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Public Policy

  • May 17, 2019

    Structural Remedies In Spotlight In Facebook Privacy Probe

    In the wake of Facebook's revelation that it expects to pay a multibillion-dollar fine to resolve the Federal Trade Commission's pending probe of its privacy practices, experts mull what the agency should include in a settlement for it to truly have teeth.

  • May 17, 2019

    SF Picks Side Of Privacy With Ban On Facial Recognition Tech

    The debate over facial recognition is heating up as San Francisco prepares to enact the nation's first ban on the controversial technology, with privacy advocates praising the step and others warning against too harshly limiting a useful tool for guarding public safety.

  • May 17, 2019

    Gov't Must Provide Info In Challenge To 2-For-1 Rule Order

    The D.C. federal judge presiding over public interest groups' challenge to President Donald Trump's executive order requiring that for every new regulation, two rules must be eliminated, said Friday that federal agencies must do a better job complying with discovery.

  • May 17, 2019

    Don't Write Off Trump's Green Card Proposal, Attys Say

    Attorneys have expressed cautious optimism about President Donald Trump’s proposal to create a points-based green card system that would prioritize highly skilled workers, but they also said it should not come at the expense of family-based immigration.

  • May 17, 2019

    Trump’s Border Wall Faces Skeptical Calif. Judge

    A California federal judge appeared open Friday to blocking the Trump administration from repurposing defense funds to build a wall along the southern border, saying he doesn't know if it is right to let the government build the wall before legal challenges to it are resolved.

  • May 17, 2019

    Calif. Man Who Threatened FCC Chair's Kids Gets 1.5 Years

    A California man who threatened to kill the children of Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai was sentenced Friday morning to 20 months in prison, the U.S. Department of Justice has announced.

  • May 17, 2019

    IRS Can't Use Law To Force Health Plan Penalty Payment

    The Internal Revenue Service can’t use the Anti-Injunction Act to dodge an injunction preventing it from collecting payments from employers whose health plans fail to cover birth control, a North Dakota federal court has ruled.

  • May 17, 2019

    Conn. Senate Sends $15 Minimum Wage Bill To Governor

    Connecticut is poised to become the seventh state to adopt a $15 minimum wage after its Senate approved a wage hike early Friday, sending the plan to Gov. Ned Lamont's desk.

  • May 17, 2019

    Revised Opportunity Zones Offer Tribes New Tool To Spur Biz

    The federal government's recently proposed regulations on opportunity zones provide much-needed guidance to help Native American tribes find ways to use the program to attract investment, but tribes' success will likely depend on how well they can parlay the zones with other sources of federal funding.

  • May 17, 2019

    7th Circ. Weighs Helicopter, Gun Use In Wis. Recreation Area

    The Seventh Circuit wrestled Friday over whether the federal government should have allowed off-road motorcycle riding, dog training with guns and military helicopter training in a Wisconsin recreational area, questioning if the activities would fall under the recreational uses the state initially intended for the area.

  • May 17, 2019

    Ill. Gov. Offers New, Hiked Taxes In $41.5B Infrastructure Plan

    Illinois would double its gas tax and create taxes on streaming services and ride sharing, among other services, to pay for a $41.5 billion infrastructure plan the governor circulated Friday.

  • May 17, 2019

    Texas High Court Allows Taking Of Developer's Land For Road

    A divided Texas Supreme Court said on Friday the City of Rowlett, Texas, had the authority to condemn land owned by a private developer even though the move helped a rival developer and a private business, deciding that there was a valid public use driving the decision.

  • May 17, 2019

    Military Medical Malpractice Legislation Gives Victims Hope

    A recently floated bill that would allow active-duty military members to sue the federal government for medical malpractice is an encouraging first step in providing justice for victims who are barred from filing such cases because of a 70-year-old U.S. Supreme Court precedent, experts said.

  • May 17, 2019

    Group Got $17M Secret Donation Ahead Of Kavanaugh Fight

    The Judicial Crisis Network received $17 million from an anonymous donor shortly before the fight to confirm Justice Brett Kavanaugh, according to two government watchdog groups that obtained the conservative judicial group's latest tax returns.

  • May 17, 2019

    Call Blocking May Come With Cost, Advocacy Org Cautions

    A Federal Communications Commission plan to allow carriers to block robocalls could mean those carriers could pass along charges for the blocking services, whether customers want it or not, an advocacy group said Friday.

  • May 17, 2019

    Rep. Asks FCC's Pai To Clarify Whether He 'Withheld' Info

    Rep. Anna Eshoo has demanded that the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission share information about a probe into mobile location tracking with his Democratic colleagues and suggested he correct statements that portrayed he didn’t know of their requests.

  • May 17, 2019

    BMW Blasts EU’s Emissions Tech Cartel Case

    BMW AG’s chief executive on Thursday blasted a European Union investigation alleging that it colluded with other German car makers to keep new emissions technology off the market for several years, calling the claims unfounded.

  • May 17, 2019

    Constitutional Crisis? Not Quite, But Courts Could Be Tested

    Legal and political scholars agree we are not in a constitutional crisis … yet. But as tensions mount between the president and Congress, the role of the third branch of government could be both crucial and perilous.

  • May 17, 2019

    Mnuchin Snubs Democrats’ Subpoena For Trump’s Tax Info

    Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will not comply with a subpoena from a U.S. House of Representatives committee for President Donald Trump’s tax returns, he announced Friday, setting the stage for a likely court battle against Democrats.

  • May 17, 2019

    DC Circ. Won't Block EPA Small Refiner RFS Waiver Action

    The D.C. Circuit on Friday refused to prevent the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency from granting new exemptions to small refiners from the Renewable Fuel Standard program while a biofuel industry group challenges the agency's allegedly revised policy for reviewing exemption requests.

Expert Analysis

  • The Drawbacks Of White House's Visa Overstay Memo

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    Methods proposed in President Donald Trump's recent memo on so-called visa overstays seem suboptimal in achieving the stated policy objectives when considered with data from a U.S. Department of Homeland Security report on foreign visitors to the U.S., says Andrew Greenfield of Fragomen.

  • State Net

    Why States And Cities Are Concerned About Census Accuracy

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    The 2020 census will impact every state, city and county in the United States, because population is a major factor in how the federal government distributes funds. Despite apprehensions about an undercount, there are reasons for optimism about the accuracy of the census, says Lou Cannon of State Net Capitol Journal.

  • Inside The New FCA Cooperation Credit Guidelines

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    The recently issued U.S. Department of Justice cooperation credit guidelines provide False Claims Act litigators important information about factors the government considers before awarding cooperation credit or moving to intervene and dismiss a qui tam relator's suit, say attorneys at Cleary.

  • The Evolution Of Software As A Service Taxes Post-Wayfair

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    Due to the expanded nexus provisions following South Dakota v. Wayfair, software as a service providers need to be especially aware of the recent — and, at times, divergent — state law developments in SaaS taxation, say attorneys at Pillsbury.

  • Q&A

    A Chat With Gilead Sciences Legal Ops Leader Gary Tully

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    In this monthly series, legal recruiting experts from Major Lindsey & Africa interview legal industry leaders about the increasingly competitive business environment. Here, Rod Osborne talks with Gary Tully, head of legal operations at Gilead Sciences.

  • High Court Hyatt Decision Will Limit State Tax Appeal Options

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    This week’s straightforward U.S. Supreme Court opinion in Franchise Tax Board v. Hyatt was rooted in sovereign immunity concepts and is unlikely to have ongoing state tax impacts other than limiting where taxpayers can bring suit, says Jeffrey Reed of Kilpatrick Townsend.

  • Opinion

    FINRA's Presumptive Bad Actor Rule Seems Like Overkill

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    The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority's proposal to establish a system of preemptive confiscatory fines based on predictive analytics prompts many questions about whether such a regime would be necessary or fair, says Thomas Potter of Burr & Forman.

  • Opinion

    Oil Cartel Bill's Passage Is Long Overdue

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    The No Oil Producing and Exporting Cartels Act has been reintroduced in Congress, and the oil market conditions that spurred this needed legislation in 2000 are just as widespread today — but so are the inaccurate criticisms of this bill, says attorney Seth Bloom, who drafted the original version of NOPEC.

  • EEOC Data Rules Pose 2 Equal Pay Study Challenges

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    New reporting requirements will provide the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission with additional data to evaluate employers’ pay practices, but the type of data to be collected and the statistical tests the EEOC proposes may result in several issues for employers, says Audrius Girnius at Advanced Analytical Consulting Group.

  • Opinion

    Calif. Fair Pay Law Is Unfair To Startup Founders

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    It's time for legislatures and courts to recognize the unfair burden the California Fair Day’s Pay Act has placed on company leaders — like founders of California startups — by holding them liable for failure to pay wages, say David Siegel and Mital Mikada of Grellas Shah.