Latest Updates

Supreme Court Denies Depublication Request, Declines To Review CEQA Decision Addressing Discretionary/Ministerial Project Approval Distinction

On July 26, 2017, the California Supreme Court issued its order denying the losing appellants’ (Sierra Club and Center for Biological Diversity) request for depublication of the opinion in Sierra Club v. County of Sonoma (2017) 11… more

State Governors Sign Cybersecurity Compact

The National Governors Association (NGA), recently announced that 38 governors had signed “A Compact to Improve State Cybersecurity.” In announcing the Compact, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, outgoing chair of the NGA, cited its… more

CRM Is A Marathon, Not A Sprint

When considering a CRM system, you may think that this is a technology that simply needs to be purchased, installed and implemented… but, in reality, that couldn’t be further from the truth. CRM is not a project, an initiative or a… more

Sixth Circuit Balances Rights of Forest Service and Rights of Private Property Owners Provided by Michigan Law

Balancing the interests of the Federal Government as owner of thousands of acres surrounding Crooked Lake and private owners’ rights, on July 26, in a 2 to 1 ruling, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled that the U.S… more

U.S. House of Representatives Passes Russia Sanctions Bill

On July 25, 2017, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a Russia sanctions bill, “Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act” (“H.R. 3364”) by an overwhelming vote of 419 to three. This broad-ranging sanctions bill… more

“Ruff” Start for Defendant in Pet Ramp Patent Dispute

Judge Saylor of the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts recently narrowed the counterclaims and affirmative defenses available to a defendant in a consumer products dispute. The decision highlights not only… more

Down, but not out – initial adverse decision not a bar to future recovery of .ca domain name

A pair of recent decisions under the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (“CIRA”) Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (“CDRP”) demonstrate that a trademark owner who fails to obtain a domain name transfer at a first panel… more

The Crisis of Free Speech on Campus: Not Fake News

A recent column in the Detroit News, by John Patrick Leary, an assistant professor of English at Wayne State University, advanced the proposition that concern over the recent protests on campus over free speech is a “manufactured… more

Alert: California New Hires Must Receive Notice of Workplace Rights of Victims of Domestic Violence

Existing California law prohibits employers from discharging or in any manner discriminating or retaliating against an employee who is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking who takes time off work for certain… more

UK Supreme Court finds that Employment Tribunal fees are unlawful

In an important judgment today, the UK Supreme Court has ruled that the introduction of Employment Tribunal fees in 2013 was unlawful and that fees should no longer be charged, with immediate effect… more

Mexico's "Red Troncal" project

General Guidelines for the Red Troncal Project - On July 17, 2017, Telecomm issued preliminary general guidelines for the Red Troncal Project. This document outlined the general criteria through which Telecomm seeks to obtain… more

Tort Reform by Any Other Name

A rose by any other name may smell as sweet, but tort reform still smells bad to traditional opponents despite an attractive title. That’s why most observers believe that the House-passed “Protecting Access to Care Act,” H.R. 1215, is… more

Better KM in an Age of Need-to-Know Security

Double-edged Sword: Protect & Deliver - 2016 was a banner year for cyber incidents as records breaches increased by 556% with more than four billion records leaked. The regulatory and client response has been significant...… more

Blockchain and Digital Token Update: SEC Releases Investigative Report and Investor Bulletin

On July 25, 2017, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) released groundbreaking materials relating to blockchain tokens. These materials provide significant and welcome insight to the SEC’s and its staff’s thinking in this… more

When (and How) the Roll Is Called Up Yonder (Part I)

Senate floor activity has made this the ACA’s biggest news week not involving Justice Roberts, but whatever news you have read, rest assured that it wasn’t really that simple. Let us preach on it. Shortly after noon EDT on July 25… more

Can Inflating Jury Verdicts and Settlements Injure More than Just Your Reputation? Kansas Law Firm Sues Competitor For False Advertising

It’s not every day that a law firm sues a competing firm for false advertising. Earlier this month, however, a Wichita, Kansas personal injury law firm did just that. Brave Law Firm sued rival firm Truck Accident Lawyer’s Group and… more

The Gig Economy Expands to the Healthcare Industry

The United States is expected to see a shortage of 40,000 to 104,000 physicians by 2030. Due to this anticipated need for primary care physicians, freelance work among the healthcare industry is becoming increasingly popular. For the… more

New Seattle Income Tax: Answers to Your FAQs

The City of Seattle adopted Ordinance 125339 on July 14, 2017, which imposes an income tax on Seattle residents and certain irrevocable trusts. The Seattle income tax is imposed at a rate of 2.25% of a resident taxpayer’s “total… more

Pennsylvania Announces Practitioner Registry For Medical Marijuana Program

In a July 26, 2017 Press Release, the Pennsylvania Department of Health announced the opening of its Practitioner Registry. This marks the next critical step in implementing Pennsylvania’s Medical Marijuana Program, which the DOH… more

DOL Asks For Feedback On Salary Levels In Overtime Rule

The U.S. Department of Labor has issued its promised Request for Information on the salary levels in the Obama Administration’s overtime rule. The RFI was published in yesterday’s Federal Register. Comments are being accepted through… more

Cadwalader Loses Work Product and Privilege Claims for 51 Internal Investigation Witness Interview Memoranda: Part II

Last week's Privilege Point explained that Cadwalader Wickersham & Taft's client Washington Metropolitan Transit Authority (WMATA) lost a work product claim for 51 witness interviews the firm prepared during its internal investigation… more

EC Publishes Final Report of Nanocomput Project

In July 2017, the European Commission’s (EC) Joint Research Center (JRC) published a report entitled Evaluation of the availability and applicability of computational approaches in the safety assessment of nanomaterials: Final report… more

Read This Before Scanning A Driver’s License In New Jersey

On October 1, 2017, a new law will take effect in New Jersey, the Personal Information and Privacy Protection Act (“PIPPA”), which will severely restrict retailers’ ability to “scan” any customer’s “identification card”–a term defined… more

Unusual IoT Hacking Shows Creativity of Hackers

Everything connected to the Internet is hackable and at risk. But there are some things connected to the Internet that you just don’t think of as risks to an organization. That is, until now. Darktrace has issued its report Darktrace… more

Court Upholds Stockholder's Share Ownership and Books-and-Records Request

Companies often defend against stockholder requests to inspect books and records by contending that the plaintiff stockholder lacks a proper purpose or that his or her stated purpose is not the real purpose. Less common is a contention… more

EEOC Sues Wesley Health System / Merit Health Wesley For Disability Discrimination

Company Refused to Accommodate and Fired Employee Because of Arm/Shoulder Injury, Federal Agency Charges - BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - Wesley Health System, LLC, dba Merit Health Wesley, a general medical and surgical hospital located in… more

With All Eyes on Senate ACA-Repeal Debate, House Passes Bill to Tweak Stark Law and Other Medicare Part B Policies

While the Capitol Hill spotlight is focused on the Senate debate on legislation to repeal or revise the Affordable Care Act, the House of Representatives quietly approved by voice vote HR 3178, the Medicare Part B Improvement Act of… more

Labor Department Asks For Public Input On FLSA White Collar Exemptions

As a preliminary step to replacing the December 1, 2016, Fair Labor Standards Act “white collar” exemptions Final Rule, the Department of Labor has issued a Request for Information (RFI) seeking public comment on a wide variety of… more

Rules Interpreting NYC “Ban the Box” Law Take Effect on August 5, 2017

Earlier this year, the New York City Commission on Human Rights (the “Commission,” or “NYCCHR”) promulgated a set of rules (the “Rules,” available here) relating to employers’ duties under the Fair Chance Act (the “FCA,” or the “Act”)… more

Your Daily Dose of Financial News

Lack of workable replacement (so far, at least) be damned—the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority has announced that [the scandal-plagued] Libor will be phased out by 2021 in favor of “transaction-based benchmarks”… more

Defendants Should Consider Personal Jurisdiction Defense Following Supreme Court Decision, Especially When the Claims of Out-of-State Plaintiffs Are Joined with Those of In-State Plaintiffs

A recent Supreme Court decision may allow defendants to avoid lawsuits in distant courts that have little or no connection to the lawsuit, especially in cases (such as mass actions) where the claims of out-of-state plaintiffs are… more

District Courts Disagree on Venue-Waiver Issues After TC Heartland

At the end of May this year, the Supreme Court unanimously clarified the law on venue in patent infringement lawsuits (see here). For 27 years, litigants had relied on a Federal Circuit decision, VE Holding Corp. v. Johnson Gas… more

Maine Court Declines to Follow Textron; Work Product Rule Protects Tax Accrual Work Papers

In a well-reasoned decision, Maine Superior Court Justice Michaela Murphy refused to grant the State Tax Assessor’s motion to compel deposition testimony relating to the taxpayer’s tax accrual (FIN 48) work papers and related… more

Tax Planning for Investment Into the United States Through Hybrid Entities - Tax Update Volume 2017, Issue 4

The Tax Section of the New York State Bar Association recently issued a report commenting on the appropriate application of treaty limitations to source-country taxation of business profits when the underlying income is earned by or… more

Compliance and the Noble Fight Against Corruption

In two recent public appearances, Department of Justice (DOJ) representatives spoke to issues of concern to every compliance practitioner regarding one role of the DOJ going forward and how that role will continue to feed the need for… more

DOJ Issues Two Declinations in First Corporate FCPA Enforcement Actions of the Trump Administration

Speed read - In June 2017, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) issued two “Declinations with Disgorgement” under the DOJ’s Pilot Program. The declinations were received by U.S. subsidiaries of the Linde Group (Linde) and CDM Smith… more

Second Circuit Lowers Causation Standard for Employees Alleging FMLA Violations

Last week, the Second Circuit joined the Third Circuit in lowering the causation standard in evaluating alleged Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) violations against employers. Under a lower “motivating factor” standard established in… more

Shippers, Freight Forwarders, NVOCCs and Carriers' Maritime Incident Warning Signs - Lessons Learned and Action Items for In-House Counsel

Despite the alleged softening of the maritime industry since 2008-09, the volume of waterborne trade continues to rise. The ebbs and flows of the industry mean changing partnerships and alliances, more complicated logistics chains… more

Hotel Cybersecurity: Protecting your guests and your property from vendor data breaches

July was another notable month for hotel data breaches – on a single day, several well-known hotel brands and managers, including Four Seasons, Trump Hotels, Hard Rock Hotels & Casinos and Loews Hotels all announced that customer data… more

Four hot mid-year topics in California employment law

As California sizzles under scorching temperatures, state and local governments have turned up the heat on employers. Employers should be aware of and make sure they are in compliance with important legislative changes effective July… more

Coherus Requests Stay Of Discovery in Amgen v. Coherus

We previously reported, Amgen filed a BPCIA suit against Coherus Biosciences, Inc., relating to its aBLA for its pegfilgrastim (Neulasta®) biosimilar. In response, Coherus filed a motion to dismiss the suit arguing that Amgen’s… more

USCIS Reopens H-1B Premium Processing for Institutions of Higher Education and Other Cap-Exempt Petitions

On March 3, 2017, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) unexpectedly announced that it would temporarily suspend its premium processing service for all H-1B petitions received on or after April 3, 2017. The premium… more

Judge, Jury and . . . Attorney’s Fees

When a contract awards attorneys’ fees to one party in a contract action, California Civil Code § 1717 intervenes by a) directing the attorney’s fees to the prevailing party, regardless of the party awarded fees in the contract, and b)… more

Vail Resorts announces sustainability, net zero plan

Vail Resorts, Inc. -- the largest ski and mountain resort operator in the world -- has announced a comprehensive sustainability commitment that calls for "zero net emissions by 2030, zero waste to landfill by 2030 and zero net… more

To Merge or Not To Merge – What’s A Law Firm To Do?

Merger mania continues in the legal sector. According to Altman Weil’s MergerLine, there have been more than 50 law firm mergers in the US so far this year; 2017 could well be a record year for law firm combinations. The odds are… more

SEC Warns That ICOs and Other Internet Token Sales May Be Securities Offerings Subject to Federal Securities Laws

On Tuesday, July 25, as many practitioners probably expected, the SEC issued a warning that offers and sales of digital assets (virtual coins or tokens) by organizations using blockchain or distributed ledger technology (often referred… more

U.S. Department of Labor Issues Request for Information on White Collar Exemption Regulations

Yesterday, July 26, 2017, the U.S. Department of Labor (“USDOL”) published a Request for Information (“RFI”) in the Federal Register regarding the regulations defining the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) exemptions for executive… more

Show Me The Money: SEC Awards $2.5 Million To Government Agency Whistlleblower

The SEC has awarded $2.5 million to a government agency employee who reported misconduct by a company to the SEC and caused the SEC to open an investigation. While the SEC order granting the award acknowledged that government employees… more

Delaware Chancellor Urges Revision of Preclusion Principles in Derivative Actions

The Chancellor of Delaware’s Court of Chancery yesterday urged the Delaware Supreme Court to revise Delaware law on preclusion in shareholder derivative actions. The court’s July 25, 2017 decision in In re Wal-Mart Stores, Inc… more

Avoiding Claims of Race, Religious, or National Origin Discrimination in the Current Political Climate

Unless you have been living under a rock, you know that the United States has had a new president for about six months: Mr. Donald J. Trump. Many suggest (and I do not take a position on this) that President Trump was catapulted to… more

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Mike Bishop JD explores large emerging business opportunities that arise from evolving legal developments, structures or legislation. Areas of focus include: * comparative law and choice of…

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