Friday, 20 July 2018

Piece of Cake: What’s Behind Supreme Court Opinions?

On June 4, 2018 the United States Supreme Court issued a decision in the controversial case, Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd. v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission. The case concerned a baker, Mr. Jack Phillips, a devout Christian, who in 2012 declined to create a wedding cake for a same-sex wedding on the basis that doing so would require him to express himself artistically in a way that was inconsistent with his religious beliefs. At the time, gay marriage was not legally recognized in Colorado. However, the state had an anti-discrimination act regarding goods and services available to the public. See C.R.S. 24-34-601. The Commission determined that Mr. Phillips violated the anti-discrimination act. On review, the Supreme Court held that the Commission violated the First Amendment’s Free Exercise Clause by egregiously treating Mr. Phillips’ case with hostility towards his religious beliefs. The Free Exercise Clause requires that states not base regulations and laws on hostility towards a religious belief, but that they remain neutral. The Supreme Court reversed the lower court’s decision stating that Mr. Phillips had been “entitled to a neutral decision-maker who would give full and fair consideration to his religious objection as he sought to assert it . . . ” Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd. v. Colo. Civil Rights Comm’n, 201 L.Ed.2d 35, 46 (U.S. 2018).

Critical to the effect of this decision on similar future cases is that the Court did not decide for the states the limits and boundaries between anti-discrimination and freedom of speech. Rather, the Court narrowly held that these disputes “must be resolved with tolerance, without undue disrespect to sincere religious beliefs . . . ” while avoiding “subjecting gay persons to indignities when they seek goods and services in an open market.” Id. at 50. In other words, the Supreme Court simply held that state courts must be neutral decision-makers who faithfully uphold the entire Constitution.

Nevertheless, the case was not decided without much disagreement among the nine Supreme Court Justices, despite the final 7-2 decision. With three concurring opinions (one such written and joined by two of the four liberal Justices) and one dissenting opinion, it is no wonder why the case has caused such controversy. What might cause even more shock is that Justice Kennedy, who wrote the majority opinion, also wrote the 2015 landmark decision which legalized gay marriage nationwide. Because of the different opinions, this case becomes an effective model for answering the following questions. How do Supreme Court Justices decide who writes each opinion? Why do they write concurring and dissenting opinions? What precedential value do concurring and dissenting opinions have?

The Majority Opinion is Assigned by the Chief Justice

After oral arguments, the Justices convene in a conference to express how each of them would decide the case; the conference is followed by a vote. Once the votes have been counted, the Chief Justice assigns a Justice in the majority to write the opinion of the Court or does so himself. However, if the Chief Justice is not in the majority, the most senior Justice in the majority has the authority to assign writing the opinion of the court. In Masterpiece Cakeshop, Chief Justice Roberts was a part of the majority and assigned writing the opinion of the court to Justice Kennedy. They were joined by Justices Breyer, Alito, Kagan, and Gorsuch. Often, a Justice in the majority will agree with the outcome of the case, but not with the majority’s reasoning for it. That Justice may write a concurring opinion, which can be joined by other Justices. Here, Justice Kagan filed a concurring opinion in which Justice Breyer joined. Justice Gorsuch filed another concurring opinion, joined by Justice Alito. Justice Thomas wrote an opinion concurring in the judgment, but only concurring in part as to the majority’s rationale. Any Justice who disagrees with the majority judgment can write a separate dissenting opinion. Here Justice Ginsberg, who was joined by Justice Sotomayor, filed a dissenting opinion.

Often, the opinions reference each other, each Justice arguing their reasoning in comparison to another’s. The following sections briefly describe the main points of each opinion and illustrate how the Justices agree and disagree with each other.

Majority Opinion:

Written by J. Kennedy; Joined by JJ. Roberts, Breyer, Alito, Kagan, Gorsuch

“While it is unexceptional that Colorado law can protect gay persons in acquiring products and services on the same terms and conditions as are offered to other members of the public, the law must be applied in a manner that is neutral toward religion.” Id. at 37. The commissioners made hostile comments about Mr. Phillips’ faith, casting doubt on the fairness and impartiality of the Commission’s adjudication of the case. Justice Kennedy compared this case to another where other bakers prevailed before the Commission despite refusing to create a cake for a client (because it depicted anti-gay messages, which the bakers opposed) while being willing to sell other products with a different message to the same customers. The cases are all too similar, he argues, and yet the Commission reached opposite decisions.


Written by J. Kagan; Joined by J. Breyer

“[A] proper basis for distinguishing the cases was available—in fact, it was obvious.” Id. at 50. The three bakers, Justice Kagan argues, would have denied making the anti-gay cake for any customer, regardless of his religious beliefs. However, Mr. Phillips would have created a wedding cake for an opposite-sex couple, but refused to create one for the same-sex couple. Nevertheless the commission made their decision with hostility and bias.


Written by J. Gorsuch; Joined by J. Alito
Pushing back against the Kagan and Ginsberg opinions, Justice Gorsuch argues that the different bakers’ cases were legally almost identical and should have resulted in the same determinations. He argues that the Commission treated them differently because they deemed Mr. Phillips’ beliefs offensive. The courts should not be deciding what is offensive. “[T]he place of secular officials isn’t to sit in judgment of religious beliefs, but only to protect their free exercise. Just as it is the ‘proudest boast of our free speech jurisprudence’ that we protect speech that we hate, it must be the proudest boast of our free exercise jurisprudence that we protect religious beliefs that we find offensive.” Id. at 55.


Written by J. Thomas; Joined by J. Gorsuch
Justice Thomas addresses the freedom of speech argument that Mr. Phillips made. He believes creating a custom wedding cake for a couple is “expressive conduct” and should therefore be protected by the First Amendment. “States cannot punish protected speech because some group finds it offensive, hurtful, stigmatic, unreasonable, or undignified.” Id at 65.


Written by J. Ginsberg; Joined by J. Sotomayor

Justice Ginsberg argues that neither the commissioners’ statements about religion nor the commission’s prior treatment of other bakers amounts to hostility towards religion. The Court’s decision is therefore unjustified. She argues that the other bakers refused to make an offensive cake because of the cake itself, but that Mr. Phillips refused to bake the wedding cake because of their sexual orientation.

Precedential Value of Concurring and Dissenting Opinions

While lower courts must follow the Supreme Court’s majority opinion (under stare decisis), there are times when a concurring opinion, and even a dissenting opinion, can influence future decisions and the development of law. Overtime, the view of the courts might therefore shift drastically.

As for the Masterpiece Cakeshop case, it will take careful consideration by lower courts of the decision as they apply it to similar cases. Courts will need to balance applying the law in a manner that is neutral towards religion while protecting people from discrimination.

Friday, 13 July 2018

Do you need to hire the best Corporate lawyers? Then read this!

It is important to make sure that if you have a business, or starting your own business, that you have everything you need. And, it normally means that you should make sure that you hire all the right people. This is the only way that you can make sure that your business is going to be successful.

One of the people that you should hire is corporate lawyers. No business can really go without this legal assistance. You might never know when you need legal advice, and then it is going to be too late to start looking for one. It is always best to have one on your payroll. Then, you will have someone that you can phone anytime. The one problems that people have is to choose the right one. You want to make sure that you hire a lawyer that you can trust and rely on. This is why you should make sure that you know these tips on how to hire the best corporate attorneys that you can find.

Doing research is the first thing that you should do

The first thing that you should do, is research. You should do research and find the best corporate lawyer Brooklyn that you can find. And, this isn’t something that you will be able to do without research.

By just hiring the first and best attorney that you find, isn’t really recommended. You will not know if you are going to have a lawyer on your payroll that you can trust and that have the reputation that you can count on. Research different names and find those that have the best reviews and recommendations.

Know the experience that the lawyer has

Different corporate lawyers have different experiences in businesses. You don’t want to hire a lawyer that doesn’t have a clue how your business is working. He won’t be able to give you the right type of advice or service.

This is why you should make sure that the legal advisor that you are going to hire, has experience and knowledge in the business that you have. If not, you should start looking for a new advisor.

His reputation is extremely important

The last thing that you want is to hire a corporate lawyer in Brooklyn that doesn’t have a good reputation. This can lead to paying someone a monthly fee that doesn’t really assist you in any legal matters.

There are different ways that you can make sure about their reputations before you can decide if this is someone that you should consider hiring. Asking around to other businesses about his reputation or reading reviews online will give you a great idea if this is someone with a great reputation that you can use without any problems.

The fees he is asking and services he’s delivering

Before your final decision about hiring a corporate lawyer, you need to make sure about the fee he is asking and the service that he’s delivering. You don’t want to hire someone if you don’t know that he is going to be valuable to the business and assisting you in any legal matters.

You want to have a contract that is stipulating his fee and the services that he is going to deliver for that fee. Then, you will not have any problems along the line with fees that are high and services that he doesn’t really provide.

Don’t wait until it is too late to hire the best lawyer for your business

The last tip is to make sure that you don’t wait until you need a lawyer for your business before you start looking for one. Then, you are going to be desperate and you will not make sure that you are taking your time and hiring the best one you can find.

When it comes to corporate lawyers Brooklyn, you need to make sure that you have one on your payroll. You don’t want to search for one when your business is in trouble. However, you still need to make sure that you are hiring one that you can trust, that you can afford and that have the right amount of experience of your type of business.  Then, you will know for sure that you have hired the best legal assistance that will be valuable for your business.

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Thursday, 5 July 2018

The complete guide to Intellectual property lawyers

There are a couple of things that a business or large company needs: They need capital, products or services to sell, employees and legal assistance. Without these things, a business doesn’t really have any chance of succeeding. Especially, for a business that is functioning for the first time.

The secret is that you should not hire just any lawyer, you should make sure that you are hiring an intellectual property law that will assist you with property management. But, before you can do this, you need to make sure that you are going to know everything there is to know about these lawyers. This is the complete guide to this legal assistance that you should consider hiring.
What is intellectual property
It doesn’t really matter what type of business you have; your business will own some sort of intellectual property. It can be anything unique that belongs to the business. It can be the name of your business, the logo, the product or service or even your design.
No matter what type of intellectual property you have, you need to make sure that it protected and that no other business can steal your property. And, this is why you need to consider hiring Intellectual property law in Brooklyn to handle this for you.
What type of services can you expect from these lawyers
You need to know what type of services you can expect from the best intellectual property litigation company. This is the only way that you can make sure that you are going to protect all your intellectual property from getting stolen by other companies. This type of company is providing services for:
  • Trademarks
  • Copyright
  • Registered design rights
  • Patents
There isn’t any other way to make sure that you have the right to your intellectual property and that not any other business can get the patent on your stuff. You need to know that these things happen a lot, and then you don’t have any legal reasons why you can take them to court.
Things that can happen when you don’t make use of these lawyers
As mentioned before, there are many negative things that can happen when you don’t make use of Intellectual property lawyers for your intellectual belongings in the business.
Without using this lawyer, you will not be able to protect your business’s belongings. You won’t be able to go to court if another company is stealing your design, your logo, the name of your business, or even your product or services that you have to offer. This can cause you to lose everything. And, it can even mean that you should close your business because the other company can now take you to court for “stealing” their idea. Even if it was your idea.
Finding the right one is essential
You need to make sure that you are going to find the best service for Intellectual property law in Brooklyn. This is another problem that business owners might have. They don’t use the best service, but just hire any service to get it over and done with.
It is extremely important to make sure that you are going to hire the best service that knows every single step in the process of getting a trademark or patent. If the right steps weren’t followed correctly, it can mean that it isn’t legal and you will lose your trademark or patent.
Doing the research, reading reviews and talking to other business owners are really important when you want to make sure that you are hiring the right expert for your business and for protecting your business’s belongings. There is much information online about these lawyers that you can use to find the best one for your business.
It is essential to make sure that you know everything there is to know about Intellectual property lawyers. Especially, if you are planning to start your own business. They are making sure that everything about the business is protected. The design, the logo the products and even the name of your business. Without making use of this professional, you will not be able to protect your business and its belongings. Then your product or even logo might not be unique anymore.

Saturday, 9 June 2018

Get the best advice for real estate industry!

It doesn’t matter if you are a buyer or a seller of some property, you want the get the best of the deal, right? How can you be sure that you have got the best of it? Can you trust the person you are selling something or buying something from him or her? Numerous people around the globe ask themselves the same question when it comes to this risky situation. There are numerous properties waiting to be sold or bought, and for that case, we have created this article! We want to share the best advice with you! Besides that, we are well aware how this process is a hard one and can cause people numerous problems and headaches, and we all want to escape that, right? So, let’s see, who can help you to go through such process smoothly, besides our advice!

When it comes to real estate, everyone is talking about an attorney. Why is that so? Because these people are literally professionals which are specialized in all legal matter that are always related to some property, and that is exactly what you are searching for, right? Besides that, they will be in your whole process with you trying to do their best and to help you to make the proper decision in every step that awaits you. It doesn’t matter if you just want to be sure how your everyday transactions are under full control. That is exactly where an attorney strikes in! Real estate attorney Brooklyn is actually our choice! Numerous people know how they really need an attorney, but it may be a hard task to choose the proper one, wouldn’t you agree? It seems like there are numerous of professionals and people stay confused while trying to choose the best person which can help them to achieve their goal. Okay, what else can you get from such a professional? You also want to get a legal guidance when you are buying or selling some property right? An attorney will keep you safe and he or she will make you get the best interests of some deal. Overall, you should definitely hire an attorney, if you have doubt about this topic earlier. Be sure how everything will end just fine!

What about a commercial real estate lawyer? Do you need one too? We will talk about commercial real estate lawyer Brooklyn because that is exactly from whom we got so many advice and help. As I have already mentioned above, people hate the part of choosing the proper expert. And for that case, I have earlier always searched for the top-rated professionals, and here we are! Okay, why do you need a commercial real estate lawyer too? First of all, he or she will make you sure how you will always get some favorable terms. How is that possible? Well, it is not an easy process to obtain the input from your attorney, but in this situation, with a great professional we have recommended, you won’t need to worry about that at all! How about facilitating a seamless transaction? Does that bother you? A commercial real estate lawyer will help you with that too! In every real estate process, there may be numerous critical issues which complicate the whole situation, and that is exactly what everyone wants to escape, right? So, how can you escape that? Can you already guess it by yourself? Yes, it is not your job to do that, all you need to do here is to hire a commercial real estate lawyer. Numerous loan documents can cause you so much stress and you may feel so lost. Oh, so many papers to sign! Do you even know what actually you are signing? If you don’t, don’t worry, because you are not the only one! As you can see, being in this process may sound like an endless game with a lot of quests, yet, if you choose a great agent and get some help from a lawyer, it cannot be easier! Besides that, you want to enjoy this process too, right? You don’t want it to make you any more troubles in your life. We are happy that we have helped you! Stay safe and learn all the tips and tricks from the real estate industry!

Wednesday, 6 June 2018


There are some situations where hiring an attorney is a natural move: a contentious divorce, battle over custody, or a criminal arrest. When it comes to buying a house or other piece of real estate, though, not everyone hurries to call an attorney.
Perhaps they assume that advice from homeowner friends, combined with a lot of research, is all they need for a successful transaction. The truth is that there are real estate attorneys for a reason. They know the law, are familiar with potential pitfalls, and will look out for you as you make this important investment in your future as well as that of your family.
Here are five key benefits for hiring an attorney for your real estate purchase.
Professional Contract Review
Real estate purchase contracts can be dense documents packed with legal jargon. You might feel pressured by an eager seller to sign on the dotted line without reading and properly understanding the contents. A real estate attorney will ensure that you understand all terms in the contract and advise you if any of the contents are potentially detrimental.
Addressing Complex Contracts
When you’re purchasing real estate from entities such as partnerships, trusts, or corporations both the contracts and the negotiations are going to be a lot more complex. A real estate attorney will have the necessary expertise in these types of transactions and ensure that the contract is legally valid while respecting the charter agreements of whatever entity type you are doing business with.
Title Search and Addressing Liens
After the signing of the purchase agreement, a title search is required to tell you—and the institution that issued your mortgage—that the seller has the legal right to sell the property to you. In other words, there are no encumbrances, such as judgments or liens, that will hinder or even prevent the transaction. Even if such an issue is discovered, a real estate attorney can provide the seller with suggestions for satisfying those claims, and later obtain proof that they have been satisfied.
A Proper Closing
A lot of vital steps occur during the closing of a real estate purchase:
  • Preparation of closing papers such as the deed
  • Title to the property passes from the seller to you
  • You pay the balance of the purchase price
  • A closing statement is prepared that itemizes the transactions between you and the buyer
A real estate attorney will provide valuable assistance if there are last-minute questions or disputes over certain costs. Without one, your rights may be jeopardized if something goes wrong during the closing.
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Monday, 28 May 2018

Do you want to become a corporate lawyer Brooklyn? Read this!

Choosing your career. The most important decision that you are going to make in your life. And, something that you should take with you, until you reach retirement age. But, with the large number of careers that you can choose from, this can be a really hard decision.
Before you make your final decision to become a corporate lawyer Brooklyn, you need to make sure that you are going to make the right decision. This can be a great career choice, but this is hard to be successful in this career option. This is why you should make sure that you need to know more about this career, before you decide to become a lawyer.
Doing research to see if this is something that you want to do
The first thing that you can do, to decide if this is your career option, is to do as many researches as possible. The more research you are doing, the better you will understand the career.
If you don’t know how to do research about this career option, you should talk to best patent Law Firm Brooklyn that you can find. This will ensure that you have an idea about what your day to day responsibilities will be. Doing research online is also a great option to see if this is something that you want to do.
Getting the right education and qualifications
You need to know that to become a corporate lawyer Brooklyn, you need to have the right education. You need to make sure that you know what education and qualifications you need in order to become a lawyer.
You should also need to know that becoming a corporate lawyer, you need to have more qualifications than just being a normal legal assistant. With your research, you will know for sure what qualifications and education you need in order to start your new career.
The importance of getting your degree
Something to consider is that there are courses where you are only going to get a diploma for your studies. This is good, but not good enough if you want to work in the best patent Law Firm Brooklyn. Then, you should make sure that you are getting your degree.
With just a diploma, you might be able to work at a law firm, but not as a lawyer or attorney. Then, you are only going to be an assistant.
Getting some experience while you are studying
It can be a great opportunity to start working at a corporate lawyer Brooklyn office. This will make it easier for you to get work after you are done with your studies.
In most cases you are going to get an internship at the same company, because of your experience and because they know you and know that you can be trusted. If you don’t have experience after you’re done with studying, you will find it harder to work.
Remember that you need to have a good school report
The one thing that can be a problem for most people who wants to work at the best patent Law Firm Brooklyn, is that you need to have a good school report in order to qualify for studying to become a lawyer or attorney.
The moment that you decide that this is something that you want to do, you might not have the right school report to be able to make your dream a reality. There are many people that think that it isn’t important to have good school grades in order to study after school. However, this isn’t the case. This is the only way that you can study anything without worrying about qualifying.
Becoming a corporate lawyer Brooklyn is something that you might consider becoming after school. However, there are many information that you need to know before you can decide that this is the right career choice for you. The more know about Brooklyn lawyer, the better you will know your responsibilities, your day to day schedule and your basic salary. With all these information, you will be able to make the right decision, so that you don’t regret your career choice for the rest of your lives.

Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Simple Guidance for You in Intellectual Property Law Brooklyn

It really doesn’t matter what type of idea you have, or what unique item you have, you need to make sure that it isn’t getting stolen. This is something that is happening a lot, and then they can’t do anything about it. Because they didn’t make sure that there is a patent or something similar to your idea or product.
This is what intellectual property law Brooklyn is all about. This is to make sure that no matter what your idea might be, it is going to be your idea, without anyone stealing it. But, before you can consider getting a patent on your intellectual property, you need to make sure that you know what it is. This is why this simple guide for you in this type of law is so important to remember.
Knowing what intellectual property is
The first thing that you should understand, is what intellectual property is. It is also known as IP. Before you can even consider intellectual property litigation Brooklyn.
IP is when you have an idea that isn’t used before. It can be something simple as a logo, a business idea or an online business that isn’t done before. You can’t start marketing your idea if you don’t have some sort of patent on it. This is because then anyone can steal the idea and you can’t do anything about it.
Different ways that you can secure your idea as just your own
Something to consider is that there are different ways that you can secure your idea so that it isn’t going to get stolen or copied. You need to find the right way to your product or idea. The option that you are going to use, will depend on the “thing” that you want to make your own. These are some of the different ways that you can secure your idea or product.
  • You can use a trademark.
  • Getting a patent
  • Copyright your idea
However, you might want to get the assistance of a professional business litigation lawyer to assist you with the process and to make sure that everything is legit.
Why should you seek professional assistance for this?
There are really many reasons why you should seek professional assistance for this type of thing. There are many that think that they can do it on their own, and before they realize it, their idea isn’t their idea anymore. These are some of the reasons why you should get professional assistance for intellectual property litigation Brooklyn.
  • You will know for sure that you are doing the correct steps.
  • That there isn’t a similar idea or product on the market already.
  • They know exactly what to do to get it done as soon as possible.
  • You will have someone that you can go to with any questions about the process.
Finding the right professional for securing your intellectual property
The last thing that you should know about intellectual property law Brooklyn, is that you need to make sure that you are going to use the right professional for this task. The problem that many might have, is that they are using someone that isn’t reliable and that they can’t trust. This is the last thing that you can risk, especially with something important as patenting your IP.
You should make sure that you are taking your time and making sure that you are going to do as much research as possible. Going for interviews and making sure that you are asking for references, is the best option to ensure that you are hiring the right professional for the job. It is always better to take your time and find the best possible person, than to use the first and best person, just to lose your IP.
When you have intellectual property (IP) that you want to ensure stays your own idea, then you should make sure that you know what to do to get it patented. The best thing that you can do is to hire a business litigation lawyer that will assist you with the process and that will make sure that you are going to have your idea patented before it is getting stolen. You should not make the same mistake as so many other people with their ideas.