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Connected Cars “Compliance Package” at the Forefront

On October 17, after about 18 months of waiting, a consultation involving more than 20 players, and two intermediate versions, the French Data Protection Authority (“Commission Nationale de l’Informatique et des Libertés” or “CNIL”)… more

Assignment of Receivables: A Step Forward for UK PLC and a Step Towards International Harmonisation

The draft Business Contract Terms (Assignment of Receivables) Regulations 2017 (the “draft Regs”) have been published. Gone is the complexity of the original draft, and now we have a straightforward piece of legislation which will be… more

EPA Approves Flint Hills Resources’ Plant For Cellulosic Ethanol Production

On October 12, 2017, Edeniq, Inc., a leading cellulosic and biorefining technology company, announced that Flint Hills Resources, a member of the Biobased and Renewable Products Advocacy Group (BRAG®), received approval from EPA for… more

Washington's New Biometric Privacy Statute and How It Compares to Illinois and Texas Law

Washington recently became the third state to pass a statute regulating the commercial use of biometric identifiers. The growing trend of state biometric privacy legislation began in 2008, when Illinois enacted the Bio-metric… more

EPA Final Rule On Use Of TOFA Confirms Safety Of Unsaturated Fatty Acids

On October 10, 2017, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published in the Federal Register its final rule establishing exemptions for a tolerance limit to use tall oil fatty acids (TOFA) as an inert ingredient “[?i]n… more

Pensions Newsletter – October 2017

Welcome to the 19th issue of the Blakes Pensions Newsletter. This newsletter provides a summary of recent jurisprudential developments that affect pensions and benefits and is not intended to be legal advice… more

In-Vitro Fertilization Inconceivable to Legislature

On Oct. 16 the Georgia Supreme Court ruled that the statute covering children “conceived by means of artificial insemination” doesn’t cover children born by means of in-vitro fertilization (IVF). Why? Well, for one thing, the statute… more

American Process and Byogy Renewables Launch Phase 1 Of DOE-Funded Biofuels And Bioproducts Project

On October 9, 2017, American Process Inc. and Byogy Renewables, Inc. announced the launch of Phase 1 of its “Advanced Biofuels and Bioproducts with AVAP (ABBA)” project following the completion of negotiations with the U.S. Department… more

Supreme Court Asked to Clarify that Class Certification Evidence Must Be Admissible

A major California grower has asked the Supreme Court to resolve a circuit split by holding that evidence used to support class certification must be admissible. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit is currently one of only… more

DOE Researchers Optimize Lignin Processing By Combining Steps

Researchers at DOE’s Ames Laboratory are experimenting with chemical reactions that will provide an economical method of deconstructing lignin into stable, readily useful components. Lignin is the second largest renewable carbon… more

Apple Decides To Clean House

App developers, take note: due to Apple’s latest “clean-up” project, you should review your current apps to ensure that they meet Apple’s new App Store Review Guidelines. Make sure that your app is not a clone, does not offer spam or… more

Trump’s Third Travel Ban Suspended In Part

Seyfarth Synopsis: Federal judges in Hawaii and Maryland have issued orders blocking major portions of President Trump’s September 24, 2017 Presidential Proclamation… more

Email Discussions May Be Next: Mississippi Supreme Court Declares Closed-Door “Non-Quorum” Meetings Illegal

The Mississippi Open Meetings Act provides that “the formation and determination of public policy is public business and shall be conducted in open meetings.” Notwithstanding this command, some public boards in Mississippi had… more

Harvey Weinstein Case Brings Sexual Harassment Back to the Spotlight

The Harvey Weinstein case has brought a spotlight to a problem that has plagued not only Hollywood but other professions as well. While Corporate America has largely cleaned up its act and instituted robust anti-harassment policies and… more

6 Ways Employers Sink Their Own Ships

It’s not always the employee’s fault when things go bad for an employer. Sometimes the employer has no one to blame but itself. Here are six of the most common ways employers sink their own ships… more

Federal Relief for Employee Benefits Plans Affected by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Department of Labor (DOL), and Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) have issued compliance guidance and a new law has been enacted providing employee benefits-related relief for individuals… more

AGG Food and Drug Newsletter - October 2017

Arnall Golden Gregory LLP's Food and Drug Newsletter is a monthly update of legal and regulatory issues that affect the FDA-regulated community, including regular updates on legislative initiatives from AGG’s Washington, DC office, and… more

Protected Conduct or Hate Speech? Managing Diverse Viewpoints in the Workplace

Recent events have underscored the difficulties employers face in managing diverse workforces in which employees hold a wide-range of political perspectives. The mere discussion of the news of the day can create divisive conflicts… more

The Potential Demise of LIBOR

The potential demise of LIBOR hit the headlines in July when the CEO of the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) announced that the rate is no longer tenable (based on a lack of transaction based data) and that the FCA will withdraw… more

CFPB Issues Last-Minute Changes to Mortgage Servicing Rules

As we previously reported, on October 19, 2016, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) published in the Federal Register final amendments to its Mortgage Servicing Rules (Final Rule). The Final Rule, weighing in at 900 pages… more

Industry Report Calls For National Internet Of Things Strategy

A coalition of the Information Technology Industry Council, the Semiconductor Industry Association, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Technology Engagement Center, Intel, and Samsung, recently released a report that puts out a call for the… more

Proposition 65: OEHHA Releases Q&A Regarding Proposition 65 Regulations for Clear and Reasonable Warnings

In August 2017, the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) released a Questions and Answers for Businesses (Q&A) document related to its August 28, 2016, adopted revisions to its Proposition 65 (Prop 65)… more

October 2017 Update On Changes To U.S. Immigration Policies Under The Trump Administration And Latest Travel Ban News

The Trump administration proposes to make sweeping changes to U.S. immigration policies. On October 8, 2017, the White House issued an Immigration Principles and Policies Statement, which was followed by separate supporting… more

Locke Lord Article: Five Best Practices in Defending a Company in Patent Litigation

1. Unlearn the case from the Complaint; learn it from the Client. The Complaint is the first voice you will hear about the case. Many roads begin there, but that is not the case, not your Client’s case. Your Client’s history begins… more

2018 Benefit Limits

Retirement Plan Limits - The IRS updated very few of the retirement plan limits effective for the plan year that begins on or after January 1, 2018. Social Security Tax and Wage Base - For calendar year 2018, the Social… more

Under Pressure: Form I-9 Compliance Increasingly Important as ICE Quadruples Workplace Enforcement

Acting Director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Thomas Homan announced during a speech at the Heritage Foundation that he has instructed ICE to increase immigration enforcement at workplaces by four to five times the… more

Florida Increases Its Minimum Wage for 2018

On October 13, 2017, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) announced that, effective January 1, 2018, the minimum wage in the State of Florida will increase from $8.10 per hour to $8.25. This increase is tied to the… more

IRS Announces Year 2018 Retirement Plan Limits

The Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) announced today, October 19, 2017, the following dollar limits applicable to tax-qualified plans for 2018: - The limit on the maximum amount of elective contributions that a person may make to a… more

CPSC Expands Phthalate Restrictions in Toys and Child Care Articles

This week, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) voted to expand existing phthalate restrictions in children’s toys and child care articles… more

Court Rejects Regulatory Takings and Pre-Condemnation Misconduct Claims Based on Airport Land Use Commission’s Reclassification of Property Within Different Safety Zone

In Dryden Oaks, LLC v. San Diego County Regional Airport Authority, __ Cal.App.5th __ (October 19, 2017), the Fourth District Court of Appeal published a previously unpublished opinion addressing both regulatory takings and… more

After Nearly 5 Years, FCC Lifting Freeze on Mods for Unrepacked Full-Power and Class A TV Stations

The FCC announced late today that the freeze that has been in place since April 2013 which prevents full-power and Class A TV stations from filing applications to expand their coverage areas will be lifted temporarily, likely before… more

Trump To Nominate Competition-Focused Simons for FTC Chair, CP-Focused Chopra for Commissioner; Reports of Philips for Additional Seat

After months of speculation among the consumer protection and antitrust bars, Trump announced today his intention to nominate former Director of the Bureau of Competition and current Paul Weiss partner Joseph Simons as Chairman of the… more

California Governor Signs “New Parent Leave Act”

On October 12, 2017, California Governor Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 63 (“the New Parent Leave Act”). Under the new law, employers may not refuse to allow certain employees to take up to 12 weeks of parental leave to bond with a… more

Court Has Zero Chill For Use Of “Chell”

The attendance of a multi-day concert/festival in the desert seems to be a right of passage for millennials with events popping up all over the country. However, are you permitted to utilize the goodwill associated with those events to… more

Unique, But Not Unusual: First District Affirms CEQA Exemptions and General Plan Consistency Finding For Three-Unit Infill Condo Project on San Francisco’s Telegraph Hill

While “agree[ing] with appellant that Telegraph Hill is outstanding and unique in a city of outstanding and unique places[,]” the First District Court of Appeal nonetheless affirmed the trial court’s order denying plaintiff/appellant… more

The State AG Report Weekly Update

AG Elections- Republican Frank White Announces Bid for Florida Attorney General- Republican state Representative Frank White announced his candidacy in the open 2018 race for Florida AG. He is also the general counsel and chief… more

CSA Propose Amendments to the Mandatory Derivatives Clearing Rule

On October 12, 2017, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) proposed for comment amendments (Amendments) to National Instrument 94-101 Mandatory Central Counterparty Clearing of Derivatives (NI 94-101), in order to refine the… more

Stars Group Powers Up With New Video Game-Inspired Poker Game

The gaming industry – like many others – is constantly asking: what’s next? What is the next game or platform or innovation that will attract new players? To bring in new players and fans, many traditional casino operators have shifted… more

Buy Clean California Act: Carbon Emission Limits for State Procurement

California has taken a significant step in aligning its procurement expenditures with its vanguard climate change policy. On October 15, 2017, Governor Jerry Brown signed A.B. 262, the Buy Clean California Act (Chapter 816, Statutes of… more

Allocation of Data Breach Risks and Costs in Vendor Contracts: Negotiate, Negotiate, Negotiate (And Negotiate Again!) Limitations on Liability and Indemnification

“A significant data breach is likely to cost the company materially, and costs could drag on for a number of years,” analyst Shlomo Rosenbaum, commenting on the Equifax breach. Organizations increasingly rely on third-party service… more

Travel Ban 3.0: A No-Go (for now)

Two federal judges have blocked President Trump’s third try at implementing a nationwide travel ban. The first ruling blocking the administration from enforcing the September 24th Presidential Proclamation, which restricts travel… more

Chancery Declines Confidential Treatment to Nonparty’s Claimed Sensitive Business Info

American courts have long recognized that the public enjoys a First Amendment right of access to judicial proceedings and records. While forceful, the right is only presumptive, and the public’s interest in access may be overcome with… more

Third Circuit Affirms Bright-Line FLSA Rule on Short Breaks, and Rejects Employer’s ‘Good-Faith’ Absent Disclosure of Legal Advice

On October 13, 2017, the Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit held that short breaks during the work day of 20 minutes or fewer are compensable as a “bright-line rule” under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”). The case, DOL v… more

Allegan’s Restasis Patents Invalidated By A Federal District Court Even After Transfer To Native American Tribe And Sovereign Immunity Claim.

In Allergan, Inc. v. Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc. et al, Case No. 2:15-cv-1455-WCB (EDTX October 16, 2017 Order), a Federal District Court recently invalidated several patents covering Allergan’s dry-eye drug Restasis. The ruling is… more

IRS Withdraws Proposed Code §2704 Regulations On Lapsing Rights And Restrictions

The IRS has withdrawn the controversial proposed regulations under Code §2704 that would have significantly affected the use of discounts in US estate planning. Code §2704 provides that certain “applicable restrictions” on ownership… more

Arrgh! Social Media Post Lands “Pirate Joe’s” in Hot Water

In the highly-publicized case about unauthorized reselling of Trader Joe’s merchandise by renegade Canadian merchant “Pirate Joe’s,” social media provided the powder keg for Trader Joe’s arbitration enforcement demand. The case set… more

Are Warhol Works Meticulously Recreated By British Artist 30 Years After Warhol’s Death Authentic Warhol Paintings?

In recent art world news, British artist Paul Stephenson has recreated some of Andy Warhol’s most celebrated works using the exact same materials and methods as the late artist. This has sparked a lively debate as to what can be done… more

Worth Another Look: The Human Services Code

The first and only “code bill” to reach the Governor’s desk this fiscal year is H.B. 59 (Moul, R-Adams), the Human Services Code bill. Although the Governor has until October 28 to sign the bill into law, he previously stated that he… more

NYS DOH Issues Medical Marijuana Emergency Regulations

On October 5, 2017, the New York State Department of Health (DOH) issued emergency regulations with respect to its medical marijuana program. Specifically, nursing homes, adult care facilities, and certain residential facilities… more

Comments by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein Suggest Major Changes to Department of Justice Policies May Be Coming

Historically, the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) often articulated policy decisions by issuing department-wide memos, usually named for their authors. For instance, in 2015, the DOJ announced a policy of holding individuals… more

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