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New York City Council Passes Ground-Breaking Legislation Limiting the Use of Credit Checks in Employment

On April 16, 2015, the New York City Council, by a vote of 47-3, approved legislation that would prohibit the use of credit checks in employment decisions except in limited circumstances. The bill, which is expected to be...more

Relaxed Cuban Sanctions Change the Landscape of the Financial Services Industry

The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) published new federal regulations permitting certain types of previously prohibited transactions. Financial services organizations hoping to gain a foothold into the Cuban financial...more

Should You Sharpen Your Diversity Policies & Practices under Dodd-Frank Mandates?

The much-publicized Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 became effective on August 12, 2011. Section 342 of the Dodd-Frank Act, requiring the implementation of diversity practices for both...more

Employment Law Commentary - Volume 27, Issue 3 - March 2015: Does The Government Think Your Confidentiality Agreements Chill...

INTRODUCTION - Employers routinely incorporate confidentiality provisions into a variety of agreements, including employment, proprietary information, separation and settlement agreements. In an era when many...more

Supreme Court to Determine Whether ECOA Allows Spousal Guarantors to Challenge Liability

On March 2, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States granted certiorari in Hawkins v. Cmty. Bank of Raymore, 761 F.3d 937 (8th Cir. 2014), cert. granted, No. 14-520, 2015 U.S. LEXIS 1635 (U.S. Mar. 2, 2015)—on appeal from...more

Supreme Court to Hear Case Deciding the Rights of Spousal Loan Guarantors under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act

The United States Supreme Court will soon hear a case that will determine the rights of spousal guarantors under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (“ECOA”), and ultimately whether creditors may require spousal guarantors on...more

DOL Issues its Final Rule for SOX Whistleblower Complaints

On March 5, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor issued a Final Rule implementing protections for employees of securities companies and their subsidiaries, as well as employees of national credit-rating agencies. The Final...more

NY Whistleblower Bounty Program On The Horizon?

NY Attorney General Eric Schneiderman recently announced his plans to propose legislation that would create a whistleblower incentive program at the state level. The proposal, titled the Financial Frauds Whistleblower Act,...more

New York AG Set to Propose Whistleblower Legislation

On February 26, New York AG Eric Schneiderman announced that he intends to propose state legislation to reward and protect employees who report information about misconduct in the banking, insurance, and financial services...more

An “Applicant” By Any Other Name – The U.S. Supreme Court Jumps in on ECOA and Guarantors

As the Bard’s Juliet famously mused, “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” One might similarly wonder at the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision yesterday (March 2, 2015) to grant...more

SEC Continues to Investigate Contractual Impediments to Whistleblower Complaints

As Rachel Louise Ensign reported earlier this week in the Wall Street Journal (subscription required), the Securities Exchange Commission (“SEC”) continues to probe obstacles to corporate employees blowing the whistle. This...more

The New EU Accounting Directive and (Non-) Financial Reporting Obligations

On 15 November 2014, Directive 2014/95/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 October 2014, amending Directive 2013/34/EU as regards disclosure of non-financial and diversity information by certain large...more

Fair Housing Organization Files Suit for Alleged Racial Bias

On February 3, the Fair Housing Justice Center (FHJC), a regional fair housing non-profit organization based in New York City, filed a complaint alleging that a large bank discriminated in its mortgage lending practices on...more

Retailers Beware: Background Checks Continue To Be Subjected To Scrutiny and Class Action Litigation

Retailers are getting hit with a tsunami of class action litigation alleging violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”), Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) guidelines, and related state laws. ...more

Diversity Reports at Two Federal Agencies Offer Glimpse of Regulatory Review under Impending Dodd-Frank Diversity Standards

The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank), signed by President Obama in 2010 in response to the financial crisis, includes a provision intended to remedy racial and gender discrepancies at...more

California AG Declares Whistleblower Tally A State Secret

Since 2004, the California Attorney General has been required to maintain a whistleblower hotline to receive calls from persons who have information regarding possible violations of state or federal statutes, rules, or...more

10-K Conundrum: 7th Circuit Holds Corporate Filings Can Lead To Employment Claims

A recent Seventh Circuit decision provides a cautionary tale for employers deciding what level of detail about litigated matters to include in publicly disclosed Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) filings. The court...more

Whistleblowers on Wall Street Could Earn Share of $425 Million Pot

Since the establishment of the SEC Whistleblower Program, there have been a lot more highly publicized cases of whistleblowers coming forward and revealing wrongdoing within their organizations, specifically in regard to...more

Flying High: The Human Rights Implications of Investing In Drones

Civilian application of drone technology has increased dramatically in recent years. The burgeoning civilian opportunities are a potential boon for investors, who view this emerging market as one that will expand long into...more

Financial Services Regulatory Bulletin - December 2014

In this issue: - CFPB Issues Final Rule on Regulation P: Annual Privacy Notices Can Be Delivered By Posting Online - ‘It Takes Hutzpah!’: D.C. Federal Judge Issues Stunning Rebuke of HUD Disparate Impact Rule...more

Implementing Regulation B Spousal Signature Provisions

The Equal Credit Opportunity Act and its implementing rule, Regulation B, prohibit any creditor from discriminating based on sex or marital status, among other protected statuses. All the federal banking agencies are involved...more

It's Time (Really!) To Prepare For Increased Whistleblowing Activity

Earlier this week, the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") issued its 2014 Annual Report to Congress on the Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Program. ...more

Spouse-Guarantor Rule: A Split Between Federal Circuit Courts

When a closely-held entity applies for a loan, the financial institution usually requires the entity’s owner(s) to guaranty the loan. If the owner is married, the financial institution may also require the owner(s) spouse(s)...more

FINRA Issues Guidance Notice To Warn Against Settlements Barring Whistleblower Tips

This month, FINRA issued guidance notice 14-40 to reminds firms that “it is a violation of FINRA Rule 2010 (Standards of Commercial Honor and Principles of Trade) to include confidentiality provisions in settlement agreements...more

FINRA Again Cautions Against Confidentiality Provisions Silencing Whistleblowers

As reported this week by Law360 (subscription required), the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) recently issued a reminder (Regulatory Notice 14-40) warning firms against the use of confidentiality provisions in...more

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