Public Policy

  • 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. 

  • February 20, 2024

    Eateries' Virus Losses Not Covered, Insurer Tells NC Justices

    Cincinnati Insurance Co. urged the North Carolina Supreme Court to affirm its win in a dispute with more than a dozen eateries over coverage for pandemic-related losses, saying government shutdown orders do not constitute direct physical loss or damage required to trigger coverage.

  • February 20, 2024

    GOP, Democratic Reps. Team Up To Decry Punted FISA Vote

    The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act's controversial Section 702, which gives the government a backdoor to intercept American communications without a warrant, is set to expire soon, and a bipartisan group of lawmakers says it's time they be allowed to vote on a version of the reauthorization that would add privacy protections.

  • February 20, 2024

    Landlord Bias Can Be Eviction Defense, Colo. Justices Say

    The Colorado Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that tenants facing eviction can raise allegations of a landlord's discrimination or retaliation as a defense, directing a trial court to take another look at the case of a woman who accused her landlord of trying to boot her because she refused to have sex with him.

  • February 20, 2024

    Solar Co. Preyed On Elderly Prior To DOE Loan Deal, Suit Says

    Sunnova Energy International Inc. was hit with a proposed investor class action alleging shareholders were damaged when reports revealed that it routinely engaged in predatory tactics against elderly homeowners before it entered a deal with the U.S. Department of Energy to help disadvantaged communities.

  • February 20, 2024

    Calif. Must Face Trimmed Suit Over Locomotive Emissions Rule

    A California federal judge has trimmed a lawsuit from rail industry groups challenging a new regulation requiring railroads to transition to zero-emission locomotives in the Golden State over the next decade, saying some parts aren't in effect yet but others may interfere with federal rules governing railroad operations.

  • February 20, 2024

    Oregon Lists Southern Resident Orcas As Endangered

    A distinct population of southern resident orcas will be protected under Oregon's Endangered Species Act following a unanimous vote by the state's Fish and Wildlife Commission.

  • February 20, 2024

    Fla. Cities, Local Electeds Sue Over New Financial Disclosures

    A group of 26 Florida municipalities and 74 elected officials have sued the state, challenging a new law requiring municipal elected officials to file a more detailed financial disclosure form that they say is "highly intrusive" and requires making public private financial information unrelated to their duties.

  • February 20, 2024

    Voters Oppose Consolidating Redistricting Challenges In NC

    Voters and voting rights groups in two different camps challenging the constitutionality of North Carolina's recently redrawn state and federal legislative districts have opposed lawmakers' request to consolidate their cases, saying their claims vary "significantly."

  • February 20, 2024

    DC Circ. Says FERC Fight Over 'Onshore' Meaning Is Moot

    The D.C. Circuit has dumped a fight between the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and an advocacy group concerning whether the agency has jurisdiction over facilities that transport liquefied natural gas to port via truck, saying the dispute is moot because the proposed facility in question isn't being built.

  • February 20, 2024

    New Yorker Writer Pans Subpoena Over Adams' Ties To Pastor

    A writer for The New Yorker said that being forced to testify about an indicted Brooklyn pastor's ties to Mayor Eric Adams would step on journalistic privilege, arguing that Manhattan federal prosecutors could instead rely on other sources.

  • February 20, 2024

    GOP Sens. Seek Full Impeachment Trial For Mayorkas

    A group of Senate Republicans made the case on Tuesday that their constitutional duty compels them to hold a full impeachment trial for Alejandro Mayorkas, secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, despite reservations from other Republicans in the Democrat-led Senate.

  • February 20, 2024

    Akin Hires Top BIS Commerce Department Counsel In DC

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP has hired the former U.S. Department of Commerce's chief counsel for the Bureau of Industry and Security, who has joined the firm as a partner in Washington, D.C., the firm announced Tuesday.

  • February 20, 2024

    Fox Rothschild AI Chief Talks 'Terrifying' Deepfakes, Biased AI

    Mark McCreary, the chief artificial intelligence and information security officer at Fox Rothschild, leads his firm's internal AI strategy and provides counsel to other law firms trying to bushwhack their path through the often murky AI legal landscape, rife with hallucinated case law citations and disturbingly real deepfakes.

  • February 20, 2024

    Justices Give Feds Time In Texas, Fla. Social Media Law Fights

    The U.S. Supreme Court has set aside time for the federal government to weigh in on looming oral arguments in cases to determine the constitutionality of controversial Texas and Florida laws that restrict social media companies' ability to curb users' speech.

  • February 20, 2024

    FBI Looks Within In Naming Its Next GC

    The FBI said Tuesday that it has elevated one of its attorneys, who has worked in the government sector for a large part of his career, to serve as the agency's general counsel in Washington, D.C.

Expert Analysis

  • Preparing For A New Wave Of Litigation Under Silicosis Rules

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    After the Division of Occupational Safety and Health of California issued an emergency temporary standard to combat noncompliance with assessments of workers' exposure to particles of crystalline silica, companies that manufacture, distribute or sell silica-containing products will need aggressive case-specific discovery to navigate a new wave of litigation, say attorneys at Dechert.

  • Reimagining Law Firm Culture To Break The Cycle Of Burnout

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    While attorney burnout remains a perennial issue in the legal profession, shifting post-pandemic expectations mean that law firms must adapt their office cultures to retain talent, say Kevin Henderson and Eric Pacifici at SMB Law Group.

  • Assessing Merger Guideline Feedback With Machine Learning

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    Large language modeling appears to show that public sentiment matches agency intent around the new merger control guidelines from the Federal Trade Commission and U.S. Justice Department, says Andrew Sfekas at Cornerstone Research.

  • The FINRA Reports That May Foreshadow New AI Rules

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    By reading the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s 2024 annual report detailing the regulatory implications of artificial intelligence tools alongside a similar 2020 FINRA publication, member firms may be able to anticipate which industry areas may soon face AI-specific regulations, say attorneys at Mintz.

  • Opinion

    Vidal Should Amend USPTO Precedent In Automaker Review

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    U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Director Kathi Vidal's recent decision to review Ford and Honda patent challenges that were rejected by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board provides an opportunity to revisit precedents that have unfairly denied companies a fair review process and align them with commonsense principles of legal equity, says former Sen. Patrick Leahy.

  • Vagueness In Calif. Climate Law Makes Compliance Tricky

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    California's recently enacted Voluntary Carbon Market Disclosures Act requires companies making claims of carbon neutrality, or significant greenhouse gas emissions reductions, to disclose information supporting those claims — but vague and conflicting language in the statute poses multiple problems for businesses, say John Rousakis and Chris Bowman at O'Melveny.

  • Grant Compliance Takeaways From Ga. Tech's FCA Settlement

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    Georgia Tech’s recent False Claims Act settlement over its failure to detect compliance shortcomings in a grant program was unique in that it involved a voluntary repayment of funds prior to the resolution, offering a few key lessons for universities receiving research funding from the government, says Jonathan Porter at Husch Blackwell.

  • Series

    Competing In Dressage Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    My lifelong participation in the sport of dressage — often called ballet on horses — has proven that several skills developed through training and competition are transferable to legal work, especially the ability to harness focus, persistence and versatility when negotiating a deal, says Stephanie Coco at V&E.

  • What Financial Cos. Must Know For Handling T+1 Settlements

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    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has adopted a groundbreaking new T+1 settlement rule for securities transactions in order to improve market efficiency — but it presents significant challenges for the financial services industry, especially private equity firms, hedge funds and institutional asset managers, says Adam Weiss at Petra Funds Group.

  • Breaking Down FDIC's New Advertising And Signage Rule

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    The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.’s final rule on signage and advertising, coming on the heels of a campaign against nonbank businesses purporting to offer FDIC-insured deposit products, introduces important new requirements and clarifies existing regulations for both traditional depository institutions and novel digital platforms, say attorneys at Venable.

  • Potential Defendant Strategies Amid Calif. Privacy Questions

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    Although the current case law surrounding the California Consumer Privacy Act is in its infancy, courts have begun addressing important issues related to the notice-and-cure provisions of the statute, and these decisions show defendant-businesses would be wise to assert their notice rights early and repeatedly, say Viola Trebicka and Dan Humphrey at Quinn Emanuel.

  • High Court Case Could Reshape Local Development Fees

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    If last month's oral arguments are any indication of how the U.S. Supreme Court will rule in Sheetz v. County of El Dorado, it's unlikely the justices will hold that the essential nexus and rough proportionality tests under the cases of Nollan, Dolan and Koontz apply to legislative exactions, but a sweeping decision would still be the natural progression in the line of cases giving property owners takings claims, says Phillip Babich at Reed Smith.

  • What Cos. Evaluating M&A Can Glean From Latest HSR Report

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    The recently released Hart-Scott-Rodino report for fiscal year 2022 helps unearth important data points for companies as they evaluate potential transactions, including that, despite a historically low enforcement rate, the number of actions exceeds the number of second requests for the first time in nearly 20 years, say Ryan Quillian and John Kendrick at Covington.

  • Harmonizing Agricultural And Clean Energy Goals

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    Congress' extension of the Farm Bill offers a chance to more thoroughly consider innovation and investments that could transform the competition between farmers and solar developers into synergistic agrivoltaic systems, which use land for both agriculture and solar energy generation, say attorneys at Husch Blackwell.

  • Opinion

    Nebraska Should Abandon Proposed Digital Ad Tax

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    If passed, Nebraska’s recently proposed Advertising Services Tax Act, which would finance property tax relief by imposing a 7.5% gross revenue tax on advertising services, would cause a politically risky shift of tax burdens from landowners to local businesses and consumers, and would most certainly face litigation, say attorneys at McDermott.

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