Acho’s Run for NFLPA Executive Director Position Ends

Jim Acho’s run to become the next executive director of the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) ended Sunday evening as DeMaurice Smith was reelected to a third term.

Two months ago when several retired NFL players nominated him to run for the executive director position, Mr. Acho explained, “I am honored that the retired players think enough of me to ask me to run. I will do the very best I can to push the main agenda, which is long-term health care for the players. Hopefully the players will consider it enough of a pressing issue to vote for me. My promise to them is that I will get it done.”

While Mr. Acho came short of his ultimate goal, he has already been contacted by representatives from the NFLPA who are interested in adopting some of his policies on long-term health care benefits for retired players. “If we can get some things done for retired players or regarding long-term health care for all players, then it’s not a total loss,” Acho said today.

Mr. Acho would like to thank his clients and friends for their support and kind words throughout his entire run.

Hirzel to Present at CAI Annual Conference and Expo

Kevin Hirzel, a partner in our Livonia office, will be presenting at the Community Associations Institute (CAI) Annual Conference and Expo on Friday, March 13. Mr. Hirzel will be discussing construction defect resolution and the appropriate steps a post-transition control Board of Directors should take with respect to discovering and resolving construction defects.

If you are attending the CAI Conference and Expo, please plan on stopping by CMDA’s booth. Mr. Hirzel, along with attorneys William Kolobaric and Joe Wloszek, will be there and look forward to sharing with you information on the various legal services our Firm’s Community Association, Construction and Real Estate Law practice group provide.

Attorneys Joe Wloszek, Kevin Hirzel and William Kolobaric at the expo

Attorneys Joe Wloszek, Kevin Hirzel and William Kolobaric  at the expo

Kevin Hirzel to present at Michigan CAI Annual Conference & Expo – March 13, 2015

Kevin Hirzel’s presentation “Construction Defect Resolution – Appropriate steps a post-transition control board of directors should take with respect to discovering and resolving construction defects” will be in the Pearl Room from 1:00pm to 1:45pm. Event:CAI Annual Conference & Expo Start:March 13, 2015 8:30 am End:March 13, 2015 4:30 pm Organizer:CAI MI Phone:734-9531-2084 Email:ced@cai-michigan Venue: Suburban Show Place Address: 46100
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Attorney’s Article on Crowdfunding Featured in IRWA Newsletter

Bob Hahn’s article “Crowdfunding Bill Intended to Assist Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses” was featured in the February, 2015 edition of the International Right of Way Association (IRWA) newsletter. 

On December 30, 2013, Governor Snyder signed into law Public Act 264, Michigan Invests Locally Exemption (MILE), which permits crowdfunding for small business. It is an intrastate exemption from the State of Michigan and Federal securities laws, whereby Michigan residents can invest in Michigan businesses.

Crowdfunding refers to funding a company by selling a small amount of equity to a large number of investors. Michigan is one of the first states to give people the opportunity to support growing local businesses such as restaurants, manufacturers, merchants, and service providers, by helping to fund their startup and growth in exchange for a return on investment. These investments can be made online. If the entire deal stays within the State, the Federal Government does not have jurisdiction, and Federal securities regulations do not apply to the transaction. On signing the bill, Governor Snyder said that the new law will streamline government procedure and eliminate unnecessary regulation.

Raising capital is a challenge all small companies understand. Often small business owners have little access to credit or capital investment and are limited to raising investment or borrowing from family or friends. The crowdfunding process is a new and innovative way for Michigan businesses to gain access to capital to grow and expand, and to create jobs. Because it is less formal than the process of registration of securities, it is important for investors to carefully investigate and evaluate investment opportunities.

The crowdfunding law is intended to allow for more efficient access to capital. It permits a business to raise up to $1,000,000 per year or $2,000,000 per year if the issuer provides audited or reviewed financial statements to the prospective purchaser. An unaccredited investor having a net worth of less than $1,000,000 can invest up to $10,000 a year per business. Accredited investors, having an income in excess of $200,000 (or $300,000 for a married couple) or a net worth in excess of $1,000,000, can invest an unlimited amount.

On April 5, 2012, President Barack Obama signed into law the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act (JOBS Act), which authorizes crowdfunding at the national level. Because of broad political support, it is expected that the Securities Exchange Commission and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority will complete the rule making process this year, although the new laws provisions governing equity crowdfunding have been criticized as unduly cumbersome.

Crowdfunding has potential drawbacks. Costs, including accounting and legal, may be significant. The law permits only limited direct advertising, and requires disclosures to investors and the State of Michigan on a quarterly basis. Investors will have to be careful to avoid fraud and will have to consider the possible difficulty of selling their interests if they wish to get out of an investment.

We will address the issue of liquidity in a second article discussing the recently introduced House Bill 5273, which would permit the creation of local stock exchanges, and would permit investors and entrepreneurs to buy and sell in state stocks.

Robert J. Hahn is an attorney in our Livonia office where he concentrates his practice on corporate and business law, commercial litigation, utility law and collection and creditor’s rights law. He may be reached at (734) 261-2400 or rhahn@cmda-law.com.

Acho Secures Nominations for NFLPA Executive Position

Congratulations to Jim Acho who secured the necessary nominations to appear on the ballot for NFL Players Association (NFLPA) executive director position. He will make a one-hour presentation at the union’s annual meeting on March 14, and the 32 player reps will elect an executive director the next day.

His platform includes long-term health-care benefits for all players after they retire until they are eligible for Medicare, the elimination of organized team activities, mandatory 100% spending of the salary cap, and a three-year maximum on rookie contracts in exchange for an 18-game season with four exhibition games.

Mr. Acho was pleased to get the required nominations because it justified “the faith that the retired players had in me to nominate me” to run.  Everyone at CMDA wishes Jim the best of luck on achieving his goal of becoming the next NFLPA executive director.

Just Posted: CMDA’s March On Law Newsletter

CMDA’s March On Law newsletter focuses on our municipal law group.

Andrew Brege outlines the Recent Changes to the Freedom of Information Act that May Impact Local Communities.

Linda Davis Friedland explains how Public and Private Employers are Subject to the 50 Employee Threshold Under the FMLA, but points out that the unconditional language in employee manuals may create a jury question.

Greg Grant offers a few practical tips that can help clients and their attorneys become more successful and increase the chances of winning a case.

Lastly, as part of our “50 a Month” donation program, throughout March CMDA will be collecting new and gently used books for Most Holy Trinity School in Detroit.

Your Attorney Needs You

Communication with your attorney is the key to a successful litigation outcome. The following are some tips to follow that will help your attorney to be a more effective advocate on your behalf. These tips will not only save you time and money, but will also certainly result in a more positive outcome for you in your case.

  1. Follow your attorney’s instructions carefully. When your lawyer provides you with any instructions, be sure to follow them specifically. At some point, your attorney will ask you to provide written answers and/or documents that are relevant to the litigation. It is important that you follow your attorney’s directions and ask questions when you have them.
  1. Do not withhold anything from your attorney. Understand that conversations between you and your lawyer are confidential and subject to the attorney-client privilege. Only you can waive that privilege. You should be candid and honest with your attorney at all times. This will ensure that your attorney will have all of the necessary information to help you succeed.
  1. Keep your lawyer informed of your schedule. You will be required from time to time to meet with your attorney, respond to document requests, attend court hearings, mediations, and settlement conferences. Your lawyer must know your schedule to be able to provide your availability at a moment’s notice.
  1. Be accessible to your attorney. If you are unavailable, return your attorney’s call as soon as possible. He or she is contacting you because it is important. Also, many attorneys utilize e-mail correspondence for client communication and to provide clients with certain documents quickly. Check your e-mail account regularly.

These tips will help you and your attorney become more successful and increase the chances of winning your case.

Gregory R. Grant is an attorney in our Traverse City office where he concentrates his practice on litigation, municipal law, and employment and labor law. He can be reached at (231) 922-1888 or at ggrant@cmda-law.com.

March’s “50 a Month Donation” Recipient

CMDA is honored and appreciative for the trust our clients have placed in our Firm since 1965.  As a way to give back to the community as we celebrate our 50th anniversary, every month throughout 2015 the Firm will be donating 50 items (or more) to a local charity.

March is Reading Month in Michigan, and we are donating new and gently used books to Most Holy Trinity School in Detroit.  The school will be using the books to expand their Kindergarten through 8th grade classroom libraries.

If you are interested in donating, please stop by our Livonia office with your contribution.  Thank you for your support!