AREAS OF PRACTICE
The firm has wide experience in most aspects of corporate and commercial law, distributorship law, intellectual property, contract law, secured transactions, and corporation law, including formation of C-Corporations, S-Corporations, LLCs and Partnerships with particular emphasis on foreign Corporations doing business in the US whether directly or indirectly or through subsidiaries.
Commercial Litigation and Arbitration
Harnik Law Firm has a national litigation practice before state and federal courts at both the trial and appellate levels. The firm has handled a broad range of commercial and contract disputes. Attorneys in the firm have expertise in litigation of cases arising under trademark and copyright laws, and in cases involving appellate practice, art law, commercial fraud, commercial law, computer technology, debtor and creditor, directors' and officers' liability, distributorship disputes, employment law, internet law, non profit and charitable organizations, offshore voluntary disclosure, and unfair competition.
Harnik Law Firm has had substantial experience in prosecuting and defending claims before arbitration tribunals. The firm has handled numerous matters before the American Arbitration Association and the enforcement of arbitral awards and the conversion of arbitral awards to money judgments.
International Litigation and Arbitration
Harnik Law Firm is adept at dealing with clients from foreign jurisdictions, especially those with a civil law tradition. The firm also recognizes the importance of fluency in foreign languages, and attorneys at the firm have the ability to conduct business in German and French. Stephen M. Harnik is the U.S. correspondent of JCA International, a network of law firms throughout Western, Central and Eastern Europe.
The firm has acted on behalf of both public and private companies, and traces its roots back to its predecessor firm, Wachtell, Manheim & Grouf, which, except for the War years, was legal counsel to the Republic of Austria, agencies of the Austrian government, and related commercial entities in connection with their United States activities.
The firm has also handled numerous matters in state and federal courts relating to judicial intervention in the arbitration process and judicial enforcement of international arbitration awards. By virtue of this broad experience, the firm is well-placed to handle complex disputes involving parties and witnesses from multiple countries. In keeping with its international expertise, the firm has wide experience in the enforcement of foreign judgments.
Construction and Product Liability Litigation
Harnik Law Firm's Of-Counsel Stephen P.H. Rachlis has handled construction and products litigation involving engineering and architectural errors, including cases involving the design, manufacture, and construction of factories, power and boiler plants, apartment buildings, hospitals, convention centers, industrial machinery, cranes, tires, fan belts, electric, HVAC, piping, steel and insulation systems.
The firm handles commercial and residential real estate transactions and related financings on behalf of clients. The firm has been involved in the sale and acquisition of commercial properties, apartment buildings, vacant land and all manner of residential properties, including those held in cooperative and condominium form. The firm's experience also extends to the area of commercial leasing including office buildings and shopping centers and real estate development. A special expertise includes knowledge of the regulatory regime that pertains to the foreign real estate investor in the United States.
An essential element of all business and investment transactions is proper structuring from a tax standpoint. Harnik Law Firm is experienced in this area as well, including the tax treatment by the United States of foreign nationals living and/or doing business in the United States and of United States nationals; activities abroad and the impact of tax treaties. The corporate and taxation expertise of the firm makes it possible to structure foreign investment in the United States for the most favorable tax treatment. Decisions to be made at the outset of such transactions include the kind of entity for the business or investment (partnership, limited partnership or corporation), and the situs of such entity (in a state of the United States or some foreign jurisdiction). Attorneys in the firm are also well versed in the US Treasury's Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program.
Trusts, Estates and Succession Law
The firm has an active trusts and estates practice. This includes both domestic and international estate planning and will preparation, the domestic administration of estates and trusts and the ancillary administration of foreign estates with domestic assets. The firm has extensive experience in the probate courts, and has participated in the trial and appeal of many New York based contested probate cases involving as well as those foreign estates or domestic estates with foreign beneficiaries. Here again, the firm's taxation expertise melds with another area of practice. The firm has dealt with many complex matters involving estate taxation (death taxes) and income taxation of estates, and in particular estate taxation and income taxation of estates with foreign connections.
The firm handles all manner of visas for non-citizen individuals as well as for corporations whose directors, officers or employees are non-citizens in need of work permits, resident alien cards ("green cards"), and visas.