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Do CMS Ratings Punish Hospitals for Serving the Poor?

Does the CMS star rating system reward hospitals for serving the affluent and punish those that serve the poor? The answer is a resounding yes, according to a recently published analysis by Bloomberg BNA. The analysis compared star…more

Futility Trumps Waiver of Arbitration Rights in Third Circuit

Echoing a holding already issued by four other circuits, the Third Circuit recently found that a defendant does not waive its right to arbitration by continuing to litigate in court, if the reason it failed to move to compel…more

Blog: HM Treasury consults on a new definition of “financial advice”

Consumers ask for advice or guidance on financial matters at different times and for different reasons. Some want to make their own investment decisions, and guidance would help. Some need limited advice on a particular issue…more

SDNY Refuses to Dismiss Executive’s Dodd-Frank Retaliation Claim

On August 24, 2016, the Southern District of New York denied Defendants’ motion to dismiss a Dodd-Frank whistleblower retaliation claim brought by its former co-CEO and Executive Chairman of its Board of Directors, finding that the…more

Massachusetts Takes Lead in Energy Storage Initiatives

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has released its long-awaited Energy Storage Initiative Study and simultaneously announced an $11 million program designed to help fund approximately 10 to 15 energy storage projects that will…more

Weekly Update Newsletter - September 2016 #3

GOVERNMENT CONTRACTS - Notice of Minimum Wage Rate Change for Contractors - The Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor issued a notice announcing that beginning January 1, 2017, the Executive Order minimum…more

Your daily dose of financial news - The Brief – 9.26.16

The Deal Professor weighs in on Yahoo’s announcement last week of the hack of roughly 500 million of its customers’ data and the specter of the MAC (material adverse change) that Verizon may choose to invoke to dance away from its $4.8…more

Deposit Insurance Review: Improving the Current Framework

On September 16, 2016, Canada’s Department of Finance (Finance Canada) published for comment the Deposit Insurance Review (Consultation Paper). The Consultation Paper ensues from the Budget 2014 announcement of the launch of a…more

Comments Due November 1, 2016 on Proposed Update to Framework for Biotechnology Regulation

On September 18, 2016, the Obama Administration issued two major documents in connection with its ongoing efforts to modernize the federal Coordinated Framework for the Regulation of Biotechnology. The first document, a proposed…more

Germany Publishes Review of the Joint Research Strategy of the Higher Federal Authorities

On September 19, 2016, the Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (BAuA) published a report entitled Review of the joint research strategy of the higher federal authorities — Nanomaterials and other advanced materials:…more

OSHA Addresses Sarbanes-Oxley Whistleblower Releases

We have written about SEC enforcement actions related to severance and confidentiality agreements that restrict reporting matters to the SEC. OSHA has also issued guidance regarding settlement agreements with whistleblowers under…more

The Future of U.K.-EU Trade: The Bilateral Trade Agreement Model

In the aftermath of Brexit, the United Kingdom is faced with the challenge of negotiating a relationship with the European Union that balances Single Market access with national control over the movement of goods and workers. This…more

Diversity Visa ("Green Card Lottery") Registration

On October 4, 2016, registration for the Diversity Visa (DV) 2018 Program will begin. Conducted by the U.S. Department of State (DOS), the DV program provides a limited number of immigrant (permanent) visas each fiscal year for…more

Wearable Device Data: The Next Big Thing for Employment Litigation Cases

Wearable device data may be the next big thing in the world of evidence for employment cases since social media. Given that it has already been used in personal injury and criminal cases, it is only a matter of time before wearable…more

Surviving the Zombie [Foreclosure] Apocalypse

Preparing For A World When Lis Pendens Protections Are All But Ober - “BEWARE REAL PROPERTY LITIGATORS” warns a former chair of the Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section of the Florida Bar. This advice, given in…more

Ownership of Copyright in Software

Can an employee claim to own the employer’s software? An “author” of a work is the first owner of copyright. To determine ownership, it’s necessary to determine which contributions will be considered “authorship” for the purposes…more

More Lessons From McRo

My previous blog on McRo focused on the direct aspects of the decision, but there are other excellent points that the court makes and that can be derived from the opinion, and that should play an important role in how the courts and…more

Trust But Verify - Due Diligence with a Jaded Eye

Ronald Reagan’s mantra with respect to US-Soviet relations in the 1980s applies with equal force to today’s world of due diligence. (I know it shows my age that I can recall this statement). Not all due diligence cases require a…more

WARNING: California’s Proposition 65 Warning Requirements are Changing

California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (“OEHHA”) recently finalized substantial amendments to the regulations governing the provision of warnings required by “Proposition 65” (a/k/a the “Safe Drinking Water and…more

Federal Circuit Provides Additional Support to Software Patents

The federal circuit recently reversed a decision in McRO, Inc. v. DBA Planet Blue that asserted claims in patents at issue, relating to a method for automatically animating lip synchronization and facial expression of animated…more

UPDATE: CA Supreme Court Grants Review of Order Requiring Yelp.com to Remove Negative Reviews of Law Firm Following Determination They Were Defamatory and Disgruntled Former Client Failed to Act

In a case which was the subject of our Alert dated June 22, 2016, the California Supreme Court agreed on September 21, 2016 to review a lawsuit that Yelp.com warns could lead to the removal of negative reviews on the popular website…more

Blog: PSD2: EBA consults on PII Guidelines for payment initiation & account information service providers

The European Banking Authority (EBA) has published its draft Guidelines on professional indemnity insurance (PII) and comparable guarantees for payment initiation and account information service providers (PISPs and AISPs…more

Mission Near Impossible - Reliance on Professionals Defense to Late Filing and Payment Penalties

An estate sought relief for $1.189 million in penalties for the late filing of a Form 706 and the late payment of estate taxes when the filing and payment were over a year late. The U.S. District Court granted the government's motion…more

EPA’s Formaldehyde Standards for Composite Wood Products Pose Challenges for Industry, Particularly Importers

Importers, retailers, and others that sell goods containing plywood or other composite wood products face significant compliance challenges from EPA’s new Formaldehyde Standards for Composite Wood Products (the Standards). The final…more

[Video]Supply Chain Agreements

In this video, McNees attorney Peter F. Kriete recaps three recent food recalls as well as the new Senate Bill 764 that will require the USDA to develop label regulations on certain food and beverages. Mr. Kriete also lays out the…more

Western District of Michigan FBA Annual Meeting a Success

Approximately 100 members of the Western District of Michigan Chapter of the Federal Bar Association met for the chapter's Annual Meeting at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel's Imperial Ballroom on September 22, 2016. The meeting capped off…more

Uber Victory in Ninth Circuit Regarding Dispute Over Enforceability of Arbitration

The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (the “Ninth Circuit”) recently ruled that the majority of Uber’s contract drivers must resolve their disputes through individual arbitration and cannot pursue their labor claims…more

Construction E-Note - September 2016

Pokémon Go is the newest craze to hit smartphones, finding colossal success in America. Some estimates claim that five percent of all android users had installed the game on their phones within one week of launch. Nintendo’s stock is…more

Better Late Than Never? Yahoo Reveals 500 Million Affected From 2014 Hack

Quick to blame a state-sponsored organization, Yahoo announced at least 500 million of their account holders had their information stolen – in 2014. A statement released on September 22, 2016, by Yahoo’s Chief Information Security…more

Integrating Drones into Your Business

Drones are becoming increasingly important for business of all types and sizes. There are already many applications of drones for businesses, but many more will certainly arise over the next few years…more

“First thing we do, let’s kill all the regulators!”

“First thing we do, let’s kill all the regulators!” Actually, Shakespeare's exact line is ''The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers.'' This famous exhortation was stated by Dick the Butcher in Henry VI. Dick the Butcher…more

The Delta Report – Derivatives Newsletter: September 2016

In this issue of The Delta Report, we bring you further updates on developments in the global derivatives space. In Europe, the focus is on Brexit and the newly-released EU final regulatory standards on the valuation of derivatives for…more

UK Regulator Consults on Qualification Standards for Financial Advisers

The Financial Conduct Authority published a consultation paper on proposed updates to the current appropriate qualification examination standards. Individuals within regulated firms that, for example, advise on securities, derivatives…more

Legal Brexit: Energy - Oil & Gas

On 23 June 2016, the UK electorate voted in a referendum to leave the European Union (EU). This outcome is expected to have far-reaching consequences for UK industry, including the oil & gas sector. These include: short- to…more

Federal Circuit Remands Issue of Enhanced Damages for Determination Whether this was an Egregious Case of Misconduct Beyond Typical Infringement

In WesternGeco LLC v. Ion Geophysical Corp., [2013-1527, 2014-1121, 2014-1526] (September 21, 2016), the Federal Circuit, on remand from the Supreme Court after Halo Electronics, Inc. v. Pulse Electronics, Inc., vacated the district…more

New Federal Telemedicine Grants Announced; Florida Not Listed

The U.S. Department of Agriculture just announced new grant funding awarded to seven telemedicine and 11 distance learning projects across 16 states to use technology to expand access to health care, substance misuse treatment, and…more

Bank of England Deputy Governor for Markets and Banking to Leave the Bank

The Bank of England announced the departure of Minouche Shafik, Deputy Governor for Markets and Banking…more

EU: Injunctions against intermediaries available also in the offline world

The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) recently confirmed that the ability of rightholders to apply for an injunction against intermediaries whose services are used by a third party to infringe an intellectual property right…more

CEQA Allows Developers to Recover Administrative Record Costs when Reimbursing Agency

Appellate Victory for Developers and Public Agencies - A developer can recover the cost of preparing a California Environmental Quality Act administrative record, even when the lead agency, not the developer, actually prepared it…more

How Appraisal Protects Against Texas Insurance Code Abuse

Insurance practice in Texas has become somewhat rote. Typically, a petition is filed against both an insurance company (that is often not based or incorporated in Texas) and a local adjuster. In addition to a breach of contract claim…more

Virtual Porn – Real Patent Lawsuit

The porn industry is often one of the early adopters for new technologies. VR is no exception. Virtual Immersion Technologies LLC is enforcing its patent against live VR porn operators. The patent 6,409,599 (“the ’599 patent”) is…more

A Sovereign Thumb on the Scale: Appeals Court Defers to China’s Interpretation of Its Own Laws To Dismiss Antitrust Suit

The Second Circuit recently set aside a $147 million verdict against two Chinese companies accused of conspiring to fix the price and supply of vitamin C sold to U.S. buyers. In re Vitamin C Antitrust Litigation. The panel held that…more

New CA Law Requires Disclosing Known ADA Violations During Lease Negotiations

Seyfarth Synopsis: In yet another effort to reduce ADA lawsuits, California Governor Jerry Brown recently signed into law – effective immediately – legislation to encourage tenants and landlords to acknowledge and address any…more

European Central Bank Draft Guidance on Non-Performing Loans

The European Central Bank published proposed draft Guidance on non-performing loans. The proposed Guidance addresses the main aspects of strategy, governance and operations for resolving NPLs. Once finalized, the Guidance will apply to…more

Wisconsin Court Rejects Employer’s Argument That Wellness Programs Are Insulated from Disability Law

Trial to Be Scheduled on Retaliation Claim - MILWAUKEE - A federal court has ruled in favor of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) in a disability discrimination case involving wellness programs filed against…more

FERC Meeting Agenda Summary - September 2016

Below are brief summaries of the agenda items for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s September 22, 2016 meeting, pursuant to the agenda as issued on September 15, 2016. Agenda item G1 has not been summarized due to its omission…more

Avoiding Post-Closing Surprises after an Acquisition

Growth is a goal of nearly every company, and mergers and acquisitions are one vehicle to make growth happen. When it comes to M&A, the last thing you want is an unexpected dispute after signing on the dotted line. Acquisition and…more

Copyright Alert: The European Union Exposes Websites to Copyright Liability for Linking to Infringing Material of Third Parties

The Court of Justice of the European Union ruled on September 8, 2016 that websites that merely link to infringing material (instead of copying it) can be liable for copyright infringement. If this decision, GS Media BV v. Sanoma…more

European Commission Calls for Acceleration of Capital Markets Union

The European Commission published a Communication calling for implementation of the Capital Markets Union to be accelerated. The CMU is part of the third pillar of the Commission Investment Plan for Europe. The CMU Action Plan was…more

No Rest for the Weary: California Law on Rest Breaks

Seyfarth Synopsis: California’s rules on rest breaks are still developing. Recent cases have addressed the timing of rest breaks, and whether employees (particularly those who remain “on call”) must be relieved of all duty during…more

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