May 10, 2021

Transactional Lawyer, A. Steven Fabietti, Esquire Joins Hyland Levin Shapiro

Hyland Levin Shapiro LLP is excited to announce that A. Steven Fabietti has joined the firm as a partner, continuing his concentration in corporate counseling and business transactions, transactional real estate and finance, and estate planning and administration. Steve represents clients located throughout South Jersey, and brings a broad range of experience to multiple practice areas that are essential to his closely-held business clients and their individual owners.  Steve represents clients in business sales and acquisitions, commercial real estate transactions, and the design and implementation of business succession plans.  He counsels many individual clients in connection with their personal estate planning needs, as well as fiduciaries charged with the administration of trusts and estates.

As a result of personal and professional endeavors, Steve has a great deal of experience in the organization and operation of non-profit entities engaged in a variety of charitable missions.  He presently serves on the Egg Harbor Township Advisory Board of the Community Food Bank of New Jersey, and has been a Trustee of the Tom Fabietti Scholarship Foundation since its inception in 1994.

“Steve was an associate in my former firm, Levin & Hluchan in the late 90’s, and worked closely with Mark Shapiro and me. I am thrilled that he is joining our firm as a partner. Steve has all the qualities we value in a partner, not only a great lawyer, but a terrific person and a consummate team player,” said Ben Levin, Managing Partner.

“We are delighted to be practicing with Steve again 20 years later. He is a welcome addition to our transactional practice, which is as busy as ever. The depth and breadth of his experience, especially in South Jersey, will benefit many firm clients,” added Mark Shapiro.

Steve previously served two terms on the New Jersey Supreme Court’s District I Ethics Committee, and presently serves on the New Jersey Supreme Court’s District I Fee Arbitration Committee.  He is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School (J.D. 1996), and Villanova University (B.A., magna cum laude, 1993).  After law school, Steve completed a judicial clerkship for the Honorable Sydney Hoffman in the Superior Court of Pennsylvania.  He is admitted to practice in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

He resides in Linwood, New Jersey with his wife and twin boys.  In his spare time, he enjoys playing guitar and beach days in Longport.

Steve may be reached at fabietti@hylandlevin.com or 856.355.2938.

April 5, 2021

Florida Real Estate Deal Lawyer, Krista D. DeCastro Esquire Joins Hyland Levin Shapiro

Krista DeCastro has joined Hyland Levin Shapiro LLP, where she will continue to represent real estate developers and investors in the acquisition, disposition, financing and leasing of commercial real estate.

Krista will practice in Key Biscayne, Florida, just outside of Miami, as Counsel with the firm. Krista has spent the last sixteen years practicing at some of the top South Florida firms for commercial real estate.

“We are thrilled to be moving into Florida with Krista’s deep experience and excellent training.  Our clients have been doing deals in Florida for about 10 years now and with each year, the need for more Florida support has grown.  That trend appears to be continuing. It was simply time to add a Florida-based attorney to help with the Florida transactions.  After an extensive search, Krista was far and away the most qualified candidate. Her breadth and depth of experience match-up well with our existing and anticipated needs in retail, multi-family and office.  As our clients continue to migrate down to Florida, both physically and through investments, we’ll be ready to assist.” said Mark Shapiro, partner who heads the firm’s real estate group and is also a licensed Florida attorney.

We continue to grow our firm based on the needs of our clients.  Florida is a natural fit for us as so many of our clients have migrated to Florida to focus their real estate and business interests in the state”, added Managing Partner, Ben Levin.

Krista is a member of the Key Biscayne Bar Association.  She is a 2005 graduate of Northwestern University School of Law in Chicago, Illinois, and a 2001 graduate of Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia where she obtained a BBA with Distinction in Consulting and Business Management.  She has been a member of the Florida Bar since 2005.

Krista may be reached at decastro@hylandlevin.com or 786.562.7233.

November 17, 2020

Restaurant Owners: How to Succeed During the Next Set of COVID-19 Restrictions

Governor Murphy has once again limited restaurant hours and bar service, while the city officials in Philadelphia have eliminated indoor dining and limited outdoor seating. Be proactive to function within these restrictions during the next wave of COVID-19 restrictions.

What you need to know.

The New Jersey set of mandates includes prohibiting seating at bars at all times. An attempted offset to this restriction, restaurants may place tables closer than six feet apart if separated by Plexiglass barrier to accommodate additional patrons. Restaurants can continue to construct heated tents – so called igloos/bubbles – around outdoor tables if limited to one group of diners and thoroughly cleaned between each seating. Another mandate requires restaurants to close between the hours of 10pm – 5am, which may affect your current business operations.

In Philadelphia all indoor dining will be eliminated and outdoor seating will be limited to four people who reside in the same household. These restrictions are intended to last for the next six weeks, but could extend longer.

Why you need to know this.

The Governor has made it the duty of every person and entity doing business in New Jersey, every member of the governing body and officials, employees, or agents of every political subdivision, and every member of all other governmental bodies, agencies, and authorities in any nature whatsoever, to cooperate fully with the new restrictions.
While failing to conform to the new guidelines puts customers and employees at risk of exposure and continued spread of the virus. Failing to conform to the new mandates can result in restrictions on permits, forced closures, and fines/penalties for business owners or even individuals.

What you need to do now.

It is important for restaurant operators to step back and take a hard look at their finances and where they want to be in 5, 10 or 15 years. While you may not be able to make the profit your business typically generates during this time, you can control your investments. Making an investment in your team will pay off when the restrictions are lifted and restaurants are able to reopen in a normal environment.

Evaluate your existing financial and contractual relationships, including your leases and loans.

  • Do you need out of your current lease because a new location will provide the outdoor or updated space you need to succeed? Are there other benefits, including reserved parking spaces you should be discussing? Has your current landlord helped you navigate the challenges of the pandemic or have they hindered your ability to adapt to the new regulations?
  • What is your relationship with your lenders? Did they help you get the loans you needed or did they put other clients before you? Have you considered moving your financial accounts to a different financial institution to get a better interest rate, loan terms, or assistance with any new SBA or PPP loans that may become available?

Evaluating your business relationships and making smart business decisions on investments, lenders and leases could mean the difference between having to close or continuing to operate the restaurant that you have worked so hard to establish.

We are here to guide you through the next partial/complete shutdown. The time to act is now, before it is too late.

If you have questions about this about this article, please contact Angela L. Mastrangelo at 856.355.2989 or by email at mastrangelo@hylandlevin.com.

November 16, 2020

Change and COVID In The Air – Philadelphia Enacts New and Significant COVID Restrictions

What happened?

On Monday, November 16, the City of Philadelphia announced new COVID restrictions in the face of surging new cases.  The new restrictions include:

  • The prohibition of indoor dining;
  • New limitations on outdoor dining restricting groups to a maximum of four members of the same household;
  • Employees must work from home unless it is impossible to do so;
  • Retail establishments may remain open but with reduced capacity and mask requirements;
  • Indoor gatherings, including weddings and funerals are prohibited, and outdoor gatherings may be held but with reduced density and a prohibition on the serving of food and beverages;
  • Colleges, universities and high schools must move to online classes, while elementary, middle schools, child care and early childhood education are permitted in person if following Philadelphia Department of Public Health safety guidance.

Why you need to know about this?

The new restrictions will greatly impact employers and their workforces.  Just some of the challenges that employers will face include: reduced operations and work, enforcement of mask requirements for employees and customers, implication of telework and leave polices, and ensuring the safety of individuals and the continued viability of their business.  Employers who are not prepared or who run afoul of these new restrictions will face liability and the potential for costly penalties and litigation.

What should you do now?

Employers should immediately review their policies and procedures to ensure they are both compliant with the new restrictions and prepared to address their impact on business operations and their employees.  The new restrictions will have a significant and far-reaching impact on employers and implicate a wide range of critical employment law issues.  To learn more about these changes, and ensure your compliance, contact Hyland Levin Shapiro’s employment practice group.

If you have questions about this about this article, please contact Megan K. Balne at 856.355.2936 or balne@hylandlevin.com or Michael G. Greenfield at 856.355.2931 or greenfield@hylandlevin.com.

March 1, 2019

NJ Employees Are Now Able to Use Their Earned Sick Leave – Are You Ready?

On October 29, 2018, the New Jersey Paid Sick Leave Act became effective. This Act requires all private sector employers to provide 40 hours of paid sick leave to their employees, regardless of classification. The law applies to all employers, regardless of size. However, under the statute, employees cannot begin using their earned sick leave until February 26, 2019.

Are you ready?

Employers should review their handbook and paid time off policies to ensure they are consistent with the new law. Below are just a few items to think about:

  1. All employees – full-time, part-time, hourly and salaried – accrue earned sick leave under the Act. Does your policy cover accrual for all of your employees?
  2. An employer must use a uniform benefit year to calculate sick leave for all employees. Have you chosen and announced your benefit year to your employees?
  3. Employees can use sick time for an expansive array of reasons, including a child’s school event or to care for a “family member,” which is broadly defined under the Act. Have you reviewed your sick day policy to encompass these reasons?

These are simply a few of the items to consider when making sure your existing policy is compliant with the new law. If you have not reviewed your policy and handbook, it is not too late to become compliant. Do not be caught unaware. Penalties for violations of the Act are significant, including damages, liquidated damages, fines, and even imprisonment.

If you have questions about whether your sick leave policy complies with the New Jersey Paid Sick Leave Act, please contact Megan Knowlton Balne at 856.355.2936 or balne@hylandlevin.com

November 12, 2013

Attorney Peter Boyer Speaking on Litigation

MARLTON, NJ – Hyland Levin Partner Peter J. Boyer will be a featured speaker on a National Business Institute panel entitled, “Dirty Litigation Tactics: How to deal with the Rambo Litigator,” on Friday, November 22, in Atlantic City.

Peter is a commercial litigator and trial lawyer. For over 30 years he has handled matters in state and federal courts at both the trial and appellate level and in arbitration and mediation proceedings.

He represents businesses and individuals in litigation arising out of business and commercial transactions, including real estate development; leasing and title issues; employment issues; business torts; claims arising out of franchise relationships; statutory claims under federal and state RICO, consumer fraud and franchise protection statutes; claims relating to dissolution of partnerships and business entities; restrictive covenants and the protection of trade secrets and confidential business information and intellectual property, among others.

For more information about the litigation program or other National Business Institute seminars, go to www.nbi-sems.com.