Automotive Industry

News & Analysis as of

Facts Govern Real Party-in-Interest Determinations - TRW Automotive US LLC v. Magna Electronics Inc.; Paramount Home Entertainment...

Addressing the real-party-in-interest (RPI) requirement of 35 U.S.C. § 312(a) in two separate proceedings, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB or Board) emphasized the fact-dependent...more

Maryland Law to Require Notice to Purchaser of Vehicle Prior to Dealer-Arranged Financing Approval

On May 12, Governor Larry Hogan (R-MD) signed HB 313, which will require auto dealers to provide notice to the purchaser/lessee before the dealer-arranged third-party financing is approved. The law requires the dealer to...more

Is Your Company a Federal Government Contractor?

Many automotive suppliers do not consider themselves federal government contractors because they only sell goods and services to the major OEMs and not directly to the federal government. However, purchase orders with OEMs or...more

FTC Lobbies Michigan Legislature to Repeal Ban On Direct-to-Consumer Sale of Motor Vehicles by Auto Manufacturers

On May 11, the FTC released a statement regarding the agency staff’s May 7 letter to Michigan Senator Booher, which concerns pending SB 268 – an act to regulate the sale and servicing of automobiles. The proposed legislation...more

South Carolina Legislative Update

The South Carolina Senate finished their budget deliberations and adopted the over $7 billion budget last week. Highlights include: an $800 bonus to state employees; an 11% raise for members of the judiciary, circuit...more

Dealer Advertising: No More Excuses

There are no more excuses. Dealers have seen all the ongoing and very recent announcements from the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) imposing millions of dollars in fines, cease and desist orders, and promises by dealers not...more

China Regulatory Enforcement Quarterly - Q1 – 2015 |

Inside This Issue: - Executive Summary - PRC Legal and Regulatory Updates - Major Enforcement News - China Communist Party Titles 101 - AIC Penalties Increase Risk of Dual Enforcement Actions - Frequently Asked...more

Six-Month DOJ Criminal Cartel Summary, Part I: Auto Parts

Today we bring you the first part of our second biennial update on DOJ criminal actions in the cartel area. This has been a busy six months for the Antitrust Division, so we are breaking this update up into installments. ...more

Technology And The Workplace

How Email And Texting Are Transforming Business Interactions - The automotive industry has embraced technology. Most dealerships have installed business development centers, and Internet departments to attract the...more

Senate Approves Auto Industry Whistleblower Bill

Under the “Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act” (the Bill), which the U.S. Senate approved on April 28, 2015, whistleblower protections and bounties would be available to individuals who report motor vehicle defects. In...more

Automotive Battery Industry Expands Its Horizons to Other Applications

As previously discussed on this blog, the automotive industry is pushing to develop new and improved batteries and charging and power systems for cars. Now, the automotive industry is setting its sights on improving batteries...more

Automotive M&A Activity Remains Strong: Be Prepared

Automobile sales are on the rise globally, and the automotive industry remains one of the hottest sectors for M&A activity. Analysts predict that the surge in deal flow that occurred during 2014 will continue or even...more

Stepping on the Gas: FTC Operation Targets Auto Industry

Why it matters - Continuing its efforts to accelerate enforcement actions against fraudulent practices in the auto industry, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently reported the results of its Operation Ruse Control....more

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

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