201707.19
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The (high) times they are a changin’: medical marijuana and disability discrimination

From Meyers, Roman, Friedberg & Lewis In what is believed to be the first decision of its kind, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court has allowed an employee to pursue a disability discrimination claim based on the use of medical marijuana. Christine Barbuto suffered from Crohn’s Disease, and legally used medically prescribed marijuana in the evening…

201707.19
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Employers & Wimbledon:5 Must Do’s to Protect your Company’s Reputation

From Berman Fink Van Horn As a Roger Federer fan, it is hard to claim a bigger story at Wimbledon 2017 than his feat of winning his record breaking 8th men’s singles title. But from a human resources standpoint, I was intrigued by the drama surrounding Australian professional tennis player Bernard Tomic’s meltdown.  Corporate sponsor, HEAD…

201707.19
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COMPULSORY ARBITRATION – PART IV: PREDICTIONS & AWARDS

From Margrave Celmins Despite the automatic right to appeal any arbitration ruling, compulsory arbitration does have its uses.  In reasonably common cases involving minor injuries, car crashes and the like, arbitration can be useful, particularly when an insurance company has accepted the defense of the case.  Insurance companies defend so many cases, and so many…

201707.14
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Personal Injury and Property Damage with Drones

Although drones (aka unmanned aircraft systems) can come in small sizes (e.g., https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/micro-drone-3-0-flight-in-the-palm-of-your-hand-drones-gadgets–4#/), the propellers on drones and flying drone parts can inflict serious, sometimes irreparable damage.  The eyes seem particularly vulnerable. Below is a list of some known injuries and the legal consequences.

201707.14
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Is an Invitation to Connect on LinkedIn a Solicitation?

We recently discussed the unsettled area of customer non-solicitation covenants in the age of social media, but what happens when an employer alleges that a former employee used social media specifically to target and recruit ex-colleagues?

201706.30
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New Power of Attorney Requirements in Georgia Take Effect July 1, 2017

On July 1, 2017, Georgia’s Uniform Power of Attorney Act (“UPOAA”) will become effective. Any power of attorney executed before July 1, 2017, will remain in effect and need not comply with the UPOAA. A power of attorney executed on or after July 1, 2017, must comply with all the requirements of the UPOAA. Unless…

201703.14
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Inclement weather policies should prioritize safety over productivity

Snow day! Norah went to bed with PJs on backwards last night (and received her wish; now please use your time wisely to work on homework). Donovan is going to be pissed because tonight’s Mathmagic night at school (which he was really looking forward to) will be cancelled. And me? I’m enjoying some flexibility by working from the comfort of my kitchen island. If the storm forecast holds as predicted, however, I’ll be giving myself lots of extra travel time tomorrow morning for a court appearance. #lawyerlife

201703.14
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PROBATE, ESTATE PLANNING AND GUARDIANSHIP

The 2017 federal exemption against estate and gift taxes is $5,490,000 per person. The current federal estate tax rate 40% for estates which exceed the exemption amount. The federal gift tax annual exclusion remains $14,000 per person per donor. The federal generation-skipping transfer tax exemption was also increased to $5,490,000 per person.  The State of…

201703.13
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NO PUNITIVES UNDER GCSPA

The Georgia Supreme Court recently held that the Georgia Computer Systems Protection Act (“GCSPA”) does not authorize an award of punitive damages. The GCSPA is a criminal statute that also allows for civil remedies for computer theft, computer trespass and other computer related misconduct. In Lyman v. Cellchem International, Inc., 2017 WL 279514 (2017), the Georgia Supreme…

201703.13
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MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT – PART XII: OFFER OF JUDGMENT

If you receive an Offer of judgment and you are not inclined to accept it, what should you do?  It is important that you timely object, if there are any grounds to object.  This will allow the Court to deny a motion to sanction you in the event the final award after trial is less…

201703.13
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Beware Trademark Registration and Fee Scans

While mail scams are not a new issue for businesses, more and more of our business and individual clients with federally registered trademarks have been asking us for advice on how to handle the numerous unsolicited letters and/or emails they have been receiving lately regarding their marks.  If you or your business owns a federally…

201703.13
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SCOTUS to review NLRB ban on class-action waivers

One of the biggest issues on the NLRB’s hit list over the past few years has been class-action waivers. In D.R. Horton, a 3-2 majority of the Board held that an arbitration agreement which requires employees to waive their right to collectively pursue employment-related claims in all forums (i.e., by giving up their right to file or join class or collective actions) violates employees’ rights under the National Labor Relations Act to engage in protected concerted activity.