Conflicts of Laws

News & Analysis as of

Fourth District Court of Appeal Holds Sales Tax Against Florida Corporation on Out-of-State Sales is Unconstitutional

In American Business USA Corp. v. Department of Revenue, Case No. 4D13-1472 (4th DCA November 12, 2014), the Fourth District Court of Appeal held that an assessment of sales tax pursuant to a provision in Florida's sales tax...more

NLRB Refuses To Yield On Anti-Arbitration Ruling Despite Near-Unanimous Rejection By Courts

Friday was Halloween, an occasion when our thoughts turn to jack o’lanterns, ghosts, and zombies. We are particularly fascinated by zombies—the dead returned to life. But we’re not the only ones. In a decision early last...more

Texas Court Refuses to Apply Texas Choice of Law in Non-Compete Fight Involving Texas Bank

A recurrent theme in non-compete litigation is the overriding importance of choice-of-law. The latest example comes to us from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas and pits a Texas choice-of-law...more

State Law Can Override Control Test for Employment

Past articles in this blog have discussed the control test for establishing an employment relationship as opposed to independent contractor status. Although government agencies such as the Department of Labor or IRS describe...more

Judge Rules Choice Of Law Waives CSL Claim

I was quite surprised to read Judge Gregory M. Sleet’s ruling in OpenGate Capital Group LLC v. Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 92256 (D. Del. July 8, 2014). The lawsuit was brought by the purchaser of a...more

Public Sector Secrecy Rules Could Violate Federal Whistleblower Laws

Whistleblower laws are intended to discourage corruption by granting legal protection and sometimes even financial incentives to employees who report corruption and other violations. However, these laws can sometimes be at...more

California Employers May Not Allocate Commissions Paid In One Pay Period To Different Pay Periods To Satisfy California Wage And...

The California Supreme Court recently considered whether an employer may allocate an employee's commission wages from one pay period to other pay periods in order to meet the commissioned employee overtime exemption. (Susan...more

Supreme Court Invalidates Union Fee Requirements Imposed on Homecare Employees

On June 30, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected Illinois law that required homecare providers for Medicaid recipients to pay fees to a union. In Harris v. Quinn, the Court held that compulsory union agency fees imposed on...more

Supreme Court Agrees to Resolve Current Appellate Court Split on EEOC’s Conciliation Obligations

In December 2013, we reported on the Seventh Circuit’s controversial decision in EEOC v. Mach Mining, in which the Court exacerbated the already existing split amongst federal appellate courts regarding the EEOC’s obligation...more

The Surprising Truth about Hobby Lobby's Effect in California

On June 30, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States handed down its decision in the Burwell v. Hobby Lobby case, holding that closely-held corporations could refuse to provide contraceptive coverage mandated by U.S....more

New York Court of Appeals Sustains Anti-hydrofracking Zoning Regulations as Permissible Exercise of Municipal Authority Under Home...

In a closely watched decision, a majority of the New York Court of Appeals has held that local anti-hydrofracking zoning rules can trump the state’s pro-energy development oil and gas law. The Court’s decision came in a pair...more

“Law of the Flag” Held Not to Apply to Action on Unenforceable Gambling Debt in Florida Bankruptcy Court

In this bankruptcy contract case, the debtor, a cruise vessel operating as a gambling casino, fronted $200,000 to a blackjack gambler who submitted checks for the cash but then stopped payment on the checks. The debtor sued...more

50 For 50: Five Decades Of The Most Important Employment Discrimination Decisions - Number 46: How To Deal With Employees Using...

Fifty years ago when Title VII became law and 23 years ago when the Americans with Disabilities Act became law, it would be inconceivable that someone would be blogging about accommodating employees by allowing them to smoke...more

U.S. Supreme Court Asked to Decide Whether Wrongful Death Suits are Subject to Arbitration

The United States Supreme Court was recently asked to determine whether the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) preempts a state law rule that prohibits enforcement of pre-dispute arbitration agreements in certain wrongful death...more

50 For 50: Five Decades Of The Most Important Employment Discrimination Decisions - Number 41: Discrimination Laws Apply To...

Illegal immigration is one of the biggest political issues of the 21st Century in the United States, as both political parties support the reform of immigration laws in one way or another. Until the laws are reformed, the...more

FMLA Benefits May Be Extended for Same-Sex Spouses

Under current law, an eligible employee may take leave under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to care for a same-sex spouse only if they reside in a state that recognizes same-sex marriage. If the employee lives in a state...more

Supreme Court Denies Cert. in New Jersey Sports Betting Case

Today, the United States Supreme Court denied New Jersey’s petition for a writ of certiorari to hear an appeal from lower court decisions that invalidated its sports wagering law. This ends a three year fight to bring sports...more

Quirky Question #230, Accommodating Nursing Mothers

Question: We are a large Minnesota employer and we have a non-exempt employee who is asking for breaks to express her breast milk multiple times every day, and each break takes a long time. We let her do so in her...more

Eleventh Circuit Holds Federal Law Preempts Florida’s Check-Cashing Fee Restriction For Out-Of-State Banks

On May 30, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit held that with regard to out-of-state state banks, federal law preempts Florida’s prohibition on financial institutions settling checks for less than par value....more

Federal Officer Jurisdiction Is Alive and Well: Ninth Circuit Affirms Jurisdiction for Navy Equipment Manufacturer

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals' recent opinion in Leite v. Crane Co., 2014 WL 1646924 (9th Cir. April 25, 2014), affirmed a decision by the Hawaii Federal District Court denying a motion to remand after finding that a...more

United States Trade Secrets Law

The America Invents Act (AIA) changes the traditional calculus in determining whether to seek patenting an invention or to maintain it as a trade secret. This shift in intellectual property protection is the result of two...more

The Fourth Circuit Affirms District Court Decision Finding Maryland’s Contract for Differences Unconstitutional

As we reported (see link below), in October 2013, the United States District Court for the District of Maryland declared unconstitutional an order of the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) directing the state’s...more

Can Prosecutors Prohibit Legal Medication? #CriminalDefense

Whenever an individual is placed on supervised felony probation, his or her probation terms are always set out in writing. Although the wording varies slightly from county to county, without fail, there is always a specific...more

Minnesota Medical Marijuana Law Will Cloud Employer Drug-Free Workplace Efforts

On May 29, 2014, Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton signed into law legislation making Minnesota the 23rd jurisdiction to adopt a law authorizing the use of medical marijuana. The new Minnesota medical marijuana law (MML)...more

Federal Court Erie Prediction Insufficient to Establish Conflict of Law

In its recent decision in Bridgeview Health Care Ctr. v. State Farm Fire & Cas. Co., 2014 Ill. LEXIS 596 (May, 22, 2014), the Supreme Court of Illinois had occasion to consider whether a federal court’s Erie prediction is...more

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