News & Insights

Katherine Cser, William Blasses chosen for 2018 Detroit Bar Association Inn of Court; firm to host series

January 6, 2018

Congratulations to Kerr Russell associates Katherine F. Cser and William C. Blasses who have been chosen as participants in the Detroit Bar Association's 2018 Inn of Court. Kerr Russell will also host all five sessions (January to May) at the Detroit office.

In their message to participants, Hon. Kirsten Frank Kelly (Inn of Court 2018 Chancellor) and  Elizabeth Jolliffe (Inn of Court Organizing Committee member) wrote, "Congratulations and welcome to the Detroit Bar Association's 2018 Inn of Court! We look forward to seeing you at the Kickoff Event on Tuesday January 16.  On tap for the evening:  food, fun, learning, warming up as an Inn and starting to work as teams!"

The Detroit Bar Association Inn of Court (IOC) strives to promote strong relationships between attorneys in different firms and practice areas, provide mentoring and training opportunities, and foster regular and constructive contacts between the bench and bar.  Based on the English model of legal apprenticeship, the IOC involves five monthly, team-led programs, typically January through May, with a season-end party in June.  IOC applications are accepted in the fall.

The structure of the IOC is similar to other models.  The Inn is divided into “Teams,” each of which has a member of the bench.  Each Team also has several “Masters” who typically have more than 20 years of practice.  A Team also includes “Barristers,” with at least 6 years of practice, “Associates,” who are newer members of the bar, and “Law Clerks,” who are law students and non-attorney legal professionals.

Each Team is assigned a program date and topic and provided with program ideas.  All team members are responsible for collaborating and developing a practical engaging program on its assigned topic using a skills based format for the rest of the Inn members.  Judges and Masters provide strategic guidance, inspiration, coaching and practice pointers to the rest of the team.

The most valuable aspects of the Inn come from the Teams’ preparatory and social meetings, as well as the full Inn discussions and social interaction during and following the programs.  All Teams are encouraged to get acquainted as a team early in the Inn season.

Inn members are expected to attend all programs and participate as engaged members, not merely observers, unless an absence is excused in advance.

Schedule:

  • Tues. Jan. 16 - Kickoff event.  5:30 - 7:30 p.m. @ Kerr Russell & Weber, 500 Woodward Ave., Ste. 2500, Detroit.
  • Tues. Feb. 20 - Team 1 program,  social start 5:30; program 6 pm - 7 pm, Kerr Russell
  • Mon. March 19 - Team 2 program, social start 5:30, program 6 pm - 7 pm, Kerr Russell
  • Mon. April 16 - Team 3 program, social start 5:30, program 6 pm - 7 pm, Kerr Russell
  • Mon. May 21 - Team 4 program, social start 5:30, program 6 pm - 7 pm, Kerr Russell

Katherine F. Cser focuses her practice on labor and employment issues. She counsels and advises business owners, managers and human resources professionals on workplace issues including discrimination, retaliation, wage and hour laws, medical leave laws, among other concerns.

She has also practiced as a commercial litigator on a wide variety of commercial disputes in federal and state courts and arbitral proceedings.  Cser has experience in commercial transactions litigation, as well as restrictive covenants and intellectual property and related tort claims.

Before joining Kerr Russell, Katherine was an attorney in the New York City office of a national law firm.  In 2014 and 2015, she was named to the New York Metro Super Lawyers’ Rising Stars list.  In 2016 and 2017, Cser was named to the Michigan Super Lawyers' Rising Stars list.  

Cser's article "The Real Estate Industry Must Be Cautious with Social Media" was published by the American Bar Association and can be reviewed here.

William C. Blasses focuses his practice in the areas of bankruptcy, restructuring and general litigation. He has substantial experience representing individual and business debtors, creditors and trustees in bankruptcy proceedings, contested matters, adversary proceedings and bankruptcy appeals. Bill also has experience representing business owners in commercial litigation and related issues in state and federal courts as well as before administrative law judges. 

Blasses approaches each case with the mentality that complex problems require comprehensive solutions. In connection with bankruptcy and restructuring cases, he has represented businesses in connection with union issues, NLRB proceedings, asset sales, debt negotiation, workouts, receiverships, alter ego and successor liability, zoning, insurance, asset sales, commercial lease and tax issues. He has represented high income individuals in connection with out of court negotiations and bankruptcy proceedings, including asset protection, risk analysis, eligibility litigation and defense against dischargeability actions. On behalf of trustees, he has identified concealed assets, litigated causes of action and conducted asset sales. On behalf of creditors and other parties, he has defended preference and fraudulent transfer actions, uncovered hidden assets and obtained agreements and judgments for the non-dischargeability of debt. His experience on all sides of the table allows him to prepare comprehensive strategies for any issues that may arise.

Blasses also asserts the same comprehensive approach to civil litigation. Although the issues may be narrower, the combination of thorough preparation and attention to detail put a client in the position to obtain the best possible settlement or judgment.  Blasses has experience representing businesses and individuals in a variety of proceedings before state, federal and administrative law judges involving real estate, tax, insurance, zoning, contract, construction and collection issues.

Blasses has also been named to the Michigan "Rising Stars" list by Super Lawyers, a division of Thomson Reuters, and to Michigan Lawyers Weekly's "Up & Coming Lawyers." (Download the article covering his recognition here.)


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