“The Brooklyn sanitary fair was a magnificent affair.”

Lavinia Goodell, March 10, 1864

In 1864, Lavinia Goodell was living in Brooklyn with her parents and working with her father in editing the Principia anti-slavery newspaper. In her spare time, Lavinia enjoyed taking in cultural events and expositions. In March of 1864, along with thousands of other people, she visited the Brooklyn sanitary fair.

During the Civil War, sanitary fairs were held to raise money for the war effort in
Continue Reading “The Brooklyn sanitary fair was a magnificent affair.”

This article is not tax advice and the discussion herein is oversimplified to relay the concept of step-up in basis. Your individual situation should be reviewed by your attorney and tax professional.
There has been a lot of discussion in Congress about what, if anything, should be done with the income tax code to address step-up in basis. Step-up in basis is a concept that affects beneficiaries who liquidate the assets of a person who passes away (“Decedent”). Not
Continue Reading What is Step-Up in Basis & Why is it Important?

On January 13, 2022, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that OSHA does not possess the statutory authority to implement the emergency order requiring employers with more than 100 employees to enforce a vaccine policy. The Court ruled the policy is “no ‘everyday exercise of federal power’ but instead a ‘significant encroachment into the lives – and health – of a vast number of employees.’”
On November 5, 2021, OSHA published an emergency standard (“ES”) requiring all employers with 100
Continue Reading U.S. Supreme Court Strikes Down OSHA Vaccination Mandate

“Mind proudly asserts its superiority over matter.”

Lavinia Goodell, December 1859

Lavinia Goodell’s contributions to the Principia, her father’s anti-slavery newspaper, have been discussed in prior posts. (Click here and here to learn more.) None of Lavinia’s pieces bear her full name. We first learned that Lavinia wrote articles for the Principia when we reviewed an unpublished biography written by Elisabeth S. Peck, a long time history teacher at Berea College in Berea, Kentucky, where the William Goodell family
Continue Reading “Mind proudly asserts its superiority over matter.”

Today the Supreme Court ordered that OSHA’s ETS be placed back on hold (a/k/a a “stay”) and sent back to the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals.  In its order, the Court‘s majority noted the ETS may have gone too far because it required employers to remedy a “public health” concern:
The Solicitor General does not dispute that OSHA is limited to regulating “work-related dangers.”  She instead argues that the risk of contracting COVID–19 qualifies as such a danger. We
Continue Reading OSHA ETS Halted Again!

As you all know, last Friday the Supreme Court heard oral arguments regarding whether the OSHA ETS vaccine mandate should be upheld. The Court has not yet issued a ruling on this issue.  As of January 10, large employers need to be in compliance with all ETS requirements.  If an employer can show it is following all of these requirements, and is acting in good faith, then it has until February 9 to require testing for unvaccinated employees.  Yesterday,
Continue Reading Reminder—the OSHA ETS is Effective Now!

“I followed the custom of the City by calling on several acquaintances.”

William Goodell, January 5, 1827

During the nineteenth century, it was customary to make social calls on New Year’s Day. While ladies remained at home to receive guests, gentlemen made the rounds of households in their circle.

Lavinia Goodell’s family maintained this tradition throughout her lifetime. Her diary entry for January 1, 1873 reported, “Father made calls” while she and her mother “prepared for calls but
Continue Reading “I followed the custom of the City by calling on several acquaintances.”

In 2014, approximately 14% to 20% of the U.S. workforce consisted of independent contractors known as “gig workers.” In 2020, the number increased to approximately 35%. Some sources estimate that by 2023, nearly half the workforce will consist of freelance and independent workers. The gig economy is nothing new, but with the new employment environment introduced by COVID-19, an increasing number of companies are looking for ways to fill labor gaps. In addition to the possibility of remote work,
Continue Reading Reliance on Gig Economy Can Create Unintentional Liability

Each state has its own rules about the enforceability of employee noncompetition agreements. Employers must draft their covenants in compliance with the rules or risk getting an agreement that’s unenforceable under state law. A Wisconsin business buyer recently learned that lesson the hard way when it tried, and failed, to enforce a noncompliant noncompete agreement against a former key employee.
Auto-Chlor manufactures, rents, and sells sanitizing and washing equipment, chemical dispensers, linen washing chemicals, and other materials for
Continue Reading Business Buyer Can’t Enforce Noncompete Against Sellers’ Son

If a supervisor lives and works in one state but has direct reports in another, is the supervisor required to complete harassment training compliant with the laws of the states where his subordinates work?
Federal Law
Before turning to the question of which state laws apply to situations involving subordinates who work in a state different from their supervisor, it’s important to remember managers and employers must comply with a number of federal harassment laws with regard to employees residing within
Continue Reading What Law Applies When Supervisor, Employees Live in Different States?

Just one month ago, OSHA suspended its COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS), after the Fifth Circuit entered a stay against it. The ETS requires employers with 100 or more employees to establish all employees are vaccinated or require mandatory masking and weekly testing. On December 17, 2021, three Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals judges issued an opinion lifting the stay. On December 18, 2021, the United States Department of Labor issued a news release indicating that
Continue Reading OSHA’s 100 Employee COVID Mandate Resurrected

In my experience, most physician groups rely on the “in-office ancillary service” exception to the Stark Law when determining how to allocate revenues from designated health services among group members.  The Stark Law is, of course, the primary applicable area of law that is relevant to the structure of productivity compensation issues within medical groups.  That is why a change in the regulations governing the structure of production compensation relationships, even a “nuanced” or subtle change in interpretation of
Continue Reading New Stark Law Regulations May Impact Many Physician Practices

 Wisconsin Supreme Court Adopts New CLE Requirements for Reactivated LawyersJeff M. BrownDec. 17, 2021 – The Wisconsin Supreme Court has issued an
order, effective Jan. 1, 2022, establishing new continuing legal education (CLE) attendance and reporting requirements for lawyers who reactivate their State Bar of Wisconsin membership or who are readmitted or reinstated to the State Bar.The State Bar filed the petition in 2021, seeking CLE rule changes to create a “comity rule” for “inactive” members who practice
Continue Reading Wisconsin Supreme Court Adopts New CLE Requirements for Reactivated Lawyers

The Internal Revenue Service has announced the optional standard mileage rates for computing the deductible cost of operating an automobile for business, medical, and moving expenses for 2022, and the increased rates reflect the increase in the fixed and variable costs of operating a vehicle, primarily due to increased gas prices.  Effective January 1, 2022, the optional standard mileage rates will increase to 58.5 cents per mile for business transportation, and increase to 18 cents per mile for travel
Continue Reading Increase in Gasoline Prices Means Increase in Optional Standard Mileage Rates for 2022

CMS Mandate: At the beginning of December we informed you that a Federal Court in Louisiana issued a nationwide stay on enforcement of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) COVID-19 vaccination mandate. During the stay period, CMS instructed its state survey teams suspend efforts related to monitoring compliance with the vaccine mandate.
On December 15, the Fifth Circuit limited the scope of the injunction granted by the Louisiana Court. The Fifth Circuit allowed the injunction to remain
Continue Reading CMS Mandate—Back for Some But Not All

The real Lavinia Goodell now welcomes Rock County Courthouse visitors

When we launched this website in 2019, we shared a post called “A case of mistaken identity,” which explained how, back in 1959, an image of an unknown woman was erroneously sent to a New York author who had requested a photo of Lavinia Goodell. For sixty years, the unknown woman’s face graced books and articles about Lavinia Goodell and was also displayed on a large mural on
Continue Reading The real Lavinia Goodell now welcomes Rock County Courthouse visitors