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Bojangles’ biscuit maker’s case remanded for findings of fact (access required)

The Court of Appeals took up the hefty issue of made-from-scratch biscuits in an unpublished opinion. The verdict? Bojangles' biscuits are made from scratch. But did they cause Ana Garcia's carpal tunnel syndrome? Perhaps, but the commission's findings of fact were insufficient to support that conclusion, so the Court of Appeals remanded the case of Garcia v. Huffbo (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-07-1005, 6 pp.) to the Industrial Commission for further findings.

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Non-discrimination preamble to resurface at Bar meeting (access required)

The N.C. State Bar will hold its quarterly meeting in Raleigh next week, and the Ethics Committee will take another stab at a putting to rest a controversial amendment to the preamble to the Rules of Professional Conduct. The preamble became an issue in July when attorneys argued whether a proposed amendment would limit free speech and threaten attorney autonomy. The controversy has been so heated that the Bar has had to publish comments to the provision in a separate book-length binder.

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Investors must arbitrate claims over startup (access required)

Shareholders must arbitrate their claims over a startup Charlotte advertising company in which they invested hundreds of thousands of dollars, even though they brought suit against its CEO as an individual, the appeals court has ruled. "This case affirms what our position has been all along," said Charlotte attorney Ross R. Fulton (pictured) of Rayburn Cooper & Durham. Fulton represented Alexander in the case. "You cannot sue an individual officer of a company to get around an arbitration agreement with the company."

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Heart balm’s constitutionality challenged in federal court (access required)

Claimants, attorneys and supporters have long argued that North Carolina's common-law heart-balm torts are designed to protect and preserve the sanctity of marriage. Hogwash, says Winston-Salem attorney John C. Vermitsky of Morrow Alexander Porter & Whitley. He says the torts are "tools used by vindictive spouses to put a scarlet red letter on their exes' [paramours] after a relationship is long over." Vermitsky said he has statistics that show that the few states that retain the heart-balm torts actually have higher divorce rates than states that don't.

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NCBA floats hybrid model for seating judges (access required)

Amid increasing calls for reform in judicial selection across the country, the North Carolina Bar Association is putting together a proposal that would fundamentally change the way judges are selected, while keeping elections as part of the equation. Since 1868, North Carolina residents have chosen judges at the polls. But a new layer between the electorate and the ballot box could be put in place under a proposal expected to be introduced when the General Assembly reconvenes in January.

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Exceptional N.C. in-house lawyers honored at Charlotte event

About 125 people gathered to recognize excellence in the in-house legal community today at the third-annual In-House Leaders in Law award ceremony sponsored by North Carolina Lawyers Weekly. Eleven attorneys were honored. "You are the ones who consistently go above and beyond that which is asked of you," Lawyers Weekly Publisher Tonya Mathis told the crowd at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Charlotte, noting that the recipients not only demonstrated excellence in the practice of law but also in contributing to their communities and balancing work and family life.

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A.G.s joining to investigate paperwork errors in foreclosures (access required)

Pressure on banks and processing firms to suspend foreclosures over concerns of paperwork errors continues to mount as a group of as many as 40 state attorneys general plans to announce a multi-jurisdictional investigation on Wednesday. North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper did not return calls for comment on Monday. Cooper last week sent letters and launched an inquiry to 14 lenders, including Bank of America, which is headquartered in Charlotte, asking the companies to suspend foreclosures in North Carolina until they can show that their affidavit procedures have been reviewed and are in compliance with the law.

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