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Presumption Case Analysis

The decision creates an intracircuit split of authority that, presumably, will have to be resolved by en banc review. Just one week to the day before this decision was issued, a different panel of the court held that there is ...

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Seventh Circuit sentencing split

What the court held Case: U.S. v. Hankton, Nos. 03-2345 & 03-2915. Issue: Does the presumption that a guideline sentence is reasonable apply at the district court level? Holding: Yes. The presumption is not limited to appellate review of guideline ...

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Real estate attorneys remaining busy

A casual summer walk through many Wisconsin neighborhoods in 2005 would have revealed “For Sale” signs rotating like seasonal lawn ornaments, a tribute to a booming real estate market. Take that same stroll this year and those signs may remain ...

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Reasonableness Case Analysis

The decision is significant for a number of reasons. First, a below-guideline sentence may never be based solely on the fact that intended loss far exceeded actual loss. Just as the disparity between crack and powder cocaine is not a ...

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Ex Post Facto Case Analysis

The opinion in this case is probably the most remarkable post-Booker decision yet, in this circuit or any other. The first and foremost question people are asking is, “What is the Department of Justice going to do?” And that would ...

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Court issues landmark ex post facto decision

What the court held Case: U.S. v. Demaree, No. 05-4213. Issue: Does it violate the ex post facto clause to use the current longer sentence guideline than the one in effect when the crimes were committed? Holding: No. Because the ...

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No Merit Case Analysis

In a footnote, the court suggested that Wisconsin’s rules governing no-merit cases be reconsidered. The court wrote, “The SPD asserts in its reply brief that ‘the Robbins majority adopts the position advocated by the [SPD] in McCoy: that the Wisconsin ...

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Claim Preclusion Case Analysis

The plaintiffs cannot be faulted for thinking they could file a second lawsuit, despite the dismissal of the first. The Seventh Circuit’s opinion in the first case states, “Citizens’ focus in this case is … the Ackerville Bridge Project. … ...

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Prior suit bars subsequent action

The doctrine of claim preclusion bars subsequent litigation, even though the plaintiffs’ legal theories in the second action differ from those in the first, the Seventh Circuit held on Aug. 2. The County J/Highway 164 Project involves the expansion of ...

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Skwierawski takes helm of MBA

Hon. Michael Skwierawski Retirement has been kind to Michael Skwierawski, but he has not been kind to retirement. The former Milwaukee County judge hung up his judicial robes in August 2003 after presiding over 513 jury trials during his 25 ...

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Emotional distress claim viable

What the court held Case: Camp v. Anderson, No. 2005AP2407. Issue: Is a claim for negligent infliction of emotional distress limited to cases where a bystander witnesses injury to a family member? Holding: No. Regardless of the fact situation in ...

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Levine questions bar exam equity

I believe the current situation with two standards — diploma privilege, or passing the bar exam — is unfair, so a task force is being formed to study the rules and regulations of both standards. Steven A. Levine, President, State ...

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Brunner receives national recognition

Hon. Edward R. Brunner Barron County Circuit Court When Judge Edward R. Brunner, who recently received a national award for judicial excellence, decided to go into law, he never imagined he’d be a judge. But when the state Legislature expanded ...

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Emotional Distress Case Analysis

For purposes of the analysis, we can assume that the child did suffer emotional distress, and that it was severe. However, the most likely cause of that distress was the killing of his dog, rather than being chased with dog ...

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Fee Splitting Case Analysis

Although the court is correct that no Wisconsin cases interpret secs. 757.295 or 757.45, there is one Wisconsin case that interprets an earlier barratry statute — Chicago, M., St. P. & P. Ry. Co. v. Wolf, 199 Wis. 278, 226 ...

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Fee-splitting agreement unenforceable

What the court held Case: Abbott v. Marker, No. 2005AP2853 Issue: Is a contract, providing that an attorney shall pay kickbacks to a non-lawyer who refers clients, enforceable? Holding: The contract is contrary to both statute and public policy, therefore, ...

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Mistake Case Analysis

The decision lends support for defendants in Wisconsin state courts facing what is arguably an unsettled issue. In State v. Longcore, 226 Wis.2d 1, 594 N.W.2d 412 (Ct.App.1999), the Wisconsin Court of Appeals held, as did the Seventh Circuit that, ...

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State Indian law needs on the rise

Recent and not so recent developments regarding Indian Law in Wisconsin have raised several questions about trends in tribes’ legal representation. The last five years have seen a concerted effort by Wisconsin’s state and tribal courts to collaborate on jurisdictional ...

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Pocan sworn in as judge

Ever since he was a child growing up in Kenosha, William S. Pocan wanted to be a judge, so he took the logical first step and became a lawyer. For 22 years, Pocan sculpted a successful litigation career at Jastroch ...

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Seizure Case Analysis

In addition to the main holding of the case — that an officer’s show of authority is not a seizure for purposes of the Fourth Amendment unless the suspect actually submits to the show of authority — the case is ...

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DNR action is not arbitrary, capricious

The DNR’s decision to reduce the number of boatslips from 22 to 11 was not arbitrary and capricious, the Wisconsin Supreme Court held on July 6. The holding sparked an ad-monishing three-justice concurrence addressing “the growth of agency power, the ...

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