In February 2015, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (the office) solicited comments as to whether it should recognize privilege for U.S. patent agents and foreign attorneys or agents. Following the comment period, the office published a notice and final rule in the Federal Register on Nov. 7, 2017 (82 Fed. Reg. 214 at 51572) officially recognizing the privilege, effective December 7, 2017.
Last year, the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) amended its recordkeeping rules related to workplace injuries and illnesses to require employers keeping those records to submit information to OSHA electronically.
On November 16, 2017, Institutional Shareholder Services Inc. (ISS) released updates to its proxy voting guidelines for 2018 (2018 Updates). The 2018 Updates are effective for shareholder meetings on or after February 1, 2018. This alert summarizes the highlights of the 2018 Updates.
The California Fair Employment and Housing Act currently requires employers with 50 or more employees to provide all supervisory employees with at least two hours of training and education regarding sexual harassment and abusive conduct.
On October 17, 2017, the European Union (EU) Working Party on The Protection of Individuals with Regard to the Processing of Personal Data (also referred to as the Article 29 Data Protection Working Party) released two draft guidance documents.
California law generally prohibits an employer from asking applicants to disclose, or from using as a factor in determining any condition of employment, information concerning arrests or detentions not resulting in a conviction.
On October 12, 2017, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) proposed amendments to various items of Regulation S-K that are intended to (1) modernize and simplify certain disclosure requirements in Regulation S-K and related rules and forms and (2) improve the readability and navigability of disclosure documents and discourage repetition and disclosure of immaterial information.
On September 29, 2017, the Fifth Circuit overturned a $664 million False Claims Act (FCA) judgment in U.S. ex rel. Harman v. Trinity Industries, Inc, Case No. 15-41172 (5th Cir). The court’s reasoning offers substantial ammunition to FCA defendants, and further demonstrates that courts really will enforce the strict materiality requirements outlined by the Supreme Court in Universal Health Servs., Inc. v. United States ex rel., Escobar, 136 S. Ct. 1989, 1995 (2016).
Just recently, in Severson v. Heartland Woodcraft, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals completely rejected the EEOC’s position – “A multimonth leave of absence is beyond the scope of a reasonable accommodation under the ADA.“
New York’s Paid Family Leave Law (PFLL) will provide employees with wage replacement while away from work in order to bond with a child, care for a close relative with a serious health condition, or help with family duties when someone is called to military service.