Public Policy

  • April 11, 2024

    Proposed BIPA Penalty Reforms Advance In Ill. Legislature

    The Illinois Senate on Thursday passed legislation that would update the Biometric Information Privacy Act as well as tweak its liability guidelines, a clarification that proponents say is needed to protect businesses from costly, frivolous litigation.

  • April 11, 2024

    CFPB Says Credit Card Shares Disqualifying In 5th Circ. Case

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau sparred Thursday with a coalition of trade groups over recusal standards in their Fifth Circuit lawsuit challenging the agency's new $8 credit card late fee rule, arguing that a judge's ownership of stock in a major card-issuing bank ought to be disqualifying in itself.

  • April 11, 2024

    Judge Tells USPTO To Hand Over 'Expanded' Panels List

    A Virginia federal judge has ordered the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to hand over a list the agency once made of how many Patent Trial and Appeal Board proceedings went before "expanded" panels, a practice that has since been abandoned.

  • April 11, 2024

    FTC's Bedoya Looking For Market Power In Pricing Cases

    Federal Trade Commissioner Alvaro Bedoya said Thursday he is most interested in bringing potential cases under the Robinson Patman Act when a company is using its market power to gain an unfair advantage over smaller rivals.

  • April 11, 2024

    Auto Tech Group Floats Bill To End Abusers' Car Access

    An auto technology group is pressing Congress to pass legislation that would make it easier for domestic violence survivors to cut off abusers' access to vehicles that use advanced wireless connectivity and could be used to track abused partners.

  • April 11, 2024

    FCC Says Satellite Co.'s Dispute With Backer Belongs In Court

    The Federal Communications Commission on Thursday told a satellite company and its financial backer to take their squabble over a withdrawn enforcement petition to court, rejecting BIU LLC's bid to reopen an administrative proceeding first prompted by Spectrum Five.

  • April 11, 2024

    Leonard Leo Rebuffs Senate Judiciary Committee Subpoena

    Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, served influential conservative and longtime Federalist Society executive Leonard Leo with a subpoena on Thursday as part of his U.S. Supreme Court ethics probe, which Leo is refusing to comply with.

  • April 11, 2024

    ND Tribe Banishes SD Gov. After Racially Charged Remarks

    A North Dakota tribe has joined two South Dakota Lakota nations in voting to banish South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem from their reservation lands after accusing her of making racially charged public comments about drug cartels allegedly operating on reservations in the state and about Native American parents.

  • April 11, 2024

    State Rules Can't 'Obliterate' Federal Rights, Justices Told

    The U.S. Supreme Court must clarify that states are categorically prohibited from requiring plaintiffs to exhaust local administrative remedies before pursuing claims that state officials violated federal rights, several Alabamans told the court Thursday, warning that state prerequisites obliterate federal rights.

  • April 11, 2024

    Race Bias Used To Form New Fla. Senate Districts, Voters Say

    A group of Tampa-area residents has filed a federal lawsuit challenging the validity of a state Senate district map, claiming Florida officials wrongly used race as a factor to redraw two districts and diminished the ability of Black voters to elect representatives of their choice.

  • April 11, 2024

    Price-Fixing Cartel Self Reporting On 'Steady Uptick,' Panel Says

    U.S. and European antitrust enforcers touted a turnaround Thursday in the number of companies self-reporting price-fixing, bid-rigging and market allocation schemes in the search for "leniency" from financial and criminal penalties over the last three years.

  • April 11, 2024

    Judge Calls Out Colo. For Limiting Prisoner Calls With Attys

    A Colorado state judge on Thursday said the state's prisons seemed to be imposing "draconian" limits on virtual calls between prisoners and their lawyers, telling officials to figure out how to do more for those seeking to join a proposed class action accusing the state of using them for slave labor.

  • April 11, 2024

    Shops Fight Altria Unit's Bid To Block Flavored Vape Sales

    A group of smoke shops urged a California federal judge to reject a bid by vape manufacturer NJOY, a subsidiary of tobacco giant Altria Group, Inc., seeking to block the retailers from selling Elf Bar branded flavored vapes, arguing that consumers won't flock to NJOY's tobacco flavored products even if Elf Bar is off the market.

  • April 11, 2024

    Prosecutor Named In Ga. Lt. Gov. 2020 Fake Elector Probe

    Nearly two years after a judge disqualified Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis from investigating Georgia Lieutenant Gov. Burt Jones over his alleged role in helping former President Donald Trump overturn the state's 2020 presidential election, a state prosecutor has been appointed to handle the case.

  • April 11, 2024

    FTC 'Hopeful' Merger Judges Can See Past Market Definition

    The Federal Trade Commission's top antitrust enforcer emphasized Thursday that the FTC and Justice Department's new merger guidelines could facilitate transaction challenges based solely on "direct" competitive effects, regardless of what market definition numbers indicate.

  • April 11, 2024

    Iowa Makes Illegal U.S. Reentry A State Crime

    Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds has signed into law a bill that will let state police arrest individuals suspected of having entered the country illegally, raising the prospect of another legal battle over the federal government's jurisdiction over immigration affairs.

  • April 11, 2024

    FDA Commissioner Says Congress Must Act On Hemp, CBD

    The commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Thursday that the agency did not consider hemp-derived CBD safe enough to be sold lawfully as a dietary supplement, and urged Congress to create a new pathway to regulate the substance.

  • April 11, 2024

    Interior Dept. Finalizes Rule To Strengthen Endangered Species Act

    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Thursday announced a final rule it said is intended to increase participation in its voluntary conservation programs, but environmentalists slammed it as "a huge missed opportunity" to improve conditions for wildlife.

  • April 11, 2024

    Colo. Developer Sues Over Remodeling Impact Fees

    A Colorado developer has accused Pitkin County's Board of Commissioners in Colorado federal court of wrongfully charging impact fees on the remodel of a residential property.

  • April 11, 2024

    DOI Lowers Fees For Solar, Wind Projects On Public Lands

    The U.S. Department of the Interior unveiled finalized updates to its renewable energy regulations on Thursday that are aimed at promoting the development of solar and wind energy on public lands by lowering the associated fees.

  • April 11, 2024

    Drag Ban Opponents Defend Free Speech Stance To 5th Circ.

    A coalition of LGBTQ advocacy groups, performers and venues challenging a Lone Star State law widely seen as a ban on drag shows told the Fifth Circuit that the attorney general "ignores established precedent" in his defense of the legislation, which the groups said chills "inherently expressive" performances.

  • April 11, 2024

    CFPB, EU Say Teamwork 'Critical' As Fintech Bridges Atlantic

    The consumer protection watchdogs in Europe and the U.S. said Thursday that their ongoing dialogue has yielded three shared focuses — the expansion of technology firms' payment services, the use of artificial intelligence in consumer markets and buy now, pay later products.

  • April 11, 2024

    Odebrecht Exec Details Bribes To Ex-Ecuador Comptroller

    The former director of Odebrecht SA's operations in Ecuador told jurors Thursday that he paid millions in bribes to "Miami" — a code name for Ecuador's former comptroller — related to various infrastructure projects the Brazilian conglomerate was building in the country.

  • April 11, 2024

    Ga. Judge Tosses Immigrant Voting Rights Suit Mid-Trial

    As attorneys for the Georgia Secretary of State's office prepared to mount their defense Thursday against a lawsuit challenging the legality of how the state adds newly naturalized citizens to its voter rolls, an Atlanta federal judge instead announced she was dismissing the case mid-trial.

  • April 11, 2024

    Alaska Native Village Defends Donlin Gold Mine Approvals

    Alaska's Native Village of Crooked Creek threw its support behind the federal government in litigation brought by half a dozen tribes challenging its approvals for a massive open-pit gold mine along the Kuskokwim River in southwest Alaska, saying the project will bring meaningful improvements to Crooked Creek.

Expert Analysis

  • Strategies For Navigating Compliance Monitorships

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    As independent compliance monitorships continue to be a favored tool of the government in resolving corporate enforcement matters, counsel should have a firm grasp on best practices for selecting a monitor, preparing the company and ensuring a productive relationship between the parties, say attorneys at WilmerHale.

  • How DEI Programs Are Being Challenged In Court And Beyond

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    In the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court's affirmative action decision last year declaring the consideration of race in university admissions unconstitutional, employers should keep abreast of recent litigation challenging diversity, equity and inclusion training programs, as well as legislation both supporting and opposing DEI initiatives in the workplace, say attorneys at Skadden.

  • An Energy Industry Case Study In Expropriation Risk

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    Andrés Chambouleyron at Berkeley Research breaks down how expropriation risk and damage mitigation calculations vary considerably by different energy sources, and uses Argentina as a case study for how energy investors might protect their interests.

  • Blocked JetBlue-Spirit Deal Illustrates New Antitrust Approach

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    The U.S. Department of Justice’s recent successful block of a merger between JetBlue Airways and Spirit Airlines demonstrates antitrust enforcers’ updated and disparate approach to out-of-market benefits versus out-of-market harms, say Lisa Rumin and Anthony Ferrara at McDermott.

  • At 'SEC Speaks,' A Focus On Rebuilding Trust Amid Criticism

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    At the Practising Law Institute's SEC Speaks conference last week, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission leadership highlighted efforts to rebuild and restore trust in the U.S. capital markets by addressing investor concerns through regulatory measures and enforcement actions, emphasizing the need for cooperation from market participants, say attorneys at Perkins Coie.

  • Series

    Fla. Banking Brief: All The Notable Legal Updates In Q1

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    Early 2024 developments that could have a notable impact on Florida's finance community include progress on a bill that would substantially revise the state Securities and Investor Protection Act, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's final rule capping late fees for larger credit card issuers, say Benjamin Weinberg and Megan Riley at Leon Cosgrove.

  • The Pros And Cons Of NIST's Proposed March-In Framework

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    Recent comments for and against the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s proposed guidance on march-in rights — which permit the government to seize federally funded patents — highlight how the framework may promote competition, but could also pose a risk to contractors and universities, say Nick Lee and Paul Ragusa at Baker Botts.

  • What Minority Biz Law Ruling Could Mean For Private DEI

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    A Texas federal court’s recent decision to strike down key provisions of the Minority Business Development Act illustrates the wide-reaching effects of the U.S. Supreme Court's 2023 Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard decision across legal contexts, say attorneys at Jenner & Block.

  • Opinion

    Federal MDL Rule Benefits From Public Comments

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    The new Federal Rule of Civil Procedure concerning multidistrict litigation that was approved this week by the Advisory Committee on Civil Rules incorporates ideas from public comments that will aid both plaintiffs and defense attorneys — and if ultimately adopted, the rule should promote efficient, merits-driven MDL case management, say Robert Johnston and Gary Feldon at Hollingsworth.

  • Weisselberg's Perjury At Trial Spotlights Atty Ethics Issues

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    Former Trump Organization executive Allen Weisselberg’s recent guilty plea for perjury in the New York attorney general's civil fraud trial should serve as a reminder to attorneys of their ethical duties when they know a client has lied or plans to lie in court, and the potential penalties for not fulfilling those obligations, say Hilary Gerzhoy and Julienne Pasichow at HWG.

  • Practicing Law With Parkinson's Disease

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    This Parkinson’s Awareness Month, Adam Siegler at Greenberg Traurig discusses his experience working as a lawyer with Parkinson’s disease, sharing both lessons on how to cope with a diagnosis and advice for supporting colleagues who live with the disease.

  • Texas Hair Bias Ruling Does Not Give Employers A Pass

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    A Texas state court’s recent decision, holding that a school could discipline a student with locs for refusing to cut his hair, should not be interpreted by employers as a license to implement potentially discriminatory grooming policies, says Dawn Holiday at Jackson Walker.

  • When Trade Secret Protection And Nat'l Security Converge

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    The Trump administration's anti-espionage program focused on China is over, but federal enforcement efforts to protect trade secrets and U.S. national security continue, and companies doing business in high-risk jurisdictions need to maintain their compliance programs to avoid the risk of being caught in the crosshairs of an investigation, say attorneys at Baker McKenzie.

  • Opinion

    Aviation Watch: Not All Airline Mergers Hurt The Public

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    The U.S. Department of Justice's actions to block recent attempted airline mergers have been touted as serving the interests of the consumers — but given the realities of the deregulated air travel market, a tie-up like the one proposed between JetBlue and Spirit might have been a win for the public, says Alan Hoffman, a retired attorney and aviation expert.

  • The Merger Cases That Will Matter At ABA Antitrust Meeting

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    While the American Bar Association's Antitrust Spring Meeting this week will cover all types of competition law issues in the U.S. and abroad, expect the federal agencies' recent track record in merger enforcement to be a key area of focus on the official panels and in cocktail party chatter, say attorneys at Freshfields.

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