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Cortney G. Sylvester News Archive

Newsroom image for the post COVID-19: The Next Public Nuisance?

Posted June 5, 2020 with Tags , ,

COVID-19: The Next Public Nuisance?

Retail businesses and restaurants have been devastated by stay-at-home orders intended to combat the COVID-19 epidemic. As restrictions begin to loosen, businesses have more freedom to open their doors, but in doing so, face the risk of lawsuits brought by employees or customers who allege that they were exposed to COVID-19.

Newsroom image for the post Snowballs and Iceballs: Crossing the Line in Settlement Negotiations

Posted April 1, 2019 with Tags ,

Snowballs and Iceballs: Crossing the Line in Settlement Negotiations

Children of northern climes remember the joys of a snowball fight. We also remember the bully who ruined the fun by packing iceballs. (Those from more temperate zones might consider the line between brushback pitches and beanballs.) What is true in projectile sports is also true in law—there is a boundary between being aggressive and breaking the (express or implied) rules. Recent news of criminal charges against a prominent attorney has focused attention on this boundary in the context of settlement negotiations. Prosecutors allege that Michael Avenatti demanded that Nike not only pay his client, but also hire Avenatti himself to conduct a $15 to $25 million internal investigation. Otherwise, he threatened to take billions of dollars off the company’s market capitalization by going public with his client’s allegations immediately before an earnings call and the NCAA basketball tournament.

Newsroom image for the post Manufacturers Take Note: Three Significant Product Liability Cases from Minnesota

Posted February 22, 2019

Manufacturers Take Note: Three Significant Product Liability Cases from Minnesota

Product liability issues are mainly grounded in seldom-changing legal doctrines. However, manufacturers everywhere need to be aware of three relatively recent court rulings should they find themselves facing litigation in Minnesota, says product liability/mass tort attorney Cort Sylvester of Nilan Johnson Lewis in Minneapolis.

Newsroom image for the post How Lawyers Can Act Ethically When it Comes to Social Media

Posted February 1, 2019 with Tags

How Lawyers Can Act Ethically When it Comes to Social Media

Although most attorneys realize the law is a noble profession, there have always been those who compromise its integrity – sometimes capitalizing on or misleading others in times of misfortune. Legal ethics rules provide some guidance on how lawyers practice or market their services. However, new forms of communication and social media present evolving ethical challenges.

Posted March 2, 2018 with Tags

If Trace-Asbestos Products Cause Comparable Exposure to What’s in the Natural Environment, Are Companies Liable?

Although asbestos has been a known carcinogen leading to mesothelioma and other conditions for decades, it has existed in multiple places, forms and concentrations, and scientists are unable to track the onset of such diseases to a specific root cause. Consequently, plaintiff lawyers often bring lawsuits against multiple parties and once and have succeeded in their attempts to bring these cases to trial by only needing to prove some degree of exposure to any given product containing asbestos, not that the certain product led to their injury, a theory called cumulative exposure.

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