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Renewable Energy Update - May 2015 #3

Renewable Energy Focus - Voter support for clean energy policies up since last presidential election - Solar Industry Magazine - May 18 - A new survey by Lazard Ltd., a financial advisory and asset management firm, has…more

Emergency Groundwater Sustainability Plan Regulations Adopted By California Water Commission

Key Principle: Sustainable Management Through Local Efforts - The California Water Commission unanimously adopted a demanding set of regulations to govern the creation and implementation of groundwater sustainability plans under…more

Supreme Court Clarifies When State Law Claims Are Removable Under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934

On May 16, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its decision in Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Inc. v. Manning, 578 U.S. __ (May 16, 2016), which resolved a longstanding circuit split as to the scope of exclusive federal…more

Indian Regulator to Consider the Civil and Commercial Use of Drones

Last month, India’s civil aviation regulator, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), issued draft guidelines proposing a framework to regulate the civil and commercial use of unmanned aerial systems or drones (“Guidelines”)…more

A Weak Link In Financial Data Security? Congress Presses FDIC On Its Data Breach Prevention And Response

On Thursday, May 12, the House of Representatives’ Science, Space, and Technology Committee scrutinized the FDIC’s data, privacy and security measures and response plans in a hearing, after the FDIC suffered a spate of data breaches in…more

Bring Out the Body Bags: Seller’s Covenant, In Asset Sales Agreement, Not To Compete Within 150 Miles For 10 Years Unenforceable

Palmetto bought the assets of Knight Systems’ mortuary transport business. The agreement of purchase and sale included (a) Palmetto’s commitment to buy body bags, at specified discounted prices, exclusively from Knight Systems for 10…more

Legal Issues Associated with Multi-Provider Alternative Payment Model

Since the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), both federal and state policies have promoted the adoption of alternative payment models (APMs), providing financial incentives for groups of providers to improve care quality while…more

Weekly Web Wrap-Up

Welcome to Sheppard Mullin’s Weekly Web Wrap-Up, a quick list of the past week’s top news in the social media, gaming, and virtual goods and currencies industries curated by Social Media & Games Team.  Here are some of the stories that…more

Congress Considers Broader Hospital Site-Neutral Payment Exceptions and Other Payments Changes

In Depth - The House Ways and Means Committee next week is expected to consider and approve the Helping Hospitals Improve Patient Care Act of 2016, legislation that would create broader exceptions under much maligned legislation…more

New Federal Overtime Exemption Rule Will Become Effective December 1, 2016

The Fair Labor Standards Act is the federal law applicable to overtime compensation for employees. The U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) announced this week that the overtime rule changes it proposed in 2015 will become effective on…more

Competitors in the Courtroom: When to Exclude a Party’s Designated Representative from Hearing a Competitor’s Trade Secrets

“You sued them. They stay, period.” This is the conclusion a Texas trial court came to when asked to exclude the designated representative of a party from a hearing where an employee of the other party, a direct competitor, would…more

SEC Approves FINRA’s Educational Communication Rule

The SEC recently approved FINRA’s new Rule 2273 (Educational Communication Related to Recruitment Practices and Account Transfers), which requires delivery of an educational communication prepared by FINRA to customers of a…more

Singapore Bond Market: Issuing Retail Bonds without a Prospectus

New regulations facilitate retail investor participation in the Singapore bond market. On May 19, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) promulgated two new regulations, effective immediately, to facilitate retail investor…more

President Obama Signs American Manufacturing Competitiveness Act of 2016

Law Modifies Process For Duty Suspensions And Reductions - On May 20, 2016, President Obama signed the American Manufacturing Competitiveness Act of 2016 into law (the Act). The Act restores the ability of the U.S. Congress to…more

Social Links—Twitter loosens up; case against Google stands; should millennials be in charge of big social media campaigns?

Here’s how Twitter is loosening up its 140-character limit. The federal government will now check the social media history of prospective employees before granting them security clearance…more

First Circuit Affirms FTC Social Media Order: Jerk.com users Jerked Around By Material Misrepresentations

In Fanning v. Federal Trade Commission, the First Circuit affirmed a summary decision of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which found that Jerk LLC, the operator of Jerk.com, materially misrepresented both the source of its content…more

Groundbreaking Healthcare Nondiscrimination Rule Issued by HHS: What It Means for Covered Entities

HHS late last week issued a Final Rule prohibiting discrimination in healthcare on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age or disability. The Rule also broadens protection for individuals with limited English proficiency…more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - May 2016 #3

Environmental and Policy Focus - In sharp reversal, California suspends mandatory water restrictions - New York Times - May 18 - The State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) on Wednesday suspended its mandatory…more

CMS Announces Risk-Based Adjusted Additional Documentation Request Limits for Institutional Providers

On May 3, 2016, CMS announced the availability of a revised method to calculate additional documentation request (ADR) limits for Institutional Providers in the Recovery Audit Contractor (RAC) Program. Under the new method, which may…more

Umpteenth Time’s the Charm? Massachusetts Has Another Go At Non-Compete Reform

The Massachusetts legislature is back at it again — as the Boston Globe reports, the Joint Committee on Labor & Workforce Development has sponsored a compromise bill with the goal of limiting non-competes in the Commonwealth…more

Manatt on Medicaid: Beneficiary Support and Enrollment Requirements

On April 25, 2016, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released its final rule that significantly overhauls regulations governing Medicaid managed care. The final rule establishes new requirements for providing support…more

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services publishes an extension of Temporary Protected Status

On May 16, 2016, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) published an extension of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for eligible nationals of Nicaragua and those without nationality who last habitually resided in Nicaragua…more

Paris Court of Appeal Rules on Forced Heirship, US Trusts and Legitimacy of Transforming Real Estate into a Moveable Asset using an SCI Structure

On 11 May 2016 in case no. 14/26247, the Paris Court of Appeal fully confirmed the judgment handed down by the Paris High Court on 2 December 2014 in case no. 10/05228, relating to the estate of Mr Maurice Jarre. By this very…more

Refresher Course on Affordable Care Act Individual and Employer Penalties For Not Having Health Insurance

Even though penalties for failure to comply with Affordable Care Act (ACA) coverage requirements have been in force since January 1, 2014 for employers with 100 or more full-time equivalent employees and January 1, 2015 for employers…more

Check Your Inbox: OCR Continues to Verify Entity Contact Information for Phase 2 HIPAA Audits

Covered Entities need to continue to check their inboxes for emails from the HHS Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”) requesting verification of contact information in connection with Phase 2 of the HIPAA Audit Program. OCR previously…more

Spouses in the Workplace: Allow or Prohibit?

Employers often face the issue of whether to allow spouses or other family members to work together. Regardless the side the employer falls on, there is potential liability lurking…more

SC Public Policy Update - May 2016 #3

What's New - SENATE - It was another busy week in the Senate as members continued to work through various bills on the lengthy Senate Calendar. The Senate spent the day on Wednesday taking up the Governor’s veto on H. 4717…more

Alabama Property Tax Protest Season is Underway

The 2016 property tax protest season has arrived. In Alabama, property tax valuations are handled on a county-by-county basis. Some counties mail valuation notices to all taxpayers. Others rely on publication notice and only mail…more

Employment Law Navigator – Week in Review: May 2016 #4

Last week the long-awaited final FLSA overtime regulations were published. The regulations are intended to make an additional 4.2 million workers eligible for overtime. The new rules raise the salary threshold for exempt employees…more

Federal Defend Trade Secrets Act Takes Effect

Employers Should Immediately Revise Confidentiality Agreements to Comply - The Defend Trade Secrets Act, signed into law by President Obama last week and effective immediately, provides a new federal remedy for trade secret…more

Is This the Beginning of an End to a Long Controversial Debate on Concurrent Surgeries?

Concurrent Surgeries and National Spotlight According to recent guidelines published by the American College of Surgeons (ACS) as Statements on Principles, concurrent (or simultaneous) surgeries occur when “the critical or key…more

The Financial Report, Volume 5, Number 10 - May 2016 (Global)

Two stories prominent in the financial media this week highlight the interesting policy challenges facing the nation’s lawmakers. On Monday, the so-called equity crowdfunding rules went into effect. The rules, promulgated under…more

American Immigration Lawyers Association shares online resources to help understand new DHS final rule

On May 10, 2016, the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) published the following announcement about online resources following the Department of Homeland Security’s new final rule affecting international students with…more

Seven Tips for Newly Licensed Court Reporters

I have the privilege of working with newly licensed San Diego California Certified Shorthand Reporters. I am extremely proud of their writing ability and the fact they are not scared to learn and use the sophisticated functionality of…more

Penny Proof for Deposits: Federal Banking Regulators Issue Interagency Guidance Regarding Deposit Reconciliation Practices

On May 18, 2016, five federal banking agencies—the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (“Board”), the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”), the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (“FDIC”), the National Credit…more

Medicare Part B Drug Payment Model

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has proposed a major, national payment model that would, if implemented, significantly impact how Medicare pays for drugs provided through the Part B program. Under the authority of the…more

ERISA: Reviewing What Needs to Be Proved to Establish the Suicide Exclusion

For many reasons, some of the toughest cases to litigate involve the application of the suicide exclusion. There is a growing body of evidence challenging suicide exclusion determinations…more

SEC Updates Guidance on Use of Non-GAAP Financial Measures

On May 17, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission released updated guidance regarding the disclosure of non-GAAP financial information by public companies. This updated guidance comes in the wake of several public statements…more

FTC Blocks Staples’ Acquisition of Office Depot

After more than a year-long battle with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the proposed acquisition of Office Depot, Inc. (ODP) by Staples, Inc. (SPLS) was blocked by the Honorable Emmet G. Sullivan of the U.S. District Court for the…more

Tough New EU-Wide Cybersecurity Rules in Prospect: The Network and Information Security Directive

Two-thirds of large UK companies have come under cyber attack in the past year, according to the UK Government, and a quarter have been attacked at least once a month. But only half have taken any recommended actions to address their…more

The Network and Information Security Directive: Serious Cyber Attacks Will Require Notification

The Council of the European Union adopted the EU Network and Information Security (NIS) Directive (the ‘Directive’) 17 May, ready for final adoption by the European Parliament. The Directive, initially proposed in 2013, has been…more

Hope For Software Patents In The Post-Alice Landscape

The courts have long been attempting to establish an appropriate framework with which to handle software-based inventions. Even before the Supreme Court decision in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank International numerous tests have been created…more

In Case You Missed It: Launch Links - May 2016 #3

Some interesting links we found across the web this week: - Don’t Expect New Crowdfunding Rules to Create a Startup Boom - Equity crowdfunding went live this week under the SEC’s recent rulemaking, but many commentators are…more

Retail and Hospitality Employers Grapple With the DOL's Final FLSA Part 541 Regulations

For over a year, retail and hospitality employers have been anxiously awaiting the issuance of the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) final overtime regulations—regulations which many had predicted would impact retail and hospitality…more

Digging Into the New Overtime Regulations

Within the Department of Labor's aggressive regulatory agenda in the last few years, its proposed regulations on the white collar exemptions from overtime generated some of the most significant concerns and anticipation for employers…more

The Notice Provision of the Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA): What Employers Must Do Now

The Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA), which became effective on May 11, extends federal civil protection to trade secrets and allows companies and individuals to file private lawsuits to remedy a wrongful taking of their trade secret…more

Judge rules HHS can't pay cost-sharing subsidies to QHPs, but allows funding to continue

More than six years after the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was enacted, legal challenges continue to thread their way through the judicial system. In a May 12, 2016 decision, US District Court Judge Rosemary M. Collyer, an appointee of…more

Court Declines to Modify Judgment Based on Collateral Proceedings before the PTAB Finding Claims of Patent-In-Suit Invalid

Summary: In the decision referenced below, the court declined to modify a judgment pursuant to Rule 60(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure even though the PTAB had found several claims of the patent-in-suit…more

Coming Soon to Your Inbox! Phase 2 of OCR's Audit Program for HIPAA Compliance

On March 21, 2016, the Office of Civil Rights (OCR) in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that it was ready to begin Phase 2 of its audit program for HIPAA compliance, which will include auditing business…more

The Write Stuff: Q&A with Top Author & Employment Attorney Daniel Schwartz

Write what you want to read. If you don’t find it interesting, your readers probably won’t either…more

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