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Public Policy

  • June 14, 2019

    States' Model Payments Law May Ease Entry For Fintechs

    State banking regulators are collaborating on a uniform model payments law that would facilitate compliance with different state rules, and in the absence of federal government action, some attorneys say the effort could benefit fintech companies by providing multistate consistency.

  • June 14, 2019

    NLRB Advice Memo Raps Ban On Social Media Criticism

    Employers can't block their workers from criticizing them on social media, though they can keep the employees from accessing those sites with their company devices, the National Labor Relations Board general counsel's office said in one of three advice memorandums posted Friday.

  • June 14, 2019

    Union Blasts 'Orwellian' NLRB Effort To Muzzle 'Scabby'

    A New York construction workers union is trying to prevent well-known labor protest symbol Scabby the Rat from being muzzled for good by the National Labor Relations Board, which they accused Friday of mounting an Orwellian effort to upend First Amendment union protections.

  • June 14, 2019

    The Biggest Benefits Decisions Of 2019: Midyear Report

    In the first half of 2019, courts made beating Employee Retirement Income Security Act suits over bad investments tougher for universities and easier for money managers who handle certain 401(k) plan funds. Here, Law360 reviews six blockbuster court developments that benefits attorneys should have on their radar.

  • June 14, 2019

    NYC Uber Rules Aren't A Cure-All For Driver, Traffic Woes

    New York City’s strict limitations on the growth of Uber, Lyft and other app-based ride-hailing services are aimed at increasing drivers’ earning potential and cutting traffic congestion, but the mixed-bag approach to leveling the competition between tech-based companies and traditional taxicabs may blow back on consumers, experts say.

  • June 14, 2019

    AGs' Sprint-T-Mobile Challenge Tests States' Influence

    Ten state attorneys general came out swinging on Tuesday with a challenge to the pending Sprint-T-Mobile merger, preempting pending decisions from both the Federal Communications Commission and the U.S. Department of Justice and raising the possibility that the states might have more influence over the merger’s outcome than usual.

  • June 14, 2019

    New Bill Would Reshape Drug Patent Cases In Uncertain Ways

    A new bill in Congress aimed at making it easier to invalidate drug patents has left attorneys with many questions, with both supporters and critics of the proposal saying it's unclear what judges would do with the bill's creation of a broad presumption that many pharmaceutical patents are invalid.

  • June 14, 2019

    9th Circ. Says Military 'Trans Ban' Injunction Must Be Revisited

    The Pentagon's transgender policy differs enough from an earlier ban that a district court must reexamine its decision to carry over a related injunction, the Ninth Circuit ruled Friday, but the policy is clearly based on transgender status, not a medical condition, and must therefore face heightened scrutiny.

  • June 14, 2019

    CFPB Suit 'Prime Example' Of Bureau Unbound, 2nd Circ. Told

    A litigation funder accused of peddling illegal loans styled as sales of settlement proceeds has urged the Second Circuit to preserve its upset win in a lawsuit brought by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and New York attorney general, arguing that the case is a "prime example" of an unconstitutional federal agency run amok.

  • June 14, 2019

    Atheists Drop Fight Over Clergy Tax Break Upheld In 7th Circ.

    An atheist group that lost its challenges to a tax exemption for clergy members’ housing allowances at the Seventh Circuit will not seek review by the U.S. Supreme Court. 

  • June 14, 2019

    Calif. Escapes Out-Of-Network Billing Law Challenge For Now

    A California federal judge has tossed a suit challenging a state law aimed at protecting patients from unanticipated medical bills for out-of-network health treatment, but gave the advocacy group that filed the case one last shot at amending the suit.

  • June 14, 2019

    Fla. Gov. Signs Bill Banning Sanctuary Policies

    Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a bill Friday that bans so-called sanctuary cities in Florida from enacting policies that limit cooperation with federal immigration authorities.

  • June 14, 2019

    Revolution Pipeline Builder Says Pa. DEP Order Oversteps

    An Energy Transfer LP subsidiary said the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection overstepped when it ordered the pipeline company to restore all the streams and wetlands disturbed by the construction of the Revolution Pipeline in western Pennsylvania, according to an appeal filed Thursday with the state's Environmental Hearing Board.

  • June 14, 2019

    The Biggest Employment Rulings Of 2019: Midyear Report

    Courts and agencies have kept employment attorneys busy so far in 2019, bringing a controversial pay data survey back from the dead, upending precedent on worker classification and clearing up lingering questions about arbitration agreements. Here, Law360 looks at seven rulings from the past six months that employment lawyers ought to be aware of.

  • June 14, 2019

    DOJ Says CVS-Aetna Judge Must Let It Rebut 'Inaccuracies'

    Despite previous denials by a federal judge, the U.S. Department of Justice is again seeking to rebut "inaccuracies" in testimony from challengers at a recent evidentiary hearing examining the settlement that accompanied the DOJ's 2018 decision to approve CVS' purchase of Aetna.

  • June 14, 2019

    Congress Would Reveal Trump's Tax Returns, DOJ Memo Says

    U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin should not comply with a congressional request for President Donald Trump's tax returns because House Democratic lawmakers intend to publicly disclose them, the U.S. Department of Justice suggested in a memorandum opinion released Friday.

  • June 14, 2019

    Senate GOP Leaders Vow To Bring Tax Treaties To Floor

    U.S. Senate Republican leaders said during a meeting with lobbyists that they remain committed to bringing bilateral tax treaties to the chamber’s floor once the treaties are approved by committee, a person who attended the meeting told Law360 Friday.

  • June 14, 2019

    Pharma Cos. Sue HHS Over Putting Drug Prices In Ads

    Merck & Co. Inc., Eli Lilly & Co. and Amgen Inc. on Friday sued the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services over a new rule requiring drugmakers to put the wholesale price of medications in ads, saying the requirement will mislead consumers about how much they'll actually have to pay.

  • June 14, 2019

    Idaho Ranch's Bid To Stop Fed Trail Project Goes Nowhere

    An Idaho federal court on Thursday denied a ranch's bid to block construction of a 4.4-mile trail connecting part of Sawtooth National Forest to a nearby city, finding the trail construction allows for the work to be excluded from certain environmental analyses the ranch and its owner had sought.

  • June 14, 2019

    San Francisco Claims Ballot Vote Needed Only Simple Majority

    A San Francisco corporate tax ballot measure brought in November needed only a simple majority to pass because it was brought by citizen initiative and not local government, San Francisco has told a state court.

  • June 14, 2019

    Top 3 Groups Lobbying The FCC

    During the month of May, lobbyists representing phone carriers and cable companies asked the Federal Communications Commission to choose a more granular mapping scheme for nationwide broadband service, refine a proposal for blocking robocalls and greenlight the combination of Sprint and T-Mobile.

  • June 14, 2019

    Ongoing Waiver Grants Doom Travel Ban Suits, Feds Say

    The U.S. Department of Justice has urged a California federal court to toss litigation accusing it of failing to implement a waiver program for President Donald Trump's travel ban, saying there's evidence the program is in effect and that there hasn't been a "blanket denial" of waiver requests.

  • June 14, 2019

    Sens. Seek To Shine Light On RFS Small Refiner Waivers

    A bipartisan pair of corn-state senators on Friday introduced legislation they claim will boost transparency over Renewable Fuel Standard exemptions handed out to small refiners by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, a practice that biofuel producers are increasingly fighting in court.

  • June 14, 2019

    Wall Street Lobbyists Slam New Jersey's Fiduciary Duty Plan

    Heavyweight trade associations in the financial services industry on Friday assailed New Jersey’s plan to hold broker-dealers to the same fiduciary duty as investment advisers, the same day Massachusetts launched its own fiduciary initiative with a call for comments.

  • June 14, 2019

    Trump Eyes Former Acting ICE Director As 'Border Czar'

    President Donald Trump said Friday that he plans to bring Thomas Homan, the former acting director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, back to his administration as a "border czar."

Expert Analysis

  • FCC's New Call-Blocking Ruling Necessitates More Oversight

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    While the Federal Communications Commission's recent ruling authorizing phone carriers to block unwanted calls is a laudable effort, the lack of any industry call-blocking standards or appreciable oversight is a cause of massive concern for many callers who do not know whether their calls will be connecting, says Eric Troutman of Squire Patton.

  • How New IRS Rules Help Tribes Holding Special Benefit Bonds

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    Recent Internal Revenue Service guidance gives tribal economic development bond issuers more flexibility to alter bond terms without losing tax advantages and a greater opportunity to realize debt-service savings, say attorneys at Greenberg Traurig.

  • Opinion

    Gov't Scrutiny Of Social Media Will Unduly Hinder Immigration

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    The U.S. Department of State's recent decision to collect five years’ worth of social media information for all visa applicants will result in the Trump administration having unfettered discretion to deny visas to anyone for arbitrary and capricious reasons — or for no reason at all, says Tahmina Watson of Watson Immigration Law.

  • State Net

    State Efforts To Rein In Drug Costs Have Mixed Success

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    Reducing the soaring costs of commonly used prescription drugs has become a political priority in the nation’s statehouses. But thus far, states have done better at increasing transparency around drug pricing than at actually lowering prices, says Lou Cannon of State Net Capitol Journal.

  • What To Expect When You're Expecting The End Of Libor

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    The significant adjustments that market participants need to make when Libor is phased out will be undertaken while replacement rates and fallback provisions remain unresolved. Now is the time to take stock of your company’s exposures and map a path forward, say Gregory Harrington and Arturo Caraballo at Arnold & Porter.

  • Texas Adds Fresh Ambiguity To Anti-SLAPP Law

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    Recent amendments to Texas’ anti-SLAPP law have undoubtedly narrowed the scope of the Texas Citizens Participation Act, but they leave some open questions and still provide creative defendants with excellent opportunities for early dismissal and attorney fees, say Hayden Schottlaender and Ryan Mrazik of Perkins Coie.

  • Recreational Marijuana Legislation Is At A Standstill In NY

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    Efforts to legalize recreational marijuana in New York have stalled due to lawmakers' disagreements over key issues, but despite this setback, eventual legalization seems to be inevitable, says Alissa Yohey of Spiritus Law.

  • SEC Proposes Welcome Streamlining Of M&A Disclosures

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    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission recently proposed extensive changes to financial disclosure requirements under Regulation S-X for business acquisitions and dispositions. These changes should further simplify line-item disclosures with respect to capital formation, and reduce the time and expense associated with preparing them, say attorneys at Skadden. 

  • An In-Depth Guide To Latest Opportunity Zone Regs: Part 1

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    In the second tranche of opportunity zone proposed regulations, the IRS provides extremely flexible guidance that may be enough to induce investors to start investing all of the capital sitting on the sidelines into qualified opportunity funds, says Marc Schulz of Snell & Wilmer.

  • Wash. Noncompete Reform: What Employers Need To Know

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    Washington recently enacted a law that will make it more difficult for employers to enforce noncompete agreements. Alicia Feichtmeir and Steven Peltin at Foster Pepper discuss key takeaways and open questions that may require litigation or legislative fixes.

  • Colo.'s New Oil And Gas Law Shifts Rulemaking Landscape

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    A new Colorado law dramatically changes the regulation of oil and gas development in the state. Oil and gas development opponents and proponents should prepare for years of complicated rulemaking and public comment opportunities at the Colorado agencies, say Zachary Fitzgerald and Ivan London of Bryan Cave.

  • Opinion

    Calif. 'Surprise Billing' Law Could Jeopardize Access To Care

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    Currently pending legislation in California, aiming to prevent patients from receiving surprise bills from out-of-network hospitals, could jeopardize the financial viability of hospitals while benefiting insurance companies that are already very profitable, say Daron Tooch of King & Spalding and Chris Fritz and Michael Heil of HealthWorks.

  • 10 Ways Canada's Patent Rules May Be Changing

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    Recently proposed amendments to Canada's Patent Rules would create shortened timelines, new standards for correction of errors, and updated filing requirements — in some instances causing greater convergence between Canadian and U.S. patent practice, say attorneys at Torys.

  • What's Ahead For LGBTQ Rights Legislation

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    The U.S. House of Representatives recently passed the Equality Act to amend various civil rights laws for explicit inclusion of sexual orientation and gender identity as protected characteristics. However, critics have raised several concerns and the bill faces tougher odds in the Senate, say Jason Brown and Robert Quackenboss at Hunton.

  • Rebuttal

    Replacing Ill. Tax Limits With Hope For Legislative Discipline

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    The explanation by a recent Law360 article that a proposed Illinois constitutional amendment is limited only to instating a graduated income tax rate will not convey to voters that, if the amendment is passed, only legislative discipline or a governor’s veto may rein in the power to tax income, says Michael Wynne of Jones Day.