Schuelke Law - September 2022

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September 2022

I write a lot about baseball because we’re a baseball family. But let’s face it, we’re in Texas. You know the saying that there are two seasons here in Texas: football season and spring football season. We’ve officially crossed the threshold into regular football season as high school teams have started practices and scrimmages, college teams are playing their first games of the season, and professional teams are kicking off the regular season. It’s one of the most exciting times of the year! Those of you who know me know I’m a big University of Texas fan. My dad played baseball at UT, my mom went to UT, and I went to UT for undergrad and law school. Heck, even my first dog, a beagle, was burnt orange. And a big part of being a UT student and alum has been football. I only missed one half of one home game throughout my entire college career. I was scheduled to take the LSAT — the law school admission test — on a Saturday during football season. Thankfully, we finished on time, and I was able to walk down the hill from the testing room to the stadium and catch the second half. Since I graduated from law school in 1995, my wife and I have been continuous season ticket holders. THE BEST TIME OF THE YEAR It’s Football Season!

I’ll be honest, my actual time at school was not the best time to be a UT fan. But there were still some good games. For most of my good memories, we had to travel north to Dallas for the Red River Rivalry, as I watched Peter Gardere become the only quarterback from OU or Texas to beat the other school four times in the rivalry. Since then, I’ve had the pleasure of sharing the experience with my kids and watching stars like Ricky Williams, Vince Young, and Colt McCoy have successful seasons. Getting to experience Texas football with my family is a big reason I find it so enjoyable. Those 5–6 home games a year are about the only weekends I can guarantee I’ll see my mom, my brothers, and some of their kids at our various tailgate or pregame activities. And while I’m a UT fan, I know fans of other schools are just as excited. I have a misguided brother who went to Baylor and have cousins who went to A&M. In fact, as a young kid, you could find my family at Kyle Field rooting for my dad’s cousin, who actually led the old SWC in receiving yards per catch and receiving touchdowns one year, before he was drafted. So, I know we all enjoy this time of the year. You can have a great time watching football of any level during this time of year regardless of who you root for. And in many ways, this is the best part of the season. We all start undefeated. There is optimism in the air, and the campuses are charged with just a little more energy. I hope our season, and yours, lives up to the promise the off-season always holds.

“You can have a great time watching football of any level during this time of year regardless of who you root for.”

-C. Brooks Schuelke | 1

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Thinking Outside the Bun Leads to Legal Action The Story of 50 Cent vs. Taco Bell

In 2008, rapper 50 Cent filed an unlikely lawsuit against the fast- food chain Taco Bell. Was it an endorsement deal gone wrong? Quite the opposite. According to the rapper, the company had implied an endorsement deal in the media when there was none. Taco Bell, known for their quirky and humorous ads, had released a print ad formatted as a faux “letter” to 50 Cent, requesting that 50 Cent change his name to 79, 89, or 99 Cent as a part of their latest promotion. The letter reached the national press and even television … except for 50 Cent’s actual mailbox. In fact, 50 Cent had no idea Taco Bell used his name. By releasing the letter, 50 Cent became the face of Taco Bell’s whole campaign, too. The letter was part of a larger hip hop-themed campaign, and customers could go to the Taco Bell website and participate in a “Rap Name Creator” to discover their rap name. They also had a “Why Pay Mo’ Rhyme Generator” that played hip hop music and a montage of “hip hop-themed scenes,” according to the rapper’s lawyer, Peter D. Raymond.

— filed a federal lawsuit saying they featured the rapper in an ad campaign without his permission and profited directly from his celebrity status without paying him a multimillion-dollar fee. Raymond said his client sought $4 million in damages.

In response, Taco Bell Corp. spokesman Rob Poetsch issued a statement saying: “We made a good faith, charitable offer to 50 Cent to change his name to either 79, 89 or 99 Cent for one day by rapping his order at a Taco Bell, and we would have been very pleased to make the $10,000 donation to the charity of his choice.” In the end, both sides settled, keeping the terms of the settlement confidential and paying their own legal fees. So, it’s possible that 50 Cent was paid after all, but we’ll never know the exact terms of their legal agreement, except “both sides are satisfied,” according to Raymond. Since then, more companies have been careful about using celebrity names in their marketing without permission. It pays to think inside the bun, after all.

As soon as 50 Cent found out about the letter on the news, he wasn’t happy. On July 23, 2008, 50 Cent — whose real name is Curtis Jackson

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Step 2: Consider hiring an attorney.

• Legal representation. If you have an attorney — and a debt collector knows this — they aren’t allowed to contact you. They must contact your attorney instead. If you are called by a debt collector while you have legal representation, make sure to give them your attorney’s information. When a debt collector calls, they should identify themselves as a debt collector. Afterwards, they’re required to state the amount owed, that you can dispute the debt, and that you can request the name and address of the original creditor (if different from the current

You may want an attorney as soon as you can, so you can receive the best guidance possible. A lawyer will be your advocate when collectors engage in harassment or communication that is abusive, threatening, or deceptive. What is harassment? It includes using profane language; threatening bodily harm; misrepresenting what you owe; making false claims that you could be arrested; threatening your property; making repeated attempts to contact you or calling you anonymously; or, as mentioned earlier, failing to state debt and creditor information on the call as required by FDCPA.

creditor). They should also tell you that any information provided to them in your calls, emails, or other communication will be used in their efforts to collect the debt. There are even more restrictions on who they can call, so make sure to research for yourself if your loved ones begin receiving calls from your debtor.

Step 3: Report any violations to the FTC.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has an online website for reporting FDCPA violations, but your attorney can help with this as well. Take a look at . We hope this helps our readers to stay safe from abusive collectors. Although debt can make us feel vulnerable, never forget that you do have rights.

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Workers shouldn’t have to choose between the job they need and the family members they love. The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) was created to allow employees to take reasonable unpaid leave for a particular family or medical reason so they can maintain a work/life balance. What does it provide? The FMLA provides eligible employees up to 12 workweeks of unpaid leave a year with the requirement of group health benefits to be maintained during the leave as if employees were continuing to work. They are also entitled to resume their same or equivalent job at the end of their FMLA leave. Who is eligible for FMLA? FMLA applies to all public agencies, all public and private elementary and secondary schools, and companies with 50 or more employees. Employees can be eligible for FMLA if they have worked for their employer for at least 12 months, worked at least 1,250 hours over the past 12 months, and work at a location that employs 50 or more employees within 75 miles. When can I use FMLA leave? An eligible employee can be granted up to 12 workweeks of unpaid, job-protected leave in a 12-month period for the following reason(s): LIFE CAN BE UNPREDICTABLE Preserving the Balance of Work and Family Life




• 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil • 1 yellow onion, chopped • 2 cloves of garlic, minced • 1lb ground beef • Salt and pepper, to taste • 1 tbsp tomato paste • 1 1/4 cups beef broth • 1 15-oz can tomato sauce

• 1 15-oz can diced tomatoes • 1 tsp Italian seasoning • 1 tsp paprika • 1 1/2 cups elbow macaroni, uncooked • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese • Fresh chopped parsley, for garnish

• Birth of and/or bonding with a newborn child

• The placement of a child for adoption or foster care with the employee

• To care for an immediate family member with a serious condition (child, spouse, or parent, but does not include parent in-laws)


• To take medical leave when the employee is unable to work due to a serious health condition

1. In a large skillet over medium heat, add olive oil and wait for it to heat. 2. Once heated, add onion and cook for 5 minutes, then add garlic and cook for 1 minute. 3. Next, add the ground beef to the skillet, and cook until no longer pink. Drain the grease, then add salt and pepper. 4. Stir in the tomato paste, beef broth, tomato sauce, and diced tomatoes. Season with Italian seasoning and paprika. Add macaroni to the skillet. 5. Bring mixture to a simmer and let it cook for 15 minutes. Stir the pasta occasionally. 6. Mix in the cheddar cheese and remove the heat.

• For qualifying exigencies arising out of the fact that the employee’s spouse, child, or parent is on covered active duty or call to covered active-duty status as a member of the National Guard, Reserves, or Regular Armed Forces The FMLA exists so employees can tend to their families without worrying about their job, allowing them to provide the best care for their loved ones. For more information regarding whether or not your company is eligible for FMLA, check out your local government agency for more details.

Inspired by | 3

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3011 N. Lamar Blvd., Ste. 200 Austin, TX 78705



The Excitement of Football Season

Why Did 50 Cent Sue Taco Bell?


Goulash, Hungary’s National Dish Your Guide to Family and Medical Leave


Can Collections Go Too Far?


Know Your Legal Rights! When Collections Go Too Far …

Did you know that millions of Americans have debt in collections? Anyone who has ever dealt with a collection agency can attest that it’s no fun. Luckily, there are laws that limit what collection agencies can and cannot do.

Step 1: Know your FDCPA rights.

• Time. Debt collectors are only allowed to call you between 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. in your local time zone. Any calls outside these hours are an FDCPA violation. • Place. You may be contacted by phone, mail, fax, or email; however, collectors can’t contact you in “unusual places,” such as hospitals, schools, or restaurants. Although they can call your home or office, you have the right to tell them not to contact you at your workplace.

If you ever fall behind on paying your mortgage, credit card debt, medical debt, student loans, or auto loans, it’s important to know your rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). Especially for individuals, FDCPA covers all kinds of debt — but specifically targets third-party debt collectors such as collection agencies, debt buyers, and lawyers who practice debt collection as part of their business.

When, where, and who can contact you to collect your debt? There are some limitations, such as:

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