Tag Archives: Lewis Rice LLC

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Google Fined 50 Million Euros for Violating GDPR

When the European Union’s (EU’s) General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR, discussed in a December 2017 client alert) took effect May 25, 2018, the French data protection regulator, Commission nationale de l’informatique et des libertés (CNIL), which translates to National Information Rights Commission, began investigating Google’s data privacy practices. Now, the CNIL has imposed on Google a €50 million fine (about $57 million), the largest to date under the GDPR, for lack of transparency, inadequate information, and lack of valid consent regarding its personalized ads. Below is a summary of the enforcement action and what it means going forward.

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Kirk A. Damman Named among Small Business Monthly‘s Best Patent Attorneys in St. Louis

Lewis Rice is proud to announce that Kirk A. Damman was named in Small Business Monthly‘s (SBM‘s) Best Patent Attorneys in St. Louis. Kirk has been included in this list every year since 2016. The honorees are selected based on insights and feedback from SBM’s readers. SBM acts as a resource to the St. Louis business community to understand and connect with the best service providers in the area. St. Louis SBM is a locally owned business publication, bringing business tips, strategies, and analysis to top executives of 17,000 businesses in the St. Louis metropolitan area.

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Melissa G. Powers Appointed Young Privacy Professional Leader for the St. Louis Chapter of the International Association of Privacy Professionals

Lewis Rice is pleased to announce that associate Melissa G. Powers has been appointed Young Privacy Professional (YPP) Leader for the St. Louis Chapter of International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP). IAPP helps professionals manage the risks associated with the information economy and protect their organization’s data. In her role as YPP Leader, Melissa will plan networking activities for other young professionals pursuing and engaged in privacy careers. Only one YPP Leader is accepted per chapter and serves a one-year term.

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Good News for Lenders: Missouri’s Future Advance Deed of Trust Statute Can Cover Interest (But What about Late Fees?)

Under Missouri’s future advance statute, Mo. Rev. Stat. § 443.055, a deed of trust may secure future advances by a lender, the principal amount of which may not exceed the “face amount stated in the security instrument.” What else, besides the “principal” amount, may be secured by such a deed of trust? The statute specifically allows advances “incurred … for the reasonable protection of the lender’s security interest” to be included, and that amount can exceed the stated amount of the deed of trust. A Missouri Court of Appeals has now confirmed that interest also can exceed the stated amount and remain secured, and property taxes and attorney’s fees may also be secured as advances for the protection of the security interest. Late fees, however, do not qualify as expenses protecting the lien. Manns v. SB RE Properties, LLC, et al., ED105820 (Mo. Ct. App. E. D. Mo., Nov. 13, 2018).

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New Legislation Introduced in Illinois Seeks Transparency in Asbestos Litigation

On November 7, 2018, Illinois State Senator Jason A. Barickman introduced S.B. (Senate Bill) 3643. This legislation is aimed at creating more transparency in asbestos litigation in the state by stipulating that at the outset of litigation, defendants would be given access to claim forms that plaintiffs have submitted to trust funds that bankrupt companies have established in order to compensate victims of asbestos exposure. Similar legislation has been passed in 15 states and comes after documents uncovered during an asbestos defendant’s 2014 bankruptcy proceeding showed a discrepancy between the exposure allegations alleged in forms submitted to these trusts and exposure testimony in separate civil lawsuits against solvent companies.

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How the Section 199A Proposed Regulations Would Affect Businesses

On August 8, 2018, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released proposed regulations (REG-107892-18) that address the operation and calculation of the 20% deduction for qualified business income (QBI) under newly enacted Section 199A of the Internal Revenue Code (the “Code”). These proposed regulations would apply to a domestic business operated as a sole proprietorship, partnership (including a limited liability company taxed as a partnership), S corporation, trust, or estate.

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Music Modernization Act Overhauls Music Licensing and Royalty Payments

Songs and musical works have been protected under the intellectual property laws of the United States since the 1830s, and third parties who wish to use or perform songs written by others must first get permission from the songwriter to do so. However, sound recordings did not enjoy federal copyright protection until 1972, resulting in older songs being subject to a patchwork of state copyright laws governing recordings, and new song recordings being treated differently under the law than the songs themselves.

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California Consumer Privacy Act Amendment Signed into Law

On September 23, 2018, California’s Governor Jerry Brown announced that he signed SB 1121 into law. SB 1121 modifies the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 (the “Act”), which was passed earlier this year (discussed in a September 2018 alert). SB 1121 leaves the Act largely intact, but it does clarify certain aspects of the Act, as briefly discussed below.

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Community Bank Regulatory Relief: Exam Cycle and Small Holding Companies

In August 2018, the federal banking agencies issued two interim rules implementing provisions of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act of 2018 (EGRRCPA) intended to reduce regulatory burdens on banks, thrifts, and their holding companies. On August 23, the federal banking agencies issued joint interim final rules allowing qualifying insured depository institutions with under $3.0 billion in total assets to benefit from an extended 18-month examination schedule in place of the former 12-month schedule. And on August 28, the Federal Reserve issued an interim final rule expanding the applicability of its small bank holding company policy statement to bank holding companies and savings and loan holding companies with consolidated assets of up to $3.0 billion.

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Federal Court Clarifies the Scope of Drawings in a Design Patent

Design patent filings have increased dramatically in recent years, as companies gain appreciation for the ability of these patents to prevent counterfeits and grey market imports. With the higher volume of patent filings comes a higher volume of legal disputes. In one such dispute, the Federal Circuit held that a design patent application that uses two-dimensional drawings to describe a three-dimensional product may be acceptable under patent law.

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