• August 25, 2016

    OCC, CFPB Hit Omaha Bank With $35M In Penalties, Refunds

    A Nebraska bank must pay $7.5 million in penalties to the federal government and refund $27.8 million to customers for debt cancellation services it falsely advertised and credit monitoring services it didn’t provide, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced Thursday.

  • August 25, 2016

    Bankrate On Track To Settle Earnings Fraud Action For $20M

    A Florida federal judge gave preliminary approval Wednesday to a $20 million settlement of class action litigation accusing personal finance publisher Bankrate of fleecing investors by fraudulently boosting claimed revenues, inflating its stock price and creating artificial demand for a 2014 share offering.

  • August 25, 2016

    DOD Releases Guidance On Military Lending Act

    The U.S. Department of Defense on Thursday issued interpretive guidance on the Military Lending Act, meant to clarify several murky points in its regulation implementing the law, which is intended to protect service members from predatory lending.

  • August 25, 2016

    Jackson Hewitt Says Text Spam Tiff Requires Arbitration

    Jackson Hewitt customers spammed with text-message ads have no path forward in federal court, the tax-prep company told an Illinois federal judge on Wednesday, because arbitration is mandated in a document the lead plaintiff signed with a middleman bank.

  • August 25, 2016

    5th Circ. Asked To Revive Suit Over $1.4M Tax Penalty

    A dual Swiss-U.S. citizen asked the Fifth Circuit on Wednesday to revive his dispute over a potential $1.4 million IRS penalty for failure to disclose a foreign bank account, arguing that he has standing to seek a declaratory judgment on the agency's burden of proof.

  • August 25, 2016

    2nd Circ. Ruling Doesn't Apply To Forex MDL, Court Told

    Foreign exchange plaintiffs accusing Credit Suisse Group AG, Deutsche Bank AG and the other financial giants in multidistrict litigation of rigging that market on Wednesday said a recent Second Circuit decision shouldn’t put their standing into question, as they actively participated in the markets where the alleged misconduct took place.

  • August 25, 2016

    Machine Co. Owner Pleads To $200M Loan Fraud Scheme

    The owner of a Pennsylvania machine tool company admitted to facilitating what prosecutors called a $200 million fraud against several Chicago-area banks in Illinois federal court Thursday.

  • August 25, 2016

    7th Circ. Scraps Shuttered Slaughterhouse's Beef With Town

    A Wisconsin town that threatened to sue a slaughterhouse operator who received dozens of complaints of foul odors and offal runoff cannot be held responsible for the slaughterhouse’s eventual shut down because the town gave the business’ owner plenty of warning, the Seventh Circuit said Wednesday.

  • August 24, 2016

    Ex-SEC Accountant Tells Jury PwC Violated Auditing Rules

    PricewaterhouseCoopers violated auditor independence standards, a primary author of those rules testified Wednesday at a trial in which the trustee for Taylor Bean & Whittaker claims the accounting giant is liable for allegedly making possible a $5.5 billion fraud at the bankrupt mortgage lender.

  • August 24, 2016

    Prudential Can't Ditch Investor’s Excessive Fee Suit: Judge

    A Maryland federal judge Tuesday ruled that Prudential Investments LLC must face an investor lawsuit alleging the financial institution breached its fiduciary duty by receiving excessive fees, saying that from the allegations a “plausible inference arises that an increase in fees is not justified.”

  • August 24, 2016

    2nd Circ. Won't Reconsider Ex-S&P Exec's SEC Challenge

    The Second Circuit on Tuesday refused to rehear an appeal from former Standard & Poor’s executive Barbara Duka, who is challenging the constitutionality of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's in-house court.

  • August 24, 2016

    Hezbollah Victims Can't Sue Bank, 2nd Circ. Rules

    Canadian and Israeli victims of a series of Hezbollah rocket attacks can't sue the now-defunct Lebanese Canadian Bank SAL under the Alien Tort Statute for its role in transferring money to the terrorist organization because corporations are immune from that statute, the Second Circuit said Wednesday.

  • August 24, 2016

    Ship Owner Wants Barclays To Turn Over Docs For Arbitration

    A ship owner asked a New York federal court on Tuesday for permission to access certain documents and testimony from a New York branch of Barclays PLC, which it says will help during a contemplated London arbitration concerning an energy company's breach of a time charter agreement.

  • August 24, 2016

    Fla. AG Sues To Halt Fake Foreclosure Law Firms

    The Florida attorney general’s office is working to shut down an allegedly illegitimate foreclosure defense and loan modification enterprise operated by six nonlawyers who deceived distressed homeowners into paying for pricey legal services using unwitting attorneys recruited on Craigslist as “front men” for the fake law firms.

  • August 24, 2016

    SEC Charges 71 Municipal Bond Issuers For Faulty Disclosure

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission charged 71 municipal bond issuers on Wednesday for misleading investors through false or incomplete disclosures, part of a crackdown on irregularities in the municipal market aided by a program that encourages issuers to voluntarily report violations.

  • August 24, 2016

    6th Circ. Asked To Rethink Flood-Zone Coverage Ruling

    A bank and a property information provider urged the Sixth Circuit on Tuesday to rethink its conclusion that the owners of a Tennessee home can proceed on claims alleging the companies provided bad advice about the necessity of flood insurance, saying the ruling inexplicably conflicts with a prior decision.

  • August 24, 2016

    4 Major Banks Launch Digital Currency Blockchain Project

    UBS AG, BNY Mellon Asset Management Ltd., Deutsche Bank AG, and Banco Santander SA announced Wednesday that they have created a new form of digital currency powered by blockchain technology, a bold step toward modernizing financial markets and how they’re regulated.

  • August 23, 2016

    Home Depot Data Breach Attys’ Fees Trimmed To $7.5M

    A Georgia federal judge on Tuesday granted final approval of a $13 million settlement between Home Depot and a class of consumers suing over a massive 2014 data breach and awarded attorneys’ fees of approximately $7.5 million, about $1 million less than the amount sought.

  • August 23, 2016

    Shareholder Can’t Inspect Freddie Mac Records, Judge Says

    A Virginia federal judge on Tuesday dismissed a suit brought by a Freddie Mac shareholder seeking to inspect its corporate records, saying that right was lost when the Federal Housing Finance Agency took over conservatorship of the home loan agency during the 2008 housing crisis.

  • August 23, 2016

    RI, Banks Strike $25M Deal In Row Over MLB Star's Startup

    Rhode Island's economic development agency has entered into a $25.6 million settlement with Wells Fargo Securities LLC and Barclays Capital Inc. in exchange for dropping claims against the banks over a financing deal for a now-defunct video game company started by a former Major League Baseball star.

Expert Analysis

  • Impact Of Pay-To-Play Rules In 2016 Election Cycle

    Clifford J. Alexander

    Vice presidential candidate Mike Pence’s authority over the Indiana Public Retirement System and the Indiana Education Savings Authority as governor of Indiana may limit political contributions to the Donald Trump presidential campaign from a wide spectrum of financial institutions. Investment advisers, brokers, dealers and municipal advisers, among others, are potentially affected, say attorneys with K&L Gates LLP.

  • High Court Inclusive Communities Ruling: 1 Year Later

    Franca Harris Gutierrez

    The U.S. Supreme Court’s recognition of disparate impact liability in Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project last summer was consistent with the position long held by federal regulators. As the impact of Inclusive Communities continues to make its way through the courts and regulatory enforcement, two ongoing developments are worth highlighting, say attorneys at WilmerHale.

  • Is Bank Debt A Security? GM's Dangerous Implications

    Thomas Moers Mayer

    Borrowers, agent banks, syndicate members and secondary market purchasers incur, syndicate, sell and buy bank debt on the assumption that bank debt is not a “security.” However, a recent New York bankruptcy court opinion in the General Motors preference litigation shows that such an assumption may no longer be valid, says Thomas Moers Mayer, co-chairman of the corporate restructuring and bankruptcy department at Kramer Levin Naftal... (continued)

  • Risk Management Tips For Attys Serving As Local Counsel

    Patrick S. (Sean) Ginty

    Often, the lead counsel in a case maintains sole contact with the client and makes substantive decisions, relying upon the local counsel only to serve in the requisite capacity to satisfy jurisdictional procedures. Therein lies the problem — absent appropriate precautionary measures, the local attorney faces equal malpractice exposure for the substantive, strategic decisions of the lead counsel, say Patrick (Sean) Ginty of CNA Glob... (continued)

  • Blockchain: Why It Matters For Financial Services Lawyers

    Excerpt from Lexis Practice Advisor
    John Servidio

    Blockchain's innovative potential is being embraced as a way to improve efficiencies, lower transactional costs, and manage and reduce risk. If widely adopted by the financial industry, distributed ledger technology would touch several different areas of law governing capital markets, say Bo Harvey and John Servidio of McGuireWoods LLP.

  • The Tax Deductibility Of Fines And Penalties

    Todd B. Reinstein

    As a result of recent guidance from the IRS and the Federal Circuit, taxpayers examining the proper tax treatment of a fine paid to any agency or self-regulatory organization need to carefully study whether that entity would be considered an agency or instrumentality of the government, say Todd Reinstein and Lisa Petkun of Pepper Hamilton LLP.

  • Beware The 'Standard' Mediation Confidentiality Agreement

    Jeff Kichaven

    There are several risks involved with signing a "standard" mediation confidentiality agreement, both to your clients and to yourself. Once you recognize these risks, you will never sign a standard MCA again, at least not without a lot of thought and a lot of disclosures to your client, says Jeff Kichaven of Jeff Kichaven Commercial Mediation.

  • New Biz Continuity Obligations For Investment Advisers

    Cheri L. Hoff

    A U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission rule recently proposed makes it important for investment advisers to implement measures to protect client interests from being placed at risk as a result of a business disruption or transition. However, there is no one-size-fits-all strategy to addressing business continuity planning, say attorneys with Bracewell LLP.

  • How Husky Is Your 'Actual Fraud' Claim?

    Ashley Dillman Bruce

    Critics have argued that a broadened reading by the U.S. Supreme Court of “actual fraud” in Husky International v. Ritz effectively eliminates the “obtained by” language in Section 523(a)(2)(A). Indeed, the jury is still out about whether this holding opens the door for a rush of dischargeability actions by credit card companies, say Ashley Dillman Bruce and former U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Lewis Killian Jr. of Berger Singerman LLP.

  • Modern-Day 101 Cases Spell Trouble For ATMs Of The Future

    David J. Kappos

    With the rise of the Information Age, the financial services sector continues to rely on technology-based solutions to enable and evolve its business capabilities. Some of these patent-worthy solutions, however, have become vulnerable to invalidation due to the courts’ increasing overreliance on Section 101’s abstract idea exception, say David Kappos and Jessica Park of Cravath Swaine & Moore LLP.