Expert Analysis


Stakeholders Must Act Now To Nominate Opportunity Zones

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act created a program to direct much-needed capital to low-income communities by providing significant tax benefits to investors who use qualified opportunity funds. States, which can nominate communities for designation as qualified opportunity zones until March 21, are seeking input from stakeholders, and all need to act quickly, say Jones Walker LLP partners Aileen Thomas and Jonathan Katz.


Chloe Kim’s Right Of Publicity: The Value Of Gold

At only 17 years old, Olympic gold medalist Chloe Kim probably has not spent much time thinking about trusts and estate planning. But success on the big stage increases the value of the right of publicity, which affects estate-planning strategies, say Scott Weingust and Jordan Salins of Stout Risius Ross LLC.


What The DOJ Cyber Task Force Can Do

While history is littered with reports and whitepapers that do not inspire change, there is an opportunity for the U.S. Department of Justice's new Cyber-Digital Task Force to have an impact, say attorneys with Wiley Rein LLP.


Excerpt from Lexis Practice Advisor

Understanding Texas Mechanic's Liens And Bonds: Part 3

Texas is home to relatively complex statutory frameworks for liens and bonds used to secure payment for services rendered. Statutory and constitutional liens provide powerful remedies for nonpayment, but only if the proper guidelines are strictly observed, says David Tolin of Cokinos Young in the final part of this article.


Series

EPA In The Trump Era: The DOJ's 3rd-Party Payment Policy

The U.S. Department of Justice's 2017 memo ending the previous administration's common practice of paying various nongovernmental, third parties as a condition of settlement with the U.S. is an important change of course that will meaningfully impact the contours of future judicial civil consent judgments with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, says Raymond Ludwiszewski, former EPA general counsel and partner at Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP.


Cryptocurrencies: Money, Securities Or Other Property?

While newer forms of commercial crime policies specifically address cryptocurrency losses, there may be debate whether cryptocurrencies are "money," "securities" or "other property" under traditional crime forms. The argument will possibly focus on the "security" definition, say attorneys with Wiley Rein LLP.


How To Deal With New Vertical Merger Enforcement Risks

Recent announcements by senior antitrust officials at the U.S. Department of Justice suggest that merging parties in vertical transactions will face an increased burden in convincing the DOJ to settle. With a heavy skepticism toward behavioral remedies, the DOJ will act more like a cop than a parole officer, say attorneys with McDermott Will & Emery LLP.


The Latest On Sexual Harassment Reform In Congress

Sexual harassment in the workplace has been in the news. You may have noticed. And that issue, as things in the news so often do, has made its way to the Hill. Bill Pittard, partner at KaiserDillon PLLC examines the existing law and practice under which sexual harassment allegations in the congressional workplace typically are handled, and touches on the key elements of the leading House proposals to amend that framework.


Nontraditional Health Care Programs Under The Microscope

Sponsored health care programs have expanded the scope of available services to include "providers" who do not offer direct medical care, but who facilitate or coordinate the provision of services by physicians and other more traditional caregivers. Difficulties in determining how to monitor these newer provider types may have kept them off the government's fraud and abuse radar for a while, but not anymore, says Paul Cirel of Todd & Weld LLP.


10 Considerations For Blockchain Patent Applications

When filing blockchain patent applications, there are some issues to keep in mind, including divided infringement, Alice and open source, say attorneys with Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP.


Examining SEC’s 2018 Exam Priorities

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations deserves credit for the increased transparency and guidance provided in its 2018 priorities letter. That said, the OCIE is clearly prioritizing the protection of retail investors even more than in years past, say attorneys with Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP.


2nd Circ. Raises Bar For US Jurisdiction Over Foreign Banks

The Second Circuit's recent decision affirming the dismissal of UBS from a Madoff case is useful for foreign banks facing U.S. litigation. The decision is a reminder that, for purposes of general personal jurisdiction, corporate structure matters, say attorneys with Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP.


Managing Aircraft Lease Novations: A Primer

With the world’s commercial aviation fleet nearly set to double over the next 15 years, trading activity among lessors is bound to increase. Aircraft lessees will confront ever-increasing requests from lessors to consent to novations of existing leases. Parties to aircraft trade transactions would do well to engage lessees in person early in the process, says Patrice Robinet of Akerman LLP.


Cyber Incident Transparency Can Assist Cyber Insurance

In a recent report, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development considered whether cyber insurance can operate as a driving force in improving cyber risk management generally. Making detailed information on cyber incidents available would help cyber insurance function as a critical risk resilience tool, say Neil Warlow and Sarah Stephens of JLT Specialty Limited.


Reading The 9th Circ.'s Tea Leaves On Injunctive Standing

In Victor v. Bigelow and Khasin v. Bigelow, the Ninth Circuit recently found that injunctive standing in the misbranding context is limited and requires a current intent to purchase challenged products in the future. Whether a plaintiff has standing to pursue an injunction may depend on the plaintiff’s deposition testimony, say Alexandra Laks and Lucia Roibal of Morrison & Foerster LLP.


Net Neutrality Repeal May Put Tech Startups In The Slow Lane

There is no telling how the current battle over net neutrality will play out, but there is a good chance that paid prioritization will not go away. Technology and content startups that do not have the resources to buy internet fast lanes may lose sales from slower traffic, says Benjamin Warlick of Morris Manning & Martin LLP.


Overcoming The Mistrust Of Science In An Alt-Fact Age

You cannot fight alternative facts with facts alone. But with a combination of inoculation, changing the narrative, and building common ground between the jury and your experts, you should be able to significantly lessen their impact, says Kirstin Abel, managing partner at Bodyfelt Mount LLP and vice chair of the Trial Techniques and Tactics Committee of the International Association of Defense Counsel.


Insurance Tips For Defendants In Opioid Litigation

Several types of insurance policies can potentially cover costs of defense and ultimate liability for pharmaceutical manufacturers, wholesale distributors and retailers defending against opioid-related lawsuits, but policyholders must be wary of the potential issues that may arise, say Anna Engh and Cléa Liquard of Covington & Burling LLP.


Series

EPA In The Trump Era: Settling Mandatory Duty Lawsuits

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s 2017 "sue and settle” directive embraces a nascent process to post online notices of intent to sue, complaints and petitions for review. For some this is sufficient for planning purposes and strategic undertakings, but for others it provides interesting opportunities, says Avi Garbow, former EPA general counsel and partner at Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP.


A Recurring Problem In Patentability Of Computer Software

In its discussion of the "abstract ideas" exception, Alice relied on Bilski. But the historical precedent cited by Bilski does not support the current patent regime. Courts should return to a clear delineation between patent-ineligible laws of nature and mathematical expressions thereof, and patent-eligible novel and useful inventions made by man, say Benjamin Hattenbach and Rosalyn Kautz of Irell & Manella LLP.




Special Series


Judging A Book

Are the latest books on the judicial system worth reading? Federal judges share their thoughts in this series of book reviews.




My Strangest Day In Court

Every seasoned litigator has his or her fair share of courtroom stories. Check out the strange experiences that captured reader interest in this popular 2017 series.

40 Years Of FCPA

​Dec. 19 marked the 40th anniversary of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Catch up on this series featuring reflections from attorneys who have played a role in the evolution of FCPA enforcement, defense and compliance.​



Q&A


A Chat With Hogan Lovells HR Chief Allison Friend

In this monthly series, legal recruiting experts at Major Lindsey & Africa interview management from top law firms about navigating an increasingly competitive business environment. Here we feature Allison Friend, chief human resources officer for Hogan Lovells.



Op-Eds


Who Should Decide If Russian Flag Is In Closing Ceremony

On Saturday the International Olympic Committee is scheduled to make the politically and morally fraught decision of whether Russian athletes can march in the closing ceremony as Russian nationals with their flag. The IOC members would be well advised to punt this no-win decision to the IOC Athletes’ Commission, says Ronald Katz of GCA Law Partners LLP.

Gig Economy Business Model Skirts Calif. Labor Laws

California workers have spent over a century carving out the rights to have fair working conditions, an eight-hour work day and to be paid a living wage. The gig economy largely seeks to circumvent these well-established laws, says Mike Arias of Arias Sanguinetti Wang & Torrijos LLP.