Public Policy

  • January 17, 2017

    Ex-Cravath Atty, Hedge Fund Runner Get 2nd CFTC Seat Try

    Just days before stepping out of office, the Obama administration on Tuesday renewed a bid to fill a pair of vacancies at the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission, re-nominating a former Cravath Swaine & Moore LLP attorney and a hedge fund manager who didn’t advance last year.

  • January 17, 2017

    Justices Mull 'Crime Of Violence' In Immigration Case

    The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday heard oral arguments in an immigration case over whether the definition of a “crime of violence” is unconstitutionally vague, with the justices grappling with the vagueness standard and how the definition differed from a separate statute that was struck down in 2015.

  • January 17, 2017

    Enviros Urge Justices To Pass On Polar Bear Habitat Appeal

    The Center for Biological Diversity is urging the U.S. Supreme Court not to upend a Ninth Circuit decision backing the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's critical habitat designation for the polar bear, saying the state of Alaska and other challengers have made too big of a deal out of the size of the habitat designation.

  • January 17, 2017

    3 Takeaways As FDA Dishes On Interchangeable Biosimilars

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s long-awaited guidance on biosimilar interchangeability contains lots of flexible language that means the coveted designation could be much more attainable for some products than others, experts say. Here are three takeaways from Tuesday’s draft guidance.

  • January 17, 2017

    After Historic Vote, Fla. Drafts New Medical Pot Rules

    The Florida Department of Health on Tuesday published its initial proposed rule for a medical marijuana program, taking a step toward implementing the recently passed Amendment 2 but creating controversy by charting a course closer to existing law than the broader guidelines voters overwhelmingly passed in November.

  • January 17, 2017

    Uber Sues Seattle To Stop New Driver Unionization Rule

    Uber sued the city of Seattle in Washington state court Tuesday to block rules permitting for-hire drivers to participate in collective bargaining opportunities, alleging they run afoul of the state’s constitution.

  • January 17, 2017

    Del. Poses Bill To Limit Unclaimed Property Collection

    Amid a high court battle between Delaware and several other states over who gets to keep abandoned MoneyGram checks, a Delaware state senator has introduced a bill that claims to make the state’s unclaimed property laws fairer and more in line with those of other states.

  • January 17, 2017

    Trump's Interior Pick Says Climate Change 'Undisputable'

    Rep. Ryan Zinke, R-Mont., Donald Trump's nominee for interior secretary, parted ways with earlier comments by the president-elect by saying during Senate confirmation hearings on Tuesday that he doesn’t believe climate change is a hoax, but suggested that there is still a place for fossil fuel drilling on federal lands.

  • January 17, 2017

    Obama Commutes Chelsea Manning's Prison Sentence

    President Barack Obama on Tuesday commuted the sentence of Chelsea Manning, the soldier convicted of leaking a trove of classified information to the website WikiLeaks, according to media reports. 

  • January 17, 2017

    Acquisition Council Issues Proposed Sustainability Rule

    The Federal Acquisition Regulatory Council issued a proposed rule Tuesday to implement a presidential sustainability directive, saying the proposal will improve federal agencies’ environmental performance and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by changing their purchasing habits.

  • January 17, 2017

    New Pa. AG Commits To Integrity, Diversity At Swearing In

    Josh Shapiro took the oath as Pennsylvania’s new attorney general on Tuesday as he promised to restore public trust in an office shaken by years of scandal including both the resignation of his predecessor following a perjury conviction and revelations of pornography swapped among state prosecutors.

  • January 17, 2017

    Pilots, Flight Attendants Sue DOT Over Norwegian Air Permit

    A coalition of unions representing pilots and flight attendants has sued the U.S. Department of Transportation in the D.C. Circuit to challenge the agency's grant of a foreign air carrier permit to Norwegian Air Shuttle ASA's Irish subsidiary.

  • January 17, 2017

    FCC’s Transparency Rules Go Into Effect For All Providers

    Enhanced transparency rules under the Federal Communications Commission’s 2015 Open Internet Order went into effect on Tuesday despite a plea from several trade associations, although a Democratic commissioner lamented the effect on small providers and a Republican commissioner pushed action soon.

  • January 17, 2017

    2nd Circ. Says EDMC Restructuring Did Not Violate Bond Law

    The Second Circuit on Tuesday overturned a federal district judge’s finding that a $1.5 billion out-of-court restructuring proposed by for-profit college operator Education Management Corp. violated a Depression-era law meant to protect bondholders, saying the payment terms governing the bonds at issue were not modified.

  • January 17, 2017

    If Not Replaced, ACA Repeal Could Double Premiums: CBO

    With Congressional Republicans working toward repealing the Affordable Care Act, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office said Monday that scrapping only parts of “Obamacare” could result in 32 million people losing health insurance and premiums doubling by 2026.

  • January 17, 2017

    Latham & Watkins Brings On 2 Energy-Focused Partners

    Latham & Watkins LLP has hired two partners with energy expertise who collectively will bring more than 50 years of experience to the firm’s Washington, D.C., office, the firm announced Tuesday.

  • January 17, 2017

    McCain Says Pentagon $430B Short Of Military Readiness

    Sen. John McCain, one of Congress’s most outspoken defense hawks, let out a clarion call Monday to boost military spending above sequestration levels in 2018, saying in a new report only $430 billion in additional Pentagon funding over the next five years can preserve U.S. military readiness.

  • January 17, 2017

    Texas Bank Can’t Leapfrog To Full DC Circ. In CFPB Case

    A D.C. federal judge on Tuesday shot down a Texas bank's bid to join an appeal before the full D.C. Circuit concerning the constitutionality of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s single-director leadership, rejecting the bank’s arguments the move would serve the interest of “judicial economy.”

  • January 17, 2017

    South Dakota Remote Sales Tax Suit Returns To State Court

    A group of online retailers being sued by South Dakota under its new law enforcing sales tax collection on certain out-of-state businesses was dealt a blow Tuesday when a federal judge punted the lawsuit back to state court.

  • January 17, 2017

    FDA's Foreign Offices Are Short-Staffed, Report Says

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration's foreign drug inspection program is persistently understaffed despite overall improvements to the program in recent years, the U.S. Government Accountability Office said in a report released Tuesday.

Expert Analysis

  • Hague Convention’s Impact On Secured Transactions

    Edwin E. Smith

    Choice-of-law rules for the perfection and priority of a security interest in “securities credited to a securities account” will change on April 1, 2017, when the Hague Securities Convention comes into effect. Edwin Smith and Alan Beloff of Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP describe what steps secured parties may need to take now for existing secured transactions and in planning for new ones.

  • Key Trade Secret Developments Of 2016: Part 2

    Randy E. Kahnke

    Our first article in this two-part series focused on the most significant event in trade secret law in many years — the passage of the federal Defend Trade Secrets Act. Now we leave the DTSA and highlight five other trade-secret trends that promise to shape future developments, say attorneys with Faegre Baker Daniels LLP.

  • Amended Rule 37(e): 1 Year Later

    Samantha Southall

    After a full year in effect, the amended Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37(e) has been tested in a variety of district courts. A sampling of these decisions reveals that courts seem to be adhering closely to the amended rule and ordering adverse inference instructions only where there was intent to deprive another party of access to relevant information, say Carrie Amezcua and Samantha Southall of Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney PC.

  • Health Care Enforcement Review And 2017 Outlook: Part 2

    Karen S. Lovitch

    In 2016, courts around the country heard cases involving a variety of False Claims Act and other enforcement-related matters. Going forward these case law developments are expected to have an impact on both the scope of FCA liability and the means by which FCA liability can be proven at trial, say attorneys at Mintz Levin Cohn Ferris Glovsky and Popeo PC.

  • Evidence Substantiation Burden May Soon Shift To FTC

    Margaret E. Krawiec

    To date, questions about how the Trump administration will impact the Federal Trade Commission have focused primarily on antitrust issues, but clues to how the new administration will affect consumer protection issues might be found by examining the record of former Commissioner Joshua Wright, whom Trump has named to lead the FTC transition efforts, say attorneys at Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP.

  • 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.

  • EPA's New Risk Management Rule Is Here ... For Now

    Michael Reer

    After the 2013 explosion at a fertilizer facility in Texas, President Obama signed an executive order requiring federal agencies to identify improvements to risk management practices. In response, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has just published a final rule amending its Risk Management Program regulations. But changes to the Congressional Review Act could affect the rule's future, says Michael Reer of Harris Finley & Bogle PC.

  • 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.

  • Dabbing Into The Financial Side Of Marijuana

    Neda Ghomeshi

    Both the U.S. Department of Justice and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network have provided guidance for brokers and firms doing business with the cannabis industry, concerning how to avoid prosecution for violating the law. However, even 100 percent compliance does not guarantee total safety from investigation, says Neda Ghomeshi of Hunter Taubman Fischer & Li LLC.

  • What Trump High Court Candidates Say About 1st Amendment

    Gayle C. Sproul

    As media advocates, we wondered how President-elect Donald Trump's soon-to-be-announced U.S. Supreme Court nominee might react to Trump’s vow to shred the hard-won protections now embedded in the law of libel. We found that none of the opinions from judges on his shortlist hint at any inclination to depart from these established rules, say Gayle Sproul and Max Mishkin of Levine Sullivan Koch & Schulz LLP.