Quarterly Publication                                                                                                                    July 2019
The Firm Welcomes 
Britany E. Morrison

Attorney Britany E. Morrison,
a graduate of Marquette University Law School, recently joined OCHDL. Prior to joining the firm, Britany worked at a "Big Four" public accounting firm utilizing her certified public accounting license to help clients manage regulatory compliance risks and enhance returns. Britany is a member of the firm's Business Law and Tax/Succession Practice Groups.
Firm News

Firm Wins Trifecta

O'Neil, Cannon, Hollman, DeJong & Laing S.C. was victorious in three cases before the Wisconsin Supreme Court this year, all involving issues of first impression in Wisconsin. Read full release here

Attorney Dean Laing Named "Lawyer of the Year"

Dean P. Laing was named "Lawyer of the Year" by the Milwaukee Bar Association at a reception attended by more than 300 attorneys. Dean was recognized for winning two cases at the Wisconsin Supreme Court for defendants and settling several million dollar plus cases on behalf of plaintiffs during the past year.  Read full release here

Attorney Christa Wittenberg Wins 2019 Judge Terence T. Evans Humor and Creativity in Law Competition

The award is given to one attorney each year whose original creative law-related writing piece is selected by the review committee. The competition honors the memory of the Honorable Terence T. Evans, former judge of the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin, and U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, who was known for his wit and creativity throughout his life and his work. Read Christa's winning article here.

Attorney Laura Lavey Reappointed as Chair of the State Bar of Wisconsin's Leadership Development Committee

The Leadership Development Committee seeks to recruit, train and engage future State Bar leaders to sustain a strong and dynamic legal profession, to encourage public service, and to promote Bar leadership. Read full release here

Attorney Grant Killoran Appointed Co-Chair of the Wisconsin Fellows of the American Bar Foundation

The Fellows of the American Bar Foundation is a global honorary society of attorneys, judges, law faculty, and legal scholars whose public and private careers have demonstrated outstanding dedication to the highest principles of the legal profession and the welfare of their communities.  Read full release here

Objecting to an Opposing Party's Request for Attorney Fees Can Have Ramifications
You just lost a case in which the opposing party has a claim for attorney fees pursuant to a contract, statute or other fee-shifting mechanism. The opposing party has now filed a motion for attorney fees. Your initial reaction is to oppose the motion by arguing that the amount of time spent by the opposing party's attorneys was excessive and their hourly rates are unreasonable. Before pulling the trigger, however, you will want to consider a potential negative ramification of taking that position.

United States Supreme Court Clarifies Standard on Sanctions for Violating Bankruptcy Discharge

On June 3, 2019, the United States Supreme Court in Taggart v. Lorenzen unanimously held that a bankruptcy court may impose contempt sanctions against a creditor for violating a discharge order where "there is no objectively reasonable basis for concluding that the creditor's conduct might be lawful." The Court rejected the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals' holding that a creditor's good faith belief that its collection actions did not violate the discharge order--even if unreasonable--shields the creditor from civil contempt sanctions.                                       
                                    Read More »
Not Feeling so SECURE: Proposed Law Could be Costly for Non-Spouse IRA Beneficiaries
On May 23, 2019, the House overwhelmingly voted (417-3) to approve the SECURE (Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement) Act and sent it to the Senate for their approval. The bipartisan bill is grabbing headlines for its modification to many retirement issues. Among those modifications is a requirement that could be costly for non-spouse IRA beneficiaries. 

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Creation of New Task Force Signals Increased State Scrutiny of Wisconsin Worker Classification
April 15, 2019 marked not only the end of the 2018 personal income tax season, but also the beginning of a new era of enforcement of Wisconsin employment practices. On that date, Governor Tony Evers issued an Executive Order creating a Joint Task Force on Payroll Fraud and Worker Misclassification (the "Task Force"). This Task Force will focus on workers who should be classified as employees but are misclassified as independent contractors.
The Art, Science & Law of Business Succession Planning
The Five Objectives of Good Succession Planning
In this article, we review the five essential objectives a good succession plan needs to address. 

The five objectives are:

1. Maximize the value of the business;
2. Minimize taxes;
3. Provide for the continuity and survival of the
4. Treat your children fairly; and
5. Preserve family harmony.

As you can imagine, meeting all five of these goals is a balancing act.

Proud to be a Member of Meritas

O'Neil, Cannon, Hollman, DeJong & Laing S.C. is the Milwaukee, Wisconsin member of Meritas, a global alliance of 7,218 experienced lawyers in 182 full-service law firms serving 249 markets. Through Meritas, clients seeking legal services can easily connect with pre-qualified legal expertise worldwide. OCHDL and all Meritas firms must consistently meet rigorous quality standards and a stringent code of ethics. Meritas firms are also required to participate in ongoing recertification and client satisfaction evaluations.

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