Blank Rome LLP

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One Logan Square
130 North 18th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103-6998, United States
Phone: 215.569.5500
Fax: 215.569.5555
Areas of Practice
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)
  • Antitrust & Trade Regulation
  • Appellate Practice
  • Bankruptcy
  • Criminal Law
  • Energy & Utilities
  • Environmental Law
  • Finance & Banking
  • Government
  • Health
  • Intellectual Property
  • International Law & Trade
  • Labor & Employment Law
  • Litigation
  • Maritime Law
  • Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Privacy
  • Products Liability
  • Real Estate
  • Science, Computers, & Tech
  • Securities Law
  • Taxation
  • Wills, Trusts, & Estate Planning
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Locations
Other U.S. Locations
  • California
  • D.C.
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Ohio
  • Pennsylvania
  • Texas
Other Countries
  • China
Number of Attorneys
400+ Attorneys

Stretching Sovereign Immunity: The New Jersey High Court Immunizes the State from New Jersey Spill Act Liability for Pre-1977 Discharges

Action Item: The New Jersey Supreme Court’s decision in NL Industries, Inc. v. State of New Jersey will frustrate the equitable allocation of cleanup costs at sites involving pre-1977 discharges where the State would otherwise…more

CERCLA, Department of Environmental Protection, NJ Supreme Court, Remediation, Sovereign Immunity

See all updates »

California District Court Holds that a Debt Collector’s Retention of a Portion of a Transactional Fee Voluntarily Paid by the Consumer for Purposes of Convenience Was a Violation of the Rosenthal Fair Debt Collections Practices Act

In April Lindblom v. Santander Consumer USA Inc., No. 15-cv-0990 (E.D. Cal. January 22, 2018), the United States District Court for the Eastern District of California held that the plaintiffs’ voluntary payment of a…more

Article III, Debt Collection, Debt Collectors, FDCPA, Injury-in-Fact

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Garden State Says #MeToo: Bill Barring Non-Disclosure Clauses Passes in Both Chambers

New Jersey appears to be the next state to ban non-disclosure clauses in employment contracts or settlement agreements. On January 31, 2019, Senate Bill 121 passed the New Jersey Assembly by a 68-4-4 vote and the Senate in a…more

#MeToo, Arbitration, Attorney's Fees, Employer Liability Issues, Employment Contract

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New York #MeToo Initiatives—It’s No Longer Just an HR Issue

Stephen E. Tisman and Rither Alabre Propelled by the Harvey Weinstein scandal and the “#MeToo” movement, New York government officials have taken new steps to protect victims of sexual misconduct in the workplace…more

#MeToo, Board of Directors, Corporate Counsel, Employer Liability Issues, Harassment

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Goodbye Uber Class Action, Hello Individual Arbitration

Last week, in a significant blow to claims that gig economy workers are entitled to pursue disputes on a class or collective basis, and possibly whether those workers will be able to establish that they are employees and not…more

Arbitration, Class Action, Employer Liability Issues, Independent Contractors, Misclassification

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UNCITRAL’s Model Law on Recognition and Enforcement of Insolvency-Related Judgments – A Universalist Approach to Cross-Border Insolvency

In its July 2018 session, UNCITRAL adopted and promulgated the Model Law on Recognition and Enforcement of Insolvency-Related Judgments (“MLIRJ”). The MLIRJ has been developed over the last four years by UNCITRAL’s Working Group…more

Bankruptcy Code, Chapter 15, Commercial Bankruptcy, Cross-Border, Debtors

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Technical Data Rights Protections Eroded by FY19 NDAA

The Fiscal Year (“FY”) 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (“NDAA”), H.R. 5515, 115th Cong., 2d Sess. (2018), passed both chambers of Congress at breakneck speed this year, the fastest pace in approximately 20 years, and was…more

Contract Disputes, Department of Defense (DOD), Federal Contractors, NDAA

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Mainbrace - January 2015 No. 1

In this issue: - A Sea Change Sweeps over Congress: A Look Back and a Look Ahead - Shipping & International Trade Law (Second Edition 2015) - Congress Passes Coast Guard Bill in Waning Hours of 113th…more

Coast Guard, Cybersecurity, Jones Act, Legislative Agendas, Maritime Transport

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IRS Announces Year 2017 Retirement Plan Limits

On October 27, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) announced the following dollar limits applicable to tax-qualified plans for 2017: - The limit on the maximum amount of elective contributions that a person may make…more

403(b) Plans, 457(b) Plans, Deferred Compensation, Employee Benefits, IRS

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New California Law Requiring Female Directors on Public Company Boards Becomes Effective

This client alert provides an update on the new legislation passed in California as it relates to the minimum number of female directors that must serve on the board of directors of each publicly held domestic or foreign…more

Board of Directors, Corporate Governance, Diversity, Governor Brown, Woman Board Members

See all updates »

Strategically Leveraging the Personal Jurisdiction Requirement to Put the Brakes on Litigation Tourism & Forum Shopping

I. Why It Matters - Until recently, personal jurisdiction over corporate defendants had been expanding significantly in scope through the reliance on tenuous corporate contacts or business conducted by a defendant in a…more

BNSF Railway Co v Tyrrell, Forum Shopping, General Jurisdiction, Personal Jurisdiction, Principal Place of Business

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Cryptocurrency: The Tax Man Cometh Again

In the wake of the success of its “Swiss Bank Program,” the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) Tax Division and the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) Criminal Investigation Division are gearing up for a similar initiative aimed…more

Cryptocurrency, Digital Currency, DOJ, IRS, OVDP

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River Road: A Cautionary Tale for Chapter 11 Financial Advisors

The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Illinois recently handed down an opinion, In re River Road Hotel Partners LLC, 2014 WL 5488259 (Bankr. N.D. Ill. 2014), dealing with the issue of a financial…more

Chapter 11, Commercial Bankruptcy, Creditors, Debt Restructuring, Engagement Letters

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The OCC and FinTech—Ready for Innovation and Collaboration

In a long-awaited decision, on July 31, 2018, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced that it will move ahead with accepting applications for national bank charters from nondepository FinTech companies. While…more

Banking Sector, Financial Services Industry, FinTech, Fintech Charter, National Bank Charters

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Mainbrace: October 2018 (No. 3)

Note from the Vice Chair - Happy fall! As the seasons change, so do the issues confronting the maritime industry...or not. Over the past few years, several topics have consistently remained in the headlines and as a thorn in…more

Coast Guard, Cybersecurity, DOJ, FCPA, Federal Arbitration Act

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$750,000,000 Missing Comma Comes Unhinged in BP’s Additional Insured Claim

Action Item: Courts must consider whether an insurance policy incorporates other documents and the extent thereof in evaluating the existence of additional insured coverage. Parties should evaluate the policy and underlying…more

Additional Insured, BP, Contract Drafting, Contract Interpretation, Deepwater Horizon

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Mainbrace: March 2018 (No. 1)

Ballast Water Management: The Conundrum Continues - It has been about 15 months since the U.S. Coast Guard (“USCG”) type-approved the first three ballast water management systems (“BWMSs”) in December 2016; three more BWMSs…more

Ballast Water Management, Chapter 11, Coast Guard, Commercial Bankruptcy, Cybersecurity

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An Overview of Intellectual Property Insurance Issues

The strategic importance and economic value of intellectual property (“IP”) can hardly be overstated in today’s global marketplace. Recognizing this, companies devote considerable time and resources to protect their vital IP…more

Commercial General Liability Policies, Copyright, Copyright Infringement, Insurance Industry, Intellectual Property Protection

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Mainbrace: June 2017 (No. 3)

Welcome to the summer 2017 edition of Mainbrace. To say we live in interesting times would be a serious understatement. We read headlines on a daily basis that challenge traditionally accepted notions of how governments operate,…more

Anti-Corruption, Antiboycott Requirements, Arbitration, Coast Guard, Customs and Border Protection

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Insurers Seize on Kokesh Ruling to Disclaim Coverage for SEC Disgorgement

Justin F. Lavella and Alexander H. Berman In April 2017, white collar and securities attorneys, as well as potential defendants, cheered the Supreme Court’s unanimous opinion in Kokesh v. SEC, which held that civil…more

Disgorgement, Enforcement Actions, Kokesh v SEC, SEC, Securities Litigation

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Midconstruction Refinancing: A Plunge Into The Void?

Construction loans typically do not get refinanced before a project is completed. A construction loan is short-term in nature and both the lender and its customer expect that they will stay on the project until the project is…more

Construction Industry, Construction Loans, Construction Project, Lenders, Liens

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Mainbrace: June 2018 (No. 2)

What #MeToo Means for the Maritime World - The #MeToo movement has shone new attention on issues for employers in the maritime industry seeking to ensure that seafarers and shore-based personnel can participate in a work…more

#MeToo, Employment Policies, Indemnity, Jones Act, Maritime Transport

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FERC to Review Its Policies Regarding the Determination of the Return on Equity in Jurisdictional Rates

FERC is conducting a comprehensive review of its method for determining the appropriate return on equity in jurisdictional rates across the energy industry. Comments are due no later than 90 days, and reply comments no later…more

Energy Sector, FERC, Oil & Gas, Pipelines, Return on Equity

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Recent FCPA Disclosure Highlights Risks at the U.S.-Mexico Border and Potential Agribusiness Probe

As 2018 came to an end, a voluntary disclosure to the U.S. Department of Justice ("DOJ") and the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) by U.S.-based agribusiness, CHS, Inc. (“CHS”), of potential violations of the Foreign…more

Anti-Corruption, DOJ, FCPA, Mexico, SEC

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IRS Publishes Opportunity Zone Proposed Regulations: The First Important Step in the Structuring of OZ Funds

As part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (the “TCJA”), a new tax incentive program was created to spur economic growth and investment in designated distressed communities (each an “opportunity zone” or “OZ”). Not only does the OZ…more

Capital Gains, Community Development, Economic Development, Internal Revenue Code (IRC), IRS

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The Uncertain Future of Gender Pay Reporting

As you may recall, in 2016, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) issued a Rule requiring private employers with more than 100 workers to include certain pay data, based on gender, race, and ethnicity, on their…more

EEO-1, EEOC, Employer Liability Issues, OMB, Reporting Requirements

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Re-Imposing U.S. Sanctions on Iran: Key Issues for Global Business

Global companies must evaluate complex legal and regulatory risks in the wake of the U.S. decision to re-impose sanctions on Iran. While the White House has set 90- and 180-day transition periods, some measures warrant close…more

Economic Sanctions, Iran Sanctions, Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Trump Administration

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Maritime Community Addresses Plastic Pollution in Oceans

The world has begun to recognise that plastic pollution in the ocean is not solely, or even mostly, a shipping problem. However, it is gratifying to see that the maritime community has stepped up to do what it can to address the…more

Maritime Transport, Pollution Control, Vessels, Water Pollution

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#TakeTheLead: California Employment Laws Boldly Go Where No Legislation Has Gone Before

Unless you’ve been living under the Starship Enterprise, you’ve seen the laundry list of new laws recently passed by the California legislature, which went into effect this year. If you do business in the Golden State, you need…more

Employee Training, Employer Liability Issues, Non-Disclosure Agreement, Settlement Agreements, Sexual Harassment

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Biometric Data Risks Lawsuits

In the summer of 2017, a supermarket chain owned by Kroger was hit with a putative class-action lawsuit for allegedly violating a law protecting individuals’ biometric data and information. Originally published in Industry…more

Actual Injuries, Biometric Information, Biometric Information Privacy Act, Data Collection, Data Privacy

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Supreme Court Limits Where Patent Cases Can Be Brought—Can You Move to Your Home Court?

The Supreme Court, in TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC, issued an opinion that may limit the number of patent suits brought in courts perceived to be plaintiff-friendly and may give companies the opportunity to…more

Forum Shopping, Patent Infringement, Patent Litigation, Patents, Personal Jurisdiction

See all updates »

Policyholders (and the Courts) Continue to Ignore Section 1123 When Analyzing Insured v. Insured Exclusions

Last month the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit issued its anticipated decision in Indian Harbor Insurance v. Zucker, affirming a 2016 decision from a federal district court in Michigan that an Insured v…more

Bankruptcy Code, D&O Insurance, Debtors-in-Possession, Insurance Litigation, Insureds

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Congress Passes Federal Defend Trade Secrets Act

Action Item: President Barack Obama is expected to sign a new law that will provide companies with a federal cause of action for trade secret protection claims. The Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 (“DTSA”) passed Congress last…more

Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA), Economic Espionage Act, Misappropriation, Pending Legislation, Trade Secrets

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The OCC and FinTech—Ready for Innovation and Collaboration

In a long-awaited decision, on July 31, 2018, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced that it will move ahead with accepting applications for national bank charters from nondepository FinTech companies. While…more

Banking Sector, Financial Services Industry, FinTech, Fintech Charter, National Bank Charters

See all updates »

Biometric Data Risks Lawsuits

In the summer of 2017, a supermarket chain owned by Kroger was hit with a putative class-action lawsuit for allegedly violating a law protecting individuals’ biometric data and information. Originally published in Industry…more

Actual Injuries, Biometric Information, Biometric Information Privacy Act, Data Collection, Data Privacy

See all updates »

Stretching Sovereign Immunity: The New Jersey High Court Immunizes the State from New Jersey Spill Act Liability for Pre-1977 Discharges

Action Item: The New Jersey Supreme Court’s decision in NL Industries, Inc. v. State of New Jersey will frustrate the equitable allocation of cleanup costs at sites involving pre-1977 discharges where the State would otherwise…more

CERCLA, Department of Environmental Protection, NJ Supreme Court, Remediation, Sovereign Immunity

See all updates »

QuadrigaCX’s Insolvency: Problems in Tracing and Recovering Cryptocurrency When Keys Stored in Cold Wallets Are Missing

The implementation of compliance protocols for private keys of cryptocurrencies is of the utmost importance for companies that hold custody of cryptocurrencies, as highlighted by the recent, untimely death of QuadrigaCX’s CEO…more

Commercial Bankruptcy, Cryptocurrency, Digital Currency, Insolvency, Popular

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OFCCP’s New Voluntary Program Exempts “High-Performing” Contractors from Compliance Evaluations

On February 13, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (“OFCCP”) issued Directive 2019-04 which establishes a framework for the Voluntary Enterprise-wide Review Program (“VERP”). Under this new program, OFCCP will…more

Diversity, Federal Contractors, OFCCP, Voluntary Compliance, Voluntary Participation

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Congress Passes Federal Defend Trade Secrets Act

Action Item: President Barack Obama is expected to sign a new law that will provide companies with a federal cause of action for trade secret protection claims. The Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 (“DTSA”) passed Congress last…more

Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA), Economic Espionage Act, Misappropriation, Pending Legislation, Trade Secrets

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Breaking News—New Jersey Supremes at Last Deliver New Jersey Developers a Win against the Insurance Industry, Finding Coverage Exists for Subcontractor’s Faulty Workmanship

Action Item: Developers and contractors, as well as commercial and residential property owners and occupants, must be aware of a recent New Jersey Supreme Court decision in Cypress Point Condominium Association, Inc. v. Adria…more

Commercial General Liability Policies, Consequential Damages, Construction Defects, Construction Industry, Construction Project

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Mainbrace: March 2018 (No. 1)

Ballast Water Management: The Conundrum Continues - It has been about 15 months since the U.S. Coast Guard (“USCG”) type-approved the first three ballast water management systems (“BWMSs”) in December 2016; three more BWMSs…more

Ballast Water Management, Chapter 11, Coast Guard, Commercial Bankruptcy, Cybersecurity

See all updates »

Barriers to Voting Beginning to Fall in New York State

Despite its progressive reputation, New York State has some of the most restrictive voting laws in the country. On Monday, January 14, 2019, both houses of the New York legislature made an aggressive move toward more…more

State and Local Government, Voter Registration, Voting Rights

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Recent Lawsuit Highlights Need for Careful Review of Cyberinsurance Policies

The “WannaCry” and “NotPetya” computer viruses that infected computer systems around the world in 2017 sounded a wakeup call. They demonstrated the power of a cyber event to disrupt the core operations of numerous companies and…more

Corporate Counsel, Cyber Attacks, Cyber Insurance, Cybersecurity, Data Protection

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Foundation: December 2016 • Vol. IV , Issue 3

We are pleased to present our last edition of Foundation for the year, and hope that you have enjoyed the issues we have put together in 2016. We have worked hard to provide you with timely and relevant articles in a…more

Acquisitions, Capital Investments, CDFI Fund, CFIUS, Consequential Damages

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Estate Planning under the New Tax Law

This client alert is part of a special series on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and related changes to the tax code, where Blank Rome’s lawyers share their analysis of different provisions in the Act and how they may affect you and…more

529 Plans, Estate Planning, Estate Tax, Generation-Skipping Transfer, Gift Tax

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U.S. Supreme Court Holds Foreclosure Firms Conducting Nonjudicial Foreclosures Are Not Debt Collectors Under the FDCPA

The United States Supreme Court holds businesses conducting nonjudicial foreclosures are not “debt collectors” under the FDCPA, but lenders and foreclosure firms should take note that the Court specifically chose to leave open…more

Appeals, Debt Collection, Dismissals, FDCPA, Non-Judicial Foreclosures

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In Blackstone v. Sharma, Maryland’s Highest Court Rules That Foreign Statutory Trusts Do Not Need to Be Licensed as Debt Collectors to Foreclose upon Real Property

In a long-awaited decision, the Court of Appeals of Maryland holds that foreign statutory trusts do not need to be licensed as debt collectors before initiating in rem foreclosure proceedings. This holding will allow numerous…more

Debt Collection, Debt Collectors, Foreclosure, Mortgages, Statutory Trusts

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Supreme Court Confirms No Change to On Sale Bar

With Helsinn, the Supreme Court confirms that secret sales trigger the on sale bar, just as before the America Invents Act. Patent applicants should be cognizant of all commercial activity related to an invention to ensure…more

America Invents Act, Appeals, Assignment of Inventions, Confidentiality Agreements, Helsinn Healthcare SA v Teva Pharmaceuticals USA Inc

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Breaking Camp(ie): Supreme Courts Sends Gilead FCA Case Back for Likely Dismissal, Postponing Escobar’s Return

The Department of Justice’s (“DOJ”) bombshell statement last month that it would seek dismissal of the Gilead False Claims Act (“FCA”) suit—a qui tam suit alleging misrepresentations and concealments regarding active ingredient…more

DOJ, False Claims Act (FCA), Qui Tam, Relators, Universal Health Services Inc v United States ex rel Escobar

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Seven Ways to Help Your Client Prepare for a Divorce

Your client never entered into a prenuptial agreement and when there was a crisis impacting his marriage, he was unsuccessful in broaching the issue of a postnuptial agreement with his spouse. After years of frustration and…more

Divorce, Prenuptial Agreements, Wealth Management

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Don’t Gamble on Anti-Money Laundering Compliance

In August 2014, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”) issued an advisory urging leadership within all U.S. financial institutions to actively promote a culture of compliance with…more

Anti-Money Laundering, Bank Secrecy Act, BSA/AML, Currency Transaction Reports (CTR), Financial Institutions

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IRS Publishes Opportunity Zone Proposed Regulations: The First Important Step in the Structuring of OZ Funds

As part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (the “TCJA”), a new tax incentive program was created to spur economic growth and investment in designated distressed communities (each an “opportunity zone” or “OZ”). Not only does the OZ…more

Capital Gains, Community Development, Economic Development, Internal Revenue Code (IRC), IRS

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White Collar Watch (December 2018 • No. 3)

NOTE FROM THE EDITORS - All of us here at Blank Rome wish you and yours a happy and healthy holiday season and start to 2019. We are pleased to present our final 2018 edition of White Collar Watch, which includes timely…more

Bribery, Civil Monetary Penalty, Compliance, Corporate Crimes, Corporate Misconduct

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2017 New Tax Law: Executive Compensation Reform

On December 20, 2017, Congress passed its comprehensive tax reform bill, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (the “Act”), which was signed into law by President Trump on December 22, 2017. The Bill represents one of the most extensive…more

Compensation & Benefits, Corporate Taxes, Excise Tax, Executive Compensation, Section 162(m)

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Small Business Runway Extension Act Adjusts Look-back Period from Three to Five Years for Calculating Size Determinations, but SBA May Not Immediately Implement the Law

The New Law - Shortly after passage by the Senate, President Trump signed the Small Business Runway Extension Act, P.L. No. 115-324, into law on December 17, 2018. The new law amends the Small Business Act to adjust the…more

Federal Contractors, SBA, Set-Asides, Small Business

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The Sedona Conference Issues Helpful and Important Commentary on the Proportionality Concept Applicable to Electronic Discovery

Action Item: The following set of six principles proposed by the Sedona Conference Working Group on Electronic Document Retention and Production should serve as practical guidance for litigants adhering to the proportionality…more

Discovery, Duty to Preserve, Electronically Stored Information, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, FRCP 26(b)(1)

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New California Law Requiring Female Directors on Public Company Boards Becomes Effective

This client alert provides an update on the new legislation passed in California as it relates to the minimum number of female directors that must serve on the board of directors of each publicly held domestic or foreign…more

Board of Directors, Corporate Governance, Diversity, Governor Brown, Woman Board Members

See all updates »

Foundation: December 2016 • Vol. IV , Issue 3

We are pleased to present our last edition of Foundation for the year, and hope that you have enjoyed the issues we have put together in 2016. We have worked hard to provide you with timely and relevant articles in a…more

Acquisitions, Capital Investments, CDFI Fund, CFIUS, Consequential Damages

See all updates »

E-Commerce vs. Brick and Mortar: Buying and Selling Shopping Centers in Distress

Declining sales by large brick-and-mortar stores are a harbinger of the challenges facing shopping center owners. The continued popularity of e-commerce shopping creates additional pressure on the retail business model. As…more

Brick-and-Mortar Stores, E-Commerce, Internet Retailers, Retail Market, Retailers

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We Are Hiring: PA Superior Court Upends the Law on “No Hire” Agreements

Countless companies contract with other companies to provide services and include a “no hire” provision (pursuant to which the parties to the contract agree to not hire employees of the contracting company) in the service…more

Employer Liability Issues, Hiring & Firing, No-Hire/No-Solicitation Agreements, Non-Compete Agreements, Restrictive Covenants

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FY 2018 GAO Protest Statistics Show Continued Success through Corrective Action

The Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) has released its Annual Report to Congress detailing the bid protest statistics for Fiscal Year 2018 (B-158766). The report shows a continuation of recent trends: the sustain rate is…more

Bid Protests, Federal Contractors, GAO

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Eleventh Circuit Holds That Voicemails Are "Communications" and Clarifies "Meaningful Disclosure" under the FDCPA

Action Item: The Eleventh Circuit held that a first voicemail from a debt collector constitutes a “communication” based on a plain reading of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”). In addition, in a case of first…more

Corporate Counsel, Debt Collection, Debt Collectors, FDCPA, Voicemail

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Regulators' IM Crackdown May Increase Cyber Risk

In April, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued a bulletin specifically aimed at banks' use of internal messaging software. The bulletin was issued to "remind" banks of their obligations related to the maintenance…more

Banks, Cybersecurity, Data Retention, Department of Financial Services, OCC

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SEC's Chief Accountant Discusses Financial Reporting for Initial Coin Offerings

Corporate, M&A, and Securities - Action Item: The Securities and Exchange Commission’s (“Commission” or “SEC”) registration requirements apply to offers and sales of securities in the United States and include filing audited…more

Cryptocurrency, Financial Reporting, Initial Coin Offering (ICOs), Registration Requirement, SEC

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On the Road to Reconciling GDPR and Blockchain

European Parliament’s Blockchain Resolution lays the framework to reconciling the GDPR and blockchain. On October 3, 2018, the European Parliament passed a resolution on distributed ledger technologies and blockchain (the…more

Blockchain, Data Controller, EU, General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), Personal Data

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New Jersey Supreme Court Weighs in on Arbitration Clauses in Consumer Contracts

On January 10, 2018, the New Jersey Supreme Court decided a case involving the enforceability of mandatory arbitration agreements in consumer contracts. In Kernahan v. Home Warranty Administrator of Florida, the Court held that…more

Arbitration, Arbitration Agreements, Consumer Contracts, Mandatory Arbitration Clauses, NJ Supreme Court

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Momentive: Key Second Circuit Decision Tackles Make-Whole Premiums and Cramdown Interest

Action Item: Lenders and bankruptcy practitioners will need to consider with care how the Second Circuit’s recent Momentive decision will impact negotiations of (i) contractual provisions relating to payment of make-whole…more

Bankruptcy Court, Chapter 11, Commercial Bankruptcy, Debtors, Lenders

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NJ Appellate Division Refuses Ascertainability Analysis in “Low-Value” Consumer Class Actions

Action Item: The New Jersey Appellate Division for the first time reviews the rapidly developing ascertainability doctrine and holds that the doctrine does not apply to low value consumer fraud class actions, setting the stage…more

Ascertainable Class, Class Action, Consumer Fraud

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The OCC and FinTech—Ready for Innovation and Collaboration

In a long-awaited decision, on July 31, 2018, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced that it will move ahead with accepting applications for national bank charters from nondepository FinTech companies. While…more

Banking Sector, Financial Services Industry, FinTech, Fintech Charter, National Bank Charters

See all updates »

States Pass Fewer Drug Manufacturer Pricing Disclosure Laws in 2018

Merle M. DeLancey Jr. While the introduction of state legislation that would require drug manufacturers to disclose pricing and other information did not slow down in 2018, the number of bills that were made law did slow down…more

Attorneys General, Drug Pricing, Manufacturers, Pharmaceutical Industry, Prescription Drugs

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NY Appellate Court Holds Default Letter Stating Debt “Will Be Accelerated” Does Not Accelerate the Debt, De-Acceleration Must Be Clear and Unambiguous, and Standing, If Raised, Is an Element to De-Acceleration

Mortgagees and their servicers should take note that a New York appellate court has confirmed that a default letter, stating the mortgage debt “will be accelerated” if the default is not cured, does not clearly and unequivocally…more

Acceleration, Borrowers, Debt, Default, Foreclosure

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Out of Wonderland from Diehr to Aatrix: Three Steps to Overcoming 101 Rejections – Part II

This second part of a two-part article discusses four decisions by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit finding subject matter eligibility under step 2 of Alice Corporation Pty. Ltd. v. CLS Bank International, et…more

Abstract Ideas, CLS Bank v Alice Corp, Computer-Related Inventions, Patent Litigation, Patent-Eligible Subject Matter

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Appellate Division Finds Coverage for EPA Claim through Company’s Historic Mergers and Acquisitions, Even Though the Bill of Sale Did Not Specifically Reference the Transfer of Insurance Rights

Earlier this month, the New Jersey Appellate Division upheld a decision allowing Cooper Industries LLC (“Cooper”) access to insurance policies received through a series of mergers and acquisitions (“M&As”), even though the…more

Acquisitions, Anti-Assignment Clauses, EPA, Insurance Industry, Mergers

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Individual Tax Reform under the New Tax Law

On December 20, 2017, Congress passed its comprehensive tax reform bill, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (“the Act” or “the Bill”), which was signed into law by President Trump on December 22, 2017. The Bill represents one of the most…more

Alternative Minimum Tax, Income Taxes, Local Taxes, State Taxes, Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

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Goodbye Uber Class Action, Hello Individual Arbitration

Last week, in a significant blow to claims that gig economy workers are entitled to pursue disputes on a class or collective basis, and possibly whether those workers will be able to establish that they are employees and not…more

Arbitration, Class Action, Employer Liability Issues, Independent Contractors, Misclassification

See all updates »

Supreme Court Limits Where Patent Cases Can Be Brought—Can You Move to Your Home Court?

The Supreme Court, in TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC, issued an opinion that may limit the number of patent suits brought in courts perceived to be plaintiff-friendly and may give companies the opportunity to…more

Forum Shopping, Patent Infringement, Patent Litigation, Patents, Personal Jurisdiction

See all updates »

Pennsylvania Legislation Introduced to Authorize Online Gaming

On February 26, 2015, Pennsylvania State Representative John Payne, chairman of the Gaming Oversight Committee, and several other sponsors introduced HB 649, a bill that would amend the Pennsylvania Race Horse Development and…more

Casinos, Gambling Licenses, Gaming, Online Gaming, Proposed Legislation

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Regulatory Update and Recent SEC Actions

REGULATORY UPDATES - U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) Proposes Rule Change to Address Auditor Independence - On May 3, 2018, the SEC proposed to amend its auditor independence rule, Rule 2-01 of Regulation…more

ALJ, Anti-Money Laundering, Auditor Independence, Auditors, DOL

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Mainbrace: January 2016 No. 1

2015 was an interesting year for the shipping industry. The dry bulk market had a very challenging 2015, with the Baltic Dry Index hitting new all-time lows. Based on various reports, the outlook for 2016 is not very positive,…more

Attorney-Client Privilege, Chapter 15, Coast Guard, Cybersecurity, Federal Maritime Commission

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U.S. Supreme Court Holds Foreclosure Firms Conducting Nonjudicial Foreclosures Are Not Debt Collectors Under the FDCPA

The United States Supreme Court holds businesses conducting nonjudicial foreclosures are not “debt collectors” under the FDCPA, but lenders and foreclosure firms should take note that the Court specifically chose to leave open…more

Appeals, Debt Collection, Dismissals, FDCPA, Non-Judicial Foreclosures

See all updates »

How Courts Have Applied Cray Patent Venue Test

In May 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its decision TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC, which narrowed the scope of venue under the first prong of 35 U.S.C. § 1400(b). The natural result was that the second…more

Patent Litigation, Patents, TC Heartland LLC v Kraft Foods, Venue

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Please Don’t Be My Neighbor: Civil RICO Claims against Marijuana Enterprises in Safe Sts. Alliance v. Alternative Holistic Healing, LLC, Et Al., and Cases Like It

A rise in lawsuits alleging violations of federal RICO and narcotics laws against marijuana growers and related businesses in states that have legalized marijuana has caused a shudder in the industry. Marijuana businesses need…more

Adjacent Property Owners, Controlled Substances Act, Marijuana, Marijuana Cultivation, Marijuana Related Businesses

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Mainbrace: October 2015, No. 4

As with the world economy, the shipping markets are currently experiencing a major bout of volatility. The wide range of matters we are handling in our maritime law practice certainly reflects the current swings the shipping…more

Anthem Blue Cross, BP, Coast Guard, Commercial Bankruptcy, Compliance

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Eleventh Circuit Rules that Consumers Have the Right to Partially Revoke Consent to Automated Calls under the TCPA

The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals recently issued its opinion in Emily Schweitzer v. Comenity Bank, holding that the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, 47 U.S.C. sec. 227 et seq. (“TCPA”), allows consumers to partially…more

ATDS, Auto-Dialed Calls, Cell Phones, Debt Collection, Prior Express Consent

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Midconstruction Refinancing: A Plunge Into The Void?

Construction loans typically do not get refinanced before a project is completed. A construction loan is short-term in nature and both the lender and its customer expect that they will stay on the project until the project is…more

Construction Industry, Construction Loans, Construction Project, Lenders, Liens

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Is There Any Role Left for Federal Regulation of Sports Wagering?

The Regulatory Review July 25, 2018 With its decision in Murphy v. National Collegiate Athletic Association, the U.S. Supreme Court invalidated the Professional Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA), a federal statute that…more

Anti-Commandeering, PASPA, Sports, Sports Betting, Sports Gambling

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2019 Estate and Tax Planning Newsletter

Blank Rome’s annual estate and tax planning newsletter addresses estate planning concepts and techniques that should be considered in 2019 by our clients and friends. 1. Transfer Taxes. The major changes made in 2010 in the…more

Alternative Minimum Tax, Deposit Insurance, Employee Benefits, Estate Planning, Estate Tax

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Proposed Treasury Regulations Shift the Landscape in Debt Financings over Collateral of Foreign Subsidiary Stock

Proposed Treasury Regulations have been published that will permit many U.S. corporate borrowers to provide a lender with a greater collateral package in respect of its foreign subsidiaries without an adverse tax consequence to…more

Controlled Foreign Corporations, Dividends, Foreign Corporations, GILTI tax, IRS

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Supreme Court Confirms No Change to On Sale Bar

With Helsinn, the Supreme Court confirms that secret sales trigger the on sale bar, just as before the America Invents Act. Patent applicants should be cognizant of all commercial activity related to an invention to ensure…more

America Invents Act, Appeals, Assignment of Inventions, Confidentiality Agreements, Helsinn Healthcare SA v Teva Pharmaceuticals USA Inc

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White Collar Watch (December 2018 • No. 3)

NOTE FROM THE EDITORS - All of us here at Blank Rome wish you and yours a happy and healthy holiday season and start to 2019. We are pleased to present our final 2018 edition of White Collar Watch, which includes timely…more

Bribery, Civil Monetary Penalty, Compliance, Corporate Crimes, Corporate Misconduct

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The OCC and FinTech—Ready for Innovation and Collaboration

In a long-awaited decision, on July 31, 2018, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced that it will move ahead with accepting applications for national bank charters from nondepository FinTech companies. While…more

Banking Sector, Financial Services Industry, FinTech, Fintech Charter, National Bank Charters

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Renewed Focus on Contractor Business System Reviews

According to a recent U.S. Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) report, the Defense Contract Audit Agency (“DCAA”) and the Defense Contract Management Agency (“DCMA”) have taken certain steps to improve the contractor…more

DCAA, DCMA, Department of Defense (DOD), Federal Contractors, GAO

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Pennsylvania Act 170 of 2016: Implications for Real Estate Transactions

In late 2016, Act 170 of 2016 (“Act 170”) was signed into law, heralding changes to the existing laws covering unincorporated entities in Pennsylvania. Act 170 went into effect on February 21, 2017, for newly formed general…more

Business Formation, Choice of Entity, General Partnerships, Limited Liability Company (LLC), Limited Partnerships

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Florida District Court Rejects Use of Statute of Limitations as a Basis for Asserting Consumer Protection Claims

Action Item: Florida District Court rejects use of statute of limitations as a basis for asserting a consumer protection claim and finds that SOL Issue should be raised—if at all—as an affirmative defense to an actual collection…more

Florida, Foreclosure, Mortgages, Statute of Limitations

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QuadrigaCX’s Insolvency: Problems in Tracing and Recovering Cryptocurrency When Keys Stored in Cold Wallets Are Missing

The implementation of compliance protocols for private keys of cryptocurrencies is of the utmost importance for companies that hold custody of cryptocurrencies, as highlighted by the recent, untimely death of QuadrigaCX’s CEO…more

Commercial Bankruptcy, Cryptocurrency, Digital Currency, Insolvency, Popular

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White Collar Watch (December 2018 • No. 3)

NOTE FROM THE EDITORS - All of us here at Blank Rome wish you and yours a happy and healthy holiday season and start to 2019. We are pleased to present our final 2018 edition of White Collar Watch, which includes timely…more

Bribery, Civil Monetary Penalty, Compliance, Corporate Crimes, Corporate Misconduct

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Foundation: December 2016 • Vol. IV , Issue 3

We are pleased to present our last edition of Foundation for the year, and hope that you have enjoyed the issues we have put together in 2016. We have worked hard to provide you with timely and relevant articles in a…more

Acquisitions, Capital Investments, CDFI Fund, CFIUS, Consequential Damages

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Buy American, Hire American: Will It Impact a Government Contractor’s Ability to Store Data Offshore?

Buy American and hire American. The concept is easy, but the implementation can be far more complicated, particularly in the current government contracting world where waivers to those requirements have become common. In an…more

Buy American Act, Data Protection, Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR), Federal Contractors, Personal Data

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Maritime Community Addresses Plastic Pollution in Oceans

The world has begun to recognise that plastic pollution in the ocean is not solely, or even mostly, a shipping problem. However, it is gratifying to see that the maritime community has stepped up to do what it can to address the…more

Maritime Transport, Pollution Control, Vessels, Water Pollution

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CGL Coverage for Cyber Data Breaches: Court Finds No Coverage unless the Policyholder Itself Publishes the Private Information

As cybersecurity incidents continue to mount and as the issue of data security becomes increasingly important and a source of potential liability, companies should consider whether their standard commercial general liability…more

Commercial General Liability Policies, Corporate Counsel, Cybersecurity, Data Breach, Data Protection

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Appellate Division Holds That Non-Residents of New Jersey Have Right to Request New Jersey’s Public Records

On May 16, 2018, the Appellate Division approved for publication a decision ruling that citizens from states outside New Jersey also have standing to obtain New Jersey’s public records under the Open Public Records Act (“OPRA”)…more

Appeals, Public Records, Standing

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Out of Wonderland from Diehr to Aatrix: Three Steps to Overcoming 101 Rejections – Part II

This second part of a two-part article discusses four decisions by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit finding subject matter eligibility under step 2 of Alice Corporation Pty. Ltd. v. CLS Bank International, et…more

Abstract Ideas, CLS Bank v Alice Corp, Computer-Related Inventions, Patent Litigation, Patent-Eligible Subject Matter

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Proposed Treasury Regulations Shift the Landscape in Debt Financings over Collateral of Foreign Subsidiary Stock

Proposed Treasury Regulations have been published that will permit many U.S. corporate borrowers to provide a lender with a greater collateral package in respect of its foreign subsidiaries without an adverse tax consequence to…more

Controlled Foreign Corporations, Dividends, Foreign Corporations, GILTI tax, IRS

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Estate Planning under the New Tax Law

This client alert is part of a special series on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and related changes to the tax code, where Blank Rome’s lawyers share their analysis of different provisions in the Act and how they may affect you and…more

529 Plans, Estate Planning, Estate Tax, Generation-Skipping Transfer, Gift Tax

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Mainbrace: March 2018 (No. 1)

Ballast Water Management: The Conundrum Continues - It has been about 15 months since the U.S. Coast Guard (“USCG”) type-approved the first three ballast water management systems (“BWMSs”) in December 2016; three more BWMSs…more

Ballast Water Management, Chapter 11, Coast Guard, Commercial Bankruptcy, Cybersecurity

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PTAB Establishes New but Limited Avenue for Petitioners to Invalidate Patents in Inter Partes Reviews after Statutory One-Year Bar

With the decision in Proppant Express, accused infringers should be cognizant of their new-found ability to initiate inter partes review proceedings beyond the one-year statutory bar date, even though there are only “limited…more

Inter Partes Review (IPR) Proceeding, Patent Litigation, Patent Trial and Appeal Board, Patents, Prior Art

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Epic Shift: Supreme Court Enforces Class Action Waivers in Arbitration Agreements

The Supreme Court issued a landmark decision on May 21, 2018, which has widespread implications for all employers. In Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis, a 5-4 opinion written by Justice Gorsuch, the Supreme Court held that arbitration…more

Arbitration, Arbitration Agreements, Class Action Arbitration Waivers, Epic Systems Corp v Lewis, Ernst & Young v Morris

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Mainbrace: October 2018 (No. 3)

Note from the Vice Chair - Happy fall! As the seasons change, so do the issues confronting the maritime industry...or not. Over the past few years, several topics have consistently remained in the headlines and as a thorn in…more

Coast Guard, Cybersecurity, DOJ, FCPA, Federal Arbitration Act

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Eastern District of Pa. Again Recognizes Montreal Convention Exclusively Governs Claims

Action Item: Until there is appellate resolution of the preemptive effect of the Montreal Convention, airlines sued in state court over damages allegedly arising during the course of international transportation should contact…more

Affirmative Defenses, Airline Passengers, Aviation Industry, Federal Question Jurisdiction, International Litigation

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White Collar Watch (December 2018 • No. 3)

NOTE FROM THE EDITORS - All of us here at Blank Rome wish you and yours a happy and healthy holiday season and start to 2019. We are pleased to present our final 2018 edition of White Collar Watch, which includes timely…more

Bribery, Civil Monetary Penalty, Compliance, Corporate Crimes, Corporate Misconduct

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Breaking Camp(ie): Supreme Courts Sends Gilead FCA Case Back for Likely Dismissal, Postponing Escobar’s Return

The Department of Justice’s (“DOJ”) bombshell statement last month that it would seek dismissal of the Gilead False Claims Act (“FCA”) suit—a qui tam suit alleging misrepresentations and concealments regarding active ingredient…more

DOJ, False Claims Act (FCA), Qui Tam, Relators, Universal Health Services Inc v United States ex rel Escobar

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Fintech Alert: Will Delaware or California Adjudicate a $1 Billion Commercial Contract Dispute Related to a Cryptocurrency?

Corporate Litigation - Action Item: As Jamie Dimon, the CEO at J.P. Morgan Chase, continues to criticize Bitcoin as a fraud, and the Securities and Exchange Commission warns of the potential dangers of investing in initial…more

Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, FinTech, Initial Coin Offering (ICOs), Popular

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FERC to Review Its Policies Regarding the Determination of the Return on Equity in Jurisdictional Rates

FERC is conducting a comprehensive review of its method for determining the appropriate return on equity in jurisdictional rates across the energy industry. Comments are due no later than 90 days, and reply comments no later…more

Energy Sector, FERC, Oil & Gas, Pipelines, Return on Equity

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Insurance Coverage for Hurricanes: Insurers May Dispute “Causation”

Like the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane season before it, the 2018 season brought devastating storms to the United States. A prime example: One of the most powerful hurricanes on record to hit Florida’s Panhandle wreaked havoc in…more

Causation, Hurricane Season, Insurance Industry, Natural Disasters, Policy Exclusions

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Recent Rulings and Regulations Equals Recognition: Progress in the Litigation Finance Industry

Recent rulings and regulations addressing litigation finance are the best indicators that courts and States are finally catching up to a booming third-party litigation finance industry. Complex commercial litigation typically…more

Disclosure Requirements, Litigation Fees & Costs, Litigation Funding, Popular, Third Party Funding

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Anticipating and Managing Bankruptcy Risk

Blank Rome Partner Ira Herman authored “Anticipating and Managing Bankruptcy Risk,” a series of articles prepared for the Financial Restructuring & Bankruptcy module of Lexis Practice Advisor, a comprehensive practical guidance…more

Bankruptcy Code, Chapter 11, Chapter 7, Commercial Bankruptcy, Creditors

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Vermont Passes New Blockchain Legislation

Vermont continues its play to bring blockchain business to the state. On May 30, 2018, Vermont Governor Phil Scott signed into law Senate Bill 269: An Act Related to Blockchain Business Development, which became effective on…more

Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, New Legislation, Popular, State and Local Government

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How Courts Have Applied Cray Patent Venue Test

In May 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its decision TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC, which narrowed the scope of venue under the first prong of 35 U.S.C. § 1400(b). The natural result was that the second…more

Patent Litigation, Patents, TC Heartland LLC v Kraft Foods, Venue

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Mainbrace: March 2017 (No. 2)

What’s different about “change” in 2017? It certainly seems that we need to redefine what we mean when we consider the term itself. Shipping historically has been a conservative industry, but its adaptability over the long…more

Ballast Water Management, Blockchain, Coast Guard, Cross-Border, UNCITRAL

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The Sedona Conference Issues Helpful and Important Commentary on the Proportionality Concept Applicable to Electronic Discovery

Action Item: The following set of six principles proposed by the Sedona Conference Working Group on Electronic Document Retention and Production should serve as practical guidance for litigants adhering to the proportionality…more

Discovery, Duty to Preserve, Electronically Stored Information, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, FRCP 26(b)(1)

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The Role of Explainable Artificial Intelligence in Patent Law

Although the notion of “explainable artificial intelligence” (AI) has been suggested as a necessary component of governing AI technology, at least for the reason that transparency leads to trust and better management of AI…more

Abstract Ideas, America Invents Act, Artificial Intelligence, Patents, Popular

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Charting Climate Change Cases: A Survey of Recent Litigation

Introduction - Right now, cases involving climate change are being heavily litigated in courts across the United States. Hundreds of climate change-related cases have been filed in both federal and state courts, where parties…more

Climate Change, Energy Sector, Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Oil & Gas, Pipelines

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The Role Of The White Knight In Turning Around A Distressed Cemetery Or Funeral Home

The laws of most states provide a comprehensive regulatory framework governing cemetery and funeral home operations, cemetery and funeral home trusts relating to preneed contracts and cemetery trusts relating to endowment…more

Funeral Homes, State Regulators, Trust Funds, Trusts

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California Corner: Loss of Use under Commercial General Liability Insurance Policies Includes the Inability to Use a Property in a Particular Manner

Most commercial general liability (“CGL”) policies contain standard, insurance industry-drafted language regarding an insurer’s duty to defend and indemnify its insured. The language typically states something like, the insurer…more

Breach of Contract, Commercial General Liability Policies, Duty to Defend, Insurance Industry, Property Damage

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Florida’s Third District Court of Appeal Reverses Earlier Decision in Beauvais and Holds That Statute of Limitations Does Not Bar a Subsequent Foreclosure Action Based on a Later Default

Action Item: Florida’s Third District Court of Appeal finds that Florida’s statute of limitations for foreclosure actions does not bar a second foreclosure action filed on a subsequent payment default occurring within the…more

Default, Dismissal With Prejudice, Florida, Foreclosure, Mortgage Lenders

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Ninth Circuit Holds Non-Judicial Foreclosure of Deed of Trust Is Not Debt Collection under the FDCPA

Action Item: The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirms that activities incident to the non-judicial foreclosure of a deed of trust under California state law is not “debt collection” within the scope of…more

Debt Collection, Debt Collectors, Deed of Trust, FDCPA, Foreclosure

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Class Gets the Squeeze: Class Certification Denied in In Re: Tropicana Orange Juice Marketing and Sales Practices Litigation, Civil No. 2:11-07382, MDL 2353 (D.N.J. Jan. 22, 2018)

Consumer class action litigation—often accusing the defendant company of deceiving its customers—strikes at the heart of a company’s reputation, goodwill, and brand—all of which are often built over the course of many years or…more

Class Action, Class Certification, Consumer Fraud, FRCP 23(b)(2), FRCP 23(b)(3)

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Blowing the Whistle Internally Is Not Enough to Be Covered by the Anti-Retaliation Provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act

On February 21, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a much anticipated decision in Digital Realty Trust, Inc. v. Paul Somers that the anti-retaliation protections of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act…more

Anti-Retaliation Provisions, Digital Realty Trust Inc v Somers, Dodd-Frank, Internal Reporting, Reporting Requirements

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2017 New Tax Law: Pass Through Provisions

On December 20, 2017, Congress passed its comprehensive tax reform bill, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (“the Act” or “the Bill”), which was signed into law by President Trump on December 22, 2017. The Bill represents one of the most…more

Business Income, Business Taxes, Capital Gains, Corporate Taxes, Income Taxes

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EPA’s 2013 Vessel General Permit to Be Continued into 2019

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) recently published an update on its website notifying the industry that it would administratively continue the 2013 Vessel General Permit (“VGP”) until a new permit is issued…more

Discharge of Pollutants, EPA, Navigable Waters, NPDES, Vessels

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2017 New Tax Law: Executive Compensation Reform

On December 20, 2017, Congress passed its comprehensive tax reform bill, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (the “Act”), which was signed into law by President Trump on December 22, 2017. The Bill represents one of the most extensive…more

Compensation & Benefits, Corporate Taxes, Excise Tax, Executive Compensation, Section 162(m)

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Insurer Liability for Retained Counsel’s Malpractice

The Hypothetical Facts - Take the following hypothetical: A California company is sued in the Los Angeles Superior Court for personal injuries suffered by the driver of a vehicle that was injured in a crash involving the…more

Attorney Malpractice, Insurance Claims, Insurance Industry, Insurance Litigation, Reservation of Rights

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DOL Adopts Employer-Friendly Standard to Assess If Workers Are Interns or Employees

In recent years, employers have used unpaid interns to perform many duties otherwise completed by paid employees. Determining whether to classify a worker as an unpaid intern or employee under the Fair Labor Standards Act…more

DOL, Employer Liability Issues, FLSA, Internships, Primary Beneficiary Test

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Mainbrace: March 2018 (No. 1)

Ballast Water Management: The Conundrum Continues - It has been about 15 months since the U.S. Coast Guard (“USCG”) type-approved the first three ballast water management systems (“BWMSs”) in December 2016; three more BWMSs…more

Ballast Water Management, Chapter 11, Coast Guard, Commercial Bankruptcy, Cybersecurity

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New California Law Requiring Female Directors on Public Company Boards Becomes Effective

This client alert provides an update on the new legislation passed in California as it relates to the minimum number of female directors that must serve on the board of directors of each publicly held domestic or foreign…more

Board of Directors, Corporate Governance, Diversity, Governor Brown, Woman Board Members

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A Look at the Friendly Foreclosure Option

When a debtor defaults on a loan secured by personal property, the secured lender has several options for repayment. One option is to sell the collateral securing the debt pursuant to Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code…more

Article 9, Buyers, Commercial Bankruptcy, Creditors, Debtors

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Pennsylvania Supreme Court Rules That Constitution Prohibits School Districts from Engaging in Selective Tax Appeals

Action Item: This alert examines the recent Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision in Valley Forge Towers Apartments v. Upper Merion School District, which held that a school district may not selectively appeal the assessments of…more

Property Tax, Real Estate Market, School Districts, Tax Appeals, Tax Assessment

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Act Now to Avoid Proposed IRS Rules Which Would Eliminate Valuation Discounts for Intra-Family Transfers of Interests in Family Controlled Entities

Action Item: Owners of family businesses and investment entities (such as family limited partnerships, limited liability companies (“LLCs”), and corporations) are urged to consider making transfers of interests in those entities…more

Estate Tax, Fair Market Value, Family Businesses, Gift Tax, Internal Revenue Code (IRC)

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Real Estate: Foundation - April 2015

In this issue: - How NMTCs Benefit Real Estate Community Development Initiatives - Noteworthy Real Estate Deals - What’s Your Priority? An Open-Ended Examination of Pennsylvania’s Mechanics’ Lien…more

Affordable Housing, Financial Institutions, Habitat Conservation Plan, Mechanics' Lien Acts, Mortgage Lenders

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Mainbrace: March 2018 (No. 1)

Ballast Water Management: The Conundrum Continues - It has been about 15 months since the U.S. Coast Guard (“USCG”) type-approved the first three ballast water management systems (“BWMSs”) in December 2016; three more BWMSs…more

Ballast Water Management, Chapter 11, Coast Guard, Commercial Bankruptcy, Cybersecurity

See all updates »

Class Gets the Squeeze: Class Certification Denied in In Re: Tropicana Orange Juice Marketing and Sales Practices Litigation, Civil No. 2:11-07382, MDL 2353 (D.N.J. Jan. 22, 2018)

Consumer class action litigation—often accusing the defendant company of deceiving its customers—strikes at the heart of a company’s reputation, goodwill, and brand—all of which are often built over the course of many years or…more

Class Action, Class Certification, Consumer Fraud, FRCP 23(b)(2), FRCP 23(b)(3)

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Not So Fast—Your Oil and Gas Lease Primary Term May Be Longer Than You Thought

Energy Industry Update - Action Item: Oil and gas leases in Pennsylvania may have a primary term longer than that stated in the lease. The Superior Court has recognized that an argument can be made that time for notice and an…more

Energy Sector, Forfeiture, Mineral Leases, Oil & Gas

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New Los Angeles ‘Ban the Box’ Ordinance

Action Item: Los Angeles employers should review their hiring process, including job applications, to ensure compliance with a new law that limits inquiries of an applicant’s criminal history starting January 1, 2017, or risk…more

Ban the Box, Conditional Job Offers, Criminal Background Checks, Criminal Records, Employer Liability Issues

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Michigan Doubles Down on Legalizing Online Gambling

The Michigan legislature is renewing its effort to introduce online gaming legislation in the state after outgoing Governor Rick Snyder vetoed the prior passed legislation at the end of 2018. To read our prior updates on this…more