Tax incremental financing, also known as “TIF” financing, is a tool that municipalities utilize by providing financial incentives to spur development.  More specifically, the TIF process allows a municipality to pay for public improvements or other related costs associated with a particular development. In doing so, a developer offsets certain costs that would otherwise prohibit a development from occurring. The municipality then recovers those costs from the future tax revenue generated by a property’s increased tax assessment.
Two of
Continue Reading What is Tax Incremental Financing (TIF)?

One of the more frequent questions that we receive at the PIA Legal Hotline is whether an agent should report a potential claim to his or her E & O carrier. Usually, the facts are such that the agent likely did nothing wrong. The agent is worried about his or her loss history and the potential effect on premiums. 
Reality check – do not be penny-wise and pound-foolish. First, to determine whether an agent needs to report a potential claim, the
Continue Reading To Report, or Not to Report, That is the Question

On December 13, 2022, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a decision expanding remedies available to employees who prevail in an unfair labor practice (ULP) charge. In addition to backpay and reinstatement, employers now may be liable for “make-whole” remedies, which include direct or foreseeable harm suffered as a consequence of their unlawful conduct. Monetary awards will be available to remedy virtually all forms of economic harm, even in the absence of egregious circumstances.
Thryv, Inc., operates
Continue Reading NLRB Raises Stakes on Make-whole Remedies

Daniel Kelly and Janet Protasiewicz squared off at a forum hosted by the State Bar.​March 21, 2023 – Two weeks before the April 4 election, the candidates for an open seat on the Wisconsin Supreme Court debated the issues facing the state’s highest court.Dan Kelly and Janet Protasiewicz are vying to replace Justice Patience Roggensack, who’s retiring after 20 years on the supreme court.The State Bar of Wisconsin hosted the debate at the State Bar Center in Madison, in
Continue Reading Candidates for Wisconsin Supreme Court Debate at State Bar Center

March 17, 2023 – The Wisconsin Supreme Court has re-elected Chief Justice Annette Ziegler to a second two-year term as chief justice.“I greatly appreciate the opportunity to continue serving the court system and the people of Wisconsin,” Chief Justice Ziegler said in a press release issued on March 16. “I am fortunate to work with a group of very talented and passionate people, who understand and appreciate the role of the courts in our justice system and in our
Continue Reading Ziegler Re-elected as Chief Justice of Wisconsin Supreme Court

When branding a new product, many businesses allude to copyrighted works either to honor a creative work or cash in on a pop culture success. The practice is very common across a wide variety of products, including t-shirts, stickers, craft beers, and car commercials. You may even be considering alluding to a copyrighted work for your next product. However, brand creators are often unaware of the dangers associated with the practice, as it risks trademark and copyright infringement. This
Continue Reading Be Careful What You Name Your Beer: Alluding to Copyrighted Works in Branding

Wisconsin’s workers’ compensation statute requires employers, absent reasonable cause, to rehire employees who suffered a workplace injury. Normally, employees need to show they reapplied to their old position to make a valid claim under the statute.
An exception exists, however, where an employee doesn’t need to reapply if they were terminated during their recovery period. A recent Wisconsin Court of Appeals case decided if this exception applies when an employee, who was fired during the recovery period, alleges he
Continue Reading No Sale: Recovery Period Rehire Exception Doesn’t Apply to New Positions

As an employer, one of your worst fears may be that a disgruntled or entrepreneurial former employee may try to share your internal operations, documents, or trade secrets. What you can do to protect your business in these situations may not always be clear. This article is meant to help you consider your options when you think a former employee is trying to sabotage your business by giving competitors an unfair edge against you.
Can I Protect Myself at
Continue Reading My Former Employee is Sharing Confidential Information—Help!

March 10, 2023 – Leaving a legacy of leadership in his profession and community, Myron LaRowe, U.W. 1965, passed away early in the morning hours on Friday, March 10, 2023.

LaRowe, a longtime small-firm Reedsburg attorney, was past president (1981-82) of the State Bar of Wisconsin, and active in many State Bar leadership roles throughout his career – most recently on the State Bar Senior Lawyers Division (SLD) board of directors.

LaRowe, said State Bar President Margaret Hickey, always
Continue Reading Myron LaRowe: A Leader in Service to Bar, Profession, Community

“Lydia Maria Child has a good letter to the editor.”

Clarissa Goodell to Lavinia Goodell, March 3, 1866

Best known for her Thanksgiving poem “Over the river and through the woods,” Lydia Maria (pronounced Mar – eye – ah, the same pronunciation as Lavinia Goodell’s sister Maria Goodell Frost’s name) Child was an  influential nineteenth century woman author. She was also an ardent abolitionist who was well known to Lavinia Goodell and her family. (In an 1861 letter, Child
Continue Reading “Lydia Maria Child has a good letter to the editor.”

“The devil has come down in great wrath knowing that his time is short.”

Lavinia Goodell, February 29, 1872

In early 1872, media accounts – especially on the east coast – were abuzz with the scandalous story that a woman had been allowed to preach in a Brooklyn Presbyterian church. The brazen woman in question was Sarah Smiley, a Quaker.

Sarah Smiley

Ms.  Smiley was born in Maine in 1830. She initially wanted to become a teacher but after
Continue Reading “The devil has come down in great wrath knowing that his time is short.”

Board of Governors Chair Kristen Hardy comments during the meeting.Feb. 27, 2023 – The State Bar of Wisconsin’s 52-member Board of Governors adopted an updated policy position on bail reform at its meeting on Friday, Feb. 24.

At the September 2022 meeting, the board discussed the proposed new policy at length. At that meeting, President Margaret Hickey – who was a member of the Policy Committee during the bail reform discussion – said the proposed new policy was worded
Continue Reading State Bar Board Approves Updated Bail Policy, Discusses Budget

There is no one right answer; each family’s farm succession plan will look different. But most successful farm succession plans have a common theme—transparency. From the time children leave the farm, to the time that one or more children begin managing the operation, open conversations can help. Discussing the expectations of each individual—mom, dad, on-farm siblings, off-farm siblings and others involved in the farm—and the rationale behind those expectations helps ease the ultimate transition.
Not all individuals may agree
Continue Reading Sibling Rivalry: Splitting the Farm Between Multiple Children

“Heard Dr. Whiting on the women’s temperance movement.”

Lavinia Goodell, April 26, 1874

Lavinia Goodell and her parents were members of the Congregational Church in Janesville, Wisconsin, and she had a cordial relationship with the church’s pastors. While she became close friends with Rev. T.P. Sawin, who was the same age as Lavinia and arrived in 1876, she was also very fond of Sawin’s predecessor, Dr. Lyman Whiting.

Dr. Lyman Whiting

In addition to his church obligations, Dr. Whiting
Continue Reading “Heard Dr. Whiting on the women’s temperance movement.”

Tony Earl, a former Wisconsin governor and State Bar of Wisconsin member for nearly 60 years, is remembered as a dedicated public servant who brought dignity and integrity to the legal profession. Feb. 23, 2023 – Anthony “Tony” Earl, a member of the State Bar of Wisconsin for almost 60 years, passed away Feb. 23, 2023, at the age of 86. A 1961 graduate of the University of Chicago Law School, Earl served as the state’s 41st governor from
Continue Reading Wisconsin Gov. Tony Earl: ‘The Best in Public Service and the Legal Profession’

When it goes into effect on January 1, 2024, a provision tucked inside the Corporate Transparency Act (the “CTA”) will impose lengthy new reporting requirements on many business entities, including many single-member LLCs. The final rule recently issued by the U.S. Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network clarifies the scope and applicability of these new reporting requirements. Businesses that fall under the CTA’s purview would be wise to begin the process of complying with these rules to avoid the
Continue Reading U.S. Treasury Clarifies Beneficial Ownership Reporting Requirements for Businesses