Ballard Spahr LLP

HUD Rule Allowing Lenders To Demand Immediate Reverse Mortgage Repayments from Widowers Violates Federal Law, Court Holds

A Washington, D.C., District Court ruled recently that a Housing and Urban Development (HUD) regulation allowing lenders to demand that widowers immediately repay reverse mortgage loans upon the death of their spouses violates…more

HUD, Lenders, Mortgages, Reverse Mortgages

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Pennsylvania Office of Open Records Blasts Charter Schools

Charter school managers and officials should be aware that the Executive Director of Pennsylvania’s Office of Open Records has recently made public statements criticizing charter schools that take the position that they should…more

Charter Schools, Disclosure Requirements, Exemptions, Public Records, Right To Know

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IRS Seeks to Curb Popularity of ‘Skinny’ Health Plans

The Internal Revenue Service, in Notice 2014-69, has concluded that certain unconventional group health plan designs that offer limited or no coverage for in-patient hospitalization services and/or physician services will not…more

Affordable Care Act, Employee Benefits, Employer Mandates, Healthcare, IRS

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Hague Agreement Streamlines Registration of Industrial Designs

On April 2, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) issued Final Rules to implement the provisions of the Hague Agreement concerning the international registration of industrial designs. The Agreement is effective in the…more

Design Patent, Final Rules, Hague Agreement, Industrial Design, Patents

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FDIC Revises Examination Procedures To Incorporate TILA/RESPA Integrated Disclosures

The FDIC has revised its interagency examination procedures to reflect the requirements of the TILA/RESPA integrated disclosures (TRID) rule. The CFPB has issued a proposal to postpone the TRID rule’s effective date from August…more

Ability-to-Repay, CFPB, FDIC, OCC, Qualified Mortgage Rule

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New York Appellate Court Confers Standing on Assignee of Note Previously Discharged in Bankruptcy

A mortgage lender has standing to foreclose even when it obtains assignment of the underlying promissory note after the note has been discharged in bankruptcy, a New York appellate court has ruled. The case arose after the…more

Chapter 7, Consumer Bankruptcy, Dischargeable Debts, Foreclosure, Mortgage Lenders

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CA Supreme Court Issues First Decision Extending FTC v. Actavis to State Antitrust Litigation

The California Supreme Court issued a decision today in the Cipro antitrust cases, concluding that the analysis set forth by the U.S. Supreme Court in FTC v. Actavis applies to alleged “pay-for-delay” pharmaceutical patent…more

Antitrust Litigation, Antitrust Provisions, Bayer, CA Supreme Court, Cartwright Act

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HUD continues reorganization of key leadership

As part of its efforts towards continued reorganization, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has recently announced changes to the Office of Multifamily Housing leadership staff. Mark Van Kirk, the…more

Administrative Appointments, HUD

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TaxAble: Tax Tips You Ought To Know

A person has phantom income when she or he has taxable income, but does not receive an equal amount of cash. Phantom income is generally dreaded by taxpayers and tax advisers alike. Yet, it occurs surprisingly frequently in many…more

Business Taxes, Phantom Income

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Proposed White Collar Overtime Rules Released

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released its long-awaited Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to alter the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standard Act (FLSA) regulations on Tuesday, June 30. A copy of the NPRM is…more

DOL, FLSA, Minimum Salary, NPRM, Over-Time

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Second Circuit Deals a Blow to Unpaid Intern Classes

In a pair of closely watched decisions, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a federal trial court decision that granted class and conditional collective action certification to claims brought by a former unpaid intern…more

Class Action, Class Certification, Commonality, DOL, FLSA

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Freddie Mac closes first direct purchase of a tax-exempt loan

Freddie Mac recently closed its first direct purchase of a tax-exempt loan. The loan financed the acquisition and rehabilitation of a 417-unit senior housing community in Dayton, Ohio known as The Lakewoods. The deal represents…more

Freddie Mac, HUD, Loans, Real Estate Market, Tax Exemptions

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New California Landlord Disclosure Requirements Effective July 1

Two new landlord disclosure requirements become effective in California on July 1, 2013. One requires that all new commercial leases state whether the property has been inspected for disability access—and if so, the results. The…more

Certified Access Specialists, Commercial Leases, Compliance, Disability, Disclosure Requirements

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Supreme Court Upholds Ban on Royalties after Licensed Patent Expires

In a 6-3 decision in Kimble v. Marvel, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to overturn the long-standing rule that bars a licensor from being able to collect royalties for sales after the expiration of the licensed patent—even if the…more

Contract Term, IP License, Kimble v Marvel Enterprises, Patent Royalties, Patents

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N.J. Supreme Court Decision in Harassment Case Mixed Bag for Employers

The New Jersey Supreme Court recently decided two key issues affecting claims of supervisory hostile work environment sexual harassment under the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (“NJLAD”). In Aguas v. State of New Jersey,…more

Employer Liability Issues, Employment Policies, Faragher/Ellerth defense, Hostile Environment, NJ Supreme Court

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Envelope’s Display of Bar Code With Embedded Account Number Violates FDCPA, Federal Court Rules

A federal court in Pennsylvania has ruled that a debt collector violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) by sending a collection letter in an envelope that allegedly revealed a barcode in which the plaintiff’s…more

Debt Collection, Debt Collectors, FDCPA, Financial Services Industry, Motion to Dismiss

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Optional Rental Program Did Not Transform Hotel-Condominium Units into Securities, Ninth Circuit Holds

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has affirmed the dismissal with prejudice of a putative securities class action concerning the sale of 420 hotel-condominium units at the Hard Rock Hotel in San Diego…more

Class Action, Condominiums, Hotels, Putative Class Actions, Rental Property

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New Utah Law Prohibits Unequal Treatment of Rental Units by Homeowners Associations

Recent revisions to Utah law clarify the role and authority of homeowners associations in restricting owners’ renting out of their units, and may require associations to take action to comply. House Bill 98, signed into law this…more

Amended Legislation, Condominiums, Homeowners' Association, Rental Property

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Federal Government Steps Up Monitoring of Distressed Municipalities

Multiple news outlets have reported that the U.S. Treasury Department has created an Office of State and Local Finance tasked with monitoring the distressed local government sector of the municipal finance market. Kent Hiteshew,…more

Disclosure Requirements, Municipal Bonds, Municipalities, SEC, Secondary Markets

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Prosecutors Strike Out on Barry Bonds as Ninth Circuit Narrows Obstruction Strike Zone

The indictment and trial of famed baseball slugger Barry Bonds for perjury and obstruction of justice drew nationwide attention. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals’ April 22, 2015, en banc decision reversing Bonds’ obstruction…more

Barry Bonds, En Banc Review, Government Investigations, Obstruction of Justice, Young Lawyers

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Congress's ‘Regulatory Objectives’ for Copyright Law Prevail in Supreme Court's Aereo Holding

In American Broadcasting Companies, Inc. et al. v. Aereo, Inc., the U.S. Supreme Court held today by a margin of 6 to 3 that an unlicensed online broadcast television retransmission service infringed copyrights owned by…more

ABC v Aereo, Broadcasting, Cable Television Providers, Copyright, Copyright Infringement

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DOL Extends FMLA Protection to Same-Sex Spouses

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) recently issued a final rule amending its definition of “spouse” under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to extend FMLA protection to legally married employees with same-sex spouses,…more

DOL, DOMA, Employer Mandates, Final Rules, FMLA

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OSHA Announces Directive on HazCom

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) released its much-anticipated directive to the agency’s compliance safety and health officers on its revised Hazard Communication (HazCom) standard yesterday. In 2012,…more

Chemicals, Classification, Distributors, Hazardous Communication Standard, Labeling

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U.S. Supreme Court Urges Resolution of Bankruptcy Disputes

The U.S. Supreme Court has provided new stimulus to the use of mediation in disputes over attorney fees in its June 15, 2015, decision in Baker Botts LLP v. Asarco. Baker Botts was employed by the bankruptcy debtor estate and,…more

Appeals, Attorney's Fees, Baker Botts v ASARCO, Bullard v Blue Hills Bank, Debtors

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Proposed Changes to Civil Rules Could Limit Scope of eDiscovery

The Advisory Committee on Civil Rules recently approved amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure addressing, among other things, eDiscovery. Although some of the Advisory Committee’s proposed revisions lessen the…more

Corporate Counsel, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Proposed Amendments, Rule 1, Rule 26

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Supreme Court Sets Framework for Determining Software Patent Eligibility

The U.S. Supreme Court recently issued an important opinion in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank International regarding the patent eligibility of basic business methods covered in computer software patents. Writing for the unanimous…more

Alice Corporation, Bilski, CLS Bank, CLS Bank v Alice Corp, Mayo v. Prometheus

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FCC Order Creates New TCPA Challenges for Companies

As previously reported, the Federal Communications Commission recently approved a Declaratory Ruling and Order (the Order) addressing a number of petitions that requested the FCC clarify its interpretations of the Telephone…more

Auto-Dialed Calls, Collection Agencies, Debt Collection, Declaratory Rulings, Exemptions

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Action Needed – FY 2016 Appropriations Bill may cut HOME program funding by 93%

The Fiscal Year 2016 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (THUD) Subcommittee has proposed critical markups to the Year 2016 Appropriations Bill. One of the most dramatic funding cuts all but…more

Affordable Housing, Appropriations Bill, Community Development Block Grants, Congressional Committees

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Nevada Senate Passes Bill Affecting Super-Priority Liens in Foreclosure

The Nevada Legislature recently passed a bill intended, in part, to address issues resulting from the Nevada Supreme Court’s decision that a homeowners association lien is a true super-priority lien that, if foreclosed,…more

Condominium Associations, Deed of Trust, Foreclosure, Governor Sandoval, Homeowners' Association

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Housing options for veterans

With Independence Day right around the corner and with several bond financings benefitting homeless veterans recently in the news (see Proposition 41 Bond Measure and Apartments for Homeless Veterans), it seemed fitting to…more

Affordable Housing, Bond Financing, Bonds, Department of Veterans Affairs, Homeless Issues

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U.S. Supreme Court Denies Challenge to California Decision that PAGA Claims Cannot be Waived in Arbitration Agreements

The U.S. Supreme Court recently denied a petition for certiorari that challenged a California Supreme Court decision carving out an exception to the federal high court’s recent holdings in AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion and…more

American Express v Italian Colors Restaurant, Arbitration, AT&T Mobility v Concepcion, Class Action, Class Action Arbitration Waivers

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Third Circuit Clarifies Article III Standing for Absent Class Members, Impact of Comcast

In a case of first impression in the Third Circuit, the Court of Appeals held that unnamed, putative class members are not required to establish standing under Article III of the U.S. Constitution. Rather, the Court held that so…more

Antitrust Litigation, Appeals, Article III, Class Action, Comcast

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New Jersey Takes Emergency Action To Speed Rebuilding after Hurricane Sandy

The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) took emergency action to reduce approval backlogs and to make it easier for those seeking to rebuild in wake of Hurricane Sandy to obtain regulatory approvals by…more

Department of Environmental Protection, Hurricane Sandy, Reconstruction, Redevelopment

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Fed Seeks Public Comment on Financial Holding Company Physical Commodities Activities

An Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) issued in mid-January by the Federal Reserve Board (the Board) seeks public comment on the scope of permissible physical commodities activities. Such activities have been under the…more

Bank Holding Company, Dodd-Frank, Energy, Federal Reserve, Public Comment

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The Sixth Circuit, Relying upon Michigan’s Nonrecourse Mortgage Loan Act, Rejects the Enforceability of an Insolvency Covenant

Notwithstanding Michigan’s 2012 Nonrecourse Mortgage Loan Act (NMLA), which provides that solvency covenants in nonrecourse loans unenforceable, in Borman, LLC v. 18718 Borman, LLC, a third-party purchaser of a foreclosed…more

Deficiency Judgments, Foreclosure, Lenders, Mortgage Lenders, Mortgages

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EEOC Must Fulfill Conciliation Requirement before Suing

The U.S. Supreme Court on April 30 released its opinion in Mach Mining, LLC v. EEOC, stating that federal courts had the authority to review whether the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) fulfilled its duty to…more

Charge Notices, Conciliation, Discrimination, Judicial Review, Mach Mining v EEOC

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The Sixth Circuit, Relying upon Michigan’s Nonrecourse Mortgage Loan Act, Rejects the Enforceability of an Insolvency Covenant

Notwithstanding Michigan’s 2012 Nonrecourse Mortgage Loan Act (NMLA), which provides that solvency covenants in nonrecourse loans unenforceable, in Borman, LLC v. 18718 Borman, LLC, a third-party purchaser of a foreclosed…more

Deficiency Judgments, Foreclosure, Lenders, Mortgage Lenders, Mortgages

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Hague Agreement Streamlines Registration of Industrial Designs

On April 2, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) issued Final Rules to implement the provisions of the Hague Agreement concerning the international registration of industrial designs. The Agreement is effective in the…more

Design Patent, Final Rules, Hague Agreement, Industrial Design, Patents

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Second Circuit Deals a Blow to Unpaid Intern Classes

In a pair of closely watched decisions, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a federal trial court decision that granted class and conditional collective action certification to claims brought by a former unpaid intern…more

Class Action, Class Certification, Commonality, DOL, FLSA

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Georgia Passes New Social P3 Legislation

Georgia Governor Nathan Deal signed into law new public-private partnership (P3) legislation, the Partnership for Public Facilities and Infrastructure Act (SB 59) (the Act) on May 5, 2015. The Act allows state and local…more

Governor Deal, New Legislation, P3s, Public Projects, Public-Private Partnerships

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Impact of USPTO Interim Guidance on Chemical, Pharmaceutical, and Biotech Inventions

The recent interim guidance issued by U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) provides applicants and practitioners with more helpful information about which types of claims the USPTO will find to satisfy subject matter…more

AMP v Myriad, Genetic Materials, Guidance Update, Mayo v. Prometheus, Patent-Eligible Subject Matter

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IRS Approves New Rules To Minimize Taxes Related to M&A Transactions

The Internal Revenue Service recently adopted long-awaited regulations intended to provide a new means of minimizing taxes in M&A transactions. The newly adopted regulations take effect on May 15, 2013, under Section 336(e) of…more

IRS

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Planning for Tenant's Changing Needs: Options To Renew, Expand, Cancel, or Reduce

As a tenant's business changes, its needs and space requirements also change. If possible, a commercial tenant should anticipate the possibility of changing needs by negotiating certain beneficial options and rights into the…more

Commercial Leases, Contract Drafting, Default, Fair Market Value, Landlords

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New Utah Law Prohibits Unequal Treatment of Rental Units by Homeowners Associations

Recent revisions to Utah law clarify the role and authority of homeowners associations in restricting owners’ renting out of their units, and may require associations to take action to comply. House Bill 98, signed into law this…more

Amended Legislation, Condominiums, Homeowners' Association, Rental Property

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Philadelphia Amends Fuel Oil Ordinance, Allows Use of Old Oil After New Standards Take Effect July 1

An amendment to Philadelphia Code relating to the use of No. 2 fuel oil—the most widely used oil for heating, industrial operations, and emergency generation, was signed into law by Mayor Michael Nutter on June 18. This…more

Local Ordinance, Manufacturing Facilities, Oil & Gas

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Colorado Supreme Court Upholds Firing Over Off-Duty Medical Marijuana Use

An employer did not act unlawfully when it fired a quadriplegic worker who used medical marijuana while off duty, the Colorado Supreme Court ruled today in a 6-0 decision. Affirming the April 2013 decision of the Colorado Court…more

Coats v Dish Network, Controlled Substances Act, Disabled, Dish Network, Drug Testing

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Supreme Court Clarifies Burden of Proof for Religious Accommodation and Disparate-Treatment Claims

The U.S. Supreme Court sided with the EEOC today and clarified the standard for religious accommodation and disparate-treatment claims under Title VII. The Court ruled that an applicant can advance a disparate-treatment claim by…more

Abercrombie & Fitch, Disparate Treatment, EEOC, EEOC v Abercrombie, Employer Liability Issues

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New York Department of Financial Services To Begin Cybersecurity Examinations of Financial Institutions

On May 6, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that the New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) will soon begin examining financial institutions for their cybersecurity preparedness. Governor Cuomo stated that,…more

Audits, Bank Records, Cybersecurity, Data Breach, Financial Institution Liability

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Bill introduced in Senate to create permanent LIHTC rate floors

On May 5, 2015, Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Pat Roberts (R-KS) introduced the “Improving the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit Rate Act” (S. 1193), which would create a permanent 9% minimum low-income housing tax credit rate…more

Affordable Housing, Bond Financing, LIHTC, Proposed Legislation

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OFCCP Announces Intent To Publish Updated Rules Prohibiting Sex Discrimination

The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) recently announced its intent to update rules prohibiting sex discrimination by federal contractors and subcontractors. The OFCCP published a Notice of Proposed…more

DOL, EEOC, Employer Liability Issues, Employer Mandates, Executive Orders

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Supreme Court: EPA Must Consider Costs in Power Plant Rule

The U.S. Supreme Court issued its opinion in Michigan v. EPA, reversing a ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and holding that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) must consider…more

Chevron Deference, Clean Air Act, Electricity, Energy Sector, EPA

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Recent Investment Management Developments - June 2015

In This Issue: - SEC Proposes Changes to Reporting and Disclosure Obligations for Investment Companies and Advisers - SEC Charges Hedge Fund Executives and External Auditor for Improper Disclosure of Expense…more

Administrative Appointments, Anti-Retaliation Provisions, Chief Compliance Officers, Cybersecurity, DOL

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$6.3 Million Judgment Awarded in Alleged Timeshare Resale Scam

A federal court recently entered a final judgment against and approved settlement agreements with several telemarketing companies charged by the Federal Trade Commission with operating a timeshare resale scam. The judgment…more

FTC, Scams, Telemarketing Sales Rule, Timeshare

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Auto Finance Company Agrees to Change Dealer Compensation Policy to Settle CFPB and DOJ Fair Lending Claims

To resolve charges by the Consumer Federal Protection Bureau (CFPB) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) that it engaged in unlawful discrimination in violation of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA), American Honda Finance…more

Automotive Industry, Automotive Loans, Borrowers, CFPB, Compensation Agreements

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Eighth Circuit: Purpose, Not Content, Determines TCPA Coverage of Calls as “Telemarketing”

Phone calls made to promote a movie constituted “telemarketing” under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) even though the two prerecorded messages left on the plaintiffs’ home phone line made no reference to the movie,…more

Article III, Class Action, Do Not Call List, Putative Class Actions, Robocalling

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U.S. Supreme Court Affirms Limits on State Open Records Laws

Businesses and organizations that request public records from other states could find their access to such records restricted as a result of a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling…more

FOIA, Public Records, SCOTUS

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Bankruptcy Trustees Target Colleges and Universities

Over the past few years, higher education institutions have seen an increase in litigation from an unexpected source: bankruptcy trustees. Trustees appointed in personal bankruptcy cases are seeking to claw back tuition payments…more

Clawbacks, Colleges, Consumer Bankruptcy, Educational Institutions, Tuition

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The America Invents Act (AIA) Affects Design Patents, Too

Over the last few years, companies have increasingly recognized the value of design patents, which are directed to the ornamental (non-functional) appearance of a product…more

America Invents Act, Crocs Inc, Design Patent, First-to-File, Inter Partes Review Proceedings

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IRS Allocates “National Pool” Credits to Thirty-Five States and Puerto Rico

Yesterday, the IRS issued Revenue Procedure 2014-52 which provides for the reallocation of $2.59 million of unused national pool low-income housing tax credits (LIHTCs)…more

IRS, LIHTC

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Nevada Amends Laws Regarding Homeowners’ Association Liens

While an amended Nevada Senate bill does not change the Nevada Supreme Court’s seminal holding that an association lien is a true priority lien that, when properly foreclosed, may extinguish a first deed of trust, the new law…more

Creditors, Deed of Trust, Financial Institutions, Foreclosure, Homeowners' Association

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Pennsylvania Supreme Court Rules Only Original Purchasers May Recover Damages for Breach of the Builder’s Implied Warranty of Habitability

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that a builder’s implied warranty of habitability extends only to the initial buyer of a home, and not to subsequent purchasers. In Conway v. The Cutler Group, Inc., the Court reversed an…more

Buyers, Construction Contracts, Construction Defects, Construction Industry, Contract Disputes

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Supreme Court Agrees Again To Decide Critical Disparate Impact Questions under the Fair Housing Act

The question of whether plaintiffs suing under the Fair Housing Act may bring disparate impact claims is back on the U.S. Supreme Court's docket as a result of the Court's decision today to grant certiorari in Mount Holly v…more

CFPB, Discrimination, Disparate Impact, ECOA, Fair Lending

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Morristown Memorial Hospital: A Tax Exemption Ruling All Nonprofit Hospitals Need to Know About

A recent New Jersey Tax Court decision has nonprofit entities on edge. The decision may offer tax authorities the opportunity to pursue payments from nonprofit hospitals and may result in the redefining of tax exemptions by…more

Charitable Organizations, Executive Compensation, Hospitals, Non-Profits, Property Tax

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Section 202: using federal sources to assist the growing elderly population

During one of the sessions at Ballard Spahr’s Ninth Annual National Housing Symposium, Mara Blitzer from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) discussed federal housing resources for aging Americans with a…more

Affordable Housing, HUD, Section 202

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FCC Order Creates New TCPA Challenges for Companies

As previously reported, the Federal Communications Commission recently approved a Declaratory Ruling and Order (the Order) addressing a number of petitions that requested the FCC clarify its interpretations of the Telephone…more

Auto-Dialed Calls, Collection Agencies, Debt Collection, Declaratory Rulings, Exemptions

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New Rule Clarifies Federal Government Authority to Regulate Certain Bodies of Water

The final Waters of the United States rule, jointly proposed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers last spring, was signed on May 26, 2015, and aims to clarify the federal government’s…more

Clean Water Act, Discharge of Pollutants, EPA, Federal Jurisdiction, Inland Waterways

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Colorado Supreme Court Upholds Firing Over Off-Duty Medical Marijuana Use

An employer did not act unlawfully when it fired a quadriplegic worker who used medical marijuana while off duty, the Colorado Supreme Court ruled today in a 6-0 decision. Affirming the April 2013 decision of the Colorado Court…more

Coats v Dish Network, Controlled Substances Act, Disabled, Dish Network, Drug Testing

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‘Primary User’ of Cell Phone Number Can Sue under TCPA, Florida Federal Court Holds

The "primary user" of a cell phone line has standing to sue under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), even when another party is the actual subscriber to the service, a federal court in Florida has ruled. The case…more

Cell Phones, Corporate Counsel, Standing, TCPA

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U.S. Supreme Court Affirms Limits on State Open Records Laws

Businesses and organizations that request public records from other states could find their access to such records restricted as a result of a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling…more

FOIA, Public Records, SCOTUS

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Proposed White Collar Overtime Rules Released

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released its long-awaited Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to alter the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standard Act (FLSA) regulations on Tuesday, June 30. A copy of the NPRM is…more

DOL, FLSA, Minimum Salary, NPRM, Over-Time

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Congress's ‘Regulatory Objectives’ for Copyright Law Prevail in Supreme Court's Aereo Holding

In American Broadcasting Companies, Inc. et al. v. Aereo, Inc., the U.S. Supreme Court held today by a margin of 6 to 3 that an unlicensed online broadcast television retransmission service infringed copyrights owned by…more

ABC v Aereo, Broadcasting, Cable Television Providers, Copyright, Copyright Infringement

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How might the Supreme Court’s decision in Perez v. MBA affect the CFPB?

The U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision in Perez v. Mortgage Bankers Ass’n invalidated a significant line of D.C. Circuit case law known, after the leading case, as the Paralyzed Veterans doctrine. A case involving a series of…more

Administrative Procedure Act, CFPB, Dodd-Frank, DOL, Mortgage Loan Officer

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CFPB holds hearing on payday and auto title loans in Richmond, VA

On March 26, the CFPB held a public hearing on payday and auto title lending, the same day that it released proposed regulations for short-term small-dollar loans. Virginia Attorney General, Mark Herring gave opening remarks,…more

CFPB, Consumer Financial Products, Payday Loans, Proposed Regulation, Richard Cordray

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New P3 Legislation To Take Effect in Washington, D.C.

A new law intended to encourage more widespread use of public-private partnerships (P3s) in the District of Columbia is set to become a reality in the coming weeks. The Public-Private Partnership Act of 2014 (P3 Act) was…more

Local Ordinance, New Legislation, P3s, Public Procurement Policies, Public Projects

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HUD issues notice on processing RAD applications

HUD issued a notice in today’s Federal Register on the process it will follow in processing applications for first component Rental Assistance Demonstration conversions that are on HUD’s waiting list. The original authorization…more

Affordable Housing, HUD, RAD Program

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Treasury Department Announces $3.5 Billion in New Markets Tax Credit Allocation Awards

Eighty-five community development entities (CDEs) have been selected to receive $3.5 billion in New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) allocation authority in the 2012 round of the NMTC Program. The announcement of the latest round of…more

Community Development Entities, New Market Tax Credits

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Anthem's Breach: How Employers Should Respond

With the news of the breach of security at Anthem health plans, many employers have been wondering whether their employees are affected and how they should respond. The breach extends to members in Anthem-affiliated plans and…more

Anthem Blue Cross, Cyber Attacks, Cybersecurity, Data Breach, Health Insurance

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Eighth Circuit: Purpose, Not Content, Determines TCPA Coverage of Calls as “Telemarketing”

Phone calls made to promote a movie constituted “telemarketing” under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) even though the two prerecorded messages left on the plaintiffs’ home phone line made no reference to the movie,…more

Article III, Class Action, Do Not Call List, Putative Class Actions, Robocalling

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Federal Court Addresses Frequently Overlooked Nuances of Electronic Document Production

U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul S. Grewal of the Northern District of California recently issued an order in Venture Corp., Ltd. v. Barrett shedding light on the meaning of two Federal Rules of Civil Procedure governing document…more

Discovery, Document Productions, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure

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Criminal Charges Brought in Food Safety Case

In another show of force against food processors, federal prosecutors in Colorado recently brought criminal charges against two brothers who owned a cantaloupe farm linked to a 2011 listeria outbreak that killed 33 people. The…more

Criminal Prosecution, FDCA, Food Manufacturers, Food Safety, Listeria

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Congress hears testimony on Public-Private Partnerships in affordable housing

Would private developers build affordable housing if there were no government subsidies? Rep. Mike Capuano (D-MA) and his colleagues explored that question and other topics during a House Financial Service Subcommittee hearing…more

Affordable Housing, Congressional Investigations & Hearings, FHA, Financial Services Committee, P3s

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FHFA proposed rule on Enterprise housing goals is open for comments

Issued earlier this month, a proposed rule from the Federal Housing Finance Agency considers updates to the Agency’s Enterprise housing goals. The rule applies to mortgages purchased by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac for housing…more

Affordable Housing, Enterprise Zones, Fannie Mae, FHFA, Freddie Mac

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Office of Inspector General challenges HUD policy regarding public housing for over-income families

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) recently released an audit report of HUD examining the extent to which over-income families have been residing in public housing units. “Over-income” means the families were eligible low-…more

Affordable Housing, HUD, OIG, Public Housing, Public Housing Authorities

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The Need for Speed: The Delaware Rapid Arbitration Act

The Delaware Rapid Arbitration Act (DRAA), 10 Del. C. §§5801-581, which became effective this month, provides a new, speedy, and relatively low-cost arbitration process for commercial disputes through the Delaware Court of…more

Arbitration, Delaware Rapid Arbitration Act, Mediation

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OSHA To Refer Untimely Retaliation Claims to NLRB

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have entered into a new program that will provide whistleblowers an avenue to pursue claims that are time-barred by the…more

NLRA, NLRB, OSHA, Retaliation, Whistleblowers

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Regulators Decline to Exempt TOBs from Risk Retention Rule but Add Helpful Revisions and Clarifications

Although regulators have rebuffed industry efforts to have tender option bonds (TOBs) exempted from the final credit risk retention rule (the CRRR), they have nevertheless provided some helpful changes and clarifications that…more

ABS, Asset-Backed Securities, Dodd-Frank, Municipal Bonds, Risk Retention

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U.S. Department of Education Fines College for Job Placement Rate Disclosure Violations

The U.S. Department of Education (Department) intends to fine a college more than $29 million for allegedly misrepresenting job placement rates and failing to comply with federal placement rate disclosure requirements. The fine…more

Administrative Fines, Colleges, Department of Education, Disclosure Requirements, Heald College

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New York AG Takes Proactive Approach to Regulation of Nonprofits

Signaling increased oversight of nonprofit organizations, the New York Attorney General’s Office recently began to scrutinize the management and operation of New York nonprofits in an effort to head off potential crises before…more

Affordable Housing, Financial Reporting, Misappropriation, Non-Profits, Private Schools

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SEC Proposed Rule 10D-1 Regarding Clawback Policies

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently proposed rules requiring national securities exchanges such as the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ to establish listing standards requiring publicly traded companies to…more

Clawbacks, Comment Period, Disclosure Requirements, Executive Compensation, Incentive Compensation

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Industry Concerns Prompt SEC To Modify MCDC Initiative

In response to concerns raised by industry participants, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has made some modifications to its Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Cooperation Initiative (MCDC Initiative). The SEC…more

Disclosure Requirements, MCDC, Municipal Securities Issuers, Policy Violations, SEC

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N.J. Eliminates Customer Data Collection Requirements for Gift Card Retailers, Issuers

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has signed into law an amendment to the state’s unclaimed property law—S.B. 2235—that eliminated its consumer data collection requirements. In doing so, Governor Christie relieved a significant…more

Amended Legislation, Chris Christie, Data Collection, Gift-Cards, Retailers

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Nevada Amends Law Regarding Deficiency Judgment Calculation

By amending a statute that limits deficiency judgment amounts in certain cases, Nevada lawmakers have attempted to restore balance as the law applies to commercial properties. The amendments follow a recent wave of litigation…more

Assignments, Banks, Commercial Bankruptcy, Commercial Real Estate Market, Contracts Clause

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Sixth Circuit Weighs in on CERCLA Cost Recovery, Contribution Actions

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit Court recently issued an important opinion related to claims to recover environmental cleanup costs at an Ohio landfill. The court’s ruling in Hobart Corporation, et al. v. Waste…more

Appeals, CERCLA, Consent Order, Environmental Claims, Environmental Remediation Costs

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The U.S. Supreme Court decides 5-4: disparate-impact liability is cognizable under the Fair Housing Act

In a 5-4 decision today, the U.S. Supreme Court recognized that disparate-impact claims maintain adjudication viability under the Fair Housing Act (FHA). Justices Kennedy, Ginsberg, Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan provided the…more

Affordable Housing, Disparate Impact, FHA, HUD, Racial Discrimination

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States Must License Same-Sex Marriages, U.S. Supreme Court Rules

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that all states must license marriages between two people of the same sex on the same terms that apply to opposite-sex couples and must recognize same-sex marriages that are validly performed…more

Fourteenth Amendment, Marriage, Marriage Equality, Obergefell v. Hodges, Same-Sex Marriage

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CMS Releases Final Rule on Physician Payment Disclosures

Public disclosure of payments from pharmaceutical, medical device, biologic, and medical supply manufacturers to physicians and hospitals will begin under a final rule on the Physician Payments Sunshine Act (Sunshine Act)…more

Biologics, CMS, Covered Entities, GPOs, Medicaid

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Third Circuit Requires Affidavit of Merit in Products Liability Case Against Residential Homebuilder

In a case of first impression, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit affirmed the dismissal of design defect claims against a residential homebuilder under New Jersey’s Product Liability Act when the homeowner failed…more

Architecture, Construction Litigation, Design Defects, Inadequate Warning, Professional Liability

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Supreme Court Upholds Affordable Care Act Subsidies in King v. Burwell

In a much-anticipated decision, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that individuals who enroll for coverage in a health insurance exchange may qualify for a subsidy to make that coverage more affordable, regardless of whether…more

Affordable Care Act, Health Insurance, Health Insurance Exchanges, Individual Mandate, King v Burwell

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IRS Construction Deadline Guidance Highlights Disparate Treatment of Renewable Energy Technologies

The IRS recently released guidance in the form of an IRS Notice implementing a rule change under the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 concerning the construction deadline that renewable energy facilities must meet to qualify…more

Begun Construction Test, Energy Projects, Investment Tax Credits, IRS, Production Tax Credit

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SEC Proposed Rule 10D-1 Regarding Clawback Policies

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently proposed rules requiring national securities exchanges such as the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ to establish listing standards requiring publicly traded companies to…more

Clawbacks, Comment Period, Disclosure Requirements, Executive Compensation, Incentive Compensation

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CFPB Proposes Additional Servicing Rule Amendments

The CFPB issued a proposed rulemaking last week to amend various provisions of the mortgage servicing rules under Regulation X and Regulation Z. Comments are due 90 days from the date of publication in the Federal Register…more

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Pa. Superior Court: ‘Valuable Consideration’ Required for Employer Enforcement of Non-Compete Agreement

In a case of first impression, a Pennsylvania appellate court recently held that contractual language satisfying the state’s Uniform Written Obligations Act (UWOA)—that is, a statement that the parties “intend to be legally…more

Consideration, Employment Contract, Non-Compete Agreements, Restrictive Covenants

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Supreme Court Addresses an Employer’s Right To Amend Retiree Health Coverage

In M&G Polymers v. Tackett, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that ordinary contract principles govern whether a collective bargaining agreement vests retirees in health coverage (and the contributions they are required to pay for…more

CBAs, Employer Group Health Plans, Employer Healthcare Costs, Health Insurance, M&G Polymers v Tackett

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Second Circuit Issues Decision in Payday-Loan Regulatory Case

In a clash of competing sovereigns’ interests, the Second Circuit recently upheld, for now, the authority of the New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) to regulate online payday loans made by Indian tribal lenders to…more

Banks, Consumer Financial Products, Consumer Lenders, NACHA, Native American Issues

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Prosecutors Strike Out on Barry Bonds as Ninth Circuit Narrows Obstruction Strike Zone

The indictment and trial of famed baseball slugger Barry Bonds for perjury and obstruction of justice drew nationwide attention. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals’ April 22, 2015, en banc decision reversing Bonds’ obstruction…more

Barry Bonds, En Banc Review, Government Investigations, Obstruction of Justice, Young Lawyers

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Impact of USPTO Interim Guidance on Chemical, Pharmaceutical, and Biotech Inventions

The recent interim guidance issued by U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) provides applicants and practitioners with more helpful information about which types of claims the USPTO will find to satisfy subject matter…more

AMP v Myriad, Genetic Materials, Guidance Update, Mayo v. Prometheus, Patent-Eligible Subject Matter

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Morristown Memorial Hospital: A Tax Exemption Ruling All Nonprofit Hospitals Need to Know About

A recent New Jersey Tax Court decision has nonprofit entities on edge. The decision may offer tax authorities the opportunity to pursue payments from nonprofit hospitals and may result in the redefining of tax exemptions by…more

Charitable Organizations, Executive Compensation, Hospitals, Non-Profits, Property Tax

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New Maryland State Income Tax Credit for Small Commercial Projects

The owners of small commercial properties in Maryland historic districts should take note of the Maryland Sustainable Communities Small Commercial Tax Credit, a new state income tax credit that may be available to them as of…more

Commercial Property Owners, Commercial Real Estate Market, Historic Preservation, Tax Credits

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Supreme Court Addresses an Employer’s Right To Amend Retiree Health Coverage

In M&G Polymers v. Tackett, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that ordinary contract principles govern whether a collective bargaining agreement vests retirees in health coverage (and the contributions they are required to pay for…more

CBAs, Employer Group Health Plans, Employer Healthcare Costs, Health Insurance, M&G Polymers v Tackett

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11th Circuit: Representations by Attorneys in Debt Collection-Related Court Filings Actionable Under FDCPA

In Miljkovic v Shafritz & Dinkin, 2015 WL 3956570, a panel of the 11th Circuit held that representations made by an attorney in required court filings during the course of debt collection litigation can be actionable under the…more

Creditors, Debt Collection, FDCPA, First Impression, Pleading Standards

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SEC Proposed Rule 10D-1 Regarding Clawback Policies

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently proposed rules requiring national securities exchanges such as the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ to establish listing standards requiring publicly traded companies to…more

Clawbacks, Comment Period, Disclosure Requirements, Executive Compensation, Incentive Compensation

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Private E-Mail and Public Officials: What's a Public Document?

The "Bridgegate" scandal in New Jersey involving an investigation into the George Washington Bridge lane closures has included many instances of Governor Chris Christie's top officials utilizing their own Gmail, Yahoo, or other…more

Chris Christie, Email, FOIA, Public Officials, Public Records

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SEC Proposed Rule 10D-1 Regarding Clawback Policies

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently proposed rules requiring national securities exchanges such as the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ to establish listing standards requiring publicly traded companies to…more

Clawbacks, Comment Period, Disclosure Requirements, Executive Compensation, Incentive Compensation

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CA Supreme Court Issues First Decision Extending FTC v. Actavis to State Antitrust Litigation

The California Supreme Court issued a decision today in the Cipro antitrust cases, concluding that the analysis set forth by the U.S. Supreme Court in FTC v. Actavis applies to alleged “pay-for-delay” pharmaceutical patent…more

Antitrust Litigation, Antitrust Provisions, Bayer, CA Supreme Court, Cartwright Act

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Connecticut Enacts New Licensing Requirement and Prohibitions for Student Loan Servicers

Connecticut’s new “An Act Concerning A Student Loan Bill of Rights” creates a licensing requirement for servicers of student loans made to state residents and imposes other significant new requirements and prohibitions on such…more

Banks, Licensing Rules, Loan Servicing, Ombudsman, Student Loans

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Important Changes to Nevada's Non-Judicial Foreclosure Process

Lenders who secure loans with real property and their foreclosing trustees should be aware of important changes to the Nevada Revised Statutes regarding non-judicial foreclosures that went into effect on June 1, 2013…more

Borrowers, Deed of Trust, Foreclosure, Lenders, Mortgages

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Philadelphia Eliminates Tax-Exempt Recertification Requirement

Owners of tax-exempt property in the City of Philadelphia no longer need to worry about submitting recertification forms regarding the continued use of their property. On April 7, 2015, Mayor Michael Nutter signed Bill 150144,…more

Municipalities, Property Owners, Recertification, Tax Exemptions

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FCC Order Creates New TCPA Challenges for Companies

As previously reported, the Federal Communications Commission recently approved a Declaratory Ruling and Order (the Order) addressing a number of petitions that requested the FCC clarify its interpretations of the Telephone…more

Auto-Dialed Calls, Collection Agencies, Debt Collection, Declaratory Rulings, Exemptions

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VAWA Regulations Take Effect July 1

The U.S. Department of Education’s rule implementing changes to the Clery Act under the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2014 (VAWA) takes effect today. The final rule was published in the Federal Register on…more

Clery Act, Colleges, Department of Education, Final Rules, Universities

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Supreme Court’s Campaign Contribution Decision To Have Substantial Impact

Pundits have alternatively saluted and denounced the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision last week striking down aggregate campaign contribution limits as unconstitutional. Few, however, have addressed the decision’s impact on states,…more

Campaign Finance Reform, Citizens United, McCutcheon v. FEC, SCOTUS

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Department of Labor Proposes New Regulations on Fiduciary Advice

The U. S. Department of Labor (DOL) has reissued long-awaited proposed regulations describing the circumstances in which a person who provides investment advice in connection with a retirement plan or individual retirement…more

Conflicts of Interest, DOL, ERISA, Fiduciary Standard, Investment Adviser

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Eighth Circuit: Purpose, Not Content, Determines TCPA Coverage of Calls as “Telemarketing”

Phone calls made to promote a movie constituted “telemarketing” under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) even though the two prerecorded messages left on the plaintiffs’ home phone line made no reference to the movie,…more

Article III, Class Action, Do Not Call List, Putative Class Actions, Robocalling

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CA Supreme Court Issues First Decision Extending FTC v. Actavis to State Antitrust Litigation

The California Supreme Court issued a decision today in the Cipro antitrust cases, concluding that the analysis set forth by the U.S. Supreme Court in FTC v. Actavis applies to alleged “pay-for-delay” pharmaceutical patent…more

Antitrust Litigation, Antitrust Provisions, Bayer, CA Supreme Court, Cartwright Act

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Defense Department Dramatically Expands Scope of Military Lending Act

The Department of Defense (DoD) dramatically expanded the scope of the Military Lending Act (MLA) on July 22, 2015, publishing its Final Rule amending the MLA’s implementing regulation. MLA coverage was previously limited to…more

Automotive Loans, CFPB, Consumer Lenders, Credit Unions, DOD

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White House Task Force on Sexual Assault Advises Colleges on Working with Law Enforcement

In its April 2014 report, the White House Task Force to Protect Students From Sexual Assault promised to release a sample Memorandum of Understanding to provide guidance to institutions of higher education that wish to increase…more

Colleges, Obama Administration, Sexual Assault, Students, Universities

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“Most Workers Are Employees” – DOL Issues Guidance on Misclassification of Workers as Independent Contractors

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued guidance today alerting employers that “most workers are employees” under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), and reminding employers that the correct classification of workers as…more

DOL, FLSA, Independent Contractors, Minimum Wage, Misclassification

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Right of Rescission Not Unlimited, Maryland Court of Appeals Holds

The timing and mechanics of rescinding a loan under the Truth and Lending Act (TILA) has been a hotly contested legal issue. As highlighted during the recent oral argument in Jesinoski v. Countrywide Home Loans, Inc. before the…more

Appeals, Mortgages, Regulation Z, Rescission, TILA

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Morristown Memorial Hospital: A Tax Exemption Ruling All Nonprofit Hospitals Need to Know About

A recent New Jersey Tax Court decision has nonprofit entities on edge. The decision may offer tax authorities the opportunity to pursue payments from nonprofit hospitals and may result in the redefining of tax exemptions by…more

Charitable Organizations, Executive Compensation, Hospitals, Non-Profits, Property Tax

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Georgia Passes New Social P3 Legislation

Georgia Governor Nathan Deal signed into law new public-private partnership (P3) legislation, the Partnership for Public Facilities and Infrastructure Act (SB 59) (the Act) on May 5, 2015. The Act allows state and local…more

Governor Deal, New Legislation, P3s, Public Projects, Public-Private Partnerships

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DOL Releases New FMLA Forms

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has issued new forms for employers to use in connection with employee leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). The new forms, which replace the forms that expired in February, are…more

DOL, Employer Mandates, FMLA, GINA, Required Forms

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Recent Investment Management Developments - June 2015

In This Issue: - SEC Proposes Changes to Reporting and Disclosure Obligations for Investment Companies and Advisers - SEC Charges Hedge Fund Executives and External Auditor for Improper Disclosure of Expense…more

Administrative Appointments, Anti-Retaliation Provisions, Chief Compliance Officers, Cybersecurity, DOL

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SEC Proposed Rule 10D-1 Regarding Clawback Policies

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently proposed rules requiring national securities exchanges such as the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ to establish listing standards requiring publicly traded companies to…more

Clawbacks, Comment Period, Disclosure Requirements, Executive Compensation, Incentive Compensation

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Connecticut Enacts New Licensing Requirement and Prohibitions for Student Loan Servicers

Connecticut’s new “An Act Concerning A Student Loan Bill of Rights” creates a licensing requirement for servicers of student loans made to state residents and imposes other significant new requirements and prohibitions on such…more

Banks, Licensing Rules, Loan Servicing, Ombudsman, Student Loans

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SEC Proposed Rule 10D-1 Regarding Clawback Policies

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently proposed rules requiring national securities exchanges such as the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ to establish listing standards requiring publicly traded companies to…more

Clawbacks, Comment Period, Disclosure Requirements, Executive Compensation, Incentive Compensation

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Recent Investment Management Developments - June 2015

In This Issue: - SEC Proposes Changes to Reporting and Disclosure Obligations for Investment Companies and Advisers - SEC Charges Hedge Fund Executives and External Auditor for Improper Disclosure of Expense…more

Administrative Appointments, Anti-Retaliation Provisions, Chief Compliance Officers, Cybersecurity, DOL

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OSHA Announces Directive on HazCom

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) released its much-anticipated directive to the agency’s compliance safety and health officers on its revised Hazard Communication (HazCom) standard yesterday. In 2012,…more

Chemicals, Classification, Distributors, Hazardous Communication Standard, Labeling

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Who Is a ‘Foreign Official’ under the FCPA? Eleventh Circuit Weighs In

Providing appellate guidance for the first time, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit interpreted a key term defining the types of “foreign officials” subject to the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and…more

Appeals, Appellate Review, DOJ, FCPA, Foreign Official

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Deadlines for Pennsylvania Real Property Tax Appeals

In view of market conditions, now is a good time to review your company’s real estate portfolio to consider assessment appeals for tax year 2016. Deadlines for appeal in certain Pennsylvania counties follow:…more

Ad Valorem Tax, Appeals, Property Tax, Tax Appeals, Tax Assessment

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Deadlines for Pennsylvania Real Property Tax Appeals

In view of market conditions, now is a good time to review your company’s real estate portfolio to consider assessment appeals for tax year 2016. Deadlines for appeal in certain Pennsylvania counties follow:…more

Ad Valorem Tax, Appeals, Property Tax, Tax Appeals, Tax Assessment

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Supreme Court Provides New Ammunition for Defeating Securities Fraud Class Actions

The U.S. Supreme Court today gave companies new ammunition to defeat securities fraud class actions. In Halliburton v. Erica P. John Fund, the Court held that defendants can, at the preliminary class certification stage, rebut…more

Basic v Levinson, Class Action, Fraud, Fraud-on-the-Market, Halliburton

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Major New Jersey Health System Pays $12.6 Million To Settle False Claims Act Suit Alleging Physician Kickback Scheme

Federal prosecutors recently announced a $12.6 million False Claims Act (FCA) settlement with a major New Jersey health system to resolve allegations that the system paid outside physicians in order to increase referrals…more

Anti-Kickback Statute, Compliance, False Claims Act, HHS, Kickbacks

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Fed Circuit Decision Gives Broad Patents New Concerns

The Federal Circuit Court of Appeals overruled prior precedent this week in Williamson v. Citrix Online, LLC and lowered the standard for patent invalidity under 35 U.S.C. § 112 (f)—the statute that requires functional claims…more

Appeals, Covered Business Method Patents, Means-Plus-Function, Patent Invalidity, Patent Litigation

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No Need for Foreclosing Trustee To Record New Notice of Sale upon Third-Time Postponement, Nevada Supreme Court Holds

The Nevada Supreme Court recently interpreted a statute that governs the manner in which a foreclosing trustee can postpone a trustee’s sale. At issue was whether a trustee must record a new notice of sale upon orally postponing…more

Foreclosure, Mortgage Lenders, NV Supreme Court, Recording Requirements, Trustee Sales

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NLRB Issues Significant Decision on Faculty Unionization

The National Labor Relations Board (Board) recently ruled that it would assert jurisdiction over Pacific Lutheran University's (PLU’s) full-time contingent faculty members. In the context of a union's attempt to organize PLU's…more

Colleges, Faculty, Jurisdiction, NLRA, NLRB

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NYSE MKT Amends Rules on How Listed Companies May Disclose Material News

Recent amendments to the NYSE MKT Company Guide provide that NYSE MKT-listed companies can comply with that Exchange’s immediate release policy by disseminating required information using any method or combination of methods…more

NYSE, Press Releases, Publicly-Traded Companies, Regulation FD, SEC

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New Internet Top-Level Domains Unveiled

Website domain names as we know them will look dramatically different now that the menu of Internet domain name suffixes is expanding. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) recently released the first…more

Brand, Domain Names, gTLD, ICANN, Registration

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The Need for Speed: The Delaware Rapid Arbitration Act

The Delaware Rapid Arbitration Act (DRAA), 10 Del. C. §§5801-581, which became effective this month, provides a new, speedy, and relatively low-cost arbitration process for commercial disputes through the Delaware Court of…more

Arbitration, Delaware Rapid Arbitration Act, Mediation

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Step 1 Completed: Zoning Rewrite Approved by Montgomery County Council

Yesterday, the Montgomery County Council approved the first restructuring of the Zoning Ordinance in more than 50 years. The much-debated legislation will be effective October 30, 2014, and it will create new zones for almost…more

Municipalities, Real Estate Market

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FTC and DOJ Shine the Spotlight on Conditional Pricing Practices

Signaling increased interest in conditional pricing, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice (DOJ) recently held a one-day workshop to examine the economic, legal, and policy…more

Antitrust Provisions, Bundled Payments, Conditional Pricing, Customer-Loyalty Programs, DOJ

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Arizona Decision May Complicate Foreclosure and Eviction Process for Lenders

A recent Arizona Court of Appeals decision could create new complexities for lenders exercising their power of sale under a deed of trust. In Grady v. Superior Court of Maricopa County, the Court of Appeals sided with the…more

Deed of Trust, Eviction, Foreclosure, Lenders, Tenants

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First Circuit Ruling in Foreclosure Litigation May Help Lenders Facing HAMP-Related Claims

The law is well settled that borrowers do not have a direct right of action under the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) against a lender that fails to offer a loan modification. A split of authority continues, however,…more

Foreclosure, HAMP, Mortgages

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States Must License Same-Sex Marriages, U.S. Supreme Court Rules

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that all states must license marriages between two people of the same sex on the same terms that apply to opposite-sex couples and must recognize same-sex marriages that are validly performed…more

Fourteenth Amendment, Marriage, Marriage Equality, Obergefell v. Hodges, Same-Sex Marriage

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Hawai’i Enacts Legislation Creating Community-Based Renewable Energy Program

A law that could significantly expand access to renewable energy generation in Hawai’i through a new community-based renewable energy program was approved by Governor David Ing on June 8, 2015. While the new law is couched in…more

Energy Sector, Public Utilities Commission, Renewable Energy, Solar Energy, Wind Power

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FCC Order Creates New TCPA Challenges for Companies

As previously reported, the Federal Communications Commission recently approved a Declaratory Ruling and Order (the Order) addressing a number of petitions that requested the FCC clarify its interpretations of the Telephone…more

Auto-Dialed Calls, Collection Agencies, Debt Collection, Declaratory Rulings, Exemptions

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Using the New Markets Tax Credit to combat chronic homelessness

In 2011, USBCDC, one of the largest New Markets Tax Credit investors, used the credit to finance a facility for Blanchet House of Hospitality, a social services nonprofit that provides three-meals-per-day, clothing and temporary…more

Homeless Issues, Non-Profits, Tax Credits

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Trade groups comment on CFPB final arbitration study results

The American Bankers Association, the Consumer Bankers Association and The Financial Services Roundtable (Associations) have filed a joint letter commenting on the final results of the CFPB’s arbitration study released in March…more

Arbitration, CFPB, Dodd-Frank, Trade Associations

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HUD Notice has potential to encourage broad PHA renewable energy rollout

Housing authorities that are seeking alternate energy sources or new funding streams will be particularly interested in HUD’s latest PIH notice. It ushers in a number of programmatic changes in an effort to increase the use of…more

Energy Projects, HUD, Public Housing, Public Housing Authorities, Renewable Energy

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Condominium Unit Sales Exemptions and Compliance under ILSA Requirements

As discussed in Ballard Spahr’s previous alert sent on September 24, 2014, effective March 25, 2015, the sale of condominium units will no longer be subject to the registration requirements of the Interstate Land Sales Full…more

Condominiums, ILSA, Real Estate Development, Real Estate Transfers

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Seventh Circuit Green Lights Data Breach Class Action Against Neiman Marcus

An increase in data breach class actions could be the result of a recent decision of the Seventh Circuit holding that allegations of future harm stemming from a data breach can establish Article III standing. The majority of…more

Adobe, Article III, Class Action, Credit Cards, Cyber Attacks

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New Montgomery County, Md., Legislation Further Regulating Community Associations

The Montgomery County Council has focused a lot of attention on the regulation of common ownership communities. Recently approved legislation mandates board member training and certification of payments of common ownership fees…more

Board of Directors, Common-Interest Communities, Local Ordinance, New Regulations

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CFPB issues final consolidated mortgage disclosure rule

Today, the CFPB issued its long-awaited final rule consolidating the application and closing disclosures required by the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act and Truth in Lending Act for mortgage loan transactions…more

CFPB, Mortgages, RESPA, TILA

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El Paso RAD transaction converting 1,590 units at 13 sites closes

On April 9, 2015, the Housing Authority of the City of El Paso (HACEP) and its development, private equity and lending partners closed Phase I of the largest Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) project in the country. Hunt…more

Finance Lenders, Freddie Mac, P3s, Private Equity, Public Housing Authorities

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Implications of a homeowner association’s statutory priming lien

While representing an institutional lender in the making of a loan secured by real property located in Colorado, we came across an increasingly relevant issue regarding properties subject to a homeowner association or similar…more

Condominium Associations, Condominiums, Liens, Mortgage Priority, Priority Debt

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Supreme Court Limits Defenses to Induced Infringement

In an important decision in Commil USA, LLC v. Cisco Systems, Inc., the U. S. Supreme Court held yesterday that a good-faith belief in the invalidity of a patent cannot negate the intent required for induced infringement. The…more

Cisco v CommilUSA, Frivolous Lawsuits, Honest Belief Defense, Induced Infringement, Patent Infringement

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The Need for Speed: The Delaware Rapid Arbitration Act

The Delaware Rapid Arbitration Act (DRAA), 10 Del. C. §§5801-581, which became effective this month, provides a new, speedy, and relatively low-cost arbitration process for commercial disputes through the Delaware Court of…more

Arbitration, Delaware Rapid Arbitration Act, Mediation

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New York Agency’s Report Focuses on Data Vulnerability of Banks’ Third-Party Vendors

The New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) recently issued a report identifying common cybersecurity issues and concerns caused by the failure of some banks to sufficiently manage vulnerabilities posed by…more

Banks, Cybersecurity, Information Reports, NYDFS, Third-Party Service Provider

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Bankruptcy Trustees Target Colleges and Universities

Over the past few years, higher education institutions have seen an increase in litigation from an unexpected source: bankruptcy trustees. Trustees appointed in personal bankruptcy cases are seeking to claw back tuition payments…more

Clawbacks, Colleges, Consumer Bankruptcy, Educational Institutions, Tuition

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Condominium Unit Sales Exemptions and Compliance under ILSA Requirements

As discussed in Ballard Spahr’s previous alert sent on September 24, 2014, effective March 25, 2015, the sale of condominium units will no longer be subject to the registration requirements of the Interstate Land Sales Full…more

Condominiums, ILSA, Real Estate Development, Real Estate Transfers

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Federal Circuit Sides with USPTO in First Review of AIA Final Decision

For the first time, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit recently ruled on a final decision of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) in an inter partes review proceeding, or IPR. In a 2-1 decision, the Federal…more

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Recent Investment Management Developments - June 2015

In This Issue: - SEC Proposes Changes to Reporting and Disclosure Obligations for Investment Companies and Advisers - SEC Charges Hedge Fund Executives and External Auditor for Improper Disclosure of Expense…more

Administrative Appointments, Anti-Retaliation Provisions, Chief Compliance Officers, Cybersecurity, DOL

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Elements of RAD discussed during the Ballard Spahr webinar

A number of essential points arising under HUD’s Notice PIH 2012-32, REV-2  were discussed during Ballard Spahr’s webinar, HUD’s Revised RAD Notice — What it Means for Closed and Future Projects. As a follow-up to the webinar,…more

Affordable Housing, Fair Housing, HUD, Public Housing, Rental Assistance Demonstration

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Deadlines for Pennsylvania Real Property Tax Appeals

In view of market conditions, now is a good time to review your company’s real estate portfolio to consider assessment appeals for tax year 2016. Deadlines for appeal in certain Pennsylvania counties follow:…more

Ad Valorem Tax, Appeals, Property Tax, Tax Appeals, Tax Assessment

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IRS Approves New Rules To Minimize Taxes Related to M&A Transactions

The Internal Revenue Service recently adopted long-awaited regulations intended to provide a new means of minimizing taxes in M&A transactions. The newly adopted regulations take effect on May 15, 2013, under Section 336(e) of…more

IRS

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Maryland Governor Expected To Sign Transgender Equality Bill

This month, Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley is expected to sign the Fairness for All Marylanders Act of 2014 (the Act). The Act prohibits discrimination against transgender individuals in employment, housing, and places of…more

Public Accommodation, Transgender

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FTC Challenges Privacy Self-Regulation Offered by TRUSTe

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently announced an enforcement action against TRUSTe, a provider of privacy certifications for online businesses. The settlement resolves allegations that TRUSTe deceived consumers about its…more

Certifications, Enforcement Actions, FTC, Privacy Policy

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Supreme Court Clarifies Burden of Proof for Religious Accommodation and Disparate-Treatment Claims

The U.S. Supreme Court sided with the EEOC today and clarified the standard for religious accommodation and disparate-treatment claims under Title VII. The Court ruled that an applicant can advance a disparate-treatment claim by…more

Abercrombie & Fitch, Disparate Treatment, EEOC, EEOC v Abercrombie, Employer Liability Issues

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Eighth Circuit: Purpose, Not Content, Determines TCPA Coverage of Calls as “Telemarketing”

Phone calls made to promote a movie constituted “telemarketing” under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) even though the two prerecorded messages left on the plaintiffs’ home phone line made no reference to the movie,…more

Article III, Class Action, Do Not Call List, Putative Class Actions, Robocalling

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Supreme Court: EPA Must Consider Costs in Power Plant Rule

The U.S. Supreme Court issued its opinion in Michigan v. EPA, reversing a ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and holding that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) must consider…more

Chevron Deference, Clean Air Act, Electricity, Energy Sector, EPA

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U.S. Mayors’ Group Recommends Ways To Improve Police-Community Relations

A U.S. Conference of Mayors working group, composed of mayors and police chiefs, recently issued a report titled Strengthening Police-Community Relations in America’s Cities. The report made two recommendations designed to…more

Community Relations, Conference of Mayors, Law Enforcement

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Federal Circuit Gives Little Guidance on Biosimilar Patent Validity Challenges

Recently, the Federal Circuit had the opportunity to issue its first decision relating to biosimilars patent litigation and the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act of 2009 (BPCIA) procedures. Instead, the court…more

Appeals, Biosimilars, BPCIA, FDA, Patent Infringement

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USPTO Clarifies Standard for Review of Financial Services Patents

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) may have given banks, financial institutions, and retailers more access to a powerful new tool to fight weak patents. A recent Patent Trial and Appeals Board (PTAB) decision…more

Patent Trial and Appeal Board, Patents, Standard of Review, USPTO

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“Most Workers Are Employees” – DOL Issues Guidance on Misclassification of Workers as Independent Contractors

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued guidance today alerting employers that “most workers are employees” under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), and reminding employers that the correct classification of workers as…more

DOL, FLSA, Independent Contractors, Minimum Wage, Misclassification

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Defense Department dramatically expands scope of Military Lending Act

The Department of Defense (DoD) dramatically expanded the scope of the Military Lending Act (MLA) on July 22, 2015, publishing its Final Rule amending the MLA’s implementing regulation. The DoD consulted with the CFPB in…more

Automotive Loans, Consumer Credit Protection, Consumer Lenders, DOD, Higher Education Act

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New York Grand Jury Indicts 12 Online Payday Lenders and 3 Individuals

In a shot across the bow of online payday lenders who allegedly disregard state law where their borrowers reside, a New York County grand jury recently voted a criminal usury and conspiracy indictment against 12 companies…more

Conspiracies, Grand Juries, Lenders, Payday Loans, Usury

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Texas Supreme Court: Discount Points are Subject to Fee Cap for Home Equity Loans and Lines of Credit

In a decision that likely will have a dampening effect on the home equity lending market in Texas, the Texas Supreme Court ruled on June 21, 2013, that lenders are prohibited from treating discount points and lender fees as…more

Fees, Foreclosure, Home Equity, Home Equity Line of Credit, Homestead Exemption

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New Montgomery County, Md., Legislation Further Regulating Community Associations

The Montgomery County Council has focused a lot of attention on the regulation of common ownership communities. Recently approved legislation mandates board member training and certification of payments of common ownership fees…more

Board of Directors, Common-Interest Communities, Local Ordinance, New Regulations

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Borrowers’ Counsel Sanctioned for Frivolous Lawsuit Against Lender Who Attempted to Resolve Foreclosure Action

An Ohio appellate court has affirmed an order of sanctions against counsel for borrowers who filed a frivolous lawsuit against the lender alleging fraud, breach of contract and estoppel in connection with failed attempts to…more

Attorney's Fees, Default, Financial Services Industry, Foreclosure, Frivolous Lawsuits

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DOJ Cracks Down on Cyber Criminals

The Department of Justice (DOJ) recently announced the largest coordinated international law enforcement effort ever directed at an online cyber-criminal forum. Financial institutions and other companies should consider whether…more

Best Practices, Criminal Prosecution, Cyber Crimes, Cybersecurity, DOJ

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SEC Proposed Rule 10D-1 Regarding Clawback Policies

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently proposed rules requiring national securities exchanges such as the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ to establish listing standards requiring publicly traded companies to…more

Clawbacks, Comment Period, Disclosure Requirements, Executive Compensation, Incentive Compensation

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Proposed IRS Regulations Address Community Health Needs Assessment for Tax-Exempt Hospitals

The IRS has recently proposed regulations affecting tax-exempt hospitals that provide guidance and comfort about the consequences of failing to meet the community health needs assessment (CHNA) requirement. …more

Affordable Care Act, CHNA, Healthcare, Hospitals, IRS

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Supreme Court Ruling on Employee’s Lawsuit Will Also Affect Rule 23 Class Action Cases

In a decision that has broad implications beyond its labor law context, the U.S. Supreme Court held on April 16, 2013, that an employee plaintiff in a collective action whose individual claim was mooted by her employer’s offer…more

Class Action, Collective Actions, FLSA, Genesis HealthCare, Genesis Healthcare Corp. v. Symczyk

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FCC Eases Some Standards for TCPA Consent Compliance Regarding Texting

Last week, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) adopted two declaratory rulings that eased some standards for complying with the Telephone Consumer Protection Act's (TCPA) consent requirements regarding informational text…more

Consent, FCC, TCPA, Texting

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Recent Investment Management Developments - June 2015

In This Issue: - SEC Proposes Changes to Reporting and Disclosure Obligations for Investment Companies and Advisers - SEC Charges Hedge Fund Executives and External Auditor for Improper Disclosure of Expense…more

Administrative Appointments, Anti-Retaliation Provisions, Chief Compliance Officers, Cybersecurity, DOL

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Fed Circuit Decision Gives Broad Patents New Concerns

The Federal Circuit Court of Appeals overruled prior precedent this week in Williamson v. Citrix Online, LLC and lowered the standard for patent invalidity under 35 U.S.C. § 112 (f)—the statute that requires functional claims…more

Appeals, Covered Business Method Patents, Means-Plus-Function, Patent Invalidity, Patent Litigation

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President Obama Seeks To Expand Market for P3 Transportation Projects

As part of his ongoing effort to urge Congress to address the nation’s critical infrastructure needs, President Obama recently announced the signing of an executive order creating the Build America Investment Initiative (the…more

Department of Transportation, Infrastructure, P3s, Public Transit, Public-Private Partnerships

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New Montgomery County, Md., Legislation Further Regulating Community Associations

The Montgomery County Council has focused a lot of attention on the regulation of common ownership communities. Recently approved legislation mandates board member training and certification of payments of common ownership fees…more

Board of Directors, Common-Interest Communities, Local Ordinance, New Regulations

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Comments requested regarding proposed guidance on the Community Reinvestment Act

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Treasury, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation are the federal agencies that implement the Community Reinvestment Act…more

Community Reinvestment Act, FDIC, Federal Reserve, OCC, U.S. Treasury

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In ERISA Stock Drop Case, Supreme Court Giveth and Taketh Away on Moench Presumption

The U.S. Supreme Court recently eviscerated a key protection against stock drop lawsuits filed by participants in defined contribution plans that hold employer stock as an investment. In Fifth Third Bancorp et al. v…more

ERISA, ESOP, Fiduciary Duty, FIfth Third Bancorp v Dudenhoeffer, Fifth Third Mortgage Company

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Federal Circuit Gives Little Guidance on Biosimilar Patent Validity Challenges

Recently, the Federal Circuit had the opportunity to issue its first decision relating to biosimilars patent litigation and the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act of 2009 (BPCIA) procedures. Instead, the court…more

Appeals, Biosimilars, BPCIA, FDA, Patent Infringement

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DOJ provides guidance on service animal accommodation for housing and beyond

According to a recent Department of Justice (DOJ) settlement, some pets are allowed in the house. HUD filed and settled a civil rights lawsuit against RiverBay Corporation, a New York City-based affordable housing cooperative…more

ADA, Affordable Housing, DOJ, Fair Housing Act, HUD

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Renewed interest in Mortgage Credit Certificate programs

Section 25 of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) permits issuers of tax-exempt qualified mortgage revenue bonds to elect to issue mortgage credit certificates (MCCs) to eligible homebuyers in lieu of offering mortgages financed…more

Ginnie Mae, IRC, Mortgage Interest, Mortgage-Backed Securities, Tax Credits

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Prepayment of tax-exempt bonds in connection with the sale of a multifamily housing project

In the last few years, we have seen an increase in the number of multifamily housing projects being sold at the completion of the 15-year low-income housing tax credit compliance period. Strong rental demand in many areas of the…more

LIHTC, Multi-Family Development, Real Estate Development, Real Estate Investments, Tax-Exempt Bonds

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Who Is a ‘Foreign Official’ under the FCPA? Eleventh Circuit Weighs In

Providing appellate guidance for the first time, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit interpreted a key term defining the types of “foreign officials” subject to the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and…more

Appeals, Appellate Review, DOJ, FCPA, Foreign Official

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U.S. Supreme Court Weighs in on Labor Department’s Interpretation of Overtime Rules for Mortgage Loan Officers

We know that many of you are aware of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Perez v. Mortgage Bankers Association. The Court held that the U.S. Department of Labor was not required to follow notice and comment procedures in…more

Employer Liability Issues, Exempt-Employees, FLSA, Mortgage Loan Officer, Perez v Mortage Bankers Assoc

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Georgia Passes New Social P3 Legislation

Georgia Governor Nathan Deal signed into law new public-private partnership (P3) legislation, the Partnership for Public Facilities and Infrastructure Act (SB 59) (the Act) on May 5, 2015. The Act allows state and local…more

Governor Deal, New Legislation, P3s, Public Projects, Public-Private Partnerships

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SEC Muni Enforcement Chief Offers Her Views on MCDC

The Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC’s) year-old Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Cooperation Initiative (MCDC Initiative or MCDC) has encouraged municipal securities issuers, borrowers, and underwriters to…more

Municipal Securities Issuers, Offering Documents, SEC

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CFPB Officially Moves TRID Effective Date To October 3

The CFPB has issued a final rule postponing the effective date for all provisions of the TILA-RESPA Final Rule and Amendments to October 3, 2015. The final rule also includes certain technical amendments to reflect the new…more

CFPB, Effective Date, Final Rules, TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure Rule (TRID)

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Condominium Unit Sales Exemptions and Compliance under ILSA Requirements

As discussed in Ballard Spahr’s previous alert sent on September 24, 2014, effective March 25, 2015, the sale of condominium units will no longer be subject to the registration requirements of the Interstate Land Sales Full…more

Condominiums, ILSA, Real Estate Development, Real Estate Transfers

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Wholly Underwater Junior Liens May Not Be Stripped Off in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Proceedings

The U.S. Supreme Court has held that a debtor in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceeding may not void a junior mortgage lien when the debt owed on a senior mortgage lien exceeds the current value of the collateral, provided that the…more

Bankruptcy Code, Chapter 7, Consumer Bankruptcy, Junior Liens, Lien Priority

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Defense Department Dramatically Expands Scope of Military Lending Act

The Department of Defense (DoD) dramatically expanded the scope of the Military Lending Act (MLA) on July 22, 2015, publishing its Final Rule amending the MLA’s implementing regulation. MLA coverage was previously limited to…more

Automotive Loans, CFPB, Consumer Lenders, Credit Unions, DOD

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Dodd-Frank diversity standards: just out of the gate and already under fire

Just days after the release of the final diversity standards under Section 342 of the Dodd-Frank Act, several prominent lawmakers and business leaders have criticized the new standards for not going far enough to promote…more

CFPB, Diversity, Dodd-Frank, Employer Mandates, Financial Institutions

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Vassar College Prevails in Respondent’s Title IX Lawsuit

A judge in the Southern District of New York recently granted summary judgment to Vassar College in a case brought by a former student accused of sexual assault. The plaintiff alleged that Vassar violated Title IX and various…more

Educational Institutions, Sex Discrimination, Sexual Assault, Summary Judgment, Title IX

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VAWA Regulations Take Effect July 1

The U.S. Department of Education’s rule implementing changes to the Clery Act under the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2014 (VAWA) takes effect today. The final rule was published in the Federal Register on…more

Clery Act, Colleges, Department of Education, Final Rules, Universities

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Affordable, small, and manufactured housing loans prioritized as GSEs approach volume caps

The government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs), Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, have announced that they are quickly approaching their 2015 volume caps. In January of this year, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), who regulates…more

Affordable Housing, Fannie Mae, FHFA, Freddie Mac, Mortgage Lenders

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CFPB Holds Field Hearing On Arbitration Report

On March 10th, the CFPB held a public field hearing in Newark, New Jersey to address the release of its arbitration report to Congress. The event featured opening remarks from Director Richard Cordray, as well as commentary from…more

Arbitration, CFPB

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Nevada Senate Passes Bill Affecting Super-Priority Liens in Foreclosure

The Nevada Legislature recently passed a bill intended, in part, to address issues resulting from the Nevada Supreme Court’s decision that a homeowners association lien is a true super-priority lien that, if foreclosed,…more

Condominium Associations, Deed of Trust, Foreclosure, Governor Sandoval, Homeowners' Association

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DOJ Cracks Down on Cyber Criminals

The Department of Justice (DOJ) recently announced the largest coordinated international law enforcement effort ever directed at an online cyber-criminal forum. Financial institutions and other companies should consider whether…more

Best Practices, Criminal Prosecution, Cyber Crimes, Cybersecurity, DOJ

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Deadlines for Pennsylvania Real Property Tax Appeals

In view of market conditions, now is a good time to review your company’s real estate portfolio to consider assessment appeals for tax year 2016. Deadlines for appeal in certain Pennsylvania counties follow:…more

Ad Valorem Tax, Appeals, Property Tax, Tax Appeals, Tax Assessment

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States Must License Same-Sex Marriages, U.S. Supreme Court Rules

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that all states must license marriages between two people of the same sex on the same terms that apply to opposite-sex couples and must recognize same-sex marriages that are validly performed…more

Fourteenth Amendment, Marriage, Marriage Equality, Obergefell v. Hodges, Same-Sex Marriage

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Dismissal of Retained Asset Account Putative Class Action Upheld by Third Circuit

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit has affirmed summary judgment in favor of The Lincoln National Life Insurance Company in a putative class action. In Edmonson v. Lincoln National Life Ins. Co. the plaintiff…more

Class Action, ERISA, Insurance Companies, Lincoln National Life Insurance Company, Retained Asset Accounts

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California Federal Court Rules ‘No Surcharge’ Law Unconstitutional

A federal district court in California has ruled that a state law prohibiting retailers from imposing a surcharge on credit card purchases placed an unconstitutional restriction on the retailers’ freedom of speech and is…more

Commercial Speech, Credit Card Surcharges, Credit Cards, First Amendment, Retailers

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New Maryland State Income Tax Credit for Small Commercial Projects

The owners of small commercial properties in Maryland historic districts should take note of the Maryland Sustainable Communities Small Commercial Tax Credit, a new state income tax credit that may be available to them as of…more

Commercial Property Owners, Commercial Real Estate Market, Historic Preservation, Tax Credits

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Ballard Spahr provides comments to HUD’s proposed rule on Section 3 regulations

As a follow up to our March 24, 2015 and April 1, 2015 posts, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) published a notice updating the interim regulation at 24 CFR Part 135, which provides for compliance with…more

Affordable Housing, Construction Industry, Contractors, HUD, Section 3

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NCAA Cannot Bar Compensation of Student-Athletes for Use of Their Names and Likenesses, Federal Court Says

A recent California federal court decision has further lifted the thumb on the scales that has historically benefited collegiate athletics in weighing whether their association rules violate the federal antitrust laws…more

Antitrust Provisions, College Athletes, Colleges, Corporate Counsel, Injunctions

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Borrowers’ Counsel Sanctioned for Frivolous Lawsuit Against Lender Who Attempted to Resolve Foreclosure Action

An Ohio appellate court has affirmed an order of sanctions against counsel for borrowers who filed a frivolous lawsuit against the lender alleging fraud, breach of contract and estoppel in connection with failed attempts to…more

Attorney's Fees, Default, Financial Services Industry, Foreclosure, Frivolous Lawsuits

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Supreme Court Upholds FCC's Authority To Impose Time Limitations on Land Use Approvals for Wireless Facilities

Last month, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a 6-3 decision that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) had authority under the Telecommunications Act of 1996 to impose time limits for state and local governments to act on…more

Chevron, FCC, Preemption, SCOTUS, Telecommunications

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Director Cordray appears before Senate Banking Committee

On Wednesday, July 15, CFPB Director Richard Cordray appeared before the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, & Urban Affairs to answer questions regarding the Bureau’s Semi-Annual Report to Congress and the President, which it…more

American Bankers Association, Arbitration, Banking Sector, Banks, CFPB

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CFPB issues request for information regarding student loan servicing and re-launches its “Repay Student Debt” tool

Consistent with its continued focus on student lending, the CFPB issued a new request for information regarding student loan servicing. The request for information seeks input from the public regarding all aspects of student…more

CFPB, Loan Servicing, Public Comment, Request For Information, Student Loans

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SEC Muni Enforcement Chief Offers Her Views on MCDC

The Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC’s) year-old Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Cooperation Initiative (MCDC Initiative or MCDC) has encouraged municipal securities issuers, borrowers, and underwriters to…more

Municipal Securities Issuers, Offering Documents, SEC

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Who Is a ‘Foreign Official’ under the FCPA? Eleventh Circuit Weighs In

Providing appellate guidance for the first time, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit interpreted a key term defining the types of “foreign officials” subject to the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and…more

Appeals, Appellate Review, DOJ, FCPA, Foreign Official

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Changes to Pa. Power of Attorney Law: A Problem for Commercial Transactions

Secured lenders and other parties entering into commercial transactions face new, potentially problematic requirements under recent changes to Pennsylvania’s statute governing powers of attorney (20 Pa.C.S.A. Ch. 56), which…more

Amended Regulation, Commercial Loans, Power of Attorney, Secured Lenders

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OCC Updates Consumer Compliance Examination Manual To Incorporate Integrated Disclosures

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has released revised TILA and RESPA chapters of its examination manual for consumer compliance exams. The revised chapters incorporate the detailed procedural and substantive…more

Examination Manual, OCC, RESPA, TILA, TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure Rule (TRID)

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Colorado Legislature Tries Again on Construction-Related Litigation Reform

As the Colorado Legislature begins its 2015 session, construction defect reform legislation is again at the fore. Senate Bill 177 was introduced on February 10 in an effort to spur condominium projects by providing developers…more

Class Action, Condominiums, Construction Defects, Construction Industry, Homeowners' Association

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Overview of Fannie Mae Legal Issues Forum – Spring 2014

On April 24,2014, Fannie Mae hosted its semi-annual Legal Issues Forum (“LIF”) where the state of the multifamily finance market and recent developments in its multifamily program were the primary topics of discussion. This…more

Fannie Mae, Mortgages

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Speed of Pharmaceutical Innovation at Stake in N.Y. Antitrust Lawsuit

A pharmaceutical firm’s ability to efficiently produce and promote a better treatment for Alzheimer’s disease lies at the center of an antitrust lawsuit pending before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. In State…more

Actavis Inc., Antitrust Litigation, Appeals, Generic Drugs, Injunctions

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Treasury Department Seeks Information on Online Marketplace Lending

The U.S. Department of the Treasury has issued a request for information (RFI) regarding online marketplace lending. The RFI reflects the Treasury Department’s recognition that online marketplace lending “is a rapidly developing…more

CFPB, Dodd-Frank, Financial Services Industry, Lending, Loans

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Supreme Court’s Campaign Contribution Decision To Have Substantial Impact

Pundits have alternatively saluted and denounced the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision last week striking down aggregate campaign contribution limits as unconstitutional. Few, however, have addressed the decision’s impact on states,…more

Campaign Finance Reform, Citizens United, McCutcheon v. FEC, SCOTUS

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Third Circuit Clarifies Article III Standing for Absent Class Members, Impact of Comcast

In a case of first impression in the Third Circuit, the Court of Appeals held that unnamed, putative class members are not required to establish standing under Article III of the U.S. Constitution. Rather, the Court held that so…more

Antitrust Litigation, Appeals, Article III, Class Action, Comcast

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Internet of Things: Federal Agencies Offer Privacy and Data Security Best Practices

The recently released Federal Trade Commission staff report, Internet of Things: Privacy & Security in a Connected World, provides companies with insight into the FTC's consumer privacy and data security expectations for the…more

Best Practices, Cybersecurity, Data Protection, FTC, Internet

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Clarity May Finally Arrive in the District of Columbia for Lenders and Title Insurers

In response to the concerns of lenders and title insurers, the District of Columbia recently enacted clarifying legislation to amend the Saving D.C. Homes from Foreclosure Emergency Amendment Act of 2010 (the Act). The Act went…more

Foreclosure, Mortgages, Title Insurance

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Clarity May Finally Arrive in the District of Columbia for Lenders and Title Insurers

In response to the concerns of lenders and title insurers, the District of Columbia recently enacted clarifying legislation to amend the Saving D.C. Homes from Foreclosure Emergency Amendment Act of 2010 (the Act). The Act went…more

Foreclosure, Mortgages, Title Insurance

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N.J. Eliminates Customer Data Collection Requirements for Gift Card Retailers, Issuers

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has signed into law an amendment to the state’s unclaimed property law—S.B. 2235—that eliminated its consumer data collection requirements. In doing so, Governor Christie relieved a significant…more

Amended Legislation, Chris Christie, Data Collection, Gift-Cards, Retailers

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Developer May Not Extinguish Contractor’s Liens by Foreclosing on Its Own Mortgage, Florida Court Holds

A Florida appellate court recently rejected a real estate developer’s creative effort to shed its property of contractor’s liens. The court applied the venerable principal of mortgage law that a borrower may not extinguish…more

Construction Liens, Contractors, Foreclosure, Liens, Mortgages

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High-Speed Trader Indicted for ‘Spoofing’

A federal grand jury in Chicago recently indicted high-frequency trader Michael J. Coscia for “spoofing,” making it the first criminal case ever brought under the Dodd-Frank Act’s rules against disruptive trading practices…more

CFTC, Consent Order, Criminal Prosecution, Disruptive Trading Practices, Dodd-Frank

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Another Agency Adopts the Uniform State Test

Another state agency has announced that it will be adopting the new national MLO test with the Uniform State Content. The District of Columbia Department of Insurance, Securities, and Banking will adopt the test effective…more

MLO Licenses

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Obama’s Proposed 2016 Budget Seeks To Address Infrastructure Needs

The Obama administration's proposed 2016 budget, released on February 2, 2015, reflects the administration's commitment to finding ways to finance the country’s growing infrastructure requirements. The 2016 budget includes many…more

Bond Financing, Bonds, Educational Institutions, Federal Budget, Infrastructure

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Pennsylvania Amends Mechanics’ Lien Law To Create Online State Construction Notices Directory

The Pennsylvania Legislature recently passed, and Governor Tom Corbett signed into law, Act 142 amending the Mechanics’ Lien Law of 1963 to create the State Construction Notices Directory. The Directory, which is slated to…more

Construction Contracts, Construction Industry, Liens, Mechanics Lien, Notice Requirements

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New P3 Legislation To Take Effect in Washington, D.C.

A new law intended to encourage more widespread use of public-private partnerships (P3s) in the District of Columbia is set to become a reality in the coming weeks. The Public-Private Partnership Act of 2014 (P3 Act) was…more

Local Ordinance, New Legislation, P3s, Public Procurement Policies, Public Projects

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Defense Department Dramatically Expands Scope of Military Lending Act

The Department of Defense (DoD) dramatically expanded the scope of the Military Lending Act (MLA) on July 22, 2015, publishing its Final Rule amending the MLA’s implementing regulation. MLA coverage was previously limited to…more

Automotive Loans, CFPB, Consumer Lenders, Credit Unions, DOD

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New York Appellate Court Confers Standing on Assignee of Note Previously Discharged in Bankruptcy

A mortgage lender has standing to foreclose even when it obtains assignment of the underlying promissory note after the note has been discharged in bankruptcy, a New York appellate court has ruled. The case arose after the…more

Chapter 7, Consumer Bankruptcy, Dischargeable Debts, Foreclosure, Mortgage Lenders

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Supreme Court Upholds Ban on Royalties after Licensed Patent Expires

In a 6-3 decision in Kimble v. Marvel, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to overturn the long-standing rule that bars a licensor from being able to collect royalties for sales after the expiration of the licensed patent—even if the…more

Contract Term, IP License, Kimble v Marvel Enterprises, Patent Royalties, Patents

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Consent Judgments Entered Against Individuals and Law Firm Accused of Mass-Joinder Mortgage Rescue Scams

Consent judgments in a lawsuit brought by the Florida and Connecticut Attorneys General have been entered against five individuals and one law firm for their part in an alleged “mass-joinder” mortgage rescue scam…more

CFPA, Consent Order, Debt-Relief Industry, Dodd-Frank, Homeowners

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Hawai’i Enacts Legislation Creating Community-Based Renewable Energy Program

A law that could significantly expand access to renewable energy generation in Hawai’i through a new community-based renewable energy program was approved by Governor David Ing on June 8, 2015. While the new law is couched in…more

Energy Sector, Public Utilities Commission, Renewable Energy, Solar Energy, Wind Power

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Insights from the executive director of the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness

Our Ninth Annual National Housing Symposium successfully brought together a rich panorama of perspectives across the affordable housing industry. Laura Green Zeilinger, the Executive Director for the United States Interagency…more

Affordable Housing, Department of Veterans Affairs, Homeless Issues, HUD

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Implications of a homeowner association’s statutory priming lien

While representing an institutional lender in the making of a loan secured by real property located in Colorado, we came across an increasingly relevant issue regarding properties subject to a homeowner association or similar…more

Condominium Associations, Condominiums, Liens, Mortgage Priority, Priority Debt

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Obama Signs Hydropower Bills Designed To Help Reduce Red Tape

President Obama recently signed two bills into law that are designed to encourage the development of hydroelectric projects, especially certain types with a lower environmental impact…more

Clean Energy, Energy Efficiency, Energy Policy, FERC, Hydropower

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Deadlines for Pennsylvania Real Property Tax Appeals

In view of market conditions, now is a good time to review your company’s real estate portfolio to consider assessment appeals for tax year 2016. Deadlines for appeal in certain Pennsylvania counties follow:…more

Ad Valorem Tax, Appeals, Property Tax, Tax Appeals, Tax Assessment

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HUD issues final rule on Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing

HUD issued the final rule on Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH), which is poised to provide clear, actionable guidelines and data that will help HUD grantees achieve fair housing and equal opportunity goals. The final…more

Affordable Housing, Fair Housing, Final Rules, HUD

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Deadlines for Pennsylvania Real Property Tax Appeals

In view of market conditions, now is a good time to review your company’s real estate portfolio to consider assessment appeals for tax year 2016. Deadlines for appeal in certain Pennsylvania counties follow:…more

Ad Valorem Tax, Appeals, Property Tax, Tax Appeals, Tax Assessment

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More ADA Enforcement – Effective Communication Requirements for Service Providers

Recently, the U.S. Department of Justice and Franciscan St. James Health (St. James), a nonprofit health care system providing comprehensive health care at hospitals in Illinois, settled a lawsuit alleging that St. James…more

ADA, DOJ, Enforcement Actions, Healthcare, Hospitals

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Morristown Memorial Hospital: A Tax Exemption Ruling All Nonprofit Hospitals Need to Know About

A recent New Jersey Tax Court decision has nonprofit entities on edge. The decision may offer tax authorities the opportunity to pursue payments from nonprofit hospitals and may result in the redefining of tax exemptions by…more

Charitable Organizations, Executive Compensation, Hospitals, Non-Profits, Property Tax

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Thousands of applicants are willing to accept NYC “Poor Door” building

The Housing Plus Blog has previously reported on the “Poor Door” controversy on August 14, 2014 and September 3, 2014. The New York Times reported on April 20, 2015 that 88,000 people applied for the 55 units located in the much…more

Affordable Housing, Condominiums, Housing Market, Real Estate Development, Residential Leases

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Final Diversity and Inclusion Standards Issued Jointly by Six Federal Agencies

Pursuant to a mandate contained in Section 342 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank or Act), six federal agencies jointly issued new Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) Standards today. These…more

Diversity, Diversity and Inclusion Standards (D&I), Dodd-Frank, Employer Mandates, Hiring & Firing

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Dodd-Frank diversity standards: just out of the gate and already under fire

Just days after the release of the final diversity standards under Section 342 of the Dodd-Frank Act, several prominent lawmakers and business leaders have criticized the new standards for not going far enough to promote…more

CFPB, Diversity, Dodd-Frank, Employer Mandates, Financial Institutions

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SEC Muni Enforcement Chief Offers Her Views on MCDC

The Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC’s) year-old Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Cooperation Initiative (MCDC Initiative or MCDC) has encouraged municipal securities issuers, borrowers, and underwriters to…more

Municipal Securities Issuers, Offering Documents, SEC

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U.S. Supreme Court Notice, Comment Not Required for Federal Agencies Interpreting Regulations

The U.S. Supreme Court decided in Perez v. Mortgage Bankers Association that federal agencies are not required to use the Administrative Procedure Act's (APA) notice and comment procedures when issuing or making changes to rules…more

Administrative Procedure Act, DOL, FLSA, Mortgage Bankers Association, Mortgage Loan Officer

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Prosecutors Strike Out on Barry Bonds as Ninth Circuit Narrows Obstruction Strike Zone

The indictment and trial of famed baseball slugger Barry Bonds for perjury and obstruction of justice drew nationwide attention. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals’ April 22, 2015, en banc decision reversing Bonds’ obstruction…more

Barry Bonds, En Banc Review, Government Investigations, Obstruction of Justice, Young Lawyers

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Recent Investment Management Developments - June 2015

In This Issue: - SEC Proposes Changes to Reporting and Disclosure Obligations for Investment Companies and Advisers - SEC Charges Hedge Fund Executives and External Auditor for Improper Disclosure of Expense…more

Administrative Appointments, Anti-Retaliation Provisions, Chief Compliance Officers, Cybersecurity, DOL

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Colorado Supreme Court Upholds Firing Over Off-Duty Medical Marijuana Use

An employer did not act unlawfully when it fired a quadriplegic worker who used medical marijuana while off duty, the Colorado Supreme Court ruled today in a 6-0 decision. Affirming the April 2013 decision of the Colorado Court…more

Coats v Dish Network, Controlled Substances Act, Disabled, Dish Network, Drug Testing

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President Announces New Build America Initiatives; Introduces New Type of Municipal Bond

President Obama recently announced the latest steps federal agencies are taking to better incorporate private sector capital and expertise in improving the nation’s infrastructure. The announcement comes six months after the…more

Barack Obama, Build America Investment Initiative, Infrastructure, Municipal Advisers, Municipal Bonds

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Employers Must Be Cautious in Addressing Ebola Concerns

Neither the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission nor the Centers for Disease Control has issued any specific guidance for employers to deal with Ebola issues. With multiple Ebola cases diagnosed in the United States and…more

ADA, Ebola, Employer Liability Issues, FMLA, Title VII

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Eighth Circuit: Purpose, Not Content, Determines TCPA Coverage of Calls as “Telemarketing”

Phone calls made to promote a movie constituted “telemarketing” under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) even though the two prerecorded messages left on the plaintiffs’ home phone line made no reference to the movie,…more

Article III, Class Action, Do Not Call List, Putative Class Actions, Robocalling

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Ballard Spahr Attorneys Weigh in on Lawsuit Alleging Collection of Illegal Finder's Fees

Last month, Ballard Spahr attorneys Gary C. Tepper and Daniel J. Tobin filed an amicus brief for the Mortgage Bankers Association in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in Petry et al. v. Prosperity Mortgage Co., et…more

Class Action, Finder's Fees, Lenders, Mortgages, Wells Fargo

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SEC Proposed Rule 10D-1 Regarding Clawback Policies

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently proposed rules requiring national securities exchanges such as the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ to establish listing standards requiring publicly traded companies to…more

Clawbacks, Comment Period, Disclosure Requirements, Executive Compensation, Incentive Compensation

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SEC Issues No-Action Letter on Internet-Based ‘Road Shows’

The Securities and Exchange Commission has issued a “no-action” letter relating to a provider of electronic-based “road shows.” The SEC stated in the letter, issued on January 29, 2013, that such presentations to retail…more

Municipal Securities Market, No-Action Letters, Road Shows, SEC, Securities Exchange Act

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Rental Housing Mistake Limited the Number of Children at Properties

Recently, managers of rental homes settled with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) after the managers discriminated against a woman with several children by unlawfully denying housing to the family…more

Discrimination, DOJ, Fair Housing Act, HUD, Recordkeeping Requirements

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Treasury Department Seeks Information on Online Marketplace Lending

The U.S. Department of the Treasury has issued a request for information (RFI) regarding online marketplace lending. The RFI reflects the Treasury Department’s recognition that online marketplace lending “is a rapidly developing…more

CFPB, Dodd-Frank, Financial Services Industry, Lending, Loans

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Bill Would Create New Category of Tax-Exempt Bonds, Tax Credits for P3 Projects

On May 4, 2015, U.S. Senate Finance Committee Ranking minority member Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat, and Senator John Hoeven, a Republican from North Dakota, introduced legislation entitled the "Move America Act of 2015," which…more

Infrastructure, P3s, Proposed Legislation, Public-Private Partnerships, Senate Finance Committee

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Ballard Spahr Lawyers Turn Back Robinson Township Challenge to Waste-to-Energy Facility

Although some have suggested that Robinson Township, et al. v. Commonwealth, a 2013 Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling that struck down key provisions of a state law regulating the oil and gas industry, could impair development…more

Energy Projects, Oil & Gas, Renewable Energy, State and Local Government

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FTC and DOJ Shine the Spotlight on Conditional Pricing Practices

Signaling increased interest in conditional pricing, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice (DOJ) recently held a one-day workshop to examine the economic, legal, and policy…more

Antitrust Provisions, Bundled Payments, Conditional Pricing, Customer-Loyalty Programs, DOJ

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Supreme Court: EPA Must Consider Costs in Power Plant Rule

The U.S. Supreme Court issued its opinion in Michigan v. EPA, reversing a ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and holding that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) must consider…more

Chevron Deference, Clean Air Act, Electricity, Energy Sector, EPA

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Consent Judgments Entered Against Individuals and Law Firm Accused of Mass-Joinder Mortgage Rescue Scams

Consent judgments in a lawsuit brought by the Florida and Connecticut Attorneys General have been entered against five individuals and one law firm for their part in an alleged “mass-joinder” mortgage rescue scam…more

CFPA, Consent Order, Debt-Relief Industry, Dodd-Frank, Homeowners

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Recent NLRB Grad Student Union Decisions Suggest Interest in Reviewing Brown University

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) recently released two unpublished decisions that boosted unionization efforts by teaching and research assistants at private universities. The decisions, issued on March 13, 2015, could…more

Brown University, NLRB, Students, Unions, Universities

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Seventh Circuit Clarifies “Date of Receipt” of Online Mortgage Payment

In a recent putative class action by borrowers against a mortgage servicer alleging violations of the Truth in Lending Act (“TILA”), the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals found that mortgage servicers must credit electronic…more

Borrowers, Electronic Payment Transactions, Mortgage Lenders, Mortgage Servicers, Mortgages

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Nevada Amends Law Regarding Deficiency Judgment Calculation

By amending a statute that limits deficiency judgment amounts in certain cases, Nevada lawmakers have attempted to restore balance as the law applies to commercial properties. The amendments follow a recent wave of litigation…more

Assignments, Banks, Commercial Bankruptcy, Commercial Real Estate Market, Contracts Clause

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Lender Risk Management for Bankruptcy Stay Violations

A recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in a bankruptcy case highlights a risk to consumer lenders and suggests a practical approach to risk management through clear policies and employee training…more

Automatic Stay, Consumer Bankruptcy, Electronic Fund Transfer Act, Risk Management

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Colorado Supreme Court Upholds Firing Over Off-Duty Medical Marijuana Use

An employer did not act unlawfully when it fired a quadriplegic worker who used medical marijuana while off duty, the Colorado Supreme Court ruled today in a 6-0 decision. Affirming the April 2013 decision of the Colorado Court…more

Coats v Dish Network, Controlled Substances Act, Disabled, Dish Network, Drug Testing

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USPTO Clarifies Standard for Review of Financial Services Patents

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) may have given banks, financial institutions, and retailers more access to a powerful new tool to fight weak patents. A recent Patent Trial and Appeals Board (PTAB) decision…more

Patent Trial and Appeal Board, Patents, Standard of Review, USPTO

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Georgia Passes New Social P3 Legislation

Georgia Governor Nathan Deal signed into law new public-private partnership (P3) legislation, the Partnership for Public Facilities and Infrastructure Act (SB 59) (the Act) on May 5, 2015. The Act allows state and local…more

Governor Deal, New Legislation, P3s, Public Projects, Public-Private Partnerships

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11th Circuit: Rule 23 Trumps State Law Limitation on Class Actions

Dealing a blow to defendants facing consumer fraud litigation in the 11th Circuit, the court of appeals for that circuit has reinstated a class action under the Alabama Deceptive Trade Practice Act (ADTPA), despite that the…more

Class Action, Consumer Fraud, Preemption, Product Defects, Rule 23

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Ballard Spahr’s National Housing Symposium goes beyond the horizon

Yesterday Ballard Spahr held its 9th annual National Housing Symposium in Washington, D.C.. The theme of the Symposium was “Beyond the Horizon: Housing and Community Development Strategies for the Future”. Government officials,…more

Affordable Housing, EB-5, Housing Market, LIHTC, Public Housing

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Third Circuit Clarifies Article III Standing for Absent Class Members, Impact of Comcast

In a case of first impression in the Third Circuit, the Court of Appeals held that unnamed, putative class members are not required to establish standing under Article III of the U.S. Constitution. Rather, the Court held that so…more

Antitrust Litigation, Appeals, Article III, Class Action, Comcast

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Seventh Circuit Clarifies “Date of Receipt” of Online Mortgage Payment

In a recent putative class action by borrowers against a mortgage servicer alleging violations of the Truth in Lending Act (“TILA”), the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals found that mortgage servicers must credit electronic…more

Borrowers, Electronic Payment Transactions, Mortgage Lenders, Mortgage Servicers, Mortgages

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Court Upholds Constitutionality of Pennsylvania Recording Statute

A class action suit against Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) in Pennsylvania will go forward after a federal district court ruled that the state recording statute is constitutional. The court ruled that the…more

Class Action, MERS, Real Estate Transfers, Recording Requirements

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Penn Study Unlikely to Result in Flood of Fracking Lawsuits

A recently released study from scientists at the University of Pennsylvania suggests a link between hydraulic fracturing ("fracking") for gas and oil and cardiac and neurological illnesses. Whether the report triggers a rash of…more

Air Pollution, Delaware River Basin, Fracking, Hydraulic Fracturing Study, Oil & Gas

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States Must License Same-Sex Marriages, U.S. Supreme Court Rules

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that all states must license marriages between two people of the same sex on the same terms that apply to opposite-sex couples and must recognize same-sex marriages that are validly performed…more

Fourteenth Amendment, Marriage,