Public Policy

  • February 20, 2024

    Liberal Justices Hint Chevron Deference Hanging By A Thread

    In the U.S. Supreme Court's latest battle royal over administrative powers, left-leaning justices at oral arguments Tuesday openly suggested that the landmark legal doctrine underpinning modern rulemaking might soon shrivel up, clearing the way for industry-led challenges to regulations on the books for decades.

  • February 20, 2024

    US Small Businesses Have Most To Lose From Digital Duties

    The possible demise of an international moratorium on tariffs for digital products, including software and media downloads, could cut into small businesses' profits and create compliance burdens for the companies that survive.

  • February 20, 2024

    Chicago Sues Oil Giants, Alleging Climate Change Deception

    The city of Chicago hit BP, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, Shell and the oil and gas industry's largest trade association with a lawsuit Tuesday, alleging their involvement in a decadeslong "campaign of deception" to increase consumption of fossil fuels to boost profits, despite their knowledge that their products cause environmental harm.

  • February 20, 2024

    NM Fire Victims Sue FEMA Over Compensation Delays

    Ten New Mexico residents with property damaged by the Hermit's Peak/Calf Canyon Fire sued the Federal Emergency Management Agency in federal court Friday, saying FEMA is not processing their claims in a timely manner, in violation of an assistance measure Congress passed for victims of the wildfire.

  • February 20, 2024

    DirecTV Slams Studies Showing No 12 GHz Interference

    DirecTV is defending its supremacy in the 12 gigahertz band, pushing back against analysis showing that terrestrial 5G use of the band wouldn't lead to interference in a new filing with the Federal Communications Commission.

  • February 20, 2024

    Groups, Scholars Back Tribes In High Court Healthcare Bid

    A coalition of Native American and Alaskan Native healthcare boards and nonprofits are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold rulings that ordered the federal government to reimburse two tribes millions in administrative healthcare costs, arguing that the obligation is deeply rooted in the trust relationship between the United States and its Indigenous nations.

  • February 20, 2024

    Calif. Tribe Looks To Undo Tobacco Noncompliance Listing

    The Twenty-Nine Palms of Mission Indians is suing the U.S. government in California federal court over its decision to place the tribe on a "non-compliant list" under a law that targets illegal tobacco trafficking, arguing that its operations comply with all applicable state laws.

  • February 20, 2024

    Judge Says He'll Mull $10M Fine For Racist Robocaller

    An Idaho white supremacist has been found liable by a Montana federal court for sending out thousands of racist robocalls in an attempt to sway public opinion against Black and Jewish political candidates, with a fine that could top $10 million to follow.

  • February 20, 2024

    US Chamber Urges 6th Circ. To Ax FirstEnergy Class Cert.

    The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, former U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission officials and others have urged the Sixth Circuit to reverse class certification in a case accusing FirstEnergy Corp. of committing securities fraud in connection with a multimillion-dollar bribe made to a convicted politician.

  • February 20, 2024

    Fla. Gaming Pact Not Allowed Under Federal Law, Expert Says

    A Miami law school adjunct professor supporting a pair of casinos seeking to undo the Seminole Tribe of Florida's gaming agreement authorizing online sports betting has urged the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the establishments' case or reverse a lower court decision, saying the pact violates the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.

  • February 20, 2024

    FinCEN Details Owner Data Access Rules For Small Banks

    The U.S. Treasury Department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network on Tuesday released a compliance guide for small financial firms on accessing and safeguarding company ownership information that their customers are required to report under recently implemented rules.

  • February 20, 2024

    FCC Urged To Revisit Caps On Duplicate FM Broadcasts

    Musicians and small radio stations are pressuring the Federal Communications Commission to reinstate limits scrapped three years ago on FM stations airing duplicate content, but face pushback from the broadcast lobby.

  • February 20, 2024

    11th Circ. Tosses Appeal Of Bid-Rigging Indictment

    The Eleventh Circuit on Tuesday found that a concrete executive has to wait until after he's tried to contest his indictment by a remotely convened grand jury during the pandemic on charges of allegedly fixing prices and rigging bids for ready-mix concrete in Georgia.

  • February 20, 2024

    Tribes, Enviro Orgs Can Join Fight Over Tongass Protections

    An Alaska federal judge said a coalition of tribes, conservation groups, fishers and tourism businesses can join litigation to help defend a challenged Biden administration rule that reinstated roadless area protections for some 9 million acres of the vast Tongass National Forest.

  • February 20, 2024

    5th Circ. Seeks Texas Justices' Input On LNG Permit Fight

    The Fifth Circuit has yanked its prior ruling that scrapped an emissions permit issued by Texas environmental regulators for a proposed liquefied natural gas terminal, saying it wants the state's Supreme Court to weigh in on how to define the best available pollution control technology under Texas law.

  • February 20, 2024

    Restoration Architect Says Visa Denial Ignored Evidence

    A Colombian restoration architect who wants to address the affordable housing shortage in the U.S., accused immigration officials in Florida federal court of disregarding more than 1,000 pages of evidence in denying him a national interest waiver for a visa.

  • February 20, 2024

    Ex-OCC Fintech Chief Won Over Top Brass Despite Red Flags

    The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency's onetime fintech chief who seemingly fabricated his professional background appears to have sailed through the hiring process at the agency, according to internal OCC communications obtained by Law360.

  • February 20, 2024

    Crypto-Friendly Atty Challenges Warren For Senate Seat

    An attorney known for his pro-crypto views and criticism of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission announced on Tuesday a campaign to unseat incumbent and crypto critic Sen. Elizabeth Warren in the Massachusetts senatorial race.

  • February 20, 2024

    Wealthy Nations Want Consensus Voting At UN Tax Group

    The United Nations General Assembly's committee for drafting the rules and goals of an international tax convention should make decisions by consensus rather than following the assembly's simple majority voting rules, governments from wealthy countries said Tuesday.

  • February 20, 2024

    WTO Says Revised Duties On Spanish Olives Still Out Of Line

    The World Trade Organization called on the U.S. to fix revised countervailing duties on Spanish olives, ruling Tuesday that the duties are still not in compliance with its 2021 decision rejecting the investigation that resulted in the tariffs.

  • February 20, 2024

    Fluoride Trial Judge Mulls 'Mixed' IQ Evidence In Closings

    A California federal judge questioned the EPA and environmental groups on studies linking fluoride exposure to lower IQs during bench trial closing arguments Tuesday, observing that there's a clear dose-response relationship at high levels of fluoride exposure, but at low levels, "the evidence is mixed — we've got evidence going both ways."

  • February 20, 2024

    Skipped Hearing Sinks Conn. Pot Store Fight, Court Told  

    A lawsuit seeking to revoke the approval of a cannabis retail permit in Stamford, Connecticut, cannot proceed because a coalition of anti-pot taxpayers followed the wrong process by skipping a public hearing and suing instead, the city's counsel told a state judge during an oral argument on Tuesday.

  • February 20, 2024

    9th Circ. Reinstates Air Traffic Controller's Age Bias Suit

    The Ninth Circuit revived a suit Tuesday from an air traffic controller who said the Federal Aviation Administration passed him over for promotions because of his age, ruling the agency can't hide behind a carveout that allows it to restrict the positions to younger applicants.

  • February 20, 2024

    Pot Cos. Say They'll Be Ruined Unless Detroit Facility Opens

    Four cannabis companies have urged a Michigan federal court to prohibit the city of Detroit from taking any action that would impede their $15 million marijuana processing facility from opening, saying they are "in immediate danger of financial ruin" unless they operate the site as planned.

  • February 20, 2024

    Ala. Justices Deem Frozen Embryos Children Under State Law

    The Alabama Supreme Court ruled that frozen embryos count as children in a first-of-its-kind decision bemoaned by advocates and a dissenting judge as potentially ruinous for in vitro fertilization services in the state. 

Expert Analysis

  • Understanding SEC's Focus Amid Lack Of Final AI Rules

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    Although the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's proposed rules to govern artificial intelligence are likely far from being finalized, understanding existing regulatory provisions that could address AI risks with respect to development, disclosure, compliance and data protection could help firms anticipate and avoid pitfalls, say attorneys at Skadden.

  • What's On The Horizon In Attorney General Enforcement

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    A look at recent attorney general actions, especially in the areas of antitrust and artificial intelligence, can help inform businesses on what they should expect in terms of enforcement trends as 10 attorney general races play out in 2024, say attorneys at Cozen O'Connor.

  • Preparing For DOJ's Data Analytics Push In FCPA Cases

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    After the U.S. Department of Justice’s recent announcement that it will leverage data analytics in Foreign Corrupt Practice Act investigations and prosecutions, companies will need to develop a compliance strategy that likewise implements data analytics to get ahead of enforcement risks, say attorneys at Cozen O'Connor.

  • Considering The Logical Extremes Of Your Legal Argument

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    Recent oral arguments in the federal election interference case against former President Donald Trump highlighted the age-old technique of extending an argument to its logical limit — a principle that is still important for attorneys to consider in preparing their cases, says Reuben Guttman at Guttman Buschner.

  • Reducing The Risk Of PFAS False Advertising Class Actions

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    A wave of class actions continues to pummel products that allegedly contain per- or polyfluoroalkyl substances, with plaintiffs challenging advertising that they say misleads consumers by implying an absence of PFAS — but there are steps companies can take to minimize risk, say attorneys at Keller and Heckman.

  • Planning For Stymied HSR Filings At FTC If Shutdown Occurs

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    If the government were to shut down in early March, the inability to submit Hart-Scott-Rodino filings with the Federal Trade Commission would grind transactions to a halt, and parties should consider numerous implications as they are negotiating or planning to close pending transactions, say attorneys at DLA Piper.

  • How High Court SEC Case Could Affect The ITC

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    While the U.S. Supreme Court’s upcoming ruling in U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission v. Jarkesy will likely spare the U.S. International Trade Commission from major operative changes, the ITC’s ability to issue penalties for violations of its orders may change, say Gwendolyn Tawresey and Ryan Deck at Troutman Pepper.

  • CFPB Overdraft Rule Could Mean Big Shift In Banking Biz

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    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has proposed "to close a longstanding loophole" in the Truth in Lending Act by changing how it regulates overdraft fees, but underneath the headline-grabbing proposal is a foundational shift in how the bureau views overdraft services, say attorneys at Katten.

  • Challenges Remain In Financing Energy Transition Minerals

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    COP28, the latest U.N. climate conference, reached a consensus on a just and equitable transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy, but more action and funding will be needed to ensure that developed countries responsibly source the minerals that will be critical for this process, say attorneys at Watson Farley.

  • USCIS Fee Increases May Have Unintended Consequences

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    U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ new fee schedule, intended to provide the agency with needed funds while minimizing the impact of higher fees on individual immigrants and their families, shifts too much of the burden onto employers, say Juan Steevens and William Coffman at Mintz.

  • Navigating The FCC's Rules On AI-Generated Robocall Voices

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    The Federal Communications Commission's declaratory ruling issued last week extends the agency's regulatory reach under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act to calls that use artificial intelligence technology to generate voices, laying out a compliance roadmap, but not making AI-cloned voices in robocalls illegal per se, say attorneys at Wiley Rein.

  • Aviation Watch: 737 Max Blowout Raises Major Safety Issues

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    The sudden in-flight loss of a side panel on an Alaska Air 737-9 Max last month, leaving a gaping hole in the side of the plane's cabin, highlighted ongoing quality issues at Boeing, the jet's manufacturer — but the failure also arose from decisions made by the airline, says Alan Hoffman, a retired attorney and aviation expert.

  • Exporters Should Approach Self-Disclosure With Caution

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    A January Bureau of Industry and Security memorandum created an abbreviated process for disclosing export control violations that lack aggravating factors, but deciding which disclosure method to utilize remains a complex strategic undertaking to which companies must give careful consideration, say attorneys at Covington.

  • Is Compulsory Copyright Licensing Needed For AI Tech?

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    The U.S. Copyright Office's inquiry into whether Congress should establish a compulsory licensing regime for artificial intelligence technologies that are trained on copyrighted works has received relatively little attention — but commenters recently opposed the regime under three key themes, say Michael Kientzle and Ryan White at Arnold & Porter.

  • Exxon ESG Proxy Statement Suit May Chill Investor Proposals

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    Exxon Mobil’s recent use of a Texas federal lawsuit to intimidate shareholders into withdrawing a climate-friendly proxy proposal could inspire more public companies to sue to avoid adopting ESG resolutions — a power move that would chill activist investor participation and unbalance shareholder-corporate relations, say Domenico Minerva and James Fee at Labaton Keller.

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