Constitutional Law Updates

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Illinois Supreme Court Strikes Down Six-Person Civil Jury Statute as Unconstitutional

The Illinois Supreme Court in Kakos v. Butler, 2016 IL 120377, has found that the six-person civil jury statute enacted last summer is unconstitutional on its face. Facts - Public Act 98-1132, effective June 1,...more

New York Court Finds Schools Not Constitutionally Underfunded

On September 19, 2016, an Albany, New York trial court in Maisto v. New York rejected plaintiffs’ claims that the state was constitutionally underfunding eight small-city school districts. Stinson Leonard Street attorneys...more

Court Rejects Takings Challenge to City’s Imposition of $600,000 in Fees for 11-Unit Infill Project

On September 23, 2016, the Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District affirmed a trial court decision denying a petition for writ of mandate filed by a developer challenging various fees—totaling nearly $600,000—in...more

D.C. Circuit Rules That the 8(a) Program is Constitutional, But Its Reasoning Raises Questions

On September 9, 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (D.C. Circuit) issued a split decision holding that § 8(a) of the Small Business Act does not violate the Equal Protection Clause of the...more

Challenges Filed to DOL Overtime Regulations

The U.S. Department of Labor’s new regulations governing the “white collar” exemptions from overtime are only two months away. Under the new regulations, which go into effect on December 1, 2016, “white collar” employees...more

FDA Denies AbbVie Citizen Petition on Fifth Amendment Takings

On September 23, the FDA denied a citizen petition from AbbVie submitted to the FDA on April 2, 2012, requesting that the FDA not implement the BPCIA as to any applications for biosimilar products referencing Humira...more

Key Legal Issues in Privacy and Data Security on Display in Sixth Circuit Data Breach Class Action Decision

A September 12, 2016 decision out of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit adds new fuel to an ongoing legal debate: when a data breach places a business’s sensitive customer information into the hands of hackers,...more

Employment Law Navigator – Week in Review: September 2016 #4

Last week, 21 states filed a lawsuit challenging the Department of Labor’s new overtime rules. Within hours, another suit was filed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and business groups. The lawsuits contend that the Department...more

UPDATE: CA Supreme Court Grants Review of Order Requiring Yelp.com to Remove Negative Reviews of Law Firm Following Determination...

In a case which was the subject of our Alert dated June 22, 2016, the California Supreme Court agreed on September 21, 2016 to review a lawsuit that Yelp.com warns could lead to the removal of negative reviews on the popular...more

DOL Overtime Rule Update: Breaking News!!!!!

On September 20, 2016, two lawsuits were filed in an attempt to block the DOL’s proposed overtime rule. Wisconsin joined 20 other states in filing one suit while the U.S. Chamber of Commerce along with 50 other business...more

Sixth Circuit Lowers Bar For Plaintiff’s Standing To Sue In Data Breach Cases

On September 12, 2016, a split panel from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit held in an unpublished opinion that customers of Nationwide Mutual Insurance (“Nationwide”) could pursue claims stemming from a 2012...more

Supreme Court Corner: Q3 2016

CASES WE ARE WATCHING - Lee v. Tam TRADEMARK – Cert. Pending Pro-Football, Inc. v. Amanda Blackhorse, et al. TRADEMARK – Cert. Pending ISSUE: Whether the Lanham Act’s disparagement clause violates the...more

RLUIPA Case of the Year? Minnesota Municipality Uses RLUIPA’s Safe Harbor Provision to Avoid Liability

In an important decision for municipalities across the country, a federal court in Minnesota has recently ruled that actions taken under RLUIPA’s “safe harbor” provision absolved a local government of possible RLUIPA...more

Court Dismisses Challenge to New York Donor Disclosure Requirement

On August 29, 2016, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York dismissed in its entirety a complaint against the New York Attorney General filed by Citizens United and Citizens United Foundation,...more

Legislature to Litigants: “Can’t Touch This!” – Virginia Supreme Court Recognizes Legislative Privilege

The Virginia Supreme Court, interpreting the Virginia Constitution’s speech and debate clauses, has recognized a legislative privilege from responding to a document subpoena substantially similar to that of the better-known...more

Lenders Take Note: U.S. Supreme Court to Decide Scope of Right to Sue Under Federal Fair Housing Act

The federal Fair Housing Act (“FHA”) outlaws discrimination in lending based not only on race, color and national origin, but also religion, sex, disability and familial status. Across the country, courts are grappling with...more

Gannett Cannot Escape Privacy Suit Over USAToday App

On Friday September 2, the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts ruled against Gannett Company, Inc. (“Gannett”) in a case where Gannett allegedly violated the Video Privacy Protection Act (“VPPA”) by...more

Off-Label Promotion And The First Amendment Updates

Although activity around the Amarin and Pacira cases has settled down, questions regarding the FDA’s position on truthful off-label promotion-and whether it comports with First Amendment free speech principles—persist....more

FACTA Check: Credit and Debit Receipts Can Show Injury-in-Fact

In a series of recent decisions that have important implications for retailers, large and small, federal courts have allowed consumer class actions to proceed against businesses for violation of the Fair and Accurate Credit...more

John Edwards argues before the Texas Supreme Court on important libel case that started in 2003

Houston partner John K. Edwards recently argued before the Texas Supreme Court on behalf of a newspaper and reporter in an important libel case that started in 2003 concerning an article published in a Fort Bend County...more

21 States Sue Obama Administration Over Controversial New Overtime Rule

The fate of the new overtime regulations governing white collar employees has been thrown into doubt this week, as twenty-one states joined together to file suit in the Eastern District of Texas, alleging that the Department...more

Employers Should Not Retreat on Compliance Planning Despite Two-Pronged Attack on OT Rule

Two lawsuits related to the Department of Labor’s revisions to the white-collar exemptions have been filed in East Texas. The first lawsuit, citing (among other things) the severe impact the impending salary increase...more

Federal Circuit Overturns PTAB Denial of Motion to Amend Claims in IPR Proceeding

Veritas Technologies LLC v. Veeam Software Corp., No. 2015-1894 (Fed. Cir. Aug. 30, 2016). On recurring controversy in AIA trials is the difficulty patent owners face meeting the PTAB’s strict requirements for amending...more

Virginia Supreme Court Opinions Affecting Local Government Law: September 15, 2016

The Virginia Supreme Court issued two opinions in September affecting local government law. Its work resulted in opinions addressing legislative privilege from document requests, and applying a local government tax exemption...more

South Carolina Court Decides Key Health Care Case - Physical therapists win in employment lawsuit

The South Carolina Supreme Court has decided a case with great significance in the health care industry. The court overturned a ban on physicians employing physical therapists and gave guidance regarding how state agencies...more

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