Empathy: Finding Echoes of Another in Yourself

By Logan C. Stone, HeLP Fall 2017 Student Intern

Lawyers, by virtue of their profession, are asked to wear many hats throughout their career. As are most other professionals. At any given time, they are an advocate, an advisor, a counselor, a champion, or a friend, to name a few. Undoubtedly, some attorneys fulfill these roles better than do others.

But is there a mechanism by which we can improve our capability in fulfilling these roles while simultaneously being effective once assuming these roles?

Take the initial client interview for example. Say your new client has a housing conditions issue. Since this type of issue requires an on-site viewing of the living conditions, a visit to the client’s home is necessary to investigate the matter. Of course, the case file gives a brief two or three-line description of the housing issue, but you honestly have no true grasp on the severity of the issue. Continue reading

Legal News: Shortened Settlement Cycle for Securities Transactions

By Eric Peters, Fall 2017 IAC Student Intern

Effective September 5, 2017, the SEC has amended Rule 15c6-1 of the Exchange Act to shorten the standard settlement cycle for broker-dealer transactions by one day.  These broker-dealer transactions are called “settlements,” defined as the official transfer of securities to the buyer’s account in exchange for cash to the seller’s account when a security is bought or sold.  The time period between the transaction date (when the sale took place) and the settlement date (when the sale was effectuated) is called the “settlement cycle.” Continue reading

Duck from Deception: Find the Fake News Before it Finds Your Wallet

By Qudsia Shafiq, Fall 2017 IAC Student Intern

Are you smarter than the ads you see? While you may think you can outsmart any ad, have you considered the possibility that you may not know an ad when you see one?

Think about where you turn to for investment advice: Is it from individuals (such as your financial adviser, friends, and relatives), traditional news sources (like television shows, radio stations, newspapers or magazines), or is it from the internet on your personal computer, tablet or smartphone? For most individuals, it’s usually a combination of these sources. But one thing these categories have in common is that they are platforms for product placement and advertisements. Continue reading

Investor Advocacy Clinic to Present at Oct. 12 SEC Investor Advisory Committee Meeting

Representatives from the Georgia State Law Investor Advocacy Clinic will present to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Investor Advisory Committee at its meeting Thursday, Oct. 12, in Washington, D.C.

Nicole G. Iannarone, clinic director and assistant clinical professor, and student intern Qudsia Shafiq (J.D. ’18), will provide an overview of the clinic’s advocacy efforts. David White, director, Investor Advocacy Project, Seton Hall University School of Law, will present on the same panel. Continue reading

Take a Load Off Your Back

Front-End Load vs. Back-End Load vs. Level Load

By: Megan Makuck, Fall 2017 Student Intern

Load is simply an equally small and equally bland word for fees, which are attached to mutual funds, life insurance policies, or annuities. The load is a commission or sales charge generated from investing in a fund that goes to the middle man, a.k.a., your investment broker or financial adviser. The load compensates your adviser for his knowledge, research, and recommendations about which funds you should invest in. Loads can range anywhere from 3.75-5.75% of your investment amount. While some funds do not have any load, called a “no-load” fund, the rest have loads, which come in three different forms: front-end, back-end, and level loads.

Continue reading

Medical-Legal Partnerships: HeLP Clinic as a Bridge to Better Care

By: Katie Broyles, Fall 2017 HeLP Student Intern

Health is determined by many things, including an individual or family’s socioeconomic status, where they live, their external and internal stressors, and whether or not they have access to care. The vast variety of socioeconomic factors alone that contribute to an individual’s health is overwhelming. Often, the health care system simply does not have the resources or capacity to examine many of these issues that can weigh heavily on a patient’s condition, such as access to healthy food, quality education, safe living conditions, quality housing, and job opportunities. In this way, medical-legal partnerships can improve a patient’s condition more than health care alone ever could. When doctors and lawyers come together to examine the social determinants of health and strive to discover solutions that may not involve medicine at all, this improves the patient’s long-term future outcome in ways that a simple visit to the hospital often cannot. Continue reading

Legal News: China’s Crypto Crackdown

By Robert Noens, Fall 2017 IAC Student Intern

A September 5, 2017, Law360 Article by Tom Zanki brought attention to a growing problem with cryptocurrencies – the online currencies/investments that appear to be popping up all over the place after the notable success of Bitcoin. As Zanki’s article points out, the money going into cryptocurrencies has grown substantially over recent months. In the first quarter of 2016, Initial Coin Offerings, or “ICOs,” raised $40 million. By the end of the second quarter in 2017, that number increased to $900 million. The issue here, however, is not getting your money into these cryptocurrency investments, the problem is getting your money back out. As readers of my last article – ICO(s)! Initial Coin Offering or Investor Conning Organization? – are well aware, this newly developed investment frontier of cryptocurrencies is plagued by fraudsters and scams. That is why, as of September 5, 2017, China has banned all ICOs for the foreseeable future. Additionally, the Chinese government informed those that have already made ICOs that they should begin to make arrangements to give their raised capital back to investors! China is not the only government entity cracking down on cryptocurrencies either.  Hong Kong decided that they will begin to regulate ICOs under their securities laws. Korea announced that they would also be strengthening their regulations over cryptocurrencies. Additionally, Canada, Singapore, and the SEC recently weighed in with comments regarding their regulation of cryptocurrencies. What these new regulation will be and where they will leave this new cyber industry, I do not know. One thing is relatively clear, however, there is a growing trend towards the regulation of ICOs and cryptocurrencies, and that trend does not appear as though it will be slowing down anytime soon.