Monthly Archives: April 2016

Attorney Ilirjan Pipa joins McDonald Hopkins

CLEVELAND (April 22, 2016) – Ilirjan Pipa has joined the Business department as an associate at McDonald Hopkins LLC, where he will be part of the Mergers and Acquisitions and Securities Practice teams.

Based in the firm’s Cleveland office, Pipa comes to McDonald Hopkins after gaining considerable experience at Roetzel & Andress and Kohrman Jackson & Krantz.

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Choosing between arbitration and litigation? Look to your contract! And ponder the pitfalls.

Parties considering whether to resolve disputes through arbitration or litigation should first look to their agreements to determine the appropriate course. Two recent out-of-province decisions demonstrate the issues that can arise when parties proceed with dispute resolution outside of the terms of their contracts.

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NLRB Argues “Misclassification” as an Independent Contractor is Unfair Labor Practice

Steven M. Swirsky

In a further incursion into the area of the gig and new age economy, the Regional Director for the National Labor Relations Board’s Los Angeles office has issued an unfair labor practice complaint alleging that it is a violation of the National Labor Relations Act (the “Act”) for an employer to misclassify an employee as an independent contractor.

The Complaint, which is based on a charge filed by the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, through its’ Justice For Port Truck Drivers  campaign, asserts that Intermodal Bridge Transport (“IBT”) “has misclassified its employee drivers as independent contractors, thereby inhibiting them from engaging in Section 7 activity and depriving them of the protections of the Act. The theory behind the ULP charge and complaint is that the Act gives employees the right to unionize and engage in other protected, concerted activity, and that if an employer misclassifies a worker as an independent contractor, it unlawfully deprives the worker of those rights.

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10 Ways to be a Legal Marketing Rock Star

unsplash_523b1f5aafc42_1The best session that I attended at the Legal Marketing Association‘s Annual Conference by far was “ROI: Measuring So You Can Better Manage,” with Equinox Strategy PartnersJonathan Fitzgarrald (Full disclosure: Jonathan is a friend of mine, but whether I’d known him or not, this session was chock full of value).

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ILN Today Post

Best Practices for Legal Hold Notices

With a change in the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure concerning sanctions for destruction of electronically stored information (ESI), it is a good idea for companies to ensure that their form legal hold notices and protocols for distribution are in line with best practices.

A company should circulate a legal hold notice when an audit, investigation, claim, or litigation is reasonably foreseeable. It must be in writing and should be labeled PRIVILEGED AND CONFIDENTIAL ATTORNEY WORK PRODUCT AND/OR ATTORNEY-CLIENT COMMUNICATION. It must state the reason for the legal hold and specify the types of documents, including ESI, that are relevant to the facts and circumstances that prompted the legal hold.

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ILN Today Post

Protecting the Attorney-Client Privilege While Using Third-Party Consultants

There can be no question that business and legal transactions have become increasingly multi-disciplinary and complex. Business executives and their legal counsel frequently seek guidance from a variety of external consultants, including outside accountants, financial advisors, executive benefits consultants, human resources specialists, insurance brokers, executive recruiters, and public relations advisors (especially in crisis communication situations). Can a company rely on the attorney-client privilege to protect the confidential nature of communications with these external consultants, or will the use of an external consultant constitute a waiver of privilege?

The attorney-client privilege protects communications between a client and counsel that were intended to be confidential and were kept confidential, where the communications were made to obtain or provide legal advice. In some circumstances, the attorney-client privilege may extend to non-lawyers consulted by internal corporate counsel and external counsel at law firms if the communications were made in confidence for the purpose of facilitating the attorney providing legal advice.

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Lack of Tenancy Agreements can Cause Disputes

As many as one in ten private landlords have no formal tenancy agreement in place with their tenants, according to new research by Direct Line for Business.

Worryingly, the research also found that where contracts are in place, landlords may unwittingly be asking tenants to sign documents that are not legally compliant. Of the landlords who don’t use a letting agent, 58% used adapted tenancy agreements from either old agent contracts or other landlords (38%) or an updated template they found online (20%).

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ILN Today Post

How Best to Ensure Enforceability of Rent Acceleration Clauses

A New York commercial landlord’s ability to enforce lease provisions that provide for the acceleration of a tenant’s future rent obligation in the event of breach came under scrutiny recently in the decision by New York’s highest court, the Court of Appeals, in Van Duzer Realty v. Globe Alumni Student Assistance.

New York law imposes no duty on commercial landlords to mitigate damages. That is, landlords have no obligation to re-let premises previously leased by defaulting tenants. Landlords, however, cannot collect from tenants more than what was bargained for at the time a lease was signed. Thus, a commercial landlord must make sure that any damages measured by the accelerated rent are not disproportionate to its actual damages.

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Expanding Reach of the Copyright Fair Use Defense

photo-1453945619913-79ec89a82c51Fair use allows for the unauthorized copying of a copyrighted work in limited circumstances. Historically, examples of fair use have included copying for the purposes of criticism, comment, parody, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, or research. Now the application of the fair use defense applies far beyond this. Two court decisions in 2015 illustrate the expanding reach of the fair use defense.

One of the key factors in determining fair use is whether the use is transformative. A work is transformative if it adds something new, with a further purpose or different character than the original work, giving it new expression, meaning, or message.

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ILN Today Post

Italy: New provisions for banks in financial difficulties

Italy has recently enforced new provisions concerning the management of banks’ and intermediaries’ crises following the European Union directives, concerning the saving of four Italian Banks.

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