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Utah Supreme Court "Repudiates" the Federal Multi-Employer Worksite Doctrine

In an unapologetic rejection of a decades-old legal fiction hatched by the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration ("OSHA") and embraced by Utah Division of Occupational Safety and Health ("UOSH"), on January 31,…more

General Contractors, OSHA, Workplace Safety

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Is It Historical Under CEQA? Court Confirms Substantial Evidence Remains the Standard

Citizens for the Restoration of L Street v. City of Fresno, et al., No. F066498,(Cal. Ct. App. 5th Dist., August 28, 2014) - In a two-part opinion, the Fifth District Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court’s judgment…more

CEQA, Environmental Policies, Historic Preservation, Historical Landmarks, Substantial Evidence Standard

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Minnesota Community Solar Garden Program Approved, Set to Open

The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission today issued its long-awaited Order approving (with modifications) Xcel Energy’s Community Solar Garden (CSG) Program - Solar Rewards*Community. The Order starts the clock for the…more

Energy, Renewable Energy, Solar Energy

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Idaho Real Estate & Development Law Update: Lack of Corporate Formalities Will Not Destroy the Limited Liability Protection Afforded by an LLC

In the case of Wandering Trails v. Big Bite Excavation released June 18, 2014, the Idaho Supreme Court clarified the requirements for piercing the veil of a limited liability company or LLC and thereby imposing liability on its…more

Breach of Contract, Commercial Real Estate Market, Corporate Veil, LLC, Personal Liability

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Minnesota Legislature Looks to Jump Start Renewable Energy Exports

The Minnesota State Legislature is currently debating a bill that would ease the regulatory burden on independent power producers looking to export wind and solar energy generated in Minnesota…more

Exports, Renewable Energy, Solar Energy, Wind Power

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CEQA Baseline Analysis: Future Conditions Baseline Should Be The Exception Not The Rule When Agency Reviews Environmental Impacts, Says Divided California Supreme Court

In Neighbors for Smart Rail v. Exposition Metro Line Construction Authority (filed August 5, 2013) (“Neighbors”), a majority of the California Supreme Court justices announced a new rule regarding the baseline agencies may use…more

CEQA, Environmental Assessments, Environmental Claims, Environmental Impact Report, Environmental Policies

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Facebook "Like" Button - Protected Activity? It Depends on What You "Like"!

In an ever expanding arc of decisions that extends the NLRA’s protections to a wide range of employee conduct – both on-and off-duty, and in union and non-union settings alike – the NLRB last week decided that merely clicking on…more

Employee Rights, NLRA, NLRB, Popular, Protected Activity

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Health Care Alert: ACA Health Insurance Subsidies Called into Question by DC Circuit

Yesterday, a divided three judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit struck down the IRS regulation allowing federal premium subsidies for individuals buying health insurance at Exchanges/Marketplaces…more

Affordable Care Act, Chevron Deference, Employer Mandates, Health Insurance, Health Insurance Exchanges

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Health Care Law Alert: Skagit County Fined $215,000 for HIPAA Violations

Skagit County in northwest Washington state has been fined $215,000 for violations of the HIPAA privacy, security, and breach notification rules. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”)…more

Breach Notification Rule, Data Breach, Fines, HHS, HIPAA

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Governor Signs Two New CEQA Bills

Governor Brown has signed two new bills amending the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). AB 52 establishes new consultation procedures with California Native American tribes, and provides that an adverse change to a…more

Amended Legislation, Biofuel, CEQA, Exemptions, Native American Issues

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CEQA Exemption Update: Westland Water District Two-Year Contract Renewals Ruled Exempt from CEQA Requirements

In North Coast Rivers Alliance v. Westlands Water District, No. FO67383 (Cal. Ct. App. 5th Dist. July 3, 2014), the Fifth Appellate District upheld the Westland Water District and its related distribution districts’ (Water…more

Bureau of Reclamation, CEQA, Municipalities, Public Contracts, Water

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Updated Status of Oil and Gas-related Bills in California's Legislature

The end of the 2013-2014 legislative session is coming to a close. Below are key deadlines for the Legislature and Governor..…more

Energy, Legislative Agendas, Oil & Gas

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Air Quality Law Alert: EPA Unveils Sweeping New CO2 Rules

Yesterday, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy announced two new rules that will ultimately result in the application of carbon dioxide (CO2) standards to existing power plants. The first rule was proposed under Section 111(d) of…more

Air Pollution, Air Quality Standards, Carbon Emissions, Clean Air Act, Environmental Policies

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ESA Law Update: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and NMFS Extend Comment Period on Critical Habitat Regulations

On June 20, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service (“Services”), the two federal agencies responsible for administering the Endangered Species Act (“ESA”), have announced that they will…more

Critical Habitat, Environmental Policies, ESA, Fish and Wildlife Service, National Marine Fisheries Service

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Safeguarding FSMA's Protectors: OSHA Issues Interim Whistleblower Reporting Regulations

Our colleague, Alyson Palmer, noted on our Food Liability Law Blog that the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published an interim final rule on February 13, 2014 creating the process for handling…more

Food Safety, FSMA, OSHA, Reporting Requirements, Whistleblowers

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U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to Review Eagle Permit Rules

On Friday, June 20, 2014, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (“Service”) announced its plans to engage the public in a review of how permits are issued for the non-purposeful take of bald and golden eagles under the Bald and…more

American Bird Conservancy, Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, Fish and Wildlife Service, NEPA, Public Comment

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No Harassment, No Problem: Idaho Court Holds Harassing Comments May Still Support Liability for Negligent Infliction of Emotional Distress

A November 27, 2013 opinion from the Idaho Supreme Court reinstated a former Assistant Vice Principal’s claim seeking damages for negligent infliction of emotional distress. This decision highlights that allegedly harassing…more

Harassment, Hostile Environment, Negligent Infliction of Emotional Distress, Public Schools, Sexual Harassment

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What's a ROG and Can It Hurt Me? EIR Overturned For Failure to Explain Air Quality Impacts to Human Health

In Sierra Club v. County of Fresno (Cal. Ct. App. 5th Dist. May 27, 2014), the Fifth Appellate District found fault with the County of Fresno’s (County) review of the Friant Ranch Project (Project) under the California…more

Air Pollution, Air Quality Standards, CEQA, Environmental Impact Report, Environmental Policies

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A Not-So Happy New Year for California Employers: 2014 Legislative Update

It has become an annual New Year’s tradition in California -- employers getting up to speed on a host of new employment laws that will affect them in the coming year. The California Legislature was busy in 2013 imposing new…more

Crime Victims, Discrimination, Employee Rights, Employer Liability Issues, Legislative Agendas

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Corporate Law Alert: Launch of New Oregon Benefit Company Law Produces Record Signups

On January 1, Oregon launched its new benefit company law, becoming the 20th U.S. state to allow the formation of such entities. The launch produced a record-setting response, with 29 registrants signing up for benefit company…more

B Corporation, Benefit Corporations, Choice of Entity, Corporate Social Responsibility, Social Entrepreneurship

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Treasure Island Update: San Francisco EIR Specific Enough

In Citizens for a Sustainable Treasure Island v. City & County of San Francisco, No. A137828 (Cal. Ct. App. 1st Dist., July 7, 2014), the First Appellate District upheld an environmental impact report (“EIR”) for the renovation…more

Environmental Impact Report, Environmental Policies, Urban Planning & Development

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Solar Installer Alert: New Countervailing Duties on Imports of Chinese Solar Products Take Effect June 10, 2014

The U.S. International Trade Administration of the U.S. Department of Commerce (“ITA”) made the preliminary countervailing duty (“CVD”) rates announced last week effective today, June 10, in a published notice, 79 Fed. Reg…more

Antidumping Duties, China, Countervailing Duties, International Trade Agreements, Solar Energy

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Don't Neglect to Understand Insurance Jargon

Unfortunately, insurance requirements in contracts are not easy to understand. The language used in insurance requirements is not always intuitive, but we all know that the consequences of not having the right insurance can be…more

Additional Insured Endorsements, Advertising Injury, Bodily Injury, Commercial General Liability Policies, Endorsements

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Environmental Law Alert: Oregon HB 3086 Allows Consideration of Off-Site Mitigation for Sage Grouse Habitat

Over 40 percent of the lands in Malheur County have been designated as core habitat for sage grouse by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife ("ODFW"). Other counties in southeastern Oregon are also heavily affected. ODFW's…more

Critical Habitat, Department of Fish and Wildlife, Endangered Species, Environmental Policies

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Why California Breweries, Distilleries, and Wineries Need to Know About California's New Industrial Storm Water Permit

On April 1, 2014, the California State Water Resources Control Board (“State Board”) unanimously adopted a new Industrial Storm Water permit (2014 Permit). You can find the new Industrial Storm Water permit and supporting…more

Clean Water Act, Industrial Stormwater Rule, Manufacturers, Water Resources Control Board, Wine & Alcohol

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President Obama Signs Executive Order Banning LGBT Job Discrimination by Federal Contractors and Government

What the Executive Order Does - This Executive Order amends two earlier executive orders: it amends Executive Order 11246, which prohibits discrimination by federal contractors to add sexual orientation and gender…more

Discrimination, Executive Orders, Federal Contractors, Gender Identity, LGBT

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Food Labeling Client Alert: FDA Proposes Changes to Iconic Nutrition Facts Label

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently proposed an update to the iconic Nutrition Facts label for packaged foods. In light of new scientific evidence about human health and nutrition, dietary recommendations of…more

Department of Agriculture, FDA, Food Labeling, Nutrition Facts Labels

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Solar Installer Alert: Commerce Dept. Reduces Preliminary Antidumping Duty Rates for Solar Products from Taiwan

The International Trade Administration of the U.S. Department of Commerce (“ITA”) on August 18 issued a notice amending its Affirmative Preliminary Determination for antidumping (“AD”) duties against certain crystalline silicon…more

Antidumping Duties, Countervailing Duties, Exports, Imports, Solar Energy

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OSHA Law Update: Potential Changes to OSHA's Process Safety Management Standard

Last year, President Obama issued Executive Order 13650 which requires the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) to publish a Request for Information (“RFI”) to identify issues related to modernizing the Process…more

Oil & Gas, OSHA, Request For Information, Workplace Safety

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"Isn't there supposed to be a good cop?" -- 9th Circuit Holds Bilious Conduct Not a Disability Under ADA

Cantankerous employees beware! Being a jerk is not a disability and, at least according to the Ninth Circuit in Weaving v. City of Hillsboro, blaming bad behavior on a physical or mental impairment does not guarantee protection…more

ADA, Adverse Employment Action, Hiring & Firing

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California Court of Appeal Rules Employers Must Reimburse Employees For Work Calls on Personal Cell Phones

The California Court of Appeal’s recent decision in Cochran v. Schwan’s Home Service, Inc. was simple. When employees must use their personal cell phones for work, California law requires employers to reimburse them,…more

Appeals, Bring Your Own Device, Cell Phones, Class Action, Employer Liability Issues

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Patent Law Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Raises the Bar for Patent Owners in Induced Infringement Claims

In a recent decision likely to significantly impact patent holders reliant on method-type claims, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled in Limelight Networks, Inc. v. Akamai Technologies, Inc. that induced infringement…more

Akamai Technologies, En Banc Review, Induced Infringement, Limelight Networks, Miniauction

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Court Rules That Telecommuting May Be a Reasonable Accommodation Under the ADA

The Sixth Circuit recently held in EEOC v. Ford Motor Co. that regular attendance may not mean physical presence in the workplace, and that telecommuting may be a reasonable accommodation for some employees with disabilities…more

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California Governor Signs Bill Regulating Oil by Rail

On September 25, 2014, California Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation that will provide California’s emergency responders with more information about trains carrying crude oil and require railroad companies to provide more…more

Emergency Response, Hazardous Substances, New Legislation, Oil & Gas, Railroads

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Financial Infeasibility of CEQA Alternatives Determined By Reasonably Prudent Person

In SPRAWLDEF et al. v. San Franscisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission, et al. (“SPRAWLDEF”)(certified for publication 5/28/2014), the First Appellate District reversed the trial court’s decision and held the San…more

CEQA, Conservation, Environmental Impact Report, Environmental Policies

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Tax Law Alert: Oregon's 2013 Special Legislative Session Passes Changes to Oregon Tax Law

The special legislative session called by Governor Kitzhaber adjourned on October 2, 2013, after passing a "grand bargain" primarily implementing cost and benefit reductions to Oregon's public employees retirement system (PERS),…more

Retirement, Tax Reform

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Minnesota Brownfields Soil Reuse Study Identifies Significant Cost-Saving and Carbon Reduction Opportunities

Stoel Rives environmental analyst Steve Heurung was among the co-authors of a Minnesota Brownfields report commissioned by Hennepin County to evaluate the potential for cost savings associated with the off-site reuse of soil at…more

Brownfield Properties, Carbon Emissions, Information Reports, Pollution Control

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2013 Minnesota Labor and Employment Update

Minnesota employers, take note: laws that impact you are changing this year. Not only did the Minnesota legislature recently expand the use of employee sick leave (as we blogged about here) and legalize same-sex marriage, but…more

Criminal Background Checks, Good Faith, Marriage, New Legislation, Same-Sex Marriage

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CPUC Adopts Transitional Net Metering Rules for Pre-Existing Distributed Generation Systems

On Thursday, March 27, 2014, the California Public Utilities Commission established rules for transitioning distributed generation renewable energy systems from the current net energy metering (NEM) arrangement to the successor…more

CPUC, Energy, Utilities Sector

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Under Scrutiny from All Sides, Brown Taps Ph.D. in Geology to Lead the DOGGR: What This Means for the Industry and SB 4's Rollout

At last, the new Supervisor of the California Department of Conservation’s Division of Oil, Gas & Geothermal Resources (“DOGGR”) has been announced. Steven Bohlen, currently Program Director at the Lawrence Livermore National…more

DOGGR, Energy, Energy Policy, Geothermal Energy, Oil & Gas

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Corporate Law Alert: Launch of New Oregon Benefit Company Law Produces Record Signups

On January 1, Oregon launched its new benefit company law, becoming the 20th U.S. state to allow the formation of such entities. The launch produced a record-setting response, with 29 registrants signing up for benefit company…more

B Corporation, Benefit Corporations, Choice of Entity, Corporate Social Responsibility, Social Entrepreneurship

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Copyright Law Alert: Copyright Worries for Cloud Service Providers Following Aereo Decision

The U.S. broadcasting industry scored a significant win yesterday, when the U.S. Supreme Court determined that internet TV provider Aereo infringed the copyright of broadcasters by streaming their over-the-air broadcasts to…more

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

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Energy Tax Law Alert: IRS Issues New Guidance Regarding Beginning of Construction Requirement for ITC/PTC

On Friday, the IRS issued guidance that clarifies and modifies prior guidance regarding the “beginning of construction” requirement for qualifying for the production tax credit (PTC) under Section 45 of the Internal Revenue…more

Deadlines, Energy Projects, Investment Tax Credits, IRC, IRS

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New Report Ranks Power Utilities by Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency Performance

In a first-of-its-kind report announced this morning, Ceres and Clean Edge ranked the nation's largest electric utilities and local subsidiaries on their renewable energy sales and energy efficiency savings. The report focused…more

Clean Energy, Electricity, Energy Efficiency, Energy Market, Renewable Energy

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Washington Court of Appeals Holds Independent Contractors Are Protected from Retaliation by the Washington Law Against Discrimination

The Washington courts are strict in their interpretation of the classification of individuals as employees versus independent contractors, resulting in many an employer discovering that an “independent contractor” is instead an…more

Contractors, Discrimination, Employee Rights, Independent Contractors, Retaliation

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Prop 65 Law Alert: California Proposes Significant Changes to Proposition 65 Warning Requirements

On March 7, 2014, the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (“OEHHA”), the agency responsible for implementing California’s Proposition 65 (“Prop 65”), issued proposed changes to existing regulations that would make…more

Manufacturers, Medical Devices, Prescription Drugs, Proposition 65, Warning Labels

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In Case You Missed It - Interesting Items for Corporate Counsel

The Director of the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance, Keith Higgins, recently gave the keynote address, here, at the 2014 Angel Capital Association Summit. He focused on the following three items on the SEC rulemaking…more

Accredited Investors, Angel Investors, Conflict Mineral Rules, Corporate Counsel, Cybersecurity

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Native American Business Law Alert: Significant Tax and Applicable Law Ambiguity in Proposed Revisions for Indian Lands Rights-of-Way Regulations

The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) is proposing to revise the process for obtaining and administering rights-of-way (ROWs) on Indian lands. While the proposed regulations seek to make improvements and clarifications benefiting…more

BIA, Taxation, Tribal Lands

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Washington Supreme Court Limits Attorney-Client Communications with Employed Health Care Practitioners

Last week's decision by the Washington Supreme Court in Youngs v. PeaceHealth has significant implications for health care providers that employ physicians (or other health care practitioners) and the attorneys who represent…more

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New Domain Name ".solar" is Now Available

As many of you know, all businesses worldwide are facing the opportunities and perils of a vast expansion of internet domain names. The Solar Industry is on the front row of this new domain name game with a generic top-level…more

Domain Names, gTLD, ICANN, Internet

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Idaho Real Estate & Development Law Update: Lack of Corporate Formalities Will Not Destroy the Limited Liability Protection Afforded by an LLC

In the case of Wandering Trails v. Big Bite Excavation released June 18, 2014, the Idaho Supreme Court clarified the requirements for piercing the veil of a limited liability company or LLC and thereby imposing liability on its…more

Breach of Contract, Commercial Real Estate Market, Corporate Veil, LLC, Personal Liability

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Proposed Regulations Address REIT Investments in Solar Facilities

The Internal Revenue Service and the U.S. Department of the Treasury recently issued proposed regulations that may facilitate using real estate investment trusts (REITs) as vehicles for financing certain renewable energy…more

Funding, REIT, Renewable Energy, Solar Energy, Solar Panels

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Tax Law Alert: Sales Factor Excludes Amounts Received from the Sale of Goodwill

In a case argued by Stoel Rives, the Oregon Supreme Court upheld the judgment of the Oregon Tax Court in favor of Tektronix, Inc. The Supreme Court ruled that, for purposes of apportioning income, the sales factor excluded…more

Acquisitions, Corporate Taxes, Goodwill, Gross Receipts Tax, Income Apportionment

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Copyright Law Alert: Copyright Worries for Cloud Service Providers Following Aereo Decision

The U.S. broadcasting industry scored a significant win yesterday, when the U.S. Supreme Court determined that internet TV provider Aereo infringed the copyright of broadcasters by streaming their over-the-air broadcasts to…more

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

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U.S. Supreme Court Declines to Hear Dispute over California Low Carbon Fuel Standard

Today, the U.S. Supreme Court denied petition for review in Rocky Mountain Farmers Union v. Corey. In Rocky Mountain Farmers, the Ninth Circuit addressed the constitutionality of California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS),…more

Carbon Emissions, Dormant Commerce Clause, Fuel Standards, Oil & Gas, SCOTUS

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ESA Law Update: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and NMFS Extend Comment Period on Critical Habitat Regulations

On June 20, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service (“Services”), the two federal agencies responsible for administering the Endangered Species Act (“ESA”), have announced that they will…more

Critical Habitat, Environmental Policies, ESA, Fish and Wildlife Service, National Marine Fisheries Service

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Energy Tax Law Alert: IRS Clarifies "Beginning of Construction" Guidance

On September 20th, the IRS issued Notice 2013-60, which updates prior guidance, contained in Notice 2013-90, regarding the "begin-construction" requirement for the production tax credit (PTC) under Section 45 of the Internal…more

Construction Contracts, Energy Tax Incentives, Investment Tax Credits, IRC, IRS

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Solar Installer Alert: Commerce Dept. Reduces Preliminary Antidumping Duty Rates for Solar Products from Taiwan

The International Trade Administration of the U.S. Department of Commerce (“ITA”) on August 18 issued a notice amending its Affirmative Preliminary Determination for antidumping (“AD”) duties against certain crystalline silicon…more

Antidumping Duties, Countervailing Duties, Exports, Imports, Solar Energy

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Tax Law Alert: The 2nd Special Session of the 2013 Washington Legislature Adjourned on June 29

The 2nd Special Session of the 2013 Legislature adjourned sine die on June 29, 2013. The accomplishment of this session was passage of a state budget, which had eluded state legislators through the Regular Session that ended…more

B&O Tax, Deficit Reduction, New Legislation, Revenue, State Budgets

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Solar Installer Alert: ITA Delays Trade Case Decision on Chinese Solar Modules | ITC's U.S. Solar Industry Injury Investigation Enters Final Phase

The U.S. International Trade Administration (ITA) has postponed its countervailing duty determination by about two months, leaving the solar industry hanging for a while longer…more

Antidumping Duties, China, Countervailing Duties, ITA, Renewable Energy

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Economic Development Law Alert: Idaho Targets Job Creation With New Refundable State Income Tax Credit for Business

Job creation efforts in Idaho received a boost earlier this month, when a new refundable state income tax credit for new or existing businesses went into effect. The Idaho Reimbursement Incentive Act creates a tax credit that is…more

Full-Time Employees, Job Creation, Prevailing Wages, State Taxes, Tax Incentives

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Qualification and Application Checklist for New DOE Loan Guarantee Solicitation for Renewable Energy and Efficiency Projects

Late last week, the United States Dept. of Energy (“DOE”) Loan Program Office issued a final solicitation for projects seeking loan guarantees titled “Federal Loan Guarantees for Renewable Energy Projects and Efficient Energy…more

DOE, Energy, Energy Projects, General Solicitation, Government-Guaranteed Loans

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Negotiating a Liquidated Damages Clause in Texas? Get Out Your Crystal Ball.

"Don't mess with Texas." Apparently the slogan even applies to liquidated damages clauses. This morning, the Supreme Court of Texas issued a decision in a drawn-out fight between wind developer FPL Energy and the power…more

Liquidated Damages

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Air Quality Law Alert: EPA Unveils Sweeping New CO2 Rules

Yesterday, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy announced two new rules that will ultimately result in the application of carbon dioxide (CO2) standards to existing power plants. The first rule was proposed under Section 111(d) of…more

Air Pollution, Air Quality Standards, Carbon Emissions, Clean Air Act, Environmental Policies

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ESA Law Update: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and NMFS Extend Comment Period on Critical Habitat Regulations

On June 20, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service (“Services”), the two federal agencies responsible for administering the Endangered Species Act (“ESA”), have announced that they will…more

Critical Habitat, Environmental Policies, ESA, Fish and Wildlife Service, National Marine Fisheries Service

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Washington Supreme Court Establishes Important Energy Siting Precedent

We’re very pleased to report on a significant energy siting victory achieved by our client SDS Lumber Co. and its subsidiary, Whistling Ridge Energy LLC, at the Washington Supreme Court yesterday. We believe the decision sets an…more

Permits, Wind Power

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Ralls Continues to Fight Presidential Divestiture Order Stemming from CFIUS Investigation

Ralls Corp., a privately-held company owned by executives of the China-based heavy machinery manufacturing conglomerate Sany Group, recently filed an appeal in its ongoing effort to avoid President Obama’s order requiring the…more

CFIUS, China, Divestiture, Foreign Investment, Manufacturers

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Health Care Law Alert: Skagit County Fined $215,000 for HIPAA Violations

Skagit County in northwest Washington state has been fined $215,000 for violations of the HIPAA privacy, security, and breach notification rules. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”)…more

Breach Notification Rule, Data Breach, Fines, HHS, HIPAA

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California Governor Signs Bill Regulating Oil by Rail

On September 25, 2014, California Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation that will provide California’s emergency responders with more information about trains carrying crude oil and require railroad companies to provide more…more

Emergency Response, Hazardous Substances, New Legislation, Oil & Gas, Railroads

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Food Labeling Client Alert: FDA Proposes Changes to Iconic Nutrition Facts Label

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently proposed an update to the iconic Nutrition Facts label for packaged foods. In light of new scientific evidence about human health and nutrition, dietary recommendations of…more

Department of Agriculture, FDA, Food Labeling, Nutrition Facts Labels

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Services Propose New Regulations For Incidental Take Under the Endangered Species Act

On September 4, 2013, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) jointly proposed new regulations governing the issuance of "incidental take statements" (ITSs) under Section 7 of the…more

Endangered Species Act, Fish and Wildlife Service, Incidental Take Permits, National Marine Fisheries Service

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Minnesota Community Solar Garden Program Approved, Set to Open

The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission today issued its long-awaited Order approving (with modifications) Xcel Energy’s Community Solar Garden (CSG) Program - Solar Rewards*Community. The Order starts the clock for the…more

Energy, Renewable Energy, Solar Energy

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Implications for Industry of Oregon DEQ's Final Nuisance Odor Strategy

For regulated companies and Associated Oregon Industry members, the publication of the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality's (DEQ) final nuisance odor strategy this past August brought mixed blessings. Among the…more

Environmental Policies, Nuisance

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ESA Law Update: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and NMFS Extend Comment Period on Critical Habitat Regulations

On June 20, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service (“Services”), the two federal agencies responsible for administering the Endangered Species Act (“ESA”), have announced that they will…more

Critical Habitat, Environmental Policies, ESA, Fish and Wildlife Service, National Marine Fisheries Service

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Report Recommends Update of USEPA UIC Program Citing Hydraulic Fracturing Concerns

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) released a report yesterday, July 28, 2014, that presents a need for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“USEPA”) to update the Underground Injection Control class II…more

Energy, Fracking, GAO, Oil & Gas, Popular

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Health Care Alert: ACA Health Insurance Subsidies Called into Question by DC Circuit

Yesterday, a divided three judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit struck down the IRS regulation allowing federal premium subsidies for individuals buying health insurance at Exchanges/Marketplaces…more

Affordable Care Act, Chevron Deference, Employer Mandates, Health Insurance, Health Insurance Exchanges

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California’s New Streamlined #Solar Permitting Law Goes into Effect

Over the weekend, California Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 2188, which is designed to streamline the permitting process for small rooftop solar systems. The new law seeks to give California’s Million Solar Roofs target a boost…more

Energy, Permits, Renewable Energy, Solar Energy

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Energy Law Alert: California Cap and Trade Auctions Upheld as Constitutional

The Sacramento Superior Court has upheld the constitutionality of California Air Resources Board's ("ARB") cap and trade auctions in the related cases California Chamber of Commerce v. ARB and Morning Star Packing Company v…more

Cap-and-Trade, Carbon Emissions, Climate Change, Energy, Energy Policy

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Native American Business Law Alert: Significant Tax and Applicable Law Ambiguity in Proposed Revisions for Indian Lands Rights-of-Way Regulations

The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) is proposing to revise the process for obtaining and administering rights-of-way (ROWs) on Indian lands. While the proposed regulations seek to make improvements and clarifications benefiting…more

BIA, Taxation, Tribal Lands

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Washington State Supreme Court's Decision on Religious Accommodation: What It Means for Employers

Employers in Washington should take note of last week’s decision from the Washington State Supreme Court holding that state law allows a claim for failure to reasonably accommodate an employee’s religious practices. That result…more

Employer Liability Issues, Freedom of Religion, Reasonable Accommodation, Religion

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Final ESA Rule Changes to Impact Analyses in Critical Habitat Designations

Effective October 30, 2013, a final rule issued jointly by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service (collectively, the "Services") modifies when and how the Services analyze impacts, including…more

Critical Habitat, Endangered Species, Endangered Species Act, Fish and Wildlife Service, National Marine Fisheries Service

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Economic Development Law Alert: Idaho Targets Job Creation With New Refundable State Income Tax Credit for Business

Job creation efforts in Idaho received a boost earlier this month, when a new refundable state income tax credit for new or existing businesses went into effect. The Idaho Reimbursement Incentive Act creates a tax credit that is…more

Full-Time Employees, Job Creation, Prevailing Wages, State Taxes, Tax Incentives

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Washington Court of Appeals Expands "Jeopardy" Element of Claim for Wrongful Discharge in Violation of Public Policy

This month the Washington State Court of Appeals, Division III issued a ruling in Becker v. Community Health Systems, Inc. that expands protections in a wrongful termination action based on violation of a public policy…more

Appeals, Community Health Systems, Dodd-Frank, Employer Liability Issues, Hiring & Firing

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Energy Tax Law Alert: IRS Issues New Guidance Regarding Beginning of Construction Requirement for ITC/PTC

On Friday, the IRS issued guidance that clarifies and modifies prior guidance regarding the “beginning of construction” requirement for qualifying for the production tax credit (PTC) under Section 45 of the Internal Revenue…more

Deadlines, Energy Projects, Investment Tax Credits, IRC, IRS

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Xcel Announces 150 MW Solar RFP

This morning, Xcel Energy announced plans to issue a Request for Proposals (RFP) for up to 150 MW of solar energy generation. Xcel included its RFP plans in a filing submitted to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission…more

Renewable Energy, Solar Energy

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With Increased Federal Scrutiny, State Governments Look To Expand Oil-By-Rail Oversight

With the federal Department of Transportation’s recent emergency order impacting those who transport crude oil by rail, state governments are likewise considering additional regulatory oversight that could affect the industry in…more

Bakken Shale, Oil & Gas, Railways, Train Accidents

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9th Cir. Finds FedEx Delivery Drivers Are Employees, Not Contractors

Last week, the 9th Circuit held in two related cases from California and Oregon that FedEx misclassified approximately 2,600 delivery truck drivers as independent contractors, rather than as employees. The cases—Alexander v…more

Employee Rights, Employer Liability Issues, FedEx, Full-Time Employees, Independent Contractors

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Drone Bill Passes Legislature, Heads to Governor

Unmanned aircraft systems - or drones, as they are commonly referred to - have become a hot topic from celebrities to farmers. Recently, AB-1327, a bill, focused on prohibiting certain actions relating to unmanned aircraft…more

Drones, FAA, Farms, Pending Legislation, Popular

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Patent Law Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Makes It Easier to Knock out Vague Patents

Recently, the U.S. Supreme Court clarified the standard by which companies may seek to invalidate a patent for being overly vague, reversing a decision of the Federal Circuit regarding the definiteness standard of Section 112 of…more

Claim Construction, Indefiniteness, Nautilus Inc. v. Biosig Instruments, Patent Infringement, Patent Litigation

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Environmental Law Alert: FWS Extends Eagle "Take" Permit to 30 Years | What You Need to Know

It's official. On Friday, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service ("FWS") issued for public inspection a final rule to extend the maximum term for programmatic "take" permits under the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act ("Eagle…more

Endangered Species, Endangered Species Act, Environmental Policies, ESA Listings, Fish and Wildlife Service

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President Obama Signs Executive Order Banning LGBT Job Discrimination by Federal Contractors and Government

What the Executive Order Does - This Executive Order amends two earlier executive orders: it amends Executive Order 11246, which prohibits discrimination by federal contractors to add sexual orientation and gender…more

Discrimination, Executive Orders, Federal Contractors, Gender Identity, LGBT

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Tax Law Alert: The 2nd Special Session of the 2013 Washington Legislature Adjourned on June 29

The 2nd Special Session of the 2013 Legislature adjourned sine die on June 29, 2013. The accomplishment of this session was passage of a state budget, which had eluded state legislators through the Regular Session that ended…more

B&O Tax, Deficit Reduction, New Legislation, Revenue, State Budgets

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Water Quality Law Alert: CA State Water Control Board Opens Public Comment on "Final Draft" of Long-Anticipated Industrial Storm Water General Permit

As previously reported by my colleague Melissa Foster, on July 19, 2013, the State Water Board published the "Final Draft" of the NPDES Industrial Storm Water General Permit, which is intended to replace the previous version of…more

Clean Water Act, Industrial Discharges, Industrial Stormwater Rule, Permits, Storm Water

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What the Federal Government's New Marijuana Guidance Means for Washington Businesses

On Thursday, the U.S. Department of Justice finally addressed its enforcement strategy as it relates to the recent Washington and Colorado initiatives legalizing marijuana in those jurisdictions. In a memo issued to U.S…more

Criminal Prosecution, DOJ, Marijuana

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Study Suggests EPA Underestimated Natural Gas Methane Emissions, But Not for Fracking, and EPA Releases Study Examining Fracking Emissions Controls

In several recent studies on methane emissions relating to the natural gas industry, scientists concluded that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) underestimated the quantity of methane the industry releases to the…more

Carbon Emissions, EPA, Fracking, Methane, Natural Gas

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Tax Law Alert: Oregon's 2013 Special Legislative Session Passes Changes to Oregon Tax Law

The special legislative session called by Governor Kitzhaber adjourned on October 2, 2013, after passing a "grand bargain" primarily implementing cost and benefit reductions to Oregon's public employees retirement system (PERS),…more

Retirement, Tax Reform

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Zinc: It's Not Just for Lifeguards

Minerals Make Life - an initiative created by the National Mining Association - has recently developed an infographic explaining the importance of the mineral zinc…more

Minerals, Natural Resources

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Supreme Court's Noel Canning Decision Invalidates Numerous NLRB Decisions

The U.S. Supreme Court has invalidated President Obama's 2012 "recess" appointments of several members of the National Labor Relations Board ("NLRB" or "Board"), which occurred while the Senate was in a three day recess. As a…more

Canning v NLRB, NLRA, NLRB, Recess Appointments, SCOTUS

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U.S. Supreme Court Declines to Hear Dispute over California Low Carbon Fuel Standard

Today, the U.S. Supreme Court denied petition for review in Rocky Mountain Farmers Union v. Corey. In Rocky Mountain Farmers, the Ninth Circuit addressed the constitutionality of California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS),…more

Carbon Emissions, Dormant Commerce Clause, Fuel Standards, Oil & Gas, SCOTUS

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Businesses and Policymakers Confirm Mexican Energy Reforms Are Gaining Momentum

Earlier this year, a group of Stoel Rives attorneys traveled to Mexico to assess existing opportunities and pending developments in the Mexican power markets. Some of the reforms and key trends identified during that trip are…more

Energy, Energy Reform, Mexico

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ESA Law Update: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and NMFS Extend Comment Period on Critical Habitat Regulations

On June 20, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service (“Services”), the two federal agencies responsible for administering the Endangered Species Act (“ESA”), have announced that they will…more

Critical Habitat, Environmental Policies, ESA, Fish and Wildlife Service, National Marine Fisheries Service

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CPUC Adopts Transitional Net Metering Rules for Pre-Existing Distributed Generation Systems

On Thursday, March 27, 2014, the California Public Utilities Commission established rules for transitioning distributed generation renewable energy systems from the current net energy metering (NEM) arrangement to the successor…more

CPUC, Energy, Utilities Sector

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Economic Development Law Alert: Idaho Targets Job Creation With New Refundable State Income Tax Credit for Business

Job creation efforts in Idaho received a boost earlier this month, when a new refundable state income tax credit for new or existing businesses went into effect. The Idaho Reimbursement Incentive Act creates a tax credit that is…more

Full-Time Employees, Job Creation, Prevailing Wages, State Taxes, Tax Incentives

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Drone Bill Passes Legislature, Heads to Governor

Unmanned aircraft systems - or drones, as they are commonly referred to - have become a hot topic from celebrities to farmers. Recently, AB-1327, a bill, focused on prohibiting certain actions relating to unmanned aircraft…more

Drones, FAA, Farms, Pending Legislation, Popular

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CFIUS Issues Its 2013 Annual Report to Congress

Number of Filings by Chinese Acquirers Increased Dramatically; First Transaction Blocked by Presidential Order Since 1990 - The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), a multi-agency U.S. government…more

Acquisitions, CFIUS, China, National Security

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Is A 16% Reduction in GHG Emissions From "Business-As-Usual" Enough Under CEQA?

Our previous post on the Second District Court of Appeal’s decision in Center for Biological Diversity v. Department of Fish & Wildlife, No. B245141 (Mar. 20, 2014), highlighted the court’s holdings on California Environmental…more

Appeals, California Endangered Species Act, CARB, Center for Biological Diversity, CEQA

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FMLA Leave or ADA Accommodation (Or Both)? Overview of Beyond the Basics

After more than 20 years under the ADA and FMLA, and 18 years since the passage of the Oregon Family Leave Act (“OFLA”), most employers are familiar with the basics of these laws. Many employee leave situations can be handled in…more

ADA, Compliance, EEOC, Employee Rights, FMLA

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Governor Signs Two New CEQA Bills

Governor Brown has signed two new bills amending the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). AB 52 establishes new consultation procedures with California Native American tribes, and provides that an adverse change to a…more

Amended Legislation, Biofuel, CEQA, Exemptions, Native American Issues

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Air Quality Law Alert: EPA Unveils Sweeping New CO2 Rules

Yesterday, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy announced two new rules that will ultimately result in the application of carbon dioxide (CO2) standards to existing power plants. The first rule was proposed under Section 111(d) of…more

Air Pollution, Air Quality Standards, Carbon Emissions, Clean Air Act, Environmental Policies

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U.S. Supreme Court Clarifies Patent Eligibility Standards

In a recent decision, Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank Int’l, the U.S. Supreme Court clarified the test for determining whether a patent falls within one of the exceptions to patent eligibility under Section 101 of the Patent Act. The…more

Alice Corporation, CLS Bank, CLS Bank v Alice Corp, Mayo v. Prometheus, Patent Litigation

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Areas of Practice
  • Agriculture
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)
  • Antitrust & Trade Regulation
  • Appellate Practice
  • Bankruptcy
  • Class Action
  • Communications & Media Law
  • Construction Law
  • Criminal Law
  • Debtor/Creditor
  • Education
  • Energy & Utilities
  • Environmental Law
  • Finance & Banking
  • Health
  • Indigenous Peoples
  • Insurance
  • Intellectual Property
  • International Law & Trade
  • Labor & Employment Law
  • Litigation
  • Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Products Liability
  • Real Estate
  • Science, Computers, & Tech
  • Securities Law
  • Taxation
  • Toxic Torts
  • Zoning, Planning & Land Use
See more
Locations
Other U.S. Locations
  • Alaska
  • California
  • D.C.
  • Idaho
  • Minnesota
  • Oregon
  • Utah
  • Washington
Number of Attorneys

100+ Attorneys

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