Latest Updates

Supreme Court Decision Limits Venue Statute in Patent Litigation

On May 22, 2017, in a highly-anticipated decision that could dramatically alter the landscape of patent litigation, the United States Supreme Court held that the “resides” prong of the patent venue statute, 28 U.S.C. §1400(b), dictates… more

The Supreme Court Narrows Forum Shopping in Patent Infringement Cases Against Domestic Companies in TC Heartland v. Kraft Food Brands

On May 22, 2017, the US Supreme Court unanimously rejected prior case law allowing patent holders to rely on the general venue statute, 28 U.S.C. § 1391(c), to file suit where a domestic defendant makes sales. TC Heartland, LLC v… more

PRC Cybersecurity Law - one week to go, and there are still new developments

The final countdown is on. The PRC Cybersecurity Law comes into force on 1 June 2017. This date marks a significant evolution in both the legal and enforcement environment for data protection in China, and organisations can no longer… more

Music Performing Rights Organizations and the “Full-Work” vs. “Fractional” Licensing Dispute: Government Seeks to Overturn Fractional Licensing Decision

On Thursday, the United States filed its brief (link is external)in its appeal of a decision by the district court for the Southern District of New York (link is external), which rejected the US Department of Justice’s earlier… more

Pissarro from Cornelius Gurlitt’s Salzburg Home Returned to Heirs

News Accompanied by Deafening Silence About Ongoing Restitution Policy Failures The German government announced recently that it had returned an additional work of art found in the Salzburg home of Cornelius Gurlitt in connection… more

New Funding Framework for DB Pension Plans Announced A Follow up from the 2017 Ontario Budget

On May 19, 2017, the Ontario Government announced that it is implementing a new funding framework for defined benefit (DB) pension plans in Ontario. Highlights include..… more

D.C. Circuit Revokes Drone Registration Rule

On Friday, May 19, 2017, less than a month after the National Park Service’s first use of a drone in a Grand Canyon search and rescue mission, the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals struck down a Federal Aviation… more

HIPAA spring check-up: Your obligations to safeguard third-party patient health information in medical records produced in litigation

You’ve had your apple a day, but you can’t keep the subpoenas away… And, if your organization is facing a request seeking records or other materials that may contain patient health information (“PHI”), it bears repeating that… more

Is Public Consumption of Marijuana on the Horizion?

In two years, Oregon’s legalized recreational marijuana industry has gone from non-existent to a thriving industry, with over $60 million a year in total sales and over 400 licensed retailers. Despite the growing popularity of… more

Families Can Use a Tax-Advantaged ABLE Account to Save for Disability Expenses

Governor Charlie Baker recently announced the launch of a state sponsored Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) account program that has been long awaited by disabled individuals and their families. This program serves as a vehicle… more

Unchecked indirect software access can be costly – what to look for in software license agreements

Simple and straight-forward are two words rarely associated with software license agreements. For example, a ruling out of the UK demonstrates the importance and real-life costs that can result when the full meaning of an agreement is… more

Written Description Lacking Where Nothing in the Specification Suggests Inventor Contemplated Claimed Invention

In Cisco Systems, Inc. v. Cirrex Systems, LLC, [2016-1143, 2016-1144](May 10, 2017), the Federal Circuit affirmed in part, and reversed in part the Board’s decision in Inter Partes Reexamination of U.S. Patent No. 6,415,082. Cisco… more

Court Denies Defendant’s Motion to Overrule Plaintiff’s Objections to Discovery Requests: eDiscovery Case Law

In Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. et. al. v. Texas Alcoholic Beverages Commission, et. al., No. 15-00134 (W.D. Texas, Apr. 10, 2017), Texas Magistrate Judge Andrew W. Austin (no relation) denied the defendant’s motion to overrule the… more

Federal Circuit Finds Claims Directed to Encoding and Decoding Image Data Patent-Ineligible

The Federal Circuit recently held in RecogniCorp, LLC v. Nintendo Co., Ltd. (Fed. Cir. 2016) that claims directed to encoding and decoding image data were not patent-eligible under 35 U.S.C. § 101. This ruling further highlights the… more

State Supreme Courts Continue to Try to Chip Away at FAA Preemption; The United States Supreme Court Is Not Amused

The Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”), 9 U.S.C. § 1, et seq., does not contain an express preemption provision, nor was it intended to be the exclusive codified arbitration law in all circumstances. However, the United States Supreme… more

Descoping of works: what is the employer entitled to do?

Financial constraints mean that employers are often looking to descope works from major projects. But how feasible is this? A recent case highlights the potential implications for employers who attempt to descope works..… more

Belgian Financial Regulator's Tightening of Investor Protection Against Unfair Contract Terms

On 6 February 2017, Belgium's financial regulator (Belgian Financial Services and Markets Authority ("FSMA")) moved to fortify the protection of investors, publishing a position paper ("Position Paper") on the application of Belgium's… more

Highlights from the National Energy Board modernization report

On May 15, 2017, the Expert Panel on the Modernization of the National Energy Board (NEB) delivered its report, Forward, Together: Enabling Canada's Clean, Safe, and Secure Energy Future (Report). The Panel was appointed in the fall of… more

Two Recent Decisions Highlight the Court’s Increasingly Narrow Interpretation on the Availability of Legal Privilege in Internal Investigations

Two recent decisions of the English High Court have considered the availability of legal professional privilege in relation to internal investigations. In both cases the availability of legal professional privilege has been interpreted… more

Actions You Can Take to Protect Your Systems and Data from a Cyber Attack

As a follow up to our cyber security alert from last week, preparing to protect against an event like the recent “WannaCry” global ransomware attack can include a range of IT, business operations and legal steps. Specifically, these… more

Senate Bill Proposes Major Market-Based Remodel of Cap-and-Trade Program

California’s cap-and-trade program withstood a battle in court, and now the Legislature is proposing changes to the controversial program. Senator Bob Wieckowski (Democrat – District 10), Chair of the Environmental Quality Committee… more

An overview of the OECD's Phase 4 Report on the UK's implementation of the Anti-Bribery Convention: Part II

This article follows on from “Part I: Detecting bribery", which also contains a summary of the background to the OECD’s Phase 4 Report. For completeness, a short background section is repeated here… more

First Impressions of the President's Proposed FY18 Budget for Labor and Employment Agencies

On May 23, 2017, President Trump released his Fiscal Year 2018 (FY2018) budget proposal—a more detailed and developed version (it’s nearly 1300 pages long) of the so-called “skinny” budget that was released in March of 2017. Set forth… more

Supreme Court Clarifies Rules on International Service by Mail

Resolving an issue that has divided state courts and the federal circuit courts, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled today in Walter Splash, Inc. v. Menon, No. 16-254, that the Hague Convention on the Service Abroad of Judicial and… more

Vehicle Event Data Recorders

Event data recorders, also known as “black boxes” or “sensing diagnostic modules,” capture information such as the speed of a vehicle and the use of a safety belt. In the event of a collision this information can be used to help… more

Proposed Oil Tanker Moratorium Act—Defining Canada's Pacific Gateway

On 12 May 2017, the Government of Canada introduced Bill C-48, the proposed Oil Tanker Moratorium Act, in Parliament. This initiative follows up on the launch of the national Oceans Protection Plan in November 2016, and fulfils the… more

Eyes on Washington: FY 2018 Budget Request

The Trump Administration on May 23, 2017, released a full budget blueprint for FY 2018, titled A New Foundation for American Greatness. The full FY 2018 budget proposal is based on the March 2017 "skinny" budget outline. The budget… more

Is it a bird... is it a plane? CJEU confirms that bird strikes are extraordinary under EC Regulation 261/2004

On 4 May 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) handed down its judgment in Marcela Pešková, Jirí Peška -v- Travel Service A.S, ruling that bird strikes should be classified as 'extraordinary circumstances' under EC… more

Model Aircraft Registration Rule Shot Down by DC Circuit

Last Friday, in Taylor v. Huerta, the DC Circuit Court of Appeals vacated a rule requiring individuals who fly small (weighing between 0.55 and 55 pounds on takeoff) drones and other model aircraft for hobby or recreational purposes to… more

Outlook 2017 Teleconference: Revisiting the Trump Administration’s Impact on Life Sciences and Health Care—the First 100 Days

On Tuesday, May 2, Ropes & Gray hosted a teleconference, “Outlook 2017 Teleconference: Revisiting the Trump Administration’s Impact on Life Sciences and Health Care – the First 100 Days,” on the potential regulatory and compliance… more

USPTO Proposes Cheaper, Faster Cancellation Option

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office register contains a lot of dead weight. In order to obtain a trademark registration and maintain the registration, the owner must use the mark in U.S. interstate commerce (as always, with a few… more

Applicability Date for DOL Conflict of Interest Rule is Looming

As you may be aware, the Department of Labor’s (DOL’s) Conflict of Interest rule expands the scope of the definition of “fiduciary” under ERISA and the Code to cover more classes of financial advisers. While the final rule became… more

Preparing for the GDPR

Significant changes to data protection law are due to come into force in just over a year's time on 25 May 2018 in the form of a new EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The GDPR will impact on the way that pension schemes can… more

Home Court Advantage - Supreme Court Limits Where Patent Lawsuits May be Filed

On May 22, 2017 the U.S. Supreme Court unwound nearly 30 years of patent venue jurisprudence allowing domestic corporations to be sued for patent infringement in any judicial district in which the company does business. In TC Heartland… more

SCOTUS Messed with Texas: Supreme Court Limits Venue in Patent Cases

Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court re-defined the scope of venue in patent cases in TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC, 581 U.S. ___ (2017). Under the Supreme Court’s ruling, venue in patent cases will now be limited to… more

Minority Shareholder Oppression Damages in New Jersey: More Than Just a Buyout?

As I have said many times in this blog, when minority shareholder oppression occurs, the most likely remedy is a buyout. In other words, courts in New Jersey have the power to compel the majority shareholder to pay “fair value” to an… more

California Judge Troubled By Trulia Refuses To Approve Settlement

Kevin LaCroix recently tackled the question Is Deal Litigation in Delaware Done? According to Kevin, “deal litigation has been shifting from Delaware Chancery Court to courts in other states and to federal courts”. He attributes this… more

Paid Parental Leave One Step Closer To Reality- President’s Proposed Budget Seeks 6 Weeks Of Paid Leave For All Families

The White House released the details of President Trump’s proposed budget today, and if the president has his way, employees will be eligible to receive up to six weeks of paid parental leave by the year 2020. However, employers will… more

TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC: Supreme Court Tightens Venue Rules for Patent Cases

In a unanimous 8-0 decision, the Supreme Court ruled on May 22, 2017, in TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC that for purposes of venue in patent-infringement litigation, a U.S. corporation “resides” only in the state… more

Supreme Courts Reaffirms Fourco, and Limits Where Corporations Can Be Sued for Patent Infringement

In TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC, [16–341] (May 22, 2017), the Supreme Court reversed the Federal Circuit and held that for purposes of the patent venue statute (28 U.S.C. 1400(b)), a corporation only resides where… more

Amendments to the German Corporate Governance Code for 2017 Published and In Force

On 24 April 2017, the Corporate Governance Committee established by the German Federal Government (Regierungskommission Deutscher Corporate Governance Kodex) officially published various amendments to the German Corporate Governance… more

A Simple Case of Statutory Interpretation: The FAA Lacks Authority to Require Model Aircraft Operators to Register

On Friday, May 19, 2017, a federal appellate court struck down an integral part of the FAA’s attempt to safely monitor and integrate small unmanned aerial systems (“sUAS”) into the national airspace. The D.C. Circuit found that the… more

Class Action Reform and the “Fairness in Class Action Act”

While the Congressional legislative agenda has taken a back seat in the headlines lately, the fact remains that there still is an agenda, and it includes class action reform… more

What Rights Will I Lose if I Pitch My Invention to Investors Before I File a Patent Application?

Did you know that the individual often credited with popularizing karaoke did not reap the financial rewards of his invention to the extent possible? It's true—Japanese musician Daisuke Inoue invented karaoke in Kobe, Japan in the… more

Is the 8 and 80 Overtime Exception for Hospitals and Health Care Providers the Right Fit for Your Company?

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires that employers pay most workers at least minimum wage for all hours worked, plus overtime – one and one-half the employee's regular rate of pay – for all hours worked in excess of 40 hours… more

Supreme Court Restricts Patent Venue

In a landmark decision, the Supreme Court unanimously overturned the Federal Circuit’s VE Holding opinion, which had permitted patent defendants to be sued in any forum in which they were subject to personal jurisdiction. Now, patent… more

Virginia Governor McAuliffe signs 11 Bills Promoting Solar and Renewable

On Monday May 8, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe signed 11 bipartisan bills (passed by the Virginia General Assembly earlier this year) which promote the use of solar and other renewable energy options and endeavor to reduce energy… more

FCA Deeper Dive: Escobar and Its Aftermath – Part II

The FCA continues to be the federal government’s primary civil enforcement tool for investigating allegations that healthcare providers or government contractors defrauded the federal government. In the coming weeks, we will take a… more

Solar Industry Import Drama Continues

On April 26, 2017, Suniva, Inc., a U.S. producer of solar cells and modules, filed a petition with the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) under Section 201 of the Trade Act of 1974 seeking temporary import relief against… more

Changes to pharmaceutical/biopharmaceutical patent litigation in Canada

As a result of the Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement with the European Union, significant changes to the patent linkage provisions and patent litigation framework relating to generic and biosimilar drug approval in Canada are on… more

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