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Posts from March 2011.

If your company engages in lease transactions—real estate, equipment, computers, etc.—then a new Joint Exposure Draft (Draft) by the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) and the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) will likely impact business.  The Draft would affect almost all outstanding leases (there will be no grandfathering of existing leases) and ...

In a case that may significantly expand the risk of retaliation lawsuits by employees, the United States Supreme Court recently held that the Fair Labor Standard Act’s (FLSA) antiretaliation provision protects employees who file oral complaints. In Kasten v. Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics Corp., an employee claimed that he had been discharged after he orally complained to ...

Have you ever had the urge to read your spouse’s or significant other’s emails? If so, you are not alone. According to a study by Retrevo.com, 38 percent of those polled who were under 25 and in a dating relationship have “snooped” and read their partner’s email. Thirty-six percent of those in a committed relationship have done the same “snooping.” While many may consider this distasteful, it soon may also be considered illegal.

At Bingham Greenebaum Doll, we're committed to our communities. We were named the 2010 Pro Bono Firm of the Year by the Indianapolis Bar Association. Pro bono work often takes place in a courtroom, but the real impact is felt in the homes of families all across Indiana. Being committed to our communities means sharing our services with those who can't afford legal assistance on their own ...

Bingham Greenebaum Doll partner Andy Gruber was on this week’s episode of “Inside Indiana Business with Gerry Dick.” Andy participated in the panel segment, “The INsiders,” where he discussed the hot topics of the week, including the Statehouse standoff, education reform, the Evansville jobs announcement and the new CEO of the Indianapolis Convention and Visitors ...

As a small business owner, finding good employees can be significant challenge.  Often the most attractive employees want benefits such as a retirement plan,  in order to be attracted to your business.  If you own or run a small business interested in providing retirement benefits to your employees, but don’t know where to start, the IRS is presenting a free webinar on April 7 entitled ...

Last week, Bingham Greenebaum Doll hosted the 15th annual Murphy-McClamroch St. Patrick’s Day Benefit for the Homeless. Each year, we raise funds for the Holy Family Shelter of Indianapolis, an emergency shelter for homeless families. Through the generosity of our friends and colleagues, we were able to raise nearly $5,000 for the shelter this year.

For anyone who handles matters related to plans governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), 29 U.S.C. § 1001 et seq., looking first to the plan language is key to resolving most issues that arise with employee benefit plans.  Both plan administrators and beneficiaries can save significant time and expense by carefully reading the plan documents and then applying the terms of the plan to any particular issue.  While many cases arise where there is a dispute as to what a particular term means, this article will focus on ERISA’s mandate that the plan language controls the rights and benefits of those governed by the plan.

The answer is not entirely clear, but there is at least one situation where if it applies to you, you should consider doing so.  Sofware-as-a-service (SaaS) products are essentially software-enabled services that are deployed over the Internet and Indiana, like most states, is in the process of figuring out how to sort SaaS offerings as either taxable prewritten software or nontaxable ...

Posted in Litigation

I recently authored this article on the legal issues of the NFL labor dispute for Inside Indiana Business.  A preview is below.  Visit the Inside Indiana Business web site for the full article.

“I may be alone here, but I always get disappointed when sports reporters begin a piece on the NFL labor dispute with, “We will spare you the boring legal details…”

Legal details boring ...

Posted in Litigation

Bingham Greenebaum Doll partner Kevin McGoff and I recently authored this article on non-refundable fee arrangements for The Indiana Lawyer.  A preview is below.  Visit The Indiana Lawyer web site for the full article.

It’s the beginning of a case and your client has agreed in writing to a $10,000 non-refundable retainer. You get to work. The case is messy. There are motions to ...

Posted in Estate Planning

Last week, I had the privilege of accepting the WFYI “Star Award” on behalf of Bingham Greenebaum Doll during the annual WFYI Mission Society Awards. At Bingham Greenebaum Doll, we’re committed to our communities. WFYI is a leader in news and information in our community, and we are proud to support their efforts. I’m looking forward to doing my part at the upcoming pledge ...

Posted in Estate Planning

Tax season is upon us again, and for many people that means facing a stack of IRS forms alone. However, through the Tax Preparation Ministry at Northview Christian Life Church, I’m able to help my fellow church members with their tax preparations. In law school, I was involved in the Volunteer Income Tax program, which was established by the IRS to help low income taxpayers. At Northview, I worked with other leaders to develop a similar program in 2004, which has grown to help more than 120 people annually. We designed the program to help those whose income is less than $50,000 (single), or $80,000 (married).

Posted in Real Estate

Bingham Greenebaum Doll LLP, in cooperation with the Indiana Chapter of NAIOP, organized and hosted the panel discussion, “Real Estate Financing in the New Economy” on Thursday, February 24th.  The event focused on requirements, challenges and opportunities associated with real estate project development and financing in the wake of the post-2007 real estate downturn ...

Posted in Estate Planning

The Indiana Repertory Theater (IRT) recently announced the newest members of their board of directors, and I’m pleased to be among them. The IRT works to bring top-quality, professional theater to Indianapolis to build a more vital and vibrant community. This includes the original play that Bingham Greenebaum Doll is proud to sponsor, The Gospel According to James.

The Gospel ...

Posted in Tax and Finance

PDF of Presentation presented at "Planning Under the New Federal Transfer Tax Law" by Greenebaum Doll & McDonald PLLC on March 3, 2011

On February 22, 2011, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency updated the phone numbers for notifying the National Response Center (NRC) of  releases of hazardous substances pursuant to 40 CFR 302.6(a).

The updated contact information as of February 22, 2011 is as follows:

Toll free phone number: 1-800-424-8802

In Washington D.C.:  202-267-2675

NRC fax number:  202-267-1322

The ...

Is your manufacturing business protected against the loss of confidential information to former employees? Manufacturers can protect their valuable business relationships and confidential information by using non-compete agreements. Contrary to the belief of many business people, non-compete agreements are enforceable and can be a very valuable tool to protect a company's core business. Courts in Indiana generally accept that non-compete agreements can be used for a protectable interest. Good drafting is essential, and with proper preparation, can even enable a court to remove certain requirements which it finds unreasonable while preserving others. Manufacturers need to ensure that their non-compete agreements will not only hold up in court, but will also survive any adjustments a court may find necessary.

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