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Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Federal District Court Rebuffs Attempt by Navy Sailors to Satisfy Judgment Against Republic of Sudan by Attaching Assets Held by Global Banks (February 15, 2017)
A recent decision by the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York delivered a victory to banks seeking to prevent judgment creditors from attaching assets “blocked” pursuant ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: US-EU Covered Agreement: The Road Ahead (February 13, 2017)
On Thursday, February 16, the Housing and Insurance subcommittee of the Financial Services Committee of the United States House of Representatives will hold a public hearing entitled, “Assessing the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Dallas Court of Appeals Reverses $2.9 Million Jury Verdict, Finding Insufficient Evidence of Intent (February 7, 2017)
In 2014, the jury awarded $2.9 million to plaintiff landowners in Lisa Parr et.al. v. Aruba Petroleum, Inc., a case involving alleged hydrocarbon exposure due to hydraulic fracturing operations. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Do Not Go Gentle Into that Good Night: Strategies for Defending Against TCCWNA Class Actions (February 6, 2017)
Businesses engaged in advertising and sales practices involving New Jersey consumers have been contending with an increase in the number of class action lawsuits brought under New Jersey’s ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: First LB&I Campaigns Demonstrate a Flexible Approach (February 3, 2017)
On January 31, 2017, the Large Business & International Division of the IRS (LB&I) released the subjects of its first 13 campaigns. Each campaign addresses a specific area that the IRS has identified ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: California Legislative Committee Holds Informational Hearing on Lucent and Administering California’s Technology Transfer Agreement Law (February 3, 2017)
On January 30, 2017, the California Legislature Assembly Committee on Revenue and Taxation held an informational hearing on “Life after Lucent: Administering California’s Technology Transfer ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Delaware’s Overhaul of Its Unclaimed Property Laws (February 2, 2017)
Facing widespread criticism about the enforcement of its unclaimed property laws, Delaware has just completed a wholesale revision of its unclaimed property statute. The statutory overhaul has passed ...
Legal Alerts - ACA Brief: Path to Repeal—Revenue Provisions in the Crosshairs (January 31, 2017)
This ACA Brief is the third in a series of installments that will closely track congressional and administrative actions relating to ACA provisions that impact large employer-sponsored plans. As ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Buckle-Up, Uncertainty Paves a Bumpy Road Ahead: Environmental Regulation Under the Trump Administration (January 31, 2017)
Sutherland attorneys are closely watching the developments concerning changes to environmental regulation under President Trump. This article begins a series of communications with our clients on ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FINRA Is Ready to Lace-up and Focus on “Blocking and Tackling”: FINRA’s 2017 Priorities and Related Enforcement Actions (January 30, 2017)
As the football season was winding down, on January 4, 2017, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) published its 2017 Annual Regulatory and Examination Priorities Letter.1 According to ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Blink and You’ll Miss It: TCPA Implications of Appointment of New FCC Chairman (January 26, 2017)
With all the pomp, circumstance, and general political commotion surrounding the inauguration of President Donald J. Trump on January 20, 2017, it was easy to overlook one of his first acts in ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Transmission Partnership Not Deemed Includible in Consolidated Return and Allowed To Collect Income Tax Allowance in its Rates (January 25, 2017)
On January 6, 2017, Texas utility companies organized as pass-through entities, including partnerships, received welcome news regarding their ability (1) not to elect to be treated as a corporation ...
Legal Alerts - ACA Brief:
Path to Repeal – No Waiting Period for the New Administration
(January 24, 2017)
This ACA Brief is the second in a series of installments that will closely track congressional and administrative actions relating to ACA provisions that impact large employer-sponsored plans. On ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SBA Adopts Final Passive Business Rule Impacting BDCs with SBIC Subsidiaries  (January 24, 2017)
On December 28, 2016, the Small Business Administration (SBA) released the final version of the Passive Business Rule (the New Rule) under § 107.720 of the small business investment company (SBIC) ...
Legal Alerts - The Final Rule: DOL Releases Additional FAQs Related to New Fiduciary Rule (January 19, 2017)
The Department of Labor has released two additional sets of FAQs providing guidance related to its final rule expanding the definition of fiduciary “investment advice” for ERISA purposes. For more ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NYC Administrative Law Judge Determines Long Distance Telecommunications Service Fees Exempt from Utility Tax (January 19, 2017)
On December 29, 2016, a New York City administrative law judge (ALJ) determined that Sprint’s long distance telecommunications service fees were exempt from the City’s Utility Tax. The ALJ concluded ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Revised 2017 Antitrust Guidelines for IP Licensing; Qualcomm Ensnared in New Antitrust Suits for Licensing Activities (January 19, 2017)
On January 12, 2017, the U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission issued updated “Antitrust Guidelines for the Licensing of Intellectual Property” for the first time since 1995. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Plaintiffs Have Come Up Empty on Class Action Slack Fill Litigation But Are Expected to Pick It Up in 2017 (January 18, 2017)
Complaints regarding the amount of product contained in a particular package appear to be the new battlefront on which plaintiffs are waging war on a wide range of consumer product manufacturers. The ...
Legal Alerts - ACA Brief:
Path to Repeal – ACA Nearing Its Lifetime Limit?
(January 17, 2017)
This ACA Brief is the first in a series of installments that will closely track congressional and administrative actions relating to ACA provisions that impact large employer-sponsored plans.  On ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: California Court of Appeal Holds Doing Business ≠ Any Activity Engaged In for Pecuniary Gain (January 14, 2017)
On January 12, 2017, the California Court of Appeal held in a published opinion that a taxpayer passively holding a 0.2 percent interest in a California-based limited liability company (CA LLC) was ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Checkfree – Another Taxpayer Win on New York State Online Service Receipt Sourcing; ALJ Determination Mirrors Expedia (January 13, 2017)
New York taxpayers received additional guidance on the important issue of whether online services constitute “service” receipts, and how those receipts should be sourced, for New York corporate ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Is It Safe? Limits of “Safe Harbor” for Temporary Holds on Senior Investor Transactions Under Proposed FINRA Rule 2165 (January 12, 2017)
I. Introduction In addition to the recent increase in regulatory focus on senior investors,1 earlier this fall, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) filed a rulemaking proposal (the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: 2016 Year in Review (January 10, 2017)
In 2016, the Department of Labor (DOL) continued a curtailed program of interpretive guidance under the Employment Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended (ERISA). As has been the case for ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Hit ‘em Where They Ain’t – TCCWNA Class Actions Target Broad Range of Consumer-Facing Practices (January 5, 2017)
Consumer-facing businesses that advertise and sell to New Jersey consumers, whether through brick and mortar operations or over the Internet, are being targeted in class action lawsuits under New ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Staff Provides Guidance on Disclosure of Sales Load Variations and Filing of New Share Classes in Light of the DOL Fiduciary Rule (January 5, 2017)
I. Introduction On December 16, 2016, the Division of Investment Management (IM) of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) published a Guidance Update (the Guidance) providing guidance on ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Treasury and DOL Update 2016-2017 Regulatory Agendas for Employee Benefits  (January 4, 2017)
The principal regulators of U.S. employee benefits have recently published updates to their guidance plans for the coming months. On October 31, 2016, the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Federal Insurance Office Report Highlights Consumer Protection Issues Raised by Big Data, Cyber Risks (December 30, 2016)
On November 21, 2016, the Federal Insurance Office (FIO) issued its first ever annual Report on the Protection of Consumers and Access to Insurance (Report). The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NY DFS Publishes Revised Proposed Cybersecurity Rules for Financial Services Companies (December 30, 2016)
On December 28, 2016, the New York Department of Financial Services (the DFS) published a revised proposed cybersecurity regulation (the Revised Regulation) for further public comment. First ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Report: 2016 Fall National Meeting (December 29, 2016)
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) held its 2016 Fall National Meeting December 10-13. Despite the glitzy setting at the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach, there were no ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Enhanced Cyber Risk Management Standards Announced in Joint Rulemaking Initiative by Treasury, Federal Reserve, and FDIC (December 28, 2016)
On October 19, 2016, the three major federal banking regulators announced a joint advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR) for enhanced cyber risk management standards (Enhanced Standards) for ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Christmas Comes Early: IRS Provides Additional Year of Relief for Taxpayers Seeking to Implement Tangible Property Rules (December 21, 2016)
On December 20, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service (the Service) issued Notice 2017-6, which provides relief for a taxpayer seeking to change accounting methods in connection with the final tangible ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The Deadline for Compliance With the U.S. Variation Margin Rules Is Approaching! Are You Ready? (December 20, 2016)
The requirement that non-cleared swaps be fully margined, which is one of the last pillars of Title VII of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank), will take effect ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Further Updates Beginning of Construction Guidance for Renewable Energy Tax Credits (December 20, 2016)
On December 15, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2017-04, which updates prior guidance regarding the beginning of construction requirement for renewable energy tax credits under ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FERC Seeks Comments on Double Recovery Resulting from Current Income Tax Allowance and Rate of Return Policies (December 19, 2016)
On December 15, 2016, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued a Notice of Inquiry (NOI) seeking comments on how to address any potential double recovery that may result from the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Adopts Revisions to Actuarial Guideline 49 (December 16, 2016)
On December 13, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) Executive (EX) Committee and Plenary adopted revisions to Actuarial Guideline 49 (AG 49) with an effective date of March 1, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Seller Beware? Rise of Consumer Class Actions Under New Jersey’s TCCWNA Statute  (December 15, 2016)
Nearly 35 years ago, New Jersey enacted the Truth-in-Consumer Contract Warranty and Notice Act (TCCWNA, pronounced “tic-wun-uh”), which provides additional protection for individual consumers who ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Final Regulations Impose Reporting Obligations on Foreign-Owned Domestic Disregarded Entities  (December 15, 2016)
Amid the Panama Papers leak and international concern that foreign persons were concealing assets through U.S. entities that are disregarded for U.S. federal income tax purposes, the Internal Revenue ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Adopts Amendments to Regulation S-X Applicable to BDCs (December 14, 2016)
On October 13, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a release adopting final rules to modernize and enhance the reporting and disclosure of information by registered investment ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Adopts Rules to Modernize Information Reported by Registered Investment Companies (December 8, 2016)
On October 13, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (the SEC) issued a release adopting final rules to modernize and enhance the reporting and disclosure of information by registered ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: A Smaller Bite for Apple? Supreme Court Limits Damages for Design Patent Infringement (December 8, 2016)
In a case reversing a $399 million damages award to Apple, the U.S. Supreme Court has held unanimously that an “article of manufacture” under the design patent damages statute can be anything from an ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Amendment to Criminal Procedure Rule 41 Impacts Data Privacy in U.S. and Abroad (December 6, 2016)
On December 1, 2016, amended Rule 41 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure (FRCP) went into effect, thus expanding federal law enforcement’s power to search and seize electronic data. The new ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Off the Grid: TCPA Class Action Settlement for Energy Utility Company (December 5, 2016)
Utility companies continue to face ongoing litigation under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) that can arise from the use of automated communications with customers for purposes of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Heightened Focus on Renewable Fuel Standard Enforcement Increases Compliance Challenges (December 2, 2016)
As the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program continues to evolve and mature, so too does the manner in which the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA or the Agency) seeks to drive day-to-day ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The Trump Administration’s International Trade and Economic Policy: Available Options and Possible Implications for Industry  (December 2, 2016)
During the recent campaign and the transition, President-elect Donald Trump generally has advocated a more aggressive U.S. international trade and economic policy as part of his plan to generate ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: TCPA Hazards Abound Following Busy Month for the FCC (November 28, 2016)
On November 16, 2016, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued a final rule regarding the treatment of debt servicing and collection calls made by or on behalf of the federal government ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FERC Proposes Adding Electric Storage and Distributed Energy Resources to the Wholesale Electric Market (November 22, 2016)
On November 17, 2016, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC or the Commission) issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NOPR) on electric storage and distributed energy resources, Docket Nos. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Undoing the Clean Power Plan (November 22, 2016)
The election of Donald J. Trump as the next President of the United States appears to have dealt certain defeat for the Obama Climate Action Plan. Central to that effort was the Clean Power Plan, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: TCPA RIP? (November 21, 2016)
The outcome of the 2016 presidential election has left many prognosticators scrambling to figure out the policy implications of the incoming Republican change in administration. Among countless other ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CCR Rule Requires Public Disclosure of Certain Compliance Documents by November 16, 2016 (November 18, 2016)
As part of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) recently implemented coal ash disposal regulations, utilities and other power producers were required to publicly disclose certain ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFPB: Consider the Future Post-Obama (November 17, 2016)
The election of Donald Trump and the new administration means a changed political reality for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). The President-elect is expected to replace Director ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Impaired Access: ADA Website Accessibility Lawsuits On the Rise   (November 14, 2016)
Key Points:  The ADA prohibits discrimination against the disabled in “places of public accommodation” including websites.    Lawsuits alleging violations of the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Adopts Liquidity Risk Management Rules for Mutual Funds and Other Open-End Investment Companies  (November 14, 2016)
On October 13, 2016, the SEC approved new Rule 22e-4 under the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended (the 1940 Act), which will require certain open-end investment companies other than money ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Cybersecurity Certifications Now Required to Access Death Master File (November 10, 2016)
Tough cybersecurity certification requirements for parties seeking access to certain information in the Social Security Death Master File (DMF) take effect on November 28. The final rule imposing the ...
Legal Alerts - The Final Rule: DOL Releases First FAQs Related to New Fiduciary Rule (November 2, 2016)
The Labor Department has released 34 FAQs providing additional guidance related to its final rule expanding the definition of an investment advice fiduciary for ERISA purposes. This first set of FAQs ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FinCEN Issues Advisory to Financial Institutions on Suspicious Activity Reports of Cyber-Events and Cyber-Enabled Crime (October 31, 2016)
On October 25, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), one of the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s lead agencies in the fight against money laundering, issued an Advisory to Financial ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FERC Proposes Changes to Interstate Oil Pipeline Index Ratemaking and Cost and Revenue Reporting (October 28, 2016)
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANOPR). This ANOPR is seeking comments on potential changes to FERC’s policies for evaluating ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Louisiana DOR Proposed Unique—and Troubling—Addback Regulation (October 27, 2016)
The Louisiana Department of Revenue proposed a new regulation expansively interpreting Louisiana’s recently enacted related party expense addback statute. La. Reg. vol. 42, no. 10, pg. 1767 (Oct. 20, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Life Actuarial (A) Task Force Approves Revisions to Actuarial Guideline 49 for Exposure and Comment (October 27, 2016)
On October 20, the NAIC Life Actuarial (A) Task Force (LATF) of the Life Insurance and Annuities (A) Committee met and approved proposed revisions to Actuarial Guideline 49 (AG 49) for exposure and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Incentive Compensation for Employees: Instead of Increasing Banks' Bottom Lines, These Arrangements May Increase the Risk of Fines (October 26, 2016)
The New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) recently issued guidance to regulated banking institutions (Institutions) prohibiting them from implementing incentive-based compensation ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Provides Guidance on Reasonable Mortality Charges for Life Insurance Contracts Based on 2017 CSO Tables (October 26, 2016)
On October 19, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued an advance version of Notice 2016-63, addressing the “reasonable mortality charge” requirement under IRC §§ 7702 and 7702A for life insurance ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FINRA, SEC Renew Focus on Senior Investors in Immediate Aftermath of FINRA Submission of Proposed Rulemaking to SEC (October 25, 2016)
I. Highlights from FINRA/SIFMA Senior Investor Conference On October 22-23, members of the securities industry, academia, regulators, and public policy experts gathered in Washington, D.C., at the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: A Subtle Snare of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act for Businesses Indirectly Supporting International Terrorism (October 24, 2016)
While countless news outlets have reported the recent Congressional override of President Obama’s veto of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA), few have given much thought to the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Federal Court Orders EPA to Evaluate Job Losses from Air Regulations (October 20, 2016)
On October 17, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia ruled in favor of Murray Energy Corporation (Murray) in its section 321 suit against the U.S. Environmental ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFPB Single-Director Structure Unconstitutional: CFPB Director Now Serves at President’s Will (October 14, 2016)
A divided panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled October 11, 2016, that the current structure of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Reverse the Charges: Challengers Push Forward in Appeal of 2015 TCPA Order, Oral Argument Set for October 19 (October 13, 2016)
In July 2015, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued a much-anticipated Declaratory Ruling and Order aimed at clarifying certain aspects of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: When Outside Compliance Monitors May Be a Blessing: Companies Subjected to Corporate Integrity Agreements May Be Undone by Rogue Employees (October 11, 2016)
Companies face ever-increasing pressures to implement mechanisms designed to prevent or effectively address employee malfeasance. (We’ve previously addressed the increased prevalence of companies ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Unclaimed Property Disputes Over State Priority Take Center Stage, Head to U.S. Supreme Court and the Third Circuit (October 5, 2016)
Disputes over the unclaimed property priority rules continue to intensify. The U.S. Supreme Court accepted review of a clash involving more than 20 states regarding the right to take custody of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Going Au Naturel: New York Federal Judge’s Recent Decision Represents the Increasing Class Action Litigation Risks of “Natural” Product Labels (October 4, 2016)
In today’s competitive food and beverage industry, product labeling plays a significant role in marketing. Labels touting a product’s “natural” ingredients or health benefits allow manufacturers to ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: STOLI Scheme Saved By Expiration of Contestability Clause (October 4, 2016)
On September 22, the Florida Supreme Court in Wells Fargo Bank NA v. Pruco Life Insurance Co., No. SC15-382 (Fla. Sept. 22, 2016) denied Pruco Life Insurance Company’s challenge to the validity of an ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Reversing Course—Proposed Regulations Reverse IRS Ruling Position on Treatment of Income from CFCs and PFICs for RIC Qualification Purposes (October 3, 2016)
On September 27, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Department of the Treasury (Treasury) issued proposed regulations (REG-123600-16) (the Proposed Regulations) under section 851 addressing ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Heads I Win, Tails You Lose: TCPA Defendants Finding Success in Striking “Fail-Safe” Class Allegations (September 27, 2016)
The 1964 cold war era movie, “Fail-Safe,” centered on the plight of a U.S. military jet pilot who received an errant instruction to drop a nuclear bomb on Moscow.  Sutherland ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NY DFS Announces Proposal for Cybersecurity Rules for Financial Services Companies (September 22, 2016)
On September 13, 2016, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a proposal by the New York Department of Financial Services (the DFS) of a rule that establishes cybersecurity requirements for ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Adopts Changes to Form ADV and Books and Records Rules (September 19, 2016)
On August 25, the Securities and Exchange Commission (the SEC) adopted amendments to Form ADV Part 1 that will require SEC-registered investment advisers to provide a significant amount of new ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Lumber War May Be Imminent (September 16, 2016)
Negotiations to keep the peace in the complex and long-running international trade dispute between the United States and Canada over U.S. imports of Canadian softwood lumber appear to have stalled. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Cruise Ships Miss the Boat on TCPA Compliance to the Tune of Up to $76 Million (September 12, 2016)
With a trial looming like storm clouds on the horizon, several cruise ship companies and their affiliated travel agencies settled a “robocall” Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) class action up ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Report: 2016 Summer National Meeting (September 7, 2016)
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) held its 2016 Summer National Meeting from August 26 through August 29 in San Diego, California. The meeting began with strong words from ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New Sedona Conference Commentary Recommends Restricting the Reach of Document Requests Directed to U.S. Affiliates of Overseas Companies (August 30, 2016)
Earlier this month, the Sedona Conference issued the final version of its “Commentary on Rule 34 and Rule 45 ‘Possession, Custody, or Control.’” The Commentary recommends adopting the “legal right” ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Don’t Hail the CAB – Why FINRA’s Capital Acquisition Broker Rule Set Will Not Get Private Funds to their Destination (August 29, 2016)
For many years, the private fund industry and the securities bar have called for a limited rule set to govern broker-dealers solely engaged in raising capital for private funds or other issuers of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Treasury Announces 2016-2017 Regulatory Agenda for Employee Benefits  (August 25, 2016)
The principal regulators of U.S. employee benefits have recently published updates to their guidance plans for the coming months. On August 15, 2016, the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Task Force Releases Revised Draft Insurance Data Security Model Law (August 25, 2016)
On August 17, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (the NAIC) Cybersecurity (EX) Task Force (the Task Force) released for comment a revised draft Insurance Data Security Model Law (the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: ISDA Publishes Variation Margin Protocol (August 23, 2016)
On August 16, 2016, the International Swaps and Derivatives Association, Inc. (ISDA) published the ISDA 2016 Variation Margin Protocol (VM Protocol). The VM Protocol is intended as a tool to help ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: In Case You Missed It, A New Act Amends Wisconsin’s Managed Forest Law (August 17, 2016)
On April 14, 2016, Governor Scott Walker signed into law Wisconsin Senate Bill 434, a bill that significantly amends the Managed Forest Law (Sections 77.80 to 77.91, Wis. Stats.), thereby enacting ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Opting-In: Treasury Regulations Provide Rules for Electing into the New Partnership Audit Regime Early (August 15, 2016)
As reported in a prior Sutherland Legal Alert, the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 (the 2015 Budget Act) makes significant changes to the procedural rules governing federal income tax audits and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: White House Issues Guidance Advising Agencies to Assess Climate Change in NEPA Reviews (August 11, 2016)
On August 1, the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) issued its final guidance for federal agencies on considering greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and the effects of climate change in ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Ten Things You Should Know About the 2016 Uniform Unclaimed Property Act (August 11, 2016)
The 2016 Uniform Unclaimed Property Act (2016 Act) was adopted unanimously by the Uniform Law Commission (ULC) in a 49-0 vote at its 2016 summer meeting. The adoption of the revised model law is a ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Power Play: Energy Utilities Score Big as FCC Approves Use of Robocalls and Texts Under the TCPA; Schools Get an Assist (August 8, 2016)
Late last week, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued a long-anticipated declaratory order, ruling that utility companies may make robocalls and send automated texts to their customers ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Patronage Capital Case Successfully Removed to Federal Court (August 3, 2016)
In December 2015, two plaintiffs filed a class action complaint against Pennsylvania’s REA Energy Cooperative, Inc. The complaint, which was filed on behalf of current and former cooperative members, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: EPA Cuts to Landfill Methane Emissions Create New Opportunities for Credit Trading and Gas–to-Energy Projects (August 3, 2016)
On July 14, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued its latest set of methane regulations as part of the Obama Administration’s Climate Action Plan: Strategy to Reduce Methane Emissions. The ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Three Million Reasons to Understand the New Federal Rules: Deleting Emails Results in Multi-Million-Dollar Rule 37(e) Sanction (August 2, 2016)
On July 12, a federal district court imposed a $3 million punitive sanction pursuant to the recently amended Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37(e). GN Netcom, Inc. v. Plantronics, Inc., No. CV ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Pressure Builds for EPA and CFTC to Investigate Manipulation in the RIN Markets (August 2, 2016)
In what could foreshadow even further scrutiny of trading activities in the Renewable Identification Number (RIN) market, the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) has asked the Environmental Protection ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Life Insurance and Annuities (A) Committee Adopts Revisions to Actuarial Guideline 49 (August 1, 2016)
On July 27, 2016, the Life Insurance and Annuities (A) Committee adopted revisions to Actuarial Guideline 49 (AG 49) to address situations where indexed universal life (IUL) insurance policies make ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New York’s New BSA/AML Rule Imposes Monitoring, Filtering and Certification Requirements (July 28, 2016)
On June 30, 2016, the New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) adopted a new anti-terrorism and anti-money laundering (AML) regulation (Final Rule) that builds on federal anti-money laundering ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Voice Over Internet Protocol and the TCPA:  The Hidden Pothole on the Information Super Highway (July 27, 2016)
Since the enactment of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) in 1991, technological advances in the way people communicate have often outpaced the ability of the courts and the Federal ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. Customs Aims to Increase Enforcement of the Jones Act (July 20, 2016)
In what could foretell a significant increase in the enforcement of the coastwise trade provisions of the Jones Act, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (Customs) announced on July 18 the creation of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Court of Appeals Hears National Federation of the Blind’s Challenge to DOT Rule Regarding Blind-Accessible Kiosks at Domestic Airports (July 19, 2016)
On June 29, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit heard the National Federation of the Blind’s (NFB) challenge to a Department of Transportation (DOT) Final Rule ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Issues Guidance on Business Continuity Planning for Registered Investment Companies (July 15, 2016)
On June 27, the staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (Commission or SEC) Division of Investment Management (IM) issued a Guidance Update on business continuity planning for registered ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Sutherland Wins Dismissal of TCPA Fax Case: Applying Spokeo, Court Finds Plaintiff Incurred No Actual Harm (July 14, 2016)
On July 5, in Sartin v. EKF Diagnostics, Inc., No. 16-1816, 2016 WL 3598297 (E.D. La. July 5, 2016), the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana granted Defendant’s Rule 12(b)(1) ...
Legal Alerts - The Final Rule: Technical Corrections to Best Interest Contract and Principal Transaction Exemptions (July 12, 2016)
The Department of Labor has published technical corrections to two of the exemptions issued in conjunction with its final rule expanding ERISA’s definition of investment advice fiduciary. The ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Argentina Relaxes Restrictions on Ownership of Rural Properties by Foreigners (July 11, 2016)
On June 29, 2016, the Argentine executive branch enacted decree 820/2016 (the New Decree), easing certain restrictions imposed under existing law on the acquisition and leasing of rural lands by ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Deferred No Longer: Treasury and IRS Issue Long-Awaited 409A Guidance (July 11, 2016)
On June 21, the Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued proposed Internal Revenue Code (Code) section 409A regulations, modifying existing proposed and final section 409A ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: D.C. Circuit Questions FERC’s Policy Statement on Income Tax Allowances (July 6, 2016)
On July 1, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued its opinion in United Airlines, Inc., et al. v. FERC. This oil pipeline rate case appeal involves SFPP, L.P., a ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New York Issues Two Advisory Opinions Regarding Surplus Lines Insurance (July 1, 2016)
The New York State Department of Taxation and Finance (Department) issued two advisory opinions determining that unauthorized non-life insurance corporations (here, surplus lines insurance companies) ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Administration Signals Intent to Challenge Judicial Decision That Struck Down Fracking Rule as Unlawful (June 30, 2016)
On June 24, the Obama Administration filed its notice of appeal to challenge last week’s federal court decision to strike down the newest regulation over hydraulic fracturing on federal and Indian ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: TSCA Reform Presents Solutions and Questions for Industry (June 28, 2016)
On June 22, 2016, President Obama signed into law the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, the first amendments to the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) since its passage ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Cooperate or Terminate: Second Circuit Protects Companies that Terminate Employees for Failure to Cooperate with Investigations (June 28, 2016)
On June 16, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit upheld the right of a company to terminate for cause executives who refuse to cooperate with an internal investigation and remain “silent” ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Brexit Impact on European Patents and Trademarks (June 24, 2016)
On June 23, in the popularly-termed “Brexit” referendum, the United Kingdom voted to exit the European Union, a decision which will have wide-ranging effects, including potential effects on ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Solidifying Claim Construction in Inter Partes Review – Cuozzo Allows Patent Office to Govern the Inter Partes Review Process (June 22, 2016)
On June 20,  the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Cuozzo Speed Technologies, LLC v. Lee, 2016 WL 3369425 (June 20, 2016) upheld the Patent Office’s long-held policy of construing a patent claim ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Don’t be Phased by Annuity Treatment: Taxation of Distributions During Phased Retirement (June 21, 2016)
On June 10, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2016-39 in response to inquiries regarding the appropriate tax treatment under section 72 of the Internal Revenue Code (the Code) for ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFTC Proposes to Expand Mandatory Clearing to Include Additional Classes of Interest Rate Swaps (June 20, 2016)
On June 9, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) released a notice of proposed rulemaking regarding an expansion of CFTC Regulation 50.4(a). If adopted, additional classes of interest rate ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Righting Copyright Wrongs Remains Elusive – Kirtsaeng Leaves Fee Awards to District Court Discretion (June 17, 2016)
On June 16, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons Inc., No. 15-375, resolved a circuit court split by reaffirming the test district courts should use to determine ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Stay Out of the Weeds: Egregious, Not Garden-Variety, Patent Infringement Is Subject to Enhanced Damages (June 15, 2016)
On June 13, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously rejected the Federal Circuit’s rigid two-part test for awarding enhanced damages in patent cases. In two cases decided together, Halo Elecs., Inc. v. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Tables Turned: 21 States Tell Delaware to “Fork Over Our Unclaimed Property!" (June 15, 2016)
The latest salvo in an ongoing battle against Delaware was fired on June 9, when 21 states, led by Texas and Arkansas, filed a motion in the U.S. Supreme Court to force Delaware to return to the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFPB Fires Another Warning Shot for Processors to Be Aware of Their Merchants’ Activities (June 14, 2016)
In a recent line of enforcement actions, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has signaled that it will hold payment processors liable if the CFPB believes the processors know or should ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The Federal Reserve Board’s ANPR with Respect to Capital Requirements for Supervised Institutions Significantly Engaged in Insurance Activities (June 7, 2016)
On June 3, 2016, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (FRB), approved  an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR)1 regarding two potential regulatory capital frameworks for ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Task Force Continues Work on Insurance Data Security Model Law (June 6, 2016)
On May 24 and 25, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (the NAIC) Cybersecurity (EX) Task Force (the Task Force) hosted a meeting in which state insurance commissioners and interested ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The Federal Reserve Board Outlines Approach For Capital Rules For Federally Supervised Insurance Groups (May 27, 2016)
At the NAIC’s tenth International Insurance Forum, Daniel K. Tarullo, a member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (FRB), outlined the FRB’s plans for the capital and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: DOL and Treasury Update 2015-2016 Regulatory Agendas for Employee Benefits (May 26, 2016)
The principal regulators of U.S. employee benefits have recently published updates to their guidance plans for the coming months. On May 18, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) updated its ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Report: 2016 Spring National Meeting (May 24, 2016)
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) held its 2016 Spring National Meeting from April 1 through April 6 in New Orleans, Louisiana. As host, Louisiana provided beautiful weather ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: What Is Your Starting Salary? New FLSA Regulations Raise The Bar For U.S. Employers (May 23, 2016)
Employers with salaried employees earning under $47,476 annually should evaluate the impact on their organizations of major changes to employee compensation following new federal wage requirements ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: EPA to Reduce Methane Emissions from the Oil and Natural Gas Industry (May 23, 2016)
On May 12, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released final regulations (the Rules) aimed at reducing methane emissions from certain new and modified oil and gas facilities by 40% to 45% ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FinCEN Customer Due Diligence Final Rules (May 19, 2016)
On May 5, 2016, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) issued final rules (the Final Rules) on customer due diligence requirements for banks, securities ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Implementing the Whistleblower Immunity Notice Provision under the Recently-Enacted Federal Defend Trade Secrets Act (May 18, 2016)
The Defend Trade Secrets Act, signed into law on May 11, 2016, includes a whistleblower immunity notice provision. An employer that wants to preserve maximum recoveries for misappropriation against ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Unclaimed Property Primer for Health and Property & Casualty Insurance (May 17, 2016)
Background Unclaimed Property: It’s not just about life insurance. The same contingency-fee unclaimed property auditors that targeted unclaimed life insurance proceeds are now turning their focus to ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Supreme Court Explores Injury Requirement for Federal Statutory Standing (May 16, 2016)
In a 6-2 opinion issued today, the Supreme Court vacated a Ninth Circuit holding that a plaintiff who alleges that his own federal statutory rights have been violated has alleged enough to establish ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: UPDATE: Federal Defend Trade Secrets Act Signed Into Law; Employers May Need to Notify Employees (May 12, 2016)
After overwhelming passage in both the House and Senate, President Obama signed the Defend Trade Secrets Act into law on May 11, 2016. The Act provides a truly uniform, nationwide set of standards ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Notice Offers Relief to Issuers of Variable Insurance Products in Response to Pending Money Market Fund Reforms (May 11, 2016)
On May 5, 2016, the IRS issued Notice 2016-32, 2016-21 I.R.B. 1, which affords relief with respect to the application of the diversification requirements of IRC § 817(h) to variable life insurance ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Here’s the Deal: Georgia Governor Signs Several Significant Tax Bills (May 10, 2016)
Following the conclusion of Georgia’s 2016 legislative session, Governor Nathan Deal signed into law several tax bills touching on a wide range of tax matters, including sales and use taxes, property ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: EPA Denies Five Petitions for Reconsideration of New Source Performance Standards (May 6, 2016)
On April 29, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) denied petitions by the Utility Air Regulatory Group (UARG), American Electric Power (AEP), Ameren Corp., the State of Wisconsin, and the Energy ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Neither a Partner nor Employee Be: Treasury and the IRS Issue Regulations Clarifying the Employment Tax Treatment of Partners in Partnerships (May 5, 2016)
The Treasury Department (Treasury) and the Internal Revenue Service (Service) have issued temporary regulations (Regulations) clarifying the federal employment tax treatment of the owners of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Updates Beginning of Construction Guidance for Renewable Energy Tax Credits Extended by PATH Act (May 5, 2016)
On May 5, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2016-31, which updates prior guidance regarding the beginning of construction requirement for IRC sections 45 and 48 renewable energy ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFPB Proposes Ban on Class Action Waivers in Consumer Arbitration Agreements (May 5, 2016)
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau today proposed a much-anticipated rule that would ban enforcement of class action waivers included in arbitration agreements found in many consumer ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Georgia Supreme Court Expands as its Jurisdiction Contracts (May 4, 2016)
Somewhat obscured by the social-issue hubbub during the recently ended session of the Georgia General Assembly was the enactment of an historic expansion of the Georgia Supreme Court and a ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Trial Court Dismisses Georgia Patronage Capital Lawsuits (May 4, 2016)
On May 2, a trial court in DeKalb County, Georgia, dismissed two class action patronage capital lawsuits filed against Oglethorpe Power Corporation, Georgia Transmission Corporation (GTC) and certain ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Basic-Supplemental Life Insurance Plan Pricing Structure Upheld in ERISA Class Action (May 4, 2016)
An employee benefit plan that includes an alleged subsidization component for its basic and supplemental options is neither prohibited by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: North Carolina Rejects Third-Party Sales of Solar-Generated Electricity (April 28, 2016)
The North Carolina Utilities Commission recently ruled that third-party sales of solar-generated electricity violate state law. The Commission rejected a test case brought by an advocacy group ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: UPDATE: Federal Defend Trade Secrets Act Clears the House, Passage into Law Expected (April 28, 2016)
As expected, overwhelming support for the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 led to its passage in the U.S. House of Representatives yesterday by a 410-2 vote. During the floor debate, one Congressman ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Only the Lonely: “Lonely” Life Insurance Companies Confront New Issues Under Proposed Debt-Equity Regulations (April 28, 2016)
The rules of IRC § 1504 and Treas. Reg. § 1.1502-47 provide the general parameters for determining whether a domestic life insurance company (within the meaning of IRC § 816(a)) may join in filing a ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: State Tax Fallout From Federal Proposed Related-Party Debt Regulations (April 26, 2016)
Recently proposed Treasury regulations under IRC § 385 (the Proposed Regulations) would create sweeping changes to the federal income tax treatment of related-party debt. The Proposed Regulations ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Steelworkers Reverse Course and Withdraw Request for Import Relief on Aluminum (April 25, 2016)
In an unusual change of course, the United Steelworkers Union (USW) has now withdrawn the Section 201 petition it filed just last week to request temporary relief against imports of primary unwrought ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Effect of Energy Policy Bills on Natural Gas Exports (April 22, 2016)
Legislative Update. On April 20, the U.S. Senate passed broad legislation that covers many different aspects of the energy and environmental sectors, including changes to streamline the approval ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Union Seeks Increased Duties on Imported Aluminum (April 22, 2016)
On April 18, the United Steelworkers Union (USW) petitioned the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC or Commission) for relief pursuant to Section 201 of the Trade Act of 1974, a safeguard ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Sweeping Changes Proposed to Tax Treatment of Related-Party Debt May Impact Private Funds (April 14, 2016)
Recently proposed Treasury regulations under IRC § 385 (the Proposed Regulations) would potentially treat related-party debt, in whole or in part, as equity for U.S. tax purposes. The Proposed ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Sutherland Submits Comment Letters on Two SEC Rulemaking Projects Pertinent to Business Development Companies (April 12, 2016)
In response to requests for comment from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Sutherland Asbill & Brennan LLP recently submitted comment letters on two SEC rulemaking projects pertinent ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Unusual Antitrust Agencies’ Guidance on Defense Mergers (April 12, 2016)
The Department of Justice (Justice) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) today issued an unusual joint statement that highlighted their continued commitment to preserve defense industry competition ...
Legal Alerts - The Final Rule: DOL’s Expanded Definition of Investment Advice Fiduciary Under ERISA and Revised Complex of Exemptions (April 12, 2016)
Just less than a year since its proposal, and just more than six months after receiving thousands of pages of commentary, petitions and hearing testimony, the Department of Labor finalized its ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Federal Defend Trade Secrets Act Clears the Senate: Is the Uniform Act on Life Support? (April 11, 2016)
The U.S. Senate has unanimously approved a bill increasing the protections available to companies for their commercial secrets. The Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 (DTSA or the Act) provides for the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Taking Stock in Related-Party Debt: Regulations Propose Sweeping Changes (April 7, 2016)
On April 4, the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released proposed regulations under IRC § 385 (the Proposed Regulations)1 that are intended to combat perceived concerns associated ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: UK Payment Systems Regulator Issues Guidance Setting Credit and Debit Interchange Caps (March 31, 2016)
On March 24th, the United Kingdom’s Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) issued final guidance establishing interchange fee caps on credit and debit card transactions where the point of sale is located in ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Interagency Guidance: CIP Requirements Apply to Certain Prepaid Cards (March 29, 2016)
On March 21, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the National Credit Union Administration, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Georgia Keeps It Interesting: Legislature Passes Novel Law on Interest Rates and Refund Claims (March 29, 2016)
On March 24, the Georgia General Assembly passed House Bill 960 (H.B. 960), which would adjust the statutory interest rate applicable to tax assessments and refunds and addresses other issues related ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Changes to 2016 ALTA Survey Standards – What You Need to Know (March 24, 2016)
The American Land Title Association (ALTA) and the National Society of Professional Surveyors (NSPS) recently adopted revised Minimum Standard Detail Requirements for ALTA/NSPS Land Title Surveys. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Limited Liability Communication: Seventh Circuit Limits TCPA Liability for Communications Made by Third-Parties  (March 24, 2016)
On March 21, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed a lower court’s ruling that a small business had no liability under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) for fax ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Quill Part Deux: North Dakota Lost the Nexus Battle. Will South Dakota Win the War? (March 24, 2016)
On March 22nd, South Dakota Governor Daugaard signed into law Senate Bill 106 (S.B. 106), the passage of which may be the ultimate vehicle to challenge Quill1 at the U.S. Supreme Court. With ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Tyson Foods v. Bouaphakeo: “Representative” Evidence May Be Used in (Some) Class Actions (March 23, 2016)
On March 22, 2016, the United States Supreme Court affirmed the certification of a class of Tyson Foods employees under Rule 23(b)(3) and a collective action under the Fair Labor Standards Act ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: PHMSA Announces Proposed Natural Gas Pipeline Safety Rules (March 22, 2016)
The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) has issued a proposal to implement regulations that would add new safety measures designed to raise existing safety standards ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Georgia Supreme Court Answers “Yes”—A Guarantor May Waive Foreclosure Confirmation (March 16, 2016)
In a decision issued on February 22, 2016, the Supreme Court of Georgia ruled that a guarantor can waive by contract the requirement for a lender to obtain confirmation of a foreclosure sale before ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Is the SEC Poised to Broaden Standard Co-Investment Relief? (March 16, 2016)
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Division of Investment Management recently issued a notice with regard to the application for co-investment relief filed by Apollo Investment ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The End of an Era—IRS Issues Additional Guidance on End of Determination Letter Application Program (March 15, 2016)
In 2015, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced changes to its existing determination letter program, namely that the staggered remedial amendment cycle for individually designed retirement ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Store Credits Not Subject to Unclaimed Property, Says California Court (March 15, 2016)
In a decision with potentially broad implications, a California Superior Court has held that merchandise credits not redeemable for cash are not subject to California's Unclaimed Property Law (UPL). ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Dial “C” for Confusion: Courts Split on TCPA Definition of Autodialer (March 15, 2016)
Notwithstanding so-called “guidance” from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in its July 2015 Order, the definition of “automatic telephone dialing system” (ATDS or autodialer) continues to ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New York State Division of Tax Appeals Addresses Unauthorized Insurance Company Taxation (March 11, 2016)
A New York State Division of Tax Appeals administrative law judge (ALJ) issued three determinations addressing the tax implications for unauthorized insurance companies, both life and non-life.1 ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Sabine Bankruptcy Court Allows Rejection of Gathering Agreements (March 9, 2016)
In a March 8, 2016 ruling from the bench, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York issued a significant decision regarding the ability of a debtor in bankruptcy to reject gas ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Revised LB&I Examination Process Requires Taxpayer’s Written Acknowledgement of Facts for Unagreed Issues (March 7, 2016)
Recently announced changes to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Large Business and International (LB&I) Division’s examination process include a requirement that the audit team issue an Information ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: EU-U.S. Privacy Shield – Full Text Released (March 7, 2016)
On February 29, 2016, the European Commission released the text of the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield. The text reveals the details of a new framework that will place stronger obligations on U.S. companies ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC IUL Illustration (A) Subgroup Approves Proposed Revisions to Actuarial Guideline 49 for Exposure and Comment (March 2, 2016)
On February 24,  the IUL Illustration (A) Subgroup of the Life Actuarial (A) Task Force approved proposed revisions to Actuarial Guideline 49 (A.G. 49) for exposure and comment. Among other things, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFTC Intermediaries to Adopt and Implement Cybersecurity Programs by March 1, 2016 (February 29, 2016)
Commencing March 1, 2016, all commodity pool operators, commodity trading advisors, futures commission merchants, retail foreign exchange dealers, introducing brokers, major swap participants and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Tenth Circuit Upholds Colorado’s Use Tax Reporting, Limits Quill to Sales and Use Tax Collection  (February 23, 2016)
Yesterday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit (Tenth Circuit) issued its opinion in Direct Marketing Association v. Brohl, reversing the district court’s order granting summary ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The Grandpappy of All Extensions: Congress Permanently Extends the Internet Tax Freedom Act (February 12, 2016)
On February 11, the United States Senate approved a permanent extension of the Internet Tax Freedom Act (ITFA) contained in the Conference Report accompanying H.R. 644, the “Trade Facilitation and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Supreme Court Orders Temporary Halt to Clean Power Plan (February 12, 2016)
On February 9, the U.S. Supreme Court delivered a major setback to the Obama Administration’s efforts to curb emissions of carbon dioxide from existing power plants in the U.S. In a 5-4 split ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFTC and EU Regulators Agree on a Common Approach for the Regulation of CCPs (February 12, 2016)
Earlier this week, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and European regulators announced that they have reached agreement on a “common approach” regarding requirements for central ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: EU-US Privacy Shield: European Union and U.S. Reach Agreement in Principle for New Data Transfer Framework – But Uncertainty Remains (February 11, 2016)
On February 2, 2016, the European Commission (EC) and the U.S. Department of Commerce (Commerce) announced that they had reached agreement on a new data transfer safe harbor arrangement for the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FY2017 Budget Proposal Sets Its Sights on Insurance Companies (February 11, 2016)
On February 9, the Obama Administration released its fiscal year 2017 budget proposal (FY2017 Budget). Many of the tax proposals included in the FY2017 Budget closely follow those included in the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: 2015 in Review: ERISA Civil Enforcement Recoveries Remain Low, Criminal Investigations Continue to Rise (February 9, 2016)
The United States Department of Labor (DOL) recently published its Fiscal Year 2015 “Fact Sheet” documenting civil and criminal enforcement activities under the Employee Retirement Income Security ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: PCI DSS – What It Is and Why It Is Relevant to Your Business (February 4, 2016)
Increasingly, companies are raising questions about PCI-DSS and its applicability to their businesses. This Legal Alert summarizes the basic aspects of PCI-DSS and its application. What is PCI ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFTC Amends Regulation 1.35 (February 3, 2016)
U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Regulation 1.35 requires futures commission merchants (FCMs), retail foreign exchange dealers (RFEDs), introducing brokers (IBs) and members of a swap ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Supreme Court: For ERISA Plans, Time May Be Money (February 2, 2016)
A new U.S. Supreme Court decision is a reminder that Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) plans must act promptly if they want to assert a lien to secure a participant’s obligation to ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Proposes Rule Related to Use of Derivatives and Financial Commitment Transactions by Regulated Funds (January 20, 2016)
In December 2015, the Securities and Exchange Commission (the SEC) proposed a new Rule 18f-4 under the Investment Company Act of 1940 (the 1940 Act) that would, if adopted, affect the ability of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Price Optimization: 2015 Year in Review and a Look Ahead (January 20, 2016)
2015 saw approximately one-third of U.S. states1 join the first state, Maryland, in issuing guidance to property and casualty insurers with respect to price optimization; action by the National ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Money for Nothing: Offer of Complete Relief to Named Plaintiff Does Not Moot Class Action, Supreme Court Holds in 6-3 Decision (January 20, 2016)
An unaccepted Rule 68 offer of judgment that would fully satisfy a named plaintiff’s individual claim does not moot individual or class claims opined the U.S. Supreme Court, resolving a split in the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. Lifts Nuclear-Related Sanctions on Iran on Implementation Day (January 20, 2016)
I. Introduction On January 16, 2016, “Implementation Day” occurred under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). This historic sanctions relief followed verification from the International ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Michigan’s New Year Resolution: Refund Opportunities Associated with Electronically Accessed Software and Certain Online Services (January 14, 2016)
The Michigan Department of Treasury (Department) issued a Notice announcing that it will no longer impose sales or use tax on certain prewritten computer software accessed electronically and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: District Court to EEOC: Leave Wellness Enough Alone (January 14, 2016)
A Wisconsin federal district court dismissed (with prejudice) a complaint by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) that a company’s wellness program violated the Americans with ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Omnibus Highway Bill Contains a Grab Bag of December Surprises for Public Companies and Companies Aspiring to Go Public (January 11, 2016)
In December 2015, President Barack Obama signed into law an omnibus highway bill called “Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act” or the “FAST Act.” This new law (i) amends certain sections of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: DOL and Treasury Update 2015-2016 Regulatory Agendas for Employee Benefits (January 7, 2016)
The principal regulators of U.S. employee benefits have recently published updates to their guidance plans for the coming months. On November 19, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) updated ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: President Obama Approves the Consolidated Appropriations Act with Key Employee Benefits Provisions (January 5, 2016)
The Consolidated Appropriations Act to fund the government through 2016 was passed and enacted on December 18. The law contains a number of benefits-related provisions, including a two-year delay of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Moves to Update Transfer Agent Rules; New Rules Likely to Impact Unclaimed Property and Cybersecurity (January 5, 2016)
On December 22, 2015, the Securities and Exchange Commission took the first step in overhauling SEC regulation of transfer agents, the little-discussed but critical intermediaries involved in the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Hailing a CAB – Does FINRA’s Proposed Capital Acquisition Broker Rule Set Get Private Fund Sponsors to Their Desired Destination? (December 31, 2015)
For many years, the private fund industry and the securities bar have called for a limited rule set to govern broker-dealers solely engaged in raising capital for private funds or other issuers of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: California Supreme Court Holds Multistate Tax Compact is Not Binding (December 31, 2015)
On December 31, 2015, the California Supreme Court closed the book on California’s Multistate Tax Compact election saga, unanimously holding that the Compact is not a binding contract among its ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Trademark Wars: The First Amendment Strikes Back – Lanham Act’s Disparaging Trademark Registration Ban Struck Down as Unconstitutional (December 29, 2015)
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, en banc, has ruled that Section 2(a) of the Lanham Act precluding “disparaging” trademark registrations is unconstitutional, rejecting the argument ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: COP21 Yields Landmark Climate Change Accord: What’s Next? (December 23, 2015)
More than a week has passed since 195 countries announced a climate change deal to hold global average temperatures to 2°C above pre-industrial levels, with an aspirational ceiling of 1.5°C. While ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: D.C. Circuit Holds that Coast Guard May Impose Nonfinancial Conditions Before Allowing Ships Accused of Violating MARPOL to Leave Port (December 22, 2015)
On December 15, 2015, a panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit held that the U.S. Coast Guard could impose nonfinancial conditions, in addition to a bond, before permitting ships ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Congress Amends Section 831(b): Is This the Beginning of the End of Section 831(b) Abuses? (December 22, 2015)
On December 18, 2015, Congress passed and President Obama signed into law the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015 (Act), which made several significant amendments to section 831(b) of the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Adopts Roadmap for Cybersecurity Consumer Protections (December 21, 2015)
On December 17, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) adopted a Roadmap for Cybersecurity Consumer Protections. Except for a new name and new introduction, the Cybersecurity ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Ho! Ho! Ho! Delaware Sets its Sights–Again–on Uncashed Rebate Checks (December 17, 2015)
There’s never a dull moment in Delaware when it comes to unclaimed property. The latest salvo comes by way of a lawsuit filed by the Delaware Department of Finance against Blackhawk Engagement ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: 2015 Tax Extender Energy Industry Impacts: Extends Renewable Energy PTC and ITC, Biodiesel and Other Fuel Credits; Repeals Crude Oil Export Ban (December 17, 2015)
Late on December 15, Congress unveiled a tax extenders bill and omnibus bill that are expected to be merged into a single bill to be signed into law. The release of this legislation follows extensive ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Supreme Court Reinforces Federal Policy Favoring Arbitration and Rejects Application of Preempted State Law (December 17, 2015)
Consistent with decisions over the past several years upholding the validity of mandatory arbitration provisions and class action waivers, on December 14, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court held that state ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: A Present from Congress: Significant Changes for SBICs (December 17, 2015)
Late on December 15, Congress unveiled a tax extenders bill and omnibus bill that are expected to be merged into a single bill to be signed into law. The House and Senate are both expected to pass ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Jackson EMC Prevails in Grandfather Rights Dispute Before Full Commission (December 15, 2015)
As previously reported, on April 3, 2015, a hearing officer of the Georgia Public Service Commission issued an initial decision in favor of Jackson EMC in its dispute with Georgia Power Company over ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Bueller? Bueller? MTC Still Calling on States to Join ALAS Program (December 11, 2015)
The Multistate Tax Commission (MTC) advanced several items of interest during its annual fall meetings held in Charleston, South Carolina, this week, including the creation of a new committee to ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Preliminary Report on the Swap Dealer De Minimis Exception (December 10, 2015)
On November 18, the staff of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) issued a much anticipated report on the de minimis exception from the “swap dealer” definition, the Swap Dealer De Minimis ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Smokin’ Hot New Jersey Throw-Out Decision (December 4, 2015)
In another taxpayer victory, the New Jersey Superior Court, Appellate Division held that an intangible holding company was not required to throw out any of its so-called “nowhere receipts” from an ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Challenges Mount to FCC's July 2015 TCPA Order (December 1, 2015)
Accusing the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) of abdicating its responsibility to clarify areas of uncertainty under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and muddying the already murky ...
Legal Alerts - Sutherland Submits Comment Letter on SEC’s Request for Comment on Rules Relating to BDC Portfolio Company Financial Disclosures (December 1, 2015)
On November 30, 2015, Sutherland Asbill & Brennan LLP filed a comment letter in response to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Request for Comment Release Regarding Rules 3-09, 4-08(g) and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Report: 2015 Fall National Meeting (November 25, 2015)
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) held its 2015 Fall National Meeting from November 17 through November 22 at National Harbor, Maryland. Notwithstanding the gigantic size of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Give Thanks and File Your Pennsylvania Net Loss Carryover Deduction Refund Claims! (November 24, 2015)
In a decision sure to give Pennsylvania legislators and the Department of Revenue indigestion before their big Thanksgiving meals, the Commonwealth Court held that Pennsylvania’s net loss carryover ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: UK Banking Regulator Finalizes Rules Requiring Adherence to Contractual Stay (November 24, 2015)
On November 13, the Bank of England’s Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) published a final policy statement titled “Contractual Stays in Financial Contracts Governed by Third-Country Law” (the PRA ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Labor Department Provides Guidance on ERISA Coverage of State-Run Retirement Programs for Private Sector Employers (November 23, 2015)
In recent years, a number of states have explored the idea of establishing state-run retirement plans for private sector employees who do not have access to employer-sponsored retirement plans. The ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: November 19, 2015 FERC Meeting – Energy Storage Panel (November 23, 2015)
On November 19, 2015, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC or the Commission) hosted an Energy Storage Panel discussion as part of its regular monthly Commission Meeting (Docket No. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Treasury and U.S. Trade Representative Notify Congress of Intent to Initiate Negotiations on Covered Agreement With EU Regarding U.S. Equivalence (November 22, 2015)
On Friday, November 20, 2015, the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) notified the chairs of the U.S. House Financial Services Committee, House Ways and Means ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Court Rules on Antitrust Claims Arising from Changes to Electricity Pricing Plans for Home Solar Users (November 17, 2015)
A federal court allowed certain antitrust and state law claims brought by an installer of distributed solar energy systems against Arizona’s Salt River Project Agricultural Improvement and Power ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Allocating Section 871(m) Withholding Tax Risk: ISDA Publishes New Protocol Addressing Withholding Under Section 871(m) (November 16, 2015)
On November 2, the International Swaps and Derivatives Association, Inc. (ISDA) published the ISDA 2015 Section 871(m) Protocol (the Protocol) that provides an efficient method to amend existing ISDA ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The New York Department of Financial Services Outlines Framework for New Cybersecurity Rules (November 13, 2015)
On November 9, Anthony Albanese, Acting Superintendent of the New York Department of Financial Services (the NYDFS), sent a letter to the 18 members of the Financial and Banking Information ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Patent Infringement Safe Harbor and Importation Redefined: Ruling Incentivizes Generic Pharmaceutical Offshore Product Testing (November 12, 2015)
A recent ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has provided an apparent loophole for manufacturers to avoid infringement liability for conducting patented manufacturing quality ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC IUL Illustration Subgroup Proposes Revisions to Actuarial Guideline 49 (November 9, 2015)
On November 3, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) IUL Illustration (A) Subgroup circulated for comment proposed revisions (Proposed Revisions) to recently adopted Actuarial ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Simplified Partnership Audit Procedures Radically Alter the Federal Income Tax Treatment of Partnerships (November 5, 2015)
On November 2, 2015, President Obama signed the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 (the “2015 Budget Act”), which makes significant amendments to the procedural rules governing federal income tax audits ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Louisiana: Get Your Amnesty Before It's Gone! (October 30, 2015)
Louisiana will offer a tax amnesty from November 16, 2015 to December 15, 2015. Taxpayers that agree to pay delinquent taxes will receive a waiver of 33% of penalties and 17% of interest. The 2015 ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Task Force Adopts a Cybersecurity “Bill of Rights” Despite Industry Objections (October 29, 2015)
On October 14, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners Cybersecurity Task Force (NAIC Task Force) adopted a version of the Cybersecurity Bill of Rights for insurance consumers. The Bill ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Party Line: Third Circuit Issues Expansive Interpretation of Right to Sue Under the TCPA (October 23, 2015)
Interpreting broadly the scope of standing to bring suit under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit has held that even an unintended recipient ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The Latest on Price Optimization (October 21, 2015)
Nearly one-third of the U.S. states have now issued directives on the use of price optimization to determine insurance rates and, to date, most states have taken a skeptical view of the practice. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FERC Proposes Expansive "Connected Entity" Reporting Requirement (October 16, 2015)
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has proposed requiring the operators of centralized wholesale power markets to collect and provide to FERC a broad range of market participant data, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Debate Over Unclaimed Property Continues Before the Uniform Law Commission Drafting Committee (October 15, 2015)
Proposed revisions to the Uniform Unclaimed Property Act were under debate this past week in Washington, DC as the Uniform Law Commission (ULC or Commission) Committee to Revise the Uniform Unclaimed ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Wynne’s First Casualty: First Marblehead Corp. v. Commissioner (October 13, 2015)
Today, the U.S. Supreme Court vacated the decision of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) in First Marblehead Corp. v. Commissioner of Revenue1 (First Marblehead) and remanded the case ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Bad Day for California as TTA Sales Tax Exemption for Software Is Broadly Reaffirmed by Appellate Court – Will Taxpayer Refund Claims Now Move? (October 12, 2015)
In a significant rebuff of the California State Board of Equalization (BOE), the California Second District Court of Appeal held that a manufacturer’s sale of software on tangible media was exempt ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Invalidation of Georgia Garnishment Statute – Now What? (October 12, 2015)
On September 8, 2015, a federal district court invalidated a portion of the Georgia post-judgment garnishment statute in Strickland v. Alexander, No. 1:12-CV-02735-MHS (N.D. Ga.). Senior Judge Marvin ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Delaware Supreme Court Addresses Novel Controlling-Stockholder Claim and Clarifies Effect of a Fully Informed, Uncoerced Stockholder Vote (October 9, 2015)
The Delaware Supreme Court recently issued an opinion, captioned Corwin v. KKR Financial Holdings LLC,1 that sheds further light on when a stockholder owning less than 50% of the voting power of a ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The Lights Are On But Is Anyone Home? (Part 1) (October 9, 2015)
On October 8, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued rules and regulations following its July 10, 2015 order purporting to clarify the scope of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Eighth Circuit Upholds FERC Rule on Co-op Avoided Cost Rates (October 8, 2015)
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit has upheld the long-standing determination by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) that the avoided cost rate paid by a distribution ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New Defense Department Guidance on Mergers and Acquisitions (October 8, 2015)
On September 30, the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD or the Department) issued new guidance that reaffirmed its earlier view that it would not look favorably on mergers of “top tier defense firms.”  ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Battle Lines Drawn in Arizona Solar Rate Design Cases (October 7, 2015)
Electric utilities and residential solar companies continue to wrangle over charges applicable to rooftop solar customers. Recent filings in rate design cases involving Arizona Public Service Company ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New NYSE Notification Rules – How to Ensure Your Company Complies with the Updated Timely Alert Policy (October 7, 2015)
On September 28, 2015, the revised New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) requirements relating to the circulation of material non-public information by listed companies, and updated procedures relating ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Announces Second Round of Charges Against Underwriters Under MCDC Initiative (October 6, 2015)
On September 30, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced enforcement actions against 22 municipal bond underwriters, the second round of enforcement actions brought by the SEC under ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: PHMSA Announces Proposed Pipeline Safety Regulations (October 6, 2015)
On October 1, 2015, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) announced proposed regulations to revise and update its pipeline safety ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Congress Extends Internet Tax Freedom Act as part of Short-Term Spending Bill (September 30, 2015)
On September 30, the U.S. House of Representative voted in favor of H.R. 719, which includes provisions extending the Internet Tax Freedom Act (ITFA) through December 11, 2015. The bill, passed ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Proposed Regulations Dramatically Change U.S. Federal Tax Treatment of Outbound Transfers of Intangible Property (September 29, 2015)
On September 16, 2015, the Treasury Department (Treasury) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) published proposed regulations under section 367 and proposed and temporary regulations under ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Back in Court: DMA Argues Before the Tenth Circuit to Follow Quill (September 29, 2015)
Direct Marketing Association (DMA) continued its fight against Colorado’s use tax reporting regime during oral arguments today before the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit.1 After ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Brazilian House of Representatives Will Expedite Vote to Ease Restrictions on Acquisitions and Leasing of Rural Properties by Foreigners (September 25, 2015)
On September 16, the House of Representatives of the Brazilian Congress approved a request to consider legislation on an expedited basis which would ease certain restrictions imposed under ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Charges Investment Adviser with Failure to Adopt Required Cybersecurity Policies Prior to Breach (September 25, 2015)
On September 22, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced that it had entered into a settlement order with R.T. Jones Capital Equities Management, Inc. (R.T. Jones), a St. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Tax Court Holds that Residual Value Insurance Qualifies as Insurance for Tax Purposes (September 24, 2015)
On September 21, the United States Tax Court held in favor of the taxpayer in R.V.I. Guaranty Co., Ltd. and Subsidiaries v. Commissioner, 145 T.C. No. 9 (2015). The court concluded that the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Extends FATCA Transition Rules (September 23, 2015)
On September 18, 2015, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2015-66, in which Treasury and the IRS announced that they intend to extend certain transition rules and modify certain ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Adopts New Cybersecurity Exam Tool (September 23, 2015)
On September 21, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (the NAIC) IT Examination Working Group (the Working Group) adopted amendments to the IT section of the Financial Condition ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FINRA’s Projected 2015 Fines: Not Keeping Pace With 2014’s Total, But Still a Blockbuster Year  (September 21, 2015)
Despite a slowdown in the fines reported in 2015, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has continued to flex its enforcement muscle so far this year. During the first half of 2015, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Solar Power Fights Heat Up  (September 15, 2015)
The clash between residential solar companies and utilities continues to heat up in courts and public utility commissions. As solar technology continues to improve, more households are installing ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Cybersecurity Forum Focuses on Escalating Threats and Best Remediation Practices (September 14, 2015)
On September 10, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) co-sponsored a cybersecurity forum at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, DC. Featuring an ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: DOL and Treasury Update 2015-2016 Regulatory Agendas for Employee Benefits (September 8, 2015)
The principal regulators of U.S. employee benefits have recently published updates to their guidance plans for the coming months. On May 21, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Court of Appeals Hears Michigan’s Compact Election Cases (September 3, 2015)
The long saga of Michigan's Multistate Tax Compact election continued on Wednesday with oral argument before the Michigan Court of Appeals. A packed courtroom witnessed a 1.5 hour proceeding before ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Report: 2015 Summer National Meeting (September 2, 2015)
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) held its 2015 Summer National Meeting from August 13 through August 18 in Chicago, Illinois. The meeting was notable for the number of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Coming Soon - Mandatory Clearing of Interest Rate Swaps Under EMIR (September 1, 2015)
On August 6, 2015, the European Commission (EC) adopted new rules that will require the clearing of certain over-the-counter (OTC) interest rate swaps pursuant to the European Market ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Amnesty, Hon! Maryland Tax Amnesty Begins September 1, 2015 (August 31, 2015)
From September 1, 2015, through October 30, 2015, the Comptroller of Maryland will administer a Tax Amnesty Program (Program) for tax periods beginning before December 31, 2014. Eligible taxpayers ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Walton EMC Prevails in “reconstruction in substantial kind” Georgia Territorial Act Case (August 25, 2015)
A hearing officer of the Georgia Public Service Commission recently decided in favor of Walton EMC in a Territorial Act dispute with Georgia Power over the right to provide electric service to a CVS ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The SemCrude Bankruptcy: Commodity Traders Prevail Against Related Fraud and U.C.C. Claims (August 24, 2015)
Introduction In 2008, SemCrude, L.P. and related entities (collectively, SemCrude or the Debtors) filed voluntary petitions for relief under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. In connection with ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: EPA Methane Regulations for the Oil and Gas Industry (August 19, 2015)
On August 18, 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced several proposals, including the first federal regulations, which, if adopted, would require the oil and gas industry to reduce ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: A Band-Aid Remedy?: New TCPA Rules for the Healthcare Industry (August 12, 2015)
Companies in the healthcare industry, along with virtually every consumer-facing business, are adjusting to the impacts of the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) July 10, 2015 Order resolving ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Issues Guidance Clarifying Anti-Retaliation Provision of Dodd-Frank Act (August 11, 2015)
On August 4, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC or “the Commission”) issued guidance that further clarifies the Dodd-Frank Act’s anti-retaliation provision.1 According to the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The Windy City’s Taxes on Cloud Computing, Streaming Services (August 10, 2015)
On August 7, the Chicago Department of Finance delayed the effective date of the imposition of the Personal Property Lease Transaction Tax (the Lease Tax) on cloud computing services from September ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFTC and NFA Afford Relief from Certain CTA Periodic Reporting Obligations (August 6, 2015)
On July 21, the staff of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight (DSIO) published an exemptive letter that provides relief from periodic ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Final Clean Power Plan Released; Significant Changes Will Not Ward Off Legal Challenges (August 4, 2015)
Final Clean Power Plan regulating carbon emissions from existing utilities released on August 3, 2015. EPA calculated new emissions rates for each state – some adjusted up or down ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Update: FERC Five-Year Review of Oil Pipeline Rate Indexation (August 4, 2015)
On June 30, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued a Notice of Inquiry (NOI) that proposed an adjustment to the annual indexation formula for oil pipeline rates. The NOI sought ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Multistate Tax Commission Amends the Equitable Apportionment Provision of the Compact and Apportionment Rules for Financial Institutions (July 30, 2015)
Yesterday, the Multistate Tax Commission (MTC) held its annual meeting in Spokane, Washington. The meeting is the annual event where full MTC member states approve model laws in their final version. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: EPA Ordered to Revise CSAPR Emissions Budgets (July 30, 2015)
On July 28, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit ordered the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to revise emissions budgets for several states under the agency’s Cross-State Air ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Not So Fast: ALAS Fails to Attain Sufficient State Support (July 30, 2015)
At the Multistate Tax Commission (MTC) Executive Committee Meeting in Spokane, Washington, the Arm’s-Length Adjustment Service (ALAS) Advisory Group provided an update on its transfer pricing effort. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Multistate Tax Commission Committees Discuss Apportionment Details and an Information-Sharing Program (July 29, 2015)
Yesterday, the Multistate Tax Commission (MTC) held meetings of its Litigation, Uniformity, and Strategic Planning Steering Committees. The meetings were generally dominated by discussions of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Multistate Tax Commission Commences Annual Conference, Expands Audit Program (July 28, 2015)
Yesterday, the Multistate Tax Commission (MTC) kicked off its annual conference and committee meetings with meetings of the Audit and Nexus Committees. The MTC’s Audit program continues to grow by ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Michigan Supreme Court Approves Partial Use Tax Exemption for Transmission and Distribution Equipment (July 28, 2015)
The Michigan Supreme Court held that an electric utility’s transmission and distribution equipment used for both taxable and exempt purposes qualifies for a partial sales and use tax exemption. See ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: MTC Nearing Completion of Model Sourcing Regulation for Services and Intangibles (July 27, 2015)
The Multistate Tax Commission’s (MTC) Annual Conference and Committee Meetings are being held on July 27-30, 2015, in Spokane, Washington. On Tuesday, July 28, 2015, at approximately 1:00 pm PDT ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Establishes 80% Threshold for Energy Companies to Apply When Determining Whether “Substantially All” of a Major Component Has Been Replaced (July 23, 2015)
On July 6, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Large Business and International Division issued a Directive1 to IRS agents regarding how to determine when a major component pertaining to steam or ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Update on NAIC and State Regulatory Activity on “Price Optimization” (July 23, 2015)
Regulatory activity on price optimization appears to be coming to a head. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) Casualty Actuarial and Statistical (C) Task Force is continuing to ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Volcker Agencies Provide Seeding Period Guidance for BDCs, RICs and FPFs in New FAQ (July 21, 2015)
On July 16, 2015, the agencies responsible for implementing the Volcker rule (Agencies) issued FAQ 16, which provides guidance on the circumstances under which a seed investment would not cause (i) a ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New Law Doubles the Penalties for Failure to File Correct Tax Information Returns and Provide Payee Statements (July 20, 2015)
On June 29, President Obama signed into law the Trade Preferences Extension Act of 2015. Quietly embedded in Section 806 of this new law is a provision that doubled the cap on penalties, from $1.5 ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: ISDA Publishes EMIR Classification Letter (July 20, 2015)
On July 13, the International Swaps and Derivatives Association, Inc. (ISDA) published the ISDA EMIR Classification Letter (the Classification Letter), a form of letter that may be used by market ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: It's Curtains for Some Lump-Sum Window Programs (July 15, 2015)
On July 9, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released Notice 2015-49 to announce it intends to prohibit retirees who are receiving annuity payments from a defined benefit pension plan from electing ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Targets Use of Basket Option Contracts and Basket Contracts by Hedge Funds and Other Taxpayers as Tax Avoidance Transactions (July 15, 2015)
On July 8, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued two notices (Notice 2015-47, 2015-30 IRB 1, and Notice 2015-48, 2015-30 IRB 1) targeting the use of Basket Option Contracts and Basket Contracts ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The U.S. and Other Nations Reach Historic Nuclear Deal with Iran (July 15, 2015)
On July 14, the P5+1 (China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, the United States and Germany) reached a historic nuclear agreement with Iran, following almost two years of negotiations. Under the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Call (Un)Answered (the Second Ring): FCC Issues Sweeping Package of Declaratory Rulings on TCPA Petitions (July 13, 2015)
In some of its most comprehensive guidance published in years, resolving more than 20 petitions requesting clarification of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), the Federal Communications ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Proposes Controversial Rule Requiring Companies to Adopt No-Fault Clawback Policies (July 10, 2015)
Recently, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC or the Commission) proposed a controversial new rule under the Dodd-Frank Act that instructs companies to establish policies that require ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: “White Collar” Exemptions Defined and Delimited (July 9, 2015)
On June 30, the Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued its much-anticipated Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on “Defining and Delimiting the Exemptions for Executive, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: First Investor Control Case Since 1984 Is Released (July 7, 2015)
On June 30, the Tax Court released Webber v. Commissioner, 144 T.C. No.17, in which the court upheld and applied the principles set forth in the Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) “investor control” ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: European Regulators Publish Second Consultation Paper on Margin for OTC Derivatives (July 6, 2015)
On June 10, the European Supervisory Authorities (ESA) published a second consultation paper on draft Regulatory Technical Standards (RTS) to implement the European Market Infrastructure Regulation ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FERC Confirms Distribution Cooperatives Must Purchase QF Output (June 29, 2015)
A distribution cooperative must purchase the electrical output made available to it by a qualifying facility (QF), notwithstanding restrictions in the cooperative’s all-requirements contract with its ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Supreme Court Finds EPA Unreasonably Failed to Consider Costs When Regulating Power Plant Emissions (June 29, 2015)
Today the U.S. Supreme Court ruled  that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) improperly refused to consider costs when it decided to regulate mercury and other hazardous emissions. The EPA ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Trenchant Analysis or Jiggery-Pokery? U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Affordable Care Act (June 26, 2015)
In a 6-3 decision on June 25, 2015 in King v. Burwell, the U.S. Supreme Court held that tax credits are available under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Affordable Care Act or PPACA) ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Supreme Court Allows Disparate-Impact Claims Under the Fair Housing Act (June 25, 2015)
The Supreme Court held today that the Fair Housing Act (FHA) not only prohibits intentional discrimination, but also establishes liability for practices that result in a disparate impact on minority ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Master Limited Partnerships: Proposed Tax Regulations Scale Back Activities Giving Rise to Qualifying Income (June 24, 2015)
The Treasury Department (Treasury) and the Internal Revenue Service (Service) have issued proposed tax regulations (Proposed Regulations) that provide guidance on, and significantly scale back, the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Deadline Approaching for Submission of 2014 BEA Surveys of U.S. Direct Investment Abroad and Foreign Direct Investment in the U.S. (June 24, 2015)
2014 Benchmark Survey of U.S. Direct Investment Abroad The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) of the U.S. Commerce Department is conducting its quinquennial (every five years) survey of investment in ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Announces First Charges Against Underwriters under MCDC Initiative (June 23, 2015)
On June 18, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced enforcement actions against 36 municipal bond underwriters, the first enforcement actions against underwriters brought by the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The Finite Life of a Patent Upheld: No Royalties After Expiration (June 23, 2015)
The U.S. Supreme Court, in a 6 to 3 ruling citing stare decisis, upheld the half-century rule against royalty payments accruing after expiration of a patent. The Court’s decision in Kimble v. Marvel ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Call Answered (The First Ring): FCC Issues Sweeping Package of Declaratory Rulings on TCPA Petitions (June 18, 2015)
In its most significant action on the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) since its revised TCPA rules took effect in late 2013, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has issued a package ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Close to Adopting Guideline for IUL Illustrations (June 10, 2015)
On June 4, after long deliberation and extensive consultation with issuers of indexed universal life (IUL) insurance policies and other interested parties by the Life Actuarial (A) Task Force (LATF), ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Proposes Disclosure Rules on Director, Officer and Employee Hedging (June 9, 2015)
In April 2015, the comment period expired for rules proposed by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the SEC) to implement Section 955 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Unclaimed Benefits Model Drafting (A) Subgroup Identifies Key Model Law Issues (June 9, 2015)
On May 29, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (the NAIC) Unclaimed Benefits Model Drafting (A) Subgroup (the Subgroup) met to discuss regulator and industry materials submitted to ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: D.C. Circuit Rejects Bid for Preliminary Review of Clean Power Plan (June 9, 2015)
Today the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit rejected a challenge to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) proposed Clean Power Plan, which seeks to regulate ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Georgia Public Service Commission Renders Initial Decision in Favor of Jackson EMC in Territorial Dispute with Georgia Power (June 3, 2015)
The Georgia Public Service Commission recently rendered an initial decision in a dispute between Jackson EMC and Georgia Power under the so-called “grandfather clause” of the Georgia Territorial Act. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Public Service Commission Affirms Hearing Officer’s Decision in Carroll EMC Territorial Act Dispute (June 2, 2015)
The Georgia Public Service Commission (the PSC or Commission) recently adopted a hearing officer’s initial decision in a “reconstruction in substantial kind” case under Georgia’s Territorial Act. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Triple Threat: U.S. House Subcommittee Considers Three State Tax Bills (June 2, 2015)
On June 2, 2015, the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Regulatory Reform, Commercial and Antitrust Law conducted a hearing on three state tax bills: the Mobile ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Performance Anxiety: SEC Proposes Pay Versus Performance Rule  (June 1, 2015)
On April 29, 2015, by a 3-2 vote, the Securities and Exchange Commission (the SEC) voted to propose a rule to implement Section 14(i) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the Exchange Act), as ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Validus Affirmed for All the Right Reasons – The FET Does Not Apply to Wholly Foreign Reinsurance Transactions (May 29, 2015)
On May 26, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia affirmed the result of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in Validus Reinsurance, Ltd. v. U.S., 19 F. Supp. 3d 225 ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Please Hold, Someone Will Be With You Shortly: FCC Action on Pending TCPA Petitions Expected Soon (May 29, 2015)
Following on the heels of FCC Commissioner Michael O’Rielly’s stinging comments imploring the agency to address a backlog of petitions requesting clarification of its Telephone Consumer Protection ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: DOL Has Many Questions About its Fiduciary Reproposal (May 28, 2015)
As has been widely reported, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) on April 14 issued its proposal to expand the definition of investment advice fiduciary under the Employee Retirement Income Security ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: EPA Finalizes Rule Defining Waters of the United States (May 27, 2015)
Today the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a prepublication version of its rule defining the waters of the United States, also referred to as the Clean Water Rule (the Rule). The ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC's Proposed SBS Rules on Cross-Border Security-Based Swap Activities (May 22, 2015)
When the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) adopted final rules in June 2014 on the cross-border activities of security-based swap (SBS) dealers and major SBS participants, the SEC indicated ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Call Answered: Supreme Court to Decide if Offer of Judgment Moots TCPA Class Action and Scope of Gov’t Contractor Liability (May 21, 2015)
On May 18, the U.S. Supreme Court granted certiorari in Campbell-Ewald Co. v. Gomez,1 a Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) class action. The case raises two related questions that are the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Supreme Court Instructs Ninth Circuit to Consider Common Law of Trusts in Applying ERISA's Statute of Limitations (May 20, 2015)
The Supreme Court has once again emphasized the importance of ERISA’s origins in the common law of trusts, this time in interpreting its statute of limitations. On May 18, the Court reversed the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Taxpayer Wynne’s: Supreme Court Rules Maryland Personal Income Tax Violates Constitution (May 18, 2015)
This morning the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Maryland’s personal income tax regime is unconstitutional. By failing to provide a full credit to its residents for taxes paid to other states, Maryland ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Price Optimization Update: NAIC Revises White Paper, Florida and Indiana Question Certain Practices (May 18, 2015)
“Price optimization,” a practice that uses predictive modeling and data analytics in pricing insurance products, continues to draw the attention of state regulators, consumer advocates, and class ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Wynne Court Holds That Internal Consistency Lives, Applies to Taxation of Resident (May 18, 2015)
A divided U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Maryland’s personal income tax regime is unconstitutional. Comptroller of the Treasury v. Wynne, 575 U.S. __ (2015). The Court affirmed the Maryland Court of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Pending SEC Rules Could Bring Additional Changes to Exchange Act Registration Requirements (May 15, 2015)
In March 2015, the comment period expired for rules proposed by the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “Commission”) to implement Title V and Title VI of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Focus On International Standards (May 13, 2015)
The influence of international standards on the direction of insurance regulation in the United States has dominated public discussion about insurance regulation during recent years. Nowhere was that ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New Temporary and Proposed Regulations Offer Welcome Clarification on Application of the Embedded Loan Rule (May 13, 2015)
On May 8, 2015, the Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service published temporary and proposed regulations under IRC §§ 446 and 956 (T.D. 9719; REG-102656-15), clarifying when nonperiodic ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: International Design Patent Filing Option Available May 13, 2015, to U.S. Filers (May 11, 2015)
Beginning May 13, 2015, U.S. applicants will be able to file international design patent applications through the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. In addition, U.S. design patents resulting from ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Alas, the MTC Executive Committee Approves Its Transfer Pricing Program Design (May 7, 2015)
After nearly a year of planning, the Multistate Tax Commission Executive Committee today approved the Arm’s-Length Adjustment Services Advisory Group (the Group) Final Program Design. The following ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: D.C. Circuit Vacates 100-Hour Exemption for Emergency Generators (May 5, 2015)
On May 1, 2015, the D.C. Circuit  in Delaware v. EPA vacated a portion of EPA’s National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) and New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) for ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Whistleblower Is Second Compliance Officer to Receive Award (May 4, 2015)
On April 22, 2015, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued its second whistleblower award to an employee with internal audit or compliance responsibilities. The recipient of the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New Standards for Shipping Crude Oil, Petroleum Products and Renewable Fuel by Rail (May 4, 2015)
On Friday, May 1, the U.S. Department of Transportation (“DOT”) issued a final rule establishing new requirements for transporting flammable liquids in a continuous block of 20 or more tank cars or ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Updates Guidance on Cybersecurity (April 30, 2015)
Emphasizing the critical importance of cybersecurity to registered investment companies (RICs), including insurance separate accounts and business development companies, and to investment advisers, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Louisiana Court Rejects Imposition Of Franchise Tax Based On Ownership Of Partnership Interest (April 28, 2015)
The Louisiana Court of Appeal reversed and remanded Bridges v. Polychim USA, Inc., No. 581,759 (La. Jud. Dist. Ct. Jan. 2, 2014) (unpublished), a case in which the trial court held that an ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Unclaimed Property Audit Primer for Broker-Dealers (April 28, 2015)
Background The same State Treasurers and contingency-fee unclaimed property auditors that focused on the life insurance industry are now turning their attention to broker-dealers. Sutherland has ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New York City Legislation Enacts General Corporation Tax Reform (April 28, 2015)
On April 13, 2015, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed New York’s 2015-2016 budget legislation, which, among other changes, conforms the New York City general corporation tax (GCT) to the most significant ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Eureka: California Controller Discovers New Source of Revenue from Insurers (April 27, 2015)
The California Controller’s (Controller) latest squeeze on the life insurance industry involves: sending life insurers notices of assessment of interest on unclaimed property reported and voluntarily ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Treasury and the IRS Offer a New Take on the PFIC Active Insurance Exception (April 24, 2015)
On April 23, Treasury and the IRS issued proposed regulations interpreting the active insurance exception under the passive foreign investment company (PFIC) rules. Although the release of the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Wellness Programs Alive and Well? (April 23, 2015)
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has issued proposed regulations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regarding employer-provided wellness programs that were published in ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FERC Issues Order No. 809 On Gas/Electric Coordination (April 22, 2015)
On April 16, 2015, FERC issued a Final Rule in Coordination of the Scheduling Processes of Interstate Natural Gas Pipelines and Public Utilities, Order No. 809, Docket No. RM14-2-000, 151 FERC ¶ ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FERC Issues Policy Statement On Natural Gas Pipeline Modernization Cost Recovery (April 22, 2015)
On April 16, 2015, FERC issued a Policy Statement in Cost Recovery Mechanisms for Modernization of Natural Gas Facilities, Docket No. PL15-1-000, 151 FERC ¶ 61,047 (2015). Effective October 1, 2015, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Update – Spring 2015 (April 22, 2015)
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) held its first national meeting for 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona, from March 26 through March 31. Noteworthy new initiatives include ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: DOL Reproposes Expanded ERISA Fiduciary Definition and Revised Complex of Exemptions (April 21, 2015)
On April 14, 2015, after 43 months in development, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released its reproposal to expand the “investment advice fiduciary” definition under the Employee Retirement ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Warns Plan Sponsors About Hardship Withdrawal Documentation (April 16, 2015)
In a recent Employee Plans Newsletter, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) warned plan sponsors that they must obtain and keep documentation related to hardship withdrawals, particularly the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Releases Favorable Private Letter Ruling on “Taxable Annuity.” (April 15, 2015)
On April 10, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released PLR 201515001 (Oct. 10, 2014), favorably addressing a “taxable annuity”—essentially, a deferred annuity contract supported, in part, by ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Issues Updates to Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System (April 14, 2015)
In recent weeks, the IRS has issued two updates to its Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System (EPCRS). EPCRS allows plan sponsors to correct many documentary and operational errors that ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: This is Not a Joke: Federal Court to Consider Quill and Comity (April 14, 2015)
In the ongoing saga over Colorado’s use tax reporting laws in Direct Marketing Association v. Brohl (DMA), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit ordered a full briefing on the Comity ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NASAA M&A Broker Model Rule (April 10, 2015)
On January 15, 2015, the Broker-Dealer Section of the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) requested comments on a proposed uniform state model rule (the Model Rule) regarding ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Will the FCC Answer Calls to Clarify the TCPA? (April 9, 2015)
We can now count an FCC Commissioner among those imploring the agency to act on the growing number of pending petitions asking for much needed clarification of regulations promulgated under the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The SEC Releases Regulations on Reporting and Dissemination of Security-Based Swaps Data (April 9, 2015)
On February 11, 2015, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) published final regulations that will require Swap Data Repositories (SDRs)1 to register with the SEC (Regulation SDR) and prescribe ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Recent Developments on Variable Annuity Captive Reinsurance and Hedging Risk Evaluation; and Impacts on VA Issuers (April 7, 2015)
In the midst of the broader discussion within the insurance regulatory community regarding the financial risks potentially posed by captive reinsurers, the National Association of Insurance ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: If They Build It, Will They Come? ALAS Advisory Group Prepares Final Program Design to Present to MTC Executive Committee Amidst Light Early Interest From States (April 7, 2015)
The Multistate Tax Commission’s (“MTC”) Arm’s-Length Adjustment Services Advisory Group (“the Group”) met via teleconference to continue working on the Final Program Design. States participating on ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Update on Cybersecurity Issues – New York Section 308 Letter & NAIC Spring National Meeting (April 2, 2015)
Cybersecurity continues to be an emerging regulatory issue in the insurance industry, as evidenced by recent actions taken by the New York Department of Financial Services (the “DFS”) and the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Georgia Supreme Court Rejects Challenge to Property Tax Incentives (April 1, 2015)
On March 27, 2015, the Georgia Supreme Court rejected a challenge to the legal validity of property tax incentives in Georgia, largely on procedural grounds. SJN Properties, LLC v. Fulton County Bd. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New York Budget Incorporates More Significant Tax Changes (April 1, 2015)
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo introduced his 2015-2016 budget and accompanying legislation on January 19, 2015 (the proposed legislation). After much negotiation, the Legislature just enacted the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Gives Insider Outside Bounty for Whistleblowing (March 27, 2015)
On March 2, 2015, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission awarded a whistleblower at least $475,000 for providing original, high-quality information that led to a successful SEC enforcement ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: BLM Issues First Federal Regulations for Hydraulic Fracturing (March 27, 2015)
On Thursday, March 26, 2015, the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) published in the Federal Register the Final Rule on hydraulic fracturing on federal and Indian ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Omnicare Opinion Expands Liability for Expressions of Opinion Under Section 11 (March 25, 2015)
The Supreme Court, in Omnicare, Inc. v. Laborers District Council Construction Industry Pension Fund, 575 U.S. ___ (March 24, 2015), expanded the scope of liability for expressions of opinions under ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: 2014 in Review: ERISA Civil and Criminal Enforcement Activity by DOL Is Trending Upward (March 24, 2015)
The Fact Sheet recently published by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) documenting Fiscal Year 2014 civil and criminal enforcement activity under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Proposed Changes to Proposition 65: What It Means for Texas Businesses (March 23, 2015)
If you’ve been to California recently, you likely returned with a heightened awareness of the dangers present in the products you consume and use on a daily basis. That is because in California, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Executive Order Mandates Clean Energy Consumption at Federal Buildings (March 20, 2015)
Yesterday, President Obama released an Executive Order entitled “Planning for Federal Sustainability in the Next Decade.” In short, the order mandates that heads of agency take action to promote ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: D.C. District Court Denies Utility’s Intervention Because of Timing (March 19, 2015)
On March 17, 2015, the D.C. District Court denied the Public Service Company of New Hampshire’s (PSNH’s) motion to intervene in a Sierra Club-initiated proceeding urging the U.S. EPA to object to a ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New Source Review Update: Courts Limit Aggregation for Major Source Determination and Challenges to NSR Pre-Project Emissions Analysis (March 19, 2015)
Pennsylvania Court Limits NSR Permit Aggregation In February, the Middle District of Pennsylvania struck down an environmental group’s challenge that Ultra Resources should have aggregated eight ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: DOL Provides More Timing Flexibility for Annual Participant Investment Disclosures (March 19, 2015)
As promised, on March 19, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) published guidance that would provide more flexibility in the timing of the annual plan and investment disclosures for ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Are You Continuing Construction? IRS Issues Fourth Renewable Energy Tax Credit Beginning of Construction Notice (March 18, 2015)
On March 11, 2015, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2015-25, which provides further guidance to assist renewable energy facility developers and investors in evaluating whether such ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Amps Up Cybersecurity Oversight (March 18, 2015)
The NAIC has begun its efforts to amp up state insurance department oversight of cybersecurity practices with the release of two documents for public comment. The first, entitled Principles for ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Issues Preliminary Section 529A ABLE Plan Guidance (March 18, 2015)
On March 10, 2015, the Internal Revenue Service released Notice 2015-18, which provides advance notification of a provision that is expected to be included in final regulations to be issued under ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Power Surge: TCPA Litigation and the Energy Industry (March 17, 2015)
Few industries have been spared from the recent wave of class actions filed under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”). The energy sector is no exception. TCPA cases against electricity and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Amicalola EMC Prevails in Dispute over Chattahoochee Technical College (March 16, 2015)
After a decision in favor of Amicalola EMC under the large-load (900kW) exception of the Georgia Territorial Act, Georgia Power Company has agreed to relinquish the disputed building to Amicalola EMC ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Challenge to Delaware Unclaimed Property Estimation Methods Allowed to Proceed (March 12, 2015)
A lawsuit challenging the unclaimed property estimation methodology used by the State of Delaware and its auditor Kelmar Associates will proceed, according to a ruling issued by a Delaware federal ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Sawnee EMC Prevails in Bid Protest to Serve New Gwinnett Technical College Building (March 10, 2015)
Sawnee EMC has prevailed in a bid protest to serve a new education building at Gwinnett Technical College. After Sawnee EMC protested Georgia Power’s offer of ½ cent per kWh—and the state’s ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Approves New Rule Limiting Who Qualifies As a Public Arbitrator in FINRA Proceedings (March 5, 2015)
On February 26, 2015, the Securities Exchange Commission (“SEC”) approved proposed Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) rules that will substantially reduce the number of public ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Sends 4-R Act Case Back to Lower Court for the Second Time (March 5, 2015)
A day after issuing its decision in Direct Marketing Ass’n v. Brohl, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Alabama Department of Revenue v. CSX Transportation, Inc.1 The Court held that a rail carrier can ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: “Use It or Lose It”: Service Mark Registration Canceled When Application Supported Only by Advertising (March 5, 2015)
On March 2, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit issued its first-ever ruling addressing use requirements for registering service marks. The court held that offering a service, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Anthem’s Data Breach Affects Many Non-Anthem Plans: What Employers Need to Know Now (March 4, 2015)
On February 4, 2015, Anthem Inc. (“Anthem”) disclosed that it had been a victim of a sophisticated cyber-attack that compromised the personal health plan data of up to 80 million customers of not ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: MTC Inches Closer to Developing Its Transfer Pricing Program (March 4, 2015)
The Arm’s Length Adjustment Service Advisory Group (ALAS) of the Multistate Tax Commission (MTC) continued its transfer pricing effort with a teleconference today to discuss its training and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Unclaimed Property Issues Under Debate as Uniform Law Commission Rewrites the Uniform Act (March 3, 2015)
Proposed revisions to the Uniform Unclaimed Property Act were under debate this past week in Washington, DC as the Uniform Law Commission (ULC or Commission) Committee to Revise the Uniform Unclaimed ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: All Nine Agree: U.S. Supreme Court Holds that the Tax Injunction Act Does Not Bar DMA’s Action in Federal Court (March 3, 2015)
Today the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously held in Direct Marketing Ass’n v. Brohl that the Tax Injunction Act (TIA) does not bar Direct Marketing Association’s federal lawsuit against Colorado.1 The ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Offers Rules of the Road for Cadillac Plan Tax (March 2, 2015)
On February 23, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2015-16 (Notice), which describes several possible approaches for implementing the excise tax on high-cost employer-sponsored health ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Life Insurance Unclaimed Property Recommendations of the Uniform Law Commission Working Group (February 27, 2015)
The Uniform Law Commission (ULC) Life Insurance Working Group (Working Group) has released its recommendations  to revise the life insurance provisions of the Uniform Unclaimed Property Act of 1995 ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Regulators Respond to Recent Crude by Rail Incidents: Ten Considerations Before Shipping Crude by Rail to Mitigate Exposure (February 27, 2015)
Last week’s derailments in West Virginia and Canada bring more scrutiny to the already heavily scrutinized shipment of crude by rail given the real-time media coverage of the incidents. Last Friday, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Ninth Circuit Rejects Challenge to Bonus Annuity (February 26, 2015)
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has affirmed summary judgment for the insurer in a putative RICO class action relating to a bonus indexed annuity. Rejecting the plaintiff’s claims, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: California Joins Maryland and Ohio in Addressing “Price Optimization” (February 23, 2015)
The California Insurance Commissioner issued a notice on February 18, 2015 to more than 750 property and casualty insurers doing business in California, announcing that “any use of Price Optimization ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Mandatory Clearing in Europe May Still Be “A Ways Off”: ESMA Responds to Proposed Amendments on Interest Rate Swaps Clearing RTS and Postpones Consideration of FX NDF Clearing (February 19, 2015)
The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act’s mandatory clearing requirement for interest rate swaps and certain credit default swaps has been in place for quite some time. However, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Insurance Topics We Will Be Watching in 2015 (February 18, 2015)
With the first month of the year behind us, this report outlines major insurance topics that we will be watching throughout 2015. Forces, trends and events that we believe will affect regulation, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The Court Mows Down Yard-Man - The Supreme Court Rejects Claim for Lifetime Retiree Benefits (February 12, 2015)
The Supreme Court, in M&G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett,1 held that courts cannot infer an employer’s intent to vest welfare benefits from ambiguous or silent collective bargaining agreements, but ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New York State ALJ Determines Travel Reservation Facilitation Receipts and Online Advertising Receipts Constitute Service Receipts That Must Be Sourced Where Performed For Income Tax Purposes (February 12, 2015)
There has been significant controversy in New York regarding whether receipts from services—particularly those that may be delivered via the Internet—constitute “service” receipts or “other business ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: EPA and Sierra Club Reach Partial Settlement in Ozone SIP Litigation (February 11, 2015)
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Sierra Club have entered into a proposed consent decree that would partially resolve a lawsuit brought by the Sierra Club against the agency. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New York’s Insurance Regulator Announces Results of Cybersecurity Survey and Previews New Regulatory Initiatives (February 10, 2015)
On February 9, the New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) released a Report on Cyber Security in the Insurance Sector (Report), summarizing the results of a survey completed by 43 insurers ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Announces $281 Million Available Under New CREBs Program (February 6, 2015)
On February 3, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released Notice 2015-12 (the Notice) which solicited applications for a third round of allocations of volume cap for new clean renewable energy bonds ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Hackers Gonna Hack—FINRA’s Report on Cybersecurity Practices Assists Firms in Responding to Threats (February 5, 2015)
On February 3, 2015 the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) released its long-awaited Report on Cybersecurity Practices, a broad overview of the state of play in the cybersecurity arena ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFTC Fines Summit Energy Services, Inc. for Violating CTA Registration Rules Under the Commodity Exchange Act (February 4, 2015)
On January 16, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) issued a settlement order requiring Summit Energy Services, Inc. (Summit Energy) to pay a $140,000 civil monetary penalty for acting as ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Releases Results of 2014 Cybersecurity Exam Sweep (February 4, 2015)
On February 3, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a Risk Alert prepared by its Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) that summarizes the results of a sweep of more ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FY 2016 Budget Tax Proposals Target Insurance Companies (February 3, 2015)
On February 2, the Obama Administration released its fiscal year 2016 budget (FY 2016 Budget). The hallmarks of the FY 2016 Budget are proposals that would impose (i) a minimum tax on the current ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New York Governor’s Budget Proposes Radical Tax Changes (February 3, 2015)
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo introduced his 2015-2016 budget and accompanying legislation on January 19, 2015 (the 2015 Budget Bill). If enacted, New York’s tax law will be significantly altered ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Counterparty Rights in Energy Bankruptcies (January 29, 2015)
For the past several years, low interest rates and higher commodity prices have resulted in generally favorable financial conditions in the energy sector, keeping energy bankruptcy activity to a ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Broker-Dealers Face Unique Challenges Under Unclaimed Property Laws, Says New SIFMA White Paper (January 28, 2015)
On January 23, 2015, the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) released a new white paper outlining the unique and varied challenges broker-dealers face when complying with ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: EPA Seeking Small Business Input on Federal Plan for Carbon Emission Goals (January 27, 2015)
Today the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that it will seek stakeholder input on the development of a federal plan for meeting the Clean Power Plan’s carbon emission goals. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Unanimously Rules That Juries Should Decide Trademark Tacking (January 23, 2015)
In its first substantive trademark ruling in more than a decade, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously held on January 21, in Hana Financial, Inc. v. Hana Bank et al., No. 13-1211, that tacking – which ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Supreme Court Holds Dismissal of Individual Case in MDL Proceedings Is Immediately Appealable (January 21, 2015)
The U.S. Supreme Court unanimously held today in Gelboim v. Bank of America Corp., No. 13-1174, that an order disposing of an individual case previously consolidated with other cases for ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: De Novo Review of Claim Construction No Longer the De Facto Standard (January 21, 2015)
On January 20, the U.S. Supreme Court, in Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc. v. Sandoz, rejected the de novo review standard applied by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit when reviewing ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Ringing in the New Year: TCPA Hot Issues for 2015 (January 16, 2015)
The year 2014 saw a surge in class action filings under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). Record-setting class action settlements captured the headlines. The Federal Communications ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New Jersey Creates More Difficult Independent Contractor Test for State Wage Law Purposes (January 16, 2015)
On Wednesday, the Supreme Court of New Jersey articulated the test to be used in determining whether a worker is an independent contractor or employee for purposes of the state’s Wage Payment Law and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFTC Grants No-Action Relief to Commodity Pool Operators with Respect to Certain Insurance-Linked Securitization Vehicles (January 16, 2015)
Toward the end of 2014, the staff of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight (DSIO) issued two letters affecting insurance-linked ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Congress Exempts Non-Financial End-Users, Their Agents and Certain Cooperatives From Non-Cleared Swap Margin Requirements in Reauthorization of Terrorism Insurance Bill (January 9, 2015)
On January 8, 2015, the U.S. Senate approved legislation, by a 93-4 vote, to reauthorize the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (“TRIA”). The legislation, dubbed the Terrorism Risk Insurance Program ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: 2014 in Review: ERISA Individual Prohibited Transaction Exemptions and Advisory Opinions (January 8, 2015)
In 2014, the Department of Labor (DOL) maintained a diminished program of advance guidance under the Employment Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended (ERISA), in response to requests ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Ring in the New Year with New Summary of Benefits and Coverage Requirements for 2015 (January 7, 2015)
On December 30, the Departments of Treasury, Labor, and Health and Human Services published a joint notice of proposed rulemaking modifying the Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) final ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: DOL and Treasury Update 2014-2015 Regulatory Agendas for Employee Benefits (January 6, 2015)
The principal regulators of U.S. employee benefits have recently published updates to their guidance plans for the coming months. The updated plans are reflected in the attached chart. On ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: EPA to Publish Rule Rescinding Greenhouse Gas Permits and Will Not Enforce Existing Permits (January 6, 2015)
On December 19, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued two memos – Next Steps for Addressing EPA-Issued Step 2 Prevention of Significant Deterioration Greenhouse Gas Permits and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Electricity Transmission and Distribution Equipment Ineligible for Georgia Sales Tax Manufacturing Exemption (January 6, 2015)
The Georgia Tax Tribunal has held that an electric utility’s transmission and distribution equipment was not “necessary and integral to the manufacture of tangible personal property” and thus did not ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Treasury Softly Launches myRA Program (January 5, 2015)
In December 2014, the Treasury Department opened the myRA (my Retirement Account) program to employers and employees. President Obama announced the myRA program in his 2014 State of the Union ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Braun v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc: Opening the Door to Class Actions? (December 30, 2014)
In Braun v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.,1 the Pennsylvania Supreme Court upheld a $187 million jury verdict in favor of class action plaintiffs. The rationale of the ruling raises the concern that ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: It’s Your Burden: South Carolina Supreme Court Rejects Department of Revenue’s Application of Alternative Apportionment (December 24, 2014)
The South Carolina Supreme Court issued its decision in CarMax Auto Superstores West Coast, Inc. v. S.C. Dep’t of Revenue, Opinion No. 27474 (S.C. Dec. 23, 2014), holding that the South Carolina ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: More Regulatory Stability and Incentives for Biogas and Biomass Projects (December 23, 2014)
Last month, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a host of new incentives to encourage the use of fuels derived from biomass—including biogas that replaces traditional natural gas ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Congress Authorizes New Ukraine-Related Sanctions Against Russia (December 23, 2014)
On December 18th, President Obama signed into law the “Ukraine Freedom Support Act of 2014,” authorizing stricter sanctions against Russia, and also increasing military and non-military assistance ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Louisiana Court Holds Video-on-Demand and Pay-Per-View Are Not Tangible Personal Property (December 23, 2014)
Today the Louisiana Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal held that a cable television provider’s video-on-demand (VOD) and pay-per-view (PPV) programming services are not tangible personal property and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFTC Expands Existing Clearing Relief for Treasury Affiliates (December 23, 2014)
On November 24, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) Division of Clearing and Risk (DCR) issued a no-action letter to expand previously issued relief, that is available to “treasury ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: President Signs Changes to Collins Amendment Favorable to Insurers (December 19, 2014)
On December 18, President Obama signed into law the Insurance Capital Standards Clarification Act of 2014 (the Act). The Act makes it clear that the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve (the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Michigan Court of Claims Upholds Retroactive Compact Repeal Legislation (December 19, 2014)
Upholding retroactive legislation recently enacted by the Michigan Legislature, the Michigan Court of Claims today dismissed multiple cases where taxpayers had appealed the Department of Treasury's ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New Patent Eligibility Guidance: USPTO Tones Down the Rhetoric (December 18, 2014)
On December 15, 2014, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issued its long-awaited Interim Guidance on Patent Subject Matter Eligibility (published in the Federal Register on December 16, link here: ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. Government Resets Cuban Policy and Eases Sanctions Against Cuba (December 18, 2014)
Yesterday, President Obama announced that the United States and Cuba will begin talks to resume full diplomatic relations and partially lift travel and economic sanctions and restrictions, some of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Supreme Court Simplifies Removal from State Courts (December 15, 2014)
The Supreme Court today relieved decades of uncertainty concerning the filing requirements for removal of cases to federal court from state court by holding that a defendant is required only to file ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Multistate Tax Commission Gauges State Interest in Funding Transfer Pricing Expertise and Expands Audit Program (December 12, 2014)
At its Fall Meeting in Nashville, Tennessee on December 11-12, the MTC’s Executive Committee voted to formally contact states to solidify whether there is sufficient financial commitment to fund ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Holds That Time Spent in Security Screenings Not Compensable Under FLSA (December 11, 2014)
On December 9, 2014, the United States Supreme Court unanimously reversed a decision by the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit holding that warehouse employees had stated a claim ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Hears Arguments in 4-R Act Case (For the Second Time) (December 11, 2014)
On December 9, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the last of three state and local tax cases that it accepted this term – Alabama Department of Revenue v. CSX Transportation, Inc. (CSX ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC and PCAOB Address Independence Requirements in Audits Related to Broker-Dealers’ Financial Statements (December 10, 2014)
Confirming that auditor independence continues to be a regulatory priority, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC or Commission) and the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) issued ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: TCPA Class Action Against Insurance Agent Not Covered by Professional Liability Insurance (December 9, 2014)
As class action filings under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) have continued to rise, so too have the number of disputes with commercial liability insurers over coverage for their ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Hears Arguments in Sales Tax Reporting Case (December 9, 2014)
On December 8, 2014, the United States Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the second of three state and local tax cases that it has accepted this term – Direct Marketing Association v. Brohl – to ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Hears Oral Argument Over the Preclusive Effect of Administrative Trademark Determinations on Future Infringement Litigation (December 8, 2014)
The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral argument last week in a much anticipated trademark matter, B&B Hardware Inc. v. Hargis Industries Inc. et al. The primary question presented was whether a ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New SEC Guidance Adds Flexibility to BDC Co-Investing (December 8, 2014)
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Division of Investment Management (the Division) just published guidance that will permit business development companies (BDCs) to co-invest with ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Texas Apartment Association Files Amicus Brief in U.S. Supreme Court Fair Housing Act Case (November 25, 2014)
The U.S. Supreme Court will review a Fair Housing Act case to address whether the Act prohibits facially neutral conduct that has an unintended disparate impact on members of a protected class. In ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Ten Items to Consider as FINRA’s Consolidated Supervision Rules Take Effect (November 24, 2014)
On December 1, 2014, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s (FINRA) Consolidated Supervision Rules will take effect. The Consolidated Supervision Rules, which were approved by the U.S. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC 2014 Fall National Meeting and Congressional Hearing on Global Standards in Insurance Regulation (November 24, 2014)
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) met for its Fall National Meeting in Washington, D.C. from November 14th through November 19th. As with prior meetings, competition among ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: ESMA Issues Revision of the Technical Standards on Reporting under Article 9 of EMIR (November 24, 2014)
On November 10, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) published a consultation paper relating to the Regulatory Technical Standards and Implementing Technical Standards (collectively, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FERC Issues Proposed Policy Statement on Cost Recovery Mechanisms for Modernization of Natural Gas Facilities (November 21, 2014)
On November 20, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (Commission) issued a Proposed Policy Statement on cost recovery mechanisms, such as trackers or surcharges, that pipelines may use to recoup ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The Ninth Circuit Raises Pleading Standards for FLSA Plaintiffs (November 20, 2014)
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit makes pleading Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) violations more difficult by applying the heightened standard in Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Another Software Patent is Ruled Patent-Ineligible - Are Business Method and Software Patents at Risk? (November 19, 2014)
On November 14, 2014, in a much-anticipated decision following the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Alice v. CLS Bank, a unanimous U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit held in ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Has New York City Added a Fourth Element for Determining a Combined Group? (November 14, 2014)
A New York Tax Appeals Tribunal Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) recently determined that a federal savings and loan association was not required to include a subsidiary, which was formed as a ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: European Union Trademark Office Announces New “Fast Track” Procedure (November 14, 2014)
Since 1994, the European Union’s trademark office – the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM) – has provided trademark owners a centralized and cost-effective registration system for ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Agrees to Hear Arguments Involving Federal Health Insurance Exchange Subsidies (November 11, 2014)
On Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court announced that it would review the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit’s decision in King v. Burwell. In that case, the Fourth Circuit held that tax credits ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Just the Fax: Recent TCPA Developments on Liability for Unsolicited Faxes and Fax Opt-Out Notices (November 6, 2014)
The end of October 2014 saw two significant developments for Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) rules governing facsimile transmissions, fax opt-out notices and liability for faxes sent by ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: TCPA Risks Increase for the Financial Services Industry (November 4, 2014)
Companies in the financial services industry are being targeted in lawsuits brought under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). Record-setting class action settlements like the recent $75 ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFTC Clarifies Dealer Requirement to Notify Customers of Right to Segregation of Initial Margin for Uncleared Swaps (November 4, 2014)
On October 31, the Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight (Division) of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) issued a staff interpretation regarding the notification of the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: DELAYED! HPID Deadline Is No Longer November 5 (November 3, 2014)
This past weekend the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) indefinitely delayed enforcement of the requirement that all self-insured health plans obtain a Health Plan Identifier number ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: REMINDER: HPID Deadline is November 5th (October 30, 2014)
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is requiring all self-insured health plans to obtain a Health Plan Identifier number (HPID) as part of its compliance efforts under the Health ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Delaware Supreme Court Finds UCC Termination Filings Valid Despite Lack of Lender’s Intent (October 28, 2014)
On October 17, the Delaware Supreme Court held that JP Morgan (JPM) terminated its security interest in all of the collateral provided by General Motors (GM) in support of a $1.5 billion loan, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS and DOL Issue Favorable Guidance on Lifetime Income Provided Through Target Date Funds in Retirement Plans (October 28, 2014)
On October 23 and 24, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Department of Labor (DOL) issued coordinated guidance on lifetime income provided through target date funds held by retirement plans. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: TCPA Best Practices: Consent, Compliance, Communication (October 27, 2014)
SUTHERLAND’S THREE CS: CONSENT, COMPLIANCE, COMMUNICATION What is the TCPA? The Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 (TCPA) protects consumers from unwanted telemarketing calls, prerecorded or ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: You Can’t Judge a Book By Its Cover: When Are Domestic Negotiations a “Sale” or “Offer to Sell”? (October 24, 2014)
In Halo Electronics, Inc. v. Pulse Electronics, Inc., 2013-1472, - 1656 (October 22, 2014), the Federal Circuit concluded that there was no direct infringement when substantial activities of a sales ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: What Does It Take to Make the SEC Happy? SEC Criticism of Broker-Dealers’ Due Diligence for Sales of Unregistered Securities Leaves More Questions Than Answers (October 23, 2014)
To ensure that broker-dealers (BDs) do not inadvertently facilitate an unlawful distribution of securities, the Securities and Exchange Commission has long required BDs to conduct a “reasonable ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Proposed Approach for Applying the “Look-Back” Method When the Section 4980H Measurement Period Changes (October 16, 2014)
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently issued Notice 2014-49 which describes a proposed approach for determining an employee’s full-time or part-time status for purposes of the employer shared ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: ESMA Issues Final Draft Standards for the Central Clearing of Certain Interest Rate Swaps under EMIR (October 15, 2014)
On October 1, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) issued final draft regulatory technical standards (RTS) with respect to the central clearing of four classes of interest rate swaps ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FINRA Provides New Carve-Out Provisions to Include in Settlement and Confidentiality Agreements (October 15, 2014)
Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Member Firms have new language to include in their settlement and confidentiality agreements.  On October 9, FINRA released Regulatory Notice (RN) ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New Jersey Refund Opportunities Associated with the Deductibility of Other States’ Taxes (October 15, 2014)
On October 2, in PPL Electric Utilities Corporation v. Director, Division of Taxation, No. 000005-2011, the New Jersey Tax Court determined that federal deductions for the taxpayer’s payments of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Massachusetts Treasurer Demands National Mutual Fund Records in Multistate Unclaimed Property Audit (October 8, 2014)
Late this summer, the Massachusetts Treasurer demanded mutual fund records on a nationwide basis as part of a multistate unclaimed property audit. Thirty-five (35) states are involved in the audit, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Georgia PSC Issues Initial Decision in “Reconstruction in Substantial Kind” Case (October 7, 2014)
On September 17, 2014, a hearing officer for the Georgia Public Service Commission (PSC) issued an initial decision in a “reconstruction in substantial kind” case under Georgia’s Territorial Act, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Eleventh Circuit Reverses Outlier Decision on TCPA Prior Express Consent Standard (October 7, 2014)
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit has clarified the standard for “prior express consent” under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) in a September 29, 2014 decision reversing ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: MTC Meets With Economic Firms to Continue Its Transfer Pricing Effort (October 6, 2014)
On October 6, the Multistate Tax Commission Arm’s-Length Adjustment Service Advisory Group (the “Group”) met in Atlanta, Georgia, to continue its foray into transfer pricing audits. The Group first ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The Tax Court Approves the Use of Predictive Coding (September 29, 2014)
On September 17, the U.S. Tax Court, in Dynamo Holdings LP v. Commissioner, 143 T.C. No. 9 (Sept. 17, 2014), held that a taxpayer could use predictive coding, over the objection of the Internal ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: S.D.N.Y. Judge Permits Novel Theory And Allows SEC To Use Unpaid Taxes As Measure Of Disgorgement In Securities Fraud Case (September 29, 2014)
In a case against Dallas billionaires Sam Wyly and the estate of his late brother, Charles, Judge Shira Scheindlin of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York agreed with the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Sutherland Files Amicus Brief for the Maryland Chamber in Wynne (September 29, 2014)
The Maryland Chamber of Commerce (the Maryland Chamber) has entered the battle against Maryland’s unconstitutional personal income tax regime. Filing as amicus curiae before the U.S. Supreme Court in ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Reaches a Split Decision on Rollover Allocation Rules (September 26, 2014)
On September 18, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2014-54, which clarifies that, subject to some limitations, a single distribution of pre-tax and after-tax amounts from a qualified ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New PPACA-related “Family Status” Changes for Cafeteria Plans (September 25, 2014)
The Internal Revenue Service has issued Notice 2014-55 to permit new health plan elections in two situations where they were not previously allowed.  BACKGROUND Under section 125 of the Internal ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Final Rules on Compensation Deduction Limit for Health Insurers (September 25, 2014)
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Department of Treasury (Treasury) have issued final regulations under section 162(m)(6) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (Code), which limit ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New York Tax Appeals Tribunal Reverses “Distorted” Knowledge Learning Decision and Provides Guidance for Proving Substantial Intercorporate Transactions (September 25, 2014)
On September 18, 2014, the New York State Tax Appeals Tribunal (Tribunal) decided its first combination case addressing the 2007 changes to New York’s combined reporting regime: Matter of Knowledge ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Largest SEC Whistleblower Award Could Have Been Larger (September 25, 2014)
On September 22, 2014, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission announced the largest-ever whistleblower award, more than double last year’s record-breaking award.1 According to the Order, the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Regulators Publish Re-proposed Margin Requirements for Uncleared Swaps (September 24, 2014)
On September 3, 2014, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (the Board) jointly adopted, with certain federal banking regulators,1 re-proposed rules that will require registered swap ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Final Deadline Imminent for Enrolling in Delaware VDA Program (September 22, 2014)
The enrollment period for the Delaware Secretary of State’s Voluntary Disclosure Agreement Program (the Delaware VDA Program) for unclaimed property reporting closes next week on September 30, 2014. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: TCPA Hot Issues - TCPA Restricts Autodialed Calls, but Courts Split on Meaning of Autodialer (September 22, 2014)
To autodial or not autodial, that is the question. The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) defines autodialer as “equipment which has the capacity to store or produce telephone numbers to be ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Sutherland Partner Discusses U.S. and EU Sanctions Imposed on Russia’s Oil and Gas Industry (September 22, 2014)
Earlier this month, the U.S. Treasury and the EU imposed sanctions that bar Western energy firms from providing technology, goods and services that support Russia’s exploration or production of deep ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFPB Proposes to Examine and Directly Supervise Nonbank Auto Lenders (September 19, 2014)
On September 17, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) proposed to make nonbank automobile lenders subject to the examination and direct supervision of the Bureau. The proposed rule can be ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Now You See It, Now You Don’t: MTC Election Disappears in Michigan? (September 17, 2014)
On September 11, 2014, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder signed S.B. 156, which purports to repeal the state’s adoption of the Multistate Tax Compact (the Compact) retroactive to January 1, 2008. Mich. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: What Financial Advisers and Accountants Should Know About Expanded IRS Streamlined Filing Compliance Procedures for U.S. Taxpayers with Unreported Foreign Assets and Accounts (September 16, 2014)
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently announced “major changes” to its offshore compliance programs, including the Streamlined Filing Compliance Procedures (Streamlined Procedures), the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Crowley Marine Subsidiary Carib Energy Receives Authorization to Export LNG to Non-FTA Nations (September 10, 2014)
Today, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) issued a final order authorizing Carib Energy (USA) LLC (Carib), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Crowley Marine, to export up to 400,000 gallons of LNG per day ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: It’s Time to Review Benefit Denial Letters (September 8, 2014)
On August 7, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit decided in Moyer that the contractual time limits governing the period during which a participant must initiate judicial review of a ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFPB Warns Credit Card Companies About Potential UDAAP Violations When Marketing Promotional Interest Rates (September 8, 2014)
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued a bulletin1 on September 3, 2014 warning credit card companies that marketing materials for promotional annual percentage rate (APR) offers may ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Underwriter Deadline Nears for Municipal Continuing Disclosure Cooperation Initiative (September 4, 2014)
On March 10, the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) Division of Enforcement announced its Municipal Continuing Disclosure Cooperation Initiative. The Initiative offers issuers and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: TCPA Hot Issues: Is the Scope of Consent Unlimited? (September 3, 2014)
What constitutes valid consent under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act? A hot issue in TCPA litigation is the scope of consent necessary to place automated calls to consumers where the consumer ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Insurance Industry Sweeps Retained Asset Account Doubleheader (August 28, 2014)
On August 26, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit held in Vander Luitgaren v. Sun Life Ass. Co. of Canada, No. 13–2090, 2014 WL 4197947 (1st Cir. Aug. 26, 2014), that an insurer, acting ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Finalizes Guidance on Rev. Rul. 81-100 Group Trusts, and Insurance Company Separate Accounts (August 26, 2014)
In Rev. Rul. 2014-24, scheduled for publication on September 8, 2014, the Internal Revenue Service (the Service) substantially completed its pending guidance on Rev. Rul. 81-100 group trusts by ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NAIC Report – 2014 Summer National Meeting (August 26, 2014)
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) met for its Summer National Meeting in Louisville, Kentucky, August 14-19. International regulatory standards were a prime focus of the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: For Whom the Ring Tones: TCPA Litigation and the Insurance Industry (August 25, 2014)
Insurance companies are increasingly the subject of Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) lawsuits. Any insurance company that communicates with its customers, job applicants, and others by phone ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Florida Legislature Relaxes Agency Licensing Requirements for Broker-Dealer Branch Offices Selling Insurance Products but Creates New Disclosure Requirements for Surrenders (August 25, 2014)
Under current Florida insurance laws, branch offices of broker-dealers selling insurance products in Florida are required to either “license” or “register” as agency branches (in addition to ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: DOL Requests Information on Brokerage Windows in Defined Contribution Plans (August 21, 2014)
On August 20, 2014, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released a request for information (RFI) about the use of brokerage windows, self-directed brokerage accounts, and similar arrangements in ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Recent Amendment Implements Important Changes to the Georgia Brownfield Program (August 20, 2014)
Effective on July 1, House Bill 957 (2014) (the “Amendment”) amended the Georgia Brownfield Act, O.C.G.A. § 12-8-200 et seq. (the Act). The Amendment broadens applicability of the Act, expands the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FinCEN Customer Due Diligence Rule Proposal (August 19, 2014)
On July 30, 2014, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”) issued proposed rules (the “Proposed Rules”) to clarify and strengthen customer due diligence ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The SEC Tackles Technicality (August 19, 2014)
Within several months of Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Mary Jo White’s announcement in late 2013 of a commitment to improving the SEC’s trial readiness,1 the Commission suffered a number ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Second Circuit Rejects Extraterritorial Application of Dodd-Frank’s Whistleblower Anti-Retaliation Provision (August 18, 2014)
On August 14, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit became the first U.S. appellate court to weigh in on the extraterritorial application of the whistleblower provisions of the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SANCTIONS UPDATE - New Treasury Guidance on Aggregation of Ownership Interests (August 14, 2014)
On August 13, the U.S. Department of the Treasury published revised guidance on the treatment of entities owned by persons whose property and interests in property are blocked under the Executive ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Multi-Million Dollar Settlements Prompt Record Filing of TCPA Lawsuits (August 12, 2014)
High-dollar settlements of class actions filed under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act appear to have prompted the filing of a record number of new TCPA cases in federal courts nationwide. In the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Are You Really Sure That Construction Began? IRS Issues Third Notice Regarding Renewable Energy Tax Credit Beginning of Construction Test (August 12, 2014)
On August 8, 2014, the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) issued Notice 2014-46, which provides further guidance intended to assist developers and purchasers of renewable energy facilities evaluate ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Waives Whistleblower Eligibility Requirements to Issue $400,000 Award (August 7, 2014)
On July 31, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC or Commission) issued a $400,000 whistleblower award to an individual who provided information leading to a successful SEC enforcement ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Financial Service Company’s Nonqualified Plan Found to be an ERISA Pension Plan (August 6, 2014)
In Tolbert v. RBC Capital Markets (July 14, 2014), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held that a deferred incentive compensation plan maintained by a financial services company for ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Florida Court of Appeal Holds Insured’s Death Alone Does Not Trigger Unclaimed Property Law Obligations (August 6, 2014)
In an opinion filed August 5, Florida’s First District Court of Appeal held that Florida’s unclaimed property law does not make life insurance proceeds due and payable at the time of the insured’s ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Multistate Tax Commission Enacts Significant Amendments to Its Compact (July 31, 2014)
On July 30, the Multistate Tax Commission (MTC) approved amendments to the Multistate Tax Compact’s (1) definition of nonbusiness income, (2) definition of “sales,” (3) factor-weighting, (4) ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Multistate Tax Commission Targets Summer 2015 Implementation of Transfer Pricing Effort (July 29, 2014)
On July 28, the Arm’s Length Adjustment Services Advisory Group (Group) of the Multistate Tax Commission (MTC) met for the third time at the MTC Annual Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: MTC Uniformity Committee Prepares for UDITPA Regulations (July 29, 2014)
On July 28, the Multistate Tax Commission (MTC) Uniformity Committee tabled two projects to free up resources to work on apportionment regulations in anticipation of the full Commission vote later ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Model Transaction Tax Overpayment Act Gains Traction at MTC (July 28, 2014)
On July 21, the Multistate Tax Commission’s (MTC) Uniformity Committee voted unanimously to send to the MTC’s Executive Committee a draft resolution recommending that the MTC endorse a model ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alerts: SEC Approves Rule Preventing Barters for Expungement Cooperation – What You Can Do to Ensure Compliance (July 25, 2014)
On July 22, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) approved the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s (FINRA) proposed Rule 2081, which prevents firms or associated persons from ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Congress Scrutinizes Hedge Funds’ Use of Financial Derivatives (July 25, 2014)
This week the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs (Subcommittee), in conjunction with the Subcommittee’s hearing on July 22, 2014, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Circuit Court Split Casts Doubt on PPACA Subsidies for Individuals and Employer Penalties in 36 States (July 24, 2014)
Two federal appeals courts issued conflicting rulings on July 22 on whether individual premium subsidies under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) are available in 36 states that ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Required Summer Reading: Guidance Issued on the Tax Treatment of Guaranteed Minimum Benefit Hedges and Identified Mixed Straddles (July 23, 2014)
Treasury and the IRS offered two pieces of highly anticipated guidance on July 18 that are particularly relevant to the life insurance industry. Specifically: The IRS Large Business and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Asbestos MDL Court Concludes Punitive Damages for Unseaworthiness Allowed for Seaman But Not for a Seaman’s Personal Representative in Wrongful Death or Survival Actions (July 22, 2014)
In a consolidated asbestos products liability multidistrict litigation (MDL), the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania held in In re Asbestos Products Liability Litigation ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: ISDA Section 2(a)(iii) Amendment Limits Prerogatives of Non-Defaulting Parties (July 22, 2014)
On June 19, the International Swaps and Derivatives Association (ISDA) published a long-awaited standard amendment to Section 2(a)(iii) of the ISDA Master Agreement (the Master Agreement).1 Section ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: D.C. Circuit Court’s Surprising Ruling on Chinese CFIUS Case May Result in Greater Transparency in Certain National Security Proceedings (July 21, 2014)
 On July 15, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled that the President violated the due process rights of Ralls Corporation, a U.S. company owned by two Chinese ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Georgia Supreme Court Applies the Business Judgment Rule to Bank Officers and Directors; Decision Has Implications for Corporate Officers and Directors (July 18, 2014)
In a landmark ruling for officers and directors of Georgia’s financial institutions, the Supreme Court of Georgia held in FDIC v. Loudermilk, S14Q0454 (Ga. July 11, 2014), that officers and directors ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. House Passes Permanent Internet Tax Freedom Act (July 15, 2014)
On July 15, the U.S. House of Representatives voted in favor of H.R. 3086, the Permanent Internet Tax Freedom Act (PITFA), by a voice vote. PITFA would permanently extend the moratorium on state and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Michigan Supreme Court Upholds the Compact Election (July 14, 2014)
On July 14, 2014, the Michigan Supreme Court in a splintered 3-1-3 decision found in favor of IBM’s election to apply the Multistate Tax Compact’s three-factor apportionment formula to the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Supreme Court of Texas Provides “Much-Needed Clarity” to Texas Spoliation Jurisprudence (July 9, 2014)
On July 3, the Supreme Court of Texas issued a significant opinion in Brookshire Brothers, Ltd. v. Jerry Aldridge, No. 10-0846 (Tex. 2014), that clarifies the standards governing the spoliation of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: RMD Rules for Longevity Annuities Finalized (July 2, 2014)
Longevity annuities are contracts that provide life annuity payments typically commencing at age 80 or 85; in many (but not all) cases, that is the only benefit the contract provides. As such, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Finds Direct Copyright Liability for Subscriber-Directed Retransmissons of Over-the-Air Broadcasts (July 1, 2014)
The U.S. Supreme Court held last week that a service provider directly infringes a copyright owner’s exclusive performance right when it transmits to subscribers individualized streams of copyrighted ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Texas Supreme Court Holds Cost to Remove Carbon Dioxide Injected in Enhanced Recovery Operations Is Properly Deductible from Royalties (July 1, 2014)
On June 27, the Supreme Court of Texas issued an opinion in Marcia Fuller French, et al v. Occidental Permian Ltd., No 12-002 (Tex. June 27, 2014), a case closely followed by the oil and gas ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Idaho Unclaimed Property Rule: Insurers Must Confirm Whether Insureds Have Died (July 1, 2014)
In a recently issued notice of rulemaking, the Idaho State Treasurer’s Office has proposed a temporary rule that, if permanently adopted, would alter two key definitional provisions in the state’s ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Sutherland Partner Leads Regulatory Panel at International Insurance Society’s 50th Annual Conference (July 1, 2014)
Sutherland Partner, John Pruitt, moderated a lively discussion among distinguished panelists during last week’s 50th annual International Insurance Society conference in London on the topic, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: After All the Preparation, It’s Finally Here: FATCA Becomes Effective July 1, 2014 (June 30, 2014)
More than four years after Congress enacted the Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment Act of 2010, Pub. L. 111-147, which added the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) provisions to the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: MTC Speaks with Potential Transfer Pricing Vendors (June 26, 2014)
On June 25, the Arm’s Length Adjustment Services Advisory Group (the Group) of the Multistate Tax Commission (MTC) met via teleconference to continue the process of developing a multistate arm’s ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Alice v. CLS Bank: U.S. Supreme Court Revisits Subject Matter Eligibility Under 35 U.S.C. § 101 (June 26, 2014)
On June 19, the Supreme Court issued a decision in Alice Corporation. Pty. Ltd. v. CLS Bank International. et al., a high-profile patent case involving the scope of patent eligibility under 35 U.S.C. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Issues Favorable Private Letter Ruling to Data Center REIT (June 25, 2014)
On June 6, 2014, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released Private Letter Ruling 201423011 (the PLR), confirming that income from certain data center services can constitute “rents from real ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Supreme Court of Texas Finds Contractors Cannot Recover Delay Damages for Negligent Misrepresentation Against an Owner’s Architect in a Case That Highlights the Economic Loss Rule (June 23, 2014)
On June 20, Texas joined a number of states that apply the economic loss rule to damages claims arising from negligent misrepresentation between contractors and the owner’s architect. In LAN/STV v. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Securities Class Action Defendants Can Rebut the Basic Fraud-on-the-Market Presumption of Reliance at the Class Certification Stage (June 23, 2014)
The U.S. Supreme Court held today that defendants in securities fraud class actions can defeat the Basic fraud-on-the-market presumption of reliance at the class certification stage “through evidence ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Launches First Whistleblower Retaliation Case Under Dodd-Frank (June 20, 2014)
On June 16, 2014, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) initiated and resolved its first case charging an employer with unlawfully retaliating against a securities whistleblower under the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFTC Division of Market Oversight Releases Questions for June 19 Roundtable on Position Limits (June 18, 2014)
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) will host a public roundtable on June 19, 2014, to discuss questions related to a proposed rulemaking to establish speculative position limits for 28 ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Internet Tax Freedom Act Extension Clears Congressional Committee (June 18, 2014)
On June 18, the Judiciary Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives voted in favor of H.R. 3086, the Permanent Internet Tax Freedom Act (PITFA) by a vote of 30-4. PITFA permanently extends the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Inherited IRAs Are Not Bankruptcy-Exempt as “Retirement Funds” (June 17, 2014)
On June 12, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously held in Clark v. Rameker that an inherited individual retirement account (IRA) does not qualify for the “retirement funds” exemption in the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Supreme Court of Texas Finds Purchasers of Used Goods Can Recover on Implied Warranty Claims in a Case That Highlights Risk of Failing to Plead Affirmative Defenses (June 17, 2014)
In a significant decision issued earlier this month, the Supreme Court of Texas held that the implied warranty of merchantability, unless properly disclaimed, passes to purchasers of used goods. The ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Louisiana Court Holds Video-on-Demand Is Not Subject to Sales Tax (June 12, 2014)
Yesterday the Louisiana 24th Judicial District Court held that a cable service provider’s video-on-demand and pay-per-view video programming are not tangible personal property subject to sales tax. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Releases Additional Rulings on Lump-Sum Windows (June 12, 2014)
The practice of offering lump-sum distributions has become increasingly popular among defined benefit plan sponsors looking to decrease volatility or other defined benefit plan risks. In some ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: SEC Issues $875,000 Whistleblower Award (June 9, 2014)
On June 3, 2014, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC or Commission) issued a whistleblower award to two individuals who had provided information leading to a successful SEC enforcement ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: NFA Issues Revised Forms CPO-PQR and CTA-PR (June 9, 2014)
On June 5, the National Futures Association (NFA) announced the issuance of revised Forms CPO-PQR and CTA-PR. The NFA is the self-regulatory organization to which the Commodity Futures Trading ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: What Do You Mean? Nautilus Ruling Holds That a Patent Claim Must Convey with Reasonable Certainty the Scope of the Invention (June 3, 2014)
On June 2, a unanimous U.S. Supreme Court held in Nautilus Inc. v. Biosig Instruments Inc. that a patent claim may be found indefinite if it fails to convey the scope of the invention “with ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFPB Plans Supervision of Nonbank Automobile Lenders (June 2, 2014)
In a May 23, 2014 blog post by Kelly Cochran, Assistant Director of Regulation, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau indicated that it is working on a “larger participant” rule for nonbank ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: It Takes One to Infringe: Akamai Ruling Holds That Induced Infringement Requires Direct Infringement by a Single Party (June 2, 2014)
On June 2, 2014, a unanimous U.S. Supreme Court held in Limelight Networks, Inc. v. Akamai Technologies, Inc. that direct infringement by a single party is a prerequisite to a finding of induced ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: MTC Launches Transfer Pricing Effort (June 2, 2014)
On June 2, the Arm’s Length Advisory Group (the Group) of the Multistate Tax Commission (MTC) met in St. Louis, Missouri, to begin the process of developing a multistate arm’s length pricing ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Storm Clouds Continue to Gather Over Bankruptcy Code’s Safe Harbors (May 29, 2014)
As noted in a previous Sutherland Legal Alert, the American Bankruptcy Institute has formed a Commission to Study the Reform of Chapter 11 (the Commission). To further its goal of proposing changes ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Colombia Seeks Foreign Investment to Expand Timberland Plantations (May 29, 2014)
Colombia plans to double its cultivated acreage from one million to two million hectares by 2020, according to Rubén Darío Lizarralde, the country’s Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFTC Interprets “Swap” Definition In the Context of Longevity Risk Transfer (May 28, 2014)
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight (Division) recently addressed for the first time the CFTC’s definition of a “swap” as it applies ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Issues Retroactive Relief Requirement for Delinquent Retirement Plan Form 5500 (May 28, 2014)
Until now, those who used the Department of Labor’s Delinquent Filer Voluntary Compliance Program (DFVCP) to obtain relief from penalties for failing to timely file Form 5500 automatically qualified ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: First Circuit: Proof of Death Prerequisite to Payment of Life Benefits (May 28, 2014)
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit has confirmed that proof of death is a reasonable requirement for payment under a life insurance policy, and is a prerequisite to monies becoming ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: UPDATE: The Hare Loses Steam – Patent Litigation Reform Law Unlikely This Year (May 23, 2014)
Efforts by the U.S. Senate to pass an alternative to the Innovation Act, which aims to reform abusive patent litigation, have stalled. Sen. Patrick Leahy, who is leading the effort, has announced ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Congress Passes Water Resources Bill Encouraging Public-Private Partnerships for Water Supply and Treatment Construction Projects (May 23, 2014)
Water infrastructure projects across the nation may soon have access to innovative financing programs and increased public-private partnership (P3) opportunities. House Bill 3080 (2013) or the Water ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. District Judge in Florida Dismisses SEC Action Against Corporate Defendants and Holds that Five-Year Statute of Limitations Removed the Court’s Subject-Matter Jurisdiction (May 22, 2014)
On May 12, Judge James Lawrence King of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida dismissed with prejudice the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) case against five ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Clock Is Ticking…Relief for Late Filed GRAs Expected to Expire Soon (May 20, 2014)
Time may be running out for taxpayers to correct technically deficient gain recognition agreements (GRAs) under the relief procedure contained in the Directive on Examination Action With Respect to ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Holds That Laches Cannot Bar Damages Relief for Timely Filed Copyright Infringement Claims (May 20, 2014)
The U.S. Supreme Court held Monday that the defense of laches cannot serve as an absolute bar to relief for actions brought within the Copyright Act’s three-year limitations period. The majority ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: EPA Sends Rule Amending Renewable Fuel Biogas Provisions to the White House for Final Review (May 20, 2014)
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has sent amendments to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) to the White House’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB) that would further incorporate the use of ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFTC Adopts Streamlined Approach for Delegation of CPO Registration (May 19, 2014)
On May 12, 2014, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight (DSIO) issued a staff letter (the Staff Letter) that provides a streamlined ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: TCPA Hot Issues: If Consent is Not Forever, What Constitutes Revocation? (May 15, 2014)
One of the hot issues in pending litigation under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) is whether a consumer can revoke consent to receive calls on a cell phone. A number of courts have ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Whose Risk Is It Anyway? New Revenue Ruling Provides Guidance for Employee Benefits Captives (May 15, 2014)
On May 8, the IRS issued Rev. Rul. 2014-15, 2014-22 I.R.B. 1, which provides guidance in the rapidly expanding area of insuring or reinsuring employee benefits with captives. In the new revenue ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Texas Supreme Court Limits Fraud Claims by Terminated Employees (May 13, 2014)
In a case of first impression, the Supreme Court of Texas declared that at-will employees may not bring an action for fraud that is contingent on the promise of continued at-will employment. The ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: To the Direct Acquirer Belong the Tax Attributes: Proposed Regulations Modify the Definition of Acquiring Corporation for Purposes of IRC § 381 (May 12, 2014)
On May 7, Treasury and the IRS published proposed regulations addressing which corporation succeeds to the tax attributes of another corporation that transfers assets in an acquisitive asset ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: MTC Executive Committee Advances Significant Part of UDITPA Rewrite (May 9, 2014)
On Thursday, May 8, the Multistate Tax Commission’s (MTC) Executive Committee (Committee) met in Washington, DC. During the meeting the Committee voted to advance its amendments to the Multistate Tax ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Beta Testing FATCA: IRS Declares 2014 and 2015 as a Transition Period for FATCA Administration and Enforcement and Provides an Additional Six Months of Relief for Certain Preexisting Obligations (May 6, 2014)
Pursuant to Notice 2014-33 (the Notice), the IRS announced that it will treat calendar years 2014 and 2015 as a transition period for the administration and enforcement of the due diligence, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Cost of Insurance Litigation -- District Court Says Stick to Enumerated Factors (April 30, 2014)
In a class action challenging a cost of insurance (COI) rate increase, a New York federal district court has stated that an insurer may only consider factors specifically enumerated in the policy ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: High Octane Patent Litigation? Supreme Court Relaxes Standards for Awarding Attorneys' Fees While Increasing Deference on Appeal (April 29, 2014)
In twin unanimous opinions issued today, the U.S. Supreme Court has rejected long-standing Federal Circuit rules governing the award of attorneys’ fees to the prevailing party in patent litigation, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FINRA’s Consolidated Supervision Rules and Regulatory Notice 14-10 (April 24, 2014)
On December 23, 2013, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) approved proposed changes to the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s (FINRA) supervision rules. On March 19, 2014, FINRA ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: European Commission Requests Comments on Treatment of Foreign Exchange Instruments Under EMIR (April 24, 2014)
On February 14, 2014, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) requested that the European Commission (EC) clarify the definition of “derivative” or “derivative contract,” and ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Cybersecurity Issues in the Financial Services Industry: Fasten your cyber belts, it's going to be a bumpy night (April 22, 2014)
Few topics are as hot as cybersecurity. Recent high-profile data breaches at national retailers have made cybersecurity a frequent topic on Capitol Hill and an issue of growing concern to average ...
Legal Alerts - NAIC Report: 2014 Spring National Meeting (April 14, 2014)
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) met for its Spring National Meeting in Orlando, Florida from March 29 through April 1. Typical for the first national meeting of the year, ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: IRS Offers Two New Due Diligence Safe Harbor Procedures for Accepting Rollovers into Qualified Plans (April 8, 2014)
On April 3, 2014, the Internal Revenue Service released Revenue Ruling 2014-9 (the Ruling), which provides guidance helpful to the administration of rollovers by tax-qualified retirement plans ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Department of Labor Issues Interim Final Employee Whistleblower Rule Under the Consumer Financial Protection Act (April 8, 2014)
On April 4, 2014, the Department of Labor (DOL) issued an Interim Final Rule establishing procedures concerning the manner in which the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Obama Issues Executive Order and Presidential Memorandum Concerning Equal Pay Initiatives for Federal Contractors (April 8, 2014)
Today President Obama issued an Executive Order and Presidential Memorandum intended to address equal pay for women (Click here to access the Executive Order and here to access the Presidential ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The Honeymoon Is Over: IRS Says It Is Time to Amend Plans to Cover Same-Sex Spouses (April 7, 2014)
On April 4, 2014, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released Notice 2014-19, which provides a series of Q&As regarding the application of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in United States v. ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Georgia District Court Judge Rules that FIRREA Precludes D&O Insurer Declaratory Judgment Actions Against FDIC as Receiver and Insured D&Os (April 2, 2014)
On March 5, 2014, Judge Richard Story in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia issued an order denying Plaintiff OneBeacon Midwest Insurance Company’s (OneBeacon) ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: CFTC Affords Market Participants a “Second Bite” at the Swap Recordkeeping and Reporting Rules (April 2, 2014)
Last month, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) issued a request for public comment on its swap data recordkeeping and reporting requirements under Part 45 of its regulations. The CFTC ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: The CFPB Releases Its “Data Point” Report on Payday Lending (April 2, 2014)
On March 25, 2014, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) released its second report on payday lending. This report followed a white paper on payday lending and deposit advance products that ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: New SEC Guidance on the Definition of “Knowledgeable Employee” Under the Investment Company Act (April 2, 2014)
On February 6, 2014, the staff of the Division of Investment Management (the Staff) of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the SEC) issued a no-action letter (the Letter) to the Managed ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Virtual Reality: IRS Provides Guidance on the Treatment of Bitcoin and Other Virtual Currency Transactions (March 31, 2014)
On March 25, 2014, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2014-21 (the Notice), which provides guidance regarding the tax treatment of Bitcoins and other virtual currency through a series ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: FERC Issues a NOPR Reforming Gas Day and Two Orders to Improve Natural Gas – Electric Generation Industry Coordination (March 26, 2014)
On March 20, 2014, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NOPR)1 and two separate, but related, Orders2 to improve the coordination of scheduling ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Clarifies Standing Requirements for Lanham Act False Advertising Claim (March 26, 2014)
A unanimous U.S. Supreme Court held Tuesday that a plaintiff may bring a false advertising claim under the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1125(a), even where the plaintiff is not a direct competitor of the ...
Legal Alerts - Legal Alert: Access to Recent DMF Data Restricted to Certified Persons Starting Today (March 26, 2014)
Today, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Technical Information Service (NTIS) put into effect a certification program required for any person or entity seeking to access information during ...