Automotive Industry

News & Analysis as of

European Auto Industry Posts Gains on Economic Growth, Weak Euro

Demand for new passenger cars in the European Unions increased nearly 11% in March 2015 compared to March 2014, according to the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA). This marks the nineteenth consecutive...more

Chicago's Technology Community Includes a Growing Automotive Technology and Research Sector

In recent years, Chicago has become a hot spot for technology companies. Established companies like Google and Motorola Mobility are expanding their footprint in Chicago, and growing companies work with incubators and...more

The Keys are in the Design

We often ask kids this question: “what do you want to be when you grow up?”  While my trajectory towards lawyering is true, my answer wasn’t always immediately “lawyer.”  I sought something that satisfied my passion for the...more

Follow-up cognitive study looks at voice in-vehicle systems

The American Automobile Association’s Foundation for Traffic Safety has recently been involved in a series of studies aimed at determining the effects of cognitive, or mental, distraction on motorists....more

FTC Announces Results of “Operation Ruse Control” on Auto Industry

On March 26, the FTC announced the results of Operation Ruse Control, “a nationwide and cross-border crackdown” on the auto industry with the intent to protect consumers who are purchasing or leasing a car. Efforts taken...more

NJ first state to restrict access to car recording device data

Did you know that your car has a recording device that records the speed, direction, and location of your vehicle while you are driving it, as well as your steering, braking, seat belt use and erratic driver behavior?...more

Yesterday's Car Buff Is Today's Hacker

If you need any evidence that modern vehicles are becoming more computer than car, look no further than this month’s over-the-air update from Tesla Motors pushed out to all of its Model S sedans. Like the latest iOS from...more

‘Operation Ruse Control’ Announcement Highlights Importance of Auto Finance Compliance

The Federal Trade Commission—and numerous other federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies in the United States and Canada—recently announced that an enforcement initiative dubbed “Operation Ruse Control” has resulted...more

Ninth Circuit Finds Auto 'Service Advisors' Not Exempt Under FLSA

In Navarro v. Encino Motorcars, LLC (9th Cir. Mar. 24 2015), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit addressed an issue of first impression in the Circuit: whether individuals who worked for automobile dealerships as...more

Everything Must Go? Dealership's Service Advisors Not Exempt from Overtime

Classifying employees as exempt or non-exempt can prove to be an arduous task for some employers. For others, however, the classification is easy, particularly where the state or federal authorities expressly spell out the...more

Proceed with Caution: Vehicle to Vehicle Communication Technology

Will the brave new world of automobiles include talking vehicles? According to a plan by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (“NHTSA”), the answer is yes. NHTSA has provided advanced notice that it intends to...more

Exempt or Not? Service Advisors

The Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) requires payment of a minimum hourly wage and overtime, unless an employee fits within one of many exemptions. In some parts of the United States, courts had ruled that automobile service...more

Why It's Wise to Pay Attention to Your FCPA Compliance

Companies in the automotive industry would be wise to pay attention to Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (the “FCPA”) compliance. What has in the past been a risk management issue principally for massive multi-national...more

Ninth Circuit Holds Service Advisors Non-Exempt Under FLSA Dealership "Salesman" Exemption; Section 7(i) Exemption Is Still...

The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (with jurisdiction over the states of Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington) has ruled in Navarro v. Encino Motorcars, LLC that Service...more

Consumers in Lemon-Law Cases Not Entitled to Postjudgment Interest on Attorney’s Fee Award Paid Before Final Judgment

In Hyundai Motor America v. Superior Court (filed 3/20/15, No. G051279), the California Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District, determined that the plaintiff consumer was not entitled to postjudgment interest on an...more

The Auto Industry: The Next "Big" Target for Hackers?

Given the exponential rise in security breaches and hacking activity in past few years and the almost constant headlines in the press of yet another major security breach, information security should be a front burner issue...more

Illinois company’s safety violations contributed to worker’s death

A 21-year-old auto manufacturing operator was crushed to death in 2014 because of safety violations at an Illinois supply plant, according to the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration....more

IP Newsflash - March 2015 #2

DISTRICT COURT CASES - Patent Misuse is Not a Stand-Alone Cause of Action - Plaintiffs Continental Automotive GmbH and Continental Automotive Systems, Inc. (collectively Continental) filed a complaint iBiquity...more

NDRC’s Qualcomm Decision Sends Mixed Messages

Chinese New Year celebrations culminated in a big way for foreign multinationals in China with the news at the end of February that the head of the National Development and Reform Commission’s (“NDRC's”) Antitrust Bureau had...more

PTAB Excludes Documents Corroborating Publication Date as Hearsay but Admits Librarian Testimony - Toyota Motor Corporation v....

In a final written decision, the U. S. Patent and Trademark Office Patent (PTO) Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB or Board) granted in part the patent owner’s motion to exclude certain documents purporting to corroborate the...more

Voice-based vehicle systems focus of new cognitive distraction study

Many new automobiles come equipped with voice-based technology, which allows drivers to control certain functions of their vehicle with the sound of their voice. This technology was originally designed to minimize the amount...more

South Carolina Legislative Update

The General Assembly was extremely busy this week. The House adopted a comprehensive ethics reform bill similar to the individual bills already sent to the Senate, legislation authorizing a veterans’ services study committee...more

CFPB “Keeping Watchful Eye on Auto Lending Market”

On February 23, CFPB Director Richard Cordray delivered prepared remarks at the National Association of Attorneys General Winter Meeting in Washington, D.C. In his remarks, Cordray indicated that the CFPB is keeping a...more

Low Carbon Fuel Bill Passed In Oregon Senate

On February 26, 2015, the Oregon State Senate passed Senate Bill 324 (SB 324), a measure that would require fuel producers to reduce the amount of carbon in car and truck fuels....more

Employee Who Was Working Elsewhere During Medical Leave Of Absence Was Properly Terminated

Avery Richey worked for Power Toyota Cerritos, part of the AutoNation consortium of automobile dealerships, for approximately four years before allegedly injuring his back while moving furniture at his home. Following the...more

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