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Dodd-Frank and Executive Compensation – Part 1: Status Update

It’s been over five years since the signing of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Act (“Dodd-Frank”) and we are still waiting for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to finalize rules on several provisions...more

Practical Advice for the Business Owner - Avoiding common mistakes when making incentive compensation grants to employees

Incentive compensation (e.g., stock options, restricted stock, bonus plans, phantom stock, stock appreciation rights, etc.) can be a very useful tool for aligning the incentives of employees and shareholders, as well as a...more

Education or Advice: The DOL Final Definition of Fiduciary; Conflict of Interest Rule

Earlier this month, the Department of Labor finally released the long-awaited “Definition of Fiduciary; Conflict of Interest Rule.” This blog post is intended to do two things...more

U.S. Department of Labor Finalizes Fiduciary Definition and Conflict of Interest Rule

On April 6, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor (Department) issued its highly anticipated final rule addressing when a person is considered to be a fiduciary under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA)...more

What Does the Department of Labor's New Fiduciary Rule Mean?

The Department of Labor (DOL) has announced its highly anticipated final fiduciary rule, which is intended to help ensure that Americans saving for retirement get investment advice that is in their best...more

DOL issues final fiduciary rule and related exemptions

The final DOL fiduciary regulation (the Final Rule) and other guidance published by the DOL on April 8 will have a significant effect on those who provide investment advice and sell investment products and services to...more

Investment Plus Partnership-in-Fact = Withdrawal Liability

Previously, we wrote about the First Circuit decision that a private equity fund constituted a “trade or business” under ERISA as amended by the Multeimployer Pension Plan Amendments Act (“MPPAA”). That dry description is...more

Recent SEC Enforcement Actions and Public Commentary Demonstrate the Commission’s Continued Focus on Internal Control Failures

We have previously written about how, over the past few years, the SEC and other regulatory agencies have devoted substantial resources to investigations regarding allegations that public companies have inadequate internal...more

Franchise & Distribution News, Number 2

Ontario Passes New Legislation Governing Tips and Gratuities - Ontario restaurants, bars and other businesses with employees who receive some of their pay through tips and gratuities will face new laws governing how...more

Private Equity Fund Sponsors' Risk for ERISA Unfunded Pension Liability Grows

On March 28, the US District Court for the District of Massachusetts held that, under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), two private equity funds (1) were engaged in a trade or business, and (2) had...more

Even Whistleblowers Must Pay the Piper

In a heavily redacted decision issued on April 5, 2016, the SEC approved the claim of one whistleblower and denied the claim of another for providing information related to an unidentified enforcement action. The SEC awarded...more

Pay Ratio Disclosures Begin to Appear in Proxy Statements

Some companies have begun to disclose pay ratios in their proxy statements in advance of the SEC requirement. We have included a sample below. Of course, you’ll want to compare the samples to the rules before relying on them....more

DOL Announces in Final Fiduciary Rule that Additional ESOP Guidance is Forthcoming

When the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released its long-awaited final rule describing investment advice (the Final Rule) on April 6, 2016, it delivered a special note to many in the employee stock ownership plan (ESOP)...more

Private Equity Funds Found Liable For Multiemployer Pension Obligations of Portfolio Company

In a significant decision for both private equity funds and multiemployer pension plans, the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts held last week in Sun Capital Partners III, L.P. v. New England Teamsters &...more

Your daily dose of financial news The Brief – 4.5.16

Big news from Big Mouse, as the former heir apparent to Bog Iger’s CEO chair—Thomas Staggs—is stepping down, throwing a wrench into Disney’s succession plans (which came under great scrutiny after a troublesome handoff to...more

Update on Institutional Shareholder Voting Guidelines on Management Say-on-Pay and Incentive Plan Proposals

This Alert is an update to last year's Client Alert on the same topic, which also discussed how to win a proxy fight despite a "no" recommendation from Institutional Shareholder Services ("ISS") and/or Glass Lewis. The...more

Employee Benefits Developments March 2016

Previously, many advisors had been concerned that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) regulations on safe harbor plan designs covering 401(k) and 403(b) plans may have severely limited the abilities of plan sponsors to adopt...more

Supreme Court Affirms Class Certification and Judgment Predicated upon "Representative Evidence"

On March 22, 2016, the Supreme Court issued a decision permitting class plaintiffs to rely on "representative" or "sample" evidence to satisfy the prerequisites to class certification and certain elements of their claims. ...more

SCOTUS v. the Ninth Circuit on Failure to Enforce ERISA Stock-Drop Pleading Standard

In a terse per curiam opinion, the U.S. Supreme Court in Amgen Inc. v. Harris, No. 15-278 (U.S. Jan. 25, 2016), made clear that it expects lower courts to faithfully apply the pleading requirements for “stock-drop” cases...more

2015 Year-End Cross-Border Government Investigations and Regulatory Enforcement Review

Globalization has connected people, companies, and products across national borders more than ever. Goods and services developed in one part of the world are readily available in other parts of the world and technology is...more

Three’s Company: SEC Awards Nearly $2 Million to Whistleblower Trio

On March 8, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued an order awarding a trio of whistleblowers a bounty of almost $2 million. One whistleblower will receive the lion’s share of the bounty — $1.8 million —...more

Proposed Legislation Expands Whistleblower Protections

The Whistleblower Augmented Reward and Nonretaliation Act of 2016, with the confusing alternative title of the WARN Act of 2016, has been introduced before the House of Representatives. The proposed legislation would...more

The Whistleblower Augmented Reward and Non-Retaliation Act of 2016

Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) and Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) recently introduced the Whistleblower Augmented Reward and Non-Retaliation Act of 2016 (“WARN Act”), which aims to bolster whistleblower protections under both...more

Highlights from the SEC Speaks — 2016 Enforcement Priorities

Senior members of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (“SEC” or “Commission”) Division of Enforcement (“Division”) addressed the defense bar on February 19, 2016, during the Practising Law Institute’s annual “SEC Speaks”...more

UK Financial Regulatory Developments - February 2016 #20

ECB consults on IPSs - ECB is consulting on how to assess the eligibility of institutional protection schemes (IPSs) for prudential purposes. Under the CRR, an IPS is a contractual or statutory liability arrangement of a...more

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