McDonald Hopkins Government Strategies Advisory: This Week in Washington — August 14, 2015

Editors Note: With Congress out of session for the August recess, we present an abbreviated “This Week in Washington.”

Obama’s climate rules under fire

Congress isn’t the only place that President Barack Obama’s new rules for carbon-emissions from power plants is facing a challenge. Fifteen states attorneys general have now asked a federal court to put the rules on hold because the clock has begun ticking on their compliance – while the rules have not been formally published in the Federal Register, they were publicly unveiled in early August.

The lawsuit argues that without a stay from the court, states will be “irreparably harmed” because they must spend resources and begin reordering their energy sector.

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Telehealth / Remote Care 2.0: The Coming Disruption

As stakeholders, legislators and policymakers wrestle with the myriad of issues related to the provision of remote health care, clinical and technological advancements continue apace. What was once an industry focused primarily on the provision of primary care through existing remote platforms is morphing into a highly sophisticated brew of clinical and technological innovation.  In that regard, several trends have caught my attention. While these trends may not squarely fall within the accepted definitions of “telehealth”, they are worth noting because they raise many of the same legal and clinical issues with which we currently wrestle in the telehealth space.  I am limiting my discussion to three of these trends and will address others in a separate post.

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ILN Today Post

Navigating Employment Law Issues Between the United States and Canada

There are many differences between the employment laws, regulations, and standards in the United States and Canada, thereby making it challenging for legal practitioners and human resources personnel alike to counsel companies that conduct business in both countries.  Therefore, it is imperative that those advising cross-border companies fully grasp the evolving laws of each state and province, as well as the federal laws of both countries, in order to ensure compliance and proper practice.   More…

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ILN Today Post

HOWARD & HOWARD EXPANDS INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY PRACTICE

Royal Oak, Michigan, August 13, 2015:  Howard & Howard Attorneys PLLC is pleased to announce that Amanda E. Hill has joined the firm.  She will practice out of the firm’s Royal Oak Office.

Ms. Hill concentrates her practice in intellectual property. She has experience preparing, filing and prosecuting patent applications in fields related to chemical, mechanical and electrical engineering. She has also prepared patentability, infringement and invalidity opinions on behalf of her clients.

Ms. Hill received her J.D. from Michigan State University College of Law in 2011 and her B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Wayne State University in 2008. She is licensed to practice in the State of Michigan and before the United States Patent and Trademark Office. More…

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Court Invalidates Solomon’s Appointment As Acting NLRB General Counsel– What Does It Mean?

On August 7, in SW General Inc. v. NLRB 2015 US App LEXIS 13812, a federal appellate court ruled that the January 5, 2011 appointment of Lafe Solomon as Acting General Counsel to the NLRB violated the Federal Vacancies Reform Act 5 U.S.C. Sections 3345 et. seq. (FVRA) (PDF). For that reasons it held that his authorizations to issue an unfair labor practice (“ULP”) complaint in the case was invalid and the NLRB’s decision finding the employer guilty of ULPs must be vacated. Since Solomon served as Acting General Counsel until November 4, 2013, the Court’s decision renders potentially suspect any and all NLRB ULP  decisions based upon complaints issued during that period.

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Restrictive covenants in employment contracts: Are they effective?

For all you need to know about restrictive covenants, read our guide to restrictive covenants here.

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ILN Today Post

Spedition Peterhänsel: Insolvenzplan führt auch zur Entschuldung des privat haftenden Alleingesellschafters

The business operations of forwarding “Peterhänsel Internationale Transporte GmbH & Co. KG” was continued by insolvency administrator Dr. Bettina E. Breitenbücher of the nationwide law firm KÜBLER for 30 months without any restrictions. The insolvency plan for the company was successfully implemented and at the same time reducing the debt burden of the private adhering sole shareholder are made possible. Now, the process has been canceled. The insolvency rate is ten percent, well above the average.

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“Even After Suprema, ITC’s Digital Authority Still In Doubt,” Maxwell Goss quoted in Law360

The Federal Circuit’s en banc decision Monday, August 10, in Suprema v. ITC — the court said the agency has the authority to ban the importation of materials that induce patent infringement even if they aren’t infringing when they cross the border — was a big deal in its own right, but many observers quickly wondered how the ruling might impact an even more closely watched case that’s also sitting before the appeals court.

Click here to read the full article.

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Multistate Tax Update – August 13, 2015

In December 2014, Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel’s idea for an online checkbook went live, with a price tag of $814,000. By March, the checkbook was impressive enough that the Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) gave it an A+ grade in “Following the Money 2015: How the 50 States Rate in Providing Online Access to Government Spending Data,” as we pointed out in a previous Multistate Tax Update.

PIRG gave 14 states an A ranking (in order of ranking from high to low):

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ILN Today Post

ILN-ergy | Part Two: PEAK OIL – Are We There Yet?

ILNergyOil and Natural Gas Boom and Bust Cycles and Their Impact On The Practice of Law

Part One of this article examined the peak oil theory, and specifically discussed the significant increase in world-wide production of oil and natural gas caused in part by the prolific use of hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling in oil shale formations. Thanks to these and other technological innovations and heavy capital investments coupled with aggressive entrepreneurial risk taking, world-wide production has reached new records. These production records are occurring at a time when relative consumption is beginning to level off and even decline in certain regions(1). Producers were encouraged to see the price of oil stabilize at around $60 per barrel during April, May and June(2), encouraging some resurgence of drilling activity. Static demand combined with economic chaos in Greece, continued discussions between the West and Iran over Iran’s nuclear program(3)  and the resurgence in United States production(4)  has caused the price of oil to again slide to the low $40s per barrel.

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