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Better vs. Cheaper? – Court Says Cost Trumps Quality in Health Care – Orders Undoing of Physician Group Tie-up

The health care industry is in the midst of a revolution caused by demographic changes, advancements in medical understanding and, of course, Obamacare. As health care providers scramble to adjust to this brave new world, the…more

Affordable Care Act, FTC, Healthcare, Physicians

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MNPI and NDAs: The Alphabet Soup of Getting Restricted

Investors wanting to equip and position themselves to negotiate a debtor's restructuring may temporarily relinquish their ability to buy and sell securities in exchange for access to material nonpublic information ("MNPI"). This…more

Commercial Bankruptcy, Creditors, Investors, Non-Disclosure Agreement, Restructuring

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Eleventh Circuit Limits Scope of FCA Whistleblower Suit

Late last month, a three-judge panel of the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated portions of a former executive’s False Claims Act (“FCA”) whistleblower action against Health Management Associates Inc. (“HMA”), alleging…more

Appeals, False Claims Act, Health Care Providers, Healthcare Facilities, Medicaid

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LGBT Rule Affecting Federal Contractors Will Become Effective April 8, 2015

Last week, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs announced a Final Rule prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity by federal contractors and subcontractors. The Rule implements…more

Barack Obama, Discrimination, Employer Mandates, Executive Orders, Final Rules

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Deadline Looming for Comments on SEC Proposed Rules on CEO Pay Ratio Disclosure

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently released its proposed rules to amend Item 402 of Regulation S-K to implement the pay ratio disclosure requirement in accordance with Section 953(b) of the Dodd-Frank Wall…more

CEOs, Disclosure Requirements, Dodd-Frank, Executive Compensation, Pay Ratio

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Significant Multiemployer and Single Employer Benefit Rule Changes Take Effect

On December 16, 2014, President Obama signed into law the $1.1 trillion Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act of 2015 (Appropriations Act), which includes some significant changes to the rules governing…more

Appropriations Bill, CBAs, Collective Bargaining, Defined Benefit Plans, Defined Contribution Plans

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Private Funds In Focus - Summer 2013

The Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act became law just over one year ago. The JOBS Act seeks to encourage capital formation and reduce burdensome regulations on smaller issuers of securities. Since its enactment on April…more

Advertising, Disclosure Requirements, EGCs, General Solicitation, Investment Funds

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DC Council Proposes Common Sense Relief to DC Employers From the Wage Theft Prevention Act

Employers in the District of Columbia have been assessing how to deal with the requirements of the Wage Theft Prevention Act of 2014 (the “2014 Act”) since the 2014 Act was passed last year.  Among other things, the 2014 Act…more

Clarification Act, Notice Requirements, Proposed Legislation, Wage Theft Prevention Act

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Eleventh Circuit Requests Assistance in Interpreting Consent-to-Settle Provision

Most cases in the United States settle. Insurers are well-aware of this fact. Thus, insurance companies employ consent-to-settle provisions in insurance policies to limit and control their liability in the likely event of a…more

Class Action, Consent, Contract Formation, Limitation of Liability Clause, Settlement

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Trends in New Jersey Employment Law - July 2014

In recent weeks, New Jersey's primary whistleblower statute—the Conscientious Employee Protection Act ("CEPA")—has been the subject of increased judicial scrutiny…more

Employer Liability Issues, Whistleblower Protection Policies, Whistleblowers

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Recent Appellate Decisions Limit Access To Customer Assets Held At Foreign Bank Branches

On October 23, 2014, the New York Court of Appeals held for the first time that, under New York law, the "separate entity" rule prevents a court from ordering a foreign bank operating branches in New York from restraining a…more

Appeals, Asset Freeze, Banks, Foreign Subsidiaries, Judgment Debtors

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Third Circuit Defines "Extraterritorial" Applicability of Federal Securities Laws in United States v. Georgiou

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit added its voice yesterday to the ongoing judicial effort to construe the U.S. Supreme Court's 2010 decision in Morrison v. National Australia Bank, concerning the extent to which…more

Appeals, Cross-Border Transactions, Extraterritoriality Rules, Market Manipulation, Morrison v National Australia Bank

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Massachusetts Supreme Court Rules ZIP Codes Are Definitely “Personal Identification Information”

In a recent ruling arising from certain certified questions in Tyler v. Michaels Stores, Inc., Civ. No. 11-10920-WGY (D. Mass. Jan. 6, 2012, the Massachusetts Supreme Court interpreted “personal identification information” under…more

Credit Cards, Data Collection, Data Protection, Personally Identifiable Information, Retailers

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Consumer Financial Product Whistleblower Complaints Up Dramatically, SOX Complaints (with OSHA) Down

Since the enactment of Dodd-Frank in 2010, the number of whistleblower complaints filed under the Consumer Financial Protection Act (“CFPA”) has risen significantly while the number of SOX complaints filed with OSHA has largely…more

CFPA, Consumer Financial Products, Dodd-Frank, Financial Institutions, OSHA

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UK Whistleblowing – tips on the rise and the possibility of bounty

Whistleblowing tips reported to the Financial Conduct Authority (the “FCA”), one of the UK bodies with responsibility for regulating the financial services industry, have increased 35 per cent in the past 12 months according to…more

Compliance, Employer Liability Issues, FCA, UK, Whistleblowers

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - February 2015

The Supreme Court cast a ray of sunlight for employers by rejecting the use of a problematic inference in adjudicating claims for retiree benefits brought pursuant to collective bargaining agreements. For many years, the Sixth…more

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

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Trends in N.J. Whistleblowing and Retaliation Law – 2014 Roundup

2014 was another busy year for developments in whistleblowing and retaliation law in New Jersey. This blog post summarizes noteworthy state and federal cases for employers to consider in the new year…more

Adverse Employment Action, Audio Recording, Confidential Documents, Dodd-Frank, Employer Liability Issues

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Massachusetts Governor Signs Parental Leave Bill

On January 7, 2015, Governor Deval Patrick signed into law a Parental Leave bill, which significantly amends Mass. Gen. L. ch. 149, section 105D. Before the amendment, the Massachusetts Maternity Leave Act (“MMLA”) provided…more

Deval Patrick, Employer Mandates, New Legislation, Parental Leave

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Three Point Shot - November 2014

Florida Broker Denied Assist in Argentine Soccer Media Rights Deal - 2014 has been a decent year for soccer – ahem, fútbol – in Argentina. An Argentine club team (San Lorenzo) won the 2014 Copa Libertadores, South…more

Copyright, Soccer, Sports, Trademarks

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Ninth Circuit Sides with FTC; Affirms Ruling That Idaho Health Care Merger Was Unlawful

In a closely-watched post-merger challenge, the Ninth Circuit this week sided with the FTC and affirmed an Idaho federal court's determination that the 2012 merger of two health care providers in the same city violated federal…more

Antitrust Litigation, Corporate Counsel, Divestiture, FTC, Healthcare

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U.S. Supreme Court Rules on the Patentability of Software Patents

The U.S. Supreme Court issued its decision Thursday in Alice Corp. Pty Ltd. v. CLS Bank Int'l, et al., holding that an otherwise unpatentably abstract idea does not become patentable simply by implementing it on a generic…more

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

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Supreme Court Adopts "But For" Causation Standard for Title VII Retaliation Claims

On June 24, 2013, the Supreme Court ruled that a plaintiff in a Title VII retaliation case must prove that the retaliation was the "but for" cause of the employer's adverse action. University of Texas S.W. Med. Ctr. v. Nassar,…more

But For Causation, Discrimination, Racial Discrimination, Religious Discrimination, Retaliation

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - April 2014

This month we discuss the evolving case law on the issue of whether unpaid employer contributions due under a collective bargaining agreement can be viewed as plan assets such that the individuals who decide to withhold such…more

Breach of Duty, Collective Bargaining, ERISA, Executive Compensation, Fiduciary Duty

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New York Nonprofit Revitalization Act Rollout Challenges

As the July 1, 2014 compliance date of the New York Nonprofit Revitalization Act of 2013 (the "Revitalization Act") quickly approaches, many charities operating in New York are confronting some difficult rollout challenges…more

Board of Directors, Corporate Officers, Economic Development, IRS, Non-Profits

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OFCCP Provides Directory of LGBT Resources for Federal Contractors

As discussed in our previous post, on July 21, 2014, President Obama signed Executive Order 13672, banning federal contractors from discriminating against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (“LGBT”) workers, and adding…more

Barack Obama, Executive Orders, Federal Contractors, Federal Procurement Systems, Gender Identity

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MNPI and NDAs: The Alphabet Soup of Getting Restricted

Investors wanting to equip and position themselves to negotiate a debtor's restructuring may temporarily relinquish their ability to buy and sell securities in exchange for access to material nonpublic information ("MNPI"). This…more

Commercial Bankruptcy, Creditors, Investors, Non-Disclosure Agreement, Restructuring

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Supreme Court Holds That Criminal Defendants Challenging Pre-Trial Asset Seizure Cannot Contest a Grand Jury’s Determination of Probable Cause

On February 25, 2014, in Kaley v. United States, the U.S. Supreme Court held 6-3 that criminal defendants challenging the legality of a §853(e)(1) pre-trial asset seizure may not contest a grand jury's determination of probable…more

Criminal Prosecution, Frozen Assets, Grand Juries, Kaley v. United States, Probable Cause

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DOD Issues Proposed Rule Extending Limitations on Contractor Employee Personal Conflicts of Interest

The Department of Defense (DOD), General Services Administration (GSA), and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) have issued a proposed rule amending the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR) to extend the…more

Conflicts of Interest, Contractors, DOD, FAR, Federal Contractors

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Better vs. Cheaper? – Court Says Cost Trumps Quality in Health Care – Orders Undoing of Physician Group Tie-up

The health care industry is in the midst of a revolution caused by demographic changes, advancements in medical understanding and, of course, Obamacare. As health care providers scramble to adjust to this brave new world, the…more

Affordable Care Act, FTC, Healthcare, Physicians

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Senate Democrats Weigh In On Revising FLSA Exemptions

As anyone who follows wage and hour matters is aware, the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”)—at the urging of the White House—is currently revising its regulations regarding who is exempt from the overtime requirements of the Fair…more

Amended Regulation, Barack Obama, DOL, Employer Mandates, Exempt-Employees

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New York Court of Appeals Clarifies Important Questions about Tip-sharing Statute

On June 26, 2013, New York's highest court for the first time weighed in and ruled on what types of employees are qualified to participate in tip-splitting or tip-pooling arrangements under the New York Labor Law, as well as the…more

DOL, Restaurant Industry, Tip-Pooling, Wages

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The Future of Domestic Partner Health Benefits

If the U.S. Supreme Court rules that the federal Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”) is unconstitutional in Windsor v. U.S., which is expected to be decided this month, will employers that offer health benefits to employees’…more

DOMA, Domestic Partnership, Essential Health Benefits, Same-Sex Marriage

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FCC Chairman Announces Proposal to Classify Internet TV Services as Cable Providers

Over the past month, there have been many reports that the FCC would soon publish an NPRM classifying an online video distributor (OVD) that delivers linear streams of video programming as an MVPD ("multichannel video…more

Cable Television Providers, FCC, Internet Streaming, Online Videos, Rulemaking Process

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New Developments on International Automatic Financial Information Exchange and Disclosure

We last updated our clients and friends in February 2014 (Feb 2014 Memorandum) on issues related to the disclosure and automatic exchange of financial information on an international basis. Since then, the pressure from…more

G20, International Financial Reporting Standards, Multilateral Agreement, OECD

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Advisory Committee on Tax Exempt and Government Entities Makes Recommendations on Reporting of Unrelated Business Taxable Income

The Advisory Committee on Tax Exempt and Government Entities (“ACT”), an IRS advisory panel, made several recommendations on issues relating to unrelated business taxable income (“UBTI”) in its annual report to the IRS (the…more

Government Entities, IRS, Tax Exempt Entities, UBTI

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A Primer on EMV Technology for Merchants

With the new year just around the corner, retailers should make a resolution to learn more about EMV technology. That’s because 2015 is slated to be the year EMV technology makes significant inroads in the United States, and…more

Credit Cards, EMV, Payment Systems, Retailers

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The D.C. Wage Theft Prevention Amendment Act Went Into Effect Yesterday – What D.C. Employers Need To Know

Yesterday, the highly anticipated – and already twice-amended – D.C. Wage Theft Prevention Amendment Act (the “Act”) goes into effect for Washington, D.C. employers. In November 2014, then-D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray, signed the…more

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Higher Education Alert: NLRB Announces Two New Standards Favorable to Faculty Unions

In Pacific Lutheran University, 361 NLRB No. 157, a case that had been watched closely by the higher education community, the National Labor Relations Board issued a 3-2 decision the week before Christmas announcing new…more

Colleges, Faculty, Jurisdiction, NLRB, Pacific Lutheran University

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NLRB Takes D.R. Horton One Step Further While the Ninth Circuit Upholds Its Contrary Decision

On January 17, 2014, the National Labor Relations Board Judge Lisa D. Thompson concluded that an agreement that did not prohibit class or collective action still violated Section 8(a)(1) of the National Labor Relations Act…more

Arbitration, Arbitration Agreements, Class Action, Collective Actions, D.R. Horton

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U.S. Supreme Court Tires (For Now) of Playing “Whack-a-Mole” With California Over Arbitration

On January 20, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court denied the petition for certiorari filed in CLS Transp. Los Angeles, LLC v. Iskanian, a case in which the California Supreme Court held that waivers of employees’ right to bring…more

Arbitration, Class Action, Class Action Arbitration Waivers, Employment Contract, Federal Arbitration Act

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Third Circuit Irons Out “Powerful” Performance False Advertising Dispute

The Third Circuit has rendered a notable decision with important implications for the use of fine print in advertising. The Court held that small print statements that explicitly define the terms of a more prominent superior…more

Advertising, Business Litigation, False Advertising, Injunctive Relief

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Another SEC Whistleblower Amicus Brief On Whether Dodd-Frank Covers Internal Complaints

On February 6, the SEC filed its third amicus brief defending its interpretive rule on Dodd-Frank’s anti-retaliation provision, 15 U.S.C. §78u-6(h)(1). The impetus is a ruling out of the Southern District of New York in Berman…more

Anti-Retaliation Provisions, Dodd-Frank, Employer Liability Issues, Internal Reporting, SEC

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - February 2015

The Supreme Court cast a ray of sunlight for employers by rejecting the use of a problematic inference in adjudicating claims for retiree benefits brought pursuant to collective bargaining agreements. For many years, the Sixth…more

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

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IRS Rules on Domesticated Organization and Tax-Exempt Status

Late last year, the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) issued a letter ruling, PLR 201446025, providing that, in certain instances, a nonprofit corporation exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as…more

501(c)(3), Domicile, Filing Requirements, IRS, Non-Profits

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Delaware Independent Director Liability in Control Buyout Cases

The Delaware Supreme Court will address the standard for pleading that an independent director has breached fiduciary duties in connection with a controlling shareholder buyout. The issue was certified for interlocutory appeal…more

Breach of Duty, Buyouts, Controlling Stockholders, DE Supreme Court, Delaware General Corporation Law

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SEC Timeout on Proxy Access Issue Has Wider Implications

On January 16, 2015, the SEC withdrew its December 1, 2014 no-action letter in which it concurred with the view of Whole Foods Market, Inc. that the company was entitled under SEC Rule 14a-8(i)(9) to exclude from its proxy…more

Corporate Governance, Management Proposals, Mary Jo White, No-Action Letters, Proxy Access Rule

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U.S. Supreme Court Rules on the Patentability of Software Patents

The U.S. Supreme Court issued its decision Thursday in Alice Corp. Pty Ltd. v. CLS Bank Int'l, et al., holding that an otherwise unpatentably abstract idea does not become patentable simply by implementing it on a generic…more

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

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Goodyear Pays for the Sins of its Subsidiaries in a $16 Million FCPA Settlement

Following recent trends, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission brought an administrative proceeding against a U.S. issuer for the corrupt activities of its foreign subsidiaries. Earlier this week, Goodyear Tire & Rubber…more

Bribery, Corporate Counsel, Enforcement Actions, FCPA, Foreign Subsidiaries

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Three Point Shot - November 2014

Florida Broker Denied Assist in Argentine Soccer Media Rights Deal - 2014 has been a decent year for soccer – ahem, fútbol – in Argentina. An Argentine club team (San Lorenzo) won the 2014 Copa Libertadores, South…more

Copyright, Soccer, Sports, Trademarks

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The SEC Provides Guidance on the Use of Social Media for Public Company Disclosure

On April 2, 2013, the Securities and Exchange Commission issued a "report of investigation" that provides important guidance for companies that wish to use social media outlets, such as Facebook and Twitter, to publicly disclose…more

Facebook, Netflix, Public Disclosure, Reed Hastings, Regulation FD

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter; November 2013

In This Issue: - Labor and Employment and ERISA Class Actions After Wal-Mart and Comcast — Practice Points for Defendants (Part I – Commonality)* - Agencies Release Guidance on HRAs, FSAs, and Employer Payment Plans…more

Affordable Care Act, Class Action, Class Certification, Comcast, Competition

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Broker-Dealer Beat - January 2015

New FINRA Rule 3110(e) streamlines and clarifies members' obligations relating to background investigations of registered persons and adds a requirement to adopt written procedures to verify the accuracy and completeness of the…more

Broker-Dealer, FINRA, New Regulations, Public Records, Registration

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Biosimilars Update

Novartis came one step closer to becoming the first company to offer a biosimilar drug for sale in the United States. Last month, an independent panel voted 14-0 to recommend FDA approval of Sandoz’s (Novartis’ generics…more

Article III, Biosimilars, BPCIA, Declaratory Judgments, FDA

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Managing Litigation Risk: Critical Questions for Private Equity Professionals Serving on Portfolio Company Boards

Private equity funds, and individuals affiliated with fund sponsors, are increasingly being named as defendants in lawsuits involving their portfolio companies. This litigation risk arises most frequently where a fund controls…more

Board of Directors, C-Suite Executives, D&O Insurance, Fund Sponsors, Personal Liability

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter

Editor's Overview - As it is well known, in Cigna Corp. v. Amara, 131 S. Ct. 1866 (2011), the U.S. Supreme Court identified several forms of appropriate equitable relief that may be available under Section 502(a)(3) of…more

ADEA, Choice-of-Venue, CIGNA v Amara, Compensatory Awards, Employer Group Health Plans

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Hong Kong Government to Extend Existing Offshore Funds Tax Exemption to Private Equity Funds

The Hong Kong government has announced in its latest budget a planned extension of the existing offshore funds tax exemption to bring offshore private equity funds investing in or through Hong Kong, within its scope. The scope…more

Hong Kong, Private Equity Funds, SPVs, Tax Exemptions

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - February 2015

The Supreme Court cast a ray of sunlight for employers by rejecting the use of a problematic inference in adjudicating claims for retiree benefits brought pursuant to collective bargaining agreements. For many years, the Sixth…more

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

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Consumer Financial Product Whistleblower Complaints Up Dramatically, SOX Complaints (with OSHA) Down

Since the enactment of Dodd-Frank in 2010, the number of whistleblower complaints filed under the Consumer Financial Protection Act (“CFPA”) has risen significantly while the number of SOX complaints filed with OSHA has largely…more

CFPA, Consumer Financial Products, Dodd-Frank, Financial Institutions, OSHA

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District Court Allows ERISA Section 510 Retaliation Claim to Proceed

A federal district court in Pennsylvania concluded that Irene Najmola, a former employee of Chester County Hospital, sufficiently pled a retaliation claim under ERISA section 510 by alleging that her employment was terminated…more

Disability, Employer Liability Issues, ERISA, Retaliation

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Same-Sex Spouse Has No Standing to Assert COBRA Notice Claim

A New Jersey federal district court held (in an unpublished opinion) that a former plan participant’s same-sex spouse who never enrolled in the benefit plan did not have standing to assert a claim alleging that his spouse’s…more

COBRA, Employer Group Health Plans, ERISA, Notice Requirements, Same-Sex Marriage

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Sixth Circuit to Construe Scope of CDA Section 230 Immunity on Appeal of Unusual Jones v. Dirty World Decision

How can a website operator lose the broad immunity for liability associated with user-generated content conferred by Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA)? Section 230 has been consistently interpreted by most…more

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Supreme Court Holds That Criminal Defendants Challenging Pre-Trial Asset Seizure Cannot Contest a Grand Jury’s Determination of Probable Cause

On February 25, 2014, in Kaley v. United States, the U.S. Supreme Court held 6-3 that criminal defendants challenging the legality of a §853(e)(1) pre-trial asset seizure may not contest a grand jury's determination of probable…more

Criminal Prosecution, Frozen Assets, Grand Juries, Kaley v. United States, Probable Cause

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DOJ Provides New Guidance on Required Licensing of Essential Patents in Standard-Setting

DOJ recently concluded that a standard-setting organization's proposal to update its policy regarding patents underlying its standards was pro-competitive. DOJ's analysis of the association's process and legal structure provides…more

Antitrust Division, DOJ, IEEE, Patents, Standards-Essential Patents

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US EPA Approves New Standard for Conducting Phase I Environmental Site Assessments

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently issued its final rule amending the standards and practices for conducting environmental "all appropriate inquiries" to include a new standard recently made…more

ASTM, CERCLA, Due Diligence, Environmental Assessments, Environmental Policies

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Ninth Circuit: Spousal Consent Not Required Under Top-Hat Plans

The Ninth Circuit held that a participant’s brother, rather than his spouse, was the proper beneficiary of benefits under a profit sharing plan. In so holding, the Court found that: (a) the participant’s first wife, who was…more

Beneficiaries, ERISA, Exemptions, Profit Sharing, Spouses

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Applying Delaware’s Direct vs. Derivative Analysis to Contract Claims

In NAF Holdings, LLC v. Li & Fung (Trading) Limited, 2014 WL 6462825 (2d Cir. Nov. 19, 2014), the Second Circuit considered, but did not decide, whether the usual direct/derivative analysis governing minority stockholder claims…more

Breach of Contract, Derivative Suit, Derivatives, Fiduciary Duty, Mergers

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New York Proposes First State Bitcoin Regulations

One might have thought the biggest news in the digital currency world lately was Dell announcing that it was now accepting bitcoin. However, after a series of highly-publicized hearings in January, New York State rolled out its…more

Bitcoins, Dell, Digital Assets, Licensing Rules, Proposed Regulation

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New York AG May Face A Tough Road In High Frequency Trading Case Against Barclays

Ruling on Barclays’ motion to dismiss the action brought by the New York Attorney General regarding Barclays’ alternative trading system (“ATS”), Justice Shirley Kornreich suggested that the AG may face substantial hurdles in…more

Alternative Trading Systems, Attorney Generals, Barclays, False Statements, High Frequency Trading

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Continued Rollout of Obama’s Executive Action on Immigration

Today, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) announced that starting May 26, 2015 it will be accepting applications for employment authorization (EAD) for H-4 dependent spouses of H-1B nonimmigrants who…more

Barack Obama, DHS, Employment Authorization Document, Executive Orders, H-1B

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Policyholders Face Uncertainty after Lapse of Terrorism Risk Insurance Program

Congress' failure to renew the Terrorism Risk Insurance Program Reauthorization Act (TRIPRA), a 2007 extension of the 2002 Terrorism Risk Insurance Act, could have significant implications for companies that rely upon property…more

Terrorism Insurance, TRIA

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Responding to the Anthem Cyber Attack

Anthem Inc. (Anthem), the nation’s second-largest health insurer, revealed late on Wednesday, February 4 that it was the victim of a significant cyber attack. According to Anthem, the attack exposed personal information of…more

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

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India’s Sexual Harassment Law Invokes New Pitfalls for Employers

India recently enacted the Sexual Harassment of Women at the Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal Act) 2013, which protects all “aggrieved women” in the workplace from unlawful harassment. To be clear, the term…more

Employer Liability Issues, India, Sexual Harassment

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Hong Kong SFC Continues To Step Up Its Enforcement Action amidst Enhanced Regulation of IPO Sponsors

With the date for the introduction of the new regulatory regime for IPO sponsors now just a matter of weeks away on October 1, 2013, the Hong Kong market has witnessed further action taken by the Securities and Futures…more

Compliance, Enforcement Actions, Futures, Hong Kong, Investors

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Beware Deceptive Trademark Solicitations from Organizations Not Affiliated with the US Patent and Trademark Office

Private organizations not affiliated with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) often use the USPTO's publicly available trademark database to obtain applicant information, and then disseminate deceptive,…more

Patents, Scams, Trademarks, USPTO

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California Employers Down, But Not Out, Concerning Class Certification Issues

Shortly after the California Supreme Court issued its 2012 decision in Brinker Restaurant Corp. v. Superior Court, employers saw an immediate uptick in appellate court decisions supporting the denial of class certification to…more

Brinker, Class Action, Class Certification, Compliance, Employer Liability Issues

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Clearance: Proskauer's Quarterly Antitrust Update - Fall 2013

In Federal Trade Commission v. Actavis, Inc., the Supreme Court, in a 5-3 decision written by Justice Breyer, reversed the Eleventh Circuit's dismissal of an FTC complaint under Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act[1]…more

Actavis Inc., Anti-Competitive, Antitrust Investigations, Antitrust Litigation, Competition

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - February 2015

The Supreme Court cast a ray of sunlight for employers by rejecting the use of a problematic inference in adjudicating claims for retiree benefits brought pursuant to collective bargaining agreements. For many years, the Sixth…more

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

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Skyworks’ Infringement Claims Grounded

In an order dated February 4, 2015, the Honorable George A. O’Toole, Jr. effectively ended Woburn-based Skyworks Solutions, Inc.’s effort to enforce patent rights against manufacturers of LED driver products used in cellphones…more

Cell Phones, Dismissals, LED, Patent Infringement, Patents

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Massachusetts Jury Finds Violation of Stored Communications Act and Massachusetts Privacy Laws

In January 2011, David Cheng (Plaintiff) filed a lawsuit against his former co-worker and fellow radiologist, Laura Romo (Defendant), alleging a violation of the Stored Communications Act (SCA) and Massachusetts privacy law…more

Email, Jury Trial, Privacy Laws, Stored Communications Act, Yahoo!

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New York Court Gives Final Approval to $58.5 Million Music Licensing Settlement

On February 19, 2015, the District Court for the Southern District of New York issued final approval of a $58.5 million settlement between performing rights society SESAC (Society of European Stage Actors and Composers) and the…more

Judicial Settlement Agreements, Licensing Rights, Music, Music Industry, Television Broadcast Stations

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Significant Multiemployer and Single Employer Benefit Rule Changes Take Effect

On December 16, 2014, President Obama signed into law the $1.1 trillion Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act of 2015 (Appropriations Act), which includes some significant changes to the rules governing…more

Appropriations Bill, CBAs, Collective Bargaining, Defined Benefit Plans, Defined Contribution Plans

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Attention Retailers: Target Data Breach Ruling Finds Duty Owed to Issuer Banks

The Court hearing the Target data security breach litigation issued a ruling on December 2, 2014, largely denying Target’s motion to dismiss the Consolidated Amended Class Action Complaint in the Financial Institutions Cases. In…more

Banks, Class Action, Data Breach, Retailers, Target

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FTC Issues Report and Privacy Best Practices for the Internet of Things

On January 27, 2015 the Federal Trade Commission (the “FTC”) issued a report detailing best practices and recommendations that businesses engaged in the Internet of Things (“IoT”) can follow to protect consumer privacy and…more

Best Practices, Data Collection, Data Protection, FTC, Information Reports

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Supreme Court Holds That Criminal Defendants Challenging Pre-Trial Asset Seizure Cannot Contest a Grand Jury’s Determination of Probable Cause

On February 25, 2014, in Kaley v. United States, the U.S. Supreme Court held 6-3 that criminal defendants challenging the legality of a §853(e)(1) pre-trial asset seizure may not contest a grand jury's determination of probable…more

Criminal Prosecution, Frozen Assets, Grand Juries, Kaley v. United States, Probable Cause

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District of Columbia Passes Two New Non-Discrimination Laws Impacting Employers

Earlier this week, D.C.’s Mayor signed two new measures amending the D.C. Human Rights Act (“DCHRA”) to prohibit (1) discrimination against employees of religiously-affiliated educational institutions on the basis of sexual…more

Bias, Birth Control Pill, Discrimination, Human Rights, Religion

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D.C. District Court Vacates Regulation Impacting Overtime Eligibility Under Companionship Exemption

On December 22, 2014, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia vacated a key portion of a U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) regulation amending the minimum wage and overtime exemptions for “companionship” domestic…more

Companionship Exemptions, DOL, FLSA, Home Health Agencies, Home Health Care

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California Employment Law Notes - January 2015

$300,000 In Punitive Damages Upheld In Sexual Harassment Case Despite Nominal Damages Award - State of Arizona v. ASARCO LLC, 2014 WL 6918577 (9th Cir. 2014) (en banc). Angela Aguilar who worked in a copper mine…more

Bribery, Constructive Discharge, Disability Discrimination, Employer Liability Issues, Employment Contract

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Terrorism Risk Insurance Program Reauthorized, But Some Uncertainty Remains

On Monday, President Barack Obama signed into law a six-year extension of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Program after the House and Senate passed the bill by votes of 416-5 and 93-4, respectively. As we previously reported,…more

Corporate Counsel, Terrorism Insurance, TRIA

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Supreme Court Holds That Criminal Defendants Challenging Pre-Trial Asset Seizure Cannot Contest a Grand Jury’s Determination of Probable Cause

On February 25, 2014, in Kaley v. United States, the U.S. Supreme Court held 6-3 that criminal defendants challenging the legality of a §853(e)(1) pre-trial asset seizure may not contest a grand jury's determination of probable…more

Criminal Prosecution, Frozen Assets, Grand Juries, Kaley v. United States, Probable Cause

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Courts Address the Level of Security Banks Must Provide to Business Accounts

Big or small, all bank accounts are susceptible to hijacking and fraudulent wire transfers. Banks ordinarily bear the risk of loss for unauthorized wire transfers. Two independent frameworks exist to govern these transfers: the…more

Bank Accounts, Banks, EFTA, Fraud, UCC

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San Francisco Passes the “Retail Workers Bill of Rights”

San Francisco recently enacted two sweeping ordinances that are being referred to as the “Retail Workers Bill of Rights”. The new laws impose strict new requirements on retail employers and establishments in the City of San…more

Employee Rights, Employer Mandates, Local Ordinance, Retailers, San Francisco

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Demand Futility in Delaware Derivative Actions

Although they often involve overlapping issues, shareholder derivative lawsuits are fundamentally different from securities class actions. While the object of a securities class action is to hold the company (and, perhaps, its…more

Class Action, Demand Futility, Derivative Suit, Shareholder Litigation

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Welcome Guidance on the Definition of Real Property for REITs Proposed by IRS

On May 9, 2014, the Department of Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (the "IRS") released proposed regulations (the "Proposed Regulations") revising and clarifying the definition of real property for the purposes of the…more

IRS, Property Tax, Real Estate Investments, REIT

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Placing Limits on the State Action Doctrine, the Supreme Court Subjects Local Government Hospitals to Scrutiny under the Antitrust Laws

Recent major regulatory and technological developments have brought forth historic changes to the health care market. Health care providers have responded to these developments in several ways. One such mechanism, hospital…more

FTC, FTC v. Phoebe Putney Health System, Hospital Mergers, Hospitals, Immunity

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NLRB Says On-Line Planning For Insubordination Is Not Protected Concerted Activity

In Richmond District Neighborhood Center, Case 20-CA-091748 (Oct. 28, 2014), the Board upheld an Administrative Law Judge’s ruling that a conversation between two employees, who were involved with student programming at the…more

Employee Rights, Facebook, NLRA, NLRB, Social Media

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Tips For Setting Employees’ Salaries And Benefits For MultiNational Companies

Setting the correct salary is never easy and is more an art than a science. In the current economic climate the market fluctuates according to industry, geographical location, budgetary constraints and a whole host of other…more

Bonuses, Discrimination, Employee Benefits, Minimum Wage, Multinationals

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Fifth Circuit Refuses Application of Bright-Line Test in FLSA Seaman Exemption Dispute

On November 13, 2014, the Fifth Circuit handed down its opinion in Coffin v. Blessey Marine Services, Inc., No. 13-20144, 2014 WL 5904734 (5th Cir. Nov. 13, 2014). The opinion addressed several key factors related to the FLSA’s…more

Employer Liability Issues, Exemptions, FLSA, Seamen, Vessels

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Delaware Legislature to Resume Debate in January on Bylaws Imposing Liability on Shareholders

The ability of corporations to impose liability on shareholders through bylaws and charter provisions has been the subject of much debate recently. On May 8, 2014, the Supreme Court of Delaware held in ATP Tour, Inc. v…more

ATP Tours, Bylaws, Delaware General Corporation Law, Fee-Shifting, Shareholders

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What Threats Can Muffle a Corporate Action? FINRA May Rely on SEC Enforcement Proceedings

In a pair of recent opinions, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) found that FINRA acted within the scope of its rules and governing statutory scheme in refusing to announce corporate actions for companies whose…more

Enforcement Actions, FINRA, OTCBB, SEC

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Four More New Jersey Cities Enact Sick Leave Laws

Four New Jersey municipalities—Passaic, Paterson, Irvington, and East Orange—recently enacted ordinances requiring employers to provide paid sick leave to their employees…more

Employee Rights, Local Ordinance, New Regulations, Paid Leave, Sick Leave

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Goodyear Pays for the Sins of its Subsidiaries in a $16 Million FCPA Settlement

Following recent trends, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission brought an administrative proceeding against a U.S. issuer for the corrupt activities of its foreign subsidiaries. Earlier this week, Goodyear Tire & Rubber…more

Bribery, Corporate Counsel, Enforcement Actions, FCPA, Foreign Subsidiaries

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Philadelphia Joins List of Cities Mandating Paid Sick Leave

On February 12, 2015, Philadelphia became yet another jurisdiction to pass a law guaranteeing paid sick leave for employees. The Philadelphia ordinance grants certain employees paid sick leave which can be used to respond to…more

Employer Mandates, Local Ordinance, New Legislation, Paid Leave, Sick Leave

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - February 2015

The Supreme Court cast a ray of sunlight for employers by rejecting the use of a problematic inference in adjudicating claims for retiree benefits brought pursuant to collective bargaining agreements. For many years, the Sixth…more

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

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Employee Was Properly Terminated For Lying And Failing To Cooperate During Company Investigation

John McGrory sued his former employer, alleging he was unlawfully retaliated against for being uncooperative and deceptive during a company investigation into allegations that he had discriminated against a subordinate employee…more

Applied Signal Tech, Discrimination, Gender Discrimination, Hiring & Firing, Internal Investigations

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Illinois Appellate Court Examines Number of Occurrences and Limits Application of Time-and-Space Test

On January 11, 2013, the Illinois Appellate Court for the First District in Chicago issued an important decision concerning the test for the number of occurrences under an insurance policy…more

Cause Theory, Number of Occurences, Time and Space Test

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EEOC Wellness Program Suits Highlight Need for Agency Guidance

The EEOC has been pursuing litigation against wellness programs of late, arguing that certain health plan penalties render participation in wellness program health screens ”involuntary” and thus violate Americans with…more

ADA, Affordable Care Act, EEOC, Employer Liability Issues, Enforcement Actions

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Welcome Guidance on the Definition of Real Property for REITs Proposed by IRS

On May 9, 2014, the Department of Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (the "IRS") released proposed regulations (the "Proposed Regulations") revising and clarifying the definition of real property for the purposes of the…more

IRS, Property Tax, Real Estate Investments, REIT

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NNU Ebola “Day of Action” Slated for November 12, 2014

Registered nurses in 16 states and the District of Columbia are planning a national “Day of Action” by engaging in strikes, picketing, leafleting, rallies, and candlelight vigils on Wednesday, November 12, in support of demands…more

Ebola, Employer Liability Issues, Hospitals, Kaiser Permanente, Nurses

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - June 2013

Our articles this month focus on health care reform. First, Jim Napoli and Brian Neulander comment on the potential for litigation under the Affordable Care Act's (ACA's) whistleblower protections and ERISA Section 510 as a…more

Affordable Care Act, COBRA, Data Breach, Data Protection, DOL

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Supreme Court Holds That Criminal Defendants Challenging Pre-Trial Asset Seizure Cannot Contest a Grand Jury’s Determination of Probable Cause

On February 25, 2014, in Kaley v. United States, the U.S. Supreme Court held 6-3 that criminal defendants challenging the legality of a §853(e)(1) pre-trial asset seizure may not contest a grand jury's determination of probable…more

Criminal Prosecution, Frozen Assets, Grand Juries, Kaley v. United States, Probable Cause

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - December 2014

This month's newsletter focuses on how Plan Trustees can appropriately settle ERISA breach of fiduciary duty claims in order to achieve "complete peace." The article provides a check list and discusses strategies for handling…more

Benefit Plan Sponsors, Breach of Duty, ERISA, Fiduciary Duty, Plan Administrators

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Private Funds In Focus - Summer 2013

The Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act became law just over one year ago. The JOBS Act seeks to encourage capital formation and reduce burdensome regulations on smaller issuers of securities. Since its enactment on April…more

Advertising, Disclosure Requirements, EGCs, General Solicitation, Investment Funds

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Third Circuit to Putative Class Action Plaintiffs: No Receipt, No Class Cert

On May 2nd, the Third Circuit declined to rehear en banc its 2013 decision to reverse class certification in Carrera v. Bayer Corp, which created a big hurdle for would-be plaintiffs bringing suit in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and…more

Ascertainable Class, Bayer, Class Certification, Putative Class Actions, Weight-Loss Products

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UK Supreme Court rules on priority ranking of pension liabilities in company insolvencies

On 24th July the UK Supreme Court handed down its unanimous decision in relation to the LBIE/Nortel appeal, overturning the previous Court of Appeal and first instance judgments…more

Defined Benefit Plans, FSDC, Insolvency, Nortel, Pensions

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New Developments on International Automatic Financial Information Exchange and Disclosure

We last updated our clients and friends in February 2014 (Feb 2014 Memorandum) on issues related to the disclosure and automatic exchange of financial information on an international basis. Since then, the pressure from…more

G20, International Financial Reporting Standards, Multilateral Agreement, OECD

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Third Circuit Defines "Extraterritorial" Applicability of Federal Securities Laws in United States v. Georgiou

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit added its voice yesterday to the ongoing judicial effort to construe the U.S. Supreme Court's 2010 decision in Morrison v. National Australia Bank, concerning the extent to which…more

Appeals, Cross-Border Transactions, Extraterritoriality Rules, Market Manipulation, Morrison v National Australia Bank

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California Supreme Court Rules On Mixed Motive Defense To Discrimination Claims, But Large Verdicts Persist…

Wynona Harris, a bus driver for the City of Santa Monica (the City), alleged that she was fired because of her pregnancy in violation of the prohibition against sex discrimination under the Fair Employment and Housing Act…more

Appeals, Compensatory Damages, Discrimination, FEHA, Mixed Motive Cases

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - February 2015

The Supreme Court cast a ray of sunlight for employers by rejecting the use of a problematic inference in adjudicating claims for retiree benefits brought pursuant to collective bargaining agreements. For many years, the Sixth…more

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

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New York Law Providing Unpaid Leave For Emergency Responders Takes Effect

New York recently passed a new leave law mandating unpaid leave for emergency responders. The law took effect December 22, 2014. Under the law, employers must provide unpaid leave to employees who serve as volunteer…more

Emergency Response, Employer Mandates, New Legislation, Unpaid Leave, Volunteers

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Recent Appellate Decisions Limit Access To Customer Assets Held At Foreign Bank Branches

On October 23, 2014, the New York Court of Appeals held for the first time that, under New York law, the "separate entity" rule prevents a court from ordering a foreign bank operating branches in New York from restraining a…more

Appeals, Asset Freeze, Banks, Foreign Subsidiaries, Judgment Debtors

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District Court Rejects Constitutional Challenge to SEC Administrative Proceedings

We recently wrote that critics, including Judge Jed Rakoff, have been questioning the SEC’s policy of increasingly bringing enforcement actions in its administrative forum rather than federal court. We noted that several cases…more

Administrative Hearings, Enforcement Actions, Jurisdiction, SEC, Subject Matter Jurisdiction

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter

Editor's Overview - This month's newsletter focuses on repayment of pension plan overpayments. Our issue discusses pension plan overpayments to participants, a plan administrator's duties to seek repayment, corrections…more

Employee Benefits, ERISA, Income Taxes, Overpayment, Pensions

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Ninth Circuit Sides with FTC; Affirms Ruling That Idaho Health Care Merger Was Unlawful

In a closely-watched post-merger challenge, the Ninth Circuit this week sided with the FTC and affirmed an Idaho federal court's determination that the 2012 merger of two health care providers in the same city violated federal…more

Antitrust Litigation, Corporate Counsel, Divestiture, FTC, Healthcare

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Private Funds In Focus - Summer 2013

The Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act became law just over one year ago. The JOBS Act seeks to encourage capital formation and reduce burdensome regulations on smaller issuers of securities. Since its enactment on April…more

Advertising, Disclosure Requirements, EGCs, General Solicitation, Investment Funds

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SEC Permits BDCs to Analyze LPs as Stockholders for Certain Co-Investments

On December 5, 2014, the Securities and Exchange Commission, through the Chief Accountant's Office of its Investment Management Division, issued a Guidance Update in response to a public inquiry regarding co-investment…more

Business Development Companies, Limited Partnerships, SEC, Shareholders

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Three Point Shot - November 2014

Florida Broker Denied Assist in Argentine Soccer Media Rights Deal - 2014 has been a decent year for soccer – ahem, fútbol – in Argentina. An Argentine club team (San Lorenzo) won the 2014 Copa Libertadores, South…more

Copyright, Soccer, Sports, Trademarks

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Unemployment Laws Have New Teeth under the Integrity Act: Are You Ready?

In 2011, President Obama signed the Unemployment Insurance Integrity Act (the "Act") as part of the enactment of the Trade Adjustment Assistance Extension Act of 2011 (“TAAEA”). The Act, which is a subsection of the Federal…more

Compliance, FUTA, TAAEA, Unemployment Insurance, Unemployment Insurance Integrity Act

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New York AG May Face A Tough Road In High Frequency Trading Case Against Barclays

Ruling on Barclays’ motion to dismiss the action brought by the New York Attorney General regarding Barclays’ alternative trading system (“ATS”), Justice Shirley Kornreich suggested that the AG may face substantial hurdles in…more

Alternative Trading Systems, Attorney Generals, Barclays, False Statements, High Frequency Trading

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New York Nonprofit Revitalization Act Rollout Challenges

As the July 1, 2014 compliance date of the New York Nonprofit Revitalization Act of 2013 (the "Revitalization Act") quickly approaches, many charities operating in New York are confronting some difficult rollout challenges…more

Board of Directors, Corporate Officers, Economic Development, IRS, Non-Profits

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New York AG May Face A Tough Road In High Frequency Trading Case Against Barclays

Ruling on Barclays’ motion to dismiss the action brought by the New York Attorney General regarding Barclays’ alternative trading system (“ATS”), Justice Shirley Kornreich suggested that the AG may face substantial hurdles in…more

Alternative Trading Systems, Attorney Generals, Barclays, False Statements, High Frequency Trading

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Three Point Shot - November 2014

Florida Broker Denied Assist in Argentine Soccer Media Rights Deal - 2014 has been a decent year for soccer – ahem, fútbol – in Argentina. An Argentine club team (San Lorenzo) won the 2014 Copa Libertadores, South…more

Copyright, Soccer, Sports, Trademarks

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Personal Planning Strategies - December 2014

2015 Estate, Gift and GST Tax Update: What This Means for Your Current Will, Revocable Trust and Estate Plan - As we previously reported, the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the "Act") made the following permanent:…more

Estate Tax, Estate-Tax Exemption, Generation-Skipping Transfer, Gift Tax, Gift-Tax Exemption

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New Developments on International Automatic Financial Information Exchange and Disclosure

We last updated our clients and friends in February 2014 (Feb 2014 Memorandum) on issues related to the disclosure and automatic exchange of financial information on an international basis. Since then, the pressure from…more

G20, International Financial Reporting Standards, Multilateral Agreement, OECD

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New York Proposes First State Bitcoin Regulations

One might have thought the biggest news in the digital currency world lately was Dell announcing that it was now accepting bitcoin. However, after a series of highly-publicized hearings in January, New York State rolled out its…more

Bitcoins, Dell, Digital Assets, Licensing Rules, Proposed Regulation

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Anti-Discrimination and Anti-Retaliation Policies Save Employer from $3.5 Million Punitive Damages Award

On January 7, 2015, the U.S. District Court for the District of Puerto Rico issued an opinion overturning a jury’s $3.5 million punitive damages award for retaliation claims brought under Title VII and Puerto Rico law, finding…more

Anti-Discrimination Policies, Anti-Retaliation Provisions, Corporate Counsel, Employer Liability Issues, Employment Policies

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Massachusetts Governor Signs Parental Leave Bill

On January 7, 2015, Governor Deval Patrick signed into law a Parental Leave bill, which significantly amends Mass. Gen. L. ch. 149, section 105D. Before the amendment, the Massachusetts Maternity Leave Act (“MMLA”) provided…more

Deval Patrick, Employer Mandates, New Legislation, Parental Leave

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Policyholders Face Uncertainty after Lapse of Terrorism Risk Insurance Program

Congress' failure to renew the Terrorism Risk Insurance Program Reauthorization Act (TRIPRA), a 2007 extension of the 2002 Terrorism Risk Insurance Act, could have significant implications for companies that rely upon property…more

Terrorism Insurance, TRIA

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Mihalik v. Credit Agricole Cheuvreux: Second Circuit Clarifies Standard of Review of New York City Human Rights Law Claims

On April 26, 2013, the Second Circuit held that New York City Human Rights Law ("NYCHRL") claims must be analyzed separately from federal and state discrimination claims and that the severe or pervasive standard of liability no…more

Discrimination, Gender Discrimination, Hiring & Firing, Hostile Environment, NYCHRL

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Delaware Independent Director Liability in Control Buyout Cases

The Delaware Supreme Court will address the standard for pleading that an independent director has breached fiduciary duties in connection with a controlling shareholder buyout. The issue was certified for interlocutory appeal…more

Breach of Duty, Buyouts, Controlling Stockholders, DE Supreme Court, Delaware General Corporation Law

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FCC Confirms Solicited Fax Ads Must Include An Opt-Out

Last Thursday the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued an order confirming that companies must include opt-out instructions on all fax ads, even for recipients who previously agreed to receive a fax from the company…more

Advertising, Faxes, FCC, Opt-Outs, Prior Express Consent

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Protecting Healthcare and Other Employees From Ebola

News that a U.S. based health-care worker in Dallas has contracted Ebola while caring for a patient with the disease has raised questions about the protections that health care facilities and other employers must provide for…more

Africa, CDC, Ebola, Healthcare, Healthcare Professionals

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European Union Cookie Sweep Highlights Need for Improved Compliance

On February 3, 2015, European data protection regulators released the Cookie Sweep Combined Analysis Report analyzing how websites use cookies to collect data from European citizens and highlighting noncompliance with Article…more

Cookies, EU, EU Data Protection Laws

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Significant Multiemployer and Single Employer Benefit Rule Changes Take Effect

On December 16, 2014, President Obama signed into law the $1.1 trillion Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act of 2015 (Appropriations Act), which includes some significant changes to the rules governing…more

Appropriations Bill, CBAs, Collective Bargaining, Defined Benefit Plans, Defined Contribution Plans

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Oops! California Court Gets Around to Invalidating 22-Year-Old Meal Period Waiver Rules for Healthcare Employees

For nearly 22 years, IWC Wage Order No. 4 and IWC Wage Order No. 5 have permitted employees in the “health care industry” who work shifts in excess of eight total hours in a workday to “voluntarily waive their right to one of…more

Healthcare, Healthcare Facilities, Healthcare Workers, Putative Class Actions, Rest and Meal Break

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Personal Planning Strategies - December 2014

2015 Estate, Gift and GST Tax Update: What This Means for Your Current Will, Revocable Trust and Estate Plan - As we previously reported, the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the "Act") made the following permanent:…more

Estate Tax, Estate-Tax Exemption, Generation-Skipping Transfer, Gift Tax, Gift-Tax Exemption

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Second Circuit Strays From “Definitively and Specifically” Standard But Still Dismisses SOX Claim

On August 8, 2014, the Second Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a SOX whistleblower retaliation claim brought by a former AECOM Technology Corp. (“Company”) employee, holding that he did not engage in protected activity because…more

Corporate Counsel, Retaliation, Sarbanes-Oxley, Whistleblowers

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Broad Definition of "Disability" Endorsed By Fourth Circuit

In its recently published opinion in Summers v. Altarum Institute, Corp., No. 13-1645, decided January 23, 2014, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit became the first federal appellate court to hold that a…more

ADA, ADAAA, Disability

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Employers To Face More Concurrent EEOC and Tort Suits after Second Circuit Decision

Last week the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit held that filing a charge of discrimination with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) does not toll the statute of limitations for state-law tort…more

Discrimination, EEOC, Sex Discrimination, Statute of Limitations

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Tips For Setting Employees’ Salaries And Benefits For MultiNational Companies

Setting the correct salary is never easy and is more an art than a science. In the current economic climate the market fluctuates according to industry, geographical location, budgetary constraints and a whole host of other…more

Bonuses, Discrimination, Employee Benefits, Minimum Wage, Multinationals

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Can Employees “Blow the Whistle” by Simply Working? EANJ says No.

On behalf of the Employers Association of New Jersey (“EANJ”), Proskauer attorneys Mark Saloman, Daniel Saperstein, Allana Grinshteyn, and Nicholas Tamburri submitted an amicus brief on an important whistleblowing issue pending…more

Employee Rights, Whistleblowers

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New York's Highest Court Sends Strong Signal That Insurance Companies Will Be Held To Their Coverage Obligations

On June 11, 2013, the New York Court of Appeals decided two groundbreaking insurance coverage cases on public policy grounds…more

Bear Sterns, Disgorgement, Duty to Defend, Indemnification, Insurers

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FINRA Alerts Investors to Bitcoin Risks

Bitcoin remains fixed on the front pages of the business and technology news for both the salacious and the positive. Much attention has been paid to the collapse of the former top bitcoin exchange, Mt. Gox, stemming from the…more

Bitcoins, FINRA, Virtual Currency

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Traveling to the United States with Global Entry and NEXUS: Are my wife and me Trusted Travelers?

On January 19, 2015, my wife and me, Global Entry participants completed our NEXUS interviews at the Pearson Airport in Ontario, Canada, and were accepted into the program…more

Canada, Customs and Border Protection, Mexico, Trusted Traveler

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New York Court Gives Final Approval to $58.5 Million Music Licensing Settlement

On February 19, 2015, the District Court for the Southern District of New York issued final approval of a $58.5 million settlement between performing rights society SESAC (Society of European Stage Actors and Composers) and the…more

Judicial Settlement Agreements, Licensing Rights, Music, Music Industry, Television Broadcast Stations

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter; November 2013

In This Issue: - Labor and Employment and ERISA Class Actions After Wal-Mart and Comcast — Practice Points for Defendants (Part I – Commonality)* - Agencies Release Guidance on HRAs, FSAs, and Employer Payment Plans…more

Affordable Care Act, Class Action, Class Certification, Comcast, Competition

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Managing Litigation Risk: Critical Questions for Private Equity Professionals Serving on Portfolio Company Boards

Private equity funds, and individuals affiliated with fund sponsors, are increasingly being named as defendants in lawsuits involving their portfolio companies. This litigation risk arises most frequently where a fund controls…more

Board of Directors, C-Suite Executives, D&O Insurance, Fund Sponsors, Personal Liability

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Responding to the Anthem Cyber Attack

Anthem Inc. (Anthem), the nation's second-largest health insurer, revealed late on Wednesday, February 4 that it was the victim of a significant cyber attack. According to Anthem, the attack exposed personal information of…more

Anthem Insurance, Breach Notification Rule, Class Action, Cyber Attacks, Data Breach

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New Developments on International Automatic Financial Information Exchange and Disclosure

We last updated our clients and friends in February 2014 (Feb 2014 Memorandum) on issues related to the disclosure and automatic exchange of financial information on an international basis. Since then, the pressure from…more

G20, International Financial Reporting Standards, Multilateral Agreement, OECD

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OIG Issues Special Fraud Alert on Business Arrangements with Physician-Owned Entities

On March 26, the HHS Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued a Special Fraud Alert (Fraud Alert) reiterating its long-standing concern that the opportunity for a referring physician to earn a profit by investing in a venture…more

Anti-Kickback Statute, Fraud, Healthcare, Joint Venture, Medical Devices

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U.S. Sentencing Commission Proposes Amendments to Widely Criticized Economic Crime Sentencing Guidelines

In recent years, a growing chorus of federal judges and defense attorneys have protested that the Federal Sentencing Guidelines for economic crimes regularly recommend inconsistent and unjust sentences. Critics claim that §…more

Criminal Prosecution, Federal Sentencing Guidelines, Proposed Amendments, White Collar Crimes

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ACT Report on IRS and Small Exempt Organizations

The Advisory Committee on Tax Exempt and Government Entities (ACT) has released its annual report and recommendations to the IRS on selected issues concerning exempt organizations, employee benefit plans, tax-exempt financing,…more

Exempt Organizations, IRS

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter; November 2013

In This Issue: - Labor and Employment and ERISA Class Actions After Wal-Mart and Comcast — Practice Points for Defendants (Part I – Commonality)* - Agencies Release Guidance on HRAs, FSAs, and Employer Payment Plans…more

Affordable Care Act, Class Action, Class Certification, Comcast, Competition

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San Francisco "Bans the Box" for Private Employers and City Contractors

The Mayor of San Francisco recently signed an ordinance that prohibits private employers and city contractors and subcontractors (collectively "contractors") from asking job applicants about their criminal histories until after…more

Arrest and Conviction Records, Ban the Box, Criminal Background Checks, Employment Application, Hiring & Firing

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Governor Cuomo Announces New Waiver Addressing Critical Issues in New York State Health Care System through DSRIP Program

On April 14, 2014, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that New York has finalized terms and conditions with the federal government for a waiver that will allow the state to reinvest the $8 billion in federal savings from the…more

CMS, Healthcare, Hospitals, Medicaid, Waivers

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - February 2015

The Supreme Court cast a ray of sunlight for employers by rejecting the use of a problematic inference in adjudicating claims for retiree benefits brought pursuant to collective bargaining agreements. For many years, the Sixth…more

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

See All Updates »

Supreme Court Dispenses With the Yard-Man Inferences

In a decision watched closely by both employers and unions, a unanimous Supreme Court has resolved a thirty-plus year split among the circuit courts on the standards governing claims for retiree health-care benefits arising from…more

CBAs, Collective Bargaining, Employer Group Health Plans, Employer Healthcare Costs, Health Insurance

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Wealth Management Update - September 2013

The September §7520 rate for use with estate planning techniques such as CRTs, CLTs, QPRTs and GRATs is 2.0%, which is the same as the August rate and an increase from July's rate of 1.2%. The applicable federal rate ("AFR") for…more

Estate Planning, Grantor Trusts, IRS, Trusts

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Hong Kong – Applying Securities Laws to Sales of Hotel Units

In a move that represents a first in Hong Kong, one of the territory's largest listed property developers, Cheung Kong (Holdings) Limited and certain of its subsidiaries have entered into an agreement with the Securities and…more

China, Hong Kong, Hotels, REIT, SFC

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A Woolley Situation: District of New Jersey Refuses to Enforce Arbitration Clause in Employee Handbook

New Jersey employers should consider the risks of including an arbitration agreement in a standard employment handbook in light of a recent decision by the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey. In Raymours…more

Arbitration, Employee Handbooks, Mandatory Arbitration Clauses

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Anti-Discrimination and Anti-Retaliation Policies Save Employer from $3.5 Million Punitive Damages Award

On January 7, 2015, the U.S. District Court for the District of Puerto Rico issued an opinion overturning a jury’s $3.5 million punitive damages award for retaliation claims brought under Title VII and Puerto Rico law, finding…more

Anti-Discrimination Policies, Anti-Retaliation Provisions, Corporate Counsel, Employer Liability Issues, Employment Policies

See All Updates »

Welcome Guidance on the Definition of Real Property for REITs Proposed by IRS

On May 9, 2014, the Department of Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (the "IRS") released proposed regulations (the "Proposed Regulations") revising and clarifying the definition of real property for the purposes of the…more

IRS, Property Tax, Real Estate Investments, REIT

See All Updates »

Employers To Face More Concurrent EEOC and Tort Suits after Second Circuit Decision

Last week the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit held that filing a charge of discrimination with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) does not toll the statute of limitations for state-law tort…more

Discrimination, EEOC, Sex Discrimination, Statute of Limitations

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MNPI and NDAs: The Alphabet Soup of Getting Restricted

Investors wanting to equip and position themselves to negotiate a debtor's restructuring may temporarily relinquish their ability to buy and sell securities in exchange for access to material nonpublic information ("MNPI"). This…more

Commercial Bankruptcy, Creditors, Investors, Non-Disclosure Agreement, Restructuring

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Ninth Circuit Sides with FTC; Affirms Ruling That Idaho Health Care Merger Was Unlawful

In a closely-watched post-merger challenge, the Ninth Circuit this week sided with the FTC and affirmed an Idaho federal court's determination that the 2012 merger of two health care providers in the same city violated federal…more

Antitrust Litigation, Corporate Counsel, Divestiture, FTC, Healthcare

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Biosimilars Update

Novartis came one step closer to becoming the first company to offer a biosimilar drug for sale in the United States. Last month, an independent panel voted 14-0 to recommend FDA approval of Sandoz’s (Novartis’ generics…more

Article III, Biosimilars, BPCIA, Declaratory Judgments, FDA

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New York Proposes First State Bitcoin Regulations

One might have thought the biggest news in the digital currency world lately was Dell announcing that it was now accepting bitcoin. However, after a series of highly-publicized hearings in January, New York State rolled out its…more

Bitcoins, Dell, Digital Assets, Licensing Rules, Proposed Regulation

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Ninth Circuit Sides with FTC; Affirms Ruling That Idaho Health Care Merger Was Unlawful

In a closely-watched post-merger challenge, the Ninth Circuit this week sided with the FTC and affirmed an Idaho federal court's determination that the 2012 merger of two health care providers in the same city violated federal…more

Antitrust Litigation, Corporate Counsel, Divestiture, FTC, Healthcare

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California Breaks New Ground in Education Privacy Law with K-12 Student Data Privacy Bill

A substantial rise in schools’ use of online educational technology products has caused educators to become increasingly reliant on these products to develop their curricula, deliver materials to students in real time, and…more

Cloud Computing, Data Protection, New Legislation, Privacy Laws, Public Schools

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Consumer Class Actions Brewing in Florida as Federal Courts Deny a Series of Motions to Dismiss

While California historically has a reputation as the most plaintiff-friendly forum for alleged consumer class action deceptive advertising cases, Florida is emerging as stiff competition for the title after a recent trio of…more

Advertising, Anheuser-Busch, Clarins, Class Action, False Advertising

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New Developments on International Automatic Financial Information Exchange and Disclosure

We last updated our clients and friends in February 2014 (Feb 2014 Memorandum) on issues related to the disclosure and automatic exchange of financial information on an international basis. Since then, the pressure from…more

G20, International Financial Reporting Standards, Multilateral Agreement, OECD

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New York Court Gives Final Approval to $58.5 Million Music Licensing Settlement

On February 19, 2015, the District Court for the Southern District of New York issued final approval of a $58.5 million settlement between performing rights society SESAC (Society of European Stage Actors and Composers) and the…more

Judicial Settlement Agreements, Licensing Rights, Music, Music Industry, Television Broadcast Stations

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Personal Planning Strategies - December 2014

2015 Estate, Gift and GST Tax Update: What This Means for Your Current Will, Revocable Trust and Estate Plan - As we previously reported, the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the "Act") made the following permanent:…more

Estate Tax, Estate-Tax Exemption, Generation-Skipping Transfer, Gift Tax, Gift-Tax Exemption

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Ninth Circuit Sides with FTC; Affirms Ruling That Idaho Health Care Merger Was Unlawful

In a closely-watched post-merger challenge, the Ninth Circuit this week sided with the FTC and affirmed an Idaho federal court's determination that the 2012 merger of two health care providers in the same city violated federal…more

Antitrust Litigation, Corporate Counsel, Divestiture, FTC, Healthcare

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Three Point Shot - November 2014

Florida Broker Denied Assist in Argentine Soccer Media Rights Deal - 2014 has been a decent year for soccer – ahem, fútbol – in Argentina. An Argentine club team (San Lorenzo) won the 2014 Copa Libertadores, South…more

Copyright, Soccer, Sports, Trademarks

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Personal Planning Strategies - December 2014

2015 Estate, Gift and GST Tax Update: What This Means for Your Current Will, Revocable Trust and Estate Plan - As we previously reported, the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the "Act") made the following permanent:…more

Estate Tax, Estate-Tax Exemption, Generation-Skipping Transfer, Gift Tax, Gift-Tax Exemption

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Supreme Court Holds That Criminal Defendants Challenging Pre-Trial Asset Seizure Cannot Contest a Grand Jury’s Determination of Probable Cause

On February 25, 2014, in Kaley v. United States, the U.S. Supreme Court held 6-3 that criminal defendants challenging the legality of a §853(e)(1) pre-trial asset seizure may not contest a grand jury's determination of probable…more

Criminal Prosecution, Frozen Assets, Grand Juries, Kaley v. United States, Probable Cause

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Senator Grassley Seeks to Form Whistleblower Caucus

On the 25th anniversary of the Whistleblower Protection Act of 1989, co-author Senator Grassley announced that he would be seeking to form a new whistleblower caucus among colleagues in the Senate. In an address on the Senate…more

False Claims Act, Legislative Agendas, Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act

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Proskauer Obtains Dismissal of High-Stakes False Claims Act Suit

On August 7, 2014, Judge Castel of the Southern District of New York dismissed a False Claims Act (“FCA”) complaint that was based primarily on allegations that the defendant Hospital improperly focused on referral revenue in…more

False Claims Act, Fraud, Healthcare, Healthcare Fraud, Hospitals

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California Judiciary, not Governor, Leading Effort to Reign in Proposition 65 Abuse

Earlier this year, we reported on California Governor Edmund Brown's call for reform of the state's Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986 – better known as Proposition 65, the number of the ballot initiative that…more

Ballot Measures, Drinking Water, Jerry Brown, Proposed Amendments, Proposition 65

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Ninth Circuit Sides with FTC; Affirms Ruling That Idaho Health Care Merger Was Unlawful

In a closely-watched post-merger challenge, the Ninth Circuit this week sided with the FTC and affirmed an Idaho federal court's determination that the 2012 merger of two health care providers in the same city violated federal…more

Antitrust Litigation, Corporate Counsel, Divestiture, FTC, Healthcare

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Deadlines Approaching for Employer Return Requirements for ISOs and ESPPs – Reporting Requirements for 2014

Section 6039 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (the "Code"), requires corporations to furnish information statements to their employees (including former employees) and to the Internal Revenue Service ("IRS") with…more

Deadlines, Employee Stock Purchase Plans, Incentive Stock Options, IRS, Reporting Requirements

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Ninth Circuit Sides with FTC; Affirms Ruling That Idaho Health Care Merger Was Unlawful

In a closely-watched post-merger challenge, the Ninth Circuit this week sided with the FTC and affirmed an Idaho federal court's determination that the 2012 merger of two health care providers in the same city violated federal…more

Antitrust Litigation, Corporate Counsel, Divestiture, FTC, Healthcare

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New Developments on International Automatic Financial Information Exchange and Disclosure

We last updated our clients and friends in February 2014 (Feb 2014 Memorandum) on issues related to the disclosure and automatic exchange of financial information on an international basis. Since then, the pressure from…more

G20, International Financial Reporting Standards, Multilateral Agreement, OECD

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Treatment of Foreign Banks under Section 716 of the Dodd-Frank Act and Related Push-Out Provisions

Last month, the Federal Reserve Board issued an Interim Final Rule that treats uninsured U.S. branches and agencies of foreign banks the same as insured depository institutions ("IDIs") for purposes of Section 716 of the…more

Banks, CFTC, Compliance, Dodd-Frank, Federal Reserve

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FINRA: The FAA Requires Enforcement of Judicial Class Action Waiver in Pre-Dispute Arbitration Agreement But Does Not Preempt FINRA Rules Permitting Consolidation of Multiple Parties' Claims

On February 21, 2013, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued a written decision finding that the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) bars FINRA from enforcing FINRA Rules intended to preserve judicial class actions…more

Arbitration, Case Consolidation, Class Action, Federal Arbitration Act, FINRA

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More “Texas Justice” For Policyholder On Contractual Liability Exclusion

On October 29, the Fifth Circuit reversed itself for the second time this year in a case involving the interpretation of a contractual liability exclusion in a CGL policy. This recent decision by the Fifth Circuit in Crownover…more

Appeals, Commercial General Liability Policies, Construction Defects, Indemnification Clauses, Liability

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Illinois Appellate Court Examines Number of Occurrences and Limits Application of Time-and-Space Test

On January 11, 2013, the Illinois Appellate Court for the First District in Chicago issued an important decision concerning the test for the number of occurrences under an insurance policy…more

Cause Theory, Number of Occurences, Time and Space Test

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Final Regulations for the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008

On November 8, 2013, the Departments of Treasury, Labor, and Health and Human Services (collectively, the "Departments") jointly issued final regulations under the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008 (the…more

DOL, Employee Benefits, Employer Group Health Plans, Healthcare, HHS

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European DPA’s Give Privacy Recommendations to Stakeholders Regarding the “Internet of Things”

The Article 29 Working Party, which is composed of representatives of DPA’s from every European country, has recently rendered an opinion on data privacy issues surrounding the development of the “Internet of Things” (IoT),…more

Data Protection, EU, Internet of Things, Mobile Privacy, Popular

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Higher Education Alert: NLRB Announces Two New Standards Favorable to Faculty Unions

In Pacific Lutheran University, 361 NLRB No. 157, a case that had been watched closely by the higher education community, the National Labor Relations Board issued a 3-2 decision the week before Christmas announcing new…more

Colleges, Faculty, Jurisdiction, NLRB, Pacific Lutheran University

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Three Point Shot - November 2014

Florida Broker Denied Assist in Argentine Soccer Media Rights Deal - 2014 has been a decent year for soccer – ahem, fútbol – in Argentina. An Argentine club team (San Lorenzo) won the 2014 Copa Libertadores, South…more

Copyright, Soccer, Sports, Trademarks

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Texas Federal Court Clarifies Broad Scope of Professional Liability Policies for Lawyers

Lawyers may be surprised to learn that lawsuits brought by clients challenging something other than purely legal advice or advocacy—such as billing—may not be covered by their professional liability policies. Interpreting the…more

Contract Disputes, Liability Insurance, Policy Exclusions, Professional Liability

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New Massachusetts Law Entitles Employees to Domestic Violence Leave

On August 8, 2014, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick signed into law a far-reaching Act designed to combat the problems of domestic violence. Notably, the Act became effective immediately upon the Governor signing it into…more

Crime Victims, Domestic Violence, Employee Rights, Paid Leave, Unpaid Leave

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Personal Planning Strategies - December 2014

2015 Estate, Gift and GST Tax Update: What This Means for Your Current Will, Revocable Trust and Estate Plan - As we previously reported, the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the "Act") made the following permanent:…more

Estate Tax, Estate-Tax Exemption, Generation-Skipping Transfer, Gift Tax, Gift-Tax Exemption

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Hong Kong Government to Extend Existing Offshore Funds Tax Exemption to Private Equity Funds

The Hong Kong government has announced in its latest budget a planned extension of the existing offshore funds tax exemption to bring offshore private equity funds investing in or through Hong Kong, within its scope. The scope…more

Hong Kong, Private Equity Funds, SPVs, Tax Exemptions

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Eighth Circuit: “Satisfactory to Us” Plan Language Sufficient to Entitle Plan Fiduciary to Deferential Review

The Eighth Circuit recently held that language in Prudential’s disability policy requiring proof of disability that is “satisfactory to Prudential” was sufficient to grant the plan discretionary authority and entitled the plan…more

Disability, Disability Benefits, Disability Discrimination, Employee Rights, Prudential

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CFTC Grants Relief to Family Offices from Registration as Commodity Trading Advisor

On November 5, 2014, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) issued a no-action letter granting relief from registration as a commodity trading advisor (CTA) to family offices that qualify for the family office…more

CFTC, Commodities, CTA, Family Offices, Investment Adviser

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International workplace dispute practices: key concepts for today’s global employers

Increasingly, companies with operations or employees in more than one country are exposed to the risk of court proceedings in a foreign jurisdiction and the unfamiliar practices and procedures arising out of overseas litigation…more

International Labor Laws

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Welcome Guidance on the Definition of Real Property for REITs Proposed by IRS

On May 9, 2014, the Department of Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (the "IRS") released proposed regulations (the "Proposed Regulations") revising and clarifying the definition of real property for the purposes of the…more

IRS, Property Tax, Real Estate Investments, REIT

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Continued Rollout of Obama’s Executive Action on Immigration

Today, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) announced that starting May 26, 2015 it will be accepting applications for employment authorization (EAD) for H-4 dependent spouses of H-1B nonimmigrants who…more

Barack Obama, DHS, Employment Authorization Document, Executive Orders, H-1B

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Illinois Court of Appeals Decision Serves as Caution to Policyholders Seeking Coverage for Underlying Settlements

The Illinois Court of Appeals recently issued an opinion providing guidance for policyholders seeking insurance coverage under commercial liability policies for settlements to resolve class actions asserted against them. In…more

Class Action, Commercial General Liability Policies, Settlement, TCPA, Unsolicited Faxes

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What KIND of Juice Did They Say It Was?

On July 14, 2014, Northern District of Illinois Judge Sara L. Ellis dealt a blow to putative class action members protesting the use of “evaporated cane juice” to describe sugar in product ingredients lists. Plaintiff alleged…more

Evaporated Cane Juice, FDA, Food Labeling, Food Manufacturers, Putative Class Actions

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Advertising Industry Enforces Enhanced Behavioral Advertising Notice Requirements on Websites

On October 28, the Online Interest-Based Advertising Accountability Program (Accountability Program), released five decisions in which the website operators have agreed to update their respective websites to provide enhanced…more

Advertising, Behavioral Advertising, Digital Advertising Alliance, Notice Requirements, Websites

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FINRA: The FAA Requires Enforcement of Judicial Class Action Waiver in Pre-Dispute Arbitration Agreement But Does Not Preempt FINRA Rules Permitting Consolidation of Multiple Parties' Claims

On February 21, 2013, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued a written decision finding that the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) bars FINRA from enforcing FINRA Rules intended to preserve judicial class actions…more

Arbitration, Case Consolidation, Class Action, Federal Arbitration Act, FINRA

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Wealth Management Update - October 2013

The October § 7520 rate for use with estate planning techniques such as CRTs, CLTs, QPRTs and GRATs is 2.4%. This is up from September's 2.0% rate. The applicable federal rate ("AFR") for use with a sale to a defective grantor…more

Beneficiaries, Estate Planning, Generation-Skipping Transfer, Gift Tax, Grantor Retained Annuity Trust

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Goodyear Pays for the Sins of its Subsidiaries in a $16 Million FCPA Settlement

Following recent trends, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission brought an administrative proceeding against a U.S. issuer for the corrupt activities of its foreign subsidiaries. Earlier this week, Goodyear Tire & Rubber…more

Bribery, Corporate Counsel, Enforcement Actions, FCPA, Foreign Subsidiaries

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Governor Signs Amendments to N.Y. Wage Theft Prevention Act, Eliminating Requirement that Employers Issue Annual Notices to Employees between January 1 and February 1

On December 29, 2014, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill amending the N.Y. Wage Theft Prevention Act (“WTPA”) immediately eliminating the requirement that employers send annual WTPA wage rate and pay date notices to current…more

Amended Legislation, Andrew Cuomo, Notice Requirements, Wage Theft Prevention Act

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - December 2014

This month's newsletter focuses on how Plan Trustees can appropriately settle ERISA breach of fiduciary duty claims in order to achieve "complete peace." The article provides a check list and discusses strategies for handling…more

Benefit Plan Sponsors, Breach of Duty, ERISA, Fiduciary Duty, Plan Administrators

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Watch Out for “Watchdogs”: The N.J. Appellate Division Expressly Expands CEPA Protection To a New Class of Employees

On September 4, 2013, the New Jersey Appellate Division in Lippman v. Ethicon, Inc., Docket No. L–9025–06, 2013 WL 4726834 (App. Div. September 04, 2013), reversed a ruling by the Superior Court, Law Division granting summary…more

CEPA, Hiring & Firing, Johnson & Johnson, Safety Precautions, Whistleblowers

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4th Circuit: 4 Year Statute Of Limitations Applies To SOX Claims

The Fourth Circuit recently held that SOX whistleblower retaliation claims are subject to a four-year statute of limitations and that emotional distress damages are available in SOX actions. Jones v. SouthPeak Interactive Corp…more

Emotional Distress Damages, Employer Liability Issues, Retaliation, Sarbanes-Oxley, Statute of Limitations

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From the Right to be Forgotten to the Right to an “e-Reputation’’: First Enforceability Ordered by French Court under Penalty

A few months after the European Court of Justice ruled on May 13, 2014 that search engines are considered personal data controllers under the EU Data Protection Directive of 1995 and, as such, should provide data subjects with a…more

Data Controller, EU Data Protection Laws, France, Google, Right to Be Forgotten

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Second Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Madoff Trustee’s Six-Year Transfer and Preference Claims

With several billions of dollars ultimately at stake, the Second Circuit has affirmed that Section 546(e) of the Bankruptcy Code, a safe-harbor protecting certain securities-related payments from bankruptcy “claw backs,” barred…more

Bankruptcy Code, Bernie Madoff, Dismissals, Preferential Transfers

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Court Affirms $3M Jury Award In Illinois Whistleblower Action

On August 28, 2014, Judge James McCarthy issued a decision in Crawley v. Chicago State University, Case No. 10 L 12657 (Cook County, Ill., Law Div.), affirming payment of over $3 million to Plaintiff James Crowley (“Plaintiff”),…more

Chicago State University, Colleges, Jury Awards, Retaliation, Universities

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SEC Releases Results of Cybersecurity Examination Sweep

By Rochelle Emert and Phillip Caraballo-Garrison On February 3, 2015, the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (“OCIE”) issued a Risk Alert that summarized its findings about cybersecurity preparedness in the…more

Broker-Dealer, Cybersecurity, Investment Adviser, OCIE, Risk Alert

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CFTC Grants Relief to Family Offices from Registration as Commodity Trading Advisor

On November 5, 2014, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) issued a no-action letter granting relief from registration as a commodity trading advisor (CTA) to family offices that qualify for the family office…more

CFTC, Commodities, CTA, Family Offices, Investment Adviser

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New Developments on International Automatic Financial Information Exchange and Disclosure

We last updated our clients and friends in February 2014 (Feb 2014 Memorandum) on issues related to the disclosure and automatic exchange of financial information on an international basis. Since then, the pressure from…more

G20, International Financial Reporting Standards, Multilateral Agreement, OECD

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter; November 2013

In This Issue: - Labor and Employment and ERISA Class Actions After Wal-Mart and Comcast — Practice Points for Defendants (Part I – Commonality)* - Agencies Release Guidance on HRAs, FSAs, and Employer Payment Plans…more

Affordable Care Act, Class Action, Class Certification, Comcast, Competition

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Employers To Face More Concurrent EEOC and Tort Suits after Second Circuit Decision

Last week the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit held that filing a charge of discrimination with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) does not toll the statute of limitations for state-law tort…more

Discrimination, EEOC, Sex Discrimination, Statute of Limitations

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Continued Rollout of Obama’s Executive Action on Immigration

Today, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) announced that starting May 26, 2015 it will be accepting applications for employment authorization (EAD) for H-4 dependent spouses of H-1B nonimmigrants who…more

Barack Obama, DHS, Employment Authorization Document, Executive Orders, H-1B

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NLRB General Counsel Issues Guidance on Deferral to Grievance Arbitration and Settlements

Following the decision of the National Labor Relations Board in Babcock & Wilcox Construction Co., 361 NLRB No. 132 (December 14, 2014), the NLRB General Counsel has issued Memorandum GC 15-02 (February 10, 2015), which provides…more

Arbitration, Babcock & Wilcox Construction, Collective Bargaining, Construction Industry, Deferral Standard

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Governor Signs Amendments to N.Y. Wage Theft Prevention Act, Eliminating Requirement that Employers Issue Annual Notices to Employees between January 1 and February 1

On December 29, 2014, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill amending the N.Y. Wage Theft Prevention Act (“WTPA”) immediately eliminating the requirement that employers send annual WTPA wage rate and pay date notices to current…more

Amended Legislation, Andrew Cuomo, Notice Requirements, Wage Theft Prevention Act

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New York Court Strikes Down Regulations Limiting Executive Compensation and Administrative Expenses

A New York court has held that the State’s regulatory limits on executive compensation and administrative expenses for entities that receive state funds unconstitutionally exceed proper regulatory authority. The regulations,…more

Administrative Expenses, Executive Compensation, State Funding

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - December 2014

This month's newsletter focuses on how Plan Trustees can appropriately settle ERISA breach of fiduciary duty claims in order to achieve "complete peace." The article provides a check list and discusses strategies for handling…more

Benefit Plan Sponsors, Breach of Duty, ERISA, Fiduciary Duty, Plan Administrators

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - April 2014

This month we discuss the evolving case law on the issue of whether unpaid employer contributions due under a collective bargaining agreement can be viewed as plan assets such that the individuals who decide to withhold such…more

Breach of Duty, Collective Bargaining, ERISA, Executive Compensation, Fiduciary Duty

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Wasted Away in Margaritaville: With Unascertainable Class, District Court Denies Class Certification in Skinnygirl Margarita Case

Alleging violations of Illinois statutory and common law, Amy Langendorf brought suit on behalf of “Any and all persons who purchased ‘Skinnygirl’ Margarita spirits in Illinois from March 1, 2009 until the date notice is…more

Ascertainable Class, Class Action, Class Certification, False Advertising, Food Labeling

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California Supreme Court Leaves Unanswered Questions in Independent Contractor Case

On Monday, June 30, 2014, the California Supreme Court handed down its decision in Ayala v. Antelope Valley Newspapers, a lawsuit brought on behalf of a group of newspaper delivery carriers who alleged that they had been…more

Class Action, Class Certification, Employer Liability Issues, Independent Contractors, Misclassification

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Sixth Circuit Declines Deference to DOL and Enforces Venue Selection Clause

The Sixth Circuit recently held that a venue selection clause in an ERISA-governed pension plan was enforceable and, in so ruling, refused to give deference to the DOL’s contrary position. See Smith v. AEGON Cos. Pension Plan,…more

Choice-of-Venue, DOL, ERISA, Jurisdiction, Successor Liability

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Texas Supreme Court Denies Policyholder’s Discovery Regarding Claims Handling

It is rare to see a state’s highest court address a discovery issue. But the Supreme Court of Texas did just that recently in In re National Lloyds Insurance Co., holding that a policyholder’s demands for discovery about how…more

Bad Faith, Claims Adjusters, Discovery, Homeowner's Insurance, Property Damage

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Responding to the Anthem Cyber Attack

Anthem Inc. (Anthem), the nation's second-largest health insurer, revealed late on Wednesday, February 4 that it was the victim of a significant cyber attack. According to Anthem, the attack exposed personal information of…more

Anthem Insurance, Breach Notification Rule, Class Action, Cyber Attacks, Data Breach

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Wealth Management Update - May 2013

The May § 7520 rate for use with estate planning techniques such as CRTs, CLTs, QPRTs and GRATs is 1.2%, which is a slight decrease from April's rate of 1.4%. The applicable federal rate ("AFR") for use with a sale to a…more

AFR, DING Trusts, GST, Interest Rates, IRS

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SEC Continues to Investigate Contractual Impediments to Whistleblower Complaints

As Rachel Louise Ensign reported earlier this week in the Wall Street Journal (subscription required), the Securities Exchange Commission (“SEC”) continues to probe obstacles to corporate employees blowing the whistle. This…more

Audits, Confidentiality Agreements, Dodd-Frank, Non-Compete Agreements, SEC

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Managing Litigation Risk: Critical Questions for Private Equity Professionals Serving on Portfolio Company Boards

Private equity funds, and individuals affiliated with fund sponsors, are increasingly being named as defendants in lawsuits involving their portfolio companies. This litigation risk arises most frequently where a fund controls…more

Board of Directors, C-Suite Executives, D&O Insurance, Fund Sponsors, Personal Liability

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FCC: The New Data Security Sheriff In Town

Data security seems to make headlines nearly every week, but last Friday, a new player entered the ring. The Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) took its first foray into the regulation of data security, an area that has…more

Communications Act of 1934, Data Protection, Electronically Stored Information, FCC, Personally Identifiable Information

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White House Budget Recommends Elimination of in-Plan Roth Rollovers of After-Tax Contributions

As reported, the Internal Revenue Code currently permits a plan design that allows plan participants to convert non-Roth after-tax contributions to Roth contributions through in-plan Roth rollovers. This design would allow a…more

Defined Contribution Plans, Employee Benefits, IRA Rollovers, IRC, Roth Conversions

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FCC Adopts Net Neutrality Rules, Reclassifies Broadband Access under Title II

After nearly 4 million public comments, and months of vigorous public, industry, and Congressional debate, the FCC, by a 3-2 vote, approved revised net neutrality rules to “protect the Open Internet.” As expected by the…more

FCC, Internet, Net Neutrality, Telecommunications Act of 1996

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Fraudulent Procurement Claim Dismissed: No Evidence Trademark Attorney Knew Statement Was False

It is not easy to cancel a federal trademark by way of a fraud claim. Investment services firm Navigator Investments (“NI”) found this out recently when the Rhode Island district court dismissed its fraudulent procurement…more

False Statements, Fraud, Trademarks

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New Developments on International Automatic Financial Information Exchange and Disclosure

We last updated our clients and friends in February 2014 (Feb 2014 Memorandum) on issues related to the disclosure and automatic exchange of financial information on an international basis. Since then, the pressure from…more

G20, International Financial Reporting Standards, Multilateral Agreement, OECD

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Third Circuit Nixes EEOC Retaliation Suit

Last week, in Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) v. Allstate Insurance Co., No. 2-01-cv-07402 (3d Cir. Feb. 13, 2015), the Third Circuit affirmed that the defendant did not violate federal anti-retaliation laws by…more

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Supreme Court Told That TTAB Preclusion Raises Constitutional Concerns

As reported in our September 23 Client Alert, the Supreme Court is set to hear argument on December 2 on the issue of whether likelihood of confusion findings by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) are entitled to…more

Claim Preclusion, Lanham Act, Likelihood of Confusion, Patent Infringement, Patent Litigation

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HIPAA Certificates Are No Longer Required As of January 1, 2015

Effective January 1, 2015, group health plans and insurers are no longer required to issue a certificate of creditable coverage (“HIPAA Certificate”) to individuals who lost group health plan coverage. As a reminder, HIPAA…more

Affordable Care Act, Employer Group Health Plans, HIPAA, Insurers

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Third Circuit Irons Out “Powerful” Performance False Advertising Dispute

The Third Circuit has rendered a notable decision with important implications for the use of fine print in advertising. The Court held that small print statements that explicitly define the terms of a more prominent superior…more

Advertising, Business Litigation, False Advertising, Injunctive Relief

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Oops! California Court Gets Around to Invalidating 22-Year-Old Meal Period Waiver Rules for Healthcare Employees

For nearly 22 years, IWC Wage Order No. 4 and IWC Wage Order No. 5 have permitted employees in the “health care industry” who work shifts in excess of eight total hours in a workday to “voluntarily waive their right to one of…more

Healthcare, Healthcare Facilities, Healthcare Workers, Putative Class Actions, Rest and Meal Break

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Ninth Circuit Sides with FTC; Affirms Ruling That Idaho Health Care Merger Was Unlawful

In a closely-watched post-merger challenge, the Ninth Circuit this week sided with the FTC and affirmed an Idaho federal court's determination that the 2012 merger of two health care providers in the same city violated federal…more

Antitrust Litigation, Corporate Counsel, Divestiture, FTC, Healthcare

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Three Point Shot - November 2014

Florida Broker Denied Assist in Argentine Soccer Media Rights Deal - 2014 has been a decent year for soccer – ahem, fútbol – in Argentina. An Argentine club team (San Lorenzo) won the 2014 Copa Libertadores, South…more

Copyright, Soccer, Sports, Trademarks

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UK Whistleblowing Protection Extended to Partners

In the UK, whistleblowing law is based on a statute prohibiting a “worker” being dismissed or subjected to any other detriment because of having made a “protected disclosure”. Until this week, the general view was that the…more

Employment Tribunals, Partnerships, UK, Whistleblower Protection Policies, Whistleblowers

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New York Court Gives Final Approval to $58.5 Million Music Licensing Settlement

On February 19, 2015, the District Court for the Southern District of New York issued final approval of a $58.5 million settlement between performing rights society SESAC (Society of European Stage Actors and Composers) and the…more

Judicial Settlement Agreements, Licensing Rights, Music, Music Industry, Television Broadcast Stations

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