Monthly Archives: December 2017

State AGs Think Opioid Class Actions Will Be the Next “Big Tobacco” Settlement

At this point, it’s not really ground-breaking news that America has a problem with opioid drugs. By way of anecdote, when I became a federal prosecutor in 2011, the last heroin case that had been prosecuted in the Nashville U.S. Attorney’s office was in the early-1990s; although, to be fair, there were then lots of what we called “pill” cases involving opioids. When I left the office in 2017, at least half of the office’s major investigations were directly related to opioids–some pills, but mostly outright heroin or fentanyl/carfentanyl . In Nashville, Tennessee, OxyContin (which is an opioid-based painkiller) can be worth up to $1.25/milligram (mg). That means that just one 80mg OxyContin has a street value of $100. Price, is of course, a reflection of demand and demand, in this case, is driven by addiction.

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Rainmaking Recommendation from Jaimie Field: You Have to Want It!

As we approach the end of the year, and you begin to think about what you’ll be doing next year to drive new business for your practice and your law firm, Jaimie Field of Marketing Field asks a tough question and issues a challenge.

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Circolare informativa. Definizione Agevolata carichi fiscali e contributivi affidati all’Agente della Riscossione (c.d. “Rottamazione bis delle cartelle di pagamento”)

Circolare informativa. Definizione Agevolata carichi fiscali e contributivi affidati all’Agente della Riscossione (c.d. “Rottamazione bis delle cartelle di pagamento”)
Autore: Simone Maria d’Arcangelo Si fa seguito alle precedenti comunicazioni del 9 Novembre e del…
Simone Maria d’Arcangelo

Come evidenziato nelle precedenti informative, la Legge n. 172/2017, di conversione con modifiche del D. Legge n. 148/20171 prevede la possibilità di:

    • pagare, senza corrispondere sanzioni ed interessi di mora, i debiti affidati alla riscossione dal 1 gennaio 2000 al 30 settembre 2017;
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Hall & Wilcox promotions and appointments

Leading independent business law firm Hall & Wilcox is pleased to announce two partner and ten senior lawyer appointments, effective 1 January 2018. The promotions are across the firm’s Melbourne and Sydney offices and will further bolster the firm’s insurance, private clients, employment/migration and litigation teams.

Ana Forster will be promoted to partner in the firm’s insurance team. Ana acts for WorkSafe Victoria and self-insurers with a particular interest in common law damages claims and claims for psychiatric injury.

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Occupiers have an ongoing duty to ensure the safety of premises

Coles found to owe a duty of care to a pedestrian who tripped and fell on a slippery surface in the car park. The Supreme Court found that as an occupier of a near-new premise, Coles still had a duty to satisfy itself that the car park was reasonably safe for pedestrians.

On 6 April 2014, the plaintiff slipped and fell in the below ground car park of the Coles’ Coffs Harbour store. Approximately a year prior to the fall, the plaintiff had undergone a total left hip replacement. In the subject fall, he suffered a peri-prosthetic hip fracture of his left hip which required revision of the previous hip replacement.

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NSW Budget 2017-2018 Half Yearly Review

On 14 December the Treasurer released the 2017-2018 Half Yearly Review showing that the NSW Government was set to deliver a budget surplus of $3.3b in 2017-2018.

A summary of the review in relation to state taxes are:

  • Taxation revenue is estimated to be $149m lower than the budget estimate.  This is partly due to the lower forecast transfer duty as growing numbers of first homebuyers benefit from new concessions, but with expected higher payroll tax and land tax collections partly off-setting the reduction.
  • Stamp duty policy changes announced in the budget (Housing Affordability package; increase in foreign purchaser duty to 8%), have changed the mix of transactions between first homebuyers, domestic investors and foreign investors, resulting in overall lower transfer duty revenue. As a result, transfer duty revenue is forecast to be $657m lower over the estimates.
  • Land tax revenue in 2017-2018 is expected to be $105.9m higher than at the budget as a result of new land valuations determined by the valuer general as at 1 July 2017.
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A Case for an Exception to the FCC Rule: Vulnerable Populations and Telemedicine

On December 14, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted to remove regulations that prohibit providers from blocking websites or charging for high quality service to access specific content. Many worry that allowing telecommunications companies to favor certain businesses will cause problems within the health care industry. Specifically, concerns have risen about the effect of the ruling on the progress of telemedicine and the role it plays in access to care. Experts worry that a tiered system in which service providers can charge more for speed connectivity can be detrimental to vulnerable populations.  Although the ramifications of the ruling are not entirely known, an exception for health care services would ensure that vulnerable populations can continue to gain access to care.

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Top Five Takeaways from MedPAC’s Meeting on Medicare Issues and Policy Developments – December 2017

The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (“MedPAC”) met in Washington, DC, on December 7-8, 2017. The purpose of this and other public meetings of MedPAC is for the commissioners to review the issues and challenges facing the Medicare program and then make policy recommendations to Congress. MedPAC issues these recommendations in two annual reports, one in March and another in June. MedPAC’s meetings can provide valuable insight into the state of Medicare, the direction of the program moving forward, and the content of MedPAC’s next report to Congress.

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Supreme Court of Canada Orders Estate Trustee to Exercise Discretion to Benefit Beneficiary

The Supreme Court of Canada released its decision in Cowper-Smith v. Morgan, 2017 SCC 61, on December 14, 2017 relating to siblings disputing the entitlement to their mother’s estate.
As early as 1992, Elizabeth and Arthur Cowper-Smith of Victoria, BC, had made it clear that after their deaths, their property would be divided equally among their three children, Gloria, Max and Nathan.  Shortly before he died in 1992, Arthur explained such intention to his children to avoid family discord.  However, after their father’s death, the children became estranged from each other.  Gloria first fell out with Nathan.  She wrote him letters demanding that he not raise his voice in her mother’s home or entertain “gay males”.  When he went on an overseas trip, Gloria changed the locks to the family home although Nathan’s belongings were still inside.  He broke in but Gloria had the police escort him out.  Nathan eventually moved to Edmonton.
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Supreme Court of Canada Orders Estate Trustee to Exercise Discretion to Benefit Beneficiary

The Supreme Court of Canada released its decision in Cowper-Smith v. Morgan, 2017 SCC 61, on December 14, 2017 relating to siblings disputing the entitlement to their mother’s estate.
As early as 1992, Elizabeth and Arthur Cowper-Smith of Victoria, BC, had made it clear that after their deaths, their property would be divided equally among their three children, Gloria, Max and Nathan.  Shortly before he died in 1992, Arthur explained such intention to his children to avoid family discord.  However, after their father’s death, the children became estranged from each other.  Gloria first fell out with Nathan.  She wrote him letters demanding that he not raise his voice in her mother’s home or entertain “gay males”.  When he went on an overseas trip, Gloria changed the locks to the family home although Nathan’s belongings were still inside.  He broke in but Gloria had the police escort him out.  Nathan eventually moved to Edmonton.
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