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JO Knows Appeals

 

An appeal typically begins when legal proceedings in a trial court end, for example by a jury verdict or summary-judgment order. If a party isn’t satisfied with the trial court’s decision, the party can appeal the decision to a higher court. The appellate court’s job is not to retry the case. It doesn’t hear testimony or decide the facts. Instead, it will consider whether the trial court properly applied the law, and has sufficient evidence to justify its ruling. If the trial court got the law right, the appellate court will uphold the decision; if the lower court was wrong, the appellate court will reverse the decision and send it back to the trial court often for further proceedings.

Because appeals are done almost entirely through written submissions, our appellate attorneys have developed a unique, easy-to-understand writing style that has been praised by judges, clients, and other attorneys. We carefully format our briefs and submissions to reflect the same attention to detail and thoroughness we apply to researching and writing substantive legal arguments. And—when it’s appropriate—we add pictures, insert boxes, graphs, and even hyperlinks to help judges understand our arguments.

Judges read thousands of submissions a year. Almost all of them look alike and read alike. Our briefs—with their sharp layout, clear prose, detailed research, and well-organized arguments—stand out.

JO Knows Insurance Litigation

At Jones Obenchain, we’ve been representing local, regional, and national insurers and their insureds for over 100 years. The work we do for them runs the gamut from defending personal-injury claims, to litigating employment-discrimination claims, to prosecuting and defending coverage actions and errors-and-omissions lawsuits.

All of this litigation gets us into court…a lot. In 2011 Jones Obenchain tried more civil jury trials in Indiana than all but two other firms.*

And though litigation is an adversarial process, our peers consistently rank us among the best at what we do. So do our clients, if the feedback they’ve given us on legal sites such as AVVO and Martindale-Hubbell are any indication.

But as essential as courtroom skills are to a litigation prac­tice, they’re worthless if our clients and the courts don’t want to read what we have to say. Let’s face it: there’s a lot of writing in a litigation practice and most legal writing is a chore to get through. We read it because we have to, not be­cause we want to.

So our litigators emphasize writing in plain English and using cutting-edge tech­nology in the documents we prepare to make them a pleasure to read. What does that mean, exactly? It’s not unusual to see photographs, hyperlinks, and video embedded in our briefs and motions. These add visual interest to the text and corroborate the arguments without sending readers to scour through mounds of exhibits.

Not only are plainly written, visually appealing documents easier for clients to read and understand, they help persuade mediators and judges about the merits of our clients’ position. That means we’re often able to bring cases to a successful resolution before we ever step foot in a courtroom.

*Source: 2011 Indiana Jury Verdict Reporter.

Celebrate National Take the Stairs Day

Are you one of the many who made a New Year’s resolution to get or remain healthy? If so, and you’re looking for something you can do that takes no special equipment or preparation, then National Take the Stairs Day is for you! The goal of the day is to encourage everyone to improve their by walking up the stairs. Walking up and down stairs is a non-impact activity that most of us can do. It helps us tone our muscles, maintain or even lose weight, and contribute to cardio-vascular health. Did you know that a 160pound person who climbs for 3 minutes, expends approximately 30 calories?  Discover and enjoy the health benefits of taking the stairs today. Then, make it a daily habit!   National Take the Stairs Day is usually celebrated on the second Wednesday of January each year.

Employers Make Note: E-Verify

Congress and President Trump’s on-going dispute over government funding has shut down most federal operations, including E-Verify. So what does that mean for employers?

E-Verify is a web-based program that allows employers to electronically verify that a newly-hired employee is authorized to work in the United States.  Employers are incentivized to utilize E-Verify. If a worker isn’t authorized to work, employers participating in E-Verify are given a presumption that they didn’t knowingly hire an employee unauthorized to work in the country.

But the program isn’t available during the government shutdown. So employers can’t enroll, create new cases, or take actions on other cases.

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the Department of Homeland Security implemented policies to minimize the disruption:

  • Suspending the three-day rule for creating E-Verify cases for situations affected by the unavailability of the program.
  • Extending the time period during which employees may resolve Tentative Nonconfirmations (TNCs). So the days when E-Verify is unavailable will not count toward the days employees have to resolve their TNCs.
  • Employers aren’t allowed to take adverse action against an employee because the employee’s E-Verify case is in an interim status.

USCIS promised to provide more information once government operations resume.

Employers with questions are encouraged to contact the attorneys at Jones Obenchain. We can help to minimize employer’s risks, make sure they remain complaint with E-Verify, and alleviate any other legal concerns.

Protect Your Online Accounts With Better Passwords

Many of us use the same user names and passwords over and over for our online accounts. While that makes them easy to remember, it may not be the best approach. The IRS has prepared some helpful hints to keep your information safe from cybercriminals. Building better and stronger passwords is an important part of that protection. See more information at: https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/strong-passwords-help-protect-accounts-against-cybercriminals

St. Nicholas Day

Traditions are a big part of the holiday season. For some their tradition includes celebrating St. Nicholas Day. Some celebrations of this day include children placing their shoes outside their bedroom door or on the fireplace hearth on the eve of in hopes of finding candy, coins, or a small gift in them when they awaken. So, celebrate the occasion and keep the tradition going by filling up a child’s shoes with goodies on Celebrate St. Nicolas Day!

JO Knows Appeals

An appeal typically begins when legal proceedings in a trial court end, for example by a jury verdict or summary-judgment order. If a party isn’t satisfied with the trial court’s decision, the party can appeal the decision to a higher court. The appellate court’s job is not to retry the case. It doesn’t hear testimony or decide the facts. Instead, it will consider whether the trial court properly applied the law, and has sufficient evidence to justify its ruling. If the trial court got the law right, the appellate court will uphold the decision; if the lower court was wrong, the appellate court will reverse the decision and send it back to the trial court often for further proceedings.

Because appeals are done almost entirely through written submissions, our appellate attorneys have developed a unique, easy-to-understand writing style that has been praised by judges, clients, and other attorneys. We carefully format our briefs and submissions to reflect the same attention to detail and thoroughness we apply to researching and writing substantive legal arguments. And—when it’s appropriate—we add pictures, insert boxes, graphs, and even hyperlinks to help judges understand our arguments.

Judges read thousands of submissions a year. Almost all of them look alike and read alike. Our briefs—with their sharp layout, clear prose, detailed research, and well-organized arguments—stand out. See for yourself here.