Public Policy

  • August 22, 2017

    LA Wants In On Sanctuary City Fight

    Los Angeles said Tuesday it wants to jump into a fight against the Trump administration over a recent move to cut off federal public safety funding for so-called sanctuary cities, just a day after a California federal judge shot down a suit by a smaller Golden State town over the policy.

  • August 22, 2017

    Feds Move To Ease Capital Treatment For Smaller Banks

    Federal banking regulators on Tuesday said they would not require most banks to comply with international standards for the treatment of mortgage servicing and other assets as part of a planned easing of the capital rules for smaller banks.

  • August 22, 2017

    Jury Selection Kicks Off In Menendez Corruption Trial

    Prosecutors and defense counsel on Tuesday combed through potential jurors to serve on the corruption trial of Sen. Bob Menendez and Florida ophthalmologist Salomon Melgen, with the government dismissing a juror whose relatives work in legal capacities and the senator tossing a juror with family ties to law enforcement.

  • August 22, 2017

    FinCEN Expands High-End Real Estate Reporting To Hawaii

    The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network on Tuesday expanded its geographic targeting orders to cover Honolulu as one of the metropolitan areas where large real estate transactions will draw scrutiny, while also adding wire transfers to the list of payment types that insurers should flag.

  • August 22, 2017

    Iran Says It Can Resume Uranium Enrichment In Just 5 Days

    The chief of the Islamic Republic of Iran’s atomic energy organization said Tuesday the country could resume producing highly enriched uranium in less than a week if the 2015 international agreement limiting its nuclear program were to fall apart.

  • August 22, 2017

    Trump Says He Is Willing To Shut Down Gov't Over Wall

    President Donald Trump on Tuesday said he is willing to shut down the government to get a southern border wall funded and implied that he is still considering pardoning former Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

  • August 22, 2017

    CFP Board's Standards Proposal Gets Support, Suggestions

    Investor advocate groups and financial planning professional associations have thrown their support behind a Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards proposal to expand its fiduciary standards but suggested clarifications, while some business groups said the board should wait for rulemaking from federal agencies.

  • August 22, 2017

    Corporate Tax Cuts Won’t Really Benefit Workers: Report

    President Donald Trump's proposal to slash corporate taxes in part to boost workers' pay is "misleading" because most of the benefits will skew to the wealthy instead, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities said in a new analysis issued Monday.

  • August 22, 2017

    Trump Calls For 'Dramatic' Shift In Afghanistan Strategy

    President Donald Trump announced Monday night that he will “dramatically” overhaul U.S. strategy in Afghanistan but will not withdraw from the long-running war, saying a review by his national security staff had pushed him away from his initial instinct to pull out.

  • August 22, 2017

    Arab Bank Says Terror Case 'Exemplifies' Alien Tort Abuse

    Arab Bank PLC on Tuesday told the U.S. Supreme Court that a bid by victims of Palestinian attacks to revive allegations that the bank helped militants fund their activities “exemplifies much of what is wrong” with current attempts to expand the use of the Alien Tort Statute.

  • August 22, 2017

    5th Circ. Puts EPA Power Plant Effluent Rule Fights On Hold

    The Fifth Circuit on Tuesday granted the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's request to delay industry challenges to portions of an Obama-era rule limiting toxic metal levels in wastewater discharged from steam-powered electricity plants while the agency revises them, a move opposed by environmental groups.

  • August 22, 2017

    Lawmakers Query 10 Agency Heads On Leave For Union Work

    Two high-ranking congressional oversight committee members said Tuesday they have asked the heads of the U.S. Department of Commerce, the U.S. Department of Labor and eight other agencies about their use of unpaid leave, following reports that the U.S. Postal Service let workers off for a pro-Hillary Clinton union campaign.

  • August 22, 2017

    FDIC Chair Will Consider Cautious Tweaks To Volcker Rule

    Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Chairman Martin Gruenberg on Tuesday said he was open to making changes to the Volcker Rule as long as they maintain the “substance” of the regulation's ban on proprietary trading by banks.

  • August 22, 2017

    Meet The 'Horse Whisperer' Of ACA Policy

    He’s been called the “horse whisperer” of Affordable Care Act policymaking. He has his very own Twitter hashtag, which is used enthusiastically by health policy geeks. He’s quoted in ACA stories more than almost any other wonk. So who is this guy? And how did he become one of the highest-profile analysts during eight years of Obamacare twists and turns?

  • August 22, 2017

    Tesla Wins Bid For Lawmaker Docs In Direct Auto Sales Fight

    A Michigan magistrate judge on Monday ordered two Republican state lawmakers to comply with Tesla Motors Inc.’s requests for documents related to a state law passed in 2014 that bans the automaker from selling directly to consumers.

  • August 22, 2017

    OCC Wants 'Speculative' NY Fintech Charter Suit Tossed

    The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has said that New York state regulators cannot prove that a special charter for financial technology firms would be harmful to them because the national bank regulator has not yet even issued one, making the state lawsuit a "speculative" exercise.

  • August 22, 2017

    AARP Gets Wellness Regs Kicked Back To EEOC

    The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission must reconsider two regulations surrounding employer-sponsored wellness programs that had been challenged by the AARP, a federal judge found Tuesday, but he kept the rules in place for the time being to avoid "disruption and confusion."

  • August 22, 2017

    US Advances WTO Case Against Chinese Ag Policies

    The Trump administration has yet to file a complaint at the World Trade Organization, but it has picked up the baton from its predecessors by looking to move a case over China’s agricultural import quotas to the panel stage, according to WTO documents circulated Monday.

  • August 22, 2017

    AT&T Pushes FCC To Steer Streamlined Make-Ready Work

    The Federal Communications Commission should support streamlined make-ready processes and incremental fee increases to speed up wire line broadband service development, AT&T Inc. recently told the agency.

  • August 22, 2017

    US, S. Korea Begin Kicking Tires On Trade Deal Retooling

    The top trade officials for the U.S. and South Korea concluded the first phase of their effort to explore possible changes to their bilateral trade agreement Tuesday, with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer vowing to carry the process forward over the next several weeks.

Expert Analysis

  • Rebuttal

    Assessing 'The Value Of Class Actions'

    Andrew Pincus

    In a recent Law360 opinion piece, Gary Mason claimed that class actions provide “significant benefits” to class members. But the study he conducted to support this conclusion shows just the opposite, says Andrew Pincus of Mayer Brown LLP.

  • Can Trump's Infrastructure Order Speed Up Enviro Reviews?

    Felicia Barnes

    As President Donald Trump's recent executive order aimed at improving the environmental review and permitting process is implemented over the next few months, project sponsors will start to see how much it will improve the process. But there will likely be limits to how much relief the order can provide, says Felicia Barnes of Hunton & Williams LLP.

  • Opinion

    Stop Gerrymandering Before It Stops Democracy

    Paul Smith

    If partisan gerrymandering continues unchecked, its effects could spread to our entire political system. Since its beneficiaries have an interest in amplifying it, the only permanent way to mitigate this danger is to clamp down on the practice itself. The U.S. Supreme Court now has an opportunity to do precisely that, says Paul Smith of the Campaign Legal Center.

  • Applying Contractual Principles In Pa. Unfair-Trade Claims

    Charlotte Thomas

    Claims against insurers under Pennsylvania's Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law occupy a unique place in its jurisprudence. Courts should be reluctant to ignore contractual principles when a UTPCPL claim arises out of an insurance policy, says Charlotte Thomas of Duane Morris LLP.

  • Diversity In The Legal Profession — A Stubborn Vision

    Robert Grey

    At the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity, we want to see, as founding member and Microsoft chief legal officer Brad Smith once stated, “a legal profession as diverse as the nation we serve.” We are not there yet — far from it — but we are beginning to put some numbers on the board, says Robert Grey, president of the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity.

  • A New Standard For Suspicious Order Monitoring: Part 1

    Kenneth Weinstein

    This past year, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency's suspicious order monitoring requirement has become increasingly important. However, the decision of whether an individual order should be blocked and reported may come down to a "know-it-when-you-see-it" standard that is difficult to systematize, say analysts with Analysis Group Inc.

  • Opinion

    New Salary History Laws Crimp Attorney Hiring Process

    Fredric Newman

    In prohibiting employers from asking potential hires about their previous salaries, lawmakers seek to "level the playing field." But there are real problems with the practicality, legality and enforceability of many of the salary history laws, says Fredric Newman, a founding partner of Hoguet Newman Regal & Kenney LLP.

  • Challenging An Escheat Audit? Be Sure The Claim Is Ripe

    Anthony Cavender

    Many companies have questioned the constitutionality of Delaware’s escheat regime. But recently the Third Circuit largely affirmed the dismissal of a pipeline firm's complaint that a proposed escheat audit was unconstitutional. When such an audit is challenged before it takes place, precedent suggests that the claim is unripe, say Anthony Cavender and Amy Pierce of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP.

  • TSCA Reform: Less Backlog But Greater Regulatory Burden

    Robert DeMott

    Earlier this month, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced that the backlog of Toxic Substances Control Act new chemical reviews resulting from the agency’s suspension of reviews has been eliminated. But there are structural aspects of the updated TSCA program that now create more extensive demands on submitters and reviewers, say Robert DeMott and Gavin Thompson of Ramboll Environ.

  • Legal Considerations After SEC's Warning Shot At ICOs

    Robert Crea

    In the midst of market excitement surrounding initial coin offerings, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission recently issued an investigative report warning that digital tokens may be securities. When a token is a security, a variety of legal considerations come into play, including the Investment Advisers Act, anti-money laundering and taxation, say attorneys with K&L Gates LLP.