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USPTO News Briefs - October 2015

USPTO Extends After Final Consideration Pilot 2.0 Program - Last week, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office indicated on its website and through a Patents Alert e-mail that the After Final Consideration Pilot 2.0 (AFCP 2.0)…more

Governor Brown Signs Fair Pay Act

SB 358, the Fair Pay Act, was signed into law by Governor Brown yesterday. Existing law generally prohibits an employer from paying an employee at wage rates less than the rates paid to employees of the opposite sex in the same…more

Mary Jane Has Come A Long Way, Baby

Last week Governor Jerry Brown signed into law three pieces of legislation (AB 243, AB 266, and SB 643) aimed at regulating the $1.3 billion medical marijuana industry in the state. The legislation, collectively called the Medical…more

Three Recent Delaware Decisions Highlight the Importance of Director Independence and Risks for M&A Financial Advisors

On September 28 and October 1, 2015, the Delaware Court of Chancery issued decisions in Caspian Select Credit Master Fund Limited v. Gohl, C.A. No. 10244-VCN and In re Zale Corporation Stockholders Litigation, C.A. No. 9388-VCP. On…more

Strict New California Fair Pay Act Will Become Effective January 2016

In only a few months, employers in California will be subject to one of the strictest and most aggressive equal pay laws in the country. This week, Governor Jerry Brown signed the California Fair Pay Act (“Act”), Senate Bill 35, a new…more

California Joins Other States with the Passage of CalECPA

Law enforcement requests for electronic information, particularly from technology companies such as Google and Twitter, have skyrocketed in recent years. In response, several states—Maine and Texas in 2013, Utah in 2014 and Virginia…more

Employment News Alert: Two Key Employer Victories

AB 465 was vetoed. This bill sought to bar mandatory employment arbitration agreements. This would have caused lawsuits to increase and would have driven up litigation costs for California’s employers. In vetoing AB 465, Brown…more

Computer Networking Technology Is Unpatentable.

The disputed technology relates to a computer network system. The claims do not reference any customization of the compilation of hardware and software described by the specification and therefore do not confer patent eligibility to…more

Class Certification, Unfair Trade Practices, and Governing Standards

In Bumpers v. Community Bank of Northern Virginia, the North Carolina Supreme Court held that when a plaintiff alleges a violation of N.C. Gen. Stat. § 75-1.1 based on a misrepresentation, the plaintiff must prove actual and reasonable…more

U.S. Supreme Court Says There Will Be No New Newman

Last Monday, the United States Supreme Court denied cert in the highly publicized insider trading case of United States. v. Newman, 773 F.3d 438 (2d Cir. 2014). Without providing further commentary, the justices said they would not…more

The Three “H”s of Fall: Halloween, Hot Chocolate, and Handbooks

Yes, the end of the year always brings a flurry of revisions to employer handbooks. This year is no different. Business owners, general counsel, and human resources professionals throughout California and the County always look at Q4…more

Dumbing Down Your Smart TV: California Prohibits the Use of Voice Recognition for Advertising Purposes

Last week, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law A.B. 1116, prohibiting manufacturers’ use of smart televisions’ voice recognition feature for advertising purposes. Effective January 1, 2016, consumers must be “prominently…more

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