Suppliers Concerned over Debt Repayment Following BHS Administration

The news that high street retailer BHS has entered administration has been widely reported in the media, with speculation over the future of the thousands of employees who work there and concern over the existence of a possible pension deficit.

The Government has tried to provide a measure of calm by issuing a statement confirming that BHS is currently still open for business as usual. It added that there are no plans for immediate redundancies or store closures, and that the administrators are looking to sell BHS as a going concern.

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House Passes Federal Trade Secrets Bill

After years of stops and starts in Congressional efforts to pass a law creating a federal claim for misappropriation of trade secrets that can be pursued by private citizens and companies (as opposed to federal prosecutors), the last few weeks have produced an astonishing acceleration of those efforts.  This month, the Defend Trade Secrets Act has been approved by both houses of Congress in resounding fashion.  It is on the brink of being enacted into law.

On April 27, 2016, the House of Representatives voted 410-2 to pass the Defend Trade Secrets Act.  That vote came quickly on the heels of the April 20, 2016 approval of the bill by the House Judiciary Committee, where the bill had languished since July 2015.  The Judiciary Committee finally took action on the bill after the Senate voted unanimously by a tally of 87-0 to approve the bill on April 4, 2016.

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Intellectual Property: 3 notable features of the newly passed Defend Trade Secrets Act

The Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 (DTSA) is about to become law. The United States Senate approved the legislation by a margin of 87 to 0 earlier this month, and the House of Representatives approved it 410 to 2. President Barack Obama, whose administration urged Congress to pass the legislation, is virtually certain to sign the bipartisan bill into law.

The DTSA will provide powerful new tools for businesses to protect their hard-won technical, business, and other information. The DTSA extends to “all forms and types of financial, business, scientific, technical, economic, or engineering information,” provided that the owner has taken reasonable steps to keep the information secret and the information derives value from its secrecy. Examples of protectable trade secrets include:

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Video Isn’t Just for Hollywood…It’s for Lawyers Too!

photo-1459184070881-58235578f004These days, everyone is talking about video – whether you’re livestreaming or pre-recording, it’s something the legal industry can no longer ignore. And those law firms doing it well are ahead of the curve, and getting attention! So I didn’t want to miss the LMA’s session on “Video Isn’t Just for Hollywood,” with Lane Powell’s Jennifer Castleberry, ReelLawyers’ Bill White, and Sutherland’s Stephen DiGennaro.

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ILN Today Post

Eye to the future: Shutts & Bowen’s history mirrors Miami’s

A recent Miami Herald article highlighted Shutts & Bowen’s continued growth in Miami and across the state, delving into the firm’s latest practice areas – including hospitality, intellectual property and Cuba – as well as its plans to expand to new offices in Jacksonville.

Bowman Brown, chairman of the firm’s Executive Committee, describes new legal opportunities brought to South Florida by the relocation of domestic hedge funds and private equity funds. Frank Rodriguez, Managing Partner for the Miami office and the Latin America practice group leader, states that Miami is “in the top 20 to 25 cities for high-net-worth individuals and international investors,” which creates more opportunities for the firm, especially in the areas of financial services, real estate, litigation and tax-planning.

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ILN Today Post

Palm Beach Legal Aid to Honor Shutts & Bowen and others during Annual Pro Bono Recognition Evening

The Legal Aid Society of Palm Beach County will honor nine attorneys, a private investigator, a community volunteer and Shutts & Bowen during its Annual Pro Bono Recognition Evening on May 7th at the Palm Beach County Convention Center in West Palm Beach.

The honorees have supported causes within the last year for domestic violence survivors; abused, abandoned and neglected children; exploited seniors; foster children; and housing and employment discrimination victims.

 

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What happens to your digital self after death?

photo-1417733403748-83bbc7c05140Florida Grants Fiduciaries Access to Digital Information

For anyone who has dealt with the death or incapacity of a loved one in recent years, one of the most perplexing and fraught questions has been how to access their electronic or digital records. Whether we realize it or not, most of us own digital assets. These could be photographs or videos on your smartphone, documents in the cloud, iTunes music collections, email accounts, social media accounts, banking records, online shopping or travel memberships, stock trading accounts – anything that can be created, transmitted, accessed or stored on any electronic or digital medium.

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Multistate Tax Update — April 27, 2016

In fiscal year 2013-14, corporate income taxes contributed about 8 percent to California’s General Fund, or $8.5 billion, and were the third largest source of revenue. The first and second largest revenue sources were personal income taxes, at about 65 percent, or $66.2 billion, and sales and use taxes, at about 22 percent, or $22.2 billion, respectively.

The California State Auditor released its findings last week, in response to a request by the Joint Legislative Audit Committee (Committee) to assess the benefits and cost-effectiveness of certain corporate tax breaks. In its April 2016 Corporate Income Tax Expenditures (Report), the Auditor found that regular evaluation of corporate income tax expenditures would improve their efficiency and effectiveness. These tax expenditures, which are defined as tax benefits for qualifying corporations, consist of tax exemptions, deductions, credits, and exclusions, and cost the state more than $5 billion in forgone revenues for fiscal year 2012-13.

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Natural Gas Claims and Litigation Association Annual Meeting

Mike Snyder, Co-Chair, Energy Team, is presenting at The Natural Gas Claims and Litigation Association Annual Meeting at JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort, April 27 at Noon. At the Association’s annual meeting, more than 85 people from more than 50 organizations attend. Presentations include gas incident case histories, the impact of the World Trade Center attack on the local utility’s operations, and property damage recovery techniques.

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DOJ Launches New Online Resource Regarding Accessible Technology Issues

While many continue to wait with growing impatience for the U.S. Department of Justice to finally issue regulations governing website accessibility for businesses under Title III of the ADA, DOJ has just launched a new online resource for those interested in staying abreast of developments in the overall area of accessible technology.

This new site is meant to provide further guidance and information to employers, state/local governments, businesses and non-profits, and individuals with disabilities by serving as a “one stop” source for DOJ’s technical assistance and guidance about accessible technology (e.g., website accessibility, e-readers, point-of-sale devices), as well as providing up to date information about DOJ’s enforcement efforts, regulatory/rulemaking endeavors, and other related initiatives in this sphere. 

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