Public Policy

  • May 16, 2024

    Judge Calls Out 'Cancel Culture' In Prof's Suit Against Penn

    A Pennsylvania federal judge said University of Pennsylvania leaders embraced "cancel culture" when they chastised an anthropology professor for handling remains from the 1985 MOVE house bombing in Philadelphia, allowing the professor's defamation case against the school to move forward.

  • May 16, 2024

    DC Judge Reluctantly Holds That Hyatt Forfeited Patents

    A D.C. federal judge on Thursday found the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has sufficiently proven that inventor Gilbert Hyatt forfeited the right to receive certain patents based on decades of delay, but made clear that his finding was the result of a Federal Circuit mandate, not how he thought the case should be approached.

  • May 16, 2024

    Democrats Prod Justice Thomas on RV Loan, Tax Treatment

    Two Senate Democrats have asked U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas' attorney to respond to what they called a failure to answer their questions about the justice's $267,000 loan from a healthcare industry executive to finance a luxury recreational vehicle, saying the loan treatment could have violated federal tax laws.

  • May 16, 2024

    FCC To Pull Phone Co.'s Authorization To Operate In US

    The Federal Communications Commission said Thursday it plans to revoke a telecom company's authorization to operate in the U.S. after the business failed to comply with an agreement with federal agencies stemming from a security review.

  • May 16, 2024

    La. Parties Split On How Voting Law Alters Consent Decree

    A civil rights group told the Fifth Circuit on Thursday that a Louisiana state law enacted two weeks before the court reconsidered whether to dissolve a 30-year-old voting consent decree was enough to end its dispute, but disagreed with the state over the dissolution process for the consent decree determining how the state's high court justices are chosen.

  • May 16, 2024

    Senate Passes Bill To Block SEC Crypto Accounting Guidance

    The U.S. Senate voted Thursday to send a bill overturning the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's controversial crypto accounting guidance to the president's desk, though without the necessary votes to override the White House's planned veto.

  • May 16, 2024

    FDIC's Gruenberg Scolded By Senators Over Agency Culture

    Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Chairman Martin Gruenberg on Thursday faced a second round of congressional reprimand from both sides of the political aisle over his agency's workplace misconduct scandal, but Senate Democrats seemed ready to let Gruenberg clean up the mess himself and continue his tenure.

  • May 16, 2024

    African Tax Admins Promote Use Of Voluntary Disclosures

    Voluntary disclosure programs have been very effective when countries launch them in anticipation of complying with an international standard on automatic exchanges of financial account information, the African Tax Administration Forum said Thursday in guidance on the programs.

  • May 16, 2024

    DOL Unveils Long-Delayed Abandoned Retirement Plan Rules

    After being sidelined for more than a decade, a plan for expanding U.S. Department of Labor rules for terminating retirement plans abandoned by employers are moving forward again, the agency reported Thursday, along with a long-delayed role in the process for bankruptcy trustees.

  • May 16, 2024

    New BLM Plans Sunset Federal Coal Leasing In Wyo., Mont.

    The U.S. Bureau of Land Management on Thursday unveiled court-ordered, revised resource management plans for coal-rich areas of Montana and Wyoming that end future coal leasing in the regions, a move blasted by congressional representatives of those states.

  • May 16, 2024

    Oil & Gas Groups Challenge DOI Overhaul Of Leasing Regs

    A coalition of oil and gas groups has slapped the U.S. Department of the Interior with a lawsuit in Wyoming federal court seeking to unravel the agency's final rule boosting bonding requirements, royalty rates and minimum bids for its onshore federal oil and gas leasing program.

  • May 16, 2024

    Firm Seeks To Force IRS To Process Worker Retention Credits

    A tax advisory firm helping businesses apply for the pandemic-era employee retention credit has asked an Arizona federal court to force the IRS to resume processing claims, saying the moratorium in place since September violates the Administrative Procedure Act.

  • May 16, 2024

    No Relief For Struggling SPACs Under Buyback Tax Proposal

    Special-purpose acquisition companies won't get sought-after relief from a new 1% tax on stock buybacks under a recent Treasury Department proposal that otherwise provides helpful clarity on the tax's implications for the subdued SPAC market, lawyers say.

  • May 16, 2024

    Judge Ends ICE's 'Knock And Talk' Immigrant Arrest Tactic

    A California federal court has struck down U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's policy of entering immigrants' private property without authorization for arrest, ruling that the practice violated the immigrants' Fourth Amendment protections against unlawful seizure.

  • May 16, 2024

    Conn. Justices Snatch Debt Collection Practice Of Law Case

    The Connecticut Supreme Court has opted to hear a case that questions whether the state's banking commissioner or its judicial branch has the power to regulate debt collection activities that occur under the purview of law firms, leapfrogging the case over the state's intermediate appellate court and into the state's highest court.

  • May 16, 2024

    Ohio Justice Seeks To Add Appeals Judge To Party Label Suit

    Ohio Supreme Court Justice Jennifer Brunner asked a federal judge to let her amend her challenge to a new state law requiring certain judicial candidates to list their political party affiliation beside their name on the ballot, arguing that her claims also apply to an intermediate appellate judge. 

  • May 16, 2024

    Calif. Bar Halts Plans To Develop New Bar Exam

    The State Bar of California has shelved a plan to develop its own online bar exam, a shift that could save the cash-strapped organization up to $4 million per year, but drew opposition from law school deans concerned about its ambitious rollout timeline.

  • May 16, 2024

    Nantucket Accused Of Biased Car-Rental Licensing

    A Nantucket couple has sued the island town's government in Massachusetts federal court, alleging it enforced an illegal and racially biased bylaw enacted 27 years ago to shut down their car rental business.

  • May 16, 2024

    Coverage Recap: Day 14 Of Trump's NY Hush Money Trial

    Law360 reporters are providing live updates from the Manhattan criminal courthouse as Donald Trump goes on trial for allegedly falsifying business records related to hush money payments ahead of the 2016 election. Here's a recap from Thursday, day 14 of the trial.

  • May 16, 2024

    Ga. High Court Candidate Can't Stop Abortion Remarks Probe

    Georgia Supreme Court candidate John Barrow can't pause a state ethics commission's investigation into his pro-abortion rights comments on the campaign trail, a federal judge ruled on Thursday, tossing Barrow's lawsuit and citing several flaws right out of the gate.

  • May 16, 2024

    DC Judge Mulls Dominion's DQ Bid For Pro-Trump Mich. Atty

    Lawyers for Dominion Voting Systems pursuing defamation claims against former Overstock.com CEO Patrick Byrne fought Thursday to disqualify the Michigan attorney representing him, insisting to a D.C. federal judge that disqualification is the most appropriate remedy for the lawyer's leak of Dominion's confidential discovery documents.

  • May 16, 2024

    Fla. Seeks To Halt Biden's ACA Trans Discrimination Rule

    Florida urged a federal court to stop recently finalized regulations clarifying gender identity-based discrimination under the Affordable Care Act from taking effect, saying the new rules would force the state to abandon its health and safety laws or lose funding from the federal government.

  • May 16, 2024

    Mayer Brown Recruits Akin Gump Public Policy Pro In LA

    Mayer Brown LLP has brought back a public policy and regulatory expert from Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP, where he spent over a decade leading its California public law and policy practice.

  • May 16, 2024

    HUD Calls Pa. Medical Marijuana Housing Suit Premature

    A Pennsylvania housing authority and two would-be residents acted hastily in suing the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, since HUD hadn't formally threatened to pull the authority's funding over a state court order to offer assistance to medical marijuana users, a HUD lawyer told a federal judge Thursday.

  • May 16, 2024

    Biden Admin Proposes To Loosen Restrictions On Marijuana

    President Joe Biden on Thursday announced that his administration has formally recommended relaxing restrictions on marijuana, marking the most significant federal policy shift on cannabis since the drug was criminalized more than 50 years ago.

Expert Analysis

  • Deciding What Comes At The End Of WTO's Digital Tariff Ban

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    Companies that feel empowered by the World Trade Organization’s recent two-year extension of the ban on e-commerce tariffs should pay attention to current negotiations over what comes after the moratorium expires, as these agreements will define standards in international e-commerce for years to come, say Jan Walter, Hannes Sigurgeirsson and Kulsum Gulamhusein at Akin Gump.

  • DOE Funding And Cargo Preference Compliance: Key Points

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    Under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the U.S. Department of Energy will disburse more than $62 billion in financing for innovative energy projects — and recipients must understand their legal obligations related to cargo preference, so they can develop compliance strategies as close to project inception as possible, say attorneys at White & Case.

  • Georgia's Foreign Lobbying Bill Is Not A FARA Copycat

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    Though a recently passed bill in Georgia aims to mirror the transparency goals of the federal Foreign Agents Registration Act by imposing state-specific disclosure requirements for foreign lobbyists, the legislation’s broad language and lack of exemptions could capture a wider swath of organizations, say attorneys at Holtzman Vogel.

  • FTC Noncompete Ban Signals Rising Labor Focus In Antitrust

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    The Federal Trade Commission’s approval this week of a prohibition on noncompete agreements continues antitrust enforcers’ increasing focus on labor, meaning companies must keep employee issues top of mind both in the ordinary course of business and when pursuing transactions, say attorneys at Skadden.

  • Breaking Down EEOC's Final Rule To Implement The PWFA

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    Attorneys at Littler highlight some of the key provisions of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's final rule and interpretive guidance implementing the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, which is expected to be effective June 18, and departures from the proposed rule issued in August 2023.

  • 4 Ways To Refresh Your Law Firm's Marketing Strategy

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    With many BigLaw firms relying on an increasingly obsolete marketing approach that prioritizes stiff professionalism over authentic connection, adopting a few key communications strategies to better connect with today's clients and prospects can make all the difference, say Eric Pacifici and Kevin Henderson at SMB Law.

  • What 3rd Circ. Trust Ruling Means For Securitization Market

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    Mercedes Tunstall and Michael Gambro at Cadwalader break down the Third Circuit's March decision in Consumer Financial Protection Bureau v. National Collegiate Master Student Loan Trust, as well as predict next steps in the litigation and the implications of the decision for servicers and the securitization industry as a whole.

  • Breaking Down DOJ's Individual Self-Disclosure Pilot Program

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    The U.S. Department of Justice’s recently announced pilot program aims to incentivize individuals to voluntarily self-disclose corporate misconduct they were personally involved in, complementing a new whistleblower pilot program for individuals not involved in misconduct as well as the government's broader corporate enforcement approach, say attorneys at Paul Weiss.

  • Cos. Must Prepare For Calif. Legislation That Would Ban PFAS

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    Pending California legislation that would ban the sale or distribution of new products containing intentionally added per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances could affect thousands of businesses — and given the bill's expected passage, and its draconian enforcement regime, companies must act now to prepare for it, say attorneys at Alston & Bird.

  • How To Prepare As Employee Data Reporting Deadlines Near

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    As filing deadlines approach, government contractors and private companies alike should familiarize themselves with recent changes to federal and California employee data reporting requirements and think strategically about registration of affirmative action plans to minimize the risk of being audited, say Christopher Durham and Zev Grumet-Morris at Duane Morris.

  • FDA Warning Letter Tightens Reins On 'Research Only' Labels

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    A recent warning letter from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to Agena Bioscience alleged the company’s diagnostic devices were labeled for research use only, but improperly promoted for human clinical purposes, signifying a reinforcement — and a potential narrowing — of the agency's policy on products labeled “research only,” say attorneys at Sheppard Mullin.

  • Opinion

    Seafarer Detention Under Ship Pollution Law Must Have Limits

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    The U.S. Coast Guard should reinstate limits on the number of days that foreign crew members may be forced to remain in the country while the U.S. Department of Justice investigates alleged violations of shipping pollution laws, in order to balance legitimate enforcement interests and seafarer welfare, say attorneys at Blank Rome.

  • Perspectives

    Justices' Forfeiture Ruling Resolves Nonexistent Split

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    The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in McIntosh v. U.S., holding that a trial court’s failure to enter a preliminary criminal forfeiture order prior to sentencing doesn’t bar its entry later, is unusual in that it settles an issue on which the lower courts were not divided — but it may apply in certain forfeiture disputes, says Stefan Cassella at Asset Forfeiture Law.

  • Behind Indiana's Broad New Healthcare Transactions Law

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    The high materiality threshold in Indiana's recently passed healthcare transaction law, coupled with the inclusion of private equity in its definition of healthcare entities, makes it one of the broadest state review regulations to date, say attorneys at DLA Piper.

  • What Cos. Are Reporting Under New SEC Cybersecurity Rule

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    Four months after its effective date, 14 companies have made disclosures under the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's mandatory cybersecurity incident reporting rule, and some early trends are emerging, including a possible rush to file, say attorneys at Debevoise.

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