Aerospace & Defense

  • January 13, 2017

    House Chairs Agree On Path To DHS Reform

    The chairs of committees in the U.S. House of Representatives that oversee the Department of Homeland Security have reached an agreement to begin work overhauling the agency, which has not been reauthorized since its formation in 2002, according to a statement Thursday from the House Homeland Security Committee.

  • January 13, 2017

    Fed. Circ. Kills Worker's Appeal Over Sequester Furloughs

    The Federal Circuit on Thursday shot down a civilian Army Cyber Command worker's appeal of the Army’s decision to furlough her for six days in 2013 after steep budget cuts, saying there was no discernible error in cutting her time in the face of budget sequestration.

  • January 13, 2017

    Trump Picks Giuliani As Cybersecurity Adviser

    President-elect Donald Trump announced Thursday that he has tapped former New York City mayor and Greenberg Traurig LLP cybersecurity practice leader Rudy Giuliani as an adviser, saying Giuliani will provide advice on cybersecurity matters and serve as a liaison with industry.

  • January 13, 2017

    Laser Maker's CEO, Attys Face Suit Over Share Increase

    The CEO of a laser weapons manufacturer and his lawyers padded their wallets by issuing millions of company shares despite the move never gaining investor approval and jeopardized potential projects with the U.S. Department of Defense, according to a derivative shareholder suit filed in Delaware Chancery Court on Friday.

  • January 13, 2017

    DC Circ. Won't Let Blackwater Guard Unseal Info For Appeal

    The D.C. Circuit on Friday declined to allow a former Blackwater guard convicted of murder over a 2007 shooting in Iraq to unseal certain statements he claims support overturning his conviction, saying he would have to present the statements in a closed session.

  • January 13, 2017

    Congress Paves Way For Trump Defense Secretary Pick

    President-elect Donald Trump's pick for the U.S. Department of Defense has a clear path to his approval after a House vote on Friday that removes a block on retired U.S. Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis serving as the head of the Pentagon.

  • January 13, 2017

    Russia Bombshells Leave Sanctions Bar Guessing

    With President Barack Obama taking one final strike at Russia for its purported tampering in the U.S. election and President-elect Donald Trump facing a slew of explosive allegations of Moscow-related impropriety, sanctions attorneys have been left grasping at straws regarding what comes next in the two countries' fractious relationship.

  • January 13, 2017

    Trump Attacks Intelligence Agencies Over Russia Reports

    President-elect Donald Trump continued to spar with the U.S. intelligence community on Friday, claiming recent reports alleging that Russia holds compromising information on him were likely publicly leaked by an intelligence agency.

  • January 13, 2017

    Prostitution Bribery Scheme Lands Navy Officer 30 Months

    A U.S. Navy lieutenant commander was sentenced to 30 months behind bars on Thursday in California federal court after admitting that he had leaked proprietary Navy information to a foreign defense contractor in exchange for prostitutes and cash.

  • January 13, 2017

    GAO Nixes Challenges To $6.8B VA Disability Exam Contracts

    The Government Accountability Office knocked down a web of bid protests challenging the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs' handling of medical disability examination services contracts worth up to $6.8 billion each, upholding the awards in a decision published Thursday after an earlier challenge sparked a do-over.

  • January 13, 2017

    US Sanctions Syrian Tech Co. For WMD Production

    The U.S. government Thursday announced sanctions against a Syrian technology company it claimed has been involved in the Syrian government’s missile and chemical weapon programs.

  • January 12, 2017

    Whistleblower's Claims Fail Under Escobar, 9th Circ. Says

    The Ninth Circuit on Thursday shot down a whistleblower’s bid to revive his False Claims Act suit accusing a contractor of incorrectly billing the U.S. Navy for a “virtual border” project, citing the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent Escobar ruling in finding the alleged wrongdoing wasn’t material.

  • January 12, 2017

    Past Work Not Enough To Reclaim $393M Army Contract

    Being the incumbent wasn't enough for a U.S. Army contractor trying to claw back a $392.97 million logistics contract in Kuwait and Qatar after a Government Accountability Office decision, made public Wednesday, found the company properly dinged for “significant adverse performance” on that very project, including two deaths.

  • January 12, 2017

    Senate Approves Waiver For Defense Chief Nominee Mattis

    The U.S. Senate on Thursday passed a bill removing a block on nominee James Mattis serving as secretary of defense, with the former Marine Corps general winning strong support from both sides of the political aisle.

  • January 12, 2017

    Federal Acquisition Council Issues Five Final Rules

    The U.S. Department of Defense, the U.S. General Services Administration and NASA on Thursday laid out a slate of finalized procurement and contracting regulations, including one that cracks down on contractors that bar their employees from blowing the whistle on waste, fraud or abuse.

  • January 12, 2017

    GAO Rejects Pricing Eval Challenge To $50B GSA IT Project

    The Government Accountability Office rejected consolidated bid protests Wednesday challenging the General Services Administration's plan to keep price a secondary consideration in filling the 60 available spots for an up-to-$50 billion IT project, finding costs needn't be a “significant” factor while rejecting the remaining arguments.

  • January 12, 2017

    Pompeo To Push Greater Cyber Protections As CIA Head

    Mike Pompeo said during a Senate hearing Thursday on his nomination for CIA director that the country needs better cyber policy and protections, as he looks to take charge of the U.S.’ largest foreign intelligence agency.

  • January 12, 2017

    Mattis Airs Concerns About Russia In Confirmation Hearing

    Former Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis expressed concerns about an increasingly aggressive Russia at a congressional hearing Thursday, one of several key policy areas where the secretary of defense nominee is likely to be at odds with President-elect Donald Trump.

  • January 12, 2017

    US Sanctions 18 Syrian Officials For Chemical Attacks

    The U.S. Treasury Department walloped 18 Syrian officials with sanctions Friday, marking the first time the government has blacklisted specific individuals within the embattled Middle Eastern nation for state-coordinated chemical weapons attacks against civilians.

  • January 12, 2017

    FBI, DOJ Face Investigation Into Clinton Email Probe

    The inspector general for the U.S. Department of Justice is investigating potential misconduct by the FBI and the DOJ in connection with the pre-election investigation into Hillary Clinton's private email server, the watchdog announced on Thursday.

Expert Analysis

  • In Congress: More Confirmation Hearings

    Richard Hertling

    Democrats will have a difficult time actually defeating any of President-elect Trump's cabinet nominations because of a change they made to the Senate rules to end the filibuster for executive branch nominations. Their goal is not really to defeat the nominees but to draw stark differences early on in the new administration, say Richard Hertling and Kaitlyn McClure of Covington & Burling LLP.

  • Avoiding The Hidden Costs Of Bargain-Priced E-Discovery

    Michael Cousino

    Many organizations are interested in finding electronic discovery partners who offer tantalizingly low prices for electronic discovery services. However, unforeseen gaps, lax security practices, ignorance of global practices and delayed deliverables can all add up to a surprisingly large final cost, says Michael Cousino of Epiq Systems.

  • Saving Lawyers 1 Breath At A Time: Mindfulness In The Law

    Jennifer Gibbs

    As critical as lawyers are to society, they are reported to be the most frequently depressed occupational group in the United States. In response to the inherently stressful nature of the practice of law, more and more lawyers are turning to an ancient contemplative practice called “mindfulness,” says Jennifer Gibbs of Zelle LLP.

  • How NDAA For 2017 Changes DOD Contracting

    David R. Johnson

    In addition to creating new rules in four areas of interest to federal contractors, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017 foreshadows potential future reforms, say attorneys with Vinson & Elkins LLP.

  • Understanding How Blockchain Could Impact Legal Industry

    R. Douglas Vaughn

    Blockchain is essentially a computerized public ledger that can apply to almost anything that a person might save into a database or spreadsheet. This versatile technology may enhance the legal industry by providing an improved record keeping system, setting up "smart contracts" and tracking intellectual property and land records, say R. Douglas Vaughn and Anna Outzen of Deutsch Kerrigan LLP.

  • In Congress: Obamacare, The Cabinet

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    Republican leaders in Congress plan to take the initial steps toward repealing and replacing Obamacare this week, hoping to deliver on the campaign promises made by most Republicans over the past six years and by President-elect Trump during the 2016 election cycle, say Richard Hertling and Kaitlyn McClure of Covington & Burling LLP.

  • Criminal Trade Secret Prosecutions Under President Trump

    Barak Cohen

    Under the Obama administration, there has been an increase by the U.S. Department of Justice in the number of criminal trade secret prosecutions. Statements by President-elect Donald Trump and his U.S. attorney general nominee suggest that the Trump administration will be equally, if not more, likely to encourage prosecution of suspected trade secret theft, say Barak Cohen and Chelsea Curfman of Perkins Coie LLP.

  • Time Is Running Out For Auto Cybersecurity Standards

    Jonathan Michaels

    According to a new report from Billington Cybersecurity, the automotive industry needs to adopt tougher cybersecurity standards for autonomous vehicles. However, at a time when we cannot wait to create a defense, legislation aimed at establishing federal standards to secure automobiles and protect drivers’ privacy is failing to pass, says Jonathan Michaels of MLG Automotive Law APLC.

  • Potential SAFETY Act Issues For Insurers To Consider

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    Although the Support Antiterrorism by Fostering Effective Technologies Act provides numerous protections for sellers of qualified antiterrorism technology, several uncertainties surround the questions of if and how the act would apply to a mass-loss event. Insurance carriers should enact their own safeguards against the act's uncertain application, says Brandon Almond of Troutman Sanders LLP.

  • US Sanctions Against Russia: Outlook Under President Trump

    Simeon M. Kriesberg

    President-elect Donald Trump has expressed admiration for Russian President Vladimir Putin, leading many to speculate that Trump's administration may relax U.S. sanctions against Russia. However, Congress has a less favorable view of Russia's role in world affairs, say Simeon Kriesberg and Jing Zhang of Mayer Brown LLP.