Legal Updates

Podcast: CMS and OIG Final Rules for Innovating Your Value-Based Payment Program – Diagnosing Health Care

In this episode of the Diagnosing Health Care Podcast:  The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (“CMS”) and the Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) of the Department of Health and Human Services have at last published their long-awaited companion final rules advancing value-based care. The rules present significant changes to the regulatory framework of the federal physician self-referral law (commonly referred to as the “Stark Law”) and to the federal health care program’s Anti-Kickback Statute, or “AKS.”

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Epstein Becker Green’s Free Wage-Hour App Includes 2021 Changes to Federal, State, and Local Laws

Years ago, Epstein Becker Green (“EBG”) created its free wage-hour app to put federal, state, and local wage-laws at employers’ fingertips.

The app provides important information about overtime exemptions, minimum wages, overtime, meal periods, rest periods, on-call time, travel time, and tips.

As the laws have changed, so, too, has EBG’s free wage-hour app, which is updated to reflect new developments.

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Tax Exemptions for Clean Energy Technologies Under Massachusetts Clean Energy Bill

On March 26, 2021, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker signed a comprehensive climate change bill known as Senate Bill 9 – An Act Creating a Next Generation Roadmap for Massachusetts Climate Policy (the Act), which is designed to eliminate carbon emissions in Massachusetts by 2050 by promoting renewable energy and reducing the state’s reliance on fossil fuels. The Act contains several provisions addressing local property taxation of wind, solar, energy storage, and fuel cell technologies.

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Post-Employment Actions May Trigger Liability for Retaliation Under the False Claims Act

Can an employer be held liable under the False Claims Act (“FCA”) for retaliation if it takes some adverse action against a former employee? Until recently, only one federal appellate court had addressed the issue, holding that the FCA does not cover post-employment retaliation.[1] However, on April 1, 2021, the Sixth Circuit reached the opposite conclusion in United States ex rel. Felten v. William Beaumont Hospital, creating a circuit split and different rules for employers in different jurisdictions.

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Supreme Court Narrows Definition of Autodialer in Facebook Ruling

The U.S. Supreme Court released its eagerly anticipated decision in Facebook Inc. v. Duguid yesterday, narrowly construing the definition of an automatic telephone dialing system, or autodialer, under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and resolving the uncertainty that had led to a long-standing split in the circuit courts. Read more…

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Written consent to personal data processing: a new approach of Draft Law № 992331-7

Currently the Draft Law No. 992331-7 is considered by the Russian Federation State Duma. Perhaps it is the most anticipated document in the field of personal data since the proposed changes in 152-FZ are designed to reduce the number of pain points for both operators and consultants in the information protection sphere.

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Additional Disclosures and Reporting in the Financial Statement and Board’s Report

The Ministry of Corporate Affairs (“MCA”) through a gazette notification dated March 24, 2021 (“Notification”) amended the Schedule III of the Companies Act, 2013 (“Act”); Companies (Accounts) Rules, 2014 (“Account Rules”); and Companies (Audit and Auditors) Rules, 2014 (“Audit Rules”), (collectively referred to as “Amendments”) wherein the statutory auditor and the Board of Director (“Board”) of the company is required to make new disclosures and reporting while preparing the financial statement along with audit report and Board’s report respectively from the financial year 2021-22 and onwards.

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Licensing Procedures for Information and Communications Technology and Services Supply Chain

On January 19, 2021, the U.S. Department of Commerce (Commerce) published an interim final rule, “Securing the Information and Communications Technology and Services Supply Chain,” which became effective on March 22, 2021. In short, it allows the Secretary of Commerce, in accordance with Executive Order 13873, to prohibit certain information and communications technology and services transactions (ICTS Transactions) to address national security threats. For additional information on the interim final rule, effective as of March 22, please see our previous article.

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ARPA Requires Tax-Free COBRA Subsidy

As part of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (“ARPA”), signed into law on March 11, 2021, employers will be required to provide, on a tax-free basis, a subsidy to employees and their qualified beneficiaries to pay 100% of the COBRA continuation premium for group health plan coverage. This subsidy applies only to “assistance eligible individuals,” who are eligible for COBRA as a result of an involuntary termination of employment or a reduction in hours and who are, or could have been, eligible for COBRA during the period of April 1, 2021 through September 30, 2021 (the “Subsidy Period”).

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Time Is Money: A Quick Wage-Hour Tip on … Tracking Employee Working Time

I had planned to focus this month’s installment of “Time Is Money” on the practice of rounding timeclock entries, addressing the history behind the practice as well as factors that make rounding today a riskier proposition than it used to be.  Then, while reviewing our previous writings on the subject, I came across my colleague Mike Kun’s treatment of the topic in our July 2019 installment, where he already said pretty much everything I had to say.

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