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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.
2011 Wisconsin Act 21 significantly changes how administrative rules are promulgated. Among other things, it narrows state agencies’ rule-making authority, gives the governor new powers to approve or prevent the adoption of rules, expands the economic-impact-analysis requirement to all agencies, and expands venue in declaratory judgment actions to all counties.
Losing one's parental rights is a serious matter, which is why representation by counsel and appearance and participation by parents is required in termination of parental rights litigation. But defense counsel face an ethical dilemma when a court denies a motion to withdraw because a parent’s conduct makes it impossible for counsel to provide adequate representation. To continue representation violates professional conduct rules. To not continue representation violates statutory law. It's a "Catch 22."

Opinions, Voices & Ideas

  • Inside the Bar
  • Getting Started
  • The State Bar has resources to help you hang out your own shingle.
  • President's Message
  • Mining in Wisconsin
  • Current mining proposals present opportunities for lawyers in a variety of practice areas. To help members gain the knowledge they need to maximize these opportunities, the State Bar is presenting a mining law symposium on Aug. 25
  • Ethics Opinion
  • ADAs Barred from Working on Private Firm Criminal Cases
  • The State Bar Professional Ethics Committee issued formal Opinion EF-11-02, discussing conflicts in criminal practice arising from working as a part-time assistant district attorney while also working as a private practitioner.
  • Ethics
  • Representing Clients Outside of Wisconsin
  • A Wisconsin-licensed attorney may provide legal services on an occasional basis in a state in which the lawyer is not licensed and not thereby violate the rules prohibiting the unauthorized practice of law.
  • Career
  • Women Lawyers Walking the Tightrope
  • In part two of this two-part article on women lawyers balancing work and life, the author discusses the advantages to law firms of embracing the move to greater diversity of employees and clients.

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