North America

Don Sihota to present on business succession on September 26

In the next 10 years, it is estimated that more than 75% of business owners in BC will retire. If you’re a business owner over 50, a business succession plan is essential. On September 26, Clark Wilson’s Don Sihota will be presenting a seminar on how to get the best price and negotiate the best terms when you sell your business. Early registrants receive a special discount if they sign up before Friday, September 20. For full details and to register, download the seminar brochure.

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Privacy & Security Concerns in Telehealth: Ensuring Legal Compliance in Hospital-Based Practices

Below is a re-print of an article that we recently wrote for the Advisory Board Company’s 2013 third quarter General Counsel Agenda. To view the original publication in the General Counsel Agenda, click here.

For hospitals, the promise of telehealth has spurred innovation across multiple service lines and led to the emergence of a number of new delivery models such as telestroke, teleradiology, telepsychiatry, telepathology, teleICU and remote patient monitoring.  While many of these programs are leading to significant improvements in access to health care services, quality of care, and efficiencies, they often also raise their own distinct set of compliance challenges, particularly in the area of privacy and security.

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Multistate Tax Update — September 19, 2013

The Wisconsin Department of Revenue (the “Department”) recently issued guidance indicating that same-sex married couples may not file jointly and must file separate income tax returns. In addition, same-sex married couples will be required to file a new form, Schedule S. While many may view the Department’s guidance in a negative light, it is likely that the Department has its hands tied until either political, legislative or judicial action (or some combination thereof) unties them. Lawsuits are likely to ensue following the announcement of the Department’s guidance.

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Mark Spognardi and Charles Pautsch present successful seminars on new concealed carry, medical marijuana legislation in Illinois

Arnstein & Lehr

Mark Spognardi

Arnstein & Lehr

Charles Pautsch

Arnstein & Lehr Chicago Partners Mark A. Spognardi and Charles W. Pautsch hosted two seminars titled “Guns and Weed” on September 10 and 11. The seminar addressed how to comply with the newly passed Illinois Firearm Concealed Carry Act, as well as the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act. These two laws are a major concern to business owners, executives, managers and HR professionals. The seminar informed attendees of employer and employee rights and responsibilities under the Acts, and what they can do to protect business interests. Please click here to read about the event from the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin.

Mr. Spognardi and Mr. Pautsch will also be presenting a “2-for-1″ seminar series on October 15-17, which will combine their two hot-topic programs. The first portion of this three hour breakfast seminar will be “Nuts and Bolts of Employment Law,” which is dedicated to the basic legal topics of the workplace. The second portion will be “Guns and Weed.” These complimentary seminars will be presented in the suburbs of Chicago and in Milwaukee. For more information on this event, please click here.

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Federal Courts Uniformly Embrace Climate Science

A visitor to Capitol Hill might come away with the impression that there are serious questions about whether climate change is occurring and, if it is, whether it is caused by human activity.  But one place where there are few such questions is the courts.

In a compelling analysis of federal court decisions addressing climate change issues,  Michael B. Gerrard, Professor of Professional Practice and director of the Center for Climate Change at Columbia Law School, argues persuasively that climate change science has been unanimously accepted by the courts (with one piddling exception) and  the basis for several significant decisions.  Anyone in the position of having to argue the acceptance of climate science in a court case should take note of Professor Gerrard’s article, “Court Rulings Accept Climate Science“, which appeared in the New York Law Journal on September 12, 2013, which contains lengthy citations to the relevant case law.   

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Robert E. McKenzie contributes to article on innocent spouse tax relief claims

Arnstein & Lehr

Robert E. McKenzie

Arnstein & Lehr Chicago Partner Robert E. McKenzie offered his thoughts to a September 10 article for Blomberg’s BNA. The article, “BNA Snapshot: Innocent Spouse Relief Cases in U.S. Tax Court” give taxpayers insight on contesting innocent spouse tax relief claims in the U.S. Tax Court. Mr. McKenzie also recently spoke at a webinar on this issue.

To read the article in full, please click here.

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Barry Katz quoted in Law360 article on appetite of institutional investors

Arnstein & Lehr

Barry Katz

Arnstein & Lehr Chicago Partner Barry R. Katz contributed to a September 11 article titled, “Appetite For Real Estate Debt Grows As Returns Justify Risk.” The article discusses a spike in the “appetite” of institutional investors to invest in real estate debt held by private funds. Mr. Katz talks about bank involvement with this issue.

To read the article in full, please click here.

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Mark Spognardi authors article for InsideCounsel

Mark Spognardi

In his article published September 16 on Inside Counsel’s website, Arnstein & Lehr Chicago Partner Mark A. Spognardi followed up on his predictions from a previous Inside Counsel article that the new members of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) members would be facing challenges immediately after their appointments. In the article titled, “Labor: NLRB Specialty Healthcare bargaining unit standard withstands employer challenge,” Mr. Spognardi discusses a recent case, Kindred Nursing Centers East, LP dba Kindred Transitional Care and Rehabilitation – Mobile v NLRB is being challenged on the definitions of certain terms that are of importance in this case.

To read the article in full, please click here.

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Administration Rejects Labor’s ObamaCare Demands

by: Adam C. Abrahms, Kara M. Maciel, Adam C. Solander, and Steven M. Swirsky

On September 13, 2013, the Obama Administration rejected the union movement’s intense lobbying efforts to seek a waiver, so that their members would be able to receive tax subsidies in the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) Marketplaces for those of their members who will be offered “affordable coverage” from their employers.

Beginning January 1, 2015, the ACA requires that large employers offer affordable health coverage that provides minimum value to their “full-time employees” (those working 30 hours or more per week) or pay a penalty. If an employee is not offered health insurance, or if the coverage offered does not meet the definition of “affordable” or does not provide minimum value, the employee may go to the Marketplace (formerly known as the Exchanges) to purchase coverage. In such cases, certain employees may receive a tax credit or premium subsidy in the Marketplace to help defray the cost of obtaining health coverage.

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Second Chance for Lawyer Ordered to Pay Costs Personally?

Rule 57.07 of Ontario’s Rules of Civil Procedure gives the court (including a Master of the court) discretion to award costs of a proceeding against a lawyer and to require the lawyer to pay the costs personally. Specifically, the rule provides that where a lawyer for a party has caused costs to be incurred without reasonable cause or to be wasted by undue delay, negligence or other default, the court may make an order, (a) disallowing costs between the lawyer and the client or directing the lawyer to repay the client money paid in respect of costs; (b) directing the lawyer to reimburse the client for any costs that the client has been ordered to pay to another party; and (c) requiring the lawyer personally to pay the costs of any party.   Such an order may be made by the court on its own initiative or on the motion of any party to the proceeding but the court has no discretion to make such an order unless the lawyer is given a reasonable opportunity to make representations to the court. 
In the case of Haider Humza Inc. v. Rafiq [2012] ONSC 6161, Master Dash of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice ordered the plaintiff’s lawyer, Murray Teitel, to personally pay the defendant’s lawyer costs in the sum of $3,000 for conduct which Master Dash defined as “sharp practice”.  Master Dash held, among other findings, as follows: 
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