Public Records

News & Analysis as of

California Public Employees' Personal Accounts May Be Subject to Public Records Act Requests

In City of San Jose v. Superior Court, No. S218066 (Cal. Mar. 2, 2017), the Supreme Court of California decided unanimously that communications made or stored on a public employee's personal account, including emails sent...more

Social Media and Public Records Laws

Social media is ubiquitous these days. Facebook alone, for example, has nearly 1.5 billion monthly active users. Given social media’s widespread use, it is not surprising that some municipalities have sought to harness its...more

Civil Discovery Act Applies to Public Records Act Proceedings, California Appellate Court Concludes

Public entities litigating California Public Records Act cases may now face the additional burden of responding to civil discovery requests. The Second District Court of Appeal recently issued its opinion in City of Los...more

California Supreme Court Holds that Communications Related to Public Business do not Cease to be Public Records Just Because They...

On March 2, 2017, in what is easily the sunniest day in this long, wet winter, the Supreme Court of California issued a landmark ruling regarding the California Public Records Act (Cal. Govt. Code § 6250 et seq.), holding...more

Sealing the Case: Controversy Surrounds New York Commercial Division Proposed New Rule

In late 2016, the Commercial Division Advisory Council proffered a proposed rule, Proposed Rule 11-h, which would amend Rule 216.1(a) of the Uniform Rules for Trial Courts in New York to define the “good cause” under which...more

Massachusetts Breach Notifications Will Now Be Publicly Available Online

On Jan. 3, 2017, the Massachusetts Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation announced that it will begin making its data breach notification archive publicly available online. Previously, data breach notifications...more

Legislation Update: How Should Law Enforcement Video Recordings Be Handled in NC?

House Bill 972 was signed into law last summer, and took effect on October 1, 2016. The law is a significant change in the way municipalities are required to handle video recordings made by law enforcement, both with dash...more

Legal Invoices to Public Agencies in California May Be Exempt from Disclosure

In a case that pitted government transparency against a public agency’s interest in confidential communications with its attorney, the California Supreme Court came down on the side of protecting attorney-client privileged...more

Police Arrest Videos Not Considered Confidential

The California Supreme Court recently denied considering an appellate court ruling from a case in Eureka that police arrest videos cannot be considered confidential officer personnel records and therefore kept from public...more

Commercial Division Refuses to Disturb Judgment Based On “Newly Discovered” Evidence That Was Available in Russian Public Records...

What is the ability of a litigant in the Commercial Division to use evidence located in the public records outside of the United States to re-open a New York court judgment? On December 7, 2016, in Alexander Gliklad v....more

Indonesian Electronic Information and Transactions Law Amended

Law No. 19 of 2016 on the Amendment to Law No. 11 of 2008 on Electronic Information and Transactions ("Amendment") took effect on 25 November 2016. Aiming to accommodate recent developments in the electronic information and...more

Commercial Division Rejects Employers’ Plea For Trade Secret and Trademark Protection

When employees resign, the scope of the trade secret doctrine often defines the relationship between former employers and their employees. Trade secret misappropriation claims frequently overlap with other claims arising out...more

Do members of the public have a right to access company records?

This article considers whether members of the public have a right to access a company’s company records such as its securities and directors registers. We explore the scope of section 26(2) of the Companies Act 71 of 2008...more

Changes to Public Records Act Reshape Duties of Government Contractors

Recent amendments to Florida's Public Records Act both clarify and alter a contractor's responsibilities under the Act. The 2016 amendment to the Act applies to contracts with a public agency entered into or amended on or...more

"Private" E-mails and FOIA

Recent legal decisions continue to blur the line between private communications and public records, extending the reach of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Because of these shifts, proactive government officials are...more

Pennsylvania Legislature Seeks to Limit Access to Police Video Recordings

The bill establishes a more restrictive process for obtaining video than the courts have provided for under the Right to Know Law. The Pennsylvania Senate passed a bill on October 19 that would prohibit police body...more

PUT YOUR DOCS WHERE I CAN SEE THEM: Seattle Police Enjoined From Disclosing Software Secrets in Public Records Act Dispute

What happens when trade secret protections collide with laws granting public access to government records? This question took center stage in a recent case involving the Seattle Police Department (“SPD”). A federal district...more

Don’t Assume A Strong Discovery Protective Order Means Your Client’s Confidential Information Will Not End Up in the Public Record

The scenario is pretty common. A company is served with a subpoena duces tecum in a lawsuit to which it isn’t a party. Among the categories of documents requested are some that clearly include information the non-party...more

The Fifth Circuit Rules Findings from SEC Civil Investigation are Admissible Evidence at Trial

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals appears to have handed white collar defendants a new tool for trial. In United States v. Gluk, — F.3d —-, 2016 WL 4150901 (5th Cir. Aug. 4, 2016), the court held that a little-noticed...more

Informing Illinois Newsletter - August 2016

Is Your Police Department Ready for Body Cameras? - Police use of force has been heavily scrutinized for more than a year. In May 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice announced that it was providing $20 million in grants...more

Florida Court Holds Budget Request Forms and Activity and Service Fee Records Not “Educational Records”

On August 11, 2016, a Florida state court judge held that the University Central Florida Board of Trustees (“UCF”) must produce Budget Request forms and Activity and Service Fee Database records to Knight News, Inc. (“KNI”)...more

North Carolina Public Records Law 101 - A primer for economic development professionals

At the North Carolina Economic Development Association 2016 Annual Conference, I participated on a panel discussion and presentation regarding public records law requirements in North Carolina and how they affect economic...more

Accidental Disclosure Of Public Records Does Not Waive The Attorney-Client And Attorney Work Product Privileges

On March 17, 2016, the California Supreme Court resolved an important case regarding the California Public Records Act, ruling unanimously that the inadvertent release of confidential documents does not waive the...more

Public Bodies Not Required to Create New Records to Respond to FOIA Request

The Second District Appellate Court recently addressed the question of when an electronic record is a public record subject to FOIA and when a public agency is required to release information from an electronic database. In...more

FHA Issues Final Guidelines on PACE Assessments

The U.S. Federal Housing Administration (FHA) issued final guidance in the form of Mortgagee Letter 2016-11 regarding the subordination of Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) assessments on Tuesday, July 19, 2016. As...more

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