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Select a topic from the drop-down list to view associated articles from WisBar News, Wisconsin Lawyer, InsideTrack, and Rotunda Report.​​​​

    May 22, 2024
    A Costco in the Green Bay area did not violate the Wisconsin Unfair Sales Act by lowering its gas prices to the non-posted prices offered by stations under a customer rewards program, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has ruled.
    Feb. 21, 2024
    Grants of up to $2,600 are available for programs that help public understanding of the legal system. Past recipients include teen court programs across the state and programs that increase access to justice. Apply by April 5, 2024.
    Dec. 06, 2023
    Boost your brand as a legal leader in 2024 by writing a State Bar of Wisconsin "Know Your Legal Rights" newspaper column on a selected topic.
    Oct. 27, 2023
    A credit union violated the duty of good faith and fair dealing by adding a retroactive arbitration clause and class action waiver provision into its membership agreement, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals District III has ruled .
    Aug. 29, 2023
    The Wisconsin Court of Appeals has ruled that a statute that prohibits misleading advertising is not limited to advertisements made to Wisconsin residents.
    May 10, 2023
    Plaintiffs in Wisconsin courts suing manufacturers for injuries caused by alleged product design defects must now meet both the reasonable-alternative-design requirements and the consumer-contemplation test. Here's what you need to know.
    Apr. 10, 2023
    Blogs selected for this column are published through the State Bar of Wisconsin's section blogs and WisLawNOW, the State Bar's aggregated community of Wisconsin legal bloggers.
    Mar. 30, 2023
    Are nitrate and nitrite about to reemerge as groundwater and drinking water chemicals of concern? New research reveals nitrate drinking water and groundwater standards fail to represent the scientific weight of evidence, say authors David Belluck and Sall
    Mar. 13, 2023
    Lawyers who handle worker's compensation or personal injury matters should periodically review their settlement procedures, including settlement content, to ensure compliance with Medicare reimbursement policies.
    Feb. 09, 2023
    A new amendment from the Securities and Exchange Commission brings new requirements to annual and semiannual shareholder reports. Grace D'Souza discusses the new rule, which seeks to increase transparency and user readability in shareholder reports.
    Feb. 07, 2023
    Nick Toman and Luke Dremel say the CARES Act requirement for 30 days' notice of eviction from some rental properties remains in effect post-pandemic and might have substantial effects on landlords and tenants.
    Jan. 10, 2023
    Explore the advantages and disadvantages of arbitration compared to litigation based on the goals of fair and efficient procedure, correct results, and minimizing adverse collateral consequences of the dispute resolution process; and the criteria that should govern the choice between those dispute resolution modes.
    Jan. 10, 2023
    This year's smartphone lineup, compiled by James Pearson, reveals a focus on camera quality, larger screens, better battery life, and a shift away from offering free phones.
    Dec. 21, 2022
    Are you a member of the State Bar of Wisconsin's Lawyer Referral and Information Service (LRIS)? Here's your chance to write for the legal column, Know Your Legal Rights, with publication in newspapers across Wisconsin.
    Dec. 09, 2022
    Christopher Shattuck has gift ideas to make life easier while working or relaxing, promote health and wellness, or just to smile about. 95 Wis. Law. 35 (Dec. 2022)
    Nov. 11, 2022
    Illinois is among the states attempting to regulate business use and handling of biometric identifiers. Although Illinois has not attempted to regulate out-of-state biometric information, skilled lawyers have extended liability to businesses outside Illinois – including in Wisconsin. 95 Wis. Law. 16 (November 2022)
    Aug. 03, 2022
    WisLawNOW has grown to include close to 50 law blogs that provide timely updates across practice areas and drive people to lawyers' websites. Is your blog on the list?
    Apr. 13, 2022
    Wisconsin has the third highest number of natural lakes of U.S. states but keeping these and other water resources clean and equitably available for all users is a challenge that increases by the day. This overview presents the basics of Wisconsin's water laws and the issues that are catalysts for disputes about water use, which we will explore in a series of articles in 2022.
    Apr. 06, 2022
    Engaging in advance planning for healthcare decision-making can mean the difference between life and death. Mike and Luciana Wiltse share their harrowing experience with writer Jeff M. Brown.
    Apr. 06, 2022
    After nine years of practicing estate planning and elder law, Appleton lawyer Jon Fischer has seen up close the effects of failing to plan for end-of-life care.
    Mar. 16, 2022
    Federal legislators and regulators are responding to restrictions on consumers' right to repair vehicles and other products.
    Mar. 10, 2022
    How has technology such as the algorithm affected human choice, especially in areas such as economics, politics, and social policy? The concept of human choice is baked into the social contracts of democracies and more specifically into the U.S. Constitution. The author argues that algorithms should augment human intelligence, not replace it.
    Feb. 09, 2022
    Too often, people who have accidents or other health-related emergencies are then hit by unexpected medical bills. The recently enacted federal No Surprises Act might alleviate some of the financial harm.
    Dec. 15, 2021
    In 2020, the federal 340B Drug Pricing Program experienced an upheaval after some manufacturers cut the number of contract pharmacies obtaining drugs at a lower price and federal Health Resources and Services Administration Office of Pharmacy Affairs stepped up its enforcement authority. Richard Davis discusses the program, the surrounding litigation, and what’s next.
    Jul. 07, 2021
    From the Americans with Disabilities Act to the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and a variety of Wisconsin statutes, there are many resources that define and outline the rights of those with disabilities. This is a guide to online resources for those researching disability cases.
    Jun. 04, 2021
    Damage caused by defects that a home's seller knew about but did not disclose can be a nasty surprise. Sellers, buyers, real estate agents, home inspectors, and contractors all have responsibilities to look closely and carefully at any property whose purchase they are involved with.
    Jun. 04, 2021
    Claims alleging injury from vaccines must be brought in specialized federal tribunals. Learn about the current legal treatment of vaccine injury claims, including claims related to COVID-19 vaccines, and the statutory processes applicable to them.
    Feb. 17, 2021
    The nationwide opioid litigation has and will reap billions of dollars in settlements funds, much like the tobacco litigation settlements of the 1990s.
    Feb. 03, 2021
    The State Bar of Wisconsin Business Law Section has launched Small Business Assistance, a project offering free legal advice to Wisconsin small-business owners.
    Feb. 03, 2021
    In this video, Trish Lane and Nadelle Grossman discuss the Business Law Section's Small Business Assistance Project to help struggling small businesses in Wisconsin.
    Jun. 03, 2020
    The authors identify practice areas in which cases related to the COVID-19 outbreak have been or are likely to be brought, including employment, consumer, personal injury, and insurance law.
    May 22, 2020
    Consumers can get free, weekly, credit reports, not just one free report per year, according to this post from Ray Dall’Osto and Chris Hayden of GRGB Law in Milwaukee.
    May 06, 2020
    In the age of the coronavirus, the State Bar's Lawyer Referral and Information Service (LRIS) is a great way to expand your practice and bring new clients to your (virtual) doorstep. Join now and get May and June free.
    Apr. 07, 2020
    Lawyers can help older individuals and their families by advising on selection of a long-term care facility and encouraging residents and family members to monitor the quality of care received in facilities.
    Mar. 09, 2020
    In Wisconsin, financial exploitation is the largest category of elder abuse after self-neglect. This article looks at certain vulnerabilities among older clients, along with options and resources to address them, especially through drafting and statutory provisions for financial powers of attorney.
    Mar. 09, 2020
    Representing older clients in financial abuse cases requires the readiness to act quickly but also the recognition that traditional law enforcement and judicial system responses might not be appropriate. Here are considerations and steps to take when investigating and remedying financial abuse of an elder.
    Jun. 05, 2019
    Changes to state and federal law means hemp is now a legal agricultural crop instead of an illegal controlled substance. Collin Schaeffer highlights several issues lawyers will be called to figure out in this new legal landscape.
    Apr. 19, 2019
    Aaron Gary says a soon-to-be-decided U.S. Supreme Court case may significantly affect Wisconsin’s alcohol distribution system.
    Mar. 20, 2019
    In this Tip of the Month, Kate Schilling identifies some of the tactics employed by Medicare scam artists and offers tips to help clients avoid becoming victims of fraud.
    Feb. 20, 2019
    Regulation and lawsuits take aim at e-cigarette makers, alleging marketing efforts have targeted young populations and contributed to a new class of nicotine addiction.
    Feb. 14, 2019
    Assistive technology is becoming more prevalent and accepted in the workplace. Eric Meier discusses some of the latest technology and legal considerations surrounding the employee data that is captured by wearable technology.
    Feb. 12, 2019
    Whether to accept online payments is no longer a question. Amy Mann gives the whys and hows for reducing friction in billing and payments processes.
    Oct. 18, 2018
    Obtaining a credit card or consumer loan as a married individual in Wisconsin actually requires compliance with multiple and complex areas of law. MaiVue Xiong discusses the framework lenders need to comply with obtaining and reporting credit, and the potential ramifications married consumers should know in Wisconsin.
    Jul. 18, 2018
    The Wisconsin Supreme Court recently ended its practice of deferring to state agencies' conclusions of law. But fractured opinions will leave practitioners to decipher the code.
    Jul. 18, 2018
    The Wisconsin Lawyers' Fund for Client Protection Committee reimbursed 19 victims of lawyer theft over the past year.
    May 02, 2018
    A new landlord-tenant bill was recently signed into law. Major changes relate to assistance animals, electronic delivery of certain documentation/information, emergency assistance, waiver and more. In this article, Tristan R. Pettit explains.
    May 01, 2018
    A case before the U.S. Supreme Court could significantly change the sales and use tax nexus landscape in the U.S. With a final decision anticipated this summer in South Dakota v. Wayfair , Luona Hao discusses the case and its implications for businesses.
    Nov. 01, 2017
    Jim Rogers argues the results of many judicial decisions have encroached on the right of injured plaintiffs to obtain remedies when they are harmed by negligent acts.
    Nov. 01, 2017
    Avery Mayne’s tips for talking to clients whose previously obtained legal advice has not gone as desired will help lawyers in client conversations in a variety of difficult situations.
    Oct. 17, 2017
    The last in a line of successive companies that acquired auto loan debt portfolios failed to establish ownership of a specific debt with sufficient evidence for summary judgment against the individual debtors, a state appeals court has ruled.
    Oct. 01, 2017
    The Wisconsin Supreme Court’s 2016 decision in Roberts v. T.H.E. Ins. Co. shows that the justices disagree on the limits of the recreational liability statute, but overall their standards still favor injured parties, especially in situations in which waivers are deficient, in substance or process. The author discusses challenges practitioners face following Roberts and offers practice tips.
    Sep. 20, 2017
    Oregon is addressing an access to justice problem with regulatory rule changes that embrace the virtual legal marketplace, including providers like Avvo. Other states have gone the opposite direction, issuing ethics opinions prohibiting such engagement. Wisconsin has not yet issued a formal position via ethics opinion or otherwise.
    Sep. 05, 2017
    So-called “anti-combination” laws that prohibit joint ownership and operation of a cemetery and a funeral home withstood a constitutional challenge recently, as a state appeals court has ruled the law has a rational basis.
    Sep. 01, 2017
    Every year, many Wisconsin residents contact the state with complaints about negative consumer experiences. This article sketches out the state’s consumer protection apparatus, identifies the most common types of complaints, and suggests best practices for consumers to work out disagreements with businesses.
    Sep. 01, 2017
    The sheer scope and complexity of consumer law is daunting for consumers and practitioners. Consumer protection provisions are scattered among many different statutes and administrative code chapters, but the responsibility for enforcing them rests among several administrative agencies, often with overlapping jurisdiction. Here is an overview of Wisconsin consumer protection laws, and the regulatory agencies responsible for them.
    Sep. 01, 2017
    Our justice system needs competent lawyers willing to pursue consumer law claims for individuals who have been victimized by predatory economic practices. Here is a look at a consumer law practice, federal and state consumer protection laws, and how lawyers can obtain an award of attorney fees based on the fee-shifting provisions in consumer protection statutes.
    Sep. 01, 2017
    This issue centers on consumer protection, says Erik Guenther, and looks into unfair, deceptive, and fraudulent business practices and how lawyers can help address them.
    Sep. 01, 2017
    Mary Fons provides an introduction to timeshares, describes a typical hard-sell sales presentation, and reviews effective statutory remedies lawyers can use to obtain relief for those defrauded.
    Sep. 01, 2017
    Tom Watson says lawyers preparing to practice in consumer protection should steep themselves in the law of the particular focus area, such as auto fraud, home improvement, debt collection, and more.
    Sep. 01, 2017
    To determine if communications with debtors comply with the law, Brandon Bowlin says lawyers should understand the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and the least sophisticated consumer standard.
    Sep. 01, 2017
    The most effective consumer protection, says Frank Sullivan, consists of preventing people from being fleeced in the first place.
    Aug. 08, 2017
    After numerous delays, the U.S. Department of Labor has now partially implemented a new fiduciary rule for financial professionals providing investment services to retirement plans. Drew Parrish discusses the new fiduciary rule, its implementation status, and how the rule will apply.
    Jul. 05, 2017
    Fishing, boating, camping, festivals and concerts, cooling off at a water park – all usual activities of summer in Wisconsin. But what happens when something goes wrong? Here are resources to help with your research into tourism and hospitality law.
    May 01, 2017
    Advances in assistive reproductive technology are giving new options for parentage to individuals who are in same-sex marriages, are dealing with infertility, or both. But Wisconsin law is not keeping pace. To resolve disputes when a surrogacy agreement falls apart and grant parent status, the author proposes that Wisconsin courts use an “intended-parent” test.
    Dec. 14, 2016
    Jeremy Myers really wants someone to pay for violating a federal law that requires merchants to block out the last five digits of a credit card number on receipts. But a federal appeals court has ruled against Myers for the second time in three months.
    Sep. 13, 2016
    Federal law prohibits merchants from including credit card expiration dates and full credit card numbers on receipts. But a lawsuit alleging violations by the Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin may not proceed, on immunity grounds.
    Jul. 20, 2016
    July 20, 2016 – From expired plates to complex insurance issues, the rental car experience could lead down a road of problems. Be informed before you put the pedal to the metal.
    Jun. 01, 2016
    Businesses that use automated telephone dialing must examine their dialing systems and customer-intake processes to ensure they comport with federal regulations and to shield themselves from potentially major liability.
    May 09, 2016
    A commercial truck manufacturer must pay double damages of $200,000 and another $200,000 in attorney fees for violating Wisconsin’s lemon law, a state appeals court has ruled, rejecting an “accord and satisfaction” argument.
    Apr. 20, 2016
    Don’t keep your loved ones in the dark about your end-of-life wishes. Download the State Bar’s planning guide, free to download through April 29.
    Apr. 20, 2016
    Help your 21st-century business clients thrive with advice on time-tested statutes, evolving case law, and cutting-edge technology, using the newly revised Commercial and Consumer Transactions in Wisconsin from State Bar of Wisconsin PINNACLE.
    Apr. 06, 2016
    Dealing with shrapnel-shooting airbags, faulty ignition switches, or unsafe child car seats? You can find a wealth of information about vehicle and consumer produce recalls on federal regulatory websites.
    Apr. 01, 2016
    The Wisconsin Statutes now prohibit local governments from imposing or enforcing time-of-sale requirements on the sale of real estate and other local ordinances affecting real estate transactions. Because the old requirements remain on the books, and appear on the mandated offer to purchase form, lawyers must ensure buyers and sellers are on the same page.
    Apr. 01, 2016
    Nursing-home residents and their families may, by signing on the dotted line, lose their ability to take care and treatment disputes to court. The authors discuss characteristics of the typical nursing-home admission process and the enforceability of arbitration provisions in nursing-home admission agreements.
    Apr. 01, 2016
    Andrew Oettinger and Christopher Flowers provide tips to help clients through the process of buying and selling zombie properties.
    Mar. 01, 2016
    For players in the ever-expanding food and beverage market, health-related labels, the rise of craft breweries, and new food-safety laws require the assistance of savvy counsel. This article looks at food and beverage laws, giving a glimpse into the challenges and opportunities that face this dynamic industry.
    Mar. 01, 2016
    One practice area lawyers cannot afford to ignore is bankruptcy. Because of bankruptcy courts’ broad jurisdiction, a wide variety of cases can be implicated, including evictions, foreclosures, the validity of and right to payment from trusts, consumer protection laws, defamation, and domestic support arrears.
    Jan. 01, 2016
    Sam Wayne says claims under the Fair Credit Reporting Act are not fact-intensive, can be prosecuted very efficiently, and can make good additions to your practice.
    Dec. 28, 2015
    A bank is liable for a misrepresentation that induced a homebuyer to buy a foreclosure home with undisclosed water and mold damage, even though the sale contract said the buyer was purchasing the home “as is,” a state appeals court has ruled.
    Dec. 01, 2015
    Whether advising government officials or members of the public, Peter Block says lawyers should know which governmental meetings must be open and the rules for publicizing and conducting open meetings.
    Nov. 30, 2015
    Nov. 30, 2015 – The State Bar is launching a new, statewide program that teaches students and adults about responsible credit use and other fundamentals of financial literacy.
    Oct. 01, 2015
    Real-life vacant houses don’t shelter ghosts or poltergeists, but the problems they cause can be as daunting to vanquish as any fictional apparition. A recent supreme court case illuminates the effect of zombie properties on homeowners, lenders, and surrounding communities. Although the decision offers some resolutions, many questions remain.
    Oct. 01, 2015
    Laws protecting and rewarding employees or other individuals who report companies’ internal problems present risks of legal, financial, and business reputational costs and damage too large for all entities, even the smallest, to ignore. This article offers suggestions for managing risk based on the hard lessons learned by companies exposed to enforcement action.
    Oct. 01, 2015
    The Internet marketplaces has changed the retail landscape, and many believe the time has come to update the sales tax treatment of e-commerce transactions crossing state lines. This article presents an overview of sales and use taxation, the current tax treatment of e-commerce transactions across state lines, and potential legislation and judicial action related to e-commerce retailers.
    Apr. 14, 2015
    A company that sold travel club memberships to Wisconsin consumers must pay more than $4.6 million in restitution and fines for misrepresentations and a failure to disclose certain information on solicitations, a state appeals court has ruled.
    Feb. 27, 2015
    A state appeals court has ruled that a debt settlement company must pay back the $4.2 million in fees that it charged individuals to settle their debts.
    Dec. 03, 2014
    Dec. 3, 2014 – Serving and consuming alcohol beverages is part of many people’s year-end holiday celebrations. But regulation of alcohol beverages is an issue year-round for businesses that produce, transport, and sell them and for governmental officials who monitor these activities. PINNACLE’s Alcohol Beverages Regulation in Wisconsin, newly supplemented in 2014, will help you unmuddy the waters for private and public clients.
    Nov. 26, 2014
    Class counsel attorneys’ fees averaging $538 per hour was excessive compensation, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has ruled in an appeal from a class action settlement involving makers and distributors of dietary supplements.
    Nov. 01, 2014
    Increasingly, the U.S. Supreme Court has interpreted the Federal Arbitration Act to apply to parties of unequal bargaining power, making it more difficult for individuals and businesses subject to adhesion contracts to exercise their legal rights.
    Aug. 26, 2014
    As incoming freshmen all over the state are getting ready to leave home for the first time and start classes, the State Bar of Wisconsin is issuing helpful reminders to new adults.
    Jul. 21, 2014
    A consumer with a legal claim against an auto dealer entered a settlement agreement without his lawyer’s knowledge. Recently, the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled against the consumer’s lawyer regarding attorney’s fees.
    Apr. 16, 2014
    April 16, 2014 – Consumers (and their lawyers) should understand the intricacies of Wisconsin’s new lemon law to avoid the pitfalls, says Milwaukee lawyer Vince Megna. This article explains the changes with commentary from Megna on the practical effects.
    Mar. 11, 2014
    Rhinelander High School captured its 17th high school mock trial state title yesterday after defeating Shorewood High School in a very close final round judged by six members of the Wisconsin Supreme Court. The team will now advance to the National High School Mock Trial Tournament, May 8-10 in Madison.
    Feb. 17, 2014
    Help the State Bar of Wisconsin send a bill to the governor’s desk, which would return first-time, nonviolent 17-year-old offenders to juvenile court jurisdiction.
    Jan. 28, 2014
    A home insurer scored a win today as the Wisconsin Supreme Court split 3-3 in a case involving water damage, products liability, and the “economic loss doctrine.” Without a majority, a lower appeals court ruling on the issue controls.
    Sep. 01, 2013
    Not only lawyers who concentrate on health care law but also many lawyers whose work merely brings them in contact with health information must understand new HIPAA regulations that rigorously affect privacy. New HIPAA regulations are effective Sept. 22, 2013.
    Aug. 14, 2013
    A consumer who borrowed short-term loans at annualized interest rates of 246 and 385 percent says the loans are unconscionable. Recently, a state appeals court asked the Wisconsin Supreme Court to “draw the line.”
    Jul. 01, 2013
    Amendments to Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code, which deals with security interests in most types of personal property and fixtures, took effect on July 1, 2013. The authors describe the types of property and transactions to which Article 9 applies, explain key terms, and provide tips to help you counsel your creditor and debtor clients.
    Jun. 25, 2013
    The Wisconsin Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether police can track a suspect’s whereabouts through court-ordered cell phone location data.
    Jun. 19, 2013
    June 19, 2013 – A provision now included within the state budget bill would trigger retroactive enforcement of tort reform provisions related to risk contribution theory. This article explains how the changes would potentially impact pending litigation.
    Mar. 06, 2013
    March 6, 2013 – Investor abuse is at an all-time high, and the elderly are most at risk. In this video, attorney Jeff Salas discusses how financial abuse occurs, reveals the tell-tale signs of investment harm, and explains how investors can bring claims for harm caused by inappropriate investment sales.
    Mar. 01, 2013
    Investor abuse is at an all-time high and elderly investors and retirees are especially vulnerable. For investors who lose money due to stockbroker misconduct, there are options for recovery through the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority or state and federal courts.
    Feb. 13, 2013
    The Wisconsin Supreme Court may decide whether several consumers who borrowed money against their car titles are bound by arbitration clauses that a trial court has found to be unconscionable.​
    Jan. 24, 2013
    A business that sued several telecommunications companies alleging the companies together engaged in deceptive billing practices has cleared another major hurdle.
    Jan. 16, 2013
    Jan. 16, 2013 – When you visit next month, you'll experience far more than a fresh coat of paint applied to the website. On Monday, Feb. 4, the State Bar will launch a new WisBar, the first major redesign and technology overhaul since 2005.
    Jan. 02, 2013
    Jan. 2, 2013 – Many websites allow individuals to post reviews about products and services. If those reviews are not true, businesses can sue, and these types of cases are on the rise. This article explains the recent developments in this area with insight from Milwaukee lawyer Donald Daugherty.
    Dec. 28, 2012
    Dec. 28, 2012 – An alternative dispute resolution (ADR) agreement designating the National Arbitration Forum (NAF) as arbitrator using NAF rules and procedures is unenforceable, a state appeals court has ruled, because NAF is no longer available.
    Dec. 14, 2012
    Dec. 14, 2012 – Larry Krueger's water softener failed after two years, causing nearly $45,000 in damages. Recently, a state appeals court ruled the economic loss doctrine does not bar a lawsuit by Krueger's home insurer against the company that manufactured the water softener.
    Oct. 01, 2012
    Many Wisconsin statutes make it possible for prevailing parties to recover attorney fees from the opposing side. Recent changes, however, presumptively cap reasonable attorney fees at not more than three times the damages awarded and list factors a court must assess when making the award. Here is a look at how courts may interpret and apply the law.
    Sep. 19, 2012
    Sept. 19, 2012 – Do the estimated 24.5 million people who play fantasy football violate gambling laws? It depends on the state, according to sports lawyer Marc Edelman. Wisconsin has not addressed the issue specifically, suggesting the state regards fantasy sports as contests of skill.
    Aug. 01, 2012
    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.
    Aug. 01, 2012
    ​Aug. 1, 2012 – The landscape of landlord-tenant rules is changing. A federal law is set to sunset in 2014, a state law has already sunset, and Gov. Walker signed 2011 Act 143. In this video, Delavan attorney Brian A. Schuk discusses changes that attorneys representing tenants and landlords need to know.
    Jul. 18, 2012
    July 18, 2012 – Greenwashing describes vague unsubstantiated or misleading environmental marketing claims. In this video, David Gilles and Matthew Kemp discuss Wisconsin's standards for labeling recycled, recyclable, and degradable products and the requirements for substantiating the energy savings created by certain products.
    Jun. 01, 2012
    Businesses and consumers eager to sell or buy environmentally friendly products should know that not every representation accurately conveys the "greenness" of the product.
    Jun. 01, 2012
    June 6, 2012 – State Bar of Wisconsin PINNACLE® ; has just released the 2012 edition of The Wisconsin Fair Dealership Law, the definitive text on a uniquely Wisconsin statute. Every manufacturer or seller of products or services doing business in Wisconsin does so in the shadow of the Fair Dealership Law; any business – or business attorney – who fails to consider the reach of that law does so at his or her or its own peril.
    May 24, 2012
    May 24, 2012 – A car dealer that can’t prove a consumer intentionally thwarted the dealer's attempts to timely refund a customer's money can't escape Wisconsin's lemon law, and payment of double damages, the Wisconsin Supreme Court has ruled.
    May 01, 2012
    In the ADAAA, Congress amended federal disability-discrimination law to restore a breadth of coverage under the ADA. Federal courts have since made initial findings of disability in a broad spectrum of discrimination cases in which they once would have refused to do so. Here is a look at the key changes.
    Apr. 01, 2012
    Programs that allow you to tackle the debt, and leave you with enough money to live on.
    Apr. 01, 2012
    Persons who violate DATCP orders regulating methods of business competition and trade practices, face stiff civil penalties under Wis. Stat. section 100.20(5), including twice the amount of any pecuniary loss. Determining what is a pecuniary loss is critical.
    Feb. 24, 2012
    Feb. 24, 2012 – Voluntarily paying a bill will not bar claims of "cramming," the practice of slipping small but unauthorized charges into customers' bills, under the state's telecommunications statute.
    Feb. 13, 2012
    Feb. 13, 2012 – On February 9, 2012, at a press conference in Washington D.C., an historic $25 billion settlement agreement involving the mortgage servicing industry was announced.
    Jan. 27, 2012
    Feb. 1, 2012 – To start off 2012 on the right foot, now is a good time to advise business clients on a law concerning renewal and extension provisions in business contracts. In this article, Madison attorney Barbara Zabawa explains the law and who it impacts.
    Jan. 03, 2012
    Jan. 3, 2012 – A binding arbitration provision that barred a Wisconsin consumer from pursuing a class-action lawsuit against a payday loan lender is indeed enforceable.
    Dec. 06, 2011
    Dec. 6, 2011 – A commercial dating service business, originally sued by the state back in 2009 for violations of various consumer protection laws, won’t have the benefit of insurance defense.
    Dec. 01, 2011
    Lawyers need to understand the effects of the 2010 Health-care Reform Law as they seek health-care coverage for themselves, their families, and their employees, and as they counsel their business clients.
    Nov. 30, 2011
    Nov. 30, 2011 – A prolific late-night infomercial salesman turned author must pay $37.6 million to consumers for misrepresenting the content of his bestselling book, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit recently ruled.
    Nov. 14, 2011
    Nov. 14, 2011 – The Wisconsin Supreme Court recently heard oral argument in a lemon law case in which a car manufacturer failed to timely issue a refund to the consumer but alleges the consumer failed to cooperate in bad faith.
    Nov. 01, 2011
    The U.S. Supreme Court has placed obstacles in the path of plaintiffs' litigators attempting to put together class action lawsuits. Learn about the Court's decision in Wal-Mart Inc. v. Dukes and the similarities and differences between the federal rule the Court relied on and Wisconsin's class-action statute.
    Oct. 27, 2011
    Oct. 27, 2011 – The full Wisconsin Senate will vote today on proposed legislation that, if enacted, will undermine the rights of Wisconsin businesses and consumers who seek to enforce their statutory, administrative, and contractual remedies.
    Oct. 17, 2011
    Oct. 17, 2011 – A three-year-old child died and others became ill after ingesting E. coli contaminated meat at two Milwaukee-area Sizzler area restaurants in 2000. Now, Sizzler USA is fighting to obtain damages and attorney fees from the supplier of beef.
    Oct. 13, 2011
    Oct. 19, 2011 – Wisconsin lawmakers are currently considering legislation that would cap a lawyer's ability to obtain reasonable attorney fees. Consumer law attorneys say the proposed law would put many consumer lawyers out of business, adversely impacting low-income individuals.
    Oct. 03, 2011
    Oct. 3, 2011 – Federal law does not prohibit a private company from reselling personal information it buys from a state's Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has ruled.
    Oct. 01, 2011
    The statutes concerning automobile insurance have seesawed during the past few years. A new law, effective Nov. 1, creates more restrictions to recovery. To competently represent car owners and anyone who could be injured in an accident, attorneys need to understand the new law.
    Sep. 30, 2011
    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.
    Aug. 29, 2011
    Aug. 29, 2011 – The Milwaukee County Circuit Court recently ruled that a public utility could disconnect utility service despite a petitioner's request for amortization of debt under Wis. Stat. section 128.21.
    Aug. 03, 2011
    Aug. 3, 2011 – The State Bar has released the 17th edition of its consumer publication What You Should Know About Wisconsin Law: Your Legal Rights and Responsibilities, formerly titled On Being Eighteen: Your Legal Rights and Responsibilities. The 40-page booklet informs Wisconsin citizens of their legal rights and responsibilities, and helps them recognize and avoid possible problems.
    Aug. 01, 2011
    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.
    Jul. 13, 2011
    July 13, 2011 – Even though Steven Kilian returned his Mercedes Benz, and received a refund of about $21,000, the lender continued to hound him for his monthly lease payments. That is, until he was forced to file a lawsuit asking them to stop under Wisconsin’s Lemon Law.
    Jul. 01, 2011
    Wisconsin’s products liability law has undergone a sea change. Changes to Wis. Stat. chapter 895 adopt a new test of defectiveness, leaving behind the analysis of consumer expectations in strict liability claims and substituting the reasonable-alternative-design standard. Plaintiffs now must meet more stringent requirements to recover for an injury caused by defective products.
    Jun. 15, 2011
    June 15, 2011 – The District I Wisconsin Court of Appeals has clarified the law around the application of Wisconsin's Uniform Commercial Code and implied warranties in Estate of Brianna Kriefall v. Sizzler USA Franchise et. al. This is one of a series of cases brought as a result of an outbreak of E. coli bacteria at several Sizzler restaurants in the Milwaukee area in 2000.
    Jun. 10, 2011
    July 6, 2011 – Love it or hate it, the U.S. Supreme Court's recent decision in AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion will dramatically affect class action litigation in Wisconsin and across the country. Attorney Michael Leffel explains the Court resolved an important circuit split and held that the Federal Arbitration Act preempts certain state laws and court rulings that have been used to invalidate class action waivers in arbitration agreements.
    May 12, 2011
    July 20, 2011 – To recover from an injury caused by a defective product, plaintiffs now must prove a manufacturer rejected a reasonable alternative design that would have reduced the foreseeable danger. In this video, Jessica Ozalp explains that this new test of defectiveness is among the biggest changes to Wisconsin's products liability law.
    Apr. 15, 2011
    April 15, 2010 – The Wisconsin Supreme Court may decide the proper burden of proof in lemon law actions when a car manufacturer alleges intentional bad faith on the part of a consumer.
    Apr. 04, 2011
    April 4, 2011 – The Wisconsin Supreme Court has granted review in eight new cases, including a medical malpractice suit in which a patient is arguing the doctor did not provide enough information to make an informed decision about treatment.
    Apr. 01, 2011
    This is the second of a two-part series to familiarize nonbankruptcy lawyers with basic bankruptcy law concepts and practices. This part focuses on specific aspects of Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 proceedings and provides practice hints. Part 1 appeared in the March Wisconsin Lawyer.
    Apr. 01, 2011
    Recent revelations concerning unreliable mortgage-processing methods nationwide have cast a negative light on industry practices but also opened the door to new defenses for homeowners and their lawyers involved in foreclosure actions. This article is a basic key for finding potential mortgage-document mistakes and using this information to help clients keep their homes.
    Apr. 01, 2011
    Although the Act of God defense – that a defendant is insulated from liability for personal injury or property damages caused by a natural cause – is rarely used, it may become more common in the future if predictions of catastrophic weather events caused by global warming prove true.
    Mar. 01, 2011
    Part one of this two-part series on bankruptcy law introduces concepts and practice tips so that nonbankruptcy lawyers may identify situations in which it is appropriate to consult with a bankruptcy attorney on the lawyer's own behalf or on behalf of prospective or current clients.
    Feb. 01, 2011
    Attorneys volunteering for the Lawyer Referral and Information Service's (LRIS) Lawyer Hotline Program provide basic information to callers and build camaraderie with their colleagues.
    Dec. 29, 2010
    Dec. 29, 2010 – Effective today, new Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regulations govern unfair or deceptive practices in providing mortgage loans or loan modification and foreclosure rescue services. Attorneys who provide such services are exempt from the rule if certain requirements are met.
    Nov. 01, 2010
    It is no secret that as the balance of power in state government changes, laws and the public policies they represent change, too, sometimes dramatically. As an example, the author compares the laws affecting Wisconsin automobile insurance law – especially the significant changes in coverage under uninsured and underinsured motorist policies – in 1995 and in 2009.
    Oct. 18, 2010
    Oct. 18, 2010 – Recognizing the "far-reaching effects" of a court holding regarding "sports ticket distribution systems utilized by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and others," the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals will wait to determine whether the NCAA violated Indiana's law prohibiting illegal lotteries.
    Oct. 13, 2010
    Oct. 13, 2010 – Among the 18 new cases slated for review by the Wisconsin Supreme Court is a high-profile case in which the court will decide whether sentencing a 14-year-old to life imprisonment constitutes cruel and unusual punishment.
    Oct. 06, 2010
    Oct. 6, 2010 – An internet search engine that links someone’s name to distasteful websites does not violate federal trademark law because one does not have a commercial interest in his or her name, a Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals panel recently held.
    Sep. 13, 2010
    Sept. 13, 2010 – Federal antitrust law does not preempt the Wisconsin laws that require gasoline retailers in the state to increase prices by a set percentage above cost, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit recently held.
    Jul. 07, 2010
    July 7, 2010 – Thanks to the combined efforts of the State Bar of Wisconsin, the American Bar Association, and bar associations and attorneys across the country, the final version House Bill H.R. 4173 contains a practice of law exclusion.
    Jun. 24, 2010
    June 24, 2010 – In a consumer transaction case, a party does not waive improper venue without “intentionally relinquishing” the right to invoke improper venue, the Wisconsin Supreme Court recently held.
    Jun. 04, 2010
    Wisconsin’s new uniform power of attorney for finances and property law, which becomes effective Sept. 1, 2010, provides clarity regarding POAs, encourages acceptance of POAs while protecting those who accept them, protects the principal in several important ways, offers guidance to agents, and provides a statutory form.
    Jun. 04, 2010
    2009 Wisconsin Act 100, relating to impaired driving, takes effect July 1, 2010. Among several important changes, the law creates new misdemeanor classifications, establishes probation eligibility for all criminal OWI offenders, permits all counties to adopt programs that offer reduced jail sentences on completion of treatment and supervision, expands orders and penalties regarding ignition interlock devices, and affects occupational license eligibility.
    Jun. 01, 2010
    June 1, 2010 – Responding to requests from several members of Congress, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has delayed enforcement of its “Red Flags Rule” through Dec. 31, 2010, while Congress considers legislation that would refine the scope of entities it covers.
    May 26, 2010
    May 26, 2010 – A consumer contract that prohibits the prospect of class-wide relief is substantively unconscionable, the appeals court recently held.
    May 17, 2010
    May 17, 2010 - An automobile insurance policy that does not clearly define the term "hit-and-run" will be construed in favor of coverage, the Wisconsin supreme court recently held in Zarder v. Acuity, A Mutual Insurance Co., 2008AP919 (May 14, 2010).
    May 05, 2010
    The myriad disability laws and regulations potentially applicable to people with allergies have made it difficult to determine if food allergy sufferers are entitled to protection and accommodations in public places, including schools and workplaces. The 2008 Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act, which expands the class of individuals entitled to protections, should help clarify the recipe of rights for allergic individuals.
    May 05, 2010
    Should a feeding tube be withheld if the patient is conscious?
    May 05, 2010
    Why the supreme court should define the practice of law.
    Apr. 06, 2010
    The Department of Regulation & Licensing Secretary explains the process used to update the new WB-11 Residential offer to Purchase form.
    Apr. 06, 2010
    Many Wisconsin counties have developed programs to provide legal information or assistance to low-income residents who have been unable to obtain more formal legal representation. A U.W. Law School survey of existing programs looks at issues and opportunities related to self-help options, and what the Wisconsin Access to Justice Commission can do to bridge the justice gap of unmet legal needs in Wisconsin.
    Mar. 30, 2010
    March 30, 2010 – The Wisconsin Court of Appeals found that the representations a motor vehicle dealer made about a highly-modified motorcycle may violate the Wisconsin Deceptive Trade Practices Act. When the purchaser began experiencing problems with the motorcycle, the dealer would not stand behind the warranty.
    Mar. 04, 2010
    Adverse-possession disputes are emotionally charged matters that are pervasive in Wisconsin. Recent cases heard by the Wisconsin Court of Appeals highlight some of the many complications of adverse possession and provide insight into how to prove and defend adverse-possession claims and how to avoid a dispute in the first place.
    Mar. 04, 2010
    If it looks like a duck and tries to sell you a trust, it’s still a duck.
    Mar. 04, 2010
    As of March 1, real estate licensees are required to use the 2010 WB-11 – residential offer to purchase form, authorized by the Wisconsin Department of Regulation and Licensing. The new form, however, contains substantive drafting errors that might require a recall of the form. Until then, here is some guidance on using the form.
    Feb. 09, 2010
    In Farmers Automobile Insurance Ass’n v. Union Pacific Railway Co., the Wisconsin Supreme Court set forth the standard for vacating or modifying insurance policy appraisal provisions used to set value for claimed losses. The court also tackled discovery and standard of review issues.
    Feb. 09, 2010
    On March 8, 2010, the Wisconsin Supreme Court will hold a public hearing and open administrative conference to consider the State Bar’s 2007 petition to define the practice of law and provide an enforcement mechanism. Contact the court today to urge it to adopt the petition to protect consumers from the unauthorized practice of law.
    Feb. 09, 2010
    Although the Internet is an important tool in the health-care field, legal issues related to medical record privacy and confidentiality, health-care quality assurance, and medical e-commerce need to be resolved through regulation to protect health-care providers and consumers. Here is an overview of some important areas that require tighter controls.
    Dec. 04, 2009
    Effective Dec. 1, 2009, new FTC Guides apply the FTC Act to the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, including the use of new media such as blogs.
    Nov. 06, 2009
    Nov. 6, 2009 – Anti-identity theft rules originally scheduled to go into effect on May 1 have been delayed again at the request of members of Congress, says the Federal Trade Commission.
    Nov. 05, 2009
    Consumers are harmed when they don’t consult a lawyer when needed.
    Oct. 27, 2009
    Oct. 27, 2009 – Following the U.S. House of Representative’s 400-to-zero vote in favor of a bill to exclude some lawyers from the Federal Trade Commission’s anti-identity theft rules, the legislation heads to the Senate.
    Oct. 20, 2009
    Oct. 20, 2009 – The Alternative Dispute Resolution Section submitted testimony to lawmakers considering a bill to grant distressed homeowners a right to mediation in foreclosure. The section sought to ensure the mediator remains neutral in whatever procedure lawmakers adopt.
    Oct. 06, 2009
    Why do lawyers need a license to practice law in Wisconsin? No one else does! And no one else will until the Wisconsin Supreme Court adopts a workable definition of what constitutes the practice of law and provides an effective enforcement mechanism. 
    Sep. 01, 2009
    2009 Wisconsin Act 20, effective July 1, 2009, expands Wisconsin’s Fair Employment Law to make available compensatory and punitive damages for employment discrimination, unfair genetic testing, and unfair honesty testing in an employment setting. These damages are in addition to other remedies available under the Fair Employment Law. Act 20 more closely aligns Wisconsin’s Fair Employment Law with Title VII of the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended.
    Sep. 01, 2009
    Business attorneys and their clients should be proactive to avoid protracted litigation of WFEA claims under the new provisions of 2009 Wisconsin Act 20.
    Sep. 01, 2009
    The WFEA falls short by requiring employees to exhaust all administrative steps before taking their cases into state courts, adding years to the process and requiring employees to essentially retry their cases.
    Aug. 13, 2009
    Aug. 13, 2009 – Debtors and secured creditors may opt out of many – but not all – of the Uniform Commercial Code provisions when drafting a security agreement. In particular, the creditor’s obligations and the defaulting debtor’s rights in collateral are preserved.
    Aug. 07, 2009
    Tenants whose landlords are in foreclosure might lose their security deposits and any prepaid rent, face eviction with 24 hours’ notice, and grapple with prospective landlords who refuse to rent to them because they were removed from a residential property because of a mortgage foreclosure. Wisconsin’s new Residential Tenants in Foreclosure Act and recent federal legislation now offer some protections to residential tenants.
    Aug. 07, 2009
    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.
    Aug. 07, 2009
    Aug. 7, 2009 – Justices analyzed the damages awarded under Wisconsin’s consumer protection law to find what relief is available to a consumer who sues over a defective leased vehicle, but then decides to buy it while the lawsuit is pending.
    Aug. 04, 2009
    Sept. 4, 2009 – The Wisconsin Court of Appeals found an insured driver has coverage after he collided with a vehicle part dropped in the roadway by an unidentified truck absent from the scene before the accident. A circuit court had required the “hit” to occur before the “run.”
    Jul. 23, 2009
    July 23, 2009 – The Wisconsin Supreme Court analyzed the remedies available to a seller under the form mandated for residential real estate transactions. After a buyer backs out, the seller must authorize return of the buyer’s earnest money before or at the same time the seller sues for actual damages.
    Jul. 14, 2009
    July 14, 2009 – The supreme court rejected a father’s claim for negligent infliction of emotional distress. The father had seen his infant son die in a botched delivery, but the court reasoned that the statutes governing medical malpractice do not recognize his claim.
    Jul. 14, 2009
    July 14, 2009 – Justices agree that lead in lead paint cannot be a design defect. But the court divided over whether the question is properly resolved according to Wisconsin’s continued reliance upon Restatement (Second) of Torts or whether it is time to embrace the third Restatement.
    Jul. 10, 2009
    The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 strengthens federal privacy laws enacted in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. Health care providers and their vendors and business associates all are now liable for unauthorized disclosures of individuals’ health care information. New provisions govern electronic information and how notification of a breach is to be made. The rules are complex, with many exceptions. And more changes are expected.
    Jul. 01, 2009
    July 1, 2009 – Some circuit court filing fees across Wisconsin have increased effective July 1 as part of the new budget drafted by the Legislature and approved by the governor. A schedule of the fees is publicly available from the courts system.
    Jul. 01, 2009
    July 1, 2009 -- Tristan Pettit, an attorney representing landlords in evictions and other legal disputes, explained the circumstances his clients face to government lawyers stepping up enforcement of nuisance ordinances and building codes. Pettit's remarks were featured at the Government Lawyers Division presentation during the State Bar Annual Convention.
    Jun. 10, 2009
    Wisconsin’s recreational immunity laws took an interesting tumble when the supreme court ruled in Noffke v. Bakke that cheerleading is a contact sport for purposes of immunizing participants from negligence actions.
    May 06, 2009
    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
    Apr. 15, 2009
    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.
    Apr. 15, 2009
    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.
    Apr. 15, 2009
    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.
    Apr. 15, 2009
    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.
    Apr. 01, 2009
    Below v. Norton applies the economic loss doctrine in Wisconsin to bar common-law intentional misrepresentation claims in both residential and noncommercial real estate transactions. Until Below is legislatively overturned, buyers who want to preserve common-law tort claims in any real estate transaction must do so by contract.
    Apr. 01, 2009
    The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 makes more than 300 changes to the Internal Revenue Code to provide nearly $300 billion in tax relief and other benefits to individuals, businesses, the environment, and state governments. This summary of the Act’s fundamental tax law changes provides attorneys with the working knowledge they need to advise their clients about the Act’s provisions.
    Mar. 18, 2009
    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.
    Feb. 19, 2009
    Feb. 19, 2009 – The State Bar Public Interest Law Section (PILS) will present a free, on-demand training titled, “Medical Debt in Wisconsin: Strategies & Practical Tips for Volunteer Lawyers,” produced by the Public Interest Law Section and ABC for Health, Inc., with the support of a Pro Bono Initiative grant from the State Bar of Wisconsin’s State Bar Legal Assistance Committee. This program is free for attorneys who commit to provide pro bono service to low-income clients.
    Dec. 04, 2008
    By clarifying and expanding key terms, Congress intends the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 to restore the ADA as a clear and comprehensive national mandate for eliminating discrimination against a broadly defined class of disabled individuals. Read how the Act alters the scope of the ADA in the workplace, effective Jan. 1, 2009.
    Nov. 13, 2008
    The author provides seven principles to help determine tribal court jurisdiction over non-tribe members following the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision in Plains Commerce Bank applying the “Montana exceptions” to the general rule against a tribe’s lack of jurisdiction over nonmembers.
    Nov. 13, 2008
    The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 prohibits health insurance and employment discrimination based on a person’s genetic information. Although the Act allows use of genetic testing and information for specific, limited purposes, questions remain whether government and research institutions can safely regulate genetic tests and safeguard large databases of genetic information. The Act’s health insurance provisions become effective in May 2009 and the employment provisions in November 20
    Oct. 08, 2008
    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.
    Oct. 08, 2008
    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.
    May 14, 2008
    Wis. Stat. chapter 128 is an old, but still little-known alternative to bankruptcy that attorneys should explore as the first option for their clients who wish to repay debt and need the help of a structured plan to get back on their feet.
    May 14, 2008
    Wisconsin’s Direct Legislation Statute, section 9.20, gives voters a direct voice in local matters and provides a procedure by which voters may compel local government to pass or put before the public for a popular vote a proposed ordinance or resolution. Read how it works.
    Apr. 09, 2008
    Commission on Reducing Racial Disparities in Wisconsin Justice System releases report, recommendations
    Apr. 09, 2008
    Employers should take care when discharging disabled employees under a no-fault attendance policy. To effectively counsel their business clients, attorneys need to know why the Wisconsin Supreme Court recently awarded a disabled employee the maximum remedy under the Wisconsin Fair Employment Act for an employer’s discriminatory application of a no-fault attendance policy.
    Apr. 09, 2008
    Many businesses hesitate to provide information about their former employees to prospective employers because of the threat of potential lawsuits. Lawyers should understand the legal issues underlying employment reference checks to help their business clients establish best practices.
    Mar. 10, 2008
    On Feb. 13 the Marquette Volunteer Legal Clinic, in partnership with Quarles & Brady LLP, opened its doors on Milwaukee's south side. While the clinic is located in the Spanish Center and is staffed with bilingual volunteer attorneys, law students, and interpreters, any person with a legal need and no financial means to pay for legal advice is welcome.
    Mar. 10, 2008
    Every business engaged in Internet commerce or using a Web site to collect personal information – not just those businesses subject to financial services industry regulations – must comply with the Federal Trade Commission rules governing the use and protection of personal information. Failure to comply can be very costly.
    Dec. 04, 2007
    When the American dream of home ownership turns into a financial nightmare, the realities of foreclosure can intersect with many legal practice areas, including bankruptcy, family law, probate, employment law, worker’s compensation, business law, and real estate and property law. Lawyers who understand the foreclosure process can help clients facing difficult circumstances.
    Dec. 04, 2007
    Consumers who are facing a mortgage foreclosure or who have been stung by a mortgage rescue scam can contact these entities for help
    Dec. 04, 2007
    Although Wisconsin’s housing market did not overheat in recent years as the housing markets did in California, Nevada, and other areas, it is a mistake to view the meltdown and related mortgage foreclosures as someone else’s problem. The authors explain the factors on Main Street and Wall Street that led to the subprime mortgage meltdown and survey the resulting litigation fallout in Wisconsin and elsewhere.
    Nov. 06, 2007
    The rise in family responsibility and caregiver discrimination claims attests to the struggle to balance family and work life amid the changing demographics of the American workplace. Because these claims likely will increase, lawyers need to recognize potential claims and advise their business clients appropriately.
    Mar. 05, 2007
    As much as Wisconsinites like to harrangue Illinois drivers (and vice versa), Illinois drivers convicted of Wisconsin OWI face more serious negative consequences in their home state than do their Wisconsin counterparts.
    Feb. 08, 2007
    Creditors now can declare consumers in default and repossess motorvehicles without court intervention. The enactment in April 2006 of 2005 Wis. Act 255 puts creditors firmly in the driver's seat and leaves consumers waving goodbye to their vehicles and consumer protections.
    Nov. 29, 2006
    The Wisconsin Supreme Court's opinion in Borst v. Allstate Insurance Co. has clarified several ill-defined aspects of the arbitration process, including the role of party-appointed arbitrators, the right of parties to seek equitable relief due to arbitrator partiality, and the taking of discovery.
    Sep. 25, 2006
    More than 5,300 lawyers, judges, law office support staff, and court personnel subscribe to the State Bar's CaseLaw Express. This free weekly email service keeps members abreast of recent cases that have been added to WisBar's case law archives. Recently redesigned, the new format is easier to scan, saving subscribers valuable time.
    Aug. 01, 2006
    The State Bar Elder Law Section's more than 10 year Guardianship Reform Project has become law along with major reforms in reporting and responding to abuse and neglect of adults at risk and adult placement services and placement. If you represent clients who are elderly or have disabilities, or the agencies and facilities that serve them, have elderly parents or loved ones with disabilities, or if you plan to age yourself - read this article to learn about critical changes in the law.
    Aug. 01, 2006
    "Green building" - the incorporation of construction practices and standards that maximize human health and economic return and minimize negative environmental consequences - will have wide-ranging impacts on many clients.
    Jun. 01, 2006
    Jun. 01, 2006
    2005 Wisconsin Act 87, revising Wis. Stat. chapter 452, recognizes modern practice methods in real estate services and attempts to regulate them while facilitating the broker's effort to deliver efficient services to meet consumer demands.
    May 01, 2006
    The Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 (DRA) is the most comprehensive change in the Medicaid laws since 1993. In 1993, with an aging U.S. population and rising nursing home costs, Congress passed the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993 (OBRA '93). OBRA '93 contained provisions that required states to try to recover the cost of Medicaid benefits paid, by passing new state laws mandating estate recovery and liens on homes.
    May 01, 2006
    The examples below examine how typical fact scenarios would have played out under the policies in effect before the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 (DRA), and how they would work following the enactment of the DRA.
    Feb. 01, 2006
    The armor of personal immunity generally shields people doing business as a "corporation" from corporate obligations. But the protection may be pierced, and personal liability imposed, under certain circumstances.
    Nov. 01, 2005
    In three cases decided in July 2005, the Wisconsin Supreme Court revisited the economic loss doctrine, carving out exceptions to its application on three discrete issues. The authors say that, even with these three new cases, there remains no more clarity for consumers and their lawyers than before, which leaves the door open to still more litigation.
    Oct. 01, 2005
    In Everson v. Lorenz, the Wisconsin Supreme Court restated that insurance policies are not "one-size-fits-all" documents, providing coverage for every type of damage. Everson makes clear that misrepresentations in the sale of real property are not accidents, and thus are not occurrences, so that misrepresentations fall outside the scope of coverage provided by occurrence based insurance policies.
    Oct. 01, 2005
    Before it will act, the Wisconsin Supreme Court wants the State Bar of Wisconsin to gather demonstrable evidence that additional regulation of the unauthorized practice of law is needed. The court recently asked lawyers for quantifiable evidence not only of the harm inflicted on the public when nonlawyers practice law but also of the nature and extent of the harm. Members should submit data by Dec. 31.
    Aug. 01, 2005
    The Wisconsin Supreme Court in Atkins v. Swimwest invalidated yet another waiver-of-liability agreement. Atkins unfortunately does not clarify this area of the law, and while it may still be possible to create enforceable exculpatory agreements, there remain numerous traps for nonvigilant drafters.
    Aug. 01, 2005
    On July 7, the Wisconsin Supreme Court ordered all custodial interrogations of juveniles in future cases be electronically recorded when feasible, and without exception when questioning occurs at a place of detention. The decision would make any unrecorded interrogations and any written confessions of a juvenile that are not accompanied by recorded interrogations inadmissible as evidence in court.
    Jul. 01, 2005
    Wisconsin's congressional delegation worked together to write provisions protecting employee benefit plans that are part of the Bankruptcy Abuse and Consumer Protection Act of 2005.
    Jul. 01, 2005
    The bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer PRotection Act of 2005 makes more than 150 significant amendments to the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, changing the protections offered to credit consumers.
    Jun. 01, 2005
    While the Schiavo case arose in Florida, it raises profound ethical questions and important legal issues nationwide. This article outlines the facts and legal issues of the Schiavo case and examines how such a case might have been decided in Wisconsin.
    May 01, 2005
    Recent court decisions seem to indicate that there is a concerted effort to rethink the economic loss doctrine. Is the Wisconsin Supreme Court ready to articulate an economic loss doctrine with a well-defined and logical reach?
    May 01, 2005
    Money paid by a property owner to a contractor on a construction project constitutes a trust fund until all legitimate claims for labor and materials are paid. Misappropriation of the funds is theft by contractor.
    Sep. 01, 2003
    There are as many reasons to conduct investigative research on companies as there are places online to look. Here are a few places to start your search.
    Sep. 01, 2002
    The ability of corporations to opt out of the public civil justice system by using mandatory arbitration clauses in consumer contracts poses a fundamental policy question for Congress and the courts. Still, there are ways to preserve clients' rights to have their day in court.
    May 01, 2002
    Like homeowners, brokers and home inspectors now owe duties under various circumstances to disclose defects or conditions that may affect residential real property transactions. Recission is not a buyer's sole remedy when these duties are breached.
    Apr. 01, 2002
    In May 2000, Wisconsin became the first state to declare notary records to be confidential and to require written consent before a notary record can be released to a third party.
    Mar. 01, 2002
    While the Lemon Law defines neither "accessories" nor "components," read how recent cases involving them have interpreted the Lemon Law to balance fairness to manufacturers with the availability of consumer remedies.

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