North America

Court of Appeal Reinstates Malicious Prosecution Case Against Latham & Watkins

Co-authored by Ted A. Gehring.

On April 17th, 2012, we blogged about a malicious prosecution claim brought against Latham & Watkins in Los Angeles Superior Court. The suit alleged that the Plaintiffs, William Parrish and Timothy Fitzgibbons, were former officers and shareholders of Indigo Systems Corporation, which was purchased by FLIR Systems, Inc. in 2004. From 2004 to 2006 the Plaintiffs worked for FLIR, leaving in 2006 to start their own business. FLIR retained Latham and sued them for, among other things, misappropriation of trade secrets. The trial court denied FLIR’s request for a permanent injunction, found FLIR brought the trade secrets action in bad faith, and awarded attorney’s fees and costs of $1,641,216.78. The trial court’s decision was affirmed on appeal. FLIR Systems, Inc. v. William Parrish, et al., 174 Cal.App.4th 1270 (2009).

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ILLINOIS REGULATES PAYROLL CARDS

The Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act was amended to regulate the use of payroll cards.

A “payroll card” is a card provided to an employee by an employer or other payroll card issuer as a means of accessing the employee’s payroll card account.

A “payroll card account” is an account that is directly or indirectly established through an employer and to which deposits of a participating employee’s wages are made. More…

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PERSONAL JURISDICTION IN THE INTERNET AGE

A party’s internet activity may affect whether the party is subject to a court’s jurisdiction.

Advanced Tactical Ordnance Systems, LLC v Real Action Paintball, Inc., 751 F.3d 796 (7th Cir. 2014), was a trademark infringement action, brought by Advanced Tactical against Action Paintball, Inc., and its president, K.T. Tran.

A PepperBall is a ball filled with a pepper-spray-like irritant. Police departments, private security firms, and similar organizations use these items. More…

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Healthcare Alert: Deadline is fast approaching for business associate agreements to comply with HIPAA’s Omnibus Rule

Many organizations (e.g., business associates, covered entities, contractors/vendors of business associates) have updated their business associate agreements to comply with HIPAA’s Omnibus Rule. However, many organizations still have not. Please be aware that all business associate agreements must be brought into compliance with the HIPAA Omnibus Rule by Sept. 22, 2014.

Whether you are a covered entity who deals with business associates or a business associate who provides services to covered entities, you should review all of your business associate arrangements to confirm that you have written business associate agreements in place that comply with the HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules, as updated by the Omnibus Rule. Start this process by identifying all of your business associate contractor/vendor relationships and, if you are a business associate, any contractor/vendor relationships you have which involve your disclosure of protected health information (PHI). 

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Client Alert – Recent Rejection of Sunshine Act Data Submissions Pushes Back Deadlines

Implementation of the Sunshine Act continues to encounter stumbling blocks. On August 15, 2014 the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (“CMS”) announced that it would be withholding one-third of the records it received from drug and medical device manufacturers under the Sunshine Act due to data inconsistencies. CMS indicated that the flawed submissions will not be published in the Open Payments System database that is scheduled to go public on September 30, 2014. Rather, CMS will be returning the flawed data to manufacturers and group purchasing organizations (“GPOs”) to be corrected and resubmitted. The resubmitted data will not be published until June 2015.  More…

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California Ruling On Medical Privacy Law Should Please Big Hospitals But Not Specialty Healthcare Providers

Narrow judicial interpretations of compliance obligations are usually cause for relief among those bearing compliance costs and the risks of non-compliance.  Then there’s the recent decision on the scope of what constitutes patient “medical information” requiring protection under California’s Confidentiality of Medical Information Act (“CMIA”) in Eisenhower Medical Center v. Superior Court, May 21, 2014 Opinion, California Court of Appeal, Case No. E058378. More…

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Multiemployer Pension Plan: Serious challenges Multiemployer Pension Plans in 2014

Multiemployer pension plans which are the product of the collective-bargaining process, offer employers, especially small businesses, the opportunity to provide retirement benefits to their workers without the administrative expenses and burdens of sponsoring a separate company retirement plan. The Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), enacted in 1974, established a pension plan termination insurance program whereby the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC), a wholly-owned U.S. Government corporation, administered an insurance program for participants in both single-employer and multiemployer pension plans. Prior to the enactment of ERISA, multiemployer plans had broad discretion to modify provisions of the plan that, after adoption, were found to be unaffordable over time. Prior to the passage of the Multiemployer Pension Plan Amendment Act of 1980 (“MPPAA”), a company with union employees participating in a multiemployer plan could simply walk away from the multiemployer plan to which it had previously contributed and leave the remaining participants liable to fund past service liabilities, plus the costs of current and future service liabilities. The MPPAA created the concept of multiemployer plan withdrawal liability under which employers who left multiemployer plans with unfunded vested benefits were assessed a withdrawal fee based on their proportionate share of such underfunding.

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Multiemployer Pension Plan: Serious challenges Multiemployer Pension Plans in 2014

Multiemployer pension plans which are the product of the collective-bargaining process, offer employers, especially small businesses, the opportunity to provide retirement benefits to their workers without the administrative expenses and burdens of sponsoring a separate company retirement plan. The Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), enacted in 1974, established a pension plan termination insurance program whereby the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC), a wholly-owned U.S. Government corporation, administered an insurance program for participants in both single-employer and multiemployer pension plans. Prior to the enactment of ERISA, multiemployer plans had broad discretion to modify provisions of the plan that, after adoption, were found to be unaffordable over time. Prior to the passage of the Multiemployer Pension Plan Amendment Act of 1980 (“MPPAA”), a company with union employees participating in a multiemployer plan could simply walk away from the multiemployer plan to which it had previously contributed and leave the remaining participants liable to fund past service liabilities, plus the costs of current and future service liabilities. The MPPAA created the concept of multiemployer plan withdrawal liability under which employers who left multiemployer plans with unfunded vested benefits were assessed a withdrawal fee based on their proportionate share of such underfunding.

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Restrictive Covenants: Better To Ask And Disclose

When recruiting an executive, or when being recruited, it is best practice for the future employer, the employee and any executive recruiting firm involved in the placement to address head-on the existence of any restrictive covenant limiting the future activities of the employee. The New York State Supreme Court – First Department Appellate Division – yesterday upheld a claim that by not clearly disclosing the existence of a non-solicitation restriction in an executive recruit’s employment agreement, the head hunter involved in the placement could potentially be held liable to the new employer for negligent and/or fraudulent misrepresentation. See Amsterdam Hospitality Group v. Marshall-Alan Associates, Index Number 113685/11 (1st Dep’t Aug. 28, 2014).

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McDonald Hopkins Government Strategies: This Week in Washington — August 29, 2014

President Obama may be getting ready to drop a political nuclear bomb just months before the 2014 mid-term elections. The Obama administration is considering unilateral executive action on immigration—with action coming as early as next week.

President Obama has yet to receive formal recommendations on changes to immigration policy from Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, but White House lawyers are already crafting the legal rationale for unilateral executive action.

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