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Intellectual Property Law - February 2016

Both Sides Claim Victory in ITC Ruling re Converse's "Chuck Taylors" - Why it matters: On November 17, 2015, an International Trade Commission judge issued an initial ruling in In the Matter of Certain Footwear Products, the case…more

Reminder – Truthful Advertising Is Not Optional

We blog frequently about new regulatory developments coming from CPSC or FDA and about enforcement actions brought by those federal agencies as well as state counterparts and private plaintiffs. But we don’t very often discuss actions…more

Fahmy v. Jay Z - USDC, C.D. California, February 1, 2016

District court enters final judgment dismissing plaintiff’s copyright infringement suit against Jay Z with prejudice, finding that its previous ruling that plaintiff’s claimed “moral rights” were not cognizable under American copyright…more

Senate Passes Trade Facilitation And Trade Enforcement Act - Comprehensive Customs bill addresses several key topics

On February 11, 2016, the Senate passed the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015 (H.R. 644) by a 75-20 vote. Today’s action constitutes acceptance by the Senate of a conference agreement reached by House and Senate…more

Top 5 Things to Know About the Caucuses in Minnesota

1. What is a caucus and how does it differ from a primary? - The caucus system is a political process put on by the major political parties in Minnesota. At the caucus, party activists endorse candidates and discuss issues…more

CMS Eases 60-Day Overpayment Requirement in Final Rule While Raising New Questions

On February 11, 2016, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (“CMS”) released the long awaited final rule clarifying the statutory requirement under the Affordable Care Act for providers and suppliers to report and return…more

The Grandpappy of All Extensions: Congress Permanently Extends the Internet Tax Freedom Act

On February 11, the United States Senate approved a permanent extension of the Internet Tax Freedom Act (ITFA) contained in the Conference Report accompanying H.R. 644, the “Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015,” which…more

Fifth Circuit Rejects Employee’s FLSA Off-the-Clock Claim; Highlights Importance of Overtime Authorization and Reporting Policies in Off-the-Clock Cases

The Fifth Circuit recently sided with an employer in an off-the-clock overtime case where the employee failed to comply with her employer’s overtime approval and reporting policies. For employers, this decision highlights the…more

California Court Rejects Arbitration Agreement for Unconscionability

On October 27, 2015, the California Court of Appeal, in an unpublished decision, issued yet another ruling applying the unconscionability doctrine to arbitration agreements in the employment context. In Prince v. Pletcher, B260864, a…more

Innovation is the key to success in 2016

Diverging economic conditions on either side of the Atlantic—as well as geopolitical issues such as global stock market volatility and plummeting oil prices—mean issuers, lenders and their advisers are entering unknown territory…more

Avvo and Advertising in the Land of Lincoln

Illinois attorney Ms. Moira Bernstein is the latest advocate to take on Avvo.com, the Seattle-based lawyer information and rating site. On February 4, 2016, Ms. Bernstein filed a class action complaint against Avvo, Inc. (“Avvo”) in…more

Changes to US Treasury Market Structure and Request for Comments

The dramatically changing market for US Treasury securities raises questions and concerns for the public and regulators alike. For example, as with the equities markets, high-frequency trading has entered the US Treasury markets…more

New Jersey Lobbying Reports Due on February 16, 2016

A business that engages in New Jersey lobbying must electronically file an annual report with the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission. Although the filing is normally due on February 15, this year’s deadline is moved to…more

Stop the Presses. Superfund is Stupid.

I know that pointing out CERCLA’s stupidity has something of a dog bites man quality, but sometimes Superfund’s stupidity bears repeating. Today’s exhibit? New York v. Next Millenium Realty, in which Judge Feuerstein held – rightly…more

EEOC Seeks to Expand EEO-1 Form to Include Pay Data

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has announced plans to require employers to provide information about employee pay and hours worked as part of their annual EEO-1 reports. The EEOC’s proposal, which was published in…more

Retroactive Tax Law Provides Tax Benefits for Victims of Wrongful Incarceration

At the end of 2015, Congress eliminated some of the uncertainty regarding the tax treatment of damages for wrongful imprisonment. Newly enacted Internal Revenue Code section 139F provides that gross income does not include…more

Twentieth Century Fox Television v. Empire Distribution Inc. - USDC, C.D. California, February 1, 2016

District court rules Fox’s hit television show “Empire” did not infringe or dilute trademark of record label Empire Distribution because Fox’s use of “Empire” was protected by First Amendment…more

Manufacturing Matters - Winter 2016

Welcome to Manufacturing Matters, DLA Piper’s specialist publication providing a round-up of legal news, sector updates and commentary for clients and contacts engaged in the manufacturing sector. British manufacturers are…more

Retail and Consumer Products Law Roundup - February 2016

Be Still, My Heart: New Suit Says Fitbits Fail to Track Heartbeats as Promised - Why it matters - Fitbit has been hit with another consumer class action asserting false advertising claims, this time alleging that the fitness…more

Implications of the Clean Power Plan Stay

Late in the day on Tuesday, February 9, the U.S. Supreme Court stayed, for at least a year and possibly longer, the implementation of the Clean Power Plan (CPP), the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) widely-publicized…more

Driessen v. Sony Music Entertainment (Fed. Cir. 2016)

On February 10, 2016, the Federal Circuit issued a nonprecedential opinion in a case captioned Driessen v. Sony Music Entertainment, Best Buy Stores, Fye, & Target Corp. addressing issues related to means-plus-function claims and…more

What to watch for in 2016 in financial regulation: important changes to AML rules for investment advisers coming this year

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network of the US Department of the Treasury (FinCEN) published a proposed rule in August 2015 which scoped certain investment advisers into the definition of “financial institution” and subjected them…more

60-Day Overpayment Final Rule Eases Obligations for Health Care Providers But Still Reinforces Need for Vigilance

On Feb. 11, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) published a final rule relating to the overpayment providers receive from federally funded health care programs. While the rule eases some of the burden for providers to…more

Courts Send Mixed Messages on Standing for Plaintiffs in Data Breach Litigation

New decisions from two federal courts may allow defendants in data breach class action litigation to breathe somewhat easier, following a run of adverse decisions last year. These decisions illustrate an emerging trend of district…more

IRS Issues Proposed Regulations Regarding Applicability of Normal Retirement Age to Governmental Pension Plans

In a change that would impact government employers with retirement plans, the IRS has proposed a rule to address whether the normal retirement age under a governmental plan satisfies the requirements to preserve tax-qualified status…more

What the Administration Actually Can Do on Drug Pricing

The President’s budget makes clear for all to see that the Administration wants to do something related to drug pricing. Unfortunately for the Administration, most of their proposals require Congressional authority that have virtually…more

CMS Finalizes 60 Day Overpayment Rule

The final rule relaxes the requirements on “identification” and look-back period. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released its long-awaited final rule related to the reporting and refunding of Medicare Part…more

BNY Mellon Issues 2015 Report on Global Trends in Investor Relations

On February 9, 2016, BNY Mellon released its 2015 Global Trends in Investor Relations: A Survey Analysis of IR Practices Worldwide. The report summarizes survey responses of 550 companies from 54 different countries to identify…more

Be My Workplace Valentine? We’ll See . . .

Psychology Today had a great article by social psychologist and professor Theresa DiDonato about nine questions one should ask oneself before starting a workplace romance. Of course, the article was written primarily from a…more

Two Claimants, One Check: A Common Maneuver That Can Get You Sued…Again

In 2009, Javier Escobar was injured in an auto accident that caused him to undergo extensive medical care at the Santa Clara Valley Medical Center - a hospital owned and operated by the County of Santa Clara (the “County”). Escobar…more

Harvard and MIT: A Decision Is Here! (Sort Of)

Long after the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Statements of Interest (SOI) were filed in June of 2015 in the cases involving Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), touching off a flood of litigation and…more

Liability of Regulators for Negligence

Salehi v. Association of Professional Engineers of Ontario, 2015 ONSC 7271 (CanLII) (Ont Sup Ct), claim of regulatory negligence during registration struck on basis of no private law duty of care - Mr. Salehi, a foreign educated…more

What Can Employers Expect from the 2016 Connecticut General Assembly Session?

On February 3, 2016, the 2016 session of the Connecticut General Assembly began. The session is scheduled to adjourn on May 4, 2016. Numerous proposed bills affecting Connecticut employers and employees will be unleashed during the…more

EEOC Retaliation Guidance, Part 3: A “Causal Connection” Checklist For Employers

This is the final installment of my analysis of the EEOC’s recently issued proposed Enforcement Guidance on Retaliation and Related Issues. Here are Part One (“You gotta be protected!”) and Part Two (“Was your employment action…more

Medicare and Medicaid Drug Policy Provisions in the Obama Administration’s Proposed FY 2017 Budget

The Obama Administration’s proposed fiscal year (FY) 2017 budget, released on February 9, 2016, includes a number of legislative proposals that would revise Medicare and Medicaid policies to achieve budget savings and make other…more

Contractual Assignees Are Not Subject To Equitable Subrogation Rule Of Superior Equities

In AMCO Ins. Co. v. All Solutions Ins. Agency (No. F070038, filed 2/8/16), a California Court of Appeal held that claims against an insurance broker for failure to procure requested coverage are assignable, and that express contractual…more

Life Settlement Disclosure Legislation

What are an insurer’s duties to insureds about disclosing the possibility of a life settlement? At least three recent cases have addressed an insurer’s duty to inform insureds about the existence and availability of life settlements…more

New Delaware Chapter 11 Filings – Sundevil Power Holdings, LLC et al.

Sundevil Power Holdings, LLC and SPH Holdco LLC have each filed a voluntary petition for relief under chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code before the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware (lead case no. 16-10369)…more

Blog: Lloyd’s CRO Urges Insurers To Contingency Plan Against The Risk Of #Brexit. Was He Right To Do So?

Lloyd’s Chief Risk Officer, Sean McGovern, spoke to the Insurance Institute of London yesterday about the impact of a possible Brexit on insurers, reinsurers and brokers. The speech was delivered at a sensitive time, and with some…more

Not So Fast My Friend: Implied Covenant to Develop and Non-Apportionment Subdivision Tracts

I can acquire a 2,000-acre lease in Ritchie County, West Virginia, held by production from one well, drilled in 1905. I can acquire a 100-acre lease with an affidavit of nonproduction from an individual who has owned the property…more

Medical Home Plans Saved Minnesota $1 Billion from 2010-2014

A five-year study released by the Minnesota Department of Health this week, which recorded reams of data in comparing traditional primary care practice patient and cost results with those of health care home practices (“HCH”), gives a…more

$89K Manager May Not Be FLSA-Exempt, Court Rules

This is scary. You’d think a person with “Manager” in her job title who was making more than $89,000 a year would be exempt from the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act…more

Proposed $13 Million Settlement in LinkedIn Privacy Case Awaits Court Approval

Lawyers in a privacy class action against LinkedIn have urged the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of California to give final approval to a $13 million settlement that was made public last year. The deadline for filing…more

Breaking News: 60-Day Overpayment Rule Finalized

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released its final rule implementing Section 6402(a) of the Affordable Care Act that requires Medicare providers and suppliers to report and return overpayments within 60 days after…more

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit Affirms Grant of Summary Judgment Dismissing "Per Se" Antitrust Tying Claims Against Live Nation

On February 4, 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit affirmed a grant of summary judgment dismissing "per se" antitrust tying claims brought by a local concert promoter (It's My Party, or IMP) against its larger rival…more

Canada Relaxes Iran Sanctions - Making it Easier to do Business with Iran

On February 5, 2016, Canada significantly reduced its unilateral economic sanctions against Iran by introducing amendments (Amendments) to the Special Economic Measures (Iran) Regulations (Iran Regulations). The relaxation follows the…more

Requirement to verify “data concerning legal entities” is now lifted

1. Law of Ukraine “On the State Registration of Legal Entities and Individual Entrepreneurs” ? 755-IV, dated 15 May 2003 was restated in its entirety under the new title “On the State Registration of Legal Entities, Individual…more

Supreme Court Blocks Obama Administration’s Clean Power Plan

On February 9, 2016, the Supreme Court of the United States issued an unprecedented grant of applications to stay the Clean Power Plan, President Obama’s signature climate change rule. The rule is being challenged in the U.S. Court of…more

Third Circuit Allows Termination of Expired CBA Obligations

Employers scored a big victory in In re Trump Entertainment Resorts, a case of first impression in the Third Circuit, which held that a debtor-employer can terminate their obligations under an expired Collective Bargaining Agreement…more

CMS Clarifies 60 Day Overpayment Rule

The Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), is set to publish a final rule that will provide some much needed relief to healthcare providers from the burdens of the so-called…more

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