Monday, June 22, 2015
If you are buying or selling real estate and the buyer is
financing the transaction with a loan and mortgage, new federal
laws entitled "Know Before You Owe" may affect your purchase
contract. For closings where the buyer applies for their
residential loan on or after August 1st, new HUD closing
statements, lender disclosures, and time limitations apply. Most
notable is that lenders must meet disclosure deadlines (including
last minute changes to the closing statements), or the sale cannot
close on the scheduled date. Failure to meet these deadlines can
result in delayed closings, loss of earnest money, and breach of
contract. While the new disclosure laws should simplify the
information provided to borrowers, sellers and buyers should expect
some "growing pains" while the system is converted. We encourage
all sellers and buyers with questions about the new rules to
contact one of our real estate attorneys for assistance with their
offer to purchase and closing. An amendment has been proposed to
delay the effective date of the new rules until October 1st.
Pinkert Law Firm LLP will keep you updated as information develops
regarding "Know Before You Owe."
Monday, June 08, 2015
Attorneys James R. Smith, Jon R. Pinkert and their families
volunteered with the Door County YMCA on Saturday June 6th to help
build a new playground at Peterson Park. Close to 200 volunteers
built the new playground in approximately six hours through
generous donations from Kaboom!, Baylake Bank, the Raibrook
Foundation, and the Auricchio family. Attorney Pinkert serves on
the Board of Directors for the Door County YMCA.
Friday, May 01, 2015
The Legal Aid Society of Door County, Inc. had a volunteer
recognition event on April 30th, 2015, sponsored in part by Pinkert
Law Firm LLP. Attorneys Richard Hauser, Jennifer Hobart, and Amy
Sullivan were recognized for volunteering their time and efforts to
the organization over the past year with pro bono legal services.
Pinkert Law Firm is proud to support the mission of the Legal Aid
Society to help meet the legal needs of the poor in our
Thursday, October 30, 2014
Partners James Smith and Randy
Nesbitt of the Pinkert Law Firm recently presented a $5000 check to
Julie Davis, Executive Director of the Door County Boys & Girls
Club. The Pinkert Law Firm believes in equality and fairness in
their representation of their clients and sees the value of
instilling those qualities in the next generation. "The Boys &
Girls Club is working to develop good character, civic engagement
and academic success in Door County youth. We're proud to make an
investment supporting our youth and the future of Door County."
Thursday, October 16, 2014
Pinkert Law Firm LLP is proud to
support Door County Habitat for Humanity, Ltd. and assist them in
providing its 37th home to Door County residents. Attorney Amy
Sullivan assisted with the most recent Habitat closing to a new
home owner. The new homeowner proudly received the keys to her new
home at the Closing at Pinkert Law Firm. From left to right: Greg
Dietz - Habitat Board President, Christine Loose - Lakeshore CAP,
Panfila J. - new homeowner, David Van Dyke - Habitat Executive
Director, Denise Plassmeyer - Title Services of Door County, and
Amy Sullivan - Pinkert Law Firm LLP.
Wednesday, October 08, 2014
Currently, only 27 counties in Wisconsin allow for optional
electronic filing ("e-filing") of court documents, and the State
Bar reports that very few cases in those counties are actually
e-filed. To promote efficiency in the justice system and reduction
of paper documents, the Committee of Chief Judges and the CCAP
Steering Committee have recommended that all attorneys be required
to e-file in Wisconsin Circuit Courts. The chief judges plan to
file a rule petition before the end of the year to ask the
Wisconsin Supreme Court to adopt mandatory e-filing. The proposal
will have a three-year rollout period from 2016-2019 that would
phase-in e-filing with each county. You can read the proposal at
http://www.wicourts.gov/ecourts/efilecircuit.htm . Pinkert Law Firm
LLP will continue to follow updates regarding mandatory e-filing in
the future so that we are ready to advise our clients on the proper
procedures for filing court documents as the new rules develop.
Source: Bousquet, Jean & Vandercook, Marcia, "Mandatory
E-Filing May be Coming Soon to the Courts Near You," Wisconsin
Lawyer, Vol. 87, No. 9 (Oct. 2014).
Friday, June 06, 2014
The Wisconsin Supreme Court recently decided State v. Matesek.
The Court held that in order to be eligible for juvenile
expungement, the court must order at the time of sentencing that
the defendant is eligible. A defendant cannot seek expungement
after sentencing if it was not ordered at that time. Wisconsin
Assembly Bill 818 was previously introduced in the legislature in
February. The Bill proposed changing the law so that someone
convicted of a crime who qualifies for juvenile expungement could
petition for it at any time, including after successful completion
of his or her sentence. However, as of April 8, 2014, the bill
failed to pass pursuant to a Senate Joint Resolution. If you would
like to consult with an attorney to see if you qualify for juvenile
expungement, contact our office to make an appointment.
Tuesday, April 15, 2014
Currently, Wisconsin law permits a person who was convicted of a
criminal misdemeanor or certain felonies to petition the court for
expungement of their criminal record. An expungement does not
overturn a conviction. Instead, it essentially seals your criminal
record, which results in the case being removed from the Wisconsin
Circuit Court Public Access website.
Wisconsin Statute s. 973.015 provides a very narrow set of
circumstances which must apply in order to be eligible for
expungement. The person must be under the age of 25 at the time of
sentencing (but, under 21 if sentenced prior to July 1, 2009).
Additionally, a person must have successfully been discharged from
probation and completed their sentence, including not committing
any subsequent offense. Finally, the eligibility for expungement
must have been ordered at the time of sentencing. That means that
if a defendant did not request to be eligible for expungement when
sentenced, it is very likely that it was not ordered, and the
defendant is ineligible.
A recent Wisconsin Court of Appeals case challenged whether
expungement could be ordered at a time later than sentencing. State
v. Matesek held that the statute was clear that expungement must be
ordered at the time of sentencing, and the court looked to the
Wisconsin Legislature to change the law based on policy reasons.
The case is currently awaiting an opinion on review by the
Wisconsin Supreme Court.
In January 2014, the Wisconsin State Bar's Board of Governors
voted to support legislative efforts to expand expungement
remedies. Assembly Bill 818 was introduced on February 27th, 2014.
The Bill would permit the courts to revisit the expungement
determination after sentencing and would permit a defendant to
petition for expungement after sentencing. The Bill has been
referred to the Assembly Judiciary Committee. If the Bill becomes
law, it may broadly expand the opportunities for people who
committed crimes as juveniles or young adults to expunge their
criminal records. Pinkert Law Firm LLP will continue to follow
these law updates. If you were convicted of a crime under the age
of 25 and are curious if you are eligible for juvenile expungement,
please call our office to make an appointment with one of our
Monday, February 17, 2014
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinal recently reported on an
investigation they conducted into a scam which tries to trick
homebuyers into buying useless documents. The report states
that private companies are sending letter to new homebuyers
requesting an $83 fee to receive copies of their deed and othe
rpublicly available information. The letters look official,
and despite having a fine-print disclaimer, the letters are often
mistaken for official government documents.
However, new homebuyers will receive their original deed from
either the Register of Deeds or their title company for free after
recording. Additional copies can be obtained from the
Register of Deeds office for a minimal fee.
For more information on the scam, visite
If you ever have any questions about a real estate transfer,
including whether requested fees are legitimate, call our office at
920-743-6505 to make an appointment with one of our real estate
Friday, January 10, 2014
Every six months, your automobile insurance company probably
sends you a new insurance card, which you may not always remember
to put in your wallet or vehicle. In 2009, Wisconsin started
requiring drivers to carry their proof of insurance with them or
face a citation and a $10 penalty. While the penalty is
minimal, it's an easily avoidable fine that frustrates many
properly insured drivers every year.
Wisconsin has recently made it easier to show your proof of auto
insurance. Effective July 6, 2013, you can now show proof of
auto insurance "in either printed or electronic format" under Wis.
Stat. 344.62(2). That means you can use your smart phone,
tablet, or other electronic device to access your proof. The
statute also specifically says that a police officer may only view
the insurance information, and may not view any other content on
the phone or device.
This simple solution may save your wallet $10.