Obama Administration

News & Analysis as of

Department of Labor Seeks Information about Employees' Use of Smartphones

The Obama Administration used the occasion of Memorial Day weekend to release its required Semiannual Regulatory Agenda. The Agenda, which is not binding on the DOL, lists a number of items including two specifically related...more

Transgender Complaints on the Rise: What Should Employers Do?

The President, the EEOC and the Justice Department have announced that gender identity discrimination is prohibited sex discrimination under Title VII. Since these declarations, the number of lawsuits alleging gender identity...more

DOL Re-Proposes Fiduciary Rule

On April 14, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) re-proposed its rule expanding the definition of fiduciary. A re-proposed fiduciary definition was initially released in October of 2010, but the Department of Labor...more

DHS Asks Court to Dismiss Lawsuit Challenging H-4 Work Authorization

While the lawsuit challenging President Obama’s executive action continues to garner headlines, an additional lawsuit has been filed contesting another part of the executive actions that DHS is attempting to implement. This...more

Polsinelli Podcast - An International Trade Issue That May Impact Your Business [Video]

There is a key new development for US companies and individuals dealing in international markets. The Obama Administration issued a new Executive Order that will subject certain individuals and entities engaging in so-called...more

Seven Things to Know About the Campus Accountability and Safety Act

In recent years, the Obama Administration and the Department of Education have aggressively increased their focus on how colleges and universities address sexual violence and harassment. ...more

Unusual Bipartisanship Makes New Free Trade Agreements More Likely

Major new free trade agreements are on the horizon. For the past several years, the Obama Administration has been negotiating two new major free trade agreements: the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Trans-Atlantic...more

Obama Administration Releases First Installment of the Quadrennial Energy Review

The Obama Administration released the first installment of its Quadrennial Energy Review (“QER”), which focuses on energy transmission, storage, and distribution (“TS&D”). The QER was first launched in Obama’s Climate Action...more

DOE Highlights the Need to Modernize Aging US Energy Infrastructure

The first installment of the Obama Administration’s comprehensive survey and analysis of the US energy sector provides a detailed roadmap for modernizing the energy transmission, storage, and distribution system to make it...more

New US sanctions program to combat cybercrimes: 3 action steps for tech companies

The new sanctions in President Barack Obama’s Executive Order 13694 of April 1, 2015, “Blocking the Property of Certain Persons Engaging in Significant Malicious Cyber-Enabled Activities,” target individuals and...more

Out With the Old and in With the New…Guidance

During a Summit on Disability and Employment in February of this year, the White House announced the release of a new guide entitled Recruiting, Hiring, Retaining, and Promoting People with Disabilities, A Resource Guide For...more

The Evolving U.S. Cybersecurity Landscape: What Firms Want to Know

Following a year of high-profile data breaches, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced on January 13, 2015 that, for the second consecutive year, its Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE)...more

Congressional Panel Approves Legislation on Iran Nuclear Deal

Yesterday, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee unanimously passed legislation that would allow Congress to review—and potentially block—any final deal reached with Iran over its nuclear program. The Iran Nuclear Agreement...more

White House Re-Introduces Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights Act

On February 27, 2015, President Obama unveiled the Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights Act of 2015, a draft bill intended to govern the collection and dissemination of consumer data. The Privacy Bill of Rights is a revival of...more

Parameters of Iran Sanctions Relief Announced

On April 2, 2015, the United States and its P5+1 negotiating partners, together with Iran, announced the key parameters of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) regarding Iran’s nuclear program. Further details are...more

United States and Five World Powers Agree on Framework with Iran

On April 2, 2015, the Obama Administration announced that the U.S., Germany, Russia, the U.K., China and France (the “P5+1”) had agreed on the framework of a deal with Iran to address concerns surrounding that country’s...more

Framework Agreement reached over Iran’s Nuclear Programme

On 2 April the P5+1, the European Union and Iran agreed to a framework for a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA framework) regarding Iran’s nuclear programme. Further detail on the JCPOA framework can be found in the...more

Obama Signs Executive Order Establishing Cybersecurity Sanctions Regime

On April 1, 2015, President Obama signed an executive order establishing a new sanctions program targeting individuals and entities responsible for, or complicit in, cyber-enabled activities that threaten the national...more

Recent Crude Oil Train Derailments Intensify the Spotlight on Rail Safety and the Value of Oil Pipelines

Few of us can erase from our memories the imagery of fires blazing at the scenes of crude oil train derailments in West Virginia in early February and in Illinois earlier this month. The fact that these trains carrying Bakken...more

Obama Administration Announces Plan to Combat Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria

On March 27, 2015, the Obama Administration released its National Action Plan for Combating Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria (NAP), a five-year, government-wide plan to address the spread of resistant bacteria. The main...more

Privacy Advocates Critical of Federal Consumer Privacy Bill

Last month, the White House released a “discussion draft” of its proposed Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights of 2015, and so far it has received a cool reception. The bill recognizes that “[t]here is rapid growth in the...more

White House Issues Executive Order Targeting Venezuela

On March 8, President Obama signed an executive order imposing sanctions on Venezuela in response to the country’s ongoing human rights violations and abuses in anti-governmental protests. Specifically, the Order (i)...more

White House Introduces Discussion Draft of Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights

Although most states have enacted some form of data privacy and breach notification laws, and certain federal statutory schemes cover specific industry sectors, there are no privacy protections for all personal data. Given...more

Executive Order Requires Government Contractors to Monitor Human Trafficking by Vendors and Subcontractors

Existing human trafficking-related prohibitions for federal contractors and subcontractors were strengthened recently by the Obama Administration. While there has been an Executive Order outlawing certain "human trafficking...more

White House Issues Proposal for FTC-Regulated Data Privacy Protection

On February 27, 2015, the White House proposed legislation to protect consumers’ personal data and information that is collected and used by private companies and nonprofits. Federal and state governments and their agencies...more

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