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Partners Appear on The Best Lawyers in America 2017 List

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It’s with great excitement and pride that attorneys James Gutglass, Paul Erickson, Kathleen Bonville, and Mark Larson from Gutglass, Erickson, Bonville & Larson, S.C., were once again chosen for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America © 2017 (Copyright 2016 by Woodward/White, Inc., of Aiken, SC). Many congrats to the firm, with each partner appearing on the list over 5 years in a row, and over 10 years for James Gutglass!

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Milwaukee Lawyers Voted in The Best Lawyers in America

Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers® has been regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence. Based on an exhaustive peer-review survey involving 55,000 leading attorneys and 6.7 million votes, the Best Lawyers® list truly encompasses a sound representation of the top attorneys per practice area, based on other respected, top attorneys in those practice areas. Lawyers are not allowed to pay for inclusion on the list. Corporate Counsel Magazine considers Best Lawyers “the most respected referral list of attorneys in practice.” By consistently maintaining these peer votes and therefore being repeatedly chosen for features in the yearly edition, we’re excited to have the legal community’s constant recognition of our firm’s excellence. With well over 30 years of combined experience, this comes as no surprise but remains quite an honor. While we continue to earn our peers’ trust through our success, ethics, and integrity, we’re even more committed to earning that same opinion from our clients.

Award Winning Milwaukee Lawyers

Kathleen Bonville, since 2012 “Lawyer of the Year” 2014 – Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants (Milwaukee) Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants Paul Erickson, since 2012 “Lawyer of the Year” 2012 – Medical Malpractice Law (Milwaukee) Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants James Gutglass, since 2007 “Lawyer of the Year” 2016 – Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants Mark Larson, since 2012 Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants The Best Lawyers in America© 2017. Copyright 2016 by Woodward/White, Inc., Aiken, SC

Is This a Trade Secret? Think Again.

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Businesses jealously guard information they deem confidential and economically valuable.  They may attempt to do so by invoking noncompete and nonsolicitation agreements with former employees to prevent those employees from using such information in the course of new employment.  Where there is no enforceable agreement, they may indirectly seek to interfere with the new employment by accusing the former employee, and possibly his or her new employer, of misappropriating trade secrets, in violation of Wisconsin Statutes section 134.90(2).  A recent court of appeals decision may discourage using trade secret litigation as an intimidation tool by recognizing there are limits as to what categories of arguably valuable confidential information qualify for trade secret protection.

Section 134.90 is Wisconsin’s enactment of the Uniform Trade Secrets Act.  The Act defines “trade secret” as follows:

(c)  “Trade secret” means information, including a formula, pattern, compilation, program, device, method, technique or process to which all of the following apply:

  1. The information derives independent economic value, actual or potential, from not being generally known to, and not being readily ascertainable by proper means by, other persons who can obtain economic value from its disclosure or use.
  2. The information is the subject of efforts to maintain its secrecy that are reasonable under the circumstances.

Wis. Stat. § 134.90(1)(c).

On April 28, 2016, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals in North Highland, Inc. v. Jefferson Mach. & Tool, Inc., No. 2015AP643, 2016 WL 1689972 (Wis. Ct. App. Apr. 28, 2016), affirmed a summary judgment dismissing North Highland Inc.’s claim that Frederick A. Wells, a former employee, and his new company, Jefferson Machine & Tool Inc., violated the Act by obtaining from another former employee the amount of a confidential bid North Highland had submitted to Tyson Foods, Inc. for a project at Tyson’s Jefferson, Wisconsin facility misappropriating a confidential bid amount and using that information to present a more favorable bid on behalf of Jefferson Machine.  The court held that North Highland had failed to demonstrate that a confidential bid amount falls within the Act’s definition of “trade secret.”  Acknowledging that the examples of information eligible for trade secret protection—formulas, patterns, compilations, programs, devices, methods, techniques, or processes—did not constitute an exhaustive list, the court nonetheless held that “information” had a much narrower definition than the dictionary meaning of the word.  It encompassed only such information as was similar in nature to the enumerated items.  North Highland failed to demonstrate such similarity.

Accordingly, North Highland teaches that a business cannot establish “trade secret” status simply by satisfying the “economic value” and “attempts to maintain secrecy” criteria in § 134.90(1)(c)1. and 2.  The result also suggests that in the court’s view, confidential pricing information is not the type of information protected under the Act.

If you have been accused of misappropriating a trade secret or want to know whether your confidential business information is entitled to trade secret protection, the experienced business attorneys at Gutglass, Erickson, Bonville & Larson, S.C. are here to help.  Call Atty. Joan M. Huffman at (414) 908-0237.

Trade Secret and Business Attorneys

Gutglass, Erickson, Bonville & Larson, S.C. Named to Milwaukee “Best Law Firms” List

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Gutglass, Erickson, Bonville & Larson, S.C. has been named a Tier 1 firm in Milwaukee Metro Area for the  2016 U.S. News – Best Lawyers® “Best Law Firms” list for both Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants and Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants.

To be eligible for inclusion on the “Best Law Firms” list, firms must receive the appropriate combination of client feedback, information provided on the Law Firm Survey and the Law Firm Leaders Survey and Best Lawyers peer-review. This means that they also must have at least one lawyers that’s been included on the Best Lawyers in America® list: Gutglass, Erickson, Bonville & Larson, S.C has four attorneys on the 2016 Edition of this list.

About U.S. News – Best Lawyers®

The “Best Law Firms” rankings are based on a rigorous evaluation process that includes the collection of client and lawyer evaluations, peer review from leading attorneys in their field, and review of additional information provided by law firms as part of the formal submission process. For more about Best Lawyers and the Best Law Firms list, visit www.bestlawyers.com.

Gutglass Erickson Bonville Larson Best Law Firms Milwaukee Metro Tier 1

Milwaukee Lawyers Voted in The Best Lawyers in America

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We’re excited to announce that our Milwaukee attorneys James Gutglass, Paul Erickson, Kathleen Bonville, and Mark Larson from Gutglass, Erickson, Bonville & Larson, S.C., were once again chosen for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America © 2016 (Copyright 2015 by Woodward/White, Inc., of Aiken, SC). We’d also like to note that James Gutglass celebrates 10 years on the list. 2016 marks 5 years of inclusion for each Bonville, Erickson, and Larson. Many congrats to the firm!

Milwaukee Lawyers Voted in The Best Lawyers in America

Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers® has been regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence. Based on an exhaustive peer-review survey involving 55,000 leading attorneys and 6.7 million votes, the Best Lawyers® list truly encompasses a sound representation of the top attorneys per practice area, based on other respected, top attorneys in those practice areas. Lawyers are not allowed to pay for inclusion on the list. Corporate Counsel Magazine considers Best Lawyers “the most respected referral list of attorneys in practice.”

Our partners’ repeated feature in the yearly edition is done by consistently maintaining these peer votes, which shows the legal community’s constant recognition of the firm’s excellence. With well over 30 years of combined experience, this comes as no surprise, but remains quite an honor.

While we continue to earn our peers’ trust through our success, ethics, and integrity, we’re even more committed to earning that same opinion from our clients.  

Award Winning Milwaukee Lawyers

Kathleen Bonville, since 2012

Lawyer of the Year 2014 – Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants (Milwaukee)

  • Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants

  • Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants

  • Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants

Paul Erickson, since 2012

Lawyer of the Year 2012 – Medical Malpractice Law (Milwaukee)

  • Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants

  • Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants

  • Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants

James Gutglass, since 2007

Lawyer of the Year 2016 – Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants

  • Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants

  • Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants

Mark Larson, since 2012

  • Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants

  • Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants

  • Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants

The Best Lawyers in America© 2016. Copyright 2015 by Woodward/White, Inc., Aiken, SC

Gutglass Erickson Bonville Larson Milwaukee Best Lawyers List

 

WI Supreme Court Addresses Post-Death Discovery Claims

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The Wisconsin Supreme Court recently addressed whether the discovery rule applies to claims that may not be discovered until after a decedent’s death. In Christ v. Exxon Mobil Corp., 2015 WI 58, the issue presented was whether the discovery rule applied to survival and wrongful death claims that were not discovered until after the expiration of the statute of limitations. The plaintiff representatives of estates and wrongful death claimants alleged the decedents’ injuries and deaths were a result of exposure to benzene at a tire manufacturing facility.

The court held the discovery rule permits the accrual of survival and wrongful death claims after the date of the deceased’s death, if the plaintiff estate representatives and beneficiaries are able to demonstrate they exercised reasonable diligence in investigating and discovering their claims. You can view the entire discussion here.

WI Supreme Court Discusses Post-Death Discovery Claims

Trust & Efficiency Valued by Wisconsin Attorneys of Gutglass, Erickson, Bonville & Larson, S.C.

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Facing legal issues can be unnerving. Our attorneys are experienced professionals, highly regarded in the community and among their peers and will help restore you to a state of calm, as they work through the situation with tact and ease. Whether you’re a doctor or hospital facing a lawsuit due to medical malpractice, disputing a contract with an employer, or considering a product liability suit, our lawyers – based in Milwaukee but serving Wisconsin – will draw upon their 30+ years experience to assist you. Gutglass, Erickson, Bonville & Larson S.C. believes you deserve trustworthy attorneys who will pursue legal action on your behalf armed with the knowledge, passion, and professionalism to best serve you.

We’ve represented a wide range of clients, from individuals to large corporations, treating each with the respect they deserve. When you hire us to take your case, you hire trustworthy attorneys who will carefully, expertly handle the situation, no matter the scope. Our ethics, skill, integrity, and plain hard work set us apart from other Milwaukee law firms, and we’re proud of the trust that we earn from our clients with each new case.

We love the Milwaukee community, which is why we’re so proud to have successfully handled thousands of cases in the area, helping businesses and individuals pursue their goals and maintain their rights. We’ve taken on constitutional challenges before the Supreme Court and a landmark Milwaukee civil rights case.  When you invest your trust with GEBL as your Wisconsin attorney, your team will be led by a senior partner expert in the area of law where your case falls: business law, healthcare law, personal injury law, etc. Each of our senior partners have extensive trial experience in each legal area, allowing our firm to handle legal matters over a broad spectrum of issues and complexities with efficiency, economy and success.

 

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Milwaukee Lawyers Voted to "Best Lawyers in America" List

By | Medical Malpractice, News & Events | No Comments

It’s with great pride that we announce Milwaukee lawyers James Gutglass, Paul Erickson, Kathleen Bonville, and Mark Larson from Gutglass, Erickson, Bonville & Larson, S.C., were again selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America © 2015 (Copyright 2014 by Woodward/White, Inc., of Aiken, SC). We’d also like to note that it’s been 9 years for James Gutglass’ inclusion on the list. Congratulations to all. Milwaukee Best Lawyers 2015

Milwaukee Lawyers Voted Best Lawyers in America

Best Lawyers® has become universally regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence since it was first published in 1983. inclusion in Best Lawyers is considered a singular honor because it is based on an exhaustive peer-review survey in which almost 50,000 leading attorneys cast nearly five million votes on the legal abilities of other lawyers in their practice areas – lawyers are not required or allowed to pay a fee to be listed. Best Lawyers has been coined by Corporate Counsel magazine “the most respected referral list of attorneys in practice.”

To be included year over year for inclusion in the next edition, attorneys must maintain these votes. So with the continued addition this year, our team of attorneys in Milwaukee shows a tradition of excellence – and that’s no surprise with over 30 years of experience.

We strive to truly represent the Best Lawyers title by earning our peers and clients’ trust through our ethics, skills, compassion, and integrity.

Award Winning Milwaukee Lawyers

Kathleen Bonville, since 2012

Lawyer of the Year 2014 – Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants (Milwaukee)

  • Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants
  • Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants
  • Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants

Paul Erickson, since 2012

Lawyer of the Year 2012 – Medical Malpractice Law (Milwaukee)

  • Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants
  • Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants
  • Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants

James Gutglass, since 2007

  • Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants
  • Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants

Mark Larson, since 2012

  • Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants
  • Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants
  • Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants

The Best Lawyers in America© 2015. Copyright 2014 by Woodward/White, Inc., Aiken, SC

Slip & Fall Lawsuits

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If you have slipped, fallen, and injured yourself, the seasoned lawyers from Gutglass, Erickson, Bonville and Larson, can help. Slip and fall lawsuits are more common than you would think. Why? Slip and fall lawsuits know no discrimination; they can happen anywhere and to anyone: a storefront, the pharmacy, or even an individual’s front pathway can all be areas for slip and fall accidents. Unsure if an inquiry you have suffered qualifies for this type of lawsuit? You may be legally entitled to compensation for your slip and all-related personal injury.

Are You Entitled to Compensation?

If you received a mild to severe injury on an individual’s property or in a public space, you may have a solid case for a slip and fall lawsuit. The key? Proof that the injury was caused due to negligence is essential. Were dangerous conditions left unfixed? If the property owner knowingly allowed for unsafe conditions to exist or took no measures to have them prevented, resolved, or discovered in the first place, you may be entitled to compensation.

Contact an Attorney Now

If you are interested in filing a slip and fall lawsuit, or are unsure if you should, Gutglass, Erickson, Bonville and Larson Law Firm is prepared to provide you with legal assistance. Slipped and fallen? Call (414) 273-1144 to learn how we can help with your personal injury.

Proudly serving the Milwaukee, Wisconsin, community.

Franchising Basics: Selecting a Franchise

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In the business world, the franchise is a promising, yet often complicated prospect. Choosing to invest in a franchise involves serious consideration and a detailed plan of action.

The decision to buy a franchise is complicated, but it is a rewarding choice for many franchise owners. When you’re contemplating franchise ownership, you need trusted legal counsel. As franchise lawyers, we are familiar with the franchise process, beginning with the foundations and extending through the life of franchise ownership.

Foundational Franchise Decisions: Selecting a Franchise

franchise attorney

As you consider franchise ownership, there are a number of basic factors to consider. Exploring the basic foundation and the keys of successful franchise ownership will assist you in selecting a franchise.

Franchise Basics

What exactly is a franchise? The U.S. Small Business Administration defines a franchise in the following way:

“A franchise is a business model that involves one business owner licensing trademarks and methods to an independent entrepreneur.”

There are a few different forms of franchising. The SBA goes on to explain the two main forms of franchising.

1. Product or trade name franchising occurs when the franchisor owns the right to the business name or trademark and sells that right to a franchisee.
2. Business format franchising occurs when the franchisor and franchisee have an ongoing relationship, and the franchisor provides services to assist the franchisee through the business process.

Before You Invest in a Franchise

Before investing in a franchise, significant research is required. We’ve already addressed the “Franchise Disclosure Document,” the agreement that includes crucial details of the franchise agreement. Before examining the franchise disclosure document, you will start by considering what type of franchise in which to invest.

There are a number of questions to consider as you plan your franchise investment. Listed below are several items to explore with each potential franchise investment:

  • How much can you invest in a franchise?
  • How much financing will be necessary?
  • What are your goals?
  • How successful are other franchisees?
  • What does the competition look like?
  • What is the demand for the product or service?
  • How much support and training is given for franchisees?
  • How stable is the franchisor?

As you consider a franchise investment, you can trust the seasoned lawyers at Gutglass, Erickson, Bonville and Larson Law Firm. We are prepared to support you with franchise litigation.

For more information about our franchise law services, call (414) 273-1144.