Recent Publications


WILLS, TRUSTS & ESTATES: PLAIN & SIMPLE – “Decanting” Trusts – Sometimes you can change the terms of an Existing Trust
July 28, 2021 | Trusts & Estates
Sometimes, the terms of an irrevocable trust (one that cannot be amended or revoked) were fine at the time the trust was created, but subsequent events or circumstances make the terms of the old trust impractical, unwanted, or obsolete. So, what can be done? Originally published in Lloyd Harbor Life, July 2021. Read the full article here. …
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New York Insurance Coverage Law Update
July 27, 2021 | Insurance Coverage
Southern District of New York Holds That COVID-19 Claim Not Covered Café du Soleil (the Café) operates a small Manhattan restaurant that suffered financial losses during the COVID-19 pandemic and suspended operations following state and municipal shutdown orders.  XL Insurance issued the Café a commercial property policy that provided business interruption coverage in the event …
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10th Circuit Case Reinforces Limits of Insurer’s Duty to Settle Disputed Claims
July 26, 2021 | Insurance Coverage
A recent federal appeals court case applying Utah law goes to the heart of the conflict that arises between a policyholder and insurer when an insurer defends a policyholder under a reservation of rights and receives a settlement offer. The case is Owners Ins. Co. v. Dockstader, No. 19-4156 (10th Cir. June 29, 2021). The …
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Capital vs Ordinary Loss When An Investment Goes South
July 26, 2021 | Tax
Capital Loss If the amount realized by a taxpayer upon the sale of a partnership interest to a third party is insufficient to restore to the taxpayer their adjusted basis for the interest – i.e., their unrecovered investment in the partnership – a loss is sustained equal to the difference between such adjusted basis and …
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MilSpecs, Wartime Production, and Ear Plugs: More Government Contractor Defense Observations
July 22, 2021 | Complex Torts & Product Liability
Paul Majkowski’s article, “MilSpecs, Wartime Production, and Ear Plugs: More Government Contractor Defense Observations” was published in the American Bar Association Mass Torts newsletter. The article reviews how not every military connection or supply is sufficient to invoke the government contractor defense or serve as a basis for federal officer removal. Majkowski states, “These examples …
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New York DOL Issues Airborne Infectious Diseases Model and Standards for Worksites
July 20, 2021 | Employment & Labor
The New York Department of Labor finally issued Model Safety Plans and Standards for airborne infectious diseases. All employers, regardless of size and with a worksite in New York, must adopt a safety plan by August 5, 2021, and must post, distribute and include the plan in their handbooks to all employees and new hires …
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Insurance Update
July 19, 2021 | Insurance Coverage
Appellate courts have been busy the last few weeks deciding a wide swath of insurance issues. The Eighth Circuit became the first federal appellate court to weigh in on pandemic-related business interruption claims. The Wisconsin Supreme Court discusses obligations owed to “innocent insureds,” while a California appellate court addresses the liability of a life insurer …
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Employee-Shareholders, Reasonable Compensation And Employment Taxes
July 19, 2021 | Tax
Movement Toward Tax Increases You may have read last week that Democrats on the Senate Budget Committee announced they had reached a deal on a budget resolution that will enable them to bypass Senate Republicans on the way to enacting most of the “social infrastructure” programs called for under the President’s American Families Plan.[i] Significantly, …
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Businesses Can Cautiously Proceed with Student-Athlete Sponsorship Deals
July 16, 2021 | Corporate
Businesses have been champing at the bit for a chance to collaborate more with college athletes for years. Until recently, however, those collaborations were not possible because college athletes were prohibited from profiting off their name and likeness and entering into sponsorship deals under the rules of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). Over the …
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WILLS, TRUSTS & ESTATES: PLAIN & SIMPLE – “The American Families Plan: Disguising an Estate Tax?”
July 13, 2021 | Trusts & Estates
President Biden’s proposed changes to the Internal Revenue Code, known as the American Families Plan, was unveiled at the end of April 2021. These changes are intended to accomplish three goals: (1) fund the government’s efforts against the pandemic, (2) support new social programs, (3) enable tax cuts for lower-income families. The measures aim to …
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Bona Fide Intercompany Loan – Are you Sure?
July 12, 2021 | Tax
Head-Scratchers The Code is chock-full of provisions that will challenge the intellectual capacity, not to mention the patience, of most tax professionals. The complexity of these rules does not arise out of some sadistic intent on the part of Congress, the Treasury, or the IRS to torment taxpayers and their advisers;[i] rather, it is often …
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Rutkin Authors Best’s Review article, “Cyber Threats: Get Ready and Get Tough”
July 12, 2021 | Privacy, Data & Cyber Law | Insurance Coverage
Alan Rutkin authored the Best’s Review article,  “Cyber Threats: Get Ready and Get Tough.” In the article, Rutkin discusses the steady increase of cyber incidents and how insurers should prepare for future attacks. “Cybercrimes, along with the related coverage issues, are among the biggest challenges now facing insurers,” Rutkin says. Read the full article. …
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NYC Department of Buildings Rescinds Phase 1 Reopening Guidance and Related Bulletins
July 9, 2021 | Construction
On July 8, 2021, the New York City Department of Buildings issued Building Bulletin 2021-009 rescinding DOB’s Phase 1 Reopening Guidance and Building Bulletins 2020-006, 2020-010, 2020-015 and 2021-008. A copy of the BB 2021-009 may be found at the following link:  https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/buildings/bldgs_bulletins/bb_2021-009.pdf. Each of these Building Bulletins and the Reopening Guidance dealt with procedures …
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The Title Reporter — Summer 2021
July 6, 2021 | Insurance Coverage
Here is what we cover in this issue of The Title Reporter: A Legal Update for the Title Insurance Industry: An appellate court in New York has ruled that a title insurance policy excluded coverage for a “Declaration and Covenants” filed as a condition of a zoning resolution. An appellate court in New York has …
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Compounding the Fraud: Questionable Billing by Pharmacies
July 6, 2021 | Insurance Fraud
As the COVID-19 pandemic was taking hold last April, the Manhattan U.S. Attorney filed a lawsuit against FPR Specialty Pharmacy LLC and Mead Square Pharmacy, Inc., and their owners, Christopher Casey and William Rue, alleging that they had submitted fraudulent claims for reimbursement to federal healthcare programs for compounded prescription drugs in violation of the …
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