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Presenter: Chris E. Nyenhuis and 5 more

Seminar Date:

Seminar Location: Grand Rapids, MI

Courtyard by Marriott Downtown
11 Monroe Ave. NW
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
Phone: 616-242-6000

This seminar is closed or full.


Registration:                      8:00 - 8:30 am
Morning Session:              8:30 am - 12:15 pm
Lunch (On your own):       12:15 - 1:15 pm
Afternoon Session:           1:15 - 5:00 pm

Contract Law Primer for Engineers  C. Nyenhuis 

   Reviewing the necessary elements of any contract
   Understanding contract “legalese”  
      • Determining performance 
      • What constitutes a breach of contract?  
      • What are damages and remedies?  
      • Liability-shifting contract provisions: warranties, guarantees and indemnities  
   Making changes to contracts

Cyber Security Issues for Engineers  H. Ostrow 

   Cyber security threats and business exposure to data breaches
   Anatomy of a data breach or cyber-attack and the spectrum of possible responses 
   Coverage that is available under cyber Insurance policies  
   Examples of actual cyber events, with lessons learned from those events

Intellectual Property Essentials for Engineers: Patents, Trademarks, Copyrights, and Trade Secrets  K. Ondersma 

   Securing ownership and protecting your intellectual property though patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets
   Leveraging your intellectual property though licenses and other technology agreements  
   Due diligence to avoid infringement issues  
   Policing intellectual property rights

Professional Liability Law  J. Spurr 

   Reviewing the grounds for professional liability claims 
   Identifying who can bring a claim 
   Examining common sources of professional liability claims  
   Reviewing defenses to liability claims  
   Determining damages 
   Participating in dispute resolution: arbitration, mediation, litigation  
   Obtaining Insurance coverage for professional liability claims

Professional and General Liability Insurance for Engineers  A. Pieti

   Understanding business insurance coverage:
      general liability vs. professional liability policies
   Additional insureds: obtaining certificates of insurance  
   Understanding insurance policies: 
      • Indemnities 
      • Assignment 
      • Insurance availability  
      • Warranties, guarantees and certifications  
   Recognizing and responding to claims

Developments in Federal and Michigan Environmental Law  S. Sutherland

   Reviewing recent changes to and enforcement of: 
      • Pollution prevention  
      • Water quality enforcement 
      • Stormwater permitting  
      • Watersheds, wetlands, lakes and streams  
   Reviewing recent and anticipated developments at the US EPA and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality

Credit Information:

Who Should Attend

  • Engineers

This seminar offers 7.0 continuing education
hours/PDHs to Michigan professional engineers.

Continuing Education Credit Information

This seminar is open to the public and offers 7.0 continuing education hours (PDHs) to Michigan professional engineers. Educators and courses are not subject to preapproval in Michigan.

Professional engineers seeking continuing education credit in other states will be able to claim the hours earned at this seminar, in most cases. Refer to specific state rules to determine eligibility.

Attendance will be monitored, and attendance certificates will be available after the seminar for most individuals who complete the entire event. Attendance certificates not available at the seminar will be mailed to participants within fifteen business days.


Chris E. Nyenhuis

Chris E. Nyenhuis, an attorney at Hilger Hammond, focuses his practice on commercial, probate, and construction litigation, family-owned businesses and closely-held companies, and manufacturing.  Mr. Nyenhuis regularly appears in both state and federal courts.  He has represented public and private companies, small businesses and individuals in a range of industries, including manufacturing, finance and technology.  Mr. Nyenhuis has broad experience resolving disputes prior to litigation, obtaining favorable settlements during litigation and arguing and prevailing on motions to dismiss and motions for summary judgment.  He has experience in all aspects of pre- and post-trial litigation.

Karl T. Ondersma

Karl T. Ondersma, a partner at Gardner, Linn, Burkhart & Ondersma LLP, is a registered patent attorney with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and is admitted to practice in state and federal courts in Michigan.  He specializes in the procurement and protection of intellectual property, with an emphasis on patent procurement and litigation, and he is a past chair of the Intellectual Property Law Section of the State Bar of Michigan.  Prior to embarking on his legal career, Mr. Ondersma held several engineering positions over an eight-year career with the Diesel Technology Company of Grand Rapids, including group manager, resident engineer in Mannheim, Germany at a Daimler-Benz diesel engine production plant, and product engineer for the design and development of heavy-duty diesel fuel injection systems.

Hal Ostrow

Hal Ostrow, a shareholder at Rhoades McKee, regularly advises clients on matters involving cybersecurity, data aggregation, and information technology.  He represents businesses of all sizes in negotiating and drafting agreements such as data ownership and licensing contracts, terms of use, privacy policies, and cybersecurity prevention policies.  He also guides businesses on their evolving obligations to safeguard their users’ data and during responses to cyberattacks.  Mr. Ostrow served on the State Bar of Michigan’s “Building a 21st Century Practice” Task Force, a comprehensive study of the intersection of law and technology, and serves as a member of Rhoades McKee’s Technology Committee.

Anthony Pieti

Anthony Pieti, an associate at Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman & Dicker LLP, focuses his practice on the defense of professional liability claims.  Before pursuing a career in law, Mr. Pieti spent 10 years at Ford Motor Company and Visteon working in automotive design and test engineering.  He also has a master’s degree in Finance and handles commercial litigation and transactions involving engineering related matters, as well as analyzing all financial aspects/ impacts to professional liability claims.  Mr. Pieti has successfully represented and defended insureds and insurers in a variety of claims in federal, state, and municipal courts in all facets of litigation and alternative dispute resolution, and he regularly handles appeals in the Michigan Court of Appeals.

James E. Spurr

James E. Spurr, a principal at Miller, Canfield, Paddock and Stone, P.L.C, specializes in resolving disputes, from trials in state and federal court, to arbitrations, mediations, and facilitations.  He has concentrated on claims arising from complex construction projects for more than 30 years.  Mr. Spurr has advocated for, defended against, and resolved claims involving corporate headquarters, manufacturing facilities, college and university buildings, public works projects, municipal parks, local schools and athletic arenas.  The claims range from interference and delay, lost productivity, and defective buildings to design negligence and serious accidents.  He has served on the faculties of major nationwide construction law seminars and industry symposia.

Suzanne P. Sutherland

Suzanne P. Sutherland is an associate at Barnes & Thornburg LLP, where she is a member of the firm’s Real Estate Department. Ms. Sutherland focuses her practice in the areas of development and construction matters and the acquisition, leasing, sale, and financing of real property. She also counsels clients on environmental compliance and enforcement (including air quality and chemical regulation); remediation, corrective action and voluntary cleanups; environmental diligence for commercial and real estate “brownfields” transactions; and wetlands permits. In addition to construction matters, she has experience counseling a range of clients on business planning, contract review, negotiation and preparation.

Tuition Costs:

Standard Tuition: $289.00
Online Tuition (pre-registration): $289.00
Group Prices
3 or more people each: $269.00

Each registration includes one copy of a manual prepared by the seminar speakers.