Lawyers Association of Kansas City 

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We encourage you to share your member news with us (transitions, verdicts, etc.). Submit news items to: info@lakc.net.

 


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  • 11 Oct 2017 7:39 AM | Anonymous


    The American Board of Trial Advocates, KCMBA's Trial Academy, KCMBA's Federal Court Advocate Section, MODL, WDMO/DKAN Federal Bar Association, LAKC, and the Civil Jury Project are sponsoring the first Kansas City Jury Improvement Lunch on Wednesday, November 1 at noon at the Charles Evans Whittaker Courthouse, 400 9th Street, Kansas City, MO 64106.  This lunch will be hosted by the following law firms: Baker Sterchi Cowden & Rice, Bartimus Frickleton Robertson, Berkowitz Oliver, German May, Gorny Law Firm, Littler Mendelson, Shaffer Lombardo Shurin, and White Graham Buckley & Carr.  Others may join as sponsors or hosts.  The purpose of the lunch is to honor the jurors and to learn from them about what can be done to improve civil trials. 

    We are asking practicing lawyers to pay $19 for their own lunches.   The cost of the lunches for the judges and jurors will be shared by the host law firms.   We are in the process of arranging for the lawyers who attend to receive credit for their continuing legal education requirements.  Anyone interested in improving their trial skills will not want to miss this lunch.  It was the overwhelming consensus of those lawyers and judges who attended our previous lunch that it was informative and should be repeated at regular intervals.      Because we assign tables (to make sure the lawyers from the same firms, the judges and the jurors are divided) and have limited space, we ask that you make a reservation in advance if you want to attend. You can do so by using this link: http://civiljuryproject.law.nyu.edu/jury-improvement-lunch-registration/.                           

     


  • 28 Jun 2017 8:00 AM | Anonymous

    LAKC presented its Legacy Award to Kent R. Erickson during its annual Judicial Reception on Tuesday, June 27, 2017 at the Kill Devil Club. In 2007, the LAKC Board of Directors established the Legacy Award to recognize an individual for his or her significant and enduring contributions to the LAKC and its mission. Prior recipients include Sylvan Siegler, Stanley P. Weiner and B. John Readey III. The meaningful and lasting service Kent has provided to the LAKC clearly meets this key criterion.

    Kent R. Erickson practices in the field of intellectual property law, focusing primarily on the acquisition, registration, maintenance and enforcement of patents, trademarks and copyrights for his clients, with particular emphasis on U.S. and foreign patent prosecution in the mechanical and chemical arts. Mr. Erickson is a registered patent attorney and is licensed to practice in Missouri and Kansas.

    Mr. Erickson graduated cum laude in 1986 with his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Missouri-Rolla and received his law degree from the University of Kansas in 1990. He has taken an active role in the legal community, serving as President for the Lawyers Association of Kansas City from 2007-08. In addition, Mr. Erickson founded and continues to organize LAKC's annual IP CLE program. Mr. Erickson was also one of the founding organizers of LAKC's Run for Justice 5K, which raises funds annually for Legal Aid of Western Missouri. Mr. Erickson has previously served as the Chair of the Patent, Trademark & Copyright Committee for both the Missouri Bar and for the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association, as a member of The Missouri Bar Young Lawyers Council, as a director and as President of the Young Lawyers Section of the Lawyers Association of Kansas City and as Vice Chair of the Ethics and Professionalism Committee of the American Bar Association’s Young Lawyer Division.


    Pictured L to R: Catherine Bell, LAKC President-Elect; Mike Hargens, LAKC President; Kent Erickson, LAKC Legacy Award Recipient; Gregg Lombardi, LAKC member; Anne Baggott, LAKC Board of Directors.

  • 08 Jun 2017 7:44 AM | Anonymous

    The Lawyers Association of Kansas City will present its Legacy Award to Kent R. Erickson on June 27, 2017 during the association's annual Judicial Reception.

    Kent R. Erickson practices in the field of intellectual property law, focusing primarily on the acquisition, registration, maintenance and enforcement of patents, trademarks and copyrights for his clients, with particular emphasis on U.S. and foreign patent prosecution in the mechanical and chemical arts. Mr. Erickson is a registered patent attorney and is licensed to practice in Missouri and Kansas.

    Mr. Erickson graduated cum laude in 1986 with his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Missouri-Rolla and received his law degree from the University of Kansas in 1990. He has taken an active role in the legal community, serving as President for the Lawyers Association of Kansas City from 2007-08. In addition, Mr. Erickson founded and continues to organize LAKC's annual IP CLE program. Mr. Erickson was also one of the founding organizers of LAKC's Run for Justice 5K, which raises funds annually for Legal Aid of Western Missouri. Mr. Erickson has previously served as the Chair of the Patent, Trademark & Copyright Committee for both the Missouri Bar and for the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association, as a member of The Missouri Bar Young Lawyers Council, as a director and as President of the Young Lawyers Section of the Lawyers Association of Kansas City and as Vice Chair of the Ethics and Professionalism Committee of the American Bar Association’s Young Lawyer Division.

    In 2007, the LAKC Board of Directors established the Legacy Award to recognize an individual for his or her significant and enduring contributions to the LAKC and its mission. Prior recipients include Sylvan Siegler, Stanley P. Weiner and B. John Readey III. The meaningful and lasting service Kent has provided to the LAKC clearly meets this key criterion.

    The LAKC Legacy Award will be presented to Kent during LAKC's annual Judicial Reception on Tuesday, June 27, 2017 at the Kill Devil Club, 31 East 14th Street in the Power & Light District. The reception will be held from 5 to 7pm and the award presentation will take place at approximately 6:00 pm.



  • 08 May 2017 10:45 AM | Anonymous

    The following slate of officers and directors will be presented for a vote at the LAKC Annual Meeting on May 9, 2017 at Tom's Town:


    2017-18 Board of Directors

    President: Mike Hargens
    President-Elect: Catherine Bell
    Secretary/Treasurer: Tim West

    Anne Baggott
    Anna Berman
    Anna Louise Hawes
    Ty Hudson
    Mark Iba
    Mike Judy
    Derek MacKay
    Travis McCallon
    Dan McClain
    Chris Mirakian
    Casey Murray
    Jennifer Oldvader
    Rick Shearer
    Lindsay Todd Perkins
    Jennifer Wieman Earles

    Past-President: Brian Baggott

    All LAKC members are welcome and encouraged to attend the Annual Meeting and Happy Hour. No RSVP required; no cost to attend.  


  • 01 May 2017 7:47 AM | Anonymous

    The Lawyers Association of Kansas City-Young Lawyers Section elections for the 2017-18 Board of Directors will be held May 9, 2017 from 4:30pm - 6:30pm at Tom's Town, 1701 Main ST, Kansas City, MO. LAKC-YLS members are invited to vote for up to three (3) candidates on the ballot by mail, email or in person on May 9th. A link to the ballot is provided below.


    INSTRUCTIONS:

    You must be a member of LAKC-YLS to vote. One ballot per YLS member.

    Please vote for up to three (3) of the following candidates for the LAKC-YLS Board of Directors by marking the box next to the candidate's name.

      Please return this ballot to Tyler Scott by e-mail to tyler.scott@huschblackwell.com or by U.S. mail to Tyler Scott, Husch Blackwell LLP, 4801 Main Street, Suite 1000, Kansas City, Missouri 64112. Ballots, whether sent by e-mail or U.S. mail, must be received prior to 5 p.m. on May 9, 2017, to be counted. If you prefer to vote in person, you may do so at the LAKC-YLS Elections on May 9, 2017, from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at Tom’s Town, 1701 Main Street, Kansas City, Missouri.

      LAKC-YLS 17-18 Ballot.pdf

    • 04 Apr 2017 7:01 AM | Anonymous

      The Young Lawyers Section of the Lawyers Association of Kansas City is now accepting applications for the 2017-18 YLS Board of Directors. Interested candidates should complete the application provided and submit to Tyler Scott at tyler.scott@huschblackwell.com on or before April 27, 2017.

      The Young Lawyers Section of LAKC is comprised of members under 35 or who have graduated from law school within the past five years and maintain “service of public interest by advancing the role of the legal profession in serving the public” as a value.

      Elections will be held on Tuesday, May 9, 2017 @ Tom's Town Distilling Co., 1701 Main ST, Kansas City MO.

      LAKC YLS Application Board of Directors 4.17.pdf





    • 04 Apr 2017 6:59 AM | Anonymous

      The following changes to the YLS Bylaws have been recommended for approval at the YLS Board of Directors in April 2017.

      LAKC-YLS proposed bylaws changes 4.2017.pdf

    • 01 Mar 2017 7:50 AM | Anonymous

      Representative Keith Frederick (R – Phelps/Pulaski counties), who sits on the Special Committee on Employment Security introduced a bill that seeks to modify RSMo 431.202 in such a way that non-compete agreements between employers and employees entered into after August 28, 2017 would not be enforceable. Obviously, this type of legislation would be popular with employees subject to these type of post-employment restrictions and not with employers.

      I believe the bill was pre-filed. It was introduced and had its first reading on January 5, 2017 and read a second time on January 9, 2017. It was referred to Workforce Development on January 25 and had a public hearing on February 1. Action was postponed on the bill on February 8, 2017 and now it sits. I don’t believe this bill is going anywhere this session.

      Tim West, MO Legislative Monitor
      LAKC Board of Directors

    • 21 Feb 2017 6:12 PM | Anonymous

      There are several bills currently pending in the legislature designed to modify the Missouri Human Rights Act. I’m going to make a sketch of these here understanding that these modifications are complex and deserve much deeper treatment than afforded by this format.

      HB 550 – This bill was introduced by Judiciary Committee Chairman Joe Don McGaugh (R – Chariton, Carroll and Ray). Rep. McGaugh also served on the Special Committee on Litigation Reform, the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules and the Joint Committee on Justice System. This bill had a public hearing before the Special Committee on Litigation Reform on February 13 along with many other bills comprising a general tort reform package.

      This bill seeks to change the causation standard under the MHRA by changing the definition of “because” or “because of” to mean the motivating factor. In other words, it would be a defense to a discrimination claim that firing a person was not the motivating factor, but was still a factor. This would put the Missouri standard closer to the federal standard for employment discrimination claims.

      Along with that change, the bill would require that juries be instructed on the business judgment rule in discrimination cases with the express intent of abrogating McBryde v. Ritenour Sch. Dist., 207 S.W.3d 162 (Mo. App. E.D. 2006) and its progeny. The business judgment rule creates a rebuttable presumption in favor of management that it acted for a proper business purpose and that judgment should not be second-guessed. In other words, management mistakes, even if very stupid, are not actionable. It must be more than a mistake or bad call to create liability for the business.

      In line with the causation change, the bill would require courts to rely heavily on federal precedent from Title VII, age discrimination, and disability discrimination cases in applying the MHRA.  In accord with this, the bill recommends an analysis for courts to apply in determining summary judgment motions that would likely result in summary judgment being granted more in Missouri state court.

      The bill also includes significant damages caps that limit recovery to actual back pay plus interest and then other damages tiered based on the number of employees the business has. For instances, if a business has less than 100 employees than other damages are limited to $50,000. If a business has more than 500 employees these other damages would be limited to $300,000. Based on reported verdicts and settlements, this would have a dramatic effect.

      Finally, the bill includes a Whistleblower’s Protection Act which essentially codifies the common law exception to the at will employment doctrine as to whistleblowers. The bill defines whistleblower as a person who has reported to the proper authorities an unlawful act or serious misconduct of the employer that violates a clear mandate of public policy. The bill limits the potential damages available to a whistleblower, including a prohibition of punitive damages.

      HB 552 is nearly identical. It was introduced by Assistant Majority Floor Leader Kevin Austin (R-Greene County). This bill was also subject of a public hearing on February 13.

      HB 676 is also nearly identical. It was introduced by Rep. Dean Plocher (R – St. Louis) and was also the subject of a public hearing on February 13.

      SB 43 goes even further in establishing a “but for” causation standard for MHRA actions. That is to say that the employee would have to prove that the employer would have not fired her or taken an adverse employment action but for the protected status. The bill also has the same abrogation of McBryde v. Ritenour Sch. Dist., 207 S.W.3d 162 (Mo. App. E.D. 2006) concerning the business judgment rule. The bill would expressly abrogate all existing Missouri approved jury instructions concerning the MHRA. This bill has the same damages limitations as found in the House bill. Finally, the Senate version includes a Whistleblower section similar to the House version.

      SB 43 was initially filed by Senator Romine (R – Iron, Reynolds, St. Francois, Ste. Genevieve, Washington and Jefferson counties). It has been through the Small Business and Industry Committee and that version is now on the Senate’s formal calendar Bills for Perfection.

      Tim West, MO Legislative Monitor
      LAKC Board of Directors

    • 20 Feb 2017 8:42 AM | Anonymous

      My last post focused on bills seeking to change the joinder rules, but those bills also address venue so I want to update that post here and talk about a few other bills.

      HB 461 essentially requires that venue be established as to each defendant in any petition alleging a tort. This was voted Do Pass (10-2) by the Special Committee on Litigation Reform and is set for hearing with the Legislative Oversight Committee on February 20 at 2pm.

      SB 261 and SB 262 are the same and are set on the Senate’s Formal Calendar Bills for Perfection on February 20.  Those bills would make changes to Missouri Supreme Court Rules 52.05 and 52.06.

      SB 259 and HB 462 seek to make changes to Missouri Supreme Court Rules 52.12. 52.12 concerns the concept of joinder. Specially, these bills seek to add a subsection that states: “Venue. No person shall be allowed to intervene in any action in which a tort is alleged if that person could not independently establish jurisdiction and venue.” These bills were introduced by the same Representative and Senator that introduced HB 461 and SB 261 and SB 262.

      These bills are on the same track meaning that HB 462 is set for hearing with the Legislative Oversight Committee on February 20 at 2pm and SB 259 is on the Senate’s Formal Calendar Bills for Perfection that same day.

      SB 260 and HB 463 seek to amend Supreme Court Rule 51.01 to incorporate the changes in Rules 52.05, 52.06 and 52.12. This appears to be bootstrapping to ensure that 51.01 does not create an ambiguity. These bills are on the same path as those discussed above.

      These bills are all attempting to do the same thing: make it harder to bring a lawsuit in Missouri.  With that I guess it is not surprising who testified in favor and against the bills. 

      Testifying in favor were Representative Kolkmeyer; National Federation of Independent Business; Missouri Retailers Association; Missouri Grocers Association; Associated Industries of Missouri; Johnson & Johnson; Monsanto; The Doctors Company; Missouri Trucking Association; Missouri State Medical Association; Jay Atkins, KC Southern Railway; Missouri Petroleum Council; Washington University; Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry; Missouri Railroad Association; Phil Goldberg, American Tort Reform Association; Missouri Insurance Coalition; Kansas City Power & Light; and Missouri Organization of Defense Lawyers.

      Testifying against were Jeff Bauer, Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys and Jack Garvey.

      Tim West, MO Legislative Monitor
      LAKC Board of Directors

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