SBM Business Law Section eNewsletter

September 2013

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Chair’s Letter from Marguerite M. Donahue

Annual Meeting—September 26

The Section’s Annual Meeting at the Sheraton Detroit Novi promises to be an interesting and worthwhile event. The program will start at 4:00 p.m. with a panel discussion, Michigan Business Courts: A View From the Bench, featuring the Honorable James M. Alexander, the Honorable John C. Foster, the Honorable Wendy L. Potts, and the Honorable Christopher P. Yates. The judges will discuss their perspectives on Michigan’s new specialized business court dockets. After the Annual Meeting that follows the panel discussion, we will congratulate Daniel Minkus on being this year’s recipient of the Schulman Award. Everyone attending the Annual Meeting is welcome to attend the reception afterwards. Please rsvp by September 19 if you will be able to join us. More event details are provided in the Section’s calendar.

Midwest Securities Law Institute

The Section is a sponsor of the Midwest Securities Law Institute again this year. Prominent regulators and experienced securities practitioners will be speaking, including luncheon speaker Patricia Geoghegan, the Acting Special Master for TARP Executive Compensation, U.S. Department of Treasury. The Institute is a great opportunity to hear national speakers directly and interact with them on a one-on-one basis. Michigan State University College of Law is hosting the program on October 11. Registration information is available on the Section’s calendar.

Pro Bono Opportunities for Transactional Attorneys

Members contact me from time to time to inquire about pro bono opportunities in their fields of expertise that will benefit Michigan residents. Michigan Community Resources’ Legal Referral Program manages pro bono referrals between transactional business attorneys and eligible Michigan nonprofit organizations. As the only program of its kind in Michigan, it provides high impact pro bono opportunities to attorneys who want to make a difference in the nonprofit community. The program helps eligible nonprofits avoid costly risks and focus on meeting their missions, and protects the attorney’s time by managing the relationships, client expectations, and work flow for every referral. Since 1998, MCR’s Legal Referral Program has leveraged an estimated $12 million in pro bono legal assistance on behalf of over 1,000 eligible nonprofit organizations in Michigan. For more information, contact Justin Sheehan at

Passing the Gavel to a New Chair

At the Annual Meeting, I will be passing the gavel to the Section’s in-coming Chair, Jeff Van Winkle. I have had the pleasure of working closely with Jeff over the course of several years, and know that I will be leaving the Section in excellent hands. Thanks go out to James Carey and Douglas Toering, talented individuals who served as officers of the Section and made my service much easier and more enjoyable. I have appreciated the opportunity to be of service to this very special organization.

General Solicitation for the Sale of Securities: Final Rules are Issued

The JOBS Act, passed in April, 2012, contemplated that issuers of securities would be permitted to raise funds using public advertising, including online promotions, so long as all securities were issued to accredited investors. Following a long delay, draft rules were issued, and finally, in July this year, the Securities and Exchange Commission approved a final rule permitting issuers to use general solicitation and advertising, but with a number of new requirements. This final rule becomes effective September 23, 2013, and is available here. Practitioners in this area should pay close attention to the many changes, including SEC proposed rules to revised Form D reporting on the unregistered sale of securities. And crowdfunding, originally a core component to the JOBS Act, remains lost in the regulatory wasteland.

Business Boot Camp Registration Now Available!

Registration for the ever popular Business Boot Camp is now open. Business Boot Camp provides great training for new business lawyers, and a refresher for more seasoned lawyers on business law fundamentals. Fall and winter sessions will be held November 4 and 5 at the Amway Grand in Grand Rapids, and January 23 and 24 at the Inn at St. John’s in Plymouth. Please see the links below for registration information.

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