ILN Today Post

Estate Planning Alert: Attention executors and beneficiaries: more time….

Estate tax return deadlines deferred

After months of uncertainty as to Estate Tax filings for decedent’s who died before December 17, 2010, the day the President signed the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010 (TRUIRJCA-covered in prior alerts and referred to “the Act”), the IRS announced on September 13, 2011 that the normal six month extension of time to file Form 706-US Estate Tax Return will be available with an extension of time to pay the estate tax that would be due. The due date for the Form 706 for those decedents had been set by the Act as September 19, 2011, nine months after enactment and later than the normal due date for all decedent’s who died before December 17, 2010. Normally, the estimated estate tax must be paid with the request for the extension of time to file.

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ILN Today Post

Mergers and Acquisition Alert: Changes to Hart-Scott Rodino filing requirements…

Recently adopted changes to the notification requirements under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Anti-trust Improvements Act of 1976 (“HSR”) will likely substantially increase the quantity of information and documentation which must be submitted to the federal government in connection with certain merger and acquisition transactions. These changes will require M&A transaction parties to plan carefully for possible HSR filings during the initial stages of the transaction process in order to avoid possible delays while awaiting clearance of the transaction from the federal government.


Overview of HSR

HSR requires parties considering a merger or acquisition of a certain size to prepare and file a notification regarding the transaction to the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) and the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice (“DOJ”). Any transaction that involves:

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Settling an FLSA Collective Action? Not So Fast!

By:  Amy Traub and Christine Fletcher

Once a settlement has been reached in an FLSA collective action, the defendant-employer typically wants that settlement to go into effect and end the case as soon as possible, so that the company can get past the myriad of distractions brought by the suit. However, as litigants increasingly are finding, the parties’ agreement to settle an FLSA collective action is nowhere near the end of the road, or the end of the case. There is a “judicial prohibition” against the unsupervised waiver or settlement of claims brought under the FLSA. Settlements must be “supervised” by the Department of Labor or a court, and gone are the days where the court would rubberstamp the parties’ FLSA collective action settlement agreement. Instead, courts nowadays are scrutinizing the settlement to ensure the “fairness” of the agreement.

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ILN Today Post

FLSA Claims Are Becoming More Difficult to Settle Prior to Class Certification

Arnstein & Lehr attorney E. Jason Tremblay

E. Jason Tremblay

On August 4, 2011, we reported on the case of Dionne v. Floormasters Enters, a case from the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals that effectively allowed an employer to avoid paying attorneys’ fees in an FLSA lawsuit and also allowed the dismissal of an FLSA lawsuit prior to class certification where an offer of judgment made by the employer made the plaintiff-employee “whole.” However, since then, several other circuits, namely the Third and Ninth Circuit Courts of Appeal, have published contrary decisions holding that an offer of judgment made by an employer to a plaintiff-employee in an FLSA case will not moot the case where the court has not yet ruled on class certification.

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ILN Today Post

Building Relationships and Trust in a Network of Lawyers, Part II – Guest Post from Barry Camson

Barry Camson is an organization development consultant and trainer who works with organizations to help them be more collaborative and effective. He is a former practicing attorney in Boston. He can be reached at


In the first post, we discussed how the characteristics that may make an attorney an effective advocate for his or her clients can often lead to a less successful law firm environment. Today, we will focus on how the ILN handles things differently in their Network.

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ILN Today Post

Robin Trupp secures veterinary malpractice victory for owner of deceased prize-winning show horse

Arnstein & Lehr attorney Robin S. Trupp

Robin S. Trupp

Tampa Partner Robin Trupp, serving as lead counsel on the case, recently secured a major veterinary malpractice victory for his client, the owner of a prize-winning show horse, against a well-known veterinarian on the horse show circuit.

A Fifteenth Judicial Circuit Court of Florida, Palm Beach County jury found Dr. Haynes Stevens and his company, Equine Services, Ltd., liable for professional negligence (malpractice) for his treatment of Grandeur, a prizewinning horse owned by Arnstein & Lehr’s client, Dawn Fogel. The horse died following a medical misdiagnosis and subsequent negligent treatment by Dr. Stevens. Dr. Stevens practices in Florida, Kentucky and Illinois and is popular on the horse show circuit.

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Unemployed – A New Protected Characteristic?

By: Michael A. Kalish

The following does not depict an actual interview.  Rather, it is a fictitious illustration (at least for now).

Interviewer:    So tell me why you’re interviewing for the position we’ve advertised.

Interviewee: That’s an easy one.  Because I’m unemployed and I need a job.

Interviewer: What happened with your last job?

Interviewee: I wasn’t very good, and they needed to reduce headcount, and I was an easy place to start.

Interviewer: There appears to be gaps on your resume between all six of the jobs you’ve had.  Six months here, two years there.  What happened with your leaving those jobs?

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Gifts of art to the nation

Tomorrow is the last day for responding to the Government’s consultation paper on the new scheme for tax incentives for giving art to the nation.
The idea was first raised in the March 2011 budget.  The rationale, according to Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, is that (and I paraphrase the Treasury press release) “With art being so expensive to buy for the nation, we would rather encourage philanthropists to give us art, in return for some tax incentive”.
Fair enough, but it can’t be any old item of art.  It must be a “pre-eminent object or work of art”.  That is likely to include items with an especially close association to our history or national life, that are of artistic or art historical interest and perhaps have an especially close association with a particular historical setting.
It is not yet known what the tax reliefs will be, but they will be capped at only £20m per year, which is for the whole scheme.  That cap is to be shared with the existing “acceptance in lieu” (AIL) scheme, which allows assets to be transferred to the Government in place of tax. AIL already accounts for about £12m per year, which does not leave much for the new scheme.  It seems that the relief will have to be rather mean or the works not particularly pre-eminent, or there can’t be many of them, which makes one wonder if the scheme is going to be worth the effort.
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New York City Raises the Bar for Employers to Show ‘Undue Hardship’ in Addressing Employees’ Religious Accommodation Requests

by Susan Gross Sholinsky , Dean L. Silverberg, Steven M. Swirsky, and Jennifer A. Goldman

New York City employers take note: under the New York City Human Rights Law (“NYCHRL”), it is now considerably more difficult for employers to establish “undue hardship” in the context of denying an employee’s request for a reasonable accommodation due to his or her religious observance or practice. While previously silent on the issue, the NYCHRL now includes a definition of the term “undue hardship,” as follows: “an accommodation requiring significant expense or difficulty (including a significant interference with the safe or efficient operation of the workplace or a violation of a bona fide seniority system).” This language mirrors the definition currently included in the New York State Human Rights Law (“NYSHRL”), and along with other changes described below, was included in Local Law 54, 2011 (entitled the Workplace Religious Freedom Act) (the “Act”). The Act was unanimously passed by the New York City Council and became effective when signed by Mayor Michael Bloomberg on August 30, 2011.

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ILN Today Post

Steve Gross was quoted in "Could A Big KFC Franchisee Hit The Market?," Restaurant Finance Monitor

McDonald Hopkins’ Detroit Managing Member, Steve Gross, was quoted in the September 20, 2011 article, “Could A Big KFC Franchisee Hit The Market?,” published by Restaurant Finance Monitor

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