Jurisdiction of the Civil Courts to change on 3rd February 2014 (31.1.2014)

The Courts and Civil Law (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2013 (Jurisdiction of District and Circuit Court) (Commencement) Order 2013 was signed by the Minister for Justice on the 18th December 2013. This Order establishes the 3rd February 2014 as the commencement date for the new monetary jurisdictions of the civil courts.

From the 3rd February 2014, the following changes will take effect:
• The ju …

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Success for Miller Samuel Client SFRS Defending Against Former Grampian Fire Chief’s Age Discrimination Claims

Miller Samuel’s leading employment law specialist Marie Macdonald has successfully defended a case brought against our client Scottish Fire & Rescue Service (SFRS) by former Grampian fire chief David Dalziel for unfair dismissal and age discrimination. This significant case has already received widespread national media coverage (see BBC, Herald Scotland, Evening Express, The Scotsman and The Press and Journal for more details in addition to the key facts outlined below).

scottish_fire_rescue_service_defends_employment_tribunal_claimDavid Dalziel, 62, held the Grampian post for eight years until it was merged into a single service.

He had applied to become the chief fire officer of the new Scotland-wide service and a number of other senior posts but was not appointed.

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Tamsin R. Kaplan Moderates Panel at Boston College Law School

On January 30, Davis Malm shareholder Tamsin R. Kaplan moderated a Boston College Law School panel on labor and employment law. The panel included Ms. Kaplan; Scott Faust, a partner at Proskauer Rose LLP; and John Welsh, a partner at Bello Black & Welsh LLP. Ms. Kaplan and the other two panelists shared their personal stories, discussed their careers in employment and labor law, and provided guidance to students interested in pursuing careers in this area of the law. The panel was divided into two 30-minute sessions and enabled law students to ask questions and advice of the panelists.

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Reminder — February 1st is a Critical OSHA Injury & Illness Recordkeeping Deadline

February 1st is an important annual OSHA Injury and Illness Recordkeeping deadline. Specifically, by February 1st every year, certain employers are required by OSHA’s Recordkeeping regulations to:
1.Review their OSHA 300 Log;
2.Verify that the entries are complete and accurate;
3.Correct any deficiencies on the 300 Log;
4.Use the injury data from the 300 Log to develop an 300A Annual Summary Form; and
5.Certify the accuracy of the 300 Log and the 300A Summary Form
For a more detailed explanation of the requirements and which companies are exempt, we encourage you to read the recent OSHA Law Update published by Amanda R. Strainis-Walker and Eric J. Conn

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Lessons from Outside the Industry: Grocery Store Brand Challenge

While traveling to Chicago today (an adventure in and of itself, due to delayed and cancelled flights and two trips through security – a story for another time), I had the opportunity to read a fascinating in-flight magazine article in American Airlines’ American Way magazine.

The article, titled “The Brand Challenge,” by Kristin Baird Rattini, discusses how private labels in grocery stores are gaining some real traction against national brands. Since I was already contemplating a post that focused on how brands outside of the legal industry can teach us lessons, I was particularly attuned to how the article is relevant to lawyers and legal marketers.

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New Minimum Wage for Government Contractors May Have Minimal Impact

by Michael D. Thompson

President Obama announced in his State of the Union address that he will issue an executive order increasing the minimum wage for employees of federal contractors to $10.10 per hour. The executive order is undoubtedly a prelude to a push for Congressional support of an increase in the Fair Labor Standards Act minimum wage of $10.10 per hour.

“If you cook our troops’ meals or wash their dishes, you should not have to live in poverty,” President Obama said. 

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Immigration Alert: January 2014

  1. H-1B Nonimmigrant Season Opens on April 1, 2014, for Fiscal Year 2015
  2. H-1B Petition Amendments May Be Required Due to Changed Job Location
  3. DOL’s Administrative Review Board Applies “Bona Fide Termination” Rule to E-3 Worker
  4. Infosys Pays Record $34 Million in Settlement
  5. New York Federal District Court Awards Undocumented Immigrants FLSA Damages
  6. California Passes “Immigrant Friendly” Legislation
  7. OCAHO Provides a Roadmap for Reducing Fines for Form I-9 Violations
  8. OSC Settles Workplace Discrimination Complaint
  9. Supreme Court Amends Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 11 to Include New Immigration Consequences Warning
  10. New York Requires Trial Judges to Inform Defendants of Deportation Consequences from Guilty Pleas to Felonies
  11. BIA Finds That an E-2 Dependent Is Not Required to Apply for Employment Authorization
  12. Important Recent Changes to USCIS M-274 Handbook for Employers
  13. USCIS Announces Enhancement to E-Verify Program to Help Combat Fraud
  14. ICE Will Not Use Information Obtained Under Affordable Care Act in Civil Immigration Enforcement Actions
  15. DOS Issues February 2014 Visa Bulletin


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McDonald Hopkins Government Strategies Advisory: This Week in Washington — January 31, 2014

President Obama delivers State of the Union address

This week, President Obama delivered his State of the Union address. In his address he called for a “year of action.” The President’s inability to work with Congress to pass key pieces of his agenda led Obama to give a speech that outlined a number of policy provisions where he would “go it alone” and use his executive authority.

Republicans and many red state Democrats were sharply critical of the President’s decision to by-pass the Congress and use executive orders to change and set policy in a number of key areas. 

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Ohio Statehouse Update: This Week in Ohio — January 31, 2014

Representatives Mike Duffey (R-Worthington) and Al Landis (R-Dover) this week asked members of the House Ways and Means Committee to favorably consider legislation that would require the state tax commissioner to notify Ohio businesses of tax or fee overpayments and provide automatic refunds by crediting future tax liability.

The sponsors said the legislation—House Bill 402—was introduced in response to a recent investigation by the Ohio Inspector General (OIG) of the theft of tax dollars by Kathleen Hyre, a former Ohio Department of Taxation (ODT) employee. The investigation revealed that Hyre had concealed her thefts by moving overpayments from one taxpayer to another—tax agents were able to move funds within the tax system without supervisor approval or knowledge by the taxpayer. The ODT found instances where a refund had been requested but the payment was listed as “pending” in the system and therefore never paid.

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Idaho District Court First to Unwind a Physician Practice Deal

Court finds: “Integrated care—and risk-based contracting—do notrequire a large number of physicians”


On January 24, 2014, in Federal Trade Commission v. St. Luke’s Health System, Ltd. & Saltzer Medical Group, P.A.,[1] the U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho found that the acquisition of Saltzer Medical Group (“Saltzer”) by St. Luke’s Health System (“St. Luke’s”) violated the Clayton Act and the Idaho Competition Act. The court permanently enjoined the consummated acquisition and ordered it to be unwound. This case represents the first time that a federal court has decided a case against a physician practice acquisition.

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