North America

THE FEDERAL COURT OF APPEAL UPHOLDS CANADA’S ANTI-SPAM LEGISLATION AS CONSTITUTIONAL

On June 5, 2020, the Federal Court of Appeal (“FCA“) released its decision in 3510395 Canada Inc. v. Attorney General of Canada et al.2020 FCA 103, in which it upheld the constitutionality of Canada’s anti-spam legislation (“CASL“). CASL is the federal law which regulates the way in which businesses may communicate with consumers using electronic means. The decision also clarified the requirements to rely on the business-to-business exemption which allows businesses to avoid the consent and content requirements of CASL in certain circumstances.

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Martin Côté in a Webinar on Solicitor-client Privilege

June 10, 2020 — Martin Côté will be presenting the webinar “Tout ce que vous devez savoir relativement au secret professionnel de l’avocat en entreprise et au privilège relatif au litige” (Everything you must know on solicitor-client privilege for in-house counsel, and on litigation privilege), broadcast on Wednesday, June 17, from 12:00 to 1:30 pm. This activity, hosted by the Bar of Quebec, is recognized for lawyers’ mandatory continuing education.

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Time Is Money: A Quick Wage-Hour Tip on … Tip Pooling

Many hospitality businesses, such as restaurants and bars, have found themselves restructuring their daily operations in light of the current global COVID-19 health crisis, and the subsequent federal, state, and local shelter in place orders. For instance, where restaurants and bars once served customers on a dine-in basis, perhaps they are now restricted to take-out only or delivery options, and, as a result, many employers who are still operating in the wake of the pandemic now have very few employees with customer-facing roles.

Because of the necessary changes in daily operations, many businesses are reconsidering their tip policies. Perhaps your policy was to allow employees to keep all tips he or she earned, which now seems unfair to employees who are integral to serving customers but no longer have direct customer contact so you want to shift to a tip pool model. Perhaps you have always operated on a tip pool model, but with ever-shifting job duties and positions, you are unclear whether your tip pool policy is legally compliant. Whatever the case, one thing is certain: given that daily operations of customer-service oriented businesses has likely changed and will continue to change as our country slowly moves toward reopening, now is the perfect time to revisit some important considerations if you are thinking about shifting to a tip pool model or even if you already have one.

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CSA ANNOUNCES AMENDMENTS TO REGULATORY FRAMEWORK FOR AT-THE-MARKET DISTRIBUTIONS

On June 4, 2020, as part of its effort to reduce the regulatory burden, the Canadian Securities Administrators (the “CSA“) announced amendments coming into effect on August 31, 2020 (the “Amendments“) to the regulatory framework for at-the-market (“ATM“) distributions. Among other things, the Amendments will eliminate the requirement to obtain exemptive relief from securities regulatory authorities and will streamline the process for conducting an ATM distribution. In particular, the Amendments:

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Marilyn Piccini Roy’s Work Gets Recognized Again

June 5, 2020 — Marilyn Piccini Roy, Ad. E., TEP, was recently awarded the 2019 Volunteer of the Year award by STEP Canada, a leading association of tax and estate professionals.

She was also re-elected as Secretary of the International Academy of Estate and Trust Law.

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Bailiff Services: Issuing and Filing of Proceedings in Non-urgent Matters Is Now Allowed

By Mariella De Stefano, from our Insurance Law Practice Group

June 3, 2020 — As you may know, the activities have gradually resumed at the court houses in Quebec as of June 1, which is great news for the legal community as well as for citizens. Each judicial district is however distinct with respect to issuing and filing of proceedings.

With respect to the judicial districts of Montreal, Longueuil and Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, it is now possible for bailiffs to issue and file at the counter of the court houses proceedings associated with non-urgent matters. This is still not the case in Laval and Saint-Jérôme; however, we continuously verify, as the situation is in constant evolution.

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Connecticut Trade Secret Laws: Q&A Guide for Employers

Thomson Reuters Practical Law has released the 2020 update to “Trade Secret Laws: Connecticut,” a Q&A guide to state law on trade secrets and confidentiality for private employers, co-authored by our colleagues David S. Poppick and Carol J. Fahertyattorneys in Epstein Becker Green’s Stamford office.

Click here to download the full Q&A in PDF format.

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June 2020 Immigration Alert

USCIS Resumes Premium Processing

USCIS has announced here that beginning the month of June 2020, it will again start accepting certain petitions for premium processing.  Premium processing was indefinitely suspended as of March 20, 2020, due to the Covid-19.

Premium processing allows (1) nonimmigrant petitions filed on Form I-129 that are reserved for H-1B, L-1A/B, O-1, and TN work authorization and (2) immigrant petitions filed by employers on behalf of foreign national employees on Form I-140 to be adjudicated within fifteen calendar days of USCIS receipt of the premium processing application request.  The application is filed on Form I-907 and requires payment of the $1,440 USCIS filing fee.

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The Courts Are Really Back in Action, as RSS Witnessed

June 1, 2020 — The Quebec courts, including the Superior Court, Commercial Division, District of Montreal, declared that they were resuming their activities in progressive fashion as of Monday, June 1.

This morning, June 1, Jean-Pierre Sheppard and Lauren Flam, from our Commercial Litigation Team, attended court on behalf of a shareholder involved in a dispute within a family company. RSS obtained an order forcing the other shareholder/director to cease unilaterally declaring dividends, withdrawing funds from the company’s bank accounts and from using the company’s credit facilities.

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California Court Whittles Down Claims Against StubHub

After more than three years of litigation and two rounds of extensive discovery, in Calendar Research LLC v. StubHub, Inc., et al., 2:17-cv-04062-SVW-SS, the United States District Court for the Central District of California dismissed almost all the remaining claims against StubHub and the other defendants.  In doing so, the Court confirmed that in California, specific identifiable trade secrets are required and general industry knowledge and “know how” is insufficient for trade secret protection.

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