protect highly sensitive, non-public information. NDA’s protect actual secrets, not things anyone can just look up online or read about in the news. Once you’ve written some key code or developed a secret sauce that no one else has thought of, then consider assaulting people with an NDA, but not before. It turns…
  • The Company You Keep

    13 Nov 2013 | 7:32 am
    With few exceptions, all business should be conducted from within a company that is properly formed and organized as a corporation, a limited liability company (LLC), a limited partnership (LP) or the like. Why? Four basic reasons: a. Asset Protection. Deservedly or not, almost all businesses get sued. Forming a company around the business can shield the owners’ personal assets (and other business interests) from being attached to satisfy the company’s liabilities. b. Asset Creation. A “d/b/a” does not a company make. If you’re doing business without a company,…
  • Bi-polar IP Strategy for Startups: Protect What You Can, then Tell Everyone

    8 Aug 2013 | 8:02 am
    If you’re starting a company, you may wish to begin in stealth mode, keeping your business idea and plans secret for a little while. During this stealth phase, consider doing the following to protect your intellectual property: Think of a name for the company. Do a trademark search before you form a company. If it’s clean, form your company with that name and file a federal trademark application at the USPTO. Also file a state trademark application in your state. If you think you’ve invented something that’s never been done before, file a provisional patent on your…
  • Copyright Duration: How Disney Moved the Finish Line

    6 Aug 2013 | 2:26 pm
    This post is excerpted from Ownability – How Intellectual Property Works, now available for pre-order at a 20% discount at In 2002, Steam Boat Willy, the first major film in which the venerable Mickey Mouse character appears, was about to celebrate the 75th anniversary of its release. Under the copyright law in force at that time, which dictated a 75-year duration for copyrights held by companies, the copyright for Steam Boat Willy was set to expire on the 75th anniversary of its release.This would have thrust the movie into the public domain for all to copy and enjoy.
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    The Securities Law Blog

  • Can FINRA Force Firms to Insure for Arbitration Awards?

    30 Sep 2014 | 10:00 am
    Every once in a while a group of customer attorneys bemoan the fact that some arbitration awards go unpaid. It is true - some arbitration awards do in fact go unpaid. So do court judgments, and without the benefit of a study, I would bet that a significantly higher percentage of court judgements go unpaid than arbitration awards.Let's keep in mind that only in the world of FINRA does a person or entity lose its ability to conduct business if it does not pay an award in 30 days. This concept is completely unheard of in the rest of the country. Only a FINRA firm, or broker, is required to pay…
  • SEC Suspends Trading in Nine Penny Stocks in Ongoing Initiative to Combat Microcap Fraud

    30 Sep 2014 | 6:30 am
    The SEC has announced suspensions in trading for nine different penny stocks as part of an ongoing enforcement initiative to combat microcap fraud.Trading suspensions provide the SEC with a means to immediately neutralize potential threats to investors when questions have arisen pertaining to the accuracy and adequacy of information about publicly traded companies.Under the federal securities laws, the SEC can suspend trading in a stock for 10 days and generally prohibit a broker-dealer from soliciting investors to buy or sell the stock again until certain reporting requirements are…
  • SEC Charges Software Company in Silicon Valley and Two Former Executives Behind Fraudulent Accounting Scheme

    29 Sep 2014 | 10:30 am
    The SEC charged a Silicon Valley-based software company and two former executives behind an accounting fraud in which timesheets were falsified to hit quarterly financial targets.An SEC investigation found that the company vice presidents were atop a scheme at Saba Software in which managers based in the U.S. directed consultants in India to either falsely record time that they had not yet worked, or purposely fail to record hours worked during certain pay periods to conceal budget overruns from management and finance divisions.  The improper time-reporting practices enabled Saba…
  • SEC Charges Two Florida-Based Attorneys for Roles in Offering Fraud by Transfer Agent

    29 Sep 2014 | 6:00 am
    The SEC charged two Florida-based attorneys for their roles in an offering fraud conducted by a transfer agent that was the subject of an SEC enforcement action two months ago.The SEC alleges that the two attorneys were designated to receive wire transfers of funds from investors who were solicited by cold callers using boiler room tactics to convince them their investments would yield high rates of return.  Wiring the money to a licensed attorney bolstered the appearance of safety in the investment opportunity and concealed from investors how the money was really being spent after one…
  • SEC Charges Purported Health Food Company and CEO with Issuing False Press Releases in Microcap Fraud

    26 Sep 2014 | 10:30 am
    The SEC charged a Florida-based penny stock company and its CEO with defrauding investors by issuing false and misleading press releases proclaiming large sales and fantastic revenue projections while the purported health food company actually was a failing enterprise.  The SEC alleges that Heathrow Natural Food & Beverage Inc. touted sales of natural health food products that the company had not even manufactured as well as non-existent distribution agreements with major retail chains.  Meanwhile, its CEO was prompting the illegal, unregistered distribution of billions of…
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    Construction Law Musings- Richmond, VA

  • Keeping Construction Issues Out of Court at Construction Law North Carolina

    Christopher G. Hill
    29 Sep 2014 | 7:00 am
    For this week’s post, I am taking a trip to the great Construction Law in North Carolina blog run by a friend and fellow construction attorney, Melissa Brumback (@melissabrumback).  Over at her blog, I discuss how to keep construction project problems from turning into money draining litigation.  Here’s a taste: While I agree to some degree that in the Murphy’s Law riddled world of commercial construction, problems will arise. These problems need not rise to the level of a dispute that requires outside (read court or arbitrator) intervention. A few tips that are easy to write,…
  • Early Action on Your Construction Contract is Key

    Christopher G. Hill
    23 Sep 2014 | 7:59 am
    (Photo credit: Wikipedia) I bang the drum of early and frequent consultation with one of us construction attorneys on a regular basis here at Musings and in other places of the “blawgosphere.” Why do I do this?  Doesn’t such consultation help to avoid the problems that seem to make those of us in the construction law business happy?  Aren’t all of us lawyers just out to complicate things and throw a monkey wrench into construction projects?  In short, why would I constantly advise on ways to avoid exactly the construction litigation that you would think would make…
  • Negotiation from Weakness- You’ll be Doing It

    Christopher G. Hill
    15 Sep 2014 | 9:03 am
    Originally posted 2010-10-16 20:16:58. For our first “Guest Post Saturday” here at Construction Law Musings, we have a great one.  Victoria Pynchon is an attorney-mediator with ADR Services, Inc. in Century City; an arbitrator with the American Arbitration Association in Los Angeles, California; and, a negotiation consultant and trainer world-wide.  Victoria is one of the founders of She Negotiates University and the author of A is for Asshole, the Grownups’ ABC’s of Conflict Resolution which will hit the stores and next week. Feel like you’re negotiating from a…
  • Just Because Your Employee Was Supposed to Work Safely. . .

    Christopher G. Hill
    15 Sep 2014 | 9:03 am
    (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Here at Construction Law Musings, I’ve discussed the need to keep up with your safety program and stay out of the cross-hairs of the state and federal safety inspectors. The Virginia Court of Appeals gave a stark reminder of this fact in the case of Atlantic Environmental Construction Co. v. Malveaux, Comm’r.  In this case, Atlantic Environmental had some roofers under their supervision working around a skylight at the Chrysler Museum in Norfolk, VA.  Unfortunately, these roofers were not using proper guardrails or fall arrest system and the skylights was…
  • Use RIMC and Dominate Your Construction Niche

    Christopher G. Hill
    10 Sep 2014 | 8:03 am
    Originally posted 2009-10-09 09:04:00. This week, Musings welcomes Mark Buckshon of the Construction Marketing Ideas blog to Guest Post Friday.  Mark publishes several regional construction industry newspapers and websites. He can be reached at 888-432-3555 ext 224 or by email at If you can imagine a table or structure which needs foundation “legs,” you will appreciate how to apply these four supporting construction marketing concepts. Properly measured and in alignment, all four will ensure your success, but you can get away with three (and in fact, your…
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    CAFA Law Blog

  • Jail Term Not a Bar For Jail Inmate’s Ability to Communicate (McGlinchey Stafford PLLC)
    30 Sep 2014 | 3:19 am
    Underwood v. Menfre, 2014 WL 67644 (M.D. Fla. Jan. 8, 2014). Aggrieved by her inability to write letters to her husband with sensitive, personal information, and send him inter alia photographs, drawings, and newspaper clippings, the plaintiff, whose husband was an inmate at the Flagler County Jail, Florida, brought an action challenging two policies of the Jail’s Sheriff regarding incoming and outgoing mails.  While one policy required all incoming mail to Jail inmates, except legal or privileged mail, to be in postcard form, another policy prohibited Jail inmates from sending outgoing…
  • Merchandise Certificates are Not Coupons And Therefore CAFA Did Not Apply to Louis Vuitton Settlement (McGlinchey Stafford PLLC)
    29 Sep 2014 | 5:17 am
    Morey v. Louis Vuitton N. America, Inc., 2014 WL 109194 (S.D. Cal. Jan. 9, 2014). A District Court granted final approval to a settlement reached between the parties holding that the settlement was fair and reasonable, and that because the settlement did not involve coupons, CAFA did not apply. The plaintiff brought an action under the California’s Song-Beverly Credit Card Act alleging that the defendant requested and recorded personal identification information when shoppers used a credit card for purchases at Louis Vuitton retail stores.  After the parties settled their disputes, the…
  • Suit on behalf of All Taxpayers in a State is Deemed a Class Action Under CAFA (McGlinchey Stafford PLLC)
    26 Sep 2014 | 3:03 am
    Brown v. Mortgage Elec. Reg. Systems, Inc., 2013 WL 6851088 (8th Cir. Dec. 31, 2013) The Eighth Circuit affirmed the order of a District Court denying a Plaintiff’s motion to remand holding that, because Arkansas cases involving the misuse of public funds proceed on a class theory that includes all Arkansas taxpayers, and the type of illegal-exaction suit pled by the Plaintiff under Arkansas law did not alter the class membership, the District Court had properly exercised CAFA jurisdiction. The plaintiff, an Arkansas Circuit Clerk, sued the defendants – various originators of servicers of…
  • Are You Ready for Some Football? (McGlinchey Stafford PLLC)
    25 Sep 2014 | 5:00 am
    Greco v. Jones, 2014 WL 177410 (N.D. Tex. Jan. 16, 2014). In this case, the plaintiffs, 237 ticket holders to Super Bowl XLV, brought an action alleging that they were denied, relocated, delayed seating, and/or, redirected to seats with obstructed views.  The plaintiffs asserted claims for breach of contract, fraudulent inducement and concealment, negligent misrepresentation, violations of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act (“DTPA”), and negligence. The defendants removed the action from state court to federal court as a mass action under CAFA.  The plaintiffs then moved to remand…
  • Doctrine of Comity Shaves off Jurisdiction of Federal Court (McGlinchey Stafford PLLC)
    24 Sep 2014 | 3:02 am
    Farneth v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., 2013 WL 6859013 (W.D. Pa. Dec. 30, 2013). A District Court in Pennsylvania remanded an action holding that the doctrine of comity applicable to state taxation cases restrains federal courts from entertaining claims for relief that risk disrupting state tax administration. When the plaintiff purchased two cans of shaving gel with a “buy one, get one” (“BOGO”) coupon, the defendant charged him sales tax on the original per item purchase price of both items instead of deducting the amount of the BOGO discount.  Thus, feeling robbed of the 21 cents…
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    Lowering the Bar

  • Legally Dead Man Sentenced to Be Actually Dead

    30 Sep 2014 | 1:52 pm
    After I reported on the case of Donald Miller, the Ohio man who failed to convince a judge he should not be considered legally dead ("'No, You're Still Deceased,' Judge Tells Dead Man" (Oct. 10, 2013)), several people wrote in to ask what would happen if, for example, Miller was asked to pay taxes or charged with a crime. While the statute in question does say that a legal death is presumed to have occurred "for all purposes under the law of this state," my guess was that the state would not have much trouble ignoring such language in appropriate circumstances. I was right. Miller…
  • BREAKING: Officers Do Not Kill Suspect

    29 Sep 2014 | 12:08 pm
    Okay, it's not "breaking," but it does seem worth commenting on two recent cases in which officers did not open fire on a suspect. Of course most police-citizen interactions do not end in death, but lately it has at least started to seem a little like that's the exception rather than the rule. The first of these surprisingly non-fatal incidents is the one in which a 42-year-old man jumped the fence, ran across the lawn and got into the White House [update: two rooms into it] before he was apprehended. Some, perhaps understandably, saw this as a failure. "Under no…
  • Property Dispute Resolved With Power Saw

    29 Sep 2014 | 5:30 am
    According to his attorney, Mark Besemann "knew there was some sort of dispute over the exact property line" when he bought an acre of land in 2013. Here's where his neighbor claims the exact property line is: Photo: Bob King/Duluth News Tribune Of course this only "resolved" the dispute temporarily, because it led to a lawsuit by Besemann against the neighbor, Roger Weber. The case was supposed to go to trial last week but that was postponed to December at Weber's request, according to reports. Seems likely that's because Weber is running for a seat in the Minnesota House, and would prefer to…
  • Polygamist Ninja Women Unprepared for Swordplay

    26 Sep 2014 | 1:25 pm
    I should probably set up a Google Alert for the phrase "I've never seen anything like this." It usually signals pretty good material. In this case, what the officer had never seen was an incident in which, as The Guardian put it, "two armed 'polygamist' women dressed 'like ninjas' were subdued by a sword-wielding man during a home invasion." I've written about polygamists, ninjas, and sword-wielding men, but I think this is the first time even I have seen all three combined. According to the report, the two women, aged 18 and 22, forced their way into the home of a Utah man in an…
  • The Screaming Itches

    24 Sep 2014 | 11:05 am
    Today's Quiz: "The Screaming Itches" would be: (a) unwise to bring up on a first date (b) a good name for a band (c) a bad excuse for failing to appear in court (d) all of the above Of course the answer is (d), so I will admit that as a quiz that kind of sucked. But perhaps it will be of some use in the continuing effort here to educate people on What Not to Do. In this case—decided by the Sixth Circuit in 1985 but just made known to me (thanks, Rob)—there are actually three lessons. First, while it sometimes cannot be avoided, it is not a great idea to schedule overlapping or immediately…
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    Ohio Family Law Blog

  • Divorce During Pendency: Living Separately or Living Together?

    Anne Shale
    26 Sep 2014 | 11:04 pm
    Should Couples Live Separately Or Together Through A Divorce Or Dissolution? – List Of Factors Crucial In Each Case The parties agree the marriage is not working; the decision is made by one of the parties to initiate a divorce proceeding.  Do the parties live separately or together during the pendency of a divorce?  There are many factors to be considered: Finances:  If there is adequate income available to cover the living expenses of two (2) households, it is probably easier and less emotionally draining to live separate and apart while the divorce is taking place.  This…
  • Beta Marriage Concept – A Trial Union for 2 Years?

    Robert L. Mues
    20 Sep 2014 | 12:43 am
    Can Beta Marriage Avoid A Complicated Divorce? Time magazine recently published an article discussing the concept of a “beta marriage” and millennials.  For those unfamiliar with the word “Beta” let me explain.  In the tech world, the word “beta” is often affiliated with a trial period, in other words, it’s something that’s tested before it’s released or finalized.  For example, when a video game company is nearing the release of a new video game, they’ll often release a “beta version” to a select few individuals.  This version is played and enjoyed as if…
  • Divorce Assets In Ohio – Survivorship Benefits For Spouse

    Joseph E. Balmer
    13 Sep 2014 | 12:53 am
    What Happens in Ohio if a Divorcee Dies Before Transferring Property or Assets as Divorce Court Ordered? How Assets are to be Divided After the Passing of a Spouse During the Divorce Decree The question was recently  posed to me as to what happens if, after a valid and enforceable Decree of Divorce, Dissolution or Legal Separation is filed, one of the spouses or ex-spouses dies before the division of assets can be fully completed.  Does the ex-spouse or spouse still retain an interest in an asset that has been released by the Court Order?  Two possible scenarios may arise, and each will be…
  • Military Divorce Rate Climbs – Are Multiple Deployments at Fault?

    Robert L. Mues
    6 Sep 2014 | 12:28 am
    Recent Study Reveals Increased Length In Deployments Will Increase The Risk Of Military Divorce A recent study conducted by the RAND Corporation with the Department of Defense sponsorship found that increased length in deployments will increase the risk of divorce.  The study goes into detail regarding marriages originating prior to and after the September 11, 2001, attacks.  The study found that couples who married prior to the attacks and had one of the spouses deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan were over 20% more likely to divorce than couples who married after the September 11 attacks.
  • An Interview with Michael Newsom, Fatherhood Coordinator for the Montgomery County Child Support Enforcement Agency

    Anne Shale
    30 Aug 2014 | 12:15 am
    Let us first look at some important statistics published by the National Fatherhood Initiative. The Effects of Father Absence in the Home of Minor Children: Children of Father-Absent homes are: Five times more likely to live in poverty. Three times more likely to fail in school. Two times more likely to develop emotional or behavioral problems. Two times more likely to abuse drugs. Two times more likely to be abused and neglected. Two times more likely to become involved in crime. Three times more likely to commit suicide. Compare the facts with children having Father’s involved in their…
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    3 Geeks and a Law Blog

  • The Exponential Law Firm - Part 2

    29 Sep 2014 | 5:00 pm
    The following is the second part of a 4 part post that expands upon a short introduction I gave to an ILTA session entitled, Do Robot Lawyers Dream of Billable Seconds? If you have not yet listened to the full session (and you have nothing better to do for the next 90 minutes), you should go listen to it now. If you would like to download and read the entire 4-part post you can get it here. Ryan The 6 Ds: An Exponential Framework Image from Peter Diamandis' presentation to ILTA. On the first day of this year’s ILTA conference, I attended the keynote session presented by Peter…
  • The Exponential Law Firm - Part 1

    28 Sep 2014 | 5:00 pm
    The following is the 1st part of a 4 part post expanding on my short introduction to an ILTA session entitled, Do Robot Lawyers Dream of Billable Seconds? If you have not yet listened to the full session (and you have nothing better to do for the next 90 minutes), you should go listen to it now. If you would like to download and read the entire 4-part post you can get it here. Ryan Computers During World War II, a “computer” was a person who calculated ballistic trajectories and published the results in books and sets of tables that were given to artillery units and battle…
  • Do Robot Lawyers Dream of Billable Seconds?

    26 Sep 2014 | 9:00 am
    I had the privilege and pleasure of moderating a terrific panel at the ILTA conference this year.  The title of the session was the title of this post.  And the intention of the session was to explore, not WHAT new technology was coming down the pipe, but HOW that technology would fundamentally change lawyers, law firms, and the practice of law itself. I am indebted to Jess Hutto-Schultz and the ILTA Committee for suggesting the topic and for allowing me to pick a truly ALL-STAR panel. The panelists were: Joshua Lenon, Lawyer in Residence at Clio (blog) Noah Waisberg, CEO and…
  • We Cannot Keep New Business Intake In a Vacuum

    18 Sep 2014 | 12:26 pm
    736-hp VW Golf Toby Brown and I have had a number of discussions over the past few months on how law firms gather information during the new business intake (NBI) process. Toby comments that all of the focus on NBI is process driven, and that we are speeding up the process, but not really doing a great job of creating better information that can help the firm create a competitive advantage at a later time. Very little in the NBI reform/reinvention process is about better data. It focuses more on faster input of information to speed up the time to open a new matter, thus creating a…
  • Let CI Be Your Guide

    12 Aug 2014 | 8:39 am
    Someone asked me recently why I think more and more law firms are creating CI roles or increasing their CI capacity, encouraging their BD and Library staff to work more closely so forth. I didn't really have a good answer on the spot, "cause it makes good business sense, or because market competition and consolidation is increasing" seemed all to obvious and do not address this specific moment in the evolution of the modern law firm.  Last month, I participated in a webinar presented by Ann Lee Gibson, long time law firm CI consultant as a part of the IntelCollab webinar series and…
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    The High-touch Legal Services® Blog...for Startups!

  • Consumer Non-disparagement Clauses Nixed in California

    18 Sep 2014 | 10:32 am
    Earlier this month, Governor Brown approved California Assembly Bill No. 2365. This bill added Civil Code Section 1670.8, which prohibits non-disparagement clauses in consumer contracts. Statute Prohibits Non-disparagement Clauses Core protections are set forth in Subsection (a) of that statute. (1) A contract or proposed contract for the sale or lease of consumer goods or services may not include a provision waiving the consumer’s right to make any statement regarding the seller or lessor or its employees or agents, or concerning the goods or services. (2) It shall be unlawful to threaten…
  • URS – ICANN Offers Uniform Rapid Suspension against Cybersquatters

    16 Sep 2014 | 4:25 pm
    I have written several times about ICANN’s longstanding Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP). This post discusses a more recent way to thwart some cybersquatters, namely, URS – Uniform Rapid Suspension. According to ICANN explains, URS exists to “provide rapid relief to trademark holders for the most clear-cut cases of infringement“. Furthermore, URS is cheaper and faster than UDRP. URS Speed and Burden of Proof Under the URS, the Complainant must prove three facts comparable to those to be proved under the UDRP. (i) The domain name is identical or…
  • LLCs: Why an Operating Agreement is Important

    5 Sep 2014 | 3:06 pm
    This post discusses why an operating agreement is important for every limited liability company (LLC). It expands upon an answer I provided on Quora several months ago. (See In simple terms, why are operating agreements important?) An operating agreement is an agreement among the members of an LLC. It addresses relations among the members and how the LLC will conduct its affairs. Requirements for an Operating Agreement Requirements for entering into an operating agreement are specified in the law of the state of formation. For example: California Corporations Code Section 17701.02(s) states…
  • Browsewrap Agreements Must Be Brought to Users’ Attention

    25 Aug 2014 | 3:57 pm
    In Online Terms can be Binding, even if You don’t have to Click!, I compared the enforceability of clickwrap and browsewrap agreements. This post discusses Nguyen v. Barnes & Noble, in which the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit recently examined notice requirements for browsewrap agreements to be enforced. Plaintiff Nguyen filed a class action lawsuit against Barnes & Noble because it had cancelled his online order for a Hewlett-Packard Touchpad tablet computer. Defense Based on Arbitration Provision B&N stated that plaintiff’s suit should be dismissed because…
  • A DBA is not a Legal Entity

    29 Jul 2014 | 4:33 pm
    This post is based on a question that I answered on Avvo. The question illustrates a common misunderstanding concerning DBAs. (DBA is an abbreviation for “doing business as” – i.e., a fictitious business name.) The questioner did not realize that a DBA is not a legal entity Q. Can someone sue a DBA for breach of contract by the parent corporation? Why a DBA is not a Legal Entity Analysis: The questioner owned a corporation that apparently was created for investment purposes. That corporation also owned a restaurant, which it operated under a fictitious business name. A…
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    Gamso - For the Defense

  • Judging the Judges

    25 Sep 2014 | 5:31 am
    Judge Kopf wondered what others thought, then offered his own thoughts, on what to do about Mark Fuller, the U.S. District Judge who beat his wife.  I offered a response in a post (one I'm not altogether sure I agree with, but hey, that's the nature of ruminations) in which I mentioned a couple of local judges charged with serious misconduct.  One of them was Lance Mason who, because of the charges, is not currently hearing cases.I was in the courthouse the other day, in a courtroom across from where Judge Mason sits and hears cases when he actually sits and hears cases.
  • Do It To the Children

    22 Sep 2014 | 9:32 pm
    Did too.Did not.Did too.Off with his head!Usually it's a little more legalistic than that.  The prosecutor asks what happened.  The accuser says that the defendant did whatever.  Maybe the defendant gets on the witness stand and denies it.  The jury believes the accuser because . . . . Damned if I know.  Because juries just can't believe anyone would lie about having had whatever done to them.Frequently you don't even need an accuser.  In Ohio, for instance (and the Buckeye State isn't alone in this), circumstantial evidence is, for legal purposes, every bit as…
  • Stop Me Before I Comb Again - UPDATE

    19 Sep 2014 | 11:22 pm
    So you're hangin' in the neighborhood barbershop waiting for a chair to open so you can get a trim.  There are five, maybe six barbers working, a whole bunch of customers sitting around, talking, reading comics, the paper, old magazines.  School's starting soon, so there are a bunch of kids there.  Gonna get cleaned up for that first day of school.There's a couple of cops inside, dressed in civvies, just kind of looking around.  This is, after all, this barbershop is in a black neighborhood.  Or a Latino one.  So you gotta figure someone's dealing crack and…
  • So We Can Remember To Be Perfect From Now On

    18 Sep 2014 | 8:51 pm
    Tim Cole was 39 when he died from asthma-related heart issues in 1999.  He's buried at Mt. Olivet Cemetery in Fort Worth, which is where he's from.  But it's not where he died, and it's not where the story began. It began in 1985.  In Lubbock, hard by the campus of Texas Tech University.  That's where and when Michele Mallin, 20 years old, a student at Tech, was taken at knife point and raped.  Tim was 25.  He'd served a hitch in the army.  Now, he was following his sister's footsteps, going to Tech as she had.  He was working on a degree.
  • Constitution Day

    17 Sep 2014 | 7:30 pm
    You know these words.  If you're of a certain age - or a certain background, I suppose, you were required to memorize them.We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establishJustice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote thegeneral Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, doordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America. They were adopted, promulgated, "done in Convention" as it saysby the Unanimous Consent of the States present the Seventeenth Day of…
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    VirtualMarketingOfficer Blog

  • Tips for Hiring a Law Firm Marketing Consultant: Part II – The Endgame

    Jayne Navarre
    8 Sep 2014 | 2:08 am
    My law firm administrator once said to me, in exasperation, “Consultants tell you what to do, not how to do it.” And he’s right. A consultant (from Latin: consultare “to discuss”) is a professional who provides professional or expert advice in a particular area or specialized field. – Wikipedia A consultant brings wide knowledge of the subject matter to a firm on a temporary basis. The overall impact of a consultant is that the client will have access to deeper levels of expertise than would be feasible for them to retain in-house, and may purchase only as much service…
  • Tips for Hiring a Law Firm Marketing Consultant: Part I – Specialization

    Jayne Navarre
    4 Sep 2014 | 4:15 pm
    October is “just around the corner,” which signals that wonderful month of the year when you are asked to prepare next year’s marketing budget. No such luck as a blank check. The temptation to procrastinate will be strong. Seriously, speaking from experience, get the gears turning as there is not enough holiday candy in the world to keep the bean counters, or your boss, off your back through the end of December. #FAIL It probably goes without saying, but, marketing encompasses (almost) everything a law firm does—what problems it addresses, how it solves them, what it costs, where it…
  • A Legal Thriller

    Jayne Navarre
    25 Jun 2014 | 6:20 pm
    If the swashbuckling criminal trial lawyer and oft times guest commentator on the CBS network, Paul Batista, had a blog, I’m pretty sure he’d write his own posts. But why waste time on a blog—here today, gone to the archive tomorrow—when you have enough within you to write a really good book? Not just a book, several; including the leading non-fiction treatise on the federal racketeering statute, Civil RICO Practice Manual, now in it’s third edition (Wolters Kluwer, 2008), and thoroughly entertaining fiction—legal thrillers—including the page turner, Death’s Witness.
  • “Ghostwriter? That is unethical,” says the law firm marketing director to the ghost.

    Jayne Navarre
    23 Jun 2014 | 3:09 pm
    Every writer knows that writing takes time. Behind what looks like a simple article, presentation, speech, memo, proposal, blog post, or legal brief may be hours and hours of researching, organizing and editing for improved accuracy, word choice and punctuation—clarity and flow. It takes practice, talent and time to write effectively; and time is a finite resource to be allocated with discretion. I believe we can all agree that reading a well-written article is much more enjoyable than slogging through a meandering one that never really gets to the point. “In your content marketing, you…
  • The Struggle For The Perfect Attorney Bio Page

    Jayne Navarre
    10 Jun 2014 | 4:53 pm
    In my experience creating law firm website content, it is rarely that simply writing an effective attorney bio is a problem. The challenge is convincing the attorney that they do not want to sound like every other attorney; that his or her bio is no longer a menu of features, it is a useful profile of your offer, and it really does matter, a lot.  You’ve got the new website project approved, and hired a great development team. The ideas are flowing like a river in the springtime, when the snow melts off the mountains. Your first priority is to work with the design team to plot out the site…
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  • Week Adjourned: 9.26.14 – E-Cigarettes, GNC, BofA

    26 Sep 2014 | 2:17 pm
    The week's top class action lawsuits and settlements. Top stories include e-cigarettes, GNC and Bank of America.
  • OH Jay Z! Two-Letter Word Sparks Infringement Lawsuit

    25 Sep 2014 | 2:05 pm
    “OH” my god—are you kidding? It’s a copyright trolling lawsuit but it may be one for the books. BUT seriously folks—it’s over the use of one word. Set to be precedent setting—according to legal scholars—Rapper Jay Z is in a legal battle for the use of an “oh” shout allegedly taken from a 1969 recording made by Eddie Bo. (who?)
  • Lawsuit filed by Desperate Wannabe Wife of New York?

    22 Sep 2014 | 8:46 am
    Possibly the most expensive dates in the world could cost a self-proclaimed elite matchmaker his livelihood. Admittedly, if Ruden had taken a quick poll of New Yorkers as to whether it was rational thinking on her part to spend six figures on finding a date—let alone husband material—the resounding response would be "No". But, of course, we won't focus here on the collective raised eyebrow we're all shooting in Ruden's direction at present; we'll focus on the biz deal she apparently had with Easton...
  • Week Adjourned: 9.19.14 – GNC, La-Z-Boy, Meriter Health

    19 Sep 2014 | 2:38 pm
    The week's top class action lawsuits and settlements. Top stories include GNC, La-Z-Boy and Meriter Health
  • Asbestos News Roundup: 9.18.14 – Fire Fighters and Asbestos Disease

    18 Sep 2014 | 7:50 am
    A roundup of recent asbestos-related news and information that you should be aware of. An ongoing list of reported asbestos hot spots in the US from the Asbestos News Roundup archive appears on our asbestos map.
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    Technically Legal

  • The Lighter Side of Patents

    Ben Snitkoff
    25 Sep 2014 | 4:35 pm
    Every once in a great while you come across a patent opinion that contains a little whimsy (not for the losing party, but for everyone else). Today was one of those days. In 2010, two inventors filed for a utility patent on a cover for a propane tank to be used during tailgating. Why, you ask, for such a specific purpose? Because it looked like this. The Patent and Trademark Office rejected the claims as obvious over prior art that included chemical tanks and a decorative beer koozie, as reproduced below. The inventors appealed, and the Federal Circuit affirmed. The court held that the…
  • Don’t Be Concerned About Being Served Papers Over Facebook

    Ben Snitkoff
    21 Sep 2014 | 3:33 am
    Slashdot, via the NY Post, have articles about a recent case from Staten Island where a judge allowed papers to be served over Facebook. The titles of the stories imply that this is a new day in service of legal papers. It is not. The judge in this case made an exception to the traditionally accepted modes of service because those all failed. It is not likely, as the Post says, that your, “next Facebook ‘poke’ could be from a process server.” (Unless you are friends with a process server who likes to poke you on Facebook. Then it’s decently likely.) More…
  • Massachusetts Dealers Can’t Sue Tesla for Operating in MA

    Ben Snitkoff
    15 Sep 2014 | 8:10 am
    This morning, the Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) of Massachusetts held that unaffiliated automobile dealers in Massachusetts do not have standing to sue Tesla over alleged violation of Massachusetts Auto Dealer statutes. For some background on this topic, listen to this great Planet Money story that outlines the common statutes. In a nut-shell: states have laws that prohibit automobile manufacturers from selling cars directly to consumers. Affiliated dealerships are set up in each state, and have certain agreements with the car makers. Those state laws often have protections baked in that…
  • Video King Wins at Bingo

    Ben Snitkoff
    26 Aug 2014 | 1:15 pm
    In 2002, based on a patent application filed in 2000, Melange Computer Systems was awarded a patent on a bingo playing machine (and method). The term “bingo playing machine” immediately evokes an image of an elderly person huddled over several bingo cards, stamping them manically or laying down plastic chips as the numbers are called. And therein was the problem for Planet Bingo, the current owner of the aforementioned, and another, patent. Planet Bingo sued Video King for infringing two patents related to electronic bingo. After claim construction, the district court found that…
  • A More Enforceable Terms and Conditions

    Ben Snitkoff
    19 Aug 2014 | 5:51 am
    After the news yesterday of the Ninth Circuit holding that Barnes & Noble’s Terms of Service were never agreed to, I wanted to highlight the “Terms and Conditions” on the Jack Rudy Cocktail Co. site. The Terms and Conditions are never explicitly agreed to by the customer, but that’s OK, because they don’t require agreement by the customer. They are reproduced in full below: Customer Service Bottom line, we are a small company, and we are positioned to ensure your experience with us is pleasant. If it isn’t, give us a call. We’ll answer. Privacy Notice We…
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    Bitter Lawyer

  • Life Lesson: Do Not Call A 1L A Porn Star On Your Morning Radio Show

    Lisa Needham
    30 Sep 2014 | 10:17 am
    You know those morning shows, right? The ones you listen to on the way into the office because one of the senior partners thinks it is high-larious, so you need to be up on Donnie the D-Bag or Angie the Asshole or whoever hosts your local morning drive time slice of hell. Perhaps your burden of listening to that dreck will feel a little lighter today as you laugh (ONLY INSIDE YOUR HEAD, YOU IDIOT. Do you want to be fired?) about this verdict against Kansas City’s “Afentra’s Big Fat Morning Buzz” show. Free legal advice for radio stations everywhere. If you’re…
  • Superheroes of the Legal Profession: Redactor

    Gregory Luce
    26 Sep 2014 | 11:11 am
    While not the most exciting civilian—being a frequent fixture on the eDiscovery vendor circuit and giving out Tootsie Rolls at legal tech shows in New York—Redactor is indispensable in keeping sensitive metadata from spilling out and ruining a partner’s lunch. His black matter gazerbeam will annihilate basic text and even eviscerate microbial signs of useless information. In addition, he’s a top Adobe Acrobat reseller and knows when and how to use “batch” mode in Adobe Acrobat X. Metadatrix, otherwise known as the evil purveyor of revelation, is…
  • The Four Types of Exams You Meet In Law School

    The Northwest 3L
    26 Sep 2014 | 5:30 am
    Brace yourselves, played-out memes about exams are coming.  Sean Bean’s biggest worry may be portraying a convincing death for whatever character he’s playing at the time, but for those of us in law school the big nasty is always going to be exams (or job interviews, which I’d prefer not to talk about at the moment . . . ).  As we’re all scurrying to prepare for exams, here’s a quick and dirty field guide to the most common types of law school exams. The 2-3 hour Issue Spotter:  The classic law school exam.  Usually involving a plaintiff whose name…
  • 10 Funny Judicial Quotes

    Grey Bitter
    25 Sep 2014 | 6:15 am
    Our Empire of Bitterness is proceeding full steam ahead. In the meantime, let’s do a Top 10! Here are some of the funniest judicial quotes out there. (Did we miss some? Please enlighten us in the comments section.) 10. Dragnet Roberts North Philly, May 4, 2001. Officer Sean Devlin, Narcotics Strike Force, was working the morning shift. Undercover surveillance. The neighborhood? Tough as a three dollar steak. Devlin knew. Five years on the beat, nine months with the Strike Force. He’d made fifteen, twenty drug busts in the neighborhood. - Chief Justice Roberts of the Supreme Court,…
  • Scorpion: Like ‘The Practice’ for the Tech Industry, But Dumber

    Bitter SciTech
    24 Sep 2014 | 12:01 pm
    Why is this here, you’re asking? What in your bitter lawyer life has led you to read about a tv show that involves an elite hacker team outrunning planes in a Ferrari? First, because we’re rolling out our bitter empire, and tv, bitter and otherwise, will be a big part of our empire once our death star is fully operational. Also because WOW, people, do something other than work sometimes. This may look like the kind of fake almost computer code that I use when I try to explain programming to students with no programming experience, but it is actually the logo for CBS’ new…
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    Rochester Bankruptcy and Debt Relief

  • Bankruptcy and Judgments

    28 Sep 2014 | 7:57 pm
    One of the issues that periodically concerns my clients is the one of removing filed judgments after receiving bankruptcy discharge. Initially, filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy won’t remove a judgment that has been already filed. Whether or not the debtor will need to remove it after receiving a discharge in either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy depends on each individual situation. When a debtor files for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, that debtor is trying to remove his or her personal liability for repayment of certain debts. If a creditor sued the debtor and obtained a judgment before the…
  • Banking After Bankruptcy

    7 Sep 2014 | 7:54 pm
    Most debtors are concerned about being able to open bank accounts after completing their bankruptcy and receiving their discharge. While most debtors will not have any difficulty opening new bank accounts, some debtors are unable to open a checking account after receiving their bankruptcy discharge. Typically, this is true for the debtors who have had a problematic history with their bank, involving bounced checks or excessive overdraft activity. As a result this negative information was reported to a check reporting company known as Chex Systems. Such negative information remains in this…
  • Executory Contracts and Leases in Bankruptcy

    5 Jul 2014 | 6:43 pm
    In Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 Bankruptcy cases, debtors have an opportunity to either continue or terminate any executory contracts or leases. That typically means that debtors will list their executory contracts and unexpired leases on the bankruptcy petition and declare their intention to either to accept or to reject those contracts. If such contracts are not timely assumed, they are deemed rejected, and debtors are released from further performance under those contracts. An executory contract is an agreement that has not been completed. A contract is an agreement between two or more parties…
  • Upcoming Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Filing Fees Increases

    3 May 2014 | 5:17 pm
    It seems inevitable that bankruptcy filing fees are going up again.  The Judicial Conference which determines the amount of various filing fees associated with bankruptcy cases has approved a fee increase which will be effective on June 1, 2014. The fees for filing a chapter 7 case will increase from $306.00 to $335.00. The fees for filing a chapter 13 case will increase from $281.00 to $310.00. This is a $29.00 increase in the filing fees for both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 Bankruptcies. The fees for filing an adversary proceeding will increase as well to $350.00. However, debtors are not…
  • Creditors’s Responsibilities After Bankruptcy Filing

    6 Apr 2014 | 2:37 pm
    On the bankruptcy petition is filed, the bankruptcy automatic stay is in effect in Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies, and virtually every type of collection activity is called to a halt. The bankruptcy court enters an order under 11 U.S.C §362, which prohibits nearly all creditors from taking any type of collection action. What happens if the bankruptcy automatic stay is violated? If a creditor violates the automatic stay by accident, it must return the money or stop the collection action as soon as it learns about the bankruptcy. However, if the stay violation is done by the creditor on…
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    The Jury Room

  • Simple Jury Persuasion: Should you consider 3-D for your courtroom videos?

    Douglas Keene
    29 Sep 2014 | 4:02 am
    Evidence admissibility issues aside, the answer is, “only if you can do it as well as they did in the 3D movie Polar Express”. As it turns out, 3D isn’t that much more impactful than 2D unless it’s done really, really well. Psychologists and neuroscientists studying emotion often use film clips for their research. So when these researchers from the University of Utah thought about the influx of 3D films, they wondered if those films would have more emotional impact than the older 2D films–especially for younger viewers (whom we might consider potential jurors). Theoretically, 3D…
  • Would you prefer a smaller government? Actually, no you would not. 

    Rita Handrich
    26 Sep 2014 | 4:02 am
    For a number of years now, we have been asking our mock jurors what role they think government should play in our society and giving them a number of options among which to choose. Most of them say government should play a smaller role and we certainly have all heard the media messages that tell us “smaller government is better”. The research we are covering today says that, in truth, big government (or at least bigger government) makes people more satisfied with their lives (at least if they live in advanced and industrial democracies). The researchers examined World Values Surveys…
  • Unfaithful partner? Would you rather be seen as mature– or as competent and strong?

    Douglas Keene
    24 Sep 2014 | 4:02 am
    According to new research, you can’t have both. Inspired by women who told them they “would not vote for Hillary Clinton [in the Presidential primaries a decade later] because she forgave then-President Bill Clinton’s infidelity”, these researchers looked at how male and female observers viewed male and female victims of infidelity based on how they responded to their partner’s behavior. The researchers did three separate experiments: The first experiment used 100 male fraternity members (aged 18 to 24 years) who read a story about (ostensibly) a member of their own fraternity whose…
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    Karl Bayer's Disputing Blog

  • Arbitration and the Contract Exchange

    Beth Graham
    29 Sep 2014 | 6:42 am
    Andrew A. Schwartz, Associate Professor of Law at the University of Colorado Law School, has published Arbitration and the Contract Exchange, Ohio State Journal on Dispute Resolution, Vol. 29, No. 2, 2014; U of Colorado Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 14-7. In his paper, Professor Schwartz examines why arbitration is the most appropriate method for resolving consumer contract-exchange disputes. Here is the abstract: A contract exchange, defined as an organized marketplace for the creation or trading of specific contracts, provides benefits to its members as well as the public at large.
  • Dallas COA Affirms Arbitral Award Despite Evident Partiality Claims

    Beth Graham
    23 Sep 2014 | 12:44 pm
    The Fifth District Court of Appeals of Texas in Dallas has affirmed a trial court’s order confirming an arbitral award in a dispute between a residential builder and several homeowners. In Meritage Homes of Texas, L.L.C. v. Ruan, No. 05-13-00831-CV (Tex. App. – Dallas, September 16, 2014) a group of individuals who bought newly built homes from Meritage allegedly learned that their houses were smaller than the square footage that was represented to them prior to purchase. As a result, the homeowners sought discovery pursuant to Texas Rule of Civil Procedure 202. Meritage responded by…
  • Crossing the Threshold: Arbitral Jurisdiction after BG Group

    Beth Graham
    22 Sep 2014 | 10:58 am
    Professor Alan S. Rau, Mark G. and Judy G. Yudof Chair in Law at the University of Texas School of Law, has authored Crossing the Threshold: Arbitral Jurisdiction after BG Group, Melanges en l’honneur de Pierre Mayer (2015 Forthcoming). In his paper, Professor Rau discusses the effect the United States Supreme Court’s recent decision in BG Group v. Argentina has had on arbitration. Here is the abstract: In a decision that was much anticipated and that has been much discussed, the Supreme Court has once again revisited the central question in our law of arbitration – the…
  • New AAA Consumer Arbitration Rules are Now in Effect

    Beth Graham
    18 Sep 2014 | 8:38 am
    On September 1st, new American Arbitration Association (AAA) Consumer Arbitration Rules went into effect. The 55 new rules reportedly replaced the eight Consumer-Related Disputes Supplementary Procedures that previously applied to consumer arbitrations filed with the organization.  The new rules apply to all arbitral cases filed after September 1, 2014. According to the AAA: The American Arbitration Association® (“AAA®,” “the Association”) applies the Consumer Arbitration Rules (“Rules”) to arbitration clauses in agreements between individual consumers and businesses where the…
  • Houston COA Orders All Parties to Arbitration in High Stakes Legal Malpractice Lawsuit

    Beth Graham
    17 Sep 2014 | 9:31 am
    Texas’ Fourteenth Court of Appeals in Houston has reversed a trial court’s order denying arbitration in a legal malpractice dispute. In Greenberg Traurig, LLP v. National American Ins. Co., National American Insurance Company (NAICO) retained the services of an attorney at Greenberg Traurig, LLP (Greenberg) to defend Okie Foundation Drilling Co., Inc. (Okie) in an appeal in an accidental death case. Although another attorney at Greenberg represented NAICO in a number of other matters since 2005, an agent for NAICO signed a flat fee retainer agreement in 2011 that was specifically related…
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    South Florida Lawyers

  • Don't Fear The Pizz!!

    South Florida Lawyers
    30 Sep 2014 | 7:15 am
    Do you feel me?I mean, do you feel me??The Florida Supreme Court on Monday instructed the governor, who was sued by Pizzi, to explain by Oct. 14 why he should not revoke Pizzi’s suspension. “[T]he Court has determined that the [Pizzi] petition demonstrates a preliminary basis for relief,” according to the order. In effect, the high court has boxed in the governor, leaving him with little choice but to lift Pizzi’s suspension, which Scott imposed after his arrest in August 2013.“It’s a home run for us,” Pizzi said after reading the state Supreme Court’s order. “The court has…
  • Being Boring

    29 Sep 2014 | 5:09 pm
    *video has brief but artful nudity #nsfwThank god! For a second there I was actually in agreement with Michele Bachmann. Don't worry self, she walked it back!For years, the GOP congresswoman from Minnesota has been a leader among Christian evangelicals and a vocal opponent of gay marriage. She not only supported a federal marriage amendment; she worked tirelessly as a state legislator in years past to get a an amendment on the ballot banning gay marriage in her home state's constitution. It finally got on the ballot in 2012 and was defeated. And then in 2013, Minnesota passed marriage…
  • Should Broward County Provide ABA Therapy to Autistic Children?

    South Florida Lawyers
    29 Sep 2014 | 6:39 am
    That's the weighty and important issue before Judge Marra, who just cleared the way for trial on this long-simmering claim that seeks to hold the school board to its statutory responsibilities on behalf of autistic children:Here, this Court has determined that a trial is necessary to resolve factual issues with respect to Plaintiff’s IDEA claim. Further, Ms. Shermett, a representative of the School Board, testified in her deposition that curriculum is not discussed with the parents during the IEP process, and that if a parent wants the team to consider a curriculum other than the one used…
  • Long Live The King!

    27 Sep 2014 | 6:17 am
    Family members of the late, great Jack Kirby have reached a settlement with Marvel/Disney, avoiding a fiery showdown in the Supreme Court.Widely viewed as one of the Kings of Comics, Kirby created or co-created some of the biggest names on the page and now on the big screen in the superhero blockbusters that Hollywood has profited from in recent years. However, while his often partner Stan Lee was a Marvel employee, Kirby was a work for hire and had no rights to Captain America, The Fantastic Four, the Hulk, Iron Man, Thor, the original X-Men and the plethora of other characters he played a…
  • The Bieb's Lawsuit Spinning Away from Him?

    South Florida Lawyers
    26 Sep 2014 | 11:49 am
    Ever heard of "damage control":The Miami area lawyer who’s suing troubled pop star Justin Bieber on behalf of a local photographer wants the singer to cough up the login and password information of all of his social media accounts. It’s yet another Gossip Extra exclusive: According to a motion filed by attorney Mark DiCowden, he wants to explore one full year of entries in all of Bieber’s social media, including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, XboxLive, Foursquare, Gowalla, MySpace and Windows Live. DiCowden also wants Bieber’s writing in chat room, message boards and other electronic…
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    International Business Law Advisor

  • The Ultimate International Law Guide for U.S. Judges–And Attorneys!

    Santiago A. Cueto
    23 Sep 2014 | 8:51 am
    Several months ago I argued a case that centered on the finer points of forum non conveniens. The issue comes-up regularly given the large number of international companies doing business here in Miami. While my adversary and I had a firm grasp of the issues involved, the judge wanted to take some additional time to review the case law cited in our briefs before making a decision. And that’s no surprise. It can be difficult for a judge to keep up with all the nuances of international business litigation. In the past year alone, there have been a number of major decisions that have reshaped…
  • Connecting with International Business Leaders is Elementary: Start with the Periodic Table of LinkedIn Influencers.

    Santiago A. Cueto
    10 Sep 2014 | 10:53 am
    One of the great things about my job is connecting with international business leaders from all over the world. Whether its resolving a dispute between parties in Zurich and Saudi Arabia or closing a deal between joint partners in Singapore and London, it’s the relationship-building that is the most fulfilling. While working on international matters is an ideal way to connect, I’ve found that LinkedIn’s Influencer platform is also a great way to build relationships with international business leaders all over the world. How to Connect with International Business Leaders on…
  • How to Supercharge Your Exports with a Third-Party Logistics Provider (3PL).

    Santiago A. Cueto
    4 Sep 2014 | 6:30 am
    “I have a problem,” the caller said to me. “Our company’s textile factory in Vietnam has been sitting idle for several weeks.” The caller explained that it’s cotton supplier was unable to clear its shipping documents with customs officials. I asked whether the company had a back-up plan to find an alternative supply. “No,” replied the caller. “We didn’t think we’d ever need one.” The Cause of the Problem. I soon learned that the company handled everything in-house and lacked the industry expertise to  handle a last-minute logistics…
  • 4 Reasons Why a Lawsuit Over Flight MH17 Will Not Succeed in U.S. Courts.

    Santiago A. Cueto
    4 Aug 2014 | 7:56 pm
    “I opened the door and it was raining people. One fell in my vegetable patch” –Irina Tipunova, Rozsypne, Ukraine That horrific account captures only part of the tragedy that ended the lives of 298 passengers aboard Malaysia Flight MH17 last month.  Several hundred feet from Ms. Tipunova’s home, dozens more ravaged bodies lay in the wheat fields where the airliner came down. Upon learning of such a scene, the knee-jerk reaction for many international plaintiff lawyers is to rush lawsuits into U.S. courts to take advantage of it’s generous tort system. Indeed, it was only…
  • 35 International Business Etiquette Rules that Might Surprise You.

    Santiago A. Cueto
    12 Jun 2014 | 12:45 pm
    Besides that one time in Switzerland that I yodeled my lunch order, I’ve had a good stretch of luck with not running afoul of any major rules of etiquette when doing business in other countries. Whether I’m at Breakfast with a banker in Brazil, at lunch with a lawyer in London or at dinner with a dealer in Denmark, I’m always uneasy about violating some unspoken rule of etiquette in the country that I’m visiting. I’ve found that the best way to the right thing is to follow the local rules of etiquette is to simply follow the lead of my hosts. This has worked-out just fine for me.
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    Compliance Building

  • When Fundraising Becomes More Lucrative Than Running the Business

    Doug Cornelius
    30 Sep 2014 | 5:55 am
    Erick Mathe had a vision of creating a media empire. Well, maybe not an empire, more of a small keep. His plan was to broadcast over Low Power Television Service. Those are locally-oriented television broadcasts in small communities. Mr. Mathe had a line up of streaming music and infomercials. He just needed capital to get the business going. It won’t surprise you that Mathe has been charged with fraud. There is an SEC complaint in Florida and a criminal indictment in Pennsylvania. Mathe has not responded to the charges so I have to rely on the government’s view of the facts. It…
  • Why I think the Accredited Investor Standard Should Not Change

    Doug Cornelius
    29 Sep 2014 | 5:18 am
    The SEC Investor Advisory Committee is scheduled to vote on a reform plan from a subcommittee at its Oct. 9 meeting. That plan calls for the SEC to rethink the income and net-worth minimums used to define an “accredited investor.” Much of the concern about private placements is about risk. They seem to be universally labeled as the most risky of investments. The accredited investor definition is categorized as the class of individuals who do not need the ’33 Act protections in order to be able to make an informed investment decision and protect their own interests. They get to…
  • Weekend Reading: Predator

    Doug Cornelius
    27 Sep 2014 | 6:00 am
    Predator covers the story of the birth of the Predator drone and its effect on military and covert operations. Richard Whittle manages to weave through the military and aeronautic bureaucracy of the Predator as it is destined to become  the most successful military unmanned aircraft. I was surprised to see the level of detail about the development of the aircraft. I would think that much of the information would be secret. Or that those involved would be quiet about its history. Whittle clearly was able to uncover a tremendous amount of detail. The story is rich, enjoyable to read, and…
  • Compliance Bricks and Mortar for September 26

    Doug Cornelius
    26 Sep 2014 | 5:00 am
    These are some of the compliance-related stories that recently caught my attention. Fixing a Company’s Ethics and Compliance Culture by Michael Volkov in Corruption, Crime & Compliance A company’s ability to enact meaningful change depends on the innate desire of its leadership to execute real change. It is too easy to say that such change depends on the CEO. Instead, a change in culture requires the dedication of two important players – the CEO and the board of directors. SEC Finds Deficiencies at Hedge Funds by Andrew Ackerman and Rob Copeland in the Wall Street Journal Mr.
  • First Enforcement Action for Private Equity Fund Expense Allocation

    Doug Cornelius
    23 Sep 2014 | 7:00 am
    The Securities and Exchange Commission has been making lots of noise about how its unhappy with how private equity firms are allocating expenses to portfolio companies. And it has finally hit its first target. The SEC charged a a private equity fund manager with breaching its fiduciary duty to a pair of private equity funds by sharing expenses between a company in one fund’s portfolio and a company in the other fund’s portfolio in a manner that improperly benefited one fund over the other. Lincolnshire’s Fund I bought Peripheral Computer Support, Inc. in 1997. PCS primarily serviced…
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    Simmons Firm

  • Join the ADAO Mesothelioma Warrior Virtual Team

    Perry J. Browder
    18 Sep 2014 | 6:38 am
    Not everyone who supports mesothelioma awareness may be able to attend Miles for Meso on Sept. 27. The Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) provides a solution to this with its ADAO Mesothelioma Warrior Virtual Team. Although this is the race’s sixth year raising money for mesothelioma research and support organizations, this is the Mesothelioma Warrior Virtual Team’s first year. This virtual team allows those who cannot participate in the 6th Annual Miles for Meso to register a name that will be featured on other runners. This means that mesothelioma survivors, victims, or…
  • Participate in Mesothelioma Awareness Day This Year

    John A. Barnerd
    5 Sep 2014 | 11:26 am
    Mesothelioma Awareness Day, which takes place on Sept. 26, is fast approaching. If you’re thinking about getting involved this year, now is the time. National Mesothelioma Awareness Day is a day dedicated to raising awareness and research funds for mesothelioma. It first began in 2004 when it was created by a group of Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation volunteers. In 2010, the U.S. Congress passed a resolution designating Sept. 26 as National Mesothelioma Awareness Day. Every year since then, participation in the awareness day has grown larger and more widespread. The day is…
  • Upcoming Mesothelioma Events You Don’t Want to Miss

    John A. Barnerd
    29 Aug 2014 | 9:03 am
    Mesothelioma Awareness Day, September 26, was founded in 2004 to bring recognition to mesothelioma, the rare cancer linked with asbestos exposure. Accordingly, organizations that are dedicated to researching, treating, and curing mesothelioma are providing a host of events to honor this important day. In addition, there are some more intensive conferences and varied events that will be offered throughout the next year that also hope to increase mesothelioma awareness and fund mesothelioma treatment research. 1. 9/6/14 Kayaking 4 Meso, Stillwater, N.Y. This eight mile kayak trip down the…
  • Financial Aid Expanded for Traveling Meso Patients

    Amy E. Garrett
    28 Aug 2014 | 8:57 am
    New Program Expands Financial Assistance for Travel Expenses of Mesothelioma Patients The Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation has increased the opportunities for travel expense reimbursement. Their Travel Grant program will now provide financial assistance for mesothelioma patients participating in clinical trials that require long distance visits. Formerly, expenses were only covered for those traveling to an initial consultation with specialists. The Meso Foundation began accepting applications for clinical trial traveling in late June. Patients seeking mesothelioma treatment from…
  • Become a Sponsor for the 2014 Miles for Meso 5K

    John A. Barnerd
    18 Aug 2014 | 6:01 am
    Besides raising funds to help support the mesothelioma community, the best part about the Alton Miles for Meso race are the shirts. Run Well, a local running store, was a Bronze Sponsor during the 2013 Miles for Meso race. As part of its sponsorship, it received a table to participate in the Miles for Meso’s vendor fair. If you’ve ever attended a Miles for Meso race, you know what I mean because everyone who registers for the Alton race, receives a free shirt. They are a moisture-wicking, long-sleeve shirt with cuffed sleeves. The most common comment we hear every year from race…
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    Texas Wills and Trusts Law Online

  • What Are You Waiting For? The Blessing of Planning Ahead

    Rania Combs
    26 Sep 2014 | 7:00 am
    Most of my clients are healthy when they contact me. Estate planning is something in which they are engaging as a precautionary measure rather than because they expect to die within a short amount of time. But not always. Occasionally, clients contact me after they’ve been diagnosed with a serious illness when emotions are high and death may be imminent. I spoke to three new clients this week, two men and one woman, who were recently diagnosed with cancer. They’ve been told to make final preparations.  They need their estate planning done now. Making important legal and financial…
  • Tips for Designating IRA Beneficiaries

    Rania Combs
    19 Sep 2014 | 7:00 am
    Wendy S. Goffe wrote a great guest article on last week that offered tips to avoid problems that can result from incomplete or inaccurate IRA beneficiary designations. Below are her recommendations Name a primary beneficiary (or beneficiaries). Name an alternate beneficiary in case the first one dies before you. Don’t name your estate as the beneficiary. Review these forms once a year to make sure they still carry out your wishes. Update your forms more often if there has been a change in your life circumstances, such as a birth, adoption, marriage, divorce or death. Each time…
  • Can The Beneficiary Of My Estate Also Be My Executor?

    Rania Combs
    10 Sep 2014 | 9:00 am
    I’ve received several emails the past few weeks asking whether it is possible for a beneficiary of an estate to also serve as executor. Naming someone as the executor of your estate does not preclude him or her from inheriting from you. In fact, the executor can and often is a beneficiary of the estate. An executor is a person charged with the responsibility of winding up your affairs after you die. The executor’s duties include: Inventorying and collecting your assets; Managing the assets during the administration of the estate; Receiving and paying the claims of creditors and tax…
  • If You Are A Part of A Blended Family, You Need A Will

    Rania Combs
    5 Sep 2014 | 11:00 am
    I got an email from someone this week whose husband did not have a Will. She and her husband had been married for 17 years. He had three children from a prior marriage, and they had one child together. Before they got married, he bought a house and a commercial building. During their marriage, they bought a home together. She asked: “Could this type of situation be a problem in Texas?” The short answer is yes! Intestate Distribution in Blended Families Many people assume that when they die, their spouse will inherit all their property. This is not always the case. When a married person…
  • What is the Tax Consequence of Selling Property I Inherit or Receive As A Gift?

    Rania Combs
    27 Aug 2014 | 7:30 am
    Several weeks ago, I received a phone call from a client whose elderly mother owned several pieces of real estate in an exclusive part of town. She had purchased the property decades ago for very little, but since then, the property had appreciated more than a hundredfold. She asked about the tax consequences of selling this highly appreciated property after her mother died. As it turns out, my friend and accountant, Ranjana Batra’s recent newsletter topic was about just that. I’m delighted that she has graciously allowed me to share the following expanded version of her…
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  • Digital Innovation Puts Us All In the Software Business

    Dave Wieneke
    29 Sep 2014 | 3:53 am
    Guess what? You’re not in the business you think you’re in. I don’t mean this like one of those these-are-not-the-droids-you-are-looking-for Jedi mind-tricks but as a statement of fact. No matter what else you may do, if you rely on digital technology – and who doesn’t – then you are in the software business too. Doubt it? Consider how your company does what it does. At how many points do your business functions pass through digital channels? It doesn’t matter if it’s back office, customer-facing, supply chain management or whatever, the answer is either “a lot” or…
  • Alibaba IPO Solidifies US / China Tech Duopoly

    Dave Wieneke
    20 Sep 2014 | 5:39 am
    Yesterday, the most anticipated tech IPO of the year established China’s largest e-commerce company, Alibaba Holding group, as a Wall Street powerhouse. Its stock closed the  day at $93.98 – setting t he firm’s market value $231 billion dollars, making it larger than Procter & Gamble. This Spring my a set of my graduate students at Northeastern University were assigned to follow the emergence of Chinese firms as Internet leaders. Each week they’d brief the course on emerging companies. Since one third of my students are international, and many are from China,…
  • Ads by Enterprise, Comcast and MBTA show disregard for customers

    Dave Wieneke
    7 Sep 2014 | 7:33 am
    Advertising is a merging of customer experience, public relations, and art. But rather than ennobling clients, these brands have ads that suggest their clients are perhaps a bit lacking. Our clients are sub-standard, so is our reward programEnterprise’s customer experience is a one I hold up as an example at conferences on service design, but their ad department really missed it here. Why tell customers they don’t rent like VIPs as part of promoting your loyalty program? Who’d want to be let in to a “VIP” program that let’s everyone in. This just brings to…
  • More hours of sleep could be better for your career than extra work

    Dave Wieneke
    27 Aug 2014 | 7:30 pm
    Let’s face it, there’s only so much more that can be done with less. Fewer staff, working harder can only spike productivity so long, until diminishing returns sets in and leaves a team trashed. American’s have definitely increased their working hours In the U.S., 85.8 percent of males and 66.5 percent of females work more than 40 hours per week. According to the International Labor Organization, “Americans work 137 more hours per year than Japanese workers, 260 more hours per year than British workers, and 499 more hours per year than French workers.”   More for less can only…
  • Admiral McRaven to Become Chancellor of U Texas System at Record Salary

    Dave Wieneke
    21 Aug 2014 | 8:15 pm
    Just this morning I dug in to the Chronicle of Higher Education’s brand new annual almanac. Once a year this small tome arrives with updates everything from enrollment data, to college financial data and faculty pay. I have to admit that I stopped briefly checking on the backgrounds on this year’s new college presidents. Over 1/3 of presidents appointed this year are women. Nearly 70% were promoted from within their institution. 8% of them came from a “noncollege” position.   That caught my imagination — were these former state officials taking taking plumb…
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    Legally India - News for Lawyers

  • 'Soft target' partner Gautam Khaitan custody extended by 5 days in choppergate probe

    30 Sep 2014 | 1:42 pm
    A court has extended OP Khaitan & Co managing parter Gautam Khaitan’s 7-day custody by another five days at the request to the enforcement directorate, reported the Indian Express. Senior counsel PV Kapur, representing Khaitan in the choppergate scam related anti-corruption investigation, argued that Khaitan was “a soft target. More serious allegations have been levelled against other co-accused. Khaitan, being a lawyer, is the softest target whereas others have not been arrested yet.”
  • Katju picks fight with Lodha again: Judges' post-retirement posts are a good thing

    30 Sep 2014 | 7:55 am
    Press Council of India chairman Markandey Katju Tuesday joined issue with former chief justice of India RM Lodha, saying that there was no rule constraining judges from taking up government assignments or constitutional posts after their retirement. ”There is no such hard and fast rule. There is no such rule (of two year cooling-off period). There are number of institutions (required to be occupied by the retired judges like tribunals), do you want them to be occupied by politicians,” asked Justice Katju (retd) to queries on Lodha’s suggestion for a two-year cooling-off period for…
  • RamJet gets Jayalalithaa special bail hearing for tomorrow after all

    30 Sep 2014 | 6:52 am
    After reports earlier today that the Karnataka high court wouldn’t hear jailed J Jayalalithaa’s bail plea until Monday, after the holidays, a special bench is now set to hear her bail plea tomorrow, reported India Today and others. Ashish Dixit, appearing as junior counsel to to senior counsel Ram Jethmalani’s, tweeted: #HC to hear #Jayalalithaa appeal and bail application tomorrow at 10:30 AM [...] We mentioned before the chief and the bench was constituted IANS reported: The Karnataka High Court will hear Wednesday the criminal review petition of jailed former Tamil Nadu chief…
  • Delhi HC blocks 72 websites hosting leaked Hrithik flick: 'Movie piracy almost like currency forgery'

    30 Sep 2014 | 5:51 am
    The Delhi high court Tuesday directed various internet and telecom service providers to block access to 72 websites hosting the yet-to-be released Hrithik Roshan starer “Bang Bang”.Justice Manmohan Singh said the court is totally against the piracy of copyrighted material, including movies, and “it is almost equivalent to duplicating currencies”.“The websites’ owners are committing piracy and collecting illegal profits, who are peeping behind the curtain and laughing at the producers of the movies. If this is not fraud what else? In fact, piracy in…
  • Clasis Mumbai projects team breaks away: Ishtiaq Ali, Damodara Rao start own 5-partner firm with ADAG GC [Update-1]

    30 Sep 2014 | 4:27 am
    Clasis Law project finance partners Ishtiaq Ali and Damodara Rao have left to start their own firm, which is understood to be a five-partner, 10-lawyer start-up law firm.
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  • Podcast: Legal Technology, Blogging, and the Future of SoloSmall Practice

    Sam Glover
    30 Sep 2014 | 11:43 am
    I just had a great, wide-ranging conversation with New York bankruptcy and real estate lawyer Daniel Gershburg. We talked about blogging, legal marketing, the misleading hashtags of legal tech conferences, and the future of solo and small-firm practice. For good measure we name-dropped Kevin O’Keefe, Ken White, Scott Greenfield, and Brian Tannebaum, among others.Tune in when you have time, or keep it on for soothing background noise this afternoon.
  • A Social Network for People with $9,000 Burning a Hole in Their Fancy Pockets

    Sam Glover
    30 Sep 2014 | 11:26 am
    “The online country club for people with more money than time [or taste —Ed.].”Are you so well-off that the fact of your well-offness means you can no longer relate to the riff-raff on Facebook and Twitter? Well, good news. There is a social network just for you and your similarly-well-off friends: The Netropolitan Club. For just $6,000 to join and $3,000 per year, you get to participate in what looks like a pretty mediocre user experience and a small community of people who — let’s be honest — are probably douchebags.Featured image: “In a restaurant cheerful…
  • How to Handle a Mixed Check with Earned and Unearned Fees

    Megan Zavieh
    30 Sep 2014 | 4:12 am
    Handling client funds correctly is critical to the success of your law practice, not only for business reasons but for ethical ones. It is essential to know how to properly handle a check which contains a mix of fund types.Related“Trust Accounting Basics”Mishandling client funds is a sure ticket to a disciplinary action. It used to be that a bookkeeping error with no real impact on a client could go unnoticed. However, as random trust account audits gain popularity, those “harmless” errors are more likely to be discovered and lead to prosecution.Among the issues that come up…
  • Watch Texas Law Hawk Bryan Wilson Show Off His “Talons of Justice”

    Sam Glover
    29 Sep 2014 | 12:42 pm
    There aren’t many lawyer commercials you would call good, exactly, but there are definitely some entertaining ones. Here is the latest, from “Texas Law Hawk” Bryan Wilson, courtesy of Elie Mystal at ATL: Redline: Two things strike me about this video:Talons of justice!His tough-guy voice totally doesn’t seem like it goes with his clean-cut look.I have no idea if Bryan Wilson knows Adam Reposa, but their videos do seem to share a common … something.
  • How to Keep Your Blog from Shriveling Up and Dying

    Sam Glover
    29 Sep 2014 | 12:04 pm
    [M]ost bloggers start a blog because they want people to come to their site, subscribe to their email newsletter, and eventually buy their products. … The content soon reflects these motives and the blog is dull, boring, and uninspired. … [I]n the end, the blog shrivels up and dies.This is what I was trying to explain when I wrote my Why Your Blog Sucks post. Except that quotation sums it up in many fewer words.Blogging for profit is doing things the wrong way around. The purpose driven blogger asks “Why would someone read my blog and give me their email address?” The difference is as…
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    New York Personal Injury Law Blog

  • Loving Your Office

    Eric Turkewitz
    30 Sep 2014 | 9:16 am
    Photo by Chris Petsos Photography. Many more great shots at his site. Click on image above to get there. Lawyers have to make decisions on their offices: Make it nice? Or make it inexpensive? Rarely do the two concepts coincide. We spend a lot of time in their offices.  Other than our homes, this is it. This came to mind when I saw an article in the Sunday real estate section of the Times on my old stomping ground: The Woolworth Building. My office was on the 8th floor, overlooking Broadway (and ticker tape parades) and City Hall Park (and the people who’d shout and scream at Mayor…
  • Apple, Privacy and Law

    Eric Turkewitz
    10 Sep 2014 | 7:00 am
    Yesterday Apple had its massive product presentation and one of the products it announced was a new pay system for credit cards, Apple Pay. Load the cards into an iPhone, and then just wave them in front of a techno-gadget at the check-out counter and you’re done. Simple. Why might this be important? Currently, big business is tripping all over itself to gather as much information on you as possible, taking away big chunks of your privacy. A 2012 New York Times piece on Target explained how, based on the buying patterns of a teenager — unscented lotions, vitamin supplements and…
  • Joan Rivers Death and ‘Risk of the Procedure’

    Eric Turkewitz
    5 Sep 2014 | 4:00 am
    Joan Rivers in 2010, via Wikipedia The phrase grates on me big time, that a poor medical outcome was a “risk of the procedure.” And so it is now that we see in a couple places with the death of Joan Rivers after she stopped breathing during an out-patient endoscopic procedure, that the phrase “risk of the procedure” is popping up, as if to excuse what happened. One leading possibility for death, of course, is that it was related to the anesthesia, which Ms. Rivers likely had numerous times considering all the jokes she made about her own plastic surgery.  A sudden…
  • GPS is Making Us Dumber (And other thoughts on the law)

    Eric Turkewitz
    26 Aug 2014 | 4:00 am
    Some folks want directions when they go someplace new. Others want a map. The directions tell you lefts and rights. The map tells you where you came from and where you need to go. Many GPS devices simply tell you to make those rights and lefts. They don’t tell you where you are. And thus we become unthinking followers. GPS devices were wrong at least twice on last week’s family vacation in Maine, once while I followed a family member and a second time while sitting shotgun. The GPS said to go one way and my brain said to go the other. The only reason I overruled the GPS directives…
  • Cops in Tanks vs. Cops on Bikes

    Eric Turkewitz
    15 Aug 2014 | 10:39 am
    The juxtaposition of the pictures couldn’t be more stark.  Out in Ferguson, Missouri, in the wake of  an unarmed teen being shot dead by a cop, we see a militarized police force racing in to use all their toys of crowd control: Tear gas, rubber bullets, armored personnel carriers and, of course, the military-style uniforms with riot armor. Everything about it screams, “Stay the hell away from us.” And the other picture is one I noted on the Gothamist a couple weeks back: A cop on a bike. The article is ostensibly about being caught riding on the sidewalk, but that…
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    The Probate Lawyer Blog: Famous Fortune Fights!

  • Tom Clancy Estate In Family Fight Due To Poor Estate Planning

    Danielle & Andy
    30 Sep 2014 | 10:23 am
    Anyone who knows who CIA analyst Jack Ryan is likely appreciates the work of late author Tom Clancy.  Called the "father of the techno-thriller," Clancy's career took off with his first novel, The Hunt for Red October.  His career -- spawning movies such as Patriot Games and Clear and Present Danger -- led to more than 100 million copies of his novels in print, with 17 books hitting the top spot on the New York Times best-seller list.  Tom Clancy passed away on October 1, 2013 from heart failure, at age 66.  He was survived by his widow, Alexandra Clancy, and their young daughter, as well…
  • As Prince Harry Inherits From Diana's Estate, Troubling Questions Remain

    Danielle & Andy
    18 Sep 2014 | 5:34 am
    Prince Harry celebrated his 30th birthday earlier this week. His mother, the iconic Princess Diana, passed away over 17 years ago, following the tragic crash as Diana and Dodi Fayed sped away from paparazzi in France.  What was so special about Harry’s 30th birthday (other than the fact that he’s still single, to the delight of eligible women throughout England)?  That’s the day Harry became entitled to receive the remaining half of Princess Diana’s assets.   After Diana passed on August 31, 1997, her mother, Frances Ruth Shand Kydd, and her sister, Lady Elizabeth Sarah Lavinia…
  • Joan Rivers Teaches Lesson About Termination Of Life Support

    Danielle & Andy
    10 Sep 2014 | 1:27 pm
    “I ain’t afraid of death.”  Joan Rivers once told Time Magazine, “I’m in show business.  I died a million times.”   Aging.  Dying.  Death.  Concepts no one likes to think about, much less talk about.  Of the many fatal tragedies the celebrity world has suffered lately — Lauren Bacall, Robin Williams, and Casey Kasem, to name a few — perhaps none shook people to the core as much as the passing of Joan Rivers. Even at 81 years old, her death seemed to take everyone off-guard. Except maybe Joan Rivers herself.  While on stage for the final time, she told the audience how…
  • Celebrity Legacies: The Fleecing Of The Elvis Presley Estate

    Danielle & Andy
    10 Sep 2014 | 1:17 pm
    Elvis Presley earned more than one billion dollars during his career … so why was his estate worth only about ten million dollars when he died?  How did things get even worse for his heirs afterwards?   And what would Elvis Presley say about appearing as a hologram? This is installment #6 of our weekly Estate Planning Lessons From The Stars series, which is based on the Celebrity Legacies TV show for which we provide commentary as the estate legal experts.  See other articles in the series here. There can be no doubt that Elvis Presley truly earned his nickname as the King of Rock…
  • Celebrity Legacies: Yoko and Julian Battled Over John Lennon's Estate

    Danielle & Andy
    3 Sep 2014 | 5:28 am
    When John Lennon of the Beatles was tragically murdered in 1980, his controversial widow, Yoko Ono, took charge of his legacy and his fortune ... but where did that leave his two sons? As arguably the most successful songwriter of all time, what did Lennon leave behind?   And what did the King of Pop have to do with John Lennon's legacy? This is installment #5 of our weekly Estate Planning Lessons From The Stars series, which is based on the Celebrity Legacies TV show for which we provide commentary as the estate legal experts.  See other articles in the series here. He famously sang "All…
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  • Solar Storm Survival Guide

    12 Sep 2014 | 2:29 pm
    Everything you need to know about the upcoming solar storm that is heading straight for our little blue marble is contained in this scientist’s facial expression. An unaltered screen capture from the USA Today mobile website.
  • Azimuth Check: Wow! That Person Has Medals!

    10 Sep 2014 | 7:07 am
    I’ve been meaning to write this post for several days now. They stem from a few choice headlines from the August 28 Early Bird (a daily digest of military-related news, published by the Military Times). Most days, I scroll through the headlines without seeing much of note. On that particular day, there were several headlines that caught my eye. Where to begin… Pursue, Or Else The former commanding general of US Army Japan will retire as a 1-star general after the Secretary of the Army determined that he did not satisfactorily perform in the rank of Major General (2-star). Why?
  • That Day When I Offended a Potential Client

    9 Sep 2014 | 11:49 am
    This is a tale of two conversations. Conversation 1 Me: Hello? Potential Client (PC): I just have a few questions… (A few questions ensue.) Me: (Answers questions. Somewhat. Well, not really. I didn’t give away the bank. I didn’t even reveal the cashier.) PC: Thanks. This has been really helpful. (Click) Three weeks pass… Conversation 2 Me: Hello? PC: Hi, this is (name) calling you back. Me: OK PC: We talked a few days ago. Me: (Flipping through call log.) Oh, you called me three weeks ago. You said (short summary of case). PC: Yes! That’s me! Me: What’s…
  • An Afternoon With Sharp Cheddar

    30 Jul 2014 | 8:22 am
    During an afternoon out with Sharp Cheddar (for an understanding of who Sharp Cheddar is, read this first), who is now a precocious 8 years old, the following conversation occurred: Me: How ’bout we go to 5 Guys Burgers and Fries? Sharp Cheddar (SC): That sounds like a place where fat people eat. Me: What? SC: It sounds like a place where fat people go to eat. Me: Where do you get this from? SC: It just sounds that way. Me: But how do you get that from 5 Gu… SC: That’s just how it sounds. Me: Well, they have really good burgers. SC: So, I’m right that fat people go…
  • Azimuth Check: Lawyer or Lawyer*

    28 Jul 2014 | 10:22 am
    It’s been a while. I know. Such is life when you are maintaining a practice whilst packing house and home and moving to a new place. At one point, I decided to abandon Unwashed Advocate. I do this once a year, mostly during summer months. This decision is celebrated by me. It sure feels good to tell your blawg to go to hell. Then, I return. After writing brief after brief, appeal after appeal, it is nice to write something that contains your voice. Here, I don’t worry about using passive voice or botching citations. That’s nice. So, what’ve I been thinking of this…
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    Planning Notes

  • U.S. Federal Trademark Filings

    16 Sep 2014 | 8:58 am
    In 2013, more than 300,000 trademarks and service marks were filed across 45 different classes of goods and services with the United States Patent & Trademark ("USPTO"); however, less than 200,000 trademarks were registered by the USPTO office during 2013. In the United States, a trademark or service mark doesn't generally have any federal rights until that mark is registered by the USPTO in either the Principal Register or the Supplemental Register. Although both the Principal and Supplemental Registers are just that, registers, the rights associated with marks registered on the…
  • ALS Association Ice Bucket Challenge Trademark Filing

    29 Aug 2014 | 9:24 am
    The ALS Association has filed an application to register a federal trademark for "Ice Bucket Challenge", the viral sensation that has swept the nation this summer. Although most Americans likely associate "Ice Bucket Challenge" with the ALS Association, there is some dispute as to whether the Association was the first to use the term 'Ice Bucket Challenge' in combination with charitable fundraising. In particualr, 'Ice Bucket Challenge' was used with lung cancer fundraising in early July of this summer, which use precedes the date of first use in commece listed in the trademark filing, August…
  • What is a Family Limited Partnership?

    30 Jul 2014 | 10:52 am
    A family limited partnership, or FLP, can allow a taxpayer to leverage two federal tax devices in conjunction with a technique known as “discounting” in order to reduce the amount of federal tax imposed at the time of that person’s death. Tax Devices Federal tax laws impose a tax, called the Estate & Gift Tax, upon a person’s right to give his/her property to others, without compensation, while that person is alive or after that person’s death. Fortunately, however, two federal tax devices can reduce the amount of the Estate & Gift Tax: the so-called…
  • The Aereo Decision & Cloud Computing

    27 Jun 2014 | 10:42 am
    In American Broadcasting Companies, Inc. v. Aereo, Inc. the U.S. Supreme Court recently held that Aereo's service, which converts and subsequently (re)transmits over-the-air television broadcasts in near real time to Aereo's customers via the internet, effectively constitutes "transmitting performances of copyrighted works to the public", which in turn requires Aereo to pay over-the-air broadcasters a fee for doing so, pursuant to the Copyright Act. Although the ruling may seem fairly limited, and according to the text of the decision the ruling is indeed fairly limited, various commentators…
  • Congressional Committee Approves Permanent Bonus Depreciation & Charity Bills

    30 May 2014 | 10:03 am
    Bloomberg BNA on proposed permanent extension of bonus depreciation: The House Ways and Means Committee approved legislation to make bonus depreciation permanent, as well as a number of tax measures related to charitable giving. The depreciation measure (H.R. 4718) advanced after a vote of 23-11, one in a series of party-line votes as Republicans and Democrats on the panel tussled over whether the forgone revenue from tax expenditures should be recovered elsewhere in the budget—a position House Democrats have staked in the drawn-out argument over a number of tax provision extensions. If…
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  • Internship @ Adv. Vrinda Grover: RTI-Related Work, Cooperative Work Environment

    'Ayan Chakraborty
    29 Sep 2014 | 11:50 pm
    Name, College, Year of Study, Email ID Akshay Soni, Amity Law School, Lucknow, 4th year, Name of Organisation, Location, Team Strength Adv. Vrinda Grover, New Delhi, 6-7 Application Process I applied directly to Vrinda Maam by mailing my CV and cover letter to her e-mail id- Duration of internship and timings 4 weeks, the timings were basically 10 am – 6 pm but, there was not any hard and fast rule regarding timings and we were allowed to leave if we were done with our work early. First impression, first day formalities, infrastructure…
  • Internship @ The Hindu, New Delhi : The Place for Future Legal-Journos!

    'Ayan Chakraborty
    29 Sep 2014 | 11:35 pm
    Apart from doing field work and covering events, main work would include framing stories. But, they are very particular about the language and the framing of the report. So, make sure you are in a regular habit of reading the paper. The post Internship @ The Hindu, New Delhi : The Place for Future Legal-Journos! appeared first on Lawctopus.
  • Internship @ Mulla and Mulla, Mumbai: Learn the Craft of Preparing a Draft!

    'Ayan Chakraborty
    29 Sep 2014 | 9:30 pm
    How to go about a research was my biggest lesson. Also, the way a petition is drafted can change the whole case into an entirely new one. It's an art that can make or break the case. The post Internship @ Mulla and Mulla, Mumbai: Learn the Craft of Preparing a Draft! appeared first on Lawctopus.
  • NLIU Bhopal’s Sports Fest Virudhaka [Oct 17-19]: Register by Sep 30 [UPDATED]

    29 Sep 2014 | 10:40 am
    Virudhaka is all set to take place in the heart of India from 17th to 19th October 2014, inviting sports lovers from all over the country in various sporting events. Register by September 30 The post NLIU Bhopal’s Sports Fest Virudhaka [Oct 17-19]: Register by Sep 30 [UPDATED] appeared first on Lawctopus.
  • Call for Papers: Spanish Yearbook of International Law; Submit by Oct 31

    29 Sep 2014 | 7:36 am
    Manuscripts dealing with any topic of interest in the field of Public and Private International Law and International Relations should be submitted to the editors by 31 October 2014 to the Editor’s address at The post Call for Papers: Spanish Yearbook of International Law; Submit by Oct 31 appeared first on Lawctopus.
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    Fashion Law | Fashion Lawyer | Fashion Law Firm |

  • Buy Your Tickets: United Colors of Fashion 4th Annual Gala, October 8th, 2014 – Paper Dreams: Writing New Runways #Fashionlaw #UCOFGala

    26 Sep 2014 | 5:03 pm
    Hey folks, I hope your week has been great. Mine has been great, busy but blessed. I wanted to bring your attention to this fashion event worth attending, which is produced with the help of some really cool fashion professionals in the business that I know i.e. Michael Palladino, Fashion Professor at LIM College and co-chair of host committee and Funmi Alaiyemola, fashion model. Please see details below and I hope you can make it. Cheers, Uduak “UCOF Annual Gala on October 8th, 2014 – Paper Dreams: Writing New Runways. Event: United Colors of Fashion (UCOF) is asking you to help…
  • #FashionLaw Attorney Uduak Oduok Featured on

    18 Sep 2014 | 4:27 am
    Hey folks, I was recently featured on as part of the ‘role models not runway models’ who walked designer Carrie Hammer’s show at the Fashion Law Institute’s Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2015. Check on the writeup below. Cheers, Uduak Photocredit: Carrie Hammer
  • Sacramento Fashion Week Now Accepting Submissions for 2015 Presentation

    15 Sep 2014 | 6:45 am
    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE SACRAMENTO FASHION WEEK 2015 DESIGNER SUBMISSIONS NOW OPEN Sacramento, CA – September (15th) 2014 – DMR Productions, the producers of Sacramento Fashion Week (SACFW), is now accepting designer submissions for the 2015 Presentation of SACFW . Sacramento Fashion Week 2015 will take place the week of February 16th through the 22nd. The events for 2015 will showcase the talents of some of Northern California’s top designers and industry professionals throughout different fashion events and showcases. The mission of SACFW is to provide a platform for designers, models,…
  • Fashion Law Institute 4th Anniversary Show – Highlights, Video and Images

    9 Sep 2014 | 4:57 am
    UPDATE: Narciso Rodriquez and Fashion Law Institute founder Prof. Scafidi have a new op-ed on fashion design protection in today’s New York Times. After changing the landscape of the Mercedes Benz Fashion Week runways with last year’s celebrated plus-size fashion show, the Fashion Law Institute once again demonstrated the power of fashion to make a difference in women’s lives with Friday’s show featuring designer Carrie Hammer. Walking the runway in the show were role models from throughout the business and nonprofit worlds, including Fashion lawyer, journalist and former fashion…
  • Pictures: Fashion Lawyer Uduak Oduok Models for the Fashion Law Institute/Carrie Hammer Spring/Summer 2015 Show #Fashionlaw

    8 Sep 2014 | 7:46 am
    Hello there folks! Happy new week. I wish you a healthy, fashionable and productive week ahead! What have I been up to? I am on a business and mini-vacation in New York. I am also covering Mercedes Benz New York Fashion Week. The bi-annual event began on September 4th and ends on September 11th, 2014. Prior to arriving in New York for fashion week, I was asked by Designer Carrie Hammer to model in her show. When she informed me about the theme of the show ‘Role Models Not Runway Models,’ it was simply a no brainer to say “Yes!” I walked her runway show alongside some…
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    Law and Daily Life

  • Legal How-To: Burying Your Pet

    Brett Snider, Esq.
    30 Sep 2014 | 7:47 am
    No owner wants to think about burying his or her pet, but it's often necessary to find a final resting place for your furry friend. But before you get a shovel and a large cardboard box for your pet's backyard burial, you should know about the kinds of laws you may be violating. This is especially true if you're thinking about burying your pet in a public park. Before you say your goodbyes, check out our legal how-to on burying your pet: Home Burial Depending on where you live, it may not be legal for you to bury your cat, dog, or even turtle on your home's property. This rule may apply to…
  • To Change Child Custody Agreement, Lawyer Must Pay $10K to Ex

    Daniel Taylor, Esq.
    29 Sep 2014 | 12:10 pm
    A Pennsylvania court has ruled that an attorney is bound by the terms of a child custody agreement that requires him to pay $10,000 to his ex-partner every time he files a court action to modify the agreement. In a somewhat ironic twist, it turns out the attorney drafted the agreement himself, reports The Patriot-News. Although a lower court had ruled in the attorney's favor, finding that the agreement was void as being counter to public policy concerns, the state Superior Court -- one of two statewide appellate courts -- disagreed. How might this lawyer's own legal work end up costing him?
  • Legalese From A to Z: 5 Legal Terms Beginning With 'K'

    Daniel Taylor, Esq.
    28 Sep 2014 | 8:09 am
    In the event that someone ever uses sticks and stones to break your bones, not only will words never hurt you, they can actually be very helpful in pursuing a lawsuit to recover for your injuries. Learning the specialized language of the legal system, known as legalese, gives you the ability to understand and use the law to your advantage, either on your own or with the help of an attorney. To help you get a grasp of this legal language, our series Legalese From A to Z breaks down legalese letter by letter. This week, we look at some legal terms that start with the letter "K": Keeper. Keeper…
  • 10 Laws You Should Know If You're in Texas

    Brett Snider, Esq.
    27 Sep 2014 | 9:02 am
    Yours truly is a Texas native, but we won't blame you if you're just arriving or simply here to visit. What Texans won't appreciate is someone who's clueless about the laws in the Lone Star State. So before your Southwest flight lands, check out these 10 laws you should know if you're in Texas: Distracted driving. You can talk on your non-handsfree phone while driving in Texas, but that doesn't mean you can't be cited for distracted driving if you're texting and driving. Marital property. Texas is a community property state, so whatever is deemed marital property is split between the two…
  • Neighbors and Trees: 5 Common Disputes

    Daniel Taylor, Esq.
    26 Sep 2014 | 7:48 am
    Even those who follow the advice of the Bible to "love thy neighbor" may not necessarily share the same warm feelings for their neighbor's trees. It turns out that disputes between neighbors regarding trees are fairly common. And being that Sunday is the annual "National Good Neighbor Day," what better time to explore some different branches of the classic neighbor-tree dispute? Here are five common sticking points when it comes to neighbors and trees: Fallen trees. If your neighbor's tree falls onto your property and causes damage, your neighbor may be liable for negligence, if it can be…
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    Pennsylvania Physicians' Lawyer

  • “Our Standard Physician Employment Contract”

    Dennis Hursh
    22 Sep 2014 | 5:56 pm
    It’s the oldest trick in the book, because it works.  The individual that hands you the impressively typed agreement solemnly swears that this is the employer’s “standard physician employment contract”.  You are led to believe that an act of Congress (or maybe more) is required to change one iota.  If everybody else has signed this exact physician employment agreement, why shouldn’t you? The “Standard Physician Employment Agreement” is a Mythical Creature The reason you shouldn’t sign the “standard physician employment agreement”…
  • Selling Your Medical Practice

    Dennis Hursh
    27 Jun 2014 | 1:01 pm
    The private practice of medicine isn’t for everyone, especially for older physicians who are just tired of the grind of both managing a business (the practice) and practicing medicine.  In this post, I discuss eight things that physicians should be aware of as they enter into negotiations for the potential sale of a medical practice. This post assumes you are selling your medical practice to the hospital, but the same issues will apply if you are selling your practice to another physician. Letters of Intent Can Restrict You in the Sale of Your Medical Practice Letters of intent…
  • Letters of Intent in Physician Contracts

    Dennis Hursh
    26 Jun 2014 | 5:24 pm
    The contracting process for physician employment agreements and medical practice purchase agreements sometimes (but not always) begins with a letter of intent, so this seem like a logical first post for this blog. The Purpose of Letters of Intent in Physician Employment Agreements and Medical Practice Sale Agreements A letter of intent (“LOI”) is simply a very brief summary of the main terms of what the parties assume will be a binding formal contract (either a physician employment agreement or a medical practice sale agreement, or both, as the case may  be). The purpose of an…
  • Welcome to the Physician Contract Blog

    Dennis Hursh
    17 Jun 2014 | 9:59 am
    Welcome to the Physician Contract Blog. Here I intend to talk exclusively about issues related to contracts that physicians are involved in, such as physician employment agreements, managed care agreements, and medical practice purchase agreements. I’ll continue to make occasional posts to the Physician Prosperity Blog about topics of more general interest to physicians.  
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    But I do have a law degree...

  • Three Things I Don't Get

    But I Do Have a Law Degree
    19 Sep 2014 | 7:36 am
    I try not to get too political/controversial/contentious on this blog. But I am coming from a sincere place when I wonder the following:1) Why is this new Ray Rice video so explosive? A caveat - I don't follow or care at all about football.  I had never heard of Ray Rice.  But I do follow the news, and from what I understand, on February 15, 2014, Ray Rice was arrested on simple assault charges for assaulting his wife.  A few days later, we all got a glimpse of what happened, as a video surfaced of Ray Rice dragging his unconscious fiancé from an elevator.  She…
  • A Kid

    But I Do Have a Law Degree
    9 Sep 2014 | 10:25 am
    When I look back at pictures of my son, Braden, I can almost pinpoint the time when he stopped looking like a baby.  It was when his hair grew long and he started standing up tall and running like a maniac. As he has gotten older, his transitions have been more subtle and harder to pinpoint.  But three days ago, on his 6th birthday, when I took his annual birthday picture, he looked like a kid. A real, life kid.He has big feet - not abnormally big (and only a half size bigger than his younger brother), but they are kid feet.  He has fuzzy blond hair on his legs now, and…
  • Pride

    But I Do Have a Law Degree
    3 Sep 2014 | 7:25 am
    As I sit down to write this post, I am letting out a big exhale.  It has been SO long since I have had more than ten minute chunks of time to myself, and my writing regularity reflects it.  But today, Colin is sleeping.  And both of "the boys," as we refer to them, are in school. There is silence and calm.  For this moment, at least.  Casey, my three year old, started school last week.  He is so laid back and chill compared to his brother, that I have to remind myself not to treat his milestones as an after thought.  He returned to the same school he went to…
  • Best. Summer. Ever.

    But I Do Have a Law Degree
    28 Aug 2014 | 6:49 pm
    When I was young, I used to go away for pretty much the whole summer, to Wellfleet, Cape Cod. This was possible only because of the fact that my father was a professor (with his summers off), and my mom was her own boss.  But to me, I thought this was normal. Didn't everyone take a vacation that lasted all summer long? To me, summers have always meant relaxation.  Sun.  Water.  Swimming.  Ice cream.  Friends. Family.  Lazy days. As I got older, summers shifted a bit.  Once I went to college, I cut down on the amount of time I spent on the Cape.
  • Robin

    But I Do Have a Law Degree
    12 Aug 2014 | 12:06 pm
    I write this blog so people out there will read it, obviously.  But I also write this blog for myself - because it chronicles my life.  It's something that I, and my kids, can someday look back on.  So let me memorialize that yesterday, Robin Williams died.  And I am seriously sad about it.  I can't figure out why.  It's not that I'm a huge Robin Williams fan.  I like his movies, but I haven't seen them all.  But generally, I would say that I definitely like him.  I mean, what's not to like?  He seems like a genuine, nice guy.  And…
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    Profit and Laws

  • DARPA’s jetpack will help soldiers run faster, stronger

    19 Sep 2014 | 10:00 am
    DARPA. DARPA. DARPA. Dude, DARPA’s making a jetpack to help you run faster. DARPA is the government’s innovation department. They invented the Internet and GPS, among other things. Once DARPA invents something and rolls it out, entrepreneurs come through and bring it to market for the rest of us. Then, the world changes. Read the […] The post DARPA’s jetpack will help soldiers run faster, stronger appeared first on Profit and Laws.
  • A Major Accounting Firm Just Ran the Numbers on Climate Change

    19 Sep 2014 | 5:50 am
    Climate Change is real: We’ve only got 20 years left Price Waterhouse Coopers, an old line, no-nonsense accounting firm, says we have 20 years left until we tumble into the abyss brought on by climate change. Pretty much only Australia and China have made progress on reducing their carbon output. We clearly won’t be doing […] The post A Major Accounting Firm Just Ran the Numbers on Climate Change appeared first on Profit and Laws.
  • Lampert Agrees to Lend Sears $400 Million

    18 Sep 2014 | 2:45 pm
    Sears gets fresh influx of cash World class douchebag, Eddie Lampert, bought Sears and promptly turned it into a fantasy of business without a human touch. Managers are pitted against managers in a race for Lampert’s budget and affection. Sales floor staff is slashed. The company invests the least amount in maintaining or improving stores in […] The post Lampert Agrees to Lend Sears $400 Million appeared first on Profit and Laws.
  • Less for More from Chicago Public Schools and Big Business

    Phil Fahim
    18 Sep 2014 | 11:30 am
    Less for More from Chicago Public Schools and Big Business Want to hear a new one? A government hired for profit businesses to do what government unionized employees used to do, and everything went to Hell. Chicago Public Schools hired giant companies to clean the schools, firing janitors in the process. The result? Mice, bugs, […] The post Less for More from Chicago Public Schools and Big Business appeared first on Profit and Laws.
  • AT&T: If you build your own broadband then we don’t get any of your tax money

    18 Sep 2014 | 9:04 am
    AT&T Wants Your Tax Dollars The only problems we have in America are bad ideas. Here, AT&T is pushing the federal government to stop small towns from providing rural internet service where AT&T won’t. Instead, they want to be given tax dollars to do it. Why? Because the “free market” means it’s always more important […] The post AT&T: If you build your own broadband then we don’t get any of your tax money appeared first on Profit and Laws.
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    Virginia Local Government Law

  • Virginia Supreme Court Opinions Affecting Local Government Law: September 12, 2014

    Andrew McRoberts
    12 Sep 2014 | 8:43 am
    The Virginia Supreme Court issued opinions this morning. After last term issuing no opinions significantly affecting Virginia Local Government Law (at least not in this author’s judgment), this term resulted in two both related to law enforcement — one tort case and one “gap” pay case.  As always, congratulations to the winners! The case summaries are taken from the Virginia Supreme Court opinions website. Click on the case number to read the opinion. 131162 Kohn v. Marquis 09/12/2014 In an action for the wrongful death of a police recruit injured by blows to the head…
  • Virginia Supreme Court Opinions NOT Affecting Local Government Law: June 5, 2014

    Andrew McRoberts
    5 Jun 2014 | 11:35 am
    The Virginia Supreme Court issued opinions this morning.  After last term’s virtual feast of seven opinions significantly affecting Virginia Local Government Law, this term had none (at least not in this author’s judgment).  Unless you are interested in wrongful death, labor relations or criminal law, read no further. If you want to double-check my judgment, feel free to proceed to the case summaries on the Virginia Supreme Court opinions website.
  • Town of Greece v. Galloway: U.S. Supreme Court Clarifies Law on Legislative Prayer and the Establishment Clause

    Cullen Seltzer
    5 May 2014 | 2:02 pm
    Co-Authored by Cullen D. Seltzer and Andrew R. McRoberts. U.S. Supreme Court building. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Today, the Court handed down its ruling in Town of Greece.  In a sweeping ruling, the Court upheld the local government’s religious invocations in a 5-4 decision.  The ruling pretty dramatically and explicitly broadens the scope of permissible religious invocations for legislative sessions. Virginia Locality Law Blog highlighted Town of Greece v. Galloway almost a year ago when the Supreme Court granted cert in this important Establishment Clause case affecting thousands…
  • Virginia Supreme Court Opinions Affecting Local Government Law: April 17, 2014

    Andrew McRoberts
    17 Apr 2014 | 1:54 pm
    The Virginia Supreme Court issued opinions this morning.  After last term issuing no opinions significantly affecting Virginia Local Government Law (at least not in this author’s judgment), this term’s opinions are a virtual feast.  Issues involving BZA discretion, nonconforming signs, FOIA, Fraud Against Taxpayer’s Act and more.  Some are cases involving Virginia local governments, others are cases without local governments as parties, but still involve issues affecting Virginia local governments.  As always, congratulations to the winners! The case summaries are taken…
  • Nervous Time for Localities: The General Assembly Is In Session

    Andrew McRoberts
    25 Feb 2014 | 1:02 pm
    It happens in January, every year.  The General Assembly convenes and considers all manner of bills that localities support or oppose.  And localities get nervous.  More nervous than most Assembly-watchers, I say. Why would that be? While the General Assembly adopts legislation every year that affects Virginians, arguably it has more of an effect on localities.  Given the Dillon Rule and its strong limitation on the powers of localities, a series of bills are filed every year reducing or controlling how localities do their business.  Some succeed, and many fail.  No matter the merit of…
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    The Complex Litigator

  • Appellate court provides some guidance on electronic discovery obligations under California law

    H. Scott Leviant
    26 Sep 2014 | 12:40 pm
    Vasquez v. CA School of Culinary Arts (pub. ord. September 26, 2014) (Second Appellate District, Division Two) is ostensibly about an award of attorney's fees following the plaintiffs' successful opposition of a motion to quash their electronic records subpoena directed to student loan servicing entity Sallie Mae, Inc.  After all, the Court describes the appeal as follows: "Sallie Mae, Inc. (Sallie Mae) appeals from an order awarding plaintiffs and respondents Daniel Vasquez, et al. (collectively, plaintiffs) $11,487 in attorney fees and costs incurred after plaintiffs successfully…
  • Pro per meets bad bank in Fleet v. Bank of America

    H. Scott Leviant
    25 Sep 2014 | 10:57 am
    When despicable loan modification practices meet desperate homeowners filing their own lawsuit, you get Fleet v. Bank of America (pub ord. September 24, 2014), from the Court of Appeal (Fourth Appellate, Division Three).
  • Luckey v. Superior Court says no to temporary judges for class settlement approval

    H. Scott Leviant
    12 Aug 2014 | 10:00 pm
    In Luckey v. Superior Court (July 22, 2014), the Court of Appeal (Second Appellate District, Division Three), the Court considered a writ following the denial of a stipulation to utilize a temporary judge to handle a class settlement approval.  Plaintiff filed a putative class action alleging violation of FACTA arising from printing “more than the last 5 digits of the card number or the expiration date” on an electronically printed receipt provided to the cardholder at the point of the transaction. (15 U.S.C. § 1681c(g).) The operative complaint alleged causes of action for…
  • Misclassifcation of independent contractors gets a boost in Ayala v. Antelope Valley Newspapers

    H. Scott Leviant
    12 Aug 2014 | 9:54 pm
    As I fill the backlog, we have yet another big decision from the California Supreme Court. In Ayala v. Antelope Valley Newspapers, 59 Cal. 4th 522 (June 30, 2014), the Supreme Court examined how the question of certification should be answered in the context of misclassification of independent contractors.  Newspaper carriers, classified as independent contractors, filed suit to obtain remedies available to employees under California’s wage & hour laws.  Plaintiffs moved for class certification.  The trial court concluded the case could not proceed as a class action,…
  • Analysis of Iskanian v. CLS Transportation Los Angeles LLC

    H. Scott Leviant
    12 Aug 2014 | 9:42 pm
    Next up on the update list is Iskanian v. CLS Transportation Los Angeles LLC (June 23, 2014). In Iskanian, a limousine driver filed a class action lawsuit on behalf of himself and similarly situated employees for his employer’s alleged failure to compensate its employees for, among other things, overtime and meal and rest periods.  Plaintiff also asserted a PAGA claim. The employee had entered into an arbitration agreement that waived the right to class proceedings. The defendant moved to compel arbitration. After the court granted the motion, Gentry v. Superior Court (2007) 42 Cal.4th…
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    Law Firm Newswire » Legal News

  • Case-by-Case Arbitration Now Viable in California Pay Disputes

    LFN Editor 102KS31
    30 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    Sacramento, CA (Law Firm Newswire) September 30, 2014 – Collective legal action has not been eliminated in pay disputes in California, but its role has been diminished. Employers may now insist on case-by-case arbitration. “In a highly anticipated ruling, the California Supreme Court has decided that California employers may stop their workers from suing jointly for unpaid wages or overtime and alternatively mandate case-by-case arbitration. In essence, the ruling limited collective legal action in wage disputes,” said noted Sacramento business attorney, Deborah Barron. In a 6-1…
  • Distracted Driving Accidents May Affect Employers

    LFN Editor 102KS31
    30 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    Austin, TX (Law Firm Newswire) September 30, 2014 – Is a working employee’s distracted driving an employer’s responsibility? “This is one of those discussions that tends to come up when a company employee like a trucker or cab driver is involved in an accident. Was the employee driving while distracted? Did the employee’s driving cause the accident? What role does an employer play in such a situation?” said Bobby Lee, an Austin injury attorney. Recently, a high-profile comedian was seriously injured when a truck crashed into the back of a limo bus. One person was killed, and…
  • Misread X-Ray Leads To Death, $16.7 Million Malpractice Award

    LFN Editor 102KS31
    30 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    Southfield, MI (Law Firm Newswire) September 30, 2014 – A misread x-ray left a Boston woman dead from lung cancer.  “According to the statement of claim filed for this case, Jeanne Ellis presented to the Brigham emergency room in October of 2006 with a nagging cough,” explained Litigation Funding Corporation representative Daren Monroe. “A chest x-ray was ordered and completed by Dr. Peter Clarke.”  Ellis’ radiologist missed signs of cancer in her chest radiograph. Clarke analyzed the x-ray to conclude that Ellis had an upper respiratory infection. She was sent home with…
  • Attorney Shaun R. Marks Engages With Harvard DUI Defense Course

    LFN Editor 102KS31
    30 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    Attorney, Shaun R. Marks Flint, MI (Law Firm Newswire) September 30, 2014 – Flint attorney Shaun R. Marks completed the National College for DUI Defense Summer Session at Harvard University Law School. “The completion of the summer session on DUI defense at Harvard Law School adds another level of knowledge and ability to my successful practice,” said Marks, a Flint attorney who defends people accused of drunk driving. “I am committed to providing superior representation to people — who are often wrongfully accused of drunk driving — and I welcomed this opportunity to…
  • Hope for Executive Action on Immigration Reform Dashed Again

    LFN Editor 102KS31
    30 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    Miami, FL (Law Firm Newswire) September 30, 2014 – The possibility for executive action prior to the Congressional election is dead. “Even though the President had indicated he would use his executive powers to put amnesty into place for illegal aliens, he has now, once again, backed away from that course of action,” indicated Miami immigration attorney Larry Rifkin, managing partner at Rifkin & Fox-Isicoff. “Obama is now viewed as the cause behind immigration reform delay.” On June 30, the president told the press that he would use a set of executive actions to move…
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    The L•E•Jer

  • Is Immigration Reform Really Working to Help Unaccompanied Children Become Legal Workers and Citizens?

    Hofstra Labor & Employment Law Journal
    29 Sep 2014 | 7:30 am
    by Samantha Karpman With immigration being such a prominent issue in recent politics, several Americans are starting to request a stricter policy when letting individuals into our borders.[1] One of the policies in question is the current implementation of the 2008 Special Immigrant Juvenile (hereafter referred to as “SIJ”) Status.[2] This law allows immigrants, who […]
  • A Special Announcement from the Journal

    Hofstra Labor & Employment Law Journal
    24 Sep 2014 | 7:30 am
    The Volume 32 Hofstra Labor & Employment Law Journal Symposium will take place on Friday, October 24, 2014. Curated by Symposium Editor Jerry Lagomarsine, the V.32 Symposium will feature programming on the subject of employee misclassification. For more information as it becomes available, please “like” our Facebook page, which can be accessed here. UPDATE (7:48 […]
  • “Ya Gotta Believe,” . . . But Who?

    Hofstra Labor & Employment Law Journal
    22 Sep 2014 | 7:30 am
    by Peter Link America’s pastime for over the past one hundred years has been baseball. Baseball and, in particular, the New York Mets have been some of my greatest passions for as long as I can remember. On the field, it is one of the most graceful games ever thought of, and in the office […]
  • China Makes Great Strides in Labor and Employment Practices for Adults, but Fails to Protect Children

    Hofstra Labor & Employment Law Journal
    16 Sep 2014 | 8:29 am
    by Dana Dohn The American Bar Association recently announced that it will be hosting a webinar on October 16, 2014, entitled “Best Practices for Labor & Employment Issues in China.”[1] During this event, China law expert James Zimmerman will be discussing and exploring many of the recent changes in the Chinese workforce, including the rise […]
  • Exploitation on the Deep Blue Sea

    Hofstra Labor & Employment Law Journal
    12 Sep 2014 | 12:29 pm
    by Thomas S. Wolinetz Last January, I took an amazing twelve-night cruise from New York to the Caribbean.  Recently, I found out that over twenty million people travel on cruise ships each year.[1]  I also learned that the cruise industry generated over thirty-seven billion dollars for the U.S. economy in 2013.[2]  During my voyage on the deep blue […]
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    My Distribution Law

  • Ninth Circuit Holds State Action Immunity Doctrine Bars Claims Against Convention Center

    Howard Ullman
    17 Sep 2014 | 5:15 am
    The San Diego Convention Center in San Diego, California. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) In United National Maintenance, Inc. v. San Diego Convention Center, Inc., No. 12-56809 (9th Cir. May 14, 2014), the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that the San Diego Convention center enjoyed state-action immunity from antitrust claims brought by a supplier of cleaning services whose business was negatively impacted by the convention center’s decision to be the exclusive supplier of cleaning services. The California Legislature specifically authorized San Diego (and other cities)…
  • N.D. Cal. Just Opened the Damages Umbrella

    Howard Ullman
    26 Aug 2014 | 1:48 pm
    (Photo credit: Wikipedia) In County of San Mateo v. CSL, Limited, Case No. 3:10-cv-05686-JSC (N.D. Cal. Aug. 20, 2014) (Corley, M.J.), the Northern District of California held that California’s antitrust law, the Cartwright Act, allows the recovery of umbrella damages.  If the decision stands or is upheld, it could stimulate a new wave of antitrust litigation. Umbrella damages are damages due to overcharges paid to non-conspirators who raise their prices because they are protected by the cartel’s price “umbrella.”  Federal courts, including the Ninth Circuit, have…
  • The Senate is Considering Minimum Resale Pricing for Contact Lenses

    Howard Ullman
    31 Jul 2014 | 12:45 pm
    NPR has the story.  Under federal law, of course, RPM is subject to the Rule of Reason.  Apparently the Senate is interested because a large portion of the contact lens market is subject to the restrictions. It is unclear to me whether the manufacturers have truly nationwide policies or whether they have excepted those states that still treat — or may treat — minimum RPM as per se unlawful. Update: After hearing a bit more about this, it sounds like these are Colgate unilateral pricing policies (no agreement; if retailers don’t abide, they don’t receive more…
  • Northern District of California Addresses Functional Discounts, Price Discrimination Claims

    Howard Ullman
    17 Jul 2014 | 3:43 pm
    Chrysler 1959 (Photo credit: Wikipedia) In Mathew Enterprise, Inc. v. Chrysler Group, LLC, 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 95522 (N.D. Cal. July 11, 2014) (Freeman, J.), the court dismissed certain Robinson-Patman Act price discrimination claims and allowed others to proceed, and in so doing addressed the contours of the functional availability defense. The plaintiff is a car dealership. It alleged that Chrysler grants “volume growth” incentives which function as a subsidy and amount to roughly $700 per vehicle sold by a qualifying dealer. The plaintiff alleged that Chrysler allowed competing…
  • A World Without Patents?

    Howard Ullman
    10 Jul 2014 | 2:44 pm
    (Photo credit: Alexandre Dulaunoy) Planet Money’s recent podcast interviews two economists who advocate for the ultimate patent law reform: the abolition of patents. They argue that patents inhibit innovation.  For example, the Wright Brothers supposedly secured a number of patents on their early airplane design — which didn’t work very well and which stalled (pun intended) airframe development in the U.S. for a number of years.  The industry migrated to France to avoid the U.S. patents. What about pharma, you might ask (as did I?)  Are pharma companies really going to…
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    Attorney at Work

  • Turn Clients into Client-Advocates: The Brand Experience

    Jay Harrington
    30 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    Research suggests that life experiences, not material things, are the key to happiness. Nonetheless, by and large people still choose to spend more of their money on material items because they believe they’re of greater value. After all, it’s pretty easy to peg a value to a new flat-screen TV that costs $4,000. But it’s hard to estimate the value of a great memory born of an amazing experience. The same principle applies in marketing. Provide a service to a client and you’ll earn a fee. But provide a positive,memorable experience and you’ll earn not just a fee, but a loyal ally…
  • Resigned to Being in the Rut?

    Chris Hargreaves
    29 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    Lawyers can easily find themselves, very early in their careers, in a predicament of epic proportions. It happens when you don’t know what to do next, and end up in a rut — a long, deep track made by the repeated passage of the lawyers (um, vehicles) who went before. For our purposes a rut has a number of relevant characteristics: It begins at the start of the road. As a result, you have a tendency to find yourself in it very quickly. Once you’re in it, it can be hard to get out without a lot of frustration. Unless you get out of it, you’re going to end up at the same destination…
  • Never-Ending Business Development

    Kandy Hopkins
    26 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    If you haven’t figured it out yet, business development is a perpetual, ongoing commitment. It can be especially onerous if you are in a small or solo firm, where you’re not just a lawyer — you’re often the entire sales force and sole customer service rep. But, thanks to the many resources found online, you’re not completely alone in learning how to move your law practice forward. Here’s a sampling of some of the helpers out there right now. 1. Starting up. Even if you’ve already hung out your shingle, it’s not too late to learn a few pointers about what to do,  or…
  • For Better or Worse: Customizing Styles in Microsoft Word

    Vivian Manning
    25 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    In last month’s column, “Stylin’ It in Microsoft Word,” I showed how using Word’s default Styles to format documents can make your life much easier — and urged you to “leave ’em as Microsoft set ’em.” Still, I had a few requests from readers who really would prefer to change the default Styles settings and wanted to know the best way to go about it. Changing Word’s default Styles is quite easy to do. You can either use what I’ll call the “formal” method or make changes even more quickly using the “easier” method.
  • Overworked? The First Step to Delegating

    Micky Deming
    24 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    “I found myself in a rut of doing work … then more work … and feeling stuck in the day-to-day of never seeing past tomorrow,” says Josh Brown, a solo attorney who deals primarily in franchise law. Like most small firm attorneys, Brown’s to-do list kept growing, and no one was around to take something off his plate. If you work in a small firm and your practice is growing, eventually you’re going to need to delegate work — whether you hire staff, outsource tasks, use virtual assistants or take another technology-based route. It’s not a matter of whether you can delegate work…
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    Justia Law, Technology & Legal Marketing Blog

  • Catch a Falling Star – Justia Weekly Writers’ Picks September 5, 2014

    Cicely Wilson
    5 Sep 2014 | 3:29 pm
    Levitt v. Yelp! Inc., US 9th Cir. (9/2/14) Business Law, Internet LawPlaintiffs, small business owners, filed a class action suit alleging that Yelp, an online forum, extorted or attempted to extort advertising payments from them by manipulating user reviews and penning negative reviews of their businesses. Plaintiffs filed suit against Yelp for violations of California’s Unfair Competition Law (UCL), Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code 17200 et seq.; civil extortion; and attempted civil extortion. The district court dismissed the suit for failure to state a claim. The court concluded that…
  • Justia Weekly Writers’ Picks – August 22, 2014

    Cicely Wilson
    22 Aug 2014 | 1:28 pm
    Lodge No. 5 of the Fraternal Order of Police v. City of Philadelphia, US 3rd Cir. (8/18/14) Communications Law, Constitutional LawThe Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), an incorporated collective bargaining organization that represents the approximately 6,600 active police officers employed by the Philadelphia, operates a political action committee, COPPAC, for purposes of distributing contributions to candidates for local and state office. FOP, COPPAC, and four police officers challenged the constitutionality of section 10-107(3) of the Philadelphia Home Rule Charter, which prohibits employees…
  • Justia Weekly Writers’ Picks – August 1, 2014

    Cicely Wilson
    1 Aug 2014 | 2:40 pm
    Bostic v. Schaefer, US 4th Cir. (7/28/14) Civil Rights, Constitutional Law, Family Law, Government & Administrative LawPlaintiffs filed suit challenging Virginia Code sections 20-45.2 and 20-45.3; the Marshall/Newman Amendment, Va. Const. art. I, 15-A; and any other Virginia law that bars same sex-marriage or prohibits the State’s recognition of otherwise-lawful same-sex marriages from other jurisdictions (collectively, the Virginia Marriage Laws). Plaintiffs argued that these laws violate the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment. The district court…
  • Supreme Court or Bust: Justia Weekly Writers’ Picks, July 25, 2014

    Cicely Wilson
    25 Jul 2014 | 11:25 am
    Two federal appeals courts this week issued conflicting opinions on Obamacare.King v. Burwell, US 4th Cir. (7/22/14) Health Law, Tax LawPlaintiffs filed suit challenging the validity of an IRS final rule implementing the premium tax credit provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), 26 U.S.C. 36B. The final rule interprets the Act as authorizing the IRS to grant tax credits to individuals who purchase health insurance on both state-run insurance “Exchanges” and federally-facilitated “Exchanges” created and operated by HHS. The court found that…
  • Justia Weekly Writers’ Picks, July 18, 2014 – As California Goes . . .

    Cicely Wilson
    18 Jul 2014 | 12:24 pm
    This week, a federal judge in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California issued a ruling that California’s death penalty is unconstitutional.  Read Courtney Minick’s analysis of the opinion on Justia’s Verdict: Federal Judge Strikes Down California Death Penalty: What This Could Mean for California.Texas Div., Sons of Confederate Veterans, Inc. v. Vandergriff, et al., US 5th Cir. (7/14/14) Civil Rights, Constitutional LawPlaintiff filed suit alleging that the Board violated its First Amendment right to free speech when it denied plaintiff’s application for a…
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    BullsEye Blog

  • Do Conflicting Experts Preclude Summary Judgment?

    28 Sep 2014 | 5:00 pm
    Courts award summary judgment to a party when there is no genuine dispute of material fact and the moving party is entitled to judgment in its favor as a matter of law. Can summary judgement be awarded if two experts have conflicting opinions about a material fact?
  • Securities Law, Daubert, Terror Trials: Cases Hinge on Experts

    18 Sep 2014 | 10:09 pm
    From market efficiency to Daubert to terrorist litigation, many cases require experts for final decisions to be made. Read more to learn about recent cases in which expert testimony played a vital role.
  • Expert Helps Prove “Efficient Market” in Securities Fraud Litigation

    15 Sep 2014 | 6:00 am
    The fraud-on-the-market presumption was recently the subject of major publicity as a result of the Supreme Court’s pending decision in Haliburton. Read more to learn about the Court’s decision and other cases that affect this unique area of litigation.
  • Profession's Litigation Guidelines Not Controlling in Daubert Inquiry

    6 Sep 2014 | 7:52 pm
    To what extent should a professional association's litigation guidelines govern the admissibility of their testimony? This is the question that arose in a case against LabCorp in this case of first impression. Read more to learn about the court’s decision.
  • Expert Testimony Central to Coffee Class Decision

    31 Aug 2014 | 10:00 am
    Angry coffee drinkers file a class action against Grove Square Coffee coffee pods. Read to learn more about how expert testimony played a key role in the 10th Circuit’s decision regarding class action certification in this case.
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    Recent Blog Posts

  • Recent Reports of Defective Cars | California Lemon Law Attorney

    19 Sep 2014 | 3:08 pm
    Despite rapidly advancing technology, certain car models can still be flawed from time to time. Unfortunately, these flaws can have deadly consequences. Two recent cases of defective cars in the U.S. involve a probe of 205,000 Ford Fiestas with doors that have reportedly failed to latch and faulty ignition switches in GM cars that cause drivers to unexpectedly lose all control over their vehicle. When such aut defect cases arise, millions of dollars' worth of lawsuits are sure to follow. If you have been in an accident caused by a defective vehicle, it's important to hire a California…
  • Kia Motors Conducts "Voluntary Service Campaign" for Engine Malfunction

    23 Jun 2014 | 9:55 am
    Kia Motors Corporation, the second-largest vehicle manufacturer in South Korea, issued a voluntary service campaign to reprogram the Engine Control Modules of 2011 – 2013 Sorento cars. Earlier this month, Kia issued a notice to Sorento owners and explained that the vehicle engine can stall / stop without warning when the driver applies the brakes. According to the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration), multiple consumers complained about the problem. Some even described the glitch as "dangerous" and reported multiple incidents of the cars stalling in…
  • GM to Pay $35 Million Fine for Safety Defects, Delayed Recalls

    23 May 2014 | 10:27 am
    American auto makers are back in the news after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration fined General Motors (GM) for not being upfront about known safety defects in some of their motor vehicles. GM agreed to pay a $35 million penalty for its failures and delayed recalls, and will make significant internal changes to policies on how safety defects will be handled in the future. GM will also be subject to increased U.S. oversight for up to three years. GM's case is yet another instance of a major manufacturer being fined for failing to put consumer safety first. Instead, many of…
  • Write It Right: Why Everyone Should Save Vehicle Maintenance Records

    7 May 2014 | 10:20 am
    In order to prove that your vehicle is a lemon, you must have proof that your new vehicle was defective and continued to be defective despite numerous attempts at repair. To establish this type of proof, consumers need to be able to provide evidence of vehicle maintenance. Auto body shops and repair dealers are actually required by law to provide their customers with detailed information about repairs as well as copies of all pertinent paperwork such as invoices. The Automotive Repair Act The Automotive Repair Act is the law that requires body shops to keep their customers informed. If you…
  • What Is The Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act?

    28 Apr 2014 | 10:12 am
    The Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act protects individuals who lease or buy new cars. According to the California Attorney General, The law requires that if the manufacturer or its representative in this state, such as an authorized dealer, is unable to service or repair a new motor vehicle to meet the terms of an express written warranty after a reasonable number of repair attempts, the manufacturer is required promptly to replace the vehicle or return the purchase price to the lessee or buyer. This act applies to vehicles with inherent problems, not problems resulting from abuse or…
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    Rozek Law

  • Risk of Brain Injury Related to Helmets?

    Randy Rozek
    29 Sep 2014 | 11:36 am
    Visit us at An estimated 25 percent of retired football players have increased risk for developing a form of dementia. Additionally, studies have found that dementia forms much sooner for football players than in those who did not play. Dave Herman, a retired NFL player with more than a decade of playing for the New York Jets, increasingly had problems with memory and thinking over the years. Dr. Sam Gandy, one of Herman’s doctors and a neurologist for Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, said that the group who viewed his case could not give a solid diagnosis. Gandy continued…
  • New Compound Protects Against Brain Injuries

    Randy Rozek
    23 Sep 2014 | 10:35 am
    Visit us at In a recent study conducted at the University of Iowa, researchers discovered that certain compounds could prevent brain cells from certain types of traumatic brain injury. In the experiment, the mice were treated 24 to 36 hours later for a traumatic brain injury due to a blast. During the trial, researchers discovered that the compound prevented the lasting effects associated with TBI. Traumatic brain injury is one of the most common health problems that men and women from the military face. Out of more than two million US soldiers, 10 to 20 percent experience a TBI.
  • Does Early Brain Injury Trigger Autism?

    Randy Rozek
    16 Sep 2014 | 10:46 am
    Visit us at When people think of the brain, they think of the cerebrum. The cerebrum, with its two hemispheres and a layer of gray matter, has come to be known as the cerebral cortex. The cerebral cortex is known for higher functioning such as language and cognition. However, according to a paper published in the Neuron, a scientific journal, the cerebellum could play greater roles than that. It is possible that dysfunction within the cerebellum during vital points in time could contribute to autism disorders. Although the cerebellum only makes up 10 percent of the brain’s…
  • Researchers Look for Brain Injury Link That Damages Lungs

    Randy Rozek
    10 Sep 2014 | 10:58 am
    Visit us at Following a brain injury, there’s an inflammatory cascade with a molecule named HMGB1, which releases into the blood after a brain injury. When HMGB1 reaches the lung, it attaches to a receptor called RAGE. Dr. Weber, one of the IU researchers for this phenomena, has said that the lungs are abundant with RAGE receptors, so they have increased vulnerability to the inflammatory process of TBI. IU researchers have wanted to understand how TBI is associated with lung injuries during the inflammatory situation that becomes active in the lungs. During the process,…
  • Wear Proper Helmets To Lower Risk Brain Injury

    Randy Rozek
    29 Aug 2014 | 8:49 am
    Visit us at In the United States, 1.4 million Americans sustain a brain injury each year. An estimated 5,700 people in Wisconsin suffer brain injuries annually. That number, however, is likely to be a lower estimation than the actual statistic because many brain injuries occur without going reported. Helmets colliding in football may not seem like an important matter, but how resistant is the human skull to fracture? Additionally, can the contents of the skull handle this? When brain matter was tested in a laboratory setting, it turns out that brain matter is not as stiff as…
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  • Accidents at School

    Robin Friedman
    26 Sep 2014 | 6:47 am
    Everyone is back to school.  Children are in school for a significant part of every day, and we trust schools to safeguard our children.  As a parent, you should be aware that schools have a legal obligation to take reasonable steps to safeguard our children’s safety. Many schools today have written safety protocols, but accidents […]
  • Start Protecting your Business in the Early Stages of Planning

    Krystal Chapin
    22 Sep 2014 | 6:35 am
    In order to position oneself to reach the highest level of success and benefits available from starting your own business, it is important to begin with a solid foundation. Starting up a business is not something that can be done overnight: months, sometimes years of planning must take place before an adequate model is in […]
  • Why Do Domestic Violence Victims Stay With Their Abuser

    Robin Friedman
    15 Sep 2014 | 1:45 pm
    If you are anything like me, you probably watched the video of Ray Rice punching Janay Palmer(now Janay Rice) in the face and cringed with anger and sadness.  I was shocked by the brutality of it.  And then I thought when it couldn’t get much worse, I heard the part of the story about how […]
  • Grandparents Rearing Grandchildren

    Linda Grear
    9 Sep 2014 | 9:14 am
    Throughout history, grandparents and extended family have raised children; however, in our current society more and more grandparents are the primary caregivers to their grandchildren. In the United States, there are 2.4 million grandparents raising grandchildren. The idea of the two-parent family simply no longer reflects today’s modern families. Reasons why grandparents rear grandchildren: To […]
  • College Bound? Get Power of Attorney and Health Care Proxy for your student!

    Linda Grear
    14 Aug 2014 | 7:33 am
    If you have children getting ready for college, you should consider having them prepare Durable General Power of Attorney and Health Care Proxy documents. From a practical perspective, you may be paying your child’s tuition and housing expenses, as well as covering him/her as a dependent on your health insurance; however, in the eyes of […]
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    bLAWgical Thinking

  • #The2Llife: Transferring Schools Truths

    30 Sep 2014 | 9:01 am
    GUEST BLOG By Harrison Thorne, 2L at UCLA School of Law TRANSFER UPDATE Now that school has been in session for a bit over a month, I felt now would be a good time to talk about my experiences so far as a transfer student. […]
  • #The1Llife: Legal Writing Meltdown

    29 Sep 2014 | 2:29 pm
    GUEST BLOG By Lauren Rose, 1L at the University of Detroit Mercy Well, it finally happened. I have officially been shot down by a professor. No, not literally, but definitely figuratively. My first critique of a memo by my professor was honestly one of the […]
  • #The2Llife: Meditation and Quiet Time

    23 Sep 2014 | 7:49 am
    GUEST BLOG By Harrison Thorne, 2L at UCLA School of Law Since starting law school over a year ago, I’ve noticed something. My brain is always moving 1,000 miles/minute. I seem to be a living, breathing day-planner. I am always thinking of where I have […]
  • #The1Llife: Explaining Law School

    22 Sep 2014 | 11:02 am
    GUEST BLOG By Lauren Rose, 1L at the University of Detroit Mercy Think about the most difficult thing you’ve ever had to explain to someone. Now think about trying to explain law school to your friends and family. Over the past month, countless family members […]
  • #The3Llife: Rolling with the Punches

    17 Sep 2014 | 12:01 pm
    GUEST BLOG By Shaun Sanders, 3L at Chapman University’s Dale E. Fowler School of Law I remember how daunting it was to step into my law school on the first day of my first year. I was ready, but only because I had prepared to […]
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    Attorney at Work

  • Turn Clients into Client-Advocates: The Brand Experience

    Jay Harrington
    30 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    Research suggests that life experiences, not material things, are the key to happiness. Nonetheless, by and large people still choose to spend more of their money on material items because they believe they’re of greater value. After all, it’s pretty easy to peg a value to a new flat-screen TV that costs $4,000. But it’s hard to estimate the value of a great memory born of an amazing experience. The same principle applies in marketing. Provide a service to a client and you’ll earn a fee. But provide a positive,memorable experience and you’ll earn not just a fee, but a loyal ally…
  • Resigned to Being in the Rut?

    Chris Hargreaves
    29 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    Lawyers can easily find themselves, very early in their careers, in a predicament of epic proportions. It happens when you don’t know what to do next, and end up in a rut — a long, deep track made by the repeated passage of the lawyers (um, vehicles) who went before. For our purposes a rut has a number of relevant characteristics: It begins at the start of the road. As a result, you have a tendency to find yourself in it very quickly. Once you’re in it, it can be hard to get out without a lot of frustration. Unless you get out of it, you’re going to end up at the same destination…
  • Never-Ending Business Development

    Kandy Hopkins
    26 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    If you haven’t figured it out yet, business development is a perpetual, ongoing commitment. It can be especially onerous if you are in a small or solo firm, where you’re not just a lawyer — you’re often the entire sales force and sole customer service rep. But, thanks to the many resources found online, you’re not completely alone in learning how to move your law practice forward. Here’s a sampling of some of the helpers out there right now. 1. Starting up. Even if you’ve already hung out your shingle, it’s not too late to learn a few pointers about what to do,  or…
  • For Better or Worse: Customizing Styles in Microsoft Word

    Vivian Manning
    25 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    In last month’s column, “Stylin’ It in Microsoft Word,” I showed how using Word’s default Styles to format documents can make your life much easier — and urged you to “leave ’em as Microsoft set ’em.” Still, I had a few requests from readers who really would prefer to change the default Styles settings and wanted to know the best way to go about it. Changing Word’s default Styles is quite easy to do. You can either use what I’ll call the “formal” method or make changes even more quickly using the “easier” method.
  • Overworked? The First Step to Delegating

    Micky Deming
    24 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    “I found myself in a rut of doing work … then more work … and feeling stuck in the day-to-day of never seeing past tomorrow,” says Josh Brown, a solo attorney who deals primarily in franchise law. Like most small firm attorneys, Brown’s to-do list kept growing, and no one was around to take something off his plate. If you work in a small firm and your practice is growing, eventually you’re going to need to delegate work — whether you hire staff, outsource tasks, use virtual assistants or take another technology-based route. It’s not a matter of whether you can delegate work…
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    The Attorney Marketing Center

  • It’s better to own a law practice than to run one

    David M. Ward
    30 Sep 2014 | 10:56 am
    An article in our local newsletter featured a neighbor who recently changed careers. I don’t know what they did before but a couple of years ago, they bought a fast food franchise and they recently opened a pizza restaurant in the food court of our local mall. The couple have two young children and my wife commented that running two restaurants sounds like a lot of work. I pointed out that running a restaurant isn’t the same thing as owning one. As the owner, you have employees who run the day to day operations. You may check in once a day, once a week, or once in awhile, but as…
  • What kind of attorney are you?

    David M. Ward
    29 Sep 2014 | 11:48 am
    When you hand someone your business card and tell them you’re an attorney, what do they typically say to you? They ask, “What kind of attorney are you?” or “What kind of law do you practice?” They can’t tell from the word “attorney” and most attorneys don’t identify their practice areas on on their card. If you simply answer the question and state your practice area(s), you’re missing out on a big opportunity. Instead, you should say something like this: “I handle [whatever you handle]. I also know a lot of attorneys who handle…
  • A simple way to find hot ideas for blog posts

    David M. Ward
    26 Sep 2014 | 11:20 am
    Are you running out of ideas for blog posts or newsletter articles? Do you want to zero in on topics prospective clients want to know about? No problem. Your competition can help you. Ideas are just a few clicks away. Go find a few popular blogs in your niche. You can find legal blog directories here, here, and here, just to name a few. While you’re there, submit your blog. Get you some links and traffic. When you’ve found a few popular blogs by lawyers in your practice area, (in any jurisdiction), visit those blogs and have a look around. Subscribe to their feeds. Follow them on…
  • Use the two-minute rule to beat procrastination

    David M. Ward
    25 Sep 2014 | 11:07 am
    In “Getting Things Done,” David Allen speaks about “the two-minute rule”. He says that as you go through your list of tasks, anything that can be done in two minutes or less should be done immediately. Don’t schedule it for later, do it now. The time you would take to schedule a task or make notes about it could be used to get the thing done. I do my best to follow the two-minute rule and find that it not only aids my productivity, it is also very satisfying. It allows me to clear my plate of “open tasks” and it feels good knowing I’m getting…
  • When the yogurt hits the fan

    David M. Ward
    24 Sep 2014 | 11:44 am
    You might lose a huge case. Or have your best client fire you. It might be an injury or illness, a financial disaster, or a drug or alcohol problem. I don’t know what it might be, but whatever it is, it doesn’t have to destroy you. There are two other possibilities: 1. You will survive. You will come back,bigger and better than before. You’ll learn from the experience and be stronger person because of it. Or. . . 2. You’ll start over. If the worst case scenario rears it’s ugly head, as long as it’s not fatal, you will start a new chapter in your life. You…
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    Valensi Rose Law

  • Gold Diggers Beware

    About Valensi Rose, PLC
    25 Sep 2014 | 3:19 pm
    By Lynda ChungIn the world of trust and estate litigation, claims of undue influence are nothing new. These suits usually concern a caregiver, mistress, or other interloper coercing an unfair share of an inheritance from the deceased.  However, far less common are undue influence cases brought against the wife of the deceased. That is … until a case earlier this year made it clear that marriage is not a license to steal. Indeed, all would-be “gold-diggers” should take note, as this decision is a potential game changer.In this case, the deceased took the defendant as his third wife…
  • Non-Profit Corporations Must Operate Pursuant to the Rules

    About Valensi Rose, PLC
    10 Sep 2014 | 3:23 pm
    By Arlen R. GunnerI was recently asked to serve as an expert witness in a case that demonstrates the abuse that occurs when people form a non-profit for the sole purpose of personal gain. As an experienced attorney representing non-profits, I was hired by the plaintiff’s attorney to testify as an expert witness against the founders of a non-profit organization. Rather than using the money raised for the mission of the organization, they were using the entity as their personal piggy bank and had already pocketed large amounts of cash.They had no interest in running a charitable organization…
  • More Recent Tax Developments That May Affect You

    About Valensi Rose, PLC
    19 Aug 2014 | 9:00 am
    By Michael R. MorrisThe following is a summary of the most important tax developments that have occurred in the past three months that may affect you, your family, your investments, and your livelihood. If any of these tax developments apply to you, please call me or one of the other attorneys in our Tax and Wealth Planning Group for more information on how to take advantage of or minimize the impact of these developments.No bankruptcy exemption for inherited IRAsA unanimous Supreme Court has held that inherited IRAs do not qualify for a bankruptcy exemption, i.e., they are not protected from…
  • When is a Property Owner also an Employer?

    About Valensi Rose, PLC
    5 Aug 2014 | 9:00 am
    By Laurie MurphyIf a tree falls in the forest, and no one is around to hear it, does it still make a sound? What if an unlicensed tree trimmer falls out of the tree, and the forest is your property? Are you liable?If you’re not careful, a $200 tree-trimming job can turn into a five-figure plus lawsuit. When landscapers, plumbers, handymen, etc., are injured while working in your home or on your commercial property, your liability depends on whether the law recognizes them as an employee or an independent contractor. Section 2750.5 of the California Labor Code states that any unlicensed…
  • Unusual Facts Lead to Unprecedented Victory for Lender

    About Valensi Rose, PLC
    22 Jul 2014 | 9:01 am
    By Gary TorrellI’d like to discuss a recent case where unusual facts and aggressive actions, led to an almost unheard-of victory for one of our lender clients.Many homeowners miss a monthly mortgage payment or two, then make it up. But when three to five consecutive payments are missed, the lender often attempts to collect or reach a loan modification with the borrower and, if that process is unsuccessful, the lender begins to foreclose.California and federal laws (including bankruptcy) protect homeowners and can delay a foreclosure for six months to over a year. During this time the…
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    Estate Law Canada

  • Joan Rivers teaches lesson about termination of life support

    28 Sep 2014 | 10:47 am
    Lawyers and other advisors who work in estate planning will always urge their clients to set up three main planning documents. Those are the will, the Power of Attorney (dealing with property and finances) and a Health Care Directive. Some clients need more, of course, such as a family trust or an estate freeze, but all of us need at least the three main planning documents. I often find that
  • How much can the trustee of a Henson Trust be paid?

    28 Sep 2014 | 10:09 am
    Thousands of Canadians have been named as the trustee of wills and by extension, the trusts set up in those wills. For many, this may include a Henson Trust. This is a type of trust that is created to set aside funds for a disabled person to provide for that person's financial future. Henson trusts are used in every province other than Alberta. Since most trustees are thrust into the job without
  • Estate planning mistakes women make

    21 Sep 2014 | 4:09 pm
    Not long ago, I was asked by a reporter to describe some estate planning mistakes women make. As a rule, I don't find a huge difference between the mistakes made by men and those made by women in terms of estate planning when both partners are alive. However, something that is indisputably true is that there are more widows out there than widowers. Therefore, women are in a somewhat different
  • How the rich die - bizarre celebrity last wills and testaments

    14 Sep 2014 | 12:51 pm
    Here's a bit of light reading for the weekend. Click here to read an article from that gives a short list of what they consider bizarre wills and estates. The attached picture accompanied the article mentioned.
  • Doctors impose DNR order, ignore family's pleas, leading to patient's death

    11 Sep 2014 | 3:55 am
    You might be aware that recently doctors in Toronto did not assist Douglas DeGuerre, an elderly man who was having a heart attack, with the result that Mr. DeGuerre died. He was very sick with heart disease, diabetes, and other conditions, and had just undergone double leg amputation. Although Mr. DeGuerre's daughter was present and begged the medical staff at the hospital to save her father,
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    AZ Attorney

  • So you say you voted. But did you finish the ballot?

    30 Sep 2014 | 9:30 am
    Today, I share some information from the State Bar of Arizona. They have devised a smart and witty way to remind you about ALL the races that can be found on our ballots, and the vital importance of completing that ballot all the way to the end. Here you go: The November election is just weeks away and soon your friends and family will be asking you the same question they ask every election: How should they vote the judges on the ballot? We want to help, so this election we’ve come up with a way for you to answer that question. Watch our Finish the Ballot video below: That’s it. Send…
  • Lawyer-leader Richard Segal recalled at Phoenix Community Alliance

    29 Sep 2014 | 9:30 am
    Dick Segal when a student at North Phoenix High School Recalling attorneys who have done great things for the community is always a pleasure, and that is what took me to an event back on September 10. In the old Phoenix courthouse, fellow leaders from the Phoenix Community Alliance gathered to remember the achievements of Richard Segal. He had died suddenly on April 18. (I noted his passing here. And read his obituary here.) Among other things, Segal was the longtime managing partner of Gust Rosenfeld and former State Bar President. In a historic conference room, though, in an event deftly…
  • Publicity summit #pubsum14 of @spjphx pairs great ideas with the journos who want them

    26 Sep 2014 | 9:30 am
    This next item is a little market-y. Let me state that up front. But if any of you have marketing and communications professionals in your firm or office (or if you do that work yourself), consider stopping by ASU SkySong tomorrow morning. That’s where you’ll get to: (1) hear directly from news professionals across multiple media, (2) pitch your story (if you’d like), targeting your idea/story to the channels and niches that best serve your goals, and (3) have coffee with me. OK, that last one may not be a big draw. But this is about my third year participating in the Society of…
  • Spirited debate for Arizona Attorney General at AWLA event

    25 Sep 2014 | 9:30 am
    In what has become an annual tradition, on Wednesday, the Arizona Women Lawyers Association hosted a debate of the candidates for Arizona Attorney General. Held at the University Club in Phoenix, it featured a packed-to-the-gills room, candidates committed to their goals, and organizers who were committed to: (1) a value-packed event and (2) getting people out on time. Organizers succeeded on both counts. The candidates? Well, attendees may each have had their own favorites. The format was composed of 10-minute candidate statements, followed by 10-minute rebuttals, and finally audience…
  • Supreme Court roundup well done – as far as it went

    24 Sep 2014 | 9:30 am
    Judge George Anagnost moderates the We the People panel, Sept. 17, 2014. He gestures toward panelists Bob McWhirter and Doug Cole. Last week, I attended the annual “We the People” CLE program, which gathers smart folks and lets them loose on the most recent High Court Term. The follow-up was complete and often enlightening. Paul Bender, Doug Cole and Bob McWhirter offered insightful and often humorous takes on a wide variety of the cases taken by SCOTUS. Led by moderator Judge George Anagnost, they were a formidable intellectual team. (I appreciated Professor Bender’s unintended error…
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    Course and Scope: Connecticut Worker's Compensation

  • Job Searches

    James F. Aspell
    12 Sep 2014 | 1:02 pm
    The quality of a claimant's job searches while collecting temporary partial benefits in connection with you Connecticut Worker's Compensation Claim is a source of frequent consternation to insurance adjusters. To ensure the timely, uninterrupted receipt of your comp checks, it is imperative that you send us 5 quality job searches for jobs consistent with your restrictions, every week. In a week that a quality search is not received, it is conceivable and quite common that the comp carrier will request a hearing to terminate your benefits. Make both your life and our job easier by getting us…
  • Age and Social Security Disability

    James F. Aspell
    2 Dec 2013 | 2:17 pm
    SSD FAQ: Is it easier to get approved for Disability after age 50? Answer: Generally yes, depending on your specific situation. The SSA's "ability to work" rules are more relaxed for applicants who are 50 and older. As a result, a 50-year-old may be approved even though he or she is able to do some kind of work whereas a 49-year-old with the same qualifications may be denied. There is no cost or obligation to receive a free evaluation to discuss your specific case and potential eligibility for benefits.
  • Year End Brings Settlement Time

    James F. Aspell
    19 Nov 2013 | 1:36 pm
    As the year begins to draw to close, insurance companies begin to think about getting older cases off their books. This can be used to your advantage if you know how to accurately price a case for settlement. We have 27 years of experiencing in resolving all manner of worker's compensation claims. If you have an older claim, or you once had a claim in Connecticut but have since moved away, call us. We may be able to help you find value in your case. And wouldn't that be a nice way to end the year!
  • Scarring Awards in the Current Worker's Comp Landscape

    James F. Aspell
    3 May 2013 | 8:52 pm
    In a few certain, specific situations, an injured worker in Connecticut can still be awarded a monetary allowance for scarring or disfigurement. Notably, a scar on the face still qualifies for compensation. The value of the scarring award is at the discretion of the Commissioner and HAS to be assessed in the time between year one and two, after the initial injury. If you require further clarification or think you need help claiming a scarring award, please feel free to contact our office for a free consultation.
  • Workers Comp Myths and facts from our freinds at LexisNexis

    James F. Aspell
    20 Dec 2012 | 7:00 am
    10 Myths and Facts About Workers' Compensation Posted by LexisNexis Workers' Comp Law Community Staff The LexisNexis Workers’ Compensation Law Community and the award-winning blog Work Comp Roundup have teamed up to present some common myths and facts about workers’ compensation. Our contributors represent different segments of the workers’ compensation industry. Questions and comments for our contributors are encouraged. Note that myths are listed below in random order and not in order of importance, since the degree of “importance” depends on the reader and his or her stake in the…
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    Law Donut blog feed

  • Why many patent holders are being ripped off on their renewal fees

    25 Sep 2014 | 3:05 am
    More than eight million patents are held worldwide by thousands of businesses, many of which do not know they are paying far more than necessary to renew their patents. For each patent a business holds, a fee must be paid to the patent office every year to keep their intellectual property in force. If you hold patents in multiple regions, the costs can quickly spiral out of control. To manage the process, most of these businesses employ the expensive legal expertise of patent attorneys, believing that the renewal process is complicated. In fact, the process is very simple. So these patent…
  • Could pension-led funding enable your business to grow?

    16 Sep 2014 | 3:11 am
    A growing number of business owners are using pension-led funding (PLF) to expand their businesses. PLF is one of the newest forms of alternative finance available to companies that either cannot or do not want to access traditional bank funding. The CBI described PLF as: “A key form of alternative finance for growing businesses.” PLF allows business owners to make use of liquid funds held within a UK Registered Pension Scheme to finance their business in such a way that there are no undesirable tax charges. It is a business financing mechanism and not a method of putting pension funds…
  • Get ready for auto-enrolment pensions

    Fanny M
    8 Sep 2014 | 5:40 am
    Are you an employer in the UK? If yes, you need to be prepared for the new law surrounding workplace pensions. Maybe you’ve already heard of auto-enrolment but think it won’t affect you as you only have a couple of employees. Or, as it’s being phased in gradually, you don’t need to worry about it for ages. If you do nothing, though, you may be caught out. The Pensions Regulator will always try and work with businesses to help them become compliant but it will issue enforcement notices that can lead to financial penalties for employers that don’t comply with their duties. Staging…
  • Recent changes to flexible working rules: what do they mean for your business?

    1 Sep 2014 | 2:09 am
    Until recently, requests for flexible working patterns were only available for parents of children up to the age of 17 (or 18 if the child has a disability) and for carers. But recently, the laws affecting the right to request flexible working hours have changed. Since 30 June 2014, any employee who has a minimum of 26 weeks of service with the employer now has the statutory right to request flexible working conditions. So what is the impact of this change and who does it affect? What is flexible working? There are various types of flexible working, including working compressed hours (eg…
  • Could pre-nuptial agreements become mandatory?

    27 Aug 2014 | 6:34 am
    Pre-nuptial agreements (AKA “pre-nups”) have traditionally been associated with wealthy Hollywood glitterati seeking to secure their assets in case of divorce. However, in recent years, such agreements have become more popular with couples in the UK from all walks of life, who ask solicitors to help draw up a pre-nup. But how effective are they? Contrary to popular perception, pre-nuptial (and post-nuptial) agreements are not legally binding in England and Wales. Although the Supreme Court decision (in the landmark case of Radmacher v Granatino) strengthened the force of pre-nups and…
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    Consumer Rights

  • Being served bones in your vegetarian food – Indian Railways

    23 Sep 2014 | 12:43 pm
    Of course, this is not the first time that this is happening, but the repeated occurrence cannot diminish the outrage and distaste that such incidents leave in the mouth. In India, there is a special significance in being a vegetarian, as followed in the name of religion rather than due to personal choice. A large number of Hindus, Jains and Buddhists are vegetarians, and consider the consumption of non-vegetarian food to be sinful, and something to be avoided (having such a faith is their legal right, and one cannot dispute this). Thus, in India, there are many restaurants and hotels that…
  • Shopping in retail stores / markets / internet stores – some points to take care of …

    8 Sep 2014 | 1:19 pm
    In my younger days, there were only small neighborhood stores that you would go to get whatever provisions you wanted and there were really not too many different brands either. Over the years however, more and more variety of products started coming into the market accompanied by larger stores, leading up to today’s hypermarkets where you can get everything you need for your household and where you can easily spend thousands of Rupees. However, with all this convenience and speed of purchasing, there is a darker side that you need to be careful about. I will detail some of my…
  • How not to encourage a person to take the course again – Dr. Batras Homeopathy

    2 Oct 2012 | 10:22 am
    I have been a long time customer of Dr. Batra for hair care treatment (long history of dandruff and also fear of an impending decline in the covering on top of the head). The promise was that they would provide me treatment that would lead to a decline in fair fall rates and also eliminate the dandruff, depending on my taking the treatment properly. Further, I had to do other things such as doing some head stimulation (using finger tips to stimulate the scalp), eating more of soya based stuff, eating cod liver capsules and consuming more green tea on a regular basis. Some of these I did,…
  • Flyers left in the lurch (some on the plane) after another strike in Kingfisher Airlines

    1 Oct 2012 | 11:42 am
    When people buy a ticket, they expect that the service will take from their origin to the desired destination. In fact, they deserve a certain amount of service, including the right to know whether the flight or train is one time, whether there is anything that could cause delays or otherwise impede the service, and they expect the Government and regulators to make sure that airlines are doing this. However, the recent (past many months) events at Kingfisher Airlines have caused a great amount of distress to passengers, with the Government not really doing anything about it (except for…
  • Customer charged for 3rd generation of iPod, given 2nd version – refunded after complaint

    3 Jul 2012 | 8:16 am
    Technology changes real fast nowadays, with one direct impact being that whatever you buy will soon have an updated version available soon, and which will cause the version you have with you being no longer the hot new version available in the market. Invariably, soon after your purchase, you will find that what you purchased has been surpassed with more features, and the version you hold does not cost as much as you would have liked. One example of that was when I had gone for a 3 month visit to the US, and purchased a camera for around $560. By the time it was time for me to come back, that…
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    Accellis Technology Group

  • Accellis Technology Group Launches Security & Compliance Services for Law Firms

    Accellis Technology Group
    25 Sep 2014 | 9:54 am
    National Legal Technology Firm Expands Law Firm Cyber Security and Compliance Management Resources Download PDF Cleveland, OH – In an effort to help law firms improve security, remain compliant and guard against cyber-attacks, Accellis Technology Group, one of the nation’s leading providers of Managed IT Services and Legal Technology Consulting, has announced the launch of its Security and Compliance Consulting service department. This program is uniquely designed around the specific security needs of the legal industry. “Law firms and business law departments have become prime targets…
  • How to Cut Your Tech Support Call Time in Half

    Bret Surdock
    24 Sep 2014 | 10:59 am
    Let’s face it, no one likes when their computer or software applications are malfunctioning and therefore need to call in to the help desk or tech support for assistance. While Accellis is always happy to assist with any issues you may have, we understand that you would much rather just get on with your day and get back to work quickly. Here are some tips on how to cut the amount of time you are on the phone with tech support in half. Reboot your computer - Eliminate the obvious points of failure. If you cannot remember the last time you rebooted your computer, chances are it is way…
  • Password Safety: Tips for Securing & Managing Passwords

    Jeremiah Sorbera
    4 Sep 2014 | 9:13 am
    Passwords have become a permanent part of our day-to-day lives. Every year you must remember more passwords, and every year they get easier to crack. The recent theft of over a billion passwords by Russian hackers is just one of many incidents forcing us to take notice. Simply put, we need to do more to keep our passwords safe. Before we get into solutions, it is important to understand just how easily your password can be cracked. The basic methodology behind password cracking is simple: Step 1: Obtain encrypted file - Obtaining the encrypted files varies in complexity. It can be as simple…
  • Review of WordRake: Editing Tool for Lawyers

    Accellis Technology Group
    25 Aug 2014 | 11:19 am
    At the ABA TECHSHOW March, we stumbled upon a document-editing software called WordRake, a powerful add-on to Microsoft Word designed specifically for lawyers. The system “rakes” your documents in search of superfluous words in order to create the most concise and clear version of legal prose possible. One simply has to highlight the intended text and click “rake” to receive near instant edits to one’s document. In theory, the idea is brilliant—you conform to the knowledge level of your client in order to ensure their complete grasp on the matter at hand. However, as with all…
  • Review of MetaJure Document Management System

    John H. Roth II
    6 Aug 2014 | 1:33 pm
    More law firms are recognizing the gains to be had by investing in a document management system. Document management enables firms to electronically store, retrieve, manage, and deliver business documents. But not all document management systems are created equally.  In this post, I’ll review one of the newer entrants to the marketplace, MetaJure, a product that takes a completely different approach to document management when compared to standard systems. The lawyers and staff in most law firms share a common problem: successfully searching for important information and sharing documents.
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    The Litigation Consulting Report

  • $300 Million of Litigation Consulting and Storytelling Validation

    Ken Lopez
    25 Sep 2014 | 12:32 pm
      by Ken LopezFounder/CEOA2L Consulting A2L supported a major win at trial last week, and the lessons from that win are extremely useful for any litigator. The case involved two of the world's top litigation law firms and, respectively, two of their top litigators, both of whom have storied careers. A2L worked for the plaintiff, an inventor. The defendant was a multi-billion dollar technology company that had licensed the plaintiff's technology. The dispute largely centered around the defendant's decision to stop paying licensing fees to the plaintiff. It was a complex case, and A2L's…
  • The Top 5 Qualities of a Good Lawyer

    Ken Lopez
    25 Sep 2014 | 11:48 am
      by Ken LopezFounder/CEOA2L Consulting I'm often asked for advice on hiring a lawyer. In fact, I refer about two dozen cases/clients out to trustworthy lawyers each year. Usually, they range in value from family law-types of cases to $100 million complex commercial disputes. I am in a unique position. While trained as a lawyer, I don't practice. I spend the majority of my time running A2L, a litigation consulting firm, and I publish what is likely the most widely read litigation blog. However, I think what really qualifies me to make great referrals is the twenty years I've spent…
  • The Top 10 Tips for Selling Professional Services

    Ken Lopez
    17 Sep 2014 | 12:16 pm
      by Ken LopezFounder/CEOA2L Consulting As the founder of A2L Consulting I've had the opportunity to do every job in the company at some point in the last 20 years. I enjoy technical work that requires deeply complex thinking. I'm great at conceptualizing litigation graphics for opening statements. Not surprisingly, as CEO, I also love leadership and strategy. However, the job I love the most is helping people connect with the right people at A2L who can solve their challenges. Usually, these challenges are related to communicating to a judge or jury, persuading a skeptical public…
  • Practice is a Crucial Piece of the Storytelling Puzzle

    Ryan Flax
    11 Sep 2014 | 1:47 pm
      by Ryan H. Flax, Esq.Managing Director, Litigation ConsultingA2L Consulting This article is the last in a series of six articles about storytelling and trial preparation. Parts 1-5 are linked at the bottom of this article. What is a trial attorney supposed to do after he or she has developed a theme and a story plus some graphics to support them visually? The answer is, test them. I encourage you to use mock juries, not to predict the outcome of your trial, but to see what themes and facts resonate with the jurors. Doing so will help you decide which facts and story lines are worth…
  • Why Trial Graphics are an Essential Persuasion Tool for Litigators

    Ryan Flax
    8 Sep 2014 | 7:45 am
      by Ryan H. Flax, Esq.Managing Director, Litigation ConsultingA2L Consulting As I pointed out in my last post, the oral telling of a story must be accompanied by visuals if it is to be fully effective. Studies show that most (reportedly as high as 61-65%) of the public prefers to learn by seeing and watching. The majority of attorneys, on the other hand, do not prefer to learn this way but are auditory and kinesthetic learners: They typically learn by hearing and/or experiencing something. This makes sense, when you think about it: We all learn this way in law school in class…
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    Austin Criminal Defense Lawyer » Bill’s Blog

  • A Choking Allegation Can Complicate Family Violence Cases

    Bill Mange
    4 Sep 2014 | 11:33 am
    It’s a question anyone who’s ever been arrested and charged with a crime has asked a lawyer: “What happens if I’m convicted?” In a case involving family violence, the answer is, “It depends.” Under Texas law, prosecutors can charge an act of assault against a family member as a felony, which is a more serious crime, or a misdemeanor, depending on the facts and circumstances unique to each individual case. What Was Used During the Assault? One factor to consider is whether the assault involved a weapon, such as a gun, baseball bat, or knife. The use of a deadly…
  • Civil Rights Violations in Ferguson and Austin

    Bill Mange
    28 Aug 2014 | 7:20 am
    A Washington Post reporter Wesley Lowery was arrested August 13, 2014 for “trespassing” in a McDonald’s. Watch the video provided by the Washington Post. This isn’t just any McDonald’s. No, this particular McDonald’s is where reporters who cover the Ferguson, Missouri shooting of a young African American man commonly gather. Mr. Lowery’s offense was allegedly trespassing, but the reason he was arrested was that he was reporting on, among other things, police conduct. Shortly after he was arrested, he was slammed into a soda machine, then taken to…
  • How Bad Is It? What Makes a DWI a Felony in Texas?

    Bill Mange
    30 Apr 2014 | 4:45 am
    Driving while intoxicated (DWI) cases in Texas are common, but that does not mean that their resolution is simple. Not all DWIs are alike. For starters, actions that constitute DWI depend on different factors. Drivers age 21 and older violate Texas drunk-driving laws when they drive while their blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is 0.08% or more. For commercial drivers, the BAC limit is lowered to 0.04%, and any amount of alcohol in an under-aged driver’s system will land them with an automatic DWI charge. The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC) provides general guidelines as to the…
  • How Some Judges Compel Speech in Violation of the First Amendment

    Bill Mange
    21 Mar 2013 | 9:59 am
    Usually when criminal lawyers talk about “compelled speech,” they’re talking about the Fifth Amendment. The compelled speech I’m talking about here has to do with the First Amendment. The First Amendment of the United States Constitution gives you the right to say, or not say, whatever it is you want to say especially when it comes to politics. If you want to vote, then vote. If you think all of the candidates who wish to be elected are bums and you don’t want to vote for any of them, then don’t vote. It’s your right. When a judge orders you as a…
  • Can You Get Probation for a Drug Felony in Texas?

    Bill Mange
    13 Mar 2013 | 8:39 am
    If the drug felony is a state jail felony and you have no prior felony convictions, then not only can you get probation, you must get probation. Criminal lawyers will recognize that I’m referring to article 42.12 §15(a)(1) of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure. Even if the judge is bound and determined to send you straight to the state jail facility, he cannot do so under this fact scenario. If you do have a prior felony conviction and the drug felony is a state jail felony, then it is still possible to get probation, and in Travis County you probably still will get probation, but…
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    New Jersey Injury Attorney Blog

  • Grandmother Critically Injured in New Jersey Crash

    15 Sep 2014 | 12:22 pm
    An 85-year-old woman was critically injured in a New Jersey car accident when a delivery van struck her and her grandson as they crossed the street. According to an Asbury Park Press news report, the pedestrian accident occurred on Newman Springs Road in Red Bank. Officials say the woman was walking with her 4-year-old grandson from Burger King to her home when the delivery van struck them. She was transported to Jersey Shore University Medical Center in critical condition and her grandson was treated and released.
  • New Jersey Firm Fined for Workplace Safety Violations

    9 Sep 2014 | 9:07 am
    After observing a number of fall hazards at three construction sites in Bloomfield, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) conducted a full investigation. According to an EHS Today news report, Concrete Systems Inc. now faces $52,470 in fines from the eight citations. OSHA officials cited the firm for one repeat and seven serious violations. The company was previously cited for exposing workers to fall and other hazards at worksites in Kearny and Cranford. OSHA cited the firm because workers were allegedly exposed to a 25-foot fall hazard without adequate protection. The…
  • Two Women Killed in New Jersey Crash

    5 Aug 2014 | 9:14 am
    Two women were killed and six others were injured in a New Jersey car accident involving a car and a truck. According to a news report in The New York Times, the fatal car accident occurred in the southbound lanes of the Garden State Parkway in Stafford Township. It is unclear from the report as to what led to the collision. The fatally injured women were in the front seat of the car. A boy and a girl, who were also passengers, were flown by helicopter to Atlantic City in serious condition. A man, a woman, a boy, and a girl in the pickup sustained relatively minor injuries. The investigation…
  • Motorcyclist Critically Injured in New Jersey Crash

    1 Jul 2014 | 12:42 pm
    A 73-year-old Flanders man is in critical condition after he was injured in a New Jersey motorcycle accident. According to a news report in The New Jersey Herald, the motorcycle crash occurred on Route 206 near the Harmony Lodge in Andover Township. Officials say a 38-year-old woman stopped to turn left when her 2013 Ford Escape was struck in the rear by a 1999 BMW motorcycle. The rider was ejected, critically injured, and airlifted to a nearby hospital. The driver of the SUV was treated and released. An investigation is underway to determine the cause of the crash. Motorcycles provide little…
  • Preventing Bicycle Accident Injuries This Summer

    24 Jun 2014 | 12:34 pm
    Summertime is a great time to get around New Jersey on your bike. You can stay fit, have fun, and save money. However, bicycling in New Jersey can prove dangerous if you are not careful. Make sure you always wear a helmet and exercise safe riding habits. Here are a few tips to help you stay safe when riding this summer: Increase your visibility. Under New Jersey law, all riders at night are required to have a front headlamp that emits a white light, a rear lamp with a red light, and a red rear reflector. Whether you are on your bike at night or during the day, you should wear bright clothes…
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  • Get In Touch With Reputed California Car Accident Lawyer Online

    29 Sep 2014 | 4:07 am
    Facing accidents is a common phenomenon and could happen to anyone. Most of the road accidents occur to due breaking of signal, changing lanes or over-speeding. You may get hurt even if you are not at fault. If you faced an accident while riding or get hit by a car, it is a devastating situation. It gets you in a fix as you do not know how to handle the situation. With injuries, your medical expenses go up. If you have to undergo a surgery, you may even have to take a leave from work for a few days and incur high medical expenses. This becomes a very stressful situation to be in. to able to…

    28 Sep 2014 | 10:09 pm
    The true ancestor of vehicles we see today was the petrol/gasoline powered auto-mobile the Benz Patent-Motor-wagon invented by Karl Benz in 1886. After that no one looked back. A new era of human transportation was initiated. But as with all other things advancements in technology often has negative effects which although are not seen clearly initially but in the long run turn out to be disastrous. Car accidents are the by-product of the evolution seen in motor vehicles. It was Henry Hale Bliss who was the first person to be killed by motor vehicle accident on 12th September 1899 in United…
  • Various Legal Services Offered By Law Firm in California

    27 Sep 2014 | 4:02 am
    Legal matters need to be handled well by the experts alone. People are seen to neglect many such issues. However, there are numerous instances that require their attention. There are a number of law firms in and around California and it is wise that you seek help from a reliable one. Ensure the firm you are hiring, offer services as described on the site. There are some firms who claim to offer the best legal representation but do not as expected. This can be very disturbing especially when they have charged you handsomely. To ensure you do not come across such a situation it is highly…
  • Acquire Legal Assistance & Consultation from Personal Injury Attorney California

    25 Sep 2014 | 3:53 am
    Personal injury is an umbrella term for a range of accidental conditions. A vehicular accident is just one of the circumstances that qualify for legal action. If you consult an experienced Personal Injury Attorney California, he will educate you with a number of conditions with which you can incriminate the guilty party. These include motor accidents, truck accidents, car mishaps, injuries due to erroneous construction work, boats, aviation, toxic emission, and so on. The list is inexhaustible and more importantly, valid under certain conditions. Firstly, the affected individual must show…
  • Legal Hassles and Lawsuits Managed By Accident Attorney Los Angeles

    23 Sep 2014 | 3:48 am
    The rise of automobile sales figures has led to a greater chance of accidents. Truck drivers, motorcycle riders and car owners are at a higher risk as a number of vehicles move around highways and roads. While most people try to drive cautiously, sometimes, negligent or drunk drivers can be lax and create accidents that could be easily avoided. When you find yourself an unfortunate victim of an accident, it is imperative to file a lawsuit in order to seek compensation from the offending party. It is the only way you can force a multi-billion conglomerate in providing you adequate monetary…
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    Alabama Workers Comp Blawg

  • The Alabama Workers’ Comp Blawg is Seven Years Old

    22 Sep 2014 | 1:16 am
    Today the Alabama Workers’ Comp Blawg celebrates another birthday. We would like to take this time to thank all of our readers who have helped to make a go to reference for Alabama workers’ compensation over the last 7 years!
  • Alabama Court of Civil Appeals Reverses Permanent and Total Disability Award as Premature

    9 Sep 2014 | 5:36 am
    On August, 8, 2014, the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals released its opinion in Fab Arc Steel Supply, Inc. v. Timothy Dodd wherein it reversed a permanent and total disability award. Among the several issues on appeal, the Court considered whether there was enough evidence to support a finding that an L-1 herniation that was asymptomatic for more than a year following the accident was causally related to the accident. The Court also considered whether a determination of permanent disability could be made when the employee was not yet at maximum medical improvement (MMI). In addition, the Court…
  • Alabama Court Rules Exemption From Coverage Must be Revoked

    8 Sep 2014 | 8:17 am
    Hooks v. Coastal Stone Works, Inc. Released September 5, 2014 The Alabama Court of Civil Appeals ruled that an officer of a corporation must take action to revoke previous certification of exemption from workers’ compensation coverage pursuant to § 25-5-50(b). On May 24, 2006, Hooks, along with two other officers of Coastal Stone Works, Inc., signed a certificate of exemption to be exempted from coverage under the Alabama Workers’ Compensation Act pursuant to § 25-5-60(b). On November 23, 2011, Hooks was injured and sought benefits under the Alabama Workers’…
  • DEA Reclassifies Hydrocodone

    28 Aug 2014 | 11:26 pm
    In an effort to reduce painkiller abuse and misuse, the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) announced last week that it is reclassifying hydrocodone as a Schedule II Controlled Substance. Under the new regulation, which will go into effect on October 5, 2014, doctors will no longer be able to call in prescriptions for drugs like Lortab and Vicodin. Additionally, patients will only be allowed one 90-day prescription per doctor visit, and will have to actually see their doctor in person before obtaining a refill. According to DEA Administrator Michele Leonhart, "Almost seven million Americans…
  • Alabama Court Holds Adult Child is not a Partial Dependent Despite Receiving Regular Financial Support

    24 Aug 2014 | 4:18 am
    On August 22, 2014, the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals released an opinion wherein it considered whether an adult child can be considered a partial dependent for purposes of receiving death benefits.  In Donna Banks v. Premier Service Company, Inc., it was stipulated by the parties that the 22 year old child received regular financial support from her father prior to his death.  The Trial Court noted in its final order that the adult child was not working but pursuing a double major at college. Since there was no evidence that the adult child was physically or…
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    Philadelphia Injury Lawyer

  • Product Liability: Dangerous and Defective Goods

    Sheridan & Murray
    16 Sep 2014 | 6:02 pm
    Although most people use a variety of products, equipment and devices on a regular basis without incident, there are times when a defective or unsafe item can cause damage or injury. On many occasions this occurs because a product has an inherent flaw within it that makes it unsafe to use in some manner. It […]
  • Golf Course Safety

    Annie Reynolds, Esq.
    20 Sep 2013 | 1:22 pm
    As spring weather improves, golf courses in the area begin to fill up. Although golfers seldom have more on their mind than their game, it is important to keep a few general rules for golf course safety in mind. Each year in the United States, there are approximately 15,000 golf cart accidents resulting in injuries […]
  • Defective Surgical Device: da Vinci Robotic Surgical System

    Sheridan & Murray
    20 Sep 2013 | 8:13 am
    If you need a surgical procedure such as a hysterectomy or a prostatectomy, the standard used to be that a surgeon would make a large incision and enter your body with a variety of instruments to perform the operation that removed your uterus or prostate. Although effective, these operations usually had long recovery times and […]
  • Hospitals Profiting from Post-surgical Complications

    Sheridan & Murray
    19 Sep 2013 | 7:33 am
    According to a recent study published in the Journal for the American Medical Association in April 2013, hospitals stand to make a substantially higher profit when surgical errors occur. Privately insured patients with no complications following surgery netted up to 330% less profit than those who experienced no complications. Likewise, patients insured under Medicare who […]
  • Student Falls to Death at Rooftop Party

    Annie Reynolds, Esq.
    6 May 2013 | 7:27 am
    A 19-year-old college student fell three stories to her death from the roof of a Philadelphia house while attending a party celebrating Temple University’s Spring Fling. The victim, Ali Fausnaught, a student at West Chester University, was at a house party off campus last month, when she fell from the reportedly un-guarded roof. According to […]
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    Pam Woldow's At the Intersection

  • Cutting Corners, Part IV: The Readers Speak

    Pam Woldow & Doug Richardson
    26 Sep 2014 | 9:40 am
    If one purpose of a blog is to provoke spirited debate, we surely succeeded in our recent posts on whether client-driven pressures for greater efficiency and cost control compel outside counsel to “cut corners” in legal service delivery.  Our premise that “an inevitable dog fight erupts whenever lawyers try to discuss quality and cost in the same sentence” proved to be true.  Passionate and pointed comments filled our email inbox. So now it’s time take the microphone out into the audience and let you hear different voices first hand. On Guard, Sir Unsurprisingly, we heard from law…
  • Skilled Scoping Diminishes Discord: Cutting Corners, Part III

    Pam Woldow & Doug Richardson
    1 Sep 2014 | 12:55 pm
    Note: Due to the numerous and passionate responses to the first two posts on Cutting Corners, we have added Part IV to the series in which we will highlight the insightful (but profoundly divided) points of view we received from In-House Counsel and Law Firms.   In the first two posts in this series, we considered the typical law firm complaint that such efficiency-producing disciplines as Legal Project Management (LPM) and Legal Process Improvement (LPI) may actually encourage legal “corner-cutting.” Does this complaint reflect a valid concern about threats to quality of service, or…
  • Perfection Is the Enemy of Good – Cutting Corners, Part II

    Pam Woldow & Doug Richardson
    23 Aug 2014 | 1:02 pm
    In this second of three related posts, we consider whether clients’ increasing efforts to control outside legal spend force their outside counsel to “cut corners.” Are firms being forced to compromise service quality and integrity in order to meet client price points?  Are Legal Project Management (LPM) and Legal Process Improvement (LPI), which are supposed to foster efficiency and cost-effectiveness, actually having the paradoxical effect of pushing law firms past “doing more with less” to the point where it becomes acceptable “to do less with less?” Maybe You’ve Got a…
  • Cutting Corners and the Question of Quality

    Pam Woldow & Doug Richardson
    18 Aug 2014 | 3:17 pm
    As you might expect, proponents of Legal Project Management (LPM), Legal Process Improvement (LPI) and other approaches for driving greater efficiency and value into legal service delivery get a lot of blow-back.  One of the more common gripes we hear is that “LPM encourages corner-cutting.” Two Ways to Complain In fact, in this form the complaint puts rather too blunt a point on the issue. So let’s be more precise: the substance of the corner-cutting charge actually derives from two quite distinct allegations. One, driven by market competition, might be labeled the “my competitors…
  • Plugging Profitability Leaks: A Simple Tip for Great Delegation

    Pam Woldow & Doug Richardson
    22 Jun 2014 | 6:04 pm
    UPDATE: This article won the BigLaw Pick of the Week award! We’ve long known that vague, incomplete or misunderstood instructions from partners to associates is a prime source of profitability leaks — revenue lost because of all the time spent on reinventing the wheel, because  of do-overs, and because of significant amounts of time written down or eventually written off.    We’ve also long known that an amazingly simple delegation improvement technique can help reduce write-downs of time by up to 18%. The Trick Anyone Can Master What is this marvelous magic trick?  Whenever…
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    New Jersey Injury Attorney Blog

  • Grandmother Critically Injured in New Jersey Crash

    15 Sep 2014 | 12:22 pm
    An 85-year-old woman was critically injured in a New Jersey car accident when a delivery van struck her and her grandson as they crossed the street. According to an Asbury Park Press news report, the pedestrian accident occurred on Newman Springs Road in Red Bank. Officials say the woman was walking with her 4-year-old grandson from Burger King to her home when the delivery van struck them. She was transported to Jersey Shore University Medical Center in critical condition and her grandson was treated and released.
  • New Jersey Firm Fined for Workplace Safety Violations

    9 Sep 2014 | 9:07 am
    After observing a number of fall hazards at three construction sites in Bloomfield, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) conducted a full investigation. According to an EHS Today news report, Concrete Systems Inc. now faces $52,470 in fines from the eight citations. OSHA officials cited the firm for one repeat and seven serious violations. The company was previously cited for exposing workers to fall and other hazards at worksites in Kearny and Cranford. OSHA cited the firm because workers were allegedly exposed to a 25-foot fall hazard without adequate protection. The…
  • Two Women Killed in New Jersey Crash

    5 Aug 2014 | 9:14 am
    Two women were killed and six others were injured in a New Jersey car accident involving a car and a truck. According to a news report in The New York Times, the fatal car accident occurred in the southbound lanes of the Garden State Parkway in Stafford Township. It is unclear from the report as to what led to the collision. The fatally injured women were in the front seat of the car. A boy and a girl, who were also passengers, were flown by helicopter to Atlantic City in serious condition. A man, a woman, a boy, and a girl in the pickup sustained relatively minor injuries. The investigation…
  • Motorcyclist Critically Injured in New Jersey Crash

    1 Jul 2014 | 12:42 pm
    A 73-year-old Flanders man is in critical condition after he was injured in a New Jersey motorcycle accident. According to a news report in The New Jersey Herald, the motorcycle crash occurred on Route 206 near the Harmony Lodge in Andover Township. Officials say a 38-year-old woman stopped to turn left when her 2013 Ford Escape was struck in the rear by a 1999 BMW motorcycle. The rider was ejected, critically injured, and airlifted to a nearby hospital. The driver of the SUV was treated and released. An investigation is underway to determine the cause of the crash. Motorcycles provide little…
  • Preventing Bicycle Accident Injuries This Summer

    24 Jun 2014 | 12:34 pm
    Summertime is a great time to get around New Jersey on your bike. You can stay fit, have fun, and save money. However, bicycling in New Jersey can prove dangerous if you are not careful. Make sure you always wear a helmet and exercise safe riding habits. Here are a few tips to help you stay safe when riding this summer: Increase your visibility. Under New Jersey law, all riders at night are required to have a front headlamp that emits a white light, a rear lamp with a red light, and a red rear reflector. Whether you are on your bike at night or during the day, you should wear bright clothes…
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    Simmons & Fletcher » Blog

  • Preventing Traumatic Brain Injuries in Youth Football

    Paul Richardson
    8 Sep 2014 | 6:00 am
    Football season is here, and it is undeniable that the residents of Texas love this sport. However, as children and teens get ready for battle on the gridiron, it is important for players and parents to understand the potential dangers …The post Preventing Traumatic Brain Injuries in Youth Football appeared first on Simmons & Fletcher.
  • What is a Hospital Lien?

    Paul Cannon
    5 Sep 2014 | 9:27 pm
    A “Hospital Lien” is a special right granted to hospitals and emergency services providers by Statute enabling them to receive payment from the first monies recovered from a negligent third-party by the injured victim. It is a right that attaches …The post What is a Hospital Lien? appeared first on Simmons & Fletcher.
  • What Should I Do After Being Attacked by a Dog?

    Paul Cannon
    20 Aug 2014 | 5:07 am
    After you are attacked by a dog you should seek medical care immediately, follow the doctors orders regarding cleaning, report the attack, identify any possible witnesses document the injury and speak to a personal injury lawyer who regularly handles cases …The post What Should I Do After Being Attacked by a Dog? appeared first on Simmons & Fletcher.
  • Litigating Dog Bites in the State of Texas

    Paul Richardson
    7 Aug 2014 | 6:00 am
    Dog bites are a serious matter of public concern, costing the insurance industry about $104 million in 2013. Though a number of states have implemented laws and regulations aimed at preventing this problem, incidents continue to occur, resulting in physical, …The post Litigating Dog Bites in the State of Texas appeared first on Simmons & Fletcher.
  • Texas Counties Seeking Help with Eagle Ford Road Repairs

    Paul Richardson
    31 Jul 2014 | 5:37 am
    The state of Texas collects billions of dollars in royalties from Eagle Ford Shale drillers. This money is significantly beneficial to the state, but a recent report explains that this monetary gain is not being equitably shared with the counties. …The post Texas Counties Seeking Help with Eagle Ford Road Repairs appeared first on Simmons & Fletcher.
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    Loyalty Law

  • Essential Procedures For Bike Owners: How To True A Bike Wheel
    25 Sep 2014 | 9:56 am
    Following on from our five simple procedures for new bike owners, here’s our guide to Trueing a bike wheel. Since this is intended as a guide for new bike owners,...
  • Whiplash At Different Ages
    27 Aug 2014 | 4:06 am
    Whiplash affects people with different conditions in different ways. For that reason, the amount of damage caused by whiplash varies greatly from person to person. Similarly, it affects people differently...
  • Three UK Cycling Activists Worth Your Attention
    15 Aug 2014 | 5:37 am
    Cycling facilities in the UK are infamous for being poor quality. From Coronation Road in Bristol to central London, cycling path fails are ubiquitous in this country, and there’s a...
  • Five Simple Procedures Every New Bike Owner Should Learn
    24 Jul 2014 | 3:14 am
    There are many bikes out there that are really suffering. Whether they’ve got rusty gears, ancient chains or are just in need of a good scrub, the typical bicycle commuter...
  • Top Ten Cycling Path Fails
    18 Jul 2014 | 8:25 am
    Cycling paths are a great idea, but implementation is all. No-one gets credit for trying and making things worse. It often seems like city planners are actively trying to sabotage...
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    Oklahoma Personal Injury Blog

  • Bicyclist Injured in Oklahoma City Intersection Crash

    Maples Law Firm
    29 Sep 2014 | 9:05 am
    A bike rider was injured in an Oklahoma car accident that occurred near an intersection. According to a News 9 report, the bicycle accident occurred at Sheridan and Western in Oklahoma City the morning of September 24. Officials have not released any information regarding how or why the accident occurred. The bike rider was transported to a nearby hospital in good condition. It is not clear if the driver will be cited for the crash. There are many reasons why so many Oklahoma bike accidents occur near intersections. It is common for riders to put themselves in danger by running through red…
  • Citizen Advocacy Group Gives Oklahoma Nursing Home a Failing Grade

    Maples Law Firm
    22 Sep 2014 | 8:48 am
    Families for Better Care, Inc. is a citizen advocacy group that acts as a watchdog of nursing homes for residents and their families. According to a recent NewsChannel 4 report, the group gave Oklahoma nursing homes a failing grade. The report states that local nursing home residents are living in dangerous conditions and that immediate and decisive action is required to keep the elderly safe. Out of the 50 states and the District of Columbia, Oklahoma ranked 49th in providing “safe, quality nursing home care and security,” the report stated. In response to the ranking, Oklahoma…
  • Edmond Man Killed in Logan County Crash

    Maples Law Firm
    8 Sep 2014 | 9:29 am
    A 50-year-old Edmond man was killed in an Oklahoma car accident when a vehicle rolled over and struck his vehicle. According to a news report in The Edmond Sun, the fatal car crash took place at Broadway and Charter Oak in Logan County north of Edmond. Officials say a 2013 Hyundai Sonata struck a 2011 Chevrolet Silverado causing the Silverado to partially roll and hit a 2006 Honda Accord. The 50-year-old driver of the Honda was killed at the scene and his 49-year-old wife has been listed in stable condition. The 32-year-old female driver of the Sonata and the 46-year-old driver of the…
  • Lenapah Motorcyclist Killed in Catoosa Collision

    Maples Law Firm
    18 Aug 2014 | 2:08 pm
    A 50-year-old Lenapah man was killed in an Oklahoma motorcycle accident involving a front-end loader. According to a KJRH news report, the fatal motorcycle crash occurred on Bird Creek near a gravel service road in Catoosa. Officials say the motorcyclist was traveling northbound when he collided with a front-end loader that was in the process of turning. reports that the victim was not wearing a helmet. He was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the front-end loader was not hurt. Under Oklahoma Statute 47-12-609 (B), only motorcycle operators and passengers who are under 18…
  • Nine Injured in Oklahoma City Bus-Truck Collision

    Maples Law Firm
    11 Aug 2014 | 10:19 am
    Nine people were injured in an Oklahoma City traffic accident involving a collision between a Greyhound bus and a semi truck. According to a News 9 report, the truck and bus accident occurred on I-40 eastbound just west of the Amarillo junction in Oklahoma City. Officials have not released information regarding what caused the bus and truck to collide. All nine of the injured victims were transported to nearby hospitals with minor injuries. It is unclear how the accident could have been prevented or if anyone will face charges for the crash. Many Oklahoma residents rely on public buses for…
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    » Blog

  • Personal Injury: Pedestrian Accidents on College Campuses

    Jay Solnick
    26 Sep 2014 | 6:00 am
    Think of a college campus and you will probably come up with some sort of combination of partying, making friends, athletic events, and maybe even some studying. College campuses are always bustling with students, professors, staff, visitors, and locals. Students travel constantly to get from one building to another, which may be all the way across campus at some of America’s larger schools. Students may travel by car or by utilizing public transportation, but the predominant means of travel among college-aged adults is on foot. Whether students are walking, skateboarding, rollerblading, or…
  • Teachers and Guns: A Proposed Solution for School Violence in Pennsylvania

    Jay Solnick
    24 Sep 2014 | 8:01 am
    Pennsylvania lawmakers proposed a new law this month that would permit teachers and school staff to carry guns on school property. Republican Senator Don White of Indiana County backed this controversial pitch in response to an estimated 74 school shootings since the Sandy Hook tragedy in December 2012. This staggering statistic became all too real in April, when Murrysville, PA’s Franklin Regional Senior High School faced school violence first hand. While no guns were involved, a 16-year-old stabbed and injured twenty innocent victims. Regardless of the types of weapons involved or…
  • Backover Accident Rise Prompts Back-Up Camera Requirement in Vehicles

    Jay Solnick
    17 Sep 2014 | 10:15 am
    September means back to school season. This season comes with school zone traffic, lowered speed limits, crossing guards, carpools, and children walking everywhere. Due to their size and personalities by nature, children are at an increased risk of being injured as pedestrians. Large vehicles often have blind spots that make seeing tiny humans difficult, if not impossible. This is particularly true when a child darts out of nowhere, moves from a prior stationary position, or is standing close enough to your vehicle that they are in your blind spot. Accidents where children are backed over by…
  • Recreational Sports: All Fun and Games?

    Jay Solnick
    12 Sep 2014 | 7:59 am
    Back to school means back to the field for many young athletes. While sports leagues invite cooperation, teamwork, and dedication among participants, injuries are also an inevitable downside to such after school activities. Regardless of whether your child is in a school-affiliated or other recreational club-type league, it is critical to recognize the risks of sports participation. How Can Youth Sports be Dangerous? Football is the logical starting place when discussing sports injury concerns. With constant forceful contact with one another, football players are at perhaps the greatest risk…
  • Alarming Number of School Buses Fail Inspection

    Jay Solnick
    10 Sep 2014 | 7:09 am
    It’s that time of year again – back to school! Parents are catching numerous sales as they prepare to send their kids back to school with the essential school supplies. Morning traffic will be more congested with school buses dropping children off at school. And, Pennsylvania State Police are currently making sure the ride back is a safe one. An alarming study finds that many school buses are not safe for traveling. Thousands of student in the Tri-State area will get on a school bus to take them to school. But, how safe are these school buses? ABC news reports that during the last week of…
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    Baron & Budd, P.C. | Protecting What's Right

  • Baron and Budd Named to Inaugural America’s Elite Trial Lawyers List by The National Law Journal

    Baron & Budd
    22 Sep 2014 | 1:03 pm
    Prestigious List Selects 50 Prestigious Law Firms That are Doing the Most Substantial, Influential Work on Behalf of Plaintiffs DALLAS (September 22, 2014) – This week, the law firm of Baron and Budd was named to America’s Elite Trial Lawyers by legal publication The National Law Journal in partnership with The list is comprised of just 50 law firms from across the nation that have achieved significant, groundbreaking results on behalf of plaintiffs within the past year and have an established track record of delivering impressive results. Firms…
  • Baron and Budd Proud to Support The Mesh Warrior Foundation for the Injured

    Baron & Budd
    18 Sep 2014 | 12:56 pm
    Firm Makes Donation to Help Women Harmed by Transvaginal Mesh DALLAS –(September 18, 2014) –Baron and Budd, a law firm dedicated to protecting consumers who have been harmed by pharmaceuticals or medical implants, is proud to announce that the firm is a sponsor of The Mesh Warrior Foundation for the Injured. Baron and Budd is honored to be one of the first sponsors of The Mesh Warrior Foundation, as well as the first legal sponsor. "The mission of The Mesh Warrior Foundation is a perfect complement to that of Baron and Budd," said Stephen Blackburn, lawyer at Baron and Budd.
  • Dallas Jury Awards Transvaginal Mesh Patient $73 Million in Boston Scientific Lawsuit, Baron and Budd Reports

    Baron & Budd
    11 Sep 2014 | 3:11 pm
    First Loss for Boston Scientific Creates Positive Precedent for Other Injured Women DALLAS –(September 11, 2014) –Earlier this week, a Dallas jury returned a $73 million verdict in favor of a woman who has suffered serious health problems after being implanted with Boston Scientific’s Obtryx transvaginal mesh product. Baron and Budd congratulates Matthews & Associates, Freese and Goss, Edwards & de la Cerda and the rest of the trial team on their victory. The firm hopes that this verdict helps to pave the way for positive results in other transvaginal mesh lawsuits.
  • Three Baron and Budd Lawyers Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© 2015

    Baron & Budd
    9 Sep 2014 | 7:54 am
    DALLAS (September 9, 2014) – Russell Budd, Scott Summy and Roland Tellis of the law firm of Baron and Budd have been selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© 2015. Best Lawyers® is a highly respected peer review publication. Each year, it compiles an exhaustive list of the most accomplished attorneys in the nation by conducting confidential peer surveys. More than 50,000 attorneys cast more than 5.5 million votes regarding the legal abilities of other attorneys in their areas of practice. Firms are not allowed to pay any sort of fee for their lawyers to be included on…
  • Baron and Budd Investigating Alleged Chrysler “Nerve Center” Defect

    Baron & Budd
    3 Sep 2014 | 11:15 am
    Defect in Certain Vehicles Can Cost Consumers Up To $25,000 to Repair DALLAS –(September 3, 2014) –Baron and Budd, a national law firm dedicated to protecting the rights of people harmed by the negligence of large companies, is launching an investigation regarding problems in certain Chrysler vehicles that may be linked to the “Totally Integrated Power Module” (TIPM), also known as the “nerve center” of the vehicle, which controls virtually all of the vehicle’s functions. Not only can this defect cause potentially dangerous problems, it can also cost…
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    News From Dallas Appellate Attorney Chad Ruback

  • Appellate Judges Education Institute seminar in Dallas, TX

    Chad Ruback
    29 Sep 2014 | 12:15 pm
    The American Bar Association’s Judicial Division and Southern Methodist University’s Dedman School of Law will be hosting a seminar in Dallas, Texas from November 13-16, 2014.  The seminar will be co-hosted by the ABA’s Council of Appellate Lawyers and the ABA’s Council of Appellate Staff Attorneys. Among the many speakers will be U.S. Supreme Court […]
  • Five Judges from the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals Offer Pointers on Appellate Advocacy

    Chad Ruback
    10 Sep 2014 | 2:13 pm
    The Dallas Bar Association Business Litigation Section recently hosted an outstanding panel discussion with five judges from the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.  I have been attending appellate continuing legal educations presentations for seventeen years, and this one was among the best I’ve seen.  Judges Gregg Costa, Jennifer Elrod, James Graves, Stephen Higginson, and Catharina […]
  • “The Best Lawyers in America” list

    Chad Ruback
    20 Aug 2014 | 6:14 am
    I am honored that my peers have once again voted to include me in “The Best Lawyers in America” list.  
  • Interview on KDAF CW Channel 33

    Chad Ruback
    15 Aug 2014 | 11:59 am
    As an appellate lawyer, I often have to answer difficult questions. On Channel 33 news, though, I got to answer an easy one. I was asked whether an individual could form his own country in North Dallas. Um, no.     Here is the video:
  • Supreme Court Hobby Lobby opinion might only directly impact two companies

    Chad Ruback
    11 Jul 2014 | 10:00 am
    After the Dallas Business Journal published an article about the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent Hobby Lobby decision, a number of people asked me about potential impact on various business. Here are my thoughts: Despite all the attention the case has gotten, the opinion might only directly impact two U.S. companies. The Affordable Care Act (also […]
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    Protecting What's Right

  • Life in the Fog: How Levaquin and Other Fluoroquinolones Can Affect Your Brain

    Rachel Brummert
    29 Sep 2014 | 12:38 pm
    Define irony: Trying to write a guest blog about brain fog and not being able to think of what to say. It took me 27 minutes just to even write that sentence. One of the many adverse reactions to fluoroquinolone antibiotics- Levaquin, Cipro, Avelox, and more- is brain fog. There are many ways to define brain fog but it basically boils down to this: it feels like your brain doesn’t work. A few examples of brain fog include: Inability to recall words you use every day Forgetfulness/memory loss Inability to concentrate Inability to focus on multiple things at once While most people would…
  • America’s Legal Killer: Asbestos Is a Known Carcinogen

    Baron & Budd
    26 Sep 2014 | 10:47 am
    Asbestos is a known and very serious carcinogen. What does that mean? The short definition is: car·cin·o·gen noun medical : a substance that can cause cancer The long definition is: carcinogen: any substance that is directly involved in causing cancer. Carcinogens may cause cancer by damaging the human genome or disrupting the cellular metabolic process — two things you do not want to happen. Now remember that childhood math equation? If a = b and b = c, then a = c? How about this: If asbestos is a carcinogen And if carcinogens cause cancer, Then asbestos causes cancer. It’s a fact…
  • How Consumers Can Protect Themselves from Dangerous Drugs Like Levaquin in 3 Simple Steps

    Baron & Budd
    24 Sep 2014 | 9:09 am
    Recently, one of our Levaquin clients sent us an article in the Arizona Republic titled “Critics Demand Strong Warnings for Potent Antibiotics.” The article discussed fluoroquinolone antibiotics like Cipro and Levaquin and mentioned just how bad and expansive the adverse side effects from taking fluoroquinolones like Levaquin and Cipro can be (to learn more about the side effects please click here). Then it covered the petitions and advocacy groups talking about the dangers of fluoroquinolone to try to spread awareness (to learn more about these heroes please click here). But then…
  • The Other Clear, September Day: When Walls Came Crashing Down

    Aaron Horton
    22 Sep 2014 | 10:40 am
    by Aaron Leigh Horton/The Mesh Warrior – September 16, 2014 In some ways, hearing the Martha Salazar verdict against Boston Scientific last Monday, September 8, 2014 was not unlike the feeling I had upon watching the Twin Towers fall on September 11, 2001, now 13 years ago. I’ll never forget where I was, whom I was with, and that surge of confusing emotions I felt. Could this be happening; is this real? WHAT IS HAPPENING? The shock, confusion and depth of emotion, sent me to the floor crying in a heap both times, this time, as I fumbled for the phone to call my mother. I…
  • Asbestos, America’s Legal Killer: What Is Asbestos

    Baron & Budd
    19 Sep 2014 | 12:45 pm
    Asbestos is a mineral used in many construction products. It is a known carcinogen that can cause serious diseases, such as mesothelioma and lung cancer. Asbestos refers to a group of six minerals, all of which are impossible to pronounce (— you can try it out: crocidolite, anthophyllite, amosite, chrysotile, actinolite and tremolite). The weird thing is that asbestos is used by manufacturers for the exact two reasons that it makes people so sick: its microscopically small size and its durability. Thanks to its microscopically small size, a person can easily inhale or ingest asbestos…
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    Hardwick & Pendergast - Seattle Personal Injury and Car Accident Attorneys

  • Changes Made to Second Avenue Bike Lane

    Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S.
    15 Sep 2014 | 11:06 am
    Recent changes designed to make Second Avenue safer for bicyclists have left many motorists befuddled. After only three days, Seattle’s Department of Transportation has already made a number of changes to reduce confusion. According to a news report in The Seattle Times, a green straight arrow replaced a solid green circle to indicate that drivers can only continue forward. They also replaced a sign that allowed turns only on a green arrow with a “No Turn on Red” sign. These changes are designed to protect bicyclists riding in the bike lane on the left side of Second Avenue.
  • New Mom Killed in Seattle Bike Accident

    Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S.
    10 Sep 2014 | 4:13 pm
    A 31-year-old female bicyclist suffered fatal injuries in a Seattle car accident while riding in the bike lane. According to a news report in The Seattle Times, the fatal bicycle accident occurred along Second Avenue in downtown Seattle. Officials say she was traveling to work in the bike lane when a truck made a left turn and struck her. She died at the scene of the crash. Officials are investigating the cause of this collision. This particular accident took place on a one-way street where the bike lane is on the left side. According to The Seattle Times, the city already has scheduled plans…
  • Locals Remember the Pedestrian Killed on First Hill

    Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S.
    18 Aug 2014 | 3:05 pm
    On the morning of August 13, 2014, friends of a Seattle woman who was killed in a pedestrian accident took to the streets to walk in her honor. According to a Seattle Times news report, the fatal car accident occurred at the intersection of Eighth Avenue and James Street on First Hill. Officials say the driver behind the wheel of the garbage truck did not know initially that he hit the woman. The 42-year-old pedestrian was killed and her body was dragged about 150 feet. The driver has not faced hit-and-run charges because he did not knowingly leave the scene of the crash. According to a news…
  • A Tricky Weekend for Seattle Drivers

    Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S.
    13 Aug 2014 | 10:31 am
    Speeding motorists and rollover accidents kept King County troopers busy the weekend of Aug. 2. According to KOMO News, there were five rollover accidents in King County and 42 speeding tickets issued that weekend. Officials say one 18-year-old driver was arrested for vehicular assault after rolling his SUV on Northbound I-5 with five young men inside. In another accident, six people were injured when a vehicle traveling at speeds up to 90 mph crashed into the guardrail. Local law enforcement aided victims of three other rollovers and caught 42 drivers within three hours who were speeding…
  • Seattle Rollover Accident Causes Critical Injuries

    Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S.
    5 Aug 2014 | 3:56 pm
    A driver and passenger were seriously injured in a Seattle car accident involving a vehicle rollover. According to a KOMO news report, the rollover accident occurred on northbound Interstate 5 in South Seattle. Officials say the driver and passenger were ejected when the vehicle went high up on an embankment near the freeway and flipped. Both injured victims sustained critical injuries and were rushed to Harborview Medical Center. Rollover accidents often result in serious injuries or death. In fact, rollovers result in fatal injuries much more often than other types of accidents. According…
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    Farah and Farah Legal Blog

  • Is The Worst Speed Trap in the Country In Waldo, Florida?

    Farah & Farah
    30 Sep 2014 | 12:30 pm
    It is a speed trap so notorious that the Automobile Association of America (AAA) named it one of only two “traffic traps” in the entire country. In fact, AAA was so incensed by the speed trap in the little town of Waldo, which sits on the junction of Highway 301 and 24 between Jacksonville and Gainesville, Florida, that it actually erected a billboard outside the town, warning residents to slow down before entering. If you are driving through Waldo, you should be advised that the speed limit changes six times along the short stretch of highway that runs through the city. Is it a speed…
  • We’ve Been Assigned a Parenting Coordinator: What Does That Mean?

    Farah & Farah
    22 Sep 2014 | 8:19 am
    Sometimes in contentious divorce cases where parents cannot agree on a parenting plan for their children, a family law court in Florida will assign a parenting coordinator to help a couple resolve disputes regarding parenting decisions. A parenting plan is required for parents who are going to share joint legal custody of their children. The plan covers decisions in areas of visitation, vacation, education and other activities. A parenting coordinator must be qualified under Florida state statute and is held to strict standards as to what their roles are. A parenting coordinator essentially…
  • Waving for Safety in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    Farah & Farah
    15 Sep 2014 | 12:03 pm
    The city of Fort Lauderdale is trying an experiment when it comes to augmenting the safety of pedestrians who attempt to cross Los Olas Boulevard in its entertainment district. The city is providing neon flags that pedestrians can wave while crossing in the crosswalk. The idea, says a spokeswoman for the city, is to make pedestrians more visible as they make their way across the boulevard. “The reasoning behind the process is to elevate public safety, make pedestrians visible at an intersection that is not signalized,” the spokeswoman told the Miami Herald. The concept behind this program…
  • Two Arrested in St. John County Meth Bust

    Farah & Farah
    8 Sep 2014 | 12:34 pm
    The St. John’s Sheriff’s deputies have arrested a 25-year-old man and a 22-year-old woman and accused them of dealing methamphetamine from their St. John’s County home. A spokesman for the Sheriff’s Office said that it received an anonymous tip that suspicious activity was going on in a home in the 1000 block of Cherry Tree Road. When members of a SWAT team stormed a trailer on the property, they allegedly found a meth lab and over 9.4 ounces of methamphetamine. The couple has been charged with trafficking meth, possession of drug paraphernalia and maintaining a drug dwelling.
  • Serious Complication Rates of Giving Birth on Par With Heart Surgery in the U.S.

    Farah & Farah
    25 Aug 2014 | 5:33 am
    A recent study published in Health Affairs suggests that giving birth in U.S. hospitals may be a more dangerous proposition than was previously thought. According to the study, some 13 percent of women, or about 550,000, suffer serious bleeding, infections, blood clots and other serious complications each year. That puts complication rates during childbirth at about the same rate as complications following heart surgery. And the rates of those injuries vary from hospital to hospital. The study found that 23 percent of women who delivered vaginally experienced complications in the lowest…
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    Pennsylvania Family Law Blog

  • Wife of Billionaire Asks to Void Prenup

    Sheryl Rentz
    22 Sep 2014 | 1:39 pm
    All divorces have the potential to become messy and stressful. This is especially true in a high-profile divorce cases involving millions and even billions of dollars. In one such divorce case, the wife of a multibillionaire hedge fund manager is asking a judge to dismiss her prenuptial agreement. If successful, she could have much greater access to her husband’s $5 billion-plus fortune instead of the one percent she is eligible for through the prenuptial agreement. If the prenuptial agreement stands, she will receive an estimated $50 million. This could result in the largest divorce…
  • Do Grandparents Have the Right to Child Custody in Pennsylvania?

    Sheryl Rentz
    15 Sep 2014 | 6:28 am
    Many Pennsylvania grandparents play a significant role in the lives of their grandchildren. Some are primary caretakers and many have regular contact with their grandchildren including long visits and holiday celebrations. During a divorce, the parents will have to negotiate custody rights and their terms may not include rights for the grandparents. It is important in these types of situations for grandparents to learn about their legal rights and options. The Child Custody Act went into effect in Pennsylvania in 2011. It allows grandparents to file for custody of a grandchild. For a…
  • How An Attorney Can Help You Navigate a High-Asset Divorce

    Sheryl Rentz
    8 Sep 2014 | 9:11 am
    No divorce is easy. A high-asset divorce is even more complicated than a standard divorce. Because the spouses in a high-asset divorce have retirement accounts, substantial investments, family businesses and other items they’ve acquired and worked on together, the help of an attorney who specializes in high-asset divorce questions is invaluable when the time comes to separate. How can an attorney become your best ally in a high-asset divorce? Your attorney knows business as well as divorce law. Choosing an attorney who specializes in high-asset divorce means choosing someone who understands…
  • Enforcing Divorce Agreements in Pennsylvania

    Sheryl Rentz
    2 Sep 2014 | 9:38 am
    A divorce agreement sets in place child support, alimony, child custody and even the division of property. Even when both spouses are willing to negotiate, there are still a number of conflicts that may arise when finalizing the details of an agreement. Once the divorce is settled and the agreements are signed, it is important that they are followed. If your ex is failing to live up to his or her side of the agreement, you should act quickly to protect your rights. The first step you can take is to contact the family court to inform them that your ex is not following the terms of the…
  • Understanding High-End Divorce

    Sheryl Rentz
    11 Aug 2014 | 1:48 pm
    One of the biggest challenges of any divorce is the division of assets. This stressful process can become even more complex when one or both parties have high net worth and significant assets. If you are involved in a high-end divorce, you will need an experienced Pennsylvania divorce attorney with an exceptional understanding of tax and finance law to protect your assets and best interests. Even the most amicable of separations can become antagonistic when property and high-value assets are involved. It is common for arguments to occur when discussing the division of real estate, bonuses,…
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    About Florida Lawyers & Attorneys

  • Melbourne Village Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer

    Florida's Top Rated Attorney
    30 Sep 2014 | 1:42 pm
    The Best Melbourne Village Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer in Florida can be found by visiting The Best Melbourne Village Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer in Florida can be found by visiting Whenever you are searching for the Best legal office in Melbourne Village, FL that will grant you the best service then search no more than the Legal Firm of Melbourne Village Florida. If you are in a lot of trouble and require assistance, everyone agrees that these Law Offices are the ones to have on your side. This legal office wins cases and that is…
  • Cinco Bayou Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer

    Florida's Top Rated Attorney
    30 Sep 2014 | 11:20 am
    The Best Cinco Bayou Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer in Florida can be found by visiting The Best Cinco Bayou Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer in Florida can be found by visiting If you are searching for the Best law team in Cinco Bayou, FL that will give you the most unbelievable service then search no further than the Law Firm of Cinco Bayou Florida. When you are in a bind and want assistance, everybody agrees that these Law Offices are the ones to have on your side. This law office wins cases and that is something that you can take to the…
  • Anita Baker sued by lawyer who claims she owes him money – Fox News

    Lawyer - Google News
    30 Sep 2014 | 10:41 am
    Fox News Anita Baker sued by lawyer who claims she owes him moneyFox NewsA lawyer who represented Anita Baker against allegations that she failed to pay for work done on her Detroit-area home is suing the singer, saying she owes him money. Jamal Hamood filed a $150,000 lawsuit against Baker on Monday in Wayne County …Anita Baker Sued By LawyerNews OneHe defended her against an earlier charge, but now says she owes him for more …Detroit Free Pressall 34 news articles »
  • Graham suspect’s lawyer says police haven’t disclosed evidence – Richmond Times-Dispatch

    Lawyer - Google News
    30 Sep 2014 | 10:31 am
    Richmond Times-Dispatch Graham suspect's lawyer says police haven't disclosed evidenceRichmond Times-Dispatch20: Jesse Leroy Matthew Jr., 32, a U.Va. medical employee who had been identified as the last person seen with Hannah Graham, is briefly interviewed at the Charlottesville police department. He asks for a lawyer, then speeds off in a car with another …Lawyer in U.Va. abduction case: I don't know evidenceThe Virginian-PilotLawyer for Jesse Matthew: Police Holding Evidence in CaseThe Charlottesville Newsplexall 584 news articles »
  • Anita Baker accused of failing to pay Rochester lawyer, facing $150000 lawsuit – WXYZ

    Lawyer - Google News
    30 Sep 2014 | 10:27 am
    WXYZ Anita Baker accused of failing to pay Rochester lawyer, facing $150000 lawsuitWXYZNow Hamood says he's learned this star singer has a lengthy history of leaving her lawyers and her contractors in the lurch. “She was developing a sort of pattern of trying to lure them in, get them to additional work, and then not pay for that work …
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    MacGregor & Collins, LLP Law Blog

  • Man in Anaheim is Arrested for Allegedly Robbing Girlfriend’s Elderly Grandmother

    Randy Collins
    17 Sep 2014 | 10:55 am
    An Anaheim man was recently arrested and accused of robbing his girlfriends’ 82-year-old mother in her home. According to the police statement, the accused took “several jewelry items and coins” in addition to ransacking the home. While robbery is not a new notion, the thought that someone would A) rob their girlfriends mother, and B) rob an elderly person is not so taboo anymore. These crimes are occurring at increasing rates, which should be alarming to the public. However, just because someone is accused and arrested does not always mean that they are guilty, or that they will be…
  • Jail Sentencing for Assault on a Minor

    Randy Collins
    3 Aug 2014 | 1:49 pm
    There are three forms of assault that can be punishable in a court of a law: common assault, criminal assault, or aggravated assault. Common assault is almost any behavior that can be judged as offensive or threatening, which is done with the volition to harm someone else but fails in physical harm. For instance, if you try to hit someone with a punch, a kick, or an object and miss, you have committed a common attack against them. Even though no physical harm was done, the failure to commit a criminal attack may still be prosecuted as a common one. Criminal assaultis associated with battery…
  • Statute of Limitations for White Collar Crime

    Randy Collins
    14 Jul 2014 | 1:00 am
    A statute of limitation is the time allowed for prosecutors to lay a charge against someone who is accused of committing a criminal offense. The period normally runs from the point at which the alleged offense has been disclosed or discovered. This period varies depending on the category of offense as well as the jurisdiction involved. California’s statutes of limitation for criminal charges are not exactly the same as other states and also differ from those of the federal government. Statutes of limitation allocated for white collar offenses are particularly complex, partly because of the…
  • Difference Between Corporal Injury and Battery

    Randy Collins
    26 Jun 2014 | 7:34 am
    If you or someone you know has been charged with anything related to domestic violence, there is a high probability that those charges are either corporal injury on an intimate partner or a spousal battery. A spousal battery is also called a domestic battery.  A corporal injury and a spousal battery are the most common domestic abuse charges. Despite having a few similarities, the crimes of a corporal injury and a spousal battery have a few distinguished differences that greatly affect the ways in which defendants are prosecuted and defended. What is a Corporal Injury on an Intimate Partner?
  • Qualifications for Expungement in California

    Randy Collins
    17 Jun 2014 | 8:58 am
    A mistake in judgment that you made years ago can have far-reaching effects, including your ability to get the job that you want, obtain some professional licenses, or rent a home.  Even though California criminal records are a matter of public record, an individual would need to know where to look for these files and take the time to look through thousands of court records in each county to find your records. However, electronic indexing has made it much easier for individuals and companies to obtain copies of your records.  Companies index court records into large databases that are easy…
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    PA Law Blogs

  • Pennsylvania Medical Malpractice Lawyers Assist with Birth Injuries

    Anapol Schwartz
    23 Sep 2014 | 10:10 am
    There are about six birth trauma injuries per 1,000 live births in the US, according to the National Healthcare Quality Report. Birth injuries can happen during prenatal, delivery or postnatal care. Mothers should not blame themselves when their baby suffers a birth injury.  The doctors and medical staff are responsible for delivering a child with the appropriate level of care.  When those expectations are not met and birth injuries such as brachial plexus palsy/injury occur, the delivery team should be held accountable for medical malpractice. Pennsylvania Medical malpractice lawyers hold…
  • Passerby Recounts Horrific Details of Delaware Bus Crash

    Anapol Schwartz
    22 Sep 2014 | 12:36 pm
    A warzone – That’s what one witness is calling the horrific bus crash that occurred yesterday on Route 1 in Delaware. “Everyone was so cut up, missing bits and pieces of arms and face. There was no one on the scene without blood on them except for me.” Passerby Elvis Cruz told CBS Philly that he stopped, grabbed a first-aid kit and did what he could to help. “Everyone was crying and bleeding out,” he said, “and screaming for help.” No one involved in the Delaware bus crash escaped injury. One victim, who was pinned under the overturned bus died at the scene.  Another…
  • When to Give a Statement after an Auto Accident in Pennsylvania

    Anapol Schwartz
    16 Sep 2014 | 6:32 am
    Do not give statements, sign papers, or accept insurance company estimates without first seeking legal advice. These are some of the most common mistakes made by car accident victims, according to 7 Fatal Mistakes Victims of Accidents Make in PA and How to Avoid Making Them. You need think about preserving your legal rights from the moment the accident occurs. Follow the steps below to avoid making a common mistake that can ruin your car accident case. Do not speak about the accident with anyone, including the other driver or witnesses. Cooperate with the police, but do not give more…
  • Ethicon’s Failure to Warn on Morcellation Cancer Risks

    Anapol Schwartz
    9 Sep 2014 | 7:28 am
    Women who were diagnosed with cancer after a hysterectomy are angry they were not informed about the risks associated with morcellation hysterectomies. Many have filed morecellation lawsuits to seek justice as a result. Laparoscopic power morcellators were introduced in 1993 for hysterectomies and uterine fibroid removal procedures called myomectomies.  Many doctors believed this innovative device that chops the uterus into tiny fragments would make hysterectomies safer and easier.  That was not always the case. Hooman Noorchashm, MD, PhD, launched a campaign to ban morcellators in 2013…
  • Most Dangerous Road in America is in Pennsylvania

    Anapol Schwartz
    5 Sep 2014 | 8:29 am
    The most dangerous intersection in America is here in Pennsylvania, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). TIME magazine compiled data on the number of fatal auto accidents that occurred within 150 feet of each other from 2003 to 2012. Researchers found that the intersection of Street Road and Knights Road in Bensalem, Bucks County was the most dangerous intersection in Pennsylvania with seven fatal car accidents during a 10 year period. During the two years leading up to the audit, there were 144 auto accidents at the Pennsylvania intersection.  NHTSA…
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    IMC Law Group

  • How To Avoid Bank Levies

    15 Sep 2014 | 8:42 am
    by: Jonathan Goldsmith Cohen Be sure to visit our Google Plus Page. When You Are At Risk of a Bank Levy In order to be at risk for a bank levy on a consumer debt, a Judgment must be entered against you. A Judgment is entered against you after the conclusion of a lawsuit on the debt brought in Superior Court in New Jersey. Due Process does still exist, so you must be sued on the debt, receive proper notice of the suit, have time to respond, and of course, have your day in court. Remember, the bottom line is, is this your debt? Did you already pay it off? Can you afford to pay it off? If you…
  • Stop a Wage Garnishment

    15 Sep 2014 | 8:29 am
    by: Jonathan Goldsmith Cohen Be sure to visit our Google Plus Page. Statistics on Wage Garnishments and How to Stop a Wage Garnishment This morning, Marketplace on National Public Radio ran a piece on wage garnishments for debts where a judgment has been entered. A link to the report is below. 1 in 10 working individuals between the ages of 35-44 are having their wages garnished. Many of my clients have had more than one wage garnishment before seeking my assistance. Wage garnishments do not just magically happen. First, you have to be sued by a creditor on an unpaid debt in Superior Court.
  • Wells Fargo

    27 Aug 2014 | 2:26 pm
    by: Jonathan Goldsmith Cohen Be sure to visit our Google Plus Page. If Wells Fargo is Your Bank, Move Your Accounts Before Filing for Bankruptcy If you are contemplating filing for bankruptcy, are filing for bankruptcy, or simply want to preserve your rights as a consumer, move all of your accounts from Wells Fargo to another bank. When a bankruptcy is filed, Wells Fargo will place a hold on all of your bank accounts whether or not you owe Wells Fargo money on a credit card or have a Wells Fargo home mortgage. Every night, Wells Fargo runs a computer program that compares all newly filed…
  • Modify Your Countrywide Home Mortgage

    27 Aug 2014 | 2:24 pm
    by: Jonathan Goldsmith Cohen Be sure to visit our Google Plus Page. I was the victim of a Countrywide loan. I got a bad mortgage. I was caught up with Countrywide. I hear these statements and similar sentiments every day in the office. As of August 22, 2014, an historical settlement was entered into between Bank of America and the federal government. This settlement provides $7,000,000,000 in relief. Yes, you heard that correctly, 7 Billion Dollars!! to homeowners who had mortgages at anytime with Countrywide. The relief will come in the form of long term mortgage modifications with…
  • An amazing mortgage modification

    25 Aug 2014 | 3:48 pm
    Mortgage Modification by: Jonathan Goldsmith Cohen Be sure to visit our Google Plus Page. Ready for an amazing mortgage modification? An historic settlement with Bank of America announced on August 21, 2014 provides for seven billion dollars of relief to homeowners with loans currently held by Bank of America. This relief is going to come in the form of unbelievable loan modifications with incredibly low interest rates (how does a 2% fixed interest rate for the remainder of your loan term sound?) and principal reductions! FREE Mortgage Modification Consultation – CLICK HERE NOW!!! Get…
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    GTH Energy & Natural Resources Law Blog

  • Ninth Circuit Orders BPA To Reconsider Recovery of Improper Payments to DSIs

    26 Sep 2014 | 3:42 pm
    Last week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ordered the Bonneville Power Administration to reconsider whether it should seek recovery of improper payments made to certain Direct-Service Industrial ("DSI") customers. The Court's decision (Industrial Customers of Northwest Utilities v. BPA, 9th Cir. Nos. 11-71368 et al (issued September 18, 2014)) is an important landmark on the long-running battle between Bonneville's competing customer groups over access to low-cost federal hydroelectric resources. The DSIs are large, energy-intensive industries, primarily aluminum smelters,…
  • Join Maj. Gen. (ret.) Tim Lowenberg for APPA's Grid Security Summit

    25 Sep 2014 | 2:03 pm
    We cordially invite you to attend the American Public Power Association's Grid Security Summit on November 12-13 in Arlington, Virginia. Our colleague, Maj. Gen. (ret.) Timothy Lowenberg, one of the nation's leading experts on cybersecurity and terrorism matters, will make a presentation entitled "Emerging Threats and Vulnerabilities in the Electric Sector." Gen. Lowenberg recently retired after a 44-year career in the U.S. Air Force and, among many other accomplishments, was the longest-serving Adjutant General in Washington's history. In that role, in the wake of the September 11 attack, he…
  • Regulators Revolve: FERC Says Hello to Honorable, Ciao to Norris

    12 Sep 2014 | 3:34 pm
    Earlier this week, the White House officially nominated Collette Honorable to become the next Commissioner of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission ("FERC"). Ms. Honorable is currently Chairman of the Arkansas Public Service Commission and President of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners. If confirmed by the U.S. Senate, Ms. Honorable would fill the term of Commissioner John Norris, who left FERC in August to become minister-counseler for the U.S. Department of Agriculture at the U.S. Embassy in Rome. Ms. Honorable would serve the remaining three years of…
  • Latest Round in PURPA Wars: Fifth Circuit Upholds Texas Rule Limiting PURPA Rights of Wind Generators

    11 Sep 2014 | 11:28 am
    Earlier this week, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit issued the latest salvo in the PURPA wind wars, this time handing wind producers a painful defeat. The Fifth Circuit's opinion upholds a rule issued by the Public Utility Commission of Texas ("PUCT") preventing non-firm resources from forming Legally Enforceable Obligations under PURPA. If the Fifth Circuit opinion stands, it could limit the ability of wind producers to obtain access to electricity markets under PURPA (the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act), a 1978 law aimed at allowing small independent and…
  • Join GTH at the Washington Future Energy Conference

    9 Sep 2014 | 6:11 pm
    Please join us at the Washington Future Energy Conference on November 5. Gordon Thomas Honeywell is proud to be a major sponsor of this event. Now in its fifth year, the Future Energy Conference brings together energy innovators, utilities, scientists, investors, and many others to discuss the future of the energy industry in our state. Speakers include GTH partner Eric Christensen, who will moderate a panel discussing the electrification of Washington's transportation system. The panel will include Steve Marshall of the Center for Advanced Transportation and Energy Solutions, Charles…
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    SEC Lawyers Blog

  • Sonn|Erez Investigating Claims Involving Mark "Steve" Garrison and Atlantic Bullion & Coin, Inc.

    24 Sep 2014 | 4:34 pm
    Sonn|Erez is investigating claims regarding Mark Steven Garrison (CRD #1939534, Easley, South Carolina), also known as Steve Garrison. Garrison recently entered into a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver, and Consent ("AWC") in which he was assessed a deferred fine of $37,043.57 and suspended from association with any FINRA member in any capacity for 14 months. See FINRA Case #2012031996001. The suspension is in effect from July 21, 2014 through September 20, 2015. Garrison was registered with NYLIFE Securities, LLC, from April 1989 until his termination in April 2012. During its investigation,…
  • SEC Hands Out Record $30 Million Award to Whistleblower

    22 Sep 2014 | 7:26 am
    The SEC announced it will pay a whistleblower who lives abroad at least $30 million to $35 million for providing information and assistance that led to a substantial recovery by the federal government. The SEC declined to identify the tipster, where he or she is from or the case to which the award award was tied. The reward is more than twice the SEC's highest prior award made to tipster under the Dodd-Frank whistleblower program created by Congress in 2010. "This whistleblower came to us with information about an ongoing fraud that would have been very difficult to detect," said Andrew…
  • FINRA Submits New Proposed Rule Requiring Broker Background Checks to SEC for Approval

    19 Sep 2014 | 6:27 am
    FINRA has sent a proposed rule to the Securities and Exchange Commission to adopt NASD Rule 3010(e) (Qualifications Investigated) relating to background investigations as FINRA Rule 3110(e) (Responsibility of Member to Investigate Applicants for Registration) in the consolidated FINRA rulebook. While firms currently are required to review job applicants, the new rule would also require firms to conduct background checks. "FINRA believes that the proposed rule change will streamline and clarify members' obligations relating to background investigations, which will, in turn, improve members'…
  • Sonn|Erez Investigating Claims Involving S.G. Investments and Former Raymond James Broker Claus C. Foerster of South Carolina

    18 Sep 2014 | 9:05 am
    Sonn|Erez is investigating claims regarding Claus Christoph Foerster (CRD #1912949, Spartanburg, South Carolina). Foerster recently entered into a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver, and Consent ("AWC") in which he permanently was barred from association with any FINRA member firm. See FINRA Case #2014041483401. Foerster was associated with Raymond James & Associates, Inc., from February 2013 until his termination in June 2014. Foerster previously was associated with Morgan Keegan & Co., Inc., (February 2008 through February 2013) and Citigroup Global Markets (July 1997 through February 2008).
  • Sonn|Erez and Aldarondo & Lopéz Bras File Claim Against UBS For Widow, Elderly Mother, and Disabled Relative With More Than $1 Million in Losses Related to Puerto Rico Debt and Puerto Rico-Focused UBS Bonds

    13 Sep 2014 | 10:34 am
    Sonn|Erez and Aldarondo & Lopéz Bras recently filed a claim against UBS Financial Services, Inc. and UBS Financial Services Inc. of Puerto Rico ("UBS") on behalf of a 68-year-old widow, her 102-year-old mother, and her 59-year-old disabled sister-in-law. The women entrusted virtually all of their liquid assets to UBS, whose financial advisors recommended a dangerous and unsuitable concentration of high risk Puerto Rico debt and Puerto Rico-focused UBS bonds, according to the Statement of Claim. UBS and its financial advisors allegedly compounded the situation by recommending a margin loan…
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    Broward Injury Lawyer Blog

  • Gallon v. GEICO - Negligent Misrepresentation Claim to Proceed

    24 Sep 2014 | 6:44 am
    An allegedly false statement by an auto insurance agent regarding stacked underinsured motorist (UM) coverage is at the center of a personal injury case before Florida's Second District Court of Appeal. Although other elements of the claim have been dismissed and affirmed on appeal, allowed to proceed is the question of whether this misrepresentation should mean the insured's injured son is entitled to double the UM coverage stated in the policy. Our Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyers know issues of negligent misrepresentation are generally rare in these cases, so it will be interesting to…
  • GEICO v. Rodriguez - Insurer Must Pay Sanctions for False Testimony of Insured

    17 Sep 2014 | 5:53 am
    A Florida appellate court has ruled an auto insurance company for an elderly man who lied about his competency as a driver in deposition testimony following a crash will have to pay sanctions imposed by the trial court for those misrepresentations. Our Fort Lauderdale car accident injury lawyers understand this might not have been the case had the insurer acted more expeditiously in its response to the revelation the driver had lied. According to court records in GEICO v. Rodriguez, the 83-year-old insured had his auto insurance renewed in November 2005. The policy allowed for a bodily injury…
  • Challenging Florida Auto Insurance Step-Down Provisions

    5 Sep 2014 | 11:14 am
    One of the many ways car insurance companies seek to limit the amount they have to pay in claims is with fine print that includes so-called "step-down provisions." These are clauses that limit the amount of money available to be paid in certain circumstances. While the language may vary from policy to policy, in a family step-down provision, the insurance company will limit the amount payable to the insured's family members. These would be individuals who would otherwise be covered, but because of their familial relationship to the policy holder, can only receive the state's statutory minimum…
  • Fort Lauderdale Injury Lawyers: Safe Labor Day Travel 2014

    28 Aug 2014 | 10:27 am
    The long Labor Day weekend is synonymous with outdoor barbeques, beaches, boats - and an uptick in fatalities attributed to drunken driving and impaired boating. Without fail, our Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyers have noted there are always revelers who will take it too far. We might expect a higher-than-usual number of injuries and fatalities, given the reduced price of gasoline this summer. That means more people will be taking longer trips, and boaters will be out on the water for longer. As they have always done this time of year, law enforcement will be heavily patrolling the…
  • Carman v. Tinkes - Comparative Fault Can Harm a Personal Injury Case

    25 Aug 2014 | 8:37 am
    In personal injury cases, plaintiff's degree of fault in the incident can impact the size of damages awarded and, in some states, preclude an injured party from receiving anything at all. Our Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyers know Florida follows the pure comparative negligence model. It's one of the models that most favors injured parties, and holds that even when a plaintiff is at fault to some degree, he or she can still recover damages, minus the degree of fault. So if the defendant driver is found to be 65 percent at fault for the crash and the plaintiff 35 percent, the plaintiff will…
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    Marketing Attorney Blog

  • Attorney's Fake Celebrity Photo Gallery on Website Draws Suspension

    19 Sep 2014 | 2:54 pm
    Call her the Zelig or Forrest Gump of California attorneys, but you can also call her "suspended." I've seen a lot of fun and strange law firm web site ethics issues come up since the mid-90s, but it is refreshing to see that there are still new takes on the concept of "deceptive and misleading" lawyer advertising online in 2014. A State Bar Court judge in Sacramento, California has recommended a six month suspension for a Los Angeles attorney who put Photoshop to use in manipulating a photo gallery on her website filled with fake pictures of her with various politicians, celebrities and star…
  • Peak Season for Law Firm Marketing & Business Development Is Here; Hurry before the Thanksgiving Lull hits!

    8 Sep 2014 | 12:05 pm
    It was a joyous day on my work calendar after Labor Day when the kids went back to school. The camp bus pickup at 9 am is replaced by the school bus pickup at 7:25 am. Extended day at school moves the "end of day" from 4 pm to 6 pm. The sunscreen, towels and related daily chores are replaced by much simpler tasks. And while family vacations are nice, they are not exactly relaxing. Many of those work trips are far less stressful. While summer time is fun, the reality is that a lot of business and work hits the back burners after Memorial Day. If there is one thing I learned when I started…
  • LP Magazine - Age over Beauty? Marketing a Law Firm's Anniversary

    14 Jul 2014 | 8:21 am
    In the July/August 2014 issue of the ABA's Law Practice magazine, I address the always-sensitive subject of age. In this case, it is about the marketing value of a law firms' years. It is yet another subject that seems to present itself to me with clients a few times every year. How young is too young? And how old is too old? And is there value in touting age--and more specifically--an anniversary to clients and prospects? Many law firms have taken anniversaries--literally as short as the one year mark and as long as 200 years--and looked to make them into marketable events. In some cases…
  • WMT: The Price You Pay for the Right Domain Name

    11 Jul 2014 | 7:59 am
    Among the very first law firm websites I ever worked on was My six year old son accesses the site every morning on his iPad before heading to school or camp to check scores and watch video highlights of last nights' major league baseball action. Of course, that does not sound like a law firm website, does it? No, it is Major League Baseball (MLB). But in the late 90s, took you to the website of one of the nation's largest law firms--Morgan, Lewis & Bockius. Morgan Lewis' IT people were certainly on their game when they beat baseball to the punch and acquired the…
  • Lily Buchdahl Provides The Weather on Fox 29 Philadelphia

    13 Jun 2014 | 1:07 pm
    For some attorneys, there is nothing more nerve-wracking than appearing on television. For my 10 year old daughter, Lily, it is one thing to say you want to be on TV and another to experience it. As part of a charity auction, Lily's Mom and I purchased the opportunity for her to do the weather forecast on the local Fox television station's morning show, Good Day. We knew someone besides Lily was on the morning show as well, since the paparazzi were not outside waiting on me (I don't think). In the green room (which was much sparser than one might imagine) we met a few of the other guests.
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    Dallas Divorce Law Blog

  • Would living in Texas have been better for Mr. Hamm in his Oklahoma divorce?

    Michelle O'Neil
    30 Sep 2014 | 9:20 am
    The Harold Hamm divorce in Oklahoma is getting a lot of media attention right now. The divorce trial has started and the wife is making allegations that the husband’s company is rewriting history to downplay his role in the company’s success in order to increase the value of the marital estate subject to division. The trial has been closed to the media and interested onlookers and the lawyers have been placed under a gag order to prevent them from leaking interesting tidbits to the media, so we won’t know exactly what’s going on for a while. Hamm divorce Mr. Hamm…
  • No such thing as common law divorce in Texas

    Michelle O'Neil
    23 Sep 2014 | 6:36 am
    Once a party establishes the elements of a common law marriage, spouses are married until they are legally divorced under Texas law.  The recent case of McMaster v. Small, No. 14-13-00069-CV, 2014 WL 950471 (Tex. App.—Houston [14th Dist.], 2014, no. pet. h.) (03/11/2014) (mem. op.), illustrates this concept case, the wife petitioned for divorce, alleging common law marriage.  Wife alleged that she and Husband married in December 1991 and ceased to live together as husband and wife in August 2004. She provided her own…
  • Michelle O’Neil named to list of Top 50 Women Lawyers in Texas

    Michelle O'Neil
    22 Sep 2014 | 8:55 am
    Michelle May O’Neill, Shareholder at Godwin Lewis, P.C., has been chosen for inclusion in the Texas Super Lawyers® listing for the fourth consecutive year. In addition to her selection for the 2014 list, Attorney O’Neil was honored with three Super Lawyers® top lists: Top 100 Lawyers in Texas, Top 50 Women Lawyers in Texas, and Top 100 Lawyers in Dallas/Fort Worth. Only 5% of Texas Lawyers are honored to be named among the Super Lawyers®. Super Lawyers® is a nationwide rating service of outstanding lawyers from over 70 practice areas who have achieved a high-degree of peer…
  • Rule 11 agreements are revocable before judgment is rendered

    Michelle O'Neil
    15 Sep 2014 | 6:56 am
    A point of confusion for many in the family law context is the viability of a rule 11 agreement to settle an issue or a whole case. Rule 11 of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure provides that an agreement between lawyers in a case is enforceable as long as the agreement is in writing and filed in the papers of the court or read into the record of the court.  However, rule 11 agreements are revocable at any time until judgment is rendered. A court may not enter an order upon a rule 11 agreement when one of the parties to the agreement has revoked his or her consent. The recent case of…
  • UPDATE: Judge Posner says it all on same-sex marriage equality (Chicago’s 7th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals)

    Michelle O'Neil
    9 Sep 2014 | 6:23 am
    On Thursday last week (September 4, 2014), the infamous Judge Richard Posner, writing for the 7th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals, known for being one of the leading "legal thinkers" in America and the number one most cited legal scholar, issued a witty, biting, deeply moral masterpiece striking down Indiana’s and Wisconsin’s gay marriage bans. This is an opinion that the Supreme Court of the United States, and maybe even some other, more conservative jurists will listen to! Maybe the Texas Supreme Court is reading this opinion right now and thinking about deciding the…
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    Massachusetts Drug Injury Lawyers Blog

  • Xarelto Injury Lawsuits Sue Bayer and Johnson & Johnson

    15 Sep 2014 | 1:46 pm
    Plaintiffs are starting to file claims seeking dangerous drug damages for injuries they sustained from using Xarelto, a blood thinner. Bayer and Johnson & Johnson/Janssen Pharmaceuticals, which jointly market the drug, are the defendants. According to the Xarelto injury lawsuits, users are experiencing internal bleeding so severe that they have been hospitalized. They believe that the companies are continuing to sell the drugs despite the health risks, of which they are neglecting to notify the public. Xarelto, unlike blood thinner warfarin (brand names Comadin, Marevan, Jantoven, and…
  • Boston Scientific Must Pay $73M Vaginal Mesh Injury Verdict

    10 Sep 2014 | 6:31 pm
    Jurors have ordered Boston Scientific Corp. to pay Martha Salazar $73 million for injuries she sustained from the Obtryx sling, which is a vaginal mesh implant. This is the first defective medical device award against the company over its incontinence slings. (The Massachusetts-based device maker won the first two cases to go to trial over the Obtryx sling.) It is facing over 23,000 more transvaginal mesh implant lawsuits. Salazar, 42, was implanted with the Obtryx sling in 2010 after she began to experience urinary leakage. She claims the medical device eroded in her body and that this has…
  • C.R. Bard, Boston Scientific Pelvic Mesh Cases Get Court Rulings

    26 Aug 2014 | 12:05 pm
    A federal judge has issued a ruling in a pelvic mesh injury case against manufacturer C.R. Bard from a plaintiff whose injuries occurred nearly two decades ago. Judge Joel H. Slomsky upheld the woman’s negligent manufacturing and failure to warn claims while dismissing other allegations, including those contending that the medical device had a manufacturing defect. Slomsky said that even if certain products cannot be made safe, this does not automatically mean they were made defective. C.R. Bard had sought to have the entire products liability case dismissed. The plaintiff underwent surgery…
  • More Zoloft Drug Injury Lawsuits

    12 Aug 2014 | 1:21 pm
    Plaintiffs recently filed at least 13 Zoloft injury lawsuits against Pfizer Inc. The women claim that their babies were born with birth defects caused from taking Zoloft. They say that doctors prescribed the antidepressant, which they took while they were pregnant. The plaintiffs believe that the drug maker either knew that Zoloft cause the birth defects or if not then they should have been aware that it did. They contend that the drug maker should have notified them about the serious risks to their children. The women are claiming that Zoloft is defective, dangerous, doesn’t come with the…
  • New Studies Reveal Serious Side Effects of Cholesterol Drug

    24 Jul 2014 | 10:59 am
    High cholesterol is one of the most common medical conditions for patients in the United States, and the market for medication to treat the condition is a multibillion dollar industry. Many doctors attribute at least part of the uptick in high cholesterol, or hypercholesterolemia, to poor diet and nutrition, alcohol consumption, and family genetics. The supersized diet popular in the United States has led to a marked increase in high cholesterol cases which, left untreated could result in cholesterol deposits in major arteries, ultimately leading to heart attack and stroke. The Center for…
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    New York Real Estate Lawyers Blog

  • How Your Cooperative or Condominium Board Benefits from Hiring an Attorney

    26 Sep 2014 | 6:56 am
    Attorneys provide valuable legal services on behalf of cooperative and condominium boards. Some buildings with fewer than ten units and without disputes have managed without an attorney representing the board. Other buildings may continue with the attorney who originally represented the sponsor. The purpose of this blog post is to describe the services that can be provided by an attorney representing a cooperative or condominium board. Transfers of apartments will occur at some point. It is not unusual for the building's managing agent to conduct closings. While many managing agents conduct a…
  • Knock-Offs and the Law: Defending Trademark Infringement Lawsuits

    19 Sep 2014 | 5:51 am
    Some of our firm's clients have been the subject of trademark infringement lawsuits, or have received "cease and desist" letters from large companies, stating that their products are infringing on a registered trademark. In general, the purpose of a "cease and desist" letter is to put the alleged infringing party on legal notice that their merchandise may be an unauthorized copy of a registered trademark. Under the United States Trademark Law, willful infringement carries a larger penalty than an infringer who is unaware of the infringement. Therefore, the alleged infringer is given an…
  • Estate Proceedings for Property Located "Elsewhere"

    12 Sep 2014 | 7:01 am
    People are leading increasingly complicated lives, in that they spend their time in several locales, some of which may not be their place of residence. If a person is fortunate, they may develop an affection for a particular area and buy a second home in such area. Likewise, they may inherit a beloved family home in a location where they do not live. When such a person passes away, the disposition of all of their property, no matter where located, must be addressed. The question to be explored in this blog post is which Court has jurisdiction over which property. If a person dies with a Will,…
  • Standards for Purchasers of New York Cooperative Apartments

    5 Sep 2014 | 7:46 am
    Our readers may be familiar with a cooperative apartment building located in Manhattan by the name of River House. This building is known not only for its distinctive classic architecture and regal location, but also by its stringent admissions standards for purchasers. It has been well known throughout the New York real estate community that the River House has declined the purchase applications of numerous famous people and persons with seemingly substantial assets. This culture has resulted in apartments being listed for sale for years, because potential purchasers cannot get approved by…
  • Beware the Evil Stepmother

    11 Aug 2014 | 7:18 am
    Evil stepmothers are not only found in popular culture, as epitomized in Cinderella . Such persons are commonly the subject of events reported by the New York press. Estate conflicts often arise between children of a prior marriage and a more current spouse. Such persons inherently have potentially differing interests. The new spouse may have been attracted to the parent because of the parent's financial success. The child may be resentful that their parent has decided to remarry. For instance, Casey Kasem was a beloved radio personality whose end of life was dominated by a battle between his…
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    San Diego Divorce Lawyer Blog

  • California Court Upholds Stipulated Settlement Agreement in Divorce Case

    23 Sep 2014 | 9:21 am
    While divorce is a difficult process, there are many cases where the parties actually work together to come to an agreement on the significant issues that must be resolved, such as child support, division of property, and spousal support. By agreeing and stipulating to certain terms, the couple can avoid having a judge devise an order that will affect their family going forward. If the parties are able to come to an agreement, a court will simply need to approve the agreed-upon terms. In order to ensure that your negotiations appropriately address the necessary topics, while protecting your…
  • Court Denied Ex-Husband's Request to Reduce Spousal Support Payments

    16 Sep 2014 | 9:03 am
    Spousal support is an integral part of most divorce cases. It is the amount of money one spouse pays the other for support each month. As one may expect, the divorcing couple often does not agree on the amount to be awarded to the supported spouse, or on the duration of those payments. Fortunately, California law provides a set of factors for courts to utilize when determining the amount of spousal support to be awarded. Since each family law case is different and presents a unique set of facts and circumstances, it is important to understand your rights concerning spousal support under the…
  • Court Addresses Interplay Between Juvenile and Family Courts in Custody Dispute

    9 Sep 2014 | 12:43 pm
    Divorce is difficult. When there are children involved, the process can become even more complicated and fraught with strong (often opposing) personal views as to the best interests of the children. In some cases, the juvenile court and the family court may both have reason to address a family's dispute or child custody situation. The interplay between the two courts requires a thorough understanding of each court's jurisdiction and authority to decide certain issues. If you are considering divorce, it is important to consult with an experienced San Diego family law attorney before proceeding…
  • California Court Construes Disclosure Statute in Divorce Proceeding

    2 Sep 2014 | 11:46 am
    Courts are often called upon to interpret or construe assorted statutory provisions. When an appellate court is faced with an issue of statutory construction, it is considered a question of law and subject to an independent review. In a recent case, In re Marriage of Evans, the court of appeals reviewed an issue of "first impression" in California, namely whether the Family Code should be interpreted to require the exchange of disclosure declarations before the parties enter into a pre-petition (for divorce) agreement resolving their rights to property. When an issue is of "first impression,"…
  • Spouse Seeking Attorney Fees in Divorce Must Show "Disparity" Between the Parties

    26 Aug 2014 | 9:46 am
    In many divorce cases, one spouse often earns a greater income or has easier access to financial resources than the other. For the less advantaged spouse, this can present a multitude of problems throughout the proceedings. But fortunately, California law serves to reduce the disparity in income and access to funds, at least as far as one's legal representation goes. One of the most significant steps in pursuing your case and protecting your financial rights - is to find an experienced family law attorney who is fully aware of the local laws applicable to cases brought in the San Diego area.
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    Maritime & Cruise Ship Accident Lawyer Blog

  • Cruise Industry Still Thinks New Laws are Unnecessary

    Gerson & Schwartz, P.A.
    24 Sep 2014 | 10:03 am
    The Washington Post recently published an interesting article about whether or not cruise ships are doing enough to protect passengers, and whether existing regulations are strong enough to ensure passenger safety. The article describes one passenger who almost drowned in the undertow of a pool on the ship, after going down a large slide. Her sister noticed her struggling, and only after she desperately cried for help did anybody from the cruise staff jump in to help her. To make up for her accident, Carnival offered her a $100 coupon. Industry Tries to Avoid Regulation The cruise industry…
  • CDC Says Cruise Ship Norovirus Outbreaks Uncommon, But That May Be Misleading

    Gerson & Schwartz, P.A.
    10 Sep 2014 | 10:31 am
    Yet another cruise ship has been stricken with an outbreak of the norovirus. Don’t be confused—this isn’t a repeat of a previous post. Norovirus outbreaks seem to happen so often on cruises that it often seems like the same news is being reported over and over again. What happened now? This time, guests on a Princess Cruise departing from Australia were affected, in an outbreak bad enough to prompt one guest to call it a “cruise from hell.” About 100 guests have been affected, but it doesn’t appear that the cruise will be terminated early. Despite the repeated norovirus outbreaks,…
  • Punitive Damages and Maritime Law

    Gerson & Schwartz, P.A.
    3 Sep 2014 | 6:00 am
    If you are injured at sea, you may think that regular laws that will apply to you, and your rights to recovery would be the same as if you were injured on land. In fact, this is not true at all. As our Florida cruise ship accident attorneys have discussed before in this blog, there are many nuanced differences between maritime law and state laws. One such difference has to do with punitive damages. What Are Punitive Damages? As the name suggests, punitive damages are not designed to compensate an injury victim at all—the goal of punitive damages is to punish the negligent party for…
  • Cruise Ship Medical Malpractice – Are Ships Responsible?

    Gerson & Schwartz, P.A.
    29 Aug 2014 | 10:19 am
    When you are on a cruise, you are often miles out into the ocean, far away from land. While on the cruise you may be engaging in extreme sports, eating foods you aren’t used to eating, walking on rocking floors, and being in close contact with thousands of other passengers in a closed environment. With the chances of injury or illness being high, you would think that ships were equipped with medical facilities and personnel that were prepared to deal with any kind of medical emergency. Think again. Medical Facilities on Cruises In fact, there is little regulation about what kind of medical…
  • Recovery for Injury When on a Cruise Excursion can be Difficult

    Gerson & Schwartz, P.A.
    14 Aug 2014 | 5:39 am
    We all know that if you’re injured while on a cruise, there’s a good chance that if anybody is liable for your injuries, it’s the cruise line. Inside the confines of the ship, it is the cruise line’s responsibility to make sure there’s nothing that’s going to injure you. But what about once you leave the ship, for the so-called excursions? Getting injured while on an excursion presents an entire host of difficult legal questions. The Danger of Excursions Excursions are the off-ship adventures that you take when the ship docks at a port of call. Excursions can include scuba diving,…
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    Brian M. Mekdsy Legal Services, Massachusetts

  • Who the hell thinks of their online accounts as digital assets?

    Brian M. Mekdsy
    18 Sep 2014 | 12:33 pm
    I mean, seriously: I bet you don’t think of your Facebook account as a “digital asset.” But truth be told, while you might not think of your online accounts that way, that’s exactly how they’re classified in the eyes of the law. And now that the Uniform Law Commission has published a draft law, called [...]Related Posts:Facebook, Instagram, Digital Assets and DeathProtecting Your Digital Assets With Google’s Inactive…A Social Media Will Is No Longer Optional8 Questions To Ask When Setting Up A Power Of AttorneyWhat Happens To Your Social Media Accounts After You…
  • Facebook, Instagram, Digital Assets and Death

    Brian M. Mekdsy
    11 Aug 2014 | 5:13 am
    Once upon a time, Al Gore invented the internet, and with it came the nearly universal accumulation of “digital assets.” In fact, digital assets are so commonplace today that more and more states are updating their laws to account for them. Now a nationally recognized group of lawyers has weighed in on the subject. In [...]Related Posts:Who the hell thinks of their online accounts as digital…Protecting Your Digital Assets With Google’s Inactive…A Social Media Will Is No Longer OptionalWhat Happens To Your Social Media Accounts After You Die?How to Plan for a Social…
  • This Fourth of July: Can’t We All Just Get Along?

    Brian M. Mekdsy
    2 Jul 2014 | 6:23 pm
    As the Fourth of July approaches and Americans get ready to celebrate independence by attending barbecues and firework displays, I can’t help but lament the current state of political discourse. This is, unfortunately, nothing new. In a Fourth of July-themed blog post last year appealing to the American sense of history, I tried to make [...]Related Posts:Why You Should Read The Declaration Of Independence This 4thBeware The Fiscal Cliff: Even Middle Class Estate Plans…Sick of Washington’s Games? Start a NonprofitIs the US Treasury Worthy of your ‘Charitable…22…
  • Remembering the Fallen on Memorial Day

    Brian M. Mekdsy
    26 May 2014 | 8:50 am
    Last Memorial Day, I wrote about two great nonprofits dedicated to helping veterans and first responders, Homes for Our Troops and Wills for Heroes. This year, in keeping with that theme, I’d like to showcase two other organizations I’ve recently learned about that do similarly noble work on behalf of military families. Children of Fallen [...]Related Posts:A Memorial Day Expression Of AppreciationWhy You Should Read The Declaration Of Independence This 4th22 Things To Be Thankful For This ThanksgivingIs the US Treasury Worthy of your ‘Charitable…Sick of Washington’s…
  • Winter’s Finally Over: Your Paperwork Needs a Good Spring Cleaning

    Brian M. Mekdsy
    28 Mar 2014 | 6:41 am
    I don’t know about you, but after the winter we’ve just been through here in the Northeast, the arrival of spring is a welcome event – to say the least. I can’t tell you how much I’m looking forward to opening the windows and filling the house with the fresh air of spring, and the [...]Related Posts:5 Items for your Estate Planning “To Do” List…Password Protection Software Can Be A LifesaverA Social Media Will Is No Longer OptionalWho Wouldn’t Like A Good Death Dinner?National Estate Planning Awareness WeekBrian M. Mekdsy Brian M. Mekdsy Legal Services,…
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    The Emplawyerologist

  • FMLA Lessons From Wal-Mart: Just What the Doctor (and Court) Ordered

    Janette Levey Frisch
    25 Sep 2014 | 4:00 am
    Most of you probably know that you cannot fire an employee for taking leave under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA.  Yet cases against employers allege that very FMLA violation. What your employee recently took FMLA leave and you fire him or her for a different reason? Is it OK now?  A number of employers in this very situation, including Wal-Mart, have still found themselves in court. This week The Emplawyerologist’s Wal-Mart series looks for lessons we can learn from Wal-Mart about FMLA compliance–after the jump, of course! Suppose you own a retail store and you recently…
  • Some Colorful Lessons From Wal-Mart Racial/Ethnic Bias Cases

    Janette Levey Frisch
    18 Sep 2014 | 7:33 am
    Wal-Mart, the nation’s largest retail employer,  has been teaching us over the last few weeks about employer pitfalls to avoid. (Once again, let’s show Wal-Mart some gratitude for committing its time, money and other resources to teach valuable lessons to the rest of America’s employers.) This week, we will let Wal-Mart teach us some lessons in the area of race and national origin discrimination. Wal-Mart has faced dozens of these types of lawsuits since the 1990’s. We are going to focus on four of the more recent ones and see what pearls of wisdom we can glean from…
  • Can Employers Learn How to “Get Religion” From Wal-Mart?

    Janette Levey Frisch
    11 Sep 2014 | 9:13 am
    According to the Wall Street Journal’s October 27, 2013 article (which you can find here) employment-related religious discrimination claims are on the rise. The EEOC received 3,811 religious discrimination complaints for fiscal 2012, and 4,151 complaints for fiscal year 2011.  We are still in the middle of our quest to learn from Wal-mart and its lawsuits.  Wal-Mart has had its share in this area too. To be fair though, Wal-Mart has not always come out the losing party. That does not mean that we cannot still learn from Wal-Mart, however. It just means that we get to see that…
  • Sexual Harassment Complaints Don’t Go Away When You Ignore Them–Ask Wal-Mart!

    Janette Levey Frisch
    4 Sep 2014 | 4:00 am
    On March 25, 2014 the EEOC announced a settlement of a sexual harassment case against Wal-Mart. Most employers do not want to be seen as tolerating sexual harassment. Wal-Mart is probably no exception. Now, we’ve had Wal-Mart under somewhat of a microscope lately (click here, here, here , here and here for review) in our continuing quest to learn some employment law do’s and don’ts. With that said however, Wal-Mart has faced its share of lawsuits in this area too. They say that experience — including someone else’s experience– is often the best teacher.
  • Wal-Mart After Dukes: Still Courting Disaster?

    Janette Levey Frisch
    28 Aug 2014 | 7:00 am
    According to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s, dissenting opinion in Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes 564 U.S. ____ (2011) women hold 70% of all hourly jobs at Wal-Mart. You would think then, that Wal-Mart would be sure to treat its female employees well.  Wal-Mart has asserted that it has “strong policies against discrimination”,  and that certain gender discrimination claims were “not representative the hundreds of thousands of women that work at Wal-Mart”. The volume of sex discrimination suits that Wal-Mart has faced, particularly in the last several years…
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    Atlanta Injury Lawyers Blog

  • Traumatic Brain Injuries and Advances Beyond Traditional CT Scans and MRI

    19 Sep 2014 | 3:30 pm
    Traumatic brain injuries (TBI) can occur when one sustains a violent blow to the head or body that will cause damage to the brain, or if an object pierces the skull to enter the brain tissue. Millions of people in the United States sustain brain injuries every year, and approximately half of these injuries, according to the National Institutes of Health, occur from motor vehicle accidents. While TBI symptoms can range from mild to severe, it is important that someone who has suffered from a head injury seeks medical aid in order to diagnose the severity of the injury. Methods of diagnosis and…
  • Head Injuries and Their Strange Symptoms: Olfactory Hallucinations

    18 Jul 2014 | 2:00 pm
    After head injuries, people may experience a wide variety of symptoms. One of the more peculiar ones is phantosmia, more commonly known as an "olfactory hallucination." When people experience olfactory hallucinations, they will smell scents that actually do not exist around them. According to the Mayo Clinic, these scents typically cannot be masked by food, and can occur in one or both nostrils. Aside from head injuries, olfactory hallucinations can occur from causes such as a stroke, upper respiratory infections, or epilepsy. Additionally, these scents are typically unpleasant, commonly…
  • A Primer on Birth Injury Cases and How to Keep Them Simple - Part 3 of 3

    4 Jul 2014 | 10:21 am
    III. Keep the Medicine Simple. I believe the most important thing we did to achieve success for the family was to keep the medicine simple for the jury. "Simple" in the context of a complicated medical injury is difficult to do. I do not mean to suggest that you or your experts will never need to discuss complex medical terms or concepts. What I mean is this: your or your expert's brilliant comprehension of the medical concepts in a birth injury case won't do you any good unless you can teach these concepts to the jury. As lawyers, we don't spend enough time reversing roles with our jurors…
  • A Primer on Birth Injury Cases and How to Keep Them Simple - Part 2 of 3

    27 Jun 2014 | 10:16 am
    II. The Role of Experts in the Birth Injury Case. Experts play a critical part in any birth injury case. You can expect both sides to employ a host of experts covering issues that span the child's entire life - literally starting with what occurred in the delivery room all the way through the child's current mental and physical condition. In the context of a birth injury trial, this means the first experts on the stand in the plaintiff's case are probably doctors, nurses or midwives discussing the Standard of Care for the delivery, followed by pediatricians or neonatologists…
  • A Primer on Birth Injury Cases and How to Keep Them Simple - Part 1 of 3

    20 Jun 2014 | 9:37 am
    Our firm recently had success in a birth injury case in Gwinnett County, Georgia. In that case we represented a family against the labor and delivery team that delivered their daughter and the hospital where they worked. Following her delivery, their daughter was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy. The term "Cerebral Palsy" refers to several different kinds of permanent brain injuries that occur before, during, or shortly after birth. Victims of Cerebral Palsy can suffer a variety of symptoms including: limited movement, speech difficulties, learning disabilities, visual problems, hearing…
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    The Federal Criminal Appeals Blog

  • Short Wins - The "Silence is Golden" Edition

    22 Sep 2014 | 8:30 am
    The most interesting case in the last two weeks, I think, is United States v. Shannon. There, the person accused of a crime simply didn't feel like talking to law enforcement - because, really, who would. The government crossed him on his decision not to talk and asked why he didn't come forward with his exculpatory testimony sooner. The Third Circuit reversed because this violated his Fifth Amendment rights - there's really no point in having a right not to talk if you hold it against a person when she doesn't talk. To the Victories! 1. United States v. Santaigo, First Circuit: Appellant was…
  • Short Wins - the Distribution of Child Pornography Gets (slightly) Limited Edition

    15 Sep 2014 | 7:34 am
    Child porn cases are turning out to be a surprisingly large portion of what's in federal court. Child pornography is gross and wrong, to be clear. But these cases are, I think, a symptom of a larger problem. All of us have times in our lives when we're in the wilderness, when we feel adrift and alienated and unsure of where we're going or where we are. Some folks in this time of life turn to alcohol, Some turn to drugs, video games, or other ways to keep themselves from facing the great chasm of dissatisfaction that their lives have become. "The mass of men lead lives of quiet desparation"…
  • Short Wins - The Late August Edition

    27 Aug 2014 | 7:17 am
    It's been an interesting few weeks in the circuits (and, apologies for the gap in posting - pesky family vacations). Probably my favorite is United States v. Mergen, about whether an FBI agent's statements that what the guy charged with a crime was doing were ok and legal were admissible. I tend to think FBI stings that take advantage of how weak the entrapment defense is are one of the more loathsome things our federal government does - any time you can poke holes in that I think it's a good thing. Also of note is United States v. Bagdy - there, a guy who spent an inheritance on stuff that…
  • Short Wins - the Entrapment Edition

    1 Aug 2014 | 12:46 pm
    It is rare and wonderful to see an entrapment opinion. And United States v. Kopstein fits the bill. In other news, I was on TV last night talking about the trial of former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell. If you're interested, here's a clip (I start at about 2:15). To the victories! 1. United States v. Kopstein, Second Circuit: Appellant was convicted by a jury of transporting and shipping child pornography. During trial, Appellant's sole defense was entrapment. The conviction was vacated and the case remanded because the jury instruction on entrapment failed to consistently and adequately…
  • Lying Isn't Always Fraud - the Sixth Circuit Sends A Case Back Because Buying Drugs From a Drug Distributor Is What The Drug Distributor Wants

    29 Jul 2014 | 12:24 pm
    Lester and Nancy Sadler, a husband and wife, ran a series of pain management clinics in Ohio. As the Sixth Circuit explained, "these were not conventional plain clinics." For example, at one clinic patients would arrive well before it opened, filling the clinic's parking lot and the lots of nearby businesses. While waiting for the clinic to open, the patients used drugs and traded prescription forms for cash in the parking lots. The patients often traveled long distances (and in large groups) to come to the Sadlers' shops, sometimes as much as 316 miles in a roundtrip, even though most of the…
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    Boston Injury Lawyer Blog

  • Recent Verdicts for Victims of Defective Transvaginal Mesh against Boston Scientific and Ethicon

    24 Sep 2014 | 1:54 pm
    A federal jury in West Virginia recently returned a verdict of $3.27 million for a woman who filed suit against Ethicon, a unit of Johnson & Johnson, for injuries due to a defective transvaginal TVT-O mid-urethral sling. After a nearly two-week trial, the jury found in favor for the plaintiff, Jo Huskey, on her counts of strict liability, design defect, failure to warn and negligence. Ms. Huskey, now 52 years old, underwent the implantation procedure in 2011 for stress urinary incontinence and has suffered erosion of the mesh, which has caused severe pain and required her to undergo…
  • Boston's Proposed Safety Ordinance Geared Towards Cyclist Safety

    12 Sep 2014 | 7:32 am
    Earlier this week, the Boston City Council was expected to take up a first-of-its-kind ordinance geared towards bicyclist and pedestrian safety. On Tuesday, September 9, 2014, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh presented the City Council with an Ordinance to Protect Vulnerable Road Users. If passed, the ordinance would require the implementation of safety apparatuses on all city-owned and city-contractor vehicles weighing over 10,000 pounds. Furthermore, only snowplows and emergency vehicles would be exempt from complying with the proposed ordinance. These safety apparatuses include protective side…
  • Back-to-School Product Recalls

    4 Sep 2014 | 8:43 am
    With Labor Day weekend just behind us, students at all education levels are starting classes this week. According to a summer study conducted by the National Retail Federation, Americans were expected to spend nearly $75 billion on back-to-school needs and wants this year. This includes everything from clothing and traditional school supplies like pens and pencils to electronics and dorm room needs for college students. Almost anything can end up on the back-to-school list, which is why buyers should educate themselves on the latest product safety news. A number of product safety recalls were…
  • "I'm not the Type to Sue Somebody But..."

    28 Aug 2014 | 9:34 am
    I long ago lost count of the number of times I've heard that line from potential clients who come into the office to discuss what happened to them or a loved one. My usual response is "That's okay, I do it all the time." There is, however, something regrettable about feeling the need to be apologetic for considering a lawsuit to hold a wrong doer accountable. Perhaps we forget that the Founding Fathers insisted on the right to jury trial in both criminal and civil cases and would not ratify the Constitution without it being included in the Bill of Rights. Perhaps we forget that without…
  • Testosterone Replacement Therapies (Low-T) Cases Consolidated into Multidistrict Litigation

    20 Aug 2014 | 12:28 pm
    As previously reported in this blog, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced in January, 2014, that it was launching an investigation into whether FDA-approved testosterone products are causing strokes, heart attacks and even death. Several studies have shown that use of testosterone replacement therapies, such as AndroGel and Axiron, for the dubious medical condition "Low T" actually increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes in men using the product. Although in its beginning stages, several lawsuits have been filed in the Federal District Court in Chicago, Ill., the…
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    Securities Law Blog

  • Former Alabama Attorney Indicted On Violations Of Alabama Securities Act

    The Frankowski Firm, LLC
    30 Sep 2014 | 9:22 am
    Former Dothan, Alabama attorney, Frederick Mitchell McNab was arrested earlier this month by Houston County Sheriff’s deputies. He was released on $310,000 bond and the surrendering of his passport. The arrest followed on the heels of a Houston County Grand Jury indictment charging McNab with thirty-one counts of alleged violations of the Alabama Securities Act. Those charges include sale of securities by an unregistered investment adviser for compensation and numerous counts of sales of unregistered securities. These charges were designated as Class C Felonies at the time they were…
  • Mississippi Woman Accused Of Operating Gigantic Ponzi Scheme

    The Frankowski Firm, LLC
    26 Sep 2014 | 8:04 am
    Gina Palasini was arrested last month in Palm Springs, California as the list of people who claim they lost money by unknowingly participating in a Ponzi scheme operated by the Mississippi fugitive continues to grow. Palasini will be extradited to Mississippi on felony charges for bad checks and then sent to Wayne County for sentencing on a felony false pretense charge to which she pleaded guilty in December 2013. She had been out on a court order to reimburse her victims, but she failed to do so. While it is unknown exactly who many victims were involved, sources indicate that the number is…
  • SEC To Award Record $30M To Whistleblower

    The Frankowski Firm, LLC
    24 Sep 2014 | 9:23 pm
    Earlier this week, the SEC announced that it anticipates awarding more than $30 million to a whisteblower who furnished critical information that ultimately resulted in a successful enforcement action. The award would be the most ever given by the agency under its new authority under the Dodd-Frank Act. According to sources, the award will range from $30 million to $35 million and will comprise the biggest made by the SEC’s three-year-old whistleblower office and the fourth award made to a foreign informant. As of now, the highest award is $14 million, which was given in October 2013.
  • Atlanta-Based Web Marketer Accused Of $105M Pyramid Scheme

    The Frankowski Firm, LLC
    23 Sep 2014 | 9:37 am
    The SEC filed a case yesterday against Atlanta, Georgia-based Zhunrize Inc. and its chief executive in a Georgia federal court, alleging that the Internet marketing and product brokerage company operates as a fraudulent pyramid scheme that has scammed investors out of $105 million since 2012. Zhunrize allows members to purchase online stores and subsequently sell merchandise through those stores. The SEC claims that the company relies on the “continual recruitment of new members to generate the returns it pays its members.” Most of the company’s revenue by a wide margin is…
  • Texas Judge Awards $40.7 In Bitcoin Ponzi Scheme Case

    The Frankowski Firm, LLC
    22 Sep 2014 | 2:33 pm
    Last week, U.S. Magistrate Judge Amos Mazzant, a federal judge in Texas, ordered Bitcoin Savings and Trust and its owner, Trendon Shavers, to pay $40.7 million after the SEC proved that the company, which sold investments using bitcoins, was in reality a Ponzi scheme. According to Mazzant, Shavers “knowingly and intentionally” used the company “as a sham and a Ponzi scheme.” Shavers mislead investors regarding the use of their bitcoins, the methods he would use to acquire promised returns, and the safety of their investments. According to the SEC, Shavers used the…
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    South Florida Criminal Attorneys Blog

  • South Florida Businessman Pleads Not Guilty in Baseball Star Human Smuggling Conspiracy

    Michael B. Cohen, P.A.
    17 Sep 2014 | 11:01 am
    Gilberto Suarez, a 40 year old businessman from South Florida pleaded not guilty after he was arrested for his part in a smuggling ring that allegedly helped Yasiel Puig, a star player for the Los Angeles Dodgers enter the country in 2012. The not guilty plea was in answer to an Indictment which gave away few details other than seeking forfeiture of any proceeds Suarez received from the illegal business deal that brought the baseball player, his girlfriend and spiritual adviser here from Cuba. Other than those details the Indictment was sealed. Specifically, the forfeiture demand recorded in…
  • Florida Man Acquitted of First Degree Murder Charges

    Michael B. Cohen, P.A.
    1 Sep 2014 | 10:50 am
    Cesar Limas made his living by selling cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana. Yet he became the prosecutor’s key witness in a first degree murder trial that led to fourteen months of jail time for Carlos Hiracheta Perez, 29, of Dade City pending trial. Limas told police that he and another man wrestled a Colt .45 semi-automatic pistol away from Perez outside an abandoned house in Dade City after two shots were fired inside the house. Within the residence lay the motionless body of Arturo Escamilla. Limas told Sheriff’s deputies that after he grabbed the gun away from Perez, the…
  • Jessie Lee Miller Freed After 15-Year First Degree Murder Acquittal

    Michael B. Cohen, P.A.
    1 Aug 2014 | 7:39 am
    Otto Wright’s first trial for felony first-degree murder ended in a mistrial when a jury couldn’t come to a unanimous decision. But his second trial ended with a guilty verdict when the previously self-proclaimed “look out” admitted that he participated in the robbery of a West Palm Beach Chick-Fil-A restaurant. Nicholas Megrath, the 18-year old manager of the restaurant that was located at the now non-operational West Palm Beach Mall was shot and killed by one of the other culprits. But Wright’s taped confession stated that although he watched the robbery unfold…
  • Boynton Beach Man Beats Prior Manslaughter Charge Walks Free Again

    Michael B. Cohen, P.A.
    8 Jul 2014 | 1:06 pm
    David Muringer appears to live a charmed life. The Boynton Beach man was acquitted last month of misdemeanor battery and felony false imprisonment charges just short of a year and a half after he virtually walked away from manslaughter charges that could have cost him fifteen years in prison. In this latest case against him his girlfriend, Robin Green, 26, told police that Muringer began to strangle her after the two of them had an argument and she tried to leave his apartment. She was able to get away from him and called 911. In this new case if convicted of both charges he would have faced…
  • Deported Gay Honduran Man Fights to Return to the US to Gain Asylum

    Michael B. Cohen, P.A.
    1 Jul 2014 | 1:19 pm
    Italo Morales had lived in Hollywood, Florida for nearly ten years after he fled his native Honduras in 2005. Morales, now 27 years old is gay. He left Honduras nearly ten years ago, following his partner who also bolted from the country due to the violence against the small gay community that survives there on a daily basis. As a country, Honduras can boast to being the murder capital of the world. The homicide rate is an alarmingly high ratio of almost one individual per every one thousand annually; earning this reprehensible label and nearly doubling its closest rival in this tragic…
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    Tampa Criminal Lawyer Blog

  • Indiana Man Accused of Cannibalism

    17 Sep 2014 | 3:46 pm
    Jeffersonville, Indiana man, Joseph A. Oberhansley, 33, is accused of murdering his girlfriend and ultimately eating portions of her corpse. Oberhansley was arrested last Thursday after police came to his girlfriend, Tammy Blanton's home looking for her as she failed to show up for work. According to news sources, Oberhansley began acting suspicious when police questioned him as to Blanton's whereabouts. Police observed a fresh cut across Oberhansley's knuckles during their contact and then patted down Oberhansley for weapons, finding a knife in the accused's back pocket full of hair and what…
  • So You've Violated Your Federal Supervised Release... What now?

    20 Aug 2014 | 9:59 am
    Just about every Federal felony carries behind a term of incarceration a period where one is on a probation like status called supervised release. For all intents and purposes supervised release is just like probation in that you will be monitored by a Federal probation officer, will forego certain rights while on supervision, and will have to meet certain requirements laid out by the Court specific to your case in addition to those general requirements for anyone on supervised release. For the most part as long as you mind your P's and Q's you won't have an issue with a potential violation.
  • Florida Man Faces Aggravated Assault For Throwing Gasoline On Wife. Tells Police It Was A Joke.

    19 Jun 2014 | 6:22 am
    Sunrise, Florida man, Khemraj Samlall told law enforcement he was only joking when he allegedly attempted to ignite gasoline that he "accidentally" spilled on his wife and her bed earlier this week. As a result of this claimed joke, Mr. Samlall is now facing felony charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon without the intent to kill. According to reports Mr. Samlall and his wife were arguing after Mr. Samlall came home drunk. Mrs. Samlall is thought to have told him he was a bad father for not spending enough time with his children, prompting Mr. Samlall to retrieve a red gas can…
  • Tampa Bay Man Found Guilty of Federal Terrorism Related Charges

    16 Jun 2014 | 6:02 am
    Kosovo born and now Tampa Bay area resident Sami Osmakac was found guilty last week of the federal crime of attempting to use weapons of mass destruction and knowingly possessing a firearm not registered to him in the National Firearms and Transfer Record. Osmakac's case received national attention in 2012 when he was indicted after posting videos on YouTube, declaring his intention to blow up highly populated Tampa areas including Hyde Park and Ybor City and then subsequently purchasing non-functioning weapons from undercover FBI agents. According to Tampa news reports, Osmakac claimed to…
  • Jameis Winston Accused Of Theft From Florida Publix

    1 May 2014 | 4:08 pm
    Heisman Trophy winning quarterback Jameis Winston was accused this week of stealing crab legs from a Tallahassee, Florida Publix. Since the time of the incident, media outlets, NFL scouts, and fans of certain rival teams have taken issue with Winston's actions, making fun, questioning his character and showing concern over his draft stock. Perhaps these concerns are warranted and perhaps not, all are certainly entitled to their opinion. At the end of the day, Winston wasn't charged with a criminal offense for retail theft or petit theft but rather was issued a civil infraction requiring him…
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    Personal Injury Lawyer Blog


    19 Sep 2014 | 4:53 pm
    Following a three week trial, a Rockland County, New York jury has awarded $2.3 million to a Nyack Hospital patient for injuries he sustained four years ago as a result of medical malpractice. On October 1, 2010, 52-year-old John Antonucci of Valley Cottage, New York visited Nyack Hospital for follow up care relating to treatment he had received a few days prior. Dr. Jason Fond, who is the head of Nyack Hospital orthopedic surgery, quickly consulted with Antonucci before sending him home without antibiotics or a definitive diagnosis. Antonucci claimed in court papers that he was sent home…

    19 Sep 2014 | 4:22 pm
    Alternative rock band Kings of Leon has been forced to cancel two more shows in its Mechanical Bull Tour after drummer, Nathan Followill, sustained injuries in a tour bus accident. Followill was treated for broken ribs after the band's tour bus stopped suddenly to avoid a pedestrian following its August 9th show in Boston. An announcement made on the band's Facebook page stated "The band was en route to their hotel after their show in Boston when a pedestrian jumped in front of their tour bus, causing the bus to stop short, injuring Nathan Followill. Nathan is being treated for broken ribs,…

    8 Sep 2014 | 7:26 pm
    With the popular and regular attendance of amusement parks, a lack of park safety has led to several theme park accidents, calling for federal oversight. The Consumer Product Safety Administration only regulates portable rides that tour with traveling shows to several county fairs, whereas fixed-site rides are regulated by state, making oversight largely inconsistent. Over 30 years ago, federal regulation over amusement park safety ended in 1981. Since then, roller coasters have drastically evolved, pushing the bounds of physics with steep drops and lightning speeds. Three years ago, an army…

    7 Sep 2014 | 7:07 pm
    A Texas jury entered a substantial $27,000,000 verdict in actual damages against McDonald's to the families of two of its teenage patrons, who died from a mob attack at one of its restaurants and the car accident that soon followed. The victims were 18-year-old Denton James Ward and his 19-year-old girlfriend Lauren Bailey Crisp. Their families never asked for punitive damages. In February 2012, the pair and another couple stopped at the McDonald's restaurant in College Station, Texas, where the young men were attacked by a mob in the parking lot. Attempting to rush them to the hospital, the…

    4 Sep 2014 | 7:16 pm
    The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) has reached a $27,800,000 settlement to pay Tennessee property owners who suffered damages from a massive spill of toxic coal ash sludge. As a corporation wholly owned by the United States government, the Tennessee Valley Authority is the nation's largest public utility, serving approximately 9,000,000 customers over seven Southeastern states. In 2008, a containment dike burst at the Tennessee Valley Authority's Kingston Fossil Plant, releasing over 5,000,000 cubic yards of ash from a storage pond. The coal ash sludge flowed into a river and contaminated…
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  • Undocumented Foreign Nationals Must Wait Until After November Elections for Immigration Reform

    24 Sep 2014 | 9:54 am
    It seems party politics has reared its ugly head again and has delayed comprehensive immigration reform. Only this time, it seems the party pushing for the delay is the Democrats. Recently, President Obama surprised and disappointed hundreds of thousands of foreign nationals and immigrant rights' advocacy groups when he informed the country that, counter to his promise made back in June, he would not utilize his executive authority to push immigration reform through Congress until after the elections in November. Why Would the President Delay Reform? President Obama has long been heralded as…
  • Foreign Entrepreneurs are Taking Their Money Elsewhere - to Canada

    15 Sep 2014 | 6:40 am
    Two years ago, it seemed that it was only a matter of time before Congress passed comprehensive immigration reform. In June of 2012, the President implemented his Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program and the following summer, the Senate passed its own version of the long-awaited immigration bill. However, the bill and the reform progress came to an abrupt halt at the feet of the House of Representatives. In the almost two years that have passed since, the country is no closer to achieving any of its immigration-related goals and continues to lose foreign nationals who could serve…
  • The Immigrant Children "Boom"

    5 Sep 2014 | 6:57 am
    Immigration to the U.S. is not a new phenomenon, but the recent influx to the U.S. by tens of thousands of young Central Americans in the summer of 2014 was notable. Over the past few years, the number of illegal border crossings had leveled off, even declined over the past few years. What were some of the reasons that motivated the dramatic rise of people from Central America crossing the border illegally in the past few months? Right now, several Central American countries, namely as Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras, have been experiencing an increase in violence as young children are…
  • DOL Finally Clarifies the Meaning of "Familial Relationship in PERM Applications

    29 Aug 2014 | 10:00 am
    Many foreign workers obtain their green cards by finding a U.S. employer to sponsor them for permanent residence. Most employment-based cases are completed through the Labor Certification process, which is also commonly referred to as the PERM process. What is the PERM Process? At first glance, the PERM process can seem quite complicated. The process requires a U.S. employer to place a series of job advertisements in various sources in order to try to recruit U.S. workers. The PERM advertisements themselves must fulfill certain content requirements, must be placed in certain avenues, and must…
  • USCIS Providing Immigration-Related Relief to West Africans

    28 Aug 2014 | 9:50 am
    In light of the current medical and public health crisis that is affecting West Africans in three countries, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is constantly monitoring the Ebola outbreak and has proposed relief measures to assist those African nationals who are currently in the United States. USCIS is taking these relief measures in large part due to the humanitarian concern for the African nationals but also as a practical matter. Since many airlines are no longer flying to the affected areas, it would not be fair to label the stranded African nationals as immigration law…
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    Palo Alto Estate Planning Blog

  • Taking Parents Off the Hook

    Liza Hanks
    23 Sep 2014 | 12:20 pm
    The New York Times published an interesting story this weekend on the expectations that parents and children have with respect to inheritances. The article summarized a study published in The Gerontologist last year, in which older adults and their children were polled on whether or not they expected to leave or inherit an inheritance. It turns out that 86.2% of the parents expected to leave their children something, but only 44.6% of the kids were expecting to receive anything.  Interestingly, the adult children who were getting money from their parents during life had a higher expectation…
  • Too Old to Drive?

    Liza Hanks
    3 Aug 2014 | 2:31 pm
    This week, an elderly driver lost control of his car and crashed into a cafe on University Avenue in Palo Alto, injuring six, including himself. News reports say that the driver was trying to park, and accidentally hit the gas pedal instead of the brake pedal. As we, or our parents, age, the question of when someone should stop driving is almost certain to come up.  While it is true that impaired driving isn’t always a factor of age, it is also true that as we age our reactions slow, our vision declines, our hearing decreases, our flexibility and strength decline, cognitive and…
  • Summer Time Is Here: Estate Planning on the Run

    Liza Hanks
    11 Jul 2014 | 5:34 pm
    Inevitably, in the summer months, I get phone calls from people who are about to take a trip somewhere, often within just a few days. Sometimes they have a Will or a trust that’s out of date; sometimes they have no estate planning documents at all; sometimes they have just finished getting divorced and are in a panic because they haven’t gotten around to updating their Will or trust. Much as I try to help everyone who calls, sometimes (often) there’s just not enough time to update their documents before that plane takes off or the road trip starts. What to do? Although none…
  • What Not to Leave Behind: Massive Piles of Paper

    Liza Hanks
    9 Jul 2014 | 5:01 pm
    Recently, a client of mine described having to go through about 30 years of their father’s financial records after he had passed away. Needless to say, that’s not an easy task, especially when you’re not entirely sure what to look for, what to keep, and what to throw away. And, here’s the real point: most of us save more paper records than we need.  One really nice legacy NOT to leave behind are massive piles of redundant, out of date financial records. Here’s a list of what to keep and how long to keep it.  Do your children a favor — throw away the…
  • Building Up Your Own Credit Score After Your Spouse Dies

    Liza Hanks
    30 May 2014 | 6:37 pm
    Losing your spouse is hard enough. But some surviving spouses also discover that they lose their ability to get credit  as well.  This is because they have no independent credit history since all of the couple’s credit cards and loans were in the name of the deceased spouse. For many women, in particular, this can be a shocking discovery. But if a woman did not work outside the home, never had a credit card in her own name, and has no record of an independent income, she runs the risk of having her credit cards cancelled after the death of her spouse, or loans denied, even if…
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    Atlanta Overtime Lawyers Blog

  • Job Titles Like "Manager," "Supervisor," or "Boss" Do Not Mean Automatic Exemption From Overtime

    15 Sep 2014 | 10:21 am
    Many times companies automatically classify its "managers," "supervisors," or "bosses" as exempt from overtime under the Executive Exemption when in reality the employees are actually entitled to overtime. In order to determine whether an employee is entitled to overtime, you must look at the employee's job duties - not their job title. To qualify under the Executive Exemption, an employee must meet the following tests: 1. The employee must be compensated on a salary basis at a rate of not less than $455 per week; 2. The employee's primary duty must be managing the enterprise, or managing a…
  • NFL Oakland Raiders Cheerleaders Settle Wage Claim Lawsuit For $1.25 Million

    15 Sep 2014 | 10:14 am
    On September 4, 2014, the Oakland Raiders Cheerleaders ("Raiderettes") settled their wage lawsuit against the Oakland Raiders for $1.25 Million in back wages. The lawsuit was filed by two of their cheerleaders in January asserting that the football team underpaid them. One of the cheerleaders estimated her hourly rate over the course of the season at just about $5 per hour. Additionally, the cheerleaders were fined for violating team rules. The settlement will provide back pay for any Raiderette who cheered for the NFL team as far back as 2010 and awards each cheerleader $6,400 for each…
  • Court of Appeals Affirms $5M Verdict Against Tyson Food Employees

    13 Sep 2014 | 3:41 pm
    A federal court of appeals court affirmed a jury verdict for employees of Tyson Food meat-processing plant workers for failing to pay the employees for pre- and post-production line activities under the Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA"). A jury found in favor of the employees and awarded them over $5M. Tyson appealed and the Court of Appeals ("COA") agreed with the jury's verdict in favor of the workers. In the case, the employees were current and former "gang time" employees and the COA found that Tyson paid the employees as follows: To calculate the employees' compensable working time,…
  • Court Of Appeals Finds Delivery Drivers Are Employees Not Independent Contractors

    20 Jul 2014 | 10:38 am
    Last month, a Court of Appeals ruled that delivery drivers were employees not independent contractors and therefore, the drivers were entitled to overtime. The case involved a Georgia company called Affinity Logistics Corporation which contracted with Sears to provide home delivery services for various home furnishing retailers. The drivers were responsible for loading furniture and appliance deliveries, unloading deliveries, and installing the deliveries. To determine whether the drivers were independent contractors or employees, the Court of Appeals stated that "the right to control work…
  • Can Restaurants Require Servers And Bartenders To Pay For Customer Walk-Outs?

    18 Jul 2014 | 9:22 am
    The Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA") permits restaurants and other employers of tipped employees to receive a "tip credit" when compensating their tipped employees. The FLSA permits the employer to pay its tipped employees $2.13 per hour plus tips as long as those tips cause the employee to make at least minimum wage per hour. Under the FLSA, "the employer is required to satisfy the following two statutory prerequisites in order to utilize the 'tip credit' allowance: (1) the employer must inform the employee of the provisions in Section 203(m) of the FLSA; and (2) all tips received by an…
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    Florida Tax Lawyer Blog


    24 Sep 2014 | 10:17 am
    As a Florida state and local tax attorney I live in the world of strange. Few attorneys or tax professionals are even aware of our peculiar area of the law. Even fewer attorneys or tax professionals have heard of, let alone practiced in the even stranger area of Native American Taxation. During my travels and while earning my LL.M. at NYU, I was one of the few fortunate souls to be exposed to this spin off of state and local tax. In fact, there are only two courses offered in the United States at the LL.M. level on this subject. Native American Taxation is poorly developed, the rules are…
  • Illinois Tries Again with Nexus Law

    16 Sep 2014 | 3:57 pm
    On March 28, 2013, Overstock and Amazon lost their challenge of a state tax on online sales in New York's highest court. Further, the the Supreme Court of United States declined hearing the case, because the court determined that such a law did not violate the federal Commerce Clause. Following the Amazon decision, we expected the states to follow New York's lead and enact its own click-through-nexus laws. In 2011, Illinois did just that. Specifically, Illinois has a nexus law that required any company with a place of business in Illinois to collect and remit tax to Illinois. In 2011,…
  • Caterpillar Loses Foreign Dividends Discrimination

    3 Sep 2014 | 11:49 am
    The Constitution gives the power to Congress, and Congress alone, to regulate commerce with foreign nations. This means the individual states cannot regulate commerce with foreign nations. This concept is known as the Foreign Commerce Clause. While it seldom comes up in the area of state taxation, the Foreign Commerce Clause states, "Congress shall have Power . . . To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States . . ." This idea seems fairly simple conceptually, however, it can be difficult in practice to determine whether a state tax impedes on Foreign Commerce. Since…
  • Colorado Shocked With Pot Tax Revenue

    15 Aug 2014 | 3:19 pm
    One of the main goals accomplished by legalizing marijuana in Colorado was the perceived increased revenue stream from state tax. Lawmakers strongly believed Colorado would benefit financially from the legalization of marijuana in its state. To their shock and dismay, the legalization has not been as profitable as lawmakers had hoped. By way of brief background, Colorado enacted a pot tax in 2013. Specifically, on November 5, 2013, Colorado voters passed the pot tax. The tax operated similar to other sin taxes in that it came at a hefty rate. Recreational marijuana sales were subjected to a…
  • Should Gas Stations Fight Two-Tiered Pricing?

    29 Jul 2014 | 1:15 pm
    Have you ever wondered why gas stations often advertise two different prices on their sign? If you have not, then start looking and you will notice most stations advertise one price for cash (or company specific credit cards, such as Mobil, Shell, Chevron, etc.) and another for credit. The $0.10 difference, known as two-tiered pricing, is an attempt by station owners to recover steep credit card fees by incentivizing customers to use cash. Over the past few years, many customers have expressed frustrations towards the station owners by being lured into a gas station for a lower price only to…
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    New Jersey CPA Tax Lawyer Blog

  • Tax Code's Strict Rules Regarding Recreational Vehicles Stop Taxpayers' Business Deductions

    17 Sep 2014 | 10:35 am
    Sometimes, converting a beloved avocation into a business opportunity can be a master stroke. One California couple likely thought so when they began traveling to recreational vehicle events to sell RV insurance policies. Unfortunately, they could not deduct the expenses they incurred on their own RV because of the rules in the tax code. The US Tax Court upheld the Internal Revenue Service's deficiency ruling because, under the tax code's strict rules, the RV was a dwelling, and the couple used it for personal purposes for more than the allotted 14 days. Dellward Jackson owned and operated an…
  • Failed Cemetery Site Tax Shelter Leads to $187K Deficiency Assessment a Decade Later for Investors

    3 Sep 2014 | 10:40 am
    Charitable deductions can provide taxpayers with very valuable tax benefits in the form of larger deductions. In some case, though, when taxpayers invest in questionable tax deduction generating schemes, the drawbacks of these investments ultimately far outweigh the benefits. In one such instance, the US Tax Court recently upheld the Internal Revenue Service's assessment of deficiencies of a couple's 1996-99 tax returns, amounting to nearly $200,000. Even though the IRS notice of deficiency occurred more than a decade after the couple filed their returns, specific exceptions to the law's…
  • Taxpayer's Failure to Keep Contemporaneous Records Leads Court to Reject Documentation as 'Ballpark Guesstimate'

    20 Aug 2014 | 2:48 pm
    For any taxpayer, maintaining proper records is vitally important. This is especially true if you have millions of dollars in business expenses riding on whether or not you meet the tax regulations' standard for a "real estate professional." A technology business owner discovered a hard lesson regarding this matter when the U.S. Tax Court rejected his appeal and upheld the Internal Revenue Service's imposition of a tax deficiency well in excess of a half-million dollars. The ruling reminds all taxpayers that there is simply no substitute for records created and updated contemporaneously, as…
  • Rental Business' Failure to Commence Dooms Business Expense Deduction

    6 Aug 2014 | 10:07 am
    In recent years, buying and selling houses has become more difficult, leaving more people to pursue renting out houses they own but do not occupy and cannot sell. For these taxpayers, the tax code establishes clear criteria for what qualifies as a valid business and when they may claim a business expense deduction for their mortgage interest. These taxpayers should take note of a recent US Tax Court case that denied a Southern California couple the deduction because the couple did not meet all these criteria, thus allowing the Internal Revenue Service to disallow the couple's business expense…
  • Mom's Attempt to Deduct Basement Office Expense, Wages to Children Falls Flat

    16 Jul 2014 | 10:18 am
    A businesswoman's attempt to maximize her business expense deductions ultimately went too far, according to a recent US Tax Court ruling. The court decided that the woman did not have sufficient basis for claiming that one-third of her home was deductible office space, and that the facts of her case did not support her claim that she paid compensation to her three minor children. Patricia Ross carried on multiple business ventures in 2007 and 2008, some of which she ran from the basement of her home. The businesswoman also put her three children, ages 15, 11, and 8, to work for one of her…
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    Securities Lawyer 101 – SEC Law & Direct Public Offering Attorneys

  • Going Public Blog l Securities Lawyer 101

    1 Jan 2101 | 6:23 am
    Going Public Lawyer  Securities Lawyer 101 Blog Going public is a big step for any company.   The process of “going public” is complex and at times precarious. While going public offers many benefits it also comes with risks and quantities of regulations with which issuers must become familiar.  Despite the risks even in a down economy, the U.S. market remains one of... Read MoreGoing Public Lawyer
  • The Accredited Investor Exemption l Section 4(a)(5)

    29 Sep 2014 | 9:00 pm
    Going Public LawyerSecurities Lawyer 101 Blog Offers and sales of securities must be either registered with the Securities andExchange Commission (the “SEC”) or be exempt from registration. Section 4(a)(5) of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended exempts from the registration statement requirements offers and sales of securities to accredited investors when the total offering price is less than $5 million. The... Read MoreGoing Public Lawyer
  • The SEC’s Periodic Reporting Obligations

    28 Sep 2014 | 9:00 pm
    Going Public LawyerSecurities Lawyer 101 Blog Once the staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) declares a company’s registration statement on Form S-1 effective under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the “1933 Act”), the registration statement is in force and the company may offer and sell the registered securities described therein. At that time, the company filing the registration statement... Read MoreGoing Public Lawyer
  • The SEC’s XBRL Interactive Data l Securities Lawyer 101

    28 Sep 2014 | 9:00 pm
    Going Public LawyerSecurities Lawyer 101 Blog The use of eXtensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL) interactive data is intended to improve the accessibility of financial information to investors by making the information inexpensive and easier to use.  XBRL interactive data uses a standardized set of tags to consistently identify data in embedded text.  Issuers must identify each piece of data in its financial statements according to... Read MoreGoing Public Lawyer
  • How Small Is a Smaller Reporting Company?

    28 Sep 2014 | 6:45 am
    Going Public LawyerSecurities Lawyer 101 Blog The Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) adopted a system of disclosure rules for issuers who fall into the category of a smaller reporting company.   The “smaller reporting company” category includes generally, companies that enter the SEC reporting system with less than $75 million in common equity public float.  Companies that are unable to calculate... Read MoreGoing Public Lawyer
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    Employment News

  • EEOC Updates Guidelines on Pregnancy Discrimination

    3 Sep 2014 | 8:00 am
    According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), a spike in pregnancy discrimination cases prompted the agency to update its guidelines for the first time in 30 years. Failure to provide accommodations, adjust work duties, or forcing a woman into leave could be construed as discrimination. The purpose of the agency’s update is to clarify the law for employers and to curb future instances of discrimination.Read more about EEOC Updates Guidelines on Pregnancy Discrimination
  • Medical Marijuana and Employee Drug Testing

    30 Aug 2014 | 4:07 am
    Minnesota recently became the 23rd state to legalize medical marijuana, effective May 30, 2014.  The new law is a breakthrough for advocates and could improve opportunities for treatment, pain management, and research. It may however create issues for employers and employees in “drug-free” workplaces. What are employee rights to medical marijuana use and what does the new law mean for compliance under the Minnesota Drug and Alcohol Testing in the Workplace Act (DATWA)?Read more about Medical Marijuana and Employee Drug Testing
  • Is Flirting Sexual Harassment?

    21 Jul 2014 | 9:28 am
    Victims of sexual harassment usually don’t need to be told when the line was crossed. Flirting is not unusual in the workplace but can become harassing behavior when it develops into behavior that is unwelcome, has a negative impact on an employee’s performance or creates a hostile work environment.  When workplace banter shifts to sexual harassment, victims may feel bullied, abused and pressured by fellow employees or a supervisor.Read more about Is Flirting Sexual Harassment?
  • Wanta Quoted in Minnesota Lawyer

    3 Jul 2014 | 9:49 am
    Employment law attorney Shawn Wanta was quoted in a June 19t, 2014 Minnesota Lawyer article, “Wage and hour battles on the rise.” The article discusses the rise in the number wage and hour claims being brought forward under state laws and the Fair Labor Standards Act over the past decade. These claims deal with the alleged theft of employee wages through forcing employees to work off the clock, shaving time off of time cards, not paying overtime, and denying mandated breaks.Read more about Wanta Quoted in Minnesota Lawyer
  • MHRA Amended with Right to Jury Trial

    30 Jun 2014 | 9:28 am
    Earlier this year, Governor Dayton signed Senate File 2322 into law, an amendment to the Minnesota Human Rights Act, ensuring that victims of discrimination or retaliation are entitled to a jury by their peers. The bill provides that victims of discrimination in employment, housing, education or other areas, will have the right to a jury trial in cases brought in state court beginning in August of 2014.Read more about MHRA Amended with Right to Jury Trial
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    Dallas Justice » Criminal Law Blog

  • Creepshot Law Held Unconstitutional: New Cases in Texas Child Pornography Defense

    Michael Lowe
    24 Sep 2014 | 2:41 pm
    The prosecution of child pornography cases just got a bit harder here in Texas after the highest criminal court in the state, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, issued its opinion last week regarding photographs taken of children in public places here. The court ruled that “upskirt” photographs are not illegal, no matter how disturbing they may be to some, and that the Texas law making them illegal, the “anti-creepshot“ law, is unconstitutionally violative of the photographer’s free speech and freedom of expression. The First Amendment states “Congress shall make no law . .
  • More Texas DWI Convictions Will Be Overturned Because of Warrantless Blood Draws

    Michael Lowe
    16 Sep 2014 | 5:04 pm
    Over in Tyler, somebody had a very good day recently – specifically, Samuel Gentry who saw his lawyer win a DWI appeal before the Tyler Court of Appeals and get his 3d DWI conviction overturned along with the Life Sentence he was serving.     Warrantless Blood Draw in DWI Case What happened? The police did a blood test on Samuel Gentry back in 2012 and then arrested him for driving while intoxicated without getting a search warrant from a judge for taking his blood. That’s called a “warrantless blood draw” and that’s the problem for the prosecution now.  Of course, in…
  • Ray Rice and When Couples Get Violent: Felony Charges in Dating and Marriage

    Michael Lowe
    10 Sep 2014 | 1:10 pm
    Things exploded on the web this week when published a video caught by a hotel elevator cam of NFL star Ray Rice of the Baltimore Ravens punching his fiance (now his wife) Janay Palmer so hard that she fell unconscious to the floor of the elevator. Things only got worse as the video shows Rice dragging Palmer out of the elevator and leaving her laying there, her legs still halfway in the elevator, her torso laid out on what appears to be lobby floor. Baltimore Ravens’ Ray Rice Watch the video here. It’s a shocking bit of footage, and it’s caused all sorts of reaction in this…
  • Texas Police Can Get Your Phone Records From Phone Company Without a Warrant: Ford v. State

    Michael Lowe
    3 Sep 2014 | 2:06 pm
    This week, there’s lots of concern about cell phone security and phone privacy rights. Why? Thousands of celebrity nude photos have been posted online by a hacker for all to see (with the promise of more to come). Now the FBI has begun investigating how the cell phone pix were stolen (hacked) from private accounts on the cloud and published. Over 100 celebrities like Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton are said to be victims of their private phone data being accessed by a stranger. Criminal charges may be made against the hacker in this case, if he can be found. Meanwhile, what’s not making…
  • Marijuana Tourism and Texas: The Lesson of Jacob Lavoro

    Michael Lowe
    27 Aug 2014 | 12:26 pm
    As marijuana product lines flourish and recreational marijuana is legalized in nearby Colorado, what does it mean to Dallas? Serious charges in you’re caught with pot in any form: Texas law has not changed. Today, nineteen year old Jacob Lavoro and his family got some great news: the Williamson County District Attorney decided to drop the 1st Degree felony drug charges that were filed against Lavoro. The national news coverage of the two-count indictment against the teenager over some hemp oil brownies may have influenced things here. The petition presented to the prosecution, with over…
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    South Florida Personal Injury Lawyers Blog

  • Orlando Court Refuses to Dismiss Couple’s Negligence Lawsuit Against Cruise Ship Owner

    Friedman, Rodman & Frank, P.A.
    26 Sep 2014 | 12:02 pm
    In Shore v. Magical Cruise Co., Ltd., a couple set sail on a themed cruise ship. While aboard the vessel, the wife apparently suffered a staphylococcal infection following a treatment in the ship’s spa. In addition, the husband allegedly became ill as well. After the couple returned from their cruise, they filed a negligence, strict liability, and loss of consortium lawsuit in the Middle District of Florida against the owner of the cruise ship and the operator of the spa where the wife was purportedly injured. In response to the couple’s lawsuit, the defendants argued that the couple…
  • Miami Federal Court Holds Statute of Limitations Expired in Defective Drug Lawsuit

    Friedman, Rodman & Frank, P.A.
    23 Sep 2014 | 12:01 pm
    In Plascencia v. GlaxoSmithKline, LLC, a Florida woman filed a products liability action against a drug manufacturer on behalf of her minor child and herself in 2012. According to the woman’s complaint, she ingested an anti-depressant medication that was manufactured by the drug company during the first six weeks of her pregnancy. As a result, the woman alleged her child was born in 1996 with numerous heart defects. In December 1997, the woman’s primary care physician noted in her medical record that the child’s heart condition was “apparently due to” his mother’s use of the…
  • Florida’s Third District Refuses to Award Costs and Attorney’s Fees in Bungled Premises Liability Case: Design Home Remodeling Corp. v. Santana

    Friedman, Rodman & Frank, P.A.
    19 Sep 2014 | 11:59 am
    In Design Home Remodeling Corp. v. Santana, a man was apparently injured when he fell while visiting a property owned by a condominium association. About 18 months later, the man and his wife filed a premises liability lawsuit against the association. As part of his complaint, the man alleged the association negligently maintained the property. The association responded by arguing a non-party was responsible for any negligent maintenance that existed on the property. The couple then amended their complaint to add the non-party as a defendant in the premises liability lawsuit. The couple also…
  • Florida Appellate Court Overturns Dismissal in Uninsured Motorist Coverage Dispute: Gallon v. GEICO General Insurance Co.

    Friedman, Rodman & Frank, P.A.
    16 Sep 2014 | 11:57 am
    In Gallon v. GEICO General Insurance Co., a man was injured in a one-car motor vehicle collision while riding as a passenger in a woman’s automobile. The man was thrown from the car and reportedly sustained serious harm as a result of the traffic wreck. At the time of the incident, the driver carried uninsured motorist (UM) coverage on her vehicle. Following the accident, the man made a claim with the driver’s insurer for UM benefits. The insurance company claimed that the woman’s UM policy limits were $50,000 per individual. The man argued that he was entitled to receive up to…
  • Florida Appeals Court Certifies Bad Faith Insurance Claim Question to Supreme Court: Boozer v. Stalley

    Friedman, Rodman & Frank, P.A.
    12 Sep 2014 | 7:41 am
    Florida’s Fifth District Court of Appeals has certified a question of law to the Supreme Court of Florida in a bad faith insurance dispute. In Boozer v. Stalley, a boy was hurt in a motor vehicle collision that was apparently caused by a woman who was covered by two automobile insurance policies issued by related insurers. Following the collision, the guardian of the boy filed a negligence lawsuit against the woman, and her insurer secured an attorney to represent her. Following trial, jurors awarded the boy more than $11 million in damages. The insurance company paid the policy limits of…
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    Massachusetts Social Security Disability Lawyers Blog

  • Welsh v. Colvin: On the SSDI Claim Process

    30 Sep 2014 | 2:06 am
    Welsh v. Colvin, an appeal from the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, involves a claimant who applied for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits from the United States Social Security Administration (SSA). The SSA denied his applications for benefits. After the SSA denied his initial application, he appealed that decision. As an experienced SSDI attorney in Massachusetts can explain, the SSA routinely denies far more than half of all new applications almost as a matter of course. Once receiving an initial denial,…
  • Whitman v. Colvin: SSDI Benefits and a Total Disability Rating

    26 Sep 2014 | 2:11 am
    In Whitman v. Colvin, an appeal from the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, claimant filed an application for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits under Title II of the United States Social Security Act. Our SSDI lawyers in Boston understand that obtaining a rating of total disability may require extensive litigation on behalf of a claimant. Claimant asserted that he became disabled in 2007 as result of a degenerative disease affecting his spinal column and a degenerative disease in the joint of one of his thumbs. Claimant initially reported his condition…
  • Hendron v. Colvin: SSDI Cases and the Standard of Review by Appellate Courts

    22 Sep 2014 | 1:52 am
    Hendron v. Colvin, a case from the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, involved a claimant who had applied three times for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits from the United States Social Security Administration (SSA). Claimant filed her first application in 1999, and it was denied based upon a lack of sufficient evidence that she was disabled. The legal term for this type of denial is an "on the merits" denial. Her second application was filed in 2001, and it was denied on grounds of res judicata. An experienced Boston SSDI lawyer can explain that res…
  • Garrison v. Colvin - ALJ Rejection of SSDI Claim Must be Rooted in Facts

    18 Sep 2014 | 4:01 am
    Administrative law judges overseeing Social Security Disability Insurance benefits claims do have a fair amount of discretion in determination of cases. They can decide whether certain expert witnesses deserve more credence than others, if some evidence should be discounted and whether they find the claimant to be believable. However, our Boston Social Security Disability Insurance attorneys recognize that despite the sometimes subjective nature of these proceedings, there is an important check on these powers in the form of the appellate courts. If the ALJ does not provide adequate reasoning…
  • Scrogham v. Colvin - Multiple Ailments in SSDI Case

    14 Sep 2014 | 3:58 am
    Unless an applicant seeking Social Security disability insurance benefits has a listed condition with severity that is recognized by the administration, he or she can expect to fight in order to secure benefits. This does not mean one is ineligible. It just means the determination is sometimes subjective, and the help of an experienced SSDI attorney in Boston can make all the difference. What we know for sure is that in some cases, a person may suffer from a multitude of ailments that, individually, would not meet the high bar of proof necessary to show benefits should be awarded. However,…
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    Austin Immigration Lawyer Blog

  • Attorney General, Obama Administration at Odds Regarding Legal Representation for Migrants

    24 Sep 2014 | 8:12 am
    There are a number of issues that fall under the larger issue of immigration policy in the United States but one that has garnered a particularly divisive brand of attention over the last several months is that of unaccompanied children from Central American countries crossing the US-Mexico border. Attorney General Eric Holder has been making the argument for the provision of legal counsel for such minors and highlighted that argument in a speech he gave recently to the Hispanic National Bar Association. Holder stated, among other things, that while the constitution of the United States may…
  • Deportation Numbers Lowest in Seven Years

    22 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    According to a report generated by the United States Department of Homeland Security, the number of illegal immigrants who have been deported has dropped by almost 20 percent since 2007. The news comes as President Obama continues to delay taking action on immigration reform and thereby allowing for deportation numbers to keep dropping. During the ten months between early October and late July, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency deported just over 258,600 undocumented immigrants compared to just over 320,000 during the same period the year before. The year before that, there were…
  • California Voters Support Legalization for Undocumented Immigrants

    17 Sep 2014 | 5:40 am
    Voters in the state of California who participated in a survey conducted by the Los Angeles Times and the University of Southern California showed that they would adamantly support any measure that would provide the nation's 12 million undocumented immigrants a means of becoming legal citizens. That works out to almost three out of every four voters surveyed who favors a major overhaul of the current federal immigration policy that would favor unauthorized immigrants living in the United States. Unaccompanied Children Still a Serious Issue Despite the overwhelming support of legalization…
  • Immigration Reform is Stagnant as November Elections Approach

    15 Sep 2014 | 4:44 am
    For political officials as well as observers, immigration reform is likely to become a defining issue for the Republican Party in the near and distant future. This is particularly true in states like Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas as well as in non-border states like Colorado, all of which have a significant Hispanic population. But while that is certainly the conventional expectation, it has not proven to be the case during the current midterm cycle. Many state representatives claim that their constituents are far more likely to be concerned about other issues like the nation's economic woes…
  • Number of Families and Unaccompanied Children Crossing US-Mexico Border Declining

    9 Sep 2014 | 3:42 pm
    For the better part of 2014 the southern border of the United States was being inundated with unaccompanied minors crossing over into the country, many of them having made the unimaginably long and arduous trek from Central American countries through the Mexican desert. But over the last two months there has been a gradual decline in their numbers, according to officials at the US Department of Homeland Security. The announcement, which came this week, stated that the number of youth immigrants who have crossed the US-Mexico border without adult accompaniment is the lowest it has been since…
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    Health Care Law Blog

  • Physician Practices: Recent Survey Reviews the Effects of Expanded Patient Access

    24 Sep 2014 | 4:13 am
    A well-intended objective of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is to improve patient access to doctors. Sometimes this objective is artfully stated as "better" access to care, rather than "increased" access to care, perhaps to acknowledge the reality that as more patients become insured via the ACA, there may actually be less access to physicians. "Better" access may therefore be an argument that, even as an existing physician shortage worsens, new alternatives under the ACA nonetheless improve access to care for the population as a whole. For sure, millions of Americans have enrolled in new…
  • Health Care Fraud Report: OIG Alert Regarding Laboratory Payments to Referring Physicians

    16 Sep 2014 | 2:57 pm
    Clinical laboratory payments to physicians in excess of the fair market value of services provided or that correlate to the volume or value of referrals can constitute health care fraud and trigger very serious civil and criminal penalties. The Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Inspector General (OIG) recently issued a Special Fraud Alert (the "Alert") addressing lab compensation to referring doctors and medical practices for blood specimen collection, processing and packaging, and for submitting patient data to a registry or database. Our Georgia health care law firm…
  • Affordable Care Act Expansion of Community Health Centers: Endeavoring to Ensure Insurance "Coverage" Equates to Health Care "Access"

    29 Aug 2014 | 7:34 am
    A premise of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is to provide "affordable coverage" to more Americans with the idea being that newly insured individuals and families will have enhanced "access" to quality health care. Whitehouse Policy Snapshot. Particularly important is access to primary care, the means by which millions of Americans can obtain preventive care and better wellness as a way to avoid more expensive health care treatment in, for example, an emergency room. Following enactment of the ACA, there has been a strong push for previously uninsured Americans to obtain insurance via the new…
  • Health Care Fraud Report: Recent Federal Indictment of Cardiologist for Alleged Overbilling of Medicare

    23 Aug 2014 | 4:33 am
    On August 21, 2014, the United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio, Stephen D. Dettelbach, together with representatives of the FBI and OIG, announced the indictment of a Westlake, Ohio Cardiologist for alleged health care fraud. The cardiologist is alleged to have overbilled Medicare and private insurers by approximately $7.2 million. About $1.5 million of the alleged overbillings was actually paid. Alleged Medicare Fraud The indictment alleges that Dr. Harold Persaud, board certified in internal medicine and cardiovascular disease, maintained a private medical practice in…
  • Medicare Issues for Direct Pay and Concierge Practices

    14 Aug 2014 | 9:04 am
    The strain of health care reform and third-party-payer bureaucracy will likely continue to push physicians towards non-traditional business models for practicing medicine. This is especially true for non-specialists. As the trend of physicians to find viable practice model alternatives grows, it is widely expected that the number of direct pay and concierge physician practices will increase significantly. Atlanta Medical Practice and Health Care Law Firm Our health care law practice is particularly interested in direct pay and concierge medicine legal issues. While the particulars may vary,…
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    Pleasanton Business & Commercial Law Blog

  • New California Law Prohibits Homeowner Associations from Penalizing Homeowners Who Do Not Water Their Lawns During Droughts

    30 Sep 2014 | 1:17 pm
    California is experiencing a severe drought, which has resulted in substantial restrictions on water usage. This has led to a wide range of responses from homeowners looking to conserve water in regard to their landscaping. Some homeowners are replacing their lawns with hardier plants, gravel or sand, and other methods of xeriscaping. Other homeowners are simply allowing their lawns to go brown. A few homeowner associations (HOAs) around the state, however, have continued to enforce rules regarding lawn care and maintenance. HOAs can enforce their own rules, provided that they do not conflict…
  • Judge Rules that NCAA Rules Restricting Football and Basketball Players' Compensation Violate Antitrust Law

    15 Sep 2014 | 11:24 am
    A federal judge in Oakland, California ruled in favor of a class of college athletes in a lawsuit against the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), finding that certain NCAA rules limiting compensation paid to players violated federal antitrust laws. O'Bannon, et al v. NCAA, No. 4:09-cv-03329, FFCL (N.D. Cal., Aug. 8, 2014). The dispute centered around the use of players' likenesses by the NCAA and the Collegiate Licensing Company (CLC), which handles trademark licensing and marketing for the NCAA, without obtaining players' permission or compensating them. The NCAA has faced…
  • Why Businesses Should Resist Any Temptation to Create Fake Online Reviews

    29 Aug 2014 | 1:34 pm
    Consumers rely on online reviews to a significant degree in making decisions about products and services. Websites like Yelp host reviews for thousands of businesses and are visited by millions of users. Whereas reviews of businesses were once primarily left to professional writers, the internet has enabled nearly anyone with an internet connection to post information about their experiences. These reviews can have a direct impact, positive or negative, on a business' revenue. In this environment, some businesses may try to boost their own online standing by posting positive reviews about…
  • Benefit Corporations Enable California Business Owners to Serve the Public Good

    15 Aug 2014 | 4:52 pm
    The "one and only social responsibility of business," according to the Nobel Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman, is "to increase its profits so long as it stays within the rules of the game." Making money is the goal is just about any for-profit business, but a common criticism of much of American business is that acting to serve its own ends often fails to benefit society. Some business owners, in addition to making a profit, might want to work towards goals that have a social, economic, or environmental benefit. Several states, including California, have enacted laws allowing the…
  • Ninth Circuit Rules in Favor of Video-Rental Company in Lawsuit Alleging Violations of California Privacy Law

    31 Jul 2014 | 1:02 pm
    New technologies are automating some transactions that once involved a customer and a merchant meeting face-to-face. As always, the law is not quite keeping pace with the latest developments, which leads to conflicts that the courts must resolve. California's Song-Beverly Credit Card Act, Cal. Civ. Code § 1747 et seq., protects consumers in part by prohibiting anyone accepting credit card payments from requiring disclosure of personal information. This has applied to in-person credit card transactions for years, but courts have recently ruled that it does not apply to certain online…
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  • Nassau County Speed Camera Locations Revealed

    Matthew Weiss
    4 Sep 2014 | 1:22 pm
    Nassau County recently launched its speed cameras program.  In total, 56 speed cameras will be installed by October, one in each of Nassau’s school districts.  Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano predicts that the cameras will generate an estimated $25+ million each year. By law, the cameras can only operate during public school hours (plus an hour before and after school) along with a half-hour before, during and after school events.  Each violation of 10 mph or more over the posted speed limit will carry a $50 fine, and there will be a $25 penalty for failure to pay (meaning a…
  • New York’s Red Light Camera Fines Among The Lowest In Country

    Matthew Weiss
    20 Aug 2014 | 6:45 am
    While no one likes receiving a red light camera ticket, there is one good thing about them.  In New York, they carry one of the lowest fines in the county … $50.00.  Compare this figure to other states in the chart below.   The other goods news is that they carry 0 points and do not affect your insurance rates. With that said, disobeying a red light is a very dangerous violation.  Motorists depend on other drivers to obey lights so that they can enter intersections without fear of being T-boned.  So whenever you approaching a changing light, err on the side of caution for…
  • Can An Out-Of-State Driver Take New York’s Driver Safety Class?

    Matthew Weiss
    6 Aug 2014 | 6:50 am
    We recently had a Florida resident that completed the New York defensive driving course.  He had a point problem in New York and, therefore, wanted to ensure that he received the appropriate credit for the class (i.e., that he received 4 points off his NY record). Our law office contacted the course provider who advised it will notify DMV only if the person has a New York Motorist ID number.  The trick is that, for an out-of-state motorist to have a New York Motorist ID number, he or she must first be convicted of, at least, one moving violation.  Upon conviction to a first offense,…
  • Nassau County Launches Speed Camera Program

    Matthew Weiss
    29 Jul 2014 | 6:43 am
    Last week, Nassau County started installing speed cameras within local school zones.  The first three schools to receive these devices are Plainedge Middle School in Bethpage, Dutch Lane Elementary in Hicksville and Abbey Lane School in Levittown.  All three schools (which are open for summer school), each received a “mobile unit” — an unmarked van equipped with two cameras and a radar machine. In total, 56 speed cameras will be installed by October, one in each of Nassau’s school districts.  Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano predicts that the cameras will…
  • (Traffic) Trial By Combat

    Matthew Weiss
    28 May 2014 | 6:38 am
    I’m a big Games of Thrones fan and am excited to see how Tyrion’s “trial by combat” works out this week.   I therefore could not resist sharing one motorist’s attempt to resolve his case using this ancient Medieval procedure. Accordingly to Wikipedia:  Trial by combat is “a method of Germanic law to settle accusations in the absence of witnesses or a confession in which two parties in dispute fought in single combat; the winner of the fight was proclaimed to be right. In essence, it was a judicially sanctioned duel. It remained in use throughout the…
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    Spencers Solicitors Blog

  • Fraudulent claims - just how big an issue are they?

    Spencers Solicitors
    29 Sep 2014 | 7:49 am
    In my last blog I touched on the issue of fraudulent claims, which can regularly be seen hitting the British headlines - often alongside telling photographs of supposedly injured claimants obliviously pursuing high-octane activities. In tackling this I am most certainly in favour of ensuring that those fraudulently pursuing compensation or seeking to recover more compensation than they are entitled to are stopped. However claiming that this is a plague of modern times, tied up in accusations of 'compensation culture', is somewhat misguided. According to information released by Aviva in 2011,…
  • Spencers & Roadpeace - working together to support road crash victims

    Spencers Solicitors
    18 Sep 2014 | 3:55 am
    Spencers Solicitors are pleased to announce their new role as a corporate supporter for RoadPeace, the national charity for road crash victims. RoadPeace works directly with those bereaved or injured through road crashes, providing much needed support and ensuring the trauma they suffer is acknowledged and justice achieved. They also campaign tirelessly for road danger reduction and fight to ensure adequate support services exist for victims and their loved ones, both in the immediate aftermath of road death or injury, and in the face of any legal obstacles. Through their work they act to…
  • 20 mph residential road limit: hindrance or life saver?

    Spencers Solicitors
    12 Sep 2014 | 6:43 am
    August marked the start of Manchester's switch to 20 mph speed limits across many of its residential areas. One third of the city's roads, equalling over 1,100 streets and 111 miles, have been turned into 20 mph zone's, with the possibility that all of Manchester's residential areas will follow suit. Along with similar actions around the UK, this move has left people wondering if a 20 mph limit should be in place on every residential road in the country. Safety is key The main argument for the reduced speed limit is that it increases road safety in areas where people live. By reducing vehicle…
  • Breaking down the myths of 'Compensation Culture'

    Spencers Solicitors
    5 Sep 2014 | 3:55 am
    With sensational headlines such as 'compensation-itis' and 'compensation culture out of control', we are likely to have caught wind of the 'compensation culture' sweeping across Britain. But are these headlines simply fuelling a backlash against a misconception, and is there any hard evidence to back up the existence of a compensation culture? Many believe the tendency to claim compensation stems from the USA where large damages payouts and expensive law suits have made headlines for years. In Britain, a rise in solicitors publicly offering American style 'no win no fee' services have often…
  • Spencers Solicitors shortlisted for Law Society Excellence Award

    Spencers Solicitors
    28 Aug 2014 | 1:57 am
    Law firm Spencers Solicitors has been shortlisted as a finalist in the prestigious Law Society Excellence Awards, beating competition from across the UK. Spencers, whose offices are located in Chesterfield, Derbyshire were nominated in the category for 'Excellence in Practice Management', and officially confirmed as finalists on 6th August 2014. The category was open to law firms who have achieved the Law Society's Lexcel Accredited status, their practice management standard only awarded to those firms meeting the highest standard of client care, legal case handling and risk management. Out…
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    White Plains Personal Injury Lawyer Blog


    25 Sep 2014 | 2:07 pm
    According to an article by Larry Copeland in the USA Today for The Journal News in May, 2014, highway crashes create an enormous toll on the lives of Americans. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration calculates that the annual price tag for these crashes are $871 billion in economic losses in 2010. This number includes $277 billion in economic costs ($900 per person in the USA) and $594 billion in societal harm from loss of life and the pain and decreased quality of life from the injuries. The purpose of this article points out that the staggering societal costs of accidents…

    18 Sep 2014 | 2:04 pm
    In an article by Leif Skodnick in The Westchester County Business Journal, he points out that even with an increase in inventory, home sales were down for the second quarter of 2014. Westchester is one of the four counties for which Hudson Gateway tracks data. They conclude that there has been a 12% overall drop in home sales in the second quarter of 2014 as compared to 2013, and a 13.5% drop in sales of single family homes. Home prices stayed relatively stable in Westchester with a median sale price of $651,250 in 2014, just a 0.2% increase over 2013. Douglas Elliman in Katonah states they…

    29 Aug 2014 | 7:57 am
    In an article in USA Today, The Journal News on Friday, August 22, 2014 by Paul Davidson stated existing home sales climbed last month to their fastest pace since September 2013, which is evidence that the housing markets is bouncing back after a sluggish first half of the year. Sales rose 2.4% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.15 million and has increased for four straight months, according to the National Association of Realtors. The total beat analysts' estimates although sales remain 4.3% below 2013. The Chief Economist, Lawrence Yun attributed the solid sales to growing housing…

    29 Aug 2014 | 7:53 am
    In an article in USA Today, the Journal News on August 10, 2014 by John Siniff relates his own accident with a woman who was on her cell phone. He relates statistics that show how bad things have gotten. About 660,000 drivers in the USA are using hand held cell phones while driving at any moment during day light hours. This number has held steady since 2010. More than half of drivers, 55% admit to using a mobile phone at least some of the time while driving. 3,328 people died in crashes from cell phone usage in 2012 and 421,000 were injured. It is now illegal to text while driving in every…

    12 Aug 2014 | 9:41 am
    In a series of articles, The Journal News has reported in July & August, 2014, a significant increase in job growth. In USA Today, The Journal News on July 31, 2014 published an article "U.S. Economy Gains Steam" after five years of slow growth from the recession ending in 2009. The United States economy is reaching "take off speed". In July, 2014, a number of economic data was released. The nation's economy grew at a 4% yearly rate. The economy's dismal first quarter of 2014, battered by winter, was less of a disaster than first reported. The private sector added more than 200,000 jobs for…
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    Pinellas County Florida Criminal Lawyer Blog

  • Florida Appeals Court Upholds Search Warrant for Woman’s Home, Despite Delay, Omitted Information

    Pawuk & Pawuk, P.A.
    30 Sep 2014 | 9:39 am
    One of the constitution’s most basic protections is citizens’ right to be secure in their homes. That’s why the law imposes several hurdles for the issuance and execution of a search warrant for a person’s home. In one recent case, the 2d District Court of Appeal allowed a warrant to stand, ruling that the police presented enough proof to allow a warrant to issue, and that the 28-day delay prior to the warrant’s issuance was not so long as to make the warrant invalid. In the case, police began pursuing Artesha Williams after a confidential informant told them…
  • Judge Doesn’t Need Proof of Dept. of Corrections’ Inability to Meet Man’s Medical Needs to Issue Lesser Sentence

    Pawuk & Pawuk, P.A.
    17 Sep 2014 | 7:31 am
    While Florida’s criminal sentencing guidelines exist to help promote fairness, the law gives judges discretion to issue lesser penalties when the sentence prescribed by the guidelines does not meet the ends of justice. That can be especially true when the accused person suffers from serious mental or physical problems. In one such recent case, the Florida Supreme Court weighed in to confirm that courts do not have to make findings that the needed medical care is unavailable through the corrections system in order to impose a lesser sentence based upon that person’s medical…
  • Police Officer’s Failure to Return ID, Wallet Changed Encounter from Voluntary to Unlawful Detainment

    Pawuk & Pawuk, P.A.
    12 Sep 2014 | 9:04 am
    In any criminal trial, the state can present only the evidence that it seized lawfully. If a police officer conducts a warrantless search without reasonable suspicion that the person he or she is searching has done something wrong, that is an illegal search, and anything discovered as part of that search is inadmissible at trial. Since a police officer failed to follow the rules in his encounter with a teenage pedestrian, the 2d District Court of Appeal recently decided that the drugs the officer located in the teen’s pants pocket were illegally obtained and should have been excluded…
  • Appeals Court Rejects State’s Overcharging Man Who Solicited Teen for Sex

    Pawuk & Pawuk, P.A.
    5 Sep 2014 | 9:41 am
    A man charged with attempted sexual activity with a minor successfully appealed his conviction because the state charged the man with the wrong crime. The man’s act of verbally offering a teenage boy money for sex possibly amounted to an illegal act, but it was not enough to show a criminal attempt. Verbal invitations to have sex, by themselves, are not sufficiently overt acts to meet the legal standard for criminal attempt and, since the state’s proof consisted only of a verbal offer, the 2d District Court of Appeal ordered the reversal of the man’s conviction. Roberto…
  • Trial Court Erred in Setting Aside Alleged Robber’s Negotiated Plea

    Pawuk & Pawuk, P.A.
    22 Aug 2014 | 9:16 am
    One of the important elements of the criminal justice system is the ability of attorneys for the prosecution and attorneys representing the accused to engage in negotiations to settle the outcome of the case. Once a trial court accepts a negotiated plea arrangement, it may set aside that adjudication and sentence if legal cause exists, which occurs only in very narrow circumstances. In the case of one man accused of robbery, a Pinellas County trial court set aside the man’s negotiated plea without proper legal cause, leading the 2nd District Court of Appeal to reverse the ruling. Cortez…
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    Oakland Employment Lawyer Blog

  • San Francisco Official Wants to Make Equal Pay a Law

    Liberty Law
    29 Sep 2014 | 11:09 am
    According to the White House, in the U.S. women on average get paid about 77 cents for every dollar earned by a man. Under federal and state law, it’s illegal to discriminate against a person in the workplace on the basis of sex. Although women can legally be paid less than men, it must be for a reason – less experience, a less demanding position, worse performance, etc. A woman cannot legally be paid less than a man simply because she is a woman. However, it can be difficult to hold employers legally liable for sex discrimination at work in the area of pay, because it can be hard for…
  • Doctor’s Unethical Behavior may have Contributed to Joan Rivers’ Death

    Liberty Law
    25 Sep 2014 | 12:13 pm
    The negligent and unethical behavior of a New York doctor may have resulted in the death of beloved comedian Joan Rivers. Rivers visited an endoscopy clinic late last month for a scheduled endoscopy. An endoscopy involves the insertion of a camera down the throat, and was intended to diagnose Rivers’ sore throat and hoarse voice. It was performed under general anesthesia. After the endoscopy was performed, a biopsy of Rivers’ vocal cords was done without her prior consent by the comedian’s personal doctor, according to a source. Under law, the doctor was not certified by the clinic to…
  • Oakland Raiderettes Wages-Related Lawsuit Settled for $1.25 Million

    Liberty Law
    22 Sep 2014 | 12:10 pm
    In January of this year, two former cheerleaders filed a lawsuit against the Oakland Raiders, alleging that they broke a variety of state laws, including failing to pay the Raiderettes minimum wage, withholding wages for months until the end of the season, and failing to reimburse cheerleaders for business expenses. The Raiderettes recently agreed to a $1.25 million settlement, which must be approved by the court before it is final. Prior to the lawsuit, Raiderettes earned $125 per game, which was paid at the end of the season in a lump sum. They were responsible for paying their own expenses…
  • PG&E Fined $1.4 Billion for San Francisco Pipeline Explosion

    Liberty Law
    18 Sep 2014 | 4:40 am
    California regulatory judges have imposed a $1.4 billion fine against Pacific Gas & Electric. The fine stems from a 2010 gas pipeline explosion in San Bruno, a San Francisco suburb. The fine is said to be the largest fine ever issued by the California Public Utilities Commission. PG&E, which is California’s largest utility, can appeal the fine. The fine stemmed from the deadliest utility disaster in California in decades. A 30 inch natural-gas line, which was installed in 1956, ruptured in September of 2010. It destroyed over three dozen homes. The explosion was so strong that…
  • Protestors Gather in San Francisco’s Apple Store to Protest Employment Practices

    Liberty Law
    15 Sep 2014 | 4:38 am
    Late last month, protestors gathered at Apple’s flagship retail store in San Francisco. Roughly 50 protestors staged a sit-in inside the store for an hour. The protestors were able to block the main entrance, forcing customers to enter through a side door.  Twelve of those who were gathered were arrested for unlawful assembly. The protestors reportedly belong to the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), which claimed that Apple regularly underpays its contractors, including security guards. It also claimed that Apple hires contractors for part-time jobs in order to avoid paying…
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    Sonoma County Criminal Lawyer Blog

  • Man Arrested for Santa Rosa Murder After Drug Deal Gone Bad

    17 Sep 2014 | 8:23 pm
    Earlier this week in Santa Rosa, a 35-year-old man was arrested and charged with first-degree murder for his involvement in the killing of a 21-year-old man in what police are describing as a drug deal gone bad. According to a report by the Press Democrat, the killing took place at the Vagabond Inn on Cleveland Avenue. Allegedly, the defendant and his accomplice showed up at the hotel room to purchase a large quantity of marijuana from the victim and his partner. For whatever reason, the defendant shot the victim several times in the torso during the deal and then left with the marijuana.
  • Mysterious Vigilantes Destroying Marijuana Crops and Threatening Growers

    4 Sep 2014 | 10:48 am
    Recently in Mendocino County, a number of accounts have surfaced that a group of unnamed men have been dropping from helicopters into marijuana fields and destroying the crops and threatening the growers. According to a report by the Press Democrat, more than 100 people recently attended a meeting with Mendocino County Sheriff, Tom Allman, about the mystery men. Some are suggesting that the men are a part of a drug cartel that is attempting to decrease the supply of marijuana in order to keep prices for the crop high. Others are suggesting that it may be a group of people who, for one reason…
  • Four Men Arrested After Authorities Bust Marijuana Growing Operation

    18 Aug 2014 | 1:48 pm
    Earlier this month in Austin Creek State Recreational Area, park rangers and Fish and Wildlife officers busted four men in relation to a small-to-medium-sized marijuana grow operation. According to a report by the Press Democrat, park rangers' suspicions arose when they noticed unusual materials around the park, including empty food containers, sleeping bags, lawn chairs, and empty ammunition casings. Evidently, five men were involved in the illegal grow operation that took place in a very remote part of the State Park. Authorities say that the operation was so remote that it was not in a…
  • Three Men Arrested in Santa Rosa Drug Bust

    4 Aug 2014 | 8:43 pm
    Earlier this month in Santa Rosa, two men were arrested on drug charges when officers stopped their vehicle near Coddington Mall. According to a report by, as part of the arrest, officers executed search warrants on the home where the men lived. Once at their home, officers uncovered a large supply of drugs and other evidence of drug dealing, including: 2.8 pounds of methamphetamine, 1.1 pounds of cocaine, 13.9 pounds of marijuana, 19 marijuana plants, and $14,000 in cash and three vehicles. Law enforcement estimates the street value of the methamphetamine alone was over $20,000.
  • Northern California Man Charged for Starting Wildfire While Growing Marijuana

    18 Jul 2014 | 10:38 am
    Earlier this month, a 27-year-old man was charged with marijuana cultivation and with recklessly starting a fire in northern California. According to a report by the Guardian, the man's farm in Shasta County caught fire when the exhaust from his truck sparked some dry grass, igniting the entire field. Evidently, the fire has reached a size of up to 3,000 acres and has required the assistance of over 1,000 emergency firefighters. As of Sunday, July 13, the blaze was only 10% under control. Currently the fire is threatening 15 homes and dozens of other structures. Many residents were forced to…
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    Tampa Bay Injury Attorney Blog

  • Tampa Teacher Arrested for Driving the Wrong Way Near Interstate 75

    Whittel & Melton, LLC
    23 Sep 2014 | 9:38 am
    A Tampa high school teacher was arrested on Sunday for driving the wrong way near I-75, according to troopers. Reports indicate that the Florida Highway Patrol received a call around 3:50 a.m. regarding a wrong-way driver on State Road 618 near 22nd Street. Troopers were told a gold 2001 Saturn was traveling eastbound in the westbound lanes and would eventually turn southbound in the northbound lanes of I-75. A trooper arrested the 24-year-old teacher as he exited at the northbound Gibsonton Drive entrance ramp. The social studies teacher was charged with driving under the influence and…
  • Student Biker Struck by Car near Riverview High School

    Whittel & Melton, LLC
    17 Sep 2014 | 11:31 am
    A 17-year-old girl riding her bicycle near Riverview High School on Tuesday morning was hit by a car. According to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, the girl, who is a Riverview High student, was struck by an Acura sedan on Whispering Creek Boulevard near Balm Riverview Road just south of Boyette Road. The driver of the Acura, a 23-year-old man, waited at the scene for deputies to arrive. According to officials, the man won’t be cited in the crash. The crash occurred just before 7 a.m. The accident caused the roadway to be shut down for about an hour. Authorities said the…
  • 8 Injured at Hard Rock in Tampa after Temporary Wall Falls Over

    Whittel & Melton, LLC
    15 Sep 2014 | 1:35 pm
    According to authorities, eight people were injured at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on Friday night when a construction wall gave way. Three of those injured were transported to area hospitals for treatment, according to Hillsborough County Fire Rescue. One man apparently suffered a broken arm when the wall fell around 11 p.m. Crews had bolstered up a 12- to 15-foot high temporary wall to separate an open section of the casino area from a high-limit slot room that is currently under construction. In between was a walkway. The wall fell down striking some people on the walkway. A witness…
  • AGAIN?? Three Killed in Wrong-Way Crash on I-275 in Tampa

    Whittel & Melton, LLC
    10 Sep 2014 | 12:11 pm
    A wrong-way driver and her two passengers were killed in a head-on collision with a gasoline tanker truck on Interstate 275 just south of Bearss Avenue early Sunday. This is the fourth fatal wrong-way crash on I-275 in Tampa this year that has happened just before sunrise. The Florida Highway Patrol believes a 2013 Honda sedan was traveling south in the inside lane of northbound I-275 when it crashed into a Gemini Motor Transport tanker that was headed north. Both vehicles came to a halt in the northbound lanes. The car’s driver, along with another woman in the front passenger seat and…
  • St. Petersburg Accident Shows Important Lesson for Boaters

    Whittel & Melton, LLC
    9 Sep 2014 | 10:48 am
    Boating is a popular and enjoyable activity here in the Tampa Bay area, but it is also a pastime filled with accidents as well. If you find yourself hurt or injured while boating due to someone else’s negligent or careless actions, it is worth speaking to a Boating Accident Injury Lawyer at Whittel & Melton about your rights. Three adults were rescued by a Coast Guard crew eight miles west of Bean Point on Anna Maria Island Sunday after their 37-foot boat began taking on water. Coast Guard watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg received a report around 3:50 p.m. that the…
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    Minneapolis Personal Injury Law Blog

  • Is elder neglect a form of medical malpractice in Minnesota?

    On behalf of Rischmiller & Knippel LLP
    26 Sep 2014 | 4:22 am
    Over three decades ago, Minnesota recognized that a sizable segment of the state population were individuals who were particularly vulnerable to maltreatment. In 1980, this growing sentiment led to the passage of MS 626.577. This section of Minnesota law identifies this vulnerable class of people with physical or mental disabilities or dependency on institutional services, and gives them certain protections to ensure their well-being. These so-called "vulnerable adults" are not only persons of advanced age but many other individuals with diminished capacity who are susceptible to…
  • The first hurdle to overcome in a Minnesota birth injury case

    On behalf of Rischmiller & Knippel LLP
    19 Sep 2014 | 5:05 am
    If you are a Minnesota resident who suspects that a doctor's error may have contributed to your child's birth injuries, there are a few things you should know. Birth injuries cover such a wide variety of maladies, ranging from brain damage caused by oxygen starvation to the brain to shoulder dislocations from a doctor forcibly removing an infant from his or her mother's birth canal. In an effort to reduce the number of frivolous and unfounded lawsuits being filed throughout the state, Minnesota adopted a statute in 2007 designed to provide a legal "speed bump" for claims filed against…
  • Some interesting Minnesota auto accident statistics

    On behalf of Rischmiller & Knippel LLP
    12 Sep 2014 | 11:23 am
    Minnesota residents are blessed with a Department of Public Safety which takes a proactive approach at reducing motor vehicle injuries and fatalities. As part of that strategy, the Office of Traffic Safety is tasked with maintaining crash data statistics and analyzing it for ways to improve safety on our roads. By understanding why and where those crashes occur throughout the state in addition to how they are impacting our lives, OTS provides law enforcement and other officials the information they need to keep our roadways safe. OTS recently released two major publications concerned with…
  • What a spinal cord injury lawsuit could mean for you

    On behalf of Rischmiller & Knippel LLP
    5 Sep 2014 | 12:17 pm
    As discussed in one of our previous blog posts, spinal cord injuries are a significant problem in the United States. According to 2010 data from the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center, an estimated 40 people out of every million will suffer a SCI this year. That works out to approximately 12,000 individuals suffering from life-altering injuries and joining the ranks of 273,000 other Americans currently living with SCIs. Perhaps the most unfortunate aspect of spinal cord injuries is that many of them were caused by preventable accidents. In fact, that same statistical data reveals…
  • What exactly is a traumatic brain injury?

    On behalf of Rischmiller & Knippel LLP
    29 Aug 2014 | 3:33 pm
    According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, a traumatic brain injury occurs whenever the brain suffers a sudden trauma causing damage to its tissue. This can result after a person's head receives a sudden and violent blow from an object or after an object pierces a person's skull and damages brain tissue. The severity of TBIs are broken down into three categories; mild, moderate or severe. Of course, these levels depend on the amount of trauma inflicted on the brain. Here are some of the most commonly reported symptoms associated with TBIs: -- Loss of…
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    Harrison County Personal Injury Law Blog

  • Texans do not have to endure burn injuries alone

    On behalf of Carlile Law Firm LLP
    25 Sep 2014 | 9:53 am
    Not all injuries are created the same. One of the most traumatic is a burn injury. Whether caused by fire, a scalding liquid or something else, victims of a burn injury can face a long and painful road to recovery. Many will never fully recover -- no matter how many skin grafts they receive. These individuals may have to live with scarring, disfigurement and even lifelong disabilities. Whatever the reason for the burn injuries, Texans need to know they have legal remedies to make a bad situation better. These remedies can provide financial compensation to help pay medical bills, recoup lost…
  • Text messages are dangerous

    On behalf of Carlile Law Firm LLP
    19 Sep 2014 | 6:46 am
    Texas driving can be a great convenience, but that convenience carries a responsibility to drive with care. If not, a car accident may be on the horizon. A common violation of that duty is driving while distracted. Distracted driving is driving while doing anything that draws your attention away from driving. Drivers can be distracted in many different ways. Some classic distractions are adjusting the radio, reading a map and eating and drinking. Some newer distractions are texting, looking at GPS and using a cell phone or smartphone. To see how dangerous these distractions can be, consider…
  • Truck accident kills Texan

    On behalf of Carlile Law Firm LLP
    11 Sep 2014 | 12:11 pm
    Texas roads see a lot of traffic, including cars, SUVs, motorcycles and semi-trucks. With all that traffic on the road, drivers need to drive carefully. The need to drive carefully is doubly true for semi-trucks. That is because semi-trucks are much larger than cars, SUVs and motorcycles. The size disparity means that any accident between a semi and other vehicles can cause serious harm or even death. Take, for instance, a fatal truck accident that occurred recently. According to the Texas Highway Patrol, a Freightliner loaded down with a trailer full of rocks crossed into oncoming traffic…
  • FAQs about defective products

    On behalf of Carlile Law Firm LLP
    4 Sep 2014 | 7:46 am
    Every day, Texans buy and use products. In the morning, they may use an alarm to wake up, a coffee maker to really wake up, a toaster to make breakfast and a car to get to work. And those are just a few of the products the typical Texan uses in the first hour after he or she wakes up. Most of the time these products work as planned, but sometimes they don't. When defective products cause an injury, Texans may have a legal claim. For Texans in such a situation, below are some frequently asked questions. If a product is defective, who can recover? In the past, only people with a contractual…
  • After a car accident - what can you do?

    On behalf of Carlile Law Firm LLP
    29 Aug 2014 | 7:39 am
    Driving is a fundamental part of the average Texan's life. In a typical day, a person may use a car to go to work, get food, run errands and return home. Depending on the commute from home to work and back, Texans can spend a healthy percent of their days in their cars. That many Texans spending so much time in their cars translates into busy roads. Just look at the traffic on Interstate 20 and U.S. Highways 59 and 80. When roads are that busy, things are bound to go wrong on occasion. A tire blows out, an accelerator locks, a driver does not see the car in his or her blind spot. When things…
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    Tennessee Estate Law Blog

  • Adding Your Children as Joint Bank Account Owners?

    Ryan Simmons
    30 Sep 2014 | 2:52 pm
    An increasing number of elderly individuals in Tennessee have begun adding their children as joint account owners on their bank account. Understandably, older parents may need assistance in paying their bills or managing their finances. However, it is important to understand the risks in adding a joint owner and the alternatives that people have. If you have questions about what alternatives you or your loved ones may have, contact The Higgins Firm. In adding a child as a joint account owner on a bank account, many parents do not understand the impact that action can potentially have on a…
  • A Loved One Has Passed Away – Now What?

    Ryan Simmons
    23 Sep 2014 | 12:12 pm
    If you have experienced the death of a loved one, you know that the period of time following his or her passing can be a confusing and trying time. You may not know what to do or where to turn. If the person who passed, also known as the decedent, left behind assets, there are certain requirements that must be met in order to transfer those assets to the rightful recipients under the law. Those assets may or may not be required to go through the probate process in Tennessee. If you have questions about Tennessee probate, contact one of our Nashville probate attorneys. Following the death of a…
  • Differences Between a Power of Attorney and Conservatorship

    Ryan Simmons
    16 Sep 2014 | 2:44 pm
    Recently attorney Jim Higgins stopped by WSMV’s Better Nashville to discuss the differences between a power of attorney and a conservatorship in Tennessee. Both of a power of attorney and conservatorship enable another person to make decisions or take actions on an individual’s behalf. However, there are different circumstances as to when each of these legal actions should be utilized. For instance, a power of attorney is a legal form utilized when the principal, or person granting the decision making authority, is mentally capable of granting that power to another person. In…
  • What Happens to your Debt after you Die?

    Ryan Simmons
    29 Aug 2014 | 1:25 pm
    Working as a Nashville probate attorney, I often hear a number of misconceptions that many people have when it comes to probate. When a loved one passes away, many people assume that they will be entitled to a portion of the decedent’s complete estate as provided in the will or the laws of intestacy. However, that may not be the case depending on a number of factors including the amount of debt a decedent had. If you have questions regarding what you may be entitled to in the probate process, contact the Nashville probate lawyers at The Higgins Firm. Although you may have been named as a…
  • Knowing When to Utilize a Power of Attorney or Conservatorship

    Ryan Simmons
    12 Aug 2014 | 8:48 am
    Although many of us are willing and capable of making decisions and acting for ourselves, there are some who incapable of doing so for a number of reasons. Whether it is due to a temporary illness or a lifelong disorder, many individuals will rely upon the help of another to assist in making certain decisions or to perform specific acts. There are certain legal avenues that can be taken to enable another in making these important decisions. Both a power of attorney and a conservatorship are legal actions that allocate the decision making authority of a person to another individual. While a…
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    Maryland Divorce Lawyer Blog

  • Maryland Court Denied Husband’s Effort to Terminate Alimony

    Anthony A. Fatemi, LLC
    30 Sep 2014 | 12:37 pm
    Divorce affects each family in a unique way. In most cases, however, the parties will have to address and resolve many emotional and financial matters. Some of the more significant financial issues concern child support, spousal support, and the division of marital property. Depending on the circumstances, one party may be entitled to spousal support (also known as “alimony”) from the other. Couples contemplating divorce are encouraged to consult with an experienced family law attorney early in the proceedings in order to ensure that their financial rights are protected. Since divorce…
  • Maryland Court Denied Husband’s Attempt to Set Aside Marital Settlement Agreements

    Anthony A. Fatemi, LLC
    15 Sep 2014 | 7:59 am
    In any divorce matter, it is important for each spouse to consult with his or her own attorney, who will seek to protect that person’s separate rights going forward. One of the most important documents that divorcing spouses often agree to is a marital settlement agreement or “MSA.” In many cases, the MSA will purport to resolve any number of issues, such as property division, alimony, child support, custody, and other matters. That agreement can be made part of the ultimate divorce judgment, depending on the circumstances and the parties’ wishes. At each step in the…
  • Maryland Court Affirms Child Support Award to Father

    Anthony A. Fatemi, LLC
    2 Sep 2014 | 6:14 am
    As many people know, divorce can be difficult. There are serious practical, emotional and financial issues for the parties to identify, weigh, and hopefully resolve as amicably and quickly as possible. Since each family is unique, with its own set of personal facts and circumstances, there is no one simple solution for dissolution of marriage. The important thing to know, however, is that an experienced Maryland family law attorney can help to move your case along smoothly and efficiently, with the goal of protecting your interests and rights every step of the way. When a divorcing couple…
  • Maryland Court Reviews Father’s Efforts to Modify Child Custody Arrangement

    Anthony A. Fatemi, LLC
    18 Aug 2014 | 8:34 am
    By its very nature, divorce divides a couple. Throughout the proceedings, spouses are expected to address and resolve many emotionally charged issues, such as child custody, visitation, division of property, spousal support, and many other significant matters. While many divorce cases are fraught with contentious conduct on behalf of one or both spouses, there are ways to approach a case with an eye toward moving the process along efficiently and amicably, while protecting one’s interests. One of the best ways to accomplish this goal is to consult with an experienced Maryland family law…
  • Maryland Court Addresses Allocation of Retirement Benefits in Divorce

    Anthony A. Fatemi, LLC
    30 Jul 2014 | 7:32 am
    One of the most significant financial aspects of a divorce is the division of marital property. Under Maryland law, courts have the authority to identify marital property, assess its value, transfer ownership between the parties, and issue a monetary award in order to even out the rights of the parties. Depending on the case and the nature of the relationship between the spouses, the couple may be able to enter into an agreement specifying the allocation of property, instead of relying on the court to do so. In any case, because this part of the divorce proceeding can significantly…
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    Houston Family Law Blog

  • Can a prenuptial agreement be invalidated in Texas?

    On behalf of Shriver & McLean, L.L.P.
    25 Sep 2014 | 1:12 pm
    If you have a prenuptial agreement in place in Texas that is preventing you from getting the things you need out of your marriage, you might be interested in these reasons a premarital agreement could be seen as invalid. Firstly, if there is no written agreement, it can't be enforced. Simply agreeing that you won't get any money during a divorce isn't enough unless it's on paper. When it is written, the document has to be properly executed. That means that you both need to sign the paperwork before your wedding for it to be valid. If you didn't read the prenuptial agreement, it may not be…
  • Get your fair share out of your Texas divorce

    On behalf of Shriver & McLean, L.L.P.
    18 Sep 2014 | 12:48 pm
    When you enter a marriage with a prenuptial agreement, you expect it to cover all aspects of your property and life. Of course, sometimes it doesn't work that way, and you may need to take other steps to protect your property. To understand how a divorce works out in Texas, you need to know that Texas is a community property state. That means that any property that becomes classified as community assets will be split between you and your spouse equitably. That isn't the same thing as splitting your assets 50-50. Here's one way to think about it. If you have a home and a car worth different…
  • Personality issues are the tip of the iceberg in Texas divorces

    On behalf of Shriver & McLean, L.L.P.
    12 Sep 2014 | 11:20 am
    Personality issues can erupt during a divorce in ways you may not be sure how to handle. An ex may feel shunned and call at all hours; your kids may never be dropped off at the right time in an effort to show you who's "in control." Those kind of actions don't have to be accepted by you or your family. Therapists work with divorce and post-divorce clients to get them through the difficulties of divorce and a failing marriage. One therapist claims that it's fairly normal to learn that one person in the relationship had a severe personality disorder that has come out during the divorce. In the…
  • What affects child custody in Texas?

    On behalf of Shriver & McLean, L.L.P.
    5 Sep 2014 | 12:09 pm
    Texas has several child custody laws that you should be aware of as a parent, since they can affect your right to see your child. Child custody, first of all, is referred to as a conservatorship. If parents determine that they want joint custody, it's called a joint conservatorship. That can be arranged if the joint custody benefits the child physically and emotionally. Child custody laws comply with the Uniform Child Custody Act. That act is used between states and aims to reduce conflicts when parents are from different parts of the United States. When a case heads to court in Texas, that…
  • Child custody: Texas versus your right to custody

    On behalf of Shriver & McLean, L.L.P.
    29 Aug 2014 | 3:23 pm
    When you have child custody of your children or are fighting for it, you know that there is no relationship worth more to you. In the state of Texas, it's presumed that you're going to share your children's custody with your ex, with each of you being a joint conservator. That means that both parties will be guardians, but the distinction of who is the parent with physical custody and who is the parent with visitation is still there. If you've been given a role as a managing conservator, that means you have physical custody of your child. As a possessory conservator, you will only have…
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    Canton Social Security Disability Law Blog

  • Does your disability qualify you for SSA disability benefits?

    On behalf of Marsh & Mittas Law Office, LLC
    26 Sep 2014 | 2:33 pm
    For most people who are living with a disability, life is complicated. In addition to dealing with the impact the disability has on their daily life, when the disability is severe enough, it could also mean having to figure out how to get by financially. In some situations disability benefits from the Social Security Administration can be secured. In this post we will give an overview of the two programs under which these benefits may be available. The first is the Social Security disability insurance program. Under this program individuals who have a work history may receive disability…
  • Is there a better way to diagnose clinical depression?

    On behalf of Marsh & Mittas Law Office, LLC
    19 Sep 2014 | 2:21 pm
    As anyone who has dealt with depression is likely well aware, it can take many forms and can sometimes be difficult to diagnose. Individuals in the midst of living with the condition may not be able to articulate their symptoms. In other cases it can manifest itself in physical ailments leading health care providers to address those issues rather than recognize and treat the depression that is the root of the issue. Difficulties in diagnosing the condition delays the possibility of individuals, who can no longer work as a result of the disease, applying for securing disability benefits from…
  • Can early diagnosis and intervention reduce autism symptoms?

    On behalf of Marsh & Mittas Law Office, LLC
    12 Sep 2014 | 3:57 pm
    There are multiple reasons why the parents of disabled children might seek disability benefits from the Social Security Administration. Since a child does not have a work history and therefore not Social Security Disability Insurance to draw from, Supplemental Security Income is the program under which benefits would be sought. One condition that a child may have that could prompt a parent to apply for SSI is autism. Autism is a condition that many parents are concerned about. Unsurprisingly, there is a big movement to determine its cause and develop treatments. According to the results of a…
  • What to know about seeking Social Security Disability benefits

    On behalf of Marsh & Mittas Law Office, LLC
    5 Sep 2014 | 3:09 pm
    When someone is dealing with a disabling condition, accomplishing even the most minor tasks can become difficult or even impossible. It can also make it impossible to work. For the average person, worrying about how living expense will be covered without a paycheck coming in makes an already stressful situation even harder to handle. Social Security Disability benefits may be available to help cover those costs.  There are several important things those contemplating seeking these benefits should know. The first is that to qualify, the disability must be expected to prevent someone from…
  • Personal care attendants caring for disabled may not be qualified

    On behalf of Marsh & Mittas Law Office, LLC
    29 Aug 2014 | 6:16 pm
    It is likely that some individuals reading this blog have a loved one who has secured disability benefits from the Social Security Administration to help cover expenses for a disability. Depending on the disability, those expenses could include hiring an in-home care giver. Personal care attendants are relied upon by many in the state of Ohio to perform medical tasks such as monitoring intravenous fluids, cleaning infections and inserting feeding tubes. In addition, some also perform housekeeping tasks such as cooking meals and doing laundry. Their presence means that a disabled individual…
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    Sacramento Injury Law Blog

  • 1 man killed in California crash

    On behalf of Aiken & Jacobsen
    29 Sep 2014 | 5:51 pm
    On Sept. 19, one man was killed in a California collision involving two tractor-trailers. The California Highway Patrol reported that the victim was a 50-year-old man who had driving one of the large commercial vehicles. Officers say that the accident occurred on Highway 299 near Round Mountain at 12:30 a.m. One tractor-trailer that was being driven westbound by an Idaho man attempted to navigate a sharp curve while traveling at about 50 mph. While attempting the maneuver, a container that was carrying asbestos and other building materials came off the vehicle's trailer and landed in an…
  • California man sentenced for distracted driving incident

    On behalf of Aiken & Jacobsen
    23 Sep 2014 | 1:22 pm
    A 30-year-old man was sentenced to a year in jail and three years' probation by a Sonoma County Superior Court judge for an accident in March. The man was driving a GMC Sierra on State Highway 12 in Santa Rosa when he allegedly looked at his cell phone in expectation of a text message. He then rear-ended a Toyota Camry that had slowed with other traffic near Farmers Lane. It is estimated that the Sierra was traveling at approximately 50 mph when the collision occurred. A 74-year-old woman and her daughter-in-law sitting in the back seat of the Camry were both killed in the collision. The…
  • Man taken into custody after fatal California accident

    On behalf of Aiken & Jacobsen
    17 Sep 2014 | 4:51 pm
    Police say that a 40-year-old man was involved in three separate crashes on Sept. 11. The first crash took place around 1 a.m. on Haven Avenue near the 60 Freeway. The man's big-rig crashed into a sedan, and the driver of the sedan was killed. Police say that the big-rig left the scene of the first crash but was soon spotted abandoned in the number four lane on Freeway 60 east. Authorities say that the big-rig had crashed into a dividing wall near the Haven Avenue on-ramp. Although the man tried to flee the scene on foot, officers found him walking on the freeway near the Milliken Avenue…
  • Chain-reaction wreck closes all lanes on California I-80

    On behalf of Aiken & Jacobsen
    9 Sep 2014 | 4:22 pm
    A 53-year-old California driver was faced with non-life-threatening injuries when his pickup truck crashed into a bus on Sept. 4 that had collided with another bus. The chain-reaction crash occurred around 6 a.m. when a full-sized Contra Costa County Connection bus was broken down in the far left lane of Interstate 80. An eastbound Solano Transit Bus collided with the disabled vehicle. Then, a white pickup truck, driven by a 53-year-old Richmond resident, hit the Solano Transit bus. Hydraulic tools were used by emergency fire personnel to release the pickup truck driver from his vehicle while…
  • Multi-vehicle crash in Fresno County kills 3

    On behalf of Aiken & Jacobsen
    3 Sep 2014 | 8:43 am
    A four-vehicle accident in Fresno County killed three people, injured four and led to one driver fleeing the scene on August 28. According to the California Highway Patrol and an eyewitness, an Apria Healthcare truck initiated the crash when it failed to stop at a two-way stop sign. The truck crashed into a minivan, which was spun by the impact and struck a Chevrolet Avalanche. The Avalanche then hit a Nissan Cube.Three people in the minivan died shortly after impact. The fourth occupant was ejected from the vehicle and aided by the witness until paramedics arrived. The three occupants of the…
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    Morristown Personal Injury Law Blog

  • Will medical malpractice case be filed in Joan Rivers' death?

    On behalf of Nusbaum, Stein, Goldstein, Bronstein & Kron, A Professional Corporation
    29 Sep 2014 | 11:11 am
    Most everyone in New Jersey has heard of the passing of Joan Rivers.  However, not everyone may know that a controversy is brewing around her death.  A medical malpractice claim may be the result of the questions currently being asked about what happened during the throat procedure she was undergoing when she went into cardiac arrest. The first question people are asking is whether the doctor had Rivers' permission to take a "selfie" with her while she was under anesthesia.  Not only was this an apparent invasion of privacy, but it could also speak to whether the doctor was…
  • Seconds count when it comes to avoiding car accidents

    On behalf of Nusbaum, Stein, Goldstein, Bronstein & Kron, A Professional Corporation
    21 Sep 2014 | 9:25 am
    A recent accident here in New Jersey involving four cars could have included at least one more. The man driving that car found out just how much seconds count when it comes to avoiding car accidents.  Unfortunately, the drivers of three other vehicles behind him were not as lucky. The driver who got away was traveling on the west side of New Jersey's Interstate 195 when he saw a vehicle from the east side of the highway coming toward him. When he realized the vehicle was not slowing down, he had only seconds to make a decision.  He accelerated and avoided the collision, but a pickup…
  • Driver negligence probable in deadly New Jersey accident

    On behalf of Nusbaum, Stein, Goldstein, Bronstein & Kron, A Professional Corporation
    18 Sep 2014 | 6:27 am
    Most New Jersey drivers are aware that during and after it has been raining, the chance that a vehicle may not have the traction needed to stay on the roadway increases.  If a vehicle also happens to be going above the posted speed limit, this is a recipe for disaster.  Failing to consider the prevailing road conditions while driving could be considered negligence. Police believe this combination of factors at least contributed to a crash that occurred on a recent Saturday night.  Someone living in the area called 911 to advise law enforcement officials that an accident…
  • New Jersey drug manufacturer recalls dangerous products

    On behalf of Nusbaum, Stein, Goldstein, Bronstein & Kron, A Professional Corporation
    10 Sep 2014 | 12:10 pm
    Pharmacy Creations is a compound pharmacy located here in New Jersey. Recently, the Federal Drug Administration published information regarding Pharmacy Creations' voluntary recall of four potentially dangerous products. So far, the company has not received any reports of illness or death related to this recall.Information regarding the particular lots of four products that are subject to the recall can be found either on the FDA's website or by contacting Pharmacy Creations. it was discovered by a third-party testing facility that the products may be contaminated. The health implications to…
  • Did negligence contribute to the death of a man in New Jersey?

    On behalf of Nusbaum, Stein, Goldstein, Bronstein & Kron, A Professional Corporation
    1 Sep 2014 | 5:07 pm
    Paying attention to traffic signs and signals is the responsibility of every driver on New Jersey roads. When a person fails to do so, the result can cause serious or even fatal injuries. For instance, the alleged negligence of one driver is being blamed for a man's death and injuries to a woman.For some reason, the driver of a minivan allegedly failed to obey a stop sign. As the 39-year-old woman's vehicle entered the intersection, it slammed into another vehicle. The impact pushed the vehicle onto its side trapping the driver. The tilted vehicle slid into the path of a third vehicle, which…
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    Chicago Auto Accident & Injury Law Blog

  • Chicago accident leaves woman paralyzed

    On behalf of Strom & Associates
    29 Sep 2014 | 4:21 pm
    Chicago police recently filed multiple charges against a 28-year-old man accused of fleeing the scene of an accident that injured multiple people and left one woman paralyzed. The Sept. 13 incident took place on West Erie Street. Purportedly, that is where the 28-year-old man exited his disabled vehicle and took a taxi to his Naperville residence, leaving behind four acquaintances. According to a police report, the 28-year-old man was the driver of a vehicle carrying four friends who had just visited a Chicago nightclub. Reportedly, the man was driving on Erie Street at speeds that some of…
  • Reviewing the Illlinois Vehicle Code

    On behalf of Strom & Associates
    25 Sep 2014 | 1:22 pm
    Motorists in Illinois may benefit from reviewing select provisions from the state vehicle code. It's worth noting that under state law, the motor vehicle owner's registration certificate, sticker and license plates shall be suspended if the insurance liability insurance coverage becomes inoperative. Owners using the vehicle for work purposes would have their certificate of compliance repealed until the vehicle complies with the state's requirements again. Motor vehicle owners who fail to comply with the provisions set forth by the Secretary of State may be guilty of a Class A misdemeanor.
  • Texting while driving can be a serious problem

    On behalf of Strom & Associates
    23 Sep 2014 | 1:23 pm
    Texting while a person is driving causes many catastrophic injuries in Illinois and around the country. The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute has reported that text messaging increases the risk of crashing by 23 times over driving when not distracted. In 2010, driver distraction accounted for about 18 percent of all vehicle accident fatalities as reported by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. This totals approximately 3,092 people. Other injuries resulting from texting and driving were tabulated at 416,000 people. Additionally, a Pew survey indicated that 40 percent of…
  • Car runs red light, causes accident and injury

    On behalf of Strom & Associates
    17 Sep 2014 | 4:52 pm
    A crash involving three vehicles that occurred in Illinois on Sept. 11 has resulted in injuries to two women and the citation of a teenage male. Authorities report that the crash took place at an intersection and obstructed traffic in all directions. According to police, the car accident happened when two cars were waiting to turn left at the intersection. When the traffic light turned green, both drivers attempted to make the turn. At the same time, a 16-year-old male failed to stop at a red traffic light and crashed into both of the vehicles. The collision injured both drivers of the…
  • Illinois trooper critical after being struck by drunk driver

    On behalf of Strom & Associates
    14 Sep 2014 | 9:22 am
    Chicago area media outlets have reported that an Illinois State Trooper was left in critical condition after being struck by an allegedly drunk driver on Sept. 6. A 59-year-old Mount Prospect woman is facing several charges, including DUI, in connection with the incident. The motor vehicle accident took place on Interstate 294, which makes up part of the Tri-State Tollway, near Berkeley around 2:46 p.m. According to an Illinois State Police report, the trooper had exited his cruiser after pulling a vehicle over in the vicinity of Charles Road when he was struck by the woman's car. The woman…
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    El Dabe Personal Injury Law Firm Blog

  • Motorcyclist Devin Santiago Fatally Injured in Huntington Beach Accident

    Injury Reporter
    29 Sep 2014 | 8:47 am
    HUNTINGTON BEACH (September 28, 2014) – Motorcyclist Devin Santiago was fatally injured in a Sunday evening traffic accident. The accident happened at 8:42 p.m. at the intersection of Pacific Coast Highway and 6th Street. Some reports are placing the collision at 8th Street and we will update the story with the correct location as it becomes clear. Devin was traveling north on PCH when the U-Haul truck attempted to turn onto Pacific Coast Hwy despite a stop sign. The dangerous maneuver caused the collision. He was rushed to Hoag Memorial Hospital in Newport Beach where he succumbed to…
  • Car Fatally Strikes Elderly Pedestrian Gregorio Nolasco in Santa Ana

    Injury Reporter
    21 Sep 2014 | 7:45 am
    SANTA ANA (September 18, 2014) – Pedestrian Gregorio Nolasco died on Thursday after being fatal struck by a car on Thursday morning. Nolasco was crossing Main Street at 300 S. Main Street near W. Pine Street when he was struck minutes before 6:00 a.m.  He was declared dead at the scene from the blunt force trauma. View of 300 S. Main Street, near Pine Street intersection, Santa Ana Gregorio Nolasco was 83 years old.  He resided in Santa Ana. An investigation is under way and eye witnesses should contact the Santa Ana Police Department at (714) 245-8665.  According to some reports,…
  • Pedestrian Juan Dominguez Fatally Struck in Santa Ana near Auto Mall

    Injury Reporter
    17 Sep 2014 | 6:48 pm
    SANTA ANA (September 15, 2014) – Santa Ana resident, Juan Dominguez, was fatally struck by a pick-up truck on Monday morning. View of 1404 S. Ritchey Street at Auto Mall Drive, Santa Ana Dominguez was struck by a pick-up around 7:30 a.m. at 1404 S. Ritchey Street near Auto Mall Drive, a mostly industrial area.  Dominguez was immediately taken to Western Medical Center where he died later that evening from his injuries.  Monday was in fact Dominguez’s 44th birthday.  Our heartfelt condolences go out to the family and friends of Juan Dominguez. Witnesses should contact the Santa…
  • Elderly Pedestrian, Vicente Banagale, Struck and Killed by Car in Orange

    Injury Reporter
    17 Sep 2014 | 6:25 pm
    ORANGE (September 15, 2014) – Vincente Banagale was fatally struck early Monday evening while attempting to cross a street in the city of Orange. W. La Veta Avenue near Devon Road, Orange, CA Banagale was attempting to cross the street in a mostly residential neighborhood when a vehicle struck him around 6:30 p.m.  The accident happened at W. La Veta Avenue, just west of Devon Road.  He was rushed to UCI Medical Center in where he later succumbed to his injuries.  The 83 year old was a resident of the city of Orange.  He died just two months shy of his 84th birthday. The cause of…
  • Pedestrian Bystander Robert Borkland Killed in Huntington Beach Accident

    Injury Reporter
    14 Sep 2014 | 9:42 am
    HUNTINGTON BEACH (September 12, 2014) – Pedestrian bystander, Robert Borkland, was killed on Friday as a result of a two car crash that happened near him around noon time on friday. Two cars collided with one another at 9812 Hamilton Avenue in front of the Resurrection Lutheran Church located between Brookhurst Street and Bushard Street.  The accident sent one car over the sidewalk which struck multiple cars and two pedestrians.  Borkland, a local transient, was in a nearby bush with another male when both were struck as a result of the crash.  Paramedics pronounced Borkland dead at…
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    Columbus Personal Injury Law Blog

  • Distracted driving results in fatal crash

    By Glen R. Pritchard
    29 Sep 2014 | 8:23 am
    Distracted driving by the driver of a tractor-trailer resulted in a tragic accident that claimed the lives of four college softball players. The accident occurred Friday night on Interstate 35 near Davis, Oklahoma.  The Northbound tractor-trailer truck failed to negotiate a curve and continued across the median where it struck a southbound bus carrying members of the North Central Texas College softball team.  After crashing into the side of the bus, the truck continued across the southbound lanes of Interstate 35 before striking and uprooting several trees. The National…
  • Testosterone therapy risks assessed by FDA

    By D. Andrew List
    26 Sep 2014 | 12:37 pm
    An FDA advisory committee assessed testosterone therapy cardiovascular risks at a recent wo-day meeting. The purpose of the meeting was to obtain recommendations from a panel of independent experts in an effort to improve the safety of testosterone replacement therapy.  In numerous studies, testosterone replacement therapy has been linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular injury including heart attacks, strokes and blood clots. The advisory committee experts were strongly in favor of revising the prescribing language on testosterone replacement products.  The panel stated that…
  • Product Recalls:GM ignition crash suit for teens' deaths dropped

    By Dale K. Perdue
    25 Sep 2014 | 10:40 am
    A product recalls lawsuit against General Motors for the wrongful deaths of two teenagers has been dismissed.  The families of the teens have chosen to pursue claims against General Motors in the GM ignition switch settlement fund rather than litigate their claims in court. Eighteen year old Natasha Weigel and Amy Rademaker, 15, were among the first victims of the defective ignition switches.  Both Wisconsin teens died in an October 24, 2006 crash.  Evidence from that crash was instrumental in exposing how both General Motors and federal regulatory agencies missed important…
  • Eminent Domain Alert: AEP plans electric lines in southern Ohio

    By Dale K. Perdue
    25 Sep 2014 | 8:41 am
    American Electric Power could use eminent domain to obtain easements needed for new electric transmission lines in Pickaway and Ross Counties. The Ohio Power Siting Board has scheduled two public hearings for affected property owners to express their opinions about the proposed power line project. The proposed transmission line would connect the AEP substations in Circleville and Chillicothe.  A 100-foot wide easement would be required for the project.  AEP stated that the transmission lines were needed to improve the reliability of electric power services in southern Central…
  • Product Recalls Update: GM Ignition Switch Claims Rise

    By D. Andrew List
    25 Sep 2014 | 8:12 am
    The number of product recalls claims in the General Motors ignition switch settlement continues to rise. According to the head of GM's settlement fund, Kenneth Feinberg, the number of claims jumped by 52 percent in one week alone.  Last week, 675 claims had been filed, up from 445 the week before. Most of the new product recalls claims were claims for personal injury, including 65 claims for serious injury and 467 hospitalizations.  To date, only 16 injury claims have been approved for compensation and 25 claims have been denied. Death claims have also increased, with 143 now…
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    El Paso Criminal Defense Law Blog

  • 55 total alleged gang members face federal crimes, state charges

    On behalf of Ruben Ortiz
    27 Sep 2014 | 9:37 am
    A total of 55 alleged El Paso Barrio Azteca gang members were recently arrested under accusations of very serious crimes. Several agents from multiple departments worked together in El Paso during the operation. Overall, 20 individuals were accused of committing federal crimes, and the remaining 35 persons face state charges. The El Paso Police, along with several federal organizations including the FBI and Homeland Security, joined forces to execute the recent raid. The investigation started after allegations surfaced claiming that the gang was collecting a street tax of sorts called a…
  • Man faces serious criminal charges after shooting incident

    On behalf of Ruben Ortiz
    25 Sep 2014 | 9:38 am
    A man was recently arrested in San Angelo after a shooting incident and subsequent ground search. The Texas man has been accused of shooting at a group of local plant employees when they encountered him allegedly attempting to steal a company vehicle. He faces serious criminal charges resulting from the incident. Just after noon, the group of employees left the plant and went outside to a company-owned area of woods next to the plant. As they were walking in the woods, they claim that they saw a man attempting to burglarize a company vehicle. The employees claim that the man was carrying a…
  • Criminal charges of child abuse for football star Adrian Peterson

    On behalf of Ruben Ortiz
    18 Sep 2014 | 4:01 am
    The National Football League is no stranger to scandal. Many players have been accused of various crimes, and the backlash from fans can impact player's careers -- even if they are eventually acquitted. Non-celebrities can learn from the experiences of these players in relation to how criminal charges can affect a person's life, from their job to their personal relationships. One recent example involves Viking's player Adrian Peterson who turned himself into Texas law enforcement on charges of child abuse. Peterson reportedly used a thin tree branch, commonly known as a "switch," to whip his…
  • Fraud and what it may entail for those accused in Texas

    On behalf of Ruben Ortiz
    13 Sep 2014 | 8:18 am
    Those in Texas who are accused of committing white collar crimes may think that it is not as serious an offense as others. Because it doesn't involve a violent act, it may seem as though the punishments should be less serious, but that is not necessarily the case. Those convicted of fraud or other related crimes can face long jail sentences and hefty fines. Knowing exactly what fraud entails might be helpful for those who are accused of this crime in order to understand just what the possible ramifications might be.Fraud occurs when one person intentionally deceives another person, business…
  • Often two sides to a story with domestic violence in Texas

    On behalf of Ruben Ortiz
    11 Sep 2014 | 8:19 am
    There are certain criminal charges that can carry a stigma with them. Those who are accused of domestic violence may see repercussions in other parts of their lives, even if they are eventually acquitted. For this reason, it is very important for those accused to fully understand what these charges involve and how Texas prosecutors will pursue them. Here at the Law Offices of Ruben Ortiz, we know that sometimes there is more to the story than just what a purported victim might say.A conviction on domestic violence charges can have serious punishments, including incarceration or a restraining…
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    North Texas Legal News

  • A Lost Employment Agreement Costs an Employer a Lot of Money

    Leiza Dolghih
    23 Sep 2014 | 3:32 pm
    In United Rentals, Inc., et al. v. Smith, the company tried to force the employee to arbitrate their wrongful termination dispute pursuant to an arbitration clause contained in the employment agreement that Mr. Smith had allegedly signed when he was hired by the United Rental.  The catch was that the company could not find the original agreement and all the copies on file were illegible. So, in support of its motion to compel arbitration, the employer submitted a “digitally enhanced” copy of an employment agreement and a statement by its former human resources director,…
  • How Long Does a Trade Secret Injunction Last in Texas?

    Leiza Dolghih
    21 Sep 2014 | 8:48 am
    According to a recent decision from the Dallas Court of Appeals, a permanent injunction should last forever, unless the company or the person accused of misappropriating the trade secrets provides sufficient proof that a lesser time period is adequate.  What does this mean? Well, it means that a business suing for a theft of trade secrets will be able to permanently prevent the thief from using its trade secrets, unless the thief can prove that its competing product incorporating the stolen trade secrets is a simple product, the construction of which is obvious and easily imitated. In…
  • Common Defenses to a Breach of Contract Claim in Texas

    Leiza Dolghih
    14 Sep 2014 | 7:21 pm
    Being sued for a breach of contract can be unpleasant, but it is not the end of the world. Texas recognizes dozens of statutory and common law defenses to a breach of contract claim, one or more of which may be available to a party who is being accused of breaching an agreement. Depending on the terms of the contract and the dealings between the parties, a breach of contract claim may be straightforward or very complicated, and it may involve one or two events or multiple events spanning over a long period of time. However, regardless of how simple or complicated the case is, the defenses…
  • The Texas Supreme Court Declares That Forfeiture Provisions in Executive Stock Incentive Programs Are Not Covenants Not to Compete

    Leiza Dolghih
    6 Sep 2014 | 11:04 am
    The Texas Supreme Court in ExxonMobil Corp. v. Drennen held that forfeiture provisions in non-contributory profit-sharing plans are not covenants not to compete, but stopped short of opining on whether they constitute an unreasonable restraint of trade in violation of Tex. Bus. Code 15.05. In Drennen, ExxonMobil’s engineer and Exploration Vice President of Americas, was awarded restricted stock options through the company’s incentive program, which allowed the company to terminate Drennen’s outstanding awards if (among other conditions) he engaged in activities…
  • A Reminder from the Dallas Court of Appeals That Non-Compete Agreements Without Time Limit Are Unenforceable

    Leiza Dolghih
    15 Aug 2014 | 7:29 am
    Earlier this week, the Dallas Courts of Appeals sided with an employee in Richard P. Dale, Jr., d/b/a Senior Healthcare Consultants v. Hoschar in ruling that her non-competition agreement was unenforceable because it did not contain a reasonable time limitation. Hoschar, who worked as an insurance sales agent for SHR had the following clause in her independent contractor agreement: Upon Termination of the Agreement, the Agent shall return to General Agent any and all information and supplies provided to Agent including any and all information and agrees to take no action either directly…
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    Galveston Pharmaceutical Products Law Blog

  • Generic drugs may compromise patient health

    On behalf of Hodge Law Firm, PLLC
    25 Sep 2014 | 10:47 am
    Texas patients may be concerned about the potency and safety of the prescription drugs they take. About 85 percent of drugs sold in the U.S. are generic. However, some doctors are advocating for the use of brand-name drugs since they believe some generic drugs may compromise treatment and be dangerous for patient use. According to researchers, generic drugs may have quality control issues and formulation deficiencies. Forty percent of U.S. generics originate in India. According to a National Bureau of Economic Research report, out of 15 drug applications by a major Indian drug manufacturer…
  • Suing for lack of drug warnings

    On behalf of Hodge Law Firm, PLLC
    18 Sep 2014 | 10:25 am
    Residents in Texas may benefit from learning more about the drug approval process and potential remedies available to account for defective treatments. A trial in March 2009 compelled Supreme Court judges to rule that patients do have the right to sue pharmaceutical companies for not putting adequate warnings on drug labels, regardless of receiving FDA approval for minor warnings. Many of the companies spend more than a decade and more than $1 billion attempting to obtain FDA approval for a new drug. A musician in Vermont filed a lawsuit claiming that a drug used to treat migraine-induced…
  • FDA recall could impact patients in Texas

    On behalf of Hodge Law Firm, PLLC
    10 Sep 2014 | 7:45 am
    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently issued a Class I recall of medical devices made by Customed, Inc. A Class I recall indicates that there may be a serious issue with a product that could lead to death. According to the FDA, the company voluntarily recalled the surgical packs after issues were found with their packaging quality. The issue could have led to the products losing their sterility. The recall was posted to the FDA website on Aug. 29 while a warning was sent out to health care providers on Aug. 26 warning of adhesion in the packaging of at least one of the products.
  • First trial for Johnson & Johnson hip replacements

    On behalf of Hodge Law Firm, PLLC
    9 Sep 2014 | 12:56 pm
    Many Texans are awaiting the results of a trial that involves artificial hips that degraded. The implants, made by Johnson & Johnson, are alleged to have been defectively designed, causing metal poisoning in some patients. Jury selection for the first of the trials began on Sept. 2. Claims that 8,000 of their Pinnacle hip implants are defective caused the company to put aside $2.5 billion for possible settlements. The metal used in these implants is a chromium and cobalt material, which the lawsuits claim has been responsible for metal poisoning. One woman who filed suit developed an…
  • Record-high number of U.S. recalls expected in 2014

    On behalf of Hodge Law Firm, PLLC
    2 Sep 2014 | 7:21 pm
    It may be interesting for patients in Texas to know that a Regulatory Affairs Professionals Society report suggests that there could be a record-high amount of drugs under recall in the U.S. in 2014. The report says that there has been a steady rise in recalls compared to previous years, and it indicates a sharp growth in Class II recalls. As of the middle of August, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has recorded 836 recalls for defective drugs, and 650 of these were Class II. Among the 499 recalls in 2012, 76 percent were categorized as Class II. The number of recalls jumped to 1,225 in…
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    New Haven Personal Injury Law Blog

  • Pedestrian critically injured in Connecticut

    On behalf of Jacobs & Dow, LLC
    25 Sep 2014 | 4:11 pm
    A pedestrian was critically injured after being hit by a car in Stamford on Sept. 17. The accident took place around 11:20 p.m. on the city's West Side.According to police, the 30-year-old victim was walking with a friend along Stillwater Avenue when the pedestrian accident occurred. They both attempted to cross the street from the west side to the east side when the victim was hit by a 2007 Honda Accord driven by a 32-year-old Stamford man. The vehicle had been traveling south on Stillwell Avenue. The pedestrians were in the middle of the block at the time of impact. The victim was…
  • Motorcycle crash in Connecticut kills 1

    On behalf of Jacobs & Dow, LLC
    22 Sep 2014 | 10:24 am
    At around 10:10 a.m. on Sept. 14, a Connecticut motorcycle driver was killed in an accident. The other car involved in the crash was a 2013 Honda Civic driven by an 88-year-old woman. The accident occurred at the intersection of Church Hill Road and Quality Street in Trumbull. Reports indicate that the woman was attempting to make a left-hand turn onto Quality Street. Officers say that she made the turn in front of an oncoming motorcycle. Trumbull police officers report that there were no one else injured in the crash. The scene where the collision occurred was closed for hours, and the cause…
  • The perils of distracted driving

    On behalf of Jacobs & Dow, LLC
    17 Sep 2014 | 11:23 am
    According to a guide from the Federal Communications Commission, cellphones can present great risks to the public when people use them while driving. According to various studies and statistics, there is an unequivocal relationship between distracted driving and traffic accidents that cause injuries and even fatalities. On account of these documented risks, lawmakers in states such as Connecticut have enacted bans on certain types of cellphone use while driving. Research from the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute indicates that the risk of a crash is 23 times higher for drivers who…
  • Connecticut crossing guard hit by car

    On behalf of Jacobs & Dow, LLC
    14 Sep 2014 | 4:10 pm
    An accident involving a driver in Hartford around 7:30 a.m. on Sept. 12 resulted in a school crossing guard being sent to a local hospital for treatment, according to a Hartford Police representative. Her condition was not disclosed in a news report updated on the evening following the accident. The 24-year-old female driver stated that the glare from the sun caused her inability to see the crossing guard. The driver remained at the scene after the accident and received misdemeaor summons for operating an unregistered motor vehicle, no license and failure to stop for a school crossing guard,…
  • Accident on Connecticut highway injures state trooper

    On behalf of Jacobs & Dow, LLC
    12 Sep 2014 | 4:11 pm
    A vehicle struck an on-duty trooper's cruiser in Middletown on September 5, and two people were injured in the collision. The Connecticut State Police trooper did not suffer serious injuries. The driver of the other vehicle suffered minor injuries and faced potential charges pending the accident investigation.The two-vehicle accident occurred on Route 9 around 10:30 a.m. as a 42-year-old North Haven man traveled north on the highway. The trooper was parked in the left lane near the Exit 10 off-ramp that was closed due to construction, and his cruiser's emergency lights were on according to…
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    Massachusetts Workers' Compensation Lawyer Blawg

  • Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Claimant Must Prove Worsening Symptoms Are Not Due to Age

    Steven H. Kantrovitz
    22 Sep 2014 | 6:12 am
    When an employee’s work-related medical condition grows worse, the insurer may contest the claim on the basis that the worsening is caused not by the original work injury, but by the employee’s growing older. The employee has the burden of proving that he or she should continue to receive benefits because the worsening of the condition is not caused by aging, but by the work injury. An example is an employee’s pain growing more severe, requiring stronger doses of pain medication. Even when the pain, in the opinion of the examining physician, is out of proportion to any…
  • Medical Marijuana Expense May Be Compensable Under Workers’ Compensation in Massachusetts

    Steven H. Kantrovitz
    17 Sep 2014 | 6:03 am
    Insurers and employers around the United States are attempting to hold the line against paying injured workers’ expenses for medical marijuana, even in states where medical marijuana is legal. They argue that they should not be required to pay for a substance that is illegal under federal law. This issue has not yet been decided by courts in Massachusetts, but legal developments in other states indicate it is only a matter of time. A court of appeals in New Mexico, in the case of Gregory Vialpando v Ben’s Automotive Services and Redwood Fire & Casualty, ordered an…
  • Possible Failure of Electronic Filing Service Requires Recommittal of Employee Claim

    Steven H. Kantrovitz
    6 Sep 2014 | 6:03 am
    Courts, including the Reviewing Board that rules on appeals in Massachusetts workers’ compensation cases, are doing their best to update court services by allowing the use of electronic systems for accepting and storing court documents. These do not always work perfectly. An employee’s attorney may submit medical records or other documents to the court electronically and then be surprised at the hearing to find that the administrative judge (AJ) has not received the documents. The AJ may have arrived at a decision and denied benefits to the employee, without having reviewed the…
  • Injured Worker With Work-Related Pre-existing Condition Entitled to Benefits for Subsequent Inj