To be a good lawyer, one must first be a healthy lawyer. And most healthy lawyers share a common trait – a commitment to well-being. A recent ALM lawyer study reported some improvement in practitioner health and well-being (although there is still work to be done), giving us all hope about our future work. However, to keep mental health and well-being strides moving forward, individuals and organizations must be purposeful with how work volume, client expectations, firm cultures, and other environmental factors are managed to ensure enduring well-being for lawyers.
Attorney-client privilege, while shielding the sacred communications between lawyers and their clients, is marred by hazy boundaries. It can be a troubling source of confusion for lawyers working as in-house or outside corporate counsel because it is not always clear who – among agents, contractors, employees, and directors – is the “client” and thus who can safely engage in privileged communication or waive the privilege. Whether the privilege applies also affects the company’s ability to communicate openly with counsel, to conduct an internal investigation, and to simply engage in an important business transaction.
With remote work seemingly here to stay, communication via texts, mobile apps, and collaborative platforms has become a necessity. The ease and ephemeral nature of these communications belie the permanence of the content when used as evidence in court. Even when seemingly deleted, the messages can be retrieved from the apps, devices, or the servers where the data can still reside. Text, app messaging, and collaborative platforms represent a relatively new category of potentially relevant evidence that must be accounted for and preserved during discovery.
A well thought out construction contract is the foundation of every complex commercial project. Much like a faulty building design, a faulty construction contact can sink a project, leaving it mired in costly litigation that could take years to settle.
Although construction and real estate lawyers’ duties differ during these projects, intra-contract coordination is crucial to work through the web of interrelated provisions to avoid project disruptions. Real estate attorneys need to not only know what provisions are most likely to cause trouble, but also how to customize a contract beyond the standard form contract to best fit the particulars of the project.
The last few years have been unlike any other that lawyers have faced in a generation. The need for significant legislation and regulations to cope with the economic and health impacts of the Coronavirus outbreak radically shifted the employee benefits landscape, and while many businesses have re-opened their doors, the long-term effects of the pandemic -- as well as inflation, high employee turnover and hybrid workforces -- continue to permeate our economy and workplaces.
As a benefits practitioner, you can best help your clients implement and prepare for the latest legal changes to plan provisions, human resources, and employer operations by ensuring you are current on the most recent regulatory guidance, court opinions, and best practices. Join us online for a deep dive over one and a half days, and get an authoritative update from leading professionals from the private, non-profit, and governmental sectors – including 10 representatives from the IRS and Department of Labor. With a short investment of your time, you’ll gain a better understanding of all of this year’s critical developments particularly impacting tax-exempt and governmental benefit plans, and what the future may hold.