Corporate Counsel

News & Analysis as of

Investigating Illegal Aliens’ Charges: Fourth Circuit Says EEOC Can Serve Subpoena On Employer

Seyfarth Synopsis: This Fourth Circuit ruling opens the door for the EEOC to investigate employers as a result of EEOC charges brought by unauthorized employees, even though an illegal alien worker may not be able to seek...more

Is Evidence of Confusion Really Necessary to Succeed in a Trademark Infringement Case?

It is not every day that a massive international TV hit show is found to infringe a trade mark. A decision of the English High Court, approved recently by the Court of Appeal, held that the popular 20th Century Fox teenage...more

NLRB Targets Independent Contractor Classification of Truck Drivers

Seyfarth Synopsis: NLRB claims that employers violate Section 8(a)(1) of the NLRA by misclassifying employees as independent contractors, thereby restraining and coercing employees in the exercise of their rights guaranteed...more

East Coast to the West Coast: Consumers Continue to File Deceptive Pricing Class Actions

Earlier this year, consumers filed class action lawsuits against retailers Zulily and Burberry in federal court in New York alleging unfair and deceptive sales practices in connection with their respective marketing of...more

European Court of Justice to Rule on Legality of Online Sales Bans

An appeal court in Frankfurt has asked the European Court of Justice to clarify the application of the competition rules to online sales. The Frankfurt court made its request in the context of a dispute between a leader in...more

The Importance of Job Descriptions

The importance of having accurate job descriptions for employees was illustrated by a recent case. In that case, the employee was let go by an employer after suffering a non-work related injury that the employer believed...more

What You Need to Know About the Recent Federal Circuit Rule Changes

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit recently implemented significant amendments to its Rules of Practice (“Rules”). The changes apply to all cases docked on or after April 1, 2016. In large part, the...more

Still Bigger in Texas: Federal Circuit Maintains Patent Venue Rules in In re: TC Heartland LLC

On April 29, 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit issued an Order denying TC Heartland LLC’s petition for a writ of mandamus, affirming the scope of venue in patent cases, and declaring that “[t]he...more

SEC Waivers with Strings Attached: the Wave of the Future?

The SEC recently attached potentially precedent-setting conditions to a waiver from certain automatic disqualifications under the federal securities laws. Without such waivers, defendants that settle securities law...more

Hot topics for state attorneys general

The role of state attorneys general (AGs) as an investigative and enforcement powerhouse for consumer protection and antitrust matters presents challenges and opportunities for corporate entities in all industries. By...more

CFPB Field Hearing May Unveil New Rule on Arbitration Agreements

The CFPB is continuing its march towards a new rule governing the use of arbitration clauses in consumer lending contracts. On April 20, the Bureau announced its next step will be to conduct a field hearing in Albuquerque,...more

Ninth Circuit Rejects Director Cordray's Recess Appointment as Defense to CFPB Enforcement Action; Dissenting Judge Disagrees

Since it was filed in a California federal court in July 2012, we have been following Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) v. Chance Edward Gordon, a case in which the CFPB alleged that an attorney duped consumers by...more

How My 'WTF' Moment Sparked a Petition for Gender Equality

Companies that aim to improve and shape society can’t do so unless they reflect society....more

Looking Back on 2015: The 6 Most Important eDiscovery Cases in Delaware

2015 saw continued interest by the Delaware courts in various aspects of eDiscovery. The courts dealt with broad issues, such as spoliation and general discovery misconduct, while also focusing on narrower issues, such as...more

USPTO Seeks Comments on New Patent Quality Metrics

In a notice published in the Federal Register (81 Fed. Reg. 16142) last month, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office announced that new patent quality metrics were being designed for use in FY2017 and that the Office was...more

In Onboard Wi-Fi Case, Covenant Not To Sue Has Wide Range

Judge Jeffrey Alker Meyer of the District of Connecticut recently released an opinion that is significant to litigants on either side of a covenant not to sue. In a complex case with a host of claims and counterclaims...more

Amended PTAB Rules to Take Effect on May 2, 2016

On May 2, 2016, amended rules governing post-grant proceedings before the Patent and Trial Appeal Board (“PTAB”), including inter partes review (“IPR”), post-grant review (“PGR”), and covered business methods (“CBM”), will...more

Pazol v. Tough Mudder, Inc.: Muddying the waters on proof of jurisdictional facts under CAFA?

The Class Action Fairness Act of 2005 (CAFA) was intended to make it easier for defendants to remove class action lawsuits from state court to federal court. For example, CAFA introduced the concept of minimal as opposed to...more

Federal Court Finds Amazon Liable for Kids’ In-App Purchases

Yesterday, a federal judge ruled that Amazon is liable for permitting unauthorized in-app purchases incurred by children. Amazon is the last in a series of actions brought by the FTC against third-party platforms related to...more

Preemption: Oregon Has Not Gone Bananas

Can you get sued over a picture of a banana? It seems the answer might depend on where you live and probably not in Oregon. That is one takeaway from a good preemption case that came out of the District of Oregon last week,...more

Court Sheds Light On “Pregnancy Accommodation” Obligation After Young V. UPS

A federal appeals court panel has come out with a decision interpreting the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision last year in Young v. UPS, and the result wasn’t too good for the employer. The Sheriff’s Department of Ulster...more

U.S. Treasury Department Suggests That Non-Compete Reform is Necessary

The U.S. Department of Treasury recently released a study on the effect of non-compete agreements, taking a hard line with respect to their social and economic benefits and purported harms. Specifically, while the authors of...more

CFPB: The Quarterly Review - April 2016

If the first quarter is any indication, 2016 is going to be a busy year for the CFPB and market participants alike. The CFPB Speaks - Regulation by enforcement - On March 9, during his prepared remarks to...more

Some pre- and post-shift activity not compensable

In recent years, a number of collective action wage and hour disputes involving the donning and doffing of protective work clothing have made their way through the courts. And in many of those cases, the employers have been...more

Keeping Your (Top) Hat On

“Top hat” plans are plans employers maintain for a “select group of management or highly compensated employees.” These plans are exempt from many of ERISA’s protections, including eligibility, vesting, fiduciary...more

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