Compliance

  • October 11, 2019

    SEC Blocks $1.7B Digital Token Offering In Court

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission obtained a temporary restraining order in New York federal court Friday to block two offshore entities from carrying out a $1.7 billion digital token offering that the agency says violates securities laws.

  • October 11, 2019

    New CFPB 'Task Force' To Review Consumer Financial Law

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau said it's putting together a "task force" to conduct a wide-ranging survey of the consumer financial regulatory landscape and recommend improvements, a project that some consumer advocates worry could just wind up providing cover for industry-friendly rule changes.

  • October 11, 2019

    Look Beyond Crypto Labels, SEC, CFTC And FinCEN Warn

    A trio of federal financial regulators released a joint statement on Friday urging anyone dealing with digital currencies to ensure they are adhering to obligations under anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism regulations, regardless of what those digital assets are called.

  • October 11, 2019

    Battles Over California's Dynamex Law Just Beginning

    Assembly Bill 5, California's new law making it harder for businesses to classify their workers as independent contractors, has garnered a lot of attention for its potential to disrupt the so-called gig economy. But there's an abundance of unanswered questions about how it will change the way businesses operate.

  • October 11, 2019

    Boustani Heads To Trial In $2B Mozambique Fraud Case

    The long-awaited trial of Privinvest executive Jean Boustani over his role in a securities fraud, bribery and kickback scheme involving $2 billion in Mozambican government loans is scheduled to commence on Tuesday.

  • October 11, 2019

    OCC Fines Citibank $30M Over Foreclosed Property Handling

    Citibank NA has been fined $30 million by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency for what the agency said were violations related to rules on how long banks can hold foreclosed property, also known as “other real estate owned,” or OREO.

  • October 11, 2019

    Chicago's Ex-Chief Judge Turns To 'Unfinished Business'

    After 25 years on the federal bench in Chicago, former Chief U.S. District Judge Rubén Castillo is returning to private practice as a man with a mission, ready to tackle "unfinished business."

  • October 11, 2019

    Feds Fight To Keep Judge Whose Ex-Clerk Works On Case

    The government urged a Pennsylvania federal court Friday not to disqualify the judge presiding over its decades-old Clean Water Act lawsuit, arguing that the judge can be impartial even though an assistant U.S. attorney working on the case once clerked for her.

  • October 11, 2019

    Mountain Valley Pipeline Pays $2M To End Va. Pollution Suit

    Developers of the $5 billion Mountain Valley gas pipeline will pay a $2.15 million civil penalty to resolve allegations it violated Virginia environmental laws and its Clean Water Act permit during construction of the project, the Virginia Attorney General's Office said Friday.

  • October 11, 2019

    EB-5 Scheme Fundraiser To Pay $527K In SEC Deal

    An oil and gas official accused of fundraising for a visa fraud scheme that targeted Chinese citizens interested in obtaining an EB-5 investor visa will pay $527,000 under an agreement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

  • October 11, 2019

    9 Months For Ex-Accountant Who Leaked Secrets To KPMG

    A Manhattan federal judge hit former Public Company Accounting Oversight Board accountant Jeffrey Wada with nine months in prison Friday for passing inspection secrets from the financial watchdog to KPMG, calling him a “crucial” component of an illegal scheme that led to six convictions.

  • October 11, 2019

    Tour Buses 'Thumbed Nose' At Health Care Law, SF Says

    San Francisco slapped the operators of the City Sightseeing tour bus service with a lawsuit claiming they refused to shell out health insurance payments for over 200 workers, violating a city law requiring employers to provide affordable health care.

  • October 11, 2019

    SEC's 'Test The Waters' Expansion Could Spur More Offerings

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s decision to allow all companies to pursue “testing-the-waters” communications with institutional investors before registering their offerings is welcomed by corporate attorneys, who say the policy could spur more deal-making, though investor groups are skeptical that the public will benefit from the rule change.

  • October 10, 2019

    Ether Is Definitively A Commodity, CFTC Chair Says

    The chairman of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission said Thursday that the cryptocurrency Ether is definitively a commodity in line with Bitcoin, which has also been excluded from securities laws and falls under the purview of the Commodity Exchange Act.

  • October 10, 2019

    LA Bar Association Creates Cannabis Section

    The Los Angeles County Bar Association announced it has created a cannabis practice section, which is believed to be the first time a local or county bar in Southern California has a designated section for attorneys working with companies in the booming cannabis industry.

  • October 10, 2019

    Fed Wraps Up Work On Revamped Big Bank Rules

    The Federal Reserve on Thursday finalized a revamped framework of capital, liquidity and stress-testing standards for large U.S. and foreign banks, completing a major effort to “tailor” post-crisis financial rules in the wake of last year’s banking regulatory relief bill.

  • October 10, 2019

    Trump Orders Could Gum Up The Works At Enviro Agencies

    President Donald Trump's executive orders aimed at curtailing federal agencies' use of informal guidance in policymaking could prevent agencies like the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Energy from reacting quickly to industry problems.

  • October 10, 2019

    Immigration Audits Of STEM Grad Work Program Stir Anxiety

    Businesses have begun taking a closer look at their training programs for foreign math and science graduates as the Trump administration ramps up its scrutiny of employment visas for entry-level hires.

  • October 10, 2019

    Former Intuit Exec Takes Over Top Role At LabCFTC

    Former Intuit executive Melissa Netram has been appointed director of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission's fintech initiative, or LabCFTC, the agency announced Thursday.

  • October 10, 2019

    What Do Trump's Orders Mean For Agency Guidance?

    The Trump administration's bid to help businesses by putting an end to "secret" rulemaking might backfire, some experts said Thursday, because it could put a damper on advice that industry relies on to comply with federal regulations.

  • October 10, 2019

    9th Circ. Tells DOE To Publish Obama-Era Energy-Saver Rules

    The U.S. Department of Energy can no longer refuse to publish Obama-era energy conservation standards for household and industrial appliances, the Ninth Circuit said Thursday.

  • October 10, 2019

    FCA Decision Tracker: Continued Interpretations Of Escobar

    More than three years after the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark Escobar decision, courts continue to wrangle with how to interpret the ruling in False Claims Act suits, including in a spate of recent cases addressing two key questions the justices left open.

  • October 10, 2019

    Former Pfizer In-House Atty New GC At Cannabis Brand

    California cannabis brand Lowell Herb Co. announced Thursday the appointment of Stacey Hallerman, who previously worked for Pfizer and the luxury goods holding company Richemont, to the position of general counsel and chief administrative officer.

  • October 10, 2019

    Did Citi Dupe DOJ In Forex Investigation?

    A former Citigroup trader acquitted on charges of manipulating foreign exchange markets has accused the bank of fabricating a case for federal prosecutors in order to shield itself from liability, raising eyebrows in the antitrust bar since the government usually goes to great lengths to ensure it’s not being duped.

  • October 10, 2019

    Mich. Pot Testing Lab Fined $100K Over Flawed Methods

    Michigan regulators have slapped a suspended marijuana testing lab with a $100,000 fine and temporarily barred its chief operating officer from the industry over allegations that the company marked contaminated cannabis as safe and told a client it would withhold failed tests from the state.

Expert Analysis

  • How Emotionally Intelligent AI Could Assist With E-Discovery

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    While artificial intelligence has already revolutionized the e-discovery field, the development of emotionally intelligent AI promises to explore data in an even more nuanced and human way, thereby further reducing the burden on legal teams, say Lisa Prowse and Brian Schrader at e-discovery services provider BIA.

  • FinCEN 'Travel Rule' Update Sets Challenges For Crypto Cos.

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    It is unclear how the virtual currency sector will find a practical way to comply with the recent expansion of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network regulation known as the travel rule, but any solution is likely to have both unintended consequences and unintended benefits, say attorneys with King & Spalding.

  • Sports Gambling Compliance: Big Money Worth The Wager

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    As America teeters on the edge of a sports betting revolution, both prudent betting operators and the banks they use should roll out tailored compliance programs that effectively manage reputational, regulatory and business risks to avoid civil or criminal penalties, say attorneys at Cadwalader.

  • PayPal Case Illustrates Difficulty Of Avoiding CMA Penalties

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    The U.K. Competition and Markets Authority's recent fine against PayPal for violating U.K. merger control rules — despite the company's attempts to put safeguards in place — demonstrates how rigid the CMA can be when it comes to initial enforcement orders, say attorneys at Fried Frank.

  • Revising Cloud Contracts In Light Of Capital One Cyberattack

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    In 2019, there have been 3,494 cyberattacks against financial institutions, including, most notably, Capital One. Until regulatory action is taken, financial institutions, which are on their own when it comes to addressing potential cloud service risks, should incorporate liability and security provisions into cloud service contracts, say Nicholas Smith and Rita Ganguli of Milbank.

  • Unpacking The Harvard Admissions Ruling And What's Next

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    While a Massachusetts federal judge's decision last week in Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard is a welcome development for institutions that rely on race-conscious admission practices, it also illustrates the exhaustive steps needed to justify what are often modest uses of race, say Scott Schneider and Paige Duggins-Clay at Husch Blackwell.

  • Preventable Risks Your Law Firm May Be Overlooking

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    Although most lawyers are well-prepared to defend or justify the value of an insurance claim for clients, often law firms have not clearly identified their own potential liabilities, planned for adequate insurance or established prudent internal risk management practices, says Victor Sordillo at Sompo International.

  • Data Privacy Compliance Best Practices For Asset Managers

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    An asset manager can more nimbly engage with the nuances of new data privacy legislation by following a best practices model, developed through universal protocols, that can more readily be adapted to comply with a variety of laws, say attorneys at Ropes & Gray.

  • 6 Ethics Tips For Attorneys Making Lateral Transfers

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    With lateral transfers between law firms on the rise, it is more important than ever for partners to understand the steps they must take to adhere to ethics rules and other requirements when making a transition, say attorneys at Harris Wiltshire.

  • CFPB Abusiveness Claims Aren't Dead Yet

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    Initially, it appeared that Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Kathy Kraninger would avoid abusiveness claims, but a recent supervisory finding and an enforcement action alleging a mortgage relief services provider misled consumers suggest that Kraninger will not be shy about using the agency’s abusiveness authority, says Ori Lev at Mayer Brown.

  • Options For Calif. Franchisors After New Contractor Standards

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    Recent judicial and legislative developments in California that make it harder to classify workers as independent contractors have left franchisors with lots of questions, but some safeguards may lessen the risk of liability when franchisees fail to comply with labor laws, say Jonathan Solish and Glenn Plattner at Bryan Cave.

  • Fraud As An Operational Risk For Banks

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    For banks, an effective approach to preventing, detecting and resolving fraud is one that focuses on the objectives of recent publications from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and is appropriately integrated into the bank’s risk management system, say Neil Bloomfield and Kristina Whittaker at Moore & Van Allen.

  • Philadelphia Is Emerging As A Leader On Workplace Regs

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    Following a minimum wage increase and new pay equity and ban the box laws enacted over the last few years, the Philadelphia City Council recently passed two more workplace statutes, demonstrating a trend that has thrust the city to the forefront of municipalities instituting worker protections, say Rick Grimaldi and Samantha Bononno at Fisher Phillips.

  • New CFC Rules Too Narrow To Fix Tax Overhaul Misfire

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    Recently issued tax rules don’t go far enough to remedy an unintended consequence of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that has resulted in U.S. affiliates of foreign parent companies being taxed as controlled foreign corporations, say attorneys at Sidley.

  • The Ins And Outs Of SEC's Expanded 'Test The Waters' Rule

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    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s recent expansion of permissible prefiling communications between issuers and certain potential investors may allow issuers to be in a better position to gauge interest in the market in a cost-effective manner, say attorneys at Debevoise.