• March 5, 2018

    High Court Lets Gov't Participate In Utility Immunity Row

    The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday carved out a slot for the federal government during March 19's oral arguments over whether an Arizona utility can immediately challenge a lower court's finding that it's not immune from an antitrust suit from a Tesla Inc. unit.

  • March 5, 2018

    Bluestone Coal Ex-Employees Get Class Cert. In WARN Suit

    A West Virginia federal judge on Monday granted class certification to more than 100 former employees at a coal strip mine who were fired, allegedly without proper notice, saying the plaintiffs presented a common issue.

  • March 5, 2018

    2 Firms Edge Ahead In February Aided By Blank Check IPOs

    Kirkland & Ellis LLP and Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP each advised three initial public offerings in February, boosted in part by a steady flow of blank check offerings, during an otherwise choppy month for IPOs, though activity appears likely to gain steam in March.

  • March 5, 2018

    SG Backs Schlumberger In Bid To Revive $93M Patent Award

    The solicitor general on Friday urged the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a decision that held patent owners cannot recover profits lost outside the U.S., one of several briefs supporting Schlumberger Ltd. in its bid to reinstate a $93 million damages award.

  • March 5, 2018

    Energy Leaders Urge Investments, Predict Oil Supply Lapse

    Industry leaders gathered at an energy conference in Houston on Monday warned attendees that as oil demand continues to rise without a peak in sight, the lack of investments in oil and gas during the past few years will lead to a supply gap if something isn’t done to address the issue.

  • March 5, 2018

    AK Steel Strikes Deal Over Retirees' Health Benefits

    AK Steel Corp. has agreed to resolve a lawsuit accusing it of unilaterally modifying vested health care benefits with a deal that calls for continued benefits for roughly 1,200 current and future retired hourly retirees and their surviving spouses, according to a motion filed Friday.

  • March 5, 2018

    $16M Ch. 11 Deal Ends Paragon-SinoEnergy Rig Dispute

    A $16.5 million settlement approved in Delaware bankruptcy court Monday freed two drilling rigs stranded in Chapter 11 by a dispute between Paragon Offshore PLC and SinoEnergy Capital Management Ltd., which bought the rigs and leased them back to Paragon in 2015.

  • March 5, 2018

    Utah Co. In SEC Offering Fraud Suit Must Stop Raising Money

    A Salt Lake City-area company that claimed to have an eco-friendly way of extracting precious metals from ore was ordered by a Utah federal judge on Monday to stop taking any more money from investors until it has wrapped up a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission suit alleging it’s at the center of a $6 million offering fraud.

  • March 5, 2018

    Pa. Utility Asks High Court To Review $199M Deduction Claim

    A Pennsylvania-based electricity supplier has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to review the Third Circuit’s decision to deny it a $199 million tax deduction, saying that the lower court has effectively authorized the IRS to take actions contradicting the agency’s own rules.

  • March 5, 2018

    Power Co. Fined $2.7M For Exposing Critical Grid Data

    Electricity grid reliability regulators have fined an unnamed power company $2.7 million for unwittingly exposing critical cybersecurity data that could have allowed hackers to gain access to its systems, according to a notice recently filed with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

  • March 5, 2018

    PE-Backed Midstream Company Reaps $100M In Initial Equity

    Dallas-based Mettle Midstream Partners LLC, a newly founded independent midstream company, on Monday said it received a $100 million initial equity commitment from energy-focused private equity firms Natural Gas Partners and Pearl Energy Investments.

  • March 5, 2018

    Naftogaz Says Gazprom Owes It For Natural Gas Stopgaps

    Russian gas giant Gazprom must compensate Naftogaz for the cost of importing more expensive natural gas into Ukraine, a Naftogaz executive said Monday, after Gazprom refused to restart supplies following Naftogaz's $2.56 billion arbitral award in their dispute over a 10-year gas purchase deal.

  • March 5, 2018

    Standing Rock Tribe Says It's Been Shut Out Of DAPL Review

    The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has largely cut the Standing Rock Sioux tribe out of any meaningful additional review of the Dakota Access Pipeline ordered by a D.C. federal judge, the tribe said on Friday, echoing earlier complaints raised by the Cheyenne River Sioux tribe.

  • March 2, 2018

    VW Nixes Bondholders' Fraud Suit Over Emissions, For Now

    A California federal judge Friday granted Volkswagen AG's bid to dismiss bondholders' putative class action over allegedly inflated bond values prompted by the 2015 diesel emissions scandal, finding that a November Second Circuit decision upends the logic the court relied on in moving the claims forward in July.

  • March 2, 2018

    Tesla Factory In Calif. Fined For Pollution Problems

    Tesla Inc. agreed to pay a nearly $140,000 penalty and install a solar power system at a local charity to settle air quality violations at its Fremont, California, manufacturing plant, a San Francisco environmental regulator said Thursday.

  • March 2, 2018

    Investors Can Take On Mass. Hatsopoulos Bros., Judge Rules

    A federal judge in Massachusetts on Friday allowed a proposed class of investors to pursue contractual claims against a distinguished engineer and his business-savvy brother, who allegedly shorted one side in a 2016 merger of their energy-technology companies American DG Energy Inc. and Tecogen Inc.

  • March 2, 2018

    Trump Picks Dow Atty To Lead EPA Emergency Mgt. Unit

    President Donald Trump on Friday said he intends a Dow Chemical Co. managing counsel to head up the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Land and Emergency Management Office.

  • March 2, 2018

    Texas Supreme Court Says Heavy Equipment Tax Law Legal

    The Texas Supreme Court on Friday reversed a lower court's ruling in a dispute over whether the state tax law uses an unconstitutional framework to value heavy equipment such as pipeline compressors, affirming the legality of the statute in question and potentially resolving hundreds of related cases.

  • March 2, 2018

    FERC Says Eminent Domain Fight Doesn't Belong In Court

    A Virginia federal judge correctly ruled she couldn’t consider a landowner suit challenging the constitutionality of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's eminent domain authority based on opposition to the $3.5 billion Mountain Valley pipeline, FERC and the pipeline's developers told the Fourth Circuit on Friday.

  • March 2, 2018

    Exxon Wants To Probe Calif. Officials On Their Climate Suits

    Exxon told a Texas state court on Thursday that it should be able to take testimony from attorneys and California public officials it believes are leading a politically charged effort to squash the company’s free speech rights by suing the oil giant over its alleged climate change liability.

Expert Analysis

  • How FERC Redefined 'Grid Resilience'

    Colette Honorable

    Last fall, the U.S. Department of Energy directed the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to consider "grid resilience" measures that tended to favor coal and nuclear power. FERC's response this week, rejecting the DOE approach, embraces a resilience strategy incorporating new energy technologies, and could even lead to consideration of climate change as a factor, say attorneys with Reed Smith LLP.

  • White House Deregulation Push Is Just Getting Started

    Jane Luxton

    The Trump administration's recently released unified agenda indicates an even greater pace of deregulatory action in 2017 than was called for in the president's "two-for-one" executive order. But parties interested in particular future regulatory reforms must develop a strategy for aligning with the relevant agency’s priorities, say attorneys with Clark Hill PLC.

  • Will Ratepayers Or Shareholders Pay For California Fires?

    Mike Danko

    Northern California homeowners recently filed suit against PG&E Corporation, blaming its power lines for sparking wildfires that have destroyed more than 5,000 homes. If plaintiffs prove that the utility took shortcuts that placed profits over safety, victims’ compensation should come from the company's profits, not from ratepayers, say Mike Danko of Danko Meredith and Caroline Corbitt of Gibbs Law Group.

  • 6 Roles To Embrace In An Evolving Legal Industry

    Rob MacAdam

    Smart law firms are increasingly positioning professionals to proactively guide them as the legal landscape reshapes itself, harnessing six emerging roles within their organizational charts to embrace new approaches, tools and systems, says Rob MacAdam of HighQ.

  • The Uncertain Fate Of Migratory Birds

    Hilary Tompkins

    It remains to be seen if the recent reversal of the U.S. Department of the Interior's long-standing position regarding the Migratory Bird Treaty Act will withstand challenges. The launch of this decision — just before Christmas and without a solicitor — highlights some potential pitfalls, says Hilary Tompkins, a partner at Hogan Lovells and former solicitor of the DOI.

  • Crystallex's Implications For Holders Of Venezuelan Debt

    Richard Cooper

    As the economic situation in Venezuela continues to deteriorate and the number of bond defaults continues to mount, the Third Circuit’s recent ruling against Crystallex is a poignant reminder about the challenges of recovering on claims against a determined sovereign. However, Crystallex is not without further litigation options, say Richard Cooper and Boaz Morag of Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP.

  • Opinion

    This Year, Let’s Invest In Lawyer Resiliency

    Highly profitable companies have comprehensive corporate wellness programs that realize plateauing health care costs, greater employee engagement, and a demonstrable competitive advantage. The legal field needs a similar awakening, says Rudhir Krishtel, a former partner of Fish & Richardson and senior patent counsel at Apple.

  • What Tax Reform Means For The Energy Sector: Part 2

    Amish Shah

    Companies in the energy sector will be affected by many provisions in the new tax law, including changes to base erosion taxation, the corporate alternative minimum tax, net operating losses, contributions in aid of construction, partnership and other pass-through income and Section 199 domestic production activities, say attorneys with Eversheds Sutherland LLP.

  • 5 Legal Technology Predictions For 2018

    Jeff Ton

    While each new year is expected to bring fresh challenges to the legal industry, 2018 will be particularly disruptive to the status quo. Both law firms and organizations that cater to the legal community should prepare for developments like increasing pressure from international clients and data security risks caused by multigenerational gaps, says Jeff Ton of Bluelock LLC.

  • OFAC Enforcement Trends In 2017: Exporters On Notice

    Sean Kane

    One probable reason for the recent shift in focus by the Office of Foreign Assets Control toward export-related transactions is that the agency’s enforcement efforts targeting big banks have worked. With fewer cases to bring against them, OFAC seems to be moving on to new weak spots in enforcement, say Sean Kane and Susie Park of Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP.