Public Policy

  • February 17, 2017

    ACA Program Isn't An Improper Tax On States, 6th Circ. Says

    The Affordable Care Act’s reinsurance program doesn’t amount to an improper tax on states or violation of the Tenth Amendment, the Sixth Circuit ruled Friday, affirming an Ohio federal judge’s dismissal of the state’s lawsuit challenging the program.

  • February 17, 2017

    DOL Notches Win Against Insurer's Fiduciary Rule Challenge

    A Kansas federal judge on Friday sided with the U.S. Department of Labor in upholding a new fiduciary rule for retirement account advisers related to fixed indexed annuity sales, finding the agency did not exceed its authority in ushering it in.

  • February 17, 2017

    6 Acosta NLRB Opinions Employers Need To See

    During his days on the National Labor Relations Board, Labor Secretary nominee Alex Acosta exhibited an independent and nonpartisan approach toward evaluating cases, voting alongside fellow Republicans in favor of employers in key cases while also not shying from occasionally siding with unions. Here, Law360 looks at six notable cases from Acosta's time on the board.

  • February 17, 2017

    Oakland's Justified In Banning Coal Shipments, Enviros Say

    A pair of environmental organizations filed motions in California federal court on Thursday, asking to intervene to defend the city of Oakland against a suit alleging it violated the commerce clause when it passed an ordinance aimed at preventing the export of coal, and pushing for the dismissal of claims.

  • February 17, 2017

    Partnership Audit Rule Freeze Causing Confusion For States

    A federal freeze on new and pending regulations is forcing states to delay introducing legislation to conform with a new federal law for auditing partnerships, leaving taxpayers with unanswered questions on if, when and how to amend their partnership agreements.

  • February 17, 2017

    Sessions' National Security Focus Will Fuel Privacy Fights

    Jeff Sessions’ record of favoring what he sees as national security interests over personal privacy rights indicates the new attorney general will likely take an aggressive approach to gathering digital data, and in doing so he will almost certainly spur a new wave of court challenges to government prying.

  • February 17, 2017

    SEC, State Watchdogs To Share Info On Private Capital

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday announced that it has signed an information sharing pact with a group of state securities regulators to monitor the effects of new rules for intrastate crowdfunding and regional offerings.

  • February 17, 2017

    Trump Admin. Floated Using Nat’l Guard To Find Immigrants

    Amid reports of ramped-up immigration raids around the country, a leaked memo shows the Trump administration at one point considered using members of the National Guard to round up deportable immigrants, although the White House denied such a plan was in the works.

  • February 17, 2017

    Justice Thomas Unlikely To Recuse Despite Wife's Politics

    While the desire expressed by U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas' wife to organize pro-President Donald J. Trump activists may raise shouts for the conservative judge's disqualification in the event of a high court review of a Trump executive order, ethics experts said: Don't waste your breath.

  • February 17, 2017

    DHS Watchdog Vows Close Watch On Border Wall Project

    A U.S. Department of Homeland Security watchdog vowed Thursday to keep a close eye on President Donald Trump’s planned multibillion-dollar southern border wall project, pointing to “very poor” historic performance by the agency in similar projects.

  • February 17, 2017

    Wyo. Advances Bill To Fight Restrictions On Online Sales Tax

    The Wyoming Senate has approved a remote sales tax collection measure designed to challenge a 1992 U.S. Supreme Court decision requiring retailers to have a physical presence in a state to collect transaction taxes.

  • February 17, 2017

    Pa. Lawmaker Lobs Bill To Allow Sports Betting

    A Pennsylvania lawmaker wants the state to legalize sports betting should federal law be changed to allow it, introducing a bill in the state House of Representatives to allow sports betting at casinos and other licensed facilities.

  • February 17, 2017

    EU, Japan Aiming For Quick Conclusion To Free Trade Talks

    The European Union and Japan are reaching advanced stages in negotiating a potential free trade agreement after talks were launched four years ago, the governments said Friday, coming out of a round of discussions that left a few remaining issues to be hammered out.

  • February 17, 2017

    Pompeo Slams Reports Claiming CIA Lacks Trust In Trump

    Newly-confirmed Central Intelligence Agency Director Mike Pompeo hit back Thursday at claims intelligence officials are withholding sensitive information from President Donald Trump in order to avoid it being shared with Russia, saying the CIA has been fully forthright in briefing the president.

  • February 17, 2017

    Nigeria Lists $1B Bond On LSE To Fund Infrastructure

    The Federal Republic of Nigeria on Friday listed a $1 billion, 15-year bond on the London Stock Exchange, the longest ever maturity for an international Nigerian bond and the country’s first international bond offering since 2013, according to a press release from the London Stock Exchange Group.

  • February 17, 2017

    NY AG, Regulator Spar Over Cuomo's Banking Fraud Plan

    New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposal to expand the Department of Financial Services’ powers against financial fraud sparked a war of words this week, with Attorney General Eric Schneiderman calling the proposal a "wholly unnecessary overreach by the executive," while the department’s superintendent labeled the objections as “petty concerns over turf.”

  • February 17, 2017

    Judge Gorsuch ‘Hopefully’ Confirmed In April, McConnell Says

    The Senate’s top Republican, Mitch McConnell, said Friday he wants to have President Donald Trump’s pick for the U.S. Supreme Court confirmed in the next two months, putting a ticking clock on the nomination of Tenth Circuit Judge Neil Gorsuch.

  • February 17, 2017

    FERC Can't Justify Refusal-Rights Ruling, High Court Told

    Ameren Services Co. this week told the U.S. Supreme Court that the federal government's assertion that federal rights of first refusal giving incumbent transmission owners first crack at building new projects aren't subject to legal protection because they're collusive and anti-competitive is unfounded and the rights must be restored.

  • February 17, 2017

    FCC Chief Tells Sen. Franken They Share Open Internet Goals

    Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai has told Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., that they both share the goal of ensuring that the internet is open and free, following a request from Franken that Pai enforce and not look to toss current net neutrality rules, according to a letter made public Friday.

  • February 17, 2017

    Hatch Says Patent Venue Legislation Likely Needed

    Senate Republican High-Tech Task Force Chair Sen. Orrin Hatch said in remarks on Capitol Hill Wednesday that regardless of whether the U.S. Supreme Court rules in favor of TC Heartland and restricts where patent suits can be filed, legislation will likely be needed to prevent future forum shopping.

Expert Analysis

  • Illinois Biometrics Legislation Sets Trend

    Kathryn E. Deal

    Litigation under Illinois’ Biometric Information Privacy Act has included putative class actions against corporate defendants ranging from some of the largest social media and technology companies to a daycare center. Now the Connecticut, New Hampshire, Washington and Alaska legislatures have also proposed bills that would regulate the collection, retention and use of biometric data, say attorneys with Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP.

  • Anti-Money Laundering Expectations Under Trump

    Michael A. Mancusi

    We do not anticipate the new administration will ease anti-money laundering enforcement. In fact, it is more likely that enforcement of the Bank Secrecy Act is an area of supervision that will increase in the coming years, say attorneys with Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP.

  • Waive Goodbye: How Trump Might Attack The Iran Deal

    Anthony Rapa

    On the campaign trail, candidate Donald Trump attacked the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action agreement regarding Iran’s nuclear program. But he suggested that rather than tearing the deal up, he would seek to improve it. One possible approach would be to engage in brinksmanship related to the statutory sanctions waivers President Obama issued in implementing the deal, says Anthony Rapa of Steptoe & Johnson LLP.

  • Debating Anti-Rebate And Inducement Laws In Washington

    Shawn Hanson

    Last month, the Washington state Senate introduced a bill that would amend its anti-rebate and inducement laws to allow insurers to offer free goods and services. Supporters argue that Washington is the only state in the country to force consumers to pay for technology that is free everywhere else, while opponents have expressed concern for fair competition, say Shawn Hanson and Crystal Roberts of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP.

  • Reconsidering CFPB V. PHH

    Eric J. Mogilnicki

    If the D.C. Circuit had declined to act in Consumer Financial Protection Bureau v. PHH, President Donald Trump would have had a clear path to firing CFPB Director Richard Cordray. Instead, the court’s action granting the CFPB’s petition for rehearing creates fresh uncertainty about the scope and shape of the president’s authority over the CFPB, say Eric Mogilnicki and Andrew Smith of Covington & Burling LLP.

  • Trump’s Enviro Law Impact May Not Be What Many Anticipate

    Lester Sotsky

    Many posit a material decline in environmental enforcement and a retrenchment or reversal of environmental regulatory initiatives in the new Trump administration. We expect three concrete areas where activism and activity will be on the rise during this time, targeting a variety of environmental, public health and liability issues of considerable potential consequences, say Lester Sotsky and Andy Wang of Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP.

  • In Retrospect

    Relearning The Lessons Of Korematsu's Case

    Randy Maniloff

    Fred Korematsu’s U.S. Supreme Court case challenging President Franklin Roosevelt’s executive order that led to the incarceration of approximately 120,000 people of Japanese ancestry may sound like ancient history. However, Feb. 19 marks the 75th anniversary of the order's signing, and that it’s celebrating its diamond anniversary now is breathtaking timing, says Randy Maniloff of White and Williams LLP.

  • CPSC Civil Penalties: A Statistical Analysis

    Jonathan Judge

    In 2015, U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission Chairman Elliot Kaye announced that he had directed CPSC staff to seek “double-digit” penalties from companies found to be in violation of the Consumer Product Safety Act. Kaye appears to have accomplished his stated goal — a statistical analysis of agency fines shows that companies are being punished more severely than before, says Jonathan Judge of Schiff Hardin LLP.

  • How A General Counsel Should Think About AI: Part 2

    Bruce J. Heiman

    General counsels face the challenging task of understanding how companies can navigate the rules surrounding uses of artificial intelligence. To get smart on AI, general counsels must ask the right questions about areas such as human resources, intellectual property, liability and insurance, say Bruce Heiman and Elana Reman of K&L Gates LLP.

  • When And Where Punitive Damages Are Insurable: Part 2

    Rory Eric Jurman

    There is no substitute for a well-drafted, ironclad insurance policy, so it is imperative that insurers either expressly exclude punitive damages in actual policies, or unambiguous, limiting language if the agreement is to cover punitive damages, says Rory Jurman of Fowler White Burnett PA.