Fall 2015 Newsletter

   Ambassador Maciek Kozlowski in Warsaw with Marc Redlich.
Dear Friends and Colleagues,

I hope that you, your family and colleagues, have had an enjoyable and productive summer. Over the past several months we have been involved in a number of successful and interesting matters that I thought you might like to know about.

A longstanding client of mine who is a professional with a large Boston based organization, was notified of a reduction in force at his organization and was offered a severance package that we felt was insufficient in light of his many years of service to the company. I was able to successfully negotiate an amicable settlement with the company that nearly tripled his severance payout. Despite the growing economy, there are still quite a few instances where the long recession continues to have negative consequences, even in the areas that have seen considerable growth and prosperity. This settlement will make my client’s transition into a new organization less fraught, and will help to give him a solid foothold for success in his next position. It is unfortunate yet common knowledge that older employees, regardless of their professional experience, have a more difficult time finding comparable positions than younger workers. As a result of this resolution, my client will have some breathing room – and time – to find a good position.

I have written before about a Will contest involving a client of mine who was born in Austria and lived for many years in the U.S. We have been involved in litigation brought initially by one of her relatives, who was left out of both the last Will and the one before it, which was prepared by another attorney. The relative has been joined in that case by the Salvation Army, which was named as a beneficiary in the prior Will, but not in her last one. Fortunately, I suggested to my client before she returned to Austria, that she be examined by a psychiatrist, which was done just three weeks after she signed her Will here in Boston. The physician’s letter makes it clear that my client was competent and able to make her own decisions at the time - and yet the other side will not settle or end their litigation despite being presented with the letter. As a result, I will be in Austria this month to take the deposition of the psychiatrist, so that he can state for the record his opinion of my client’s mental health. We will also take the deposition of the person to whom my client finally bequeathed her estate, an older lady who might not be able to travel to the U.S. for the trial of this matter. This is not the first time I have been involved in depositions and court proceedings in Europe. My previous deposition activities were in France and Germany. I was invited to take a deposition of Libya’s oil minister in Tripoli many years ago during the Kaddafi regime, but decided to forgo that opportunity.

I have also been negotiating with a large international bank’s securities brokerage division about discrimination against my client based on his disability. Efforts to reach an amicable settlement have so far been rebuffed by the bank. As a result, we are about to file a claim in the securities industry’s FINRA arbitration process for a resolution of the case. I will update you more on that as the case proceeds.

There’s an old saying that no good deed goes unpunished. I represent two family members who were deeded a home ten years ago by a parent who has since passed away. A sister of my clients, in need of a place to stay for a short while following her divorce, was invited to stay as a guest in my clients’ home, presumably for a few months. Instead, the “guest” extended her stay for nearly three years and was neither charged, nor paid, any rent. When my clients decided to sell the home they were deeded 10 years ago, the sister refused to move, which made the sale untenable. She instead insisted on staying and demanded a share of the home’s sales price to move. We gave notice to vacate and of our intention to begin an eviction action, and eventually the relative moved out without being paid money she had no right to.

This past June I was invited to participate in a study tour of Poland by the Forum for Dialogue, a Polish non-profit foundation supported in part by the Polish Foreign Ministry. The Forum’s mission is to encourage a dialogue between Poland and the world-wide Jewish community. I attended many interesting and informative meetings with Polish government officials, such as Hon. Maciek Kozlowski, the former Polish Ambassador to Israel, as well as many discussions and working sessions with prominent scholars, including Professor Eugeniusz Smolar of the Centre for International Relations. Some of those working sessions included visits to former Jewish shtetls or villages in Poland, as well as schools where the Forum is working to educate the youth of Poland as to the history of the Jews who once resided in those same communities. As you may be aware, there are very few Jews who remained in Poland after World War II, and that is still the case. The Polish Government, which supports the efforts of the Forum to improve Jewish-Polish relations, has also been supportive of the new POLIN Museum in Warsaw, which tells the history of the Jewish population in Poland since the Middle Ages. It was a fascinating visit, which took us to Krakow as well as Warsaw. I am very appreciative to the Polish Foreign Ministry, the Forum for Dialogue and to our fellow participants to have been able to be part of this important and ongoing dialogue.

While in Warsaw, I was able to visit with Renata Janusz and Marta Duchlińska, my Polish colleagues in ij International Jurists, the international organization of law firms around the world. Renata and Marta are excellent and very experienced business attorneys, and were very gracious hosts.

I continue to serve as Boston Eric M. Warburg Chapter Director for the American Council on Germany. We have sponsored a number of recent events. Mayor Thomas Geisel of Düsseldorf spoke at a jointly sponsored event at the Goethe Institut about the role of cities and their current challenges, particularly in light of the recent surge in the migration of people from the Middle East to Europe. As you may have read in the press, a very large percentage of these migrants wish to reach and settle in Germany, and have passed through many other countries to get there. Professor Bruce Leimsidor, who teaches at Ca’ Foscari University in Venice, spoke this past month in a joint event at Brandeis University on the topic of this current migration and about the international conventions governing refugees and asylum. Another speaker was Hon. Ruprecht Polenz, a former member of the German Bundestag (Parliament). He spoke at a program jointly sponsored by the ACG as part of its Dr. Henry A. Kissinger Transatlantic Speaker Series, and by Boston University’s Center for the Study of Europe. His talk focused on the Ukraine crisis and Russia’s aggressive actions toward that country and other nations in Eastern Europe. German author and journalist, Peter Schneider, also spoke at a jointly sponsored event at Goethe Institut about his new book, Berlin Now. Messrs. Polenz, Leimsidor and Schneider were brought to Boston and other Warburg Chapters around the U.S. by the ACG. Photographs from these events are attached.

I continue to be involved in Swiss-American relations both as a member of the Board of Directors of Friends of Switzerland and as a participant in activities with Swissnex, the Swiss Consulate in Cambridge, and the American Swiss Foundation in New York. A visit by former Swiss Federal Councilor, Hon. Ruth Metzler, was hosted by Swissnex. The recipient of FOSI’s 2015 Stratton Award was Renata von Tscharner, a Swiss native who has led the Charles River Conservancy, and has been instrumental in helping restore the Charles River to a place where people once again are able to enjoy all it has to offer.

FOSI and the ACG have resumed their luncheon and speaker series this fall. Please feel free to contact me directly, or go to our firm’s website, www.redlichlaw.net, where you will find links to these organizations’ websites and events.

We continue to practice in a wide range of legal areas, including corporate, business and commercial law, trials and appeals, real estate issues, employment, discrimination, divorce and university law. If you have any questions about our areas of practice or about any legal matters where we can be of assistance to you or someone you know, both here and abroad, please do not hesitate to call on me.

As always, I look forward to hearing from you, and send you my best wishes for a healthy and successful fall season.

                            Kindest personal regards,
                            Marc Redlich



Mayor Thomas Geisel of Düsseldorf, center, Christoph Mücher,
the Director of Goethe Institut-Boston, and Marc Redlich.

Prof. Joseph Wippl, Ruprecht Polenz and Marc Redlich..

Professor Eugeniusz Smolar of the Centre for International Relations and Marc Redlich in Poland
Marc Redlich with General Consul for Germany Rolf Schuette, German Author Peter Schneider,
and Detlef Gericke-Schoenhagen former Director of the Goethe Institut-Boston.

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