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Franchisor not vicariously liable for negligence

“The quality and operational standards typically found in franchise agreements do not establish the sort of close supervisory control or right to control necessary to support imposing vicarious liability on a franchisor.” Hon. Diane S. Sykes Wisconsin Supreme Court The ...

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Drunk driver in garage poses exigent circumstances

“Most people exit their cars shortly after parking at their homes. … We agree with the circuit court that this circumstance, combined with other information, suggested a current intoxication-related health problem.” Hon. Paul G. Lundsten Wisconsin Court of Appeals A ...

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Exigent Case Analysis

There are two plausible ways to read this decision: it supports a broad right of officers to enter the garages of suspected drunk drivers who just arrived home; or it is easily distinguishable in all but the most extreme cases. ...

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Mutual insurance companies owe fiduciary duty

“The policyholders are dependent upon Northwestern’s investment decisions and are thus in an inferior position to Northwestern. Consequently, Northwestern owes the policyholders a fiduciary duty.” Hon. Gregory A. Peterson Wisconsin Court of Appeals Both a mutual insurance company, and its ...

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Fiduciary Case Analysis

The decision is consistent with modern trends imposing a fiduciary duty on mutual insurance companies, vis-à-vis policyholders like the Noonans. The decision is also justifiable on public policy grounds, given the “inferior position [of the policyholders] to Northwestern.” Numerous jurisdictions ...

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Senate approves Sykes

Hon. Diane S. Sykes The U.S. Senate has approved the appointment of State Supreme Court Justice Diane S. Sykes to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Following some discussion Thursday night, the Senate voted 70-27 to approve President George W. ...

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Labor Logic

Weingarten rights for non-union employees: Now you have them, now you don’t

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Sufficiency of evidence challenge not waived

Hon. Shirley S. Abrahamson A criminal defendant does not have to raise a challenge to the sufficiency of the evidence during trial to preserve the challenge for appeal as a matter of right, the Wisconsin Supreme Court held on June ...

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No Waiver Analysis

Ultimately, the decision really has no bearing on whether defendants can challenge the sufficiency of evidence even though they failed to do so at trial. There is one thing on which all of the justices agree — even if a ...

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Competency objections must be raised in trial

“Requiring challenges to the circuit court’s competency to be raised in the circuit court encourages diligent investigation and preparation of cases. It also gives the circuit court and both parties a fair opportunity to address any objections to the court’s ...

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Waiver Case Analysis

The decision in this case either expressly overrules, or severely limits, a number of court decisions concerning waiver of objections to a court’s competency. However, attorneys need to be on notice that a host of other decisions, not mentioned by ...

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Peterson new DCBA president

“Everyone’s practice is going to be affected because there will be different offices for filing papers, different rules and procedures that will be implemented. Every judge will have new chambers.” H. Dale Peterson, Stroud, Willink & Howard, LLC On Dane ...

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Supreme Court decides first e-discovery case

“Some of the records on the backup tapes go back to the 1970s. An open-ended time span during which the records were produced or received is unacceptable. Accordingly, the overly broad demand of the subpoena duces tecum issued here cannot ...

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E-Discovery Analysis

The decision is noteworthy as the first Wisconsin case to apply Fourth Amendment principles to a subpoena. As the first Wisconsin case to consider electronic discovery, also, the decision will inevitably have to be referred to when e-discovery disputes arise, ...

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Labor Logic

Relative Value Pension Regulations — New Disclosure Requirements Take Effect July 1, 2004

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Hickey heads up MBA

“We, as more experienced lawyers, should be teaching the younger lawyers what it really means to be a professional and that we should treat each other as professionals.” Margaret Wrenn Hickey, Becker & Hickey, S.C. When Margaret Wrenn Hickey is ...

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Expert’s testimony not fatally contradictory

“Given the severe consequences of the [no case] rule, we [] believe that it should be reserved for the most extreme cases.” Hon. Ann Walsh Bradley Wisconsin Supreme Court An expert’s acknowledgement that a plaintiff may not need future care ...

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No Case Rule Analysis

The court wisely reversed the court of appeals in this case. To have affirmed, the court would have had to overrule its precedent in Bleyer v. Gross, 19 Wis.2d 305, 120 N.W.2d 156 (1963), a case with nearly identical facts, ...

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Age, experience irrelevant to custody

“The custody inquiry states an objective rule designed to give clear guidance to the police, while consideration of a suspect’s individual characteristics — including his age — could be viewed as creating a subjective inquiry.” Justice Anthony M. Kennedy U.S. ...

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Custody Case Analysis

The decision may have a substantial effect in Wisconsin, because the facts in the case at bar are almost identical to those in a Seventh Circuit case, A.M. v. Butler, 360 F.3d 787 (7th Cir. 2004), in which the Seventh ...

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Law helps cooperation between tribal, state courts

Lawyers in almost any practice area should have at least a passing knowledge about the legal systems of the tribes in the state and the unique state and/or federal laws relating to tribes that may affect their practice. Paul W. ...

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Status quo presumption trumps equal placement

“The most reasonable interpretation of Wis. Stat. sec. 767.24(2)(am) is that the presumption that joint legal custody is in the child’s best interest applies only in initial legal custody determinations, not in modification determinations.” Hon. Paul B. Higginbotham Wisconsin Court ...

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Presumptions Case Analysis

The decision is a good candidate for further review, if for no other reason than that both the concurrence and dissent urged the Supreme Court to review it. If accepted, it is also a good candidate for reversal, because as ...

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Supreme Court upholds search

In New York v. Belton, 453 U. S. 454 (1981), the U. S. Supreme Court took a hint from noted search and seizure guru and professor, Wayne La Fave, who observed: “ A highly sophisticated set of rules, qualified by ...

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Attorney-client privilege survives disclosure

“The client is the holder of the privilege and … only the client may waive the privilege.” Chief Justice Shirley S. Abrahamson Wisconsin Supreme Court An attorney’s voluntary production of documents pursuant to a discovery request does not waive the ...

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Privilege Case Analysis

The decision is important for holding, without any doubt, that the expectations of clients — that the attorney-client privilege is sacrosanct — will be enforced. The court of appeals’ decision, by contrast, greatly threatened that expectation. The court of appeals ...

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