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FERC Seeks to Enhance Electricity Market Surveillance and Data Collection for Market-Based Rates Sellers and Other Market Participants, but Substantially Eases Recently-Proposed Data Reporting Requirements

On July 21, 2016, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (July NOPR) to require certain participants in wholesale electric markets to submit “relational databases” to report information…more

Projected Decline of Americans Lacking Health Insurance Over Next Decade

The CMS Office of the Actuary recently released a report estimating that the percentage of Americans lacking health insurance will decline over the next decade. The actuary’s office predicts that in 2025, 8 percent of the U.S…more

Increase in Vertical Price Restraint Enforcement in China

In recent months, Chinese anti-monopoly enforcement actions scrutinizing and penalizing pricing-related issues have noticeably increased. A growing number of foreign companies in consumer-facing industries have received significant…more

Commonsense Misconduct Not so "Common": Illinois Supreme Court Significantly Narrows Use of Commonsense Rationale in Employee Dismissal Cases for Misconduct under the Unemployment Insurance Act

In the absence of a rule prohibiting specific conduct, employers can no longer rely merely on what one would deem "commonsense" to deny unemployment benefits. In Petrovic v. Department of Employment Security, the Illinois Supreme…more

Brexit: Key commercial issues for real estate

Summary – the three things you need to know - It is worth re-emphasising that Brexit will not result in any significant changes to the law underpinning property ownership, letting and conveyancing in England and Wales as this…more

Unlocking the EU General Data Protection Regulation: A practical handbook on the EU's new data protection law: Chapter 14: Data Protection Authorities

Why does this topic matter to organisations? National Data Protection Authorities ("DPAs") are appointed to implement and enforce data protection law, and to offer guidance. As set out in Chapter 16, DPAs have significant…more

Health Update - July 2016

The Vulnerability of Healthcare Information - According to a report the Brookings Institute issued in May 2016, 23% of all data breaches occur in the healthcare industry. Nearly 90% of healthcare organizations had some sort of…more

Can blockchain live up to the hype?

Is blockchain the revolutionary technology that will rewrite the rules for the finance industry, identifying authenticity and verifying payment flows that arise at a business-to-business level or between business and consumers and…more

Physical Combinability of References Not Necessarily Required for Obviousness

Addressing issues of obviousness, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit upheld the obviousness determination of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB or Board), explaining that it is not necessary for two references to be…more

Choice is Knowledge: H.R. 3178

This is the fifth installment in a series examining five bipartisan bills advanced by the House Committee on Education and the Workforce on June 22, 2016 and approved by the full House of Representatives on July 11, 2016. While…more

One of the Largest Member Clubs in Singapore Is Liquidated

California Fitness’s closure has left many consumers who have purchased prepaid packages without any remedies. On 20 July, California Fitness, which was once fronted by action movie star Jackie Chan, announced that it would…more

Top 10 rules for compliant non-qualified deferred compensation

By Lori Jones Internal Revenue Code Section 409A regulates nonqualified deferred compensation (NQDC) plans and arrangements, which are commonly used to provide supplemental compensation to key executives. Complying with Section 409A is…more

Ten Questions to Consider Before Granting Equity to Employees

Granting employees equity can be a great way to reward and motivate employees. Most employees will work harder once they have some skin in the game. However, granting equity can be complicated and it's easy to make mistakes. Before…more

California Supreme Court Clarifies Constitutional Limits on Punitive Damages

In Brandt v. Superior Court, the California Supreme Court held that when a plaintiff proves that an insurance company withheld policy benefits in bad faith, attorneys' fees reasonably incurred to compel payment of the benefits are…more

Genzyme Therapeutic Products Ltd. v. Biomarin Pharmaceutical Inc. (Fed. Cir. 2016)

The Federal Circuit affirmed the decision by the Patent Trial and Appeals Board (PTAB) in an inter partes review (IPR) that the claims of Genzyme's U.S Patent Nos. 7,351,410 and 7,655,226 were obvious, in Genzyme Therapeutic Products…more

Claim Terms with No Specialized Meaning in the Art Always Linked to Specification

Emphasizing the public-notice function of a patent’s specification, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit affirmed a district court’s construction of four patent claim terms based entirely on intrinsic evidence. Indacon, Inc…more

FDA Issues Draft Guidance as Part of Precision Medicine Initiative

The two draft guidance documents are intended to streamline the review of next generation sequencing-based tests. On July 8, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA or Agency) issued two draft guidance documents regarding next…more

Advertising Law - July 2016 #4

Sen. Franken Hits Pause on Pokémon GO - After the Pokémon GO app was downloaded approximately 7.5 million times in the United States alone in its first week of release, Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), the chairman of the Judiciary…more

SBM Offshore N.V. signs five party $340M leniency agreement to resolve Petrobras bribery allegations in Brazil

SBM Offshore N.V. has reached a $340M settlement with both criminal and administrative prosecutors in Brazil to resolve allegations of bribery relating to the Petrobras scandal, the first deal of its kind in Brazil and a notable…more

Consumer Financial Services Newsletter - July 2016

Eighth Circuit Holds That Filing Accurate Proof of Claim on Time-Barred Debt Does Not Violate the FDCPA - Nelson v. Midland Credit Mgmt., Inc., No. 15-2984, 2016 WL 3672073 *1 (8th Cir. July 11, 2016) - On July 11, 2016, the…more

Unlocking the EU General Data Protection Regulation: A practical handbook on the EU's new data protection law: Chapter 13: Cross-Border Data Transfers

Why does this topic matter to organisations? In today's world, it is increasingly important to be able to move data freely to wherever those data are needed. However, the transfer of personal data to recipients outside the EEA is…more

House of Commons Justice Committee review of Tribunal fees

It has now been three years since the introduction of Employment Tribunal fees (ET Fees). There is an ongoing challenge to ET Fees by the union Unison, which is taking its judicial review case to the Supreme Court. The publication of…more

Financial Services Weekly News - July 2016 #4

Editor's Note - What Exactly Is Bitcoin? In a case featuring a sting operation beginning with meetings in a coffee shop, ice cream store and hotel lobby and ending with the sale of bitcoins to an undercover Miami Beach police…more

“Battle-ready” Privacy Shield gets muted welcome from EU data protection authorities

On 26 July, the Article 29 Data Protection Working Party (WP29) released a statement outlining its opinion on the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield, which was adopted by the European Commission earlier this month. After praising the improvements…more

ASDA equal pay claims

On Monday 20 June 2016, a seven-day hearing began in the largest private sector equal pay claim ever brought. It is estimated that the claim, if successful, could cost ASDA over 100 million pounds. It could also have wide-ranging…more

Ninth Circuit Says You’re Going to Jail for Visiting That Website without Permission

Zounds, right? But that is arguably what the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit said about the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act in Facebook v. Power Ventures, Inc. on July 12th. Let’s get to it…more

CA Corps Not Obligated to Make Records Available for Inspection in California

The California Court of Appeal recently ruled that an inspection demand under California Corporations Code section 1601 requires a corporation to make its books and records available for inspection at an office where they normally are…more

Dealing With Trade Secret Thieves: Strategies for Cost-Effective Settlement

Trade secret thieves are almost always an employee or business associate. They are known, generally held the trust of the business, and are perceived as traitors. The urge for retribution against such trade secret thieves can be hard…more

Brexit: Potential regulatory and transactional impacts for financial institutions

This paper considers the key potential regulatory and transactional consequences for financial institutions of the UK's referendum vote on 23 June 2016 to leave the EU. The future relationship between the UK and the EU is unclear. But…more

Is Proposed Legislation Likely To Slow Implementation of The New Overtime Regulations? Probably Not.

On May 18, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced the publication of its final rule updating its existing overtime regulations. The updated regulations are scheduled to become effective on December 1 of this year and are…more

Florida Judge Rules Bitcoin is not Money

On July 25, a Florida Circuit Court judge dismissed state criminal charges against a defendant who attempted to sell bitcoins for $30,000 in cash on the ground that bitcoins are not money. Defendant Michell Abner Espinoza allegedly had…more

CMS’ Web Portal: Final Rule 21 CFR § 411.39 Promises Quick and Efficient Conditional Payment Resolution for Those Able to Abide by Its Strict Guidelines

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has published its long-awaited final rule entitled “Medicare Program: Obtaining Final Medicare Secondary Payer Conditional Payment Amounts via Web Portal.” From the outset of…more

Brexit: Three key points for the infrastructure sector

With recent falls in the value of sterling causing price rises for some imported materials, the UK's infrastructure market is already seeing the impact of one generic issue that affects most domestic businesses. Depending on what deal…more

Minerals Matters - Spring 2016

Minerals Matters is DLA Piper's bi-annual publication which showcases the breadth and depth of our experience in the mining and minerals sector across our office network and in all practice areas. In this issue, we feature an…more

"Winding Up" A Law Firm Partnership Doesn't Necessarily Mean Liquidation

You can "wind up" a partnership without having to liquidate all of its assets and terminating its existence. So ruled Judge McGuire last week in Hardin v. Lewis, 2016 NCBC 55. But that may not be true for all partnerships. This case…more

Does Your Severance Trigger ERISA? Why You Should Care and What You Should Do

Generally speaking, many employers do not think about the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) when it comes to severance, whether at the front end, when employment agreements or policies are negotiated and planned, or at…more

Hyper-Divergence: Halo and the Preliminary Injunction Requirement for Enhanced Damages

A recent report and recommendation issued in the District of Massachusetts is one of the first cases to interpret – and arguably, to extend – the Supreme Court’s recent decision on willful infringement, Halo Electronics, Inc. v. Pulse…more

An overriding omnishambles: Recent break clause developments

Two recent cases provide salutary lessons in how to serve break notices and also in how to draft them. The firmament of break clause cases has been so enriched in recent years with cases such as M&S and Ibrend that fanatics of break…more

Brexit and financial markets

On 23 June 2016, the UK electorate voted to leave the European Union in a so-called Brexit referendum. This historic decision raises significant challenges and potential opportunities for financial services activity within the UK and…more

Boosts in Ransomware Attacks Spark Multiple Government Agency Responses

Following a recent U.S. government interagency report indicating that, on average, there has been an alarming 300 percent spike in daily ransomware attacks since early 2016 as compared with 2015, the U.S. Department of Health and Human…more

The Dispute Resolution Mechanisms Under the Privacy Shield: What Happens if I Join Privacy Shield and Someone Submits a Complaint? (Part 1 of 2)

The first installment in our month-long series dissecting the new “Privacy Shield” framework for transferring data from the EU to the United States discussed the history and implementation of the Privacy Shield. The second, third and…more

Personal data protection – Prohibition on transfer of data out of Singapore

In a connected world, data moves across borders everyday, and most of us do not have any concerns. However, since Singapore’s data protection law came into effect on 2 January 2013, organisations in Singapore have to be mindful of the…more

Basic Contract Issues for New Physician Contracts

When physicians have finally completed the medical education journey, many are confronted with a “physician employment contract,” usually from a hospital or medical practice, which could define the essential terms of their professional…more

Important changes to the Market Abuse Regime

The Market Abuse Regulation (MAR) will replace the current EU market abuse regime from 3 July 2016. This will be the first time standardised market abuse rules will apply across all EU countries. Up to now the rules flowed from a…more

French Labor Court Holds: Look The Other Way And Pay

France is world-renowned for its protection of employees against adverse employer actions, particularly unilateral terminations. Like virtually all other countries outside the United States, France does not recognize at-will…more

Cleveland Law Allows Transgender Employees to Use Restroom Associated With Gender Identity

Companies in Cleveland, Ohio, now must permit transgender employees and patrons to use the bathrooms, showers, locker rooms, and dressing facilities associated with the individual’s gender identity or expression. Cleveland Mayor…more

Pokémon No! A Strategy Guide on Handling the Latest Smartphone Craze in the Workplace

Although Pokémon Go is only 21 days young, over 30 million users have downloaded and played the augmented reality game on their smartphones. In the latest release of the pocket monster franchise, your mission is to capture and train…more

Did You Know...The Qyburnian Resurrection of the Jiffy June Standard: The New Battle of Cash-in-Lieu and the Reasonable Rate of Pay

In a case of first impression, the Ninth Circuit held in Flores v. City of San Gabriel that an employer was liable to a class of employees for failing to include cash-in-lieu of benefits payments in its calculation of the regular rate…more

Development of court practice in tax disputes over accounting of expenses to pay for intragroup services

On 23 May 2016 the Commercial Court of the North Caucasus Region delivered a ruling in the case of Bonduelle-Kuban LLC (the “Company”), No. ?32-8522/2015, in which the court upheld the judgments of the lower courts and supported the…more

Public Works Slowdown Following Implementation of the New Italian Public Procurement Code

The Italian Government definitively approved Legislative Decree no. 50 in April this year, implementing Directives 2014/23/EU, 2014/24/EU and 2014/25/EU of the European Parliament and European Council. The revised legislation resulting…more

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