Tuesday, June 18, 2019

No More Straws at Suffolk County Restaurants

Effective January 1, 2020, Suffolk County restaurants, grocery stores, supermarkets, and convenience stores are only allowed to provide paper / food straws (biodegradable and/or backyard compostable single-use beverage straws or stirrers) to consumers and you don’t get them unless you request them.

These restrictions are pursuant to L.L. No. 20-2019 or §700-13 et seq. of the Suffolk County Code.

There are exceptions though - straws are still allowed for prepackaged individual serving beverages with a small plastic straw included such as juice or milk boxes and pouches. Straws may also still be provided with drinks purchased at a drive through window or self-service beverage station provided that it is biodegradable and/or backyard compostable. Lastly, consumers with a disability or medical condition may still request a plastic or other non-biodegradable straw or stirrer.

Violations are subject to a civil penalty of $100 for the first violation, $200 for any second violation occurring within 12 months of the first violation, and $400 for any third or subsequent violations within 12 months of a prior violation. Each day a violation occurs is a separate and distinct offense.

Condo owners can access adjoining units to perform construction

Ever need to modify the pipes in your condo unit only to be denied access by your downstairs neighbor?

Those where the facts in the case of Marina Vornon and George Argiris v. Board of Managers of the Newswalk Condominium, et al. where the court granted such access.

This is the first time that a right to a construction license was granted in the condominium setting pursuant to RPAPL 881.

Moving forward, if you have a problem with your neighbor while performing condo construction, know that you have rights of access and if you can't negotiate those rights, a court can grant them to you in the form of a license.

Boards - take notice - knowing the law can avoid costly lawsuits.


Friday, June 07, 2019

How to tell if your lawyer is an idiot

Everywhere that I go these days, I see attorney's signs that say that they specialize in this or that. It's on their website, on their shingle, Linkedin - you name it.

Just so consumers know - attorneys' ethical rules state:

A lawyer or law firm may publicly identify one or more areas of law in which the lawyer or the law firm practices, or may state that the practice of the lawyer or law firm is limited to one or more areas of law, provided that the lawyer or law firm shall not state that the lawyer or law firm is a specialist or specializes in a particular field of law, except as provided in Rule 7.4(c).

If your attorney is getting hired by breaking the law, do you think you have a good lawyer?

Just saying...

Thursday, June 06, 2019

The Court of Appeals Salvages the Home Health Care Industry by Upholding the DOL's "13-Hour Rule"

Monday, June 03, 2019

Real Estate Brokerage Regulatory Updates - 5/31/19 NYS Board Of Real Estate Meeting Summary

On 5/31/19 the NYS Board of Real Estate continued its mission of optimizing the regulation of real estate brokers in our state by holding its meeting in NYC, Rochester and Albany. To remind real estate brokers and salespersons, the public is welcome at these meetings where the public can bring comments from the floor. It's encouraged that Lieb School students attend these meetings to have your voices heard. 

"[T]he Board has general authority to promulgate rules and regulations affecting real estate brokers and salespersons in order to administer and effectuate the purposes of Article 12-A of the Real Property Law."

A complete video of the meeting is available here.

In summary, the following was discussed:
  1. Complaints: From 1/1/19 to 4/30/19, the Department of State received 241 complaints about licensees. For perspective, there are 134,964 licensees in New York State.
  2. Testing: In 2018, of the 27,209 individuals who sat for the salesperson exam, 14,172 passed, which is roughly a 52% pass rate; of the 2,215 individuals who sat for the brokers exam, 1,447 passed, which is a 55% pass rate.
  3. Regulations: The Board is considered updating advertising regulations as to web based advertising where lead generation will be specifically addressed. Additionally, corporate titles was raised as a concern and a committee was assigned to study the issue. The simple solution stated was increased enforcement. 
  4. Discrimination: Lawful source of income was discussed and the Department, while working with the Division of Human Rights, is hopefully going to issue guidance. 
Remember, to take Lieb School's online classes to stay ahead of your profession.