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  • A cut-out-and-keep guide to getting legal advice in Japan

    April marked the start of the year for schools and many companies in Japan — a month when many newcomers from overseas arrive in the country, just in time for the cherry blossom season.

    If you are one of these new arrivals, a lot will be fresh and unfamiliar, and that, unfortunately, applies to the problems you may face as well as the positive aspects of your new life here. Even long-term residents are not immune to complications related to their visa status, work, money, family and so on. With this in mind, I thought it would be timely to take this opportunity to share some tips on how to use legal services in Japan.

    First, the national and local tiers of government offer a range of free counseling services in English and other languages. The Immigration Bureau operates a number of regional Immigration Information Centers (see No. 1 below) that you can call for general information and “one-stop” information centers in Shinjuku (2); Urawa, Chiba Prefecture; and Hamamatsu, Shizuoka Prefecture. These centers can offer advice on a variety of issues, not just those related to immigration.

    If you believe your human rights have been violated, whether it is related to discrimination, bullying, defamation or privacy issues on the Internet, you may want to consult with the Justice Ministry’s Human Rights Counseling Offices for Foreigners (3). This service is also free.

    If you work here, you are protected by Japanes...

  • Revised law enables gov't to invest in Tokyo, Osaka port operators

    A bill to revise the Ports and Harbors Law was passed into law Wednesday to enable the government to invest in the operators of hub container ports in the Tokyo and Osaka areas with the aim of boosting their competitiveness.

    Having seen large chunks of Japanese cargo to Europe and North America routed via South Korea's Busan Port, which has been wholly backed by the South Korean government, Japanese businesses have been calling on the government to get involved in running ports in the Tokyo and Osaka bay areas.

    The operators of three ports in the Tokyo region -- Tokyo, Yokohama and Kawasaki -- and those of two ports in the Osaka region -- Osaka and Kobe -- plan to integrate their management, and the government will then invest in the new firms.

    The government will promote business investment in preparing facilities to handle cargo that will contribute to reducing operational costs and be involved in sales to attract domestic and foreign freight.

    Under the revised law, the government can also provide non-interest-bearing loans into projects to introduce warehouses with distributive processing functions near the major ports and to reinforce the quake-resistance of privately owned seawalls.

    Details of the government's involvement, including investment ratios, will be discussed later as Yoichi Masuzoe, governor of the Tokyo metropolitan government which supervises the Tokyo port, remains cautious about the s...

  • Hvad forklarer den ti år lange nedgang i sørøveri og røveri i Sydøst Asien? Miha Hribernik hævder, at regionalt samarbejde – primært gennem ReCAAP mekanismen – har været en vigtig faktor, som vil blive endnu vigtigere med tilføjet deltagelse i Malaysia og Indonesien.

    Sidste år har vi oplevet et fald i rapporteret [2] angreb mod skibe i nogle af verdens mest piratkopiering udsatte områder, såsom Adenbugten og – for første gang siden 2009-i Sydøstasien.[3] i den samme periode, men steget hyppigheden af angreb i nogle dele af sidstnævnte betydeligt, især i de farvande og havne i Indonesien. Dette papir anfører følgende: først, at den forbedring af situationen i Sydøstasien som helhed, i vid udstrækning kan tilskrives succes af multilaterale counter - pirateri initiativer, hovedsagelig den regionale samarbejdsaftale om bekæmpelse af sørøveri og væbnet røveri mod skibe i Asien (ReCAAP). Andet, Malaysia og Indonesien – kun to Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) medlemsstaterne, ikke der ReCAAP kontraherende parter – tiltrædelse kunne bidrage til den mekanisme større effektivitet i Sydøstasien. Deltagelse af Indonesien kunne navnlig hjælpe håndtere det hurtigt stigende antal piratvirksomhed og røverier hændelser til søs inden for dens jurisdiktion. Tredje, multilaterale initiativer som ReCAAP repræsenterer en ideel mulighed for den Europæiske Union (EU) og enkelte europæiske stater til at øge deres indflydelse i Sydøstasien og vinde fodfæste som sikkerhedsak...

  • Tpp_pjve_177_

    12 nationer mæglervirksomhed en Pacific-fælg handelsaftale vil fortsætte forhandlingerne, som USA og Japan ikke har kunnet overvinde hovedforskelle forud for et planlagt besøg af præsident Barack Obama i Japan.

    US Trade Representative Michael Froman og japanske Minister for økonomi- og finanspolitiske politik Akira Amari i går sluttede samtaler i Washington på Trans-Pacific partnerskab uden slående et tilbud på nogle af de mest omstridte spørgsmål.

    "Efter mere end 20 timers forhandlinger, vi fortsat skal gøre fremskridt," amerikanske handel kontor meddelte i går i en usigneret erklæring. "Disse spørgsmål er vigtige for begge sider og er der fortsat betydelige forskelle."

    Forhandlerne havde fremskyndet deres arbejde - møde i Tokyo i sidste uge og Washington i denne uge - som præsident Barack Obama forbereder sig på at besøge Japan, Malaysia, Filippinerne og Sydkorea April 24-28. De nationer smedning pagten ikke holder sig til en specifik deadline og vil tage tid nødvendige for at opnå en god aftale, ifølge en amerikanske embedsmand, der ønskede anonymitet at orientere journalister.

    Ledende forhandlere fra TPP lande mødes i midten af maj i Vietnam for yderligere forhandlinger, sagde embedsmanden. Handelsministrene mødes separat under en Asien-Pacific økonomisk samarbejde topmøde i Qingdao, Kina fra maj 17-18.

    Største aftale

    Udfyldes, ville Stillehavsområdet overenskomst være den største handelsaftale i USA 's historie, for...

  • Adelson-via-bloomberg_large_177_

    Maj, er industriens ledere i Japan vært for den første nogensinde internationale konference for at fremme viden og ledelse omkring den kommende gaming lovgivning i Japan. Mens individuelle investorer ikke kan være i stand til at deltage i konferencen at lære første hånd af japansk gaming regler og lovgivningsmæssige initiativer kommer som konferencen vil koste omkring $1800 til at deltage i, de kan helt sikkert vinde fra den overordnede følelse at gaming i Japan videre hurtigt.

    Alle ønsker Sidste år, casino selskaber som Las Vegas Sands (NYSE: LVS), MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM), Wynn Resorts (NASDAQ: WYNN), og Melco Crown (NASDAQ: MPEL) alle gjort overskrifter, når de hver især gjorde dristige påstande om hvor meget de ville straks investerer i Japan, hvis regeringen indvilget i at ændre sine love og åbne land op til legaliseret kasinoer. Las Vegas Sands CEO Sheldon Anderson førte den bullish krav ved at sige, han ville investere 10 milliarder dollar, hvis nødvendigt.

    Japans vellykket bud for 2020 sommer spil wil være ikke billig, regeringen vil være ansporet af tanken om flere gaming indtægter kommer tid. Foto: CNN På tidspunktet var investorerne usikker på, hvorvidt påstandene blev investeringer værdig. Der var jo stadig den truende forhindring af den japanske regering faktisk lovgivning for at tillade gaming. Mens regeringen har helt sikkert syntes støttende i det sidste år med udtalelser i håb om at gaming indtægter kunne finansiere en del af 2...

  • Mxr05_alitalia_bankruptcy_177_

    Det er tid til at slå ned på eskalering i air rage og andre forekomster af forstyrrende og potentielt farlige passager adfærd, siger International Air Transport Association.

    For mange flypassagerer, der begår alvorlige forbrydelser om bord retsforfølges ikke på grund af juridiske smuthuller i eksisterende luft politiske aftaler, den faggruppe, der repræsenterer omkring 240 flyselskaber verden over sagde tirsdag.

    "Flyselskaber gør alt hvad de kan for at forebygge og håndtere uregerlige passager hændelser, men det skal følges op med effektiv retshåndhævelse," IATA generaldirektør og administrerende direktør Tony Tyler sagde i en erklæring.

    "Rapporter af uregerlig adfærd er på fremmarch. Der er for mange eksempler på folk at komme væk med alvorlige overtrædelser af sociale normer, som fare for flyvninger fordi lokale retshåndhævende myndigheder ikke har magt til at handle."

    IATA statistik angiver, at hændelser af forstyrrende adfærd sprang til mere end 6.000 i 2011, fra omkring 500 i 2007.

    Men sikkerhedseksperter siger, der er plads til luftfartsselskaberne til at intensivere deres egne bestræbelser på at forebygge og kontrollere passager ubehøvlet opførsel som flyvendes appel udvider, discount flyselskaber formere og kunde servicestandarder falder.

    "Vi bør undersøge hvordan luftfartsselskaber, der leverer alkohol på fly og hvordan de ofte ikke screening passagerer at komme på et fly at se om de er berusede," sagde...

  • 0_177_

    WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court on Tuesday expanded protections for whistle blowers covered by an anti-fraud law passed following the collapse of energy giant Enron, ruling outside accountants, auditors and lawyers cannot be fired or punished for exposing fraud.

    The 6-3 decision will have an effect in the mutual fund and financial services industries, the court said, because they rely heavily on outside contractors and advisers.

    The case before the court arose when two employees of a firm that did research for the Fidelity family of mutual funds revealed the funds were overstating expenses. They alleged that in some instances, Fidelity was operating “veiled index funds” while collecting a fee as though they were actively managed.

    The two employees say they were reprimanded and ultimately dismissed for having exposed this fraud. When they sued their employer under the Sarbannes-Oxley Act, they lost when an appeals court ruled the law’s protection for whistle blowers covered only employees of public firms, not outside advisers and accountants.

    In their appeal to the high court, they said this would reimpose “the very code of silence” that allowed massive frauds such as Enron to occur.

    Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, speaking for the court, said Congress meant to broadly protect whistle blowers who could expose wrongdoing. It made no sense, she said, to think “a Congress, prompted by the Enron debacle, would exclude from whistle-blower protection countless profession...

  • Mk-ck112_lawjou_d_20140217161946_177_

    The Supreme Court appeared divided into three camps on whether to overrule or alter a long-standing legal precedent that provides the foundation for many class-action lawsuits alleging securities fraud.

    The court heard an hour-long oral argument in a case involving Halliburton Co. and whether to overturn a 1988 Supreme Court decision which held that investors in securities-fraud lawsuits don’t have to prove they relied upon any misleading statements by a company.

    By the end of an hour-long argument session, it appeared some justices were looking for a middle-ground to resolve the case.

    The court, in Basic v. Levinson, said it was enough that investors rely on the integrity of stock prices, which are a reflection of publicly available company information. That legal doctrine, known as fraud-on-the-market, has provided a basis for allowing investors to pool their claims into one large class-action lawsuit. Read the full WSJ story here.

    If the court abandons its earlier precedent it could make it difficult for investors to bring class-actions alleging they were misled.

    The court’s four liberal justices, including Justice Elena Kagan, voiced resistance Wednesday to overturning the 1988 decision.

    Justice Kagan said Congress has been active in passing securities-law reforms and has had “every opportunity” to overrule or alter the court’s Basic decision, but hasn’t done so. She and other liberal justices suggested there was no strong justification for the court to overrule...

  • The Avanti Law Group: Legal Fraud of the Century

    Community, Communication Design

    Wrapports_legal___fiancial_service_menon__insurance_fraud_177_

    There are plenty of candidates for that title, but after Tuesday the prize belongs to attorney Steven Donziger. Federal judge Lewis Kaplan ruled that the environmental activist had engaged in a massive racketeering scheme and declared that a $9.5 billion judgment against Chevron CVX -0.89% in an Ecuadorian court cannot be enforced in the United States.

    As our readers know, in 1993 Mr. Donziger sued Texaco (now merged with Chevron) for what he said was the company's failure to clean up oil pits it drilled in Lago Agrio in the 1970s with state oil company PetroEcuador. Chevron had signed proof that it had cleaned its portion of the pits and had been absolved of any liability, but Mr. Donziger sniffed the potential windfall of a media-ready environmental "disaster" and sued the company for $113 billion. He enlisted all manner of celebrity helpers, including actress Daryl Hannah.

    He won in Ecuador, but only thanks to what Judge Kaplan found were "dishonest and corrupt" measures including bribery, coercion and engaging an American consulting firm to ghostwrite an independent expert's reports. In a 485-page opinion, the judge called the case "extraordinary," calling the actions of Mr. Donziger and his legal team "offensive to the laws of any nation that aspires to the rule of law, including Ecuador." The corrupt extortion was intended to "instill fear of a catastrophic outcome in order to increase the amount Chevron would pay to avoid ...

  • Dbpix-holder-tmagarticle_177_

    A report issued by the Justice Department’s inspector general, Michael E. Horowitz, underscores the danger of extolling short-term results when it comes to prosecuting white-collar crimes. The report highlights how generating headlines seemed to take precedence over accurate figures in the government’s fight against mortgage fraud.

    In October 2012, less than a month before the presidential election, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. called a news conference to trumpet the Justice Department’s success in combating foreclosure fraud through a program called the Distressed Homeowner Initiative. “The success of the Distressed Homeowner Initiative, and the developments we announce today, underscore our determination to pursue these and other financial fraud criminals around the country,” Mr. Holder said in a statement.

    The claims of great success came during a time of persistent criticism that the Justice Department was not taking stronger action to pursue fraud in the run-up to the financial crisis. The numbers offered by Mr. Holder for the first year of the initiative were impressive: charges filed against 530 defendants, including 172 executives, from frauds that resulted in losses of more than $1 billion.

    After questions from the news media about those claims, almost a year later the Justice Department revised those figures significantly downward. The total number of defendants charged was 107, with no reference to any executives, and the loss from criminal acti...

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