Monthly Archives: October 2013

Neil Melliship quoted in Canadian Lawyer

Neil Melliship was quoted in Uses and abuses of trademarks online, a recent Canadian Lawyer article examining how the parameters that define trademark registration and use in different jurisdictions have been complicated by our increasingly online and globalized world.  In the article, Neil, together with several other leading Canadian trademark practitioners, identified a number of recent cases that have highlighted the difficulties that Canadian Courts have had in responding to changes in how business is conducted online, when dealing with the concept of whether or not a trademark is used in Canada.
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The curious incident of the trust (and) the matrimonial property regime

Estate planners may dismiss the recently reported Court of Appeal case of Slutsker* v Haron Investments Ltd & Another ([2013] EWCA Civ 430) as one for divorce lawyers only.  However, for anyone engaged in setting up trusts or other wealth structuring vehicles, the case is an intriguing one.   

The facts; in brief.  In 2000, with the help of her solicitors, Mrs Slutsker purchased a London property for £6,000,000.  She was married at the time and the property was bought as a residence for herself and her young children while they attended school in London.  Haron Investments Ltd, as Mrs Slutsker’s nominee, purchased the property on her behalf and then later, at Mrs Slutsker’s direction, declared that it held the property on trust for the trustee of a Cayman Islands discretionary trust, from which Mrs Slutsker, her husband and the children could benefit.  All appeared well until Mr and Mrs Slutsker divorced in Russia in 2009 and Mr Slutsker claimed that half of the property was held on a resulting trust for himself.
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Massachusetts Abandons Section 125 Plan Requirement

Massachusetts has just eliminated another requirement of its Health Reform law. Covered employers no longer need to offer Section 125 plans to employees who do not have access to employer group insurance. Related Massachusetts penalties and notice requirements will not be enforced, and the Administration will ask the Legislature for a formal repeal. See Massachusetts Connector Administrative Bulletin 2013-3. 

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ROBERT J. GALVIN QUOTED IN NOTED CONDOMINIUM RESOURCE HOALEADER.COM

Davis Malm shareholder Robert J. Galvin was recently quoted in the noted online condominium resource HOALeader.com. Mr. Galvin offered insight on Know How to Respond to HOA Owners’ Concerns.

For more information about HOA Leader, please visit: www.hoaleader.com.

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Multistate Tax Update — October 31, 2013

Businesses and individuals who have postponed trading in their used vehicles on new ones may be rewarded for their patience. Michigan consumers will no longer be taxed on the full sales price of new or used motor vehicles or recreational vehicles when a consumer provides a trade-in motor vehicle or recreational vehicle as part of the purchase price of a new or used motor vehicle or recreational vehicle, under a bill (SB 89) that was passed by the Michigan legislature and is expected to be signed by Governor Rick Snyder.

Senator Dave Robertson, the bill sponsor, explained that “Michigan is currently one of only six states—and the only Great Lakes state—that taxes the value of trade-ins. This unfair policy puts in-state businesses at a serious competitive disadvantage and costs Michigan consumers more in extra taxes.”

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FDA Reports 12% of U.S. Spice Imports Contaminated With Insect Parts And Rodent Hairs…What’s In Your Salad?

New York Times reporter Gardiner Harris reported on October 30, 2013 that an FDA study found that about 12 percent of spices brought to the United States are contaminated with insect parts, whole insects, rodent hairs and other things, based upon an analysis of spice imports.

According to FDA officials, it is unclear what share of the nearly 1.2 million annual salmonella illnesses in the United States result from consuming contaminated spices.  Less  than 2,000 people had their illnesses definitively tied to contaminated spices from 1973 to 2010, and most people eat spices in small quantities.   But because people often fail to remember eating spices when asked what foods might have sickened them, FDA officials speculated that problems related to spices may be under-reported.  The Scientific literature has associated foodborne illness outbreaks from microbial contaminants in spices.

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Ashley Forte to speak to local business owners on audit traps

Ashley Forte

Arnstein & Lehr Chicago Associate Ashley Hayes Forte will be presenting on November 7 at the Mont Clare/Elmwood Park Chamber of Commerce in Chicago. Her presentation, titled”Tax Gap Audit Traps” will be given to a group of business owners.

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Alexander Popelyuk joins Lidings as Senior Associate

Lidings has announced Alexander Popelyuk joining its Moscow office as senior associate. Mr. Popelyuk, a seasoned legal professional in the sphere of litigation and corporate law, will become a valuable addition to the firm’s Dispute Resolution practice.

Prior to joining Lidings Mr. Popelyuk worked as a senior associate at Nektorov, Saveliev and Partners  and Vegas Lex, held senior position in the legal department of a leading worldwide operating retail trust and contractor, and acted as a legal advisor for a major Russian investment holding.

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A Quarterly Refresh of your Marketing/Biz Dev Plan

To many people, fall may just be the prelude to winter – the days get shorter, it’s darker earlier, and the leaves are falling. But I’ve always thought of fall as a fresh start. It may be years since I’ve been in school, but something about the chill in the air makes me feel renewed and revitalized.

With that in mind, I was recently chatting with my friend, Jaimie Field, about this very thing and how close we are to the end of the year. This starts to be the time when firms and attorneys look at their marketing and business development plans, to see how they’ve done in terms of meeting their goals for the year and what they want to accomplish in the following year. 

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Combatting Counterfeiting in Higher Learning Environments

By Jeffrey D. Morton

Counterfeiting activity has long been an issue of concern for Canadian owners of intellectual property rights (“IPR”). While recent progress has been made both by way of court decisions and statutory reform, the potential damage to IPR owners that are subjected to counterfeiting activity continues to be an issue of significant concern. Increasingly, higher learning institutions, such as our universities, institutes and colleges, have become aware of the misappropriation of their valuable brands. For example, a number of British Columbia-based higher learning institutions have recently had to respond to issues related to marketers of counterfeit athletic wear, which made unauthorized use of well-known university and college logos. Further, the scope of counterfeiting activity includes the counterfeiting of degrees themselves with a number of active websites offering counterfeit Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Ph.D. Degrees, emblazoned with the institutional logo of your choice, for approximately $300 per degree.

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