Latest Updates

Arbitrator, Judge, Or Jury; Pick Your Poison

As a general rule businesses hate litigation. Why? Litigation results seem uncertain to the point of randomness. It need not be that way. You can never squeeze all of the uncertainty out of litigation, but if you understand who will be… more

President Trump's Budget Includes Proposed Merger of EEOC and OFCCP

Seyfarth Synopsis: On May 23, 2017, the White House released its proposed budget for the 2018 Fiscal Year. Included in the proposal, which would impose deep cuts to many programs administered by the Department of Labor, was a… more

Decrypting the New Whistleblower Law in France

On December 9, 2016, France enacted a statute broadly granting whistleblower protections to employees. This new law represents the next step in the evolution of such protections in France. The focus on this area of law originated with… more

Intellectual Property and E-commerce Shops

If you’re the owner of an e-commerce shop, you deal with intellectual property everyday. Intellectual property refers to the creations of the human mind. This includes symbols, images, names, inventions, and literary and artistic… more

Federal Contractor Agency To Be Radically Overhauled Under Trump Budget Proposal- OFCCP Will See Budget Slashed, Merger With EEOC By End Of FY2018

The proposed federal budget released earlier this week would have a dramatic impact on the Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP), the watchdog agency overseeing the federal government’s… more

The Opportunities and Challenges of Freestanding Emergency Departments

Following our blog post regarding the retail clinic movement, “Patient Check-Ups Before Checking Out: Partnering to Bring Health Care into the ‘One-Stop Shopping’ Sector” (April 19, 2017), we continue our examination of alternative… more

Filing Your Own Return

In our last post, we reviewed the main advantages and disadvantages of joint tax returns for married couples. This post will focus on when a married couple should consider filing separately, and special considerations if they reside in… more

Supreme Court Significantly Narrows Reach Of Patent Venue Statute

In a highly anticipated opinion significantly narrowing the first prong of the patent venue statute, 28 U.S.C. § 1400(b), the Supreme Court in TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC unanimously held that a domestic… more

Wage and Hour Pitfalls Part 1: What You Need To Know

1. Employers Must Pay “Manual Workers” Weekly. In New York, employers are required to pay manual workers weekly. A “manual worker” includes “a mechanic, workingman or laborer” or individuals who spend more than 25% of working… more

€110 million fine for Facebook by the European Commission for providing misleading information during WhatsApp merger review

The European Commission (“Commission”) announced on May 18, 2017, that it was fining Facebook €110 million for providing misleading or incorrect information during the review of the social network’s acquisition of WhatsApp in 2014… more

Supreme Court heralds tectonic shift in venue selection for patent suits

Reversing nearly 30 years of patent practice, the United States Supreme Court recently held in TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC that the appropriate venue for patent-based suits against domestic corporate defendants is… more

[Video]Health care M&A

John Chesley, Ropes & Gray health care partner, discusses M&A deal-making in the industry and the impact of value-based payment models. He also outlines a new Bloomberg BNA portfolio on M&A transactions that he co-authored. __ Health… more

Growing Older — Safety Resources & Information

Children and the elderly are most often hurt in avoidable accidents in and around the home. The US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) reports that about 1.4 million Americans age 65 years and older are treated in emergency… more

[Video]Operationalizing Compliance Through Your Tone in the Middle

One of the ways that Human Resources (HR) can help to operationalize compliance is to assist each level of an organization to have a proper tone. While the top of an organization rightly gets much of attention, the tone about doing… more

Not Necessarily Unfair to Reply on Patent Owner’s Submissions in Obviousness Finding, but Board Failed to Provide Adequate Explanation

In Rovalma, S.A. v. Bohler-Edelstahl GmbH & Co., KG, [2016-2233] (May 11, 2017), the Federal Circuit vacated the Board’s Final Written Decision in IPR2015-00150, finding the Board did not set forth its reasoning in sufficient detail to… more

Court Allows Trade-Secret Misappropriation Claim Based on Inevitable Disclosure

A recent decision by the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois allowed one company to sue its direct competitor for misappropriation of trade secrets based entirely on the improper taking of trade secrets by the… more

CFTC Revises Record Keeping Requirements

The CFTC has issued final amendments to Regulation 1.31 which sets forth the form and manner in which all regulatory records must be kept by records entities. “Records entities” are persons required to keep records pursuant to the… more

You've Got Mail: Supreme Court Clarifies Procedures for Service of Process Abroad

The US Supreme Court has confirmed that US litigation may be commenced against foreign parties by sending documents through the mail, provided that certain conditions are met. In Water Splash, Inc. v. Menon, No. 16-254 (May 22, 2017)… more

The Northern District of New York Applies the “Reasonable Belief” Standard

On May 11, 2017, the Northern District of New York applied the Second Circuit’s standard for evaluating a Dodd-Frank retaliation claim in response to a motion to dismiss under F.R.C.P. Rule 12(b)(6). The court denied the employer’s… more

Let Food Be Thy Medicine, But Mind Your Words

A tweet last week from Project Nosh set my food-labeling-lawyer-head buzzing: “Consumers are looking for snacks that aren’t just empty calories. Brands are providing everything from protein to anti-nausea properties.” An anti-nausea… more

Digital Media Are Now Caught by French Regulation and in Particular by Stringent Transparency Requirements

By virtue of the French “Sapin” law of January 29, 1993, France has become one of the most transparency-regulated media market in the world and remains so today. With the new Decree No 2017-159 of February 9, 2017, the protection… more

The Supreme Court, Reversing the Federal Circuit, Holds that “Residence” in the Patent Venue Statute Refers to Only a Domestic Corporation’s State of Incorporation

In a brief, well-reasoned opinion, a unanimous eight-member Supreme Court held that 28 U.S.C. § 1400(b) is a stand-alone provision governing venue in patent infringement suits, unaffected by the broad definition of “residence” in the… more

The Hague Service Convention Does Not Prohibit Service of Process by Mail

The Supreme Court held in Water Splash, Inc. v. Menon, No. 16–254 (May 22, 2017), that the Hague Service Convention allows service of process by mail under Article 10(a), when two conditions are met: first, the receiving state has not… more

Preparing for Depositions in Finland! (Updated 2017)

Finland is an enviable destination for depositions. First of all, there is plenty of coffee! Finns drink more coffee than any other nation in the world. No one will have any issues remaining alert through a deposition in this country… more

DOL Takes Significant Step Forward in Rescinding Persuader Rule

This week the Department of Labor (“DOL”) submitted a proposed rulemaking that would rescind the regulation commonly termed the “Persuader Rule” to the Office of Management and Budget’s Office of Information and Regulatory Transparency… more

What Can We infer When Justice Kilbride Asks the First Question in Civil Cases?

Yesterday, we asked whether we can infer anything about Justice Kilbride’s vote and whether he’s writing an opinion, based on the pattern of his questions in oral argument. Today, we ask a slightly different question – can we infer… more

ECHA Publishes REACH Guidance for Nanomaterials

The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) announced on May 24, 2017, publication of five documents that it intends to help registrants preparing dossiers that cover nanoforms ahead of the 2018 registration deadline under the Registration… more

Night Note: The 1st 100 Days: USTR Seeks Comments and Holds Hearing on NAFTA Renegotiation

On Tuesday, May 23, 2017, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) officially announced in a Federal Register notice that the United States intends to commence negotiations with Canada and Mexico over modernization of the… more

Government Employees Can’t Hide Behind Their Private Email Accounts: California Supreme Court Expands Public Records Definition To Include Emails Sent On Private Email Accounts

The use of private email servers and communications devices by government officials was a major issue in the 2016 election, from the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s email practices to the hacking of a private email account Mike… more

Portions Of The DOL Fiduciary Rule To Go Forward On June 9, 2017

Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta announced on Monday that portions of the controversial Department of Labor (DOL) fiduciary rule will go into effect as planned on June 9, 2017, with full implementation of the rule on January 1… more

New Federal Railway Administration Requirements For Maintenance-Of-Way Workers Take Effect June 12, 2017

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration’s (“FRA”) final rule expanding drug and alcohol testing to maintenance-of-way (“MOW”) employees takes effect on June 12, 2017. MOW employees are “employees of a… more

Government Contractors: Buy In to "Buy American" or Risk Enforcement

President Trump’s recent “Buy American and Hire American” executive order signals greater enforcement of Buy American Laws. The order requires all federal agencies to assess and revamp internal policies for implementing and enforcing… more

Executive Order 13800 – Strengthening the Cybersecurity of Federal Networks and Critical Infrastructure

President Donald J. Trump signed Executive Order 13800 titled “Strengthening the Cybersecurity of Federal Networks and Critical Infrastructure” on May 11, 2017, his thirty-fifth executive order since taking office. Before… more

No Delay of DOL Fiduciary Rule’s June 9 Applicability Date; Additional Guidance Issued

Earlier this week, Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta indicated in a Wall Street Journal op-ed article that there will be no further delay as to the parts of the fiduciary rule issued by the Department of Labor (DOL) that are… more

State And Federal Trade Secrets Claims Upheld By Northern District Of Illinois

A May 11, 2017 decision by Judge Chang, in the Northern District of Illinois, found misappropriation alleged under the Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA) and the Illinois Trade Secrets Act (ITSA), in a case where the employee downloaded… more

Scott Angelle Tapped to Take the Helm of BSEE

Scott Angelle took over as the Director of the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday, May 23. Mr. Angelle is well known to the oil and gas industry in… more

Facebook Fined for WhatsApp Data Linking Fallout

On 18 May 2017, the European Commission (“Commission”) fined Facebook €110 million ($122 million) for misrepresentations made in its application for competition clearance of the company’s acquisition of WhatsApp. In its merger… more

Irish Butter Shortage Spreads Trademark Battle in Wisconsin

A Wisconsin federal judge issued a temporary restraining order last month against a Wisconsin creamery for their use of the “Irishgold” Irish butter trademark and associated packaging. Irish dairy distributor Ornua Foods North America… more

Court Affirms the Comforting Bevill Backstop

Lawyers representing corporations should in nearly every circumstance provide an Upjohn warning to avoid accidentally creating attorney-client relationships with company employees. Upjohn v. United States, 449 US 383 (1981)… more

FCC Privacy Rules Repealed – Before Becoming Effective

On April 3, 2017, President Trump signed Senate Joint Resolution 34 (SJR 34), which effectively repealed not-yet-in-effect Federal Communications Commission regulations designed to limit use of customer information by broadband service… more

Temporary Protected Status For Haitians Extended Six Months

The Temporary Protected Status (TPS) program for Haitians will be extended an additional six months, until January 22, 2018, Secretary of Homeland Security John F. Kelly has announced. While in TPS, individuals are protected from… more

Researchers Complete First EPA-Sanctioned GE Algae Field Trial

Researchers at the University of California San Diego (UCSD) and Sapphire Energy completed the first EPA-sanctioned outdoor field trial for GE algae, which was focused on understanding how GE algae perform in outdoor cultivation. The… more

Hold the Phone – Debt Collectors Challenge FCC’s Take on TCPA

Businesses across America are waiting with bated breath for a ruling in ACA International, et al. v. FCC, a case brought by a debt collection industry group challenging the FCC’s order interpreting the Telephone Consumer Protection Act… more

Rating Agency Developments

On May 17, 2017, Fitch issued a report entitled Switzerland Residential Mortgage Rating Criteria Addendum. On May 17, 2017, Fitch issued a report entitled Germany Residential Mortgage Rating Criteria Addendum. On May 17… more

Supreme Court’s Decision in TC Heartland Narrows Patent Venue Selection

The Supreme Court’s decision in TC Heartland will undoubtedly have a substantial impact on patent venue selection and will likely lead to a marked decrease in cases brought in the Eastern District of Texas.  Under the Supreme Court’s… more

FRANCHISOR 101: State Taxes on Franchise Fees

Franchisors collect weekly or monthly "franchise fees." In many cases, fees are for particular services, such as marketing assistance or IT support. In franchising, the parties may be in any number of different states: for example, a… more

Factoring and leading with your chin

Factoring agreements are very popular with subcontractors and suppliers in the construction industry, assisting cash-flow by providing a line of credit against accounts receivable. However, like any financial product, factoring… more

Brave New World: Compliance and the Transition to Value-Based Care

The U.S. health care system is in the midst of a fundamental shift, away from traditional “fee-for-service” models that reward providers for the quantity of services provided to patients, toward value-based models designed to reward… more

The SFC’s Guidance on Corporate Transactions and the Use of Valuations

The SFC has become increasingly concerned that some listed companies are acquiring or selling assets at improperly assessed prices, resulting in losses to listed companies and their shareholders. Summary - The Securities and… more

PJM's 2020-2021 capacity auction results

PJM Interconnection -- the operator of the wholesale electricity market serving mid-Atlantic and eastern states -- has reported its latest capacity auction results. PJM's 2020/2021 Reliability Pricing Model Base Residual Auction was… more

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Farella Braun + Martel LLP represents clients throughout the United States and abroad in sophisticated business transactions and complex commercial, civil and criminal litigation. We are known for our…

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