Latest Updates

Queen’s Speech confirms (new) data protection law for the UK

The Queen’s Speech on 21 June 2017 confirmed the government’s plans for a new data protection law ensuring "that the United Kingdom retains its world-class regime protecting personal data"… more

Scope of Personal Jurisdiction In Nationwide and Multistate Class Actions Potentially Impacted By Supreme Court Decision In Bristol-Myers Squibb Case

This week the Supreme Court issued a new opinion in a case that involved the scope of personal jurisdiction in a nationwide mass action brought in a state court. Although it is not entirely clear the extent to which this decision may… more

Bottini v. GEICO: Parties to Bad Faith Action Not Bound by $30.8 million-dollar Verdict Without Appellate Review

For years, when a bad faith action was brought pursuant to a jury verdict in excess of policy limits in the underlying UM claim, everyone assumed the jury verdict was binding in the bad faith action. Then, Bottini v. GEICO resulted in… more

NYC’s “Freelance Isn’t Free Act” Might End Up Impacting Businesses Across the Country

Many workers are leaving the comfort and stability of traditional 9 to 5 jobs in favor of more flexible options. This paradigm shift may be new to the general public, but it certainly does not appear to be a passing fad. In fact, in… more

Credit reporting standards for civil judgments and tax liens to change July 1

An informative new American Banker podcast discusses recent and possible future changes to traditional credit scores, what they mean for industry, and possible industry responses. The podcast begins with a discussion of changes that… more

The Government Uses Multiple Tools to Fight Corruption

There are multiple ways to deal with an issue which can provide known and unforeseen benefits. Today we celebrate one of those as it was on this day in 1944, that President Franklin Roosevelt signed the GI Bill into existence. The… more

The Supreme Court Holds the Lanham Act’s Disparagement Clause Unconstitutional

In a closely watched decision, the eight participating members of the Supreme Court unanimously held that the so-called disparagement clause of the Lanham Act violates the First Amendment. The high-profile case of Matan v. Tam was… more

Tenth Circuit Finds Citizen Petition Denial to be "Clear Evidence" of Conflict Preemption

A U.S. Court of Appeals has held that a Food and Drug Administration (FDA) denial of a citizen petition can be “clear evidence” of conflict preemption under the test set forth by the Supreme Court in Wyeth v. Levine, 555 U.S. 555… more

Biofuel Mandates Escape Current EPA Scrutiny

The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is a regulatory program administered by EPA that requires petroleum-based transportation fuel sold in the U.S. to contain a minimum volume of various categories of biofuels. The program’s mandates are… more

Is Software Patentable? Recent US Case Law Offers a Glimmer of Hope

Many inventions involve software, and many inventors are interested in protecting such inventions with a patent. The question is: are software inventions patentable? Based on recent cases in the United States, the answer is: yes… more

Clarifying the status of Gainful Employment and Borrower Defense to Repayment

During the second term of the Obama administration, the U.S. Department of Education promulgated several complex regulatory packages. Among the most significant and controversial were the Gainful Employment (“GE”) rule, effective July… more

The Board can Rely on a Party’s Arguments in an IPR, as Long as it Explains Why

In Outdry Technologies Corp. v. Geox S.P.A., [2016-1769] (June 16, 2017), the Federal Circuit affirmed the Board’s determination that claims 1–15 of U.S. Patent No. 6,855,171 would have been obvious over a combination of prior art… more

[Video]Entrepreneur Minute: Why Women Entrepreneurs Should Use Reward-Based Crowdfunding

Geri Stengel of Ventureneer discusses why women succeed with crowdfunding. Baker Donelson's Entrepreneur Minute features attorneys, entrepreneurs and business leaders sharing advice on starting, growing and running your… more

New Jersey Amends the Alcoholic Beverage Control Act to Address the Manufacture and Sale of Hard Cider and Mead – Part 2: Wineries and MABPA.

In addition to creating the Cidery and meadery license (see Part 1 for a discussion of the privileges of that license), the recent amendments to the Alcoholic Beverage Control Act (“Act”) amended the definition of “wine” in those… more

Taiwan: Cross-border opportunities amid global change: Taiwan M&A has strong Q1 after a robust 2016 - Spurred by semiconductor company consolidations, TMT activity dominated Taiwan's inbound and outbound dealmaking in Q1 2017

The 2017 kickoff in Taiwan M&A showed the second-highest Q1 deal volume since Q1 2010, with 13 deals (Figure 1). This matched the Q1 2016 total—which itself was a busy year for M&A in Taiwan… more

Five Common Mistakes Law Firms Make When Entering a New Market

A dynamic law firm growth tactic involves opening an office in a new geographic market. To move a firm into virgin territory requires careful thought about issues that go beyond simply hiring new lawyers. Indeed, expanding a firm’s… more

Enforcement of International Arbitral Awards in the U.S. – Could a Court Abstain Due To “Inconvenience”?

Forum non conveniens is one of several judicial abstention doctrines, applied from time to time by U.S. courts, that permit a court to dismiss (without prejudice) a plenary action in its discretion. In a forum non conveniens case, the… more

Safe harbour and ipso facto reform in Australia

Long-awaited law reform to bring Australia's insolvency regime into step with many of its trading counterparts is slated to be enacted in the second half of 2017. The text of the law is currently before parliament for debate. If… more

Supreme Court strikes down Lanham Act's disparagement clause as unconstitutional

In a landmark decision that will significantly impact those seeking to block or cancel trademarks they consider offensive, the U.S. Supreme Court has struck down the "disparagement clause" of the federal trademark registration act… more

Uncompensated "Off-the-Clock" Work Time Nets Call Center Nurses a $6.2 Million Settlement

Late last year, more than 1,300 "advice nurses" working at call-in centers providing answers to patient health care questions for Kaiser Permanente and Permanente Medical Group filed a class action lawsuit for unpaid wages and overtime… more

4 Common Reasons for a Trademark Registration Refusal

When someone applies for a federal trademark registration with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), it is possible for the trademark registration application to be refused. While this is often disappointing, it is… more

Litigation Update: Amgen v. Hospira

As we reported yesterday in the Amgen v. Hospira litigation, Amgen filed a motion for leave to file an amended brief in support of its Motion for a Preliminary Injunction, in light of the Supreme Court’s ruling in Sandoz v. Amgen. That… more

Special Purpose Vehicles’ Authority to File for Bankruptcy Revisited

In order to file for bankruptcy in the United States, a company needs to secure the appropriate corporate authorizations as required by its governing documents. What happens when a debtor does not obtain appropriate authorization to… more

Do Read the Fine Print – California’s Recent Budget Makes a Number of Labor and Employment Policy Changes

Last week, (by their constitutional June 15 deadline) the California Legislature passed and sent to the Governor a $184.5 billion budget for fiscal year 2017-18. Most of the media attention focused on tobacco tax expenditures, efforts… more

Augmented and virtual reality - emerging legal implications of "The Final Platform"

In August 2015, Time Magazine declared that Virtual Realty (“VR”) was about to change the world. A year earlier, Facebook bought Oculus VR for $2.3 billion signalling the impact of what Oculus founder Palmer Luckey referred to as “The… more

EP Opposition and US Inter Partes Review Decisions Go Hand In Hand

It is often desirable to obtain patent protection for inventions both in Europe and the United States. As a result, competitors frequently look to Europe and the US as important jurisdictions for challenging the validity of a patent… more

The Covfefe Kerfuffle and the Rush to Register Trending Terms

While many of us are working our way through the flood of thought-provoking analysis of Matal v. Tam, I’m taking a break with some lighter fare, namely, covfefe. In case you missed it, the viral non-word “covfefe” was born out of a… more

DoD Seeks Industry Input on DFARS Buying Reform

The Department of Defense (DoD) is asking contractors to help identify solicitation provisions and Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS) clauses that impose unnecessary regulatory burdens. DoD has invited written… more

SCOTUS Overturns California's Extreme Expansion of Personal Jurisdiction for National Corporations

The United States Supreme Court has issued an important decision rejecting California's effort to assert personal jurisdiction over nonresident corporations and curtailing the plaintiff's bar's efforts at forum shopping… more

China Relaxes Some Restrictions on Foreign Investment in China's Pilot Free Trade Zones

The General Office of China's State Council posted on June 16 the Special Measures on the Administration of Entry by Foreign Investment in Pilot Free Trade Zones (Negative List) (2017 edition) (Guobanfa [2017] No. 51, dated June 5 and… more

NYSERDA and NY Power Authority Seek to Fund Proposals for New Clean Energy Projects: First Round Submissions Due July 13th

On June 2nd, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and the New York Power Authority (NYPA) issued record requests for proposals from qualified developers to build renewable energy projects that will… more

United States Supreme Court Clarifies Scope of Specific Personal Jurisdiction in State Court

On Monday, June 19, 2017, the Supreme Court clarified the limits of specific personal jurisdiction in state courts, holding that a connection between a defendant’s contacts with the forum and the claims at issue remains essential in… more

Sustainable Development Update - June 2017 #4

Sustainable Development Focus - Support for wind, solar power continues - Facility Executive - Jun 14 - Demand for renewable energy by consumers and businesses — along with a long-term commitment to cleaner portfolios from… more

Force majeure and the Qatar crisis: implications for UAE businesses

On 5 June 2017, the UAE announced that it would be severing all diplomatic ties with Qatar. In separate announcements, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt also severed ties with Qatar, with other countries in the region following suit… more

Financial Services Weekly News - June 2017 #3

Editor's Note - In This Issue. President Trump announced his intended nominee for Chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) proposed updates to its prepaid account… more

Try Not to be so Friendly: Current Issues in Interviews and Advertising

Many of us like to chat. We like to know what you’re reading, how your kid’s baseball season is going, and what kind of pie you like, but while hostesses love you at a cocktail party, chatting can lead to trouble, especially in the… more

Commerce And USTR Hold Public Hearing On U.S. Trade Deficit

On May 18, 2017, Commerce and USTR held a public hearing on U.S. Trade Deficits. The hearing was held in response to Executive Order 13786, issued by President Trump, which instructed the agencies to prepare and submit an Omnibus… more

CHOICE Act: Reform or Recalibration?

In the last session of the US Congress in mid-2016, representative Jeb Hensarling first introduced the Financial CHOICE (Creating Hope and Opportunity for Investors, Consumers, and Entrepreneurs) Act. This represented an amalgamation… more

The Case Goes On, For Now: Seventh Circuit Holds Rule 67 Cannot Moot TCPA Class Action

In January 2016, the Supreme Court issued its Campbell-Ewald v. Gomez decision and definitely ruled that Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 68 could not be used to moot the claims of a named plaintiff. Prior to that ruling, courts across… more

First Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Biogen Investors’ Claims, Finding a Lack of “Connecting Detail,” in In re Biogen Inc. Securities Litigation, 857 F.3d 34 (May 12, 2017)

In this putative class action, investors alleged that Biogen executives misled the public about the impact on sales of the company’s multiple sclerosis drug Tecfidera after one patient’s death. Plaintiffs alleged violations of Sections… more

Consultation on personalised robo-advice

As you will be aware from our previous updates on robo-advice, personalised financial advice in New Zealand must be given by a human being. This is limiting the development of robo-advice models in the New Zealand market and is to be… more

Shipowner Who Tried to Skirt Club Rules Runs Aground in Court

The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York recently issued a decision finding that a shipowner member was bound to a P&I Club’s board of directors’ decision to deny coverage for that member’s losses arising from a… more

Don’t Forget To Calendar Your Deadlines – Especially The Statutory Ones!

If you commence an action by way of summons with notice, you must bear in mind the strict time limitations imposed by CPLR 3012(b). When the other party timely serves a written demand for a complaint, you have exactly twenty (20) days… more

Is It a Dividend? Is It a Tax? Could President Trump Care Less?

In February, I posted about the formation of the Climate Leadership Council and its push for what it calls its “Carbon Dividend” plan. In essence, it’s a gradually increasing carbon tax. The plan would be revenue neutral, with the… more

SCOTUS: Supreme Court Holds Disparagement Clause of the Lanham Act Violates the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment

On June 19, 2017, in Matal v. Tam, previously Lee v. Tam, the Supreme Court handed down its most impactful interpretation of the disparagement clause of the Lanham Act to date by holding that at its intersection with the First… more

Another Facially Neutral Employment Policy Bites the Dust

About a year ago, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or Board) struck down another neutral employer workplace rule – this one against making unauthorized recordings in the workplace. The NLRB’s decision just was affirmed by the… more

Supreme Court Holds Entities May Register Disparaging Trademarks

The Lanham Act’s restriction on trademarks that disparage persons living or dead violates the First Amendment. Though the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has sometimes reversed its position on whether a particular… more

Saudi Arabia Update - June 2017

Legal Developments - 10 minute SAGIA License - Companies carrying any foreign ownership in Saudi Arabia are required to have a foreign investment license issued by the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA)… more

[Audio]Employment Law Now I-10- Independent Contractors, Age Discrimination, Performance Reviews, Web Site Accessibility, and Ducks, TIEs and Chimps

Michael Schmidt, Vice Chair of Cozen O’Connor’s Labor & Employment Department, discusses current employment law news, trends, developments and guest analysis. This episode addresses independent contractor misclassification, performance… more

How Insurtechs Maximize Profits and Competitive Advantage

The potential to disrupt the historic insurance industry model has made insurtech one of the hottest new areas of innovation and investment, with entrepreneurs developing technologies at a breakneck pace and venture capital firms… more

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