Data Privacy and Security: An Introduction for In-house and Outside Counsel
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Authored by , re: Employment, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Data Privacy and Security: An Introduction for In-house and Outside Counsel | Richard Friedman

As is widely recognized, the attorney-client privilege is one of the most important fundamental principles in the legal profession. Every attorney has an obligation to protect his or her clients’ information and to keep attorney-client communications confidential. Of course, this principle applies to in-house counsel as well as outside counsel. Accordingly, it is crucial for both corporate legal departments and law firms to adopt and implement safeguards in order to protect client information. Although all lawyers presumably know that they have a duty to protect privileged client communications and information, many do not know how to do so.

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Oversight of Financial Planners: Proposed Rules Delayed
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Oversight of Financial Planners: Proposed Rules Delayed | Ronald A. Fatoullah

By Ronald A. Fatoullah, Esq. and Debby Rosenfeld, Esq.

{3:08 minutes to read} Many individuals with assets rely heavily on financial advisors to provide advice or guidance regarding their portfolios. Financial advisers can provide many different services, such as investment management, income tax preparation, and estate planning. The expectation is always that a financial advisor has his/her client’s best interest in mind, but unfortunately, that is not always the case. Sometimes, financial advisors will earn higher commissions if they recommend certain retirement investments with high fees and low returns to their clients.  

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Don’t Write Like a Lawyer
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Don’t Write Like a Lawyer | Dana Heitz

Of principle importance to the duteous legal practitioner is the abstention from granting preference to esoteric terminology at the expense of concise transmission of the perceived reality. In other words, lawyers shouldn’t let their choice of words get in the way of their arguments. Year after year, this issue confronts law school grads entering the real world and flexing their legal muscles. Baby lawyers—and many seasoned ones—view their degrees as a license, if not an imperative, to churn out hollow chestnuts such as "here and before," "heretofore,” and “notwithstanding,” like it’s their job—as it frequently is.

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American Immigration Lawyers Association — National Day of Action 2017
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, on .
American Immigration Lawyers Association — National Day of Action 2017 | Mitchell Zwaik

{4:18 minutes to read} On April 6th, I was in Washington DC as part of a contingent of immigration lawyers from the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). This was our National Day of Action, the purpose of which is to meet with members of the House and the Senate, in order to work with or at least discuss the issues in immigration law that we feel are most important. Attendance this year numbered over 550 members, which is far and away the largest group that's ever appeared for the National Day of Action.

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What Do You Mean I’m Not Really Married? Or Not Really Divorced?
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Authored by , re: Family & Divorce, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
What Do You Mean I’m Not Really Married? Or Not Really Divorced? | Deborah E. Kaminetzky

When people call our office asking about divorce or family court issues, we tell them the various documents we need to look at in order to best advise them. One of the documents we want to look at is their marriage certificate. Often, we have people who consider themselves married, have lived together for years, had children together, bought property together and they are surprised that they are not, in fact, married. New York has no “common law marriage.” There is an exception to that rule. New York will give full faith and credit to a marriage from another state or country where it was recognized. For example if you lived together in a state which did recognize common law marriage prior to moving to New York, you will be considered married here as well. People who get married in a religious ceremony in another country, Israel, for example, will be considered married here even though they did not have a secular marriage.

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Help! Is My Attorney in Bed With My Ex’s Attorney?!
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Authored by , re: Family & Divorce, on .
Help! Is My Attorney in Bed With My Ex’s Attorney?! | Cheryl Stein

On several occasions, I have been the incoming attorney where the client did not trust the attorney they initially retained, because they felt that attorney was in bed with their ex’s attorney, so to speak. They had observed the two attorneys — opposing counsel to one another on the given case — engage in overly friendly behavior and banter in the court hallways and overheard their attorney cutting deals and verbally committing to settlement agreements to the opposing counsel that they had not spoken about with them (their own client) previously.

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Is Now a Good Time to Invest? Yes!
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Authored by , re: Asset Management, FINANCIAL ARTICLES, on .
Is Now a Good Time to Invest? Yes! | Jeff Holland

{3:00 minutes to read} Everyday, the stock market has an expected rate of return. This means that on the day that you invest, you have the potential to earn an expected rate of return. If you wait for that “perfect” time and hold off, you miss capitalizing on the market’s rates of returns. When it comes to investing, you’re either in or you’re out.

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What Goes Into a Patent Application?
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Authored by , re: Intellectual Property, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
What Goes Into a Patent Application? | Pat Werschulz

Many people are under the impression that drafting a patent application is just a matter of filling out forms, like any type of government application, and perhaps submitting a picture, as you do when you’re applying for a passport. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, preparing a patent application is a complex legal process. The United States Supreme Court has even said that drafting a patent application is the most complicated legal writing in the profession. A patent application has three main parts: the written specification, the drawings, and the claims. This is true of any type of patent applications, whether it’s for a utility application, a design application, or even (in those rare instances) a plant patent application.

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Divorce and 401(k)s and IRAs – Part 4
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Divorce and 401(k)s and IRAs – Part 4 | Ada Hasloecher

{4:30 minutes to read} In the preceding 3 articles, we have covered the subjects of retirement funding, comparing 401(k)s and IRAs, and dividing a 401(k) plan. As you will see, IRA plans almost never require a QDRO. However, many of them do have detailed paperwork which can look similar in scope to the language in a QDRO document. Typically, the plan will want to see a copy of the section of the Settlement Agreement (Separation Agreement) that spells out how the parties agreed to split the IRA along with their paperwork. It’s always wise to prepare the paperwork well in advance of the judgement of divorce as there can be a lag time with the paperwork.

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the greek chorus revisited
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Authored by , re: Family & Divorce, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
the greek chorus revisited | Jennifer Safian

{3:06 minutes to read} A few years ago, I wrote an article called “The Greek Chorus.” The article centered around all the well meaning people who think they know what you are going through and want to dispense advice on your situation. The effects of “friendly advice” continue to be a problem with many of my clients, so I thought that it might be helpful to take another look at this topic. Divorce is a very scary proposition, and when we are scared, many of us tend to gravitate towards others for answers and support.

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Breitbart’s Biggest Enemy is the Truth…Including Todd Bigelow’s Copyright
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Authored by , re: Intellectual Property, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Breitbart’s Biggest Enemy is the Truth…Including Todd Bigelow’s Copyright | Mark Kaufman

A lawsuit was recently filed in the Southern District of New York that isn’t exactly fascinating for its merits, but it does speak to the perennial issue of intellectual property rights: the erroneous but popular idea, even among commercial users, that “if it’s on the internet, it’s free to use!” In Bigelow v. Breitbart News Network, LLC, photographer Todd Bigelow is suing Breitbart News over its use of one of his photographs without his permission. In addition to garden-variety copyright infringement, Bigelow also sued under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, because Breitbart had removed the identification of the artist and its copyright from the image.

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Success Story: How Weltman & Moskowitz Bridged the Gap Between Mortgage Foreclosure and Chapter 13 to Successfully Protect Its Client’s Interests
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Authored by , re: Bankruptcy & Credit, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Success Story: How Weltman & Moskowitz Bridged the Gap Between Mortgage Foreclosure and Chapter 13 to Successfully Protect Its Client’s Interests | Michael L. Moskowitz

By Michael L. Moskowitz and Michele K. Jaspan

Our firm was tasked by one of our lender clients to file a residential mortgage foreclosure case in New Jersey after borrower’s failure to make mortgage payments. Borrower, assisted by a purported residential foreclosure defense expert, sought to place numerous roadblocks to the foreclosure action, including the filing of an answer containing the usual boilerplate meritless “defenses.” Ultimately, after extensive discovery and unnecessary litigation caused by borrower’s “scorched-earth” tactics, final judgment of foreclosure was rendered in favor of lender. Of course, this is not the end of the story, only the beginning.

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Identifying With Others vs Blaming Them
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Authored by , re: MENTAL HEALTH, Therapy, Wellness, on .
Identifying With Others vs Blaming Them | David Zerella

{2:42 minutes to read} There is a frequent overlap when teaching individuals about unconditional acceptance and providing assertiveness training. One of the ways they overlap is with the idea of identifying with others. By “identifying” I mean relating to or finding common ground with others. Identifying with others allows us to decrease internal frustrations, stress and resentment, as well as express ourselves with more assertiveness and less blaming.

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3 Crucial Estate Planning Documents
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Authored by , re: Asset Management, Elder Care, Miscellaneous, Trusts, Estates & Elder law, on .
3 Crucial Estate Planning Documents | Peter Gordon

{4:40 minutes to read} Why should you have a living will, healthcare proxy, and power of attorney? People are living longer and enjoying fuller lives. However, it is possible that because of a sudden illness or injury, you may be unable to talk to a doctor to make decisions about your treatment or direct your financial decisions. To plan in advance, it is important to prepare a few simple legal forms.

Click here to read Peter Gordon's full article..

What is the Best Legal Structure for Your Start-Up?
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Authored by , re: Business Law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
What is the Best Legal Structure for Your Start-Up? | Bettina Eckerle

Some of the questions I get asked by my start-up clients are perennial in nature, with the most common being: Do I have to form a legal entity, and if so, what kind and why? Entrepreneurs have a number of legal structures available when seeking to capitalize on a million-dollar idea. Each type of entity has distinct advantages and disadvantages that I discuss below, and the decision should be tailored to your individual situation. The choice will impact the amount of tax you pay, the amount of paperwork you are required to do, the personal liability you face, and your fundraising activities. While there are a number of different kinds of entities, I am focusing here on the most common—the sole proprietorship, the LLC, the S-Corporation and the C-Corporation.

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Continuing Education for Mediation
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Authored by , re: Family & Divorce, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Continuing Education for Mediation | Deborah E. Kaminetzky

Mediation is gaining in popularity, so much so that there are a proliferation of people advertising that they do mediation. Some of them are attorneys, some of them are not. Many of them have had absolutely no training in mediation, yet will sit down with a couple and “mediate.” New York has no licensure for mediators, so it is difficult for the consumer to determine whether a person claiming to be a mediator is actually trained in the process or just trying to help facilitate a compromise. One can even get a mediation certificate online.

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When Moving On is More Important Than Discerning the Truth
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Authored by , re: MEDIATION, on .
When Moving On is More Important Than Discerning the Truth | Clare Piro

{3:48 minutes to read} While the history of a client’s relationship is obviously relevant to them, its relevance to the mediation is not necessarily the same. If there is a dispute as to whether or not an event occurred, my role is not to determine the truth. That would be in the realm of litigation. In mediation, its relevance has to do with the effect that those beliefs about past events have on each party’s ability to work with the other in the process and reach a resolution.

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Mediator Impartiality: Is It Possible?
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Authored by , re: MEDIATION, on .
Mediator Impartiality: Is It Possible? | Susan Ingram

{3:24 minutes to read}  Two of the most frequently read articles I’ve posted on my blog have addressed the subject of mediator impartiality or neutrality. While both articles were published nearly three years ago, this subject is as relevant and important today as it was then. And after re-reading these articles, I don’t think I could say it any better now. So, without further ado, here’s a link to the first article entitled “Can a Mediator Really be Neutral or Impartial”?

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A Letter from China: International Collaboration with Mental Health and Divorce Professionals
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Authored by , re: Family, Family & Divorce, on .
A Letter from China: International Collaboration with Mental Health and Divorce Professionals | Lauren Behrman

{Read in 3:30 minutes} Dear Colleagues: We’re sending this blog from Wuhan, China, where we are enjoying a few days of sightseeing and absorbing Chinese hospitality, history and culture from our wonderful colleagues and their graduate students.

Jeff is the current president of The Society for the Advancement of Psychotherapy,(SAP) Division 29 of the American Psychological Association (APA). The division has been working on increasing its international presence, and in 2016, SAP formalized an affiliation with Oriental Insight—a similar organization in China Normal University School of Psychology which was founded by Professor Jiang Guangrong, a leading psychologist at Central China. Professor Jiang is one of the leaders in the field of Counseling Psychotherapy and Mental Health on the Chinese mainland.

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Copyright and Trademark: Titles, Words & Short Phrases
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Authored by , re: Intellectual Property, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .

{4:12 minutes to read} It is a truism among intellectual property lawyers that no matter how often one may encounter discussion of a “copyrighted word” or a “copyrighted phrase”—and this notion appears frequently in media—copyright law generally does not protect titles, words, slogans or phrases.[1]

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Look Who is Coming to the Mediation Table
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Authored by , re: MEDIATION, Miscellaneous, on .
Look Who is Coming to the Mediation Table by Rachel Alexander

{4:54 minutes to read} What happens when attorneys join clients in matrimonial mediation? It’s anyone’s guess! Generally, in my practice, divorce mediations are intimate, including only the parties and the mediator. This often adds to the sense of confidentiality and privacy. It works well for many clients who want to speak candidly about difficult issues in a safe, unbiased environment.

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Odd Evidence: Plan for Time, Cost & Effort in Appellate Court
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Odd Evidence: Plan for Time, Cost & Effort in Appellate Court | Liza Bobo

{2:00 minutes to read} Attorneys should expect to have cases that require crucial, out-of-the-ordinary pieces of evidence (i.e., color photos or oversized maps). Once the evidence is filed in the court of original incidence, the appellate court expects to see a precise duplicate of the original piece of evidence. In every stage and each new setting, the courts want to see like for like. If you stipulate to the color photo or use the appendix method, you can physically exclude it.

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“Throuple”: A Case of Polyamorous Custody
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Authored by , re: Family & Divorce, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .

An interesting decision out of Suffolk County recently established custodial rights of a non-biological parent who was part of a polyamorous relationship. In Dawn M. v. Michael M., the court essentially affirmed the validity of a non-traditional family composed of two women and one man. Though their names have been revealed in the media, for our purposes we will call the family members Mom 1, Mom 2, Dad, and Child. Mom 1 and Dad were a married couple who had attempted to conceive with great difficulty. They utilized in vitro fertilization, but unfortunately Mom 1 miscarried.

Click here to read Andrea Vacca's full article...

National Health Care Decisions Week is April 16th to 22nd
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Authored by , re: Healthcare Management, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
National Health Care Decisions Week is April 16th to 22nd | Dana Heitz

Who: You, your clients What: National Healthcare Decisions Week When: April 16-22, 2017 Why: Everyone dies How: See an attorney or fill out a DIY Healthcare Proxy form {2:20 minutes to read} I recently worked on a case that resulted from the unexpected death of a 28-year-old. The nearness of death hit home after that—as did the consequences of being unprepared for this inevitability. Then a couple weeks ago, I had minor wrist surgery. During the intake, I was asked if I’d chosen whom I wanted to appoint as decision-maker if I became unable to communicate.

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Mediating a Divorce After a Long-Term Marriage
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Mediating a Divorce After a Long-Term Marriage | Don Sinkov

{2:30 minutes to read} I am often pleasantly surprised when couples who have been married for 20, 30, 40 years or more are able to come to mediation to be divorced. Sometimes I wonder whether I could have done that; whether I could sit next to my soon-to-be ex-spouse and say out loud, “I want to divorce you and move on with my life. I want to live alone and not be married to you anymore.” How incredibly difficult would that be in a private setting, but here we are, saying this in front of the mediator, a stranger whom we just met.

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What is a Revocable Trust and is it Appropriate for Me?
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Authored by , re: LAW RELATED ARTICLES, Trusts, Estates & Elder law, on .
What is a Revocable Trust and is it Appropriate for Me? | Tom Sciacca

{Read in: 3:30 minutes} What is a Trust, and more specifically, what is a Revocable Trust? Creating a Revocable Trust is like creating a new legal entity. This Trust is created by a Grantor and managed by several people known as Trustees. In its simplest form, a Revocable Trust is a Will substitute that avoids probate.

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5Pointz: The Intersection of Intellectual and Real Property
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5Pointz: The Intersection of Intellectual and Real Property | Mark Kaufman

Anyone who has had the pleasure of riding outbound LIRR trains from New York’s Penn Station over the years probably remembers a memorable sight: the 5Pointz graffiti artist showcase emblazoned on the exterior walls of some aging factory buildings in Long Island City. Having reached at least a tacit deal with the owner of the buildings, the space provided a venue for graffiti artists to produce photo-realistic murals of hip-hop legends as well as the familiar practice of “tagging,” which consists of writing the artist’s nom-de-guerre with highly imaginative and stylized lettering.

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CLE Course: Recent Litigation and Legislation in Insurance Law
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Authored by , re: Insurance Related, on .
CLE Course: Recent Litigation and Legislation in Insurance Law | Evan Schwartz

In addition to my law practice, I have the honor of serving as a faculty member on LawLine.com, which is the largest online, continuing legal education (CLE) provider in the United States. I have 11 lectures available, some of which I delivered on my own, and some with the help of my partner, Matthew Conroy. Those lectures are available for purchase and viewing on LawLine. Today, I want to talk to you about two lectures that Matthew Conroy and I will be giving on May 1st. The first part of the series is titled, “Recent Litigation and Legislation in Insurance Law.” We will offer an update for the legal profession on the trends in insurance coverage litigation.

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Do You Engage in Good Business Habits?
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Do You Engage in Good Business Habits? | Aimee B. Davis

{4:24 minutes to read} Although Q1 2017 is in the history books, it’s never too late to re-evaluate your business habits and consider how they may be improved. Transitioning from an employee of BIG LAW to a solo practitioner was challenging, but figuring out how to organize my time has always come easy to me. When I launched Aimee B. Davis Law P.C., people who knew I worked from home commended my self-discipline and ability to stay motivated.

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Divorce and 401(k)s and IRAs – Part 3
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Authored by , re: Family & Divorce, Financial Planning & Insurance, MEDIATION, on .
 Divorce and 401(k)s and IRAs – Part 3 | Ada Hasloecher

{4:54 minutes to read} In Part 1 and Part 2 of BJ Mann’s article on retirement plans and divorce, we talked about retirement funds in general and the differences between 401(k)s and IRAs. Now to the topic of dividing the plans. No matter how these plans are divided (equally or some other sharing arrangement), the math must be done first.

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