Legal Updates

Immigration Alert: August 2010

Emergency Border Security Supplemental Appropriations Act, Which Includes Targeted Visa Fee Hikes, Becomes Law

Customs and Border Protection Announces Interim Final Rule Increasing ESTA Fee

Department of Homeland Security Amends Rules Governing Electronic Signature/Storage of Forms I-9

State Department Issues Final Rule Regarding J-1 Trainees and Interns

August 13, 2010, H-1B Cap Count

Smartsoft Agrees to Pay $1 Million to Settle H-1B Visa Allegations with Department of Labor

DOS Issues September 2010 Visa Bulletin

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Third Circuit Case Explores Nooks and Crannies of Trade Secret Misappropriation Under Pennsylvania Law

A July 27, 2010 decision by the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, in Bimbo Bakeries USA, Inc. v. Botticella, No. 10-1510, upheld an injunction preventing a senior executive from commencing employment at Hostess Brands, Inc., a bakery rival to the plaintiff Bimbo. The decision is notable in that the Court enjoined Mr. Botticella’s employment, in the absence of any non-competition agreement, on the basis that there was a “substantial likelihood,” but not an “inevitability,” that Mr. Botticella would disclose or use Bimbo’s trade secrets in the course of his planned employment at Hostess.

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Societies of Limited Responsibilities and Individual Enterprises of Limited Responsibilities

Societies of Limited Responsibilities

The societies of Limited Responsibilities are those formed by two or more persons by contributions of all partners, who don’t respond personally of the social debts. It is our personal believe that this will be the most commonly used form of company.
Particular Characteristics
  • Number of partners: minimum two (2) and maximum of fifty (50)
  • Social denomination: a fantasy name can be used or a trade name that will have to be preceded or followed by the words “Society of Limited Responsibilities” or the initials “SRL”. If this indication is omitted the partners will be jointly responsible in front of third parties.
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Bloomberg Article Examines Whistleblower Awards and Protections under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act

In the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank), Congress has crafted an array of bounty awards and whistleblower protections broadly affecting securities, commodities and futures, and consumer financial products firms and those associated with them. Although there was an opportunity to create incentives promoting internal reporting in aid of corporate compliance programs and to rationalize whistleblowing with standardized definitions, procedures and remedies, Congress went in different directions. The result is a set of whistleblower inducements that may frustrate attainment of corporate compliance objectives by driving whistleblowers outside the organization and an enigmatic patchwork of whistleblower protections laden with internal variations that must be mastered.

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Do Women Really ‘Hold the Cards’ in Our Modern Economy?

You may have read a controversial and thought-provoking article in the July/August issue of The Atlantic magazine called “The End of Men.” The article poses the following question: “What if the modern, postindustrial economy is simply more congenial to women than to men?” After all, as author Hanna Rosin points out, many more men than women lost their jobs during the recent recession, women now make up the majority of the U.S. workforce, most of the job categories that are expected to grow in the next decade are dominated by women, and women are obtaining more B.A. degrees than men. Ms. Rosin believes that all of these developments suggest that “the modern economy is becoming a place where women hold the cards.”

But is the picture really that rosy for women?

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New ADA Regulations Explained

On July 26, 2010, the U.S. Department of Justice released new regulations under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) on accessibility for places of public accommodation.  “Places of public accommodation” are facilities operated by private entities whose operations affect commerce and fall within at least one of several categories that include a […]

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Special Immigration Alert, July 2010: Federal Judge Enjoins Key Parts of Arizona’s Immigration Law

On July 28, 2010, Judge Susan R. Bolton of the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona issued a preliminary injunction that prevents the most controversial sections of Arizona’s new immigration law (SB 1070) from taking effect. While not finally deciding the constitutionality of SB 1070, the Court found that several of its provisions were likely unconstitutional because they were “preempted” by federal immigration laws and that the failure to issue the injunction would result in substantial harm to the public interest.

SB 1070 took effect on July 29, 2010, but many of the provisions that most angered opponents have been enjoined. These include:

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No New Extension of COBRA Benefits Subsidy

The recent passage of the Emergency Unemployment Compensation Program Extension and Extended Benefits Temporary Provisions Extension did not extend the subsidy of COBRA benefits.    Congress had previously extended the subsidy for COBRA benefits through May 31, 2010.   The COBRA subsidy provided a 65% health insurance premium subsidy for up to 15 months to qualified employees […]

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SOX Whistleblower Must Actually Believe Employer’s Conduct Was Illegal, Says Eleventh Circuit

[Ed. Note: We thank our colleague Richard D. Tuschman for this post, which was originally published on EBG’s Florida Employment & Immigration Law Blog]

An employee claiming Whistleblower protection under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act must have actually believed that his company’s conduct was illegal in order to state a claim under the Act, according to a recent decision by the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, Gale v. U.S. Department of Labor, Case No. 08-14232 11th Cir. June 25, 2010) (pdf).

The case arose when Michael Gale was terminated from his employment at World Financial Group (“WFG”). Gale filed a Whistleblower complaint with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which enforces the SOX Whistleblower provisions. Gale alleged that he was terminated because he opposed decisions made by company officers relating to waste and misuse of corporate funds, and because he raised concerns regarding the alleged violation of SEC rules and regulations.

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Update: Bioenergy Phase 2 Call

Just a quick update on our previous post.  BC Hydro announced today that it received registrations from 14 proponents for 19 bioenergy projects in response to the May 31 Bioenergy Phase 2 Call request for proposals.  Names of the proponents or descriptions of the projects have not been released.

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