Latest Updates

Will Blockchain Render the Bill of Lading a Relic?

A bill of lading is an old form of legal document. As merchants in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries ceased accompanying their goods on ships and entrusted their proper delivery to the carrier, a need arose for a tangible and… more

Developers and businesses take note: as the feds roll back wetland regulation, California is stepping in

Land developers, commercial property owners and industrial entities should closely watch the major shifts in the ways significant wetland habitats are regulated, as the Trump Administration strips away relevant federal regulations and… more

In Matal V. Tam, Scotus Rules Prohibition On Disparaging Trademarks Unconstitutional

The Asian American members of the band the Slants adopted that name to “reclaim” and “take ownership” of the derogatory term. The United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) refused to register a trademark application for THE… more

IRS Seeks Applications for Advisory Committee for the Tax Exempt and Government Entities Division

The IRS is seeking applicants for vacancies on the Advisory Committee on Tax Exempt and Government Entities (ACT). The committee provides advice and public input on the various areas of tax administration served by the Tax Exempt and… more

Corporate Insurance Newsletter – July 2017

The Hogan Lovells’ Corporate Insurance Newsletter for July has been published. This provides a round-up of UK, EU and international regulatory developments relevant to UK based insurance market participants. Please see full… more

Handling Improper Coaching of Witnesses During PTAB Deposition Proceedings

Many attorneys have encountered an opposing party’s witness that provides very concise, supportive responses to the questions of the witness’s own attorney after a recess in a deposition. Often, these helpful responses occur during… more

Unions Fight Back Against Missouri Right-to-Work Law

On February 6, 2017, Missouri Governor Eric Greitens signed Senate Bill 19, making Missouri our nation’s 28th right-to-work state. Senate Bill 19, codified as Section 290.590 of the Missouri Revised Statutes (RSMo), was scheduled to… more

Judicial acceptance of the SCL Delay and Disruption Protocol 2nd Edition

The recent Australian case of Santos Ltd v Fluor Australia Pty Ltd [2017] QSC 153 gives credence to the Society of Construction Law Delay & Disruption Protocol 2nd ed in determining the sufficiency of the plaintiff’s pleaded claim for… more

Get Ready for Mandatory SEC Exhibit Hyperlinks Beginning September 1

The Securities and Exchange Commission’s final rules requiring hyperlinking of exhibits to SEC filings will be effective for most public companies on September 1, 2017. This update summarizes the final rules, answers the top questions… more

US LNG exports increasing, proposed

The developer of a proposed Louisiana liquefied natural gas (LNG) export project has asked U.S. regulators for approval to begin a "pre-filing review" of its project. Part of a boom of interest in LNG exports, the Fourchon LNG… more

Take It or Leave It: The Perilous Decision of Whether to Violate a No Contest Clause

One of the most dramatic areas of California trust and estate litigation is no contest clauses. No contest clauses bring a made-for-tv excitement to the practice of trust and estate law because of the risk of disinheritance. Yet such… more

New York State Cybersecurity Regulations: First milestone in sight, what is next on the horizon?

The New York State Department of Financial Services (“NYDFS”) enacted final cybersecurity regulations (“Regulations”) for NYDFS regulated entities that went into effect on March 1, 2017. The first deadline for compliance under the… more

Key California Employment Law Cases: July 2017

This month’s key California employment law cases involve wage and hour (payment of wages) and civil procedure (class and representative actions). Wage and Hour - Payment of Wages: Minnick v. Auto. Creations, Inc., 2017 WL 3203265 (Cal… more

Pa.L.C.B. Changes Procedure on Brand Registration for Breweries

We have received official word that the Pa.L.C.B. has decided to change part of its procedure for brand registration. This was not a formal regulation change, but a change to the internal review and approval requirements. After a… more

Quick Link Guide for MiFID II Guidance

Changes to the MiFID II regulatory regime will impose new obligations on many global investment managers both inside and outside the European Union (“EU”). While the precise scope of these obligations will depend, in many cases, on… more

Athena Automation IPR Decision Rejecting Equitable Defense of Assignor Estoppel in IPR Proceedings Designated Precedential by the PTAB

On August 2, 2017, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) designated Section II.A. of the Institution Decision in Athena Automation Ltd. v. Husky Injection Molding Systems Ltd., IPR2013-00290, Paper 18 (PTAB Oct. 25, 2013) as… more

AFRICA - A Legal Guide for Business Investment and Expansion: Zimbabwe

1 .What role does the government of Zimbabwe play in approving and regulating foreign direct investment? The Government established the Zimbabwe Investment Authority (ZIA) to promote, coordinate and approve investment projects among… more

Federal Circuit Finds Improvement to Computer Memory Systems is Patent Eligible, and Not an “Abstract Idea” Under Alice, reversing District Court

On August 15, 2017, the Federal Circuit issued a decision in Visual Memory LLC v. NVIDIA Corp. that provides a favorable decision applicants and patentees can rely upon in seeking to obtain and defend patent claims directed to… more

GHA Implements Georgia Rural Hospital Expense Tax Credit Program for Employees

In 2016, the Georgia Legislature passed the Rural Hospital Tax Credit Program that provides a state income tax credit that is designed to encourage Georgians to financially contribute to qualified rural hospital organizations. In 2017… more

Delaware Law Changes Method To Record Stockholders

Delaware is known for being a trailblazer in the area of corporate law. In keeping with tradition, Delaware is the first state to formally recognize the ability of a corporation to record stockholder transactions using distributed… more

Missing Pension Plan Beneficiaries and the Federal Consultation Paper on the Financial Sector Framework

The Bank of Canada currently maintains a program for holding account balances for missing individuals, which are transferred from banks and trust companies in certain circumstances. On August 11, 2017, the federal Department of Finance… more

The Carpenter Case and Other Privacy-Related News

As we discussed in the last few weeks, privacy is repeatedly in the news. Washington lawmakers are trying again to update the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, the Stored Communications Act (the “SCA”), and the Pen Registry Act… more

District Court Dismisses Class Action for Failure to Plead Fraud Claim with Particularity

A recent 40-page opinion from the Central District of California illustrates how a Rule 12(b)(6) motion is still a viable vehicle to fight back against putative class actions. We have seen an increase in the number of product… more

Proposed Bipartisan Bill Intended to Strengthen Security of Internet of Things (IoT) Devices

Earlier this month, Senators from both sides of the aisle introduced the “Internet of Things Cybersecurity Improvement Act of 2017,” outlining new security requirements for vendors who supply the U.S. Government with IoT devices. The… more

Louisiana Second Circuit: Oil and Gas Lender Held Liable for Certain Mineral Lease Obligations

A recent opinion from the Louisiana Court of Appeal, Second Circuit regarding Gloria’s Ranch, L.L.C. v. Tauren Exploration, Inc., has left a number of oil and gas lenders bellyaching. In this case, the Second Circuit found that a… more

Consent under the General Data Protection Regulation: what are the alternatives for employers?

The UK's Information Commissioner, Elizabeth Denham, has launched a series of blogs designed to “bust some of the myths” which she believes have developed around the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Her first blog… more

[Video]12 O'Clock High-Episode 56, Leadership Lessons from James Monroe

Description: In this episode, I continue the series on leadership lessons from U.S. presidents in discussing James Monroe of Virginia, who was President from 1817 to 1825. He is probably best known today for the Monroe Doctrine which… more

German Auto Antitrust Cartel – A Record Enforcement Action Begins

Just when you thought it could not get any worse, events remind us that things actually can get worse. Volkswagen suffered through a horrible scandal involving an elaborate scheme to circumvent emissions regulations. The scandal rocked… more

What Firm Leaders Need Most from Marketing

At a recent leadership roundtable event, WPG facilitated a discussion among managing partners and firm leaders on what they most need from CMOs and marketing teams. The ideas that came out of the discussion aren’t earth shattering—but… more

New Acting Head Of MSHA Named

On August 21st, 2017, Secretary of Labor, Alexander Acosta, announced that Wayne Palmer, former Chief of Staff for the Department of Labor, will serve as interim Assistant Secretary for the Mine Safety and Health Administration… more

OIG asks: Are CPD programs available to undocumented immigrants?

Today, the HUD Office of Inspector General (OIG) published a bulletin indicating that it is unclear if undocumented immigrants have access to certain HUD Community Planning and Development (CPD) programs – namely the Housing for… more

“I Got the Power!” – EEOC’s Investigatory Power Trumps Dismissal of Discrimination Claim in Federal Court

Can the EEOC keep investigating a claim after it has issued a right to sue letter? What about after the charging party has already filed a lawsuit and lost at the summary judgment stage? The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh… more

Parties Litigating Arbitrability Should Consider Procedural Rules in the Federal Arbitration Act

Lenders who move to compel arbitration should always consider the complex interplay between the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and the Federal Arbitration Act. In Ryan D. Burch v. P.J. Cheese, Inc., 861 F.3d 1338 (2017), the Eleventh… more

Trump Administration Stops Law Enforcement Funds To Chicago, Sanctuary City, And Gets Sued

Chicago, a sanctuary city, is challenging the Trump Administration’s ability to deny it needed law enforcement funds. The battle between the Administration and sanctuary localities began in April, when a federal judge blocked a part… more

Fire Protection Districts' Authority to Enforce State Fire Marshal Standards and Regulations Reiterated in California AG Opinion - Local Agencies’ Broad Authority Emphasized

The California Attorney General has reiterated fire protection districts’ broad authority to enforce building standards and regulations disseminated by the State Fire Marshal, including for residential occupancies and designated… more

Could Tax Reform Threaten Higher Education?

Given declining funding from government sources and the continued pressure to minimize tuition increases, it is critical for higher education institutions to encourage private giving. The primary catalyst for private giving is the… more

Protecting Against Patent Trolls

Companies that hold patents so that they can sue companies in an effort to generate revenue rather than create their own goods and services—also known as “patent trolls,” nonpracticing entities (NPEs), or patent assertion entities… more

California Court of Appeal Upholds Clearly Defined Waiting Period Before Vacation Begins to Accrue

Building on earlier vacation policy decisions, a California Court of Appeal recently held in Minnick v. Automotive Creations, Inc. that employers may impose a clearly expressed waiting period before an employee can begin to accrue… more

EMA's revised guideline on manufacture of the finished dosage form

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has adopted a new guideline on manufacture of the finished dosage form of medicinal products for human use (“the new Guideline”)… more

Soft Skills in Remediation: Part II – Project Timing

Today, I continue a five-part series on what a Chief Compliance Officer (CCO) needs to consider when working through the remediation component of a potential Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) compliance violation. I am joined in… more

Social Links: A seminal opinion on web scraping; Obama breaks Twitter record; court holds state’s subpoena law applies to digital communications

In an opinion granting a preliminary injunction preventing LinkedIn from blocking a startup’s use of information in LinkedIn profiles accessible to the entire public, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California… more

EEOC Sues Silverado for Pregnancy Discrimination

Residential Care Provider Refused to Keep Pregnant Worker on the Job Working Light Duty and Instead Fired Her, Federal Agency Charges - MILWAUKEE - Residential care provider Silverado violated federal law when it fired an employee… more

Your Daily Dose of Financial News

Breakingviews suggests that the devil is definitely in the details in Sempra Energy’s apparent winning bid for Oncor. Control of the company, for example, isn’t as simple as it might seem… more

Using Genetics to Uncover Human History

Human history is often something modern man only sees as through a glass, darkly. This is particularly the case when that history did not occur in the Mediterranean, the Nile Valley, India, or China, or when there is no written record… more

Six Crucial Points About the New Russia, Iran and North Korea-Related Sanctions Law

Russia-Related Sanctions Codification: The new law codifies sanctions executive orders related to circumstances in Ukraine and Crimea as well as certain cyber-enabled activities, restricting the U.S. President's authority to… more

Digital Single Market: Draft Copyright Directive - What is the current state of the European ancillary copyright for publishers?

The ever-lasting discussion regarding the implementation of a European ancillary copyright for press publishers has now entered the next round. In March 2017, MEP Therese Comodini Cachia, who then was the rapporteur of the European… more

Applicable Federal Rates - September 2017

Please see Charts below for more information… more

Third Circuit Introduces New Uncertainty While Attempting to Clarify Ascertainability Jurisprudence

On August 16, the Third Circuit gave the plaintiff a pass for failing to pursue evidence necessary to determine whether its proposed class was ascertainable and took the opportunity to clarify that affidavits may be used, at least in… more

HUD issues report on worst case housing needs

On August 9, HUD issued to Congress its 16th report on worst case housing needs in the United States, based on 2015 data. Households with “worst case needs” are those that are very low income, do not receive government housing… more

Legislation Would Legalize ‘Valid When Made’ Rule

A new bill introduced by Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) would overrule the U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit, decision in Madden v. Midland Funding and legalize the “valid when made” rule… more

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