Public Policy

  • April 10, 2024

    Fla. Lawyer Seeks 'Compassion' After Loan Fraud Conviction

    Fresh off a failed bid to have her wire fraud conspiracy conviction nixed, a Florida attorney found guilty of fraudulently obtaining federal COVID-19 relief loans asked a Georgia federal judge for leniency in her upcoming sentencing.

  • April 10, 2024

    FCC Urged To Wait For BEAD Fund Awards Before 5G Auction

    Small, independent cable providers want the Federal Communications Commission to hold off on a rural 5G development auction until the U.S. Department of Commerce completes its massive award of high-speed internet build-out funds.

  • April 10, 2024

    Maine Says Lobster Boat Tracking Counts As Legal Search

    Maine's top fisheries' regulator is arguing that newly required electronic location tracking for some lobstering boats is a legal administrative search of commercial premises and has urged a federal judge to toss a lawsuit alleging the rule violates lobster fishers' constitutional rights.

  • April 10, 2024

    Mich. Justices Block Wind Farm's Plan To Expand Near Airport

    The Michigan Supreme Court has upheld a local board's decision to block a commercial wind farm expansion, agreeing with a trial judge that zoning officials had marshaled enough evidence that the windmills posed safety risks to aviators.

  • April 10, 2024

    FBI, GSA Face Criticism Over Response To HQ Site Probe

    Republican lawmakers continued to criticize the FBI and General Services Administration on Wednesday over contentious plans for a new FBI headquarters, citing concerns over the planned site and size of the facility, and the agencies' responses to a related investigation.

  • April 10, 2024

    DeFi Platform Uniswap Discloses SEC Enforcement Notice

    The firm behind decentralized crypto exchange Uniswap said on Wednesday that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission had notified the firm that it may soon face an enforcement case.

  • April 10, 2024

    GOP Senators Ask 5th Circ. To Ax School Bus Wi-Fi

    Seven Republican senators are backing a Fifth Circuit challenge to the Federal Communications Commission's plan to subsidize school bus Wi-Fi, saying the government shouldn't be funding children's unsupervised internet access on the way to and from school.

  • April 10, 2024

    Paper Companies Still Liable In Superfund Row, Judge Says

    A Michigan federal judge held that International Paper Co. and Weyerhaeuser Co. can still be sued for future cleanup costs of a Michigan superfund site after the Sixth Circuit cut them loose from their portion of a $49 million bill for cleanup costs to date.

  • April 10, 2024

    Trump Fails Again To Halt NY Trial Over Claim Judge Is Biased

    Donald Trump on Wednesday tried and failed for the third time in as many days to delay his upcoming hush-money trial, after arguing the judge should be removed for supposed bias and that the judge's rules were preventing him from defending himself.

  • April 10, 2024

    Merger Notification Overhaul 'Pretty Close,' DOJ Official Says

    A senior U.S. Department of Justice antitrust official predicted Wednesday that the DOJ and Federal Trade Commission are likely just weeks away from issuing the final version of a major overhaul to the filing requirements of companies notifying mergers to the agencies.

  • April 10, 2024

    Biden Keeps Up With Trump On Judge Confirmation Pace

    The Senate voted 100-0 on Wednesday to confirm Judge Ann Marie McIff Allen to the District of Utah, which marks 40 confirmations of lifetime judges with public defender experience under President Joe Biden, putting him on par with the number of judges President Donald Trump got confirmed by this point in his administration.

  • April 10, 2024

    Feds Back Trial Delay For Sen. Menendez's Wife's Surgery

    Prosecutors on Wednesday told the New York federal judge overseeing Sen. Robert Menendez's bribery case that they are in favor of postponing the May trial for a few months in light of a serious medical condition affecting Nadine Menendez, the senator's wife and co-defendant.

  • April 10, 2024

    Trade Court Rules CBP Should've Labeled Planners As Diaries

    The U.S. Court of International Trade on Wednesday ruled that U.S. Customs and Border Protection improperly classified imports of a California calendar company's weekly-plus-monthly planners as notebooks, saying the products are diaries because they have spaces meant for jotting down reminders.

  • April 10, 2024

    Past Violations To Get Close Eye With New Merger Filing Rules

    Changes proposed to Federal Trade Commission and U.S. Department of Justice merger reporting requirements would impose significant document submission obligations on merging parties, such as past violations of antitrust and labor law, practitioners and an agency deputy said Wednesday.

  • April 10, 2024

    IRS' DOJ Referral Rules 'A Disaster,' Sen. Whitehouse Says

    The IRS protocols for referring cases to the U.S. Department of Justice are "a disaster" for enforcing laws against bankers and other actors who help U.S. taxpayers evade taxes, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse said Wednesday during a hearing on offshore tax evasion before the Senate Budget Committee.

  • April 10, 2024

    DA Says SEPTA Prosecutor Law Unfairly Singles Out Philly

    An attorney for Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner told a Pennsylvania appellate court Wednesday that a law mandating a "special prosecutor" within the Attorney General's Office to handle crimes within the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority had unfairly and unconstitutionally singled out Philadelphia and his office.

  • April 10, 2024

    Pot Cos. Say California City Reneged On Fee Waiver Promise

    Six cannabis companies are suing the city of Cudahy in California federal court, saying the city breached its contracts by refusing to waive fees accrued during national emergencies and city-caused delays, costing the companies more than $26 million in damages.

  • April 10, 2024

    DOL Says Groups' Challenge To Rule Update Must Fall

    The U.S. Department of Labor pressed a Texas federal court to ax two construction groups' challenge to its rule updating the Davis-Bacon Act, arguing that they face no injury and that their suit relies heavily on speculation and fear-based claims.

  • April 10, 2024

    Biden's Student Loan Relief Plan Is Unlawful, States Say

    A coalition of states have sued the Biden administration over a student loan forgiveness program that's set to kick in this summer, alleging in a Missouri federal lawsuit that the plan sidesteps statutory authority and will unduly cost taxpayers nearly $500 billion.

  • April 10, 2024

    Ex-Trump Finance Chief Weisselberg Jailed For Perjury

    A New York state judge on Wednesday sentenced former Trump Organization Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg to five months in jail for lying under oath in the attorney general's civil fraud case against Donald Trump and his business associates, imprisoning a close ally of the former president on the eve of his hush-money trial.

  • April 10, 2024

    EPA Finalizes First-Ever PFAS Drinking Water Standards

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday announced the final version of its first-ever regulatory limits on "forever chemicals" in drinking water, a move the EPA said will be accompanied by nearly $1 billion in new funding for implementation.

  • April 09, 2024

    Men Agree To Pay $1M For Robocalls Targeting Black Voters

    A pair of conservative conspiracy theorists have agreed to collectively pay $1 million to resolve litigation stemming from their robocall campaign that spread lies about voting by mail to Black voters ahead of the 2020 election, according to a consent decree filed Monday in New York federal court.

  • April 09, 2024

    After Uproar, New MDL Rule Advances With Attys Assuaged

    Following years of debate and months of outcry, a judicial panel Tuesday approved the first formal rule aimed at improving efficiency and fairness in the nation's burgeoning realm of multidistrict litigation, earning plaudits from placated lawyers in the defense and plaintiffs bars.

  • April 09, 2024

    5th Circ. Asks For Briefing Amid Scrutiny Of Judge's Citi Stock

    The Fifth Circuit has ordered additional briefing in a banking industry-backed legal challenge to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's $8 credit card late-fee rule amid questions that have been raised about a potential conflict of interest involving a circuit court judge on the case.

  • April 09, 2024

    Ex-Ohio Utility Chair Dies As Criminal Charges Mount

    The onetime chair of Ohio's utility regulator, who was accused of stealing money from FirstEnergy Corp. as part of a bribery scheme behind a controversial $1.3 billion bailout for two nuclear energy plants, died Tuesday in an apparent suicide, the Franklin County Coroner's Office confirmed.

Expert Analysis

  • Tipsters May Be Key To Financial Regulators' ESG Efforts

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    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission are looking to whistleblowers to assist their climate and ESG task forces, suggesting insider information could be central to the agencies' enforcement efforts against corporate greenwashing, false investment claims and climate disclosure violations, says John Crutchlow at Youman & Caputo.

  • Opinion

    Why USPTO Should Issue Inherency Guidance Memo

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    The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office should issue a new guidance memo in regard to the standard for inherency during the examination process, as the standard is frequently misapplied during prosecution, and consistency of the standard in the USPTO should match that in the federal courts, says Irving Feit at Lucas & Mercanti.

  • 5 Takeaways From SAP's Foreign Bribery Resolutions

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    German software company SAP’s recent settlements with the U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, resolving allegations of foreign bribery, provide insights into government enforcement priorities, and how corporations should structure their compliance programs to reduce liability, say attorneys at Perkins Coie.

  • Series

    Serving As A Sheriff's Deputy Made Me A Better Lawyer

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    Skills developed during my work as a reserve deputy — where there was a need to always be prepared, decisive and articulate — transferred to my practice as an intellectual property litigator, and my experience taught me that clients often appreciate and relate to the desire to participate in extracurricular activities, says Michael Friedland at Friedland Cianfrani.

  • Fears About The End Of Chevron Deference Are Overblown

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    While some are concerned about repercussions if the U.S. Supreme Court brings an end to Chevron deference in the Loper and Relentless cases this term, agencies and attorneys would survive just fine under the doctrines that have already begun to replace it, say Daniel Wolff and Henry Leung at Crowell & Moring.

  • Parsing Chinese Governance On AI-Generated Content

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    As essential risk-mitigation, companies with a China reach should be aware of recent developments in Chinese oversight of AI-generated content, including the latest rulings and regulations as well as the updated ambit for supervisory bodies, say Jet Deng and Ken Dai at Dacheng.

  • Perspectives

    Context Is Everything In Justices' Sentencing Relief Decision

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    In the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent Pulsifer v. U.S. decision, limiting the number of drug offenders eligible for sentencing relief, the majority and dissent adopted very different contextual frames for interpreting the meaning of “and” — with the practical impact being that thousands more defendants will be subject to severe mandatory minimums, says Douglas Berman at Moritz College of Law​​​​​​​.

  • Opinion

    The SEC Is Engaging In Regulation By Destruction

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    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's recent use of regulation by enforcement against digital assets indicates it's more interested in causing harm to crypto companies than providing guidance to the markets or protecting investors, says J.W. Verret at George Mason University.

  • Series

    NJ Banking Brief: All The Notable Legal Updates In Q1

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    Early 2024 developments in New Jersey financial regulations include new bills that propose regulating some cryptocurrency as securities and protecting banks that serve the cannabis industry, as well as the signing of a data privacy law that could change banks’ responsibility to vet vendors and borrowers, say attorneys at Chiesa Shahinian.

  • Former Minn. Chief Justice Instructs On Writing Better Briefs

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    Former Minnesota Supreme Court Chief Justice Lorie Gildea, now at Greenberg Traurig, offers strategies on writing more effective appellate briefs from her time on the bench.

  • Preparing For Possible Calif. Criminal Antitrust Enforcement

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    Though a recent announcement that the California Attorney General's Office will resume criminal prosecutions in support of its antitrust enforcement may be mere saber-rattling, companies and their counsel should nevertheless be prepared for interactions with the California AG's Antitrust Section that are not limited to civil liability issues, say Dylan Ballard and Lillian Sun at V&E.

  • What To Know About IRS' New Jet Use Audit Campaign

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    The Internal Revenue Service recently announced plans to open several dozen audits scrutinizing executive use of company jets, so companies should be prepared to show the business reasons for travel, and how items like imputed income and deduction disallowance were calculated, say attorneys at Morgan Lewis.

  • ShapeShift Fine Epitomizes SEC's Crypto Policy, And Its Flaws

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    A recent U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission order imposing a fine on former cryptocurrency exchange ShapeShift for failing to register as a securities dealer showcases the SEC's regulation-by-enforcement approach, but the dissent by two commissioners raises valid concerns that the agency's embrace of ambiguity over clarity risks hampering the growth of the crypto economy, says Keith Blackman at Bracewell.

  • California Shows A Viable Way Forward For PFAS Testing

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    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has no good way of testing for the presence of specific per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances in food packaging — but a widely available test for a range of fluorine compounds that's now being used in California may offer a good solution, says Vineet Dubey at Custodio & Dubey.

  • 2nd Circ. Adviser Liability Ruling May Shape SEC Enforcement

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    The Second Circuit’s recent decision in U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission v. Rashid, applying basic negligence principles to reverse a finding of investment adviser liability, provides a road map for future fraud enforcement proceedings, says Elisha Kobre at Bradley Arant.

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