State Bar of Wisconsin​

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The cultural mediation I refer to in this article is clan mediation. Clan mediation within the Hmong community is the negotiation process that Hmong married individuals undergo along with both the husband and wife’s respective clans when seeking a cultural divorce.

In a previous article in the State Bar Family Law Blog in May 2021, I addressed what clan mediation is, and why it is important to the parties, their respective clans, and the attorney.

This article generally
Continue Reading Incorporating Clan Mediation in a Mediated Divorce within the Hmong Community

Imagine you were just charged with a criminal offense for the first time in your life.

At your initial appearance, the judge or commissioner informs you that you are presumed innocent, but sets bond at $10,000. You come from poverty, and there is no chance that you or your family could post that amount of money.

You are put onto a bus. They take your clothes and all your belongings, and in exchange give you a uniform and a
Continue Reading Protecting the Presumption: The Constitutionality of Pretrial Detention in Wisconsin

Jan. 14, 2022 – T​he state Department of Public Instruction (DPI) impermissibly inquired into religious doctrine in determining that two private schools in Washington County were affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has ruled.In

St. Augustine School v. Underly, 2021 WL 5998534 (Dec. 20, 2021), a three-judge panel held that by relying on a profession of Catholic affiliation on one of the school’s websites, DPI violated the First Amendment’s
Continue Reading Reliance on Label ‘Catholic’ to Find Schools’ Attendance Areas Overlapped Was Unconstitutional

Jan. 14, 2022 – A Wisconsin appellate court has ruled that a prosecutor who repeatedly argued that a victim’s testimony was “uncorroborated” violated the constitutional right of a criminal defendant who did not testify during the trial.In

State v. Hoyle, 2020AP187-CR, (Jan. 11, 2022), the Court of Appeals District III held that the multiple mentions of the uncorroborated testimony constituted improper references to the defendant’s decision not to testify and violated his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.‘Someone is
Continue Reading Mention of ‘Uncorroborated’ Testimony Violated Defendant’s Right Against Self Incrimination

Jan. 14, 2022 – A presumption against granting custody to an abusive parent can only be overcome with proof that the parent has completed treatment for batterers from a certified program or from a certified provider, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals has ruled.In

Valadez v. Valadez, 2020AP1006 (Dec. 29, 2021), the Court of Appeals District II held that a circuit court erred in concluding that an abusive parent had overcome the presumption against granting him custody by completing
Continue Reading Court Erred by Ruling That Non-Certified Treatment Overcame Custody Presumption

Practitioners in smaller communities or those working extensively with small business need not be intimidated when clients seek to buy or sell businesses.There are resources available to help lawyers better understand issues that could arise during any such transaction, and to better educate attorneys as to when to seek help.Smoothing Out TransactionsAcquisitions are difficult for any size business, but they can be made smoother or made into bumpy rides depending on the outside advice obtained along the way.In most
Continue Reading Acquisition Checklist: Include Outside Professionals for Success

Jan 12, 2022 – A company that repossessed a car from an apartment building garage violated the Wisconsin Consumer Act (WCA), the Wisconsin Supreme C​​​ourt has ruled.

In Duncan v. Asset Recovery Specialists, Inc., 2019AP1365, (Jan. 06, 2022) the supreme court held that for purposes of the WCA’s prohibition against a creditor entering a residential dwelling to repossess collateral or leased goods, the garage was included within the term “dwelling used by the customer as a residence.”
The decision
Continue Reading Company Violated Consumer Protection Law by Repo’ing Car From Attached Apartment Garage

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) vaccine and testing emergency temporary standard (ETS) has been a whirlwind since the beginning of November, with stays being put in place and stays being dissolved by different courts.

It is unknown as to whether the OSHA vaccine and testing ETS will survive, but if the Supreme Court rules in its favor, employers will have to be ready to implement the OSHA ETS requirements.

One of those requirements is verification of employee
Continue Reading Determining an Employee’s Vaccine Status

Jan. 12, 2022 – The Wisconsin Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on a lawsuit filed over the decennial re-drawing of the state’s congressional and legislative districts at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 19. The date and time were set in an order issued on Jan. 11.​
Redistricting must take place every 10 years to account for shifts in population, and comply with other federal and state laws. The Republican-controlled Wisconsin Legislature drew new maps after the 2020 census, but
Continue Reading Wisconsin Supreme Court Will Hear Arguments in Redistricting Lawsuit on Jan. 19

Since graduating from law school and moving to Milwaukee in August, I’ve met several longtime residents who didn’t know Summerfest is not on a natural land formation – it’s built on lakebed fill – or that Lakeshore State Park is also built on lakebed fill, or that Bradford Beach and parts of Lincoln Memorial Drive are located on land that used to be covered by water.Lakebed Fill and the Public Trust DoctrineWhat do all these spaces have in common?
Continue Reading Public Rights on Milwaukee’s Fresh Coast: Issues with Lakebed Fill

Jan. 5, 2021 – Two retired Milwaukee police officers who were rehired by the city lost the right to begin receiving retirement benefits at age 57, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals has ruled.
In Miller v. City of Milwaukee, 2020AP1346 (Dec. 28, 2021), the Court of Appeals District I held that because they were rehired as general employees, the two former police officers were entitled to begin receiving retirement benefits at the age of 60.
Re-hired After Retirement
Continue Reading Re-hiring Changed Minimum Retirement Age for Retired Milwaukee Police Officers

Jan. 5, 2021 – Video gaming machines that allow players to preview the outcome of particular games are illegal gambling machines, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals District I has ruled.

In JD Prime Games Kiosk, LLC v. Wisconsin Department of Revenue, 2020AP1935 (Dec. 21, 2021), the court held that even though the preview allows players to not proceed with the game, the outcome of the game was determined by chance and the machines were therefore gambling machines.
Continue Reading Outcome Preview Doesn’t Rescue Slot-like Video Games From Gambling Ban

 Dec. 28, 2021 – A state appeals court has ruled that a trace amount of heroin found on a defendant provides a basis for the offense of narcotics possession, because a jury could have reasonably inferred from compelling circumstantial evidence of recent drug use that the defendant knowingly possessed the heroin.In

State v. Chentis, 2020AP1699-CR (Dec 1, 2021), the Court of Appeals District II held that Nakyta. T. Chentis had failed to demonstrate that withdrawing his plea to
Continue Reading Circumstantial Evidence Means Trace Amount of Heroin Is Sufficient to Sustain Conviction

Dec. 28, 2021 – The decision of an administrative law judge (ALJ) that the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) failed to comply with state law in issuing permits for a frac sand facility was supported by substantial evidence, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals has ruled.  In Meteor Timber, LLC v. Wisconsin Division of Hearings, 2020AP1869 (Dec. 16, 2021), the Court of Appeals District IV upheld the ALJ’s reversal of the DNR’s decision to issue the permits.  Mining
Continue Reading Appeals Court Upholds ALJ’s Decision Denying Permit for Frac Sand Facility

 Dec. 28, 2021 – The Wisconsin Court of Appeals has certified an appeal over a victims’ rights ballot measure adopted last year to the Wisconsin Supreme Court.In Wisconsin Justice Initiative, Inc. v. Wisconsin Elections Commission, 2020AP2003 (Dec. 21, 2021), a three-judge panel held that certifying the appeal to the supreme court was necessary to clarify the central question raised by the appeal: whether the ballot question submitting the measure to voters was legally insufficient.In its certification, the court
Continue Reading Court of Appeals Sends Challenge to Victim Rights Measure to Supreme Court

 Dec 28, 2021 – State law does not grant a municipality the right to file a writ of certiorari challenging a board of review’s property tax assessment, the Wisconsin Supreme Court has ruled.In City of Waukesha v. City of Waukesha Board of Review, 2019AP1479 (Dec. 22, 2021) the supreme court unanimously held that the statute that allows a party to file a writ of certiorari to challenge a property tax assessment grants that right only to taxpayers.Listing Prompted
Continue Reading City May Not File Certorari to Challenge Tax Assessment, Supreme Court Rules