Automotive Legal News - May 2013 • 2nd Quarter


- The Legal Challenge to the SEC’s Conflict Minerals Reporting Regulations:

In the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act, the United States Congress required, inter alia, the SEC to promulgate regulations requiring certain manufacturers to trace the sources of tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold that are contained in products they manufacture or contract to manufacture to allow them to report yearly to the SEC whether the products are “not DRC [Democratic Republic of the Congo] conflict free.” Conflict free was defined by Congress as meaning the products do not contain minerals that finance or benefit violent armed groups in the DRC or adjoining countries. Congress required the SEC action because “it [was] the sense of Congress” that the exploitation of conflict minerals from that region was financing armed groups that engaged in “extreme levels of violence” creating “an emergency humanitarian situation.”

- E-Mails and Automotive: A Quick Reminder:

We just successfully defended a lawsuit that turned on a critical issue – are e-mails sent by an employee to his personal attorney using his employer’s computer protected by the attorney-client privilege? In our case here in Tennessee, the court held that the employee and his personal attorney had lost privilege over their communications. The e-mails could be used against the employee in the litigation and any alleged merits to the employee’s lawsuit quickly dissolved...

- Auto Insurer Trade Groups Applaud the Introduction of the “PARTS Act” as a Step Towards Greater Competition in the Collision Parts Replacement Industry and Reduced Insurer Costs:

In late April, Congressman Darrell Issa (R-CA) and Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren (D- CA) in the House of Representatives, and Senators Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) in the Senate, announced that they were introducing the “Promoting Automotive Repair, Trade and Sales (PARTS) Act of 2013” (H.R. 1663). The legislation would amend patent law to reduce the length of a design patent issued on the external automotive parts used in collision repairs (bumpers, headlights, door panels, etc.), from 14 years to 30 months. As such, if enacted, parts manufacturers would be free to copy the design of such parts much sooner, without fear of a claim of patent infringement from the patent holder arising from the design of the part. For this reason, proponents of the legislation claim that it would increase competition in the repair parts market, potentially lowering insurer costs and insurance premiums for insureds...

Please see full newsletter below for more information.

LOADING PDF: If there are any problems, click here to download the file.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Dickinson Wright | Attorney Advertising

Written by:


Dickinson Wright on:

Readers' Choice 2017
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:

Sign up to create your digest using LinkedIn*

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.

Already signed up? Log in here

*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.