Davis Wright Tremaine LLP

1201 Third Avenue Suite 2200
Seattle, Washington 98101-3045, United States

Contact: Justin Shaw

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California’s “Online Eraser” Law for Minors to Take Effect Jan. 1, 2015

On Jan. 1, 2015, California’s “Online Eraser” law will take effect, requiring websites and other online service operators to delete on demand any content posted by minors. The law also prohibits such operators from sharing…more

Commerce Clause, Communications Decency Act, COPPA, Corporate Counsel, First Amendment

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Good News: California Extends Its Medical Data Breach Notification Requirement From 5 to 15 Days

On Sept. 18, 2014, California’s governor approved Assembly Bill 1755, extending California’s stringent breach notification deadline for medical information breaches from five business days to 15 business days for clinics, health…more

Breach Notification Rule, Data Breach, EHR, Healthcare, Personally Identifiable Information

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Is Your Website Ready for California’s “Minor Eraser” Law?

Starting on Jan. 1, 2015, California’s new “Minor Eraser” law goes into effect and allows minors in California to remove content or information that they have posted as a registered user on a website, online service, online…more

Minor Eraser Law, Minors, Mobile Apps, New Legislation, Notice Requirements

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California Employment Law Update: What’s New for 2015?

The California Legislature was unusually active this year. Significantly, California introduced mandatory paid sick live, created new “unfair immigration-related practices” and expanded potential liability for employers who use…more

Arbitration, Discrimination, Employee Benefits, Employer Liability Issues, Hiring & Firing

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“Corporate Governance” in a Family Business: Who Needs It?

Smaller family-owned businesses are often operated with a degree of informality that is both natural and efficient. The thought is that “corporate governance norms” are for someone else’s business—the big guys with their…more

Corporate Governance, Family Businesses, Small Business

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European Union’s Highest Court Rules Google Must Remove Links Containing Personal Data

In a significant and concerning decision, the European Court of Justice (“ECJ”) has endorsed the so-called “right to be forgotten” and ruled that, in some circumstances, search engines can be compelled to remove search result…more

Data Protection, ECJ, EU, EU Data Protection Laws, Google

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New Omnibus Rule Released: HIPAA Puts on More Weight

On Jan. 17, 2013, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released the long-awaited “Omnibus Rule,” which amends the administrative simplification provisions of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act…more

Business Associates, Covered Entities, Data Breach, Data Protection, Enforcement

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U.S. FCPA Guidance Released by DOJ and SEC

On Nov. 14, 2012, the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission released a joint 130-page Resource Guide to the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”). This long-anticipated guidance lays out the…more

Compliance, DOJ, FCPA, FCPA Resource Guide, SEC

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Sixth Circuit Rules That TripAdvisor’s Ranking of “Dirtiest Hotels” is Protected Opinion

In a helpful decision for online publishers of rankings and ratings, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals held that a travel website’s annual top-ten list of the dirtiest hotels in the United States, based on data compiled from…more

First Amendment, Free Speech, Hotels, TripAdvisor

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IRS Allows Cafeteria Plan Election Changes to Coordinate With ACA Exchanges

New IRS guidance adds two more events that allow participants to change their cafeteria plan elections outside of the annual open enrollment period. These events are designed to coordinate with the employer coverage rules and…more

Affordable Care Act, Cafeteria Plans, Employee Benefits, Health Insurance, Health Insurance Exchanges

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FERC Provides Important Guidance Regarding Confidentiality Agreements and “Duty to Support” Clauses

Yesterday, I wrote a blog post describing a FERC order that, for the first time ever, would have allowed an interstate oil pipeline to grant preferential rates and capacity rights to shippers making volume commitments through an…more

Confidentiality Agreements, Energy, FERC, Oil & Gas, Pipelines

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Portland Requires Employers to Provide Paid Sick Leave Starting in 2014 to Employees Who Work in City

The Portland City Council has passed a paid sick leave mandate that requires employers to provide paid leave for employees to use for personal and family member illness as well as certain safety concerns. The new ordinance takes…more

Local Ordinance, Medical Leave, Municipalities, Paid Leave

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SOX Whistleblower Protections Now Cover Employees of Private Contractors

Until this month, the onerous (for employers) anti-retaliation protection in Section 1514A of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) only applied to employees of publicly traded corporations. But, in a widely reported decision, Lawson v…more

Contractors, FMR LLC, Lawson v FMR, Sarbanes-Oxley, Subcontractors

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Business Associate Agreements: Time to Update

If you sponsor a group health plan that is subject to the HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules, it is time to review and potentially update your business associate agreements…more

Business Associates, Employer Group Health Plans, Health Plan Sponsors, HHS, HIPAA

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ERISA Litigation Review

The courts have been busy in 2014, addressing a variety of issues in the employee benefits field in decisions that impact everyone from union travelers to ESOP fiduciaries. This advisory summarizes a selection of the 2014…more

Blue Cross, Employee Benefits, Employer Liability Issues, ERISA, ESOP

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Good News: California Extends Its Medical Data Breach Notification Requirement From 5 to 15 Days

On Sept. 18, 2014, California’s governor approved Assembly Bill 1755, extending California’s stringent breach notification deadline for medical information breaches from five business days to 15 business days for clinics, health…more

Breach Notification Rule, Data Breach, EHR, Healthcare, Personally Identifiable Information

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Delaware Formally Adopts Proposed Statutory Amendments Governing Mergers Following the Completion of a Tender Offer

The governor of Delaware recently signed into law previously proposed amendments to Section 251(h) of the Delaware General Corporation Law (“DGCL”), which make Section 251(h) more accessible to deal parties by..…more

"Section 251(h), Delaware General Corporation Law, Merger Agreements, New Amendments, Shareholders

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California Court of Appeal Upholds Provision Delegating Authority to Arbitrator to Resolve Disputes Concerning Enforceability of Arbitration Agreement

On May 15, 2014, the California Court of Appeal provided positive news to employers seeking to maintain and enforce arbitration agreements. In Tiri v. Lucky Chances, Inc., a unanimous First Appellate District panel reversed a…more

Appeals, Arbitration, Arbitrators, Delegation of Discretion, Employment Contract

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FTC, DOJ Issue Antitrust Policy Statement Encouraging Private Sharing of Cybersecurity Information

The Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice yesterday issued a joint policy statement on the sharing of cybersecurity information. Declaring that “properly designed cyber threat information sharing is not likely…more

Antitrust Provisions, Barack Obama, Cybersecurity, DOJ, ECPA

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EPA Issues Assessment of Bristol Bay and Large-Scale Mining

On January 15, the Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) issued its final Assessment of Potential Mining Impacts on Salmon Ecosystems of Bristol Bay, Alaska, concluding that large-scale mining in the region poses risks to…more

Clean Water Act, Critical Habitat, Environmental Assessments, Environmental Policies, EPA

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Berkeley's Measure D: What Distributors, Restaurants and Retailers need to know about the Berkeley "Sugar Tax"

According to its backers, the Berkeley “Sugar Tax” is the future of sugar in America. Berkeley’s Measure “D,” which garnered an overwhelming 75% “yes” vote, imposes a general excise tax of $0.01 per ounce on the distribution of…more

Distributors, Food Manufacturers, Grocery Stores, Local Ordinance, New Legislation

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FCC Requires Closed Captioning of IP Video Clips

Yesterday, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released its Second Order on Reconsideration and Second Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“Order” or “FNPRM”) requiring closed captioning of certain video clips…more

Compliance, FCC, Internet, Popular

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FERC Accepts PJM’s Proposal to Limit Imported Capacity

Owners of generation capacity in PJM have often complained of what they perceive as favorable treatment under rules governing PJM’s annual forward capacity auctions when applied to competing resources, namely generation located…more

Energy, FERC, PJM, Power Plants, Utilities Sector

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Estate, Gift, and GST Taxes in 2013: American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 and Other News (Oregon)

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the “Act”) was signed into law on Jan. 2, 2013, avoiding dramatic changes to tax exemptions and tax rates on transfers subject to federal estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer…more

American Taxpayer Relief Act, Charitable Donations, Estate Tax, Fiscal Cliff, Generation-Skipping Transfer

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"Ladies' Night" Promotions Violate California Law

The hospitality industry is no stranger to the rules prohibiting discrimination in accommodations. The average restaurant or hotel operator is aware that the establishment cannot deny service to a patron on the basis of a…more

ADA, Discounts, Discrimination, Hospitality Industry, Protected Class

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OSHA Rules for Injury Reporting Change

Starting January 1, 2015, OSHA rules will require companies nation-wide to report all work-related in-patient hospitalizations, amputations and eye losses within 24 hours. Oregon is one of 6 states that already require employers…more

OSHA, Reporting Requirements

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California’s “Online Eraser” Law for Minors to Take Effect Jan. 1, 2015

On Jan. 1, 2015, California’s “Online Eraser” law will take effect, requiring websites and other online service operators to delete on demand any content posted by minors. The law also prohibits such operators from sharing…more

Commerce Clause, Communications Decency Act, COPPA, Corporate Counsel, First Amendment

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California Employers Must Reimburse Employees for Mandatory Work-Related Cell Phone Use

In a ruling that may spawn a wave of California employment-related class action litigation, a California Court of Appeal has ruled that employers must always reimburse employees for “some reasonable percentage” of their cell…more

Appeals, Bring Your Own Device, Cell Phones, Employee Rights, Employer Liability Issues

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Federal Circuit Holds Foreseeable Equivalents Infringe Under Doctrine of Equivalents

The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit held Wednesday that the doctrine of equivalents covers alternatives that were foreseeable at the time of application but not literally claimed. As a result, patent drafters will not…more

Functional Equivalent, Patent Infringement, Patent Litigation, Patents

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Case Studies on Labor Dispatch

“Labor dispatch” is an arrangement under which an employee is hired by an employment agent (i.e., nominal employer) and then dispatched to work for another company (i.e., actual employer). Typically, there would be (i) an…more

China, Employment Contract, Hiring & Firing, Labor Dispatch Services, Multinationals

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Estate, Gift, and GST Taxes in 2013: American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 and Other News

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the “Act”) was signed into law on Jan. 2, 2013, avoiding dramatic changes to tax exemptions and tax rates on transfers subject to federal estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer…more

American Taxpayer Relief Act, Estate Tax, Generation-Skipping Transfer, Gift-Tax Exemption, Retirement Plan

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SCOTUS Clears District Court Jam Over Test for Standing in False Advertising Cases

Printing has not been this interesting since Dwight Schrute and Jim Halpert bickered over paper sales and Michael Scott told off-color jokes in “The Office.” Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court stepped into the laser…more

Advertising, AT&T, False Advertising, Lanham Act, Lexmark

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Senator Wyden Urges FERC to Support Regional Flexibility in Order No. 1000 Compliance Filings by Northwestern Utilities

In a letter to FERC Chairman Jon Wellinghoff dated March 5, 2013, Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), the new Chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, strongly urged the FERC to support principles of regional…more

FERC, Order No. 1000, Tariffs

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California Court of Appeal Upholds Provision Delegating Authority to Arbitrator to Resolve Disputes Concerning Enforceability of Arbitration Agreement

On May 15, 2014, the California Court of Appeal provided positive news to employers seeking to maintain and enforce arbitration agreements. In Tiri v. Lucky Chances, Inc., a unanimous First Appellate District panel reversed a…more

Appeals, Arbitration, Arbitrators, Delegation of Discretion, Employment Contract

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New SEC Guidance Regarding Social Media; Proposed Clarifications to Delaware Law for Mergers Following a Tender Offer; Change in SEC Notice Procedures for Granting Confidential Treatment Requests

Social media is becoming a desirable tool for companies to communicate with their shareholders and potential investors. Over the last few years, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) has issued guidance on how SEC…more

Disclosure Requirements, Investors, Public Disclosure, Public Offerings, SEC

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Additional IRS Guidance on Physical Work Test and Facility Transfers for Energy Tax Credits

The IRS has released additional guidance (Notice 2014-46) on the “beginning of construction” requirement for the renewable energy production tax credit under Code Section 45 (PTC) and energy investment tax credit under Code…more

Energy, Energy Policy, Energy Tax Incentives, Investment Tax Credits, IRS

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Blurred Lines: Ninth Circuit Applies Same First Amendment Protections to Bloggers as Traditional Media

The Ninth Circuit last week became the first federal court of appeals to find that bloggers are entitled to the same First Amendment protections as traditional print and broadcast media when sued for defamation. Obsidian Fin…more

Blogs, Defamation, First Amendment, Media

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FERC Extends Deadline for Filing Q3 2013 EQRs

Yesterday, on October 10, 2013, FERC issued a long-anticipated order granting public utilities and non-public utilities an extension of time to file their third quarter (Q3) Electric Quarterly Reports (EQRs). FERC will notify…more

Extensions, FERC, Filing Deadlines, Filing Requirements, Reporting Requirements

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California Employment Law Update: What’s New for 2015?

The California Legislature was unusually active this year. Significantly, California introduced mandatory paid sick live, created new “unfair immigration-related practices” and expanded potential liability for employers who use…more

Arbitration, Discrimination, Employee Benefits, Employer Liability Issues, Hiring & Firing

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Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Begins Accepting Consumers’ Money Transfer Complaints

Noting that “[i]t’s pretty incredible that you can quickly send money to almost anywhere in the country or abroad,” the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) recently announced it has begun accepting consumer complaints…more

CFPB, Consumer Complaint System, Money Transfer

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Operation Chokepoint and the Brave New World of Criminal Liability - November 2014

The U.S. Department of Justice and banking regulators have stepped up the pace of criminal, civil and administrative actions against banks, payment processors, money transmitters, and other financial institutions, for violations…more

Anti-Money Laundering, Bank Secrecy Act, Banks, Criminal Prosecution, DOJ

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Supreme Court Solidifies Privacy Protections for Cellphone Data by Holding Warrantless Searches Incident to Arrest Unconstitutional

With the present Term nearing its end, the U.S. Supreme Court took a major step forward in unanimously extending individual protections from police intrusion into the realm of digital privacy. In a consolidated decision in Riley…more

Cell Phones, Evidence, Law Enforcement, SCOTUS, Search Warrant

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DOI Secretary Jewell Announces Two Utility-Scale Solar Projects in California and Nevada

Secretary Jewell, of the Department of Interior, announced approval of two utility-scale solar projects located on the California-Nevada border. The Stateline Solar Project will be located in the Mojave Desert in San Bernardino…more

Department of the Interior, Public Projects, Public-Private Partnerships, Renewable Energy, Solar Energy

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Final Regulations on Play or Pay Mandate Provide Relief to Certain Employers

This week, the IRS issued final regulations concerning the Affordable Care Act’s “play or pay” (also known as the employer shared responsibility) mandate. This advisory describes highlights of these voluminous regulations,…more

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

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Department of Justice Files First False Claims Act Lawsuit Against Physician-Owned Distributorship

On Sept. 8, 2014, the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a 98-page civil complaint alleging that investment returns, paid to a Michigan spinal surgeon and other physicians by a spinal implant company partially owned…more

Anti-Kickback Statute, DOJ, Enforcement Actions, False Claims Act, HHS

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Amendments to the Law on the Protection of the Rights and Interests of Consumers to Take Effect on March 15, 2014

On Oct. 25, 2013, China's Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (the “NPC’s Standing Committee”) promulgated the Amendments to the Law on the Protections of the Rights and Interests of Consumers (the…more

Burden of Proof, China, Disclosure Requirements, Human Rights, Product Recalls

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FFIEC Releases Revised BSA/AML Examination Manual

The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) has released its revised Bank Secrecy Act/Anti-Money Laundering (BSA/AML) Examination Manual. The revisions clarify supervisory expectations and incorporate…more

Anti-Money Laundering, Bank Secrecy Act, Banking Examinations, Banking Sector, Banks

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The Alaska Constitution and Alaska Oil and Gas Projects

In the March 29th decision of Sullivan v. Resisting Environmental Destruction on Indigenous Lands (REDOIL), the Supreme Court of Alaska held that the Alaska Constitution requires only one “best interest finding” (that an oil or…more

Leases, Oil & Gas, Permits

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California’s “Online Eraser” Law for Minors to Take Effect Jan. 1, 2015

On Jan. 1, 2015, California’s “Online Eraser” law will take effect, requiring websites and other online service operators to delete on demand any content posted by minors. The law also prohibits such operators from sharing…more

Commerce Clause, Communications Decency Act, COPPA, Corporate Counsel, First Amendment

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“Operation Failed Resolution:” FTC Seeks Media Outlets’ Help to Police Deceptive Weight Loss Ads

In the wake of settlements between the FTC and four weight loss product purveyors relating to the companies’ advertising tactics, the FTC has issued updated guidance for media outlets regarding the publication of advertisements…more

Advertising, Endorsements, False Advertising, FTC, Weight-Loss Products

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Essential Employment Policies for Family Businesses, Part II

In this second round of “must-have” employment policies, we focus on rest breaks and meal periods. It can be devastating for any business, but especially a family-run business, to face claims of non-compliance with wage and hour…more

Audits, Best Management Practices, Class Action, Employee Benefits, Employment Policies

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In Flight Catalog: Senator Rockefeller Opens Inquiry Into Consumer Data Practices by Airlines

Last week, Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) sent a letter to the top ten revenue generating passenger airlines in the United States, opening an inquiry into their practices related to charging additional fees for optional…more

Airlines, Aviation Industry, CalOPPA, Data Collection, Data Protection

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Trouble Ahead for One-Day Inpatient Stays: New Pre-Billing Challenges Loom

On Aug. 19, CMS published a final rulemaking that may effectively eliminate DRG Part A payments for most acute care inpatient stays of one day…more

CMS, Healthcare, Hospitals, Medical Expenses, Medicare

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1st Circuit Limits Secured Lender’s Right to Post-Petition Interest by Applying Flexible Standard

In an important decision for lenders, the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals recently decided In re SW Boston Hotel Venture LLC, holding that a bankruptcy court was right to give a lender a claim for post-petition interest beginning…more

Commercial Bankruptcy, Hotels, Secured Lenders

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Federal Circuit Holds Foreseeable Equivalents Infringe Under Doctrine of Equivalents

The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit held Wednesday that the doctrine of equivalents covers alternatives that were foreseeable at the time of application but not literally claimed. As a result, patent drafters will not…more

Functional Equivalent, Patent Infringement, Patent Litigation, Patents

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New Washington Supreme Court Opinion Makes Pre-Decisional Case Records Easier to Seal

In a substantial narrowing of the public’s ability to review court files, the Washington Supreme Court has held there is no constitutional right of access to any case record unless and until the record becomes “relevant to a…more

Bennett, Discovery, Ishikawa, Right of Access, Sealed Records

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CMS Reopens the Medicare Payment Adjustment Hardship Exception Application Submission Period for Certain Providers and Hospitals

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently announced the reopening of the submission period for hardship exception applications for eligible professionals and eligible hospitals that have been unable to fully…more

CEHRT, CMS, EHR, Healthcare, Healthcare Reform

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California Appellate Court Holds That Federal Law Preempts Unfair Competition Law Claims Tied to Organic Label

In a case of first impression in the state courts, a California appellate court delivered an early Christmas present Dec. 23 to beleaguered food and beverage companies facing an avalanche of lawsuits under California’s Unfair…more

ConAgra, Food Labeling, Labeling, Organic, Preemption

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When Food Production Leads to Prosecution

Over the last few weeks, two big stories have made headlines in the food industry. Beginning in early February, news media across Europe began reporting that food products tested in several European countries contained…more

Certificates of Analysis, DOJ, EU, FDCA, Food Contamination

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Changing Basic Rules of the Game: CMS Proposed Rule Relating to ACO Governance and Contracting

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services released a new proposed rule for Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) participating in the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP). This advisory expands upon our initial advisory…more

ACOs, CMS, Healthcare, Medicare Shared Savings Program, Proposed Regulation

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New HSR Filing Thresholds Take Effect Feb. 24, 2014

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has announced an increase in the thresholds that determine whether companies are required to notify federal antitrust authorities under the Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) Antitrust Improvements Acts…more

FTC, Hart-Scott-Rodino Act, Pre-Merger Filing Requirements

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Preparing for the Aug. 29 Restaurant Workers Strike and Beyond

Non-union restaurant workers are being urged to strike nationally on Aug. 29 by unions and others hoping to raise industry wages and promote union representation…more

Employee Rights, Non-Union, Restaurant Industry, Strike, Wage and Hour

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The Big Picture: Aereo Held to Violate Public Performance Right

In a 6-3 decision written by Justice Breyer, the Supreme Court today ruled that Aereo’s internet television service infringes broadcasters’ exclusive rights to publicly perform their works. Despite the potentially broad…more

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

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Supreme Court Grants Certiorari in POM’s Attack on FDCA/Lanham Act Preemption

On Friday, the Supreme Court granted the certiorari petition of Pom Wonderful in its Lanham Act false advertising case against Coca-Cola. Pom Wonderful LLC v. Coca Cola Co., 679 F.3d 1170 (9th Cir. 2012), cert granted, ___…more

Advertising, Coca Cola, False Advertising, FDA, FDCA

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California Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan Aims to Provide Certainty for Renewable Developers: Draft Released

On September 23, 2014, the U.S Department of Interior and the State of California released a draft Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (“DRECP”), which covers over 22 million acres in Imperial, Inyo, Kern, Los Angeles,…more

Department of the Interior, DRECP, Energy Projects, Geothermal Energy, Renewable Energy

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California Court of Appeal Upholds Provision Delegating Authority to Arbitrator to Resolve Disputes Concerning Enforceability of Arbitration Agreement

On May 15, 2014, the California Court of Appeal provided positive news to employers seeking to maintain and enforce arbitration agreements. In Tiri v. Lucky Chances, Inc., a unanimous First Appellate District panel reversed a…more

Appeals, Arbitration, Arbitrators, Delegation of Discretion, Employment Contract

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Invalid NLRB Recess Appointments Mean Controversial Decisions Get a Second Look

In Noel Canning, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously decided that President Obama’s January 2012 recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB” or the “Board”) violated the Constitution. Non-union and union…more

Barack Obama, Canning v NLRB, NLRB, Non-Union, Recess Appointments

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Unpaid Interns May Be Entitled to Wages and EEO Protections

Every summer, eager students beat down company doors, offering to do whatever is needed—for free—so they can include experience and a reference on their resume. But, a recent slew of lawsuits by unpaid interns has caused…more

Best Management Practices, Contract Drafting, DOL, EEOC, Employee Rights

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Estate, Gift, and GST Taxes in 2013: American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 and Other News

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the “Act”) was signed into law on Jan. 2, 2013, avoiding dramatic changes to tax exemptions and tax rates on transfers subject to federal estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer…more

American Taxpayer Relief Act, Estate Tax, Generation-Skipping Transfer, Gift-Tax Exemption, Retirement Plan

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U.S. FCPA Guidance Released by DOJ and SEC

On Nov. 14, 2012, the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission released a joint 130-page Resource Guide to the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”). This long-anticipated guidance lays out the…more

Compliance, DOJ, FCPA, FCPA Resource Guide, SEC

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New York’s Shield Law Follows New York Reporters Wherever They May Roam

On Dec. 10, 2013, the New York Court of Appeals resoundingly reaffirmed the important public policy underlying the New York statutory scheme that allows New York journalists to preserve the anonymity of their confidential…more

Journalists, Shield Laws

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FCC Releases Text of Wi-Fi-Focused E-Rate Reform Order and Further NPRM

Last Thursday, July 24, the FCC issued the 176-page text of its E-rate Modernization Order (“Order”), which it adopted on July 11 in a sharply divided and partisan 3-2 vote. The Order includes a Further Notice of Proposed…more

Broadband, E-Rates, FCC, Funding, Rulemaking Process

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Supreme Court Invalidates Software Patents Directed to Implementing Abstract Ideas

Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court announced its highly anticipated opinion in Alice Corp. Pty. Ltd. v. CLS Services, Inc., No. 13-298. In Alice Corp., the Court upheld an en banc decision of the United States Court of…more

CLS Bank, CLS Bank v Alice Corp, Patent Litigation, Patents, Popular

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FCC Proposes Fines of More Than $1.9M for EAS Violations

On March 3, 2014, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued an omnibus Notice of Apparent Liability (NAL) that proposes substantial fines totaling more than $1.9 million against Viacom, ESPN and NBCUniversal (the…more

Emergency Alerts, ESPN, FCC, NBC, Viacom

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Business Associate Agreements: Time to Update

If you sponsor a group health plan that is subject to the HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules, it is time to review and potentially update your business associate agreements…more

Business Associates, Employer Group Health Plans, Health Plan Sponsors, HHS, HIPAA

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PCI DSS 3.0: Business as Usual?

In the past, critics of the Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standard (DSS) have alleged that the DSS requirements either (1) provide little more than a minimal baseline for security with a “check-the-box” compliance…more

Cloud Computing, Compliance, Credit Cards, Data Protection, DSS

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Unpaid Interns May Be Entitled to Wages and EEO Protections

Every summer, eager students beat down company doors, offering to do whatever is needed—for free—so they can include experience and a reference on their resume. But, a recent slew of lawsuits by unpaid interns has caused…more

Best Management Practices, Contract Drafting, DOL, EEOC, Employee Rights

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Is Carbon Capture and Sequestration the Best or Even an Achievable Control Technology To Reduce Carbon Dioxide Emissions from Coal-Fired Power Plants?

EPA’s proposed greenhouse gas emission standards for new power plants rest on the agency’s finding that carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) technologies are “achievable” and the “best system” for the reduction of carbon…more

Carbon Capture and Sequestration, Carbon Emissions, Clean Air Act, Coal-Fired Generation, Coal-Fired Plants

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Good News: California Extends Its Medical Data Breach Notification Requirement From 5 to 15 Days

On Sept. 18, 2014, California’s governor approved Assembly Bill 1755, extending California’s stringent breach notification deadline for medical information breaches from five business days to 15 business days for clinics, health…more

Breach Notification Rule, Data Breach, EHR, Healthcare, Personally Identifiable Information

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Opposition Builds to Proposed Federal Clean Water Act Rules

Federal agencies face growing opposition from members of Congress and industry regarding a proposed definition of “waters of the United States” under the Clean Water Act (CWA). The scope of federal jurisdiction under the CWA has…more

Clean Water Act, EPA, Jurisdiction, Nexus, Rapanos v US

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Ninth Circuit Rejects CERCLA Settlement, Declines to Give Deference to State Agency

On August 1, 2014, a divided panel of the Ninth Circuit reversed a district court’s approval of a multi-party settlement at an Arizona waste site. State of Arizona v. Ashton Company Incorporated Contractors and Engineers, et…more

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FCC Proposes to Make 150 MHz of Spectrum Available for Shared Broadband Through Use of Dynamic Spectrum Access and Sharing Systems

Yesterday, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) took steps to make 150 megahertz of spectrum available for shared broadband use by unanimously approving a Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (FNPRM) setting forth…more

Broadband, Citizens Broadband Service, FCC, NPRM, Wireless Industry

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STELA Reauthorization Act of 2014

President Obama has signed H.R. 5728, reauthorizing the Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act of 2010 (“STELA”) which was set to expire at the end of this year. The new law, entitled the STELA Reauthorization Act of…more

Barack Obama, Copyright, License Agreements, STELA, Television Broadcast Stations

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New HSR Filing Thresholds Take Effect Feb. 24, 2014

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has announced an increase in the thresholds that determine whether companies are required to notify federal antitrust authorities under the Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) Antitrust Improvements Acts…more

FTC, Hart-Scott-Rodino Act, Pre-Merger Filing Requirements

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California Court of Appeal Holds That a Private Conservator is a Public Official; Finds No Actual Malice Shown in Claim Based on CBS Report About Conservatorships

A conservator appointed by the court to temporarily handle certain affairs of an elderly woman is a “public official” for purposes of defamation law who has to meet the “actual malice” standard to survive an anti-SLAPP motion,…more

Actual Malice, Anti-SLAPP, Conservators, Defamation, Public Officials

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Oregon Carbon Tax Study Released

Today the Oregon Legislative Revenue Office released a report on the economic and emissions impacts of a carbon tax in the state. The report was prepared by the Northwest Economic Research Center (NERC) at Portland State…more

Carbon Taxes, Greenhouse Gas Emissions, NERC

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California AG Weighs in on Cybersecurity

Just as NIST completes its version 1.0 national Framework for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity, California Attorney General Kamala Harris has made clear she intends a leadership role for California. With a guide…more

Cybersecurity, Cybersecurity Framework, NIST

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U.S. FCPA Guidance Released by DOJ and SEC

On Nov. 14, 2012, the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission released a joint 130-page Resource Guide to the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”). This long-anticipated guidance lays out the…more

Compliance, DOJ, FCPA, FCPA Resource Guide, SEC

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Changing Basic Rules of the Game: CMS Proposed Rule Relating to ACO Governance and Contracting

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services released a new proposed rule for Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) participating in the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP). This advisory expands upon our initial advisory…more

ACOs, CMS, Healthcare, Medicare Shared Savings Program, Proposed Regulation

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If You Think Your Family Business’s Service Contracts Limit Your Liability In All Situations, Think Again!

Family-owned businesses in the services industry in Washington (and beyond) should be paying attention to a recent Washington Supreme Court case addressing the “Independent Duty Doctrine” (also referred to as the “economic loss…more

Family Businesses, Limitation of Liability Clause, Service Contracts

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U.S. House Approves Law Targeting Sex Trafficking Ads, Threatens to Undermine Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act

On May 20, 2014, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Stop Advertising Victims of Exploitation Act of 2014 (“SAVE Act”). If enacted, the bill would expose websites and other media to federal criminal penalties for…more

Communications Decency Act, Crime Victims, First Amendment, Free Speech, Internet

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Estate, Gift, and GST Taxes in 2013: American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 and Other News (Oregon)

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the “Act”) was signed into law on Jan. 2, 2013, avoiding dramatic changes to tax exemptions and tax rates on transfers subject to federal estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer…more

American Taxpayer Relief Act, Charitable Donations, Estate Tax, Fiscal Cliff, Generation-Skipping Transfer

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Latest HIPAA Settlement: Compliance is an Ongoing Process

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issued its first settlement under new OCR Director Jocelyn Samuels earlier this month. This latest settlement serves as a reminder that a successful…more

Healthcare Facilities, HIPAA, OCR, Patient Confidentiality Breaches, PHI

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TTB Changes Course on Oregon's Wine Growler Law

On April 25, 2014, the Alcohol & Tobacco Tax & Trade Bureau (TTB), the federal agency that regulates and taxes alcohol producers, suspended a March 2014 wine growler ruling that would have unnecessarily required wineries and…more

Registration, Retailers, TTB, Wine & Alcohol

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New Law Makes California Businesses Liable to Workers Supplied by Labor Contractors

Effective Jan. 1, 2015, businesses will be directly liable to workers supplied by labor contractors (including temporary and other staffing agencies) when those labor contractors fail to correctly and completely pay wages or…more

Contractors, Employee Rights, Employer Liability Issues, Labor Contractor, Trucking Industry

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FCC Captioning Quality Rules Likely to Be Effective Mid-March

The FCC is expected to announce soon that the bulk of its new closed captioning quality rules will take effect on March 16, 2015, rather than January 15, as originally projected. The specific rules at issue, which were…more

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Stolen Patient Information on Hospital Computer Not Considered “Medical Information” by California Appellate Court

The California Court of Appeal recently held that the release of an index identifying hospital patients did not constitute the release of medical information under California’s Confidentiality of Medical Information Act (CMIA),…more

Appeals, Data Breach, Healthcare, Hospitals, Medical Records

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FCC Sets Dec. 15 Deadline for Special Access Data Collection Submissions

December 15 is now set as the deadline by which nearly all cable operators, telecommunications carriers, and many others must respond to an extensive FCC special access data collection, per an Order on Reconsideration released…more

Data Collection, Deadlines, FCC, Telecommunications

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Alaska Department of Natural Resources Seeks Comment on Precedent-Setting Instream Flow Water Right

Instream flow rights can be controversial among consumptive water users because they decrease the legally available supply of water for other uses that may arise in the future. Conversely, instream flow rights are often…more

Environmental Policies, Natural Resources, Water, Water Rights

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ERISA Litigation Review

The courts have been busy in 2014, addressing a variety of issues in the employee benefits field in decisions that impact everyone from union travelers to ESOP fiduciaries. This advisory summarizes a selection of the 2014…more

Blue Cross, Employee Benefits, Employer Liability Issues, ERISA, ESOP

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Changing Basic Rules of the Game: CMS Proposed Rule Relating to ACO Governance and Contracting

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services released a new proposed rule for Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) participating in the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP). This advisory expands upon our initial advisory…more

ACOs, CMS, Healthcare, Medicare Shared Savings Program, Proposed Regulation

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Annual Diversity “Green Card” Lottery Registration Period: Oct. 1 to Nov. 3, 2014

Registration for the U.S. Department of State’s electronic Diversity Visa (DV) “green card” lottery for fiscal year 2016 will begin at 12:00 noon U.S. Eastern Daylight Time on Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014. Entries must be submitted…more

DIversity Lottery, Green Cards, Immigrants, Visas

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California Court of Appeal Rules Models’ Right of Publicity Claims Assignable, Not Preempted by Copyright Act

The California Court of Appeal held earlier this month that certain right of publicity claims are freely assignable, and that the Copyright Act does not preempt a right of publicity claim where the defendant has no legal right…more

Copyright, Copyright Infringement, Corporate Counsel, Popular, Right of Publicity

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Seattle’s Criminal Background Check Ordinance and New Rules Take Effect Nov. 1, 2013

Seattle’s new criminal background check ordinance goes into effect Friday, Nov. 1, 2013. In anticipation, the Seattle Office for Civil Rights (“SOCR”) recently issued rules implementing the new law. The ordinance restricts when…more

Criminal Background Checks, Criminal Records

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Congress Confirms NIST’s Role in Cybersecurity – and the Continuation of the Cybersecurity Framework

The Cybersecurity Enhancement Act of 2014 (CEA) was passed by the House and the Senate on December 11th, and signed by the President on the 18th. The bill formalizes the role of the National Institute for Standards and…more

CISA, Cybersecurity, Cybersecurity Framework, DHS, FISMA

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Alaska Passes Initiative to Legalize Recreational Use of Marijuana—What Does that Mean for Employers?

Alaska voted on Nov. 4, 2014, to decriminalize possession, use, display, purchase, and transport of marijuana. Alaska has now joined Colorado, Washington, Oregon, and Washington, D.C. in legalizing recreational marijuana use…more

Decriminalization of Marijuana, Drug Testing, Employer Liability Issues, Employment Policies, Marijuana

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Changing Basic Rules of the Game: CMS Proposed Rule Relating to ACO Governance and Contracting

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services released a new proposed rule for Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) participating in the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP). This advisory expands upon our initial advisory…more

ACOs, CMS, Healthcare, Medicare Shared Savings Program, Proposed Regulation

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FCC Announces Retransmission Consent Reform

Confronted with rapidly increasing retransmission consent costs, the cable and DBS industries have actively sought legislative and regulatory reform for several years without success. The FCC today took two significant steps in…more

Broadcasting, Consent Agreements, FCC, Television Broadcast Stations

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New Regulatory Measures for Internet Transactions in China

On Jan. 26, 2014, the Chinese State Administration for Industry and Commerce (“SAIC”) promulgated the Regulatory Measures for Internet Transactions (the “New Measures”). The New Measures, which took effect on March 15, 2014,…more

China, Internet, SAIC

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FCC Sets Dec. 15 Deadline for Special Access Data Collection Submissions

December 15 is now set as the deadline by which nearly all cable operators, telecommunications carriers, and many others must respond to an extensive FCC special access data collection, per an Order on Reconsideration released…more

Data Collection, Deadlines, FCC, Telecommunications

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EEOC’s Tough Enforcement Stance Against Criminal Background Checks

Earlier this year, the EEOC issued new Enforcement Guidance warning private sector employers that they could face litigation unless they significantly restrict the use of arrest and conviction records in hiring, promotion, and…more

Arrest and Conviction Records, Criminal Background Checks, EEOC, Enforcement Guidance, Strategic Enforcement Plan

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CFPB Proposed Prepaid Account Rule

On November 13, 2014 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued its long-awaited proposed rule on prepaid products. The rules would apply broadly to any “prepaid account,” whether in the form of a card, code or other…more

CFPB, Prepaid Payment Products, Proposed Regulation, Regulation E, Regulation Z

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Extension of Participant Fee Disclosure Deadline Is Available for 2013 or 2014

The Department of Labor has provided plan administrators with a one-time opportunity to delay annual distribution of investment information to retirement plan participants for up to 6 months in 2013 or 2014…more

Benefit Plan Sponsors, Deadlines, Delays, DOL, ERISA

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U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit Upholds FCC’s April 2011 Pole Attachment Order

In a significant victory for cable and telecommunications providers, today the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, in a unanimous opinion, upheld the FCC’s April 2011 decision (2011 Pole Order) lowering…more

Cable Television Providers, FCC, ILEC, National Broadband Plan, Pole Attachment Order

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California Supreme Court Broadens Borrower Fraud Defense to Written Loan Agreements

The California Supreme Court handed down a unanimous decision earlier this week, broadening the scope of the “fraud exception” to the parol evidence rule, to allow a plaintiff challenging the terms of a written agreement to…more

Bank of America, Borrowers, Foreclosure, Fraud Exception, Lenders

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Court of Appeals Rejects Constitutional Challenges to Anti-SLAPP Statute, Affirms Dismissal of Lawsuit Targeting Allegedly Unlawful Boycott and $10,000 Statutory Award for Each Defendant

In one of the first published decisions to interpret Washington’s new anti-SLAPP statute, the Washington Court of Appeals this week affirmed a trial court’s dismissal of a lawsuit that arose from a consumer boycott of Israeli…more

Anti-SLAPP, First Amendment, Olympia Food Co-op

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“Getting to Know You, Getting to Know All About You…” FTC Data Brokers Report Calls for More Industry Transparency, Regulation in How Data Brokers Use Consumers’ Personal Information

“You may not know them, but data brokers know you,” Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chairwoman Edith Ramirez said when she announced the release of the Commission’s newest report on the data broker industry. And in the FTC’s…more

Data Brokers, FTC, Information Reports, Personally Identifiable Information, Risk Mitigation

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Encouraging Gas Development in China—A Work In Progress

The Chinese government recently issued several reform measures intended to open up its gas industry to foreign oil and gas developers. An inflow of foreign capital and technology, it is hoped, will spur construction of the…more

China, Entergy, Foreign Investment, Infrastructure, Oil & Gas

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Regulatory Issues Cause ConocoPhillips to Join Shell Oil in Suspending its Drilling Program in Arctic Waters off Alaska

Today, ConocoPhillips announced that it is suspending its drilling program in the Chukchi Sea off the northwest coast of Alaska for 2014, due to uncertainty regarding the changing regulatory requirements. …more

Arctic Drilling, ConocoPhillips, Offshore Drilling

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When Food Production Leads to Prosecution

Over the last few weeks, two big stories have made headlines in the food industry. Beginning in early February, news media across Europe began reporting that food products tested in several European countries contained…more

Certificates of Analysis, DOJ, EU, FDCA, Food Contamination

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CMS Releases Proposed Rules Allowing Meaningful Use CEHRT Flexibility and Extending Stage 2

CMS recently issued proposed rules that would modify 2014 EHR certification requirements and revise the meaningful use Stage 2 and Stage 3 timeline. In response to industry complaints that many eligible professionals and…more

CEHRT, Certifications, CMS, EHR, Healthcare

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Cloud Computing: Evolving Contracting Practices

The explosion of cloud computing is creating new common standards and changing industry contracting practices for access to these services. Cloud services providers tend to provide standard contractual terms that are largely…more

Cloud Computing, Contract Drafting, Contract Formation, Negotiations, Software

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Good News: California Extends Its Medical Data Breach Notification Requirement From 5 to 15 Days

On Sept. 18, 2014, California’s governor approved Assembly Bill 1755, extending California’s stringent breach notification deadline for medical information breaches from five business days to 15 business days for clinics, health…more

Breach Notification Rule, Data Breach, EHR, Healthcare, Personally Identifiable Information

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California Employment Law Update: What’s New for 2015?

The California Legislature was unusually active this year. Significantly, California introduced mandatory paid sick live, created new “unfair immigration-related practices” and expanded potential liability for employers who use…more

Arbitration, Discrimination, Employee Benefits, Employer Liability Issues, Hiring & Firing

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Unpaid Interns May Be Entitled to Wages and EEO Protections

Every summer, eager students beat down company doors, offering to do whatever is needed—for free—so they can include experience and a reference on their resume. But, a recent slew of lawsuits by unpaid interns has caused…more

Best Management Practices, Contract Drafting, DOL, EEOC, Employee Rights

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Estate, Gift, and GST Taxes in 2013: American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 and Other News

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the “Act”) was signed into law on Jan. 2, 2013, avoiding dramatic changes to tax exemptions and tax rates on transfers subject to federal estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer…more

American Taxpayer Relief Act, Estate Tax, Generation-Skipping Transfer, Gift-Tax Exemption, Retirement Plan

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The Big Picture: Aereo Held to Violate Public Performance Right

In a 6-3 decision written by Justice Breyer, the Supreme Court today ruled that Aereo’s internet television service infringes broadcasters’ exclusive rights to publicly perform their works. Despite the potentially broad…more

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

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Preparing for the Aug. 29 Restaurant Workers Strike and Beyond

Non-union restaurant workers are being urged to strike nationally on Aug. 29 by unions and others hoping to raise industry wages and promote union representation…more

Employee Rights, Non-Union, Restaurant Industry, Strike, Wage and Hour

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California Supreme Court Holds Names of Officers in Police Shootings Should Be Disclosed

The California Supreme Court has held that the names of police officers involved in shootings generally must be disclosed under state public records law, rejecting arguments by police unions and municipalities that the names…more

Police, Police Brutality, Police Misconduct

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IRS Issues New Guidance for Exempt Hospitals: Proposed Procedures for Correcting and Disclosing Violations of Section 501(r)

The IRS has issued new guidance to assist Section 501(c)(3) nonprofit hospital organizations in complying with the requirements of Section 501(r), enacted by the Affordable Care Act…more

501(c)(3), Exempt Organizations, Hospitals, IRS, Non-Profits

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Ecology to hold public meetings on updates to human health criteria in Washington’s water quality standards

On September 12 and 16, 2013, Ecology will hold public meetings at its headquarters in Lacey, Washington regarding its rulemaking to update Washington’s surface water quality standards…more

Drinking Water, EPA, Public Safety, Toxic Exposure, Water

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Do You Need a Living Trust?

There is a good chance that someone you know, perhaps a friend, family member, or financial advisor, has told you that you need a “Living Trust” rather than a Will. Are they right? Living Trusts have become increasingly popular…more

Estate Planning, Living Trust

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CFPB Proposes No-Action Letter Policy for Innovative Products

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has proposed a no-action letter policy under which the agency would issue letters stating that its staff “has no present intention to recommend initiation of an enforcement or supervisory…more

CFPB, Compliance, Enforcement, Financial Products, No-Action Letters

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Estate, Gift, and GST Taxes in 2013: American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 and Other News

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the “Act”) was signed into law on Jan. 2, 2013, avoiding dramatic changes to tax exemptions and tax rates on transfers subject to federal estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer…more

American Taxpayer Relief Act, Estate Tax, Generation-Skipping Transfer, Gift-Tax Exemption, Retirement Plan

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New Form Factors in Cobrand and Private-Label Credit Card Program Agreements

Most current cobrand and private-label agreements involve one or, more usually, two parties that are issuing, branding or developing non-traditional form factors alongside or in lieu of plastic cards. Some of these form factors…more

Brand, Credit Cards, Mobile Payments, Servicing Agreements

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State AGs Looking to Crack Down on Telemarketers Press FCC and FTC

A majority of the nation’s state and territorial Attorneys General have collectively urged the Federal Communications Commission and Federal Trade Commission to revisit rules and policies in ways that would help law enforcement…more

Attorney Generals, Corporate Counsel, Enforcement, FCC, FTC

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Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council Releases Cybersecurity Assessment Results: Boards of Directors and Senior Management Need to Engage

The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) released general observations yesterday from a cybersecurity assessment of over 500 community financial institutions. The cybersecurity assessment evaluated the…more

Corporate Officers, Cybersecurity, Directors, FFIEC, Financial Institutions

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Is Dark Fiber a Regulated Service?

It seems logical to think that leasing dark fiber is not a telecommunications service. Dark fiber is only a component of a service, not a service unto itself. It may therefore come as a surprise to know that the FCC (and the…more

Dark Fiber, FCC, Stored Communications Act, Telecommunications

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California Adds Limited Agent of A Payee Exemption to Its Money Transmitter Licensing Requirement; Relaxes “Right To Refund” Disclosure Requirement for Online Transactions

Following an extended period of public comment and modifications to the bill beginning in March of 2013, the California legislature recently amended its Money Transmission Act to exempt from licensure companies that process…more

Agents, Licensing Rules, Money Transmission Act, Money Transmitter

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Sixteen State Attorneys General Urge CFPB to Limit Pre-dispute Arbitration

State attorneys general from California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington sent a letter to Consumer…more

Attorney Generals, CFPB, Mandatory Arbitration Clauses

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California Court Clarifies Controversial Questions About Medical Staff Peer Review Decisions and the Power of Hospital Boards

Two recent California Court of Appeal opinions decide issues of first impression in the medical staff peer review arena, helping to resolve questions that have long been uncertain and controversial. In the first of the two cases…more

Healthcare, Healthcare Professionals, Hospitals, Peer Review

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Supreme Court to Revisit the Plaintiff-Friendly “Fraud-on-the-Market” Presumption in Securities Fraud Class Actions

The U.S. Supreme Court is set to decide a case this term that could significantly affect the viability of securities fraud class actions against public companies. The case, Halliburton Co. v. Erica P. John Fund, Inc., will…more

Class Action, Fraud, Fraud-on-the-Market, Halliburton, SCOTUS

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Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council Releases Cybersecurity Assessment Results: Boards of Directors and Senior Management Need to Engage

The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) released general observations yesterday from a cybersecurity assessment of over 500 community financial institutions. The cybersecurity assessment evaluated the…more

Corporate Officers, Cybersecurity, Directors, FFIEC, Financial Institutions

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Grant Recipients Likely to Accept a 50 Percent Share of Cleanup Costs Under New Washington Grant Funding Rule

The new Department of Ecology (Ecology) grant funding rules, which are expected to go into effect in September 2014, will change the way grant recipients resolve contribution claims against other liable parties under the Model…more

CERCLA, Environmental Policies, Grants, Toxic Substances Control Act

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Oregon Initiative Legalizes Recreational Use of Marijuana—What Does that Mean for Employers?

On Nov. 4, 2014, Oregon voted to decriminalize, regulate, and tax the production, delivery, and possession of marijuana. Oregon joins Alaska, Colorado, Washington, and Washington, D.C. in legalizing recreational marijuana use…more

Decriminalization of Marijuana, Employment Policies, Marijuana, New Legislation

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1st Circuit Limits Secured Lender’s Right to Post-Petition Interest by Applying Flexible Standard

In an important decision for lenders, the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals recently decided In re SW Boston Hotel Venture LLC, holding that a bankruptcy court was right to give a lender a claim for post-petition interest beginning…more

Commercial Bankruptcy, Hotels, Secured Lenders

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Cybersecurity Legislation Focuses on Federal Government Initiatives – Leaves Private Sector Reforms for 2015

One of the few things the parties in Congress can agree upon these days is cybersecurity – at least when it comes to directing the federal government’s cyber activities. In its final days, the 113th Congress reached agreement on…more

CISA, Cybersecurity, DHS, FISMA, Legislative Agendas

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Second Circuit Issues Its Fair Use Ruling in Authors Guild v. HathiTrust

On June 10, 2014, the Second Circuit issued its decision in Authors Guild v. HathiTrust, a copyright case involving mass digitization of university library collections. The case centered on whether three actions would be…more

Authors Guild, Books, Copyright, Copyright Infringement, Fair Use

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Annual Diversity “Green Card” Lottery Registration Period: Oct. 1 to Nov. 3, 2014

Registration for the U.S. Department of State’s electronic Diversity Visa (DV) “green card” lottery for fiscal year 2016 will begin at 12:00 noon U.S. Eastern Daylight Time on Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014. Entries must be submitted…more

DIversity Lottery, Green Cards, Immigrants, Visas

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New Rules Allow Members of Oregon Nonprofit Corporations to Participate in Meetings Remotely

As of Jan. 1, 2014, members of Oregon nonprofit corporations may participate in membership meetings by remote communication, provided certain safeguards are in place. Directors of Oregon nonprofit corporations have long been…more

Non-Profits, Public Meetings, Telecommunications, Telecommuting

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China’s New Online Information Protection Law

On Dec. 28, 2012, the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress enacted a 12-article Decision on Strengthening Online Information Protection (the “Decision”), without public consultation and after just one…more

China, Data Protection, Internet, Internet Privacy Protection Acts, ISPs

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Federal Reserve Banks Payment System Improvements Project Moves Forward

Keep your eye on this one. In the fall of 2013, the Federal Reserve Banks launched a study of the US payments system. The study has three targets: first, a faster payment system; second, a more secure payment system; and…more

Banks, Cross-Border, Cross-Border Transactions, Federal Reserve, Payment Systems

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FERC Announces Technical Conferences Focused on Clean Power Plan

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has announced plans to hold a series of technical conferences around the country to discuss the impact of the proposed Clean Power Plan on electric utilities. The first of these…more

Clean Power Plan, FERC, Market Participants

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New 2014 Oregon Employment Laws

Oregon employers are directly affected by several new laws recently passed by the legislature. Most changes went into effect on Jan. 1, 2014, unless otherwise noted. We’ve compiled a summary of the most significant changes for…more

Compliance, Employee Rights, Minimum Wage, Paid Leave, Passwords

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Estate, Gift, and GST Taxes in 2013: American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 and Other News

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the “Act”) was signed into law on Jan. 2, 2013, avoiding dramatic changes to tax exemptions and tax rates on transfers subject to federal estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer…more

American Taxpayer Relief Act, Estate Tax, Generation-Skipping Transfer, Gift-Tax Exemption, Retirement Plan

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Unpaid Interns May Be Entitled to Wages and EEO Protections

Every summer, eager students beat down company doors, offering to do whatever is needed—for free—so they can include experience and a reference on their resume. But, a recent slew of lawsuits by unpaid interns has caused…more

Best Management Practices, Contract Drafting, DOL, EEOC, Employee Rights

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You May Not Be Entitled To Use Your Own Name

Working with several artisan food and alcohol producers as clients, we frequently notice that using one’s own name (first, last, or both) as a brand name in association with one’s goods is very common in these industries…more

Brand, Charles Shaw, Food Manufacturers, J Gallo Winery, McDonalds

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Mobile Application: Security Best Practices

The industry for mobile applications is growing rapidly. As companies and independent developers look to gain—or strengthen—footholds in this competitive space, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) asks, “… is security keeping up”…more

Credit Karma, Cybersecurity, Fandango, FTC, Mobile Apps

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FTC Seeks Public Comment on AgeCheq, Inc.’s Proposed Parental Consent Method under COPPA

The Federal Trade Commission announced Monday that it seeks public comment on a new verifiable parental consent method application proposed by AgeCheq, Inc., to enable apps, websites and advertisers to obtain parental consent to…more

AgeCheq, COPPA, FTC, Mobile Apps, Online Advertisements

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California Enacts Mandatory Paid Sick Leave Law

California Governor Jerry Brown has signed into law the Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act of 2014, which requires employers to provide almost all California employees with three paid sick days per year. Although many…more

Employee Rights, Paid Leave, Sick Leave

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Caution: Your Company's Biggest Privacy Threat is...the FTC

Technology companies—from startups to megacorporations—should not overlook an old privacy foe: the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Since its inception in 2002, the FTC’s data security program has significantly picked up steam…more

COPPA, Data Protection, FTC

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The Redskins Decision: What It Means and Does Not Mean

On June 18, 2014, the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB or Board) issued its ruling in Blackhorse v. Pro Football, Inc. (TTAB Cancellation No. 92046185) cancelling the Washington Redskins’ federal trademark registrations…more

Blackhorse v Pro-Football, Disparagement, Football, Laches, Native American Issues

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New 2014 Oregon Employment Laws

Oregon employers are directly affected by several new laws recently passed by the legislature. Most changes went into effect on Jan. 1, 2014, unless otherwise noted. We’ve compiled a summary of the most significant changes for…more

Compliance, Employee Rights, Minimum Wage, Paid Leave, Passwords

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Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia Sponsors Small-Dollar Credit Conference

On July 11-12, 2013, DWT partner Andy Owens attended a conference organized by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia (Federal Reserve) entitled Small-Dollar Credit: Products, Economics, and Regulation…more

Consumer Lenders, Lenders, Loans, Payday Loans

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A Q&A on Recent Developments Involving China Union Pay

Recently, DWT payments team members Vincent Wang and Norm Page sat down in our Shanghai office to discuss recent developments involving China Union Pay (CUP). Vincent Wang has extensive experience helping U.S. companies and…more

China, Employee Rights, Unions, WTO

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Purchasing D&O Insurance: What Family Owned Businesses Need to Know

One of the insurance policies every business should strongly consider having is directors and officers insurance. Regularly referred to as “D&O insurance”, this is an insurance policy covering directors and officers for claims…more

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Ninth Circuit Recognizes Copyright Interest in Actor’s Performance in Response to Fatwa to Justify Takedown of Video

The Ninth Circuit became the first federal appellate court to hold that an actor has a copyright interest in her performance, holding that a district court abused its discretion in denying a motion for preliminary injunction…more

Actors, Copyright, First Amendment, Free Speech, Google

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AP Wins Key Copyright Action: Reselling News Excerpts from Internet Not a Fair Use

On March 21, 2013, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York issued a sweeping decision in favor of DWT’s client, The Associated Press, in its copyright infringement suit against Meltwater News, an online…more

Associated Press, Copyright, Fair Use, Infringement, Meltwater News

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Supreme Court to Revisit the Plaintiff-Friendly “Fraud-on-the-Market” Presumption in Securities Fraud Class Actions

The U.S. Supreme Court is set to decide a case this term that could significantly affect the viability of securities fraud class actions against public companies. The case, Halliburton Co. v. Erica P. John Fund, Inc., will…more

Class Action, Fraud, Fraud-on-the-Market, Halliburton, SCOTUS

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California Air Resources Board-Commissioned Report Recommends Ways to Avoid Price Volatility in California’s Cap and Trade Market

Concerned about the potential for price volatility in its cap and trade program, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) commissioned the Market Simulation Group (MSG) at the University of California Energy Institute to look…more

California Air Resources Board, Cap-and-Trade, Carbon Emissions, Environmental Policies, Greenhouse Gas Emissions

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Court Ruling May Subject Hospitals and Health Care Providers to OFCCP Regulation

Hospitals, health care providers, and managers of other businesses across the country may be surprised to learn that under a new federal court ruling, their organizations may now qualify as government contractors or…more

Affirmative Action, Appeals, Compliance, Consent, Healthcare

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Virtual Currency Round-Up: NY Mulls Bitcoin License; FinCEN Issues Opinion Letters on Bitcoin Mining, Software Providers and Bitcoin Investment Activity; Bitcoin is Money, Says WA DFI

New York Department of Financial Services Superintendent Benjamin Lawsky said the agency is considering a “BitLicense” in hearings held Jan. 28-29 in New York City. The Department will develop a virtual currency regulatory…more

Bitcoins, FinCEN, Virtual Currency

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California Air Resources Board-Commissioned Report Recommends Ways to Avoid Price Volatility in California’s Cap and Trade Market

Concerned about the potential for price volatility in its cap and trade program, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) commissioned the Market Simulation Group (MSG) at the University of California Energy Institute to look…more

California Air Resources Board, Cap-and-Trade, Carbon Emissions, Environmental Policies, Greenhouse Gas Emissions

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Trouble Ahead for One-Day Inpatient Stays: New Pre-Billing Challenges Loom

On Aug. 19, CMS published a final rulemaking that may effectively eliminate DRG Part A payments for most acute care inpatient stays of one day…more

CMS, Healthcare, Hospitals, Medical Expenses, Medicare

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Obama Executive Actions on Immigration – What Employers Should Know

On Nov. 20, 2014, President Obama announced a series of executive actions on immigration, which are outlined on the USCIS website and described in three memoranda issued by the Department of Homeland Security. These initiatives…more

Barack Obama, Corporate Counsel, DACA, DAPA, Deportation

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Federal Tax Benefits Expanded to Certain Same-Sex Couples by U.S. Supreme Court

With the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in United States v. Windsor on June 26, 2013, same–sex couples legally married in a state that recognizes same-sex marriage, and who reside in such a state, are now governed by the…more

Civil Unions, DOMA, Domestic Partnership, Employee Benefits, Estate Tax

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No Harm, Still Foul? Florida Court Approves Data-Breach Class Action Settlement

Data-breach class action suits may have just gained significant traction. On Feb. 28, 2014, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida approved a first of its kind class action data breach settlement that will…more

Class Action, Data Breach, Data Protection, Settlement

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SCOTUS Clears District Court Jam Over Test for Standing in False Advertising Cases

Printing has not been this interesting since Dwight Schrute and Jim Halpert bickered over paper sales and Michael Scott told off-color jokes in “The Office.” Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court stepped into the laser…more

Advertising, AT&T, False Advertising, Lanham Act, Lexmark

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The Dark Side of Health Care Reform: The First “60-Day Rule” False Claims Act Case

The U.S. Department of Justice and New York State Attorney General’s Office recently intervened in a federal False Claims Act case in federal District Court based on allegations that a provider failed to report and refund an…more

Affordable Care Act, DOJ, False Claims Act, Healthcare Reform, Hospitals

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Berkeley's Measure D: What Distributors, Restaurants and Retailers need to know about the Berkeley "Sugar Tax"

According to its backers, the Berkeley “Sugar Tax” is the future of sugar in America. Berkeley’s Measure “D,” which garnered an overwhelming 75% “yes” vote, imposes a general excise tax of $0.01 per ounce on the distribution of…more

Distributors, Food Manufacturers, Grocery Stores, Local Ordinance, New Legislation

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Section 230 Does Not Apply to Allegations that Website for Models Failed to Warn Plaintiff About Potential for Rape

The 9th Circuit earlier this month decided that Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, 47 U.S.C. § 230, does not bar claims that a networking website for models failed to warn a member that a third party might use the…more

Communications Decency Act, Modeling, Rape, Sexual Assault, Websites

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Marijuana, Banking, and the “10-Foot Pole”

On February 14, 2014, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”) issued guidance aimed at clarifying Bank Secrecy Act expectations for financial institutions interested in providing services to marijuana-related…more

Bank Secrecy Act, DOJ, FinCEN, Marijuana, Medical Marijuana

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Culture Shock: A Retailer’s Initial Lending Program With a Bank

Many retailers and OEMs have engaged banks to provide private-label credit to their individual and small-business customers, or have joined with banks in offering them cobranded general-purpose credit. Many other retailers/OEMs…more

Banks, Lending, OEM, Retailers, Small Business

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California Supreme Court Holds Names of Officers in Police Shootings Should Be Disclosed

The California Supreme Court has held that the names of police officers involved in shootings generally must be disclosed under state public records law, rejecting arguments by police unions and municipalities that the names…more

Police, Police Brutality, Police Misconduct

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SOX Whistleblower Protections Now Cover Employees of Private Contractors

Until this month, the onerous (for employers) anti-retaliation protection in Section 1514A of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) only applied to employees of publicly traded corporations. But, in a widely reported decision, Lawson v…more

Contractors, FMR LLC, Lawson v FMR, Sarbanes-Oxley, Subcontractors

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FCC Proposed Revised Net Neutrality Rules

On May 16, 2014, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM)1 proposing revised “Open Internet” (or “net neutrality”) rules, in response to the January 2014 D.C. Circuit decision…more

FCC, Internet, Internet Service Providers, Net Neutrality

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Second Circuit Issues Its Fair Use Ruling in Authors Guild v. HathiTrust

On June 10, 2014, the Second Circuit issued its decision in Authors Guild v. HathiTrust, a copyright case involving mass digitization of university library collections. The case centered on whether three actions would be…more

Authors Guild, Books, Copyright, Copyright Infringement, Fair Use

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California Supreme Court Broadens Borrower Fraud Defense to Written Loan Agreements

The California Supreme Court handed down a unanimous decision earlier this week, broadening the scope of the “fraud exception” to the parol evidence rule, to allow a plaintiff challenging the terms of a written agreement to…more

Bank of America, Borrowers, Foreclosure, Fraud Exception, Lenders

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Surviving the AG Conversion Process: Tips for Nonprofit Hospitals

Any manager of a nonprofit health facility involved in a sale, merger or other affiliation knows that undergoing such complicated transactions can become a major distraction from the day-to-day task of running the facility. A…more

Due Diligence, Healthcare, Hospitals, Mergers, Non-Profits

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Kentucky Enacts Data Breach Notice Law That Adds Extra Protection for Student Information while inBloom Withers

The world of the 1987 movie Robocop largely remains science fiction – except, perhaps the central character’s ability to access massive amounts of confidential personal data through the strike of a keyboard or even his helmet…more

Breach Notification Rule, Data Breach, Data Protection, Student Records, Students

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New California Law Protects Journalist’ Records Held By Third Parties

Journalists in California must now receive advanced notice if their records are being subpoenaed either directly from them or through a subpoena issued to a third party. California’s new law—an amendment to California Civil…more

First Amendment, Journalists, Notice Requirements, Shield Laws, Subpoenas

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“Th-th-th-that’s All, Folks!” Federal Judge Dismisses Class Action against Cartoon Network, Finds Anonymous User IDs Don’t Qualify as Personal Information under VPPA

On October 8, Georgia Federal District Judge Thomas Thrash, Jr., dismissed a putative class action against The Cartoon Network, Inc., where the plaintiff alleged that the animation company violated the Video Privacy Protection…more

Cartoon Network, Class Action, Dismissals, Electronically Stored Information, Mobile Apps

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President Obama Unveils Climate Action Plan

President Obama published a formal Climate Action Plan last month, announcing the plan in a speech delivered at Georgetown University. The plan organizes the President’s executive actions under three pillars..…more

Barack Obama, Carbon Capture and Sequestration, Carbon Emissions, Clean Energy, Climate Action Plan

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The CFPB and the Technological Revolution

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Director Richard Cordray emphasized during the CFPB’s September 11, 2014, meeting with the Consumer Advisory Board the CFPB’s new focus on protecting consumers who use mobile…more

CFPB, Dodd-Frank, Mobile Apps, Mobile Devices, Mobile Payments

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The Space Between Draft and Final

EPA has a lot to consider in finalizing its rule directing states to create programs to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from fossil fuel fired electric generating units. The public comment period on a recently proposed…more

Clean Air Act, Electricity, EPA, Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Power Plants

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Appellate Court Rules Medical Information Must Actually Have Been Viewed by an Unauthorized Person for a Plaintiff to Recover Under the California Confidentiality of Medical Information Act

The California Court of Appeal recently held that in order to recover under California’s Confidentiality of Medical Information Act (CMIA), Civ. Code §§ 56 et seq., a plaintiff must plead and prove that the “stolen medical…more

CMIA, Data Protection, EHR, PHI

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Oregon Initiative Legalizes Recreational Use of Marijuana—What Does that Mean for Employers?

On Nov. 4, 2014, Oregon voted to decriminalize, regulate, and tax the production, delivery, and possession of marijuana. Oregon joins Alaska, Colorado, Washington, and Washington, D.C. in legalizing recreational marijuana use…more

Decriminalization of Marijuana, Employment Policies, Marijuana, New Legislation

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FCC Establishes Application Procedures for Rural Broadband Experiments – Application Deadline Set for Oct. 14

On August 19, the FCC’s Wireline Competition Bureau released a public notice establishing the process for applying for support under the Rural Broadband Experiments program. Applications under this program must be submitted via…more

Applications, Auction, Broadband, FCC, Rural Broadband Experiments

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Case Studies on Labor Dispatch

“Labor dispatch” is an arrangement under which an employee is hired by an employment agent (i.e., nominal employer) and then dispatched to work for another company (i.e., actual employer). Typically, there would be (i) an…more

China, Employment Contract, Hiring & Firing, Labor Dispatch Services, Multinationals

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STELA Reauthorization Act of 2014

President Obama has signed H.R. 5728, reauthorizing the Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act of 2010 (“STELA”) which was set to expire at the end of this year. The new law, entitled the STELA Reauthorization Act of…more

Barack Obama, Copyright, License Agreements, STELA, Television Broadcast Stations

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Essential Employment Policies for Family Businesses, Part II

In this second round of “must-have” employment policies, we focus on rest breaks and meal periods. It can be devastating for any business, but especially a family-run business, to face claims of non-compliance with wage and hour…more

Audits, Best Management Practices, Class Action, Employee Benefits, Employment Policies

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FCC Approves Voluntary Experiments Testing Impact of Technology Transitions

On Jan. 30, 2014, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted to approve a Petition AT&T had filed in November 2012, seeking to conduct trials of the transition from TDM technology to all-Internet Protocol (IP) networks…more

AT&T, Cell Phones, FCC, ILEC, Telecommunications

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Court of Appeals Rejects Constitutional Challenges to Anti-SLAPP Statute, Affirms Dismissal of Lawsuit Targeting Allegedly Unlawful Boycott and $10,000 Statutory Award for Each Defendant

In one of the first published decisions to interpret Washington’s new anti-SLAPP statute, the Washington Court of Appeals this week affirmed a trial court’s dismissal of a lawsuit that arose from a consumer boycott of Israeli…more

Anti-SLAPP, First Amendment, Olympia Food Co-op

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FCC Announces Record $7.4 Million Settlement for Failure to Provide CPNI “Opt-Out” Notices to Customers

On Tuesday, September 3, the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau announced that it had entered into a consent decree with Verizon, under which Verizon will pay $7.4 million to the U.S. Treasury for violating the FCC’s “Customer Proprietary…more

Consent Decrees, Corporate Counsel, Enforcement, Enforcement Actions, FCC

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Five Tips To Launching A Franchise Program Successfully

CONGRATULATIONS! You’ve spent years building your business, developing a loyal following, and honing your operations into a replicable format. You own two, three or maybe ten different locations, all profitable, and understand…more

Franchise Agreements, Franchise Disclosure Document, Franchise Investment Law, Franchises

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Washington Supreme Court Limits Public Access to Hospital Privileging, Peer Review Documents

Public hospital districts may not disclose certain records created during closed-door meetings about hospital privileging decisions, the Washington Supreme Court recently held in Cornu-Labat v. Hospital Dist. No. 2 Grant Cnty.,…more

Disclosure Requirements, Healthcare, Hiring & Firing, Hospitals, Peer Review

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U.S. Steps Up Efforts to Make “Safe Harbor Safe Again” – FTC, Justice Department Work to Keep EU Happy and Avoid Pull Back from Safe Harbor

Within the span of two days, both the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the U.S. Department of Justice announced initiatives meant to assuage the European Union’s concerns over trans-Atlantic data flows and to secure Europe’s…more

CJEU, Data Protection, DOJ, Edward Snowden, EU

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Deferred Payments and Earnouts – A Potential Source of Family Discord

Let’s assume you are selling the family business. In order to get the best terms and price, you may not be able to negotiate the full purchase price in cash up front. More likely, some portion of the purchase price will be…more

Family Businesses, Sale of Assets

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Second Circuit Issues Its Fair Use Ruling in Authors Guild v. HathiTrust

On June 10, 2014, the Second Circuit issued its decision in Authors Guild v. HathiTrust, a copyright case involving mass digitization of university library collections. The case centered on whether three actions would be…more

Authors Guild, Books, Copyright, Copyright Infringement, Fair Use

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Washington State Same-Sex Registered Domestic Partnerships Automatically Convert to Lawful Marriages on June 30, 2014

On June 30, 2014, same-sex domestic partnerships registered with the Washington Secretary of State will automatically convert to lawful marriages, unless one of the partners is age 62 or older, or the domestic partners have…more

Domestic Partnership, Same-Sex Marriage

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Supreme Court Grants Certiorari in POM’s Attack on FDCA/Lanham Act Preemption

On Friday, the Supreme Court granted the certiorari petition of Pom Wonderful in its Lanham Act false advertising case against Coca-Cola. Pom Wonderful LLC v. Coca Cola Co., 679 F.3d 1170 (9th Cir. 2012), cert granted, ___…more

Advertising, Coca Cola, False Advertising, FDA, FDCA

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Stolen Patient Information on Hospital Computer Not Considered “Medical Information” by California Appellate Court

The California Court of Appeal recently held that the release of an index identifying hospital patients did not constitute the release of medical information under California’s Confidentiality of Medical Information Act (CMIA),…more

Appeals, Data Breach, Healthcare, Hospitals, Medical Records

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Second Circuit Confirms Town Of Greenburgh Unlawfully Denied Crown Castle DAS Network

On Friday, Jan. 17, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed that the Town of Greenburgh, New York, had unlawfully denied Crown Castle’s application to install a 20 node distributed antenna system (DAS) in…more

Cell Towers, Communications Act of 1934, Crown Castle, Municipalities, Shot Clock

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Influential Appeals Court Rejects Attempt by Former In-House Counsel to Use Privileged Information Against Company in Whistleblower Lawsuit

The pool of potential qui tam relators may have just shrunk a little, based on a recent decision by the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals that has put the ability of in-house lawyers to become qui tam relators into serious question…more

Attorney-Client Privilege, Confidential Information, Corporate Counsel, Legal Ethics, Qui Tam

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FCC Explores Feasibility of More Precise Wireless Caller-Location Capabilities for E911 Calls From Indoor Locations and Strengthening of Existing E911 Rules

Even as privacy advocates become increasingly nervous about the extent to which our communications devices keep tabs on our whereabouts, the FCC is looking to make it easier to monitor our location more precisely, at least when …more

FCC, Geolocation, Mobile Devices, Warrantless Tracking, Wireless Industry

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Are REITs a Viable Strategy for Communications Companies?

Windstream Holdings, Inc. recently announced plans to spin off its copper, fiber and other fixed real estate assets into an independent publicly traded real estate investment trust (REIT). Windstream received a private letter…more

Corporate Tax Rates, Corporate Taxes, IRS, Popular, Private Letter Rulings

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Labor Dispatch Under the Amended Labor Contract Law of China

Since the Labor Contract Law of China became effective in 2008, many employers have been using labor dispatch to ease the financial and regulatory impacts of the law. On Dec. 28, 2012, the Labor Contract Law of China was…more

China, Chinese Labor Contract Laws

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Oregon Restricts Employers' Access to Private Social Media Accounts

Oregon recently joined numerous states in prohibiting employers from seeking access to employees’ or prospective employees’ private social-media accounts, personal email, and other online content…more

Employee Rights, Passwords, Social Media

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Court Ruling May Subject Hospitals and Health Care Providers to OFCCP Regulation

Hospitals, health care providers, and managers of other businesses across the country may be surprised to learn that under a new federal court ruling, their organizations may now qualify as government contractors or…more

Affirmative Action, Appeals, Compliance, Consent, Healthcare

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Washington’s Courts Delivers Possible Double Whammy Limiting Insurers’ Ability to Use a Late Tender Defense to Delay Providing a Defense

Liability insurance policies require notice be provided to the insurer to allow the insurers time to adequately investigate and respond to claims. An insured’s failure to provide notice to its carrier can result in the insured…more

Duty to Defend, Late Notices, Liability Insurance, Notice Requirements

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Consumer Privacy Legislation? All Sides Weigh In But Remain Far Apart in the Big Debate Over Big Data

Recent comments filed by various stakeholders in response to the U.S. Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s (NTIA) Request for Public Comment (RFC) on “Big Data and Consumer Privacy…more

Big Data, Data Protection, IAB, NTIA, Popular

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H-1B Demand for Fiscal Year 2015 Anticipated to be High: File April 1, 2014 for October Start Date

USCIS will soon post its guidance for filing cap-subject H-1B petitions on April 1, 2014 for an Oct. 1, 2014 start date. It is anticipated that the demand for H-1Bs in fiscal year (FY) 2015 (which starts on Oct. 1, 2014) will be…more

Deadlines, H-1B, Immigrants, USCIS, Visas

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Four Loko Liability Ruling Notable, but Not Game-Changing

A California court recently held that Four Loko is not protected from liability in a wrongful death lawsuit. Fiorini v. City Brewing Co., LLC, 2014 WL 5743133 (Cal. Ct. App. Nov. 6, 2014). In this case, the parents of a…more

Causation, Corporate Counsel, Dram Shop Laws, Four Loko, Wine & Alcohol

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What Does the New Washington Crowdfunding Law Allow?

The Washington State legislature has passed a crowdfunding bill, HB 2023. The Governor has yet to sign the bill, so it is not yet law. But hopefully it will be law soon. If you are wondering what the new law will allow, I…more

Crowdfunding

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China Widens Entry to Medical Device Market to Investment, Innovation While Tightening Regulations on Existing Market Products

As the medical device industry in China continues accelerated growth, investors seek to capitalize on a roughly $65 billion market that is growing at an annual rate of 21 percent. Under recent changes to the regulatory framework…more

China, Foreign Investment, Medical Devices, Popular

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Public Company Alert: “Fraud-on-the-Market” Presumption Adopted in Oregon Securities Case

With the recent Oregon Supreme Court case State of Oregon v. Marsh & McLennan Companies and Marsh Inc., Oregon is among the first states to recognize the “fraud-on-the-market” theory in securities cases…more

Fraud-on-the-Market, Marsh & McLennan Companies, Securities Fraud, State Securities Claims

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Latest HIPAA Settlement: Compliance is an Ongoing Process

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issued its first settlement under new OCR Director Jocelyn Samuels earlier this month. This latest settlement serves as a reminder that a successful…more

Healthcare Facilities, HIPAA, OCR, Patient Confidentiality Breaches, PHI

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Case Studies on Labor Dispatch

“Labor dispatch” is an arrangement under which an employee is hired by an employment agent (i.e., nominal employer) and then dispatched to work for another company (i.e., actual employer). Typically, there would be (i) an…more

China, Employment Contract, Hiring & Firing, Labor Dispatch Services, Multinationals

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California Bill Would Create Cyber Security Commission

In recognition of the increasing threat that cyber-attacks pose to the state's infrastructure and the considerable costs that government and private sectors are estimated to spend on cyber security (more than $70 billion…more

CPUC, Cyber Attacks, Cyber Threats, Cybersecurity, Cybersecurity Framework

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California Supreme Court Holds Names of Officers in Police Shootings Should Be Disclosed

The California Supreme Court has held that the names of police officers involved in shootings generally must be disclosed under state public records law, rejecting arguments by police unions and municipalities that the names…more

Police, Police Brutality, Police Misconduct

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Delaware Formally Adopts Proposed Statutory Amendments Governing Mergers Following the Completion of a Tender Offer

The governor of Delaware recently signed into law previously proposed amendments to Section 251(h) of the Delaware General Corporation Law (“DGCL”), which make Section 251(h) more accessible to deal parties by..…more

"Section 251(h), Delaware General Corporation Law, Merger Agreements, New Amendments, Shareholders

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Latest HIPAA Settlement: Compliance is an Ongoing Process

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issued its first settlement under new OCR Director Jocelyn Samuels earlier this month. This latest settlement serves as a reminder that a successful…more

Healthcare Facilities, HIPAA, OCR, Patient Confidentiality Breaches, PHI

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Setback for Patent Troll Under “Patent Exhaustion” Doctrine Liberates Mobile Technology

Helferich Patent Licensing’s (HPL) licensing program has been dealt a serious blow by an Illinois federal judge. On August 14, Judge John Darrah ruled that the New York Times and others could not infringe HPL’s patents because…more

Patent Exhaustion, Patent Trolls, Patents

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IRS Issues New Guidance for Exempt Hospitals: Proposed Procedures for Correcting and Disclosing Violations of Section 501(r)

The IRS has issued new guidance to assist Section 501(c)(3) nonprofit hospital organizations in complying with the requirements of Section 501(r), enacted by the Affordable Care Act…more

501(c)(3), Exempt Organizations, Hospitals, IRS, Non-Profits

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New MOFCOM Regulatory Measures on Outbound Investment Effective as of Oct. 6, 2014

On Sept. 6, 2014, the Ministry of Commerce (“MOFCOM”) promulgated the Administrative Measures for Outbound Investment (“2014 MOFCOM Measures”), replacing the original Administrative Measures for Outbound Investment that was in…more

China, MOFCOM, Outbound Acquisitions

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California’s “Online Eraser” Law for Minors to Take Effect Jan. 1, 2015

On Jan. 1, 2015, California’s “Online Eraser” law will take effect, requiring websites and other online service operators to delete on demand any content posted by minors. The law also prohibits such operators from sharing…more

Commerce Clause, Communications Decency Act, COPPA, Corporate Counsel, First Amendment

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Chinese Court Rules in Favor of Plaintiff in the First Antitrust Civil Action on Vertical Anti-Competitive Agreements

After judicial proceedings spanning three years, Johnson & Johnson Medical (China) Ltd. and Johnson & Johnson Medical (Shanghai) Ltd. (collectively, “J&J”) lost the antitrust action brought by Beijing Ruibang Yonghe Science and…more

Anti-Competitive, Antitrust Litigation, China, NDRC

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SEC Approves New Corporate Governance Listing Standards for Compensation Committees and Advisers

On Jan. 11, 2013, the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) approved amended corporate governance listing standards for the New York Stock Exchange (the “NYSE”) and the Nasdaq Stock Market (the “Nasdaq”). The amended…more

Compensation Committee, Dodd-Frank, Independence Rules, Listing Standards, Nasdaq

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China Widens Entry to Medical Device Market to Investment, Innovation While Tightening Regulations on Existing Market Products

As the medical device industry in China continues accelerated growth, investors seek to capitalize on a roughly $65 billion market that is growing at an annual rate of 21 percent. Under recent changes to the regulatory framework…more

China, Foreign Investment, Medical Devices, Popular

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China’s New Online Information Protection Law

On Dec. 28, 2012, the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress enacted a 12-article Decision on Strengthening Online Information Protection (the “Decision”), without public consultation and after just one…more

China, Data Protection, Internet, Internet Privacy Protection Acts, ISPs

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Areas of Practice
  • Antitrust & Trade Regulation
  • Appellate Practice
  • Art, Entertainment, & Sports Law
  • Bankruptcy
  • Business Organizations
  • Business Torts
  • Class Action
  • Commercial Law & Contracts
  • Communications & Media Law
  • Construction Law
  • Debtor/Creditor
  • Energy & Utilities
  • Environmental Law
  • Finance & Banking
  • Government
  • Health
  • Immigration Law
  • Insurance
  • Intellectual Property
  • International Law & Trade
  • Labor & Employment Law
  • Litigation
  • Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Products Liability
  • Real Estate
  • Science, Computers, & Tech
  • Securities Law
  • Taxation
  • Toxic Torts
  • Wills, Trusts, & Estate Planning
See more
Locations
Other U.S. Locations
  • Alaska
  • California
  • D.C.
  • New York
  • Oregon
  • Washington
Other Countries
  • China
Number of Attorneys

400+ Attorneys

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