In their Second Circuit Review column, Martin Flumenbaum and Brad S. Karp discuss 'Floyd v. City of New York', in which the circuit affirmed a district court order denying a motion by a group of police unions to intervene in New York City's "stop-and-frisk" settlement.
In her State Environmental Regulation column, Charlotte A. Biblow addresses the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation's draft of a plan seeking to prevent the introduction and spread of aquatic invasive species (AIS) in the state. The author discusses the extent of the AIS problem in New York and then explores the most significant strategies contained in the draft plan, especially its proposed legislative and regulatory aspects.
In his Patent and Trademark Law column, Robert C. Scheinfeld writes: The U.S. Supreme Court had a busy 2013-14 term, especially when it came to patent cases, granting a record-breaking six writs of certiorari, and this year's term promises to be even busier.
write: Pursuant to the Court of Appeals' recent ruling in 'Motorola', New York law is now settled, and the separate entity rule is here to stay. The decision, however, may result in a significant limitation of 'Koehler v. Bank of Bermuda,' despite the court's attempt to distinguish its holding in 'Motorola', particularly with respect to funds held in foreign bank accounts.
In their Trial Practice column, Robert S. Kelner and Gail S. Kelner discuss the two-prong analysis courts generally use in determining whether to compel the production of the contents of social media accounts, the frequent need for an in camera review to limit disclosure to what is material and relevant, and court reactions to overly broad demands.
In his Northern District Roundup, Adam R. Shaw discusses a pair of recent decisions that address thorny issues that often confound even seasoned practitioners: the rules for attorney disqualification and the role of evidentiary rules in summary judgment.
By Lawrence Jay Braunstein, Lyn R. Greenberg and Arnold T. Shienvold
Lawrence Jay Braunstein, Lyn R. Greenberg and Arnold T. Shienvold write: Mental health professionals have long been involved with divorcing families, but recent years have seen an increase of sophisticated service models, along with some controversy about them. It is important for attorneys to be familiar with qualified professionals, the benefits they can offer to clients, ethical obligations of such professionals and potential controversies.
In his Health Law column, Francis J. Serbaroli discusses the Department of Health's recent revisions to New York's Certificate-of-Need regulations. He notes that these revisions should assist hospitals and other licensed facilities in their efforts to consolidate and modernize.
In his Criminal Law column, Ken Strutin, the director of legal information services at the New York State Defenders Association, writes: A wrongful conviction can be concealed by a plea, a trial and especially the unforgiving barriers to post-conviction review. The U.S. Supreme Court's tentativeness in recognizing actual innocence illustrates the slow pace of progress. But the landscape has begun to change. The newest information channels in pursuit of justice are free standing actual innocence and reinvestigation.
Howard S. Jacobowitz and Diane K. Kanca discuss the background of and decision in 'Grace v. Law', where the Court of Appeals held that failure of the plaintiff to appeal an underlying adverse ruling does not bar a subsequent legal malpractice claim, unless the attorney-defendant can prove that plaintiff would have been "likely to succeed" in his appeal.
In his Contract Law column, Glen Banks writes: A contract may provide that a right or obligation will be triggered by an action of, or receipt by, an "affiliate" of a signatory. Should the term "affiliate" mean only those affiliates that exist at the time of contracting? Or, does it include affiliates that come into existence after the execution of the contract?
In their International Litigation column, Lawrence W. Newman and David Zaslowsky write: Although the United States is not a party to any judgment enforcement treaty, courts in this country regularly enforce foreign judgments. Indeed, if jurisdiction in the foreign court is proper and service of process was accomplished appropriately, the expectation should be that the foreign judgment will be enforced. In the past few months, however, there have been two noteworthy cases in which enforcement of foreign judgments was refused.
In his Tax LItigation Issues column, Jeremy H. Temkin writes that the IRS has long challenged attempts by taxpayers to reduce their tax liability by executing transactions that lack economic substance, a doctrine that has been applied by many courts to transactions that carry no reasonable possibility of generating a profit. A recent decision suggests that courts are changing their views.
In his Law Firm Partnership Law column, Arthur J. Ciampi analyzes some of 2014's important determinations involving "claw-back" claims against former partners by the trustee in the bankruptcy of Dewey & LeBoeuf, the tensions between the rule allowing the sale of a law practice and the one limiting the sharing of attorney fees among attorneys who are not associated, and more.
Norma B. Levy and Elisabeth R. Curzan discuss the ongoing battle between the insurance industry and the Department of Housing and Urban Development over HUD's authority to adopt a disparate impact rule for the provision of homeowners insurance, which the U.S. Supreme Court seems likely to take up in the not too distant future.
Richard A. Klass and Elisa S. Rosenthal discuss factors that both federal and state courts in New York have considered in determining whether or not assets held in another state can be used to satisfy a New York judgment, including the separate entity rule, jurisdiction and the type of proceeding.
In his Bankruptcy Update, Edward E. Neiger discusses the historic confirmation of the City of Detroit's plan of reorganization and the status of litigation that brought General Motors back before the bankruptcy court, along with the potential sale of Energy Future Holdings' stake in Oncor Electric and the successful sale of substantially all of Natrol Inc.'s assets.
Steven Schindler and Katherine Wilson-Milne write: On Sept. 15, the Seventh Circuit in 'Kienitz v. Sconnie Nation' delivered a rebuff to the Second Circuit's controversial copyright "fair use" holding in 'Cariou v. Prince'. As the Kienitz court suggested, the Cariou holding diverges substantially from the language of the Copyright Act of 1976, expands the reach of the precedents on which the holding relies, and directly conflicts with one of the exclusive rights granted to a copyright holder—the right to make derivative works.
In their New York Court of Appeals Roundup, Roy L. Reardon and William T. Russell Jr. discuss cases involving the preservation of a legal malpractice claim and when a statement represents an assertion of fact or opinion for purposes of a defamation claim, along with a recent decision with implications for New York's status as a global financial center.
In his Elder Law column, Daniel G. Fish discusses "spousal impoverishment protection" and "pooled income trust," the two methods of calculating the treatment of income for a married Medicaid applicant who is seeking home care.
In his Immigration Law column, Michael D. Patrick writes: Months after the border surge has abated somewhat, the need for counsel extends far beyond detention centers. Unaccompanied immigrant children populate large cities across the United States, and increasingly the need for counsel has moved to the nation's immigration courts, where the backlogs that have plagued that system for many years have been exacerbated by the growing docket of deportation cases involving juveniles.
Paul F. Millus discusses the history of executive orders and the issues associated with the president's power to issue executive orders mandating inaction in deportation decisions, which have never been more pronounced than they are today.
In his Intellectual Property column, Stephen M. Kramarsky, a member of Dewey Pegno & Kramarsky, discusses a recent case in the Southern District of New York that shows just how critical transformative use can be. The decision came down to one issue: Was the service innovative enough to be transformative?
In his New York Practice column, Thomas F. Gleason writes: Hardly a day goes by without a new hacking or computer intrusion news story. Identity thieves exercise extraordinary ingenuity to obtain personal information, and court files, with detailed information on the parties and others, remain a logical target. A new section of the Uniform Civil Rules of the Supreme and County Courts will address this risk.
In his Tax Tips column, Sidney Kess writes that while the midterm election gave the majority of the Senate to the Republicans, who also retained control of the House, this won't automatically bring tax certainty for 2014 and the coming year. Congress must address expired tax rules for 2014 as well as tax reform.
Steven Kobre and Leanne Bortner write: A corporate entity operating in multiple countries and regions is constantly confronted by conflicting rules in various jurisdictions. Particularly with respect to privilege and attorney work-product protections, what may be beyond the scope of discovery in one country can be discoverable in another.
In their Bankruptcy Practice column, John J. Rapisardi and Joseph Zujkowski write: Earlier this month, the Delaware Chancery Court further clarified its position on the fiduciary duties of officers and directors of insolvent Delaware corporations. Specifically, in 'Quadrant Structured Products Company v. Vertin,' the Chancery Court dismissed certain derivative claims brought by a creditor on behalf of Athilon Capital Corp. alleging breach of fiduciary duties by the company's non-independent directors.
Max W. Gershweir writes: While the New York courts adopted choice-of-law rules governing liability insurance policies that seemed to offer an easy way of determining which state's law applies where an insured business operates in multiple states, two recent cases from the First Department have thrown that conclusion into doubt, at least where the party seeking coverage is an additional insured covered for liability arising out of work performed for it by the named insured.
In his Construction Accident Litigation column, Brian J. Shoot writes: Myth is often more compelling than fact, particularly when the myth plays to our misconceptions. So, is it true, as New York Labor Law §240 reformers have claimed, that "several courts have held that a plaintiff's intoxication at the time of the incident cannot constitute a defense to a Scaffold Law claim"? The answer is, in a word, No.
Joseph F. Donley and Michael M. Rosenberg write that in federal practice, the familiar FRCP 9(b) provides a reliable bulwark against the "in terrorem or stigmatizing effect on defendants and their reputations" of loosely pleaded fraud claims. But its state counterpart, CPLR 3016(b), has been applied inconsistently, and some leading commentators have even questioned the viability of a heightened pleading standard on fraud claims.
In his Environmental Law column, Michael B. Gerrard writes that New York has moved into the front rank of states in legally mandating that future climate change be considered in decisions by state agencies. The Community Risk and Resiliency Act merely requires consideration of climate change; it does not demand any particular outcome. However, it makes climate impacts an important part of the decision-making process, much as nearly 40 years ago SEQRA made environmental considerations an important part of many state and local processes.
In their Intellectual Property Litigation column, Lewis R. Clayton and Eric Alan Stone review recent cases involving the Supreme Court's test for patentable subject matter and how it has led to dismissal of infringement claims based on business method patents; when post-invention evidence can demonstrate an invention is not obvious; and whether the flavor of eggplant parmesan or its plating can acquire secondary meaning under trademark law.
Vincent Di Lorenzo discusses the law, enacted on Sept. 26, that exempts condominium developers from the registration and disclosure requirements of the Interstate Land Sales Full Disclosure Act, although it is unclear whether the new law will be interpreted as exempting developers from compliance with the act's contractual requirements.
In her International Banking column, Kathleen A. Scott discuss a recent paper from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency that provides an overview of its approach to regulating federal branches and agencies of non-U.S. banks, and another OCC issuance regarding its revised process for managing supervisory issues of concern arising out of examinations, including those of federal branches and agencies of non-U.S. banks.
By Joel C. Haims, James J. Beha II and Jonathan Rothberg
Joel C. Haims, James J. Beha II and Jonathan Rothberg discuss a notable recent decision in which Southern District Judge Denise Cote held that the U.S. Tennis Association was not obligated to adjust the schedule for an amateur tennis tournament to accommodate the religious observance of Orthodox Jewish competitors.
By C. Raymond Radigan, John G. Farinacci and Jennifer F. Hillman
In their Trusts and Estates Law column, C. Raymond Radigan, John G. Farinacci and Jennifer F. Hillman write that at a minimum in New York, a surviving spouse is entitled to elect to receive $50,000 or one-third of the net estate outright by exercising what is known as the right of election. The public policy is fairly straightforward; however, the logistics of calculating the elective share and the correlating tax consequences of that election can be complex.
In his Attorney Discipline column, Hal R. Lieberman comments on a number of noteworthy disciplinary decisions from the past year, including an unusual indefinite suspension for a lawyer who disregarded his biennial registration obligations, and two decisions noteworthy for their leniency with respect to conduct which that court had traditionally treated far more harshly.
In his Insurance Fraud column, Evan H. Krinick reviews laws state legislatures across the country have passed this year defining insurance fraud, prohibiting payments to "steer" clients or patients for the purposes of obtaining benefits under an insurance policy, allowing insurers to cancel policies if the applicant misrepresented certain information, and more.
In their Antitrust Trade and Practice column, Shepard Goldfein and James Keyte write: In September 2011, the Department of Justice formally announced the first settlement in its investigations into an international automobile parts price-fixing and bid-rigging conspiracy. In the three years since, the DOJ has continued the auto parts investigations, charging more than 30 individuals and 27 companies with antitrust violations, collecting more than $2.3 billion in fines, and demonstrating its resolve in ferreting out bid-rigging, customer allocation and price-fixing across a wide range of industries.
Lorca Morello writes that the Court of Appeals, in 'People v. Gillotti', held that anyone convicted of possessing multiple images of child pornography has multiple "victims" under the Sex Offender Registration Act and therefore presents the same future risk to public safety as someone who has sexually assaulted multiple children, a view which, as the dissent said, "is more likely to produce emotional satisfaction than to protect any children."
In his Franchising column, David J. Kaufmann analyzes a recent decision in which Southern District Chief Judge Loretta A. Preska held that franchisee disclaimers of non-reliance on purported financial performance representations allegedly furnished outside of a franchisor's Franchise Disclosure Document do not violate the "anti-waiver" provision of the New York Franchise Act.
In his Matrimonial Practice column, Timothy M. Tippins writes: Standing at the very core of evidentiary doctrine is the rightly vaunted rule against hearsay, an essential bulwark against the incursion of unreliable information into the fact-finding process. Yet, sadly, in practice, fidelity to the rule banning hearsay is far less than it ought to be.
Benjamin Zelermyer and Jeffrey G. Steinberg write: If an insurer reserves its right to deny coverage, even while agreeing to defend an insured against a third party's claim, or denies coverage for a loss while accepting the duty to defend the insured, the insured has the right to be represented by defense counsel chosen by the insured and paid by the insurance carrier. While that principle may be simply stated, its application, not surprisingly, is more complex.
In their Cooperatives and Condominiums column, Richard Siegler and Eva Talel write that transfer fees have become an important source of revenues for many co-ops. As such, the federal income tax treatment of such fees raises an important issue: Are these fees to be characterized and treated as income derived from shareholders or as contributions to the co-op's capital?
In their Appellate Practice column, Thomas R. Newman and Steven J. Ahmuty, Jr. review the Second Circuit's recent decision in 'Acumen Re Management Corp. v. General Security National Insurance Co.,' which contains a very informative analysis of the "multiple claims" requirement for partial final judgments pursuant to Rule 54(b) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.
Debbie Kaminer discusses a case in which the U.S. Supreme Court recently granted certiorari involving a Muslim teenager's application to work at Abercrombie & Fitch and their refusal to hire her based on her wearing a hijab without notifying Abercrombie that it was for religious reasons.
In his State E-Discovery column, Mark A. Berman writes about recent decisions that tackle an employer's remote "wiping" of an employee's personal iPhone; discovery of social media; affidavits attesting to the purported unavailability of relevant emails; and whether emails are proper "documentary evidence" under CPLR 3211(a)(1).
Thomas D. Kearns explores the benefits to condominium purchaser plaintiffs of the Interstate Land Sales Act's anti-fraud provisions over claims under New York law, and discusses potential defenses to such claims including New York's law of specific disclaimers.
In their White-Collar Crime column, Elkan Abramowitz and Jonathan Sack discuss two trends that may make the already constrained position of companies even more difficult in terms of increased exposure to liability and reduced opportunities to mitigate the terms of settlement: expanded self-reporting obligations and increased interest by the DOJ in using the false statement statute against companies.
In his Civil Rights Litigation column, Ilann M. Maazel reports that a recent study found a 4.1 percent wrongful conviction rate for defendants sentenced to death. If that rate applied to all prisoners, then almost 100,000 people are wrongfully imprisoned in this country. These extraordinary numbers perhaps explain a recent legal trend, relaxing the burden for criminal defendants to vacate their convictions, as in a recent Second Department decision.
In his Section 1983 Litigation column, Martin A. Schwartz writes that in 'Lane v. Franks' the U.S. Supreme Court last term held that a public employee's truthful testimony pursuant to subpoena, on a matter of public concern, given outside of his ordinary job responsibilities, was protected speech for the purpose of his §1983 First Amendment retaliatory firing claim.
Geoffrey A. Mort discusses the National Labor Relations Board general counsel's July ruling that McDonald's is a joint employer of those who work for its roughly 14,000 franchised restaurants in the United States, which continues to send ripples through both the legal and business worlds.
In his Professional Responsibility column, Anthony E. Davis discusses two recent ethics opinions that address the existence and scope of a duty to conduct research about jurors, and the limitations on that duty particularly when the research is conducted online.
In his Settlement and Compromise column, Thomas E.L. Dewey writes: The Second Circuit, in 'Winston v. Mediafare Entertainment', has recognized that an unexecuted settlement agreement may still be enforceable. Although this rule certainly allows for an oral settlement agreement to be binding on the parties to a litigation, a recent New York district court case suggests that the hurdle remains high for an oral settlement agreement to satisfy the Winston standard.
Lester M. Kirshenbaum and Alan E. Rothman analyze 'Motorola Credit Corp. v. Standard Chartered Bank', a recent Court of Appeals decision that adversely impacts on New York judgment creditors' rights to collect on judgments against defendants' funds located outside of the United States.
In her Professional Liability Insurance column, Sue C. Jacobs discusses indemnity agreements, emphasizing that courts will strictly construe the obligation. If the document does not specifically require indemnity for defense costs the courts will not find one. If the parties intend to indemnify the indemnitee for its own negligence, the parties should use explicit language mandating that obligation.
John D. Carlin and Fiona E. Darkin review the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in 'Limelight Networks v. Akamai Technologies', which held there can be no liability for induced infringement of a patented method under 35 U.S.C. §271(b) unless direct infringement has occurred under Section 271(a) or another statutory provision. The decision has important implications for process patents, especially those in which the required individual steps can be divided among two or more actors to avoid direct infringement liability.
In their International Criminal Law and Enforcement column, Nicholas M. De Feis and Philip C. Patterson write: Historically, the United States was virtually alone in the world in treating anticompetitive conduct as a criminal offense. Increasingly, however, other countries are criminalizing such conduct and aggressively pursuing antitrust enforcement, indicating that antitrust offenses are on the way to being treated worldwide as seriously as any other international financial crime.
Jason L. Shaw writes: Three recent federal district court decisions create a conflict within the Second Circuit about whether private insurance companies selling federal flood insurance are immune from liability to the policyholder beyond the policy limits for their bad faith handling of flood insurance claims.
In his Divorce Law column, Alton L. Abramowitz discusses a recent decision in which a Support Magistrate authorized the petitioner in a support proceeding to serve the respondent with the summons and petition via Facebook, perhaps signaling the dawn of a new era in the often frustrating realm of serving process on evasive defendants in matrimonial and other family law proceedings.
In his Antitrust column, Elai Katz reviews recent decisions on use of student athletes' names and likenesses in video games and telecasts, territorial restrictions for broadcasting professional baseball and hockey games and price-fixing of polyurethane products.
In her Internet Issues/Social Media column, Shari Claire Lewis, a partner of Rivkin Radler, discusses a case in which the Ninth Circuit rejected contentions that a contributory cybersquatting claim should be permitted to proceed under the ACPA.
Javier Bleichmar and Cynthia Hanawalt write: The U.S. Supreme Court recently declined to resolve a circuit split on whether its ruling in 'American Pipe & Constr. Co. v. Utah', that the statute of limitations is tolled during the pendency of a purported class action, also applies to the statute of repose under the Securities Act of 1933, leaving lower courts to face ongoing jurisdictional conflicts.
In his Condemnation and Tax Certiorari column, Michael Rikon discusses the public trust doctrine and the First Department's recent decision allowing NYU to proceed with a building project on land that includes three parcels the lower court had found to be public parkland,
In their Second Circuit Review, Martin Flumenbaum and Brad S. Karp discuss the background and implications of 'Republic of Iraq v. ABB,' in which the court affirmed a decision that dismissed Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, and state law claims brought by the Republic of Iraq against two individuals and numerous business entities based around the world.
In their Trial Advocacy column, Ben Rubinowitz and Evan Torgan write that obtaining a just and proper award from a jury for pain and suffering in a wrongful death case can be challenging. An effective trial attorney must thoroughly prepare for all stages of the trial, including a voir dire that explores the feelings and beliefs of the potential jurors, and a strong summation that relates those feelings and beliefs to the evidence.
John C. Ertman and Richard D. Marshall write that investors in residential mortgage loan trusts that were created in the real estate boom years have incurred billions of dollars of losses since 2008. In the coming months, decisions regarding statute of limitations and the approval of global trust settlements under New York trust law are expected in two lawsuits over those losses that will have a major impact on the direction mortgage litigation will take.
In his Estate Planning and Philanthropy column, Conrad Teitell writes: While beauty may be in the eye of the judges, a beauty pageant's qualification as an IRC §501(c)(3) charity is in the eye of the IRS. A recent letter ruling held that monetary awards in a pageant were inextricably linked with services performed in conjunction with pageant operations and thus were not scholarships.
In her Western District Roundup, Sharon M. Porcellio discusses a decision concerning the defendant's destruction of a surveillance video which showed a slip and fall accident in a negligence case and its ultimate impact on the plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment.
Stephen Sonnenberg and Emily Pidot write:During the last year, several decisions nationwide have focused on the use and misuse of representative evidence in wage and hour class actions and have provided litigants with guidance regarding some critical questions.
In their Government and Election Law column, Jerry H. Goldfeder and Myrna Pérez write: Thousands of eligible voters are at risk of having a more difficult time casting their ballots this November than in past years. Since the 2010 legislative elections, new voting restrictions have been passed by legislators in no fewer than 22 states. And voters have fewer protections against discrimination at the ballot box than in prior years.
In their Aviation Law column, Steven Pounian and Justin Green write: The FAA estimates that roughly 7,500 commercial drone operations will be viable within the next five years. This dramatic increase in air traffic raises safety concerns, including the increased risk of mid-air collisions between drones and manned aircraft, and requires smart and effective regulation to address the risks.
In their Domestic Environmental Law column, Christine A. Fazio and Ethan I. Strell write: New Yorkers have generally embraced the bulk of scientific evidence that supports the view that the Earth's climate is warming faster than expected due primarily to human activity. However, many people still are unsure that climate change is occurring at all or question the reason for it, and lack enthusiasm for policies that may raise energy prices. Therefore, examples of real-world, local experiences from those adversely impacted by climate change is an important method to engage New Yorkers to support climate change mitigation policies.
In his Tax Tips column, Sidney Kess writes: The tax law presents a challenge to individuals and businesses that must comply with rules and regulations and pay what is owed. It is becoming increasingly difficult for tax practitioners to advise clients and comport with their professional responsibilities. While the tax law and practice related to it have always been fluid, the changes of late have come at increased rapidity and volume.
Bruce M. DiCicco writes: One of the most common issues arising in the context of estate and trust administration in my experience is the refusal or failure of a fiduciary to account to the beneficiaries and/or the cestui que trust. Related to that issue are demands for an accounting when there is no right to request an accounting.
In his Banking column, Michael T. Escue discusses the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency's recently finalized "guidelines" to establish minimum standards for the design and implementation of risk governance frameworks by certain large banks and minimum standards for the boards of directors of those banks in overseeing the frameworks' design and implementation
In their Southern District Civil Practice Roundup, Edward M. Spiro and Judith L. Mogul write: As several recent decisions make clear, failure to observe even the most technical aspects of FRCP 45 can result in a subpoena being quashed, and the more substantive provisions may require parties to make important tactical decisions about how to present evidence at trial.
John R. Casey writes: Replacement cost property insurance coverage for real and personal property is the standard coverage offered in today's insurance market. However, there are significant exceptions and limitations on an insured's ability to recover the replacement cost of his property following a covered loss.
In his Cyber Crime column, Peter A. Crusco, executive assistant district attorney, Investigations Division, Office of the Queens County District Attorney, reviews recent case law in which the courts tackled some of the anticipated questions that a new Apple phone raises, including in what circumstances the government may compel a user to decrypt his or her own digital files.
In their Copyright Law column, Robert J. Bernstein and Robert W. Clarida analyze a recent decision in which Southern District Judge Thomas P. Griesa, weighing the alleged re-creation of three scenes from the infamous pornographic film "Deep Throat" as part of a 2013 film, "Lovelace," produced by The Weinstein Company, upheld the defense of fair use and granted Weinstein's motion for judgment on the pleadings.
C. Evan Stewart writes: For almost 25 years, I have been writing about the eroding status of the attorney-client privilege. Practitioners, legal academics, and judges seem either not to understand the privilege, or believe that the purposes it serves are overstated or not important. One recent case—which purports to strengthen the privilege—further documents this disheartening state of affairs.
In his Complex Litigation column, Michael Hoenig reviews recent developments in three cases: the opinion of a plaintiff's crash injury causation expert was deemed "unreliable" by the Eleventh Circuit, four experts' opinions that plaintiff's zinc-induced copper-deficiency myelopathy was caused by using Fixodent denture adhesive were excluded, and the Fourth Department found a defendant's attorney in a motor vehicle accident case should have been allowed to question plaintiff regarding possible tax fraud in her tax returns.
Milton Springut analyzes a recent opinion upholding an insurer's denial of coverage to indemnify judgments in two trademark counterfeiting cases. The case provides insight to trademark practitioners about insurance coverage and provides information about strategies for trademark owners' enforcement efforts.
In their Appellate Division Review, E. Leo Milonas and Frederick A. Brodie report on recent decisions involving a shareholder's common-law right to corporate information, whether a murderer may indirectly inherit from his or her victim, the "knowing, intelligent and voluntary" standard for criminal defendants' waivers of appellate rights, and sealing of criminal records after completion of a judicial diversion or drug treatment program.
In their Commercial Division Update, George Bundy Smith and Thomas J. Hall review recent decisions that make it clear that the new standard set by the U.S. Supreme Court in 'Daimler v. Bauman' has reduced the reach of New York courts' general jurisdiction over non-domiciliary corporations by providing only a "limited set of affiliations" that can now confer general jurisdiction.
In her Securities Regulation column, Roberta S. Karmel writes: In the past, the SEC disclosure policy was used only infrequently for the purpose of advancing societal good. One example is corporate disclosure of environmental infractions. A similar issue is whether the SEC should compel companies to disclose the effects of climate change on their businesses. Today, however, some activists are attempting to utilize the federal securities laws to implement political policies in order to compel large multinationals to behave as better corporate citizens.
James Worthington and Brendan M. Goodhouse write that what was previously something of a backwater in New York law—the "peculiar knowledge" doctrine—has seen rapid development in the past couple of years. The authors examine the history of the doctrine, how New York courts have applied it to fraud claims in cases arising out of the financial crisis involving sophisticated entities, and potential strategic considerations that litigants may face.
David L. Hall and Claire Coleman write that the recent verdict in 'Linde v. Arab Bank,' should serve as a warning to international financial institutions: The consequences of ineffective monitoring of financial transactions for suspicious activity are potentially dire, and reliance upon automated AML screening procedures consistent with banking industry practices is not enough.
In his Criminal Law and Procedure column, Barry Kamins reviews criminal justice legislation enacted in the last session, including three substantive pieces designed to strengthen New York's laws relating to public corruption, address the dramatic increase in heroin trafficking and abuse, and permit the use of marijuana for medical purposes.
In their Antitrust Trade and Practice column, Shepard Goldfein and James Keyte review the history of 'Dean Foods Co. v. Food Lion,' in which milk wholesalers defending themselves against price-fixing allegations have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to decide whether a plaintiff "must produce evidence of causation to defeat a motion for summary judgment, or whether a court may instead presume causation at summary judgment and permit the case to proceed to trial based on that presumption."
In their Privacy Matters column, Richard Raysman and Peter Brown describe two leading cases that reject the government's petitions for unfettered access to a target's email accounts; a case that reaches a contrary conclusion, even after concluding that the government's request lacked probable cause; and a series of opinions analyzing the same warrant request that came to diametrically opposite conclusions.
In his Real Estate Securities column, Peter M. Fass discusses the amendments to Rule 506 of Regulation D under the Securities Act of 1933 that prevent certain felons and other bad actors to more broadly solicit investors and publicize their real estate offerings.
David B. Rosenbaum and Brian D. Graifman write: Imagine a gas explosion on Park Avenue causes the city to temporarily relocate residents to a nearby hotel while their building undergoes repairs. Some of them enjoy their temporary accommodations, claim a permanent tenancy and demand rent-stabilized leases and benefits. Are people truly entitled to rent stabilization because they happened to have spent time at a temporary shelter as their homes are rebuilt?
In their Eastern District Roundup, Harvey M. Stone and Richard H. Dolan report on recent decisions which involved employer status and aiding and abetting in a discrimination case, sex offender registration and residency requirements, and more.
Andrew N. Vollmer writes: Unduly broad requests by the SEC for electronic documents slow the production process, extend investigations, and significantly increase the associated costs. Without sacrificing enforcement goals, the staff of the Division of Enforcement could use more specifically tailored document requests, which would allow the agency to allocate its resources more efficiently, reduce costs for recipients of the requests, and treat those recipients more fairly.
In their Entertainment Law column, Michael I. Rudell and Neil J. Rosini discuss the recent decision in 'Fox News v. TVEyes,' which allowed a searchable database to incorporate copyrighted works in their entirety and provide users with excerpts as a fair use. In approving these key features, the court followed the trail blazed by 'Authors Guild v. Hathi Trust' and 'Authors Guild v. Google' which held that electronic libraries of books created to allow users to search for keywords or terms were protected by fair use.
In his No-Fault Insurance Law Wrap-Up, David M. Barshay asks: What happens when an insurer denies all future benefits based on the results of an independent medical examination, but subsequently demands the injured person submit to an examination under oath? Must an insurer have a reasonable basis for requesting an EUO?
In their Corporate and Securities Litigation column, Sarah S. Gold and Richard L. Spinogatti write that application of demand futility has often been confusing as trial courts have attempted to analyze particular fact patterns. Recently, however, courts have focused on the central concept that a substantial likelihood of personal liability compromises the directors' ability to consider a demand impartially.
Gregory R. Alvarez writes: Ensuring that the memories of Hurricane Sandy are ingrained into the brains of state decision-makers when they must consider approving major new development projects is a laudable legislative goal. However, buried in the new Community Risk and Resiliency Act is a separate requirement which could have a similarly far-reaching impact on all municipal decisions being rendered on new projects to be constructed within the state's borders.
In their White-Collar Crime column, Robert J. Anello and Richard F. Albert write: The last arrow in the SEC's quiver to avoid a strict five-year limitation has been its argument that when it seeks so-called "equitable" remedies, like injunctions and disgorgement, the limitations period contained in Section 2462 is inapplicable. This final effort to avoid statutory time constraints may be doomed, however.