Public Policy

  • September 2, 2015

    FWS Gets Foul Call For Prairie Chicken Threatened Listing

    A Texas federal court Tuesday vacated the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s rule listing the lesser prairie chicken as a threatened species, saying the agency did not adequately evaluate conservation efforts being implemented by several states when it listed the bird.

  • September 2, 2015

    3rd Circ. Backs Fair Notice To Medical Malpractice Plaintiffs

    The Third Circuit on Wednesday found that a Pennsylvania rule requiring malpractice defendants to provide fair notice to plaintiffs of their intention to dismiss a suit for failure to timely submit a required certificate of merit is substantive law and must be honored by a federal court.

  • September 2, 2015

    SEC Judge Denies Tilton's Stay Bid Over In-House Case

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is pressing forward with an in-house October trial against distressed-debt investment firm Patriarch Partners LLC despite principal Lynn Tilton's desire for a delay as she awaits the Second Circuit's say on her appeal challenging the regulator's use of the alternative forum.

  • September 2, 2015

    DOL Asks DC Circ. For Quick Approval Of Home Care Rule

    The U.S. Department of Labor on Tuesday asked the D.C. Circuit to expedite its mandate approving of the agency’s rule extending overtime and minimum-wage protections to most home-care workers, saying there’s no reason to pause implementation even in the face of a potential high-court review.

  • September 2, 2015

    Former Ex-Im Chief Says Shuttering Bank A 'Foolish' Move

    Republican lawmakers' quest to permanently extinguish the Export-Import Bank of the U.S. has been a “foolish” exercise that has only been exacerbated by the recent downward plunge in the value of China's currency, former Ex-Im President and Chairman James A. Harmon tells Law360.

  • September 2, 2015

    IRS Takes Large Bite In CFC Partnership Loan Rules

    New rules released Tuesday by the Internal Revenue Service concerning the treatment of loans by a controlled foreign corporation to a foreign partnership are broader than expected and could lead to inconsistencies in the tax code if finalized in their current form, experts say.

  • September 2, 2015

    US Senator Backs Repeal Of Country-Of-Origin Labeling

    The senior senator from Arkansas is urging his colleagues to repeal the decade-old country-of-origin labeling rule that could see Mexico and Canada hit the U.S. with $3 billion in sanctions, saying on Wednesday that he fears the impact the rule could have on his home state’s agricultural industry.

  • September 2, 2015

    NJ Joins Fight To Block EPA's Clean Power Plan Rule

    New Jersey on Wednesday sent a letter to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy, formally asking for an administrative stay and reconsideration of the agency’s Clean Power Plan, making it the latest state seeking to block the rule designed to reduce carbon emissions from existing power plants.

  • September 2, 2015

    FCC Issues Proposal For Retransmission Negotiation Review

    The Federal Communications Commission on Wednesday issued its much-anticipated proposal to review and possibly update its “totality of the circumstances” test used to determine whether retransmission consent negotiations between broadcasters, cable companies and satellite providers are being carried out in good faith.

  • September 2, 2015

    White House Touts Climate Change, Rural Alaska Programs

    The White House on Wednesday touted a raft of federal initiatives to build climate resilience and help Alaska native villages and other rural communities in the state deal with the impact of climate change.

  • September 2, 2015

    Calif. Assembly Sends Coal Divestment Bill To Gov.

    The California Assembly on Wednesday approved a measure requiring the state’s public pension funds to divest from holdings in thermal coal, sending the bill to Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk.

  • September 2, 2015

    Dish Ready To Battle Broadcasters Over FCC TV Rules Review

    The gloves are off in the battle between broadcasters and pay-TV providers over negotiations for the retransmission of broadcast TV signals, with a Dish Network Corp. official on Wednesday accusing broadcasters of exploiting the rules as the industry gears up for the Federal Communications Commission’s formal review of the system.

  • September 2, 2015

    White House Seeks Input On 3-Year IP Enforcement Plan

    The Obama administration is seeking input on the best ways to protect intellectual property rights as it pens a new three-year strategic plan to coordinate the regulatory and enforcement agendas across the federal government, the White House said Tuesday.

  • September 2, 2015

    Industry Group Tells Texas Justices To Nix Houston Air Law

    An industrial group including ExxonMobil Corp. and the Dow Chemical Co. on Wednesday told the Texas Supreme Court during oral argument that a Houston air quality law exceeds the “vigorous but limited” role of local government in enforcing the Texas Clean Air Act.

  • September 2, 2015

    DOD Watchdog Says Army Ammo Unit Still Not Audit Ready

    The U.S. Army’s record keeping for more than $33 billion of ammunition and other related assets did not match audit standards in a review from the Defense Department’s Inspector General released Wednesday.

  • September 2, 2015

    Calif. Law Extends Tax Deduction Deadline After Napa Quake

    Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday signed into law a California Senate bill allowing owners of properties that are damaged by earthquakes and located in a city or county that’s in a state of emergency extra time to file tax deductions afforded for disaster relief.

  • September 2, 2015

    Transgender Worker Health Care Bill Clears Calif. Assembly

    A bill that would limit California agencies’ business with companies that don’t provide equal health care coverage for transgender employees, and one that guides how transgender children are placed in foster homes, each passed the state Assembly Wednesday.

  • September 2, 2015

    Calif. Gov. Inks Law Loosening 'Made In America' Rules

    California Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday signed a bill that will enable products to be marketed as “Made in America” even if they were not constructed entirely within the U.S., aligning the state's labeling rules with the standard used by the Federal Trade Commission and the 49 other states.

  • September 2, 2015

    EPA Agrees To 2017 Deadline For New CERCLA Finance Rules

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has agreed to finalize new financial assurance rules for hard rock mining companies involved in Superfund litigation by the end of 2017, and possibly propose similar requirements for other industries as well.

  • September 2, 2015

    FTC, FCC To Clash On Internet Privacy, Regulators Say

    Republican members of the Federal Trade Commission and Federal Communications Commission on Wednesday warned that the FCC's plan to enter the FTC’s territory of Internet data privacy may lead to double enforcement and a cloud of uncertainty for broadband companies.

Expert Analysis

  • Consent Order Shows More CFPB Interest In Student Loans

    Jodie H. Lawson

    The severity of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's consent order against Discover Financial Services, coupled with the CFPB's request for information on student loan servicing practices, indicates that the bureau is currently taking a hard look at student loan servicers, say Jordan Sykes and Jodie Lawson of McGuireWoods LLP.

  • Fla. Construction Law: 5 Things Developers Should Know

    Charles B. Jimerson

    While real estate developers should be well versed in Florida’s construction laws, there are five particular aspects that developers should know backwards and forwards, say Charles Jimerson and Brittany Snell at Jimerson & Cobb PA.

  • Chemicals Management In Consumer Product Safety Planning

    Paul Laurenza

    In the chemicals arena — apart from the occasional outlier — product recalls are typically undertaken for failure to comply with a U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission ban or standard, but in today’s environment a well-informed chemicals management policy for consumer products requires a much broader focus than just the CPSC, says Paul Laurenza at Dykema Gossett PLLC.

  • Russian Energy Sector Sanctions: 1 Year On

    Wynn Segall

    On Aug. 6, 2014, the United States and the European Union implemented various sanctions targeting the Russian energy sector’s ability to develop long-term exploration and production projects. The addition of a Gazprom oilfield to the U.S. sanctions list on Aug. 7, 2015, shows that Russian energy sanctions continue to evolve with no clear end in sight, say attorneys at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP.

  • Putting The Brakes On 'Responsible Banking' Ordinances

    H. Rodgin Cohen

    A recent Southern District of New York decision striking down New York City’s “Responsible Banking Act” confirms that courts will scrutinize municipal laws that venture into the field of bank regulation and sets a precedent for potential challenges to responsible banking acts currently in place in various cities across the United States, say attorneys with Sullivan & Cromwell LLP.

  • How Sequenom Lost Patent Protection For Fetal DNA Test

    David A. Gass

    In Ariosa Diagnostics Inc. v. Sequenom Inc., Federal Circuit Judge Richard Linn spoke effusively about a groundbreaking invention useful in noninvasive prenatal testing that was “deserving of patent protection.” He wrote this in an opinion concurring that the invention was ineligible for patent protection. Who is responsible for such a seemingly anomalous result? asks David Gass of Marshall Gerstein & Borun LLP.

  • Relief In Sight For Colleges Grappling With 1098-T Flaws

    Joseph E. Lundy

    Going forward, colleges and universities may be able to take advantage of a safe harbor included in recently enacted trade legislation to avoid penalties for failing to properly report student taxpayer ID numbers on IRS Forms 1098-T, says Joseph Lundy of Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis LLP.

  • FinCEN Continues Aggressive Anti-Money Laundering Trend

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    If adopted, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network’s recently proposed rules will prescribe specific anti-money laundering obligations for investment advisers, which previously had not been subject to Bank Secrecy Act AML regulations notwithstanding their potential criminal liability for engaging in or aiding and abetting money laundering, say attorneys with Cadwalader Wickersham & Taft LLP.

  • A Rock And A Hard Place: US Discovery And Chinese Law

    Amiad Kushner

    Chinese companies increasingly find themselves embroiled in litigation in U.S. courts, which can pose unique dilemmas, especially in the realms of discovery and jurisdiction, for even the most sophisticated Chinese companies — as illustrated in the recent Southern District of New York decision Vring Inc. v. ZTE Corp., say Amiad Kushner and Jae Zhou at Lowenstein Sandler LLP.

  • NY High Court, 2nd Circ. Are No Friends Of Fracking

    Yvonne E. Hennessey

    Not only have oil and gas operators utterly lost the ability to secure drilling permits to develop shale assets in New York due to a statewide ban, but now the New York Court of Appeals and Second Circuit have compounded this injury by affirming the termination of state oil and gas leases at the expiration of their primary term, says Yvonne Hennessey of Barclay Damon LLP.