Monthly Archives: November 2013

Lidings to represent Inchcape in Russia

Inchcape Russia has chosen Lidings to be its official legal adviser in Russia. Lidings will advise the leading auto retailer on corporate law matters, ensure protection of the company’s assets in its investment projects and represent Inchcape in dispute resolution.

“Inchcape’s success formula is based on the cornerstones of the company’s unique business model,” says Sergey Aksenov, managing partner at Lidings. “In this context we can see quite a few similarities to our own strategy. An innovative approach to service package development and commitment to anticipation of customer demand are the common denominators of our business philosophies. In offering key companies of the automotive sector comprehensive legal support in the Russian market Lidings undertakes to put in place a sound legal platform for their successful growth and development. I am confident that our cooperation with Inchcape will benefit both parties.”

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Rare Complete Dismissal Of Non-Compete Case At Pleading Stage

There are three important “take-aways” from New York Supreme Court Justice Charles E. Ramos’ recent decision in Greystone Funding Corporation v. Kutner: (1) termination “without cause” is not a per se prohibition of enforcement of a non-compete unless the language of the contract as in this case so provides; (2) conclusory allegations of breach of fiduciary duty, tortious interference and unfair competition are inadequate and will be dismissed unless supported by facts on each element of proof; and (3) customer and prospect identity and impressions about them are sufficiently sensitive to warrant cause for sealing of a record under 22 NYCRR § 216.1.

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Bell-Curve Rankings In at Yahoo

By Nancy L. Gunzenhauser and Jeffrey M. Landes

It’s performance review season…meaning reports of various performance review systems are making headlines for employers. In a recent survey by OnForce, former technology employees turned-independent contractors stated that performance reviews were one of the least missed aspects of working as employees, only behind commuting. Performance reviews come in various types, with some causing more controversy than others. One of the most controversial types of performance review systems is the bell-curve (aka “forced” or “stacked”) ranking.

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Free Webinar: “Railcar Fall Protection Enforcement – What OSHA Requires from Grain Elevator Operators”

On Tuesday, December 3, 2013 at 3 PM (Eastern) / 2 PM (Central), Eric J. Conn, Head of the national OSHA Practice Group at Epstein Becker & Green will conduct a free webinar focused on OSHA’s enforcement landscape as it relates to work on top of rolling stock (specifically railcars) at grain elevator facilities.  This is the second in a series of OSHA law related webinars for the grain industry in conjunction with Grain Journal.

Whether it’s prepping cars down track away from the elevator, helping to guide a load out spout into a railcar, or allowing state or federal grain inspectors access to railcars for stowage inspections and sampling, there are numerous work activities that require employees to stand and walk between the tops of railcars.  With potentially miles of track where work may need to be done on top of the railcars, there often is no feasible way to provide anchor points to which employees can tie off fall protection over the tracks.

To make matters worse, OSHA’s requirements regarding Railcar Fall Protection, however, are among the most confusing and inconsistently enforced.  So what does the law require and how is OSHA treating this issue from an enforcement standpoint?  Get the answers to these questions and more during this webinar.  The webinar will:

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Intellectual Property Alert: U.S. Patent Office is reducing (some) fees

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is reducing fees that applicants must pay in order for their applications to issue as patents. Large entities currently pay $2,080 after receiving a notice of allowance for an application to issue as a patent. That fee includes the issue fee of $1,780 and a publication fee of $300. Effective January 1, 2014, the issue fees will be reduced and the publication fee will be eliminated. The new fees will be:

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Larry Yen takes part in BC Jobs and Trade Mission in Asia

Clark Wilson’s Larry Yen will be joining Premier Christy Clark on the BC Jobs and Trade Mission in Asia. The delegation, which includes First Nations leaders, representatives from private-sector companies and members of educational institutions, will visit China, Korea and Japan over the next two weeks. One of the key objectives of the trip is to strengthen ties with Asian energy companies, focusing on the advancement of liquefied natural gas development. Larry’s BCLTV interview on the Mission, conducted in Mandarin and Cantonese, can be viewed here.

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Ashley Forte comments on “click-through” tax law

Arnstein & Lehr LLP

Chicago Associate Ashley Forte was quoted in a November 14 Westlaw Journal Computer & Internet article titled, “Illinois ‘click-through’ tax law unconstitutional, state high court rules.” The article discusses an Illinois statute that requires out-of-state retailers to collect taxes on sales referred to them by in-state web publishers.

To read the article in full, please click here.

 

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David Newman contributes to two articles

Arnstein & Lehr LLP

Chicago Partner David Newman recently contributed to two articles.

The first article was published on November 14 in the Daily Herald titled, “Motorola seeks patent for e-tattoo to connect throat to mobile devices.” It discusses a new patent Motorola Mobility is seeking for an electronic tattoo that’s attached to the throat and can communicate with your mobile devices. Even though this patent is awaiting approval, development may be able to proceed. The Daily Herald is the third largest newspaper in Illinois.

To read the article in full, please click here.

The second article was posted on November 14 to the ECT News Network website titled, “Apple, Samsung Whip Out Calculators in Patent Penalty Redux.” This article discusses how Samsung was recently found liable for infringing five Apple patents. The issue at hand now is how much money Apple will be receiving from Samsung. ECT News Network is one of the largest e-business and technology news publishers in the United States.

To read the article in full, please click here.

 

 

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Brand Activation Association Marketing Law Conference: Demonstrations

We’re all familiar with the classic product demonstrations in television commercials: who hasn’t seen re-enactments of the super-absorbent paper towel, or the dish detergent that cuts through grease with a single drop?

How do we define a demonstration?  Well, a demonstration is just that: a way for advertisers to show the product functioning as it actually would, as objective “proof” of performance.  As such, it is especially important that demonstrations actually consist of a true and accurate portrayal of the product.  When the FTC began bringing enforcement actions concerning advertising demonstrations in 1959, it encountered cases where products or props had been doctored, enhanced or replaced to achieve the desired performance, and the advertiser had not disclosed any modification.  Even if the product claim itself was not false, the issue was that the demonstration was false.   For example, in the early 1990s, Volvo ran an advertisement which showed a monster truck crushing other cars, except for a Volvo station wagon, in order to show that Volvo vehicles would provide superior safety in a collision.  However, the commercial was produced by weakening the competitor vehicles’ roofs and reinforcing the Volvo’s roof, and then subjecting the Volvo to less severe crushing by the truck – none of which was disclosed to consumers.  Subsequently, the FTC issued a consent order requiring Volvo to stop depicting demonstrations that involved undisclosed mock-ups or material alterations to products.

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Matthew Cohn publishes article on obtaining further remediation letters

Arnstein & Lehr LLP

Recently, Chicago Associate Matthew Cohn authored an article regarding a discussion that arose while in attendance recently at a presentation in Chicago. On November 11, his article was published in Environmental Leader, a website on environmental & energy management news. The article titled, “What is So Great About a ‘No Further Remediation’ Letter Anyway?,” Matt reviews a topic that ensued among attendees regarding obtaining no further remediation (NFR) letters issued by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA).

To read the full article, please click here.

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