Bright Prospect for Midlands Law School Graduates

Law school graduates in the Midlands have a brighter prospect of being hired than those on the coasts. Admission to law schools for the fall, has decreased nationally. In a recent article in the Omaha World Herald, partner Brian Brislen relates that new graduate hires, at the firm has actually increased this year compared to the previous two. Competition for these positions has grown with the increase in the number of graduates.  You can read the full story at http://www.omaha.com/article/20130409/MONEY/704099961/1685

LDM Successfully Defends University in Disability Discrimination Case

LDM attorneys Craig Martin and Jason Grams convinced a jury that their client, a local university, did not discriminate against one of its students.  The student alleged that he was removed from the Nursing Program because of his disability.  The university disagreed, asserting that the student was removed from the Nursing Program because he failed to meet the expectations of a senior nursing student.

The trial took four days to complete, and involved numerous exhibits and testimony from administrators, professors and students.  The jury returned a unanimous verdict in favor of the university.

Discrimination claims against educational institutions, like those against employers, are difficult because of the sympathies engendered by a plaintiff.  LDM and the university were pleased that the jury looked beyond these sympathies and to the facts underlying the university’s decision to remove the student from the Nursing Program.

LDM Attorneys Secure $33.5 Million Settlement

LDM attorneys, led by Mark Novotny, Pat Vipond and Cathy Trent-Vilim, recently secured a $33.5 million settlement for a large commercial client in a highly complex and contentiously-litigated matter.  Over the course of the three and a half year suit, LDM successfully defeated three separate motions to dismiss and two motions for summary judgment (which span more than 500 pages of combined briefing and thousands of pages of evidence).  The settlement, reached only weeks before a scheduled six-week federal jury trial, related to investment losses the commercial client suffered while participating in a program operated by the defendants.  The case required the team effort of numerous LDM attorneys, paralegals, and staff members, who analyzed more than 550,000 pages of documents produced by the defendants and reviewed approximately 1.4 million pages of client documents for privilege and responsiveness.

Partner Sean Minahan Travels to S.E. Asia

Partner, Sean Minahan recently spent 12 days traveling in Hong Kong, Vietnam and Taiwan as a member of the Nebraska LEAD Class 31.  Throughout the educational travel seminar, the group met with governmental and corporate representatives from each country’s agricultural sector.  The prevailing theme of the experience was the U.S. agriculture’s role in S.E. Asia’s food supply and how that role may change in the future.  You can contact Sean if you have any questions about his experience traveling  in Hong Kong, Vietnam, and Taiwan.

Plaintiff Verdict Affirmed on Appeal

LDM attorneys Bill Lamson and Cathy Trent-Vilim recently obtained a ruling from the Nebraska Supreme Court affirming a $1 million plaintiff’s verdict.  In Werner v. County of Platte, the Court rejected the County’s objections to the trial court’s receipt of certain evidence, and its determination that the plaintiff was an “innocent third party” for purposes of Nebraska’s vehicular pursuit strict liability statute, and upheld the trial court’s judgment for Mr. Werner in the amount of $1 million, the maximum permitted by Nebraska law.

Cathy S. Trent-Vilim and “They’re Not My Clients-What Do You Mean I Owe Them a Duty of Care?”

Cathy S. Trent-Vilim recently published “They’re Not My Clients – What Do You Mean I Owe Them a Duty of Care?” in the January, 2013 edition of the Nebraska Defense Counsel newsletter.  The article discusses the Nebraska Supreme Court’s recent expansion of an attorney’s duties to third parties.  You can read the full article at https://www.dropbox.com/s/al85okak2zaqrbs/They%27re%20Not%20My%20Clients.pdf

Mark Novotny Inducted in American Board of Trial Advocates

Congratulations to LDM partner Mark E. Novotny, for his recent induction in the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA).  ABOTA is an invitation-only organization aimed at elevating the standard of integrity, honor, and courtesy in the legal profession.  It seeks out attorneys who display the skills, civility and integrity to help younger attorneys achieve a higher level of trial advocacy and educate the public about the vital importance of the Seventh Amendment which guarantees the right to trial by jury.

JoAnna Thomas Appointed as interim Vice Chair of Executive Committee for OBA Young Lawyers Division

JoAnna Thomas was recently appointed as interim Vice Chair of the Executive Committee for the Omaha Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division.  Ms. Thomas participated in the Omaha Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division Exploratory Committee from June through December, 2012.  The exploratory committee examined areas in which a Young Lawyers Division could benefit newer members of the bar and encourage community involvement in Omaha and participation in the OBA.  The exploratory committee submitted a formal proposal for organization of the YLD, which was approved in late December, 2012.  The YLD will serve the interests of attorneys within their first five years of practice and those under the age of 36.  The YLD houses two programming committees:  a committee for outreach and communication, focused on mentorship and community service in Omaha and surrounding areas; and a committee devoted to continuing legal education, focused on addressing practical issues faced by young practitioners.

Three Partners Chosen as The Best Lawyers in America

Lamson, Dugan and Murray is pleased to announce that three of its partners have once again been chosen as The Best Lawyers in America:   Bill Lamson for company litigation, commercial litigation, litigation – regulatory enforcement (SEC, telecom, energy), medical malpractice and personal injury litigation; Bob Murray for corporate and tax law; and Pat Vipond for commercial litigation and plaintiff and defendant professional malpractice law.

Mark Novotny Presents a Speech on Health Care Professional Negligence Litigation and Licensure Discipline Actions

LDM partner Mark Novotny recently spoke to the Omaha Dental Group on the topics of professional malpractice civil litigation, licensure investigations and proceedings, controlling risks and risk management.  The audience consisted of practicing dentists and oral maxillofacial surgeons from the Omaha area.  The presentation included outlining current case law, a step-by-step discussion of the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services disciplinary review process and highlighting recent claims and lawsuit by learning through the peer review process.  Mr. Novotny frequently is asked to speak with groups concerning professional malpractice, health care law and administrative proceeds.