Insurers: Bill 96 May Affect Your Civil Litigation Proceedings

By Patrick Henry, from our Insurance Law Practice Group

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November 9, 2021 — Bill 96, An Act respecting French, the official and common language of Québec, proposes a certain number of substantial modifications to Quebec civil procedure. The Bill is presently making its way through various stages of consideration at the National Assembly of Quebec and it is possible that additional changes will be made prior to the adoption of the final text. In the interim, we provide the following summary of the Bill, highlighting parts which may affect civil litigation proceedings.

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OUR PLEDGE TO BE A NET-ZERO FIRM BY 2035

With COP26 having now begun in Glasgow, we at Miller Samuel Hill Brown have been considering the impact of our business operations on the environment, along with many other business and individuals across the United Kingdom and the world. While as a law firm in the services sector our impact is minimal when compared with other sectors (such as manufacturing), that is no excuse to avoid making change ourselves. We have therefore considered what further steps we can take as we work towards minimising our impact on our shared environment. As a result of this review, we have redrafted and updated our environmental policy, the centrepiece of which is our ambitious target to be a net-zero firm by 2035, 10 years ahead of the Scottish Government’s target for Scotland to be net-zero by 2045. We are already taking steps towards that goal and are confident that we will surpass our target.  Read more…

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EXTENDED LICENSING HOURS DURING COP26 A WELCOME BOOST FOR THE HOSPITALITY TRADE

As 30,000 delegates descend on Glasgow our hospitality sector clients are hopefully in for a much needed boost in trade after an incredibly challenging period. In recognition of the event and in support of the trade the Glasgow Licensing Board, have granted a general extension to licensed hours which permits all premises selling alcohol for on-sales an additional hour trading throughout the duration of COP26 (31 October to 12 November 2021 inclusive). This is an automatic extension that operators can take advantage of without the need to make an application. Read more…

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Non-Compete Laws: Massachusetts – 2021 Q&A Guide for Employers

Thomson Reuters Practical Law has released the 2021 update to “Non-Compete Laws: Massachusetts,” a Q&A guide to non-compete agreements between employers and employees for private employers in Massachusetts, authored by our colleague David J. Clark.

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Circuit Court Blocks OSHA Emergency Temporary Standard, at Least for Now – Stay Tuned

As we previously reported, effective November 5, 2021, the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) issued an Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) requiring employers with 100 or more employees to ensure that covered employees are fully vaccinated or provide a negative COVID-19 test at least weekly.

On November 6, 2021, just one day after the OSHA ETS became effective, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit temporarily stayed the regulation in a case captioned BST Holdings, LLC v. OSHA. Inasmuch as the OSHA rule’s first milestones are December 5, when most employers with at least 100 employees must, among other things, impose an indoor mask mandate for unvaccinated workers, and January 4, when covered employers must mandate COVID-19 vaccination or, in the alternative, vaccination or weekly testing, the Fifth Circuit panel’s temporary ban does not have immediate effect. However, the case has emboldened groups of businesses, religious groups, and at least half the states to mount a serious challenge to OSHA’s authority to issue such a rule, arguing that a mandate like this one is a legislative act that only can be enacted by Congress.

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Baltic law firm client survey: TGS Baltic ranked as No. 1 in Lithuania and the most recommended firm in the Baltic States

According to the results of the survey of client satisfaction with law firms in the Baltic States, Prospera Law Firm Review 2021, TGS Baltic has received the highest rating from the clients in Lithuania and has been ranked as the most recommended law firm in the Baltic States.

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California Law Restricts Recyclability Claims

The recently signed California Senate Bill 343 prohibits use of the “chasing arrows” recyclable symbol, or any other symbol or statement indicating that a product or packaging is recyclable, in California, unless the product is recyclable in accordance with certain to-be-developed standards.

RequirementsThe law requires that, on or before January 1, 2024, the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) take steps to evaluate and identify which materials are recyclable in the state. Read more…

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Ready, set, go: Employers race to comply with OSHA ETS vaccine requirements

Almost two months after President Joe Biden called for quick action on COVID-19 vaccine or testing rules, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) released Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS) on November 4, 2021. With these new rules, employers with 100 or more employees have a tight timeframe to implement policies on vaccines, testing, and masking – assuming  that the rules are not halted by a legal challenge.  Read more…

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New Retirement Plan Limitations Announced by the IRS for 2022

On November 4, 2021, the IRS release IRS Notice 2021-61, providing for the new cost of living adjustments affecting dollar limitations for pension plans and other retirement-related items for the 2022 Tax Year. Changes to the limits are based upon the Social Security cost-of-living increases. Unlike last year, as a result of higher inflation many of the applicable pension and retirement limitations are rising significantly from the rates in place for the 2021 Tax Year. Read more…

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CCPA Enforcement Priorities Include Loyalty and Rewards Programs

The California Attorney General continues to bring enforcement actions relating to the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). While advertisers and marketers have generally focused on CCPA compliance with respect to privacy practices, it is important to highlight a marketing practice that may be overlooked — loyalty and reward programs.

Loyalty and Reward ProgramsLoyalty and reward programs are generally optional programs whereby participants receive points, coupons, credits, rewards certificates or other benefits that can be redeemed for making purchases at a given company. They are often redeemed for merchandise, cash discounts or rewards certificates. A hallmark feature of these programs is that, in order to opt-into the program, a potential participant must provide personal information, such as full name, email and phone number. Read more…

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