Author Archives: John Fleming

More Change is Needed

Altman Weil recently published its annual report on Law Firms in Transition. The takeaway: law firms are changing, but not fast enough. The report analyzes a recent survey Altman Weil conducted of nearly 800 of the U.S.’s largest law firms. Its findings starkly highlight the challenges faced by traditional law firms. It’s clear many are failing to deliver what clients need from their lawyer. Law firms must change their business model to be more client-focused. Yet resistance to change dominates most big law firms. Clients need practical and efficient solutions (i.e. technology-driven) to their problems. Seems simple.

DB Welcomes Sebastian Spears

Densborn Blachly is pleased to announce that Sebastian Spears has permanently joined the DB family. Sebastian is originally from the Indianapolis area, and previously served DB as a clerk while finishing his degree at Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law. He earned an undergraduate degree in accounting from Southern Methodist University, and now plans to focus primarily on corporate and commercial law.

Indiana Benefit Corporations

In recent years, consumers and investors have demonstrated an increased preference for socially conscious companies. The natural outgrowth of this trend has been the rise of socially conscious companies like Tom’s, a shoe company that donates one pair of shoes to those in need for each pair it sells. On January 1, 2016, Indiana entered the fray as the 30th state to enact a benefit corporation statute. Benefit corporations are for-profit corporations formed with the additional purpose of providing a general public benefit. Under the statute, a general public benefit is a benefit creating “material positive impact on society and the environment,” as a whole, through a corporation’s operations.[1] This ambiguous language provides flexibility to benefit corporations that have a variety of benefit interests.

Know Your Business Partners (OFAC Changes 50% Rule)

US persons and companies are prohibited from doing business with blocked persons. On August 13, 2014 the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Asset Control (“OFAC”) issued revised guidance on its 50% rule for Entities Owned By Persons Whose Property and Interest in Property Are Blocked. This new guidance dramatically increases the vigilance and diligence necessary to verify that you are not doing business with an entity that is a blocked person.

Crypto-Currency: Do Bankers Dream of Electric Money? Part II

The legal environment for bitcoins, and all crypto-currencies, is rapidly developing. On March 25, 2014, the IRS issued Notice 2014-21 answering questions about the tax treatment of virtual currencies. The Notice clarifies that virtual currencies, like bitcoins, are treated as property for tax purposes. On April 2, the House Committee on Small Business held a hearing to discuss the implications of Bitcoin for small businesses.

Crypto-Currency: Do Bankers Dream of Electric Money?

Crypto-currencies.  Bitcoin.  Litecoin. Dogecoin.  All Crypto-currencies.  Compelling.  Disruptive.  Confusing.  Safe?  Legal?  There are lots of questions about crypto-currencies—especially Bitcoin, which is in the headlines a lot lately.  I am going to explore crypto-currencies in a series of posts.  Hopefully, we can all gain a little understanding of the mysterious meta-money!