Interstate Commerce

News & Analysis as of

A Tale Of Two Hats: Trademark “Use In Commerce” Expanded In A Potentially Game-Changing Decision

Our readers no doubt understand that trademark use is the basis for trademark protection in the U.S. But all use is not created equal, and sometimes it’s not so easy to tell whether a trademark is actually used in a manner...more

Facebook calls Illinois Biometric Law Unconstitutional

In the ongoing saga of Facebook’s challenge of the Illinois Biometric Law, it declared last week that the Illinois law violates the United State Constitution. According to Facebook’s Answer in a suit filed against it in...more

More Than Zero: Under the Lanham Act, One Interstate Sale Qualifies as Actual Use of a Trademark in Commerce

In 2009, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office rejected shoe manufacturer Adidas’s application to trademark the phrase “ADIZERO,” due to a likelihood of confusion with an existing mark: “ADD A ZERO,” a clothing trademark held...more

ADD A ZERO v. ADIZERO

The long running trademark dispute between Adidas and a church in Illinois just had a decision handed down by a federal appeals court. Adidas thought it could outrun a church in Zion Illinois, but it appears that they...more

Mississippi Supreme Court Finally Disconnects The Line On Dividend Exclusion Statute In The AT&T Case

In a previous article, we summarized AT&T’s 16-year effort, in two separate lawsuits, to have declared unconstitutional two Mississippi income tax statutes on the alleged basis that they placed a greater tax burden on AT&T...more

Video-Streaming Companies See the “Netflix Tax” Going into Effect Around the Country to the Dismay of “Cord Cutters”

If you are like many other Americans, then you may have “cut your Cable TV cord” and turned to streaming movies and shows through your accounts with Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, HBO GO, SlingTV, or other video streaming tech...more

FERC Proposes Changes to Interstate Oil Pipeline Index Ratemaking and Cost and Revenue Reporting

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANOPR). This ANOPR is seeking comments on potential changes to FERC’s policies for evaluating interstate oil pipeline...more

FERC Issues ANOPR on Revisions to Oil Pipeline Indexing Policies and Reporting Requirements

On October 20, 2016, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC” or “Commission”) issued an advanced notice of proposed rulemaking (“ANOPR”) seeking comments on potential revisions to (1) the Commission’s policies for...more

Class Action Arbitration after Dell Webb

Agreeing to arbitrate disputes, in lieu of traditional litigation, is not a new phenomenon. As consumers, we all contractually agree to arbitrate disputes on an almost daily basis. While not everyone may read the entire...more

California Dreamin’: California Releases Its Sustainable Freight Action Plan and is Sued for Allegedly Improperly Imposing a Fee...

Late last week, California released the California Sustainable Freight Action Plan, a comprehensive document that is to serve as a blueprint for transforming the state’s multi-billion dollar freight transport system into one...more

EU-U.S. Privacy Shield: Companies Can Now Certify

As of, August 1st, 2016, U.S. companies can now join the Safe Harbor successor EU-U.S. Privacy Shield (the “Privacy Shield”) for personal data transfers from the EU to the U.S. This post gives a high level summary of...more

Goodwin Files Supreme Court Amicus Brief On Behalf Of The Mortgage Industry

On July 25, 2016, Goodwin filed a certiorari-stage amicus brief on behalf of the Mortgage Bankers Association, Consumer Mortgage Coalition, and several other mortgage industry groups. The case involves a Connecticut law that...more

Financial Services Weekly News - July 2016 #4

Editor's Note - What Exactly Is Bitcoin? In a case featuring a sting operation beginning with meetings in a coffee shop, ice cream store and hotel lobby and ending with the sale of bitcoins to an undercover Miami Beach...more

Securities Fraud – a Lesson for Promoters

We discussed SEC v. Arcturus et al last week and promised more. Here it is. Did defendants commit securities fraud? It doesn’t matter. Violations of Sections 5 of the Securities Act and 15.A of the Exchange Act are...more

DC Circuit Ruling Threatens to Topple FERC Tax Allowance Policy

Court rules that FERC policy permitting a tax allowance for pass-through entities may unjustifiably permit “double-recovery” of tax expense. On July 1, the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued...more

High Stakes: Investing in a Legal Marijuana Business

Considering diversifying with a high-risk investment? Heard the lure of the “green rush” toward a possible $100 billion legal marijuana industry? Before you write that check... Please see full Article below for...more

Why is Federal Question Jurisdiction Such a Mess?

In honor of Buddy Ryan, the legendary football coach who passed away last week, we will be especially crotchety in today’s case report. It was while we were in law school in Chicago that Ryan was the coordinator of a Bears...more

Connecticut Supreme Court Ruled MCS-90 Endorsement Within Trucking Policy Covers Only Interstate Transit or Trip-Specific...

In Renee Martinez v. Empire Fire and Marine Insurance Company, SC 19390 (to be officially released on July 12, 2016), the Connecticut Supreme Court ruled that the MCS-90 Endorsement within trucking policy covers only...more

Accounting for FERC’s Ability to Revoke MBR Authority in Project Financing Agreements

On June 9, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”) issued an order revoking authority to charge negotiated “market-based” rates (“MBR Authority”) previously granted to several subsidiaries of Berkshire Hathaway...more

The federal-state energy regulatory divide: The new order after Learjet, EPSA and Hughes

In three recent decisions (the Three Decisions), the US Supreme Court (the Court) drew a sharp dividing line between the authority of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC or Commission) and that of the states to...more

FERC says Nicatous microhydro doesn't need license

Federal energy regulators have ruled that a micro-hydroelectric project proposed by a remote Maine sporting camp does not require licensing under the Federal Power Act. The Nicatous case illustrates one expedited regulatory...more

The Supreme Court - June 2016 #5

The Supreme Court of the United States issued decisions in five cases today: RJR Nabisco, Inc. v. European Community, No. 15-138: The European Union and 26 of its members filed an action in District Court against...more

Shhhhh! Obama Signs the Defend Trade Secrets Act

Remember when you, as an employer, asked an attorney to prepare a contract containing a covenant not to compete? Or maybe you, as an employee, had questions about such a covenant. Or, perhaps, an attorney prepared a...more

Proposed New North Carolina Law Would Allow Distilleries to Sell Direct to Consumers Outside the State at the Distiller’s Price

North Carolina House Bill 169, the Regulatory Reduction Act of 2016, proposes to authorize North Carolina distilleries to “better complete nationally and internationally” through two important changes: (1) increasing the cap...more

The Supreme Court - May 2016 #3

The Supreme Court of the United States issued decisions in three cases on May 19, 2016: CRST Van Expedited, Inc. v. EEOC, No. 14-1375: The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) brought a suit in its own name...more

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