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Red Flags When Evaluating Medical Records

When you have what you regard as a suspicious record or handwritten entries, the following clues should alert you to the need for a document examiner and/or handwriting expert.

Expert Witness Advice on Prosecuting & Defending Bank Director & Officer Liability Lawsuits Filed by the FDIC

Provided by: Don Coker
The author, a veteran expert witness for the government and defendants in extensive FDIC D&O litigation in the previous banking crisis, explains some of the important issues in director and officer liability litigation, and how to handle them.

SEC Takes Initial Measures to Avoid a Second Flash Crash

Provided by: Fulcrum Inquiry
We explain high-frequency trading that likely caused the crash, and the additional regulatory changes that will be seriously considered.

Interactive Chi-Square Calculator Illustrates Independence Testing

Provided by: Fulcrum Inquiry
We explain this widely used and valuable test, other statistical alternatives, and non-discrimination uses. But the pièce de résistance is the online calculator that you can use yourself.

More Is Needed to Improve Credit Rating Agency Conclusions

Provided by: Fulcrum Inquiry
Ratings of debt instruments are an integral part of U.S. financial markets. Reliance on these ratings is increasing, but their reliability is pathetic. A Congressional commission held a recent hearing involving the credit rating agencies. Past and current Moody’s employees who testified provided shocking information.

Nevada Attempts to Capitalize on California’s High Taxes

Provided by: Fulcrum Inquiry
Nevada is running another series of advertisements which attempt to woo California’s businesses to their state. Advertisements released this last week mock California legislators.

CEOs Rank California Worst for Business in Entire Country

Provided by: Fulcrum Inquiry
In its sixth annual report, CEO Magazine reported the results of its survey of over 650 chief executive officers regarding how all 50 states rank as to its business conditions. This is not a predetermined result based on uncontrollable factors, but is instead the result of leadership and policy issues that are avoidable.

Indian Tribes Win Big in California Lawsuit

Provided by: Fulcrum Inquiry
In a ruling that has not received deserved press attention, the Ninth Circuit concluded California could not obtain revenue sharing or “taxes” from Indian tribes because the arrangements violate the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. The case has national significance since it prohibits similar arrangements in numerous states that now benefit from Indian gaming.

Critically-Important CBO Cost Estimates for President Obama’s Health Care Changes Were Materially Wrong

Provided by: Fulcrum Inquiry
Last week the Congressional Budget Office issued “updated and expanded” cost estimates that show their prior “final” estimates were entirely incomplete and misleading. We explain what happened, and what should have happened.

Expanded SEC Whistleblower Program Is Likely

Provided by: Fulcrum Inquiry
A little-noticed provision in the financial regulatory overhaul legislation currently before Congress provides for a significantly expanded SEC whistleblower program. We explain the proposed law, the IRS’s results with a similar program, and practical suggestions of what to do.

New Economic Substance Test Eliminates Certain Judicial-Based Confusion, but still Allows Significant Judgment

Provided by: Fulcrum Inquiry
The recent health-care legislation (H.R. 4872) will be partly paid by a 40% penalty on tax underpayments related to transactions that lack “economic substance”. Although aimed at tax shelters, the new penalties could be used by the IRS for much broader tax assessments.

Banking Litigation Involving Check Fraud, Bookkeeper Embezzlement, and Checking Account Administration Issues

Provided by: Don Coker
The author, renowned nationwide banking expert witness, former banking executive, and former governmental banking regulator Don Coker, explains some important banking issues and nationwide banking industry standard policies, procedures, and practices that impact employee check fraud embezzlement litigation.

NFPA 1001 Standards as Minimum Training Standard for Firefighters

The NFPA 1001 (Firefighter I and II) standard identifies the minimum job performance requirements for career and volunteer fire fighters whose duties are primarily structural in nature and the purpose of this standard shall be to ensure that persons meeting the requirements of this standard who are engaged in firefighting are qualified. It shall not be the intent of the standard to restrict any jurisdiction from exceeding these requirements. How does that affect you and your department?

Multiple Employer Pension Plans and ERISA

A “multiple employer pension plan” (or MEPP) is a qualified retirement plan, such as a 401(k) plan, that is sponsored by multiple unrelated employers. The Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) applies to MEPPs, which must meet the requirements of the Internal Revenue Code in order to receive employer contributions for employee retirement benefits.

Spousal Guaranties in Business Lending Litigation

Provided by: Don Coker
The author discusses the sometimes tricky area of spousal guaranties in business lending. Federal Reserve Regulation B prohibits lenders from requiring that a spouse guarantee a loan simply because she or he happens to be the spouse of a person applying for credit.

Banking Litigation Involving Check Deposits Made at a "No-Envelope" or Imaging ATM

Provided by: Don Coker
The author explains the process of how check deposits made at no-envelope, image-capable ATMs work, and discusses important issues that often arise in banking litigation involving check deposits made at these ATMs, plus some related forged endorsement issues, and how to handle them.

Measuring Bank Capital and Bank Financial Health

Provided by: Don Coker
The author draws on his experience as a high-level banking executive, high-level banking regulator, and regulatory-appointed interim manager of several insolvent institutions in this explanation of measuring bank capital and bank financial health.

The Dark Side - An Ethical Dilemma

Should an expert testify for the Dark Side? Is there a dark side? Should an expert be a zealous advocate for his client? What guidance, if any should a client give to an expert in forming an expert opinion? This article will help you understand the role of an expert and why the Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) designation is important in picking an expert.

Searching for Dollars in Old Policies

When a lawsuit against your company alleges bodily injury or property damage occurring years ago, insurance companies will not respond if you cannot find your policies or prove they existed. This article has helpful hints on where to look and what you need to find so that the insurance company will respond.

"Non Qualified" Executive Compensation

In the benefits and compensation field “non-qualified” is generally used to describe arrangements which do not receive special tax favored treatment, while “qualified arrangements” do. For example a qualified 401(k) plan produces a current year tax deferral for contributions and a tax deduction for the employer’s portion. This article reviews the differences between non-qualified and qualified executive compensation plans.

Safety 101: Laws that Save Lives

Legislation regulating transportation safety is saving lives and reducing serious injuries in motor vehicle collisions year after year. This ongoing legislative effort continuously changes the landscape of our transportation system and the automotive industry in profound ways by mandating programs, rules and regulations that proactively address the three key elements of highway safety: Humans, Vehicles, and the Environment.

Litigation Over the Calculation & Application of Mortgage Loan Payments, Late Fee Charges & Escrow Accounts

Provided by: Don Coker
Many disputes between borrowers and mortgage lenders have at their root the question of how mortgage payment amounts should be applied to the loan balance. Other lawsuits arise over questions involving escrow accounts and the payment of insurance premiums and property taxes.

Anti-Money Laundering Laws and Practices for Banks, Individuals, and Corporations Involved in AML Litigation

Provided by: Don Coker
The author discusses the requirements of the United States’ anti-money laundering laws and the banking industry’s standard practices and procedures for implementing these legal requirements. He also explains some related principles of offshore banking, wire transfers, Know Your Customer, Economic Substance, and other pertinent practices related to anti-money laundering issues and litigation.

Letters of Credit, Bills of Lading & International Trade Finance Documentation Issues Important in Litigation

Provided by: Don Coker
The author explains from a banker’s and financial professional’s point of view factors that must be taken into account by attorneys handling litigation involving letters of credit, bills of lading, documentary collection, international trade finance documentation, offshore transactions, offshore finance, transfer pricing, international business entities, multinational business entities, and other related subjects.

Fire Training Officer Liabilities

Training is a vital part of fire department operations. Its importance is even greater when you consider the mission of the fire department and the inherent dangers of a firefighter’s job. Firefighting and first-response fatalities average 100 each year with more than 83,000 injuries occurring annually. Training is designed to prevent these deaths and injuries but unfortunately, improper and unsafe training also results in firefighter deaths and injuries.

Litigation Involving Offshore Banking, Offshore Bank Accounts, Offshore Finance, Trade Finance, and Tax Havens

Provided by: Don Coker
Court-recognized banking, anti-money laundering, and taxation expert witness and former banking regulator Don Coker explains from a banker’s and financial professional’s point of view factors that must be taken into account by attorneys handling litigation involving offshore banks, offshore bank accounts, offshore finance, offshore transactions, transfer pricing, international business entities and finance, multinational business entities, tax havens, wire transfers, and many related subjects.

Corporate Governance: Accounting Standards Compliance a Concern

Provided by: Epstein + Nach LLC
Audit Committee members should ensure that the accounting departments of the companies on whose boards they serve are adequately staffed and resourced to cope with FASB’s Accounting Standards Codification, IFRS, and other looming changes to the financial reporting landscape. Doing so should be seen as central to the governance duties of the committee.

Seven Tips for Attorneys to Utilize GAAP Accounting Standards Codification

Provided by: Epstein + Nach LLC
Attorneys serving as advisors to business clients, as house counsel, or for assisting in structuring major transactions such as business combinations or filing SEC registration statements, should be familiar with the importance of generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP). While not accounting experts, per se, attorneys need to be assured that GAAP is being applied properly and that their clients are being protected from contractual provisions that could be disadvantageous to them.

Three Ways an Expert Witness Can Save Law Firms Time and Money

Provided by: Epstein + Nach LLC
Many law firms unknowingly, and unnecessarily, sacrifice limited billable hours by only utilizing an expert witness and litigation support staff during the final trial phase. Law firms can improve efficiency throughout the litigation process by retaining an expert witness early on, and then consulting with that expert witness throughout the trial preparation process.

EBITDA Pro’s and Con’s

EBITDA, an acronym for "earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization," is an often-used measure of the value of a business.

Examples of Weak Cases V - Multiple Defendants in Medical and Dental Malpractice

Provided by: JD.MD, Inc.
You were treated by many doctors over a period of time and cannot be sure which one was responsible or whether they all were.

Medical and Dental Malpractice - Did You Consent to the Treatment?

Provided by: JD.MD, Inc.
A mugger sticks a knife in you and kills you or leaves you maimed for life. A surgeon sticks a knife in you, and kills you or leaves you maimed for life. What is the difference between the two? The mugger will go to jail and the surgeon will not. Why? Because you consented: you signed a consent form and gave the surgeon permission to stick the knife in you.

Medical and Dental Malpractice - How Do You Give Informed Consent?

Provided by: JD.MD, Inc.
Before you decide whether you have a legitimate complaint for lack of informed consent, let us look at some of the ways you can consent to a doctor’s treatment and some of the ways a doctor can treat a patient without that person’s formal consent.

Medical and Dental Malpractice - When Do You Not Need A Consent?

Provided by: JD.MD, Inc.
To work on a patient without anybody’s consent, a doctor must comply with four requirements: 1. The patient is in dire danger. 2. The patient is unable to consent. 3. If the patient is a child, a parent or guardian is not readily available. 4. It can be reasonably assumed that the patient would consent if able.

How Much Does the Doctor Have to Tell You to Obtain Your Consent?

Provided by: JD.MD, Inc.
Does he have to tell you everything he is going to do? Go through the surgical operation step-by-step? Warn you about every possible complication? Discuss all possible alternative treatments, even if they are hardly ever used? What if the chance of a certain complication is one in a million? What if it is one in ten? How about a 50-50 chance?

The Reasonable Patient Standard in Informed Consent

Provided by: JD.MD, Inc.
Lawyers call this the Lay Standard, because it is based on what a layman (the patient) understands and not what a professional thinks she needs to understand.

What is Medical or Dental Malpractice?

Provided by: JD.MD, Inc.
A physician or dentist does not undertake to cure you. He only has to do his best for you according to the standard of care for his community or medical or dental specialty. If he did not, you have a legitimate complaint. If he did, you probably do not have a case, no matter how disastrous the results.

Rules in Medical and Dental Malpractice

Provided by: JD.MD, Inc.
This means the doctor has to be up-to-date and in step with modern medicine or dentistry. For example, we know today that lumpectomy and simple mastectomy produce better results in most cases of breast cancer than the disfiguring, disabling radical mastectomy that was popular with breast surgeons for many years. Today, a doctor who rushes in and does radical breast surgery, without considering conservative treatment, is not up to the state of the art and is guilty of malpractice.

Rules in Medical and Dental Malpractice - School of Thought Rule

Provided by: JD.MD, Inc.
You have already read about the New Jersey case, which held that a podiatrist cannot be expected to treat a cardiac arrest, because he is only trained to work below the ankle. However, an Arizona podiatrist treated an elderly man for pain in the leg and lameness.

Rules in Medical and Dental Malpractice -The Respectable Minority Rule

Provided by: JD.MD, Inc.
You are sitting outside the treatment room of a hospital when you hear one nurse say to another, “Dr. Jones is butchering that poor patient!” The patient is your mother.

How to Hire an Independent Accountant: What an Attorney Needs to Know

Provided by: Epstein + Nach LLC
An accountant can add dimension and provide unique solutions to attorneys engaging in litigation or performing transactional work. Deciphering the credentials and understanding the type of accountant that would serve the needs of a specific project can be challenging. The backgrounds and capabilities of some of those who might assist attorneys are addressed in the following paragraphs.

Water Damage and Mold Exposure, Hazards to Health

Exposure to water damage can cause illnesses and distressing symptoms in susceptible individuals. Some of the problems are of an allergic or immunologic nature, some from the irritant effects of microbial volatile organic compounds ,but the causes for many other symptoms remain unknown.

Proposed DOL Rules Will Dramatically Change Investment Advice Provided To 401(k)S And IRAs

Provided by: Fulcrum Inquiry
Last week, the Department of Labor proposed requiring investment advisers to (i) disclose their fees and (ii) show that the computer models used to offer advice are objective and unbiased. The new rules will alter the investments commonly held in 401(k) and IRA accounts.

Moody’s And Bernanke Warn Of U.S. Budget Deficits And Related Credit Rating Problems

Provided by: Fulcrum Inquiry
Moody’s warned that it might pull the federal government’s triple-A credit rating if President Obama’s recently-released budget is implemented. Last week, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke gave similar serious warnings about the same budget.

ESI Spoliation Case Will Be Widely Followed

Provided by: Fulcrum Inquiry
In another case destined to be widely quoted, U.S District Judge Shira Scheindlin of Zubulake fame issued a ruling electronic discovery spoliation which she entitled Zubulake Revisited: Six Years Later. (See Original our case summary for a primer on the first Zublake decisions).

Dodd’s Retirement Casts Further Doubt On Proposed Financial Industry Regulation

Provided by: Fulcrum Inquiry
The Obama administration’s financial regulation proposals are significant, although they have been overshadowed by the health care debate. The financial industry proposals will now receive much greater attention, but these “reforms” may also be in doubt.

IRS to Finally Require Tax Preparer Registration, Continuing Education, and On-Site Visits

Provided by: Fulcrum Inquiry
For the 2007 tax year, about 60% of the 143 million individual tax returns filed with the IRS were done by paid preparers. Tax preparer registration for these paid preparers has been considered for years.

Construction Lending Industry Standard Practices Applicable to Construction Loan Litigation

Provided by: Don Coker
The author, and experienced lender and expert witness, explains the industry standard process of how construction loans and acquisition and development loans are originated and administered.

Broker Price Opinion and Property Inspections Practices and Procedure for the Mortgage Industry

Provided by: Don Coker
The author explains some of the details of property inspections and Broker Price Opinions that are often misunderstood and become the subject of disputes between borrowers, mortgage lenders, and mortgage servicers.

Rumplestiltskin, LLP: The Dark Side of Fax

Provided by: Context Corporation
In this article, the author explains the basics of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and illustrates the risks of unsolicited fax solicitations with an example scenario. He briefly discusses preventions and defenses based on his considerable expertise in telecommunications and his experience as a consulting and testifying expert for the defense in TCPA cases.

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