JULY 2019

As my sons start yet another baseball season, I can’t believe it’s already July. Time flies. Although time flies, some things aren’t changing quickly enough. 

One thing that hasn’t changed quickly enough is the lack of diversity in the legal profession. Although approximately 50% of law school students are women, only 35% of practicing lawyers are women. Further, only 24% of law firm partners are women. The fact that women are leaving the practice of law and not achieving many partnership positions is concerning to me. Women have only started to bridge the wide gap in obtaining partnerships as compared to their male counterparts. While this gap is narrowing there is much work to be done. Without question, there are some legitimate and understandable reasons why some women have left the practice of law or failed to achieve the professional successes that they envisioned when starting out, but in other instances they have been hindered by a glass ceiling that has only just started to crack.

The numbers are even more concerning when evaluating racial and ethnic diversity in the legal field, where only 5% of active attorneys identified as Black/African American or as Hispanic/Latino in 2017. This is a trend that cannot continue if we are to ensure all Americans are effectively represented in the legal profession. That means we need to do more to encourage and support students of color so that they attend and graduate from law school and obtain employment in the myriad of legal careers that exist in the United States.

From a practical perspective clients and juries come from a diverse background and your ability to generate business or find success in a courtroom can be greatly enhanced by having diversity in your conference room, board room, or court room.

Here at FGMC we value diversity in all forms and are committed to helping diverse and economically disenfranchised groups within our community. To that end, FGMC supports diverse pursuits such as the Annual Women’s Leadership Breakfast, Denver Kids Annual Breakfast Club, the Emily Griffith Foundation, Shalom Park, the Asian Chamber of Commerce, and One Colorado, just to name a few. We continue to strive to make our firm a welcoming and modern force in the Denver legal community. I am proud to be a partner here.

Happy Fourth of July and cheers to the melting pot that is America!
Foster Graham Milstein & Calisher, LLP has been awarded a Top Workplaces 2019 honor by The Denver Post. The list is based solely on employee feedback gathered through a third-party survey administered by research partner Energage, LLC. The anonymous survey measures several aspects of workplace culture, including alignment, execution, and connection, just to name a few.

Chambers USA has released its 2019 list of law firm and attorney rankings in the United States. This year, two attorneys from FGMC –  Gary Lozow   and  John Chanin   – were ranked on this exclusive and prestigious list for their practice in White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations related litigation.
Chambers USA ranks America’s leading attorneys who have been identified as the best in their field by their peers and clients based on interviews with attorneys and clients.

Congratulations to our very own  Gary Lozow  and  John Chanin!

FGMC is pleased to announce the addition of Courtney Dinnel to the criminal defense practice group. Courtney is the former Lead Deputy Public Defender at the Colorado Public Defender office in Adams County. Courtney will handle both criminal and regulatory matters.

FGMC took on Allen Vellone Wolf Helfrich & Factor P.C. in a thrilling softball game on June 28th. While the two firms have worked congenially in the past, there was no love shown on the diamond. FGMC out-slugged AV by a score of 11 to 8 but in the end beers were shared and only small amounts of blood were spilled.

Laura Martinez has been selected to the Colorado Defense Lawyers Association Board of Directors. Her term commences in September 2019. Congratulations Laura!

(As of July 1, 2019 there are major changes in how medical malpractice claims will be handled in Colorado. Any failure to understand these changes could have significant consequences to you. The following is a brief summary of the newly enacted law, Colorado Revised Statute C.R.S. §§ 25-51-101 et seq.)

When scheduling a medical procedure, patients never expect to be made worse off from the procedure than they were before. Most physicians and hospitals do an excellent job of providing quality medical care to us and to our loved ones. Nevertheless, there are times when the physician or hospital provide negligent care that can lead to devastating physical injuries, impairment, and even death. This tragedy is only compounded by the financial impact caused by these cases. Unfortunately, it is very difficult to obtain financial recourse when negligence occurs and these cases are fiercely defended by the insurance companies, making even the most obvious cases of malpractice expensive and complicated to resolve.

I hate LLCs that make elections to be treated as S corporations. I mean I really hate it. It infuriates me. Since it’s become possible for LLCs to elect S corporation treatment I don’t think I’ve ever seen a single instance where I felt it was justified.

A Little Background...

S corporations have been around for quite a while. Since 1958, in fact, when the provisions of sub chapter S were first incorporated (no pun intended) into the Internal Revenue Code. The goal of the statutes giving rise to S corporations was to give shareholders of closely held businesses the combined advantage of the protection from business liabilities available to shareholders of corporations, with the pass through income tax treatment available to partners of partnerships. As a result of an S corporation election, the electing corporation is not required to pay income taxes so long as the shareholders of the corporation report their own allocable shares of corporation taxable income on their own individual tax returns. If you’ve ever heard of the concept of the double taxation of corporation profits, that concept generally doesn’t apply to S corporations...

The Denver Post recently listed FGMC among Denver’s 2019 “Top Workplaces.” Through a third-party researcher, the Post discovered employees at FGMC feel appreciated, happy with their work-life balance, and satisfied they are part of something meaningful. I believe three particular aspects of FGMC’s culture drive this high level of job satisfaction: (1) the firm’s facilitation of positive relationships among employees; (2) our attorneys’ willingness to subordinate their egos to quality work; and (3) the firm’s commitment to work-life balance. Not only do these factors produce a positive work environment, they yield significant advantages for our clients.

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