Latest Updates

Ajemian v. Yahoo: One Small Step For The Family, One Giant Step For Fiduciaries

Yahoo! On October 16, 2017, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court issued its long-awaited decision in Ajemian v. Yahoo!, Inc. (“Yahoo”), http://bit.ly/2zuW1T9, interpreting the federal Stored Communications Act (the “SCA”) to allow… more

The SEC Wants To Know What’s Next For Blockchain: Are You Keeping Up?

On October 12, 2017, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission’s Investor Advisory Committee met to discuss Blockchain technology and its impact on the securities industry… more

California AG Thirsty for Action Against Gatorade

The Gatorade Company violated state law by urging players of its advergame to ditch water for the sports drink, California’s attorney general alleged in an action against the company… more

Florida’s Minimum Wage to Increase on January 1, 2018

Florida voters approved a constitutional amendment that created Florida’s minimum wage in November of 2004. The minimum wage applies to all employees in the state covered by the federal minimum wage… more

Juniper Faces Blue Spike’s “Assembly-Line Litigation Campaign”

In January 2017, Blue Spike, LLC (“Blue Spike”) filed what has been described as the largest patent infringement case in the U.S. Blue Spike asserted 26 patents containing 656 claims against 113 products owned by Juniper Networks… more

EU Digital Single Market Update – Online Platforms and Illegal Content

As part of its Digital Single Market strategy, the European Commission has identified the issue of combatting illegal content online as a key challenge for online platforms. It has now released guidance to online platforms containing a… more

Real Property, Financial Services, & Title Insurance Update: Weeks Ending October 6 & 13, 2017

REAL PROPERTY UPDATE FINANCIAL SERVICES UPDATE - Ad Valorem Taxes: land lease holders are considered equitable owners of land for tax purposes if land lease renews automatically and is perpetual; owners of condominium built on land… more

CFPB further updates HMDA Rule guidance materials

The CFPB recently posted on its website updated versions of guidance in connection with the revisions to the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) rules that become effective on January 1, 2018, and also posted a new guidance item… more

How to Answer Employee Questions About a Co-Worker's ADA Accommodations

The Americans with Disabilities Act requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to employees with medical disabilities. The ADA also prohibits employers from disclosing information about an employee’s medical condition… more

[Video]Day 13 of One Month to More Effective Compliance for Business Ventures-Compliance Terms and Conditions in Joint Venture Agreements

Numerous US companies have come to FCPA grief for their overseas joint ventures and the continue to be a bane for many companies under the Act. There are some basic compliance terms and conditions which should be considered for any… more

Exclusive: New Statistics from CHRO Show Drop in Discrimination Claims

Through a recent FOI request, I was able to take a peek at the latest case statistics coming out of the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities. (The CHRO has since added them to the website as well.)… more

Client Alert: Administrator Pruitt Issues a Directive to Eliminate “Sue and Settle” Agreements in Environmental Regulation

On October 16, 2017, Administrator Pruitt issued a directive and accompanied memorandum that would eliminate “Sue and Settle” agreements that have been used during the past administration to influence U.S. EPA’s regulations. Sue and… more

Culture and conduct through the lens of the UK’s Senior Managers and Certification Regime

Speaking on 20 September 2017, Jonathan Davidson—Director of Supervision for Retail and Authorisations at the Financial Conduct Authority (“FCA”)—addressed the issue of culture and conduct in financial services, in light of the… more

CFPB Denied Restitutionary Relief in False Advertising Lawsuit Against Mortgage Services Company

In a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) action against a mortgage services company, its subsidiary, and its founder, a California district judged denied an award of $73.9 million in restitutionary relief, and imposed a civil… more

Drone hits commercial plane on final approach into Canadian airport

On October 12, 2017, a Skyjet flight, on its final approach into Québec City, was struck by a drone. This aviation incident marked the first commercial aircraft strike by a drone in Canada. No one onboard suffered any injuries, and… more

Groundbreaking—IRS makes things complicated

Employers who adhere to certain IRS guidelines may face much lower indemnity payments for employees who traveled for work pre-injury - Myres v. Strom Aviation, Inc. (16-558) - In companies where employees regularly travel away… more

No Notice: How Unnotified Creditors Can Violate a Discharge Injunction

Here is the scenario: You are a creditor. You hold clear evidence of a debt that is not disputed by the borrower, an individual. That evidence of debt could be in the form of a note, credit agreement or simply an invoice. You… more

Las Vegas’ Airport And The Lawyer Who Went “All In” For His Client

Passengers flying to Las Vegas arrive at the McCarran International Airport. Having spent my youth in Las Vegas, I have many memories of going to the airport to greet arriving family or to fly East for school. Then, there was no… more

Kitty Hawk NC offshore wind lease signed

U.S. ocean energy managers have leased a 122,405-acre site offshore North Carolina to a company for offshore wind development. The U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management's lease to Avangrid Renewables, LLC will enable the company to… more

CAS Legal Mailbag Question of the Week – October, 2017 #3

Dear Legal Mailbag: I tried to get a police dog into my school on the morning of an overnight, out-of-state field trip so that the dog could sniff student luggage before putting the bags on the buses. I felt the need to do this… more

Building Your Founding Team—Is There a Magic Number?

During our recent webinar on seed fundraising, questions were raised on the ideal size of a company’s founding team and if there was a magic number that may be more attractive to investors. Jere Doyle, Managing Director of Sigma Prime… more

The Continuing Support for Dual-Class Stock by Companies and Investors

The reported demise of dual-class stock appears to be, to paraphrase Mark Twain, "greatly exaggerated." The end of dual-class stock was predicted following the decisions this summer by the major indices, including FTSE Russell (who… more

Does getaroom Make U Want 2 BookaRoom?

A tv commercial for yet another hotel booking website just caught my eye, called getaroom..… more

Capital Markets & Public Companies Quarterly: Capital Formation, Dividend Notice and Pay Ratio Q3 Updates

During the previous quarter, the SEC confirmed that CEO pay ratio disclosure will go into effect as scheduled for the 2018 proxy season. They further announced a new policy permitting qualifying issuers to submit draft registration… more

Limiting Your Exposure and Visibility

We spend so much time on our mobile phones and on social media, yet often we don’t think of how these tools are broadcasting our lives as we work and play. With just a few steps, you can limit what you are digitally telling the world… more

CFPB provides update on HMDA platform

In August 2017, we reported that the CFPB had given the mortgage industry a first look at the Internet-based platform it is developing for industry members to use to submit data under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA)… more

Q&A with Scott and Celia Catlett - Insights From the Restaurant Industry

In this edition of the Franchise & Hospitality newsletter, we open with an interview of Scott and Celia Catlett. Scott is the Vice President and Deputy General Counsel at YUM! Brands, Inc. (the owner of the KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell… more

Cybersecurity 2018 – The Year in Preview: HIPAA Compliance

Like many things in Washington, the HIPAA landscape in 2018 will be shaped by the shifting priorities of President Trump’s new administration. Early signs point to less funding for the Office of Civil Rights (“OCR”) within the… more

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Inferior Parental Leave Policies Can Result in Discrimination Claims

To recruit and retain top talent, employers often offer benefits more generous than required under the law. Such benefits include unlimited vacation, paid maternity leave and paid paternity leave. However, a recent US Equal Employment… more

NASDAQ Company Discusses Plan for Initial Coin Offering

Social Reality, Inc. (NASDAQ:SRAX) discussed its plans for an initial coin offering with analysts on October 17, 2017. Its stock closed up 70% on the news… more

Workers’ Compensation Ruling Given Preclusive Effect In Discrimination Lawsuit

Seyfarth Synopsis: In Ly v. County of Fresno, the Court of Appeal held that correctional officers’ claims for race, ethnicity, and national origin discrimination were barred because the claims had been previously denied in workers'… more

New California Laws on the Horizon

California has passed a number of employment laws this year, including the expansion of baby bonding leave to small employers, prohibiting inquiries into an applicant’s salary history, and restricting the use of applicants’ criminal… more

Data Privacy + Cybersecurity Insider - October 2017 #2

FBI Issues Flash Alert on Apache Struts Vulnerability - The Apache Struts vulnerability has been mentioned frequently in the media over the past month, as it is believed to have been involved in one of the largest and most damaging… more

Asset Management Regulatory Roundup - October 2017 - Issue 8

A compact summary of the most recent regulatory developments relevant to the UK asset management industry. This issue includes details on US-EU equivalence of certain OTC derivative rules; the FCA asset management authorisation hub;… more

March-in Rights and Compulsory License in the United States

March-in rights in the US were created in 1980, as part of the Bayh-Dole Act. Simply stated, when the US government funds research that results in patents, it obtains rights to those patents. These rights are retained even when the… more

End and refund of the French 3% tax on distributions

The French Constitutional Court rules that the 3% contribution on distributions is unconstitutional - On 6 October, 2017, the French Constitutional Court, in its decision (n°2017-660 QPC), held that the 3% contribution on… more

FTC Provides Guidance on Reasonable Data Security Practices (Part II of III)

This is the second in a series of three articles on the FTC’s Stick with Security blog... Over the past 15 years, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has brought more than 60 cases against companies for unfair or deceptive data… more

Jump in Credit Scores Means Dip in Underwriting Predictability

Underwriters that rely on popular credit-scoring models like FICO and VantageScore to assess risk may have noticed that some consumer credit scores jumped recently. The nationwide credit reporting agencies, Equifax Inc., Experian PLC… more

Tennessee Health Services and Facilities Report: October 2017

The Tennessee Health Services and Development Agency (“HSDA”) is responsible for regulating the health care industry in Tennessee through the Certificate of Need Program. A Certificate of Need (“CON”) is a permit for the establishment… more

Happy Cybersecurity Awareness Month! Are you Safe?

Since it was first announced by Presidential Proclamation in 2013, we mark each October as National Cybersecurity Awareness Month. The Department of Homeland Security explains that, in 2017, designation is “designed to engage and… more

U.S. Department of Justice Rescinds Policy Protecting Transgender Employees

On October 4, 2017, the United States Department of Justice, through Attorney General Jeff Sessions, issued a memorandum rescinding an Obama-era policy protecting transgender employees from employment discrimination pursuant to Title… more

The Salary Privacy Act—Stacking the Deck

Job interviews and salary negotiations have always been a sort of poker game. Now, in California, employers are required to show their hands, while candidates can keep their cards close to the vest… more

Third Travel Ban Blocked by Court

On the eve of its taking effect, President Donald Trump’s third attempt at a travel ban has been blocked by the District Court in Hawaii. On October 17, 2017, Judge Derrick Watson granted a nationwide temporary restraining order… more

Oil and Gas in Texas: Some Law and a Little History

Welcome to the binary edition, where you have a choice: An informative and engaging stroll through the history of the oil and gas business in Texas, or a wonkish and also informative legal analysis… more

Distillations: Glass Half Full

Here at the Distillations Desk we’ve talked about trademark disputes over the shapes of bottles, but now comes a case about the shapes of glasses. On October 12, Glencairn IP Holdings and Glencairn Crystal Studio filed suit in… more

Health Insurance for U.S. Employees - A New Option for an Old Problem

There is good news in the world of U.S. health insurance laws, at least for Canadian companies with fewer than 50 full-time U.S. employees. Effective this year, it is now possible to directly reimburse employees for the cost of… more

AMF Report Highlights Deficiencies in Disclosure Documents of Quebec Issuers

The Corporate Finance Division of Quebec’s Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) recently released its first Summary of Oversight and Regulatory Activities (Report), which provides general information and reminders about securities… more

EDPS Releases Recommendations on ePrivacy Regulation – Still a Long Way to Go

We are only eight months away from the new EU data protection regime entering into force. In addition to the General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”), which includes the general data protection provisions, the ePrivacy Regulation… more

Alert: China Issues New Policy for Drug and Medical Device Approvals

On October 8, 2017, the General Office of the CPC Central Committee and the General Office of China's State Council jointly issued Opinions of the State Council on Promulgating the Reform of Review and Approval System for Drugs and… more

Cracking Open a Cold One: Plaintiffs’ False Advertising Suit Against Brewer Survives Dismissal

Earlier this year, two plaintiffs launched a putative class action against Portland-based Craft Brew Alliance, the fifth largest brewing company in the U.S. and parent company of Kona Brewing Co. Craft Brew acquired Kona in 2010… more

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