By Timothy Lynch Esq., Offit Kurman
By Paul Levy, Lawrence Grant
How is a typical lawyer paid? Trick question: there is no such thing as a typical lawyer. Accordingly, there is also no true standard model for how law firms dole out compensation and rewards. Numerous factors, including region, size, structure, leadership, tenure, billing practices and practice areas, determine a firm’s financial structure, which is why practitioners—even those working in the same firm, in the same practice area with the same size book of business —sometimes take home vastly different earnings.
A question that most companies find themselves asking is, is my annual audit adding value to my business? We understand perfectly that an audit of your business records can sometimes be time consuming, costly and inconvenient, but we look at it as an opportunity to conduct a review of your financial and management systems, identify any problem areas so that we can help transform your business' prospects for the future.
By Dr. Attila Kovács, Kovács Réti Szegheõ Attorneys at Law
As of 1 July the rules of the Hungarian Act III of 1952 on the Code of Civil Procedure (“CPC”) provides for comprehensive changes in civil proceedings, including bankruptcy and liquidation procedures. While electronic communication with the court of registration for companies has already been institutionalized in 2008, and while the orders for payment procedures are handled electronically since 2009, the – in most cases – obligatory communication by electronic means in civil proceeding as of 1 July 2015 will be the next step to the “paperless” legal procedures.
By Robert Worthington, Shea Nerland Calnan LLP
Hybrid instruments can significantly reduce a corporate group’s cost of capital. Group financing strategies rely on different countries’ characterisation of debt and equity. The idea is to create interest deductions in one country while having corresponding exempt dividends in another.
By Dr. Karl Friedrich Dumoulin, FPS Rechtsanwälte & Notare
Confidentiality clauses are widely used in M&A and IP transactions as well as in cooperation agreements between high-tech companies and also in arbitration and mediation agreements. Therein, the parties involved usually undertake not to disclose certain confidential information disclosed by the other party in the formation of the agreement. Moreover, it is often the case that the parties also undertake not to make use of certain evidence made known in the transaction. If, at a later date, certain elements of the transaction become contentious between the parties and the case goes to court, the question arises whether and to what extent the parties and the court are bound by the confidentiality agreement, i.e. whether a party is permitted to submit to the court certain information or evidence defined as confidential in the agreement.
By John J. Cahill and Lisa H. Wang, Gibbons
35 U.S.C. § 122(e), adopted last fall as part of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act ("AIA"), conditions third party submissions to the USPTO for consideration and inclusion in an application file. Recently, the USPTO published the final rules regulating these submissions by third parties: Changes to Implement the Preissuance Submissions by Third Parties Provision of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act, 77 Fed. Reg 42150 (2012). That is to say, the USPTO provided the requirements and guidance to anyone wishing to have the Office consider patents, published patent applications, or other printed publications of potential relevance during the examination of a pending application. The new rules pave the way for a third party to limit the scope of a pending patent application, particularly a competitor's application, in a meaningful way.
By Francis P. Donovan and Jean-Philippe Bolduc, Ravinsky, Ryan, Lemoine, LLP
As part of a bailout provided by the Canadian government to General Motors during the 2008 financial crisis, over 200 GM dealerships were closed, with GM offering dealers compensation pursuant to Ontarian wind down agreements. A class action was filed in Ontario, alleging that the firm Cassels Brock and Blackwell LLP gave negligent legal advice to the dealers. Cassels Brock added 150 Canadian law firms, which had also given dealers advice pursuant to the agreements, as third party defendants.
By Terry McCabe, McCabes Lawyers
‘Informal wills’ is a term used to describe instruments which fall short of being executed formally in the manner stipulated at law.
By Dr Jorge Marcos García Landa, Corporativo García Landa, S.C.
In Latin America, most legal entities have no idea of what their company is worth, which is detrimental to their own company and the legal entities that comprise it.
By Lisa H. Wang, Gibbons
As we previously discussed, the new inter partes review (IPR) procedures went into effect September 16, 2012, along with several other significant changes.
By Patrizia Giannini, S4B Solutions 4 Business
In general – or, roads you can drive down in your sleep! – International commercial arbitration (ICA) involves a business-related dispute among citizens of different nation-states, including investor-state arbitration between foreign private parties and state entities, according to bilateral investment treaties (BITs). ICA is private, but parties may contest the agreement to arbitrate, or the award, in Court.
By Patrizia Giannini, S4B Solutions 4 Business
Part 1 of this topic was presented last year, addressing the applicable conventions, institutions and procedure, putting the “key in the ignition” - Part 2 continues our road trip.
By Merrill April, Memery Crystal LLP
The Employment Appeal Tribunal (“EAT”) could be accused of presiding over a “game of two halves” in two recent decisions relating to employee sickness absence. Team Employer will be pleased by the decision in Metroline West Ltd v Ajaj that “pulling a sickie” can be a ground for dishonest gross misconduct. However, in Private Medical Intermediaries v Hodkinson the EAT found that an employer’s correspondence with an employee on sick leave amounted to constructive unfair dismissal, showing the importance of careful management of sickness absence.
By Dr. Mariagiulia Signori, COMMA 10
In Italy, debt collection has undergone considerable changes. By means of two urgent reforms, important measures have been taken. L. 162/14 – November and L.D. 83/2015 – June, were issued to improve the efficacy of both the collection of receivables against debtors and sales of seized assets by public auction.
By Dr. Mariagiulia Signori, COMMA 10
Italy regulated the extra – judicial proceedings for ADR with Legislative Decree No. 28/2010, which made provision for mediation becoming a preliminary condition for judiciary proceedings. This term of law was examined by the Italian Constitutional Court which, in its judgment No. 272/2012, declared the unconstitutionality of the legislative decree No. 28/2010 as it stipulated compulsory mediation.
By Prof. Dr. Renate Dendorfer-Ditges & Philipp Wilhelm, DITGES PartGmbB
Mediation is increasingly considered as an alternative to settle commercial cross-border disputes. Regularly the question is raised whether the result of mediation will be enforceable. In this respect, it is advisable to draft the final agreement enforceable according to the law of that state in which enforcement is expected, e. g. as a notarial deed (see sec 794 para 1 no 5 German Code of Civil Procedure/ZPO), a settlement reached among attorneys (see sec 796a, sec 796b ZPO), or a settlement concluded by the parties before a court (see sec 794 para 1 no 1 ZPO).
James Dressman, III, Dressman Benzinger LaVelle psc
In a recent decision, the Kentucky Court of Appeals sent a clear message to lending institutions. Namely, to carefully examine existing due diligence practices prior to extending financing to borrowers. The case, Fifth Third Bank v. Rogers et al., concerned five brothers that organized multiple corporations and served as their sole shareholders and directors. After the death of a brother and pursuant to the terms of an existing Stock Purchase Agreement, the deceased brother’s estate offered his stock to the corporations and remaining shareholders. After failing to elect to purchase the deceased brother’s stock, the Estate initiated an action to have the corporations dissolved and their affairs wound up in accordance with the Stock Purchase Agreement.
By Nicholas Birkenhauer, DBL Law
Kentucky courts have always strictly construed employee non-competition agreements against employers and in favor of employees. This means that any ambiguities, or other questions, in a non-competition agreement will be resolved in favor of the employee. For this reason, it has always been important for Kentucky employers to pay careful attention when drafting non-competition agreements. This is even more true today, in the wake of a 2014 Kentucky Supreme Court case which significantly altered the requirements of employee non-competition agreements in Kentucky.
By Izak Potgieter, Heyns and Partners Inc.
TA South African court recently gave the green light to launch the largest class action suit in the country’s legal history, when two pensioners were granted permission to institute a lawsuit against the massive parastatal, Transnet.
By Frank W.M. Sonsma, Alea Management B.V.
Labour law in several countries contains prevailing mandatory provisions aimed to protect the rights of the employee. This concept of law is regarded as justified since the employee is perceived to be the weaker party (“the employee as the modern version of a slave”).