Latest Updates

California Businesses Will Have to Stop Landfilling Organic Waste

Pending regulations now being developed by CalRecycle will have a significant impact on persons generating, transporting, recycling and disposing of organic waste in California. These regulations should become final by mid-2018, but… more

Time Will Tell If Trump Infrastructure Executive Order Shortens Federal Reviews

On August 15, 2017, President Trump issued an Executive Order (EO) (not yet numbered) that seeks to streamline federal environmental review and approvals of major infrastructure projects by imposing new timelines and procedures. The… more

Recent HHS Activity Following International Cyber Attacks

Following recent international cyber attacks, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued warnings to healthcare organizations, provided a cyber attack checklist, and launched its revised HIPAA Breach Reporting… more

Medicare Claims Appeals: D.C. Circuit Reverses and Remands in Case Seeking Relief From Processing Delays

On August 11, 2017, the D.C. Circuit reversed the district court and held that the district court abused its discretion by ordering the Secretary of HHS to clear the backlog of administrative appeals of denied Medicare reimbursement… more

“Buy American And Hire American” Update - Comments solicited for consideration in report to President Trump

On August 21, 2017, the U.S. Department of Commerce (“Commerce”) and the Office of the United States Trade Representative (“USTR”) published a Federal Register notice requesting comments on the costs and benefits to U.S. industry of… more

Think That Your Firm Isn’t Subject to GDPR? You May Be Wrong About That: eDiscovery Trends

We’re getting closer and closer to the implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) standard designed to strengthen and unify data protection for all individuals within the European Union (EU). It goes into effect… more

[Video]Compliance into the Weeds-Episode 51, the PCAOB and Compliance

In this episode, Matt Kelly and I take a deep dive into the Public Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB). We consider the role of the PCAOB in both audit standards and internal controls for compliance. What is goodwill, goodwill… more

The Department of Labor’s Fiduciary Rule – Three Issues for Retirement Plan Sponsors

The DOL’s fiduciary rule re-defines when a party is acting as a “fiduciary” under ERISA as a result of providing investment advice to a retirement plan and has the effect of greatly expanding the types of services that are deemed to be… more

Mine Safety Agency Implements Medical Standards Action Plan For Inspectors, Technical Personnel

The Mine Safety and Health Administration will implement an action plan for employees who do not meet the agency’s medical standards. As a condition of employment, MSHA inspectors and technical personnel must undergo periodic… more

The Plan Providers That A 401(k) Plan Sponsor Needs

When an employer decides to start a 401(k) plan, one of the biggest problems out there is that they don’t know who they need. They know that they need someone to help on their retirement plan, but they don’t know who. One of the secret… more

OSHA Schedules Second Public Meeting On Voluntary Protection Programs

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has scheduled the second of two meetings to “reshape” the Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP) for August 28, 2017. The first meeting was held on July 17, 2017… more

Step Aside, Payday Loans: There’s an Old Kid in Town

In recent years, there has been a dramatic increase in the use of bills of sale, a somewhat antiquated form of security, in relation to individuals raising finance secured against a car they own: the logbook loan. This article… more

Two Delaware Decisions Make Statutory Appraisal a Less Attractive Remedy

During the past several weeks, the Delaware Supreme Court and the Delaware Court of Chancery have issued two opinions, ACP Master, Ltd. v. Clearwire Corporation and DFC Global Corporation v. Muirfield Value Partners, L.P., relating to… more

State AGs Data Breach Settlement Reinforces the Importance of Patch Management

A recent settlement between Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company and attorneys general from 32 states and the District of Columbia (the "Attorneys General") over a 2012 data breach reinforces the importance of patch management. On… more

Updates to National Plan and Provider Enumeration System (NPPES) Impact Physicians, Providers, and Suppliers

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently updated the National Plan and Provider Enumeration System (NPPES), which impacts all physicians, providers, and suppliers that use NPPES to obtain or maintain a National… more

Department of Labor Names Wayne Palmer Acting Head of Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA)

While it remains to be seen whether a formal presidential appointee will be tapped to run the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA), the Trump Administration finally made an influx of leadership decisions for the agency. The… more

Filing An Early Motion To Strike Class Allegations

A recent decision by the Western District of Michigan is indicative of the increasing trend in federal district courts to grant early motions to strike class allegations where it is obvious that a class cannot be certified. The benefit… more

ESOP: An Exit Strategy

One way for business owners to transition their ownership to their employees and to receive liquidity for their shares is through the creation of an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP). According to the National Center for Employee… more

[Video]Changing values of IP and data in deals

Ed Black, co-head of Ropes & Gray’s IP transactions and technology, media & telecommunications practice groups, discusses changing values of IP and data in M&A transactions. ______________________________________ One of the things… more

CPSC Recall Snapshot – Recall Effectiveness

Welcome to the August edition of the Alston & Bird CPSC Recall Snapshot. Last month, the CPSC held a Recall Effectiveness Workshop, which was organized to allow the CPSC staff and industry stakeholders to discuss the CPSC recall… more

Tax Court Holds That Foreign Corporation’s Sale Of A Partnership Interest Not Taxable In US

The US Tax Court recently held that a foreign corporation is not subject to US income tax on the sale of a partnership interest where the partnership conducts a US business. In so holding, the Tax Court rejected a 26 year old Revenue… more

Bad News for Whistleblowers: Defendant Pleads Guilty

At first glance, it looks nonsensical. How could it be bad news for False Claims Act whistleblowers that the defendant pleaded guilty to violating that statute—to committing the very Medicare fraud the whistleblowers alleged?… more

Worth Another Look: Transportation Infrastructure

In January of 2017, the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) published a list of the top 10 issues that will be before state legislatures across the nation this year. While we’re just over a quarter of the way through the… more

GDPR is Coming -- Are You Prepared?

What is the GDPR? The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a comprehensive data protection law created by the European Union and comes into effect on May 25, 2018. It replaces the Data Protection Directive. Its goal is to… more

How Often Did the Illinois Supreme Court Reverse Death Penalty Judgments (Part 2)?

Yesterday, we began our comparative review of the Illinois and California Supreme Court’s experience with direct review of death penalty judgments. Today, we reach the second half of our first analysis – how often did the Illinois… more

Delaware: The Latest State To Amend Its Data Breach Notification Law

Delaware joins the growing number of states that recently amended their data breach notification law. On August 17th, Delaware amended its data breach notification law with House Bill 180, the first significant change since 2005… more

[Audio]K&L Gates Triage: 340B Regulatory Update: CMS Proposal and Draft Executive Order Could Have Big Impact on 340B Program

This episode outlines the basics of the 340B Drug Pricing Program and discusses potential changes affecting the program, including CMS’s recent proposal to cut reimbursement for Part B drugs purchased under the 340B program… more

Salary Inquiries Off Limits in San Francisco

Last month, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee signed the “Parity in Pay” Ordinance, making San Francisco the latest in a growing number of cities and states that have enacted legislation prohibiting employers from asking job applicants about… more

SEC Updates IPO Guidance: Issuers can Omit Interim Financial Information that will be Superseded

On August 17, 2017, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) updated its guidance with respect to interim financial information that issuers may omit from draft registration statements. Under the updated guidance, both an… more

SAP Meeting on Continuing Development of Alternative High-Throughput Screens to Determine Endocrine

On August 3, 2017, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published a Federal Register notice announcing revised comment period dates for the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act Scientific Advisory Panel (FIFRA… more

[Audio]K&L Gates Triage: 340B Eligibility - Hospital Covered Entities

This podcast focuses on the eligibility requirements for hospitals participating in the 340B Drug Pricing Program. Factors affecting eligibility include a hospital’s licensure status, patient population, and Medicare cost-reports. The… more

Aloha Cash Buyers: FinCEN Issues Advisory to Financial Institutions; Expands Geographic Tracking Order to Include Honolulu, Wire Transfers

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) announced the revision of its Geographic Targeting Orders (GTO) Tuesday. The GTO requires title insurers to report beneficial ownership information on legal entities, including shell… more

FREEP exposes more auto accident attorney kickbacks, No-Fault fraud

Will newest allegations finally get Michigan Attorney Grievance Commission to look into auto accident attorney fraud, kickbacks and illegal solicitation of auto accident victims in Detroit?… more

Trump Reportedly Has Chosen His Nominee For NLRB General Counsel

Bloomberg BNA reported last night that President Trump plans to nominate management-side labor attorney Peter Robb to become General Counsel for the National Labor Relations Board, replacing Richard Griffin, whose term expires this… more

Blog: Department of Education Extends Deadline for Gainful Employment Earnings Appeals

The Department of Education issued a notice on August 18 that extends the deadline for all institutions to file alternate earnings appeals that challenge the debt-to-earnings rates issued for their GE programs in January 2017… more

U.S. Court of Appeals Rules on Renewable Fuel Standard Battle

In July, the U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit ruled in favor of renewable fuels advocates, including the Americans for Clean Energy and the National Corn Growers Association, agreeing with the petitioners that the… more

Texas Supreme Court Dabbles in Bankruptcy Law

Noble Energy Inc. v. ConocoPhillips Company, a 6-to-3 Texas Supreme Court decision, is a reminder of two things: How parties to a property transaction describe what’s being acquired and what’s being left behind can have grave… more

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“Iron Mike” Tyson is a controversial sports figure who seems in equal parts loved and loathed by the public. Celebrated for a genuine world-class talent and derided for his behavior in and out of the ring, Tyson has a public profile… more

Some Control Is Just Fine: Ninth Circuit Upholds Independent Contractor Status in Jones v. Royal Admin. Servs.

Just the other week, in Jones v. Royal Admin. Servs., the Ninth Circuit reaffirmed the federal common law standard for distinguishing agents from independent contractors and upheld the independent contractor status of telemarketers… more

Third Circuit Affirms Judgment in Favor of Employer in ADA Action, Finding that Compliance with NRC Regulations Justified Employee's Termination

Recently, the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in McNelis v. Pennsylvania Power & Light Company affirmed the district court’s grant of summary judgment to the employer in a lawsuit alleging disability discrimination… more

U.S. Targets Chinese and Russians for North Korea Dealings

The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated 16 parties as Specially Designated Nationals (SDNs) today, effectively seizing their assets in the United States, blocking them from doing business with U.S. parties, and denying… more

DOL Withdraws Guidance Letters Leaving Employers to Pick up the Pieces

On June 7, 2017, the U.S. Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta announced the withdrawal of the U.S. Department of Labor’s (“DOL”) guidance on independent contractors and joint employment issued during the Obama administration, without… more

Infusing Corporate Culture with Accountability

If you are a fan of Simon Sinek, you will understand and probably agree with the thrust of this posting. Sinek is a great motivational and business speaker. Many of his observations are spot-on and I would urge you to review some… more

NMFS Issues Final Rule Designating Critical Habitat for the Atlantic Sturgeon

On August 17, 2017, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) issued a final rule designating critical habitat for the endangered New York Bight, Chesapeake Bay, Carolina, and South Atlantic Distinct Population Segments (DPSs) of… more

When Are Goods “Received” By Your Buyer?

Two 3rd Circuit courts issue recent decisions that significantly impact trade creditor claims in bankruptcy - When the Bankruptcy Code was amended in 2005, Congress included a new protection for trade creditors who sell goods to a… more

Recent Events Increase the Importance of HIPAA Risk Analyses and HIPAA Policies

Recent events highlight the fact that threats to customer and patient data continue to increase. In recent months, government agencies, news outlets, and others have spent considerable time investigating and reporting on major… more

FinCEN Issues Revised Geographic Targeting Orders Focusing On Shell Companies Purchasing Luxury Properties In 7 Major Metropolitan Areas

Yesterday the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) announced the issuance of revised Geographic Targeting Orders (GTOs) that require U.S. title insurance companies to identify the natural persons behind shell companies used to… more

Seventh Circuit Opinion Focuses On Employee Handbook in Determining Whether Employer Had Constructive Notice Of Non-Supervisory Sexual Harassment

On August 2, 2017, the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit issued a decision in Nischan v. Stratosphere Quality, LLC providing clarity on what constitutes an employer’s “constructive notice” of harassment. Michele… more

Website Accessibility Lawsuit Filings Still Going Strong

Seyfarth Synopsis: The number of federal lawsuits alleging inaccessible websites continues to increase, along with the number of law firms filing them. Businesses remain well-advised to seek advice from counsel experienced in website… more

Lincoln Cemetery Sued by EEOC for Retaliation

Company Terminated a 31-Year Veteran Employee After She Participated in a Discrimination Investigation, Federal Agency Charges - ATLANTA - Lincoln Cemetery, Inc., an Atlanta corporation specializing in interment arrangements… more

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