Legal Updates

Anbefalinger for god fondsledelse af erhvervsdrivende fonde

Anbefalingerne er udarbejdet i forlængelse af den nye lov om erhvervsdrivende fonde, der blev vedtaget den 3. juni 2014.

Loven indeholder en bestemmelse om, at bestyrelsen skal redegøre for, hvorledes de forholder sig til de af Komitéen for god Fondsledelse udarbejdede anbefalinger for god fondsledelse.

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“Ban the Box” is Coming to Illinois

Jason Tremblay

Illinois has become the 5th U.S. state to prohibit inquiries about criminal history on initial applications from most private sector jobs. Commonly known as “ban the box” legislation, the “Job Opportunities for Qualified Applicants Act” requires private employers or employment agencies in Illinois who employ at least 15 employees to evaluate an applicant’s skills and qualifications before inquiring into the applicant’s criminal history. While asking about criminal history is not prohibited, employers are prohibited from making inquiries into criminal backgrounds and convictions until later in the interviewing process. Specifically, an employer or employment agency cannot “inquire about or into, consider, require disclosure of the criminal record or criminal history of an applicant until the applicant has been determined qualified for the position and notified that the applicant has been selected for an interview….or, if there is not an interview, until after a conditional offer of employment is made to the applicant….”

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Connecticut State Court Rejects Trade Secrets Theft Complaint

After a bench trial, a Connecticut state court rejected a violation of trade secret complaint by an employer against a former employee in BTS USA v. Executive Perspectives, Superior Court, Waterbury, Docket No. X10-CV-116010685 (Oct. 16, 2014). The plaintiff, BTU USA, provides training and consulting services to corporate clients using learning maps, computer simulations and board games. The defendant, Executive Perspectives (“EP”), offers essentially the same services and products.

Marshall Bergmann, a former BTS Senior Director who had access to much of BTS’ proprietary information, had signed a non-compete clause stating, among other things, that when he left, he would not solicit current BTS customers, or any client BTS had, during the last two years of his employment. BTS claimed that after Bergmann left his employment, he violated the non-compete provision by contacting and soliciting BTS clients through LinkedIn, and he stole some of the technology and products, such as packaging, the name of the packaging vendor and client lists, in violation of the Connecticut Uniform Trade Secrets Act. Other claims included Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act Violation, tortious interference with business relationships and breach of contract.

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Pleadings, Pitfalls and Party Litigants – Running Your Own Court Case

Courts are intimidating environments, and if you find yourself having to go to court to settle a dispute – either as the Pursuer or the Defender – you would be well advised to instruct a solicitor.  Of course, on some occasions this will not be possible.  You may simply not have the funds or inclination to pay a solicitor, or view the sum being sued for as so small that it is not worth going to the expense of hiring a professional.  You may be eligible for legal aid funding for a solicitor.

This brief guide is designed to highlight the current differences in procedures in Scottish Sheriff Courts with respect to “pleadings” and “fair notice”, and what these might mean for you when bringing (or defending) a claim on your own.

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The Land Registration etc. (Scotland) Act 2012 – Scottish conveyancing’s coming of age.

Heritable property law in Scotland has undergone a turbulent period of reform within the last 35 years. From introduction of the Land Register in 1979 to the abolition of feudal tenure in the imaginatively named Abolition of Feudal Tenure etc. (Scotland) Act 2000, there has been a clear intention to simplify conveyancing. The Land Registration etc. (Scotland) Act 2012 aims to modernise the law further and will have a major impact on Scottish conveyancing practice on 8 December 2014 when the Act comes into full force. Given that for many Scots, the purchase of heritable property represents the most costly and significant investment they will ever make, any change to heritable property law, whether substantive or administrative, will naturally have a significant impact across society-at-large. So what does the Act do?

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Can trusts be trusted in the event of divorce?

Preserving family wealth is uppermost in many families’ minds.  Therefore, knowing how structures created to hold family wealth will perform in the event of a family member divorcing is crucial.
Unfortunately, the treatment of trusts on a beneficiary divorcing is to some extent uncertain.  The legislation is clear enough: anyone with an irrevocable, fixed interest in a trust (e.g. life tenant/capital remainderman) can have their interest transferred to their spouse or child in the event of a divorce or separation.  The terms of ‘nuptial settlements’, be they discretionary or fixed interest, can also be varied to permit a spouse and/or children to benefit.  Therefore, trusts that want to remain outside the divorce courts will take care not to be regarded as nuptial settlements. 
However, this can be difficult to achieve as, if there is some connection between the trust and a spouse to the marriage, in that capacity, the court has shown itself to be capable of some creative thinking if it decides that it needs to find that a trust is a nuptial settlement.  There is no statutory definition of a nuptial settlement for these purposes – the matter is entirely caselaw driven, so the boundaries of what constitutes a nuptial settlement are still being explored.
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Multistate Tax Update — November 20, 2014

California: Berkeley will tax sodas and other sugary beverages, San Francisco will not

On November 5, 2014, the LA Times proclaimed the City of Berkeley’s Sugary Beverages and Soda Tax, Measure D, to be a success; about 75 percent of voters backed it. The penny-per-ounce tax affects the following sugar-sweetened beverages sold in the city:

 
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Nyt krav på vej om registrering af selskabers ejerforhold i offentligt ejerregister

Med henblik på at skabe mere åbenhed og gennemsigtighed vedrørende danske selskabers ejerforhold skal alle danske aktieselskaber, anpartsselskaber, iværksætterselskaber og partnerselskaber fra den 15. december 2014 registrere deres ejerforhold i et offentligt ejerregister.

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Viborg Kommunes køb af reklamer på Viborg Stadion af Viborg FF A/S

Viborg Byråd traf beslutningen om, at Viborg FF i en femårig periode må benytte eller sælge stadionnavnet til Viborg Stadion, der ikke fremstår som økonomisk forsvarlig.

I marts 2014 fandt Statsforvaltningen, at der ud fra de i sagen foreliggende oplysninger ikke var påvist en egentlig saglig kommunal interesse i den trufne beslutning, men at beslutningen nærmere og i det væsentlige syntes båret af hensynet til at give Viborg FF A/S en økonomisk håndsrækning, hvilket ikke er lovligt. Viborg Byråds beslutning fremstod derfor ikke som økonomisk forsvarlig.

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NYC Affordable Transit Act Passes – Expanding the Right to Pre-Tax Transit Benefits to More New Yorkers

Technology, media, and telecommunication employers doing business in New York City should take note of a new ordinance Mayor Bill de Blasio signed into law on October 20, 2014 – The Affordable Transit Act.

The Affordable Transit Act (the “Act”) requires employers in New York City with 20 or more full-time employees to offer pre-tax transit benefits to employees. The Act allows employees to use up to $130 in tax free money towards their transit costs, which is the current IRS limit.  Full-time employees are defined as employees working an average of 30 hours or more per week.

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