Attorneys

Michal J. Nowicki

Associate Attorney

About

Mr. Nowicki is an Associate Attorney at Marashlian & Donahue, PLLC. His practice focuses primarily on helping clients comply with a wide range of telecommunications laws. Mr. Nowicki has recently advised clients on exemptions from Universal Service Fund contribution requirements, new Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rules strengthening access to E911 emergency services, and regulation of telecommunications carriers by state public utilities commissions. He has also given software developers and service providers guidance on telemarketing and call recording laws.

Mr. Nowicki is also interested in, and has significant practical experience with, transactional work. Mr. Nowicki prepares and reviews various types of contracts, including data services, non-disclosure, resale, and joint venture agreements. Additionally, in law school, he took two contract drafting courses in which he drafted a promissory note, security agreement, personal guarantee, and an asset purchase agreement. Mr. Nowicki also reviewed complex software purchase, licensing, and maintenance agreements between Fortune 500 companies for Axiom Global Inc., a legal consulting company, and he reviewed the University of Illinois Foundation’s templates for gift agreements.

Mr. Nowicki also supports the firm’s Dispute Resolution and Litigation practice. Mr. Nowicki advises clients at all stages of litigation on a wide array of topics ranging from Telecommunications and VoIP to breach-of-contract, data privacy, and other commercial claims.

Mr. Nowicki has a strong personal interest in the 21st-Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act (CVAA). Even well before joining Marashlian & Donahue, Mr. Nowicki helped the National Federation of the Blind convince the FCC to deny Amazon’s petition for a permanent exemption from CVAA accessibility requirements for e-book readers. He has also worked closely with Comcast and DirecTV to ensure that both companies comply with FCC regulations requiring video description for the blind and visually impaired. Finally, Mr. Nowicki recently responded to the FCC’s request for public comments on how video description rules have been implemented, hoping that the FCC will expand the requirements to cover video-on-demand programming.

Mr. Nowicki closely monitors changes to the CVAA and other disability access laws affecting every sector of the telecommunications and information technology industries, including:

  • Access to advanced communications services and the equipment used to provide such services by persons with sensory, physical, and psychological disabilities
  • Closed captioning;
  • Video description, access to emergency information conveyed in live video programming, and the accessibility of set-top boxes and other video playback equipment;
  • The National Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program; and
  • Telecommunications Relay Services (TRS) for persons with hearing and speech impairments.

Mr. Nowicki explained how the CVAA benefits blind professionals at the 2019 National Association of Blind Lawyers meeting, and he will provide an in-depth overview of video description requirements under the CVAA, Americans with Disabilities Act, and Sections 504 and 508 of the Rehabilitation Act at the 2020 Jacobus tenBroek Disability Law Symposium.

Publications

Mr. Nowicki served as Staff Writer, and later as a Notes Editor, for the Illinois Business Law Journal during law school. He wrote two notes for the journal, both of which were published. Mr. Nowicki also recently wrote an article on the business opportunities for the automobile industry stemming from making fully autonomous vehicles accessible to persons with disabilities, which was published in the RFID Journal.

Education

Mr. Nowicki graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Illinois at Chicago, majoring in Spanish and minoring in Russian; he also speaks Polish fluently. He earned his Juris Doctor degree at the University of Illinois College of Law.

Admissions

Mr. Nowicki is admitted to practice law in the state of Illinois.