Credit Damages

Link: http://www.vegaslegalmagazine.com/economic-expert-report-credit-damages/

Article:

The Firm, P.C. is a boutique Las Vegas law firm founded by Preston Rezaee, Esq. Preston Rezaee is also the founder and Editor in Chief of Vegas Legal Magazine.

“Who steals my purse steals trash. ‘Tis something–nothing; ‘Twas mine, ‘tis his and has been slave to thousands. But he that filches from me my good name robs me of that which not enriches him and makes me poor indeed.” – Othello

Shakespeare’s character Iago offers this wisdom that has uncanny applications to modern consumer law. No one in William Shakespeare’s time was denied an auto Loan due to false credit reporting or was extended a mortgage loan that the lender knew the individual could never repay, leading to a foreclosure. But Shakespeare would still understand the damage done to one’s reputation. In modern times, a quality financial reputation – a good credit record – is very valuable, and one can become literally “poor indeed” when this is lost.

In November 2017, I had the privilege of speaking to many legal colleagues at the National Consumer Law Center (NCLC) Consumer Rights Litigation Conference in Washington, D.C. In a discussion session following the keynote speech by Senator Elizabeth Warren, I shared my research and experience regarding credit damage, the types of loses that can be claimed, and how these claims are to be valued. Here I share this knowledge with you.

Credit damage can arise from a variety of circumstances. Mistakes by consumer reporting agencies (CRAs, or credit bureaus) and by credit or information furnishers (Banks, credit card companies, etc.) result in credit damage to innocent Americans every day. Identity theft or identity confusion resulting in merged records is also a common cause of credit damage. Many errors and problems can arise from credit reporting agencies themselves. A recent revision of Equifax’s data breach assessment now shows a theft of over 143 million Social Security numbers, and counting. People seek credit damage compensation as a result of banks wrongfully extending mortgages during the credit boom that they could not afford, and upon which they subsequently have defaulted and have lost in foreclosure. Failure of banks to offer government-financed mortgage modifications for which applicants qualify can result in excess costs and credit damage. Credit damage also frequently occurs during a divorce when one party ruins the credit history of another on jointly held credit cards or loans. Separating legal responsibility for mortgage payments on a jointly owned house and on other jointly held credit can be problematic when the parties are in emotional and perhaps financial adversity. Further, people can also sustain credit damage when they are injured, sick or wrongfully discharged, and do not work for a protracted period, reaching a point where they cannot pay their bills.

Sometimes credit damage arises in unique and unpredictable ways. One plaintiff paid fire insurance premiums to a bank, along with the mortgage payments on his home. A bank employee embezzled the funds and never made payment on the insurance policy. When the house burned down, the owner stopped making mortgage payments and sued the bank to recover the uninsured losses. The bank disputed the claim and foreclosed on his house. This was reported to the credit bureaus resulting is significant damage to his credit. The damage lasted during several years of litigation, but the reported foreclosure was eventually reversed.

Often, credit damage is reversible. Innocent error can be often corrected, even if not easily. But frequently, even though caused wrongfully and through no fault of the consumer, credit damage may occur and cannot be reversed, except by the passage of time, and sometimes not even then. If a person defaults on a mortgage through a breach of contract by another, the report cannot be reversed. The credit bureaus cannot erase or reverse the correct reporting of a foreclosure or a bankruptcy even if the consumer wins a lawsuit against the tortfeasor that caused this. Foreclosures, late payments, bad debt in collection, and other derogatory information, unless put on in error, remains on a credit report for seven years; bankruptcy remains for ten years. Tax liens remain on a credit report as derogatory information for seven years after they have been paid. If the tax lien has not been paid, Equifax and TransUnion will show the unpaid tax lien indefinitely while Experian shows it for fifteen years. If during a divorce, one spouse informally promises to pay real estate taxes on a jointly held house, or income taxes on a joint return, and subsequently fails to pay, the other spouse can experience credit damage, possibly forever, unless the tax liens are eventually paid.

The damage may persist for as long as seven years in the case of an irreversible error (such as in the instance of the earlier-mentioned house fire) or up to ten years in the instance of a bankruptcy. Even if the bankruptcy results from breach of contract, and even if the consumer obtains a verdict in court that a breach has occurred, the Credit Reporting Agencies cannot reverse such derogatory information if the bankruptcy did occur, despite the fact that it arose through no fault of the consumer. In some instances, it may be difficult to anticipate when the damage might terminate because, after seven or ten years when the credit scores have been restored, former low levels of mortgage rates may not be available.

There can be a variety of consequences to credit damage, among them: (a) withdrawal or loss of job offers, (b) significantly higher borrowing costs on credit cards and loans and higher premiums on auto insurance, (c) reduced credit expectancy or capacity, (d) the considerable expenditure of time, energy and money to remedy the situation, and finally, (e) a significant loss of enjoyment of life. Using standard forensic economic methods, these damages can be valued and claimed in lawsuits against the tortfeasors, many of whom are subject to various consumer protection laws including the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA 15 U.S.C. § 1681 et seq.) and its amendments, and the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act of 2003 (FACT).

Various state and federal laws permit a wide variety of claims, including claims for punitive damages. Perhaps the easiest claims to value are the out-of-pocket expense arising from credit damage. The time lost, valued at some reasonable rate, along with out-of-pocket expenses including legal fees etc. can also be easily valued.

Frequently consumers make claims for loss of opportunity, in particular loss of job offers. If a person is offered a job at $45,000 a year and suffers a withdrawal of that offer as a result of credit damage, the loss can be the difference between the lost offer and the next best available alternative, for as many years as the reduced salary can be expected to persist. The loss of opportunity may be more than just a reduction in salary, it may involve a once-in-a-lifetime offer for a position that can never be regained.

Claims can also arise for higher-than-warranted interest costs on credit cards or loans. If a mortgage should have been issued at 4 percent, and the credit damage resulted in a mortgage rate of 6 percent, the two percent difference per annum over the life of the mortgage is a significant sum of money, and can easily be calculated.

Another credit damage claim that can be made is the loss or reduction in credit expectancy. Some consumers simply cannot obtain credit cards or loans at any rate whatsoever and hence cannot make major purchases such as homes, boats, or other assets that require loans, and must carry cash for all lesser purchases. Imagine a world where you cannot buy an airline ticket online or pay for your cell phone usage with a credit card, and where all transactions must be paid for in cash? This loss of credit expectancy can be valued by comparing the rate the consumer might have expected with the highest rate charged by credit card companies, as a floor on the loss of expectancy damages. The loss of credit expectancy is estimated by the cost of credit extended under normal circumstances versus the cost charged to those who are viewed as high credit risks to whom credit is extended, but at the highest rates charged. Normal credit costs are approximately 1 to 1.5 percent per month; the costs charged to high credit risk accounts can run to 3 percent per month or higher. For persons with prior good, or even fair, credit they had the ability to borrow considerable sums beyond his or her diminished credit. I frequently estimate this additional capacity of be at least $100,000, and likely more. This standby credit under normal conditions has a value similar to the value of a safety net for a trapeze artist, or the value of a term life policy for a person who continues to live a healthy life – the value does not depend on the actual use. It is an option, and options have value. In my earlier days, I had a seat on the Chicago board of Trade, formed in 1848 to help farmers manage their options against weather losses, price changes, and other financial ups and downs.

Finally, claims can be made and testimony can be provided for the loss of enjoyment of life, well-recognized in the State of Nevada. (See my article in Vegas Legal, August 2016 “Economic Damages in Nevada) Victims of credit damage frequently report going through protracted emotional turbulence and upset, experiencing significant loss of enjoyment of life. These damages can persist long after financial restoration is made as in some instances relationships are destroyed as a consequence of the credit damage. The standard process for evaluating the loss of enjoyment of life applies in these instances. Typically, consumers must be interviewed extensively to obtain detailed information about all these losses.

Credit damage and its consequences can arise easily in the lives of virtually any consumer despite public awareness and programs and laws to prevent this. The consequences can be financially and emotionally devastating. Forensic economists, using standard approaches, can assist in evaluating the losses.

While the filching of one’s good name and the resulting credit damage can arise from a variety of causes – and the consequences can make one very poor indeed – our legal system offers relief and the prospect of significant economic recovery for the aggrieved party.

Stan V. Smith, Ph.D., is president of Smith Economics Group, Ltd. headquartered in Chicago. Trained at the University of Chicago (one of the world’s pre-eminent institutions for the study of economics and the home of the law and economics movement), Smith has also taught at the university and co-authored the first textbook on the subject of economic damages. A nationally-renowned expert in economics who has testified nationwide in personal injury, wrongful death and commercial damages cases, Smith has assisted thousands of law firms in successful results for both plaintiffs and defendants, including the U.S. Department of Justice. To that end, Smith also developed the first course in forensic economics at DePaul University, and pioneered the concept of “hedonic damages,” testifying about the topic in landmark cases. His work has been featured in the ABA Journal, National Law Journal, and on the front page of The Wall Street Journal. Kyle Lauterhahn is a Senior Economic Analyst at Smith Economics Group in Chicago.

 

The Firm, P.C. is a boutique Las Vegas law firm founded by Preston Rezaee, Esq. Preston Rezaee is also the founder and Editor in Chief of Vegas Legal Magazine.

 

 

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Saving Sandoval: Las Vegas Attorney & Iraq Veteran Releases New Book

 

Link: http://www.vegaslegalmagazine.com/saving-sandoval-las-vegas-attorney-iraq-veteran-releases-new-book/

Article:

The Firm, P.C. is a boutique Las Vegas law firm founded by Preston Rezaee, Esq. Preston Rezaee is also the founder and Editor in Chief of Vegas Legal Magazine.

While deployed to the most dangerous area in Iraq in 2007 known as the “Triangle of Death,” U.S. Army Specialist Jorge Sandoval, an airborne infantryman and elite sniper, was instructed to “take the shot” and kill an enemy insurgent wearing civilian clothes. Two weeks later, Army investigators descended upon Sandoval’s unit and began interrogating the soldiers and trying to link Sandoval and others to war crimes. Sandoval was ultimately charged with six felony level offenses, to include two counts of murder. The case made international headlines with leading stories in the New York Times and Washington Post.

Then, Captain Craig W. Drummond was the Army JAG military defense attorney assigned to Sandoval’s case. The new book covers the events from the moment the trigger is pulled on the battlefield through the trial that took place in a U.S. military compound on the outskirts of Baghdad during the height of the enemy uprisings in Iraq. The book brings the reader into the reality of modern warfare in a post September 11th environment where the enemy does not always wear a uniform. The detailed account of the investigation and trial testimony from elite Army snipers brings the reader into the courtroom and onto the battlefield of Iraq.

The book is receiving rave reviews and high praise from the legal and military community.

“A revealing, real-life courtroom drama, reminiscent of A Few Good Men.”–Hunter R. Clark, Director, International Law and Human Rights Program, Drake University Law School.

“Armed forces continue to operate in uncertain and complex environments and this story is an insightful and powerful look into the challenges and judgments faced by a young sniper deployed to the battlefield of Iraq.”–Brigadier General Jeffery L. Underhill, U.S. Army Retired, (Iraq Veteran).

SAVING SANDOVAL was published by Wild Blue Press which is owned by New York Times Bestselling Author Steve Jackson. The book is available now on Amazon.com. Craig W. Drummond is a Las Vegas attorney at the Drummond Law Firm practicing in Personal Injury and Criminal Defense. He received the Bronze Star for his service in Iraq. More information about Craig and the book can be found at DrummondFirm.com

 

The Firm, P.C. is a boutique Las Vegas law firm founded by Preston Rezaee, Esq. Preston Rezaee is also the founder and Editor in Chief of Vegas Legal Magazine.

 

 

Hamilton At The Smith Center: How To Get Your Tickets

Link: http://www.vegaslegalmagazine.com/hamilton-at-the-smith-center-how-to-get-your-tickets/

Article:

The Firm, P.C. is a boutique Las Vegas law firm founded by Preston Rezaee, Esq. Preston Rezaee is also the founder and Editor in Chief of Vegas Legal Magazine.

I’m getting calls every day with this question. I am also hearing reports that the entire run of “Hamilton” in Las Vegas is completely sold out. THIS IS NOT TRUE.

The producers of “Hamilton” want to make sure that real people get access to tickets at face value, therefore they are holding the on-sale date a little later than usual. That’s right, other than season-ticket holders who already have their subscription seats for the week of May 29, no single tickets have been sold for “Hamilton” at The Smith Center. We are anticipating a late-April date for these tickets to go on sale. Please keep an eye open for this date and check our website, http://www.TheSmithCenter.com, for updates.

Why are the show producers waiting to sell single tickets? They believe this will help to cut down on tickets sold via the secondary market, therefore making more tickets available directly to Las Vegas locals who want to see the show. “Hamilton” has already played an important role in helping Congress understand the importance of outlawing ticket sellers’ use of BOTS (computers that buy up all the good seats for the sole purpose of reselling them at a much higher price). That’s because the show producers have seen their seats filled with people who “know a guy” who can get them tickets. Some audience members even like to flaunt the fact that they paid more than $3,000 per seat on the secondary market.

It’s important to point out that none of the money made from secondary sales goes to the show, the producers who risked their dollars to fund the production, the actors, the theater, or anyone else associated with the show. Nor does the state benefit, because ticket brokers are not charging sales tax on their inflated tickets. The “Hamilton” producers want their tickets going to people who really want to see the show and who plan to use the tickets for their own friends and family.

So be careful. While the internet has significantly expanded consumer access to live events, it has also created new opportunities for fraud and deceptive practices. There are unscrupulous ticket sellers who set up websites meant to intentionally confuse the consumer. You may click on a link that looks like the official site for The Smith Center (or the T-Mobile Arena, MGM Grand Garden Arena, etc.) that are actually resellers impersonating the official venue websites. Just because it says “smithcenter” in the URL, doesn’t mean it is the official site. You might be buying tickets that are fraudulent (or non-existent). Do yourself a favor and be sure.

And if you currently see tickets advertised for “Hamilton” shows between June 5 to 24, please know these are speculative offers from people who do not actually have tickets to sell, so you may not receive any tickets from them. Got it? No tickets have been sold for “Hamilton” performances during this period at The Smith Center. Shouldn’t someone need to own something before they can resell it?

The Smith Center is also taking steps to prevent unethical ticket brokering. Because certain sellers have been known to purchase tickets once and resell them multiple times by reprinting a print-at-home ticket in the PDF format, we will not be offering print-at-home tickets for “Hamilton.” This means that you will need to pick up tickets at will call, or have them mailed to you just prior to the performance. Please know this step is necessary in order to curtail fraudulent ticketing activity.

The only way to ensure your tickets are genuine and guaranteed is to buy them directly from The Smith Center — the official ticket seller for “Hamilton” — at http://www.thesmithcenter.com.

Plenty of tickets will be available on the first day of sale for performances from June 5 to 24. Don’t miss your chance to be “in the room where it happens!”

In the meantime, check out the Grammy Award-winning “Hamilton” soundtrack and get ready to be among the first to see this groundbreaking, amazing and extraordinary show!

As president and CEO of The Smith Center for the Performing Arts, Myron Martin brings the world’s most revered and celebrated entertainers to Las Vegas. Martin has a rich history in the performing arts business. A proud Las Vegas resident, Martin has received many accolades, including being named among the Vegas Dozen, Las Vegas’ Man of the Year by Vegas Seven, and receiving the key to the city from Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman. The Nevada Broadcasting Association presented him the Community Achievement Award and The Public Education Foundation called him their Champion for Children. He is an Emmy Award nominee for producing the Vegas PBS special “Frank Wildhorn & Friends” and is a voter for the Tony Awards.

 

The Firm, P.C. is a boutique Las Vegas law firm founded by Preston Rezaee, Esq. Preston Rezaee is also the founder and Editor in Chief of Vegas Legal Magazine.

 

Laser Spine Surgery Pro’s & Con’s

Link: http://www.vegaslegalmagazine.com/laser-spine-surgery-pros-cons/

Article:

The Firm, P.C. is a boutique Las Vegas law firm founded by Preston Rezaee, Esq. Preston Rezaee is also the founder and Editor in Chief of Vegas Legal Magazine.

Your back hurts! And you’re looking for a treatment that will make the pain stop.
You’ve read about laser spine surgery, and you’re interested in how it may help relieve your back pain.

There’s been lots of press about laser spine surgery, and while it can help some back conditions and it does benefit some people, it seems to benefit those with only minor spine problems.

What IS Laser Spine Surgery?

Laser spine surgery uses a laser to remove tissue with heat rather that with traditional instruments. While it may be seen as “modern” or a “magic bullet,” in truth, the use of lasers has been around for a long time. Lasers use a focused beam of light to cut soft tissue.

The PRO’S:
1. It’s minimally invasive;
2. Fast recovery time; and
3. For minor conditions, laser spine surgery can be effective.

The CON’S:
1. For most painful back conditions, laser spine surgery is not effective;
2. Laser spine surgery can truly only be used for a very small number of minor spine conditions;
3. Laser surgery can result in a procedure which does not completely address or alleviate the problem (inadequate operation), which sometimes means you’ll need additional surgery;
4. Pain may actually be caused by back instability and laser surgery does not address or alleviate this condition;
5. Using a laser during surgery can sometimes limit nerve damage, but in the hands of an inexperienced surgeon, a laser can actually increase the chances of tissue or nerve damage;
6. Using a laser scalpel can be less effective and pose more risk than other minimally invasive procedures;
7. The heat from the laser can damage adjacent nerves and lead to increased pain;
8. Laser spine surgery is not taught in medical schools and is not considered a viable approach to spine surgery by medical advisory boards;
9. Laser spine surgery is generally not covered by health insurance; and
10. You don’t have to be a surgeon to perform laser spine surgery.

A Very Important Consideration

Laser spine surgery does not have to be performed by a spine surgeon.
Therefore, practitioners who do not have the education, experience or understanding of the anatomy and function of the spine can legally perform laser spine surgery.

A wise plan of action is to have an exam and consultation with a spine surgeon who is both Board-Certified and Fellowship Trained. At that exam, your spine surgeon can explain all options available for treatment of your particular (and unique) condition. Before committing to any spinal procedure, it’s wise to consider non-surgical options such as physical therapy, medication, and supervised exercise.

If surgery is indicated, explore all options available, including minimally invasive procedures that offer the benefits of less post-procedure pain and shorter recovery time. Statistics prove, more complicated back problems often require traditional surgery for the best outcome.

Andrew M. Cash, M.D., is a board certified orthopedic spine surgeon specializing in neck and back care with a focus on minimally invasive operative treatments. His practice—Desert Institute of Spine Care—is located at 9339 West Sunset Rd., Suite #100, Las Vegas, NV 89148. For more information, visit http://www.disclv.com or call 702.630.3472.

 

The Firm, P.C. is a boutique Las Vegas law firm founded by Preston Rezaee, Esq. Preston Rezaee is also the founder and Editor in Chief of Vegas Legal Magazine.

 

Las Vegas Icons: Al Marquis

Link: http://www.vegaslegalmagazine.com/al-marquis/

Article:

The Firm, P.C. is a boutique Las Vegas law firm founded by Preston Rezaee, Esq. Preston Rezaee is also the founder and Editor in Chief of Vegas Legal Magazine.

Sometimes the worst thing is the best thing ever. “Exhibit A” might be Al Marquis, the founding partner of Marquis Aurbach Coffing, known as MAC Law, one of the largest local law firms in the state of Nevada. Upon graduating from high school, he had a bold life plan. He was accepted to the U.S. Air Force Academy, and he was going to be an astronaut. Didn’t happen. Al had to drop out of the Academy because he and his wife got into having a family way earlier than expected. (He also admits that his experience at the Academy convinced him that he was “the wrong stuff” to be an astronaut—he could not fit into the military mold.) His big plan was over, and his parents were mortified – convinced that he would never get a college education. However, that was the beginning of a series of events that led Al to where he is today, a fortunate path that Al contends is mostly attributable to “dumb ass luck.”

Surprisingly, Al’s personality does not really fit either an astronaut or a founding partner of a large, well-respected law firm. While he can still litigate with the best attorneys and pilots a plane occasionally; he is enjoying partial retirement and his other occupations as an author, cowboy poet, and real cowboy raising horses on his own ranch that is complete with a runway, pond and Tarzan swing (www.Kingstonranch.com). He is also a philanthropist who has donated the use of his ranch to hold camps for disadvantaged children such as those assisted by the Nevada Childhood Cancer Foundation, where Al serves on the board and his dog Charlie serves as the official mascot. The NCCF children call him “Uncle Al.” He also has two successful sons (one of whom is a shareholder at MAC Law), who love him dearly and are quite surprised at their old man’s youthful nature as he quickly approaches his 70th birthday (which will have passed by the time you read this). Sometimes the worst thing is the best thing ever, as Al revealed in a recent interview:

Vegas Legal Magazine: You did not come to the law in a straight line…

Al Marquis: It was quite the zigzag, that’s for sure.

I went to the Air Force Academy for two years. When I quit there, they made me serve as an enlisted man in the Air Force for two years in Wichita Falls, Texas.

I moved back to Seattle with a wife and two kids, and we lived in low-income housing while I pursued my major in physics. By the time I got to my senior year, I realized a physics degree would not provide me with a means to earn a good income. I had to get myself out of debt, pay back student loans, and raise a family, so a good income was necessary.

I looked around campus for different possibilities. I looked into nuclear physics, but the only jobs were in nuclear power plants, teaching in universities or working on atomic bombs, none of which paid well or sounded very appealing.

The University of Washington offered graduate school in something called biophysics. I had an appointment to discuss the possibility of attending, and I was walking down this long hallway when I saw this open door to a surgery room. On this table was a dead dog with his front paws up in the air. I looked at that gruesome sight for a minute, turned around and left the building. That was the end of my biophysics career.

Then one day I was walking by this old Gothic-style building on campus that had a brass plate on the front that said “Law School.” So I walked in, looked for the administration office, and asked, “How long does it take to get through law school?” They said three years, and that is how I became a lawyer.

VLM: What advice would you give to a young attorney who has doubts?

AM: Well, I remember being in the first year of law school, and it is so competitive. Everybody was so tense, and it seemed I was such a long way off from making any money.

I remember sitting at the school cafeteria and two guys across from me were third-year law students. I couldn’t even imagine myself in my third year of law school. It seemed like such an eternity that I thought I’d get hit by a bus or something before graduating and all of my hard work would be for nothing. But lo and behold, I graduated, got a job, and ended up in Las Vegas for the next 43 years.

I feel so fortunate to have made the decision to become a lawyer. While the job has been challenging, I’ve never been bored. Most importantly, I’ve been able to help clients and make a big difference in their businesses and their lives. In that regard, the practice of law has been a fulfilling career.

VLM: So it worked out OK?

AM: Las Vegas was a really good choice. This is a thriving business community, which naturally leads to legal disputes. I’ve been fortunate to have been involved in some high-profile cases, such as the representation of Martin Sheen and Carl Sagan and a lawsuit against entertainer Redd Foxx. This led to some big money cases such as a $1.2 million jury verdict against Aetna Insurance Company in the 1980’s and a $35 million condemnation case in the 1990’s. I’ve never regretted becoming a lawyer or choosing Las Vegas as my home.

VLM: Over the span of your career who stood out in your mind as a really exceptional attorney?

AM: Dennis Kennedy and I were in school together and we were kind of the derelicts of the Law Review. All the serious students thought we would never get a job.

But we both got jobs early, both at Lionel, Sawyer & Collins. It was the largest firm in the state in 1975, with 18 lawyers. I was there for 2 1/2 years and worked for some outstanding attorneys. I worked with Sam Lionel, who is amazingly still practicing law at the age of 98; Grant Sawyer, who was a tremendous person, and served as Nevada’s governor from 1959 to 1967; and Steve Morris, a great litigation attorney. I watched all of them and tried to take the best attributes that I could from each of them. Watching all these great lawyers gave me a far greater education than law school.

VLM: During the last 10-15 years, many firms decided to sell out to large national firms, causing many of them to fragment or take on a new identity, yet your firm managed to stay together. How did your firm hold together when nationals came calling?

AM: That’s a really good question, because the only thing holding a law firm together is the mutual perception that we’re all better together than apart. We’ve worked hard to achieve and maintain that status.

In most firms, the senior partners keep the money for themselves and let a little trickle down to the younger partners and associates. They may also sell the firm to a national firm, taking additional profits that the younger partners will never see. Younger partners tend to resent being excluded from these profits and having little or no say in the direction of their firm, so they eventually quit and go out on their own.

Partners in our firm, however, are in a unique position. When they become partner, they become part of a compensation plan in which we are all on the same footing. A new partner in the firm is paid in accordance with the same formula as a senior or even a founding partner. There are few, if any, other law firms where new partners can make that kind of money. We want to keep the best attorneys and we are not greedy so we share the profits based upon the individual’s performance.

We also share the decision-making. Once an attorney becomes a director at MAC, they are entrusted with all of the information needed to manage the firm, and they participate in the management because we each have an equal vote on firm decisions.

This has allowed us to retain some of the very best lawyers, and it is why most of our partners have stayed with us for so long, allowing us to avoid the major splits that often happen with other firms. The young lawyers know that we have a special firm, and that the grass is not greener on the other side of the fence. Our staff stays with us for the same reason. Our office manager has been with us for 33 years, and my secretary has worked for me for 32 years. We are able to retain the very best professionals because they know this is a really good place to work.

VLM: What are you doing now?

AM: I’ve joked for years that I’ve been working on making myself dispensable. Around 2000, Terry Coffing became president of the firm basically taking over my job. In 2010, we changed the name to Marquis Aurbach Coffing. Now everybody refers to us as MAC Law, even the Nevada Supreme Court.

These days I refer to myself as semi-retired. I’m in the office a couple days each week, oversee work on my cases and still keep my hand in the game. I have more time to ride my horses, play pickle ball, scuba dive and travel. In September, my girlfriend and I took our dogs to Europe for a three-week vacation and I just returned from the big island of Hawaii. I have to say that I am enjoying this chapter of my life.

Mark Fierro began his career as a reporter/anchor at KLAS-TV, the CBS television station in Las Vegas. He worked at the U.S. House of Representatives in Washington, D.C. He served as communications consultant on IPO road shows on Wall Street. He provided litigation support for the Michael Jackson death trial. He is president of Fierro Communications, Inc., and author of several books including “Road Rage: The Senseless Murder of Tammy Meyers.” He has made numerous appearances on national TV news programs.

 

The Firm, P.C. is a boutique Las Vegas law firm founded by Preston Rezaee, Esq. Preston Rezaee is also the founder and Editor in Chief of Vegas Legal Magazine.

 

Diets & Picking The Right One

Link: http://www.vegaslegalmagazine.com/diets-picking-the-right-one/

Article:

The Firm, P.C. is a boutique Las Vegas law firm founded by Preston Rezaee, Esq. Preston Rezaee is also the founder and Editor in Chief of Vegas Legal Magazine.

At any given time, a new diet plan is on the rise, but with so many new trends it is becoming harder to determine which plan is right for you. Strictly following one diet plan can not only be very problematic, but also difficult to maintain. Here is a quick insight on several popular diets.

Paleo Diet

The Paleo diet can be described as primal eating and focuses primarily on food from the paleolithic time such as meat, fish, vegetables, fruit, seeds and nuts. Excluded are processed foods, grains, legumes, dairy and refined sugar. The paleo diet suggests that legumes and grains contain anti-nutrients and pro-inflammatory properties but fails to consider the fact that cooking eliminates the anti-nutrient affects and whole grains do have health benefits. The paleo diet certainly has its appeal of being a lean and clean diet, but in the long run, it can be extremely restrictive and hard to maintain.

Gluten Free Diet

A gluten free diet excludes the protein gluten which is present in grains such as wheat, barley, rye and oats. A gluten free diet is essential for managing symptoms in celiac disease- a disease associated with an inability to properly digest gluten. A gluten free diet is, however, popular due to the perception of improved health, increased energy and weight loss. However, removing gluten from the diet typically leads to a limited intake of fiber and vitamins from grains and may not be beneficial for everyone.

Vegetarian/Vegan Diet

Vegetarians and vegans exclude animal products from their diet. A vegan diet however is more limiting and excludes all form of animal derived products including dairy, eggs, honey and gelatin. Vegetarian and vegan diets contain high levels of healthy plant compounds and high amounts of fiber and minerals, as well as low amounts of saturated fats and cholesterol. On the other hand, both diets can lead to several nutrient deficiencies and result in low intakes of calcium, zinc, iron, vitamin D and B12 and as omega-3 fatty acids.

Low Fat Diet

A low-fat diet mainly restricts fat and cholesterol and is intended to reduced obesity and heart disease. It should be noted however; many low-fat alternative foods are often high in sugar and calories and provide minimal vitamins and minerals. Evidence shows that not all fats are equally harmful and that healthy fats found in fish, avocado, nuts and seeds, are essential for heart health and lead to feeling satisfied longer.

Juice Cleanse

On a straight juice cleanse, the daily dose of fruits and vegetables are being consumed and the nutrients are easily absorbed. The downside however is blood sugar fluctuations due to the high intake of natural sugars which won’t lead to any actual weight loss. In addition to that, there is a lack of fiber and protein and if stayed too long it can lead to nutrient deficiencies.

Howard Riell is a veteran journalist who over the past 39 years has written and edited for nearly 200 business and consumer publications, national trade associations, advertising/PR agencies, newspapers, research firms, newsletters, non‑profit groups, e‑zines, blogs, manufacturers and other clients across the country and abroad. He lives in Henderson.

 

The Firm, P.C. is a boutique Las Vegas law firm founded by Preston Rezaee, Esq. Preston Rezaee is also the founder and Editor in Chief of Vegas Legal Magazine.

 

Public Speaking Do’s & Don’ts From Speakers In The Valley

 

Link: http://www.vegaslegalmagazine.com/public-speaking-dos-donts/

Article:

The Firm, P.C. is a boutique Las Vegas law firm founded by Preston Rezaee, Esq. Preston Rezaee is also the founder and Editor in Chief of Vegas Legal Magazine.

“All great speakers,” Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “were bad speakers at first.” But even attorneys who aren’t bad speakers can become, if not great, at least better. Here’s how.

Las Vegas criminal attorney Nick Wooldridge, founder of LV Criminal Defense, says there are no “tips” on public speaking that apply to all occasions. “We use the same rules of speech when we’re speaking in a courtroom, at an awards ceremony, talking to our best friend, or out on a date.” In fact, the occasion, or venue, “determines which of the public speaking rules we pull out. The dilemma with most people when it comes to speaking in public is the tendency to over-complicate.”

“The important do of public speaking is to stay on topic,” says Jason P. Stoffel of Roberts Stoffel Family Law Group, “so if the topic is about substance abuse, don’t throw in politics. If the topic is tort reform, don’t talk about how great you are as a speaker. An audience has come to see the speaker, so staying on topic is always best.” Stoffel also urges speakers to maintain eye contact as much as possible and look around the room. “Make everyone in the audience feel important, not just front and center attendees.”

An important don’t, Stoffel continues, is to not offend anyone. “If the speech is on the importance of life insurance or annuities, don’t insult the crowd and say they are idiots for not having a particular product or service. Also, don’t ramble on and waste time.”

Charlie Harary, a professional speaker and attorney, as well as Clinical Professor of Management and Entrepreneurship at the Syms School of Business at Yeshiva University and Senior Director of Capital Markets at RXR Realty, identifies six keys for speaking publicly:

  1. Prepare. “Make sure you are fully prepared before you get up there.”
  2. Relax. “Most of what your audience is looking for is an experience; a tense speaker ruins it for them. Regardless of what you are saying, if you are more relaxed it will be accepted better by your audience.”
  3. Be Personal. “It is so much better to tell a story from your life, even if it may not be as dramatic than something else you don’t personally connect to. People want to connect to you personally.”
  4. Eye contact. “If you have to read from a script, fine. But practice it enough times so you could make eye contact. No one wants to look at the top of someone’s head as they read though a speech.”
  5. Speak slowly. “Naturally, as the fear kicks in, people tend to speak quickly. Quick speeches are difficult to process. It’s better to slow down and give people a chance to understand than to whiz though it.”
  6. Smile. “Enjoy yourself. Even if you are nervous, smiling produces relaxation hormones. It also shows the audience that you’re having a good time which then puts them in a better mood.”

Jennifer Hadley Catero, a partner and Co-Chair of Financial Services Litigation and Commercial Litigation for Snell & Wilmer, LLP, advises those standing in front of a crowd to always “be thoroughly prepared, such that you are very comfortable with the subject matter. Familiarity with your subject matter will help you speak more extemporaneously, as opposed to delivering a memorized or overly-rehearsed speech or presentation.”

A speaker’s manner should be conversational, Catero adds, “so vary the inflection of your voice, smile, laugh where appropriate. Also, don’t put the entirety of your speech or presentation in your PowerPoint if you are using one. If the audience can read the entirety of your remarks on the screen they have no need to listen to what you are saying.”

Indeed, making the audience feel they absolutely need to hear what you say may just be the most important tip of all.

Howard Riell is a veteran journalist who over the past 39 years has written and edited for nearly 200 business and consumer publications, national trade associations, advertising/PR agencies, newspapers, research firms, newsletters, non‑profit groups, e‑zines, blogs, manufacturers and other clients across the country and abroad. He lives in Henderson.

 

The Firm, P.C. is a boutique Las Vegas law firm founded by Preston Rezaee, Esq. Preston Rezaee is also the founder and Editor in Chief of Vegas Legal Magazine.