ILN Today Post

Llinks Client Alert – Cybersecurity, Data & Privacy

I. Highlights

Personal Information Protection Law and Data Security Law have been included in the 2020 legislative plan.

The Cyberspace Affairs Commission (CAC) issued Provisions on Governance of Network Information Content Ecosystem.

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Health Plan Sponsors Welcome Repeal of Cadillac Tax: Opportunities and Uncertainty Lie Ahead – SECURE Act Series

Sponsors of health plans have long known that the only constant in life is change. In 2020, that is surely to remain true.

Ding-Dong! The Cadillac Tax Is Dead!

On December 20, 2019, as part of the year-end appropriations bill, the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) so-called 40% “Cadillac Tax” on high-cost health plans was finally, after much lobbying and other efforts by sponsors and health care payers, put to an end with a full repeal. The “Cadillac Tax” was currently scheduled to take effect in 2022 (after two delays), and would have taxed employer-sponsored plans worth more than $10,200 for “self-only” coverage and $27,500 for other coverage (in 2018 and would have been indexed for inflation in future years). The tax was initially intended to help reduce health care costs and pay for the ACA.

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Brigitte Garceau’s Community Involvement Gets Recognized

January 15, 2020 — For several years now, Brigitte Garceau has selflessly devoted her energy to the West Island’s philanthropic organizations. For instance, she is legal counsel and a board member of the West Island Women’s Shelter, and has helped create its “Pumps & Pearls” annual gala.

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The New Year Brings New Guidance on FLSA Issues from the U.S. Department of Labor

In its first installment of opinions letters in 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (“WHD”) addressed two issues under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”): (i) the salary basis requirements in the context of per-project compensation arrangements and (ii) calculation of overtime pay for employees who receive nondiscretionary lump-sum bonus payments earned over time and not tied to a specific period.  (A third letter, FMLA2020-1-A, considered FMLA requirements vis-à-vis public employees.)  While neither of these FLSA opinion letters addresses controversial or novel issues, they offer useful guidance to employers facing similar scenarios and helpfully reiterate general principles of broad applicability.

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RSS Introduces its Recruits for 2020

January 15, 2020 — Year after year, RSS remains as appealing as ever for lawyers looking to practice in the ideal professional atmosphere. Over the last months of 2019, a number of top-quality recruits joined our team:

Maro Coric, a partner with 15 years of experience regarding coverage issues and who has specific expertise regarding cyber matters, now practices in our Montréal office;

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Is BURNS NIGHT OFF KILT-ER?: Scotch, Trademarks & Distilling American Meanings

Within a year after the 1787 Edinburgh edition of his poems, American editions…were published in both Philadelphia and New York. Ever since we [Americans] have adopted the beauty, the humor and the wisdom of Robert Burns as part of our own culture and our own idiom—-often, even usually, without knowing the source in Scotland’s ploughman poet.

[Montgomery, James M. (1998) “How Robert Burns Captured America,” Studies in Scottish Literature: Vol. 30: Iss. 1, at 237 (emphasis added)].

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What Employers Should Know About the SECURE Act’s Lifetime Income Provisions

Predictable lifetime income is often of paramount concern to retirees.  Yet, as employer-sponsored retirement plans have moved away from the traditional pension plan model, participants in defined contribution plans may be faced with managing their own account balances and plan distributions, which may not lead to a steady stream of lifetime income in retirement.  The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act of 2019 (the “SECURE Act”), signed into law on December 20, 2019, may aid in securing retirements.   Employers who sponsor defined contribution retirement plans, such as 401(k) plans, now have: (1) new participant disclosure obligations; (2) the ability to adopt certain portability design features related to lifetime income investment options; and (3) guidelines to encourage inclusion of lifetime income investment options in plan investment line-ups.

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Non-Solicitation Agreements: Court Finds Financial Professionals Have a Duty to Notify Clients About a Change of Employment

Our colleague Janene Marasciullo, a Member of the Firm at Epstein Becker Green, has a November 2019 post on the Trade Secrets & Employee Mobility blog that will be of interest to many of our readers in the financial services industry: “Enforcing Non-Solicitation Agreements Against Financial Professionals: A Court Finds Financial Professionals Have a Duty to Notify Clients About a Change of Employment.”

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Federal Court Extends TRO to Enjoin Enforcement of New California Arbitration Statute

As we recently wrote here, on December 29, 2019, just days before California’s new arbitration statute known as AB 51 was to go into effect, a federal judge in the United States District Court of the Eastern District of California granted a temporary restraining order (“TRO”) to enjoin enforcement of AB 51.

The new law, which was set to go into effect on January 1, 2020, would outlaw mandatory arbitration agreements with employees.

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Your Compass for Navigating Claims in a Hard Market

An increase in underwriting discipline has seen a rise in premiums and reduction in the availability of cover for professional indemnity (PI) insurance. Aoife Skehan navigates PI claims in a hard market

In Brief: Insurers have started to take steps to return to underwriting profitability which has resulted in a hardening of the market, causing contraction in the availability of coverage as well as premiums to rise, particularly for PI risks. Insurers and their insureds will require a defence panel firm which can navigate changing claims behaviours in this market. Careful policy coverage investigations are necessary which include robust assessments of liability and quantum, timely conclusion of claims and value for money.

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