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Emerging Concerns Regarding Silica Exposure in the Engineered Stone Industry
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, November 2019

The dangers of workers developing silicosis amid the fabrication of engineered stone has become a topic heavily discussed in the news and elsewhere recently. Silicosis is a lung disease that develops from the exposure and inhalation of silica particles. On Oct. 2, National Public Radio (“NPR”) aired a story entitled “Workers Are Falling Ill, Even Dying, After Making Kitchen Countertops...

Key Takeaways from USDA Final Interim Rules for Domestic Hemp Production
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, November 2019

Introduction On Oct. 31, 2019, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) published its highly anticipated interim final rules, establishing the USDA Domestic Hemp Production Program to be administered by the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS)...

IRS Issues 2020 Limits for Retirement Plans
Hanson Bridgett LLP, November 2019

On November 6, 2019, the IRS announced in Notice 2019-59 cost of living adjustments to the qualified plan dollar limits for 2020. Below is a summary of the limits that are generally relevant for most retirement plans. Effective January 1, 2020: The elective deferral limit for 401(k), 403(b), and eligible 457(b) plans is increased from $19,000 to $19,500. The catch-up contribution limit for those age 50 or older is increased from $6,000 to $6,500...

Is a Benefit Corporation Right for You?
Verrill, November 2019

The “benefit corporation” is a relatively new type of business entity. In 2010, Maryland became the first state in the U.S. to enact a statute recognizing and providing for the organization of this form of entity. In September, Maine joined 30 other states that have enacted benefit corporation legislation over the past nine years, and such legislation is currently pending in several more states...

USTR Announces List 4A Exclusion Request Process and Other US-China Trade Developments
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, October 2019

The U.S.-China trade dispute continues to simmer with multiple significant developments in the past several weeks: The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) announced the exclusion process for Chinese imports subject to List 4A Section 301 tariffs will open on Oct. 31, 2019 and conclude on Jan. 31, 2020. List 4A and 4B tariffs on an estimated $300 billion of goods imported from China, effective Sept. 1, 2019 and Dec...

The Insolvency Law in Panama
Morgan & Morgan, October 2019

On May 19, 2016, the concept of a “Bankruptcy,” as the legal term was defined, ceased to exist under Panamanian law. Law 12 of 2016 (the “Insolvency Law”) entered into force on that date and introduced new proceedings into our legal system. These proceedings are referred to as Reorganization and Liquidation...

Proposed Regulations Under the CCPA Provide Some Clarity, But Questions Remain
Verrill, October 2019

Earlier this month, the California Attorney General issued long-awaited proposed regulations (“Proposed Rule”) under the California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”)[1] along with a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Action and Initial Statement of Reasons explaining the Proposed Rule...

New Decision from the Court of Appeal Regarding the Possibility to Deprive Employees of their Duties within the Period of Notice
Simonsen Vogt Wiig AS, October 2019

In LG-2018-161055 the Court of appeal, in a case regarding preliminary action, gave an elaborated assessment regarding under what conditions an employer can deprive an employee of his or her duties in the notice period.   Introduction An employer only exceptionally has the right to deprive a dismissed employee of his or her duties within the period of notice. For this to be possible, there must be "particularly compelling reasons"...

Good Tax News for the Cannabis Industry: California Repeals 280E Limitation for Personal Income Tax
Hanson Bridgett LLP, October 2019

Existing law, the Medicinal and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MAUCRSA), among other things, consolidates the licensure and regulation of commercial medicinal and adult-use cannabis activities and authorizes persons to conduct specified commercial cannabis activities, as defined, in the state. The objectives of the new law are as follows: To provide tax equity to the cannabis industry...

The Environment Bill 2019 - Water, Water, Everywhere
Shoosmiths LLP, October 2019

Part 5 of the Environment Bill, contains a number of disparate proposals relating to water – which could have major implications for many. Senior associate Joanne Sear and solicitor Grace Mitchell take a look at some of the key points in the Bill. Water resources planning According to its explanatory notes, the Bill is intended to “improve… water resources planning” and “facilitate… collaborative regional planning”...

IRS Finalizes New Hardship Distribution Rules for 401(k) and 403(b) Plans
Hanson Bridgett LLP, October 2019

On September 23, 2019, the IRS published final regulations that amend the rules for hardship distributions from 401(k) and 403(b) plans. The regulations finalize the proposed regulations issued in November 2018 to implement statutory changes made by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 and the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 intended to make it easier for plan participants to take hardship distributions...

Feinwachs Holds FCA Relator’s Emails to Counsel, Even Though on Employer’s Server, Protected as Work Product
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, October 2019

In the False Claims Act (FCA) case of Feinwachs v. Minnesota Hospital Association, the district court recently upheld relator David Feinwachs’ claim of work-product privilege over emails sent to his work email account. No. 11-cv-0008, 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 155027 (D. Minn. Sept. 11, 2019).  Feinwachs was formerly general counsel of the Minnesota Hospital Association (MHA), a trade association of Minnesota hospitals and health care systems...

IBM Wins Dismissal of FCA Qui Tam Suit Alleging It Used Faked Audit to Pressure IRS to Renew Software License
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, October 2019

On Sept. 30, IBM won dismissal of a federal False Claims Act (FCA) qui tam suit, Cimino v. IBM, No. 13-cv-00907 (APM), 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 168059 (D.D.C. Sept. 30, 2019). In the suit, Relator Paul A. Cimino alleged IBM, assisted by Deloitte LLP, fabricated audit findings regarding Internal Revenue Service (IRS) usage of IBM-licensed software to coerce IRS into renewing its software enterprise license...

FDA Warns Consumers to Stop Using THC Vaping Products Amid Ongoing Investigation into Lung Injuries
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, October 2019

Acting Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Norman Sharpless has issued a statement warning Americans to stop using vaping products that emit THC until further testing can be done. Federal and state public health agencies, including the FDA, have been investigating an unprecedented wave of 1,000-plus cases of severe lung injuries and deaths among consumers who claimed they used vaping products containing THC, nicotine, or both...

FMSHRC Withdraws Simplified Proceedings Program
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, October 2019

On October 10, 2019, the Federal Mine Safety and Health Review Commission (“Commission”) published a notice it would withdraw its simplified proceedings program. The withdrawal of the program becomes effective 45 days after publication in the Federal Register unless adverse comment is received...

Cincinnati Is Latest City to Outlaw Hair Discrimination
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, October 2019

Cincinnati, Ohio has joined a small but growing list of states and municipalities that ban discrimination on the basis of natural hair styles. On Oct. 9, 2019, the Cincinnati City Council voted 7-1 to add a hair-bias ban to the city’s existing non-discrimination law...

IRS Issues Proposed Regulations Regarding Individual Coverage HRAs
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, October 2019

On Sept. 30, 2019, the IRS issued proposed regulations regarding how the employer-shared-responsibility provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and certain nondiscrimination rules under the Internal Revenue Code (Code) will apply to individual coverage health reimbursement accounts (HRAs). The proposed regulations aim to facilitate the adoption of individual coverage HRAs by employers on or after Jan. 1, 2020.   Background On Oct...

The Requirement to Use the Indonesian Language is Regulated Further
Makarim & Taira S., October 2019

Background After ten long years of the issuance of Law No. 24 of 2009 on the National Flag, Language, Emblem, and Anthem (“Language Law”), the Government of Indonesia has finally issued an implementing regulation of the Language Law, ie Presidential Regulation No. 63 of 2019 on the Use of the Indonesian Language (“PR 63/2019”). It came into effect on 30 September 2019.   Key provisions which may be relevant to businesses   a...

Indonesian Government Simplifies Outsourcing Requirements
Makarim & Taira S., October 2019

In early August 2019, the Indonesian Minister of Manpower amended Minister of Manpower and Transmigration Regulation Number 19 of 2012 on The Requirements for Outsourcing (“MOMR 19/2012”) by issuing Minister of Manpower Regulation Number 11 of 2019 on the Second Amendment to Minister of Manpower and Transmigration Regulation Number 19 of 2012 on The Requirements for Outsourcing (“MOMR 11/2019”)...

Dental Practice Pays $10,000 in HIPAA Settlements for Disclosing Personal Health Information on Social Media
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, October 2019

Elite Dental Associates, Dallas (“Elite”) has agreed to pay $10,000 to the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and to adopt a corrective action plan to settle potential violations of the HIPAA Privacy Rule[1]. According to OCR, Elite is a privately owned dental practice in Dallas, Texas, providing general, implant, and cosmetic dentistry...

Dubai: Changes to the Fines that can be Applied by the Public Prosecutors’ Department
Afridi & Angell, October 2019

The Public Prosecutors’ Department in Dubai has the power to impose fines with respect to certain criminal misdemeanors and offences[i] without being required to refer the matter to a Court of Law. Such fines are issued under a Penal Order. This power stems from Dubai Law No. 1 of 2017, which authorises the Attorney General of Dubai to prescribe the offences and the corresponding fines which may be the subject of a Penal Order...

Proposed New Rules Implementing CFIUS Reforms
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, October 2019

CFIUS inbound investment national security review expanding to certain non-controlling foreign investments in critical technology, critical infrastructure, and sensitive personal data, as well as to certain real estate transactions.  The U.S. Treasury Department published proposed rules in the Federal Register on Sept. 24, 2019, concerning changes to the review process for foreign investment conducted by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS)...

IRS Form 1099-K Payment Reporting Under California AB 5
Hanson Bridgett LLP, October 2019

On September 18, 2019, California Governor Gavin Newsom approved Assembly Bill 5 (AB 5) to limit the classification of workers as independent contractors in the state. The new law, effective January 1, 2020, will increase payroll tax responsibilities for California companies that must reclassify workers as employees...

Countries Can Order Facebook to Take Down Content and Restrict Worldwide Access
Simonsen Vogt Wiig AS, October 2019

On 3 October 2019, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) published its groundbreaking ruling in case C-18/18 establishing that the EU enables national courts to order information societies such as Facebook to remove defamatory information. This also encompasses equivalent versions of previously declared illegal information. In doing so, the ECJ effectively held that EU law does not preclude injunctions issued by national courts from producing worldwide effects...

Competition Law Implications of Search Engine Advertising and Agreed Negative Listing Between Competitors
Simonsen Vogt Wiig AS, October 2019

There is an ongoing controversy relating to search engine advertising. In particular regarding the legality of purchasing search terms incorporating third-party trademarks. In seeking a reasonable legal standard, this article discusses the latest legal development in trademark, unfair trading practices, marketing, and competition Law...

 

 

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