Compliance

  • October 19, 2021

    FERC Got PURPA Eligibility Wrong, DC Circ. Told

    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's rationale for determining a solar-plus-battery facility can qualify for power purchase agreements under the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act was a misinterpretation of the law and a stalking horse for pro-solar policies, utilities have claimed.

  • October 19, 2021

    Facebook Inks $14M Deal To End Feds' Anti-US Bias Claims

    Facebook has agreed to pay up to $14.25 million to settle the U.S. Department of Justice's allegations that it unlawfully favored temporary visa holders over U.S. workers, marking the largest financial recovery ever under the Immigration and Nationality Act's anti-discrimination clause, the government said Tuesday.

  • October 18, 2021

    Del. Judge Puts Off Ruling On HHS Discount Pharmacy Fight

    A federal judge in Delaware said Monday he was not persuaded that AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP urgently needs a quick ruling on its bid to scuttle federal enforcement actions accusing it of violating a nationwide program mandating discount drug prices for targeted groups.

  • October 18, 2021

    Tether Action Sees CFTC Staking Territory In Crypto Oversight

    The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission's $41 million enforcement action against Tether shows the agency carving out its jurisdiction in the federal government's evolving regulatory regime for cryptocurrencies and alerting other stablecoin issuers that the CFTC considers the digital assets to be within its anti-fraud jurisdiction, experts say.

  • October 18, 2021

    SEC Says 'Game-Like' Trading Apps Need More Examination

    "Game-like" features on stock-trading apps could lead investors to trade more than they would have otherwise and need to be further examined, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission said in a report unveiled Monday on the GameStop trading frenzy.

  • October 18, 2021

    Generic-Drug Group Wants Justices To Intervene Against FTC

    The trade group for the generic-drug industry has joined Impax Laboratories in asking the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a Fifth Circuit decision upholding the Federal Trade Commission's claim that an agreement the generic maker cut with Endo Pharmaceuticals Inc. over the opioid pain medication Opana ER ran afoul of antitrust laws. 

  • October 18, 2021

    ProShares To Launch US's First Bitcoin Futures ETF

    ProShares said Monday it will debut the U.S.'s first exchange-traded fund focused on bitcoin futures, marking another step toward bringing cryptocurrency-related products into the traditional financial sphere.

  • October 18, 2021

    Bank Of America Shuts Down Pot Researcher's Account

    A cannabis researcher who is waging a legal battle to reschedule marijuana in the federal circuit courts said that Bank of America decided to deactivate her institute's bank account without explanation or recourse.

  • October 18, 2021

    FTC Says Shkreli Has No Good Reason To Delay Antitrust Trial

    The Federal Trade Commission is fighting back against disgraced former pharmaceutical executive Martin Shkreli's bid to have his mid-December civil trial pushed back to May, telling a New York federal judge that it is simply the latest in a line of attempts to delay trial.

  • October 18, 2021

    Lawmakers Say Amazon May Have Lied To Congress

    Members of the House antitrust subcommittee have sent a letter to Amazon asking for answers after recent reports seemed to contradict testimony from company officials denying use of third-party seller data and search rankings to boost its own private-label business.

  • October 18, 2021

    NY Joins Crackdown On Crypto Lending Products

    The New York Attorney General's Office on Monday ordered two cryptocurrency lending platforms to shut down their operations in the state and demanded information from three others, as regulatory pressure mounts on digital-asset lending products.

  • October 18, 2021

    Former Del. Chancellor Bouchard Joins Paul Weiss As Partner

    Former Delaware Chancellor Andre G. Bouchard believes he still has much left to give the legal community as he enters the next phase of his career by joining global firm Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison LLP as a partner in its litigation department.

  • October 18, 2021

    Ex-FTC Consumer Protection Leader Joins BakerHostetler

    Daniel Kaufman, former acting director of the Federal Trade Commission's Consumer Protection Bureau, will end a more than 20-year career in public service to join BakerHostetler, the firm announced Monday.

  • October 18, 2021

    Biden Admin. Starts Governmentwide Effort To Combat PFAS

    The Biden administration on Monday announced a multiagency, three-year strategy to begin addressing the contamination of what have come to be called "forever chemicals," setting a timeline for drinking water limits and designating some substances a hazard under the nation's Superfund law.

  • October 15, 2021

    Ex-FTC Chair To Aid Maryland AG With Privacy, Antitrust Work

    A former head of the Federal Trade Commission is joining the Maryland attorney general's office to help boost the enforcer's growing efforts to manage emerging data privacy, technology and antitrust issues, the office said Thursday.

  • October 15, 2021

    5th Circ. Says CFPB Payday Loan Regs Must Wait For Appeal

    The Fifth Circuit has stepped in to extend a stay on Consumer Financial Protection Bureau payday lending regulations that are being challenged by two industry trade groups, giving small-dollar lenders a reprieve from an expected June compliance deadline.

  • October 15, 2021

    DOJ Lands 1st Indictment Of Many Expected In 737 Max Probe

    The criminal indictment of The Boeing Co.'s former chief technical pilot for allegedly duping federal safety regulators during their review of the 737 Max is the first of what's likely to be many, as the U.S. Department of Justice vows to vigorously prosecute individuals undermining public safety.

  • October 15, 2021

    SEC Awards Total Of $40M To 2 Whistleblowers

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission announced Friday that it had awarded a total of $40 million to a pair of whistleblowers who kick-started a successful enforcement action, despite the fact that one informant waited years to report the misconduct.

  • October 15, 2021

    Treasury Issues Sanctions Compliance Guide Aimed At Crypto

    The Office of Foreign Assets Control on Friday published a compliance guide for digital asset companies as part of its ongoing efforts to crack down on ransomware attacks and the use of cryptocurrencies to avoid sanctions.

  • October 15, 2021

    DOL Plan Could Make ESG Retirement Investing Hip — Again

    A new U.S. Department of Labor proposal would rip down Trump-era barriers that discouraged ESG investing by employee retirement funds, but it may only be the latest volley in a fiery debate over whether such investments are economically relevant — and whether they benefit or harm investors.

  • October 15, 2021

    FCC Fines 911 Service Providers For Late Certification Filings

    The Federal Communications Commission has reached settlements with eight 911 service providers for failing to timely file their required 911 service reliability certification in 2020.

  • October 15, 2021

    FERC Commissioner Splits Ramp Up Confirmation Pressure

    Tuesday's Senate confirmation hearing on President Joe Biden's choice to fill the last vacant spot at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has taken on new stakes after stalemates among FERC's four current commissioners allowed two controversial power market changes to take effect.

  • October 15, 2021

    Tether To Pay CFTC $41M Over Stablecoin Reserve Claims

    The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission said Friday that Tether will pay $41 million to resolve allegations that it misled the market about its namesake stablecoin being "fully backed" by U.S. dollars.

  • October 15, 2021

    Banks Still Reporting Significant Libor Exposures, EBA Warns

    Banks still have €50 trillion ($58 trillion) in derivatives exposures tied to Libor and face high transition risks as the scandal-plagued benchmark rate goes out of service in two months, the European Union's banking watchdog warned.

  • October 14, 2021

    CFPB, FTC Wade Into 4th Circ. Fight Over Public Records Site

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and Federal Trade Commission told the Fourth Circuit on Thursday that a public records website cannot use so-called Section 230 liability protections for tech platforms to shield itself from a class action accusing it of credit reporting violations.

Expert Analysis

  • What FTC's 'Penalty Offense Notices' Mean For Cos.

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    In recent weeks, the Federal Trade Commission has resurrected a long-dormant enforcement power by sending hundreds of companies notices of marketing-related offenses — and while the agency may face practical challenges in executing penalties, companies should proceed carefully, say attorneys at Manatt.

  • Preparing Remote Deposition Defenses For Corporate Entities

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    As remote depositions will remain common for the foreseeable future, attorneys defending a deposition notice or subpoena to a corporation should implement certain strategies to mitigate unique challenges, such as less planning time and increased difficulty of establishing rapport with witnesses, say attorneys at Sidley.

  • How To Mitigate Antitrust Risk In ESG Efforts

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    Recent statements from Jonathan Kanter, nominee to lead the U.S. Department of Justice Antitrust Division, suggest that companies will need to assess whether environmental, social and governance policies are unrelated to competition and prepare accordingly for merger reviews, say Michael Murray and Tara Giunta at Paul Hastings.

  • DOL's Proposed Rule Doesn't Make ESG Investment Risk Free

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    A proposed U.S. Department of Labor rule aimed at Employee Retirement Income Security Act fiduciaries who take climate change into account should not be viewed as a green investment free pass, as prudent investors must consider the potential for bad returns if climate mitigation efforts fail, says J.B. Heaton at One Hat Research.

  • Cannabis M&A: How To Prepare For Regulatory Due Diligence

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    Cannabis-related businesses that are being acquired or receiving investments or loans should facilitate a robust due diligence process — including keeping records of licenses, regulatory correspondence and standard operating procedures — to insulate themselves from, and ensure other parties are well aware of, regulatory risks, say attorneys at Saul Ewing.

  • Mental Health Parity Act: A Compliance Wake-Up Call

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    Recent developments, including the U.S. Department of Labor’s settlement with UnitedHealth, suggest that the DOL is taking a renewed and more aggressive approach to enforcing the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, say Tim Kennedy and Anne Hall at Hall Benefits Law.

  • Draft Plan Illuminates EPA's Enviro Justice, Climate Priorities

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    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's recently released draft strategic plan provides the key to understanding a number of the agency's recent priorities, including an enhanced focus on environmental justice, greater oversight of regulatory programs, and state and local partnerships to enforce environmental laws, say attorneys at King & Spalding.

  • Preserving Disgorgement Tax Deductibility In SEC Settlements

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    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission recently added language to its enforcement orders that could affect a settling party's ability to deduct certain disgorgement payments, but proper planning can help them satisfy Internal Revenue Service prerequisites, say attorneys at Sidley.

  • OSHA Virus Citation Highlights Key Compliance Challenges

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    The Occupational Safety and Health Administration's recent citation to Fred Loya Insurance Agency for failing to report an employee’s COVID-19-related death shows the compliance hurdles employers face in determining if an exposure is work-related and when a death or inpatient hospitalization must be reported, says Patrick Bickford at Ausley McMullen.

  • Perspectives

    Why Law Schools Should Require Justice Reform Curriculum

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    Criminal defense attorney Donna Mulvihill Fehrmann argues that law schools have an obligation to address widespread racial and economic disparities in the U.S. legal system by mandating first-year coursework on criminal justice reform that educates on prosecutorial misconduct, wrongful convictions, defense 101 and more.

  • Compliance Tips For Marketing Health Benefits In Alcohol

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    When it comes to marketing alcohol products around health benefits, such as vitamin-fortified hard seltzer, accurately understanding product classification, along with regulators' stance on individual beverage claims, will make it easier to avoid regulatory risk, say attorneys at DLA Piper.

  • Proposed Mass. Enviro Regs Prompt Compliance Questions

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    The proposed amendments to the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act would introduce new assessments for determining unfair or inequitable environmental burden on marginalized populations, but the lack of guidance and a looming implementation deadline leave developers in the dark on how to apply new regulatory concepts, say attorneys at Holland & Knight.

  • Extension Of The HSR Waiting Period Increases Acquirer Risk

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    Attorneys at K&L Gates look at the Federal Trade Commission's recent extension of the merger-review waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act, and its effect on pending transactions, broader public policy and the Biden-era M&A market.

  • 4 Antitrust Risk Areas To Watch For Government Contractors

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    To plan for the increased likelihood of detection and stiff penalties for antitrust violations following the anticipated passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, compliance efforts should focus on joint bidding, dual distribution, legal certifications, and hiring and compensation, say Andre Geverola and Lori Taubman at Arnold & Porter.

  • Tax-Exempt Orgs, Beware This 403(b) Plan Compliance Pitfall

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    A recent Internal Revenue Service publication puts 403(b) retirement plan sponsors on notice about a contribution aggregation compliance failure often identified in audits of government and tax-exempt entities, but risk can be minimized by ensuring plan documents and communications address the issue directly, say Greg Needles and Michael Gorman at Morgan Lewis.

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