• Most Topular Stories

  • Russia Spy Case: Highlights from the Unsealed Complaint

    Law Blog
    Jacob Gershman
    26 Jan 2015 | 2:01 pm
    U.S. prosecutors in Manhattan on Monday announced espionage charges against three men accused of spying for the Russian government in New York. Law Blog has highlights from the unsealed complaint.
  • Judge Masunaga: the Newest District Court Judge in Hawaii

    Ms. JD Blog
    24 Jan 2015 | 12:14 pm
    Judge Margaret Kuroda Masunaga: Surrounded by her friends and family, Judge Margaret Masunaga was sworn in on December 2, 2014 as Third Circuit District Court judge by Hawaii Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald. Judge Masunaga’s swearing in ceremony was filled with leis for her guests, the support of her brother and sisters who flew in from California, and was followed by a reception with her favorite foods including sushi and Manago Hotel pork chops. Among all the excitement, Judge Masunaga’s most memorable moment was a speech given by a representative from the Hawaii…
  • How to achieve your career goals faster

    PLI SmartBrief
    26 Jan 2015 | 7:10 am
    Get promoted more quickly by accepting new duties, learning new skills and finding a mentor, Marcelle Yeager writes.  -More- 
  • Filing bankruptcy for free?

    Bankruptcy Home Blog
    19 Jan 2015 | 11:25 am
    Visit for the original content posted here, Filing bankruptcy for free? Unfortunately, if you are considering filing bankruptcy you are most likely already in a very precarious financial position. In fact, it’s likely you have thousands of dollars in unsecured debts such as credit cards and medical bills. You may even … Continue reading →
  • Bracewell IP partners lead 10-lawyer team to Pillsbury’s new office in Austin, Texas

    ABA Journal Daily News
    26 Jan 2015 | 3:25 pm
    Four intellectual property partners, headed by the former managing partner of Bracewell & Giuliani’s office in Austin, Texas, have exited for Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman.…
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  • “World’s Worst Mom”

    Walter Olson
    27 Jan 2015 | 3:23 am
    Lenore Skenazy of Free-Range Kids fame, often linked on this site, has a new TV series Thursday evenings on the Discovery Life channel. Tweet Tags: nanny state, safety “World’s Worst Mom” is a post from Overlawyered - Chronicling the high cost of our legal system
  • End tenure as of age 70…

    Walter Olson
    27 Jan 2015 | 2:45 am
    … or go on watching the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) weaken law faculties [Dan Subotnik] I wrote on this problem in my 1997 book The Excuse Factory, and more recently here, here, and here. Tweet Tags: age discrimination, law schools End tenure as of age 70… is a post from Overlawyered - Chronicling the high cost of our legal system
  • How Republicans win in the Northeast

    Walter Olson
    26 Jan 2015 | 9:15 pm
    I wrote the cover story in this weekend’s Washington Examiner magazine, about why the Northeast continues to elect Republicans as governor (and not to many posts other than that). The cast of characters includes newly elected governors Larry Hogan of Maryland and Charlie Baker of Massachusetts, Thomas Dewey, Chris Christie, Rudy Giuliani, William Weld, George Pataki, Mitt Romney, and Christine Todd Whitman. It’s a particular honor that political analyst Michael Barone wrote a piece riffing on my article and going into more detail about the reformist origins of the GOP tradition in…
  • Supreme Court and constitutional law roundup

    Walter Olson
    26 Jan 2015 | 9:05 pm
    Should a sock used to hold pills count as “drug paraphernalia?” [NPR via Jeffrey Miron on Supreme Court case] Michael Greve: on Medicaid spending-forcing suits, behold the Obama administration taking the correct stance, U.S. Chamber the wrong [Liberty and Law, more] No, the justices don’t just use religious freedom cases to advance their own beliefs [Eugene Volokh] Can/should the courts correct misconduct by the EEOC in dealings with employers during the “conciliation” phase before litigation? [Robert Barnes/Washington Post, Julie Goldscheid/SCOTUSBlog, Michael…
  • Mortgage borrowers “helped” — at mortgage borrowers’ expense

    Walter Olson
    26 Jan 2015 | 3:02 am
    Who could possibly have seen this coming? [Arnold Kling]: Servicing [of mortgages] has been traditionally a very low-margin business, with the whole ballgame about keeping costs low. Back in 2009, policy makers treated mortgage servicers like a piñata. They beat on servicers to provide foreclosure relief, loan modifications, and so forth. They told them to administer new programs that combined loan origination procedures with loan servicing procedures. They sought to punish servicers for noncompliance. Well, guess what. Now servicers do not want anything to do with any loan that might become…
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    Solo Practice University®

  • Are You Working With The New Consumer-Facing Legal Startups?

    Susan Cartier Liebel
    26 Jan 2015 | 5:30 am
    2015 is shaping up to be THE year of the legal startup. is flush with more than 720  startups and almost 1,100 investors. In 2013 a stunning $458 million was invested into legal startups, a breathtaking leap from a mere $66 million invested in 2012. But while investment dollars declined in 2014, the startups are proliferating like weeds in an unkempt garden. Some will live.  Some will die.  But they will keep on coming. As I started to write part three in this series, (read Parts 1 and 2 to put this post in context) a close relative who just started a small firm practice…
  • Building A (Much) Better Law Firm – Guest Lecture with Kathleen Paukert

    Susan Cartier Liebel
    22 Jan 2015 | 5:30 am
    When Kathleen Paukert first contacted me to discuss her book The Fulfilled Lawyer, my initial thought was this was another perspective on work/life balance.  However, once we started to dig into her law firm’s business model I saw the future!  I saw the future for solo practitioners who want to work within a collective of independent lawyers but still function and present like a large law firm primarily for all the perks solo practitioners bemoan not having because they feel isolated.  As Kathleen got deeper into the discussion I found the hairs on the back of my neck go up. …
  • Faculty Announcement – Jared Correia

    Susan Cartier Liebel
    20 Jan 2015 | 5:30 am
    Jared D. Correia, Esq. is Law Practice Management Advisor at MassLOMAP (Massachusetts Law Office Management Practice) and will teach the course “Law Practice Management” at Solo Practice University®. Jared D. Correia, Esq. is Law Practice Management Advisor at MassLOMAP (Massachusetts Law Office Management Practice). Prior to joining LOMAP, he was the Publications Attorney for the Massachusetts Bar Association (“MBA”). He was the first Publications Attorney for the MBA, and established the continuing legal education publication protocols and standards. In addition to…
  • Emergency Planning – Thinking About the Unthinkable

    Laura Loyek
    15 Jan 2015 | 5:30 am
    In the spring of 2012, Raleigh attorney Alan Barnes* was at the top of his game.  He was 58 and had spent years building a thriving solo practice.  His work included trusts and estates, general business, and real estate matters.  In a moment, everything stopped when Alan suffered a massive stroke. For several days, he remained unconscious and completely unable to communicate.  Alan’s wife Jane recognized that something needed to be done about his practice.  Jane was an in-house corporate attorney.  She knew nothing about her husband’s practice areas.  She had never encountered a…
  • Online Security Basics for Attorneys – Guest Lecture with Deborah Gonzalez (Part 2)

    Susan Cartier Liebel
    13 Jan 2015 | 5:30 am
    As promised, here is the second part of this important and fascinating guest lecture with Deborah Gonzalez discussing online security basics for attorneys.  If you’ve not listened to Part 1 yet, you can do so here. The audio is about 48 minutes. Listen directly below (.MP3) Deborah Gonzalez, Esq. is an attorney and the founder of Law2sm, LLC, a legal consulting firm focusing on helping its clients navigate the legal and security issues relating to the new digital and social media world. Deborah is the…
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    Above the Law

  • Associate Bonus Watch: WilmerHale’s Wily Ways?

    David Lat
    26 Jan 2015 | 2:33 pm
    Is "merit-based" compensation just a poorly disguised way for a law firm to lower total compensation costs?
  • National Hydraulic Fracturing and Energy Issues to Watch in 2015

    Above the Law
    26 Jan 2015 | 2:09 pm
    Hydraulic fracturing and energy policy promise to be an interesting area to watch in 2015 as many competing political forces push to control the agenda.
  • Non-Sequiturs: 01.26.15

    Joe Patrice
    26 Jan 2015 | 2:02 pm
    * Another benchmark in the Ninth Circuit's ongoing war against prosecutorial misconduct: a panel of judges -- Kozinski, Wardlaw, and Fletcher -- suggest trying prosecutors for perjury. [New York Observer] * Lawyer and blogger Eric Turkewitz finds himself in the New York Post's Page Six gossip column. Just what was he doing with Selena Gomez while Justin Bieber wasn't looking? [New York Personal Injury Attorney Blog] * Kristine Sperling left her position as a senior associate at Latham to start her own organic soap company. And, I'm assuming, an underground fight club. [Good Day Sacramento] *…
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    Simple Justice

  • Move On

    27 Jan 2015 | 4:11 am
    From what I would assume to be a transcript posted by Jamison Koehler: HEARING EXAMINER:  I will tell you right now, I do not, unless you have an expert here to testify as it relates to the field sobriety tests, unless you can provide that testimony through an expert – DEFENSE COUNSEL:  — I have an expert right here – HEARING EXAMINER:  — I cannot allow that line of questioning. DEFENSE COUNSEL:  Let me try – HEARING EXAMINER:  Because you are trying to get the officer to say that the tests are not peer-reviewed.  What does that mean? What does that mean to the officer?
  • Things Only Bad Cops Do

    27 Jan 2015 | 3:49 am
    Omar Rendon was a sergeant in the Marines, which is detailed so you realize that he was one of the good guys. You know, the brave heroes everybody talks about, who deserve our thanks.  And indeed, they do, and he does. And he is a good guy, which didn’t really help him much. From the Daily News: Omar Rendon, 25, a former Marine sergeant, said he was sitting in his Acura sedan in an Ulmer St. parking lot in College Point, Queens while on his lunch break last week, eating a Subway sandwich and watching “Wentworth” on his cell phone, when an unmarked blue van pulled alongside…
  • A Nice Young Man At Yale

    27 Jan 2015 | 3:15 am
    Could the Yale police have made a worse choice of students to pull a gun on?  Not likely.  The student turned out to be the son of New York Times columnist Charles Blow. Saturday evening, I got a call that no parent wants to get. It was my son calling from college — he’s a third-year student at Yale. He had been accosted by a campus police officer, at gunpoint! Blow’s commentary often addresses the state of race relations in America.  I suppose it comes with the territory, though that would be a racist conclusion based on Blow’s skin color. He could just as easily be a…
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    Law and Magic Blog

  • Law and Magic On "The McCarthys"

    9 Jan 2015 | 4:27 pm
    The lawyer/magician has made it onto scripted television. On the January 8, 2015 episode of the CBS series The McCarthys, titled "Marjorie and Eileen," Marjorie's brother-in-law    a partner at a BigLaw firm, announces that he retired from his firm in order to pursue his real love--magic! Unfortunately, we don't get to see any magic, so we're left wondering if he's actually likely to be any good at his new occupation.
  • Argentina's President "Adopts" Boy To Avoid Werewolf Outcome

    31 Dec 2014 | 10:45 am
    NBC News reports that the President of Argentina has "adopted" a seventh son of an Argentinian family, in order to prevent him from becoming a werewolf. Yes, according to South American folklore, a seventh son might become a werewolf, so according to Argentinian law, another family can adopt such a child to prevent that fate. If the seventh child is a girl, she'll become a witch. More here from the Independent, here from the Smithsonian Magazine. However, at least one Argentinian historian says there's no truth to the notion that these adoptions have anything to do with…
  • Nigerian Government Gains Wizardly Allies In Fight Against Boko Haram

    3 Dec 2014 | 2:39 pm
    Check out this piece from Vice on the Association of Nigerian Witches and Wizards (WIZTAN), which is fighting back against Boko Haram. According to reporter Mark Hay, WIZTAN has made some predictions about ultimate success against Boko Haram, the group known for abduction of schoolgirls and for attacks on the Nigerian government. These predictions include the capture of the group's leader by the end of 2014 and (it looks like WIZTAN is hedging its bets a little here) that not all the abducted schoolgirls will be freed and returned to their families. 
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    What About Paris?

  • Will someone please give Julianne Moore her Oscar?

    JD Hull
    23 Jan 2015 | 9:42 am
    We think her fifth Academy Award nomination is the charm for this astonishingly versatile and hard-working actress, author and human being.
  • Dang. Someone get this Boehner fella' a cup of black coffee.

    JD Hull
    21 Jan 2015 | 11:15 pm
    As readers of this blog over the past 10 years know, I'm a swing voter, not a heavy Democrat, worked on the Hill a total of 4 years for two fine and mega-bright men, a Wisconsin senator (D) and later on an Ohio congressman (R). I do have some strong GOP leanings on some issues. And I've had such leanings on a few select fundamental issues ever since a shop foreman at a Cincinnati Keebler-owned cookie factory the summer before my freshman year at Duke told me not "to work so damn hard" on my 8 hour shift building tall stacks of cookies on skids for shipments all over the Midwest lest I make my…
  • Write "declination letters" confirming there is no engagement to two kinds of would-be clients: (a) unsophisticated users of legal services and (b) stone crazy people.

    JD Hull
    20 Jan 2015 | 8:59 pm
    And now, my K Street pimp friend, you're going to write that Answer due tomorrow. Lots of conversations with persons who approach your firm with a legal issue do not result in your getting hired. The matter might be too small, too insubstantial or not the kind of law you do. You usually know in the first few minutes. But very often the time from the initial call or meeting to saying "no" is protracted. You may need to review documents, or speak with someone they asked you to contact. However, that may take a few days, and involve a few conversations and emails. In those cases in which you…
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    Legal Juice

  • You’ve Heard Of “Helicopter Moms”?

    John Mesirow
    26 Jan 2015 | 9:05 pm
    Yes, of course you’ve heard of helicopter moms. But what about helicopter dads? They don’t get a lot of ink. This gent is the exception! As reported by The Guardian An Italian father who forced his teenage daughters to ski competitively and eat a macrobiotic diet because he was concerned they were too fat has been found guilty of abuse and sentenced to nine months in prison. The unusual case in Turin may set a precedent in how Italian courts define psychological abuse of children. There are no similar cases of abuse on record. The case started in 2011 when the two teenage girls…
  • Noisy Nancy Very Displeased With Neighbor And Johnny Law

    John Mesirow
    25 Jan 2015 | 9:08 pm
    “Um, excuse me. Could you please keep it down?” Fuhgeddaboutit. Ain’t nobody quieting this lady down. As reported by The Star-Ledger at A 47-year-old Hackettstown woman went on a rampage and was arrested when police arrived at her house to check into a noise complaint last week, authorities said. Gail Tortorella was drunk when police showed up to her home on Ashley Avenue at about 6:45 p.m. Thursday, Hackettstown police said in a release. Instead of calming down, police said she became belligerent. Rampage? Yeah, not the right move. While being placed under arrest…
  • That Nosy Swedish National Tax Board Again!

    John Mesirow
    24 Jan 2015 | 9:07 pm
    Remember the story about the Swedish parents who wanted to name their daughter “Metallica?” Or the Swedish transvestite who wanted to change his name to Pia? Add to that list the Swedish couple who wanted to name their daughter “Elvis.” Fuhgeddaboutit, said the National Tax Board. Why? Because … Elvis “is a first name of a masculine type.” While the King might be pleased with that determination, no doubt Elvis’s parents are not. They should follow Metallica’s parents lead, who fought the law, and won.
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    Ernie the Attorney

  • Elegant discipline & rainstorms

    Ernie Svenson
    18 Jan 2015 | 1:00 am
    Why is it useful to keep a journal of your daily reflections? There is an elegant discipline involved in capturing your daily perspectives on life. When you write your thoughts every day you’ll begin to see new things. Your perspectives will start to move in slow motion. And you’ll notice things you don’t ordinarily pay attention to. We tend to rush through life like we’re in a rainstorm without an umbrella. We’re always scrambling to find refuge. Of course, this is silly, because there is no refuge from life. Starting the daily habit of writing in a journal is…
  • The Lost & Found Department is waiting

    Ernie Svenson
    11 Jan 2015 | 3:00 am
    What if the thing that you wanted most in life was just sitting there waiting for you to claim it? Like at a Lost & Found Department. A lot of times we lose something and don’t know it’s even missing. That thing might be sitting in the Lost & Found Department for a long time. If we never notice it’s missing it sits in the Lost & Found forever. Lost, and found, but never claimed. What if the thing you wanted most out of life was like that? Why wouldn’t you realize that the dream you have for your life is lost? Probably because you’re afraid it’s…
  • Dreams vs. Distractions

    Ernie Svenson
    2 Jan 2015 | 4:00 am
    What’s the next thing you’re going to do? Not the thing you’ll do tomorrow, or in ten minutes… Right NOW. What are you going to do? The most important choice you’ll ever make is the one about what to do in the very next moment. It’s actually the only choice you have. You can only make one choice at a time. So the next choice is the one that counts most. Train yourself to take each next choice very seriously. Pay attention to why you make choices, and to how your choices pan out. Most people aren’t very clear about their choices. Most people don’t see the…
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    JURIST - Paper Chase

  • Former LRA commander makes first appearance before ICC

    26 Jan 2015 | 8:34 am
    [JURIST] Former Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) [State Department backgrounder] commander Dominic Ongwen on Monday made his first appearance [press release] before the International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website]. The pre-trial hearing was brief as Ongwen simply had to confirm his identity and that he clearly understood the charges against him. During his hearing, Ongwen thanked God and referred to himself as a former soldier saying that he "was abducted in 1988 and ... taken to the bush when [he] was 14 years old" in Acholi, his native language. Ongwen faces three counts of crimes…
  • Mexico authorities make arrest in connection to alleged massacre of students

    26 Jan 2015 | 8:27 am
    [JURIST] Mexican authorities have arrested a hit man for the Guerreros Unidos gang in connection with disappearance and alleged massacre of 43 students from a teacher-training college in Ayotzinapa, in the state of Guerrero. The Mexican government believes the students were killed [DPA news report] by the Guerreros Unidos gang after being handed over to the group by local police in the city of Iguala. Prosecutors say the gang killed the students believing them to be members of rival gang, after which they incinerated their bodies and scattered the ashes in a local river. Only one set of…
  • Egypt court convicts doctor of manslaughter in female genital mutilation case

    26 Jan 2015 | 7:53 am
    [JURIST] An Egyptian appeals court Monday convicted a doctor of manslaughter in a female genital mutilation (FGM) [WHO backgrounder] that resulted in the death of a 13-year-old girl in 2013. The doctor, Raslan Fadl, who was originally cleared of charges [JURIST report] at the trial level, was fined and sentenced [BBC report] to two years of hard labor for manslaughter with an additional three months added for FGM. The victim, Suhair al-Bataa, was brought to Fadl by her father in order to undergo the illegal procedure. The father of the victim also faced trial Monday and was given a…
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  • 'Religion' as a Bundle of Legal Proxies: Reply to Micah Schwartzman

    Andrew Koppelman
    25 Jan 2015 | 5:57 am
    The American legal tradition of giving religion special treatment is justified, I have argued, because when interpreted at a sufficiently high level of abstraction, religion serves as an indispensable legal proxy for a plurality of important goods. Micah Schwartzman argues, in response, that using religion as a legal proxy remains vulnerable to charges of unfairness toward those with secular ethical and moral convictions. I respondto Schwartzman’s critique in a new piece in the San Diego Law Review, available here.
  • Holt v. Hobbs and Third Party Harms

    Guest Blogger
    22 Jan 2015 | 3:11 pm
    Micah Schwartzman, Richard Schragger, and Nelson TebbeIn Holt v. Hobbs, the Court unanimously and easily held that Arkansas prison officials cannot bar an inmate from wearing a ½ inch beard that he claims is required by his religion. The exemption to hair grooming standards, the Court held, is required by the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA), which prohibits the government from imposing substantial burdens on religious exercise unless its policies are narrowly tailored to achieve a compelling interest. Holt isn't a hard case. The prison officials could offer no…
  • Why even the colorblind should embrace disparate impact law

    Joey Fishkin
    21 Jan 2015 | 8:57 pm
    On the surface, Inclusive Communities Project, which was argued today at the Supreme Court, is a statutory interpretation case.  The question presented is straightforward: does the Fair Housing Act (FHA) authorize disparate impact claims?  The statutory text is clearly ambiguous; the Justices spent a reasonable portion of the morning’s argument asking imponderable questions about phrases like “make unavailable” and “adversely affect.”  (None of the major statutes courts understand to authorize disparate impact claims originally used the phrase “disparate…
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    Concurring Opinions

  • ROUNDUP: Law and Humanities 01.23.15

    Christine Corcos
    23 Jan 2015 | 9:09 am
    Austin Sarat, Matthew Anderson, and Cathrine O. Frank are the editors of an excellent publication, Law and the Humanities: An Introduction (Cambridge, 2014).  Included are a valuable chapter on the origins of the discipline by the three editors, “Three tales of two texts: an introduction to law and the humanities,” by Kathryn Abrams, a section on Ideas of Justice from the biblical to the postmodern by leading scholars in the field, and other important overviews of the movement. A worthwhile purchase for those interested. Contributors include Richard Sherwin, Christine Farley,…
  • A Word Missing From the Constitution

    Gerard Magliocca
    22 Jan 2015 | 9:03 am
    The answer is “Governor.”  The Constitution never refers to the Governor of a State.  The phrases used instead are “executive authority” or “executive officer.”  I’m not sure why.  One possible answer is that at least one state in 1787 did not have a Governor, but instead relied on some form of collective executive.  (I still need to research that.) This textual point sheds some light on the Supreme Court’s upcoming examination of what the word “Legislature” means in the Arizona redistricting case.  The Constitution does refer…
  • FAN 44.1 (First Amendment News) — Professor William Van Alstyne weighs in on Citizens United

    Ronald K.L. Collins
    22 Jan 2015 | 8:19 am
    In yesterday’s FAN column I posted the comments of thirteen noted First Amendment lawyers and scholars concerning their views of Citizens United, this on the occasion of the fifth anniversary of the case. One of those who read that column was Professor William Van Alstyne, Perkins Professor of Law, Emeritus, Duke Law School and currently emeritus at the William and Mary School of Law. As many know, Professor Van Alstyne’s writings on constitutional law and First Amendment have been widely cited by judges and scholars alike. In the free speech area his numerous works include The…
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    Sui Generis-a New York Law Blog

  • Plan for 2015 with these solo/small firm resources

    21 Jan 2015 | 10:43 am
    This week's Daily Record column is entitled " Plan for 2015 with these solo/small firm resources."  My past Daily Record articles can be accessed here. Plan for 2015 with these solo/small firm resources The new year is upon us and it’s time to start planning for 2015. For solo and small firm lawyers, annual planning can be an arduous task. Not only do you have to stay abreast of changes in your practice areas — you are also tasked with making business decisions about the direction of your law firm.The good news is that there are lots of resources out there for solo and small firm…
  • 2015 Legal Technology Predictions

    15 Jan 2015 | 9:57 am
    This week's Daily Record column is entitled "2015 Legal Technology Predictions."  My past Daily Record articles can be accessed here. 2015 Legal Technology Predictions As 2014 draws to a close, it’s once again time for me to take a stab at predicting how lawyers will use technology in the coming year. I’ve been making these predictions for years now; sometimes I’m right, sometimes I’m wrong. But either way, it’s always a fun endeavor to put my predictions out there and then see if they come to pass. So, let’s get started, shall we? First, let’s take a look at social media.
  • Join Me For Lunch In NYC Next Month

    15 Jan 2015 | 6:30 am
    Will you be in New York City on February 4th? If so, join  me for a free lunch in midtown Manhattan. This is a great opportunity to network with your colleagues and discuss the ins and outs of running a successful law practice.  Here's what's planned. It's being held on Wednesday, February 4th from 12:30pm-1:30pm at Aretsky’s Patroonmap) and in addition to networking, you'll hear about: Trends and best practices in law practice management Tips to help run your law office more efficiently How you can use MyCase to save time and money A sneak peek at new MyCase features What’s…
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  • Frustration with the Intracorporate Conspiracy Doctrine Distorts Other Areas of Law

    Josephine Sandler Nelson
    27 Jan 2015 | 12:00 am
    My previous blogposts (one, two, three, four, five, and six) discussed why conspiracy prosecutions should be used to reach coordinated wrongdoing by agents within an organization. The intracorporate conspiracy doctrine has distorted agency law and inappropriately handicaps the ability of tort and criminal law to regulate the behavior of organizations and their agents. My Intracorporate Conspiracy Trap article argues that the intracorporate conspiracy doctrine is not properly based in agency law, and that it should most certainly not be applied throughout tort law and criminal law. As a result…
  • Subsidizing Savings v. Subsidizing Borrowings

    Christine Hurt
    26 Jan 2015 | 2:56 pm
    OK, so I try not to just vote my interest.  If I'm in tax bracket A, I try not to root for tax cuts to A and cheer for tax hikes for tax bracket B and so forth.  I know it's human to vote one's interest, but I try to vote the interest of the country.  (Ha!) BUT, I have to say I hate this new proposal.  Currently 529 programs allow anyone to save money for future education benefits for any named beneficiary, with all returns on investment growing tax-free.  Distributions for educational purposes are tax-free as well.  There are no phase-outs or maximum income rules for using 529s.
  • The Silenced Connecticut Sex-Abuse Case

    Josephine Sandler Nelson
    26 Jan 2015 | 12:00 am
    My previous blogposts (one, two, three, four, and five) introduced why conspiracy prosecutions should be used to reach wrongdoing by agents within an organization. The 2012 prosecution of Monsignor Lynn for twelve years of transferring predator priests from parish to parish at the command and for the benefit of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia was defeated by the intracorporate conspiracy doctrine. Moreover, this was not the first time that the Roman Catholic Church had used the doctrine to help its bureaucrats escape liability for suppressing sex abuse cases. In 1997, employees of the Roman…
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    Ms. JD Blog

  • Quotas: A Way to Further Gender Diversity on US Corporate Boards

    26 Jan 2015 | 11:38 am
    According to the 2013 Catalyst Census: Fortune 500 Women Directors, women in America held only 16.9 percent of board seats last year—virtually no change from the 16.6 percent in 2012.  Less than one-fifth of companies had even 25 percent women directors, and one-tenth of companies had absolutely no female board representation.  Gender diversity has been a hot-button corporate governance topic for years now, yet there seems to be a standstill in progress on American corporate boards. A variety of legislative, regulatory, and voluntary methods are in use around the world to…
  • GEF’s Spotlight on Women’s Rights & Education Series: Ebola’s Impact on Liberia’s Schools

    24 Jan 2015 | 1:49 pm
    Along with Sierra Leone and Guinea, the CDC has designated Liberia as a country with widespread ebola transmission. Ebola has impacted all facets of life in Liberia, including putting a halt to the educational system. President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf ordered all schools closed since the end of July 2014.  They are not scheduled to reopen until March at the earliest. Even prior to the ebola outbreak, schools in Liberia were struggling with low literacy and school attendance rates – 43 and 34 percent, respectively. The country suffered through two…
  • Judge Masunaga: the Newest District Court Judge in Hawaii

    24 Jan 2015 | 12:14 pm
    Judge Margaret Kuroda Masunaga: Surrounded by her friends and family, Judge Margaret Masunaga was sworn in on December 2, 2014 as Third Circuit District Court judge by Hawaii Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald. Judge Masunaga’s swearing in ceremony was filled with leis for her guests, the support of her brother and sisters who flew in from California, and was followed by a reception with her favorite foods including sushi and Manago Hotel pork chops. Among all the excitement, Judge Masunaga’s most memorable moment was a speech given by a representative from the Hawaii…
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    Legal Profession Blog

  • Buehler? Buehler?

    Legal Profession Prof
    26 Jan 2015 | 9:28 am
    We recently reported that the New York Second Department had reduced a New Jersey disbarment to a two-year reciprocal suspension. The Maryland Court of Appeals went the other way today -- a six-month suspension from Virginia drew disbarment as reciprocal...
  • The Title Is Disbarred

    Legal Profession Prof
    26 Jan 2015 | 8:27 am
    The South Carolina Supreme Court disbarred an attorney for misconduct in several matters Respondent's law practice included conducting residential real estate loan closings. In 2007, Chicago Title Company (Chicago Title) canceled respondent's title agency. From that point, respondent had approved...
  • Theft Enabler Gets Suspended

    Legal Profession Prof
    26 Jan 2015 | 7:13 am
    The Indiana Supreme Court ordered a suspension of not less than six months without automatic reinstatement of an attorney's whose failure to register a trust account facilitated another lawyer's thefts. Respondent maintained two attorney/client trust accounts ("Trust Accounts"), neither of...
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    China Law Blog

  • China Contract Damages: More Art Than Science

    25 Jan 2015 | 8:24 pm
    Our China lawyers often stress to our clients the importance of a well-crafted contract damages provision that contains a “just-right” amount of damages should there be a breach. We are often asked what the just right amount should and our answer is that depends on the specific facts and to what the Chinese side will agree.   The other day, one of our China attorneys wrote the following to a client regarding a contract damages provision in an NNN Agreement we had drafted. We had recommended one figure for the contract damages, but against our advice, our client had insisted on a…
  • China VIEs: A Bibliography From The Last Few Days

    24 Jan 2015 | 5:09 pm
    The recent news about China VIEs has thrown many (most?) China lawyers into a bit of a tizzy. We all know that what is happening is complicated and important and we are all scrambling to figure it all out, knowing that whatever we conclude now will no doubt differ from what we conclude six months from now. Because this issue is so important and so complicated, I thought it appropriate to gather up the best writings on it and list them below. This is truly a situation where the more you read the more you will understand, though if you think you have it completely figured out, I think you are…
  • China VIEs Are Dead. Done. Over. Stick A Fork In Them.

    22 Jan 2015 | 11:58 pm
    January 19, 2015 marks the date of the death of the VIE investment structure in China. The death blow was dealt by the PRC State Council itself, the highest authority on such matters in China. Now that the issue is settled, we can all move on to figure out the effects.  How was the VIE killed? On January 19, the State Council issued a discussion draft of legislation setting out the plan for overhauling the antiquated Chinese foreign investment legal regime. The new system is set out in the PRC Investment Law Discussion Draft (the “Draft”), a massive document in 178 Articles and…
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    Patently-O » Patent

  • Next Up: Lighting Ballast

    Dennis Crouch
    26 Jan 2015 | 10:37 am
    In Teva v Sandoz, the Supreme Court held that a district court’s factual conclusion supporting a claim construction determination should be reviewed de novo on appeal.  In the expected follow-up, the Supreme Court has now acted on a hadful of cases riding in Teva‘s wake. In particular, the Court has issued “GVR” decisions in the pending cases of Lighting Ballast v. Universal Lighting; Gevo v. Butamax, and Shire v. Watson Pharma.  In a GVR, the Supreme Court Grants certiorari, but, rather than deciding the case in the merits, immediately Vacates the appellate…
  • Delano Farms v. California Table Grape Commission (Fed. Cir. 2015)

    Dennis Crouch
    26 Jan 2015 | 6:59 am
    by Dennis Crouch Like their utility and design patent brethren, plant patents must also satisfy the patentability requirements of Section 102 and 103 of the Patent Act. In Delano Farms v. California Table Grape Commission (Fed. Cir. 2015), the plant patents at issue relate to Scarlet Royal and Autumn King table grapes. Plant Patent Nos. PP16,229 and PP16,284.  The declaratory-judgment plaintiffs are grape growers seeking to invalidate the patents so that they can grow the grapes without continuing to pay a license fee. Public Use: Under pre-AIA law, Section 102(b) renders patents invalid…
  • Dr. Sheppard Selected as Director of USPTO’s Detroit Office

    Jason Rantanen
    23 Jan 2015 | 9:21 am
    By Jason Rantanen Congratulations to my colleague at the University of Nebraska College of Law, Dr. A. Christal Sheppard, who I understand has been selected as the first Director of the PTO’s Detroit satellite office.  From her biography at the College of Law: Dr. Sheppard began her career as a scientist earning a M.S. and Ph.D. in Cellular and Molecular Biology from the University of Michigan.  After receiving a J.D. from Cornell University Law School and interning with Judge Rader at the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and the Executive Office of the President’s…
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    Religion Clause

  • Facebook Complies With Turkish Court Order To Block Pages Insulting To Prophet

    Howard Friedman
    27 Jan 2015 | 4:15 am
    Jurist reports that on Sunday, a court in Turkey ordered a ban on Facebook pages containing material insulting to the Prophet Muhammad. The Golbasi Duty Magistrate Court sent to the Presidency of Telecommunication and Communication and to the Access Provider Association its order calling for Facebook to be totally blocked in the country if the offending pages are not removed. The New York Times reported yesterday that Facebook has complied with the court order and blocked Turkish users' access to the pages authorities specified as offensive.
  • Female GITMO Guards File Discrimination Complaints After Judges Grant Prisoners' Accommodation Requests

    Howard Friedman
    27 Jan 2015 | 4:10 am
    Muslim defendants in two cases before military commissions at Guantanamo Bay have been objecting to the military's assigning female guards to transfer them to meetings with their attorneys and to hearings.  The transfers result in physical contact between guards and the prisoners.  Military judges have issued at least interim orders barring the practice which violates defendants' religious beliefs. (See prior related postings 1, 2). Now AP reports that female guards at Guantanamo have filed complaints with the Defense Department's Office of Diversity Management and Equal…
  • Today Is International Holocaust Remembrance Day

    Howard Friedman
    27 Jan 2015 | 4:05 am
    Today is the International Day of Commemoration in memory of the victims of the Holocaust as designated by a United Nations Resolution (full text) adopted five years ago. The date-- Jan. 27-- is the anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camp by the Soviet army. (Background.) This year is the 70th anniversary of that liberation. The ceremony scheduled at United Nations headquarters for today has been postponed until Wednesday because of the snow storm forecast for New York.
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  • Best of 2009: Keeping it real — the ultimate use in commerce

    Ron Coleman
    26 Jan 2015 | 1:48 pm
    This was first posted on May 7, 2009. The TTABlog® reports, again, on the fraud issue, but that’s not what interests me here so much this time. Rather, it’s the question of the lifecycle of a trademark’s “use in commerce” status when plotted against that of a specific product which may no longer be manufactured, but which arguably may have trademark significance. I have looked at this question in other contexts before, particularly in this post where I wrote about a company called River West Brands, that pokes through the junk-heap of “abandoned”…
  • Best of 2009: Properly classified — there’s no “significant doubt”

    Ron Coleman
    26 Jan 2015 | 11:01 am
    Originally posted 2009-03-14 23:59:47. Republished by Blog Post PromoterPhoto: SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images CORY DOCTOROW: Obama administration: releasing details of secret copyright treaty endangers”national security.” Er, what? Good question, Instapundit.  Click through — the original story is here, at Wired.  The reference is to the so-called Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, or ACTA. But you can really see all you need to see by reading the letter from the Administration responding to a Freedom of Information Act request for disclosure of this information about a…
  • Best of 2009: The best of the best. Of the bestest.

    Ron Coleman
    26 Jan 2015 | 9:41 am
    Originally posted 2009-04-14 11:20:40. Republished by Blog Post PromoterOnly Marc Randazza can put certain things in certain ways — and on those occasions when he’s actually right (like when he’s discussing law and not politics! ;-)), man, he’s right on. Well, he’s right on today in this latest demonstration of the Streisand Effect. As Marco explains in his not-quite-safe-for-work post, a man called Morgan, whose name only ironically reminds us of an investment bank, posted what is at best a lame, and at worst a tinfoil-hat-special, gripe site about our…
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    Grits for Breakfast

  • Houston crime lab labeling errors led to dropped DWI charges

    26 Jan 2015 | 5:03 am
    More dysfunction at the Houston crime lab, where in Oct. 2013, before its transition from HPD to an independent entity, "A lack of attention by both the analyst and the analyst's supervisor allowed [a] report containing inaccurate information from the submitting officer to be reported to the District Attorney's office," according to a December report by the city's inspector general's office and a soon-to-be-released investigation by the Texas Forensic Science Commission. Anita Hassan at the Houston Chronicle reported (Jan. 23) over the weekend on an investigation by the Forensic Science…
  • Political landscape in Texas Senate taking shape: Effect of committee assignments, elimination of 2/3 rule on criminal justice policy

    25 Jan 2015 | 10:28 am
    The political landscape in the Texas state senate during the 84th Texas Legislature, both generally and on the criminal justice front, has begun to take shape. Newbie Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick announced committee assignments on Friday and the eastern chamber earlier eliminated its decades-old 2/3 rule. Let's consider the implications of both for the criminal justice arena:Who said you can't put new wine in old skins? (Oh, yeah.)As we await the designation of committee and chair assignments in the Texas House, consider recent changes at the Senate Criminal Justice Committee. Though still chaired by…
  • Is reticence of Nueces prosecutors to disclose evidence an institutional failure?

    24 Jan 2015 | 8:13 am
    Grits had missed a story from earlier this month about the Nueces County DA allegedly withholding evidence in criminal cases. Reported the Corpus Christi Caller Times (Jan. 7): The Nueces County District Attorney’s Office has shown a pattern of turning over evidence at the last minute and sometimes withholding it all together, defense attorneys testified Wednesday.Attorneys for Trinity Ringelstein, who is serving a life sentence, argued prosecutors waited until the week before his capital murder trial to give them tapes containing more than 72 hours of phone conversations he had while in…
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    Blonde Justice

  • What's So Special About You?

    Blonde Justice
    31 Dec 2014 | 5:30 pm
    I recently talked to an older white man who had been arrested for DUI. He was not a client of mine, but he knew I was a lawyer and he wanted to vent to me, so I let him.He shared that the police hadn't been fair to him, that he had tried to tell them that he wasn't drunk, that the handcuffs were too tight, that he wanted to call his wife, and the police officers had not listened to him, had refused to listen to him, had persisted in arrested him and in keeping him cuffed tightly."A few weeks ago," he continued, "when I heard about all of these people protesting the police, I thought they…
  • Things They Should Teach In Law School

    Blonde Justice
    5 Dec 2014 | 12:38 pm
    A big part of my job is making up excuses. Especially about why my clients or my witnesses are late. When I was in the big city, I relied more on train trouble. In the suburbs, "He's just parking" is my new go-to. Everyone is always "just parking." Sometimes for hours or days. But these are the things I think they should teach public defenders in law school.  That, and copier repair. 
  • B as in Blonde...

    Blonde Justice
    21 Nov 2014 | 9:17 am
    My client left a message for me and spelled her name in the cutest way. I can't help but think that it took her some time to come up with it. I don't want to give up her name obviously but let's just say her last name was Grubs.  Her message said "G as in Glitter, R as in Rainbows, U as in Unicorns, B as in Butterflies, S as in Stars." It was great! So cheerful... and I'll certainly remember to call her back! Oh, I'd better go do that!
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    Drug and Device Law

  • Deflate-Gate Wasn’t the Only Blowout Last Week

    John J. Sullivan
    26 Jan 2015 | 5:30 am
    This past week you probably heard the low monotone sound that emanates from Patriot head coach Bill Belichick’s mouth whenever he’s explaining deflate-gate and trying to muster up the energy to drool out words that ultimately reveal only that he’s not interested in saying them.  His barely operating mouth doesn’t tell you what his eyes so clearly communicate: “This is stupid.  It was a blowout.  It’s stupid, stupid, stupid.  Really stupid.”  His eyes make a better point than his mouth.  It was a blowout and was always going to be.  The same is…
  • Putting Ascertainability into Rule 23

    23 Jan 2015 | 9:30 am
    Following the completion of its overhaul of Rules 26(b)(1) and 37(e) (see our most recent post here), the federal Advisory Committee on Civil Rules is set to take up Fed. R. Civ. P. 23, concerning class actions.  Sadly, our preferred outcome abolishing Rule 23 altogether and allowing Congress and state legislatures to determine the availability of class actions on a subject-by-subject basis – is not on the table.  One thing that is on the agenda (in addition to cy pres, which we’ve discussed a lot lately) is ascertainability. Ascertainability is the subject of this…
  • Homeopathic Drugs – Eh, We Don’t Know

    John J. Sullivan
    22 Jan 2015 | 6:28 am
    It’s difficult to draw concrete conclusions in the world of homeopathic drugs.  It seems that we don’t know exactly what they are, why they work or whether they even do work.  We’re not exactly sure why we take them, but our friend at the yoga studio said they worked and so did Dr. Oz.  So we take them, hoping that they’re more fix than fairy dust.In the preemption and FDA world, it’s even more difficult to draw concrete conclusions when homeopathic drugs are involved.  The FDA recognizes these drugs and has in fact devoted a section of its Compliance Policy…
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    Crime and Consequences Blog

  • News Scan

    CJLF Staff
    26 Jan 2015 | 12:36 pm
    Wyoming Lawmakers Push For Firing Squad: Several Wyoming senators say the time has come for the state to bring back the firing squad as a method of execution as an alternative or backup to lethal injection.  Cheryl K. Chumley of the Washington Times reports that the firing squad suggestion comes at a time when several pharmaceutical companies have scaled back or completely eliminated the production of lethal injection drugs due to pressures from anti-death penalty groups.  Utah offers the option of using a firing squad for inmates who are already on the state's death row, but not…
  • Grand Theft Vino

    Kent Scheidegger
    24 Jan 2015 | 7:51 am
    Kerana Todorov reports for the Napa Valley Register:Investigators have recovered the bulk of the premium wine bottles stolen from The French Laundry on Christmas Day, according to the Napa County Sheriff's Office. No arrests have been made.*                                         …
  • The Underpolicing of Black America

    Kent Scheidegger
    23 Jan 2015 | 8:28 pm
    Jill Leovy has this essay in the WSJ:In predominantly African-American neighborhoods of U.S. cities, far too many killers have gotten away with far too many crimes for far too long, fueling a disastrous murder epidemic. Solving these murders and other serious crimes of violence in black communities should be a top goal for law enforcement--and it deserves to take priority over much more widely discussed issues such as racial profiling and the excessive use of force by police in black neighborhoods, from Ferguson to Staten…
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  • Monday Open Thread

    26 Jan 2015 | 9:59 am
    Busy work day. Here's an open thread, all topics welcome. [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • How to Get a Gold Star From the DEA

    26 Jan 2015 | 6:26 am
    The infamous Flores twins of Chicago will finally be sentenced Tuesday. Some background on twin brothers Pedro and Margarito Flores, is in this Chicago Reader article. The Government filed its sentencing memorandum a few weeks ago, which I have... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • "El Chapo" Guzman: U.S. Makes New Push for Extradition

    26 Jan 2015 | 4:20 am
    Mexico's Attorney General last week said he believed the U.S. was hours away from filing a new extradition request for Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman. His lawyers immediately filed a new request a writ of Amparo seeking protection from extradition. ... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
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    TheFunded Founder Institute News

  • Heddoko to Compete in Wearable Technology World Cup

    26 Jan 2015 | 2:05 pm
    Heddoko, a Montreal-based startup that has won many awards, has raised $350,000 in funding. In addition, Heddoko will compete as finalists in Germany in the WT Wearable Technology World Cup in February of this year. They are one of 20 finalists, selected from 500 competitors. The founders of Heddoko are both Latin American, Alex Fainberg of Argentina, and Mazen Elbawab of Brazil. Despite the fact that they both had full-time jobs, they decided to pursue their ideas behind Heddoko full-time, which led to them attending the Founder Institute in Montreal to help get their ideas off the ground.
  • Come to a Free Founder Institute Event and Learn from top Startup Experts

    26 Jan 2015 | 10:00 am
    The Founder Institute hosts thousands of free startup events across the globe each year, in over [total_cities] cities across six continents. These events are designed to help aspiring entrepreneurs improve their ideas and entrepreneurial skills, all in a low-pressure environment. At Founder Institute events, you can meet and learn from successful entrepreneurs, get feedback on your ideas, come up with new ideas, recruit potential co-founders, and more. They are the perfect starting point for beginning your entrepreneurship journey. We have several events coming up in the next few…
  • The Road to the "Small Win" for Startups

    23 Jan 2015 | 2:15 pm
    When striving to grow a company, sometimes it's the small wins that count the most. Although these accomplishments may not be considered newsworthy by the masses, they contribute to your company’s progress, and offer tactical lessons that others can apply in their own entrepreneurial journey. In this special installment of #Smallwins, Matthew Hender, a Graduate of the Perth Founder Institute, discusses the struggles he endured to achieve a small win for his company, Cycle My City, and the lessons he learned as a result. "Some small wins happen quickly, some take…
  • FI Graduate Gift Card Indonesia Receives $2M in series A Funding

    23 Jan 2015 | 11:50 am
    A recent success story comes from one of our graduates in Indonesia. Antonius Taufan of Gift Card Indonesia (GCI) has managed to receive a $2 million investment from the U.S.-based Sovereign’s Capital. As Enricko Lukman discusses in an article written for TechInAsia, “Gift Card Indonesia nabs $2M series A funding,” other investors in the round included Lippo Digital Ventures, SMDV (Sinar Mas Digital Ventures), and RMK Ventures. Though the Founder Institute has been in Indonesia for two years, this is the first time that one of its graduates has raised series A…
  • Get on the Rocket Ship! The Founder Institute is Hiring at our Palo Alto Headquarters

    22 Jan 2015 | 4:23 pm
    Are you interested in entrepreneurship? The Founder Institute (the world's largest entrepreneur training and startup launch program) is the best place in the world to be immersed in the startup ecosystem and culture.   The Founder Institute is scaling up, and hiring for multiple roles in our Palo Alto office - including Project Managers, Account Managers, an Office Manager, an Executive Assistant, a Finance & Operations Manager, Operations & Logistics Associates, Interns, a Director of Sales, and more. The Founder Institute’s mission is to launch companies…
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  • Petition of the day

    Maureen Johnston
    26 Jan 2015 | 7:25 pm
    The petition of the day is: Kagan v. City of New Orleans 14-585Issue: Whether New Orleans's tour-guide licensing requirements violate the First Amendment.
  • Event announcement

    Kali Borkoski
    26 Jan 2015 | 4:00 pm
    On February 5 at one o’clock, the National Institute for Health Care Management will host a ninety-minute webinar on King v. Burwell.Speakers will include Julie Rovner, Nicholas Bagley and Michael Cannon.  There is no cost to participate. Registration is available here.
  • Opinion analysis: Justices reject presumption of health-benefit vesting, calling for analysis under ordinary contract principles

    Ronald Mann
    26 Jan 2015 | 1:46 pm
    Monday’s decision in M&G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett resolves a dispute about the vesting of health-care benefits under a collective bargaining agreement. Neither the Employee Retirement Income Security Act nor the National Labor Relations Act obligates employers to provide health-care benefits, but of course employers often do, and their commitments to provide those benefits often appear in collective-bargaining agreements. As so many companies struggle to deal with the overhang of providing employee benefits to long-retired employees, it should be no surprise that employers are…
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    Larry Bodine Law Marketing Blog

  • Free Webinar - Click-Worthy Assets: The New Search Marketing

    Larry Bodine
    25 Jan 2015 | 3:02 pm
    Pay Per Click and Conversion Specialist, Paul Julius from, will be joining Ken Hardison for a Free webinar: Click-Worthy Assets: The New Search Marketing Date/Time: Thursday, January 29th @ 1 PM Eastern Time During this Free webinar you will discover… What makes a website asset click-worthy The process in developing a highly converting practice area page What it takes to get rewarded by Google in the search engines today Click to register! Leads and clients arrive on your website doorstep looking for one thing and one thing only…value. If…
  • 4 Guest Blogging Tips for Lawyers

    Larry Bodine
    23 Jan 2015 | 2:10 am
    See Joy's new article: 4 Direct Mail Mistakes You Can’t Afford Here is a guest post by Joy Gendusa about the topic of – writing guest posts on other peoples’ blogs. Guest posting on established blogs is a great opportunity to get exposure in front of quality prospects, but you need to get it right to make the most of it.  Here are 4 tips to consider before submitting your guest post... #1: Look for a Win-Win Exchange When you are looking for a guest blogging opportunity, always look for a blog with more of a following than your own. However, guest blogging should be a…
  • Federal Court Throws Out Florida's Advertising Rules on Use of Past Results

    Larry Bodine
    17 Dec 2014 | 8:55 pm
    As reported on Law Practice Advisor: Blasting the Florida Bar, a federal judge threw out state ethics rules that ban the use of past results in lawyer advertising in indoor and outdoor display, television and radio media. The court held that the rules were unconstitutional and in violation of the First Amendment. The landmark ruling on December 12, 2014, is a complete rejection of the Florida Bar’s obstinate efforts to suffocate lawyer advertising in a state with 68,500 attorneys. The court granted the plaintiff law firm’s motion for summary judgment, and went on to enjoin…
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    Jim Calloway's Law Practice Tips Blog

  • New Client Inquiry on Line One

    Jim Calloway
    23 Jan 2015 | 9:43 am
    "New Client Inquiry on Line One" is my column for the Oklahoma Bar Journal this month. There’s a lot of discussion about attorney marketing and client development. Many firms now market via some form of social media. But sometimes the...
  • It's Time To Love Technology

    Jim Calloway
    5 Jan 2015 | 10:28 am
    Lawyers tend to have a love/hate relationship with technology. Of course, that's often true for any of us who use today’s technology for our work. But for many lawyers, these feelings are quite pronounced and, without offering any amateur psychological...
  • Drum Roll, please...The 2014 Blawggies are Announced.

    Jim Calloway
    23 Dec 2014 | 11:51 am
    Dennis Kennedy, legal technology guru and former technology columnist for the ABA Journal, has announced his Blawggie Awards for 2014 -- the 11th edition of the honor. In much the same way that prestigious art exhibits often have a single...
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    Robert Ambrogi's LawSites

  • Dear Vendors: Why LegalTech is the Worst Place to Demo Your Products

    Robert Ambrogi
    26 Jan 2015 | 1:22 pm
    Weather reports say a blizzard is coming my way, but I’m already being snowed under. With LegalTech New York just a week away, I am being deluged with emails from vendors asking to arrange demos at the show. I appreciate hearing from you. Honestly I do. I welcome opportunities to learn about the new products […] The post Dear Vendors: Why LegalTech is the Worst Place to Demo Your Products appeared first on Robert Ambrogi's LawSites.
  • Podcast: The Sandy Hook Lawsuit against Bushmaster Firearms

    Robert Ambrogi
    26 Jan 2015 | 6:09 am
    On Dec. 14, 2012, 20-year-old Adam Lanza fatally shot 20 children and six adults at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. Last month, two years after those horrific shootings, the families of the victims filed a lawsuit against Bushmaster Firearms International, the manufacturer of the AR-15 rifle used by Lanza. What is the […] The post Podcast: The Sandy Hook Lawsuit against Bushmaster Firearms appeared first on Robert Ambrogi's LawSites.
  • Evernote’s New ‘Scannable’ App Makes Scanning Automatic

    Robert Ambrogi
    20 Jan 2015 | 6:58 am
    Evernote recently introduced Scannable, a free scanner app for iPhone and iPad. Although it is not the perfect scanner app, it has some great features that could make it your scanner app of choice. And if you’re an inveterate Evernote user, as I am, you’ll have all the more reason to want this app. Scannable’s […] The post Evernote’s New ‘Scannable’ App Makes Scanning Automatic appeared first on Robert Ambrogi's LawSites.
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    Wise Law Blog

  • Home Buyer Beware: Real Estate Representation Agreements

    Garry Wise
    26 Jan 2015 | 9:33 pm
    A cautionary tale on the consequences - and potential financial risks - of signing an exclusive representation agreement with an Ontario real estate agent.- Garry J. Wise, TorontoVisit our Toronto Law Office website: www.wiselaw.netVisit our website:
  • 140 Law - Legal Headlines for the week of January 19, 2015

    Rachel, Law Clerk and Office Manager
    26 Jan 2015 | 6:43 am
    Here are the leading legal headlines from Wise Law on Twitter for the week of January 19, 2015: Arrival of electronic document delivery drags Ontario lawyers kicking and screaming into the 21st Century Game change: Jamaica is about to decriminalize marijuanaFired man suffers through epic arbitration delay - Toronto StarUS Supreme Court to review Oklahoma lethal injection procedureSolitary confinement called cruel and unusual punishment in BC lawsuit Former WWE wrestlers sue over brain damage, other injuriesLSUC: Obligations upon Withdrawal from Representation Speaker's Corner:…
  • Tips on Law Blogging

    Rachel, Law Clerk and Office Manager
    23 Jan 2015 | 9:17 am
    With the 10 year anniversary of Wise Law Blog rapidly approaching  this April, my thoughts have turned recently to the nuts and bolts of law blogging. There are numerous articles online about the virtues of law blogging, and all the benefits becoming a blogger can bring to you and your firm.These positives include increased profile, better optimization for your firm’s website, and the genuine professional advantage of being current and engaged in topics of interest to you and your clients.There is somewhat less guidance online, however, on “how to blog.” Not…
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  • 52 Books in 52 Weeks – 2015

    8 Jan 2015 | 6:01 pm
    For the last few years, I’ve enjoyed reading the posts of several bloggers who are trying to read 52 books in 52 weeks. I’ve also wanted to find a good way for me to keep track of the books I’ve read. And it gives me a good reading target to shoot for.Last year, I read 58 books, 6 more than in 2013. Or, more accurately, I listed 58 books that I read. I “read” many business books in the form of getAbstract summaries and I don’t list books that might reveal certain things I might (or might not) be working on.I’m doing the same thing in 2015. My approach…
  • Announcing the 2014 Blawggie Awards – Eleventh Edition

    22 Dec 2014 | 4:28 pm
    Welcome to the 2014 edition of Dennis Kennedy’s annual Best of Law-related Blogging Awards, affectionately known as the “Blawggies.”The Blawggies, which honor the best law-related blogs as determined from my personal and highly-opinionated perspective, were first unleashed on an unsuspecting blogosphere in December 2004 and are an annual tradition here at DennisKennedy.Blog. This historic eleventh edition of the awards makes them the longest running annual awards list for law-related blogs selected by a lawyer named Dennis Kennedy living in St. Louis, Missouri. What was…
  • Some Recent Podcasts and Articles for You

    26 Nov 2014 | 12:50 pm
    I wanted to wish everyone a happy Thanksgiving. It’s a good time to say “thnak you!” to my patient readers (and the impatient ones, too). I’m hoping to get back onto a regular blogging schedule soon.I also wanted to highlight some of my recent podcasts, articles and other odds & ends.Tom Mighell and I just reached the 140-episode milestone for The Kennedy-Mighell Report podcast. It’s great working with the Legal Talk Network team on the podcast. I recommend subscribing to the the podcast (free) in iTunes or in a podcast app.I mention subscribing because we…
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    Inter Alia

  • Do Lawyers Use Technology To Collaborate?

    Tom Mighell
    19 Jan 2015 | 10:59 am
    Way back in 2008, Dennis Kennedy and I wrote The Lawyer’s Guide to Collaboration Tools and Technologies: Smart Ways to Work Together – hard to believe it has been 7 years since we wrote that book! We recently decided to revisit the topic on our podcast, so in our latest episode of The Kennedy-Mighell Report, we survey the 2015 collaboration landscape in The Lawyer’s Guide to Collaboration Tools and Technologies. Check out the show notes for links to the different things we talked about. I must confess to some frustration on this subject, because I’m just not convinced…
  • Are Technology Resolutions Important for Lawyers?

    Tom Mighell
    5 Jan 2015 | 7:50 am
    At this time of year, every year, you can count on a regular deluge of articles on New Year’s Resolutions, “getting a fresh start,” and all types of advice to suggest that everything you did last year was a failure, and to make sure this year is not a similar disaster, you’d better get started now. Interestingly, this year I have seen many more “anti-resolution” articles, along the lines of “I don’t believe in resolutions” or even “I believe in evolution, not resolution.” And the anti-resolutionists have a point. I would…
  • Review: Logitech Keys-to-Go Bluetooth Keyboard

    Tom Mighell
    1 Dec 2014 | 11:14 am
    For years, I have used (and recommended) two Bluetooth keyboards, primarily when I am using my iPad. I tend to use Apple’s Wireless Keyboard more; it’s reasonably thin and light, and I like that it’s a full-size keyboard, which is not the case with most of the other portable keyboards for the iPad. If I have a complaint, it’s that it is too big and clunky – of course it’s all relative, but if I could find a Bluetooth keyboard that was smaller, I’d jump at it in a heartbeat. The Logitech Ultrathin Keyboard Cover is a thinner, smaller keyboard, and I…
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    Amazing Firms, Amazing Practices

  • Alternative Fees For Litigators: Timely and Practical Advice

    Gerry Riskin
    9 Jan 2015 | 7:47 am
    I am delighted to recommend to you a new book by my esteemed colleague and friend, Patrick J. Lamb. Alternative Fees for Litigators and their Clients is published by the Law Practice Division of the American Bar Association. Most law firms today are wrangling with issues related to alternative fee structures. Whether we want to change or not, client expectations demand that we make choices that will move us away from the traditional billable-hour approach. Deciding what new billing method(s) to implement in our various areas of practice can be difficult, and the implementation of them can…
  • Listen up!

    Gerry Riskin
    26 Dec 2014 | 10:33 am
    __________ Many of the thousands of lawyers we have trained in client relations skills, or coached to enhance their book of business, have told us that listening is the most important skill they can possess. Invest 7 minutes and 47 seconds to listen to this TED Talks episode by sound expert Julian Treasure, and learn five ways you can improve your listening skills right now. As always, I invite your feedback on this and any other subject either through the Comments section below, or directly via email.   (Thanks to Jathan Janove, Director of Employee Engagement Solutions…
  • Why Google Values Predictability

    Gerry Riskin
    4 Dec 2014 | 4:26 am
    _________________________ A recent post on the Human Capital League website talks about “The Boring Trait that Google Looks for in its Leaders.” Contrary to what most of us might think, the article says, “The most important character trait of a leader is one that you’re more likely to associate with a dull person than a dynamic leader: predictability. The more predictable you are, day after day, the better.” The article points out that Google may be a reliable source of guidance for other businesses due to the thoroughness with which the company collects data from…
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    LawBiz® Blog

  • Southern California Law Schools address “modest means” clients

    Ed Poll
    12 Jan 2015 | 3:52 pm
    UCLA School of Law, Pepperdine University School of Law and Southwestern Law School have been awarded a one-year grant from the State Bar of California’s Commission on Access to Justice to establish a modest means incubator, a pilot program to help new attorneys launch and develop viable law practices serving modest means clients.
  • LawBiz Newsletters and free chapters from 2 books!

    Ed Poll
    11 Jan 2015 | 12:15 pm
    Sign up for LawBiz newsletters, and receive a free chapter each from Life After Law and The Profitable Law Office Handbook! Thank you for reading my blog posts. Did you know I also have a weekly newsletter, with hints, tips, comments, suggestions and useful ideas you can use every day in your law practice? You can take a look at the Lawbiz newsletter archive. If you would like to subscribe, please enter your information into the form on the webpage, or click here. You will also receive a free chapter from my books, Life After Law and The Profitable Law Office Handbook, that you can download…
  • Service is still the name of the game

    Ed Poll
    20 Dec 2014 | 7:36 pm
    A New York consulting firm recently conducted a survey and found that eight of the top 10 companies that no longer provided extraordinary support for their products and services for technology companies. Companies like Samsung, Apple and others apparently are appealing to a younger audience that is not accustomed to having handholding as an element of value. Dunkin’ Donuts was one company that  was more traditional and not technology based. Apple, while no longer  enabling you to make an appointment at their “Genius Bar” online nevertheless  still had a service component…
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    the [non]billable hour by Matthew Homann

  • Meet My Invisible Girlfriend

    Matt Homann
    23 Jan 2015 | 5:34 pm
    Here’s the thing I’ve been spending some of time on for the last year.  I’ll be sharing the whole story soon, but wanted to share it here. We launched in public beta on Tuesday, and two days later made the Today Show (not to mention nearly every other national media outlet. It has been crazy, and cool.  More to follow… Matthew Homann delivers meaningful, practice-changing experiences to lawyers -- both as an "innovational" speaker and a creative facilitator.  His company LexThink creates unique, collaborative firm retreats, practice group meetings, workshops…
  • Looking for a Resolution?

    Matt Homann
    29 Dec 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Need some resolution inspiration this year?  You can find all 100+ from this blog right here. Want a bit more of a curated list?  Here are ten of my favorites: Resolve to Let Clients Set Your Price Resolve to Support the Causes Your Clients Do Resolve to Count Cards Resolve to Fix Your Technology Less Resolve to De-Confuse Your Clients Resolve to Understand Your Worst Clients Resolve to Get Less Business Resolve to Trade Your Headache Resolve to Invite Your Dream Team to Dinner Resolve to Buy Some Strangers Coffee Finally, here are ten resolutions for every lawyer I share every year:…
  • Happy Holidays from My Team at Kendeo

    Matt Homann
    29 Dec 2014 | 3:02 pm
    Some of you may know about Kendeo, the design and strategy consulting company I own where I do all my ‘non-legal’ work.  I often tell people that “we draw pictures of hard-to-understand things,” and that’s pretty much true. We had some fun with our Holiday card this year and I really wanted to share it (albeit belatedly) here on the blog.  The whiteboard sketches are actual pictures from our office’s whiteboard (it should show a bit larger if you click on the image.) I hope you like it. If you still can’t read the text, here it is: It all begins…
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    Innocence Blog

  • New York Man Cleared by DNA of Wife’s Murder Dies in Car Crash

    26 Jan 2015 | 12:50 pm
    Newsday reports that John Grega of Long Island, New York, died in a tragic car accident on Friday evening. Grega had been wrongly convicted in 1995 for the 1994 rape and murder of his wife, but was released in 2012 after DNA proved that he wasn't the perpetrator. He was just blocks away from his Lake Ronkonkoma home at 5:00 p.m. on Friday when he lost control of his van and crashed into a tree. More than 20 years ago, Grega was vacationing with his wife and young son in West Dover, Vermont, when his wife was found strangled and sexually assaulted. With a lack of physical evidence linking…
  • Joseph Sledge Exonerated and Released After 36 Years in Prison

    23 Jan 2015 | 2:07 pm
    A panel of judges exonerated and released Joseph Sledge on Friday. Sledge, 70, served 36 years in prison for a double-murder which DNA evidence proves he did not commit. Since his arrest, Sledge has denied involvement in the 1976 murders of Josephine and Ailene Davis. Police linked Sledge to the crime because he escaped from a nearby prison on the day of the murder after a fellow inmate threatened his life. The North Carolina Innocence Inquiry Commission began examining Sledge's case in December after a ten-year investigation by the Center on Actual Innocence revealed that DNA testing of…
  • Former Officers Ordered to Pay $7 Million to Florida Man Wrongfully Convicted at 15

    23 Jan 2015 | 1:55 pm
    A federal appeals court ruled Thursday that two retired police officers accused of framing Anthony Caravella for a murder he did not commit must pay him $7 million for the nearly 26 years he spent behind bars. Caravella was only 15 years old and had an IQ of 67 when Officers William Mantesta and George Pierson coerced him into confessing to the 1983 rape and murder of 58-year-old Ada Cox Jankowski. He was arrested by the two officers for failing to appear in court for a minor theft charge. Over the course of a week in juvenile custody, Caravella was told and forced to repeat information about…
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    UNDERDOG - Fairfax Criminal/DWI Attorney - Northern Virginia.

  • Our day of service on MLK Day 2015.

    24 Jan 2015 | 9:00 pm
    About to make fifty sandwiches. (Photo property of Younghee Katz).   Making the sandwiches.Certainly overdue, now that my son is eight years old, I invited him to join me and my wife to spend a day of service for this year's Martin Luther King Day. My son jumped at the idea, and we decided to make and share fifty peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and cookies with people in downtown Washington, D.C., and Dupont Circle.Martin Luther King, Jr.'s, great deeds merit treating his birthday not as mere day off from work, and not a day of work, but a day that includes service (see here, too). A…
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    The Legal Satyricon

  • Cry for Argentina’s Free Press

    25 Jan 2015 | 9:24 am
    An Argentine journalist credited with breaking the news of a prosecutor’s suspicious death has been forced to flee the country, fearing for his own safety. Damian Pachter of the English-language Buenos Aires Herald is currently in Uruguay, en route to Israel. In 1994, the Argentine-Israeli Mutual Association in Buenos Aires was bombed, leaving 84 dead. […]
  • Only a total idiot would have filed a defamation case over the term “total idiot”

    24 Jan 2015 | 4:10 pm
    The Nebraska Supreme Court reminds us in Steinhausen v. Homeservices of Nebraska, 289 Neb. 927 (Neb. 2015) that rhetorical hyperbole is not actionable as defamation. I can assure you that total idiots nationwide will fail to get the memo. In this case, someone referred to a home inspector as a “total idiot.” Nitz argues that […]
  • Divorce and Woman Scorned Begets Personal Domain Name Case – Audrey Dunham v. Paige Dunham

    24 Jan 2015 | 3:37 pm
    Audrey Dunham is comedian Jeff Dunham’s new (vintage 2012) wife. Before she married him, she was Audrey Murdick. Jeff’s ex-wife is Paige Dunham. Paige is accused of registering,, and Apparently though, she registered those names before Audrey Murdick became Audrey Dunham. But, according to the complaint filed by Audrey’s lawyers, she […]
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    Chicago IP Litigation

  • Court Appoints Counsel in IP Case

    R. David Donoghue
    25 Jan 2015 | 3:58 am
    Vogue Tyre & Rubber Co. v. Mendez, No. 14 C 5839, Slip Op. (N.D. Ill. Oct. 1, 2014) (Shadur, Sen. J.). Judge Shadur appointed defendant counsel from the N.D. Illinois trial bar with experience in IP cases, after finding that defendant’s In Forma Pauperis Application sufficiently showed defendant’s inability to pay counsel; that both parties and the Court would benefit from the representation; and that defendant had made appropriate, albeit unsuccessful, efforts to retain counsel. Having appointed counsel, the Court ordered counsel to review plaintiff’s complaint and then file a…
  • Ordinary Meaning Relied Upon When the Patent Does Not Require More than That

    R. David Donoghue
    23 Jan 2015 | 4:03 am
    Sonix Tech. Co., Ltd. V. Pubs. Int’l, Ltd., No. 13 C 2082, Slip Op. (N.D. Ill. Oct. 30, 2014) (St. Eve, J.). Judge St. Eve construed the disputed terms of the patent in suit in this case regarding graphic indicators on a surface that are not visible to the human eye, but when scanned provide additional information.The Court held that the following three terms need not be construed, relying upon their plain and ordinary meaning: Capable of distinguishing the corresponding graphical indicator from adjacent graphical indicators; Main information that overlaps and co-exists with the graphical…
  • Northern District of Illinois Practice Tips Nos. 21-25

    R. David Donoghue
    21 Jan 2015 | 3:19 am
    At the start of the new year, many of us are spending time looking back at where we have come from and forward to where we want to go. As part of that process, many are making resolutions to make 2015 better than ever. In that spirit, over the next several weeks, I am reposting a popular series of practice tips for the N.D. Illinois (with a focus upon IP litigation of course) that I ran a few years ago, with slight modifications for 2015. The tips are not in a particular order of import. Why twenty-five? I found that beyond twenty five, the tips became focused upon minutia. The tips are…
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    Ohio Employer's Law Blog

  • The FMLA has eligibility limits (unless you tell your employees otherwise)

    Jon Hyman
    27 Jan 2015 | 4:32 am
    The FMLA does not provide leave benefits to all employees of all employers. First and foremost, it only covers employers with 50 or more employees. And, only a subset of employees of a covered employer is eligible for FMLA leave. An employee is eligible for FMLA leave from a covered employer if the employee— was employed by the employer for at least 12 non-consecutive months; worked 1,250 hours during the 12-month period preceding the start of the requested leave; and works at a location where the employer employs 50 or more employees within a 75-mile radius. Employees who fails to meet any…
  • Should it matter if your employee thinks hand scanners are tools of Satan?

    Jon Hyman
    26 Jan 2015 | 4:28 am
    If you’re a long time reader of my blog, you might recall a story I shared a few years ago about a co-worker at one of my high-school jobs, who held some interesting opinions about Lee Iacocca, Satan, and the end of the world. At the time, I made a point about taking the path of least resistance with reasonable accommodations. Apparently, Consol Energy is not a blog subscriber. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette brings us the story of Beverly Butcher Jr., an employee at its Robinson Run, West Virginia, mine, and an Evangelical Christian, who refused to use the company’s hand scanner to clock in…
  • WIRTW #352 (the “rock hard” edition)

    Jon Hyman
    23 Jan 2015 | 4:22 am
    In my never-ending quest to be an employment lawyer and manager for my 8-year-old daughter’s burgeoning rock career, I bring you 4:50 of melt your face off rock and roll from last weekend’s School of Rock Joan Jett show. That’s Norah killing the lead guitar on “You Got A Problem,” and closing the show with “Bad Reputation.” My personal favorite part—Norah’s demure, “Thank you very much / Have a good afternoon” after screaming about her bad reputation. Who said polite manners and rock ‘n’ roll don’t mix? You can check out the repeat performance tomorrow, January 24,…
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  • You are biased but I'm not: Bias perception, the spiral of conflict, and the role of the mediator

    11 Jan 2015 | 6:52 am
    The word "Truth" etched in the pieces of this sculpture on Canyon Road in Santa Fe If we disagree with someone, we typically view the other person as more influenced by bias than are we. That perception of bias can be a monumental obstacle to conflict resolution. But what to do about perception bias? In their chapter "Bias Perception and the Spiral of Conflict," in Ideology, Psychology, and Law, Kathleen Kennedy and Emily Pronin suggest three methods of increasing success in conflict resolution and lessening the influence of this conflict spiral. All three are briefly…
  • What's the role of playfulness in creativity?

    10 Jan 2015 | 6:26 am
    An important topic: play. Fortunately it is receiving serious attention these days. For example, Current Biology has devoted an edition to it. An excerpt from the article "Playfuness and creativity": Having fun is a good reason to be playful. The pleasure it generates could be seen as its primary benefit. Even so, I want to explore what can be the longer-term benefits of playfulness. For the biologist, benefits are measured in terms of the particular ways in which an activity increases the chances of survival and enhances reproductive success. Most people would not worry too much if…
  • Reminiscing this holiday season? Here are some benefits of nostalgia

    21 Dec 2014 | 5:33 am
    Thanksgiving in Manassas, Virginia This season often brings with it memories fond to hard, and glad to sad. Did you know that nostalgia is a focus of much research? And that it has many benefits? Enjoy or at least value those thoughts of the past; they are not a waste of time. From "Holiday nostalgia: Why it's good to relive memories" (Eureka Times-Standard): While nostalgia may involve looking backward, "metaphorically speaking, it is a torch to light the road ahead," [Tim] Wildschut says. "It entails information about what matters in life, what is valuable,…
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    Lawyers, Guns & Money

  • Book Review: Marina Welker, Enacting the Corporation: An American Mining Firm in Post-Authoritarian Indonesia

    Erik Loomis
    27 Jan 2015 | 3:06 am
    In Enacting the Corporation, the anthropologist Marina Welker seeks to humanize corporate behavior by examining how the Denver-based mining conglomerate Newmont attempts to enact the principles of Corporate Social Responsibility in its dealings at a mine site on the island of Sumbawa in Indonesia. Welker argues that rather than seeing corporations as monoliths concerned only about profit, it is far more useful to examine how different actors seek to “enact” the corporation to meet their own interests, whether as employees, activists, executives at the company’s Denver…
  • Blizzard Prep

    Erik Loomis
    26 Jan 2015 | 2:44 pm
    If civilization is going to end with the approaching blizzard at least let the past help you prepare to go out the right way.
  • The Silver Downside

    Scott Lemieux
    26 Jan 2015 | 1:36 pm
    If this is true — and Sherrill is a very sharp analyst — here’s a reason not to break out the champagne after the arrest of Sheldon Silver: Silver is the most powerful ally that unions and tenants-rights groups had “and the criminal charges will tilt the politics of state government inevitably to the right,” said Ken Sherrill, Hunter College political-science professor emeritus. “It will be a huge change because the next speaker will be more under the control of the governor, someone the governor thinks will not cause him any problems, not someone with an independent…
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    Avvo Blog

  • Updated TOU, Privacy Policy & Community Guidelines

    Josh King
    12 Jan 2015 | 5:52 am
    Exciting Mildly interesting news – we’ve updated Avvo’s Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community Guidelines.     Up to this point, changes to Avvo’s governing policies have taken the form of tweaks and bolt-on changes. And just as Seattle’s much-patched roads are a pain for those of us who try to ride our bikes on them, this accretion […] The post Updated TOU, Privacy Policy & Community Guidelines appeared first on Avvo Blog.
  • In Late

    Cristin Carey
    31 Oct 2014 | 3:51 pm
    Because all important communication should be in haiku form…an email received by the team earlier this week:   In late tomorrow Unanticipated thing I will miss standup - Matt The post In Late appeared first on Avvo Blog.
  • Introducing Avvo Advisor

    Tim Ahlers
    23 Oct 2014 | 4:22 pm
    Today we’re excited to announce Avvo Advisor! With our free app and online service, consumers can get affordable legal help from experienced lawyers for a fixed-fee of just $39—anytime, anywhere, and on demand. While the public launch is an exciting milestone, it’s amazing to think back on how much work has been done leading up […] The post Introducing Avvo Advisor appeared first on Avvo Blog.
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  • OPM Disability Retirement: Facts and Explanations

    27 Jan 2015 | 3:57 am
    There is often a widespread misconception that "facts" need no elucidation or explanation, and somehow speak for themselves.  There are, indeed, times when self-imposed limitation of apparent eloquence and bombastic, grandiloquent and pretentious verbosity is of use; for, scarcity of adjectives and brevity of prose can leave the plains and tundra of a descriptive narrative's call for less inhabitants, and not more, to reveal the beauty of the linguistic landscape; but even in such instances, facts still require explanation.  Facts without explanation constitute mere…

    22 Jun 2013 | 6:04 pm
               Most people know that Tylenol and its generic equivalent, acetaminophen, are some of most widely used over-the-counter pain medications in the United States.  What many people might not know is that Tylenol and other medications containing acetaminophen are also one of the major sources of liver damage in the United States.  More than 26,000 Consumers end up in hospitals and 500 die annually to due liver damage caused by Tylenol and other medication containing…
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    Connecticut Employment Law Blog

  • BLIZZARD! Wage and Hour Reminders for Employers on Winter Storm

    Daniel Schwartz
    25 Jan 2015 | 1:54 pm
    Well, it’s official.  Connecticut is under a Blizzard Warning as of Sunday afternoon. This is, of course, nothing new for employers in the state. We’ve had more than our fair share of big “monster” storms. If you’ve been following this blog for some time, you’ll have read more than your share of blog posts about what to do with your employees when a storm hits. But here are three issues you may not have thought of recently. Reporting Time or Minimum Daily Earnings Guaranteed: Connecticut has a “reporting time” obligation (as do several of our…
  • Use of Marijuana On Duty Still Justifies Termination, Says Court

    Daniel Schwartz
    22 Jan 2015 | 8:15 am
    With all the talk about the state’s implementation of medical marijuana laws, it’s easy to wonder what impact those laws will have on terminating employees who use marijuana on the job. One recent Superior Court decision gave a pretty clear answer for state employees: None.  In other words, for employers: Fire Away. That, of course, simplifies the decision and the result — employers should still exercise caution when disciplining employees for drug use to understand the facts and circumstances — but the court’s decision is yet another affirmation that the…
  • New Retaliation Standard of Proof Shows Its Teeth

    Daniel Schwartz
    21 Jan 2015 | 7:23 am
    When the U.S. Supreme Court changed the standard for proving retaliation cases back in 2013, there was some speculation as to whether the standard would result in different decisions. Before the court’s decision, employees who claimed they were retaliated against, needed to show only that the retaliatory motive was a “substantial or motivating fact” affecting their termination.  The Supreme Court ruled in University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center v. Nassar heightened that standard, requiring employees to show that an employer would not have taken an adverse…
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  • 脱毛は慣れが重要

    5 Jan 2015 | 11:43 pm
    私が持っている脱毛器は痛みが酷くてなかなか思うようにムダ毛処理ができないのですが、もう10年ほど脱毛して痛みにも慣れてきました。 このまま脱毛サロンに通わなくてもいいくらいスムーズに脱毛ができるようになり、時間も無駄にならなくなりました。 完璧に痛みに慣れたというわけではありませんが、初めて脱毛器で脱毛した時のような衝撃はありません。…
  • 車を安全に運転する方法とは

    16 Jun 2014 | 7:05 am
    車を安全に運転するには周囲の状況を考えて運転する必要があり、速度を守って運転することが大事です。 運転をするには危険予測を正しくできるようにすることが重要であり、的確な判断をできるように訓練をする必要があります。 自動車保険に加入する必要があり、自賠責保険以外にも任意保険に加入することで事故が起きた場合にも対処できます。…
  • 引越し先で新しい暮らし

    8 Jun 2014 | 8:41 pm
    引越し先では、これまでの地域とは別の国です。 県が違うとけっこう違うもので、しかも新幹線で移動するようなところで暮らすのは割と冒険です。 若いからいくらでも後からどうにでもできると思って、飛び込んで入ったようなもので勤務地もさほどこだわってはいませんでした。 入ったら入ったで、その勤務地の近くに家がある人と、自分みたいに地元を出た人がいます。…
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    Special Education Law Blog

  • Weekly Question!

    Jim Gerl
    26 Jan 2015 | 6:01 am
    We are continuing our series on bullying of kids with disabilities. What else should school districts do to prevent the serious problem of bullying?------- Thanks for subscribing! Jim Gerl
  • My Lunch With Ernie Banks

    Jim Gerl
    24 Jan 2015 | 9:03 am
    English: black and white photo of the bronze statue of Ernie Banks (Mr Cub) at Wrigley Field (Photo credit: Wikipedia)OK so this post has little to do with special education law.  Except maybe that my only sports addiction, the Chicago Cubs, is all about rooting for the underdog...  Anyway let's call it a point of personal privilege.Ernie Banks died yesterday.  He was my favorite player. When I was a kid, he was the big star on a long series of bad teams.  I saw him hit a few home runs at Wrigley Field, and every time he came to the plate, there was hope. He was our…
  • Bullying of Kids With Disabilities - PS III GAO Report #bully

    Jim Gerl
    22 Jan 2015 | 1:16 pm
     (Photo credit: Wikipedia)The federal Government Accountability Office  issued a report in June of 2012 pertaining to school bullying.  The title of the report is "SCHOOL BULLYING:  Extent of Legal Protections for Vulnerable Groups Needs to Be More Fully Assessed." This relates to the current hot button issue in special education law although bullying affects more than just special education students. The GAO reviewed research on the prevalence and effects on victims; and analyzed state bullying laws, and school district bullying policies.After looking into the…
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    Drug Injury Watch

  • UK Drug Safety Regulator Issues New Warnings About The Use Of Depakote / Depacon / Depakene By Women During Pregnancy

    Tom Lamb
    26 Jan 2015 | 1:20 pm
    Updates Information About Extent Of Serious Developmental Disorders Such As Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) As Well As Congenital Malformations And Birth Defects Like Spina Bifida (Posted by Tom Lamb at Depakote, Depakote CP, and Depakote ER (divalproex sodium), Depacon (valproate sodium), and Depakene (valproic acid) are manufactured and sold by the drug company AbbVie Inc. (formerly Abbott). On January 22, 2015 the UK's Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) issued a Drug Safety Alert, "Medicines related to valproate: risk of abnormal pregnancy…
  • Pancreatic Cancer As A Side Effect Of Diabetes Drugs Bydureon, Byetta, Januvia, And Victoza

    Tom Lamb
    19 Jan 2015 | 1:50 pm
    Health Canada Currently Conducting Epidemiological Study Of These Incretin-Based Type 2 Diabetes Medications To Assess This Potential Drug Safety Issue (Posted by Tom Lamb at the October 2014 edition of the Canadian Adverse Reaction Newsletter we get this drug safety review of the diabetes drugs Bydureon, Byetta, Januvia, And Victoza, "Incretin-based therapies and the risk of pancreatic cancer". From that relatively recent Health Canada article we get this information: Non-clinical studies have suggested that incretin-based therapies can lead to increased…
  • A French Medical Study Provides More Support For Apparent Link Between Benicar With Chronic Severe Diarrhea And Substantial Weight Loss Side Effects

    Tom Lamb
    12 Jan 2015 | 7:35 am
    Researchers Found An Almost 10-Times Increased Risk Of Severe Intestinal Malabsorption Associated With Benicar After 2-Years Use Compared To Some Other Blood Pressure Medications (Posted by Tom Lamb at We continue to hear about patients who have been diagnosed with sprue-like enteropathy or intestinal malabsorption while using Benicar, Azor, Tribenzor, or Benicar HCT, and we have written previously about the still-emerging Benicar drug injury litigation. In May 2014 the medical journal Gastroenterology published an article, "Severe Malabsorption Associated With…
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    Bankruptcy Home Blog

  • Filing bankruptcy for free?

    19 Jan 2015 | 11:25 am
    Visit for the original content posted here, Filing bankruptcy for free? Unfortunately, if you are considering filing bankruptcy you are most likely already in a very precarious financial position. In fact, it’s likely you have thousands of dollars in unsecured debts such as credit cards and medical bills. You may even … Continue reading →
  • One credit card can I file bankruptcy?

    12 Jan 2015 | 8:53 am
    Visit for the original content posted here, One credit card can I file bankruptcy? According to the Federal Reserve statistics, the average US household credit card debt stands at $15,611, counting only those households carrying debt. If all households are considered, even those who do not normally carry debt, the amount drops to an … Continue reading →
  • Choosing between filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13?

    7 Jan 2015 | 8:29 am
    Visit for the original content posted here, Choosing between filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13? Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy are the two most common bankruptcies filed by individuals. Recently on our bankruptcy forum a user asked, “Can I choose between filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy?” Although many filers meet the eligibility … Continue reading →
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    Asbestos HUB

  • Occupational Exposure To Asbestos Dust Or Secondhand Household Exposure Can Result In Mesothelioma Years Later

    Tom Lamb
    23 Jan 2015 | 2:00 pm
    Over at our website we have a list of questions about job sites or work places where workers were likely to have had direct exposure to asbestos dust if they worked there before the mid-1970’s. See: “Brief Test For Asbestos Exposure Based On Worker’s Employment History”. In turn, those workers may be at an increased risk of getting an asbestos disease such as asbestosis, lung cancer, or mesothelioma later in life. In addition, family members of those people who worked around asbestos on the job site or in the work place may have had so-called…
  • Asbestos-Related Lung Cancer Cases Where There Is A History Of Smoking By Plaintiff: See How A Defense Law Firm Looks At These Lawsuits

    Tom Lamb
    16 Jan 2015 | 12:24 pm
    Recently we came across an article written by two attorneys in Miles & Stockbridge’s Products Liability and Mass Torts Practice Group that provided some insights about how defense lawyers might assess asbestos lung cancer lawsuits. From the Introduction part of this article, “Asbestos, Smoking and Lung Cancer: Valuing the Venue and Verdict” (subscription required), which was published online in November 2014: In recent years, courts across the country have seen an increase in lung cancer cases based on alleged asbestos exposure. Many of these cases involve plaintiffs with…
  • Verastem Says Its VS-6063 Mesothelioma Treatment Study Is On-Track And Showing Some Promising Results

    Tom Lamb
    9 Jan 2015 | 1:25 pm
    The COMMAND clinical trial involves the use of Verastem’s experimental drug VS-6063 in patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma. The primary endpoints of COMMAND are progression free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS). VS-6063 targets cancer stem cells which are an underlying cause of tumor progression and recurrence. In this January 8, 2015 corporate press release, “Verastem Provides Year-End 2014 Update and Outlook for 2015″, the drug company let us know that things are progressing relatively well for the COMMAND study: We currently remain on track to complete…
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    Real Lawyers Have Blogs

  • How effective is a general law blog for the entire law firm?

    Kevin O'Keefe
    26 Jan 2015 | 11:35 pm
    John Hopkins who heads up all things digital for the Florida law firm of Searcy Denny  asked over on my LinkedIn Legal Blogging Group if it was more effective for a firm of 33 lawyers to have individual blogs for lawyers or one blog for the entire firm. For both SEO and readers.  A “general law firm blog” with a large number of lawyers covering various areas of the law tends to be a non-starter. In Hopkins’ case, one blog covering various types of plaintiff’s claims.  That doesn’t mean though that you’ll have a blog for each lawyer. Think of a blog as a…
  • Top 10 in Law Blogs: Rise of Uber, the Super Bowl, Exporting Crude Oil

    Colin O'Keefe
    26 Jan 2015 | 6:00 pm
    With the Super Bowl here, talk is heating up on the subject on the LexBlog Network. But while that’s heating up, the Northeast is cooling down with the approach of Winter Storm Juno. Zosha writes up four big issues related to that, and also had a good piece on Illinois’ law forcing students to turn over their Facebook passwords. The “Uber” rise of peer-to-peer sharing – Toronto lawyer Daniel Daniele of Norton Rose Fulbright on the firm’s Social Media Law Bulletin Super Bowl or Bust: Can Employees Gamble on the Big Game? – Michael Truncellito of Obermayer on…
  • How can undergrads and law students best use blogs and social media?

    Kevin O'Keefe
    25 Jan 2015 | 9:31 pm
    I would welcome any ideas you have on how college students can blog and use other social media for professional development (learning) as well as networking to build relationships and word of mouth to gain employment upon graduation. It’s no pipe dream. I am hearing of law students from last year’s class who got jobs through blogging. I am headed to the University of Notre Dame and Michigan State University this week. Football rivals when I was at Notre Dame in the ’70′s. On Thursday I am presenting to Professor John Webber’s Internet marketing class at the…
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    Securities Docket

  • Securities Docket News Wire for January 23, 2015

    Securities Docket
    24 Jan 2015 | 5:55 am
    Judge Lets Four Defendants Retract Insider-Trading Guilty Pleas – Law Blog – WSJ -> U.S. SEC official sees no immediate crackdown on private equity | Reuters -> Australia: ASIC demands access to metadata for crime-fighting | The Australian -> Chasing the Gatekeepers | The National Law Review -> A Closer Look at the SEC’s Financial Reporting Cases in FY 2014 | Compliance Week -> In new emails Madoff defends his dead sons — CNBC…
  • A Closer Look at the SEC’s Financial Reporting Cases in FY 2014 | Compliance Week

    Securities Docket
    23 Jan 2015 | 7:43 am
    The SEC recently released data showing that it filed 99 financial reporting and accounting cases in FY 2014 — a 46% increase over FY 2013. A closer look at the data reveals, however, that the predicted surge in these cases may not be upon us just yet. via A Closer Look at the SEC’s Financial Reporting Cases in FY 2014 | Compliance Week
  • Securities Docket News Wire for January 22, 2015

    Securities Docket
    23 Jan 2015 | 5:55 am
    DOJ Prosecution of Individuals – Then vs. Now — FCPA Professor ->
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    Womble Carlyle Non-Compete and Restrictive Covenants Blog

  • N.C. Court of Appeals Reverses Order Denying Injunction in Trade Secret and Non-compete Case

    John E. Pueschel
    24 Jan 2015 | 4:53 am
    On New Year's Eve, the North Carolina Court of Appeals stepped in to reverse an order denying a preliminary injunction to a company seeking to stop a former employee from misappropriating trade secrets and breaching a non-compete agreement.  According to the decision, the employee originally worked for TSG Finishing, a fabric finishing company that applies chemical coatings to fabrics for various customer applications.  The employee, Keith Bollinger, left TSG to take a job with a competitor at a location just five miles away.  At his deposition, Bollinger admitted that he was…
  • Thomas Weisel Partners Wins Breach of Fiduciary Duty Claim Against Former Director Who Joined BNP Paribas and Orchestrated En Masse Resignations

    6 Apr 2010 | 12:34 pm
    This out of California - on April 1st, a federal judge (The Honorable Marilyn Hall Patel) found Praveen Chakravarty liable for breach of fiduciary duty to Thomas Weisel Partners in connection with his departure as a Director for Thomas Weisel Partners and his "facilitation of" the resignations of at least 18 employees, who promptly became re-employed with BNP Paribas or its affiliated company, BNP Paribas Securities (Asia) Limited. In carefully chosen words, Mr. Chakravarty admitted he served as "an intermediary of information between BNPP and his co-workers in the hope that some of them…
  • Georgia House Passes Proposed Constitutional Amendment On Non-Compete Agreements

    John E. Pueschel
    24 Mar 2010 | 8:20 pm
    A proposed amendment to the Georgia Constitution to allow for enforcement of reasonable non-compete agreements easily cleared the Georgia House of Representatives on March 22, 2010. The proposal now heads to the Georgia Senate. If passed by the Senate, the amendment could be presented to Georgia voters for ratification this November.
  • Goldman Sachs Alleges Credit Suisse Picked Its Pocket in Atlanta

    18 Feb 2010 | 11:17 am
    Reuters is reporting that Goldman Sachs has sued seven former wealth managers for allegedly soliciting an en masse departure of employees and clients. Goldman has also reportedly sued Credit Suisse for inducing the departures with oodles of up front departure bonus cash.The seven immediately began "pirating" Goldman clients and colleagues to join them at Credit Suisse, according to the suit, filed in federal court in Atlanta on Wednesday. The seven violated their non-solicitation agreements and stole confidential information, the suit said.Credit Suisse and Goldman declined to comment on the…
  • Dunkin' Donuts Pays Its Way Out of Starbucks Manager's Noncompete Promise

    27 Oct 2009 | 6:48 am
    The Puget Sound Business Journal is reporting that Paul Twohig ran Starbucks retail operations in the Southeastern United States before taking the Dunkin’ job.By switching companies, Starbucks alleged, Twohig violated an agreement in which he had said he would not work for a rival for 18 months. He left Starbucks in March and asked to have the non-compete lifted, but was denied.“As part of the settlement Mr. Twohig will complete initial training but will otherwise not work at Dunkin’ until Jan. 15, 2010,” Starbucks said in a statement quoted by the Puget Sound Business Journal. “In…
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    | Bachus & Schanker Attorneys

  • Denver Car Accident Attorney Review – Kyrsti Farmer

    Kyle Bachus
    8 Jan 2015 | 7:10 am
    Video Transcription I was going to work on my bike, I was riding on the pedestrian bike path and a driver who was turning into a golf course, the sun had come up, I don’t think she was paying attention to where she was going, but she didn’t look before she turned and she hit me as she turned into the parking lot. I just remember thinking, “uh oh”, you know like this changes everything and I hope nothing is really wrong, and not sure what to do, I guess is the biggest thing that I was really worried about. Putting back together the little pieces of things that would…
  • Denver Car Accident Attorney Review – Jim Sarabia

    Kyle Bachus
    8 Jan 2015 | 7:04 am
    Video Transcription It was 44th and Tennyson, I was on a bicycle and a lady opened her car door and I hit the car door threw a flip and immediately after it happened I was in lots of pain I don’t really remember much else, hurt. Don’t talk to the insurance company, let somebody handle it for you for sure, because it’s…they give you a big run-around, it’s not worth it. They were definitely looking out for their own best interest for sure. Sounds like a name you can trust, I have to say, that’s why I went with Bachus & Schanker. Thanks a lot for…
  • Denver Car Accident Attorney Review: Catherine Bedwell

    Kyle Bachus
    8 Jan 2015 | 6:58 am
    Video Transcription I was making a left and she was going straight in the turning lane, and she hit me from the side. Well, I went online and checked with Tom Martino; you were right on top. You [Bachus and Schanker] let me know exactly what was going on every step of the way. It’s an excellentfirm. I would use you again. Thank you Bachus & Schanker. Denver Car Accident Attorney Review
  • 7 Things To Do Immediately After a Car Crash

    Kyle Bachus
    13 Nov 2014 | 5:27 am
    There are certain things you should do immediately if you are involved in an automobile crash. This guide can help you think clearly and eliminate some of the stress and uncertainty you will likely be experiencing.
  • Is Tort Reform Really the Answer?

    Kyle Bachus
    7 Nov 2014 | 12:56 am
    Is tort reform really the answer to frivolous lawsuits? More studies are coming out that show that tort reform doesn’t produce substantial savings and even puts patient safety at risk. “Politicians often ask us for proof that “tort reform” makes us less safe. But “proof” was always difficult to find – until now.” Joanne Doroshow, Center for Justice & Democracy at New York Law School. Read Joanne’s Huffington Post article, “How Tort ‘Reform’ Ruins Health Care for Everyone” about three studies on tort reform.
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    P.I.S.S.D. -- Personal Injury, Social Security Disability. Dallas Texas Lawyers

  • Power of Attorney: What It Is and Why You Should Care

    Bob Kraft
    26 Jan 2015 | 7:13 am
    A power of attorney is a legal document in which you authorize someone else to make business, legal, and medical decisions for you. The designated power of attorney should be someone who is well known and trusted by the one authorizing the document. It can be revoked at any time or remain in effect throughout the person’s lifetime. Busy people. This type of document can be done under normal circumstances when a person is too busy to handle all aspects of his or her life and allows someone else to make decisions or sign forms as needed. For example, a high-level executive who is…
  • Not at Fault in Your Motorcycle Accident? Four Tips to Recoup Your Losses

    Bob Kraft
    25 Jan 2015 | 7:18 am
    If you’ve had a motorcycle accident for which you are not at fault, you are probably concerned about how to recoup your financial losses. Knowing what to do to recover the loss can mean the difference between you being able to stay financially solvent or needing to file bankruptcy. An informative guide to taking steps to recoup your losses and playing it smart can be found at The Scene of the Accident It is important to gather insurance information, names of witnesses, and take pictures of the location of all of the vehicles involved. The insurance company of the other vehicle…
  • ALJ Hearing Processing Times and Pending Claims: The Statistics Tell All

    Bob Kraft
    24 Jan 2015 | 7:17 am
    The National Organization of Social Security Claimants Representatives is the most authoritative voice for disability claimants. According to NOSSCR, the situation is bad and getting worse for claimants. Fewer cases are being granted, and it is taking longer to get decisions from the Administrative Law Judges of the Social Security Administration. Here is the opening paragraph of a recent article in the NOSSCR newsletter: Hearing processing times are increasing. ALJ allowance rates are decreasing. Cases pending more than one year are increasing. Senior attorney advisor fully favorable…
  • Friday Fun

    Bob Kraft
    23 Jan 2015 | 1:53 am
    When fathers are left in charge of small children…
  • Ever Considered Car Sharing? How to Know if these Programs Can be Trusted

    Bob Kraft
    22 Jan 2015 | 7:10 am
    The investment in a car is a large one—not only do most people have monthly car payments, but repairs, regular maintenance, paying for gas, and insurance costs can pile on quickly. Unlike other assets such as a home, vehicles depreciate over time. Rather than pouring your money into a new car, or buying a second vehicle to accommodate your family, car sharing is an alternative. With these programs, you set up a membership and receive a card equipped with RFID technology. With this card, you have access to any car in that company’s inventory. As long as you return the car in one piece,…
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    Marquette University Law School Faculty Blog

  • Some Historical Perspective on Netanyahu’s Address to Congress

    Ryan Scoville
    21 Jan 2015 | 12:00 pm
    Today there’s some interesting news from the realm of foreign relations law: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will give an address to Congress next month on the topic of Iran’s nuclear program, presumably to encourage legislators to support a hardline stance and perhaps to undermine the President’s ongoing efforts to achieve a diplomatic solution. To me, the noteworthy part is not so much the address itself, but rather the process by which it was arranged: the White House had no role. In fact, the Administration didn’t even know about it until today. John Boehner says that he…
  • Karl Marx on Religion

    David R. Papke
    20 Jan 2015 | 2:48 pm
    Religious people sometimes express disdain for Karl Marx and his philosophies because he supposedly characterized religion as “the opiate of the masses.” It turns out that this isn’t exactly what Marx said. Furthermore, he wasn’t necessarily negative about religion and its role in social life. Appearing in Marx’s projected but never completed A Contribution to the Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy, Marx’s words on religion are of course in German. He uses the German word “Volk,” which usually translates as “the people” rather than “the masses” as his…
  • Barrett: Streetcar Plan Is a Bet on the City’s Future

    Alan J. Borsuk
    20 Jan 2015 | 2:13 pm
    “I’m betting on the future of this city, and I’m saying we have to invest.” The specific investment Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett was speaking of during an “On the Issues with Mike Gousha” event at Eckstein Hall on Tuesday is the proposed streetcar that would serve parts of downtown Milwaukee. Barrett has been an energetic advocate for the streetcar plan, which has become a political controversy of a major order. The proposal appears to be coming to an important point (but not a final decision), with two votes scheduled for Wednesday by the Milwaukee Common Council that would create…
  • Attorney Priya Barnes Highlighted for Pro Bono Work

    Melissa L. Greipp
    19 Jan 2015 | 1:18 pm
    This month the State Bar of Wisconsin highlighted Attorney Priya Barnes, a 2013 Marquette Law School graduate, for her pro bono work. The State Bar’s Inside Track interviewed Barnes.  Barnes noted that while in law school, she volunteered with the Marquette Volunteer Legal Clinic (MVLC) and the Milwaukee Justice Center (MJC).  She now represents pro bono clients referred through the Volunteer Lawyers Project at Legal Action of Wisconsin, handling primarily Chapter 7 bankruptcy and domestic violence matters.  Barnes said that her pro bono work reinforces the work she does in her general…
  • Pet DNA Used to Help Solve Crimes

    Melissa L. Greipp
    17 Jan 2015 | 1:25 pm
    As this public radio show discusses, DNA from pets is increasingly being used to help solve crimes.  Investigators can take DNA samples found at a crime scene, such as hair, and have it tested to match a victim’s pet.  A match can link a perpetrator to the crime if, for instance, the DNA of the victim’s pet shows up on the assailant’s clothes.  As noted on the show, the field of veterinary forensics is growing, and while the DNA testing is expensive, it can make a big difference in solving a case.  In addition to animal DNA, plant DNA and viral DNA has also been used…
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    Green Building Law Update

  • All Water is Greywater - So Don't Ban Greywater in Your Plumbing Code

    Stuart Kaplow
    25 Jan 2015 | 8:33 am
    As governments across the country enter the triennial building code cycle, including adopting the 2015 International Plumbing Code, it is key that they not ban greywater use. Codes are usually adopted by local government legislative bodies, often with the advice of boards comprised of retired or senior members of local trades (e.g., the Plumbing Board) many of whom may not be conversant in sustainability and new innovations in green building. Many, if not nearly all, local governments alter and amend national codes for their own purposes. A prime example is that many local governments adopted…
  • Indoor Marijuana Growing Accounts for Over 1% of all Electric Consumption in the U.S.

    Stuart Kaplow
    19 Jan 2015 | 7:30 am
    In 2015, when vaping is out and Marley Natural Weed is in, the largely unrecognized and surging use of electricity associated with marijuana must be considered.  Indoor marijuana growing operations accounted for over 1% of all electric consumption in the U.S., according to a 2011 study by Evan Mills, a Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory researcher. In California, marijuana production accounted for about 3% of electric use, according to the study. The methodology of the study, self-recognizing the difficulties in tracking an activity that was illegal, only considers the indoor…
  • Pennsylvania is First State to offer Tax Credit for Passive House

    Stuart Kaplow
    4 Jan 2015 | 2:52 pm
    Pennsylvania is the first state to offer tax credits for low income Passive House building. Applications submitted under the PennHOMES and low income housing tax credit program are scored and ranked in accordance with a numerical criteria. By way of example, up to 30 points are awarded to developments located in areas with high poverty rates or large numbers of senior citizens eligible for affordable housing.   Up to 25 points are awarded for green building, including up to 5 points for redevelopment of a brownfield site, and up to 10 points for an adaptive reuse of a vacant building.
  • Dunkin' Donuts Green is a Hot Trend in Green Building

    Stuart Kaplow
    29 Dec 2014 | 7:24 am
    While you were busy enjoying their new “Cronut” croissant donuts, earlier this month Dunkin’ Donuts announced the goal of 100 new DD Green™ certified restaurants by year end 2016. DD Green is a green building certification program that will assist franchisees build sustainable, energy efficient restaurants.  To be recognized as a DD Green restaurant, a franchisee will follow a five stage program during the planning, design and construction of a store. The five stages of the DD Green program include Site Development, Store Efficiency, Healthy Indoors, Sustainable…
  • Arlington County is the First to Adopt Incentives Tied to LEED Version 4

    Stuart Kaplow
    21 Dec 2014 | 2:24 pm
    While hundreds of governments throughout the United States have adopted programs incentivizing green building, many tied to the LEED rating system, Arlington County, Virginia is the first to tie incentives specifically to the new LEED version 4. Arlington first adopted its very successful voluntary Green Building Incentive Program in October 1999 offering up to 0.25 floor area ratio (FAR) bonus density in exchange for obtaining a LEED Silver certification.  The program has been popular with developers in Arlington. Since the first LEED bonus density project was approved, 96 buildings…
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    California Employment Law Report

  • Five indispensable items employers must know about California's Wage Theft Protection Act's Notice to Employee

    Anthony Zaller
    23 Jan 2015 | 7:53 pm
    The Wage Theft Protection act of 2011 added Labor Code section 2810.5 requiring all private California employers to provide a written notice containing specific information to non-exempt employees upon hire. Below are five indispensable items employers should understand about the Notice to Employee (“Notice”) required under the law. 1. All private employers, regardless of size, must provide the Notice to employee with some limited exceptions. The DLSE explains that the Notice is not required for employees “directly employed by the state or any political subdivision,…
  • Five errors that make defending an employment lawsuit harder

    Anthony Zaller
    16 Jan 2015 | 10:11 am
    In litigation, the following five issues make defending an employment lawsuit much more difficult. 1. No documentation. No matter what type of employment litigation is at issue - wage and hour claims, leave issues, or harassment claims - the amount of documentation an employer has dramatically increases the odds of prevailing in litigation. I would even go as far as to say there is a relationship in place here (similar to Moore’s law in the computing industry) that the likelihood of avoiding a devastating judgment is proportionate to the amount of documentation the employer has…
  • Five New Year's resolutions for California employers in 2015

    Anthony Zaller
    9 Jan 2015 | 10:48 am
    Happy New Year.  I started the Friday’s Five articles at the beginning of last summer, and the interest in the articles has been astounding, so I appreciate everyone who has read them and provided comments and feedback. If you have any topics you would like me to address, please let me know. With that said, here is a list of five resolutions for California employers in 2015: 1. Relax–make sure your employees are taking their meal and rest breaks. 2. Train – your supervisors to comply with California’s required sexual harassment prevention training for employers…
  • Top five employment law class action claims for California employers in 2014

    Anthony Zaller
    26 Dec 2014 | 10:58 am
    Let me start with the lawyer’s disclaimer up-front: this Friday's Five list has no scientific or statistical backing whatsoever, I generated it based on the cases I’ve been litigating in 2014. My experience may be (and probably is) skewed a bit, but nevertheless California employers should pay attention to the following areas of potential litigation. 1. Meal and rest break litigation. Meal and rest break class action litigation is still very prevalent in California. While employers are becoming more sophisticated in ensuring compliance with their obligations, the litigation has…
  • Areas employers should review as part of their yearly audit - part two

    Anthony Zaller
    19 Dec 2014 | 8:09 am
    In my last post, I wrote about what steps employers should talk to comply with the new employment laws for 2015. This post discusses more generally what employers should audit on a yearly basis. And with the year coming to a close, now is a great time to review these five items: 1. Expense reimbursement and mileage policies. Employees must be reimbursed for all out of pocket expenses incurred while performing their jobs under Labor Code Section 2802. This includes reimbursing employees for their out of pocket expenses for driving their personal vehicles for business purposes. There are a…
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    Social Security Disability Lawyer

  • Social Security to Expand Field Office Hours Nationwide

    Maine Social Security attorney Gordon Gates
    26 Jan 2015 | 5:39 pm
    The Social Security will expand its hours nationwide effective March 16, 2015. Local "field" offices will be open to the public for an additional hour on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays; they will be open from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m on those days.  Offices will continue to close to the public at noon every Wednesday so employees have time to complete current work and reduce backlogs. Staying open to the public another hour is a step in the right direction. However, I do not think the public expects a government office to be closed at noon on a Wednesday. My office is…
  • Getting initial disability claims granted

    Maine Social Security attorney Gordon Gates
    13 Jan 2015 | 2:30 pm
    Working on initial disability claims, from the application itself through the DDS review process, is one of the most enjoyable parts of my job as a Social Security disability lawyer. Most of my practice involves preparing disability claims for hearings before administrative law judges, but a certain percentage of my cases are initial claims or claims at the Reconsideration level. Often we can gather the evidence necessary to get disability benefits paid after the initial review, without having to go through an appeal process. This saves a great deal of time and worry for the client, and often…
  • Multiple Myeloma And Social Security Disability

    Maine Social Security attorney Gordon Gates
    8 Jan 2015 | 10:01 am
    Multiple Myeloma is a blood cancer that used to be a terminal diagnosis. However in the past 10 years or so, truly amazing advancements have been made in the treatment of this disease. There are new drugs, like Revlimid and Valcade, and autologous stem cell transplants are a treatment option that offers lengthy remissions. I am happy to say that for many patients, multiple myeloma has become more of a chronic condition than a terminal cancer. I never used to have clients with multiple myeloma, because disability applications based upon the disease were routinely granted. However, the…
  • "The patient is doing well."

    Maine Social Security attorney Gordon Gates
    3 Jan 2015 | 6:30 am
    The patient is doing well. I wish I had a nickel for every time I read that sentence in a progress note for a patient who is applying for disability benefits. This statement (and similar language) in a patient's medical records can cause problems in a disability claim, because it is routinely misinterpreted by those making disability determinations (whether or not it is wilfully misinterpreted is a separate issue).  Saying the patient is doing well is relative. A patient who is no longer suicidal may be doing "well." A patient who is no longer bedridden half the time due to…
  • Vocational evidence can win your disability claim

    Maine Social Security attorney Gordon Gates
    22 Dec 2014 | 2:15 am
    Most disability claims are decided on a medical-vocational basis. Sometimes too little attention is paid to the vocational part of the analysis. I had a Social Security disability hearing recently where the administrative law judge gave the DDS residual functional capacity assessment as a hypothetical question to the vocational expert (VE) at the hearing. The VE answered that past work was precluded, and that other work would also be precluded by the functional limitations assessed by DDS. Game over. Claim granted. Sometimes the problem with the disability determination made by DDS when…
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    The Rainmaker Blog

  • Tips for Succeeding on LinkedIn

    Stephen Fairley
    26 Jan 2015 | 2:49 pm
    If your practice serves businesses or business people, then you need to have a presence on the leading business website:  LinkedIn.  This is the #1 social media hangout for business professionals who use the site to connect with peers, find jobs, learn things that can make them better at their current jobs, or utilize as a vehicle for outreach to potential clients. LinkedIn is also powerful when it comes to search.  When someone searches for you on the Internet using your name, your LinkedIn profile will be one of the first things that pop up.  Its summary format makes it an attractive…
  • How to Tell Which Social Media Platforms Will Work Best for Your Practice

    Stephen Fairley
    23 Jan 2015 | 2:35 pm
    One of the most common questions I get from attorneys is how to identify the right social media platforms for their practices.  First, the most important thing in identifying the right social media platform is to know your target market.   If you don’t know that, then any marketing you are doing anywhere is just a shot in the dark. Once you know the demographics of your market, you can then focus on the social media platforms that do the best job of reaching that audience.  Here are demographic breakdowns on the most popular social networks from the Pew Reseach Center’s 2014…
  • How to Motivate Your People and Profit

    Stephen Fairley
    22 Jan 2015 | 2:21 pm
    Last year, I invited attorneys to submit questions for an interview I was conducting with Michael Gerber, the author of a number of books on entrepreneurship including the best selling Awakening the Entrepreneur Within and The E-Myth Revisited. For more than 40 years, he has been teaching business owners who possess significant technical skills but few business skills how to transform their companies into world-class organizations. I fielded about 40 questions and was amazed at the number of those that dealt with personnel issues.  Not just finding good people, but training them and keeping…
  • How to Identify Your Ideal Target Market

    Stephen Fairley
    21 Jan 2015 | 2:22 pm
    When it comes to marketing your law firm, identifying your target market is job #1.  If you don’t do that, nothing else you do will matter. Many attorneys may struggle with developing a concise, detailed description of their target market, but it is vital that you do this or your marketing efforts will fall flat. Ask yourself these 10 questions when trying to determine your target market: 1.  Who would pay for my service?  People that have legal issues need attorneys, so what specific problems do you solve and who is willing and able to pay for that solution? 2.  Who has already…
  • Rainmaker Retreat Now Scheduled for Dallas and Los Angeles; 50% Off for Early Registration

    Stephen Fairley
    20 Jan 2015 | 3:11 pm
    Do you have a plan in place this year to meet or exceed your 2014 financial goals? Want to learn how top attorneys are doubling their revenues even in this economy? What do these attorneys know that you don’t? “Even though my firm is ahead of the average law firm with respect to tech savvy techniques, the Rainmaker Retreat offered cutting-edge tips to launch our marketing strategies to all new levels.” - Jo-Anne, Partner (FL) “This was the most valuable seminar I’ve been to. Stephen is wonderful, accessible, knowledgeable, entertaining, and truly gifted. If I…
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    Defending People

  • 2015.30: For Shame, Professor Franks.

    Mark Bennett
    26 Jan 2015 | 3:08 pm
    Shame that @ACLU supports the violation of sexual privacy for profit or entertainment — Mary Anne Franks (@ma_franks) January 26, 2015 A wise man recently said, “If you publicly oppose criminalization of anything, zealots of criminalization will accuse you of favoring that thing.” The argument is either ignorant or dishonest. Franks doesn’t get to plead ignorance here. She knows the argument is dishonest and she makes it anyway. It is fair to ask, “is there some depth to which Mary Anne Franks won’t…
  • 2015.29: We Have Seen the Enemy…

    Mark Bennett
    26 Jan 2015 | 2:52 pm
    The ACLU sued on behalf of several bookstores and publishing associations, the owner of the Village Voice and 12 other alternative newsweeklies nationwide, and the National Press Photographers Association. The groups sent Mesnard and legislative leaders a letter early this month suggesting changes to the law to address its concerns that the law was overly broad. … “In our view, we’re just trying to ask them to add some elements that first of all protect the media with respect to images that are important historically or have news value or artistic image,” said David…
  • 2015.28: Billy Harmon, Hubris, and Defilement

    Mark Bennett
    25 Jan 2015 | 8:36 pm
    A couple of years ago I wrote a post about the prevalence of judges coaching prosecutors: In short, the judiciary acting as an adjunct to the prosecution shouldn’t surprise anyone. Elected judges identify with the state. There are very few who will decide close calls for the defense. There are many more who will bend over backwards to make sure the state wins. What Coker did with Jones is little different than what Narcise does with Cousteau. But Narcise doesn’t text Cousteau, or if he does Cousteau is smart enough not to commit the texts to paper. Now I’ve found a judge who is so…
  • 2015.27: Stalin is Smiling

    Mark Bennett
    24 Jan 2015 | 8:24 pm
    I don’t think I’d heard of Brad Spangler before today, when this popped up in my feed reader: The following message was posted on Facebook, allegedly from Brad Spangler, and I find it difficult to believe. If someone out there is trying to malign him or malign libertarianism through him, then it is a viciously sick joke. I’m suspending judgment until more is known, and I hope everyone else does the same. I am not providing the FB link because the commentary thread has been reduced to spewing hatred. The message (purportedly) from Brad Spangler: “…During a…
  • 2015.26: Standard Disclaimers Always Apply

    Mark Bennett
    23 Jan 2015 | 9:48 am
    “Let me state boldly; I am against sexual assault. But…” “I am against revenge porn. But…” “I am not a supporter of crime or criminals.…” Of course you are against all the bad things. So you don’t need to say it. Please don’t. I understand the impulse: if you publicly oppose uncritically believing people who make rape accusations, you will be accused by small-minded people of favoring sexual assault. If you publicly oppose criminalization of anything, zealots of criminalization will accuse you of favoring that thing. If you defend people…
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    a public defender

  • On Serial: a spectator sport for the elite

    9 Jan 2015 | 7:02 am
    To say that our system of laws that regulates conduct between members of society is a complex entity is an understatement. While the principles underlying the passage of laws that prohibit criminal behavior and the description of behavior as criminal itself are fairly straightforward, there is almost nothing else beyond that which can be so classified. The reasons why people come into contact with the criminal justice system, their treatment in that system, the results obtained by the functioning of that system and the output and long-term impact of having been through the system are…
  • Rewarding lying cops: America’s crisis of faith

    18 Dec 2014 | 4:12 am
    There is a crisis of faith in America. A crisis that exposes the deep chasms that exist in our society. Traditionally a community caretaking function, and thus deserving of the highest levels of faith, trust and respect, policing in America is now a flashpoint; a litmus test through which to determine which side of the privilege aisle you rest your head on. A Gallup poll released last week showed that while police departments were one of the institutions that Americans on average had the highest confidence in (57% overall), this was belied by deep divides among racial and political lines.
  • One last gasp: Eric Garner and the failure of racial justice

    4 Dec 2014 | 5:47 am
    The last words of Eric Garner, and perhaps the last gasp of the veil of ignorance that shrouds law-abiding suburban folk from the reality of the racial injustice that permeates and destroys every other part of America. This is an incredibly complex issue – well, it is an incredibly simple issue to frame, but exceedingly complex to unpack, understand and solve. Eric Garner was killed, that much is sure. That no one is to blame – legally – for that death is a mild surprise. That a prosecutor shirked his responsibility to do justice yet again is nothing but business as usual.
  • 3 images about Ferguson you need to have handy today

    27 Nov 2014 | 5:25 am
    I bet you’re all going to hang out with family today. All families, by law, have one or two racist fucktards who are gonna go on and on about how the Officer was defending himself and acting properly in the line of duty. They’re not gonna get it, but to explain that requires reading. Here are three images – because people like your Uncle Bill aren’t the best at reading good – that you should print out and shove in their faces: Via. Note the staggering number of NA for Darren Wilson. Via. There’s more at the link. And if you really want to troll someone…
  • 1 thing you should do after Ferguson

    26 Nov 2014 | 5:03 am
    There are lots of websites out there giving you advice on what you can do to help and change things after Ferguson. It’s cute. It’s stuff like “understand things better” or “hold hands y’all” or “be good to each other” or “realize that black lives matter”. It’s hogwash. None of that will change anything. I’m here to give you the straight dope. The skinny. The real deal. The inside info. Here’s what you should do to change things. Get on a jury. Vote to acquit. Done. The more marginal, he-said she-said,…
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  • Facebook wins against alleged advertising fraudster

    Evan Brown (@internetcases)
    12 Jan 2015 | 12:21 pm
    Defendant set up more than 70 bogus Facebook accounts and impersonated online advertising companies (including by sending Facebook falsified bank records) to obtain an advertising credit line from Facebook. He ran more than $340,000 worth of ads for which he never paid. Facebook sued, among other things, for breach of contract, fraud, and violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA). Despite the court giving defendant several opportunities to be heard, defendant failed to answer the claims and the court entered a default. The court found that Facebook had successfully pled a CFAA…
  • Court orders Twitter to identify anonymous users

    Evan Brown (@internetcases)
    9 Jan 2015 | 8:18 am
    Defamation plaintiffs’ need for requested information outweighed any impact on Doe defendants’ free speech right to tweet anonymously. Plaintiff company and its CEO sued several unknown defendants who tweeted that plaintiff company encouraged domestic violence and misogyny and that the CEO visited prostitutes. The court allowed plaintiffs to serve subpoenas on Twitter to seek the identity of the unknown Twitter users. Twitter would not comply with the subpoenas unless and until the court ruled on whether the production of information would violate the users’ First Amendment rights.
  • Domain name case under ACPA failed because trademark was not distinctive

    Evan Brown (@internetcases)
    5 Jan 2015 | 12:47 pm
    Federal appeals court holds that plaintiff failed to satisfy all elements of the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act in action against competing airline The federal Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA) [15 U.S.C. 1125(d)] is a provision in U.S. law that gives trademark owners a cause of action against one who has wrongfully registered a domain name. In general, the ACPA gives rights to owners of trademarks that are either distinctive or famous at the time the defendant registered the offending domain name. The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals recently affirmed the…
  • Forum selection clause in browsewrap agreement did not bind parties in bitcoin fraud case

    Evan Brown (@internetcases)
    29 Dec 2014 | 10:55 am
    We all know that clickwrap agreements are preferable to browsewrap agreements, assuming, of course, the objective is to establish binding contracts between participants in online transactions. Nonetheless, some online platforms still (try to) rely on browsewrap agreements to establish terms of service. That avoidance of best practices gives us situations like the recent case of Hussein v. Coinabul, LLC, in which a federal court in Illinois refused to enforce a forum selection clause in a “bitcoin to gold marketplace” browsewrap agreement. Plaintiff alleged that he sent about $175,000…
  • Court allows class action plaintiffs to set up social media accounts to draw in other plaintiffs

    Evan Brown (@internetcases)
    17 Nov 2014 | 11:54 am
    Some former interns sued Gawker media under the Fair Labor Standards Act. The court ordered the parties to meet and confer about the content and dissemination of the proposed notice to other potential class members. Plaintiffs suggested, among other things, that they establish social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn) titled “Gawker Intern Lawsuit” or “Gawker Class Action”. Gawker objected. The court permitted the establishment of the social media accounts. It rejected Gawker’s argument that the lack of evidence that any former intern used social media would make the…
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  • Tell Better Stories

    Doug Jasinski
    27 Jan 2015 | 4:00 am
    Podcasting has become something of a recurring joke around my office this year. One of my colleagues has recently become intrigued by the medium, and is eager to find suitable client or in-house projects where our agency can work in this arena. I’ve been helpfully proposing that every project we discuss is a nail for which this newfangled podcasting hammer would be the perfect tool and teasing her about the cutting edge nature of this technology, which has had native support within iTunes since 2005, and is really but a short technological hop from old-fashioned radio serials that have been…
  • Tips Tuesday

    27 Jan 2015 | 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 Don’t Worry About Overcharging Your Mobile Device Batteries* Dan Pinnington Some people still worry about overcharging the batteries on their mobile devices. Those of us that have been around a bit longer will remember the days when you were supposed to fully charge and then fully discharge your batteries so they would maintain the ability to take and retain a full charge through many charging cycles. This was an…
  • Plaintiff and Defendant Both Seek, and Are Denied, Leave to Appeal

    Matt Maurer
    27 Jan 2015 | 3:58 am
    Litigation produces winners and losers. Often, the loser feels that the judge got it wrong and appeals the decision accordingly. In some cases even the winner thinks that it should have received a decision more favourable than it did and that an appeal is an appropriate route to take. In a recent case, both the winner and the loser of a summary judgment motion thought that the motion judge got it wrong, and both sought leave to appeal. More surprising than the fact that both sides think the judge got it wrong, is that the Divisional Court denied leave to appeal for both parties. The decision…
  • Look to Your Left, Look to Your Right…

    Colin Lachance
    26 Jan 2015 | 10:28 am
    …One of you won’t be here next year. Variations of that famous phrase, according to legend, are routinely directed at first year law students, though now mostly in jest. Many people have been credited as being the first to warn law students that at least 1 in 3 wouldn’t be able to handle the rigours of law school and would soon be seeking other pursuits, with records suggesting the first utterances came as early as the 1930s, if not earlier. If it were ever true for law students (Hint: I doubt it. And certainly not in living memory), it is seemingly now applicable to practicing lawyers…
  • Incivility: Practical Consequences for You and Your Client

    Dan Pinnington
    26 Jan 2015 | 9:30 am
    Debate about lawyers’ incivility – whether it’s on the increase, whether it’s worthy of concern, how it should be handled – is an ongoing one. The subject continues to be discussed, and we can expect to hear more about it in the coming months and years. But high-profile cases aside, when does a lawyer’s conduct cross the line into unprofessional conduct, and what are the costs and other implications? These questions are answered in a paper by Daniel Naymark of Lax O’Sullivan Scott Lisus LLP and LAWPRO’s litigation unit director and counsel Jennifer Ip. It was presented at…
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    Native American Legal Update

  • The Economist Reports on New Tribal Gaming & Poverty Research

    Greg Guedel
    16 Jan 2015 | 8:51 am
    The upcoming edition of The Economist features an article on the relationship between Tribal gaming and poverty, based on research conducted by Foster Pepper’s Native American Group and the University of Washington’s Jackson School of International Studies. The article can be accessed HERE. The research is being led by Foster Pepper’s Native American Group Chair Greg Guedel, who said: “This study provides data on how specific economic activities are impacting quality of life in Tribal communities. The goal of the research is to help empower Tribes to create prosperity…
  • Congress Eliminates Dollar-Match Requirement for Native CDFIs

    Greg Guedel
    6 Jan 2015 | 11:20 am
    In a significant action that will assist Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), Congress has moved to waive the non-federal dollar-for-dollar match requirement for the Native American CDFI Assistance (NACA) program in the FY 2015 Omnibus Appropriations Bill, now Public Law 113-235. The law appropriates $15 million in funding to NACA for financial and technical assistance, training, and outreach programs without the obligation of meeting the match requirement found in 12 U.S.C. 4707(e). The removal of the dollar-for-dollar match requirement is an important boost for economic and…
  • New Research on Tribal Sovereignty, Economic Development, and Human Security

    Greg Guedel
    18 Dec 2014 | 7:59 am
    The American Indian Law Journal has just published a new research study that provides data on key Tribal economic and human security indicators.  The research was conducted by Greg Guedel in conjunction with the University of Washington Jackson School of International Studies.   Key findings from the research include: Data indicating that while revenues from Tribal gaming have provided tremendous economic resources since the California v. Cabazon decision, gaming revenue growth has decreased dramatically since 2007 and annual total gaming revenue has effectively plateaued. Tribal…
  • DOJ to Allow Marijuana Farming on Tribal Lands

    Greg Guedel
    12 Dec 2014 | 7:52 am
      The United States Department of Justice Department has issued a new memorandum indicating that U.S. attorneys will not prevent Tribes from growing or selling marijuana on their sovereign lands, even in states where marijuana cultivation and sales are banned. The new guidance will be implemented on a case-by-case basis and Tribes must still follow federal guidelines, said Timothy Purdon, the U.S. attorney for North Dakota and the chairman of the Attorney General's Subcommittee on Native American Issues. Some Tribes see marijuana sales as a potential source of revenue, similar to…
  • Tribes Resist Opening of Sacred Rattlesnake Mountain to Public

    Greg Guedel
    10 Dec 2014 | 10:34 am
    As reported by Tom Banse of KUOW radio, the Yakama Nation and neighboring tribes have objected to a move by Congress to offer public access to the summit of Rattlesnake Mountain, a place tribal members consider sacred. Rattlesnake Mountain is located within the Hanford Reach National Monument near Richland, Washington. Republican Congressman Doc Hastings authored the requirement that the federal government provide some degree of public access. The provision is now part of a defense spending bill that is expected to pass. Access to the mountain is currently highly restricted. Philip Rigdon…
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    Technology & Marketing Law Blog

  • Court Rejects VPPA Claim Against Viacom and Google Based on Failure to Disclose Identity

    Venkat Balasubramani
    26 Jan 2015 | 5:37 am
    I blogged before about the privacy lawsuit against Viacom and Google over the disclosure of the viewing habits of minors. Shutterstock / SoulCurry – I love My Privacy The court previously rejected the claims on the basis that the disclosure of user attributes (such as demographic information, unique identifier and IP address), without more, does not amount to disclosure of someone’s personal identity (“information which identifies a person as having requested or obtained specific video materials or services from a video tape service provider”). Plaintiffs went back and…
  • Another Keyword Advertising Lawsuit Fails Badly

    Eric Goldman
    21 Jan 2015 | 8:57 am
    That’s the way the ill-advised trademark lawsuit crumbles. Photo credit: Angry businessman crashing stone trademark with karate punch // ShutterStockThis case is so pathetic, it probably only warrants a tweet. The TL; DR version: another trademark owner initiates a lawsuit over keyword advertising and gets crushed in court. The end. The antagonist is a Florida van rental service operating under several brands. The services include special transportation services for people with various ailments. The defendant, apparently providing similar or rival services, bought Google AdWords on…
  • Vonage Isn’t Liable For Disclosing ‘Unlisted’ Phone Number

    Venkat Balasubramani
    19 Jan 2015 | 10:40 am
    Miller is a psychologist who undertakes efforts to keep his phone number unlisted. As part of his work, he evaluated the mental health of criminal defendants. (For various reasons, his family wished to keep the number unlisted as well). an image of a telephone with a no solicitors sign He switched from TDS Metrocom to Vonage and researched whether Vonage would list his phone number and address. He determined that Vonage would not list his information. Nevertheless, his number was published after he ported the number to Vonage, so he started getting business-related calls at home, which…
  • No Personal Jurisdiction Over Nasty Facebook Post–Burdick v. Superior Court

    Eric Goldman
    16 Jan 2015 | 11:17 am
    Let me see if I can sum up all of my knowledge about Internet jurisdiction in a few pithy bullet points: * Motions to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction often lose, so why should we get too wrapped up in doctrinal nuances? * After all, the various doctrinal tests are a muddled mess. * In particular, the seminal Internet jurisdiction case, the Zippo case, is a heaping pile of poo. * Fortunately, courts have been stepping back from the overly plaintiff-favorable 1990s-era Zippo ruling. * Unfortunately, most courts are afraid to expressly reject Zippo, so the case still casts a…
  • Police Officer’s Facebook Post Criticizing Chief’s Budget Decision Justified Termination–Graziosi v. Greenville

    Venkat Balasubramani
    13 Jan 2015 | 7:32 am
    This is an appeal involving a police officer who was fired for criticizing the chief and a budget decision he made. Specifically, the chief decided to not make available official transport so that officers could travel to attend the funeral of an officer from a neighboring county who was killed in the line of duty. shutterstock / chrisdorney: “You’re Fired Rubber Stamp Over a White Background” Graciozi took to Facebook. She posted to her page and later to the then-Mayor’s Facebook page that the chief’s decision was unacceptable: I just found out that Greenville Police…
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    The California Employment Law Blog by Mediator Steven G. Pearl

  • Happy New Year!

    Steven G. Pearl
    6 Jan 2015 | 1:48 pm
    Happy New Year to all of you. Last year was a terrific one personally and professionally for me. I hope that yours was as well and that 2015 will be even better.
  • In re Walgreen Co. Overtime Cases: Court of Appeal Affirms Denial of Certification in Meal Period Class Action

    Steven G. Pearl
    26 Nov 2014 | 8:00 am
    In In re Walgreen Co. Overtime Cases (10/23/14, pub. 11/13/14) --- Cal.App.4th ---, the plaintiffs sought to certify a class of hourly employees on the theory that Walgreens propounded a lawful meal period policy, but in practice Walgreens failed to provide its employees with compliant meal periods. The trial court denied their motion for class certification, and the Court of Appeal affirmed, holding as follows: The trial court held that employers must make meal periods available, but need not ensure that their employees actually take those meal periods. Slip op. at 3-6.
  • Martinez v. Joe’s Crab Shack Holdings: Court Reverses Order Denying Class Certification in Misclassification Action

    Steven G. Pearl
    24 Nov 2014 | 8:00 am
    In Martinez v. Joe's Crab Shack (2013) 221 Cal.App.4th 1148 (discussed here) the plaintiffs alleged that the defendants misclassified its salaried managers and assistant managers as exempt from California’s overtime requirements. The trial court denied certification, finding that the plaintiffs failed to establish typicality, adequacy of representation, predominance of common questions, and superiority of the class action mechanism. After the Court of Appeal reversed, the California Supreme Court granted review and remanded in light of its opinion in Duran v. US Bank N.A. (2014) 59…
  • LACBA Presents "Employment Law Nuts & Bolts" Program 11/15

    Steven G. Pearl
    6 Nov 2014 | 1:00 pm
    The Los Angeles County Bar Association is presenting "Employment Law Nuts & Bolts: Discrimination, Harassment, Retaliation and Wage and Hour Law" on Saturday, November 15, 2014, at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles. The program runs from 9:00 am until 12:15 pm. The program will focus on teaching the law to new attorneys, those in practice less than five years, or those with more experience outside of the employment law field who wish to gain a better understanding of employment law.The first panel will cover federal and state wage and hour law. I am moderating, with Lauren Teukolsky…
  • Dynamex Operations West v. Superior Court: Who Is An Employer? (Revisited)

    Steven G. Pearl
    5 Nov 2014 | 8:00 am
    In Martinez v. Combs (2010) 49 Cal.4th 35 (discussed here), the California Supreme Court held that the broad, three pronged definition of "employer" found in the IWC Wage Orders applies in minimum wages actions brought under Labor Code section 1194. The question after Martinez was whether the Wage Order definition of "employer" would apply in all wage and hour actions or whether courts would continue to look at the multi-factor test found in cases such as S.G. Borello & Sons, Inc. v. Department of Industrial Relations (1989) 48 Cal.3d 341. Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court…
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    The Securities Law Blog

  • 10 ETFs To Be Excited About In 2015

    26 Jan 2015 | 2:04 pm
    Investors were introduced to more than 180 new exchange-traded products in 2014, as well as a handful of ETF issuer newcomers.While the majority of new offerings offer more traditional investment objectives, there are a passel of funds that provide exposure to unique methodologies and hyper-targeted sectors.
  • Good News - FINRA Chief Says FINRA Won't Be Piling On.

    26 Jan 2015 | 9:31 am
    In discussing the state of FINRA enforcement's activities, FINRA Enforcement Director Brad Bennett said he will not pursue a violator if the Securities and Exchange Commission or state regulators are going after the same individuals and the same firms for the same acts.“If there is no reason for us to be in a case, we won’t be there just to collect fines,” said Bennett.We will have to wait and see how this pans out. For more information, go to Finra Enforcement Chief: Smaller Ponzi Schemes The Norm Post MeltdownThe attorneys at Sallah Astarita & Cox include veteran securities…
  • Investor Alert - Owen Li crashes Canarsie Capital in New York

    22 Jan 2015 | 6:18 am
    Owen Li, the manager of Canarsie Capital has apparently lost nearly 100 million dollars in what he calls overzealous investments, which caused devastating losses.Fund managers who invest the funds assets in an inappropriate manner are liable to their investors for their losses. We are reviewing these events for possible claims by investors in Canarsie Capital. If you were an investor in the fund, please contact our office at 212-509-6544. My only hope is that you understand that I acted in an attempt—however misguided—to generate higher returns for the fund and its investors. But…
  • SEC Press Releases

    21 Jan 2015 | 8:31 am
    Canadian Man Charged With Conducting Fraudulent Trading SchemeA man living in Ontario, Canada, has been charged with orchestrating a lucrative market manipulation scheme that relied on “layering” in which a trader places orders solely to trick others into buying or selling U.S. publicly traded stocks at artificially inflated or depressed prices.UBS Subsidiary Charged With Disclosure Violations and Other Regulatory Failures in Operating Dark PoolA subsidiary of UBS has been charged with disclosure failures and other securities law violations related to the operation and marketing of its…
  • Failing to Reporting Customer Complaints

    20 Jan 2015 | 6:50 am
    FINRA rules require firms, and brokers, to report certain customer complaints on the broker's Form U-4 within 30 days of receipt of the complaint. FINRA's requirements for complaint reporting are extremely broad, and quite frankly, unfair. While FINRA's reporting requirements need to be changed, they also need to be followed.The details of the requirement have changed over the years, but today, if a broker's customer files a sales practice complaint, in writing, or an arbitration or lawsuit, and alleges damages of  $5,000 or more or alleges forgery, theft, misappropriation or conversion of…
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  • Today’s Investiture Results in Arkansas’s First Majority Female Supreme Court

    Tasha C. Taylor
    6 Jan 2015 | 10:03 am
    An investiture ceremony is being held at the Arkansas Supreme Court today at 1:00 p.m. for the swearing in of three justices: Arkansas Supreme Court Justice Karen Baker, Arkansas Court of Appeals Judge Rhonda Wood, and Arkansas Court of Appeals Judge Robin Wynne. Supreme Court Justice Karen Baker was originally elected to the Arkansas Supreme Court in 2010. She was re-elected last May to serve an eight-year term on that Court. Court of Appeals Judge Rhonda Wood was elected to Position 7 on the Arkansas Supreme Court in May of 2014.  Judge Wood replaces Justice Hoofman, who was appointed to…
  • Were Your Arguments Made in Chambers Preserved for Appeal?

    Andy Taylor
    21 Nov 2014 | 2:13 pm
    Arkansas Realtors Association v. Real Forms, LLC Any attorney who has spent much time practicing in court knows that many arguments and rulings are made in chambers (and off the record).  The question, then, is how to preserve arguments made in chambers.  The Arkansas Supreme Court’s recent decision in Arkansas Realtors Association v. Real Forms, LLC provides some guidance. 2014 Ark. 385.  Although the opinion does not include a definitive method to preserve such arguments, the takeaway is that attorneys must find a way to make the argument on the record. The facts of Arkansas…
  • Proceedings Under Trust Code (Rather than Probate Code) Not Appealable Unless Final

    Andy Taylor
    29 Oct 2014 | 9:41 pm
    In Bank of the Ozarks v. Cossey, 2014 Ark. App. 581, the Arkansas Court of Appeals addressed the question of whether an order that appears to be a non-final order is still appealable under Ark. R. App. P. (2)(a)(12), which permits an appeal from almost all orders entered in probate cases. Only a brief summary of the facts of this case is necessary.  In sum, there was a dispute about who was the trustee of the Hamilton Family Trust.  One of the beneficiaries of the trust, Ms. Cossey, filed a petition claiming that Bank of the Ozarks was the trustee and demanding an accounting from Bank of…
  • Arbitration Clauses Not Enforceable in Arkansas State Courts Where There is No Mutuality of Obligation

    Tasha C. Taylor
    28 Oct 2014 | 2:56 pm
    The Arkansas Supreme Court began its fall 2014 term with two decisions rendering arbitration clauses unenforceable in Arkansas state courts where such clauses contain no mutuality of obligation. Regional Care of Jacksonville, LLC v. Henry On September 11, 2014, the Arkansas Supreme Court affirmed the Pulaski County Circuit Court’s decision to deny a nursing-home facility’s motion to compel arbitration due to the absence of mutuality of obligation in the nursing-home facility’s admission agreement. See Regional Care of Jacksonville, LLC v. Henry, 2014 Ark. 361.  In Regional…
  • UPDATED: We Endorse Tim Cullen Over Robin Wynne for Arkansas Supreme Court

    Andy Taylor
    15 May 2014 | 7:57 am
    We Support Tim Cullen for Supreme Court This blog is mostly read by lawyers, but around election time, a lot of voters (who are not necessarily lawyers) visit our blog to learn about the candidates running for appellate court positions.  This year there is only one contested appellate court race. That’s the race between Tim Cullen and Robin Wynne for an open seat on the Arkansas Supreme Court. Before this election cycle, the Arkansas Appeals Blog had never endorsed a judicial (or any) candidate.  That changed when, in February, our good friend and mentor, Tim Cullen, decided to run…
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    New Jersey Attorney Law Review Blog

  • NJ Open Public Records Act Mandates Disclosure of Police Records

    Glenn R. Reiser
    20 Jan 2015 | 4:16 am
     In a written opinion issued on January 12, 2015 Bergen County Assignment Judge Peter E. Doyne ordered that the State of New Jersey and several townships comply with public records requests made by North Jersey Media Group, the owner of The Record newspaper, concerning an incident that resulted in police officers shooting and killing an African American suspected of participating in vehicle theft and eluding police. North Jersey Media Group, Inc. v. Township of Lyndhurst, et al., Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Docket No.: BER-L19048-14.Read more. 
  • New Jersey Appeals Court Reaffirms Factors Establishing Corporate Successor Liability Under New Jersey Law

    Glenn R. Reiser
    11 Dec 2014 | 8:16 pm
      In an unpublished decision issued on December 11, 2014, the Appellate Division of the Superior Court of New Jersey was confronted with deciding whether a corporation was the successor in interest to the plaintiff's former commercial tenant such that the corporation should be held liable for tenant's breach of the lease.  40 Eisenhower Drive, LLC v. Karoon Capital Markets, Inc., et al., Docket No.: A-2620-12T4 (App. Div. Dec. 11, 2014).  Ruling in the affirmative, the appeals court provides a salient summary of New Jersey law on successor liability in the context of corporate…
  • NJ Judge Slams Mortgage Lender With $26,000 in Attorney's Fees for Violating New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act

    Glenn R. Reiser
    5 Aug 2014 | 3:53 pm
    In a July 31, 2014 unpublished decision, a Bergen County judge fined a mortgage lender $26,125 in legal fees for duping a 70-year old borrower into a refinance transaction that benefited only the lender.   Finding that the lender committed an unconscionable commercial practice by charging the borrower over $11,000 in mortgage closing costs that would have taken her 5+ years to recoup based on the paltry savings of $63/month from her monthly mortgage payment, the Court chastised the lender for acting in its own self-interest.A more detailed analysis about this case appears on our…
  • Vauling Closely Held Businesses Under New Jersey Law - What's it Worth?

    Glenn R. Reiser
    24 Jun 2014 | 10:47 am
    What is my business worth?  You say $100,000, she says $1,000,000.  Whether arguing with an irate spouse in the context of a divorce case or a business partner in a partnership dispute, the answer is often difficult and expensive to determine.As the New Jersey Supreme Court observed in Balsamides v. Protameen Chemicals, Inc., 160 N.J. 352, 368 (1999) (“Balsamides“), and Lawson Mardon Wheaton, Inc. v. Smith, 160 N.J. 383, 397 (1999) (“Lawson“), valuation of a closely-held business is not an exact science. See also Bowen v. Bowen, 96 N.J. 36, 44 (1984) (quoting Lavene v.
  • New Jersey Appeals Court Clarifies Requirements for Debt Purchasers Suing on Credit Card Debts

    Glenn R. Reiser
    10 May 2014 | 9:03 am
    In an unpublished decision, a New Jersey appeals court clarified the legal requirements that credit card debt purchasers must meet in order to pursue collection from consumer account holders. Main Street Acquisition Corp. v. Nemeth (App. Div., April 1, 2014).Click here to read the full post.
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    Construction Law Musings- Richmond, VA

  • The Anatomy of a Construction Dispute Stage 3- The Last Straw

    Christopher G. Hill
    26 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    Uncyclopedia dispute resolution (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Over the past two weeks here at Construction Law Musings, I’ve discussed the first two stages of a typical construction dispute (if such a thing exists): the claim, and how to bring heat short of litigation/arbitration.  As promised, this week I’ll be discussing the next step or “last straw” in a construction dispute, namely, arbitration or litigation to enforce all of those rights that you preserved in the first two stages. Construction litigation is expensive, time consuming, and, quite frankly, a pain in the…
  • Join Me In Fairfax, VA for a “Hanging a Shingle” CLE

    Christopher G. Hill
    22 Jan 2015 | 6:35 am
    On January 29, 2015 I will be joining a great group of solo practitioners to help out those that are thinking of “hanging a shingle” and starting a journey that I started almost 5 years ago now.  Here’s the brochure and information. If you want the information electronically, here’s the Virginia CLE website registration information. As always, I welcome your comments below.  Please subscribe to keep up with this and other Construction Law Musings. © Construction Law Musings- Richmond, VA is licensed under a Creative Commons…
  • The Anatomy of a Construction Dispute Stage 2- Increase the Heat

    Christopher G. Hill
    19 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    Construction Company (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Last week we discussed the groundwork and circumstances of a construction claim.  This week’s post will discuss the next steps, hopefully short of full blown arbitration or litigation that you, as a construction company, can pursue presuming your claim has been properly preserved. If your contract requires certain steps such as informal resolution attempts or other items, these are the first things that must be done while still preserving your rights to pursue all remedies available.  Instituting such contractually required resolution…
  • Aarow Equipment v. Travelers- An Update

    Christopher G. Hill
    12 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    Originally posted 2011-11-28 09:00:07. Image via Wikipedia Previously here at Musings, I discussed the application of pay if paid clauses and the Miller Act.  The case that prompted the discussion was the Aarow Equipment & Services, Inc. v. Travelers Casualty and Surety Co. case in which the Eastern District of Virginia Federal Court determined that a “pay if paid” clause coupled with a proper termination could defeat a Miller Act bond claim.  However, as I found out a couple of weeks ago at the VSB’s Construction Law and Public Contracts section meeting, the 4th…
  • The Anatomy of a Construction Dispute- The Claim

    Christopher G. Hill
    12 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    English: Contractor-led design-build, architect as subcontractor (Photo credit: Wikipedia) A  new year brings with it promise and challenges.  The promise is a relatively clean slate and the thought that 2015 will be a great year for construction professionals and those that assist them.  The challenges come from the almost inevitable issues that can arise on a construction site with its many moving parts and enough potential pitfalls to make even the most optimistic construction attorney, contractor, subcontractor or supplier think that Murphy was an optimist. In order to assist with the…
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    CAFA Law Blog

  • PAGA Penalties Divided Among Employees and State of California May Not Be Aggregated To Satisfy CAFA’S Amount-In-Controversy Requirement (McGlinchey Stafford PLLC)
    26 Jan 2015 | 4:00 am
    Main v. Dolgen California, LLC, 13-01637, 2013 WL 5799019 (E.D. Cal. Oct. 28, 2013). In this case, a California district court remanded a putative class action after finding that plaintiffs’ individual recoveries under the California Labor Code’s Private Attorneys General Act (“PAGA”) could not be aggregated with civil penalties under the Act that inure to the benefit of the State of California. The named plaintiff filed this putative class action in California state court seeking civil penalties under PAGA due to defendant’s alleged failure to provide adequate meal breaks, pay…
  • Red Light Means Stop! District Court Finds CAFA’s Amount in Controversy Is Sufficiently Demonstrated in Removal of Traffic Violation Fine Case (McGlinchey Stafford PLLC)
    19 Jan 2015 | 7:44 am
    Hung v. American Traffic Solutions, Inc., 2014 WL 1689303 (E.D. Mo. April 29, 2014). In an action brought on behalf of citizens of Missouri who had paid traffic violation fees, a district court in Missouri found that the allegations in the complaint were sufficient to satisfy the jurisdictional threshold considering that there were thousands of violations, and each violator paid a fine of $100. The plaintiffs brought a putative class action in the Circuit Court for the City of St. Louis, Missouri.  The complaint stated that the defendant American Traffic Solutions, Inc. contracted with the…
  • A Class Action By Any Other Name is Still a Class Action (McGlinchey Stafford PLLC)
    15 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    Williams v. Employees Mut. Cas. Co., 2014 WL 1375470 (E.D. Mo. April 8, 2014). In a garnishment action to collect insurance proceeds brought by a lone plaintiff, the District Court found that it satisfied the requirements of CAFA removal because an action to collect insurance proceeds brought by the class representative was in substance a class action. The plaintiff Barbara Williams filed this action in the Circuit Court for Lincoln County, Missouri.  The action was filed on behalf of a previously certified class to recover a $82,037,000 judgment obtained in a separate state court action…
  • District Court Concludes that Plaintiff Failed to Plead Sufficient Facts to Establish Jurisdiction Under CAFA (McGlinchey Stafford PLLC)
    14 Jan 2015 | 3:00 am
    Hirmez v. GNC Holdings, Inc., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 72096 (S.D. Cal. May 27, 2014) A California district court dismissed a class action complaint for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. The court determined that the complaint contained insufficient factual allegations to establish not only the plaintiff’s citizenship, but also that the amount in controversy exceeded CAFA’s jurisdictional minimum. Stephanie Hirmez (“Hirmez”), a California resident, purchased a health food product from GNC Holdings, Inc. (“GNC”). According to Hirmez, GNC made false, fraudulent, misleading, unfair,…
  • District Court Reconsiders Remand Order in Light of Rodriguez v. AT&T Mobility Servs. LLC (McGlinchey Stafford PLLC)
    13 Jan 2015 | 3:00 am
    Deaver v. BBVA Compass Consulting And Benefits, Inc., 2014 U.S. Dist. Lexis 72074 (N.D. Cal. May 27, 2014) The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California (the “Northern District”) reconsidered its remand order in light of the Ninth Circuit’s ruling in Rodriguez v. AT&T Mobility Servs. LLC, 728 F.3d 975 (2013). In originally remanding the case, the court relied on the “legal certainty” test promulgated by Lowdermilk v. United States Bank National Association, 479 F.3d 994 (9th Cir. 2007). Because the Rodriguez court overruled Lowdermilk and held that a defendant…
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    Lowering the Bar

  • Police: Suspect Is White Male, Average Height & Build, Has Mouth, Two Eyes

    25 Jan 2015 | 10:59 am
    The lead-in by ABC13 News in Houston pretty much sums it up: The Rosenberg Police Department admitted that this might be a "long shot," but decided to release the sketch anyway, because you never know. On the department's Facebook page, they asked readers to "pay special attention to the details around the eyes and mouth," which seems like good advice here.          Related StoriesNude Citizens Make Nude Citizens' Arrest of Nude CitizenAgain, Accused Taggers Should Reconsider Tagging the CourthouseNobody Move! This Is a Film Project 
  • Again, Accused Taggers Should Reconsider Tagging the Courthouse

    23 Jan 2015 | 11:32 am
    In covering some of these stories, I sometimes wonder whether I am potentially helping to deter future conduct of that kind or possibly just encouraging it. It depends a lot on what the particular conduct is, of course. I would like to think that in a small way I may have tended to discourage people from, for example, forming an Amish beard-cutting gang, suspending schoolchildren for biting a danish into the shape of a handgun, trying to mug someone anywhere near a ninja-training school, taking the TSA at all seriously, or maybe pretending to have a brain injury in order to trick…
  • Jury Finds for Rick Springfield in Buttocks-Assault Case

    21 Jan 2015 | 10:38 am
    A jury in Syracuse needed just 61 minutes to deliberate on this one, making it all the more puzzling to me why Rick Springfield's attorneys thought they needed a mistrial the first time around. As you may recall, Vicki Calcagno accused Springfield of knocking her down with his butt while working the crowd during a 2004 concert at the New York State Fair. Although she conceded she did not leave the concert or seek medical attention at the time, and had no witnesses to back up her story, she claimed to have suffered a variety of mostly head-related injuries as a result of a fall. The case was…
  • Expert: Invitation to Child's Party Not Enforceable

    20 Jan 2015 | 11:43 am
    The BBC asked its legal correspondent to weigh in on the case of Alex Nash, the five-year-old who was billed £15.95 for failing to show up for a friend's birthday party. Although the party organizers (the friend's parents) have allegedly threatened to go to small-claims court to collect if necessary, Clive Coleman opines that the invitation could not have created a binding contract for two reasons: Any claim would be on the basis that a contract had been created, which included a term that a "no show" fee would be charged. However, for there to be a contract, there needs to be an intention…
  • Tom & Jerry Go to Court

    20 Jan 2015 | 5:00 am
    Randy Spencer is an attorney who bills himself as "the only stand-up comic to specialize in insurance," and—oh, well, here he is performing at Caroline's, Mr. Skeptic. You don't think that's possible and yet here you are reading a "legal-humor blog." For shame. Anyway, while Randy's newsletter, Coverage Opinions, is mostly about insurance and is aimed at other attorneys, he also includes humor essays that should not go unread by human beings. I liked "Tom and Jerry Go to Court," in which he noted that there are cases involving the classic "slip on banana peel" fact pattern, and wondered if…
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    Ohio Family Law Blog

  • Divorce Filings Spike in January by One-Third

    Robert L. Mues
    24 Jan 2015 | 12:33 am
    January Is Often Called Divorce Month Recent UK Study Claims One In Five Will Divorce After Holidays The first of the year is the time that many unhappy couples who are reluctant to break up the family during the holidays officially start their divorces. January is often called the “divorce month.” This trend occurs not only in the United States but in the UK and abroad as well. According to a recent study in England one in five couples had plans to divorce after the holidays. James McLaren, President of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, recently said, “we see a…
  • Why Kids Shouldn’t be Your Highest Priority

    Guest Contributor Gregory Ramey, PhD, Child Psychologist and Dayton Daily News Columnist
    17 Jan 2015 | 1:25 am
    If I’m speaking with a group of parents and I want to elicit a lively debate, I only need to say the following: “Kids shouldn’t be your highest priority”. As a youngster, I remember my dad telling me that “your mom always comes first,” but I really didn’t understand what he meant.  It wasn’t until I spent many years working with kids and families that I realized that focusing your life around the needs and wants of your children was a serious mistake. I’ve gotten some passionate feedback on this position from many parents. My favorite comment was from a mom of an infant. …
  • Divorce: Options to Dispose of the Marital Residence

    Anne Shale
    10 Jan 2015 | 2:04 am
    What Are The Options To Consider When Disposing Of The Marital Residence In A Divorce Proceeding? In the usual divorce or dissolution proceeding, the disposition of the marital residence is often one of the most important decisions in the case and one of the most emotional issues with the exception of “custody” of the minor child or children. One or both parties may have very strong emotional ties to the home and may overlook important financial considerations in their quest to “keep” the family home. I now provide to you my list of available options in disposing of the marital…
  • Divorce on Your New Year’s Resolution List?

    Robert L. Mues
    3 Jan 2015 | 1:11 am
    If a Divorce is on Your New Year’s Resolution List, Consider this First… Seven Tips for Dealing with Family Issues During the Holidays from Texas Divorce Attorney Richard C. Price I was pondering a list of various topics for this blog article. I wanted to publish a strong blog article to start 2015. I started a couple and even finished one that wasn’t honestly that memorable. So I decided to hold that one in the “bank” for another less important time of the year. The start of any new year is an obvious time for reflection and to take an inventory of our blessings and shortcomings.
  • Animal Protection: New Ohio Law Will Shield Pets From Abuse

    Robert L. Mues
    27 Dec 2014 | 1:25 am
    Ohio Joins 29 Other States to Protect the Family Pet Against Domestic Animal Abuse with New Protection Order On June 28, 2014, we published an article about S.B 177, an Ohio Bill that was introduced in August 2013 that would amend domestic protection order laws to allow your furry friend to be included.  The legislation became a reality when Governor Kasich signed it into law on Friday, December 19, 2014. The ASPCA had urged Governor Kasich to quickly sign this bill into law to address this pervasive problem and protect Ohio families and their pets. “Too often, victims will not flee an…
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    3 Geeks and a Law Blog

  • Lexis Gains Exclusive Legal Information Provider Status of The New York Times

    9 Jan 2015 | 9:27 am
    LexisNexis representatives are sending out notices that they are now the exclusive provider of The New York Times content for the legal market. For those of you that are keeping score, this adds to LexisNexis' exclusive content with Factiva (which includes The Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones News Service), and ALM content. It would seem that LexisNexis is doubling-down on the news content area. Here is the message that went out earlier today. LexisNexis® is now the exclusive legal information provider of The New York Times® content to the legal market! This agreement extends…
  • Marketing a Law Firm As If It Were A Music Festival

    8 Jan 2015 | 9:20 am
    If you've seen any concert festival posters over the past few years, you'll notice that the bigger the band is, the bigger the font is. As I was thumbing through some of my reading yesterday, I saw an article on "Top 10 font size shockers from the Coachella 2015 lineup." Some bands were given inappropriate font sizes based on their current popularity (at least according to the author.) Font is power!! Imagine if font size and font type were given out to these bands? Imagine the horror of being a 9 point Comic Sans font! Oh the humanity!! As usual, I just couldn't let this stay as a typography…
  • To Be CI or Do CI - That is the Question

    30 Dec 2014 | 6:17 am
    On December 23rd,  Arun Jethmalani, Founder & Managing Director at ValueNotes Database Pvt. Ltd. in India, published an article to LinkedIn entitled 5 Debates about Competitive Intelligence that will never be resolved.  The article essentially lays out five of the canonical questions that are a constant dialogue in the CI community. I won't share his insights, you'll have to read the article for that, but the five questions he puts forward are: 1.     Should CI be strategic or tactical? 2.     Where should CI reside?
  • The Irrational Fear of Artificial Will

    2 Dec 2014 | 2:44 pm
    Image [cc] - agsandrew  A lot has been made of Elon Musk's recent comments about Artificial Intelligence being "a greater risk than nukes." And no less an intellect than Stephen Hawking recently echoed that sentiment. I've seen two examples of this fear showing up in popular television shows; a recent episode of Elementary had Sherlock Holmes administer an extended Turing test to a doll to see if it possibly killed a person, and this season of Person of Interest centers around the battle of omniscient and seemingly omnipotent computers with ridiculously…
  • Using Novelty, Surprise, and Shock to Change Behavior

    25 Nov 2014 | 9:14 am
    Image [cc] Brainware3000 As I was going through my Facebook feed this morning, I noticed an update from Amy Hale-Janeke that pointed to an article on "How to Stop Annoying Behaviors and Handle Offensive People." For strictly research purposes only, of course, I read the article, which led to me watching Dan Pink's 2009 Ted Talk, and then to Pink's short video on Crowd Control: Top 5 Jaywalkers. It was extremely interesting to listen as Pink discussed how businesses incentive methods are shown to be ineffective when reviewed by social scientists. Methods meant to improve performance…
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    The High-touch Legal Services® Blog...for Startups!

  • Telling Facebook Friends Means Telling the World

    15 Jan 2015 | 3:43 pm
    This post explains something that we all should know intuitively. If you disclose information to your Facebook friends, you potentially have disclosed it to the entire world. Matthew Richard Palmieri was a contractor for the United States. He lost his industrial security clearance after the government investigated certain of his activities. Palmieri brought suit (without a lawyer) against various government agencies and officials in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. The suit identified 30 ways in which the defendants allegedly violated his rights. Alleged Fourth…
  • Je Suis Charlie

    11 Jan 2015 | 9:17 am
    Charlie Hebdo homepage, announcing that the next issue will be published on Tuesday, January 14 Je suis Charlie (French for “I am Charlie”). This post supports freedom of expression, generally, and more particularly Parisian satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo, which was the victim of a massacre by Islamist radicals on January 7, 2015. Being a bit of a francophone and francophile (see Paris: What a Difference a Decade Makes), and having relatives in Paris, I feel it is especially important to join millions of people throughout the world proclaiming that we value freedom of speech and…
  • Should I Form Separate Legal Entities for Different Lines of Business?

    23 Dec 2014 | 5:26 pm
    This post discusses whether one should form separate legal entities (corporations or limited liability companies) for different lines of business. I am writing this post because I have seen this type of question online many times. The most recent occurrence was on Avvo. See Should I set up a subdivision or have a LLC or corporation own another LLC? Separate Legal Entities Protect Different Businesses The most important reason to form separate legal entities is to ensure that failure of one business will not bring down another business. Assume, for example, that one line of business incurs a…
  • How to Dissolve a Delaware Corporation or LLC

    2 Dec 2014 | 7:11 pm
    This post discusses how to dissolve a Delaware corporation or LLC (limited liability company) – i.e., how to terminate the entity’s existence. For information about dissolving California entities, see How to Kill Your Company when that’s the Only Choice. Dissolve a Delaware Corporation Shortcuts are available if the corporation has not conducted business or has not issued shares. Otherwise, the following procedure will apply. Delaware General Corporation Law Section 275 provides that to dissolve a Delaware corporation, either of two procedures may be followed. A majority of the…
  • What are Repeated and Successive Transactions?

    13 Nov 2014 | 7:35 pm
    In Doing Business in CA? Be Sure to Register, I discussed when a foreign entity must register to do business in California. The test is whether the entity has transacted intrastate business, i.e., has engaged in repeated and successive transactions of business within the state. This post explores the meaning of “repeated and successive transactions“. “Repeated and Successive Transactions” Not Defined The term “repeated and successive transactions” appears in Corporations Code Subsection 191(a). Unfortunately, that term is not defined. However, another…
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    Gamso - For the Defense

  • Glossip, Grant, and Cole. Not Warner

    25 Jan 2015 | 10:30 pm
    Question 1: Is it constitutionally permissible for a state to carry out an execution using a three-drug protocol where (a) there is a well-established scientific consensus that the first drug has no pain relieving properties and cannot reliably produce deep, comalike unconsciousness, and (b) it is undisputed that there is a substantial, constitutionally unacceptable risk of pain and suffering from the administration of the second and third drugs when a prisoner is conscious.Question 2: Does the Baze-plurality stay standard apply when states are not using a protocol substantially similar to…
  • The California Way: Perjury with Impunity

    22 Jan 2015 | 8:43 pm
    I've talked before about how the courts mostly just blow it off when the prosecutor commits misconduct.  Maybe he says improper things during closing argument.  Maybe he asks questions he knows he can't ask hoping to get away with it.  Maybe she hides exculpatory evidence or denies that the snitch got a deal when of course he did.The courts may acknowledge the error.  They admonish the prosecutor to go forth and sin no more. But by god, the sumbitch they were after was guilty, so fuck it.  No remedy.Which was how it came to pass (and I've told this story before) that…
  • As Long As It Was Policy

    16 Jan 2015 | 2:53 pm
    Imagine, if you will (and if you won’t, go away).Someone you know and care about is murdered.  Viciously.  The evidence points to you.Police come, show your mother the incriminating evidence, and ask her if you did it.No, she says.  I’ve reviewed the evidence and find that he’s innocent.Police leave, satisfied because his mom cleared him.Welcome to the world of internal affairs where police investigate themselves and conclude that they behaved properly.It’s not just police, of course.  Government agencies do it all the time with their employees.  Decades ago,…
  • American Exceptionalism Part Deux

    13 Jan 2015 | 4:26 am
    OK, OK.  So the administration now says that the we should have sent someone who we could claim was at least important to the march.  Not a "world leader," of course (that would be his Barakness), but someone like a cabinet officer - say Eric Holder who just happened to be in Paris at the time but somehow just couldn't get over to where stuff was going on. But really, you know, we're absolutely engaged in the fight against terrorism in France, and wasn't that the point?  Hey, the French know it. Except that wasn't the point.  Or at least not all of it.  It was about…
  • American Exceptionalism.

    12 Jan 2015 | 4:41 am
    I was, it seems, unfair to our administration.I wrote, yesterday, about how the US blew off the chance to stand tall with much of the the rest of the world (even those parts of it that were lying through their collective teeth) in favor of free speech and press and religion and tolerance.  Leaders from around the world showed up to stand with millions from France to say they were not afraid and they believed in the word - even when they don't like it. The US?  Not so much.Obama spent the day in the White House. Joe Biden was wherever he was. Secretary of State John Kerry was in…
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    VirtualMarketingOfficer Blog

  • 10 Tips for Converting Your Presentation Slide Deck for SlideShare

    Jayne Navarre
    22 Jan 2015 | 11:21 am makes it really easy to double down on that live presentation slide deck that you spent hours developing. In some case it takes just 30 minutes—the time it takes to revise your deck for the SlideShare audience—to exponentially increase your exposure. With 60 million unique visitors every month, SlideShare receives five times more traffic from business owners than any other platform of its kind. What’s more, built-in sharing tools let you easily post to your social media accounts. But tapping into the SlideShare audience requires more than simply posting your live…
  • Six Can’t-Miss Plays to Supercharge Your Online Marketing in 2015.

    Jayne Navarre
    14 Jan 2015 | 2:32 pm
    By now you’ve probably scanned at least a dozen or so ‘2015 social media prediction’ posts, and maybe you found a nugget or two that you can add to your strategy. Maybe you’re looking for more direction? How close are we? How far have we come? Here are my top picks for lawyers, law firms, and all professional services marketers that want to supercharge their online marketing in 2015. Top Social Media Plays Every Professional Services Marketer Needs Now. (1) Embrace Social Media. This could be the year that firms wake up to the reality that social media is a tool for building…
  • Top Ranked Blogs Get Passed Over By The 2014 ABA Blawg 100

    Jayne Navarre
    3 Dec 2014 | 2:22 pm
    Santa’s got a list. He’s checking it twice. Every “list” deserves a little scrutiny—a second look? Well, here’s to that… In a few weeks we’ll not only know who’s been naughty or nice, we’ll know who tops the 8th annual ABA Blawg 100 list. (Anyone can register to vote their favorites from the nominees here.) The Blawg 100 gets published and everyone in the niche clamors. Why? Because it’s interesting to see what law blogs our peers and blogger brethren are reading and loving each year, and more importantly who earned their bragging rights. Each year there…
  • Are you ready to deck the halls with boughs of social media content?

    Jayne Navarre
    10 Nov 2014 | 5:39 pm
    There’s a holiday feeling in the air. The invites to parties, soirees, concerts, and other festive affairs are about to hit your December calendar. The law office canteen will soon be filled with cookies and candies. Greeting cards are printed and soon to be lined up on the conference room table, ready for signatures. Law firm client gifts are approved and ordered. The database housekeeping and eCard production is done. Ooops. You didn’t forget your holiday social media content plan did you? Deck the Halls with Boughs of Content… All year long you’ve been collecting followers, friends…
  • Praise for FAIL: An entertaining detective mystery with a conscience…

    Jayne Navarre
    3 Nov 2014 | 3:32 pm
    The glorious lack of success in almost any bad situation can be summed up in a single syllable—fail. However, FAIL, a recently released detective mystery novel by award winning author Rick Skwiot (Blank Slate Press, St. Louis, Missouri, Oct. 2014), is a glorious success that receives my highest recommendation—a real page-turner. Skwiot’s writing, working meticulously like a treacherous black widow spider, pulled me craftily into the mean streets of St. Louis, Missouri, an otherworldly chasm of urban decay and corruption. Weaving tough subjects—criminal justice, inner city schools,…
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  • Week Adjourned: 1.23.15 – United Airlines, Wet Seal, eBay

    23 Jan 2015 | 12:57 pm
    The week's top class action lawsuits and settlements. Top stories include United Airlines, Wet Seal and eBay.
  • Monster Energy + Scruples Don’t Mix? (Just Ask the Beastie Boys)

    23 Jan 2015 | 9:38 am
    Beasties vs. Monsters. That’s a headline copyright infringement lawsuit circa 2014. And who won? Well the first round went to the Beastie Boys. But—their lawyers are heading back into the ring for round two. This time—over legal fees. Monster Energy—no stranger to lawsuits—was found guilty by a federal judge in Manhattan, of using the Beastie Boys’ songs without their permission to market their energy drinks. Take what you need and pay the piper later—if you need to? Nice. But it seems that’s the way Monster rolls…an appropriately named business.
  • Week Adjourned: 1.16.15 – Toyota, Capital One, Wolfgang Puck

    16 Jan 2015 | 11:33 am
    The week's top class action lawsuits and settlements. Top lawsuits include Toyota, Capital One Bank and Wolfgang Puck
  • Why Do this Guy’s Girlfriends Want him Dead?

    16 Jan 2015 | 11:17 am
    It must have seemed like a good idea at the time. Or not. In any event, one 57-year old social worker from Brownville, New York decided she’d had enough—enough of her daughter’s ex-boyfriend, and father of her two-year old grandson, so she hired a hit man to kill him and feed him to the crocodiles. (Would I make this up?) Luckily for the ex—the “hit man” turned out to be an undercover detective and mamma has been arrested and charged with both second degree criminal solicitation and conspiracy in the second degree.
  • Week Adjourned: 1.9.14 – DAP XHose, Nissan, Honda

    9 Jan 2015 | 1:29 pm
    The week's top class action lawsuits and settlements. Top cases include Nissan, DAP Xhose and Honda.
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    Are You Reading These Posts?

  • Do You Know How Your Clients Define "Value"?

    Lance Godard
    26 Jan 2015 | 5:00 am
    Like every business, writes Bruce MacEwen in What's Value? Answer One Question, in law there is room for the "sell it for more" firms (the equivalent of Ritz-Carlton and BMW), just like there is room for the "make it for less" ones (think Ikea and Motel 6). But it only works if you're defining "value" in exactly the same terms as your clients, something very few firms are able to do successfully. And that means that everybody else is fighting for the same clients in the middle:... the middle market is an extremely tough place to survive and thrive, precisely because it is so densely populated…
  • Don't Be a Jerk, and Other Tips for Promoting Yourself

    Lance Godard
    23 Jan 2015 | 2:40 pm
    There's a fine line between ensuring that your skills and experience are recognized, and coming across as an arrogant braggart, writes Dorie Clark in How to Promote Yourself Without Looking Like a Jerk. One way to avoid crossing it? Be humble: ... even when you’re promoting yourself, it’s essential to express humility. That doesn’t in any way mean hiding your abilities. However, it does require being sensitive to the fact that some accomplishments may make others feel jealous or inadequate, and you don’t want to appear glib or self-congratulatory.Read the post. Take Clark's…
  • Fill In The Blank: In 2015, I Resolve To __________

    Lance Godard
    22 Jan 2015 | 12:05 pm
    Still struggling with your resolutions for the coming year? Matt Homann's latest post on the [non]billable hour has for all the "resolution inspiration" you'll ever need.Homann has compiled ten of his favorite posts (from the more than 100 he has written) for lawyers and firms on setting - and achieving - the right kind of goals, those that will make you and your clients happier and calmer and better. And they're all worth reading. Our favorite? "Resolve to get less business:"If too much income comes from clients you hate serving, find a different practice area or a different job.Read the…
  • What Do You Call a 20-Year Relationship With Your Clients? A Good Start

    Lance Godard
    21 Jan 2015 | 5:00 am
    When you're building your practice, stay away from the "fire and forget" work, writes Keith Lee, founder of Associate's Mind, in How To Build A 20 Year Relationship With Your Clients. Instead, focus on building a long-lasting relationship with your clients, providing customized, high-quality products and services that they'll brag about. Like apparel companies Gramicci and American Giant:Gramicci built a relationship with me by providing a product that has lasted decades. American Giant wants to build that same sort of relationship. They’ve told me – everyone – that when you buy their…
  • The Secret of Client Development?

    Lance Godard
    20 Jan 2015 | 5:00 am
    The secret of client development really isn't a secret. It's straight-up, hard-working, honest to goodness client service. Service that would make your mother proud, that makes your best clients pick up the phone to tell their friends about they great lawyer they've hired.That's why you need to read Dan Hull's "world-famous and annoying but highly correct, inspirational and soulful" 12 Rules of Client Service: The client is the main event.
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    Internet Television Law Blog

  • News Roundup - December 2014

    31 Dec 2014 | 7:59 pm
    Google sues Mississippi Attorney General 'for doing MPAA's dirty work'China opens second intellectual property rights court Google & MPAA Publicly Slam Each Other Over Piracy Swedish Supreme Court Determines Movie Piracy Fines “How To Learn Absolutely Nothing In Fifteen Years,” By The Copyright Industry Sony Planned to Flood Torrent Sites With “Promo” Torrents Leak Exposes Hollywood’s Global Anti-Piracy Strategy The Pirate Bay Goes Down Worldwide Google News Is Taken Offline In Spain, After A Call For Payments
  • News Roundup - November 2014

    30 Nov 2014 | 6:07 pm
    Net neutrality: FCC tells Obama to back offHas Switzerland cracked the net neutrality riddle?CJEU asked to rule on copyright liability of operators of free and open Wi-Fi networks Operation Onymous may have exposed flaws in Tor, developers reveal Right to be forgotten poses more questions than answers Amazon takes 22.5% of UK entertainment market Pirate Bay Founder Peter Sunde Released From PrisonAVG Monitors Torrenting Habits to Advise Heavy Downloaders17 Arrested As European, U.S. Officials Raid Online Black MarketsPicking The Locks: Redefining Copyright Law In The Digital Age
  • News Roundup - October 2014

    31 Oct 2014 | 6:52 pm
    Close To 100,000 Hungarian Demonstrators Protest Internet Usage Tax In An Online, On-Demand Age, TV Reruns Are Redefined UK reforms enabling private copying, parodying and general quotation of copyrighted material come into forceAcademic behind copyright law changes warns that rights holders could lose even more control of content by taking test cases to courtOettinger sketches out EU copyright reforms timetable
  • News Roundup - September 2014

    30 Sep 2014 | 6:48 pm
    CJEU defines works of parody and rules that rights holders' interests must be considered
  • News Roundup - August 2014

    31 Aug 2014 | 6:46 pm
    Is posting football Vines copyright infringement?
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    Rochester Bankruptcy and Debt Relief

  • Homestead Exemption and Married Spouses

    4 Jan 2015 | 6:51 pm
    It is not uncommon for one spouse to seek bankruptcy relief under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 of the Bankruptcy Code in a situation where title to the real property is held in both parties’ names. Generally, under such circumstances, the debtor typically claims a half interest in the property. Thus, the homestead exemption, under either New York law or federal bankruptcy exemptions, would be used to protect that interest. This creates an interesting legal issue  since under New York’s Real Property Law both spouses hold an undivided interest in the entirety of the property. If so,…
  • Bankruptcy and Eviction

    25 Oct 2014 | 6:37 pm
    If you are behind on the rent and are hoping to buy some time, or wipe out the obligation to the landlord altogether, under appropriate circumstances, Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy may be a solution. Filing for bankruptcy will usually wipe out the balance due for past due rent as of the date on which the case is filed. Rent for any period after the case is filed won’t be discharged. If the filing of the case is done correctly, you may also be able to buy some more time in the place before you have to move out. The filing of a bankruptcy petition stops all efforts at collection,…
  • 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…
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    The Jury Room

  • “His brain made him do it” and so I feel much less empathy for him 

    Rita Handrich
    26 Jan 2015 | 4:02 am
    We’ve written about the brain based defenses a lot here. And here’s an article that may shed light on how the presentation of neural defenses could backfire on defense attorneys. First, let’s look at the research. The researchers wondered how the biological explanation of mental illness might affect the empathy of mental health clinicians toward the patient. To test their hypotheses, the researchers performed three studies with a total of more than 300 participants (all mental health clinicians—psychologists, psychiatrists, counselors, and social workers). What they found in the…
  • Wait! Could that be a  lumbersexual in your venire panel?

    Douglas Keene
    23 Jan 2015 | 4:02 am
    We know it’s important for you to keep up on new stereotype labels. You know what labels like metrosexual, hipster, and perhaps even lumberjack mean. But lumbersexual? Tom Puzak, over at GearJunkie wrote about it first a couple of weeks ago and then the term went viral. “He looks like a man of the woods, but works at The Nerdery, programming for a healthy salary and benefits. His backpack carries a MacBook Air, but looks like it should carry a lumberjack’s axe. He is the Lumbersexual. Seen in New York, LA and everywhere in between, the Lumbersexual is bringing the outdoor industry’s…
  • Then and now: Beepers versus iPhones  [and separation anxiety]

    Rita Handrich
    21 Jan 2015 | 6:36 am
    Back in the early ‘90s, I had a job that required me to carry a beeper. The constant awareness that I was “on call” was a source of strain and led me to complain I was never really “off duty”. Flash forward to this century and I cannot imagine being without my smart phone. In fact, I often double-check to be sure I have my iPhone when I am on the go so I never leave it behind. It’s a whole different sort of anxiety about being separated from my iPhone than I felt toward that beeper. And I am not alone. Today’s researchers examine how many of us are anxious when separated from…
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    South Florida Lawyers

  • "Second, I Mean Thirdly, I Mean -- Oh Well Let's Just Talk Cruise Ship Accidents!"

    South Florida Lawyers
    26 Jan 2015 | 8:58 am
  • Orval Faubus or Fabulous Oral?

    26 Jan 2015 | 6:38 am
  • Talking Football with Judge Rosenbaum!

    South Florida Lawyers
    23 Jan 2015 | 8:53 am
    You're on sports talk 11 with Judge Rosenbaum!! -- news and weather on the nines -- caller what's your question?Can you win a football game with a crappy defense?On the football field, a team with a weak defense may choose to emphasize its offense. The trouble is, in the end, it can be hard to win without a reliable defense.But Judge, how does that relate to a statute of limitations defense exactly?Defendants’ statute-of-limitations defense is, by no means, a certain winner. So their offense—that they will suffer prejudice as the result of a voluntary dismissal without prejudice because…
  • So Prince Andrew Allegedly Had an Orgy With Jeff Epstein's Sex Slave.

    South Florida Lawyers
    22 Jan 2015 | 7:30 am
    It's not often you get to write a headline like that.Wow this case was already insane but reading the allegations in this affidavit just lifted it to another level:Actually I can't bring myself to quote any of it.The allegations about Dershowitz are equally insane. In related news, Jack Scarola tried to serve Buckingham Palace, with predictable results:Jane Doe 3 said she hoped that Andrew would accept what she was saying now that it has become public. “Given what he knows and has seen, I was hoping he would simply voluntarily tell the truth about everything. I hope my attorneys can…
  • Q & A With Spencer Aronfeld (Now With Moderate Facial Hair!)

    South Florida Lawyers
    22 Jan 2015 | 6:39 am
    I have a few cruise ship questions:1.  Can I die boarding the ship?2.  Can I die while rolling at the craps table?3.  Can I die on the waterslide?4.  Can I die while snorkeling?5.  Can I die from eating a frittata off the midnight buffet?6.  Can I die while sleeping peacefully in my cabin? (I'm sure there are others.)
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    Unveiling The Laws of Attraction for Legal Marketers

  • Present to the Beauty of The Constitution and the Life I Have This Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

    19 Jan 2015 | 9:21 pm
    Having watched Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech today, I find myself  emotionally moved and in love. I was less than a year old when the March on Washington took place.  My parents, our family and all of their friends, neighbors, clergy and business owners in their circle where there.  My heart is full ...
  • For Small Businesses Owning Your Online Presence Is Crucial

    16 Jan 2015 | 8:57 pm
    Over the last several years of working with lawyers and small business owners, I have found that the last thing they need is another long list of things to do.  Every Time I’ve proposed plan of action with a new client and they try to take on management of a segment of the tasks themselves ...
  • If You Have A Business “The Art of Social Media – Power Tips for Power Users” Is a Must Read

    15 Jan 2015 | 4:08 pm
    Guy Kawasaki and Peg Fitzpatrick’s new book, The Art of Social Media, is just out.  Since I’ve written about Guy’s work previously and The Karasma Media Legal Marketing Blog is part of the Alltop blog list, I am one of several social media aggregators Guy has given a complementary Kindle book to.  I’ll be making ...
  • Why You Need Content for Law Firm and Mid-Size Business Growth

    8 Nov 2013 | 4:36 pm
    Demand Metric is a marketing advisory firm that provides practical online tools and training. They have built a membership community of over 30,000 marketing professionals in 75 countries. They created a truly appealing visual guide for content marketing that I wanted to share with you.    My thought:  Very useful for those responsible for law firm or ...
  • Legal Marketers — New Enhancements Make Twitter Even More Attractive

    5 Nov 2013 | 4:14 pm
    I’ve been using Twitter for several years as an invaluable tool to share links my audience is interested in.  When Twitter first started, a lot of people used it like a supercharged texting device, but it has been more than that for quite some time. It is useful to think of Twitter at that time ...
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    Lawyer Advertising & Attorney Marketing

  • The Ever Changing Face of Advertising

    Philip Franckel, Esq.
    15 Jan 2015 | 1:58 pm, Inc. announced a deal with filmmaker Woody Allen to write and direct his first television series for Amazon Prime’s Instant Video streaming service.  The deal is a further commitment to distribute video content by Amazon since it started just over a year ago. But is it a commitment to get more viewers or sign […] The post The Ever Changing Face of Advertising appeared first on Lawyer Advertising & Attorney Marketing.
  • Rule Against Advertising Past Results is Past

    Philip Franckel, Esq.
    8 Jan 2015 | 3:00 pm
    Lawyers in Florida can now advertise past results in their advertising. The rules prohibited using past results in lawyer advertising in indoor and outdoor display, television and radio. However, a federal court held that the state ethics rules were unconstitutional and in violation of the First Amendment. The rules weren’t just thrown out. They were […] The post Rule Against Advertising Past Results is Past appeared first on Lawyer Advertising & Attorney Marketing.
  • Marketing Your Law Firm With Social Media

    Philip Franckel, Esq.
    23 Sep 2014 | 4:13 pm
    Law firms are marketing legal services with social media including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, YouTube, Pinterest and others. Are you feeling left behind because you don’t have the time to interact with all of these social media sites? The question is do you really need to market your law firm on all of the social […] The post Marketing Your Law Firm With Social Media appeared first on Lawyer Advertising & Attorney Marketing.
  • How Clients Search on the Internet

    Philip Franckel, Esq.
    22 Jul 2014 | 9:50 pm
    Potential clients are searching for lawyers on the Internet using longtail keywords. FindLaw found that longtail keyword searches where someone was looking for a lawyer accounted for 32% of all searches.  67% were less valuable research queries using regular keywords, such as “DUI laws in Texas”. What’s the difference between a regular keyword, keyword phrase […] The post How Clients Search on the Internet appeared first on Lawyer Advertising & Attorney Marketing.
  • Cloud Sync Storage 20GB and more free

    Philip Franckel, Esq.
    10 Apr 2014 | 7:42 pm
    Get a free 20GB account at to backup & sync all of your computers, tablets and smartphones.  I now use for my law office. will give you 15 GB of free storage when you open an account but you’ll get an additional 5 GB of free storage if you sign up using […] The post Cloud Sync Storage 20GB and more free appeared first on Lawyer Advertising & Attorney Marketing.
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    RainmakerLawyer Blog

  • New Development Experiences from Dave Lorenzo

    Dave Lorenzo
    24 Jan 2015 | 12:30 pm
    We are excited to announce two outstanding new development experiences with Dave Lorenzo.Valtimax Revenue Revolution This full day seminar is designed to help you boost your law firm revenue in just one day. Join Dave Lorenzo as he presents his 51 best revenue growth ideas and provides you with live examples.  This is a brand new experience and Dave packs an entire year’s worth of revenue growth strategy into an eight hour seminar. There is a huge price discount available for a limited time and that makes this amazing day a phenomenal value at just $350.  But seating is limited so…
  • Wow. That Was Fast.

    Dave Lorenzo
    16 Apr 2014 | 8:28 am
    “Are you serious about taking control of your future?” This was the question being posed to me by the guy across the table. “Yes” I answered timidly. “Then you need to learn how to get tings done quickly.  It doesn’t matter if you feel comfortable or not, the person who makes things happen is always going to be successful.  Even if you are wrong and you make a big mistake, if you act quickly, most of the time you can correct a mistake before it does damage.” He continued: “When people see you take an idea and turn it into to a money-making business, you want them to stop…
  • Rainmaker Lawyer is Now A Registered Trademark

    Dave Lorenzo
    30 Jan 2014 | 8:20 am
    It is with pride that I announce the registration of Rainmaker Lawyer as a Trademark on the Principal Register with the United States of America. Continue Reading...
  • Thankful for Second Chances

    Dave Lorenzo
    27 Nov 2013 | 2:11 am
    I use this forum to discuss things that can help you make a great living and live a great life ®. Typically these things involve business and leadership strategy and/or a marketing tactic. This is not one of those occasions. A few times each year, like the anniversary of the terrorist attacks on the United States or a date that has importance only to me, I express the emotion I feel. I do this because we have that kind of relationship. This is typically a time of year when we express gratitude. We take stock of the blessings we have received and we pause and reflect. We acknowledge the…
  • May I Speak to You?

    Dave Lorenzo
    20 Nov 2013 | 6:57 am
    As you probably know, I spend a good deal of time giving talks to audiences of lawyers all over the United States. Typically, the organizer of the event pays me to speak and pays my travel expenses. During the first half of 2014, I’m offering you the opportunity to invite me to speak to your group of lawyers without investing a dime. You read that correctly. I will conduct an education session for your group of lawyers, bar association or large law firm, at no expense to you. I am partnering with a sponsor who will cover my fee, my travel and all the materials included with my education…
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    Compliance Building

  • What’s in your Wallet? Insider Trading

    Doug Cornelius
    26 Jan 2015 | 5:00 am
    It’s clearly insider when a company’s high-level executive trades on pending earnings data not yet released to the public. It’s clearly not insider trading when you count cars in a retailer’s parking lot to get insight to sales. A recent SEC case falls somewhere in the middle. The Securities and Exchange Commission brought charges against two men who worked at a credit card company. The two crafty traders tracked credit card use to determine revenue trends for retailers and then traded based on that data. Their plan was solid. They made over $2.8 million on a $147,300…
  • Compliance Bricks and Mortar for January 23

    Doug Cornelius
    23 Jan 2015 | 5:00 am
    These are some of the compliance-related stories that recently caught my attention. Equity Crowdfunding: A Market for Lemons? by Darian M. Ibrahim in the CLS Blue Sky Blog Before reaching the more difficult Title III, I reveal that the less-radical Title II, which allows general solicitation of accredited investors, seems to have proven successful for entrepreneurs and investors in its first year of operation. Online platforms such as AngelList, FundersClub, and CircleUp have successfully matched entrepreneurs and accredited investors and raised significant cash for startups. This is somewhat…
  • Massachusetts Adopts Crowdfunding

    Doug Cornelius
    22 Jan 2015 | 5:37 am
    Add Massachusetts to the growing list of states that are sidestepping the unusable federal crowdfunding alternative. “The Crowdfunding Exemption is designed to foster job creation by helping small and early-stage Massachusetts companies find investors and gain greater access to capital with fewer restrictions. The exemption is also intended to provide necessary investor protections by requiring key disclosures, and by making the exemption unavailable to bad actors that have violated the securities laws or committed financial fraud.” The federal crowdfunding provisions in the…
  • Preparation for SEC Examinations

    Doug Cornelius
    21 Jan 2015 | 5:00 am
    Ascendent Compliance put together a presentation on Preparation for SEC Examinations. Last year the SEC examined 9% of advisers which represent 25% of the RAUM. Of those exams, 87% had deficiencies, 25% had significant findings, and 14% were referred to enforcement. The SEC has implemented a new telephone assessment for offsite remote exams. The examiners do not end up in your office. Unless they find something that catches their attention. The Never Before Examined Initiative is continuing for advisers registered before 2012. The Presence Exam Initiative may be winding down. The SEC is still…
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day

    Doug Cornelius
    19 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    It’s the third Monday of January, so that means a day off to celebrate the Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. It was officially observed in all 50 states for the first time in 2000. President Ronald Reagan signed a bill creating the federal holiday to honor King in 1983. How to celebrate?
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    Simmons Firm

  • Mesothelioma Caregiver Tips for the New Year

    Amy Fair
    23 Jan 2015 | 7:27 am
    January 2015 marks the beginning of a new year and a time to start fresh. Whether you believe in New Year’s Resolutions or not, this is the perfect time to set new goals that can improve yourself – mentally, emotionally and physically. For mesothelioma caregivers, this is especially important. The mesothelioma lawyers at Simmons Hanly Conroy commend all mesothelioma caregivers for their dedication, support and selfless giving to loved ones with mesothelioma. There is no question that being a mesothelioma caregiver can be challenging, stressful and emotionally draining. It’s important to…
  • Get to Know the Simmons Hanly Conroy Shareholders - Part 3

    Simmons Hanly Conroy
    18 Jan 2015 | 9:08 am
    Once a month, we have been sharing some facts about each of shareholders who make up the Simmons Hanly Conroy family. Now it’s time to introduce the rest. Our goal is to give you an inside glimpse at the dedication and passion our attorneys have for helping clients secure the justice they deserve. Take a closer look at the people behind our dedicated law firm below. David Miceli Attorney David Miceli joined the firm’s pharmaceutical litigation department in 2006. He has more than twenty years of experience practicing law and specializing in the complex, pharmaceutical and medical device…
  • Mesothelioma and Women: The Truth Behind Take-Home Exposure

    Amy E. Garrett
    16 Jan 2015 | 9:22 am
    Many asbestos occupations like auto mechanics, construction workers and oil refinery workers were made up of predominantly male employees. For this reason, a large portion of patients who are diagnosed with mesothelioma are often men. However, that trend is changing and the proportion of women who are diagnosed with mesothelioma is growing every day. You may be wondering, how can this be? How are women being exposed to asbestos if they’re not working in the occupations that so often exposed individuals to the deadly toxin? Much of the answer lies in take-home exposure. For instance, a…
  • Asbestos and Mesothelioma News Wrap Up: December 2014

    Amy E. Garrett
    30 Dec 2014 | 6:36 am
    The mesothelioma lawyers at Simmons Hanly Conroy understand the importance of staying up to date on the latest asbestos and mesothelioma news. Below is a group of some of the most recent news stories covering asbestos exposure, mesothelioma research and other headlines from throughout the world. EPA: Asbestos cleanup reducing health risks in Libby The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a human health assessment for Libby, one of the largest sites of asbestos exposure, which found that cleanup efforts at the site are reducing deadly asbestos poisoning. Asbestos remains legal…
  • Get to Know the Simmons Hanly Conroy Shareholders - Part 2

    Simmons Hanly Conroy
    17 Dec 2014 | 6:31 am
    In October, we introduced ten members of the Simmons Hanly Conroy leadership team. Now it’s time to introduce ten more. By getting to know our shareholders, you can see for yourself the dedication, selflessness and compassion our lawyers have for every person they represent. Mitchell Breit Joining the leadership team from Hanly Conroy Bierstein Sheridan Fisher & Hayes LLP, Mitchell brings more than thirty five years of experience in the legal industry. He is primarily focused on consumer class actions and mass torts of national scope, as well as defective medical and pharmaceutical…
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    Texas Wills and Trusts Law Online

  • Can a Convicted Felon be an Executor in Texas?

    Rania Combs
    21 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    I received a email recently from someone asking whether a convicted felon can serve as an executor in Texas. The individual who contacted me had two daughters and one son, but didn’t trust his daughters to be fair and honest. Unfortunately, his son had been convicted of a felony. Section 304.003 of the Texas Estates Code concerns persons disqualified to serve as an executor or administrator in Texas. It provides that a person is not qualified to serve if he or she is: Incapacitated; A felon convicted under the laws of the United States or of any state of the United States unless, in…
  • Do I Have to be an Adult to Make a Will in Texas?

    Rania Combs
    14 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    The Texas Estates Code provides that in order for a Will to be valid, the person making the Will must not only be of sound mind, but also have attained the age of eighteen years; be or have been married; or be a member of the armed forces of the United States, an auxiliary of the armed forces of the United States, or the United States Maritime Service. Unless a minor is (or has been lawfully married); or is a members of the armed forces or an auxiliary thereof, or of the Maritime Service, he or she will not be able to make a Will.
  • Celebrating Five Years!

    Rania Combs
    9 Jan 2015 | 8:00 am
    When I started my law firm years ago, I was nervous. Petrified, actually. I had always worked for other attorneys before, so I never had to be a rainmaker or run a business. Naturally, I worried about the possibility that all my efforts would fail. My fears were compounded because the concept of a completely web-based office was still in its infancy, and many expressed doubt that a virtual law office could actually be successful. In fact, I distinctly remember the look on many colleagues faces when I shared my plans. It was a cross between skepticism that clients would actually work with an…
  • Ending the Year on a High Note…Again!

    Rania Combs
    29 Dec 2014 | 6:00 am
    This month, I was honored to be included in Houstonia Magazine’s list of “Top Lawyers” for 2014! This is the second year in a row I have received this honor. Houstonia Magazine’s selection was based on Avvo ratings, which factor in peer endorsements, experience, education, training, speaking, publishing, and awards. It’s a great way to end the year! Thank you for all your support and encouragement!
  • Do I Need an Attorney to Probate a Will in Texas?

    Rania Combs
    17 Dec 2014 | 7:00 am
    I get phone calls and emails each week from Texans who have lost friends and family members. Often, they have been named as independent executors and need information about probating a Will. The first question they ask is whether it will be necessary to retain an attorney to go through the probate process. In most cases, the answer is: “Yes.” Most courts in Texas require an executor to be represented by an attorney in a probate matter because an executor not only represents himself, but also the interests of beneficiaries and creditors. Since under Texas law, only a licensed…
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  • The Erosive Simplicity of College Rankings: Meet America’s ‘Worst College’

    Dave Wieneke
    19 Jan 2015 | 6:51 pm
    Shimer may be unlike any college you’ve ever heard of. Its students read a canon of original source texts based on the Great Books of western thought. They make sense of them through mostly self-led discussions facilitated by the lectureless questioning by professors. The place is self-governed by an assembly of all students and other stakeholders. In the increasingly productized world of higher education, professors at Shimer joke that it is somewhere between reality and utopia. This week, Shimer, my alma mater, was named ‘worst college in America’. Though it is perennially…
  • Boston Hosting the Olympics is Like Winning a Beauty Contest in Prison

    Dave Wieneke
    11 Jan 2015 | 6:05 pm
    I’m from Boston. Since my city calls itself “the Athens of America”, I understand that the call of hosting the Olympics is hard to resist. Its another chance to be an example as a “City on a Hill.” Another moment to feel like the “Hub of the Solar System”. Its another chance to best New York in a contest.   But this week when the US Olympic Committee named Boston its candidate to host the 2024 Summer Olympics, there was a groan that seemed either downright curmudgeonly or surprisingly informed. Olympic Hosting is Like Winning a Beauty Contest in…
  • The Best Digital Strategy Articles, MOOCs and Books for 2015

    Dave Wieneke
    30 Dec 2014 | 7:10 pm
    John Maeda once noted that “Time may tick in seconds, but it is lived in years.” As we sit here hungry for the brief pause between years, the forces moving digital business have never seemed stronger. I’ve written a post for ISITE Design’s Insight blog summing-up articles, books and business MOOC’s that I’ve found especially heading in to 2015. The ISITE post unpacks each a bit and explains why I thought you might want to start the year with them. But, to get to the list faster, here’s an outline of the resources with just a line about each. Business strategy…
  • The long winter of Russia’s economic failure

    Dave Wieneke
    21 Dec 2014 | 4:28 am
    This week Winter came to Russia. I can’t predict the future of the Russian economy, or what happens when people bereft of buying power turn on a Kleptocracy helmed by a KGB strongman. The brutality of a long winter, and the Malthusian tumult it could bring is something not calculable in advance. The decline of Russian businessThe headline that resounded in digital business circles was that several US companies, in this case Google, now have higher market values than the entirely of the Russian stock market. This factoid sits on top of an amazing moment in global economics which holds…
  • Global forces drive digital business and Amazon readies to join the travel biz

    Dave Wieneke
    23 Nov 2014 | 9:04 am
    Amazon will enter the travel business. Want to know what companies are up to? Keep an eye on their trademark filings and their hiring. This posting confirms that Amazon “the everything store” is about to add hotel listings to its inventory. Judging from Amazon’s job postings, they stand-up curated travel offerings starting with Boston, New York, San Francisco, LA and Dallas. Last month Amazon singed a lease to take over a full twelve story building in Manhattan, providing 470,000 square feet, at 7 West 34th Street. Yep, they’ll be just across the street from the Empire…
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    A Connecticut Law Blog

  • Connecticut Injury Attorney Andrew Garza Named Of Counsel To McKeen Law Firm

    Ryan McKeen
    22 Jan 2015 | 5:42 pm
    Attorney Andrew Garza has it. He is a tenacious advocate for the injured. I’ve seen him work tirelessly for his clients. Andrew wears his commitment to his clients on his sleeve. He gets results for his clients. Andrew is committed to learning and developing the very best trial and advocacy methods available. Unleashing these cutting edge techniques has yielded and will continue to yield results for folks who have suffered harms and losses as a result of someone else choosing to violate safety rules. We’ve traveled long distances together to attend national seminars taught by the…
  • McKeen Law Firm Launches Real Estate Website

    Ryan McKeen
    12 Jan 2015 | 4:32 am
    Real estate is one of the areas our firm is growing in. Allison McKeen will focus part of her practice on residential real estate while I continue to grow my civil litigation and personal injury practice. To reflect this renewed focus, we’ve launched It is a site dedicated to our real estate practice. We will blog about Connecticut real estate issues. All websites are works in progress, and this one was created and launched over the weekend. Check it out. Need a Connecticut Real Estate Attorney? Contact Allison McKeen below. We will respond to your inquiry.
  • Allison McKeen Joins McKeen Law Firm, LLC

    Ryan McKeen
    4 Jan 2015 | 6:56 pm
    “What should I name my firm?” That’s one of the first questions any new solo attorneys asks himself. In the summer of 2013, I toyed with a number of names including “The Law Office of Ryan McKeen”. Ultimately, I decided against it because I didn’t want to have to redo the letterhead in the event it made sense for my wife, Allison McKeen to join the firm. I decided to leave a door open. McKeen Law Firm, LLC was born. Over the past 16 months, the firm has grown to the point where it was becoming increasingly difficult to manage both the caseload and…
  • Connecticut Personal Injury Lawyer Ryan McKeen Named 40 Under 40 By National Trial Lawyers

    Ryan McKeen
    1 Jan 2015 | 3:21 pm
    Attorney Ryan McKeen has been named 40 under 40 by the National Trial Lawyers for civil plaintiff’s work in Connecticut. The National Trial Lawyers Top 40 under 40 is a professional organization composed of the top trial lawyers from each state or regions of certain highly-populated states who are younger than the age of 40. Membership into The National Trial Lawyers: Top 40 under 40 is by invitation only and is extended exclusively to those trial lawyers practicing civil plaintiff and/or criminal defense law. Invitees must exemplify superior qualifications, trial results, and…
  • Happy New Year From McKeen Law Firm

    Ryan McKeen
    31 Dec 2014 | 1:48 am
    “Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.” — Albert Einstein We wish you a happy and safe New Year’s Eve. And if you’re like us and spending the night at home with young children – Netflix has a really awesome 3 minute countdown that can be started at anytime.  May your 2015 be filled with joy. And we’re growing to better serve your legal needs. You know where to find us if you have any legal issues in 2015. Make us your first call. If we can’t or don’t handle your matter – we will place you in the hands of an attorney…
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    Legally India - News for Lawyers

  • Nalsar students spooked, await results of college-wide swine flu tests after one positive diagnosis

    27 Jan 2015 | 4:03 am
    Nalsar Hyderabad students are being tested for the swine influenza virus at the city’s Gandhi Medical College and Hospital after one student at the law school tested positive for the deadly virus. Nalsar vice chancellor Faizan Mustafa told Legally India that yesterday night he ordered everyone on campus to be tested for the swine flu virus, starting with students who currently have a cold, fever or any other such condition. He said that one student, a girl in Nalsar’s first year, had not been finally diagnosed with swine flu but had tested positive in her preliminary medical reports. She…
  • AZB, Links for Temasek’s Rs 280 cr buy of Silicon Valley Bank with Amarchand & others

    27 Jan 2015 | 4:01 am
    Amarchand Mangaldas, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, Osborne Clark and Anand Gujadhur advised Silicon Valley Bank on its Rs 280 crore acquisition by Temasek Holdings, which was advised by AZB & Partners and Linklaters. Amarchand Mumbai corporate partners Ashwath Rau and Shishir Vayttaden, Wilson Sonsini partner Raj Judge, Osborne Clark partner Steve Wilson and Mauritian counsel Gujadhur acted for Silicon Valley Bank, including SVBIF Management and SVB International Finance Inc (Sellers) which entered into a share purchase agreement with Temasek Holdings for the sale of 100 per cent…
  • Luthra to promote capital markets lawyer Geeta Dhania to partnership in Delhi, more to follow

    27 Jan 2015 | 2:12 am
    Luthra & Luthra Delhi managing associate Geeta Dhania will be promoted to partnership on 1 February, confirmed authoritative sources, with other promotions to be announced shortly. Dhania will head the firm’s Delhi capital markets practice, which is headed by Luthra Mumbai capital markets partner Manan Lahoty ever since former Luthra Delhi capital markets head Madhurima Mukherjee left the firm in August 2013. Dhania graduated from NLSIU Bangalore, then joined Luthra Delhi and was made a managing associate at the firm in 2010. Luthra managing partner Rajiv Luthra declined to confirm the…
  • Amarchand to split in two firms on 1 April (but ET rumours of Bharucha-Shardul tie-up almost certainly false)

    27 Jan 2015 | 12:47 am
    Amarchand Mangaldas Delhi and Mumbai regions, managed by brothers Shardul and Cyril Shroff respectively, have agreed to split into two firms by 1 April 2015, confirmed three independent sources.
  • Harish Salve, KK Venugopal tipped for Padmas

    24 Jan 2015 | 4:50 am
    Supreme Court senior counsel Harish Salve and KK Venugopal are set to be awarded Padma awards, with Venugopal to receive a Padma Vibhushans, India’s second-highest civilian honour, reported Zee and others.
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    Associate's Mind

  • Social Media Subpoena Guide 2015 Edition

    Keith Lee
    26 Jan 2015 | 4:15 am
    I initially wrote about how to subpoena various social media sites back in 2011. Seeing as it has been a few years I thought it was time to provide an update. It’s worth noting that almost every site you attempt to subpoena will throw up the Stored Communication’s Act, (18 U.S.C. §2701) as a defense: Courtesy Cornell University Law School That is, they’ll all claim that it prevents them from “disclosing the contents of an account to any non-governmental entity pursuant to a subpoena or court order.” (EFF has a good overview of the law here). Which stands now, but…
  • Judges Propose Changes To Warrant Requirements For TOR/Encryption

    Keith Lee
    21 Jan 2015 | 9:01 am
    Last year at the Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure of the Judicial Conference of the United States, Judges proposed changes to warrant requirements in the United States, specifically as it relates to concealment of online activity. a magistrate judge with authority in any district where activities related to a crime may have occurred has authority to issue a warrant to use remote access to search electronic storage media and to seize or copy electronically stored information located within or outside that district if: (A) the district where the media or information is located has…
  • A Lawyer’s Duty – Lawyers Respond To #JeSuisCharlie

    Keith Lee
    11 Jan 2015 | 3:40 pm
    The horrific shooting in Paris took place while I was on the road. I had been invited over to Emory Law School to talk about blogging. I listened, utterly in shock at the scenario I was listening to on the news. I got to my brother-in-law’s house and read about it more online. News websites, Reddit, Twitter. The following morning I woke up and read more about it from another type of venue – law blogs. I knew that many of the legal bloggers I know would be discussing the events. I also knew that many legal bloggers would not. It’s something I discussed at my talk at Emory…
  • Imagination > Plastic

    Keith Lee
    27 Dec 2014 | 10:31 am
    So Christmas has come and passed. My five-year-old son received a boatload of presents. A huge RC monster truck. Transformers. A RC helicopter. Puzzles. Legos. A Power Wheels Mini-Cooper for him to drive around in. An iPad mini (his schools is starting on tablets when they come back from holiday break – they are actually required. In Kindergarten).  With all these toys and electronics and battery-powered do-dads, the most played with toy he received is as follows: Just a box The box that the Mini-Cooper came in. He drew controls on it as soon as he got in it. In this picture it is…
  • Class of 2013 Job Results: All Schools

    Keith Lee
    24 Dec 2014 | 12:41 pm
    I was chatting about the ABA 509 data over in r/lawschool the other day when redditor bl1nds1ght mentioned that he had compiled all the employment data for the class of 2013 from the good folks over at Law School Transparency. He said I could have at it if I wanted to, so I did. A note from his spreadsheet: ALL NUMBERS ARE IN PERCENTAGES BOLDED terms in the Gross Unemployment column indicate schools that sent 20% or fewer students to short term work, part time work, or complete unemployment from the 2013 graduating class. BOLDED terms in the Biglaw column indicate schools that sent 15% or…
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    Dangerous Drugs & Medical Devices

  • IVC Filters: 86% Exhibit Serious Side Effects

    Jared Fink
    26 Jan 2015 | 6:21 am
    In 2012, a team of researchers from the Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging at the University of California, San Francisco published an article that illustrated some serious risks associated with the use of IVC filters. Inferior vena cava filters are small metal filters inserted into the inferior vena cava vein, used in patients with deep vein thrombosis (DVT) to mechanically catch blood clots before they can reach the lungs and cause in pulmonary embolism.  Sometimes, these filters are implanted permanently, and sometimes IVC filters are implanted for a limited time, ranging from…
  • Doctors urge blood testing with Xarelto, despite Bayer’s claim it’s unnecessary

    Jared Fink
    14 Oct 2014 | 1:42 pm
    In recent years, a new anticoagulant drug called Xarelto (rivaroxaban) has been found by the FDA to increase the risk for major bleeding events over other drugs in its class.  And unlike other drugs in its class, the manufacturer does not recommend regular blood testing, a simple procedure which can lower the risk for major bleeding events by 40%.  Here, we discuss one piece of research titled “New oral anticoagulants in the treatment of acute venous thromboembolism – a systematic review with indirect comparisons.” on risks associated with Xarelto by an Austrian research team,…
  • Xarelto lawsuits cite studies indicating higher risk for bleeding than Bayer reports

    Jared Fink
    10 Oct 2014 | 2:19 pm
    Titled “The potential role of anticoagulant therapy for the secondary prevention of ischemic events post-acute coronary syndrome”, a piece by A.C. Camuglia et al. (published in Current Medical Research and Opinion – August, 2014) from Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital and the University of Queensland (Queensland , Australia) reviews the safety of an anticoagulant drug called Xarelto.  Recently, a number of studies have indicated that this blood thinner carries a higher risk for major bleeding events than others in its class. The team writes, “The use of dual antiplatelet…
  • Study shows Xarelto carries higher risk for bleeding than industry standard

    Jared Fink
    10 Oct 2014 | 1:20 pm
    Here, we discuss a study titled “Clinical characteristics and outcomes with rivaroxaban vs. warfarin in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation but underlying native mitral and aortic valve disease participating in the ROCKET AF trial.”, published in European Heart Journal this year by G. Breithardt and a team of German researchers.  This study aimed to further evaluate the safety of Xarelto (rivaroxaban), an anticoagulant drug linked to increased risk for major bleeding events. [Click here to read safety communications regarding Xarelto from the FDA] The team writes, “Among 14…
  • 2014 – More Research Shows Xarelto Linked to Major Bleeding Events

    Jared Fink
    8 Oct 2014 | 12:48 pm
    In recent years, a number of studies have shown that the anticoagulant drug Xarelto (rivaroxaban) is linked to increased risk for major bleeding events.  Here, we discuss one such study, titled, “Anticoagulant-related gastrointestinal bleeding-could this facilitate early detection of benign or malignant gastrointestinal lesions?” and published in the August, 2014 edition of Annals of Medicine by A. Clemens et al. This team states “The higher incidence of gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding with the non-vitamin K oral anticoagulants (NOACs) may be related to pre-existing malignancies;…
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  • Podcast #4: Ed Walters on Robot Lawyers and the Law of Robots

    Sam Glover
    27 Jan 2015 | 4:12 am
    This week Aaron and I cover non-lawyer ownership, non lawyers, and access to justice. Also — GOOD NEWS! — We also learn that every lawyer should be bringing in at least $200,000 because statistics. For the interview, Fastcase CEO Ed Walters and I talk about law and robots, which will not necessarily help you get your $200,000, but is a pretty interesting discussion of the law of robots and the role artificial intelligence may play in the future of law. Why Do PI Lawyers Hate Non-Lawyer Ownership? Do alternative business structures actually increase access to justice when it comes to…
  • Judge Posner: Administrative Law Judges Are Like Chicken-Factory Workers

    Lisa Needham
    26 Jan 2015 | 8:31 am
    The Association of Administrative Law Judges brought a suit contending that their caseload — which is now around 500-700 cases a year — was so high that it was infringing on their right to decisional independence. ALJs are Article I judges, not fancy Article III judges like Judge Richard Posner and the rest of the Seventh Circuit. When the suit made its way in front of the ever irascible Posner, he was what can charitably be described as less than sympathetic. Posner compared the judge’s claim to that of a poultry worker on an assembly line who is asked to debone more…
  • Teams Are Smarter When They Have More Women

    Lisa Needham
    26 Jan 2015 | 8:10 am
    The New York Times set out to find out what makes for a smarter, more well-functioning team. They worked with M.I.T. to group nearly 700 volunteers into teams that had to work together to complete short tasks involving things like brainstorming, logical analysis, and planning. Who works smartest? Surprisingly, the study found that smarter people do not make for smarter teams. Teams with high-IQ averages didn’t perform any better than lower-IQ average teams did. Nor did teams with extroverts. Instead, the study found three things made for smarter teams: First, their members contributed…
  • 25 Percent Of Your Colleagues Will Quit Being Lawyers By 2022

    Lisa Needham
    26 Jan 2015 | 7:48 am
    Law School Tuition Bubble crunched some Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data and figured out that lawyers are leaving the profession at an overall average of 25.5%. That’s not attorneys who are retiring. The retirement rate is a relatively non-terrifying 17.1%. But for “occupational transfers,” which is BLS-speak for “bailing out of being lawyers,” we’re seeing one of every four lawyers leave. And if you’re wondering how that compares to other professions … But the real money is in comparisons among the professional occupations, which are…
  • How to Subpoena Information from Facebook and Other Social Networks

    Sam Glover
    26 Jan 2015 | 7:04 am
    So is social media information accessible via civil subpoena? Who knows. Courts are all over the place with it. That said, Keith Lee reviews the relevant law and links to subpoena information for all the popular social networks in his “Social Media Subpoena Guide, 2015 Edition.” It’s a valuable update to my 2009 posts about how to subpoena Facebook and MySpace, which are probably completely out of date now (not least because MySpace is a completely different service than it was in 2009).
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    New York Personal Injury Law Blog

  • The Day Gossip Died (Updated)

    Eric Turkewitz
    26 Jan 2015 | 3:59 am
    Many strange things have happened to me as a result of this blog. I’ve been on the side of a bus, punked the New York Times in an April Fool’s gag, and found myself on the editorial page of the Wall Street Journal. But my name in boldface on the legendary Page Six of the New York Post? Me?! Get outta here! Page Six is where Paris Hilton was born. It’s where Kardashians and Lohans live. Where celebrities of all types go to die, both metaphorically and literally. It may be the nation’s top tabloid gossip column. Or so I am told. According to this Manhattan Media profile:…
  • Roca Labs, Snake Oil and Randazza

    Eric Turkewitz
    13 Jan 2015 | 3:00 am
    I’m on a roll lately writing about idiotic defamation cases, so I might as well do one more. I’ve ignored this one until now. And no, this isn’t about me. It’s about irreverent First Amendment badass Marc Randazza being sued by Roca Labs. Who/what is Roca Labs? It makes a weight loss product. And you what that means? It means that some folks will call it bunkum, tommyrot and malarkey, say it’s snake oil, and challenge its effectiveness. The owners will undoubtably be called frauds, con men, quacks, hustlers and charlatans, and some may even call them bad names.
  • Je Suis Charlie

    Eric Turkewitz
    8 Jan 2015 | 4:12 am
    Translation: Mohammed overwhelmed by fundamentalistsBubble: It’s hard to be loved by idiots Two of the cartoons on this page are caricatures of the prophet Mohammed. Before yesterday, I couldn’t imagine circumstances where I would publish them, both because this blog doesn’t deal with religious issues and because such caricatures are offensive to Muslims. I just don’t run around looking to insult the religious beliefs of others. To each their own, so long as it doesn’t impact others. But I also write and publish and enjoy the magnificent freedom of speech.
  • On Suing and Being Sued

    Eric Turkewitz
    6 Jan 2015 | 3:00 am
    A new graphic, for lawyers that bring idiotic defamation cases: The dunce cap. So I bring lawsuits for a living. And I’ve repeatedly railed against the tort “reformers” that seek to limit suits. But now I’ve been sued twice in idiotic defamation suits for my writings on this blog,  both of which were thrown out in the pleadings stage. The first was Rakofsky v. Internet and the second was by Dr. Michael J. Katz. It’s reasonable to ask (as Daniel Fisher did yesterday in Forbes) since I’ve now been on the other side of the “v” twice: Have my…
  • Things Get Worse for Dr. Michael Katz…(Updated x2)

    Eric Turkewitz
    5 Jan 2015 | 9:56 am
    Samson Freundlich with New York Law Journal front page story: Criticism of Doctor was Protected Speech, Judge Finds So there’s the story, as the feature on the front page of Friday’s New York Law Journal: Justice Cynthia Kern‘s decision throwing out the defamation case Dr. Michael J. Katz  stupidly started against me and my co-blogger Samson Freundlich. I previously blogged about this dismissal, but now it’s front page news. (NYLJ: Criticism of Doctor Was Protected Speech, Judge Finds) And if the whole legal community didn’t already know that Justice Duane…
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    The Probate Lawyer Blog: Famous Fortune Fights!

  • The Tragic Life and Death of The Daughter of Zsa Zsa Gabor and Conrad Hilton, Francesca Hilton

    Danielle & Andy
    16 Jan 2015 | 7:19 am
    Everyone loves a good rags-to-riches tale.  But Francesca Gabor Hilton’s life followed a dramatically different path.  Born to Hollywood star Zsa Zsa Gabor, and founder of the famed Hilton hotel dynasty, Conrad Hilton, Francesca was raised living in mansions, attending celebrity parties, earning blue ribbons in horse-riding competitions, and jet-setting to Rome and Paris, among other fashionable cities.  But her life was not as idyllic as it seemed.  Zsa Zsa Gabor wrote in her autobiography that Francesca was born following a pregnancy that resulted from rape by Conrad Hilton, her…
  • Joan Rivers' Estate Planning Was No Laughing Matter

    Danielle & Andy
    17 Dec 2014 | 12:40 pm
    Joan Rivers was widely respected for her sense of humor, work ethic, and willingness to say almost anything for a laugh.  When it came to planning her estate, however, the late comedienne and host of Fashion Police treated the matter very seriously.  Joan Rivers' last will and testament was signed on November 16, 2011.  A thorough and well-drafted legal document, her will named a living trust as her beneficiary. Specifically, Joan Rivers, whose full legal name was Joan R. Rosenberg, signed the Rosenberg Family Trust on the same day as the will.  The will directed that all of her estate…
  • Top 10 Celebrity Stories To Spark Holiday Estate Planning Conversations

    Danielle & Andy
    10 Dec 2014 | 9:29 am
    Sure the holidays are a fun time for families to sit around talking about what happened on the latest episode of The Walking Dead or how granddaughter Mary is doing in dance class.  But they are also a great time to have the important -- yet often difficult -- conversations about estate planning.  What happens when Mom dies?  Does anyone know where Dad kept his will?  Did they ever transfer the investment accounts into their revocable living trust like they were supposed to?   Many families don't ask these tough questions ... especially when dynamics are strained, like in many…
  • Mick Jagger Can't Get No Satisfaction; Ugly Lawsuit Settles

    Danielle & Andy
    25 Nov 2014 | 12:04 pm
    It's rough being Mick Jagger sometimes.  Even as the front man for the famed Rolling Stones, he Can't Always Get What he Wants.  But when he tries, at least sometimes, he  just might find ... that he gets what he needs.  These days, what Sir Mick (as he is known officially in England) truly needs is some peace and quiet ... and a little privacy.  Is it too much to ask to Get Off of his Cloud?  Sir Mick took a beating in the media last week when a lawsuit that he had hoped to keep quiet became very public.  That is what often happens with lawsuits involving those in the public eye,…
  • Melissa Rivers Seeks Answers As To Why Joan Rivers Died

    Danielle & Andy
    5 Nov 2014 | 9:06 am
    Even though she was 81 years old when she died on September 4th, there is no denying that Joan Rivers died too soon. She continued to entertain with an energy level that suggested she was anything but eighty-something. Melissa Rivers has now hired a law firm to find out exactly why Joan died … and who, if anyone, should be held responsible.  Representatives for Melissa Rivers told E! News and others that she retained a New York law firm to “fully determine all of the facts and circumstances surrounding the death of Joan Rivers.” Other reports state that the law firm is sending letters…
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  • Trigger Warning Episode 3: Full-Frontal Podcast

    26 Jan 2015 | 5:19 pm
    Looking for something to do on your snow day? The Trigger Warning Podcast: One Big Steaming Pile of Law Of course you are. Check out the latest Trigger Warning Podcast by Daniel and Eric. It features a full-frontal performances by both. As we continue to tweak the format, this week we go with a free-wheeling and minimally-edited format. For those of you who have been keeping up with the episodes, drop me a note and let me know what you like, don’t like, hate, and loathe. We’re constantly seeking ways to improve, amuse, and disgust. In the future, we’ll be adding a few…
  • Mailbag: Soliciting Creative Responses

    11 Jan 2015 | 6:45 pm
    Let’s reach into the mailbag: Dear Eric: I have a solo practice, and that means that I answer my own phone on most days. Something has been happening on a regular basis that really makes me angry. I’ll answer the phone, and a potential client will begin to tell me about his/her case. They usually want to tell a long story, but I always try to focus them on what I need to know in order to provide them with a good estimate of legal fees. Most of the time, after hearing my fee, they either try to milk the conversation for as much info as I will give them, or they exit the call.
  • In which Daniel Gershburg and I enter the next circle of hell.

    8 Jan 2015 | 10:55 pm
    Episode 2 of Trigger Warning is now posted. May god have mercy on our souls.
  • Adventures in Potential Clients, 6 January 2015

    6 Jan 2015 | 4:52 pm
    Picture, if you will… A conversation just occurred (in reality, it happened months (and perhaps years) ago) in which I gleaned the most important aspects of the potential case: the general issues presented, proper venue, and time/travel/expenses necessary to effect representation. Fees are explained, including fees for consultations. 15 minutes have been spent on the phone. Potential Client: But, don’t you want to know more about my case? Me: You already told me everything I need at this point. I know the gist of your case and what we generally need to do. If you’d like a…
  • Call Log: It’ll save your ass.

    5 Jan 2015 | 2:11 pm
    There are many tips for young lawyers floating around out there. Some are great. Some suck. This is one of the former. Keep a log of all calls. Make it as detailed as possible. Take time after each call to review what you wrote. It should be a notebook or other “analog” means. Digital logs can be great, but they often take time to access and set up. Availability is the key. Function is more important than form. Never throw it away. Why am I saying this? Mine just saved my ass twice today.
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    Planning Notes

  • Selling a Business: Stock Sale v. Asset Sale

    5 Jan 2015 | 1:53 pm
    When a business is sold, the actual sale often occurs via one of two forms, either as a stock sale or as an asset sale. In general, sellers often prefer stock sales while buyers often prefer asset sales. Although the considerations associated with the sale of businesses vary substantially from one transaction to another, two of the most important and common considerations are: taxation and liability. Stock Sale A stock sale is often the simplest way to sell a business, technically. In a stock sale, the owner or owners of a business simply sell their shares of stock – in cases of…
  • 2014 Tax Extender Bill Passed By Congress

    17 Dec 2014 | 8:38 am
    President Obama signed the tax extender bill, discussed below, into law on December, 19, 2014. Kelly Phillips Erb, writing for Forbes: With just over two weeks left in the 2014 calendar year, the Senate finally made up its mind about the tax extenders bill. The bill, which extends the life of a number of tax breaks through 2014, passed the Senate 76 to 16. Only 60 votes were needed for approval. The bill, however, is only effective for the year 2104 — it retroactively extends provisions that expired at the begining of this year — but does not extend the provisions for the year…
  • What Is A Business Plan?

    20 Nov 2014 | 9:56 am
    Although a proper legal structure is very important for a startup business, there are many other considerations that are very likely much more important if the business is to be successful. In particular, developing a business plan is often very important, even for those businesses that do not intend to raise outside capital. Though the term business plan is quite general and can have a myriad of different meanings, the term business plan often refers to a document that contains the following seven (7) sections, or some derivatives thereof: Executive Summary Company Description Market…
  • Business Structures: The Facts & Figures

    5 Nov 2014 | 8:11 am
    Although there a lots of very important questions that a business owner, or owners, must ask when starting a business, perhaps of one of the most important is: How should I legally structure my business? In general, there are three principal considerations when choosing a business structure: (1) liability, (2) management, and (3) taxation. Unfortunately, the laws that affect some of these considerations – in particular, liability and management – vary significantly from state to state and are not uniform across the country. As a result, the information that follows regarding…
  • 4 Ways to Protect Your Intellectual Property

    8 Oct 2014 | 11:54 am
    In the United States, there are four principal ways in which a person or business can protect intellectual property, however, not all types of protection are available for all property types. The infographic below briefly describes each of the four (4) principal types of intellectual property protection, namely patent, trademark, copyright, and trade secret, along with some of the benefits and advantages associated with each type of protection.  If you are interested in posting the infographic above to your site, please contact us via the form below. This brief post is by no means…
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    Law and Daily Life

  • Top 3 Everyday Legal Questions From FindLaw Answers: January 2015

    Laura Strachan, Esq.
    26 Jan 2015 | 11:08 am
    You've got questions... we've got answers. If you have not yet asked or answered a question in FindLaw's Answers community, what are you waiting for? This amazing free resource supports a dynamic community of legal consumers and attorneys helping each other out. Simple as that. We see a lot of great questions in our Answers community every day. Here's a look at the Top 3 recent questions from our various boards: 1. Both my parents passed away without a will. There is a family cabin (not worth very much money) that I would like to have and my sister does not want. How do I go about doing that?
  • Legal How-To: Reporting Online Bullying

    Daniel Taylor, Esq.
    23 Jan 2015 | 11:17 am
    Online bullying, also called cyberbullying, has become a widespread issue. As you may recall, a FindLaw survey in 2014 found that nearly one in 12 children had been the victim of online bullying. What can parents do about this? One Minnesota dad whose daughter was being bullied over Snapchat talked to the bullies' father, filed a police report, and then fought back by posting the bullies' (and their father's) messages on YouTube, reports Minnesota Public Radio. Publicity following the release of the video spurred the child's school to launch an investigation and also led the father of the…
  • How Do Unmarried Fathers Establish Paternity?

    Daniel Taylor, Esq.
    22 Jan 2015 | 2:17 pm
    When a child is born to a married couple, the husband is generally presumed to have paternity rights as the child's father. But what about a child born to unmarried parents? Establishing a child's maternity is generally fairly straightforward (for hopefully obvious reasons). Paternity, on the other hand, may in some circumstances require legal action. Why is paternity important, and how do unmarried fathers go about establishing it? Why Paternity Matters Establishing legal paternity gives a father a number of important legal rights in decisions involving his child. Foremost among these is the…
  • Is It Legal to Keep Pets Outdoors in the Cold?

    Daniel Taylor, Esq.
    21 Jan 2015 | 10:02 am
    As the cold weather continues through the remainder of winter and into spring, most pet owners likely don't need to be compelled to bring their animals in from the cold. But what about those who choose to leave pets outside, even in extreme cold weather? Besides being hazardous to your pet's health or even potentially fatal, depending on where you live, leaving an animal outside in cold weather could actually result in criminal penalties including fines and jail time. In other areas, however, animal owners are free to leave pets outside no matter how cold it gets. What are some examples of…
  • 10 Laws You Should Know If You're in Missouri

    Daniel Taylor, Esq.
    20 Jan 2015 | 8:12 am
    Before Missouri was admitted as the 24th state in 1821, it was part of the much larger Missouri Territory. This was the name given to the Louisiana Purchase to avoid confusion following the admission of Louisiana as a state in 1812. However, Missouri is still part of a no-less-confusing quirk of U.S. geography: Kansas City is mostly in Missouri and not, as one might expect, in Kansas. Missouri's other major metropolitan area, St. Louis, is known for its Gateway Arch, but has recently made headlines for the shooting of an unarmed teenager by a police officer in Ferguson, a St. Louis suburb.
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    Pennsylvania Physicians' Lawyer

  • What Do You Do After You Have Your Physician Employment Agreement Reviewed?

    Dennis Hursh
    12 Jan 2015 | 1:50 pm
    The Written Analysis of a Physician Employment Agreement The purpose of this post isn’t to try to convince you to have your physician employment agreement reviewed by a physicians’ lawyer.  I’m assuming that you already figured out the value of having your agreement reviewed by a competent physicians lawyer, and have gotten the comments back.  If you haven’t decided whether or not to get your physician employment agreement reviewed, then there is no sense reading this until you’ve made the correct decision. Get the Maximum Benefit from the Review of Your…
  • Productivity Compensation for New Physicians

    Dennis Hursh
    1 Dec 2014 | 3:33 pm
    Several years ago I did a post on the Physician Prosperity Blog about productivity compensation for new physicians. I think it is still timely. To check it out, click here. I hope you find it useful!
  • The Bottom Line of a Covenant Not to Compete for Physicians

    Dennis Hursh
    25 Oct 2014 | 1:00 pm
    Here’s all you really need to know about the enforceability of covenants not to compete in physician employment agreements. What Lawyers Will Tell You About Covenants Not to Compete in Physician Employment Agreements (Feel free to skip this section.  As noted below, the legality of a covenant not to compete in your physician employment agreement is all but meaningless). Most lawyers will tell you that, depending on state law, covenants not to compete in physician employment agreements are generally enforceable if they are reasonable in time and distance.  In other words, if a court…
  • “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…
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    William Carleton, Counselor @ Law

  • One Thousand Things Worth Knowing

    William Carleton
    25 Jan 2015 | 8:08 pm
    This weekend I've read Paul Muldoon's newly published collection of poems, "One Thousand Things Worth Knowing." (The dust jacket sports a very pleasing design by the ubiquitous Quemadura, a brilliant designer and a kind man I will never forget for how he helped me during a brief turn I took as a publisher.) I say I've read the book, present perfect, but I'm still reading it by way of re-reading it. Muldoon is new to me, and I don't yet find familiar his poetics or his themes. His strangeness, to me, derives from his different commitments, you might say. For…
  • ACA Webinar on Accredited Investor Definition and Established Angel Group Certification

    William Carleton
    16 Nov 2014 | 12:04 pm
    I've just listened to an archived recording of an excellent webinar presented by the Angel Capital Association last week (I had intended to listen in real time, but got pulled away): ACA Webinar on Accredited Investor Definition and Established Angel Group Certification. Presented by ACA Executive Director Marianne Hudson and ACA Chair David Verrill, the hour long webcast covers how the accredited investor definition might change (and how that might impact the startup investing ecosystem) and what the Angel Capital Association is doing to facilitate the transition to the brave new world…
  • A Sestina About Copyright

    William Carleton
    4 Nov 2014 | 9:28 am
    Last week Boing Boing published a sestina I wrote earlier this year on the subject of copyright. I'm thrilled about this and hope you will check it out: What is a sestina? It is a verse form involving a patterned repetition of the same six words. This chart, credited on Wikipedia to Phil Wink, explains the pattern. As you can imagine, the sestina as a structure requires copying; as a poetic practice, it demands of the practitioner the audacity to remix and engage in transformative use in transparent ways. Sestinas are all about…
  • Alan Bennett's anthology of six English poets

    William Carleton
    26 Oct 2014 | 10:39 am
    Thanks to a London nephew, I'm reading Six Poets: Hardy to Larkin, an anthology of poems by Hardy, Housman, Betjeman, Auden, MacNeice and Larkin, chosen by the English playwright Alan Bennett, with commentary by Bennett between each presented verse. The commentary is more about the disposition of the poets and their subject matter, rather than the art of their verse. But it's breezy and entertaining, and interesting to try to situate the six poets Bennett chooses with one another as a group. Bennett's critical method is to end-run the cultivated pretensions of each. For…
  • Weight as Volume as Displacement of Space

    William Carleton
    22 Oct 2014 | 9:11 pm
    A brilliant, young sculptor has just arrived in Seattle. Her name is Francesca Lohmann. I saw these pieces at the Vignette gallery this evening on Yale Avenue in Capitol Hill. What a talent. The small-scale "sandbags" (I'll call them that; that's not a perfect name) are plaster casts, and it's amazing how the smallest differences in scale totally change what and how they project. The surface of the card table is gelatin, specially designed and installed for this show. A one-night-only show, alas!
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    But I do have a law degree...

  • Thursdays in Baltimore

    But I Do Have a Law Degree
    22 Jan 2015 | 7:13 pm
    Every other Thursday, Casey, my four year old, and I head to Baltimore for our 1:30 appointment at Johns Hopkins.  I should be be thankful for this - so incredibly thankful- because we travel there for a peanut allergy clinical trial that very few people are able to participate in.  If all goes well, at the end of three years, Casey will be, for lack of a better word, "cured."  And that's huge. But going to Baltimore from DC so often has proved to be a pain. Every other Thursday, I pick Casey up early from school.  I take him to the McDonald's drive through and…
  • A New Thing to Obsess Over, and It's Oh So Much Fun

    But I Do Have a Law Degree
    7 Jan 2015 | 6:35 pm
    It's no wonder I was a litigator.  I LOVE to research.  It gets borderline obsessive, actually.  I will dig deeper and deeper and deeper and scour all available resources until I have reached near expert status.  Then I feel satisfied, abandon, and move on to the next thing to obsess over. I go on kicks - research for vacation planning, research on local real estate listings, etc. and now.... interior design.Yes, we have this nice new big house and nothing to put in it.  We must buy a coffee table, kitchen table, bar stools, wall hangings, knick knacks, and who knows…
  • From Sponges to Lemurs - Ringing in 2015

    But I Do Have a Law Degree
    31 Dec 2014 | 11:59 am
    We never really do anything special for New Year's, and it's been years since I've stayed up past midnight.  Last year, after the kids went to bed, my husband and I split a bottle of champagne and watched Blackfish.  I ended up tipsy and depressed thinking about the poor killer whales and vowing to never visit Sea World, or a zoo, ever again (Casey may or may not have had his birthday party at the zoo this year). It wasn't all solemn, though.  Before the kids went to bed, we had a family New Year's celebration.  I sent my husband out to get some hats and streamers,…
  • A Last Big FU From My House to Me

    But I Do Have a Law Degree
    18 Dec 2014 | 10:41 am
    Dear House,I have been kind to you.  Sure, I have bitched about you and complained about you and cursed you and your money sucking ways.  But I've cared for you and spruced you up and even wrote a long emotional blog post about you a couple weeks ago.  I think I even shed a tear for you, god dammit. I was sad to move and leave you forever. We only have eight days left together before we depart.  Can't we make them happy ones? Apparently not.  Apparently you are pissed. Because you had to give us one last fuck you, didn't you? You thought eight days before our…
  • 27 Months (Twice Over)

    But I Do Have a Law Degree
    17 Dec 2014 | 9:40 am
    It's an inside joke between my husband and I.  Every time there is a task that we don't want to do - say change a diaper or clean a dirty pan that's been sitting in the sink or be the designated driver - I sing my little jingle. 27 months!That's how long I was pregnant with our three boys.  3 x 9 (full term babies) = 27 months.  Twenty seven months of creating and living for another human being.  Of dealing with nausea and pain and blood draws and hemorrhoids and stretch marks and peeing 5 times a night.  And then somehow ejecting each of the three babies from my…
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    Profit and Laws

  • If We Rewrote Our Laws to Help Entrepreneurs Understand Them, We’d Have More Startups and More Jobs

    26 Jan 2015 | 5:24 am
    A major entrepreneurial center in the country, the Kauffman Foundation, has ranked cities and states for small business friendliness. The results are interesting, but not as interesting as the reasons why some areas scored better than others. As it turns out, there are three things that make an ideal place to start a business: 1. The […] The post If We Rewrote Our Laws to Help Entrepreneurs Understand Them, We’d Have More Startups and More Jobs appeared first on Profit and Laws.
  • Convertible Notes

    23 Jan 2015 | 10:09 am
    This one is pretty law geeky, so stay with me. When you go to raise money for your company, you have to decide what you are going to give your investors in exchange for their cash. Your choices are usually a promissory note (if you call the cash a loan) or equity (if you call […] The post Convertible Notes appeared first on Profit and Laws.
  • Coco’s Christmas Carol Special

    25 Dec 2014 | 9:00 am
    Listen to the full episode while you read. Your browser doesn’t support the audio element. Try using Chrome, Firefox or Safari. Intro Today, I’m on a special mission. In honor of the beginning of December and the holiday season I’m talking about Christmas carols today their history their tradition and why they mirror yours and […] The post Coco’s Christmas Carol Special appeared first on Profit and Laws.
  • If this is America, I Don’t Want to Live Here. Thank God it’s Not.

    23 Dec 2014 | 8:29 am
    When I saw this political cartoon it knocked the wind out of me. In this cartoon, put out by the conservative political cartoonist, David Eden, a beefy, angry caucasian Uncle Sam has a slight, fearful Barack Obama by the tie. Uncle Sam screams at President Obama, “Stop Trying To Change Me!!” And, there it is. The conservative […] The post If this is America, I Don’t Want to Live Here. Thank God it’s Not. appeared first on Profit and Laws.
  • Don’t Fetishize the First Amendment – Violent Threats Ought to be Illegal

    2 Dec 2014 | 4:00 pm
    An ex-husband started posting nasty remarks about his wife and his co-workers on Facebook. One of them said, “There’s one way to love ya but a thousand ways to kill ya. I’m not gonna rest until your body is a mess, soaked in blood and dying from all the little cuts.’’ The ex-husband was tried […] The post Don’t Fetishize the First Amendment – Violent Threats Ought to be Illegal appeared first on Profit and Laws.
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    Virginia Workplace Law

  • Updated OSHA Reporting and Recordkeeping Rule: What Employers Need to Know

    Nicole Cheuk
    26 Jan 2015 | 1:16 pm
    As of January 1, 2015, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (“OSHA”) updated recordkeeping and reporting rule went into effect. The recordkeeping rule changed in two key ways: (1) the rule updated the industries that are exempt (and not exempt) from the requirement to keep injury and illness records; and (2) the rule expanded the list of severe work-related injuries and illnesses that all covered employers must report to OSHA. Industries now exempt from the requirement to keep injury and illness records include gas stations, clothing stores, newspaper…
  • White Collars Tighten: Forecasting Changes to Overtime Qualification Rules

    Mike DeCamps
    1 Dec 2014 | 10:19 am
    On March 13, 2014, President Obama signed a Presidential Memorandum directing the Department of Labor to update the regulations defining which white collar workers are eligible to receive pay for hours worked over 40 hours in a work week.  The proposed rule was originally forecast to be issued in November of 2014, but it is now clear that the earliest this rule is likely to be issued is the First Quarter of 2015.  Once issued, there will be an opportunity for comments to be submitted.  However, based on previous experience, there are not likely to be many changes between the proposed rule…
  • Virginia Dept. of Health offers Ebola advice for employers

    Phyllis Katz
    20 Oct 2014 | 6:45 am
     Many employers, particularly health care facilities, are concerned about the spread of Ebola through workplace contact(s).  There has been very little guidance until today.  The following link will connect you to the advice that the Virginia Department of Health has just released.  Before implementing any policy where an individual is excluded from employment (either as an applicant or continuing employment) based the responses to questions similar to those proposed by the VDH, an employer should contact an employment attorney. VDH Guidance on Ebola for Health Care Providers Sands…
  • Pregnancy Guidance Seems to Require Light Duty For All

    Karen Elliott
    16 Jul 2014 | 6:56 am
    The EEOC’s pregnancy discrimination guidance issued July 14 affects more than just the rights of pregnant women in the workplace. Although nominally titled as an enforcement guidance regarding “pregnancy discrimination,”  the guidance potentially reaches beyond pregnant employees to employees with a disability regardless of cause. The EEOC’s guidance holds that impairments related to pregnancy may qualify for accommodation as a disability under the ADA, and if light duty is offered to injured workers, it must also be offered to qualifying pregnant workers as a…
  • Virginia Significantly Raises Worker Misclassification Fines

    Phyllis Katz
    14 Jul 2014 | 9:36 am
    Worker misclassification remains a number one target area for both state and federal review.  On July 1, 2014, the  Virginia Workers Compensation Act (the “VWCA”) significantly increased the civil penalties that the state can impose on a Virginia business owner who has failed to insure a worker who should have been insured.    The civil penalty is now up to $250 per day for each day of noncompliance, subject to a maximum penalty of $50,000, plus collection costs.”  The VWCA requires every business owner with more than two employees (a part-time worker is counted…
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    North Carolina Law Life

  • Deciphering the Franchise Disclosure Document Part 2

    Donna Ray Berkelhammer
    23 Jan 2015 | 7:55 am
    If you are going to buy a franchise, federal law requires the franchisor to make certain information available to help you evaluate what you are getting into.  This information is provided in a “franchise disclosure document” or FDD. These documents are supposed to be consumer protection documents, but they are drafted by the franchisor’s attorneys.  Often hundreds of pages long, they can be both intimidating and clear as mud.  As with any legal document, the business owner should be able to read and understand the business terms, and call in the experts to evaluate the…
  • Deciphering the Franchise Disclosure Document Part 1

    Donna Ray Berkelhammer
    9 Jan 2015 | 9:36 am
    If you are going to buy a franchise, federal law requires the franchisor to make certain information available to help you evaluate what you are getting into.  This information is provided in a “franchise disclosure document” or FDD. These documents are supposed to be consumer protection documents, but they are drafted by the franchisor’s attorneys.  Often hundreds of pages long, they can be both intimidating and clear as mud.  As with any legal document, the business owner should be able to read and understand the business terms, and call in the experts to evaluate the…
  • Mingling Employee Smartphone and Company Work Product Can be Dangerous

    Donna Ray Berkelhammer
    17 Dec 2014 | 1:27 pm
    Many people will receive new smartphones as presents this month.  Think carefully as an employer before allowing your employees to mingle work and pleasure on the same phone. Many employees may see added convenience in receiving their work emails on their personal phone and accessing company networks from virtually anywhere.  But “BYOD” (Bring Your Own Device) can be risky as well. Company confidential information may be exchanged or downloaded on an insecure phone.  The device may be lost or stolen without adequate security to protect company information.  Employees may also…
  • How to Keep Your Company Out of the Witness Protection Program

    Donna Ray Berkelhammer
    8 Dec 2014 | 9:58 am
    Is your company in the witness protection program – using a name in the marketplace that is different than your company name (commonly known as an assumed name, fictitious name, doing business as, trading as or d/b/a”)? Some companies file a really boring name with the North Carolina Secretary of State, but use a really exciting name to answer the phone and market.  This may happen with a franchise, where your name at the Secretary of State is GZ #634, LLC, but your marketing is all done under the name and slogan “Glazzle – providing Glamour and Marketing Razzle Dazzle for…
  • Look The Gift Horse In The Mouth (Or If It Seems Too Good To Be True, It Probably Is).

    Donna Ray Berkelhammer
    2 Dec 2014 | 11:18 am
    Today is Giving Tuesday, and if your inbox is anything like mine, it is full of donation requests. I encourage you to support the causes that are near and dear to you. But there also may be others asking for your money — in the role of “investor” rather than “donor”. You may be approached, even by a broker you know, to take advantage of an unregistered security offering (these would be exempted under Rule 504, 505 or 506 of the federal Securities Act and state counterparts). Some of these investments can be offered only to accredited investors who have earned at…
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    Virginia Local Government Law

  • An ICE Detainer is Merely a Request—Not a Requirement

    Michelle L. Warden
    21 Jan 2015 | 8:12 am
    Written by Jim Cornwell and Michelle Warden Law enforcement officers and agencies are often faced with deciding whether they are required to detain an otherwise releasable prisoner when there is a detainer on the prisoner from the federal Department of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) on file. The Commonwealth of Virginia’s Office of the Attorney General rendered an Advisory Opinion on January 5, 2015 providing guidance on this very issue. The Attorney General confirmed the decisions of several courts and the wording of the regulation creating the detainer, 8…
  • T-Mobile South, LLC v. City of Roswell – Contemporaneous Reasons Needed for Denying Cell Towers

    Andrew McRoberts
    15 Jan 2015 | 1:11 pm
    By Andrew R. McRoberts and Cullen D. Seltzer On January 14, 2014, the United States Supreme Court issued its opinion in T-Mobile South, LLC v. City of Roswell. At issue was the breadth of the requirement in 47 U.S.C. § 332(c)(7)(B)(iii) of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (the “Act”), which provides that a locality’s denial of an application to build a cell phone tower “shall be in writing and supported by substantial evidence contained in a written record.” A 6-3 Supreme Court, Justice Sotomayor writing for the majority, said that the statutory language requires…
  • Virginia Supreme Court Opinions Affecting Local Government Law – January 8, 2015

    Andrew McRoberts
    9 Jan 2015 | 8:46 am
    Happy New Year!  The Virginia Supreme Court issued opinions yesterday, its first term for 2015.  This term resulted in cases which, in various ways, deal with the authority of government entities (Workers Compensation Commission to address issues other than compensation, Virginia Department of Health to regulate smoking at a hookah bar, State Tax Commissioner to interpret a tax deduction statute, City to collect special taxes for a Community Development Authority) which, in our opinion affect Virginia local government law.  As always, congratulations to the winners! This firm was pleased…
  • Times-Dispatch Editorial Shines Light on Andrew McRoberts Representation

    Andrew McRoberts
    7 Jan 2015 | 11:40 am
    Times-Dispatch Editorial shines light on Andrew McRoberts Representation Published on: 8/31/2014 The Sunday, August 31, 2014 issue of the Richmond Times-Dispatch included the editorial “No” covering the zoning application that Richmond City Council is considering for The James at River’s Bend condominium development near Libby Hill Park.  Andrew McRoberts is referenced throughout the editorial as providing the legal reasons the City Council does not have the power to issue a special-use permit (SUP), which McRoberts notes is “strictly limited” in the City…
  • Andrew McRoberts Argues Minimizing Historic Impacts of Powerlines and Zoning Preemption on Appeal to Virginia Supreme Court

    Andrew McRoberts
    7 Jan 2015 | 10:48 am
    On Tuesday, January 6, 2015, the appeal of the State Corporation Commission’s grant of a certificate of public convenience and necessity for two powerlines and a switching station was heard by the Virginia Supreme Court. Significant issues included to what extent minimization of impacts on historic sites is mandated to the SCC in a certificate case under Virginia Code section 56-46.1, and whether local government zoning was preempted on a 51-acre switching station site by the SCC’s grant of the certificate. Andrew R. McRoberts, shareholder with Sands Anderson PC, argued the case…
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    Law Firm Newswire » Legal News

  • White House Heralds Resumption of Cuban Ties, Hopes for Warmer Relationship

    LFN Editor 102KS31
    27 Jan 2015 | 3:00 am
    Houston, TX (Law Firm Newswire) January 27, 2015 – On December 17, President Obama announced that the United States would restore diplomatic relations with Cuba and will open an American embassy in Havana for the first time in more than 50 years. The surprising change in U.S. foreign policy portends an open dialogue between the erstwhile Cold War enemies, but it is less clear how the resumption of relations will impact Cuban immigration policy. The president has also signaled that he wants to lift the 54-year-old U.S. trade embargo on Cuba. But a shift in trade policy would require…
  • Michigan’s Veterans Court Programs Offer Support for Struggling Veterans

    LFN Editor 102KS31
    27 Jan 2015 | 3:00 am
    Legal Help for Veterans is a law firm helping veterans get the benefits they deserve. Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) January 27, 2015 – Many veterans develop drug and alcohol addiction related to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after returning home, and they may end up facing criminal charges as a result of these issues. Michigan currently has 20 veterans treatment courts designed to provide alternative consequences and treatments specific to the veteran population. According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, about 20 percent of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans suffer from…
  • Texas Man Sues Hagemeyer North America for Age Discrimination in Employment

    LFN Editor 102KS31
    27 Jan 2015 | 3:00 am
    Austin Oil and Gas Attorney, Gregory D. Jordan Austin, TX (Law Firm Newswire) January 27, 2015 – A Texas man has filed a lawsuit against his former employer, claiming that he was fired because of his age. Odell Hyden filed suit against Hagemeyer North America Inc., in the Houston Division of the Southern District Court of Texas. “Age discrimination in employment is prohibited by both federal and Texas state law,” said Gregory D. Jordan, an Austin employment attorney with the Law Offices of Gregory D. Jordan, “but its proof often requires circumstantial evidence. Employers…
  • To Protect A Child’s Future, New Parents Should Prioritize Creation of Estate Plan

    LFN Editor 102KS31
    26 Jan 2015 | 3:00 am
    Hook Law Center (formerly Oast & Hook) Virginia Beach, VA (Law Firm Newswire) January 26, 2015 – ]With a baby on the way, new parents should prioritize making a basic estate plan. An estate plan is one of the most important building blocks for a growing family. “In the midst of all the other changes associated with becoming a new parent, an estate plan is essential to protect your children in case anything should happen to you,” said Andrew H. Hook, a Virginia estate planning attorney with Hook Law Center, which has offices in Virginia Beach and northern Suffolk. An estate plan can…
  • Same-Sex Divorce Before Mississippi Supreme Court May Set Precedent Across U.S.

    LFN Editor 102KS31
    26 Jan 2015 | 3:00 am
    Orange County, CA (Law Firm Newswire) January 26, 2015 – The state of Mississippi does not recognize same-sex marriages. A divorce case before that state’s Supreme Court may change the national marital landscape. In 2013, a Mississippi County Chancery Judge ruled the state’s constitution and statutes forbade him from granting a divorce to a same-sex couple. The women were married in California in 2008, and could have obtained a divorce in that state. However, they moved to Mississippi to buy a home and ended up going their separate ways in 2010. The foundation of the argument before…
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    My Distribution Law

  • Can the State Seek Restitution After a Class Action Settlement?

    Howard Ullman
    9 Jan 2015 | 12:34 pm
    In The People of the State of California v. IntelliGender, LLC, 771 F.3d 1169 (9th Cir. Nov. 7, 2014) (Wardlaw, J.), the Ninth Circuit said the answer is “no.”  A federal court had approved a class action settlement involving false advertising and unfair competition claims that, among other things, awarded $10 per approved claim.  Subsequently, the California Attorney General’s Office San Diego City Attorney(*) brought its own Section 17200 suit challenging the same practices and seeking civil penalties and injunctive relief as well as restitution under its parens patriae…
  • Motorola’s FTAIA Quest Ends With a Whimper in the Seventh Circuit

    Howard Ullman
    4 Dec 2014 | 10:13 am
    Deutsch: Motorola M3888 ca. 2000 (Photo credit: Wikipedia) On November 26, 2014, the Seventh Circuit (Posner, J.) issued its order upon rehearing of Motorola Mobility LLC v. AU Optronics Corp. (Case No. 14-8003). Motorola still effectively lost the appeal, but the Court’s more circumspect reasoning means that the decision doesn’t have nearly the same significance as Judge Posner’s initial decision.   In a nutshell, Motorola’s foreign subsidiaries bought LCD panels overseas, which were allegedly subject to a price-fixing cartel. The subsidiaries assembled mobile phones and sold…
  • Three Billy Goats Gruff

    Howard Ullman
    19 Nov 2014 | 9:40 am
    (You know . . .  the fairy tale about trolls.) This summer, PwC published its 2014 Patent Litigation Study.  The tagline of the study is “[a]s case volume leaps, damages continue general decline.” Some of they key findings — which are quite fascinating — are: Median damages awards continue to trend down—to $4.3 million in recent years. Damages awards for NPEs averaged more than triple those for practicing entities over the last four years. The median jury award amounted to nearly 37.5 times the median bench award between 2010 and 2013. NPEs have been successful 25%…
  • Is the NCAA a Cartel?

    Howard Ullman
    5 Nov 2014 | 4:24 pm
    The usually good Planet Money program has an excellent recent podcast setting forth the arguments for and against the NCAA [National Collegiate Athletic Association] being an unlawful cartel.
  • Could Amazon Possibly Be a Monopolist? (Updated) (Again)

    Howard Ullman
    13 Oct 2014 | 11:51 am
    (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Franklin Foer, at the New Republic, argues that the answer is yes.  The alleged “crime”: predatory pricing — if not express, than at least in spirit. In “There’s one huge problem with calls for anti-trust action against Amazon” at, Matthew Yglesias rightly points out that market share does not by itself a monopoly make, and further argues that One important hint about Amazon’s non-monopoly status can be found in its quarterly financial reports. That’s where you find out about a company’s profits. In…
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    Kangaroo Court of Australia

  • Premier Campbell Newman returns QLD to the corrupt Joh Bjelke-Petersen days

    Shane Dowling
    24 Jan 2015 | 5:18 pm
    The Queensland state election is a week away and the polls say that the current LNP (Liberal National Party) government will win the election but Premier Newman could lose his own seat. If Newman does lose his seat it would probably be a first for any state in Australia but a good day for democracy. It will send a […]
  • Commonwealth Bank now using legal threats and the courts to intimidate whistleblowers

    Shane Dowling
    19 Jan 2015 | 2:56 pm
    Commonwealth Bank CEO Ian Narev is now using legal threats and the courts in an attempt to shut-up whistleblowers regarding the massive fraud and theft at the bank. Minister for Foreign Affairs Julie Bishop’s younger brother Douglas Bishop is the lawyer representing Commonwealth Bank executive Brendan French in defamation proceedings against whistleblower Michael Fraser. This raises many […]
  • KCA 2014 yearly review – Christmas and New Year post

    Shane Dowling
    20 Dec 2014 | 4:27 am
    I would like to thank everyone who has supported Kangaroo Court of Australia (KCA) this year which has helped it grow. Email followers have grown by about 12% although page views have gone down. The decrease in page views is not a big issue given last year was an election year so a spike then […]
  • Tony Abbott’s Sydney siege review needs to get to the truth. No time for cover-ups

    Shane Dowling
    17 Dec 2014 | 1:36 am
    Prime Minister Tony Abbott today (17/12/14) announced that the Secretary of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet and the NSW counterpart would conduct a review of the “Martin Place Siege”. The media statement in full is below: Martin Place siege – Joint Commonwealth – New South Wales review 17 December 2014 Prime Minister Premier […]
  • Premier Mike Baird & Chief Justice Bathurst fail to act on paedophile supporter Judge Garry Neilson

    Shane Dowling
    13 Dec 2014 | 4:56 am
    Premier Mike Baird and NSW Supreme Court Chief Justice Bathurst have failed for over five months to take any real action against paedophile supporting Judge Garry Nielson. Yet in a matter of weeks action was taken against confessed paedophile, former Bega Cheese CEO Maurice van Ryn, who had been allowed free on bail pending his sentencing. The obvious question is […]
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    Attorney at Work

  • Addressing Pricing Questions

    Sally J. Schmidt
    27 Jan 2015 | 2:30 am
    Despite all the talk about alternative fees, many lawyers still bill on an hourly basis for some, if not most, of their work. Even those who use project pricing, flat fees or fixed fees still find the need to increase those rates from time to time. Many lawyers are uncomfortable discussing money with clients or prospects, as I’ve discussed before. Yet without a discussion about fees, it is unlikely you will get the business. Even if you do, absent the discussion of costs, it will be very easy to disappoint a client. Today many clients feel empowered and are asking for discounts,…
  • Keeping Better Notes

    Megan Zavieh
    26 Jan 2015 | 2:31 am
    Yellow legal pads, containing what at least to a casual observer might seem unintelligible scribbles, abound in most lawyers’ offices. Of course, good legal business practice dictates that we take copious and clear notes to identify work we have done or still need to do, who we have spoken with, when and about what. But it is also critical to maintaining compliance with ethics rules. Managing client disputes. If a client ever comes back to you with a question about advice you have given, your notes should reflect when you spoke to them, what you talked about, and what you told them. Do…
  • Things Lawyers Say They Love About the Cloud

    Jack Newton
    23 Jan 2015 | 2:00 am
    In nearly seven years of building and leading a company that provides practice management solutions for the legal profession, you hear a lot about the pains and joys of being a lawyer. I’ve engaged with hundreds (if not thousands) of lawyers and legal professionals in that time and all of them have their stories to share. Among those who have experienced the benefits of cloud computing, one thing is evident: They love what the cloud has to offer. Here are five things that stand out. 1. Portable practice. The cloud, lawyers say, has given them incredible flexibility. They’re no longer…
  • 10 Tips: Why I Love Publishing to SlideShare

    Jayne Navarre
    22 Jan 2015 | 2:00 am
    What’s not to like about a large, highly targeted B2B market with low competition? Not much. That’s why SlideShare has become the Internet’s largest platform for sharing presentations. With 60 million unique visitors every month, it receives five times more traffic from business owners than any other platform of its kind. What’s more, built-in sharing tools let you easily post to your social media accounts. But tapping into the SlideShare audience requires more than simply posting your live presentation deck. It is a publishing platform, not a posting repository. To be effective,…
  • Target Practice: Writing for Marketing

    Jared Correia
    21 Jan 2015 | 2:30 am
    Ask any parent of a small child, and they’ll tell you: Caillou is a whiny little puke. On the scale of fears for parents, seeing that a “Caillou” episode is coming on the television, and knowing that you won’t have the dexterity to swiftly change the channel, lies somewhere between being eaten by a hippopotamus and feeling the Earth approach the Sun. If you’re not familiar with Caillou, imagine your worst nightmare then imagine something much, much worse. But, the thing is, little kids love Caillou. I cannot overstate this. It’s because he represents a megaphone for the…
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    Justia Law, Technology & Legal Marketing Blog

  • These Are Not the Lawsuits that You’re Looking For: Justia Weekly Writers’ Picks – January 16, 2015

    Cicely Wilson
    16 Jan 2015 | 3:57 pm
    Alfred v. Walt Disney Co., Delaware Court of Chancery (1/14/15) Civil ProcedureThis complaint concerned the T-65 X-wing fighter plane, a fictional vehicle created in connection with the movie Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope. Walt Disney Company owned the trademark for the fictional vehicle. Plaintiff developed a marketing plan pursuant to which Disney would license to a non-party the right to use the X-wing name and appearance, the non-party would develop the vehicle in the appearance of an X-wing (the “Flying Car”), and Plaintiff would raise the funds for development of the Flying Car.
  • Justia Weekly Writers’ Picks – October 17, 2014

    Cicely Wilson
    17 Oct 2014 | 4:31 pm
    In re Adoption of K.P.M.A., Oklahoma Supreme Court (10/14/14) Constitutional Law, Family LawThe issue this case presented for the Supreme Court’s review centered on the termination Respondent-appellant Billy McCall’s (Father) parental rights to K.P.M.A. (Child). Child was born out-of-wedlock to T.Z. (Mother) in 2012. Prospective adoptive parents, petitioners-appellees Marshall and Toni Michelle Andrews had had physical custody of the child since she was released from the hospital after birth. On appeal of his termination, father argued: (1) whether his due process rights were…
  • Oh Say Can You Pro Se? Justia Weekly Writers’ Picks – October 3, 2014

    Cicely Wilson
    3 Oct 2014 | 12:20 pm
    Zavodnik v. Harper, Indiana Supreme Court (9/30/14) Civil ProcedurePlaintiff was an abusive litigant. In this case, Plaintiff filed a complaint against Defendant, which the trial court dismissed for failure to prosecute or comply with applicable rules under Ind. Trial Rule 41(E). The court of appeals dismissed Plaintiff’s appeal with prejudice for Plaintiff’s failure to file a timely brief and appendix. The Supreme Court denied Plaintiff’s petition to transfer jurisdiction and refrained from imposing sanctions or restrictions. This per curiam opinion also gave guidance to the state’s…
  • 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…
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    BullsEye Blog

  • 40 Essential Apps for Trial Lawyers, Part One

    23 Jan 2015 | 2:57 pm
    In courtrooms and depositions across the country, the iPad is replacing the legal pad as an essential accoutrement of trial lawyers. Since we reported the most popular apps for trial in 2011, the number and variety of litigation-related apps has continued to grow, expanding into categories like e-discovery. Our original list included 8 apps. While surveying for 2015, our list grew to 40.   Continue reading to view part one of our survey of 40 Essential Apps for Trial Lawyers.
  • Hospital Antitrust Skirmish Over Economist

    16 Jan 2015 | 8:35 pm
    Antitrust law is designed to help the Davids of the world maintain a level playing field with the Goliaths. This assertion was tested in a recent case between two primary care medical groups, in which the plaintiff sought to block the acquisition of another medical group by the defendant under the argument that the acquisition would allow the defendant to secure a dominant market share of the adult primary care market in Nampa, Idaho. Read more to learn if the court preserved this level-playing-field objective.
  • Expert Witness Soap Opera Plays Out in Federal Court as Daubert Motions Fail

    31 Dec 2014 | 7:55 pm
    As a battle brews between two Spanish-language television networks over copyright claims of their respective soap operas, Miami Federal Court Judge Jonathan Goodman has found himself having to evaluate telenovela experts and act as a Daubert gatekeeper.
  • Tax Court Okays Use of Predictive Coding to Review Documents

    25 Nov 2014 | 7:10 pm
    To address the concern of the expense of electronic discovery, technologies have been developed to search through large pools of electronically stored documents for material responsive to e-discovery requests efficiently. One such technology is “predictive coding”. Read more to learn about the case of Dynamo Holding, Ltd. v. Commissioner, in which the U.S. Tax Court approved the use of this technology.
  • Court-appointed Experts: The Future of Litigation?

    23 Nov 2014 | 10:17 pm
    In a complex case dealing with the Silk Road drug-dispensing website, Judge J. Paul Oetken must be able to determine whether complicated physical evidence that the FBI searched for and seized from a secure computer is admissible to the case. When it comes to these types of highly specialized technological decisions, will courts now need to hire experts to explain and inform judges, or should judges be able to make these decisions on their own?
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    Hunt & Associates, PC

  • ABLE Accounts: A New Savings Account for People with Disabilities

    Charles Ford
    15 Jan 2015 | 10:02 am
    On December 19, 2014, President Obama signed into law the “Achieving a Better Life Experience Act of 2014”, also known as the “ABLE Act of 2014”. This new law will allow states to establish an ABLE program, under which eligible people with disabilities can set up an ABLE account. These accounts will be modeled after Section 529 (college savings) accounts. Who can have an ABLE account? Eligibility will be limited to people who became severely disabled before turning 26 years of age. An older disabled person can have such an account, provided the person’s disability arose prior to age…
  • The Threat of a State Capital Gains Tax in Washington

    Lawrence Hunt
    31 Dec 2014 | 11:52 am
    As everyone knows, Washington has no state personal income tax while Oregon imposes a 9% personal income tax on all income earned in the state. Oregon makes no distinction between sources or kinds of personal income in applying its tax. The net effect of this difference can be dramatic. For instance, sale of a capital asset such as shares of corporate stock worth $10 million will result in a $900 thousand Oregon income tax obligation but will result in no Washington state income tax. There is thus a great incentive for Oregon residents to change their residence to Washington for tax purposes…
  • Are You Required to Pay Overtime to People Who Work in Your Home?

    Charles Ford
    15 Dec 2014 | 10:18 am
    Both federal and Oregon wage and hour law require employers to pay covered employees one and one-half times their regular wage for all hours worked in excess of 40 in a workweek. As the funny commercials featuring that gecko would say, “everybody knows that.” What many people may not know, however, is that the overtime requirements also apply to employees who work in your home. Back in 1974, the federal Fair Labor Standards Act, first enacted during the depression, was amended so as to make its overtime requirements specifically applicable to “an employee in domestic service” who…
  • Super Sealed Proceedings – You Won’t Even Know Why the Government Took Your Property; If You Ask, You’ll Be Indicted

    Lawrence Hunt
    1 Dec 2014 | 3:42 pm
    Many years ago many of us were taught that before the government could take your property or liberty, constitutional due process required, at a minimum, that it first give you notice and an opportunity to be heard. Apparently now federal prosecutors have found a civil forfeiture process which is subject to a “super seal”. That is, even the individuals targeted don’t know the government’s trying to take their property. As Bradley Balko of the Washington Post notes here, a federal magistrate in Nevada recently ruled that the government shouldn’t take property from people without…
  • Child Custody Disputes between Parents and Third Parties

    Charles Ford
    17 Nov 2014 | 10:51 am
    Family law cases involving issues of child custody and/or parenting time are emotionally challenging for all concerned. The typical dispute involves a child’s two parents, each trying to convince the trial judge that she or he is more suited to be the primary custodial parent, or is deserving of more parenting time with the child than the other parent will agree to, or some variant of one or the other. Family law judges in Oregon, when deciding these emotional tug-of-wars, are required by statute to give primary consideration to “the best interests and welfare of the child.” The…
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    Recent Blog Posts

  • Is Your Car at Risk of Hacking?

    12 Jan 2015 | 12:19 pm
    If you've driven a new car recently, you've probably noticed that it came with a dizzying array of technological advances. Spoken commands, GPS, Bluetooth music and video, and much more can be found in almost every new vehicle. Not only that, but downloadable apps for commerce, traffic, and weather conditions are coming into play as well. And these are just extra features: everything from the brakes to the engine can have some kind of digital integration. Some cars can even drive and park themselves! Ultimately, we can hope that these advancements in car technology can lead to safer…
  • Cars Now Being Sold Without Spare Tires

    22 Dec 2014 | 2:37 pm
    You're driving down the road when suddenly, you feel that one of your tires has gone flat. While at first panicked, you breathe a sigh of relief, knowing that your car came with a spare tire. Unfortunately for some car buyers, this situation might play out a little differently. Recent reports have announced that many, if not all, car companies are choosing to forego the spare tire in place of an inflator kit. Out with the old and with the new, all in an effort to increase fuel efficiency and the mileage your car is getting out of each tank of gas. It certainly sounds effective.
  • Consumer Reports Reveals Problems with Common Cars

    5 Nov 2014 | 12:32 pm
    Consumer Reports, a company that seeks to inform consumers to make the best possible decision when buying goods, has recently released a review of the 2014 automobiles. The big three companies based out of Detroit - General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler - have scored in the bottom for small-car production. Detroit Automakers Fail to Make Safe Vehicles for Drivers Consumer Reports released its Annual Auto Reliability Survey, and the big Detroit car companies were unable to compete with other auto manufactures in developing reliable vehicles. These car companies have been honest with the public…
  • 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…
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    Rozek Law

  • Southern Paraplegic Scam Artists Now Targeting Wisconsin Personal Injury Attorneys

    Randy Rozek
    14 Jan 2015 | 1:11 pm
    Visit us at In the latest iteration of this popular scam, a southern gentleman has been contacting personal injury law firms regarding his most unfortunate situation. You see poor Calvin Thomas (Telephone: 225-276-5233) was working in the loading dock area at Lowe’s in Madison, Wisconsin, when a FedEx Ground delivery driver backed up to the dock. Unfortunately, the FedEx driver failed to engage his brakes and exited from the truck. The truck then rolled backwards pinning poor Calvin between the back of the truck and the loading dock. The 29 year-old (sounding more like…
  • How Traumatic Brain Injuries Impact the Memory

    Randy Rozek
    12 Dec 2014 | 7:02 am
    Visit us at Memory impairment affects approximately 54 to 84 percent of individuals suffering from traumatic brain injury. While the effect of TBI on long-term memory has been known for a long time, what occurs behind the scenes has never been detailed for this population. The theory of cognitive reserve has long been used to explain comparable injuries. In other words, higher intellectual enrichment provides a protective effect on long-term memory. Study from the Kessler Foundation Researchers at the Kessler Foundation studied 50 patients who had mild to severe TBI for their…
  • Rich Environments May Help Brain Injury

    Randy Rozek
    14 Nov 2014 | 7:19 am
    Visit us at Violent blows to the head, as football players are learning, have the potential to cause to severe brain injuries. When it comes to physical brain damage, the long-term effects range from trouble communicating, extensive cognitive slowdown and behavioral deterioration. Up to this point, researchers have found no effective cognitive or medical treatment for patients who suffer from a TBI. However, a recent study from Tel Aviv University suggests that enriched environments could provide a promising path for the rehabilitation of patients who suffer from mild traumatic…
  • Marijuana Study Indicates an Increased Survival Rate for Patients

    Randy Rozek
    24 Oct 2014 | 10:48 am
    Visit us at According to research published in the American Surgeon, a scientific journal, patients who showed a history of cannabis use had a higher rate of survival than non-users. UCLA Medical students conducted a three-year review of brain injury trauma patients and discovered that 97.6 percent of those that tested positive for marijuana survived surgery. In contrast, patients who tested negative for pot possessed an 88.7 percent survival rate. Medical students examined 446 drug records for patients who suffered a traumatic brain injury. Doctors test for drugs to decide on…
  • Studies Find Brain Injury Increases Risky Behavior

    Randy Rozek
    9 Oct 2014 | 12:22 pm
    Visit us at New research has found that teen girls who survive a traumatic brain injury are at a higher risk for problematic behavior. In the study, researchers found that 13 risky behaviors increased for girls with TBI, such as binge drinking, suicidal thinking and smoking marijuana. On average, boys only engaged in 9 of the unhealthy behaviors. Survey across Ontario The research involved 9,288 students from grades 7 to 12 from across Ontario, Canada. In the study, surveyors defined traumatic brain injury as blows to the head that caused a five-minute knockout, or a minimum of…
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  • Safely Clear Snow and Ice

    Robin Friedman
    26 Jan 2015 | 5:41 am
    The importance of removing snow and ice from sidewalks should never be underestimated.  If it is not removed, sidewalks can become so dangerous that it is almost impossible to walk on them.  This can pose a problem for homeowners and landlords alike. It also means that emergency crews may not be able to get to […]
  • Taking Stock of Your Business

    Robin Friedman
    21 Jan 2015 | 1:51 pm
    Slow business cycles provide a unique opportunity for companies to evaluate important and often overlooked aspects of their operation.  In short, this “down” time offers business owners and executives a chance to get their affairs in order. Employment policies, such as vacation and leave policies, whether or not contained in a company employee handbook, should […]
  • Winter Weather Accidents

    Robin Friedman
    21 Jan 2015 | 10:41 am
    Western New York is known for its severe winter weather, and this year has certainly brought its fair share of cold weather and winter storms.  Winter weather often creates slippery conditions that can significantly increase the risk of injury due to slip and falls or motor vehicle accidents. In addition to these risks, cold weather […]
  • STAR Real Property Tax Exemptions

    Linda Grear
    17 Jan 2015 | 6:57 am
    People often have questions regarding the STAR real property tax exemption.  The STAR exemption entitles anyone who owns a primary residence to a reduction in the amount they pay for School Tax (STAR = School Tax Relief).  There are two types of exemptions.  The Basic STAR exemption is available to anyone owning a primary residence, […]
  • Divorce, property division can impart powerful lessons

    Robin Friedman
    14 Jan 2015 | 6:56 am
    Any large-scale life event brings with it a chance to learn a range of lessons.  In fact, a great deal of our knowledge and understanding comes from having gone through difficult experiences.  We learn from good choices that we make, as well as from decisions we would like to forget.  Divorce and property division are […]
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    bLAWgical Thinking

  • #The1Llife: What Happens to the Dead Whale?

    26 Jan 2015 | 4:02 pm
    GUEST BLOG By Lauren Rose, 1L at the University of Detroit Mercy Way back, during my first property class in August, the professor started talking about foxes and whales. It went something like this: “Who owns the fox?” and “What happens to the dead whale? Who can claim ownership of it?” Do Pierson v. Post and Ghen v. Rich ring a bell? If yes, then you’ve obviously taken a 1L property course! While discussing these things, all I could think was something along the lines of, “Uhhh.. Why are we learning about foxes?” and “What do foxes have to do with the law?!” The first…
  • #barpreplife: Just Breathe

    23 Jan 2015 | 12:17 pm
    GUEST BLOG by Jennifer Varteressian, Graduated from The University of Tulsa College of Law Okay, let us all take a breather. If you’re anything like me you’re freaking out at this juncture. We are five weeks out from the bar exam and the MBE is literally wiping the floor with me. I wanted to take the opportunity to use this blog to hopefully ease some of your anxieties. I have been really struggling over the past few days with the MBE. I feel like I am doing so poorly in every subject and am nowhere near where I need to be. Given that I am so type A, I did a little bit of investigating. I…
  • #The3Llife: What’s a Traditional Law Student?

    21 Jan 2015 | 7:10 pm
    GUEST BLOG By Shaun Sanders, 3L at Chapman University’s Dale E. Fowler School of Law I am not a traditional law student. Without a doubt, I have enjoyed my time in law school and feel that the experience has added greatly to my life, but I can’t help but feel a bit like a misfit toy. Like most decisions in my life, I ultimately chose law school to satisfy my curiosity. “What would happen,” I wondered, “if someone like me went to law school?” Unfortunately, the answer appears to be, “make people wonder why you decided to go to law school.” I belong to the demographic of…
  • #The2Llife: Life Outside School

    20 Jan 2015 | 4:20 pm
    GUEST BLOG Harrison Thorne, 2L at UCLA School of Law When I began 1L, I was totally dedicated to school. I went to class, studied, outlined, went to the gym, and that was about it. In fact, I did those same things for my entire 1L year, and then most of my first 2L semester. Over break, I realized some things. First, I have a better handle on managing time and I am able to study more effectively. Second, I can make time for things I like outside of class. Third, I don’t do anything outside of class – for the most part. So, being a new year and all, I sat down and tried to recall things I…
  • #The1Llife: The Good Old Socratic Method

    19 Jan 2015 | 11:58 am
    “To know, is to know that you know nothing. That is the meaning of true knowledge.“Socrates   GUEST BLOG By Lauren Rose, 1L at the University of Detroit Mercy I’m not sure about you, but I am dying (ha-ha) for the return of ABC’s How To Get Away With Murder. The final episode of Season 1 left fans wondering what would happen regarding the murder of Sam. If you have not watched the show, I won’t ruin it by giving away major details. However, it is definitely worth watching. A few months ago, I wrote a blog about similarities and differences between the show and law…
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    Attorney at Work

  • Addressing Pricing Questions

    Sally J. Schmidt
    27 Jan 2015 | 2:30 am
    Despite all the talk about alternative fees, many lawyers still bill on an hourly basis for some, if not most, of their work. Even those who use project pricing, flat fees or fixed fees still find the need to increase those rates from time to time. Many lawyers are uncomfortable discussing money with clients or prospects, as I’ve discussed before. Yet without a discussion about fees, it is unlikely you will get the business. Even if you do, absent the discussion of costs, it will be very easy to disappoint a client. Today many clients feel empowered and are asking for discounts,…
  • Keeping Better Notes

    Megan Zavieh
    26 Jan 2015 | 2:31 am
    Yellow legal pads, containing what at least to a casual observer might seem unintelligible scribbles, abound in most lawyers’ offices. Of course, good legal business practice dictates that we take copious and clear notes to identify work we have done or still need to do, who we have spoken with, when and about what. But it is also critical to maintaining compliance with ethics rules. Managing client disputes. If a client ever comes back to you with a question about advice you have given, your notes should reflect when you spoke to them, what you talked about, and what you told them. Do…
  • Things Lawyers Say They Love About the Cloud

    Jack Newton
    23 Jan 2015 | 2:00 am
    In nearly seven years of building and leading a company that provides practice management solutions for the legal profession, you hear a lot about the pains and joys of being a lawyer. I’ve engaged with hundreds (if not thousands) of lawyers and legal professionals in that time and all of them have their stories to share. Among those who have experienced the benefits of cloud computing, one thing is evident: They love what the cloud has to offer. Here are five things that stand out. 1. Portable practice. The cloud, lawyers say, has given them incredible flexibility. They’re no longer…
  • 10 Tips: Why I Love Publishing to SlideShare

    Jayne Navarre
    22 Jan 2015 | 2:00 am
    What’s not to like about a large, highly targeted B2B market with low competition? Not much. That’s why SlideShare has become the Internet’s largest platform for sharing presentations. With 60 million unique visitors every month, it receives five times more traffic from business owners than any other platform of its kind. What’s more, built-in sharing tools let you easily post to your social media accounts. But tapping into the SlideShare audience requires more than simply posting your live presentation deck. It is a publishing platform, not a posting repository. To be effective,…
  • Target Practice: Writing for Marketing

    Jared Correia
    21 Jan 2015 | 2:30 am
    Ask any parent of a small child, and they’ll tell you: Caillou is a whiny little puke. On the scale of fears for parents, seeing that a “Caillou” episode is coming on the television, and knowing that you won’t have the dexterity to swiftly change the channel, lies somewhere between being eaten by a hippopotamus and feeling the Earth approach the Sun. If you’re not familiar with Caillou, imagine your worst nightmare then imagine something much, much worse. But, the thing is, little kids love Caillou. I cannot overstate this. It’s because he represents a megaphone for the…
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    The Attorney Marketing Center

  • Need more time? What would you do with it?

    David M. Ward
    26 Jan 2015 | 11:25 am
    I just upgraded my modem and my download speed has literally doubled. And yes, I can tell. Everything opens faster. Pages scroll faster. Videos are smoother. I love it when a plan comes together. Also, the old modem was starting to go down frequently, requiring a re-set. Lately, this had been happening almost every day. I’m on my computer most of the day and I figure that by swapping out the modem, I’m saving several minutes a day. That got me thinking about what else I might do to save more time. What if I could consistently “find” 15 minutes a day, by cutting things…
  • If my dentist managed your law practice

    David M. Ward
    23 Jan 2015 | 11:47 am
    My dentist send me an email that said: NORDSTROM GIFTCARD GIVEAWAY INVITE A FRIEND AND WIN A NORDSTROM GIFTCARD! Introduce friends, family and co-workers to our office, and when they come in for their appointment between now and February 19th, you will be entered into a drawing to win a $100 NORDSTROM Giftcard! The rest of the message said when the drawing would take place and that the “New patient must complete routine exam, cleaning and x-rays to qualify for drawing entry. One entry per person seen in the office.” Not bad. Get more referrals, total cost: $100. Two things come to…
  • If John Wooden managed your law practice

    David M. Ward
    22 Jan 2015 | 12:14 pm
    Basketball coaching legend John Wooden was known as a perfectionist. He believed that planning and preparation and attention to detail were the keys to winning. He expected the best from his teams and usually got it. In his long career, Wooden proved that his methods worked. He left a legacy unmatched in the field of sports and we can learn a lot by studying his methods and his life. But how much of what he teaches can we use to build a law practice? Can we demand as much from ourselves and our staff as Wooden demanded from his teams? Let’s think about that in the context of the first…
  • Bundling isn’t just for political campaigns

    David M. Ward
    21 Jan 2015 | 10:32 am
    I just got an email with a great offer on a “productivity bundle”: “For just $59.99, you can unlock one-year subscriptions to Wunderlist Pro, Pocket Premium, Evernote Premium, and LastPass Premium.” If you’re interested, here’s the link. Now, put on your thinking cap. How could you use bundling to market your services? Find one or more compatible service providers–lawyers in different practice areas, (including lawyers in your firm), a CPA, a financial planner, or a business owner–anyone with a product or service your clients or prospects might…
  • Take a loser to lunch

    David M. Ward
    20 Jan 2015 | 11:05 am
    An excellent way to grow your practice is to spend time with other lawyers. Once a week, invite a successful lawyer to lunch and get to know about them and their practice. Look for ways you can help each other, with referrals, introductions, promoting each others events and content, guest posts, and so on. Ask lots of questions about what they want and need and look for ways to help them. But don’t stop there. Learn from their successes. Ask questions about how they market their services and look for ideas you can use to market yours. What do they do, where do they do it, how did they…
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    Law Firm Internet Marketing Blog | Attorney Search Engine Optimization SEO | News & Tips

  • Is The Internet Really Dying? Many Say Yes

    Dustin Ruge
    23 Jan 2015 | 7:44 am
    Yesterday we heard some pearls of wisdom out of Davos from the Chairman of Google, Eric Schmidtwho proclaimed that “…the internet will disappear.” To many of us who work in the industry of internet marketing, this should come as no surprise…but to most it still is. In November of 2014, an article in the Wall Street Journal entitled “The Web Is Dying; Apps Are Killing It” was published after many prognostications dating back a number of years now that mobile is transforming the internet landscape. Additionally, many industry experts now predict that the number of people accessing…
  • Does My Law Firm Need An App?

    Dustin Ruge
    30 Oct 2014 | 9:07 am
    A growing number of attorneys and law firms that I work and meet with are asking the same question: Do I need an App for my practice? When asked I always ask them 3 simple Questions:WHY would their clients want to download their APP? HOW would your App make your client engagements better and more efficient FOR YOUR CLIENTS?HOW REPEATABLE are the engagements with your clients and HOW OFTEN do they take place? As you can imagine, most attorneys are not fully prepared to answer these questions and therefore would be advised NOT to build an APP for their practice until then they are. There are…
  • Dustin Ruge Presentation: Emerging Technologies & Trends In Attorney Marketing (Colorado Bar Association)

    Dustin Ruge
    27 Oct 2014 | 1:45 pm
    Dustin Ruge will be speaking at the Colorado Bar Association Technology Expo on emerging technologies and trends in attorney marketing on October 27th For more information and registration:  Click Here  Date & Time: Monday, October 27th at 4pmLocation: 1900 Grant Street, Denver CO 80203Faculty: Dustin Ruge #cle  #lawyermarketing
  • AZ Bar Association CLE: Attorney Brand Management (1 Ethics Credit) Faculty: Dustin Ruge

    Dustin Ruge
    1 Oct 2014 | 2:56 pm
    Dustin Ruge will be speaking at the AZ Bar Association (Tucson Chapter) on the importance and strategies surrounding personal brand management for attorneys on October 9th @ 12 noon.For more information and registration:  AZ Bar Association CLE Programs  Date & Time: Thursday, October 9th at 12 noon CLE ETHICS Credits: 1Location: 270 N. Church Ave. Tucson, AZ 85701Faculty: Dustin Ruge #cle  #branding #lawyermarketing
  • Creating Attorney Videos That Convert

    Dustin Ruge
    11 Aug 2014 | 10:04 am
    One of the best ways that attorneys can compete and win online is by focusing on conversion. Despite all the focus on rank and search engine traffic, the vast majority of attorneys still get the bulk of their business from referrals. Since referrals tend to be given out in number (ie here are 2-3 attorneys you can contact), it is important to know how you stack up against your referral competition and how best to convert those referrals to clients. VIDEOS HELP YOU OUTPERFORM YOUR REFERRAL COMPETITORSThe majority of referrals are looking up attorneys online BEFORE and after they meet you. If…
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    Estate Law Canada

  • To litigate or to mediate?

    26 Jan 2015 | 10:32 pm
    It's no surprise to any of us that estates can be minefields of disputes, upsets, and resentments. The usual way of resolving an estate dispute is to take someone to court and let the judge decide who wins and who loses. But those of you who have thought that there simply must be a better way of dealing with these disagreements are right; there is an alternative. That alternative is mediation.
  • Movies about older adults active in the dying process

    25 Jan 2015 | 8:59 pm
    As regular readers of this blog know, I encourage families to talk to each other about the tough topics that are part of estate planning. This is a lot easier when there is nobody in the family in immediate danger of passing away, but unfortunately an awful lot of people don't act (or speak) until there is a pressing need. I recently found a post by Karen D. Austin, who blogs at The Generation
  • My uncle hasn't contacted family for 20 years. Can he contest being left out of my grandmother's will?

    25 Jan 2015 | 2:47 pm
    Nothing illuminates a family estrangement like the death of a parent. Does a person who hasn't contacted his family for twenty years have a right to be included in his parent's will? A reader recently wrote to me about this. Her question and my answer are below: "My grandmother's will was made up in 2013 and notarized when my grandmother was mentally stable. The entire estate goes to my
  • Top Ten Reasons Why Estate Planning Should Top Your New Year's Resolutions

    21 Jan 2015 | 9:29 am
    Did you make any New Year's Resolutions this year? If you're one of the millions of people who like to get organized and set priorities at the beginning of each new year, take a look at this article by Ontario lawyer Donna Neff. She gives ten good reasons why estate planning should be on your list of must-do plans for this year.
  • Where does probate take place if you live in one province but have assets in another?

    15 Jan 2015 | 1:29 pm
    If you live in one province but have assets in another province, where does the probate of your will take place? A reader recently asked me about this, as you'll see below. "I have accounts in Alberta but I live in British Columbia. Since the bulk of my assets are in Alberta, does my will get probated there, or does it have to be probated where I live?" This is an excellent question, given
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    AZ Attorney

  • Protected: Arts Competition 2015 Music Submissions

    26 Jan 2015 | 10:00 pm
    This post is password protected. You must visit the website and enter the password to continue reading.
  • Lawyer dialogue on mediation to be next month’s @azbarcle video Snippet

    26 Jan 2015 | 8:30 am
    Arizona Summit Law professors Jalae Ulicki (left) and Penny Willrich with Arizona Attorney Editor Tim Eigo, Jan. 20, 2015, after taping of an educational video on mediation as a healing art. Last week, I got to engage in what has become a highlight of my month: a dialogue with some current Arizona Attorney authors. The point of the very enjoyable exercise is to create a short video. This partnership with the State Bar of Arizona CLE Department is called “CLE Snippets,” and this month’s authors are Professors Penny Willrich and Jalae Ulicki, both of the Arizona Summit Law School. The way…
  • Food, music, art featured at TrueDTPhx in (o’course) #dtphx

    23 Jan 2015 | 8:30 am
    The event-rich month that surrounds the Super Bowl reaches quite a high crest this weekend, as the Pro Bowl nears kickoff. And even if football is not your bag (inflated balls or not), downtown Phoenix has quite a variety of festivities planned that may please most all comers. The happenings, spanning today and tomorrow, are described by Fara Illich here. As she describes trueDTPHX, it includes shopping, concerts and more. More detail and links are on the trueDTPHX Facebook page. Here’s wishing you a community-filled weekend, whether you make it downtown or not. Follow @azatty
  • Human trafficking battled in Arizona, subject of lawyer education

    22 Jan 2015 | 8:30 am
    An Arizona public-information campaign sponsored by Clear Channel features billboards educating on human trafficking. If you drive through the Valley of the Sun, you may have spotted a number of billboards that highlight the tragedy of human trafficking. Sponsored by Clear Channel Outdoor, the signs were touted earlier this month by new Attorney General Mark Brnovich, who (with Cindy McCain) unveiled an anti-human trafficking campaign. You can read more about the Clear Channel partnership here. According to a press release: “These efforts to raise awareness about human trafficking come just…
  • 5K by @AZFinestL avoids Super Bowl upset with Superb Owl solution

    21 Jan 2015 | 8:30 am
    Owls aren’t the only wise creature when it comes to avoiding trademark trouble. Super Bowl. There, I said it. Of course, I’m not selling anything, or trying to use the name to market or sell something, so it’s unlikely I will hear from The Big Game’s legions of lawyers. As I’ve noted before, though, that’s not been the result for other purveyors of goods and services, large or small. Woe betide the mom-and-pop store that advertises a “Super Bowl Sale,” for there could be confusion in the marketplace (or something). Well, now that we know what teams will be duking it out in…
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    Beck's Law

  • Florida’s Medical Necessity Defense, Reconsidered

    Jared Beck
    7 Jan 2015 | 8:30 am
    Surprisingly little has been written on Florida’s medical necessity defense, although the Amendment 2 campaign to legalize medical cannabis prompted some renewed discussion of the doctrine.  Still, medical necessity remains a barely examined and rarely applied legal concept in Florida.  It could gain importance as barriers to cannabis use, both recreational and medical, continue to tumble throughout the country. Florida’s medical necessity defense has received scant attention.     In the 1991 case of Jenks v. State, 582 So. 2d 676 (Fla. 1st DCA 1991), a Florida…
  • An Open Letter To President Obama: Please Remove Cannabis From Schedule I

    Jared Beck
    6 Nov 2014 | 4:41 pm
    Dear Mr. President: I know your administration has much to think about in the wake of Tuesday’s midterm elections, which by any account were a difficult event for your party.  But one issue, at least, should be a no-brainer. The time has come to remove cannabis from Schedule I of the federal Controlled Substances Act. As the most stringently restricted category of controlled substances under federal law, only Schedule I drugs cannot be prescribed by a doctor.  Congress designated cannabis as Schedule I almost 45 years ago.  To qualify for such treatment under the U.S.
  • When Winning Isn’t Enough

    Jared Beck
    4 Nov 2014 | 8:28 pm
    Amendment 2 has received 57.5% yes votes at latest count, with over 95% of the votes recorded.  It takes over 60% to amend the Florida Constitution.  This means that Amendment 2 will not pass, and cannabis will not be legalized for medical purposes in Florida. But let’s take a closer look at these numbers. Amendment 2 received at least half a million more votes in Florida than did either major party candidate for governor. Amendment 2 won a greater percentage of the electorate than Franklin Roosevelt did nationally when he cruised to a historic landslide victory over Herbert…
  • Thoughts On Amendment 2, One Day Before The Election

    Jared Beck
    3 Nov 2014 | 1:26 pm
    Should Amendment 2 go down in defeat on Election Day, the people of Florida will have some thinking to do. Amendment 2 would legalize the use of cannabis, with a doctor’s approval, as a treatment for patients with debilitating medical conditions including cancer, AIDS, Lou Gehrig’s disease, and multiple sclerosis, among others. In January of this year, the Florida Division of Elections announced that the proposed amendment had recorded over 786,000 signatures, well in excess of the amount needed to qualify for the ballot. Later that month, the Florida Supreme Court approved the…
  • Who’s To Blame For The Great Florida Condo Crash? Florida Appellate Court Suggests It May Be . . . Escrow Agents

    Jared Beck
    7 Sep 2011 | 11:00 pm
    While the global economy remains in the doldrums, recent reports have the South Florida condo market showing signs of recovery, even robustness.  Still, the fallout from the Great Real Estate Crash of several years ago remains undecided in critical ways.  This is especially true of the legal realm, which typically marches to a slow but steady drumbeat. Yesterday, the Third District Court of Appeal — the Florida State intermediate appellate court with jurisdiction over Miami-Dade County — dropped a bombshell of sorts.  In a case called CRC 603, LLC v. North Carillon, LLC, the…
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    Law Donut blog feed

  • Missing persons: how the law has changed to help families

    19 Jan 2015 | 7:55 am
    In November last year, the National Crime Agency reported that someone is recorded as missing in the UK every two minutes. Its findings were based on research released by the National Crime Agency’s UK Missing Persons Bureau, which analysed statistics for the year 2012–2013. This means that, on average, police forces in the UK are dealing with some 838 missing person reports every day. Although the vast majority of those reported missing are found safe and well, a small number (in the region of 3%) remain unfound. Not knowing what has happened to a loved one is a distressing and traumatic…
  • What must your business do to comply with the EU Consumer Rights Directive 2014?

    13 Jan 2015 | 1:25 am
    New EU Consumer Rights Directives came into effect on the 13 June 2014, but many online retailers are still not compliant. So, how did the rules change? Update terms & conditions for delivery and cancellation Cancellation periods: Increased from seven to 14 days. If you don’t specify the cancellation period customers have a one-year return period automatically. Refunds: Refunds must include the standard delivery charge. Buyers choosing more expensive delivery options are only entitled to a refund of standard postage. Delivery dates: Orders must be delivered without undue delays within…
  • Three top tips for an effective business plan

    7 Jan 2015 | 3:56 am
    Not only is a business plan the single most important document you need in order to attract potential investors to help fund your business, it also lays out clear objectives and strategies that act as a blueprint for your success. Research has shown that start-ups who have a business plan raise twice as much capital as those without one so that is a testament to the importance of getting it right. So, here is some advice on the key points you should keep to ensure that you have a clear, well-structured and effective business plan. 1. Don’t underestimate the importance of the executive…
  • Ten things you could have learned from our blog in 2014

    Mark Williams
    8 Dec 2014 | 3:07 am
    1 “If you run a business, it is advisable to seek professional help in writing a will. For example, if you are a majority shareholder but die unexpectedly without having a will, your shares, and therefore, majority ownership of the business, would be subject to the intestacy rules.” From Why business owners need to have a will by Rob Martins 2 “Health and safety is all about risk prevention, and in worst-case scenarios, what to do if an accident occurs. First, start by assessing potential risks in the workplace. Once these have been documented, state what you are doing, or have done, to…
  • Unfair dismissal tribunals - infographic

    24 Nov 2014 | 7:42 am
    Information about Unfair Dismissal and Redundancy from Knocker & Foskett employment solicitors, based in Kent, visit their website for more information Further reading Dismissing employees - key facts When a dismissal is automatically unfair Resources:  Dismissals and redundancies
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    Colorado Construction Litigation

  • The Great Fallacy: If Builders Would Just Build It Right There Would Be No Construction Defect Litigation

    David M. McLain
    19 Jan 2015 | 10:14 am
    As the 2015 Colorado legislative session gets into full swing, there is a lot of anticipation and discussion regarding this year’s construction defect reform bill.  It seems like every time a reporter broaches this issue in an article, there is a quote from a plaintiffs’ attorney stating that if builders would just build homes right, there would be no need for construction defect litigation. This is the sentiment expressed in the site  The problem with this argument is that it assumes that the “construction defects” for which associations sue are…
  • Senator Ray Scott Introduced a Bill to Reduce Colorado’s Statute of Repose for Construction Defect Actions to Four Years

    David M. McLain
    15 Jan 2015 | 11:21 am
    For those of you reading this blog who are familiar with Colorado’s law as it pertains to construction defect actions, which I assume to be anyone reading this blog as it does not seem to get much random traffic, you are probably aware that the statute of repose applicable to construction defect actions in Colorado is generally thought of as being six plus two years. Specifically, C.R.S. § 13-80-104 states, in pertinent part:(1)(a)  Notwithstanding any statutory provision to the contrary, all actions against any architect, contractor, builder or builder vendor,…
  • Coloradoans Deserve More Than Hyperbole and Rhetoric From Plaintiffs’ Attorneys; We Deserve Attainable Housing

    David M. McLain
    8 Jan 2015 | 11:33 am
    As the 2015 Colorado legislative session gets underway, the media attention and discussion regarding the lack of attainable housing, skyrocketing rental rates, and the ongoing state and local efforts to reverse these trends have risen to a dull roar. The hyperbole and rhetoric from those who would oppose any reforms has risen to cacophonous levels. Among the most often quoted talking points from the opposition are that any changes to Colorado’s existing laws would strip homeowners of their right to seek redress for construction defects and that they would virtually insulate construction…
  • Colorado Legislators Need to Fix Barriers to Attainable and Affordable Homeownership

    David M. McLain
    8 Jan 2015 | 8:22 am
    Rents Soar and Condo Construction Stalls, creating “Housing Squeeze”Colorado’s economy is dependent on a strong housing market that includes diverse and attainable options.  Despite strong demand, communities across Colorado face a growing shortage of one of the most critical options—owner-occupied, multi-family housing. Condo and townhome construction has effectively ground to a halt due in part to concerns among builders about the growing number of lawsuits over construction issues.Today, condos represent just 3.1 percent of new housing starts, compared to nearly 23 percent in…
  • Another Case Highlighting the Difference Between CGL Policies and Performance Bonds

    David M. McLain
    7 Jan 2015 | 7:52 am
    During the summer of 2011, Ellis Construction hired Cool Sunshine Heating & Air Conditioning to install the HVAC systems in a single-family home it was building for Gary Doberman and Ellen Robertson in Boulder, Colorado. The homeowners took issue with much of the work performed on their home and tried to negotiate directly with Ellis Construction. When those negotiations broke down, the homeowners sent a notice of claim pursuant to the Construction Defect Action Reform Act, C.R.S. § 13-20-801, et seq. One of the defects alleged in the notice of claim was that the SEERS 13 compressor…
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    Accellis Technology Group

  • Make Your Life Easier With This Simple Password System

    Jeremiah Sorbera
    22 Jan 2015 | 12:39 pm
    Disclaimer: This is not an article on how to create a secure password. We’ve all read those…we all know it’s something we’ll ‘eventually get around to doing’, right? Don’t worry, I won’t tell. No, the aim here is to let you in on a simple solution to help you manage all of those pesky passwords. The Tiered Password System If you’re like most people, you probably use the same password for every site you log into. When you do this, you’re making that password only as secure as the weakest site on which you use it. That’s why I suggest using a tiered system to organize your…
  • How An Email Archiver Saved One Firm $30,000

    Derek Schroeder
    15 Jan 2015 | 1:27 pm
    No too long ago, a law firm client of ours was representing a community association that wanted to cancel an approximate $25,000 job with their landscaping company. The association claimed they sent an email to the law firm requesting that they notify the landscape company to cancel the project. The law firm never received the email, therefore, did not know to cancel it. The landscape company did the job and charged the association for the work. The association attempted to charge the law firm for the $25,000 project plus $5,000 in damages since they failed to put the brakes on the project.
  • 3 Essential Takeaways From the Sony Hack

    Jeremiah Sorbera
    9 Jan 2015 | 3:15 pm
    In late November, a large amount of internal documents and spreadsheets containing information on Sony Pictures’ employees and senior executives was leaked to the public. While a flurry of stories and rumors continue to be published, there are several key takeaways for law firms. As a former IT Specialist for the United States Navy and a Certified Ethical Hacker, these sort of situations are unsurprising to me. But as these events continue to hit closer to home for a lot of folks, security must be considered a priority for any business. Establish email etiquette & use encryption On…
  • Securing Client Data in Amicus Attorney

    Colleen Heine
    2 Jan 2015 | 12:50 pm
    As security threats becomes more prevalent, it’s important to understand the risks associated with storing your client’s confidential information in your practice management system. Learn best practices for keeping your client information secure within Amicus Attorney. Watch our on-demand video for tips to improve the way your firm handles client data, including: • Setting up security profiles for different members of your firm • Steps to take when staff members leave the office • Techniques for closing and securing client files • Keeping data on mobile devices safe • Securing…
  • 10 Law Firm Resolutions for 2015

    Colleen Heine
    30 Dec 2014 | 8:10 am
    The end of the year always brings a time of reflection and resolutions to better ourselves. We’ve all had that one friend who went a little extreme with the New Year’s resolutions, right? Learning guitar or going to the gym everyday are both big undertakings. Instead, let’s make 2015 the year your firm dedicates to overall improvement. Build your business initiative for next year by making the next 10 resolutions a reality. Bundle up your accounting books! If you are a PCLaw firm administrator, check out the end of the year training package designed for reconciling firm balances. Topics…
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    The Litigation Consulting Report

  • 21 Ways Trial Can Be Like a Blizzard - But It Never Has to Be

    26 Jan 2015 | 10:17 am
      by Ken LopezFounder/CEOA2L Consulting We East Coasters have a love-hate relationship with snow, and the snow moving into the Northeast today may be one for the record books - particularly around Boston. It will dominate the news for days - and it probably should. An incredibly large number of people will be impacted by this particular storm. Under or next to that red line on the map where the storm is forecast to hit, you'll find roughly 20% of the U.S. population living on roughly 3% of the country's land, half of the hedge funds, one third of the headquarters of Fortune 500…
  • 9 Things In-House Counsel Say About Outside Litigation Counsel

    21 Jan 2015 | 12:27 pm
      by Ken LopezFounder/CEOA2L Consulting One month ago I wrote an article titled 9 Things Outside Litigation Counsel Say About In-house Counsel, and we recently included it in our free In-House Counsel Litigation Toolkit e-book. It is a popular piece read by several thousand people so far. Today's article looks at what is being said by in-house counsel about outside litigation counsel. I've spent a lot of time talking with in-house counsel from large companies over the past two months. They have a lot to say about outside litigation counsel that I don't normally see reported in the…
  • Join the Jury - NLJ's 2015 Best of Survey is Now Accepting Votes

    20 Jan 2015 | 7:38 am
      by Ken LopezFounder/CEOA2L Consulting There are many annual surveys that help rank law firms, specialty legal training programs and legal vendors and consultants. The annual Best of The National Law Journal is the crown jewel of these surveys. A2L Consulting is honored to have been nominated and voted best litigation graphics provider and best jury consultants in this and other polls many times before. By voting in such surveys, I believe we make our industry better by acknowledging those who contribute to it the most. While I would certainly be thrilled, honored, and grateful it…
  • Boston, a Bomb of a Trial

    15 Jan 2015 | 8:46 am
      by Laurie R. Kuslansky, Ph.D.Managing Director, Jury & Trial ConsultingA2L Consulting Want a change of venue? Think again. Judge O’Toole and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit turned down the defense’s attempts to change the venue. Even though Boston is where the horrifying Boston Marathon Bombing happened, that is where the jury pool will come from to judge the surviving Tsarnaev brother, Dzhokhar. Will there be enough jurors? Here, 1200 prospective jurors will complete a jury questionnaire of 100 questions to seat a jury of 12 jurors plus 6…
  • Implications for 2015 Workplace Litigation, Voir Dire and Trial

    12 Jan 2015 | 9:22 am
      by Laurie R. Kuslansky, Ph.D.Managing Director, Jury & Trial ConsultingA2L Consulting Q:  Per Glass Door’s 10 Biggest Job Likes and Gripes of Employees for year-end 2014,1 what do you think topped the lists of likes vs. gripes: co-workers or pay? A:  Good vs. annoying co-workers topped the lists; good vs. low pay trailed in slot 5: 10 Biggest Job Likes of Employees 1. Great Co-workers 2. Work Environment 3. Good Benefits 4. Interesting Work 5. Good Pay 6. Work-Life Balance   7. Flexible Work Schedule 8. Company Culture 9. Fast-Paced Environment 10. Smart…
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    New Jersey Injury Attorney Blog

  • Protect Yourself from Winter Weather Slip and Fall Accidents in New Jersey

    5 Jan 2015 | 8:21 am
    The winter weather in New Jersey opens up the prospect of sledding, skiing, building snow forts, and other exciting adventures for the whole family. Yet a day of fun – or even a day at work – can turn into a tragedy in an instant if a slip and fall accident occurs. Slip and fall accidents can cause serious injuries, or worse, result in permanent disability or death. You can help protect yourself and others from slip and fall injuries this winter. Keep these tips in mind:
  • Fair Haven Councilman Killed in Bicycle Accident

    8 Dec 2014 | 2:04 pm
    Fair Haven Councilman Jerome Koch, 63, suffered fatal injuries when a car struck his bicycle. According to an news report, the fatal bicycle accident occurred on River Road near Elm Place in Fair Haven. He was pronounced dead the day after the crash at Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune. It is unclear what caused the crash, but it does not appear from the report that the driver will face citations for the crash. Even skilled and experienced riders can suffer fatal injuries in the event of a crash. Bicyclists are simply not provided enough protection to survive a major…
  • New Jersey Motorcyclist Killed by Deer

    4 Nov 2014 | 9:15 am
    A 36-year-old Hillsborough man was killed in a New Jersey motorcycle accident when his 2008 BMW R12 collided with a deer. According to a news report, the fatal motorcycle crash occurred near the former Gibraltar Rock Quarry entrance on County Route 601 in Montgomery Township. Officials say he was ejected from his motorcycle after colliding with a deer. He was treated at the scene and admitted in extremely critical condition in New Brunswick. Later that day, he died from his injuries. As the temperature begins to drop, we can expect an increase in the number of deer-related traffic…
  • Workers Injured in New Jersey Factory Explosion

    20 Oct 2014 | 2:09 pm
    Several people were injured at a New Jersey factory when a four-alarm blaze broke out following an explosion. According to a CBS New York news report, the factory accident occurred at Crest Foam Industries on Carol Place in Moonachie. Of the 17 employees in the factory, four were hospitalized with head injuries after the explosion. Officials worried that dangerous toxins may have been released into the air, but tests proved negative. An investigation is underway into the cause of the explosion, but officials know that workers were mixing hydrogen and oxygen to make polyurethane foam at the…
  • Teenager Killed in New Jersey Truck Accident

    13 Oct 2014 | 1:08 pm
    A 19-year-old Bridgewater man was killed in a New Jersey car accident when his 2005 Dodge Ram burst into flames after being struck by a 2015 Mack truck. According to a an Associated Press news report, the fatal truck accident occurred on Route 22 at Cramer Avenue in Green Brook. Officials say the pickup was stopped for a red light when the larger truck plowed into it. The teen's pickup burst into flames, and he was fatally injured. Whenever someone is killed in a New Jersey car accident, it must be determined who was at fault and how the crash could have been prevented. In many cases, the…
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    Bay Area Bankruptcy Lawyer Blog

  • US Supreme Court Decision in In re Law Limits Courts’ Discretion to Paint Debtors with the “Bad Faith” Brush

    Jon G. Brooks
    18 Jan 2015 | 12:06 pm
    Nearly a year ago, The Supreme Court held in Law v. Siegel (In re Law), No. 12-5196, 571 U.S. ___ (March 4, 2014), that despite a debtor’s misdeeds, the Bankruptcy Court still has to follow the Bankruptcy Code and can’t just dispense its own sense of justice ad hoc. This same reasoning was recently applied in a bankruptcy court case in California, In re Arellano, 517 B.R. 228 (Bankr. S.D. Cal. 2014), the bankruptcy court there followed the Supreme Court’s logic in affirming that a bankruptcy trustee can’t object to a debtor’s amended claim of exemption based merely on a claim of…
  • 2014 Enhancements of California’s Anti-Deficiency Statutes Give Added Protections to Foreclosed Homeowners

    Jon G. Brooks
    3 Feb 2014 | 10:57 am
    With the new year California homeowners who might suffer a foreclosure now will have enhanced protections against mortgage lenders or debt buyers trying to collect on a foreclosed first mortgage or sold-out junior mortgage. Senate Bill 426, signed into law in July 2013 and effective on January 1, 2014, strengthens California’s existing anti-deficiency statutes. Specifically, SB 426 amends CCP Sections 580b and 580d. This follows on the relatively recent addition of Section 580e applicable to the short sale context, which prevented second mortgage lenders (usually home equity line…
  • In re Flores: Bad for Chapter 13 debtors, Bad for Chapter 13 Creditors Too

    Jon G. Brooks
    31 Dec 2013 | 9:37 am
    2013 saw several major judicial shifts affecting bankruptcy law, and one decision by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affects how Chapter 13 bankruptcy plans are proposed and confirmed in profound ways. In August of this year, the Ninth Circuit published the decision In re Flores, taking away significant flexibility from debtors in Chapter 13 when proposing the length of their Chapter 13 payment plans. The issue before the court was pretty technical and wonky, so bear with me because its effects on debtors and creditors are profound, and I believe, profoundly negative. It all hinges on the…
  • Federal Consumer Protection Agency Cracks Down on Debt Settlement Scam

    Jon G. Brooks
    8 May 2013 | 7:31 pm
    In its first-ever criminal referral, the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the federal consumer watchdog agency mandated by Dodd-Frank, has referred a case for criminal prosecution against a debt settlement company, Mission Settlement Agency. The indictment was filed in the U.S. District Court in Manhattan, charging that the debt settlement company’s manager and three employees “systematically exploited and defrauded” customers who sought to settle their debts. Rather than offering any real debt relief, according to the indictment Mission Settlement Agency, took about $14…
  • Can I Keep My Luxury Car, RV, and Boat, in Chapter 13 Bankruptcy in California?

    Jon G. Brooks
    17 Apr 2013 | 4:48 pm
    Chapter 13 bankruptcy trustees in California and elsewhere frequently object to debtors’ Chapter 13 plans in which the debtor proposes to pay very little to his general unsecured creditors (like credit card companies), while nevertheless continuing to make payments on secured debts for so-called “luxury items.” Such plans, some Chapter 13 trustees have claimed, were made in “bad faith” because payments on the secured debts for such luxury items take away money that could have been used to pay more toward unsecured debts. I have had many San Jose bankruptcy cases in which I worried…
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  • Remarkable personal injury litigation in California

    26 Jan 2015 | 8:15 am
    Personal injury law has become pretty popular all over the world. This is probably because of the increase in cases of personal injuries and especially so at work. The slightest of errors can cause serious injuries to people at the work place. Insurance companies have made it their business to dodge compensation of some cases even when it is completely viable. This is why you need an expert lawyer to analyze your case for you. There are so many personal injury lawyer California residents can trust. However, the best of them all are to be found at The Ledger Law Firm. This firm has grown to…
  • Expert legal representation after an auto accident

    24 Jan 2015 | 8:15 am
    Lawyers are in no short supply and especially so in California. It is easy to find a lawyer but finding one who is genuinely concerned about your well being is a totally different thing. Some of the best lawyers are either too busy or too expensive to be concerned with some people’s cases. This is however not the case with the legal practitioners you will find at The Ledger Law Firm. This is undisputedly the best law firm in California. Auto accident attorneys Auto accidents can lead to severe losses not only of property but also of lives. Injuries that occur due to a car accident can live…
  • California’s finest truck accident legal services

    22 Jan 2015 | 8:15 am
    Car accidents have claimed a multitude of lives all over the world. This remains to be the leading cause of deaths and paralyzing injuries in many countries. One of the main causes is driving under the influence of drugs and other substances. Can you imagine that you are innocently driving home in your car and then a drunken driver just drives into your car head on? This is not your fault and you are entitled to a whole lot of compensation. Road accident compensations Every vehicle is required to have at least a third-party insurance cover. This will take care of any injuries that the other…
  • California’s best motorcycle and auto accident lawyers

    20 Jan 2015 | 8:15 am
    The popularity of motorcycles has increased over the past few years. These vehicles are stylish, affordable and some are impossibly luxurious. Motorcycle fanatics are in no short supply all over the country and the motor bikes themselves are selling out very fast. The only problem with these vehicles is that they put the individuals at such vulnerable position than most other drivers. A motorcycle accident is totally different from a bicycle accident. Injuries related to motorcycles can be devastating and in some cases death does occur as a result of a motorcycle accident. It gets even worse;…
  • Find Professional California Personal Injury Attorneys Online

    12 Jan 2015 | 8:15 am
    Construction work is one of the most risk prone kinds of job. The number of accidents that occur at a construction site is high and many times unavoidable. Contractors should make it a point to consider all the possibilities and take all safety measures beforehand. Even though the rules are to be followed strictly, there are still many builders who do not pay enough attention to this. The nature of job is such that workers are constantly exposed to some sort of risk. One of my uncles works for a construction company. One day, he was told to handle some risky work from a height. The issue was…
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  • New SEO Techniques for Lawyer Marketing

    15 Jan 2015 | 1:37 pm
    Anyone who is marketing a law firm online understands that Google is very important.  Most computer users will go directly to Google, type in their search term, and hope they get back good information.  Your goal, of course, is for your law firm to show up in results that come back.  There are methods for improving your ranking in those results, referred to as SEO, or search engine optimization. No one knows with absolute certainty how exactly Google determines which sites to pull into a user’s SERP (search engine result pages), and the algorithms used change as much as 600 times a…
  • Holy Excuses!

    19 Nov 2014 | 11:57 am
    Theoretically, every small business owner understands that marketing is a basic need for success.  Still, it can be intimidating and leave lawyers wishing they didn’t have to develop this skill.  It’s impossible to overstate the importance of marketing for lawyers, though.  If you find yourself procrastinating due to any of the following excuses, you’re not alone. I Have Enough Work When you’re busy filing briefs and meeting with clients, it can seem like there’s just no time in the day to devote to marketing your law firm.  You might even think that you don’t need to market…
  • I did your holiday shopping for you!

    10 Nov 2014 | 7:18 am
    The holiday season is upon us, and that means for the next eight weeks our schedules are going to be hectic, offices will be closed and our professional and personal calendars are going to become chaotic! On the list of things to do before the end of year is show appreciation to top clients and referral sources, and I know you WANT to make that happen. However, I can’t even tell you how many times I have talked with attorneys about the holidays and showing appreciation to top clients and referrals sources and heard, “Well, I really wanted to do that, but time just got away from…
  • Fool Proof Legal Marketing Strategies for November & the New Year

    7 Nov 2014 | 6:04 am
    It’s hard to believe November is here already.  We are busy working on our plans for 2015 and hopefully you are doing the same. For those of you that do public speaking engagements, now is a great time to reach out to secure gigs for the beginning of the year.  Identify a handful of organizations or groups you would like to work with, send them a letter proposing an event or speaking topic and have someone on your staff follow up within the next two weeks.  It’s a fool-proof formula for speaking success! November is also a great month to send out your holiday or…
  • Good Deeds Can Also Be Good Marketing for Lawyers

    29 Oct 2014 | 8:54 am
    There’s nothing quite like being able to market your law practice while also doing something wonderful for someone else.  Fall and winter are the perfect time to consider hosting a food or clothing drive, for example.  With the weather getting colder many people have difficulty affording weather-appropriate clothing, not to mention the added expense of heating their homes.  With the holidays coming up, many are also wondering how they will be able to purchase a few gifts for their children and other loved ones or to travel for family get-togethers. A great way to market your practice and…
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    Pam Woldow's At the Intersection

  • LPM for Associates: The View from Ground Level

    Pam Woldow & Doug Richardson
    24 Jan 2015 | 10:33 am
    We’ve all heard the time-worn joke that associates share with each other: We’re just like mushrooms — kept in the dark and buried in…fertilizer. To reality-test whether today’s associates really see their work that way, we recently  conducted several Legal Project Management and collaboration skills training workshops targeted specifically to associates. This was a novel approach, because most LPM training focuses heavily on the roles and responsibilities of partner-level participants: client-relationship partners, project managers, practice group leaders, client team leaders,…
  • The LPM Maturity Model: 5 Steps for Transforming into a Client Focused Business

    Pam Woldow & Doug Richardson
    3 Jan 2015 | 1:54 pm
    In this guest post, we are pleased to have Keith Lipman, Esq., President and Founder of Prosperoware, share his practical insights about implementing Legal Project Management. Unless you are deaf to the present realities in today’s legal marketplace, you now hear the persistent drumbeat of client-focused legal service delivery: a persistent rhythm driving you toward Legal Project Management (LPM). Clients are insisting that firms price and deliver services that fit their tolerance for risk, produce excellent results and keep the work within budget — all in the most efficient…
  • Taking the Plunge: Do You Want to Be Managing Partner?

    Pam Woldow & Doug Richardson
    13 Nov 2014 | 12:37 pm
    UPDATE: This article won the BigLaw Pick of the Week award! So you’re thinking about diving into the election for Managing Partner, eh?         You think your chances are good: you enjoy the respect of your partners, your business judgment is on a par with your legal judgment, and during your term on the Executive Committee, you came up with strategies that helped the firm navigate some rocky shoals and weather some serious storms. You’re seen as a problem-solver who can think outside the box and eschew tradition when necessary to respond to change. Yet some close…
  • “You did WHAT!?” – The Powerful Value of Providing Something for Nothing

    Pam Woldow & Doug Richardson
    7 Nov 2014 | 7:16 am
    At the risk of further confirming our reputation as heretics, let us advance what to most practicing lawyers may seem like an outrageous proposition: “Not everything in life has to be a billable event. There are times when you’ll help your cause most by providing value and not charging the client.” Full disclosure: This post was triggered by the progress reports of a group of up-and-coming partners participating in a year-long business development coaching program. All confirmed the powerful BD benefits of face-to-face time, researching all aspects of potential clients’ businesses,…
  • Straight From the Horse’s Mouth – GCs Say What They Want From Outside Firms

    Pam Woldow & Doug Richardson
    15 Oct 2014 | 3:53 pm
      We recently attended a private meeting held in Panama with the General Counsel of 35 global corporations. Given the differences in their businesses, geography, cultures and operational envelopes, one would surmise that they saw their practices, priorities and peeves quite differently.  Not so: it would be fair to say that there were more areas of concordance in their thinking as there were differences and disagreements.  Plain speaking was the order of the day. Their responses were particularly telling – and particularly outspoken – when we propounded a broad meta-question: What…
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    Idaho Criminal Defense Blog

  • The Prosecutor Has A Story - and he will spin it against you at trial!

    Chuck Peterson
    2 Jan 2015 | 3:25 pm
      By now you likely have finished listening to Serial, a podcast from the creators of This American Life, hosted by Sarah Koenig that garnered over 5 million listeners and which I last wrote about weeks ago. Time flies when you are busy. Since then I have tried a little criminal case, and been through an arbitration proceeding in an intellectual property dispute. And I am going back through Serial because there are great lessons for lawyers and defendants - actually there are lessons for Plaintiffs in personal injury cases or any other type of case. Here is the…
  • Your Story is Your Only Hope - So start listening to Serial on PBS

    Chuck Peterson
    8 Dec 2014 | 6:30 pm
     “For the last year, I’ve spent every working day trying to figure out where a high school kid was for an hour after school one day in 1999. Or, if you want to get technical about it (and apparently I do), where a high school kid was for twenty-one minutes after school one day in 1999….” And so it begins. Serial, a podcast from the creators of This American Life, hosted by Sarah Koenig. The true story is told a week at a time. It takes us through Koenig’s investigation into the disappearance and murder of Hae Min Lee, a high school senior. Her…
  • Panel Kills Public Defender Changes in Idaho - Don't Blame the Defenders!

    Chuck Peterson
    24 Nov 2014 | 6:11 pm
     From the Idaho Statesman tonight:  "Four years ago, a report from the National Legal Aid and Defender Association found that Idaho is violating its Sixth Amendment obligations to defendants. Public defenders across the state were being given too many cases, and some defendants weren't meeting their attorneys until they were in the courtroom. The report also said that defendants sometimes felt pressured to accept a plea agreement rather than go to trial." The Idaho Statesman is reporting that the legislative committee charged with making changes in our state's method of…
  • NY Times Says Idaho Dead Last at Protecting Juvenile Records

    Chuck Peterson
    20 Nov 2014 | 11:27 am
     Associate Attorney William Young is at it again: There is an article today in the New York Times discussing the issue of juvenile offenders and the importance of sealing their records from the public eye. The article examines how many states fail to protect the confidentiality of juvenile records despite data showing that “95 percent of young people enter the juvenile justice system for nonviolent crimes like theft or vandalism — behavior they typically leave behind when they move into adulthood.” The failure of states to protect this information can follow teen…
  • Fight that Ticket!

    Chuck Peterson
    7 Oct 2014 | 1:36 pm
      Peterson Lawyers associate attorney Will Young tells us to "challenge that speeding ticket! Speaking from experience, getting ticketed for speeding is not a fun experience. Seeing red and blue lights in your rearview mirror is not a good feeling. I realize speeding is not even close to the worst thing you can be accused of, it can still impact your life in many ways. Penalties for a speeding infraction include: steep fines, insurance rate hikes, and added points on your driving record. In the past, I have just paid the ticket and tried not to speed in the future. Recently I have…
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    Northern California Personal Injury Blog

  • Accident on Highway 70 after Driver Falls Asleep

    Kelly Balamuth
    13 Jan 2015 | 12:22 pm
    On January 6 at 5:40 a.m., a two-vehicle collision occurred when a 37-year-old woman fell asleep while driving her Mazda 6, allegedly crashing into the SUV in front of her. The 37-year-old driver of the Explorer then lost control, crashing his Explorer into the center divider. Both suffered only minor injuries. All drivers have a legal obligation to drive safely while looking out for the safety and well-being of others. Unfortunately, falling asleep while driving is an all too common occurrence, as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that 2.5 percent of fatal crashes…
  • Balamuth Law Spread Holiday Cheer with Brighter Beginnings

    Kelly Balamuth
    22 Dec 2014 | 9:28 am
    Balamuth Law – including Kelly Balamuth and her three kids, Grady, Piper and Truitt, – are spreading holiday cheer this year by adopting a family through Brighter Beginnings. Brighter Beginnings is an organization devoted to helping parents and children who have limited resources year round in the Contra Costa and Alameda Counties. Not only does the organization help provide food and supplies to families in need, but it also offers family healthcare services, childhood development programs, and family-strengthening education groups. This year, Balamuth Law adopted a family of five…
  • Increase in Toy Related Injuries Concerns Experienced California Injury Lawyers

    Kelly Balamuth
    16 Dec 2014 | 10:23 am
    Despite heroic attempts by federal and state governments to improve children’s toy safety and increased awareness by parents and caregivers of the risks certain toys pose, the number of children injured by defective toys or in toy-related accidents continues to climb, according to a study published recently in Clinical Pediatrics. Experienced California personal injury lawyers view the new numbers with concern.  Researchers found that between 1990 and 2011, toy-related injuries jumped from just over 120,000 per year to over 195,000 by 2011.  The injury rate also increased.  In 1990, 18.9…
  • Kelly E. Balamuth Selected to SuperLawyers For 6th Consecutive Year

    Kelly Balamuth
    10 Dec 2014 | 8:21 am
    Balamuth Law founder Kelly E. Balamuth was named one of Thomson Reuters’ “SuperLawyers” for the sixth consecutive year in 2014.  Kelly Balamuth’s legal practice involves protecting the rights and needs of clients who are injured through the negligence of others in the Oakland, California area, including Alameda and Contra Costa Counties.  Through the years, she has helped clients pursue the compensation they deserve in cases ranging from car accidents, dog bite injuries, manufacturing defects, medical malpractice, defective toys and other consumer products, birth injuries, workplace…
  • Attorney Kelly Balamuth Presents Mediation at the Contra Costa County Bar Association Seminar

    Kelly Balamuth
    8 Dec 2014 | 10:15 am
    Kelly Balamuth was pleased to sit in as part of a panel at the Contra Costa County Bar Association’s 2014 MCLE Spectacular on November 21, 2014 with Malcolm Sher, Matthew Talbot, and Denae Budde.  The two hour presentation was entitled Mediation is a Process, Not an Event and was made to a full room at the Walnut Creek Marriott. Kelly and the panel discussed their approach to pre-mediation litigation and techniques for making the most of any settlement conference. As a personal injury attorney on the panel, Kelly was able to share her experience and insight on the meditative process, from…
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    New Jersey Injury Attorney Blog

  • Protect Yourself from Winter Weather Slip and Fall Accidents in New Jersey

    5 Jan 2015 | 8:21 am
    The winter weather in New Jersey opens up the prospect of sledding, skiing, building snow forts, and other exciting adventures for the whole family. Yet a day of fun – or even a day at work – can turn into a tragedy in an instant if a slip and fall accident occurs. Slip and fall accidents can cause serious injuries, or worse, result in permanent disability or death. You can help protect yourself and others from slip and fall injuries this winter. Keep these tips in mind:
  • Fair Haven Councilman Killed in Bicycle Accident

    8 Dec 2014 | 2:04 pm
    Fair Haven Councilman Jerome Koch, 63, suffered fatal injuries when a car struck his bicycle. According to an news report, the fatal bicycle accident occurred on River Road near Elm Place in Fair Haven. He was pronounced dead the day after the crash at Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune. It is unclear what caused the crash, but it does not appear from the report that the driver will face citations for the crash. Even skilled and experienced riders can suffer fatal injuries in the event of a crash. Bicyclists are simply not provided enough protection to survive a major…
  • New Jersey Motorcyclist Killed by Deer

    4 Nov 2014 | 9:15 am
    A 36-year-old Hillsborough man was killed in a New Jersey motorcycle accident when his 2008 BMW R12 collided with a deer. According to a news report, the fatal motorcycle crash occurred near the former Gibraltar Rock Quarry entrance on County Route 601 in Montgomery Township. Officials say he was ejected from his motorcycle after colliding with a deer. He was treated at the scene and admitted in extremely critical condition in New Brunswick. Later that day, he died from his injuries. As the temperature begins to drop, we can expect an increase in the number of deer-related traffic…
  • Workers Injured in New Jersey Factory Explosion

    20 Oct 2014 | 2:09 pm
    Several people were injured at a New Jersey factory when a four-alarm blaze broke out following an explosion. According to a CBS New York news report, the factory accident occurred at Crest Foam Industries on Carol Place in Moonachie. Of the 17 employees in the factory, four were hospitalized with head injuries after the explosion. Officials worried that dangerous toxins may have been released into the air, but tests proved negative. An investigation is underway into the cause of the explosion, but officials know that workers were mixing hydrogen and oxygen to make polyurethane foam at the…
  • Teenager Killed in New Jersey Truck Accident

    13 Oct 2014 | 1:08 pm
    A 19-year-old Bridgewater man was killed in a New Jersey car accident when his 2005 Dodge Ram burst into flames after being struck by a 2015 Mack truck. According to a an Associated Press news report, the fatal truck accident occurred on Route 22 at Cramer Avenue in Green Brook. Officials say the pickup was stopped for a red light when the larger truck plowed into it. The teen's pickup burst into flames, and he was fatally injured. Whenever someone is killed in a New Jersey car accident, it must be determined who was at fault and how the crash could have been prevented. In many cases, the…
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    Loyalty Law

  • Accident At Work Statistics
    16 Jan 2015 | 8:46 am
    Skip to statistics charts. We are probably all aware of the risks associated with the type of work that we do. Chances are we’ve had the health and safety training,... The post Accident At Work Statistics appeared first on Loyalty Law.
  • Can I Make A BT Oscillator Hearing Claim?
    12 Jan 2015 | 8:50 am
    Get The Quick Answer!   BT engineers who worked for BT before the 1990s may suffer from tinnitus and hearing loss of various levels of severity. This is due to... The post Can I Make A BT Oscillator Hearing Claim? appeared first on Loyalty Law.
  • The Most Blunderful Time Of The Year
    21 Dec 2014 | 10:29 am
    As we come up to Christmas, please bear in mind that this really is the most blunderful time of year. Crowded houses, crowded pubs, sharpened knives and scalding hot grub... The post The Most Blunderful Time Of The Year appeared first on Loyalty Law.
  • Who Is At Risk From ‘Lazy Expert Syndrome’?
    18 Dec 2014 | 5:52 am
    ‘Lazy Expert Syndrome’ is a phrase coined by the people over at Riskology that essentially amounts to ‘complacency’, but their article is well worth a read for some concrete, real... The post Who Is At Risk From ‘Lazy Expert Syndrome’? appeared first on Loyalty Law.
  • Five Serious Legal Cases Trivialised By The Media
    4 Dec 2014 | 3:19 am
    It’s no secret that the media can be a bit callous in pursuit of a good story, and in law stories especially there’s often an urge to simplify and dramatise... The post Five Serious Legal Cases Trivialised By The Media appeared first on Loyalty Law.
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    Strictly Business

  • Venture Capital Term Sheet Negotiation — Part 18: Non-Disclosure and Developments Agreements

    Alexander J. Davie
    14 Jan 2015 | 1:52 pm
    This post is the eighteenth in a series giving practical advice to startups with respect to understanding and negotiating a venture capital term sheet. In the prior seventeen posts, we provided an introduction to negotiation of the term sheet and discussed binding and non-binding provisions and discussed valuation, cap tables, and the price per share, dividends on preferred stock, liquidation preferences, the conversion rights and features of preferred stock, voting rights and investor protection provisions, anti-dilution provisions, anti-dilution carve-outs and “pay to…
  • Venture Capital Term Sheet Negotiation — Part 17: Non-Competition and Non-Solicitation Agreements

    Casey W. Riggs
    18 Dec 2014 | 2:23 pm
    This post is the seventeenth in a series giving practical advice to startups with respect to understanding and negotiating a venture capital term sheet. In the prior sixteen posts, we provided an introduction to negotiation of the term sheet and discussed binding and non-binding provisions and discussed valuation, cap tables, and the price per share, dividends on preferred stock, liquidation preferences, the conversion rights and features of preferred stock, voting rights and investor protection provisions, anti-dilution provisions, anti-dilution carve-outs and “pay to play”…
  • Venture Capital Term Sheet Negotiation — Part 16: Closing Conditions and Expenses

    Alexander J. Davie
    17 Nov 2014 | 10:11 am
    This post is the sixteenth in a series giving practical advice to startups with respect to understanding and negotiating a venture capital term sheet. In the prior fifteen posts, we provided an introduction to negotiation of the term sheet and discussed binding and non-binding provisions and discussed valuation, cap tables, and the price per share, dividends on preferred stock, liquidation preferences, the conversion rights and features of preferred stock, voting rights and investor protection provisions, anti-dilution provisions, anti-dilution carve-outs and “pay to play”…
  • Venture Capital Term Sheet Negotiation — Part 15: Rights of First Refusal and Co-Sale

    Casey W. Riggs
    9 Nov 2014 | 3:05 pm
    This post is the fifteenth in a series giving practical advice to startups with respect to understanding and negotiating a venture capital term sheet. In the prior fourteen posts, we provided an introduction to negotiation of the term sheet and discussed binding and non-binding provisions and discussed valuation, cap tables, and the price per share, dividends on preferred stock, liquidation preferences, the conversion rights and features of preferred stock, voting rights and investor protection provisions, anti-dilution provisions, anti-dilution carve-outs and “pay to play”…
  • Venture Capital Term Sheet Negotiation — Part 14: Representations and Warranties

    Alexander J. Davie
    30 Oct 2014 | 2:12 pm
    This post is the fourteenth in a series giving practical advice to startups with respect to understanding and negotiating a venture capital term sheet. In the prior thirteen posts, we provided an introduction to negotiation of the term sheet and discussed binding and non-binding provisions and discussed valuation, cap tables, and the price per share, dividends on preferred stock, liquidation preferences, the conversion rights and features of preferred stock, voting rights and investor protection provisions, anti-dilution provisions, anti-dilution carve-outs and “pay to play”…
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    Arizona Criminal Law & Defense Blog

  • Coming to Super Bowl XLIX: What are the Arizona DUI Laws?

    8 Jan 2015 | 9:00 am
      Every year, cities and sports venues from all around America submit bids to host a Super Bowl. University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona was privileged to be awarded the right to host Super Bowl XLIX (49) to be played on February 1, 2015. The good news was delivered on October 11, 2011 and represents the second time this venue has been selected. If you plan on coming to the Phoenix area for the Super Bowl, we’ve put together a few places you might want to visit while you’re here on your trip. We also put together an outline of the Arizona DUI Laws which are good…
  • 2014-2015 Phoenix Holiday and East Valley DUI Task Force

    19 Dec 2014 | 9:10 am
    Many Phoenix residents are familiar with the annual Holiday DUI task force, which consists of increased police efforts to curb drinking and driving throughout metro Phoenix. Valley residents can expect heightened police surveillance on many roads, with officers pledging to be more vigilant in pulling drivers over for otherwise minor traffic infractions. This activity has real consequences; in 2012, DUI task forces arrested more than 4,000 drivers on suspicion of DUI. The 2014 DUI task force starts at Thanksgiving and runs through the New Year Holiday 2015. If you’ve been drinking and…
  • Man arrested second time for stabbing stranger in Phoenix

    14 Nov 2014 | 3:14 pm
    PHOENIX – 27-year-old Christopher Gale was arrested on Sunday for a second time on suspicion of aggravated assault and attempted first-degree murder. The incident took place at a Phoenix Walgreens store. According to police reports, the crime actually occurred in September 2013 when Gale stabbed a stranger using an eight-inch knife he had bought from a Walmart store just a few hours before the stabbing. He went to a Walgreens store about four miles away from the Walmart store, approached a woman who was shopping and stabbed her in the neck from behind. The woman started screaming and…
  • 58-year-old Phoenix man arrested for 1989 sexual assault, murder

    4 Aug 2014 | 10:28 am
    PHOENIX – 58-year-old Cudellious Love, of Phoenix, was arrested on Friday by the Phoenix police officers after they found DNA evidence that linked him to an unsolved murder and sexual assault from 1989. A report released by the Phoenix Police Department’s crime lab in January indicated a DNA match between a sample taken from the scene and a DNA profile in the state database. According to the court records released Monday, the DNA belonged to a 58-year-old man named Cudellious Love who was in prison for more than three years for a drug conviction. The DNA evidence linked Love to an…
  • Fourth of July 2014 DUI Patrols

    3 Jul 2014 | 12:57 pm
    ** If you are looking for DUI Checkpoint Do’s and Don’ts, Click Here. Summertime is one of the best times to enjoy the outdoors with family and friends. and more specifically, the Fourth of July is a time when people in Arizona head to the lake for some fun in the sun! With that comes increased risk of drinking and driving (or boating). Local law enforcement in Arizona is out looking to arrest people for DUI if they have consumed too much alcohol and think they are OK to drive a car or boat. Our suggestion is if you’ve had any alcohol, please get a ride. If you are out on…
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    Oklahoma Personal Injury Blog

  • Pedestrian Crash Deaths on the Rise Nationwide

    Maples Law Firm
    19 Jan 2015 | 8:22 am
    The rate of motor vehicle accidents nationwide has plummeted in recent years – but the rate of pedestrian deaths in car crashes is increasing, according to the most recent pedestrian death report released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). To many experienced Oklahoma pedestrian accident lawyers, the numbers signal that more must be done in order to protect those who walk on or near the nation’s streets. When a car collides with a pedestrian, severe injuries and death can easily result. In 2012, 4,743 pedestrians lost their lives and another 76,000 were injured…
  • Honda Pays Record Fines After Failing to Report Vehicle Injuries and Deaths

    Maples Law Firm
    12 Jan 2015 | 11:35 am
    Honda Motor Co. recently agreed to pay fines totaling $70 million dollars in the United States after an investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) revealed that the automaker had failed to meet its obligations under the federal Early Warning Reporting System, according to an article in the Huffington Post. A NHTSA investigation began looking into Honda’s reports to the Early Warning Reporting System, which collects information about vehicle damage, warranty claims, injuries, and deaths that may point to a hidden vehicle defect or other serious problem.  The…
  • Prevent Burn Injuries This Winter

    Maples Law Firm
    5 Jan 2015 | 1:46 pm
    Winter is one of the riskiest seasons for household fires and burn injuries from household items, according to the United States Fire Administration (USFA). Cooking-related fires top the list of household fire causes year-round, and they are a significant source of serious burn injuries, especially in young children. During the winter months, however, fires and burn injuries caused by household heating equipment also start to play a significant role in endangering Oklahoma families, as every Oklahoma City personal injury lawyer has seen. Households that use heating equipment like fireplaces,…
  • Growing Overmedication a Concern in Nursing Homes

    Maples Law Firm
    29 Dec 2014 | 12:12 am
    According to a recent NPR article, there is a serious, growing issue of overmedicating nursing home residents. There are around 300,000 seniors in nursing homes today who are receiving anti-psychotic and/or anti-anxiety medications. These medications aren’t explicitly prescribed for dementia or Alzheimer’s, rather, they’re administered to make the stress and aggression that go along with these diseases more bearable for all involved, including the nursing home staff. However, Federal Law prohibits nursing home staff from administering antipsychotic or other psychoactive drugs for their…
  • Pedestrian Fatally Injured on Interstate 40

    Maples Law Firm
    15 Dec 2014 | 12:28 am
    A 58-year-old resident of Oklahoma City was recently killed after being struck by a pick-up truck. The man was hit while he was trying to cross eastbound Interstate 40 near Morgan Road. An official on the scene described it as “pretty horrific” and “the worst he’s ever seen.” While it is unclear who was at fault at this juncture, there is no denying how dangerous a moving car can be. Without the protection of a metal frame, seat belts or airbags, pedestrians usually suffer severe injuries in a vehicle accident. While crosswalks help indicate where pedestrians are legally allowed to…
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    » Blog

  • A Year In Review: Automotive Product Recalls of 2014

    Jay Solnick
    23 Jan 2015 | 3:50 pm
    2014 was a bad year for the auto industry. An October 2014 report by the Detroit Free Press put auto recalls at nearly 60 million this year alone, and this number has since increased. Japanese auto leader Honda recently expanded an airbag recall that has already affected nearly 10 million vehicles featuring Takata-manufactured airbags. Takata, a Tokyo-based company, issued recalls spanning around a dozen auto manufacturers, most recently including Subaru and Mitsubishi vehicles. These faulty airbags have caused shrapnel-like matter to eject from in or around the airbag, causing catastrophic…
  • Buckle Up: Safety Tips to Remember After the Holidays

    Jay Solnick
    21 Jan 2015 | 3:09 pm
    “Wear your seatbelt!” Many of us can envision a family member, sibling, or even driving instructor giving us the lecture about the importance of wearing a seatbelt. Unfortunately, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 16% of drivers in the northeastern United States are still not using this life-saving safety measure, despite overwhelming evidence that seatbelts save lives. Pennsylvania Seat Belt Usage There were reports of over seven hundred car accidents and eight reported fatalities over the Christmas holiday (December 24-December 28), and according to the…
  • Understanding Damages: A Civil Approach

    Jay Solnick
    30 Dec 2014 | 9:39 am
    Damages. You hear the word used frequently in civil litigation cases, but few people truly understand what damages are. The starting place involves understanding the basis of civil law, and the differences between civil law and its criminal law counterpart. Civil Versus Criminal: Blurring Lines Many people confuse civil and criminal matters due to the fact that many civil matters have criminal components and vice versa. A criminal case is characterized such that the charges are being brought by the state, called the prosecution, in a criminal matter. The state is bringing the charges against…
  • Scope of Employment in Workers’ Compensation Cases

    Jay Solnick
    23 Dec 2014 | 11:27 am
    A Pennsylvania court recently ruled that a man was entitled to workers’ compensation benefits after his co-worker’s dog bit him while the man was on a smoke break. Employers that lawfully deny workers’ compensation benefits to their employees usually do so for one of two reasons: (1) improper or untimely filing of required workers’ compensation documents, or (2) if the employee was not acting in the scope of his employment when he was injured. The Pennsylvania court found that even though the man was taking a break, this was a foreseeable aspect of his scope of employment and the…
  • Premises Liability During the Holidays

    Jay Solnick
    17 Dec 2014 | 2:51 pm
    This year, the Black Friday failed to live up to the usual hype that surrounds the shopping “holiday.” The New York Times reported that sales through the Black Friday weekend holiday dropped 11% from the numbers recorded in 2013. The Times also estimated that 5.2% fewer people actually hit the shops, whether online or in person this year as well. Stores and Premises Liability Fewer people physically visiting stores could be due to a number of things: improved online shopping experiences, economic concerns or the fear of injury. Aggressive behavior resulting in death or serious injury has…
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    Baron & Budd, P.C. | Protecting What's Right

  • Employment Lawyer Baron and Budd Reports Oil and Gas Workers Should Be Aware of their Employment Rights Under the WARN Act

    Baron & Budd
    14 Jan 2015 | 4:21 pm
    Employment Lawyer Baron and Budd Informs Energy Sector Employees May Be Owed Statutory Damages If Not Properly Informed of Upcoming Layoffs If you or a loved one has been laid off without being given notice by an employer covered under the WARN Act, please get in touch with the national law firm of Baron and Budd as quickly as possible. Contact us online or call 1.866.844.4556. DALLAS (Jan. 14, 2015) – As oil prices drop, layoffs in the energy sector continue to be likely. The national law firm of Baron and Budd wants energy industry employees to know they may have rights under the Worker…
  • Baron and Budd Lawyer Allen Vaught Featured in Dallas Morning News Article on Wage-and-Hour Lawsuits in Texas

    Baron & Budd
    7 Jan 2015 | 1:03 pm
    Article Highlights Baron and Budd Victory in Fair Labor Standards Act Case DALLAS (January 7, 2014) – Baron and Budd lawyer Allen Vaught was featured in a December 22, 2014 article in the Dallas Morning News regarding overtime compensation lawsuits, the national law firm reports. The article highlighted a recent victory for Vaught and his team in which a federal jury found that approximately 100 truck drivers and several dispatchers were not paid for all overtime hours worked. Vaught, who has more than 15 years of experience as a litigator, manages Baron and Budd’s Employment Law…
  • Mesothelioma Lawyers Baron and Budd Highlight Young North Texas Woman’s Mesothelioma Diagnosis

    Baron & Budd
    18 Dec 2014 | 2:29 pm
    DALLAS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The case of a young North Texas woman diagnosed with mesothelioma highlights the risk of developing the disease through secondhand exposure to asbestos, the mesothelioma law firm of Baron and Budd reports. Mesothelioma is a cancer that can attack the lining of the lungs, the abdomen, and, in some cases, the heart. It is only caused by exposure to asbestos – tiny fibers that can be either inhaled or ingested. Despite the well-documented cancer risk, asbestos is still not fully banned in the United States. A December 1, 2014 article in the San Antonio…
  • Mesothelioma Law Firm Baron and Budd Reports Promise of Modified Cells to Fight Mesothelioma

    Baron & Budd
    10 Dec 2014 | 11:43 am
    White Blood Cells Kill Mesothelioma Tumors, Keep New Ones from Forming in Mice DALLAS (Dec. 9, 2014) – Researchers at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York have found that injecting mice with genetically modified white blood cells not only killed existing mesothelioma tumors, but also kept new tumors from forming, reports the mesothelioma law firm of Baron and Budd. The results of their work were published in the November 4, 2014 issue of Science Translational Medicine. According to a November 5, 2014 article in the Los Angeles Times, the injected cells successfully fought…
  • Environmental Law Firm Baron & Budd Says Decision of High Court Vindicates BP Oil Spill Plaintiffs

    Baron & Budd
    10 Dec 2014 | 11:28 am
    Baron and Budd represents companies, individuals and public entities harmed by the Gulf Oil Spill DALLAS, December 9, 2014 — Yesterday’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to deny BP’s petition to reopen the Deepwater Horizon oil spill settlement agreement that BP signed in 2010 is a victory for residents and businesses in the affected Gulf of Mexico region, according to Dallas-based national law firm Baron & Budd, P.C., a leader in environmental litigation. "The high court’s decision vindicates plaintiffs throughout the Gulf," said Baron & Budd attorney…
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    Protecting What's Right

  • Where is the FREE PRESS in the WORLDWIDE MESH MESS?

    Aaron Horton
    22 Jan 2015 | 3:43 pm
    I had intentions to start the New Year off with a blog I wrote titled, “Why I am the Grinch Who Stole Your New Year’s Resolution,” but with the abrupt ending of a two and a half week trial involving the Budke Family v. Johnson & Johnson, I thought better of it. This trial in Camden County, Missouri has been brought by the remaining family members of Mrs. Joan Budke, a wife, mother and grandmother who tragically passed away from a pulmonary emboli less than a year after implant with Johnson and Johnson’s Prolift mesh. Her demise over nine months or so is a difficult…
  • Martin Luther King Day: Let’s Not Take Our Rights for Granted

    Baron & Budd
    19 Jan 2015 | 2:00 am
    This Martin Luther King Day, we honor and give tribute to a man who fought courageously to make sure that every American has the rights they deserve. As a result of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s unrelenting work, Congress enacted the now-familiar Civil Rights Act in 1964. As a country, we are indebted to King, who was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom. It goes without saying that his quest for equality and nondiscrimination lies at the heart of our American values. But today, despite the attention given to Martin Luther King, it is easy to take those hard-won rights…
  • How To Protect Yourself… When Everyone Around You Is Sick! For Mesothelioma Patients, Families & Those Fighting Low Immunities Caused by Pharmaceutical Related Illnesses

    Baron & Budd
    9 Jan 2015 | 12:31 pm
    Everyone has to make that extra effort now and again to take care of themselves and their bodies and not get sick with common colds, flus and viruses during the winter season. For those with mesothelioma or pharmaceutical related illnesses and their family members who are under extra stress, taking care of yourself and making sure to the best of your abilities that you don’t catch that bug going around the office or your town is an especially big deal, because people fighting either as patients or caregivers just don’t have the time to add even one more thing to their growing To…
  • Truck Driver Lawsuit Featured in The Dallas Morning News Today

    Allen Vaught
    5 Jan 2015 | 1:33 pm
    Today, I am happy to announce that The Dallas Morning News has featured some of my work on behalf of approximately 100 truck drivers against Native Oilfield Services. These drivers were required to arrive at work early each morning to bring sand to fracking sites in oilfields such as the Eagle Ford and Barnett Shale of Texas. However, many times, there were no trucks available for the drivers to do their work, and the drivers were required to wait at the employer’s truck yard,  without pay, until a truck was issued to them. Similarly, those drivers experienced unpaid time while waiting…
  • Happy New Year: Here’s a Sampling of What We’re Fighting for in 2015 — From Fluoroquinolone Toxicity to Defective Takata Air Bags and Overtime Violations

    Baron & Budd
    1 Jan 2015 | 11:34 am
    New Years Day — meet New Year’s Resolutions. For those who have been injured either physically or financially by a negligent company, resolutions can be a tall order: Stand Up For Yourself, Speak Up, Do Something About It and Suffer in Quiet No More. These are actions that require tremendous strength and courage… but you’re not alone. Baron & Budd lawyers are committed to helping individuals who have been wrongfully injured — whether it be from dangerous chemicals in schools, deadly exposure to mesothelioma, the Gulf Oil Spill or faulty or defective pharmaceuticals…
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    Hardwick & Pendergast - Seattle Personal Injury and Car Accident Attorneys

  • Female Bicyclist Hurt in West Seattle Crash

    Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S.
    26 Jan 2015 | 2:58 pm
    A woman was injured in a Seattle car accident when a car struck her bicycle. According to a news report in, the bicycle accident occurred at Delridge Way and 17th SW in Seattle. The bicyclist was transported by private ambulance to a nearby hospital. In order to determine the cause of a Seattle bicycle accident, investigators may need to interview witnesses, examine the crash site, and review footage from nearby video cameras. If you are injured in a Seattle crash, it would be in your best interest to: Remain at the crash site. Call the authorities right away. Provide your…
  • Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. Win Prestigious 2014 Litigator Award™

    Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S.
    16 Jan 2015 | 8:25 am
    The Seattle personal injury attorneys at Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. are thrilled and honored to receive the 2014 Litigator Award™ in Wrongful Death, one of the most exclusive and sought-after awards in Trial Law. The Litigator Awards™ are reserved only for those Super-Star Lawyers who have successfully reached Million, Multi-Million and/or Billion Dollar settlements and verdicts, which amount to less than 1 percent of all attorneys in the nation. Unlike other competitions in the legal profession, the 2014 Award winners are judged on actual performance and dollar amounts achieved in…
  • Washington State Patrol Wants Harsher Distracted Driving Laws

    Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S.
    13 Jan 2015 | 2:19 pm
    Washington State officials were among the first in the country to recognize the dangers of distracted driving and to act upon it. Washington State passed a ban on distracted driving back in 2008. Then in 2010, distracted driving became a primary offense, which means that officers can pull you over just for driving while distracted. Now, officers are calling upon state officials to once again strengthen distracted driver laws statewide. According to a King 5 news report, the Washington State Patrol wants the distracted driving law enhanced. Under current law, drivers who are using their phone…
  • Pedestrian Killed in Renton Car Accident

    Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S.
    5 Jan 2015 | 3:11 pm
    A man was killed in a King County car accident when a car struck him in the roadway. According to a news report in The Seattle Times, the fatal pedestrian accident occurred at Southwest Sunset Boulevard and Rainier Avenue South in Renton. Officials say the man was crossing the road when a vehicle turned and struck him. He succumbed to his injuries at Harborview Medical Center. The driver remained at the scene. It is unclear if the motorist will face charges. Washington State compares favorably with other states when it comes to pedestrian safety, but fatal traffic accidents are common on the…
  • Bicyclist Injured in Seattle Crash

    Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S.
    15 Dec 2014 | 12:44 pm
    A man was injured in a Seattle car accident when a white Toyota Prius struck his bicycle. According to a KIRO-TV news report, the bicycle accident occurred on Third Avenue at James Street in downtown Seattle. Officials say the car struck his bicycle, but they have not released information regarding who may have been at fault. He was bleeding from his head when medics arrived but was able to sit up on his own. It is unclear how hurt he was or if the driver will face a citation for the accident. Bicyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as drivers of other vehicles. So, when a…
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    Farah and Farah Legal Blog

  • Florida Highway Safety Laws Have Fallen Behind

    Farah & Farah
    26 Jan 2015 | 3:13 pm
    One way that state governments can actively reduce the number of injury accidents is to pass and enforce traffic safety laws. There are a number of laws, such as seat belt laws and texting laws, which can save lives. According to the 2015 “Roadmap of State Highway Safety Laws,” from the Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, Florida ranks among the worst in the country for failing to adopt state laws that can prevent traffic accidents. Florida is one of only nine states that received a red (danger) rating in the study. Florida only has six of the 15 basic traffic laws enacted. For…
  • Florida is the Worst State to Get in a Car Accident

    Farah & Farah
    19 Jan 2015 | 12:36 pm
    A recent study by WalletHub shows that Florida is the worst state in the country to get into a traffic accident because of the number of uninsured drivers and the number of drivers with inadequate insurance coverage. If you are ever involved in an accident, hopefully you will be able to receive the financial support you need to cover your medical bills, lost wages, the cost of rehabilitation and other related damages. If, however, the person responsible for the crash has no auto insurance coverage or not enough coverage, you may not be able to get the support you need. WalletHub reviewed the…
  • Jacksonville is Dangerous for Pedestrians

    Farah & Farah
    12 Jan 2015 | 2:14 pm
    It is important to review car accident statistics to determine if certain areas are more dangerous than others. When a particular city, street or intersection has a high number of accidents, steps should be taken to make the area safer for motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians. According to a data mined by Smart Growth America, Jacksonville is in need of dramatic changes because it ranks third in the nation among the top 10 cities for pedestrians accidents. The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) recently publicized specific portions of the report to determine what areas are unsafe…
  • Gainesville Woman Charged with Robbery and Battery

    Farah & Farah
    5 Jan 2015 | 12:53 pm
    A 33-year-old Gainesville woman is facing multiple criminal charges, including robbery and aggravated battery, after allegedly grabbing cash from a store. According to The Gainesville Sun, the incident occurred at the Chevron on University Avenue in Gainesville. The clerks say the woman went into the employee area and grabbed cash that was set aside to make a deposit. When the clerks attempted to detain her, she allegedly pushed them away and threw punches. A detective arrived and detained her. She now faces charges for resisting merchant detainment, aggravated battery on a pregnant woman and…
  • Boy Killed in Dania Beach Hit-and-Run

    Farah & Farah
    22 Dec 2014 | 4:27 pm
    On December 8 two brothers were hit by a gray Toyota Tacoma as they were walking home on Bryan Road from a school basketball game in Dania Beach. The accident happened a few blocks away from their house, with the driver of the vehicle failing to stop to help. The younger of the two brothers, who was eight years old, eventually succumbed to his injuries after being on life support for over a week. The older brother remains in the hospital. Broward County Crime Stoppers are offering a $5,500 reward for any information leading to the arrest of the driver. Being hit by a 2,000 to 3,000 lb vehicle…
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    Pennsylvania Family Law Blog - The Law Offices of Sheryl R. Rentz

  • Property Division in High Asset Divorce Cases

    Sheryl Rentz
    19 Jan 2015 | 12:41 pm
    One of the most important and complicated parts of a high-asset divorce is property division. There are many assets that both parties may want, such as businesses, cars, boats, collectibles, and furniture. There are also non-tangible items that may be coveted, such as bank accounts, trusts, stock options, patents, life insurance policies, retirement plans, and copyrights. Before you can even begin to divide these assets, you must identify them specifically, determine when the assets were acquired, and give each asset a value. Identifying property is not as easy as it sounds. Make a list of…
  • Lessons to Learn from Chris Rock’s Divorce

    Sheryl Rentz
    5 Jan 2015 | 10:30 am
    All divorce proceedings can prove stressful and complex. This is especially true when at least one of the spouses has a significant amount of wealth. To prevent contention and disagreement in the event of a divorce, Chris Rock and his then fiancé had signed a prenuptial agreement. This agreement, commonly known as a “prenup,” was designed to streamline the divorce and protect Rock’s finances. However, since they were married back in 1996, his agreement has expired. It is common in a prenup involving clients with large amounts of assets to have sunset provisions. These are…
  • Top Questions to Ask a Divorce Lawyer

    Sheryl Rentz
    16 Dec 2014 | 10:12 am
    There’s no doubt that your mind is going a mile a minute if you are facing a divorce. There’s a lifetime worth of responsibilities, possessions and memories to unravel on top of the confusing, overwhelming emotions you must be experiencing. But when the time comes to choose your representative in the split, it’s important to suss out the average from the exceptional. The outcome, and your future, will depend on it. Even if this is not your first time meeting a lawyer, it’s important to ask plenty of questions during your consultation and to be prepared ahead of time. In the moment, it…
  • Managing Holiday Stress during a Divorce

    Sheryl Rentz
    9 Dec 2014 | 9:48 am
    The holidays are a major source of stress for thousands of families in Pennsylvania. In addition to an already hectic work week, parents try to fit in as much shopping, gift wrapping, traveling and quality time with the children as possible. But when parents are navigating a divorce, the typical holiday rush is more than just nerve-racking; it can be downright panic inducing. In order to help reduce the pressure and anxiety this season, remember to slow down, take a breath, and follow these simple steps. Less is more. This festive time of year often means trying to make room for everything…
  • Finding Hidden Assets During Your Divorce

    Sheryl Rentz
    24 Nov 2014 | 5:34 am
    Unfortunately, for many couples entering the divorce process, even before the official documents have been served, many spouses begin looking for ways to keep money or other assets away from the other spouse. This often means that one (or both!) spouses try to hide financial information. If you believe that your spouse is hiding assets from you at any point in the divorce, do not hesitate to speak with a knowledgeable Pennsylvania divorce lawyer. The best way to protect your rights and future well being is to evaluate what assets belong to the marriage and work to ensure that you receive your…
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    About Florida Lawyers & Attorneys

  • Vero Beach Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer

    Florida's Top Rated Attorney
    27 Jan 2015 | 4:22 am
    The Best Vero Beach Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer in Florida can be found by visiting The Best Vero Beach Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer in Florida can be found by visiting The Best Vero Beach, FL Criminal Defense Law Firm, The Legal Offices of Vero Beach Florida, is thought of one of the top ranked Florida Criminal Defense Law Teams for a reason: they get the task done. If you are in disorder and demand a high quality Law team to be behind you, then the Legal Teams of Vero Beach Florida are the ones you must meet. You will feel safer…
  • St. Petersburg Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer

    Florida's Top Rated Attorney
    27 Jan 2015 | 4:16 am
    The Best St. Petersburg Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer in Florida can be found by visiting The Best St. Petersburg Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer in Florida can be found by visiting The Best St. Petersburg, FL Criminal Defense Legal Firm, The Law Offices of St. Petersburg Florida, is confirmed to be one of the leading ranked Florida Criminal Defense Legal Firms for good sense: they get the business done. Whenever you are in disorder and require a high caliber Law team to be behind you, then the Law Offices of St. Petersburg Florida are the…
  • Rosemary M. Flannery, 93, Montco lawyer –

    Lawyer - Google News
    27 Jan 2015 | 12:07 am
    Rosemary M. Flannery, 93, Montco lawyerPhilly.comRosemary McCarron Flannery, 93, of Haverford and Avalon, N.J., a former Inquirer sports writer and one of the first women to graduate from Villanova Law School, died Friday, Jan. 23, of an aneurysm at Bryn Mawr Hospital. Mrs. Flannery blazed a trail …
  • Belleair Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer

    Florida's Top Rated Attorney
    27 Jan 2015 | 12:06 am
    The Best Belleair Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer in Florida can be found by visiting The Best Belleair Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer in Florida can be found by visiting The Legal Firm of Belleair Florida are by far the best legal offices because they get the best results time and time again. Clients totally agree that this Belleair Law firm and Associates are the lawyers to take on your side when you have a case the looks like a loser. These attorneys have a enormous track record of wins under their belt and are sure to get the best…
  • No environmental lawyer for Dunmore councill, for now – Scranton Times-Tribune

    Lawyer - Google News
    26 Jan 2015 | 11:54 pm
    No environmental lawyer for Dunmore councill, for nowScranton Times-TribuneDUNMORE — Borough Councilman Timothy Burke on Monday formally proposed the borough hire an environmental lawyer to fight Keystone Sanitary Landfill's expansion plan with money the group set aside for landfill-related issues. But his proposal didn't …
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    MacGregor & Collins, LLP Law Blog

  • Man Arrested for Auto Theft In Anaheim Following High-Speed Pursuit

    Randy Collins
    20 Jan 2015 | 12:22 pm
    Anaheim sees nearly 2,000 auto theft arrests annually, so it comes as no surprise to local residents when a nine minute car chase broke out close to home on Friday evening. Anaheim police pursued 24 year old Anaheim resident, Salvador Guillen, after spotting him driving an allegedly stolen car in the vicinity of Ball Road and Euclid Street at approximately 9 p.m. A chase ensued leading police further down Euclid Street and into Garden Grove. In Garden Grove Anaheim police initiated a failed attempt at stopping the stolen car and its driver. Fleeing the scene, Guillen raced back through his…
  • Orange County Teacher Arrested for Alleged Child Molestation

    Randy Collins
    11 Jan 2015 | 11:14 pm
    Fullerton Police arrested Christopher Millet, 36, on Wednesday after allegations that he sexually assaulted a young girl. Millet is a seventh grade science teacher at Valadez Middle School in Placentia. He is being charged on multiple offenses of sexual misconduct with a minor occurring between August and December within Fullerton city limits. Currently these allegations are indicating one victim was involved. To date, there is no substantial evidence indicating that there are any victims through Millet’s employment at the middle school. Authorities involved have confirmed that Millett was…
  • Costa Mesa Man Arrested For Selling Fraudulent Disneyland Tickets

    Randy Collins
    11 Jan 2015 | 10:59 pm
    At 11:15 am, on Tuesday, December 30, a 26 year old man named Jonathan Olsen was arrested in Costa Mesa, California, for selling fake tickets to Disneyland through social media. Unfortunately, in spite of all the restrictions and precautions that have been taken since the start of social networks that serve as a peer-to-peer market, such as Craigslist and eBay, there are still many who still end up being victims, unknowingly. Olsen was caught thanks to a woman who bought two tickets from him, which he had posted in Craigslist for $160, a great deal compared to the Disneyland price of $210 per…
  • Disneyland Employee Accused Of Sexually Assaulting Minors

    Randy Collins
    4 Jan 2015 | 9:57 pm
    Jail records indicate that a Disneyland worker who has been accused of the sexual assault of multiple children will get to have his day in court this week. The case got started on December 19, when it was reported that a man, later revealed as Goodman, was allegedly masturbating while in the presence of children. David Goodman, who is currently residing in Banning, was subsequently placed under arrest on December 19 by the San Bernardino Police Department. The 21-year-old Goodman is alleged to have masturbated in the presence of two young Yucaipa boys. In addition, Goodman has also been…
  • Anaheim Hills Burglar Shot in Back By Homeowner

    Randy Collins
    2 Jan 2015 | 11:52 am
    The community is divided over the justification of shooting a burglar, in the back, after he exited the residence. The shooting occurred 100 feet away from the Anaheim Hills home of the intrusion. It all happened in the evening when the suspect attempted to break and enter a home. That attempt was unsuccessful for reasons that are unclear. Immediately following the spoiled first attempt he allegedly proceeded to burglarize the residence where again, the suspected burglar allegedly struck the homeowner across the face with a wrench. At that time the homeowner then retreated to his bedroom on…
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    PA Law Blogs

  • Philadelphia Firm Filing Stryker Hip Lawsuits

    PA Law Blogs
    23 Jan 2015 | 6:48 am
    The Philadelphia Personal Injury Law Firm Anapol Schwartz will continue to file Stryker Hip Lawsuits after the 2014 Settlement. Firm Shareholder Thomas Anapol was instrumental in negotiating the November 2014 Stryker Hip replacement lawsuit settlement. Anapol, along with three other lawyers, reached an agreement with Stryker on November 4, 2014 granting each claimant a $300,000 base award. Additional compensation will be provided to plaintiffs who suffered further complications. Anapol will continue to pursue Stryker hip lawsuits on behalf of Rejuvenate and ABG II recipients not included in…
  • Flu Vaccine Only 23 Percent Effective

    Anapol Schwartz
    16 Jan 2015 | 6:47 am
    The 2014-2015 flu season is in full force.  It has been a season because this year’s flu vaccine is only 23 percent effective, according to the Associated Press. The vaccine was prepared to combat a strain of the H3N2 virus, which mutated shortly after the vaccination was produced. The shot does not protect against the mutated virus. The flu vaccine may not protect against the mutated virus, but doctors and vaccine injury lawyers are still advocating on behalf of the vaccine. “It’s still worth doing because it’s the best way to protect against the flu – 33 percent means that in a…
  • Vaccine Court Awards $1.5 Million for GBS Flu Shot Injuries

    Anapol Schwartz
    12 Jan 2015 | 8:15 am
    The National Vaccine Court awarded a $1.5 million settlement in December 2014 to a Pennsylvania woman who developed Guillain-Barré syndrome after receiving a flu vaccine. Lebanon resident Wendy Lister received a flu vaccine in October 2011.  Two weeks later she was admitted to Good Samaritan Hospital with tingling, numbness, weakness and burning sensations in her upper and lower extremities. She was diagnosed with Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) and severe ataxia. List was hospitalized for six weeks for Guillain-Barré flu shot injuries. GBS is a rare autoimmune in which the immune system…
  • Pennsylvania Lawyers File DePuy Pinnacle Lawsuit Claims

    Anapol Schwartz
    9 Jan 2015 | 8:10 am
    The Pennsylvania Personal Injury Lawyers at Anapol Schwartz are filing claims on behalf of patients injured by failed metal-on-metal Pinnacle hip implants. Anapol Schwartz clients have a dedicated team of attorneys committed to seeking justice.  The team approach allows the lawyers to keep the client informed, pay attention to every detail and prepare for any legal circumstance. Shareholder Tom Anapol served on the Discovery Committee in the DePuy ASR Multidistrict Litigation, Co-lead counsel for the Biomet M2a Magnum Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation and served on the Plaintiff’s…
  • Pediatric Medication Mistakes Occur at Alarming Rate

    Anapol Schwartz
    8 Jan 2015 | 7:55 am
    A medication error involving a child occurs every eight minutes, according to the Huffington Post. The majority of the incidents were not life-threatening, but medication errors are a major health concern. “This isn’t just a couple of cases, there are tens of thousands of errors occurring every year,” said Henry Spiller, director of the Central Ohio Poison Center. Spiller’s study, published in a recent issue of Pediatrics, focused on unintentional medication errors involving children under the age of 6 that occurred outside a hospital or physician’s office. The study classified an…
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    IMC Law Group

  • Top 10 NJ Bankruptcy Myths Debunked

    21 Jan 2015 | 7:34 am
    by: Jonathan Goldsmith Cohen Be sure to visit our Google Plus Page. Top 10 NJ Bankruptcy Myths Debunked 1. Bankruptcy Myth or Reality? Myth: All debts are wiped out in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. Reality: Not quite but most debt can be wiped out. What cannot be discharged in bankruptcy? Child support and alimony, student loans, restitution for a criminal act, and debts incurred as the result of fraud. 2. Bankruptcy Myth or Reality? Myth: Everyone will know that I have filed for bankruptcy. Reality: No! Your friends, neighbors, relatives, and employer will not know that you have filed for bankruptcy…
  • Repeat Bankruptcy Filings

    16 Dec 2014 | 11:25 am
    Repeat Filings: How Often Can You file, or Re-File, Bankruptcy? by: Jonathan Goldsmith Cohen Be sure to visit our Google Plus Page.  How Often Can You File Bankruptcy? If you have filed for bankruptcy before and received a discharge then the bankruptcy code specifies when you can file bankruptcy again and obtain a discharge. If you did not get a discharge in your previous bankruptcy case, then you can file for bankruptcy again without consideration of the time limits described below. You can file for bankruptcy twice or even three times, even if you have received a discharge. The key is that…
  • How To Get An Ex‐Spouses Name Off of A Mortgage

    2 Dec 2014 | 1:18 pm
    DIVORCED?  DIVORCING? HOW  TO  GET  YOUR  NAME  OR  YOUR  EX’S  NAME  OFF   OF  A HOME  MORTGAGE by: Jonathan Goldsmith Cohen Be sure to visit our Google Plus Page. According  to  the  CDC,  the  most  recent  Census  data  from  2011  states  that  45%  of   marriages  in  the  United  States  end  in  divorce.    Today,  December  2,  2014  the  New   York  Times  said  that  this  number  is  holding  steady  or  going  down  slightly,  but  not   increasing.  As  of  April  2014,  Bloomberg  News  reported  that  65%…
  • Debt Collection Post Bankruptcy

    14 Nov 2014 | 3:13 pm
    DEBT COLLECTION POST BANKRUPTCY DISCHARGE AND YOUR CREDIT REPORT This week, I read a great New York Times article entitled “Debts Canceled by Bankruptcy Still Mar Consumer Credit Scores.”  The article discusses illegal debt collection, something that I come across regularly in in my practice. In short, after a bankruptcy discharge from a personal Chapter 7 Bankruptcy or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy, no debt collector can demand payment from you for debts. The bankruptcy discharge…
  • 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…
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    SEC Lawyers Blog

  • Sonn|Erez Investigating Claims Involving Arque Capital, Ltd., and GWG Renewable Debentures

    23 Jan 2015 | 11:17 am
    Sonn|Erez is investigating claims regarding Arque Capital, Ltd. (CRD #121192, Scottsdale, AZ) and sales of GWG Renewable Debentures. Arque Capital recently submitted an AWC in which the firm was censured and fined $50,000. See FINRA Case #2012033994701. FINRA found that Arque Capital sold a total of approximately $3.53 million in an alternative investment known as GWG Renewable Secured Debentures to approximately 40 investors while providing investors with the company's sales kit, which included a brochure with misleading statements. FINRA found that as the managing broker-dealer for the…
  • SEC Charges Elm Tree Investment Adviser and Manager in Fort Lauderdale, Florida-Based Fraud

    21 Jan 2015 | 4:39 pm
    The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced fraud charges and an asset freeze against Fort Lauderdale, Florida-based investment advisory firm, its manager, and three related funds in a scheme that raised more than $17 million since November 2013. In a complaint filed last in the Southern District of Florida, the SEC charges that Elm Tree Investment Advisors LLC, its founder and manager, Frederic Elm, and Elm Tree Investment Fund LP, Elm Tree "e"Conomy Fund LP, and Elm Tree Motion Opportunity LP with violating anti-fraud provisions of federal securities laws and SEC anti-fraud…
  • FINRA Cautions Investors Regarding E-Cigarette Stock Scams

    19 Jan 2015 | 9:22 am
    FINRA recently issued an Investor Alert, "E-Cigarette Stock Scams: New Smoking Technology Could Light Up Pump-and-Dump Fraud." In the Alert, FINRA warns investors of aggressive promotions advertising stocks that allegedly capitalize on the popularity of the e-cigarette and vaporizer market. FINRA's Alert follows the Securities and Exchange Commission's recent trading suspension for a company that purported to make disposable electronic cigarettes because of concerns about manipulative activity related to the company's common stock. FINRA urges investors who receive an offer that contains…
  • Sample Practices that Create Firm Liability for Customer Investment Losses

    9 Jan 2015 | 7:31 am
    Securities firms and brokers can't always "blame it on the market" when it comes to investor losses. In addition to state and federal securities laws, FINRA rules impose obligations upon securities firms and brokers. In particular, FINRA rules require that brokers observe high standards of commercial honor and just and equitable principles of trade. The FINRA rules also prohibit any manipulative, deceptive, or fraudulent actions (FINRA Rules 2010 and 2020, formerly NASD Rules 2110 and 2120). Further, securities firms are responsible for training and supervising their brokers, investigating…
  • Sonn|Erez Investigating Claims Involving Former Raymond James Broker Jo Ellen Fisher

    8 Jan 2015 | 6:33 am
    Sonn|Erez is investigating claims regarding Jo Ellen Fisher (CRD #3047985, Gallipolis, Ohio). Fisher recently submitted an Offer of Settlement in which she was barred from association with any FINRA member in any capacity. See FINRA Case #2014041208401. Fisher was registered with Raymond James Financial Services, Inc., from January 2010 until her termination in May 2014. The Form U5 filed by Raymond James with FINRA to terminate Fisher's registration stated that the reason for the termination was that Fisher "was terminated due to intentional violation of company policy with respect to…
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    New York & New Jersey Consumer Law Blog

  • 2014, the Year that Was: NJ Commercial Tenant Finally "Gets with the Program"

    9 Jan 2015 | 4:26 am
    A NJ commercial landlord-tenant relationship can be challenging to manage. A commercial landlord must balance the benefit of having a rent paying tenant in a space that can be difficult to rent with the realities of the tenant's behavior. In 2014, the Firm confronted this scenario: Pursue an eviction matter far enough to convince a commercial tenant to change his behavior while preserving the landlord-tenant relationship and rent payments to the Landlord.
  • 2014, the Year that Was: NJ Eviction of a Subetter Claiming to be a Co-Tenant

    2 Jan 2015 | 12:37 pm
    A residential landlord client received financing for his building from the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency. In exchange for this financing, Landlord had to maintain a certain amount of low-income units in the building. This financing agreement serves the noble purpose of diversifying buildings, neighborhoods and cities. It has the added virtue of being successful. Unfortunately, it is subject to abuse. In this case, the tenant on the lease did not live in her low income unit. Instead, she lived far out of state and sublet her unit to the highest bidder. This conduct violated…
  • 2014, the Year that Was: A 5 Part Review of Successful NJ Landlord-Tenant Cases

    2 Jan 2015 | 12:34 pm
    2014 was a busy year for the Firm on the landlord side of the ledger. Some particularly notable NJ landlord-tenant cases include (1) a successful eviction in connection with a tenant's refusal to cooperate with the Landlord's lease (required by the NJ Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency); (2) A chronically difficult commercial tenant's total acquiescence to the Landlord's demands minutes before trial; (3) A successful defense of a tenant's illegal apartment claim against a landlord; (4) An eviction of a horrid with horrific behavior for damage to the apartment and (5) a trial judgment in…
  • Finder's Fees, Pet Fees and Damage Fees: A Landlord's 'Right' to Collect Fees as Rent

    29 Dec 2014 | 6:45 am
    Many New Jersey landlords require that tenants pay extra money for certain "extra" rights. For example, a landlord may require a pet fee in exchange for the right to keep a pet on the property. Some landlords charge tenants "finder's fees" for the right to rent an apartment (even though no real estate brokers are involved). Tenants often bristle at paying these extra fees, especially when a lease is renewed. This raises the question: Can a tenant be evicted for failure to pay additional fees?
  • NJ Eviction for Late Payments: There's More to "Habitual" Than Meets the Eye

    5 Nov 2014 | 3:38 am
    Late payment of rent is one of the more common landlord complaints. Late-paying tenants interfere with their landlord's bottom line and create an atmosphere of disrespect toward the landlord's investment. The NJ Anti-Eviction Act allows a Landlord to evict a tenant for "habitual late payment of rent" when the tenant "after written notice to cease, has habitually and without legal justification failed to pay rent which is due and owing." N.J.S.A. 2A:18-61.1(j). Although the law seems clear, it's easy to say a tenant pays rent habitually late; evicting for late payments is more difficult…
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    Broward Injury Lawyer Blog

  • South Florida Judge: Punitive Damages Ok'd in Paralyzing Crash Case

    20 Jan 2015 | 12:47 pm
    A judge overseeing the product liability case against a vehicle manufacturer whose alleged acceleration problems led to a paralyzing crash has approved a plaintiff request to seek punitive damages. What that means is the former University of Central Florida student whose injuries rendered him quadriplegic could potentially receive somewhere between $135 million to $180 million if he's successful in his case. That's roughly 10 times what he could have received had Palm Beach Circuit Court Judge Meenu Sasser not approved the request. The man now requires around-the-clock care - and will for the…
  • New Florida Child Car Seat Law in Effect Jan. 1, 2015

    14 Jan 2015 | 12:51 pm
    Parents of 4- and 5-year-old children, take note: As of Jan. 1, 2015, you are in violation of the law if your child is in a moving motor vehicle without being strapped to a child car seat or booster seat. A new child car seat law took effect at the start of the year, with the aim of reducing the number of child injuries and fatalities attributed to car accidents. The Florida Highway Patrol reported according to preliminary figures, five children died and another 145 were injured in wrecks due to improper or no child safety restraints last year.
  • Star Indemnity v. Morris - Boating Injury Prompts Nonjoinder Insurance Dispute

    8 Jan 2015 | 12:07 pm
    The Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission reports an average of 420 boating injuries every year in Florida, ranging from cuts and bruises to broken bones and serious head, neck and spinal injuries. While many news reports focus on injuries suffered by individuals who fall or are tossed overboard, those who suffer falls inside the vessel may sustain equally severe trauma. Depending on the circumstances, there may be grounds to pursue a personal injury lawsuit against the owner and/or operator of the vessel in which the injury occurred. One such case recently before Florida's Third…
  • Holiday Shopping May Give Rise to Premises Liability Claims

    24 Dec 2014 | 8:35 am
    While it's true an increasing number of people are carrying out their holiday shopping online, there are still scores of people who venture out to the brick-and-motor stores to purchase their goods. On Black Friday 2014, retailers reported holiday shopping at physical stores topped $50.9 billion. That was down about 11 percent from $57.4 billion a year ago, but it's still significant. When stores invite people onto their property to shop and engage in transactions, they also owe a responsibility to ensure those guests are safe. In legal terms, these patrons are referred to as "business…
  • Holidays Increase Car Accident Risk

    20 Dec 2014 | 8:15 am
    On Christmas Eve, 2013, a mother and grandmother anxiously waited for a 9-year-old girl to arrive. Her father was to bring her over, and they planned to make gingerbread houses and set out cookies for Santa. But the little girl never made it. Her father, 27, was drunk, lost control of the vehicle and smashed into a tree. The roof of the vehicle was crushed. It took rescue crews 45 minutes to extricate him from the vehicle. It was only then they realized the 9-year-old girl in the back seat. She was pronounced dead at the scene. Her father's blood-alcohol content was 0.137 percent - well above…
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    Marketing Attorney Blog

  • LPT: (Women) Progressing into Partnership--Road Rules for a New Role

    6 Jan 2015 | 11:16 am
    The December 2014 issue of Law Practice Today (LPT) is dedicated to the theme of New Partners, in advance of the annual ABA New Partners Institute in Washington, DC on April 17th. Amy Drushal of Trenam Kemker (a speaker for the NPI and co-chair of the first NP conference a few years back) served as issue editor. I will also be presenting at NPI (and has served on the planning committee each year) on the topic of business development. However, at the recent ABA Women Rainmakers Mid-Career Workshop, I spoke on the topic of women progressing into partnership. While not talking, I took copious…
  • LP Magazine - Embracing the Changing Face of PR (and a tribute to Lou Corletto)

    6 Jan 2015 | 10:20 am
    In the November/December 2014 issue of the ABA's Law Practice magazine, I write about Embracing the Changing Face of PR. In the column, I write about how much the concept of PR has changed with time and technology. While I still believe that PR is a significant part of business development, the way you utilize it and how it works has little resemblance to the way that it functioned a decade or two ago. With print deadlines for Law Practice coming about four months prior to publication, it was summertime when I sat down to write this piece. What the column does not tell you is why I chose this…
  • ABA Women Rainmakers Mid-Career Workshop: Progressing into Partner--Road Rules

    3 Oct 2014 | 8:50 am
    The biannual ABA Women Rainmakers Mid-Career Workshop will take place November 7-8, 2014 at The US Grant hotel in San Diego, California. I will be speaking on a panel entitled "Progressing into Partner--Road Rules," with an esteemed faculty that includes Rori Goldman of Hill Fulwider, Ali Sylvia of Plews Shadley Racher & Braun and Law Practice Division chair Bob Young of English Lucas Priest & Owsley. I often remark to people that as a summer associate at Bernstein Shur in Portland, Maine, I quickly realized that my personality and career goals did not equate to a likelihood of becoming a…
  • 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…
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    Dallas Divorce Law Blog

  • How is My Retirement Divided After a Divorce in Dallas, Texas?

    Michelle O'Neil
    15 Jan 2015 | 6:02 am
    When going through a divorce in Dallas, Texas, it is important to gather all the information you can regarding your retirement accounts such as the start date, the most recent statement and the plan administrator’s contact information. Any retirement acquired during the marriage is community property and is thus divisible by the Court. When it comes to dividing a retirement account such as a 401K or a pension, extra steps are required in addition to the final divorce decree dividing such accounts. In order to divide a 401k or Pension, an additional order called a Qualified Domestic…
  • Real estate in a Texas divorce – What do you need to know?

    Michelle O'Neil
    6 Jan 2015 | 6:15 am
    This is a reprisal of a blog post I wrote two years ago about real estate valuation and division in a Texas divorce.  The points here still ring true today. Hat tip to Jeff Landers’  (@bedrock_divorce) Personal Finance Column on for his article about real estate in divorce. He had seven points that he believes divorcing women need to know about real estate and real estate appraisals. I actually think that his point is relevant whether you are a man or a woman – anyone going through divorce that has real estate needs to be aware of how real estate is handled, especially in…
  • Divorce in the New Year Protecting Your Business

    Michelle O'Neil
    2 Jan 2015 | 6:08 am
    January is the month of renewal – closing the door on the negativity of the prior year and planning for the challenges of the new year. Many commit to weight loss, exercise, or stopping smoking at the start of a new year as an opportunity to make improvements in their lives. On the other hand, some people use the beginning of a new year to make new personal beginnings, such as ending their marriage. Planning for a divorce and new life may seem daunting. Not knowing what to expect can be scary and frustrating. In a Texas divorce, specific requirements must be met before someone will even be…
  • What to look for in hiring a Texas divorce attorney

    Michelle O'Neil
    30 Dec 2014 | 5:49 am
    Dallas divorce lawyer Michelle May O’Neil explains what she thinks a person should look for in hiring a divorce attorney  (HINT:  good communication):    
  • Reasons not to file a joint tax return during a Texas divorce

    Michelle O'Neil
    23 Dec 2014 | 6:00 am
    Texas marital property law is different than most other states because it is based on a scheme of community property. In dealing with filing of tax returns, this difference can cause a significant impact on divorcing spouses. In community property states, each spouse, if filing separately, reports one half of the other spouse’s community income, but the tax liability on each return is still determined separately. Each spouse who files separately pays tax on one half of his or her spouse’s community income. Then, each spouse may have separately property income and deductions as…
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    Massachusetts Drug Injury Lawyers Blog

  • Lipitor Injury Lawsuits Against Pfizer Blame the Drug for Diabetes

    9 Jan 2015 | 8:33 pm
    More women are continuing to come forward, accusing pharmaceutical company Pfizer of not giving them proper warning that taking cholesterol drug Lipitor might cause them to develop type 2 diabetes. In their Lipitor diabetes lawsuits, the plaintiffs claims that the drug manufacturer was aware of these side effects but did not act to make sure that the public knew about them, too It wasn’t until 2012—six years after Lipitor entered the market—that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration demanded that manufacturers of drugs that lower cholesterol, also known as statins, modify their labeling…
  • Consolidation of Xarelto Injury Lawsuits Gets Opposition from Bayer, Johnson & Johnson

    5 Dec 2014 | 6:03 pm
    Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) and Bayer AG (BAYN) are combatting efforts to consolidate Xarelto injury lawsuits filed by plaintiffs who claim that the blood thinner caused patients to suffer fatal bleeds. Bayer makes the medication, and J & J owns the rights to the drug in the United States. Some 65 fatalities are being blamed on the drug, which does not have an antidote. Some patients say that they began to bleed internally and so profusely that they ended up going to the hospital. The plaintiffs contend that the defendants played down the risks involved with taking Xarelto. They are accusing the…
  • Hundreds of Risperdal Lawsuits Blame Drug For Causing Gynecomastia in Males

    18 Nov 2014 | 9:33 pm
    The number of Risperdal lawsuits continues to grow, with many of the plaintiffs blaming the drug for causing gynecomastia, which is male breast growth. Janssen Pharmaceuticals and Johnson & Johnson are accused of hiding the serious health risks involved with taking Risperdal and improperly marketing the drug for uses that are considered “off-label" for kids. Janssen is a J & J unit. In Massachusetts, please contact our Boston Risperdal injury lawyers if you think that you or your child suffered serious side effects from taking this medication. The drug, launched in the United States in the…
  • Stryker Settles Hip Implant Lawsuits for $1.43 Billion

    7 Nov 2014 | 11:33 am
    Stryker, a company that makes artificial hip implants, has reached a settlement to resolve thousands of products liability lawsuits over the now-recalled medical devices. The deal is expected to cost the manufacturer approximately $1.43 billion. The agreement covers patients who were implanted with the ABG II Modular-Neck or the Rejuvenate Modular-Neck and had to undergo another procedure to have the hip implant replaced. Both models were recalled in 2012 in the wake of growing patient complaints of corrosion and other problems. According to the plaintiffs, Stryker sold the faulty implants,…
  • Paxil Birth Defect Lawsuit Is Sent Back to State Court

    13 Oct 2014 | 4:39 pm
    The United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit has ordered that a drug defect lawsuit against GlaxoSmithKline LLC over its Paxil antidepressant medication be sent back to a state court. The three-judge panel ruled that the second removal to federal court was not timely. They said that Pennsylvania’s Eastern District Court made a mistake when it denied the plaintiffs motion to remand. The Paxil birth defect lawsuit was brought by Sallee Miller and her child. They claim that the boy was born with congenital defects because Miller took the SSRI antidepressant while she was expecting.
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    New York Real Estate Lawyers Blog

  • Legal Issues Relating to Subtenants in New York State

    8 Jan 2015 | 7:37 am
    First, we would like to wish all followers of our blog a happy and healthy 2015. We look forward to continued successful legal outcomes for all of our clients in the New Year. Our copy of Black's law dictionary defines a subtenant as "one who leases all or part of the rented premises from the original lessee for a term less than that held by the latter." What this means is that, ordinarily, a tenant rents premises from a landlord, who is usually the owner of the property. The tenant may, in turn, rent her interest as a lessee to another party. That other party is generally known as a…
  • An Estate Dispute Involving the Fine Line between Lent or Gifted Artwork and Bequests Under a Will

    5 Dec 2014 | 5:18 am
    Maurice Sendak was a beloved children's book author and illustrator whose death two years ago has raised multiple issues to be discussed in this blog post. During his life, he had a close professional affiliation with the Rosenbach Museum and Library in Philadelphia, whereby he lent a vast majority of his books and illustrations for viewing by the general public. He also had a caretaker who managed his personal affairs for decades and was very knowledgeable about his preferences. Mr. Sendak's Will provided that his caretaker would be one of three executors. It also left some valuable original…
  • New Court Ruling in New York Relating to Disputes over Religious Institutions

    18 Nov 2014 | 8:28 am
    A recent case decided by a New York Appellate Court relates to a dispute over governing and control of a Buddhist Temple. To summarize, the Master of the Temple, Mew Fung Chen, excommunicated 517 members over a dispute relating to control of the Temple, which had locations in both Brooklyn and Manhattan. At a special meeting, the Board of the Temple voted to close the Manhattan Temple and excommunicate the followers of an alleged "rogue monk," Master Ming Tung. Ming Tung's followers constituted a majority of the congregation at the time of the excommunication. Ming Tung filed a lawsuit in…
  • How to Stage a Takeover of Your Coop or Condo Board

    7 Nov 2014 | 5:56 am
    Board members of cooperative and condominium buildings are hard working volunteers who are subject to what may be undeserved criticism. In other cases, a board may be treating a particular unit owner unfairly or there may be a general sense among neighbors that the board is doing a poor job. Our firm receives inquiries from such unit owners, either on their own behalf or as representatives of a group of unit owners that are "out of power," as to our recommendations. If efforts to influence existing board members continue to be unsuccessful, our attorneys will discuss the consideration of a…
  • Happy Halloween: Haunted Houses, Zombie Houses, Ghosts and Other Scary Things

    31 Oct 2014 | 5:19 am
    Even Halloween gives rise to legal issues that may pertain to our blog readers. This blog post will address haunted houses, zombie houses, ghosts and other scary situations from a legal perspective. Unfortunately, a crime, suicide or other unpleasant event may have happened in a house prior to sale. Such a house may be considered to be "haunted". Does New York law require disclosure that the house is haunted to a potential buyer? The answer is no. New York is a caveat emptor state, meaning "let the buyer beware". Psychological issues do not require disclosure. It is the buyer's responsibility…
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    Wisconsin Probate & Estate Planning Blog

  • Avoid Estate Planning Mistakes to Protect Your Loved Ones

    Krause Donovan Estate Law Partners
    22 Jan 2015 | 8:00 am
    Avoid Estate Planning Mistakes to Protect Your Loved Ones No one likes to think about the end of his or her life; however, it is something that we all must face. In part, we do not want to think about the loved ones that we are leaving behind when it is our time say goodbye. It is because of your loved ones that you should think about estate planning. Estate planning protects your loved ones during a time when they are emotional and may not be thinking clearly. By taking steps now to ensure that your estate planning is up-to-date and includes all of the necessary estate planning tools, you…
  • Looking Back… and Forward: How To Go About Giving Your Estate Plan a Year-End Review

    Krause Donovan Estate Law Partners
    1 Dec 2014 | 4:02 am
    December 31 is quickly approaching, and many people use this time as an opportunity to reflect on the year that is nearly complete. These reflections may include new additions, losses, accomplishments or struggles. One way, though, in which your year-end reflections can provide significant value is by reviewing those changes in your life that have potential impacts on your estate plan, and ensuring that your plan is current, reflecting your life and goals as they now exist. If it has been more than three years, we recommend that you undertake a review of your plan. Perhaps you’ve…
  • A Brief Primer on Special Needs Planning

    Krause Donovan Estate Law Partners
    3 Nov 2014 | 10:38 am
    Special Needs Planning is an area that will likely apply to you or someone close to you: planning for a loved one with special needs. We will look at the increasing need for this planning; the decrease in government benefits; the concerns families have about providing for their loved ones; whether it is worth protecting government benefits; and planning tips to help you provide for and protect your loved one for as long as he or she lives. The Increasing need for special needs care and planning. Chances are there is or will be someone in your family (child, grandchild, nephew, niece, parent,…
  • An Introduction to Asset Protection Planning

    Krause Donovan Estate Law Partners
    1 Oct 2014 | 9:07 am
    Almost everyone knows someone who had a problem and lost everything. Claims can, for example, allege professional liability, responsibility for a car accident, or unpaid creditors. Whether meritorious or not, defense can be enormously costly. With our litigious society, with limited risk for those making liability claims, asset protection planning has become required for many and highly desirable for many more. My goal in writing this post is to provide an introduction to asset protection planning (what it is, types of risk, when to plan, what to expect in the planning process, and levels of…
  • Should I Write My Own Will?

    Krause Donovan Estate Law Partners
    2 Sep 2014 | 2:02 pm
    I’m sure you have heard this less than eloquent phrase before – “Garbage in, garbage out.” The phrase is typically used in computer programming and scientific research. Unfortunately, it also applies to the law, legal documents, and writing your own Will. What’s Wrong With Writing Your Own Estate Plan? Legally, you have the right to draft your own documents; however, that doesn’t mean you have the right to have them actually work. Do-it-yourselfers accidentally disinherit children, fail to protect assets from lawsuits, trigger probate, invite court interference, give assets…
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    Tennessee Divorce Lawyer Blog

  • T.C.A. § 36-6-106(a)(8) Creates Uncertainty For Parents and Their Psychotherapists

    2 Jan 2015 | 6:45 pm
    In 2013, Senator Mae Beavers (R - Mt. Juilet) explained on the floor of the Senate her reasoning behind S.B. 0028, a bill that purported to amend various sections of the T.C.A. relative to consideration of mental health care records of a parent in child custody cases. Senator Beavers explained that she had a friend who had a sister-in-law going through a custody case. The woman had presented herself at Vanderbilt University Hospital with a tube of toothpaste, and requested that they inspect it for poison. When they refused, the woman declared that her husband was trying to poison her, accused…
  • In re Lyric J.: Will Tennessee Supreme Court Weigh In On The Rights of Putative Biological Fathers?

    28 Dec 2014 | 12:13 pm
    The American legal system views the relationship between parent and child as sacrosanct, only to be severed through a knowing, voluntary relinquishment by the parent or through a formal court proceeding known as a termination of parental rights (TPR). TPR fundamentally affects the relationship between parent and child. In effect, TPR is a death sentence for the parent-child relationship.
  • The "Maximum Participation Possible" Provision in T.C.A. § 36-6-106(a): a Step Toward Equal and Fair Parenting Time Or Simply a Politically Correct Policy Statement?

    19 Dec 2014 | 11:58 am
    Between 2009 - 2011, the Tennessee General Assembly repeatedly voted down a bill entitled the Equal and Fair Parenting Act. FN1 Its controversial purpose was to create a mandatory rebuttable presumption in child custody cases that joint physical custody was preferred. FN2 Parents could overcome this presumption by showing that a 50/50 split in custody would not be in the child's best interest. FN3 Father's rights advocates herald similar laws as a necessary step in the fight against "gender bias." FN4
  • Update on Grandparent Visitation Case

    30 Jul 2012 | 1:11 pm
    Last month, we posted about a recent Tennessee Court of Appeals decision regarding grandparents' rights. We explained that the Tennessee grandparent visitation statute does not address the standard of proof for a grandparent or parent to modify an order of visitation. In Lovelace v. Copley, the Tennessee Court of Appeals established that standard, determining that in order to modify an order of grandparent visitation, there is a heightened standard, requiring the grandparents to prove there has been substantial harm to the child or that substantial harm will occur if the visitation is not…
  • Can I Date While My Divorce Is Pending?

    29 Jul 2012 | 9:53 pm
    Going through a divorce is a difficult process - financially and emotionally. Many clients can't wait for the day their divorce will be final so that they can move on with their lives. Some spouses even look forward to dating other people, and they wonder whether it is acceptable to begin dating while their divorce is pending. The answer is that it is never a good idea to begin dating before your divorce is final. In fact, you should not date someone else, even if your spouse has begun dating others. Even if you and your spouse have already separated, dating while your divorce is pending has…
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    San Diego Divorce Lawyer Blog

  • California Court Weighs Mediation Confidentiality Versus Disclosure Requirements in Divorce

    20 Jan 2015 | 1:00 pm
    When a couple chooses to end a marriage, they must sort through a variety of important financial and emotional issues, such as the division of marital property and spousal support. If there are children involved, they must also address matters of custody, visitation, and child support. One way families can attempt to resolve these issues is through a process known as mediation. In mediation, an impartial third party -- the mediator - assists the spouses in reaching an agreement they can both accept. However, considering the nature of divorce, mediation may only be beneficial under certain…
  • California Court Addresses Computation of Income for Child Support Obligation

    13 Jan 2015 | 8:52 am
    When a couple who has children separates, divorces, or simply parts ways, the parents will be expected to address the issue of child support. In many cases, a court will order one parent to pay to the other a certain amount of money each month for the care and expenses of the couple's child or children. Most states consider the issue of child support to be a serious one. In fact, California law requires each county in the state to maintain a local child support agency that is responsible for establishing, modifying, and enforcing child support obligations (among other things). If you are…
  • California Family Law Guides Courts in Ordering Spousal Support

    6 Jan 2015 | 11:59 am
    When a couple decides to divorce, the court may order one party to pay to the other a certain amount of money in support for a specified period of time. Section 4320 of the California Family Code sets forth a multitude of factors for courts to consider when deciding whether (and to what extent) to order spousal support. Established case law suggests that ordering support is "an exercise of equitable discretion," requiring a court to weigh all of the statutory items, and not simply one or two. Unfortunately, spouses often argue over the amount of spousal support to be awarded in connection…
  • California Court Granted Petition to Remove Child Custody Evaluator for Bias

    24 Dec 2014 | 8:45 am
    When spouses are enmeshed in a divorce proceeding, they often do not see "eye to eye" on matters of child custody. In many cases, both parties want to be able to spend as much time with their children as possible after the divorce. Unfortunately, disputes over custody can be intense and emotionally difficult for all of the parties involved. Keep in mind that in any child custody case, the court will seek to protect the best interests of the child, especially when parents are unable to agree on a parenting plan. To be sure your rights are protected in a child custody or divorce matter, you are…
  • California Court Upholds Divorce Judgment Rendered in Guam

    16 Dec 2014 | 3:42 pm
    Marriage and divorce are highly regulated by state law. Since each state has the authority to enact laws governing divorce, there is a substantial amount of variation from one jurisdiction to the next. But what happens when a married couple lives in one jurisdiction and pursues a divorce in another? How do the courts handle such a situation? Which state has the authority to dissolve the marriage? Like most family law matters, it usually depends on the facts and circumstances surrounding the case. No matter what the facts are, if you are considering a divorce, you are encouraged to consult…
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    The EmpLAWyerologist

  • Understanding The Affordable Care Act’s Penalties

    22 Jan 2015 | 4:20 am
    If you are an employer subject to the Affordable Care Act, you should be starting to feel  its presence– or maybe that started for you already. You are subject to what is known as the Employer Mandate–and you may have to worry about penalties. As with many parts of the ACA, misconceptions abound. Let’s have a good look at the penalties and transitional relief that may be available, after the jump… Let’s dive right in there. First, here’s the employer mandate in a nutshell: Certain employers have to offer certain coverage to certain employees or risk…
  • Do You Offer a Grandfathered Group Health Plan? Do You Like It? Can You Keep It?

    15 Jan 2015 | 4:00 am
    Do you offer your eligible employees’ health insurance? Do you have a grandfathered plan? Do you like it and were you able to keep it as the President said you could? Does having a grandfathered plan mean you don’t have to worry about the Affordable Care Act?  Was the President’s statement about you being able to keep your insurance plan accurate? How does any of this impact most employers? Are you confused by all these questions and all things ACA-related? If you are at least you have the small comfort of knowing that you are in good company.  Those are the questions and…
  • It’s 2015. Are You Ready for the Affordable Care Act?

    5 Jan 2015 | 6:18 pm
    I doubt you really need me to tell you that it’s 2015, or what that means, right? This is the year the rubber really begins to meet the road for Affordable Care Act compliance. Maybe you feel that you’ve heard enough about the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and you know what you need to know. Maybe you feel you will never get it so you kind of shut down when you hear about it. Since the ACA is not going away and it has undergone some changes since its enactment, let’s see where we are with it now. Let’s start with some ACA requirements that are not talked…
  • Why You Should Be Concerned About Discrimination Against Your LGBT Employees

    30 Dec 2014 | 10:47 am
    Here at the EmpLAWyerologist we have been getting familiar with laws and regulations that do –and do not–protect the LGBT population in the workplace. Without trying to sound like a broken record, there is no federal statute that explicitly protects against sexual orientation and/or gender identity discrimination. That said, we have gotten unmistakable messages from the President, certain federal agencies, federal appellate courts, the ADA, the FMLA and states and localities that have provided protections albeit through the back door. There are so many angles, we could get dizzy…
  • Do the ADA and FMLA Provide Protections to LGBT’s in the Workplace?

    23 Dec 2014 | 8:43 am
    These last few weeks we have focused on legal protections against sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination in the workplace under Title VII,  (click here for review) under Affirmative Action laws and regulations governing federal contractors (click here for review), and under state and local laws (click here to review).  What about the ADA/ADAAA? What about the FMLA? Do they provide any protections for the LGBT population in the workplace?  They  might. Let’s slow down and take a good look at both after the jump… Doesn’t the ADA specifically exclude…
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    Atlanta Injury Lawyers Blog

  • Cerebral Palsy and Its Different Forms, Part I

    8 Jan 2015 | 8:37 pm
    Cerebral palsy (CP), a condition resulting from injuries to a child's brain while in the womb or at birth, is often referred to simply as "cerebral palsy." However, CP can be divided into various different types, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). There are four main types of CP, which we have mentioned in a prior post and discuss in more detail here: spastic cerebral palsy, dyskinetic cerebral palsy, ataxic cerebral palsy, and mixed cerebral palsy. In this post, we will discuss the first two types: spastic cerebral palsy and dyskinetic cerebral palsy.
  • "Voir Dire is Scary (This is the Truth)": Nelson Tyrone Published in Verdict Magazine, Part II

    2 Jan 2015 | 8:13 am
    Last month, we announced that Verdict Magazine, journal for the Georgia Trial Lawyers Association, had published an article written by Nelson Tyrone of Tyrone Law Firm. That post summarized the first half of the article, which discusses the challenges attorneys face during voir dire, the process by which potential jurors for a trial are selected. Today, we explain the second half of the article.
  • Tyrone Law Firm Wins $13.9 Million Verdict in Georgia Birth Injury Case, Part II

    23 Dec 2014 | 8:51 pm
    Last week, we announced that the Georgia Court of Appeals ruled in favor of a $13.9 million medical malpractice verdict in a case where the plaintiff was represented by Tyrone Law Firm at trial. The complaint, brought by Melissa Dempsey for injuries that her daughter, Kailey, sustained during her birth in 2002, alleged that Kailey suffers from permanent mental and physical disabilities including cerebral palsy and mental retardation due to traumatic brain injury at birth, caused directly by the attending nurses' negligence during the birth. This week, we delve a little deeper into the Court's…
  • Tyrone Law Firm Wins $13.9 Million Verdict in Georgia Birth Injury Case, Part I

    20 Dec 2014 | 9:25 am
    Earlier this month, the Georgia Court of Appeals ruled in favor of a $13.9 million medical malpractice verdict in a case where the plaintiff was represented by Tyrone Law Firm. The Court ruled in favor of the plaintiff, Melissa Dempsey, for injuries that her daughter, Kailey, sustained during her birth in 2002.
  • Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD, CRPS Type 1) Support: Hope Over Pain

    16 Dec 2014 | 8:05 am
    A few weeks ago, we posted about several different support groups that exist for those suffering from reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD), also known as complex regional pain syndrome type 1, a condition that causes severe, chronic pain and has no known cure. Recently, we learned of another, Hope Over Pain, that may be of use to those seeking communal support for coping with RSD.
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    The Federal Criminal Appeals Blog

  • When Accepting a Guilty Plea, a Court Should Make Sure the Person Pleading Guilty Is Actually Pleading Guilty

    23 Jan 2015 | 3:06 pm
    United States v. Fard is a nice study in the wrong way for a lawyer to handle a plea hearing. Let me say, at the start, that I get that a plea hearing can be hard. Sometimes a lawyer sees what's in his client's best interests more clearly than the client. There can be a temptation to push a client really hard to take a plea when the client doesn't want to. And getting a client who has reluctantly inked a plea through a plea hearing can also be hard. There are few things you can do to handle that. Maybe you spend more time with the client explaining why a plea makes sense. Maybe you talk -…
  • Short Wins - the Withdrawal of a Plea and Schaedenfraude Edition

    12 Jan 2015 | 6:52 pm
    It's been an interesting week in the federal circuits. Aside from the normal and expected sentencing appeals, there are two cases that caught my eye. The first is United States v. Fard on withdrawing a plea. I often hear from people who have entered a plea and want to talk about hiring me to withdraw it. It can be maddening to see how other lawyers have poorly advised their clients, or have simply had them enter pleas that their client does not understand (sometimes, especially when the lawyer has no prior criminal defense experience, I fear the lawyer doesn't understand the plea either).
  • The Only Entrapment Opinion You Ever Need To Read (unless you practice outside of the Seventh Circuit and want to accurately understand the law)

    12 Jan 2015 | 5:39 pm
    As I've been writing about a lot over on Above the Law, one thing that is really not good about the federal criminal system is that it is extremely hard to attack government conduct. This isn't to say that all prosecutors or cops are bad. But they have massive amounts of unchecked power. And, my view at least, is that human nature is such that any given with power has at least a decent chance of abusing it. Prosecutors and cops aren't saints - some of them are going to do what they ought not. And, when that happens, absent an egregious Brady violation and a really good judge, nothing much is…
  • Short Wins - the Dramatic Catch-Up Edition

    18 Nov 2014 | 9:51 am
    And, after a really long break, we're back. Apologies. This day job has been very busy lately. And, of course, if you ever find yourself jonesing for my writing, you can always check out my stuff on Above the Law. You saw our guest post on Hite last week - it's a great case that bears a close read. To the Victories! 1. United States v. Barnes, First Circuit: Appellant pled guilty to distribution and conspiracy to distribute 50kg of marijuana. At sentencing, the district court attributed 3,000kg of marijuana to Appellant after a judicial finding of that quantity by a preponderance of the…
  • The D.C. Circuit Makes It Harder to Prosecute Someone For Enticing A Minor

    14 Nov 2014 | 11:05 am
    Editor's Note - We've never had a guest post before, and normally I give a blanket no to a request for one. But, Assistant Federal Public Defender extraordinaire Jon Jeffress wrote a great piece about the D.C. Circuit's recent decision in United States v. Hite that I'm very pleased to publish here. If you're looking at this as a precedent for other guest posts, please know that if you are an AFPD or credible attorney working in the federal system on criminal cases, I'd be happy to look at anything. Otherwise, no. Finally, I should say that the opinions here are solely Jon's, not those of his…
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    Boston Injury Lawyer Blog

  • Trial Lawyers in Massachusetts are Preparing for Attorney-Conducted Voir Dire

    23 Jan 2015 | 11:17 am
    Massachusetts will soon join the majority of other states in permitting personal injury attorneys (and pro se parties) to conduct voir dire during the jury empanelment process. Superior Court Standing Order 1-15 allows attorneys to directly question the jury venire in civil and criminal cases. This new empanelment procedure comes into effect as attorneys will also be allowed to argue monetary damages to a jury on behalf of a plaintiff. Superior Court Standing Order 1-15 becomes effective on February 2, 2015. This is an interim Order which will remain in effect until the Supreme Judicial Court…
  • SRE - Hospital "Never Events"

    7 Jan 2015 | 8:18 am
    Unfortunately, injuries in hospitals are all too common. One class of such injuries has been labeled as "never events", a term used to describe medical errors that should never happen under any circumstances. The Massachusetts Department of Public Health ("DPH") calls these types of injuries "serious reportable events" ("SRE") and there are regulations that outline what events constitute a SRE (for example, surgery on the wrong leg) and what a hospital is required to do should SRE occur during the course of a patient's care. The regulations require hospitals, within seven (7) days, to report…
  • 2014 Holiday Safe Shopping Guide

    9 Dec 2014 | 9:19 am
    With Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday just behind us, and only 16 shopping days until Christmas, many people will be putting on comfortable shoes and heading to the malls and brick and mortar stores to check off everyone on their shopping lists. Before you purchase just any toy on the shelf, read through the 29th annual "Trouble in Toyland" report, released December 1, 2014 by the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (PIRG). The report outlines safety issues and provides safety guidelines, educating even the most savvy consumer (even personal injury attorneys!) about…
  • Mass(achusetts) Pandemonium: Black Friday & Premises Liability

    17 Nov 2014 | 11:18 am
    The day after Thanksgiving, known as "Black Friday", is perhaps the most iconic and celebrated shopping day of the year. According to the National Retail Federation's 2014 Holiday Survival Kit REV, 2013 saw more than 141 million shoppers during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend (Thursday through Sunday), with the average shopper spending about $407. Black Friday alone saw more than 92 million online and in-store shoppers - that's roughly one out-of-every three Americans. In total, consumers spent approximately $57.4 billion during last year's holiday weekend. This year, the pandemonium that is…
  • Making Sure Your Children's Halloween Costumes are Safe

    28 Oct 2014 | 9:27 am
    It is that time of the year where parents are led to a costume store by eager kids wanting to purchase the year's hottest or funniest Halloween costume. While there is not a lot to worry about, parents still need to be mindful of their children's choice. Despite what one would expect, there are many costumes on the market that simply are not safe for children because, among many reasons, they are not flame resistant or are so dark that they put a child at risk to be struck by a car. It is hard to believe, but since 1980 there have been 16 reported incidents where a child under the age of 15…
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    South Florida Criminal Attorneys Blog

  • South Florida Ex-Convict Faces Federal Weapons Charges

    Michael B. Cohen, P.A.
    24 Jan 2015 | 5:14 am
    Michael Paul Watkins of Inverness had successfully escaped from custody previously on two separate occasions after being convicted for the crime of fondling and handling a minor under the age of sixteen years in Florida State Court. He was arrested in October 2011 on a charge of domestic battery. Details of that arrest record are exempt from public information as per Florida statute. Late last year, the Citrus County Sheriff’s Office received information from local Wal-Mart employees that an individual who was later identified as an employee of Cool Aid Heating and Air Conditioning was…
  • Miami Woman Sentenced to Life in Prison for Revenge Killing

    Michael B. Cohen, P.A.
    10 Dec 2014 | 3:34 am
    When police responded to a 911 call made by an agitated North Miami woman whose husband was murdered while playing with the couple’s 20 month old son the previous month, they found the bullet riddled body of Ilam Nissim who had been shot numerous times by the 911 caller, Janepsy Mesa Carballo. Carballo, 35, first called police emergency to report a battery, but called again a short time later telling the dispatcher that she shot an intruder. When police arrived at the scene, she told them that she was in the process of transporting furniture out of her home located on NW 12 Avenue in…
  • US District Court to Hear Convoluted Murder for Hire Case

    Michael B. Cohen, P.A.
    26 Nov 2014 | 4:44 am
    Fred Topous Jr. is a registered sex offender who pleaded guilty in 1999 to the charge of assault with intent to penetrate a thirteen year old minor female who just happened to be his boss’s daughter. He can easily be labelled a career criminal as his records show that he’s either been imprisoned or on parole for all of but three years between the years of 1984 and 2006 for three individual criminal convictions. But after his release from prison in 2006, Topous hit the lottery… I mean he literally hit the lottery! In 2008, Topous picked the six winning numbers in Michigan’s…
  • Collateral Monetary Damage in South Florida from Home Depot Security Breach

    Michael B. Cohen, P.A.
    11 Nov 2014 | 2:02 pm
    These days it seems that with far too much frequency there is continually breaking news about another retailer with online outlets being victimized by a security breach. The latest of these high tech break-ins was successfully aimed at Home Depot and turned out to be executed by a low-tech method; at least when first hijacking their network. The well-known distributor of appliances and supplies for home and garden items released news that show that a breach which began in April of this year and went undetected through September allowed hackers to steal credit and debit card data of fifty-six…
  • Miami Federal Judge gives International Sex Trafficker/Rapist 27 years

    Michael B. Cohen, P.A.
    30 Oct 2014 | 8:30 am
    His reign of terror which operated Internationally including Australia, the Mid-East and the United States finally came to an end when Miami Federal District Judge Cecilia Altonaga sentenced Jamaican born Damion St. Patrick Baston to twenty-seven years in federal prison. For years, the smoothing talking former nightclub dancer enticed women into a life of prostitution that spanned numerous continents by making them believe he was a hip hop music producer, later bragging to them that he was a member of Bloods, the violent West Coast street gang based out of Los Angeles. Once under his…
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    Darlingtons Solicitors

  • Common law marriage – the myth, the reality, the solution

    15 Jan 2015 | 8:33 am
    The Office for National Statistics recently revealed that the number of cohabiting couples has doubled over the past 20 years, to an astounding 5.9 million; 20% of whom have no intention to marry or enter into a civil partnership in the future. Despite this substantial increase, there remains a common public misconception that cohabiting couples enjoy the same legal rights as married couples. A common law marriage – there is no such thing In July 2004, a governmental campaign, “Living Together” attempted to make cohabiting couples aware of their legal status.  Despite this, recent…
  • Pre and Post nuptial agreements – a few key pointers.

    Maya Bhatiani
    14 Jan 2015 | 6:40 am
    It has been an interesting journey for those who have entered in to pre and post nuptial agreements over the last 5 years. The law relating to Nuptial Agreements has developed following the Supreme Court decision in Radmacher – V – Granatino when it was decided that when considering the role of the Nuptial Agreement in a financial claim on divorce, the starting point is the relevant legislation, being the Matrimonial Clauses Act 1973, namely Section 25. Section 25 MCA takes into account a number of factors, including but not limited to the following:: The income, earning capacity…
  • David Rosen selected as Super Lawyer 2014

    David Rosen
    22 Dec 2014 | 7:33 am
    PRESS RELEASE: Professor David Rosen, head of Litigation at Darlingtons Solicitors LLP, associate Professor of Law at Brunel University and Certified Fraud Examiner, has been included on the London Super Lawyers list, for 2014 in the fields of Commercial Litigation and Fraud. This is the second year now that he has been selected. Super Lawyers state in their publication: ‘Super Lawyers, a Thomson Reuters business is a research-driven, peer-influenced rating service of outstanding solicitors who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement’.  ‘It is…
  • Fraud or dishonesty at work – employer options

    David Rosen
    29 Oct 2014 | 2:21 am
    D Rosen This blogpost presumes that the reader is someone within an organisation who is an owner, or in a position of responsibility. Firstly, how does your business define ‘fraud’? Some businesses adopt the case law interpretation as set out in Derry v Peek [1889] LR 14 App Cas 337. Other businesses have their own definitions of what is, and what is not fraud. Some businesses only consider fraud on a criminal basis to a criminal standard. That is a high standard to have sufficient evidence to prove beyond reasonable doubt that a person has committed such a crime. Some businesses consider…
  • Profiling Fraudsters

    David Rosen
    20 Oct 2014 | 4:54 am
    D Rosen  Q to James Bond  “I can do more damage on my laptop sitting in my pyjamas before my first Earl Grey…” Skyfall I was inspired to write this blogpost, following my reading of ‘Countering fraud for competitive advantage, the professional approach to reducing the last great hidden cost’ (Button and Gee 2013).  I do not seek to find the current answer, but merely write to be thought-provoking.  Has developing technology changed the scope in which criminal profiling has previously identified classes or groups of people, likely to commit fraud?  Undoubtedly, yes.
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  • House of Representatives Votes to Block President Obama's Immigration Reform

    20 Jan 2015 | 12:10 pm
    Recently, the House of Representatives made headlines again in what is likely its first of many moves to interfere with and further delay the much-needed comprehensive immigration reform. Specifically, the Republicans in the House voted to block President Obama's deferred deportations of millions of undocumented foreign nationals, including those foreign nationals who were brought to the U.S. as children (commonly called "dreamers"). The Vote The 236-191 vote was made in connection with a broad bill whose purpose is to allocate nearly $40 billion in funds to the U.S. Department of Homeland…
  • Congress May Start the New Year by Passing Pro-Immigration Legislation

    15 Jan 2015 | 1:42 pm
    With the New Year comes the new Republican-controlled Congress. Many immigrants and immigrant advocacy groups are not optimistic that the new Congress will take steps to safeguard and promote immigrant rights. Instead, these groups are worried that Congress will move in the opposite direction and pass laws to further restrict and complicate America's already hugely complex immigration system. However, amid the Republicans' promises and threats that they will punish the President for his recently announced executive orders, there seem to be very positive discussions that indicate the…
  • President Obama's Executive Action is Already Reuniting Families

    6 Jan 2015 | 9:37 am
    In November 2014, following the congressional mid-term elections that resulted in more Republican legislators elected to the Senate and House of Representatives, President Obama announced that his administration would be implementing new policies aimed at providing temporary immigration-related relief to undocumented foreign nationals who are the parents of U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents (green card holders). This policy, referred to as Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Legal Permanent Residents or DAPA, is an offshoot of the President's previously implemented policy…
  • ACLU Files Class Action Lawsuit Against White House's Asylum Seeker Policy

    29 Dec 2014 | 5:37 am
    Immigration-related issues again dominated the headlines last week as major news sources reported that the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed a nationwide and class action lawsuit against the Obama administration. Specifically, the lawsuit challenges the administration's policy of retaining, in immigration detention centers, women and children who are seeking asylum in the United States. These detention centers are spread all across the U.S. with the largest center located in Texas. The Case - RILR v. Johnson The ACLU filed the lawsuit, RILR v. Johnson, on behalf of foreign national…
  • Pennsylvania Judge Issues Opinion Declaring the President's Executive Immigration Action Unconstitutional

    19 Dec 2014 | 10:19 am
    Recently, a Pennsylvania federal judge issued a case opinion ruling that the President's executive action on immigration - specifically, suspending the deportation proceedings for qualifying undocumented foreign nationals - is unconstitutional. However, it is unclear whether this ruling will have any impact on the greater immigration debate because the judge was never asked to consider the constitutionality of the President's executive action. The Case The case before U.S. District Court Judge Arthur Schwab was criminal in nature. The defendant is Mr. Elionardo Juarez-Escobar, a Honduran…
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    Palo Alto Estate Planning Blog

  • Right to Die Law Proposed for California

    Liza Hanks
    23 Jan 2015 | 6:04 pm
    For the first time since 2007, legislation has been introduced in this year’s State Senate that would legalize physician-assisted suicide in California. The bill, SB 128,  The End of Life Option Act, is modeled on Oregon’s Right to Die law. It allows a person with a terminal disease and a prognosis of death within six months to obtain a physician’s prescription for a lethal dose of medication. Two doctors would have to agree that the patient meets certain criteria, such as mental competence, that they’ve been made aware of alternatives, and that they be able to take…
  • Happy New Year!

    Liza Hanks
    31 Dec 2014 | 4:52 pm
     I am wishing a lovely New Year to all of our    clients and readers! May 2015 bring love, wisdom, and compassion to you all. Here’s to keeping all of our eyes firmly fixed on what truly matters in the year ahead, in estate planning and all things.
  • IRA Charitable Rollover Extended for 2014

    Liza Hanks
    22 Dec 2014 | 5:35 pm
    Late in the year, and at the last minute, on December 16, 2014, Congress has extended the ability of those over 70 1/2 to make direct charitable donations from their IRA’s of up to $100,000, as long as they haven’t already taken out the required minimum distribution for 2014 and do this charitable rollover by December 31.  The way to do this is to tell your plan custodian to distribute up to $100,000 to a public charity of your choice from your IRA. (For a couple, this is 100K from each IRA.) Although there’s no charitable deduction for a charitable rollover, there’s…
  • How to Work with Your Trustee/Your Beneficiaries

    Liza Hanks
    12 Dec 2014 | 5:27 pm
    The Wall Street Journal recently published an article entitled, “The Trouble with Trustees” that outlined the issues that can come up between a trust beneficiary and a Trustee. The article focused on several themes that we’ve seen over the years: Frustration–a beneficiary is frustrated that they don’t have direct access to trust assets, even though a trust was established precisely to prevent that beneficiary from having direct access to trust assets. Poor communication – a beneficiary is angry because they don’t feel that they understand how trust…
  • IRS Year-End Gifts to Charity Tips

    Liza Hanks
    24 Nov 2014 | 9:50 am
    As 2014 draws to a close, many of our clients are thinking about making annual gifts to charities. The IRS has just posted a handy article with six tips to keep in mind to make sure that you can claim an income tax deduction for the gift. Here’s a summary: 1. Qualified charities. Make sure that you are making a donation to a qualified charity. The IRS offers a tool to make sure that your intended recipient is qualified. Donations to churches, synagogues, temples, mosques, and government agencies are also deductible, even if they’re not listed. 2. Monetary donations. If you want to…
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    Atlanta Overtime Lawyers Blog

  • Class Overtime Lawsuit Filed On Behalf Spectrum Financial's Accenture Contract Administrators

    12 Jan 2015 | 5:00 pm
    Our law firm has filed an overtime lawsuit against Spectrum Financial Services, LLC pursuant to the Federal Labors Standard Act ("FLSA"). The federal lawsuit alleges that Spectrum Financial, a national staffing company, hired individuals across the country to work for its client, Accenture, as contract administrators. The Complaint alleges that Spectrum paid these individuals an hourly rate but illegally failed to pay them time and a half for overtime hours (all hours over forty in a given work week). The Complaint also alleges that Spectrum classified some of its Accenture contract…
  • 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…
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    New Jersey CPA Tax Lawyer Blog

  • Tax Court Upholds Rejection of Engineer's Medical, Charitable Deductions

    23 Jan 2015 | 9:29 am
    An engineer's efforts to deduct several items as medical expenses or charitable contributions proved unsuccessful for a variety of reasons. The US Tax Court ruled that the taxpayer's bicycle was not a medical expense because she could not prove that it was essential to the treatment of a medical condition, and the taxpayer could not maintain her charitable contributions because she lacked the appropriate contemporaneous records in support of them. Melanie Thomas-Kozak was an engineer for a division of Sunoco who racked up a large number of deductions on 2008 and 2009 federal income tax…
  • Taxing Cloud Computing Service Providers... and Users

    26 Dec 2014 | 8:57 am
    In the wake of the cell phone photo heist (and publication) of the private images of several Hollywood celebrities back in September, a wide discussion was held about cloud computing, particularly with regard to security issues. Those dealing with using "the cloud" for business purposes should concern themselves not only with security, though, but also with the tax implications of cloud computing. This issue is a challenging one, since the laws regarding the topic vary dramatically from state to state. One recent case bringing this issue to life was Matter of SunGard Securities Finance LLC,…
  • Tax Court Grounds Law Firm's Travel Deduction for Use of Partner's Private Planes

    28 Nov 2014 | 7:49 am
    A law firm's claim of travel expense deductions related to one of its partners' use of two private aircraft fell apart because the firm lacked the proper documentation to prove that the flights were related to firm business. The US Tax Court's ruling in favor of the Internal Revenue Service stands as a stark reminder for taxpayers of all sizes about the need to keep clear, accurate, and contemporaneous expense records. The unsuccessful taxpayer was Engstrom, Lipscomb & Lack, APC, a prominent personal injury and class action law firm in Southern California. The firm's tax troubles arose after…
  • Tax Court Declares Woman's Art to Be a Business; Decision Hailed as Victory for All Artists

    15 Oct 2014 | 10:38 am
    In a ruling widely regarded as a success for artists of all varieties, from independent musicians to photographers and painters, the US Tax Court rejected an Internal Revenue Service decision that a well-respected painter and art professor's painting work was not an activity conducted for the purpose of making a profit. The court explained that the law looks at many factors for determining the nature of an activity, and the painter's clear proof of a business plan and maintenance of a "businesslike" record established that her painting was a for-profit activity. Susan Crile worked both as a…
  • Corporate Officer's Inability to Cash Bonus Check Trips Up Entity's Tax Deduction

    1 Oct 2014 | 10:13 am
    A corporation officer's handling of his year-end bonus check was a case of form over substance, the US Tax Court ruled, and that meant that the bonus payment was not eligible for a tax deduction for payments to corporate officers. The central problem was that the officer clearly did not have unrestricted control over his bonus payment, since the corporation did not had enough money in its bank account to cover the amount of the check. The dispute involved the corporate entity created by architect Robert Vanney. Vanney created Vanney Associates, Inc., a personal services C corporation, in…
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    Securities Law & Going Public Lawyers

  • Going Public Blog l Securities Lawyer 101

    1 Jan 2101 | 6:23 am
    Going Public LawyerGoing 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 the most attractive sources of... Read MoreGoing Public Lawyer
  • SEC Amends Related Party Disclosure Rules – Going Public Lawyers

    26 Jan 2015 | 9:00 pm
    Going Public LawyerAnnual reports on Form 10-K are just around the corner for companies with a December 31, year-end. We have received several questions concerning recently adopted Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) Auditing Standard No. 18, Related Parties. The new rule applies to all issuers and SEC registered broker-dealers and become effective for audits of financial statements for fiscal years beginning on... Read MoreGoing Public Lawyer
  • What Is The Section 1145 Exemption? Securities Lawyer 101

    25 Jan 2015 | 9:00 pm
    Going Public LawyerSecurities law issues are an important consideration in structuring a Chapter 11 reorganization particularly where the debtor is a public company. Section 1145 of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the “Securities Act”) provides issuers in Chapter 11 reorganizations with an exemption from registration that eases some of the burdens of Chapter 11 reorganization.  An important requirement of the Section 1145... Read MoreGoing Public Lawyer
  • Six Years Later – U.S. v Ross Mandell

    25 Jan 2015 | 7:40 am
    Going Public LawyerIn July 2009, Ross Mandell, founder of Sky Capital Holdings, Ltd., a venture capital firm and brokerage, was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and charged with violating the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.  According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, he and a number of co-defendants had used Sky Capital to run... Read MoreGoing Public Lawyer
  • Can I Issue Free Trading Shares Under Rule 504? Going Public Lawyers

    24 Jan 2015 | 1:14 pm
    Going Public LawyerDespite numerous SEC enforcement actions, Rule 504 of Regulation D of the Securities Act remains a commonly misused exemption particularly in dilution schemes. The popularity of Rule 504 is simple – the Rule 504 exemption provides a way for dilution funders to issue illegally free trading shares using baseless legal opinions. Any experienced going public lawyer will tell you that Rule 504... Read MoreGoing Public Lawyer
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    Employment News

  • Mandatory Arbitration Clauses and Employee Rights

    18 Jan 2015 | 10:09 am
    When starting a job, the last thing you are thinking about is how it will end. What will your rights be in the event that you suffer discrimination or wrongful termination? Before you sign a contract, remember that many employers will automatically include a “mandatory arbitration” clause in your agreement. Essentially, this will prevent you from litigating your case and will require you to arbitrate your case not before a judge or jury, but before a private arbitrator.Read more about Mandatory Arbitration Clauses and Employee Rights
  • SCOTUS Takes Up Pregnancy Discrimination Case

    15 Jan 2015 | 12:48 pm
    Recently the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued new guidelines to protect women against pregnancy discrimination (discussed here). Indeed, the EEOC reports that pregnancy discrimination cases are on the rise. The Supreme Court has now intervened and will be hearing a case involving a United Parcel Service (“UPS”) worker who was told to take unpaid leave after she requested a break from heavy lifting because of her pregnancy. Read more about SCOTUS Takes Up Pregnancy Discrimination Case
  • Employment Law Changes for 2015

    12 Jan 2015 | 8:10 am
    Over the course of the past year there have been important shifts in federal and state law regarding employment. For both employers and employees, these changes can have a significant impact on workplace policies, employee rights and empolyer liability. Here is a summary of some employment law developments and trends for 2015: Read more about Employment Law Changes for 2015
  • Sexual Harassment of Tipped Employees

    8 Jan 2015 | 7:04 am
    Throughout Minnesota, servers, bartenders, and other tip-reliant workers continue to endure sexual harassment and advances for the sake of their income. According to a new report titled, “The Glass Floor: Sexual Harassment in the Restaurant Industry,” a study found restaurant workers reporting high levels of harassing behaviors from restaurant management (66%), co-workers (80%), and customers (78%). Read more about Sexual Harassment of Tipped Employees
  • FedEx “Independent Contractor” Misclassification: 9th Circuit Unravels Business Model

    28 Oct 2014 | 10:43 am
    Classifying employees as independent contractors rather than employees can give employers a significant advantage. In addition to avoiding certain responsibilities, such as workers’ compensation, health insurance, and providing other employee benefits, employers can also escape other legal liabilities. In a recent case, the Ninth Circuit has ruled that FedEx misclassified more than 3,000 delivery drivers as independent contractors rather than employees.Read more about FedEx “Independent Contractor” Misclassification: 9th Circuit Unravels Business Model
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    Dallas Justice » Criminal Law Blog

  • Legal Marijuana in Texas: Will HB507 Legalize Small Amounts of Pot Statewide? It Just May Happen.

    Michael Lowe
    7 Jan 2015 | 1:48 pm
    Last month right before the holiday break Texas State Representative Joe Moody filed a new bill in the Texas House, HB 507, that looks to have a pretty big chance of success in changing Texas marijuana laws. HB 507, if it becomes state law, will make possession of less than one ounce of marijuana in the State of Texas to be a civil offense carrying a fine of $100.00. If Passed, HB 507 Makes Small Amount of Marijuana a Civil Offense, Not a Crime This law would decriminalize possession of less than one ounce of pot in Texas. It would no longer be a crime to have less than 1 ounce of pot in your…
  • Heroin Arrests in Dallas and North Texas: Billboards, Big Brother, and Civil Rights in Heroin Cases

    Michael Lowe
    31 Dec 2014 | 9:44 am
    In George Orwell’s classic novel 1984, Oceania was ruled by a character called “Big Brother,” who oversaw the ruling government that held total control over the citizens “for its own sake.” (If you read this back in high school, this is where you probably learned about the “totalitarian” form of government.) Orwell wrote of every person in this fictional world being watched by the government all the time, 24/7/365. They were always on camera and just in case they might forget this surveillance for a minute, there were lots of posters, notices, etc., are around with the catch…
  • Heroin is a Business in Texas: Growing Heroin Demand Means More Heroin Busts in 2015

    Michael Lowe
    24 Dec 2014 | 10:03 am
    It’s not news to any Texan that there’s lots of drug traffic moving across the state from Mexico; everyone knows it.  What lots of people, especially those who live in the more affluent parts of North Texas and the Dallas – Fort Worth metroplex, may not realize is how much heroin is coming into our part of the state and exactly who is buying it. We’ve posted warnings about this before, see: Heroin Use Among Teens and Young Adults: Dallas, Fort Worth Suburbs Will See More Heroin Arrests as Popularity of Heroin Continues to Rise Lots of Heroin Arrests Will Be Happening Here in…
  • False Arrests From Flawed Cocaine Detection Kit: the NIK 6500 is Bad News for Texas

    Michael Lowe
    17 Dec 2014 | 12:12 pm
    Cocaine possession is a serious felony and law enforcement in North Texas takes this crime very seriously.  In the past, it took awhile for police to charge someone officially with having cocaine because it took some time for the lab to verify that the white powder taken into evidence was indeed an illegal, controlled substance. Now, impatient to get drug test results, local area police are using in-the-field testing to back up drug arrests.  Problem is: false positives are the result of untrustworthy tests and wrongful arrests are happening. Remember the Fake Drug Scandal Here in Dallas?
  • Unjustly Accused of Sexual Assault: When Rape Allegations Aren’t True There’s Still a Victim

    Michael Lowe
    10 Dec 2014 | 10:36 am
    Rapes and sexual assaults do happen in here in the Dallas – Fort Worth area, as they do all around the State of Texas, and these are horrible, life-changing events for the victims (both men and women). However, as criminal defense lawyers who represents people accused of rape and sexual assault know well, there is the other truth that is just as painful: there are men (and women) wrongfully accused of rape — and once that accusation is made, they are also victimized and often suffer permanent harm. The stigma of having someone finger-point you and cry “rape” can be enough to…
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    South Florida Personal Injury Lawyers Blog

  • Southern District of Florida Holds UIM Benefits Case Must be Adjudicated Before Bad Faith Insurance Claim May be Considered

    Friedman, Rodman & Frank, P.A.
    22 Jan 2015 | 2:01 pm
    In Shapiro v. Government Employees Insurance Co., a couple was seriously injured in a Florida automobile accident that was caused by an uninsured motorist. At the time of the collision, the hurt individuals maintained an uninsured and underinsured motorist (“UIM”) policy on each of their vehicles. Following the automobile crash, the couple sought financial compensation from their UIM insurer. Unfortunately, the insurance company refused to pay the couple damages for the harm each sustained in the traffic wreck. As a result, the couple filed a claim for UIM benefits in Broward County. The…
  • Appellate Court Affirms Legal Fees Award for Plaintiffs in Florida Medical Malpractice Case

    Friedman, Rodman & Frank, P.A.
    19 Jan 2015 | 9:00 am
    In Duong v. Ziadie, a woman filed a medical malpractice lawsuit on behalf of her incapacitated son against his doctor, the practice where the doctor was employed, and other defendants. According to the woman’s complaint, the physician’s negligent care caused her son to become permanently paralyzed. In her lawsuit, the mother sought damages related to her son’s medical bills, pain and suffering, and loss of earning capacity. She also asked the court to award his minor children financial compensation for their loss of parental services and other damages. Prior to trial, the mother…
  • Florida Appeals Court Overturns Order Compelling Medical Exam in Workers’ Compensation Case

    Friedman, Rodman & Frank, P.A.
    15 Jan 2015 | 9:34 am
    In Jackson v. Columbia Pictures, a Florida man suffered a traumatic brain injury in 1986 when he fell more than 20 feet at work. Two years later, the brain-damaged worker reached “maximum medical improvement.” Eventually, the hurt man received a workers’ compensation award that included any attendant care benefits that were medically necessary. During the intervening years, the brain-damaged man was incarcerated on two separate occasions. In 2008, a Judge of Compensation Claims (“JCC”) determined that the injured man required care around the clock during his incarceration. As a…
  • Appellate Court Refuses to Overturn Discovery Order Compelling Production of Social Media Photos in Florida Slip and Fall Case

    Friedman, Rodman & Frank, P.A.
    12 Jan 2015 | 9:31 am
    Florida’s Fourth District Court of Appeal has refused to overturn a unique discovery order in a premises liability action. In Nucci v. Target Corp., a woman allegedly slipped and fell on a foreign substance while shopping at a Florida department store in 2010. Following the incident, she filed a premises liability lawsuit against the store. In her complaint, the woman sought financial compensation for her resulting physical harm, pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost wages, future impairment, and other damages. Prior to taking the injured woman’s deposition, counsel for the store…
  • Southern District of Florida Refuses to Dismiss Negligence Claims Against Cruise Ship Over Shore Excursion Accident

    Friedman, Rodman & Frank, P.A.
    8 Jan 2015 | 7:22 am
    In Ash v. Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., 28 cruise ship passengers were reportedly injured in a bus crash in St. Maarten. Prior to the accident, each individual purchased tickets for a related excursion from a St. Maarten tour provider that contracted with the cruise ship company. The tour provider then contracted with the bus company to offer transportation between the ship and the onshore excursion for the passengers. Following the bus accident, the injured passengers filed a lawsuit against the cruise ship owner, tour operator, and bus company in the Southern District of Florida’s…
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    Massachusetts Social Security Disability Lawyers Blog

  • Social Security Benefits for Disabled Veterans

    25 Jan 2015 | 2:26 pm
    With all the troops forward deployed to places like Iraq and Afghanistan during the global war on terror, we are seeing more and more young men and women returning home from the battlefield with severe and permanent disabilities. Some of these disabilities are physical in nature and involve loss of one or more limbs, traumatic brain injury (TBI) and other health issues caused by fighting in the Middle East. Many others were lucky enough to return without suffering physical injuries, but now suffer from debilitating mental conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). When these…
  • Social Security Disability Claims Process

    23 Jan 2015 | 1:46 pm
    Much of the news coverage about the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program deals with the upcoming budget shortage, which may reduce benefits by 20 percent by 2016 should congress fail to act. However, a recent news article from Huffington Posts looks at how the system works for claimants and what you need to do to qualify for benefits. Social Security Disability Insurance is a federal benefits program administered by Social Security Administration (SSA). SSA also manages the Social Security retirement programs, but those funds come from a different budget than SSDI benefits.
  • Minnick v. Colvin: Proving Disability

    22 Jan 2015 | 10:11 am
    In Minnick v. Colvin, an appeal from the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, claimant saw his doctor in January of 2009 with complaints of lower back pain radiating down both legs. His doctor opined the pain was muscular in nature. He also found a secondary cause to be deconditioning and obesity. Doctor suggested claimant may have fibromyalgia. When his condition did not improve after some time, doctor ordered an MRI of claimant's lumbar spine. MRI scan revealed lumbar spondylosis, a bulging disc, and hypertrophic degenerative spur formation. Doctor made a diagnosis of…
  • Congress Ready to Fight Over SSDI Funding

    18 Jan 2015 | 10:06 am
    With changes in Congress we are seeing following this past election, it is hard to watch the national news or use the internet without hearing about what the next big fight will be. One of the issues that must be decided soon is what will happen to the Social Security Disability budget. Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is essentially a government-run insurance policy. Employees and their employers pay taxes into the Social Security fund. Some of that money is used to pay for SSDI. Much of it is used to pay for Social Security retirement insurance. The United States Social Security…
  • Comedian Denied Disability Benefits after Being Hit by Subway Train

    12 Jan 2015 | 1:06 am
    According to a recent article from Media Bistro, a comedian passed out on the platform of a New York City subway station and was hit by a train. This occurred while she was coming from an audition to be on Saturday Night Live. The South Carolina comedian is still recovering from the accident, which occurred this past February. She is now in Greenville as she tells her story of what happened. In 2014, she came to New York City to pursue her comedy career. She was homeless, but was doing well professionally. She had an agent and an interview with Saturday Night Live. After fainting and falling…
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    Austin Immigration Lawyer Blog

  • Elionardo Juarez-Escobar Wants to Proceed to Sentencing

    Lyttle Law Firm, PLLC
    15 Jan 2015 | 7:45 am
    Last month, a man named Elionardo Juarez-Escobar, who is originally from Honduras, sparked a national debate on immigration policy.  In April 2014, Juarez-Escobar was charged with driving drunk in Beaver County, PA. Police released him but in July, he was arrested again because he had already been deported from the United States back in 2005. In early December, he pled guilty to this charge and was held in custody. On December 16th 2014, Judge Arthur J. Schwab of the U.S. District Court issued a ruling stating that President Obama created a violation of the law due to his executive order in…
  • Republicans Trying to Block Obama Immigration Order

    Lyttle Law Firm, PLLC
    12 Jan 2015 | 9:01 am
    Republicans appear to be determined to block President Obama’s undocumented immigration executive actions and sources are saying that a House vote may come as early next week. GOP House Leaders Meet with Colleagues to Discuss Changes When they met on Thursday, House GOP leaders discussed building a consensus on a bill that would essentially defund Obama’s initiatives.  According the newest budget deal, The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will only be receiving funds through February 27th.  Republicans want to use this deadline to prevent additional immigration spending. In the…
  • President Obama and Mexican President Nieto Meet to Discuss Immigration

    Lyttle Law Firm, PLLC
    8 Jan 2015 | 8:18 am
    President Obama met with Mexico’s president, Mr. Enrique Peña Nieto, on January 6th, to discuss common state matters, including immigration. The visit from Mr. Peña Nieto to Washington comes at a time of mutually increased cooperation between the two countries. This is in concurrency with the efforts being made by both the US and Mexico to normalize their respective relations with Cuba. President Obama and President Nieto on US immigration Amongst the issues that were discussed during the visit was the topic of undocumented immigrants crossing the border from Mexico into the US. President…
  • Two Executive Orders Aimed At Welcoming Undocumented Immigrants

    Lyttle Law Firm, PLLC
    5 Jan 2015 | 8:15 am
    Govenor Pat Quinn has announced two executive orders that will help to make undocumented immigrants feel more welcomed in Illinois. On Monday, Gov. Quinn instructed the Governor’s Office on New Americans to elect a liasison for every state agency to get the most benefit from President Obama’s newest executive action concerning undocumented immigrants. This action cuts back on the numbers of deportation and allows work permits to immigrants who arrived in the U.S. illegally. Quinn also states in the excutive order “community policing efforts are hindered” when immigrants who…
  • Immigrants Receive Warning About California Driver’s Licenses

    Lyttle Law Firm, PLLC
    1 Jan 2015 | 6:53 am
    Although thousands of immigrants residing in California are eager to get their driver’s licenses, many others are being told to think twice about it. Advocates for undocumented immigrants state that most illegal aliens will be able to get their driver’s licenses without issue.  They are warning others, however,to contact a lawyer before seeking a new drivers license if they have used a false name or social security number in the past.  The same advice holds true for immigrants who have a criminal record or past deportation order since law enforcement and federal immigration officials…
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    Health Care Law Blog

  • FQHC Section 340B Audit Readiness: A Pound of Prevention

    25 Jan 2015 | 8:42 am
    For Federally Qualified Health Centers and other eligible safety net health care centers, proper utilization of the federal Section 340B Drug Discount Program can offer enormous financial advantages to facilitate delivery of high quality primary health care services to their communities. The Section 340B Program, created in 1992, requires drug manufacturers to provide outpatient drugs to qualifying health care centers and organizations at reduced prices. The purpose of the Section 340B Program is to provide a financial advantage that supports FQHCs and other safety net providers, enabling…
  • Physician Practice: Are Physician Non-Compete Agreements Enforceable?

    16 Jan 2015 | 12:11 pm
    Hospital employment among doctors is increasing. According to Jackson Health's 2014 Survey, the trend of physician employment is gaining speed. Rapid changes in health care industry fueled by the Affordable Care Act, more insured patients and increasing demands on doctors, decreasing reimbursement, and the growing cost and headaches of owning and running a medical practice are causing more and more doctors to view employment as a preferred career option. Atlanta and Augusta, Georgia Business and Health Care Law Firm Inevitably, the termination of some physician employment relationships will…
  • New Medicare Rules Strengthen Regulatory Oversight of Medicare Providers and Increase CMS' Ability to Remove Providers from Medicare

    31 Dec 2014 | 9:43 am
    Earlier this month, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced implementation of a Final Rule intended to increase oversight of Medicare providers and enable recoveries from those health care providers that commit fraud and violate Medicare rules. According to the press release, Marilyn Tavenner, the CMS Administrator, stated that the new rules "are common-sense safeguards to preserve Medicare for generations to come" and that "[t]he Administration is committed to using all appropriate tools as part of its comprehensive program integrity strategy shaped by the Affordable…
  • HHS 2015 Quality Improvement Awards for FQHC recipients: HHS Awards $36.3 Million in Affordable Care Act Funding for FQHCs and Other Health Centers

    17 Dec 2014 | 1:07 pm
    On December 9, 2014, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) announced substantial financial awards for numerous Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) and other health centers nationwide. Our Atlanta, Georgia business and health care law firm represents FQHCs and health centers. We learned from HHS' press release that it awarded $36.3 million in Affordable Care Act funding for the purpose of rewarding and expanding the quality of care in FQHCs. FQHCs and other HRSA-supported health centers are designed to provide comprehensive, high quality primary care services to the…
  • Physician Practice: The 2014 Physicians Compensation Survey

    29 Nov 2014 | 6:50 am
    Physician compensation as a whole has continued to stagnate during 2014, according to Physician Practice's 2014 Physician Compensation Survey. As compensation models morph and develop with the new emphasis upon value-based care, it remains to be seen how physician compensation will change in the coming years. This very important healthcare industry issue affects all of us. It also involves interesting irony in the enactment and implementation of the Affordable Care Act, touted by proponents as geared to improve patient "access" to health care (or "coverage" under an insurance plan), yet…
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    Pleasanton Business & Commercial Law Blog

  • Lawsuits by Tech Industry Guest Workers Allege Multiple Unlawful Practices

    15 Jan 2015 | 12:51 pm
    The Silicon Valley technology industry is one of the nation's biggest employers of H-1B foreign guest workers. H-1B visas allow people to come to the U.S. temporarily for jobs requiring specialized education and skills. Federal law limits the number of new visas available each year, and competition is fierce. A recent report, based on an investigation by NBC Bay Area and The Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR), describes alleged mistreatment of tech industry guest workers, such as non-payment of wages, by some companies. H-1B workers have challenged these practices in several class…
  • Shareholder Lawsuit Against SeaWorld Claims Management Misrepresented Reasons for Financial Losses

    30 Dec 2014 | 12:05 pm
    A shareholder's lawsuit against the owner and operator of the SeaWorld theme parks alleges that the company misled investors about declining revenues and park attendance in connection with its 2013 initial public offering (IPO). Baker v. SeaWorld Entertainment, et al, No. 3:14-cv-02129, complaint (S.D. Cal., Sep. 9, 2014). The company has faced extensive criticism over the treatment of marine animals in its parks, particularly its iconic killer whales, also known as orcas. After an orca killed a trainer at the company's Orlando, Florida park, the company faced regulatory investigation, fines,…
  • Misconduct by California Financial Firm Results in Penalty by Private, Independent Regulator

    15 Dec 2014 | 3:32 pm
    The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) fined a California broker-dealer $325,000 in November 2014 in connection with multiple complaints, including the alleged sale of unregistered or non-exempt securities. In re BMA Securities, No. 2010023220502, letter of acceptance, waiver, and consent (FINRA, Nov. 11, 2014). FINRA is a private corporation that acts as an independent regulator in the financial industry, meaning that it essentially serves as a way for the financial industry to self-regulate. Member firms and licensed securities brokers agree to abide by FINRA rules, and to…
  • Ninth Circuit Invalidates Arbitration Clause in Website's Terms of Use for Lack of Mutual Assent

    28 Nov 2014 | 1:27 pm
    Laws governing the formation of contracts, including the creation of an enforceable obligation, go back for centuries. The internet has changed many aspects of how businesses interact with their customers, but it has not changed the basic nature of contract formation. A California federal district court held that that an arbitration clause in a website's Terms of Use (TOU) was unenforceable because the defendant business did not make the plaintiff adequately aware of the clause. The clause therefore lacked mutual assent. Nguyen v. Barnes & Noble, Inc. ("Nguyen I"), No. 8:12-cv-0812, order…
  • Court Denies Discharge in Personal Bankruptcy Case, Finding that Transfer of Cash from Bank Account to Safe Deposit Box Had Fraudulent Intent

    14 Nov 2014 | 10:57 am
    A debtor in a Chapter 7 personal bankruptcy case argued that the court should discharge his debts over the objection of a creditor, which claimed that he transferred money before filing bankruptcy with fraudulent intent. The debtor claimed that the transfer, which involved withdrawing cash from a personal checking account and placing it in a safe deposit box, was necessary because of allegedly unlawful collection activities by the creditor. The bankruptcy court denied the discharge, and the Bankruptcy Appellate Panel (BAP) affirmed the ruling. In re Haag ("Haag 1"), Nos. AZ-11-1661,…
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  • Are Homeowners Better Drivers Than Renters?

    Matthew Weiss
    14 Jan 2015 | 6:34 am
    A recent report indicates that homeowners are better drivers than renters.  The website found that drivers who own their home file fewer insurance claims than than renter counterparts.   Data from over 700,000 drivers was analyzed.  The study also concluded that drivers 18 to 24 who lived with their parents filed the most insurance claims (even more so that renters) and that drivers between 65 and 99 filed the least number of claims. It is surmised that homeowners generally have higher net worths and/or more stability than renters leading to the difference in claims between…
  • Ignorance Of The Traffic Law Does Not Apply To Police Officers

    Matthew Weiss
    7 Jan 2015 | 6:45 am
    In 2009, a man was illegally stopped near Dobson, N.C. because one of his brake lights was out. The owner consented to a search of the car and the police officer found a bag containing cocaine.  The hitch, however, is that, under North Carolina law, it is only illegal to drive a car when both brake lights are inoperable making the initial stop illegal. The Supreme Court was recently asked to decide whether the police officer’s stop constituted and illegal search and seizure in violation of the Fourth Amendment. Surprisingly, the high court held (8-1) that the stop was reasonable…
  • Traffic Violations Bureau Held Not A Court

    Matthew Weiss
    17 Dec 2014 | 6:41 am
    NYS Department of Motor Vehicles In a recent decision, Acting Bronx Supreme Court Justice Miriam Best ruled in People v. Serrano that the Traffic Violations Bureau is not a court for purposes of the attachment of double jeopardy. In Serrano, the defendant was found guilty by default of un-licensed operation under VTL 509(1), a violation. He was simultaneously charged with criminal un-licensed operation (i.e., driving when one knows or should know that he or she is suspended) in criminal Court. Serrano argued that he could not also be charged in criminal court because the Traffic Violations…
  • New York’s New Cell Phone Laws

    Matthew Weiss
    6 Nov 2014 | 6:44 am
    Using cellphone while driving Effective Saturday, November 8, 2014, the penalties and fines for tickets for illegally using a cell phone and texting-while-driving will increase. The new law increases the maximum fines for texting and talking while driving. The maximum fine for a first offense will increase from $150 to $200. For a second offense — committed within 18 months of the previous offense — fines will increase from $200 to $250. A third violation or subsequent violations committed within 18 months will increase from $400 to $450. For young drivers under 21 with junior licenses, a…
  • NYC’s 25 MPH Speed Limit

    Matthew Weiss
    15 Oct 2014 | 6:27 am
    Question:  When there are no speed signs posted on a New York City street or stretch of roadway, how fast can you drive?  If you answered 30 mph, you’d be right until November 7th.  On that date, the un-posted speed limit will be lowered to 25 mph.  (This new un-posted limit, of course, does not apply to NYC highways which have a default speed of 50 mph). The lower speed limit is part of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s campaign to make the streets safer, and is expected to reduce accidents, injuries and fatalities.  Meanwhile, motorists can expect routine enforcement of the new limit…
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    Spencers Solicitors Blog

  • Compensation: myth and reality

    Spencers Solicitors
    16 Jan 2015 | 5:56 am
    Working as a personal injury lawyer, the phrase 'compensation culture' is unfortunately never far away - and sometimes it's not hard to see why. Almost every TV channel, radio station and newspaper will have some form of advert stating 'where there's blame there's a claim' or 'you could be entitled to compensation'. Meaning it is easy for the public to start believing people claim for almost any mishap or financial irregularity, in exchange for huge sums of cash. But I assure you this isn't the case, and so I wanted to revisit a few of the myths around compensation in the workplace that the…
  • Saving our lollipop men and women

    Spencers Solicitors
    8 Jan 2015 | 1:35 am
    School Crossing Patrols are under threat across the UK. Despite lollipop men and women having made an invaluable and ongoing contribution to road safety in our country for over 60 years, financially hard-pressed local authorities are considering scaling back or axing the service entirely - with several having already done so. The idea of School Crossing Patrols (SCPs) was first trialled in the late 1940s. The favourable reception given to the service was such that 1953 saw the School Crossing Patrol Act being passed, giving SCPs the legal authority to stop traffic, and the first permanent…
  • Head injuries in sport: knowledge is power, but only money talks....

    Spencers Solicitors
    12 Dec 2014 | 7:18 am
    We human beings are highly intelligent and innovative, and our abilities have enabled us to achieve great things - such as developing cures to many fatal diseases and even sending men to the moon. In years gone by we did not know that cholera was caused by dirty water; but when we found out we innovated and created clean and efficient water networks in order to eradicate this disease in the UK. Why is it then, when we discover the cause of something which is undesirable, such as a head injury or concussion, that innovation to prevent it is slow to materialise? Think about the recent Ebola…
  • Winter is coming, are you and your roads ready?

    Spencers Solicitors
    5 Dec 2014 | 5:52 am
    During November's Road Safety Week, I was reminded of all the little maintenance tasks that needed to be done on my car. Every driver knows the importance of getting their vehicle ready for the winter weather. From checking tyres to replacing wiper blades, there are plenty of simple steps that can improve a car's safety, performance and handling in bad weather. While many safety precautions are within your control, a major aspect that isn't is the condition of the roads, as unfortunately a recent Streetwatch survey by the AA showed that 40% of respondents listed their local roads as being in…
  • Spencers Solicitors calls for businesses to take action on road safety

    Spencers Solicitors
    19 Nov 2014 | 8:28 am
    Spencers Solicitors are pleased to announce their support of Road Safety Week, in conjunction with Brake, the road safety charity. Road Safety Week is the UK's biggest road safety event, involving thousands of schools, businesses and community groups every year. This year's RSW runs from 17-23 November, and to mark the occasion, Spencers Solicitors held an office 'Bright Day' where the whole team wore their brightest and most florescent clothing to work, in an effort to raise funds and awareness for the charity. Staff from the firm have also signed up to the 'Brake Pledge' in order to help…
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    White Plains Personal Injury Lawyer Blog


    19 Jan 2015 | 9:59 am
    The exploding airbags manufactured by Takata has been a problem known by the manufacturer since the mid 2000. Honda announced the first U.S. recall for faulty airbags in a nationwide action in 2008. The founder of Takata was the late Juichiro Takada. His family business grew into the world's largest suppliers of car safety equipment. He was often on factory floors at home and abroad. According to an article in USA Today - The Journal News reported by Kirk Spitzer on December 7, 2014, more than 16 million cars have been recalled worldwide because of defective air bags made by Takata. Five…

    7 Jan 2015 | 1:07 pm
    .M. went through great efforts to quickly produce replacement ignition switches for millions of cars under recall. However, the harder part is getting customers into dealerships to get the cars fixed. GM met its October, 2014 goals of having 1.96 million recalled cars. In an article in USA Today - The Journal News by Chris Woodyard points out only 55.7% of owners have had the repairs done by November 20, 2014 leaving 833,630 still to be fixed. The initial flood of customers trying to get recalled cars fixed has dwindled to a trickle. After barraging customer with letters, e-mails, etc. GM has…

    23 Dec 2014 | 12:30 pm
    In an article in the Journal News on December 16, 2014 by Theresa Juva-Brown states that in 2013, 63% of tickets that made their way through New York Courts, 135,738 tickets resulted in guilty as charged convictions. Another 26% of tickets resulted in convictions for other driving violations. The guilty as charged convictions remain high but they have declined since stiffer penalties went into effect in 2013. In 2012, before cell phone violations added 5 points to your license, 72% of tickets processed ended with guilty as charged convictions and 17% resulted in convictions for other driving…

    4 Nov 2014 | 10:02 am
    An analysis of municipal workers salaries was reported in The Journal News on August 7, 2014 by Elizabeth Ganga. The conclusion of the analysis was that Westchester County employees are the highest paid County employees in the State in both the police positions and general government jobs. Among Town employees, Ramapo in Rockland County claims the top spot for employees' salaries. A report was made by the Empire Center for Public Policy on County and Municipal payrolls in New York. The report compares the different governments by category and within regions allowing taxpayers to see low…

    3 Nov 2014 | 7:21 am
    One of life's privileges is a license to drive. Many baby boomers have the problem of elder parents not wanting to stop driving. The main problem is most states, including New York, do not have mandatory retesting of elder drivers. Naturally, people in their 70's & 80's do not have the same reflexes as they once had. Older drivers cannot see, hear or react the same way. However, without mandatory retesting, no one knows if an elder person has the ability to keep driving. In an article in The Journal News on August 7, 2014, the author discussed that older drivers do not want to give up their…
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    Pinellas County Florida Criminal Lawyer Blog

  • Juvenile Car Burglaries

    Pawuk & Pawuk, P.A.
    26 Jan 2015 | 12:32 pm
    One of the most common juvenile crimes that I see are juvenile car burglaries.  These frequently happen in neighborhoods where kids may be walking around at night and trying to open up unlocked cars looking for loose change or cigarettes.  Kids call this crime CAR HOPPING. Usually these types of crimes are harmless and the kids who do this certainly don’t think it is a big deal. The cars are unlocked so there is no damage and they rarely take factory installed items like stereos or speakers.  But sometimes, the innocent search of change in an unlocked car might reveal a computer,…
  • Occasional, Infrequent ‘Alarms’ from Ankle Monitoring Device Not Enough to Violate Probation

    Pawuk & Pawuk, P.A.
    14 Dec 2014 | 9:38 am
    Most of us have known the frustration of trying to keep our cell phones charged. A recent smartphone commercial playfully mocks the “wall huggers” who are tethered to electrical outlets at airports and other public venues. For one Tampa Bay man, the device he failed to keep charged was much more important than a cell phone, and the stakes of a dead battery were much greater than losing email and Facebook, since his struggle to keep his court-ordered ankle monitoring bracelet charged nearly sent him to jail. The Second District Court of Appeal, however, determined that the…
  • Beware: Ignoring Your Arrest Warrant Will Not Make It Go Away

    Pawuk & Pawuk, P.A.
    11 Dec 2014 | 9:38 am
    Those who study the social sciences may speak of the “Ostrich effect,” or information aversion, which is the technique of dealing with risky situations by pretending they don’t exist. The name comes from the old myth that ostriches defend themselves from danger by sticking their heads in the sand. Pretending a danger doesn’t exist is rarely an effective strategy, and this is especially true with your outstanding arrest warrant, as some recent arrests have illustrated. An arrest warrant will not go away on its own. Depending on the crime with which the authorities have…
  • Supreme Court Rejects Police’s Mining Suspected Drug Dealer’s Cell Phone Location Information Without a Warrant

    Pawuk & Pawuk, P.A.
    1 Dec 2014 | 4:04 am
    On the heels of this summer’s landmark privacy ruling in Riley v. California, the Florida Supreme Court issued an important ruling last month that strikes a blow not just for the accused but for the privacy of all Floridians. The court’s decision threw out certain cell-phone evidence against an accused drug dealer because the law enforcement officers did not have a warrant when they seized the information. Many legal authorities have hailed the ruling as an important step in the right direction regarding digital privacy. Shawn Alvin Tracey was suspected of trafficking drugs after…
  • Offender Gets Two Years in Jail for Refusing to Admit Wrongdoing as Part of Plea-Bargain Required Treatment Program

    Pawuk & Pawuk, P.A.
    21 Nov 2014 | 5:00 am
    An accused sex offender’s failure to complete the terms of his plea deal landed him in jail for more than two years, and the trial court ruled that he willfully violated his probation. His argument that he did not fully understand the requirements of his plea deal did not win on appeal, since the 5th District Court of Appeal stated that he had only two options, which were to ask to withdraw the plea arrangement or to seek to have his sentence vacated, and since he did neither of these things, the probation violation ruling was proper. The outcome is a cautionary tale for anyone facing…
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    Oakland Employment Lawyer Blog

  • Jury Awards Family of Bicyclist Killed by Truck Driver $4 Million

    Liberty Law
    26 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    The family of a 24-year-old woman who was killed by a truck while riding a bicycle in San Francisco in 2013 was recently awarded $4 million by a San Francisco jury. The jury found the truck driver was negligent in striking and killing the woman. The victim’s family was represented by Micha Star Liberty of Liberty Law and William Veen and Jeremy Cloyd of the Veen Firm. The woman, who worked at a marketing firm, was riding her bicycle to work on August 14, 2013 in the South of Market neighborhood. The bicyclist was killed when the truck driver turned from Folsom Street onto Sixth Street. At…
  • Eighteen Months after Recalling Jeeps for Gas Tank Fires, Drivers are Still Dying

    Liberty Law
    22 Jan 2015 | 6:20 am
    Even though certain models of Jeeps were recalled 18 months ago for defective gas tanks, drivers are still being killed in accidents involving the defective vehicles, many of which have not been repaired. The recalled vehicles are 2002-2007 Jeep Libertys and 1993-2004 Jeep Grand Cherokees. Those vehicles were recalled in June 2013 after it was discovered that some Jeeps can easily burst into flames when they are hit from behind. The gas tanks in those vehicles are located behind the rear axle, only inches from the bumper. Federal investigators determined that the rear-mounted gas tanks can be…
  • Over Thirty New California Employment Laws Take Effect in 2015

    Liberty Law
    19 Jan 2015 | 6:14 am
    California’s lawmakers were busy last year. Over 30 state employment laws are set to take effect this year. The most significant new employment law is the paid sick leave law. This law requires employers to provide paid sick leave to any employee who worked in California for 30 days or more within a year of being hired. Each employee must get at least one hour of sick leave for every 30 hours worked. There are limitations on the use of the sick leave time – employers can limit the paid time off to 24 hours or three days in each year of employment, and can stop employees from accumulating…
  • GM Recalls Topped 30 Million in 2014

    Liberty Law
    15 Jan 2015 | 5:36 am
    On December 31, General Motors issued its final recall for 2014, which affected over 92,000 Cadillac, Chevy, and GMC vehicles. That recall pushed the total number of GM recalls for 2014 to 30.4 million vehicles. The year started off quietly for GM, but in February, a major problem became public – the ignition switches on many GM vehicles were defective. The defective ignition switches caused cars to shut off while driving, which disabled air bags and resulted in deaths and serious injuries. Beginning in February, GM recalled 780,000 older cars to fix faulty ignition switches. Two weeks…
  • San Francisco 49ers Sued for Age Discrimination

    Liberty Law
    12 Jan 2015 | 5:34 am
    Two former employees of the San Francisco 49ers are suing the team. They are alleging that they were fired in 2011 because of their age. The men, who were both managers of the 49ers at the time they were fired, were both in their late fifties. According to the lawsuit, the 49ers fired a number of senior managers in 2011 and 2012 in order to hire younger employees. At the time, the CEO allegedly said he wanted to hire younger technology workers from Silicon Valley because they made a lot of money, didn’t want to play golf six days a week, and did a lot of cool things before they turned…
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    Sonoma County Criminal Lawyer Blog

  • California Appellate Court Rules "Concentrated Cannabis" Counts as Marijuana under the Compassionate Use Act

    11 Jan 2015 | 6:52 pm
    Earlier last year in December, a California appellate court reversed a lower court's decision holding that concentrated cannabis was not considered "marijuana" under the Compassionate Use Act of 1996. According to one local news source out of Sacramento, the appellate court determined that "marijuana" under the Act included all parts of the cannabis plant, including oils derived thereof. The facts that gave rise to the case are as follows: A man's probation was revoked after he was found to be in possession of concentrated cannabis in the form of "honey oil" and "dabs." While the probation…
  • Sonoma County Man Arrested on Gun and Drug Charges

    4 Jan 2015 | 2:15 am
    Just last week on New Year's Eve, a Rohnert Park man was arrested and charged with several drug- and gun-related charges after Sonoma County sheriffs found methamphetamine, marijuana, and seven guns in the man's residence. According to one local news report, the man was on probation for past drug offenses when he was brought in on these current charges. Evidently, the sheriffs conducted a raid on the man's home. It is unclear whether they had a warrant to do so. However, they did discover nine grams of methamphetamine, five pounds of marijuana, and seven different guns, including two assault…
  • Eighth Grader Arrested with Pot and a Gun at Santa Rosa School

    17 Dec 2014 | 6:08 pm
    Earlier this month in Santa Rosa, an eighth-grade boy was arrested after he was caught with a pellet gun and some marijuana on school property. According to a report by the Press Democrat, several other students saw the boy with the gun and reported him to school authorities, who then called police. School employees searched out the teen's backpack and searched it, finding the pellet gun and a small amount of marijuana. The backpack was not with the student at the time of the search. It is unclear where the bag was in relationship to where the student was. Police told reporters that no one's…
  • Drug Enforcement Agency Task Force Seizes Over 1,000 Marijuana Plants in Recent Bust

    10 Dec 2014 | 4:47 pm
    Earlier this month in Petaluma, the Sonoma County Drug Enforcement Task Force executed a raid on a warehouse that uncovered a grow operation containing more than 1,000 marijuana plants. According to one report, the police stated that if the plants had been allowed to grow to maturity, they would have been able to produce up to 2,800 pounds of marijuana with a street value of upwards of $4.25 million. While on the scene, officers noted that there were various other problems with the building meeting current code. No one was in the warehouse when the search and seizure was conducted, and no one…
  • SUV Plunges into Ravine, Leading to Seizure of Four Pounds of Marijuana

    13 Nov 2014 | 6:55 pm
    Earlier this month in Santa Rosa, police seized four pounds of marijuana near an SUV that had tumbled down into a ravine while attempting to evade the authorities. According to a report by the Press Democrat, police attempted to initiate a traffic stop after they observed the 38-year-old driver commit a traffic violation. Once the man pulled the SUV over on Highway 101, and the officer got out of his car to approach, the SUV sped off towards East First Street. The chase extended for about eight miles and lasted for approximately seven minutes before the police called off the chase because the…
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    Tampa Bay Injury Attorney Blog

  • 7-Year-Old Seriously Injured in Tampa Crash

    Whittel & Melton, LLC
    20 Jan 2015 | 6:21 am
    A 7-year-old boy suffered serious injuries after being struck by a minivan on Saturday night, according to Tampa police. Witnesses told police they saw the boy run across Main Street around 5 p.m. with several other children. The boy was crossing the street when a gray 2015 Dodge Journey Minivan traveling west passed the intersection of N. Rome Ave and hit him. The driver of the minivan, a 28-year-old man, apparently stopped and attempted to give the boy CPR. Tampa police have not released any additional information regarding what led up to the crash or the boy’s injuries. The boy was…
  • Gibsonton Man Dies in Pedestrian Accident

    Whittel & Melton, LLC
    16 Jan 2015 | 1:53 pm
    A 38-year-old Gibsonton man was killed Wednesday evening while walking along the northbound shoulder of U.S. Highway 41. According to the Florida Highway Patrol, the man was struck by a vehicle at 6:18 p.m. Troopers believe the man was not using an available sidewalk when he was hit by a Ford Focus driven by a woman who claims she did not see the victim. The man was taken to Tampa General Hospital, where he later died from his injuries. The woman was not injured. As of now, no charges have been filed. If an innocent person is killed because of somebody else’s negligent, careless or…
  • Another Driver Arrested for Driving the Wrong Way on Selmon Expressway

    Whittel & Melton, LLC
    12 Jan 2015 | 7:21 pm
    Authorities nabbed yet another wrong-way driver on Sunday on a Tampa Bay area roadway. Around 2 a.m., a 24-year-old Bradenton man drove around a road block put in place on the eastbound Lee Roy Selmon Expressway for a crash investigation, according to the Florida Highway Patrol. Troopers claim the man then turned his 1999 Saturn sedan around before reaching the crash and traveled west in the eastbound lanes. A trooper helping with the traffic investigation pulled the man and arrested him for driving under the influence. The FHP said he refused to provide a breath sample. Wrong-way traffic…
  • New Child Car Seat Law Goes Into Effect Thursday

    Whittel & Melton, LLC
    6 Jan 2015 | 11:09 am
    As it is now, Florida is one of only two states in the nation that does not require car seats for children who have outgrown baby seats but are still too small for seat belts. But come Thursday, a new law will go into effect that will greatly improve Florida’s child safety seat laws. The new law essentially mandates booster seats for children aged 3 to 6-years-old. The new law will require children to be in booster seats until their 6th birthday, however, experts say to keep kids in the booster seat until the seat belt fits properly. According to law enforcement, children restrained the…
  • Man Killed in Palm Harbor Scooter Crash

    Whittel & Melton, LLC
    2 Jan 2015 | 2:34 pm
    A 26-year-old Palm Harbor man was killed Thursday in an early morning crash on his scooter near downtown Palm Harbor. The man was heading south on Alt. U.S. 19 near New York Avenue when he lost control of the scooter and hit the outside curb at 2 a.m., according to the Florida Highway Patrol. That impact of the collision caused the scooter to overturn and eject the rider, who was not wearing a helmet, onto the pavement. The man was taken to Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point, where he later died from his injuries. Due to the small size and lighter weight of scooters, collisions involving…
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    San Jose Attorney and Counselor At Law - Richard G. Burt

  • Guidance on Best Practices in M&A Transactions

    Richard Burt
    15 Jan 2015 | 6:20 pm
    The Corporations Committee of the Business Law Section of the State Bar of California just published an e-bulletin that I prepared. The e-bulletin alerts attorneys to a paper written by Leo Strine, Jr., chief justice of the Delaware Supreme Court, Documenting the Deal: How Quality Control and Candor Can Improve Boardroom Decision-Making and Reduce the Litigation Target Zone. I recommend the paper highly for business lawyers, even those who don’t practice in the area of contested mergers. The post Guidance on Best Practices in M&A Transactions appeared first on San Jose Attorney and…
  • Real Estate Withholding Credit for Pass-Through Entities

    Richard Burt
    7 Jan 2015 | 9:12 pm
    The California Franchise Tax Board (FTB) has recently published a reminder about credit for real-estate withholding. According to the FTB: Pass-through business entities that pass through their income, deductions, and credits to the owners must also pass through the real estate withholding credit. What is a pass-through entity? It is an S corporation, limited partnership, or limited liability company. A general partnership is treated the same as a pass-through entity, though technically it is not one. The FTB advises that it cannot refund that part of the real estate withholding credit that…
  • Richard Burt Law: Handling M&A Transactions

    Richard Burt
    18 Dec 2014 | 6:42 pm
    Smart merger and acquisition transactions can be a key component of business growth and on-going success. Business attorney Richard G. Burt is ready to assist at every stage of a merger or other acquisition transaction and to assure that the business deal is carefully documented and legally sound, with help on negotiation tactics as well as preparation of M&A agreements, contracts, and other documents, due diligence, and closing, Mr. Burt works assiduously to accomplish a transaction in which his client’s interests are protected. Comprehensive Merger & Acquisition…
  • Misleading Certificate of Status Solicitations

    Richard Burt
    17 Dec 2014 | 3:36 pm
    The California Secretary of State has issued warnings about misleading certificate of status solicitations. Directors and officers of corporations and managers and members of limited liability companies (LLCs) should be wary of such solicitations. As a public service, the text of the Secretary of State’s warning is repeated below (with minor modifications): Letters are being sent to businesses registered with the Secretary of State directing them to submit $49.50, respond by a certain date, complete a form, and send the money and documentation to a private entity named “California…
  • Out-of-State LLC Owning Property in California

    Richard Burt
    8 Dec 2014 | 5:39 pm
    Many California residents are members of LLCs formed under the law of other states (often referred to as “foreign LLCs”). California, being hungry for tax revenue, often tries to tax the LLC on the ground that it is doing business in California. Obviously, if a Delaware LLC owns rental property in California and is generating rental income from the property, it would be considered to be doing business in California. But what if the resident forms an out-of-state LLC simply to hold raw land or a personal residence for the owner (either a principal residence or vacation home)?
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    Minneapolis Personal Injury Law Blog

  • What do I need to know about my Minnesota spinal cord injury?

    On behalf of Rischmiller & Knippel LLP
    22 Jan 2015 | 3:51 am
    Spinal cord injuries can occur whenever the soft tissue that is inside the spinal column is severed, crushed or dislocated by some physical trauma in a way that puts harmful pressure on that tissue. Typically, spinal cord injuries results in a loss of motor functions and often paralysis. Most people are surprised to learn that the majority of spinal cord injury victims are men. According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, nearly 80 percent of all SCI patients are male. It is also estimated that approximately 12,000 citizens will suffer some form of SCI each year.
  • Understanding brain injuries caused by a lack of oxygen

    On behalf of Rischmiller & Knippel LLP
    16 Jan 2015 | 1:50 am
    When most of us think of brain injuries, we imagine some impactful event such as a motorcycle or automobile collision. What many people fail to realize is that there are other forms of damage to brain tissue that can ultimately prove just as debilitating as any traumatic brain injuries. Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy is a condition that occurs within brain tissue when it is deprived of oxygen. HIE generally occurs after four minutes when brain cells begin dying off due to the lack of oxygen. Although HIE can be fatal, many victims survive with lifelong symptoms of diminished brain function.
  • Minnesota malpractice suit allowed to move forward after appeal

    On behalf of Rischmiller & Knippel LLP
    8 Jan 2015 | 2:26 pm
    The Minnesota Court of Appeals has ruled that a malpractice lawsuit against a doctor who reportedly transplanted a pancreas containing cancer cells into a 36-year-old woman from Pequot can now move forward. The case, which was initially dismissed, claims that the doctor breached Minnesota state law on standard of care after the doctor accepted a donated pancreas for transplant into the woman. Attorneys for the woman's family claim that although the doctor was not aware that the pancreas was diseased, she should have performed a more thorough screening of the donor since there were questions…
  • Seeking more than just answers in your birth injury lawsuit

    On behalf of Rischmiller & Knippel LLP
    2 Jan 2015 | 4:09 am
    Perhaps nothing is more heartbreaking than new parents learning that their child may be permanently disabled by a preventable birth injury. There are a host of things that can go wrong throughout a mother's pregnancy and subsequent birth that may affect the long-term health of her child. For example, medications administered to the mother to induce labor may adversely affect the child. Additionally, improper birthing techniques can lead to the child suffering oxygen starvation to its brain. In some instances, a doctor's forcible removal of an infant from the mother's birthing canal using…
  • Distracted driving and car accidents in Minnesota

    On behalf of Rischmiller & Knippel LLP
    26 Dec 2014 | 3:56 am
    This is the time of year when many people will be receiving gifts of electronic devices like cellphones, tablets and GPS navigation units. Unfortunately, Minnesota's "No Texting While Driving Law" makes it illegal for drivers to send, read or compose text messages while driving. This ban also extends to vehicles that are considered to be part of traffic. An example of this might be a person texting on his or her phone while waiting at a traffic signal. The rules are even tougher for school bus drivers and teens. School bus drivers are completely prohibited from using cellphones while driving.
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    California Innocence Project » Blog

  • Annual Dodgeball Tournament

    14 Jan 2015 | 11:29 am
    ANNUAL CIP DODGEBALL TOURNAMENT What: 32 Team Double El […] The post Annual Dodgeball Tournament appeared first on California Innocence Project.
  • A Look Back at 2014

    30 Dec 2014 | 1:28 pm
    2014 has been an amazing year for us at the California […] The post A Look Back at 2014 appeared first on California Innocence Project.
  • Learning from Nick Yarris

    Madison Christian
    19 Dec 2014 | 10:56 pm
    By Madison Christian Last Saturday night, I jumped on t […] The post Learning from Nick Yarris appeared first on California Innocence Project.
  • Innocence March Vigil Photos and News

    15 Dec 2014 | 1:22 pm
    The California Innocence Project hosted an Innocence Ma […] The post Innocence March Vigil Photos and News appeared first on California Innocence Project.
  • Matthew and Grace Huang Board Plane for Los Angeles

    3 Dec 2014 | 4:33 am
                FOR IMMEDIATE […] The post Matthew and Grace Huang Board Plane for Los Angeles appeared first on California Innocence Project.
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    Personal Injury and Disability Lawyer in Pensacola, Florida

  • Fifth Circuit Upholds Reliance Standard Denial of LTD Benefits

    Nick A. Ortiz, Esq.
    9 Jan 2015 | 9:39 pm
    Disclaimer: This was not a case handled by disability attorney Nick A. Ortiz. The court case is summarized here to give readers a better understanding of how Federal Courts decide long term disability ERISA claims. Case Name: Killen v. Reliance Standard Life Insurance Company Court: United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, Appeal from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas Type of Claim: Long Term Disability. Insurance Company: Reliance Standard Life Insurance Company (“Reliance Standard”). Claimant’s Employer:  Covenant Health Systems…
  • Claimant Friendly ERISA Federal Court Decision From Northern District of Illinois

    Nick A. Ortiz, Esq.
    4 Jan 2015 | 8:02 pm
    Disclaimer: This was not a case handled by disability attorney Nick A. Ortiz. The court case is summarized here to give readers a better understanding of how Federal Courts decide long term disability ERISA claims. Case Name: Warner v. Unum Life Insurance Company Court: United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Type of Claim: Long Term Disability. Insurance Company: Unum Life Insurance Company. Claimant’s Employer: Tyson Foods, Inc. Disabilities: fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic low back pain, a seizure disorder, and “other…
  • Subjective versus Objective Proof of Condition That Causes Pain – ND California

    Nick A. Ortiz, Esq.
    26 Dec 2014 | 8:20 am
    Disclaimer: This was not a case handled by disability attorney Nick A. Ortiz. The court case is summarized here to give readers a better understanding of how Federal Courts decide long term disability ERISA claims. Case Name: Gilmore v. Liberty Life Assurance Company of Boston Court: United States District Court for the Northern District of California. Type of Claim: Long Term Disability. Insurance Company: Liberty Life Assurance Company of Boston (hereinafter Liberty Life). Claimant’s Employer: Wells Fargo & Company. Disabilities: cervical arthritis; status post an anterior…
  • LTD Insurer Can Waive Limitations Period by Failing to Provide Policy Document – USDC Colorado

    Nick A. Ortiz, Esq.
    24 Dec 2014 | 8:45 am
    Case Name: Walden v. Metropolitan Life Insurance Company of America, Inc. Court: United States District Court for the District of Colorado. Type of Claim: Long Term Disability. Insurance Company: Metropolitan Life Insurance Company of America, Inc. (MetLife). Claimant’s Employer: Honeywell. Disabilities: “numerous mental, physical and emotional disabilities”. Benefits Paid? No. Issues: ERISA Statute of Limitations -Whether whether MetLife waived the ability to rely on the Plan’s time limitations period to file a claim and/or whether equitable estoppel or tolling may apply…
  • Opinions of Treating Physicians May Be Afforded Greater Weight in LTD Claims- USDC Arizona

    Nick A. Ortiz, Esq.
    22 Dec 2014 | 10:52 pm
    The Opinions of Treating, Examining Physicians May Be Afforded Greater Weight Than Those of Nontreating Physicians in Long Term Disability Claims Case Name: Brown v. Life Insurance Company of North America Court: United States District Court for the District of Arizona. Type of Claim: Long Term Disability. Insurance Company: Life Insurance Company of North America (LINA). Disabilities: Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), frequently referred to as Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD); Nutcracker Syndrome; connective tissue disease; an autoimmune ailment diagnosed as scleraderma; and…
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    Atlanta Criminal Lawyer Blog

  • Minor in Possession of Alcohol in Georgia

    15 Jan 2015 | 3:56 pm
    I got a call today from a parent whose child was charged with minor in possession of alcohol in the City of Atlanta Municipal Court. He was driving his parents car. There was a passenger, also under 21, in the car and they were pulled over by the police. The passenger admitted drinking one beer and there was one empty beer can on the floor. He was arrested. The driver said he did not drink anything, took field sobriety tests and took a breath test and tested 0.00. He was still arrested and charged with minor in possession of alcohol because he admitted drinking 1 beer earlier in the evening.
  • Impact of Georgia's Juvenile Justice Reforms

    9 Dec 2014 | 9:28 am
    In Georgia, anyone under the age of 17 is considered a juvenile offender and enters a separate system for juvenile offenders, rather than the adult criminal justice system. A judge reviews their cases and decides an outcome. In a worst-case scenario, the outcome of a juvenile case can result in long-term confinement in a correctional facility. However, in most cases, the goal is not punishment, but rehabilitation. Under some circumstances, depending on the juvenile's age, he or she can be tried as an adult, and his or her case can be transferred to adult court. In the past, too many kids…
  • Shoplifting Recidivists in Georgia

    9 Dec 2014 | 9:25 am
    Shoplifting is illegal in Georgia. Shoplifting can be charged when the defendant performed actions with the intent of taking merchandise without paying or of depriving the owner of possession of merchandise or its value. Shoplifting includes altering price tags, switching labels, transferring merchandise between containers, or otherwise causing less to be paid for a particular item. It can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on how much was stolen and whether there were any aggravating circumstances. In a recent appellate decision, a Georgia jury found the defendant…
  • Denial of Bond in Georgia Hit and Run

    9 Dec 2014 | 9:08 am
    In Prigmore v. State, the defendant was arrested for a hit and run under OCGA § 40-6-270. He was also arrested for vehicular homicide, reckless driving, and driving under the influence of drugs. Under the hit and run statute, a driver of any vehicle that is involved in an accident resulting in injury or death to anybody is required to stop the car at the scene. If the driver can't stop right at the scene, he or she must stop as close to the scene as possible and go back to the scene to give help to the victims. For a first conviction, the defendant must be fined between $300 and $1,000,…
  • Atlanta Georgia Attorney Tom Nagel discusses hit-and-run O.C.G.A. 40-6-270

    2 Jul 2014 | 3:11 pm
    Sandy Springs, Dunwoody, Fulton, Gwinnett, DeKalb and Cobb County Hit-and-run lawyer Nearly every week I'll get a call from somebody who was involved in a hit-and-run situation. You may have left the scene for many different reasons. Within the next few days following a hit-and-run, it's not uncommon to receive a call from a hit-and-run detective or police officer from the city or county in which the incident occurred. The detective wants to talk to you about what happened to get your version of the events. The detective or police officer will ask you to come to the station to discuss what…
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    Harrison County Personal Injury Law Blog

  • Bad weather can lead to car accidents

    On behalf of Carlile Law Firm LLP
    23 Jan 2015 | 10:12 pm
    Texas residents enjoy good road conditions compared to many drivers elsewhere in the nation. Yet, road conditions are not always good. Inclement weather and man-made issues happen that can make the roads dangerous. When this happens, drivers who do not adjust to the circumstances could end up being involved in a car accident. While it seems obvious that when poor conditions pop up drivers should slow down and drive carefully, many do not. In fact, every year weather plays a role in more than a million car accidents. These accidents kill thousands and injure hundreds of thousands more. Some…
  • High-rise fire kills five Texas residents during the holidays

    On behalf of Carlile Law Firm LLP
    16 Jan 2015 | 7:36 am
    One's home is supposed to be a place of safety. And for many Texans, their home is a place of safety. But for some, the safety of their homes is threatened by a host of dangers. One is a residential fire. These fires can lead to serious burn injuries or even death. Take, for example, a recent fire at a high-rise apartment complex for senior citizens. A fire swept through the building, killing five residents and leaving many more without housing. Reports did not indicate the cause of the fire, but many residents claim that the deadliness of the fire may have been at least partly due to the…
  • Truck accidents can be devastating

    On behalf of Carlile Law Firm LLP
    9 Jan 2015 | 6:06 am
    For many Texans, hopping in a car and zipping from one place to the next is as commonplace as breathing. But neither the commonness nor the convenience of driving makes it completely safe. In fact, getting into a car can be one of the most dangerous things a person does all day. In fact, car crashes cause untold harms each year. For example, 2010 statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration calculate that the country lost about $1 trillion from car crashes. Some of that $1 trillion loss came in the form of lost productivity, but far too much was the result of lost lives.
  • Government agency recalls nearly 200,000 pounds of chorizo

    On behalf of Carlile Law Firm LLP
    2 Jan 2015 | 4:46 am
    The food distribution system, which lets Texans enjoy foods made across the planet, is a modern marvel. But like any complicated system, it breaks down. Things go awry. Storage fails; transportation gets delayed; food spoils. When that happens, Texans get sick -- or even die. Those Texans (or their loved ones in case of death) may have legal options. One is a personal injury lawsuit. Take a developing situation. The United States Food and Drug Administration just recalled more than 190,000 pounds of chorizo (a pork product). The chorizo, which is made by San Antonio-based Garcia Foods, Inc.
  • Distracted driving, a primary cause of Texas car accidents

    On behalf of Carlile Law Firm LLP
    26 Dec 2014 | 5:20 am
    Most Texans drive carefully. They drive a safe speed, and pay attention to the road. They scan intersections and keep track of the vehicles around them. But, even the best drivers struggle to do all of those things every moment they are driving. If those moments of distraction come at the wrong moment, a car accident can happen. Distractions are prevalent. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, drivers are distracted by non-driving activities for more than a quarter of the time they are driving. The distracting activities are all too familiar: eating, drinking,…
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    Tennessee Estate Law Blog

  • Estate Planning New Year’s Resolutions

    Ryan Simmons
    19 Jan 2015 | 2:39 pm
    Having entered the New Year you may have created a list of resolutions that you hope to accomplish sometime during 2015. Some may be looking to exercise more, eat healthier, or even save some more money. Although it may not be one of the first things that you think of in setting your resolutions, estate planning is a goal that can be easily accomplished without spending too much money or time. If you have questions about your estate plan, contact the Nashville estate planning attorneys at The Higgins Firm. So you may be wondering what exactly an estate plan is. In its most basic form, an…
  • Tennessee Probate Inheritance Taxes

    Ryan Simmons
    23 Dec 2014 | 10:52 am
    While it seems as though you can be taxed for almost anything these days, there is good news for those who may be worried about potential inheritance taxes in Tennessee. Many states have made a push to eliminate inheritance taxes in an effort to draw new residents and businesses. Tennessee has followed suit. The Tennessee state legislature has enacted legislation to gradually increase the inheritance tax exemption amount before completely eliminating the tax in 2016. The Tennessee inheritance tax exemption allows for any estate valued under the set amount to be exempt from paying the…
  • The Importance of Estate Planning for Those who are Single

    Ryan Simmons
    17 Dec 2014 | 9:59 am
    The landscape of the American population is ever changing. In 1970, approximately one-third of Americans age 15 and older were single. In 2013, that number had risen to nearly one-half. With a growing population of single individuals, it is important to recognize the implications on estate planning. While much of the attention on estate planning may focus on those who are married and have families of their own, the reality is that estate planning can be even more important for those who are single. Those included within the singles population may include divorced individuals, those who have…
  • Divorce and its Effect on Estate Planning in Tennessee

    Ryan Simmons
    2 Dec 2014 | 2:15 pm
    Life is full of change. Many of those life changes can reach much farther than people realize. While a large portion of the population has been affected by a divorce, often those individuals do not understand the impact that it may have on their estate planning documents. Exactly what happens to a last will and testament or power of attorney after there has been a divorce? It is important to understand what can happen if your documents are not updated. If you have questions how a major life change may affect your estate plan, contact the Nashville estate planning lawyers at The Higgins Firm.
  • The Higgins Firm Wishes You a Happy Thanksgiving!

    Ryan Simmons
    25 Nov 2014 | 2:28 pm
    This time of year brings families together to enjoy food, fellowship, and maybe even a little football. Whether your Thanksgiving involves a small gathering of close friends or a large get-together with distant relatives, this is a time to be thankful for all of those loved ones in our lives. As you meet with your loved ones, it is a great opportunity to think about your estate plan. Being around your family may help you evaluate who would best serve in certain roles or who may need some extra protection in the future. While your estate plan may not be your first concern, having an estate…
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    Maryland Divorce Lawyer Blog

  • Maryland Enacts New Laws to Protect Families from Domestic Violence

    Anthony A. Fatemi, LLC
    22 Jan 2015 | 7:58 am
    Many states throughout the country have enacted “no fault” divorce laws, essentially permitting married couples to file for divorce without first citing specific grounds or satisfying other cumbersome requirements. Under Maryland law, however, spouses may only file for a “no fault” divorce after living apart for one full year, in separate homes. This is a requirement. Parties may file for divorce immediately if one can prove certain events including adultery, cruelty of treatment, and excessively vicious conduct. According to an article published last year, the state of this current…
  • Maryland Court Affirms Decision Denying Parent Visitation in Child Custody Dispute

    Anthony A. Fatemi, LLC
    30 Dec 2014 | 6:55 am
    Divorce is a serious matter. Depending on the particular family circumstances, there may be a variety of important and challenging decisions to make that will have a long-term impact on the parties involved. In most cases, spouses will be expected to address issues such as child custody and visitation, spousal support (or alimony), property and debt division, and child support, among other things. Because of the nature of divorce, parties often do not agree on even the most fundamental decisions. In order to sort through the myriad issues that may arise throughout the proceedings, and to…
  • “Marital Presumption” Under Maryland Code Governs Issues of Paternity

    Anthony A. Fatemi, LLC
    16 Dec 2014 | 6:43 am
    Under Maryland law, children born or conceived during a marriage are presumed to be the legitimate children of both spouses. The issue of paternity is important to settle as early in a child’s life as possible, for emotional, financial, and legal reasons. Once a man is determined to be the father, he is under a legal obligation to support the child. In some cases, a person may attempt to dispute paternity and any resulting court order regarding child support or custody issues. This is a matter that courts take very seriously. If you are facing a paternity, child custody, or support matter,…
  • Maryland Court Upholds Award of “Indefinite Alimony” to Wife

    Anthony A. Fatemi, LLC
    26 Nov 2014 | 6:17 am
    Every state in the country has the authority to enact laws governing marriage and divorce. Couples who initiate divorce proceedings will be subject to their state’s particular laws. It is important to understand the family code in your state, as well as the applicable laws that will likely affect the outcome of your case. The Maryland Family Code covers a multitude of issues, such as child custody, division of property, and spousal support, also known as alimony. In many family law cases, the amount of alimony to be awarded is a hotly contested issue. If you are considering a divorce, it…
  • Maryland Court Refused to Reduce Father’s Child Support Payments

    Anthony A. Fatemi, LLC
    12 Nov 2014 | 6:02 am
    Divorce is difficult. Couples seeking to dissolve their marriage will likely face some challenging and potentially divisive issues, such as child custody and support, alimony, and the division of marital property. Ideally, the parties will set aside their differences to address these important matters in an effort to move forward in their separate lives. Fortunately, Maryland family law governs many aspects of the process, affording the parties somewhat of a blueprint of what to expect as they proceed through their case. But how these laws apply to the unique circumstances of any one family…
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    Houston Family Law Blog

  • Protect yourself with a prenuptial agreement in Texas

    On behalf of Shriver & McLean, L.L.P.
    22 Jan 2015 | 12:41 pm
    Do you have personal assets that mean a lot to you? Maybe you received an inheritance or money from a loved one that you want to protect in the case of divorce from your soon-to-be spouse. Regardless of your reasoning, a prenuptial agreement can help you keep your personal assets in your name and prevent them from becoming community property. Statistics have shown that while married couples may have the best intentions, nearly 40 percent of marriages end in divorce. In Texas, divorces can result in your assets being split amongst you, so if you don't want that to happen and want to protect…
  • Couple claims morality clause is unconstitutional in Texas

    On behalf of Shriver & McLean, L.L.P.
    15 Jan 2015 | 9:32 am
    Imagine getting a divorce and wanting to move on with your life. You have children, and you've met a new partner. Now, you want to live together as a family. Unfortunately, if a morality clause is in place following your divorce, you may not be able to. Here's an interesting story out of Texas about morality clauses and the trouble they can cause for alternative relationships. A judge has determined that a lesbian couple may not cohabitate because of a morality clause in the divorce papers from one partner's previous marriage. The clause is a common clause in Texan divorce cases, and it…
  • Billionaire asks for reduction in alimony payments during divorce

    On behalf of Shriver & McLean, L.L.P.
    8 Jan 2015 | 1:08 pm
    In many cases, if your job circumstances change in Texas and you're paying alimony, you may be able to get a reduction in the am