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U.S. Supreme Court Holds Warrantless Search by Drug-Sniffing Dogs at Front Porch Constitutes Unreasonable Search

On March 26, the U.S. Supreme Court (the “Court”) held that the Miami-Dade law enforcement officers conducted a trespassory invasion when they used a drug-sniffing dog at the front door of a suspected marijuana dealer’s home without obtaining a search warrant, and that this invasion constituted an unreasonable search and a violation of the suspected dealer’s Fourth Amendment rights. The decision in Florida v. Jardines, --- S. Ct. ----, 2013 WL 1196577 (U.S. Mar. 26, 2013), will have an impact on how law enforcement agencies in Florida conduct K-9 searches.

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Categories: LitigationFederal LawFederal CourtsConstitutional LawCriminal Law
Tags: Florida Supreme CourtFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsFort Lauderdale Constitutional Law AttorneysMiami Constitutional Law AttorneysSouth Florida Constitutional Law AttorneysSouth Florida LitigatorsFlorida Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Civil Litigation AttorneysMiami Litigation Attorney
Author(s): Brooke P. Dolara

Eleventh Circuit Affirms Dismissal of First Amendment Challenge Against North Bay Village

On March 22, WSH obtained a favorable ruling for North Bay Village before the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals. The Eleventh Circuit refused to overturn the dismissal of a lawsuit challenging North Bay Village’s adult entertainment use regulations. Partner Edward G. Guedes, Chair of WSH’s Appellate Practice Group, handled the appeal for the City.

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Categories: Land Use & Zoning (Public)LitigationAppellate Law & PracticeFederal LawLand Use & Zoning (Private)Federal CourtsConstitutional Law
Tags: Jamie A. ColeEdward G. GuedesMichael S. PopokJoseph H. SerotaSusan L. TrevarthenLaura K. WendellMatthew H. MandelFort Lauderdale Appellate Law AttorneysMiami Appellate Law AttorneysSouth Florida Appellate Law AttorneysFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsFort Lauderdale Constitutional Law AttorneysMiami Constitutional Law AttorneysSouth Florida Constitutional Law AttorneysSouth Florida LitigatorsFirst AmendmentEleventh Circuit Court of AppealsFlorida Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Civil Litigation AttorneysMiami Litigation Attorney
Author(s): Edward G. Guedes & Brooke P. Dolara

Eleventh Circuit Expands FLSA Protection for Undocumented Workers

On March 6, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals issued an opinion that permits undocumented workers to recover back pay from their employers for violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”). In Lamonica v. Safe Hurricane Shutters, Inc., --- F. 3d ----, 2013 WL 811906 (11th Cir. Mar. 6, 2013), the Eleventh Circuit upheld a District Court decision awarding unpaid wages and liquidated damages to former employees, including one worker who was not authorized to work in the United States, who alleged that they were owed overtime wages under the FLSA. This was not a case of first impression for the Eleventh Circuit; the Court had previously held that undocumented workers could state a cause of action under the FLSA in Patel v. Quality Inn S., 846 F. 2d 700 (11th Cir. 1988). However, Hurricane Shutters, Inc. argued that Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc. v. NLRB, 535 U.S. 137, 122 S. Ct. 1275, 152 L. Ed. 271 (2002), a Supreme Court case which held that the National Labor Relations Board could not award back pay to undocumented workers who are terminated for union activity, effectively overruled Patel. The Eleventh Circuit disagreed, stating that the case was not controlling authority because it involved a different statute and different issues; whereas the employees in Hoffman alleged they were owed back pay for being deprived a job, the employees in Lamonica claimed they were owed back pay for work already performed.

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Categories: Labor and EmploymentLitigationFederal Law
Tags: Collective BargainingMiami Commercial Litigation AttorneyMiami Commercial Litigation LawyerSouth Florida Commercial Litigation AttorneySouth Florida Commercial Litigation LawyerMatthew H. MandelFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsSouth Florida LitigatorsFort Lauderdale Employment Law AttorneysMiami Employment Law AttorneysSouth Florida Employment Law AttorneysFort Lauderdale Labor Law AttorneysMiami Labor Law AttorneysEleventh Circuit Court of AppealsFlorida Commercial Litigation LawyerFlorida Employment AttorneysFlorida Labor LawyersFlorida Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Civil Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Commercial Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Commercial Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Employment LawyerFort Lauderdale Employment LawyerMiami Commercial Litigation AttorneyMiami Employment AttorneyMiami Employment AttorneyMiami Labor LawyerMiami Litigation Attorney
Author(s): Brett J. Schneider & Brooke P. Dolara

Sequester Results in Reduction of Bond Subsidy Payments

In the first significant impact of the federal sequestration on municipal bond issuers, the IRS announced on Monday that payments to issuers that elected to receive a direct credit subsidy under the Build America Bonds, Qualified School Construction Bonds, Qualified Zone Academy Bonds, New Clean Renewable Energy Bonds, and Qualified Energy Conservation Bonds programs, will be reduced 8.7% effective March 1, 2013. The sequestration reduction rate will be applied until the end of the fiscal year (September 30, 2013) or intervening Congressional action, at which time the sequestration rate is subject to change.

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Categories: Local GovernmentFederal Law
Tags: Municipal GovernmentMitchell A. BiermanJamie A. ColeJeffrey DeCarloChad S. FriedmanRichard Jay WeissDavid M. WolpinBondsFort Lauderdale Local Government LawMiami Local Government LawSouth Florida Local Government LawFort Lauderdale Municipal AttorneysMiami Municipal AttorneysSouth Florida Municipal AttorneysPublic FinanceMunicipal Bonds
Author(s): Jeffrey DeCarlo

Will the Federal Tax Relief Act of 2012 Provide the Wireless Industry With Relief From Local Wireless Tower Ordinances?

The Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 (the “Tax Relief Act”), which President Obama signed into law on February 22, 2012, is commonly thought of as the legislation which extended the payroll tax exemption. However, the Tax Relief Act contained numerous unrelated provisions.

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Categories: Land Use & Zoning (Public)Local GovernmentFederal Law
Tags: Mitchell A. BiermanJamie A. ColeChad S. FriedmanSusan L. TrevarthenRichard Jay WeissDavid M. WolpinFort Lauderdale Local Government LawMiami Local Government LawSouth Florida Local Government LawFort Lauderdale Municipal AttorneysMiami Municipal AttorneysSouth Florida Municipal AttorneysJohanna M. Lundgren
Author(s): Johanna M. Lundgren

News of Bisaria Indictment Reaches South Florida Papers

As we reported in our blog last week, the Chicago Tribune reached out to WSH Member and Miami-Dade Partner-in-Charge Michael S. Popok for his reaction to the recent indictments of Boca Raton developer Atul Bisaria and contractor Steve Lewis, who are charged with defrauding Chicago’s Mutual Bank and Broadway Bank out of more than $19 million in loans. WSH represents United Central Bank, the successor to Mutual Bank, in a related foreclosure.

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Categories: LitigationFederal LawFederal CourtsCriminal Law
Tags: Jamie A. ColeEdward G. GuedesEric P. HockmanMichael S. PopokJoseph H. SerotaFort Lauderdale Business Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Business Litigation LawyersMiami Commercial Litigation AttorneyMiami Commercial Litigation LawyerSouth Florida Commercial Litigation AttorneySouth Florida Commercial Litigation LawyerSouth Florida Business Dispute Litigation AttorneysSouth Florida Business Dispute Litigation LawyersMatthew H. MandelFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsSouth Florida LitigatorsFlorida Commercial Litigation LawyerFlorida Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Civil Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Commercial Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Commercial Litigation AttorneysMiami Commercial Litigation AttorneyMiami Litigation AttorneyJohn J. Quick
Author(s): Brooke P. Dolara

Nine Years After Grutter v. Bollinger, Supreme Court Revisits Affirmative Action in College Admissions

Next week, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Fisher v. University of Texas to consider whether use of race in undergraduate admissions decisions violates equal protection under the U.S. Constitution. The Court’s decision will have significant consequences for affirmative action policies at public universities.

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Categories: LitigationFederal LawFederal CourtsConstitutional Law
Tags: Governmental LitigationJamie A. ColeEdward G. GuedesMichael S. PopokJoseph H. SerotaMatthew H. MandelMiami Appellate Law AttorneysSouth Florida Appellate Law AttorneysFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsFort Lauderdale Constitutional Law AttorneysMiami Constitutional Law AttorneysSouth Florida Constitutional Law AttorneysSouth Florida LitigatorsFlorida Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Civil Litigation AttorneysMiami Litigation Attorney
Author(s): Brooke P. Dolara

Plaintiffs Alleging Securities Fraud Face Difficulty Establishing Prima Facie Case

The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals recently issued an opinion addressing what elements a plaintiff in a private securities fraud case must prove in order to establish a prima facie case. In Hubbard v. BankAtlantic Bancorp, Inc., 2012 WL 2985112 (11th Cir. Jul. 23, 2012), the Court held that the plaintiff had to prove loss causation, or that the plaintiff’s loss can be attributed to the defendants’ fraud and not ancillary factors unrelated to the defendant’s actions. The decision highlights the difficulty for most plaintiffs in establishing a prima facie case of securities fraud in a turbulent economic environment.

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Categories: LitigationFederal LawFederal CourtsTorts
Tags: Market Share LiabilityFort Lauderdale Business Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Business Litigation LawyersMiami Commercial Litigation AttorneyMiami Commercial Litigation LawyerSouth Florida Commercial Litigation AttorneySouth Florida Commercial Litigation LawyerSouth Florida Business Dispute Litigation AttorneysSouth Florida Business Dispute Litigation LawyersSouth Florida Private Transactions AttorneysSouth Florida Private Transactions LawyersFort Lauderdale Private Transactions AttorneysFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsFlorida Commercial Litigation LawyerFlorida Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Civil Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Commercial Litigation AttorneysMiami Construction LawyerMiami Commercial Litigation AttorneySecurities and Exchange Commission
Author(s): Brooke P. Dolara

SEC Asks Congress for Greater Control Over Municipal Bond Market

The Securities and Exchange Commission("SEC") recently released a report on the municipal bond market which requests Congressional approval for authority to regulate municipal bond issuers and the required content of disclosure documents provided to investors. Under current law, municipal issuers are required to comply with the broad antifraud provisions of federal and state securities laws, but are not directly regulated by the SEC. The SEC currently has authority to regulate broker-dealers and municipal securities dealers, which has an indirect impact on the municipal marketplace. The requested authority would provide the SEC, for the first time, with direct authority over municipal bond issuers.

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Categories: Government AffairsLocal GovernmentFederal Law
Tags: Jeffrey DeCarloFort Lauderdale Municipal AttorneysMiami Municipal AttorneysSouth Florida Municipal AttorneysSouth Florida Private Transactions AttorneysSouth Florida Private Transactions LawyersFort Lauderdale Private Transactions AttorneysMiami Private Transactions AttorneysSouth Florida Public Transactions LawFort Lauderdale Public Transactions LawMiami Public Transactions Law Public FinanceSecurities and Exchange CommissionMunicipal Bonds
Author(s): Jeffrey DeCarlo

Fourth DCA Holds State Traffic Statute Does Not Violate Equal Protection Clause, Red Light Camera Violators Not Similary Situated

On July 25, the Fourth District Court of Appeal handed down a decision holding that section 316.075 of the Florida Statutes, which governs traffic control signal devices, is constitutional and does not violate the Equal Protection Clause of either the United States or Florida Constitutions. The Fourth District reversed the trial court’s decision, which had found that the statute violated the Equal Protection Clause on the basis that the law unlawfully differentiated between individuals who were observed running red lights by law enforcement officers, and individuals caught running red lights by red light cameras. Under the Florida Statutes, red light violations that are observed by law enforcement officers are punishable by fines and points assessed against the driver’s license. However, red light violations that are captured via a red-light camera are cited and fined, but no points are assessed.

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Categories: LitigationGovernment AffairsLocal GovernmentFederal LawConstitutional Law
Tags: Governmental LitigationMunicipal GovernmentJamie A. ColeEdward G. GuedesMichael S. PopokJoseph H. SerotaMatthew H. MandelFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsSouth Florida LitigatorsFlorida Litigation AttorneysMiami Litigation Attorney
Author(s): Edward G. Guedes