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Manufacturing

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Services We Provide

Whether your company is involved in truck and auto industry production, in emerging computer technologies and advanced applications like jet engine components, or in traditional industries like textiles and printing, McNair delivers the full range of legal services that you need. Development and construction, economic development incentives, labor and employment, environmental, intellectual property protection and general contract issues– McNair helps manufacturers of all sizes throughout the Carolinas with these and many more concerns.

Facility Location and Expansion

South Carolina is one of the nation’s most effective states at attracting manufacturers and helping them expand. We represent major companies that seek to move to or expand in the state, and also counsel municipal, county and state development officials on the best ways to attract and retain these companies.

We play a role in facilitating economic development bond financing for manufacturers and governments throughout South Carolina. You get the benefit of our experience on billions of dollars in economic development financing transactions.

We work to ensure development solutions that add value to both business and government. No matter where you are on the development spectrum, you can rely on McNair to know what is both practical and feasible.

Example of our Services
Our client, a global manufacturer of high technology cables and systems that is affiliated with one of Italy’s largest industrial groups, planned a $30 million expansion of its South Carolina manufacturing operations. The corporate parent approved the project and the land was assembled, but a major problem arose when the state Department of Transportation targeted an eminent domain action for part of the property to build a new highway and bridge project – an action that would scuttle the expansion plans.

Our lawyers worked with all levels of government from the county to the Departments of Commerce and Transportation, to devise a solution, and eventually negotiated an agreement for financing the construction of a new bridge that would make relocation of the highway project feasible. Our focused dispute resolution skills preserved the expansion, and the jobs and revenue it will generate.

Industry Restructuring

Industries such as textile and vehicular component manufacturing are global, and traditional domestic operations frequently face the economic necessity of outsourcing to other regions. If that’s your company’s challenge, McNair can handle it.

Our lawyers deal with such international business needs as transfer pricing analysis, the establishment of tax-efficient offshore operations, manufacturing outsourcing, and cross-border acquisitions and licensing agreements. We also work with cross-border leasing and financing arrangements, particularly as our manufacturing clients establish new production operations in Canada, Mexico, Latin America and Asia.

We have also counseled manufacturing employers to ensure that their preparation for a reduction in force or a plant closing complies with all advance notification and applicable discrimination rules.

Patent Enforcement

With our technical experience, we can prepare and prosecute patents in the US and abroad, across a full spectrum of applications – mechanical, chemical, biotechnical, software, business methods and design inventions. More important, you get patent counsel that is integrated into a value-added strategy in which we help you exploit new business opportunities while protecting you from infringers. This includes protecting your patent-related trade secrets through effective non-competition agreements, and licensing your patents in ways that reduce infringement risk and tax liability while maximizing your control and income stream.

Example of our Services
Our client, a specialized manufacturer of products used by the US military, faced a request by its major competitor to pay royalties on a product that the competitor had recently patented. We examined the competitor’s patent and found that much of its technology existed either in prior art or in our client’s own patents.

McNair filed a reexamination request with the Patent and Trademark Office, and the PTO found the competitor’s patent invalid. The result: rather than paying royalties, our client is now selling the patented product to its competitor, giving it a stronger market position than ever.

Environmental Concerns

We can defend your company and individual executives and managers against claims alleging violation of CERCLA and the Clean Air and Water Acts, as well as in toxic tort claims. We have also successfully negotiated and mitigated claims brought against clients by the EPA and state environmental agencies. If you own property contaminated with hazardous materials – either because they were disposed of there or simply were byproducts of previous business operations – we help you determine whether there is environmental risk, including both Phase I site assessments and Phase II site tests.

You’ll get our advice on current and past uses, hazardous substance exposures, past waste disposal activities and necessary corrective actions.

Example of our Services
McNair defended a past owner of a manufacturing facility against a private action brought under the CERCLA and RCRA statutes. The current owner sought in federal court well over $10 million in cleanup costs and damages, and but we demonstrated that provable damages were less than half that. On the second day of trial, we reached a favorable settlement for less than the provable damages.

Labor and Employment

McNair labor and employment lawyers help manufacturers identify the problems that can become employment lawsuits, and work to prevent problems or resolve controversies. Issues like sexual harassment and workplace violence demand immediate attention, and we provide it.

If you’re in the middle of a dispute over an organizing drive or an unfair labor practice complaint, we know that you need prompt responses. Our labor relations counsel can be crucial to helping you maintain a competitive workplace that treats employees fairly, minimizes conflicts and maximizes your management flexibility.

If you face a union organizing drive, count on our help to maintain a positive working environment and communicate fully with all employees. We’ll make sure you comply with National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) election law, and counter unionizing efforts without creating a “union-busting” controversy.

Example of our Services
During the past 15 years, we have helped one client maintain a union-free environment through two different organizing drives. Our counsel also is illustrated by a jury trial of allegations that one of our client’s HR managers had not properly responded to an employee problem. We put the manager on the stand, asked him to explain his actions in light of company policy, then asked the jury in summation: “Can you believe this person and this company did what they were accused of?” The jury’s answer?--"no."

Construction Claims

We represent the interests of manufacturers who face construction controversies over project defects or delays after building or expanding a facility. Our lawyers also help manufacturers prepare architectural, design, construction and construction supervision contracts that work to reduce the likelihood of disputes. Our goal is to tailor contract provisions to limit your risks as a building owner and ensure timely completion.

However, when disputes arise, we are skilled at working with our clients to preserve and analyze project documents and correspondence, including change orders, to identify the responsibility for defect and design claims.

Example of our Services
A manufacturer of chemical treatments for fabric products engaged McNair when multiple defects emerged in a newly constructed production line. We took the dispute to mediation against the prime contractor and six subcontractors, using nearly a dozen expert witnesses to present our case. The mediator’s decision supported our claim and the resulting award made our client whole by covering the profits lost from downtime on the defective production line.