Monthly Archives: June 2011

ILN Today Post

Emerging Investment Opportunities in India: The Multi-Brand Retail Segment

A consensus has emerged in the government to permit foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retailing.

The Ministries of agriculture and food processing and the Planning Commission have suggested FDI up to 100 per cent in this sector, where other ministries have suggested smaller caps and sought more suggestions from industry.

The inter-ministerial group of inflation headed by Kaushik Basu, who is the chief economic advisor in the finance ministry, has recommended that FDI in multi-brand retail should be permitted, as it could be one of the key steps to help reduce rising prices and cut the margin between farms and retail prices.

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ILN Today Post

Protective agreements: don’t let the courts define things for you

Many companies require employees to sign restrictive or protective covenants as a condition of employment. Some of these agreements impose confidentiality obligations on employees, while others impose post-employment obligations, including non-competition, non-soli- citation of clients and employees, and non-servicing of clients. These agreements provide peace of mind to companies so they can permit staffers to have unfettered access to confidential information without fearing that it will be used by departing employees for the benefit of a future employer.

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The Times They Are A-Changin’: The Obama NLRB issues proposed new rules to revamp the union election process

In the face of the failure of the Employee Free Choice Act, the Liebman-led NLRB has taken it upon itself to overhaul the union election process.  According to the NLRB, the changes will “remove unnecessary barriers to the fair and expeditious resolution of questions concerning representations,” despite the fact that in FY 2010, the median timeframe for conducting initial elections was 38 days and 95% of all elections were conducted within 56 days.  As Member Hayes said in his dissent, “In truth, the ‘problem’ which my colleagues seek to address through these rule revisions is not that the representation process takes too long.  It is that unions are not winning more elections.”

The proposed changes to the current election process include:

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The Death of Employer Free Speech: Labor relations and the proposed rules by the DOL and the NLRB

In a one-two punch, the DOL and the NLRB issued notices of proposed rulemaking that together seek not only to hamstring employers in communicating with employees during a union organizing effort, but also to hamstring employers in communicating with employees about unions at all. These efforts are little more than a thinly veiled attempt to circumvent Congress and salvage the Obama administration’s support from organized labor – particularly following the Employee Free Choice Act debacle. Indeed, perhaps the “transparency” repeatedly espoused in the notices would be a little more credible if the agencies just came clean and admitted their role as political pawns.

The net effect of the proposed regulations is to expedite union elections, thereby providing a further advantage to organized labor (which is already winning over 50% of elections), and to effectively kill what an employer can actually do in the truncated time they would have. With a current median election time of 38 days from the date of petition (with 95% of elections occurring within 56 days), the NLRB’s proposed rules realistically seek to reduce that time period to not much more than 20 days. The purpose of the quickie election, of course, is to allow the union to propagandize its target audience, file a petition and hold the election immediately – before employees can be educated on the fact that there is a view other than the union’s.

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Joel Hurwitz appointed to Midwest Advisory Board of CAMERA

Joel M. Hurwitz

Chicago Partner Joel Hurwitz was recently appointed to the Midwest Advisory Board of the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA).  CAMERA is a media monitoring, research and membership organization devoted to promoting accurate and balanced coverage of Israel and the Middle East.

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William T. Eveland appointed chair of ISBA’s

William T. Eveland

Chicago Associate Toby Eveland was recently appointed to serve as chair of the Illinois State Bar Association’s Diversity Leadership Council by ISBA President John Locallo.  The Diversity Leadership Council is charged with coordinating the ISBA’s diversity outreach efforts throughout the state.  As chair of the Diversity Leadership Council, Mr. Eveland was given the opportunity to address the Association at its annual meeting on June 17, where his speech focused on the need to continue to diversify the legal profession and highlighted some of the ISBA’s current diversity initiatives.

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Partner Raymond Werner named to the Governing Council of Advocate Lutheran General Hospital

Raymond J. Werner

Managing Partner Raymond J. Werner was recently appointed as a member of the Governing Council of Advocate Lutheran General Hospital.  Located in Park Ridge, Illinois,  Advocate Lutheran is one of the largest hospitals in the Chicago area for research and referrals. It is a Level l trauma center and has been designated as a Pediatric Critical Care Center by the Illinois Department of Public Health and Emergency Medical Services for Children. It also serves as the only children’s hospital in the greater north and northwest suburban region of Chicago.

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New York Court Enforces 60-Day Notice Provision After Original 60-Day Period Already Elapsed

In a recent decision in the matter Alliance Bernstein, L.P. v. William Clements, the Supreme Court of the State of New York, New York County (Justice Louis B. York), enjoined a former employee of AllianceBernstein, L.P. (“AllianceBernstein”) from working for a competitor for 60 days, pursuant to a provision in an agreement requiring the individual to provide 60 days notice of his intention to resign. Although the original 60 days extending from the date of his resignation had already elapsed, the Court in effect granted a new 60 day period of non-competition, because the individual had started working for the competitor immediately upon his resignation from AllianceBernstein.

The facts as set forth in the decision were that the defendant individual, a California resident, had no experience in the securities industry when first hired, but AllianceBernstein gave him extensive training and paid for his registration with various securities exchanges. He then became a successful financial advisor. In 2009, AllianceBernstein and the defendant entered into an extensive incentive plan, in which defendant promised (a) to give 60 days notice of his resignation, (b) not to solicit clients or employees of AllianceBernstein during those 60 days, and (c) to keep permanently the confidentiality of AllianceBernstein’s trade secrets and confidential information.

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Andrej Rudanov on amendments of the Law on Pharmacy

Andrej Rudanov on amendments of the Law on Pharmacy


Legal portal Infolex published an interview with Andrej Rudanov, senior associate at TARK GRUNTE SUTKIENE. The interview focused on recent amendments of the Law on Pharmacy, assessing the possible effect and key issues arising in the application of the new rules. The interlocutor also touched upon the advertising of medicinal products and food products, licensing of the activities of pharmacies, regulation of medicine pricing and other topics.

The entire interview (in Lithuanian) is available at Infolex.


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"You want what? What to do when faced with a bankruptcy preference demand," Jeffrey Grasl Interviewed by Smart Business Magazine

You want what?
What to do when faced with a bankruptcy preference demand

Jeffrey Grasl Interviewed by Smart Business Magazine

Whether your company is large or small, sooner or later you will experience the pain and apprehension that come from receiving notice that one of your customers has filed bankruptcy. The first thing that many companies do after receiving notice is run to the accounts receivable ledger to see how much money just became uncollectible. However, that may not be the end of the pain, says Jeffrey S. Grasl, member, McDonald Hopkins PLC. “Many companies don’t realize that the real knife in the gut may come 18 to 24 months later when they receive a letter demanding that they pay back some of the money the bankrupt company previously paid to them,” says Grasl. “In bankruptcy parlance, this is referred to as a ‘preference.’” Smart Business spoke with Grasl about what to do when faced with a bankruptcy preference demand.

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