America’s Dairyland also prizes its lakes and rivers. But as high-capacity wells proliferate in Wisconsin, agriculture and other groundwater users are posing risks to the amount and health of the water, bringing to the legal forefront disagreements about access to the waters that lie beneath.
Projects to gain energy efficiency to reduce costs are top of mind for commercial building owners, but financing through traditional lending practices is hard to come by. Property Assessed Clean Energy programs are a new statutory financing mechanism that provides a new opportunity for general-practice attorneys to offer building-efficiency upgrade solutions for a variety of clients.
Given the large scale and rapid growth of frac sand mining operations in Wisconsin, some conflict between mines and their neighbors probably is unavoidable, but mine owners can promote good relationships by adhering to existing health and environmental laws and regulations.
The State Bar of Wisconsin National Mock Trial planning team is calling on attorneys, judges and experienced teachers and coaches from around the state to step up to the bench and volunteer to serve on a judging panel during the 2014 National High School Mock Trial Championship on May 9 and 10 in Madison.
Want to refine your courtroom skills and delivery? Looking at procedure and performance from a different perspective, like that of a judge, can be very helpful, and the State Bar of Wisconsin has a perfect opportunity to do just that. You can take the bench while volunteering as a judge at the National High School Mock Trial Championship in Madison from May 8 to 10.
2011 Wisconsin Act 167 changes the DNR’s permitting authority and requirements for navigable waterway permits. Effective Sept. 1, 2012, the new law eases requirements for private entities seeking to fill navigable waterways by shortening timelines, removing public participation requirements, and creating presumptive approvals. The changes have significant implications for the state’s administration of the public trust doctrine.
Oct. 5, 2011 – Gov. Scott Walker called the Wisconsin Legislature into special session on Sept. 29 to consider a number of bills, including four tort reform measures. Learn what's in store for this special session.
Damages in construction defect cases are generally measured by the cost to repair the defect. But in cases posing economic waste – in which a repair requires significant reconstruction or, despite a high cost, would not improve the property’s value – the measure is the decrease in property value caused by the defect. The inherent vagueness of the economic-waste doctrine often complicates determining which measure should be used in a given case.
Employers that hire independent contractors generally are not liable for injuries to the contractor's employees, unless the injury was caused by the hiring party's affirmative act of negligence or occurred while the employee was engaged in an extrahazardous activity. Tatera v. FMC Corp. makes clear that plaintiffs face high barriers to satisfying either of these prerequisites to recovery.
Every recession creates buying opportunities, such as acquiring a properly priced condominium project. Lawyers for prospective new owners of such projects can play key roles in reducing the buyer’s risk, increasing the project’s value, and setting the project on the right course economically. Here is a look at the significant legal issues.
Aug. 31, 2009 – The Wisconsin Court of Appeals said vacant land reserved for development belongs to owners of finished condo units so that they pay the property taxes, not the developer. But a dissenting judge warns years may pass before first construction begins, leaving cities unable to collect taxes on the unimproved land.
- When the defects caused by cheap materials and poor construction methods threatened a low-income family’s home, health, and unity, attorney Kim Hurtado worked pro bono to find a legal resolution.
When the defects caused by cheap materials and poor construction methods threatened a low-income family’s home, health, and unity, attorney Kim Hurtado worked pro bono to find a legal resolution. Then she persuaded her staff and construction clients to donate labor and materials to restore the family’s home.
"Going green" is an increasingly popular building protocol, with more governmental units offering tax or capital incentives to more developers in more municipalities. Lawyers well-versed in the green building protocol can help clients articulate their motivation for going green, identify the opportunities and benefits, and suggest creative solutions to minimize the significant risks inherent in green development.
May 6, 2009 – Last year’s rampant flooding in Wisconsin pointed out a need that this program is designed to meet. Attend an afternoon of free training from 12:30 to 4:10 p.m. on May 21 in Madison to educate lawyers about common legal issues faced by victims of a natural disaster. Hear legal services professionals from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), representatives from the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, as well as private practitioners discuss how disasters af
April 15, 2009 – The next time you plan to attend a State Bar seminar, you can add it to your electronic calendar when you register by using WisBar’s new “Add to My Calendar” feature. Once you have registered, click the “Add to My Calendar” hyperlink. You will receive an email notification of your event with instructions on how to save the event to your electronic calendar. The feature works for Outlook and Google users.
Apirl 15, 2009 – Did you know that the State Bar of Wisconsin is the official record keeper for agencies that regulate the practice of law in Wisconsin? That means, when your State Bar member record is out of date or incorrect, it affects more than just the Bar. It could affect communications from the Wisconsin Office of Lawyer Regulation, Board of Bar Examiners, and Wisconsin Supreme Court.
April 15, 2009 – Today, our country is experiencing one of the most troubling economic periods since the Great Depression, and the legal profession is not immune from the effects. These difficult times make finding cost-effective ways to connect with paying clients more important than ever.
April 15, 2009 – The State Bar Practice411™ Breakfast & Business: Eggs, Ethics and Answers series will be presented on April 22 in Platteville and June 17 in Pembine. Pembine program information is not yet available. Pembine is conveniently located about an hour and a half from Rhinelander, Green Bay, and Marinette, and about a half hour from Iron Mountain, Mich. Both seminars, presented in two sessions, will begin with a hot breakfast at 8:15 a.m. and conclude at 11:15 a.m.
March 18, 2009, – Today, our country is experiencing one of the most troubling economic periods since the Great Depression, and the legal profession is not immune from the effects. These difficult times make finding cost-effective resources to connect with paying clients more important than ever.
- Today’s parties to contracts and other readers who need to interpret these documents find archaic language to be unclear, wordy, and downright irritating, sometimes even sexist.
Some drafters continue to use archaic language in contracts, often with the belief that such “formal” language lends weight or credence to the document. But today’s parties to contracts and other readers who need to interpret these documents find archaic language to be unclear, wordy, and downright irritating, sometimes even sexist. Here are some ideas to bring your contracts into the 21st century.
Recent appellate opinions have clarified Wisconsin’s open government laws as applied to economic development issues. By following the public records and open meetings laws, and by understanding when the very limited exceptions may apply, the public, local governments, and developers can all reap the benefits of economic development.
Wisconsin’s Deceptive Trade Practices Act prohibits untrue, deceptive, or misleading representations in the sale of goods and services to the public. Although the law was enacted almost a century ago to target false print advertising, it effectively affords remedies for wrongful trade practices in the modern age. The Wisconsin Supreme Court has recently decided several important issues arising out of the Act’s application in the ever-changing business and consumer world.
For many years, Daniel W. Hildebrand contributed to Wisconsin legal literature by annually describing those Wisconsin appellate decisions that he viewed to be most significant. Attorney Hildebrand passed away in late 2007; these authors, both former supreme court clerks, are attempting to pick up the Hildebrand torch.