Shapiro, Lifschitz & Schram's attorneys John T. Bergin and George D. Carry published an article entitled "Claims, Litigation, and E-Discovery Readiness for Firms of All Sizes" in the February 2013 Special Edition of Construction Executive. The article focuses on how companies of all sizes can and should proactively prepare for claims. litigation and e-discovery and offers easy to follow tips for addressing system and policy issues on-going.
How Obamacare Will Affect Clean Air Act Litigation, Shapiro, Lifschitz & Schram's Judah Lifschitz and Scott D. Burke analyzed how a Supreme Court ruling on Obamacare may impact Clean Air Act litigation and the energy industry in an article that recently published in Electric Light & Power, "How "Obamacare" Will Affect Clean Air Act Litigation."
In the article, Lifschitz and Burke note that the Supreme Court ruling in National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius (NFIB) may have much broader implications than judging aspects of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, also known as "Obamacare." The ruling is likely to affect many aspects of law substantially, including offering new lines of attack against the Clean Air Act (CAA) and its regulation.
Judah Lifschitz is co-president and head of the construction and litigation and trial practice groups at the firm. He has experience in construction-related matters and represents clients in complex commercial litigation. Scott D. Burke is an associate in the litigation and trial practice and has experience as a federal prosecutor and in private practice.
How to Draft Government Subcontracts to Ensure Prompt Payment Protection, Shapiro, Lifschitz & Schram's Laura Fraher recently outlined how subcontractors can draft contracts to ensure timely payment from government agencies in an article that appeared in Critical Path, a newsletter of the Construction Law Committee of DRI, an association of defense attorneys and in-house counsel. The article offers practical tools and must-know information for subcontractors and their counsel in drafting agreements with government agencies.
The article outlines rights for contractors and subcontractors under the U.S. Prompt Payment Act ("PPA"), and discussed the need for a subcontractor or its counsel to carefully review every subcontract to ensure that all statutorily required language is included in its terms. The article points out that is the only way the subcontractor will have the ability to directly enforce those terms through a breach of contract action against the general contractor.
Laura Fraher is an associate in the trial and construction group at the firm. Laura has experience in civil litigation at both the trial court and appellate level and focuses on complex commercial and construction litigation.
"Is Your Company Tweeting its Way into Trouble?", Corporate Counsel, December 2011 - In this article, Judah Lifschitz and Laura Fraher discuss how general counsel and corporate executives can safeguard their company's social media presence to avoid "e-trouble" in today's fast-moving world of online communication. The authors provide four must-know tips that companies should follow as they engage in the world of social media as well as corporate examples of the real-life risks created by social media content in litigation matters.
Litigation Issues with LEED Ratings and Checklist Design, ENR Mountain States, September 2011 - In this article, Robert Foster and co-author Sean O'Brien discuss the best practices for projects seeking LEED certification, and the unintended consequences of the LEED Rating System and "checklist"design. The authors address why designers and design-build contractors need to be aware of the bigger picture of sustainable design, and offer examples of the negative consequences that can result from selecting LEED points without a full understanding of how the building will be affected by the design features needed to earn those points.
Establishing Lines of Credit for Your Practice, Medical Office Today, September 2011 - In this article, Reed Sexter is quoted on how medical practices can establish a line of credit in today's tough economy as banks become more selective in their lending standards. Mr. Sexter offers several ways that medical practices can improve their chances of establishing a line of credit, such as looking to local community banks as an alternative to national banks, and maintaining strong financial statements, financial history, and credit rating scores.
The Importance of Medical Entities, Virginia Medical Law Report, March 2011 - In this article, Reed Sexter discusses the importance of medical entities for physicians who maintain their own medical practice, and their legal function in shielding physicians' personal assets from the liabilities of their practices. Mr. Sexter discusses the careful process that physicians should take in selecting a legal entity and implementing a partnership agreement, and what issues a standard partnership agreement should address.
Liability in the Air, BUILDERnews, November 2010 – In this article, Judah Lifschitz is quoted on the topic of mold in green buildings. He cautions about making grandiose claims about green buildings improving the health of residents. In addition, Mr. Lifschitz predicts that more lawsuits will be brought as green buildings are found not to perform as promised. He offers some simple and straightforward advice for owners, builders and design professionals.
Loose E-Mails Sink Litigation, Corporate Counsel, October 2010 - In this article Judah Lifschitz and James McMichael explain how lawsuits and government investigations can turn into trouble fast and with little warning, especially when "E-Trouble" happens. E-Trouble is defined as e-mails sent by a company's employees that are produced in discovery or pursuant to a subpoena and then used against that company. The authors provide several real-life E-Trouble examples and a list of the "dirty dozen" phrases that opposing counsel may look for in the discovery process.
Green building: the risks of "almost rated," BUILDERnews, August 2010 - In this article, Judah Lifschitz cautions builders on the risks associated with green construction. Mr. Lifschitz provides an overview of a recent lawsuit in New York where the owners of an eco-friendly condominium sued the building's developer, among others, seeking $1.5 million for alleged underperformance of green building systems. Mr. Lifschitz provides three precautionary rules to avoid such claims.
Digital Files May Kill Credibility, Engineering News-Record, May 19, 2010 - Authored by James McMichael and Alexis Lockshin, this column provides practical and must-know advice for businesses to avoid the legal pitfalls and dangers associated with e-mail, e-documents, and e-data, and offers key steps to prevent the creation of damaging documents.
Power Owners in Strong Position to Collect Liquidated Damages, Managing Power, March 1, 2010 - Although law varies by jurisdiction, a recent case demonstrates arbitration panels' willingness to uphold liquidated damages clauses in power plant engineering, procurement, and construction contracts.
$26.9 Million in Liquidated Damages Not a Windfall to Power Plant Owner, ConstructionRisk.com Report, Vol. 12, No. 3, March 2010 - The decision in New Athens is particularly significant regarding the enforceability of liquidated damages provisions. Liquidated damages provisions are too frequently overlooked, but can - and will - be enforced, often without consideration of actual damages.
Green Building Projects Pose Special Risks for Contractors, Modern Contractor Solutions, February 2010
Liquidated Damages of $26.9 Million Held Enforceable and Not a Penalty (Athens Generating, L.P. v. Bechtel Power Corporation) , Construction Claims Advisor, Volume 7, Issue 46, November 23, 2009
Judd Lifschitz quoted in The Daily Record, As the green construction industry expands, litigation and arbitration might follow, April 6, 2009.
Aggregate View: Transitioning Business in a Troubled Economy, Concrete Construction Magazine, March 2009
Judd Lifschitz quoted in Accounting Today, Stimulus may stimulate accountants, Accounting Today, March 16, 2009
Judd Lifschitz is quoted in a Washington Post article, Subcontractors Sue For Lack of Payment, The Washington Post, October 31st, 2008