Legal Updates

Customs Delivers Duty Pain with New Notice

The Australian Customs and Border Protection Service (“Customs“) published an Australian Customs and Border Protection Notice (“ACN“), ACN 2014/36, on or about 14 August 2014, but dated 31 July 2014, advising of the revocation of ACN 2000/30.  ACN 2000/30 represented Customs’ view from the year 2000 on the interaction between the relevant Incoterms and liability for customs duty.  Specifically, ACN 2000/30 clarified the previous position of Customs as to who the owner of imported goods was for Customs entry purposes, and who the importer was for Goods and Services Tax (“GST”) purposes in regards to Delivery Duty Paid (“DDP“) and Delivery Duty Unpaid (“DDU“) transactions.   More…

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Every credit union advertises. And, every credit union faces the same question: what disclosures are required on my advertisement? Often, there are internal discussion and meetings (fights?) at the credit union – most likely involving those responsible for marketing and those responsible for compliance.

How can credit unions understand and manage the compliance risks related to their advertising? I’ve been fortunate to work with credit unions throughout the country – first as the lead compliance attorney at NAFCU and now in private practice. Based on this experience (I’ve spent a good deal of time “in the weeds” of the overlapping regulations), below are my 7 Advertising Compliance Tips for Credit Unions. More…

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Large Data Breach Highlights Risks from Foreign Hackers

Community Hospital Systems (CHS) has announced that the personal information of approximately 4.5 million patients has been breached.  According to CHS, the information includes patient names, addresses, social security numbers, telephone numbers, and birthdates. Although the breached records do not contain the details of the patients’ treatment at CHS’ hospitals, the identifying information in the […]

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Container detention fees an unlawful penalty?

There have been ongoing debates as to the quantum of container detention fees charged by shipping lines.  This has been a controversial issue, as many are of the view that the heavy fees imposed do not constitute a genuine pre-estimate of the damages expected to be suffered from the late return or non-return of a shipping container and are better considered as penalties and unenforceable.

This issue has been reawakened by a class action filed on 12 August 2014 against ANZ, Citibank and Westpac (“the New Class Action”).  The New Class Action follows on from a series of previous litigation concerning the enforceability of the quantum of certain bank fees.  More…

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On August 14, 2014, in East Durham Wind, Inc. v. The Municipality of West Grey, 2014 ONSC 4669 (“East Durham”), Ontario’s Divisional Court found that the Municipality of West Grey’s entrance permit policy and oversize/overweight vehicle by-law (collectively referred to as “permitting by-laws”) frustrated, pursuant to section 14(2) of the Municipal Act, S.O. 2001, c.15 (“Municipal Act”), the purpose of East Durham Wind, Inc.’s Renewable Energy Approval (“REA”) issued for the construction of a 14 turbine wind farm. As a result, the Court ruled that the permitting by-laws must be held inoperable to the extent of their conflict with the REA pursuant to section 14(2) of the Municipal Act, S.O. 2001, c.15 (“Municipal Act”). More…

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What happens when a beneficiary is criminally responsible for the deceased’s death?

In the Fenotti Estate case, Chief Justice Hinkson considered a thought-provoking (and troubling) issue:  what occurs when a beneficiary of a deceased’s estate was criminally responsible for the deceased’s death?

In this case, the deceased did not leave a Will.  As a result, the deceased’s estate (the “Estate”) would pass on intestacy to the deceased’s four children.  However, one of the deceased’s children had pled guilty to the deceased’s murder.  The administrator of the Estate asked the Court for directions regarding the portion of the Estate that was supposed to pass to that child.

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1st Circuit Court of Appeals Upholds Tax Refund In False Claims Act Case

The United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit upheld the district court’s decision allowing Fresenius Medical Care Holdings, Inc. (f/k/a National Medical Care, Inc.) to deduct $95 Million from a $385 Million dollar civil settlement under the False Claims Act (“FCA”).  Accordingly, the First Circuit affirmed the district court’s tax refund judgment in […]

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Security Interest Reborn

Over two years have now passed since the introduction of the Personal Property Securities Act 2009 (PPSA) and we are now finally starting to see the courts provide some guidance on practical issues secured parties have been faced with since its inception.

In SFS Projects Australia Pty Ltd v Registrar of Personal Property Securities [2014] FCA 846, Justice Gleeson of the Federal Court rejected the Registrar’s argument for a narrower interpretation of the PPSA favouring a more practical application that will come as welcome relief to anybody dealing with the Personal Property Securities Register (PPSR). More…

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7-Eleven Franchise Operators’ Overtime & Minimum Wage Lawsuit Given Green Light by NJ District Court

By Maxine Neuhauser

For retail and hospitality industries especially,  it is turning out to be a long, hot summer as franchises continue to be in the employment law spotlight.  

On July 29, 2014 the NLRB’s General Counsel announced a decision to treat McDonald’s, USA, LLC as a joint employer, along with its franchisees, of workers  43 McDonald’s franchised restaurants with regard to unfair labor practices charges filed by unions on behalf of the workers and authorized charges against of both the franchisees and McDonalds. (See our July 30 blog post  and Aug. 4, 2014 Aug. 14 blog post)

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Tvangsfuldbyrdelse på grundlag af digitale dokumenter

Folketinget har den 11. juni 2014 vedtaget en ændring af retsplejeloven og forskellige andre love, som bl.a. gør det muligt for kreditorer at bruge dokumenter med debitors digitale underskrift, når man skal inddrive gæld eller søge sig sat i besiddelse af genstande solgt med ejendomsforbehold. Reglerne trådte i kraft den 1. juli 2014, og de gælder også for dokumenter, der er underskrevet digitalt inden lovens ikrafttræden.

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