Legal History

News & Analysis as of

The U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework Is Invalid: Now What?

A confluence of events has tested the strength of the Safe Harbor Framework and for now, it is no longer a port in the storm. Most recently, on October 6, 2015, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) invalidated...more

Estate Tax Changes Past, Present and Future

INTRODUCTION - This outline is a selective and evolving review of the history of the modern federal estate tax. It originated during the attempts to repeal the estate tax in President Clinton’s second term and...more

Two Hundred and Twenty Fifth Anniversary of U.S. Patent X000001

U.S. Patent X000001 was granted on July 31, 1790 to Samuel Hopkins. The original document went missing for many years, only resurfacing in 1956. The inventor named is Samuel Hopkins, but which Samuel Hopkins was much in...more

The Americans with Disabilities Act at 25 Years: A Look Back and What’s Ahead

This Sunday marked the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), which was signed into law by President George H.W. Bush on July 26, 1990. The enactment of the ADA represented a bipartisan commitment to...more

Lack of Materiality as a Defense in False Claims Act Cases

The False Claims Act (the “Act”) imposes liability on those who “’knowingly’ present, or cause to be presented, ‘a false or fraudulent claim for payment or approval’” to the government. Persons who act in “deliberate...more

New Guidance On Wellness Programs

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently issued proposed new rules clarifying its stance on the interplay between the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and employer wellness programs. Officially...more

CEQA Judicial Outcomes: Fifteen Years of Reported California Appellate and Supreme Court Decisions

This report analyzes all published opinions from 1997 through 2012 litigated to the California Court of Appeal or the California Supreme Court concerning the analytical validity of an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) or...more

A Modest Proposal (or Two)

Any observer of the interaction between the Federal Circuit and the Supreme Court over the past decade has recognized that the Court has become increasingly critical of the Federal Circuit's patent jurisprudence and of...more

FCRA Preemption: Is Guidance on the Way from the 11th Circuit?

FCRA preemption of state law claims against furnishers of credit information is anything but a settled legal issue. For better or worse, guidance may be on the way soon from the Eleventh Circuit. This is a subject that cannot...more

The Pendulum We Know As Workers’ Compensation

When you’ve been in the workers compensation industry for almost 40 years, you see a lot of changes. A few decades ago, workers’ compensation was a gold mine for claimant’s attorneys. The joke then was that, to win, all a...more

Supreme Court’s Omnicare Decision Muddies Section 11 Opinion Liability Standards

The Supreme Court has a long history of rejecting expansive interpretations of implied private rights of action under Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act. Most notably, since 1975, it rejected the argument that mere...more

The Heavy Burden of Light Duty: Young v. UPS

On March 25, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its much-anticipated decision in Young v. UPS, which employer and employee groups alike hoped would clarify whether employers must provide light duty and other workplace...more

Litigation Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Raises the Stakes in Trademark Proceedings at the TTAB

This week, the Supreme Court issued an important ruling that will significantly impact the way parties handle trademark disputes in the United States. The opinion in B&B Hardware, Inv. v. Hargis Industries, Inc., 575 U.S....more

Recent California Decisions Reinforce Need for Care in Electronic Contracting

In mid-1999, the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws, responding to an intensifying reliance on electronic communications and a corresponding need for clarity as to the legal enforceability of...more

Should The SEC Adopt Governance Principles (For Itself)?

When I served as Commissioner of Corporations for the State of California, I was sometimes asked about the other Commissioners.  However, I never concerned myself with the “other Commissioners” because there were no other...more

Supreme Court Ruling Validates DOL’s 2010 Interpretation Regarding FLSA Status of Mortgage-Loan Officers

The Supreme Court recently rejected a challenge to the validity of a 2010 interpretation by the U.S. Department of Labor (the “DOL”), which had concluded that the administrative exemption of the Fair Labor Standards Act...more

Supreme Court Eliminates Notice-and-Comments for Some Agency Interpretations

On March 9, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that the Paralyzed Veterans doctrine, which requires an agency to use the notice-and-comment procedures of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) when issuing a...more

With Highly Anticipated Copyright Decision, The AutoHop Litigation Is Coming to a Close

In 2012, DISH Network announced two novel product offerings that would result in considerable backlash from the four major broadcast television networks and set in motion a three-year, wide-ranging, multi-front battle with...more

Health Care Reform in America: The Good, The Bad And The Ugly

Health care providers, the insurance industry, and all of us as health care consumer continue to experience the difficult birth pangs of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act ("ACA" or the "Act"). Political battles...more

How Data Privacy Regulations Changed Across Asia-Pacific in 2014

2014 saw a large number of significant developments in data privacy laws across Asia-Pacific. However, unsurprisingly there has not been a consistent approach across Asia-Pacific towards the development of data privacy...more

OFCCP's Final Rule Prohibiting LGBT Discrimination by Federal Contractors Takes Effect April 8, 2015

The OFCCP's final rule implementing President Obama's Executive Order (EO 13672) prohibiting federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity takes effect April 8, 2015. ...more

The Only U.S. President Elected under the 12th Amendment is...

The 12th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States provides for the election of the president and vice president by the electoral college, and if no candidate obtains a majority, the House of Representatives chooses...more

Twenty Years Down the Road: A Q&A With Paul Goldstein, Author of Copyright’s Highway

More than two decades have passed since internationally recognized copyright law expert and award-winning novelist Professor Paul Goldstein of Stanford Law School (and Of Counsel to Morrison & Foerster) published his landmark...more

A View From the Foxhole: The Practical Side of the NLRB’s New Election Rules

Having recently completed my latest National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) post-election representation hearing, I found myself contemplating the impact of the NLRB’s new election rules (which some have dubbed the “Quickie...more

Regulating Exploration on the Arctic OCS: U.S. Federal Regulators Propose Rules for Oil and Gas Exploratory Drilling on the Arctic...

In recent years, the energy industry has expressed significant interest in investigating submerged lands on the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) in the Arctic for commercial quantities of oil and natural gas. The...more

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