Public Policy

  • July 10, 2024

    African Student Visa Denials Need Investigating, Experts Say

    New data from the U.S. Department of State backs up what immigration attorneys have long suspected for years: African students are denied visas at higher rates than students from other regions, showing a need for greater scrutiny of the student visa process.

  • July 10, 2024

    House GOP Demands Info On BEAD 'Rate Regulation'

    Congressional Republicans called on a top U.S. Department of Commerce official to release all communications with state agencies in charge of distributing federal broadband grants to see if the agencies were pressured into regulating rates.

  • July 10, 2024

    'Wrong In Every Way': 11th Circ. Judges Rip VRA Ruling

    A trio of Eleventh Circuit judges castigated their colleagues Wednesday for refusing to revisit a decision upholding an allegedly discriminatory Georgia electoral system, charging that their "novel, dramatic, and wrong" conclusions have made Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act "a dead letter" within the circuit.

  • July 10, 2024

    Atty Says Alaska Judge Reprimand Bolsters 4th Circ. Bias Suit

    A former public defender awaiting a bench ruling on her sexual harassment claims against the federal judiciary said Wednesday that the judge deciding her case should note a recent ruling reprimanding an Alaska federal judge for his "sexualized relationship" with a clerk in which the Ninth Circuit Judicial Council determined that intent was irrelevant.

  • July 10, 2024

    Utah Goes 'Too Far' In Seeking Order Clarity, Tribe Says

    A Native American tribe asked a federal district judge Tuesday to deny a bid by Utah to clarify a June order that dismissed the tribe's racial-bidding scheme claims against several state officials, arguing that the state is using the request as a vehicle to ax all remaining allegations in the tribe's suit.

  • July 10, 2024

    3rd Circ. Questions Authority Of Fish Management Councils

    The Third Circuit on Wednesday grappled with whether the "Fishery Management Councils" that set plans and limits for ocean fisheries are merely advisers to the commerce secretary or if they're empowered enough for their members to be subject to Senate confirmation, with one judge suggesting that the panels are essentially "toothless."

  • July 10, 2024

    Mont. High Court Weighs Youths' Right To Sue In Climate Case

    The Montana Supreme Court on Wednesday wrestled with whether to revive state law provisions that bar the consideration of greenhouse gas emissions in permitting decisions that were struck down by a lower court judge, querying both sides whether the youth plaintiffs had standing to sue.

  • July 10, 2024

    Iowa Blasts Beverage Makers' Challenge To New Hemp Law

    The state of Iowa is defending a new law placing restrictions on products with hemp-derived THC, saying the beverage makers who have challenged it in federal court will not prevail on their new claim that the law is unconstitutionally vague.

  • July 10, 2024

    NJ Panel Says Tax Amendment Challenge Had No Real Claim

    A New Jersey state appeals court on Wednesday tossed a challenge to an amendment blocking certain appeals from being litigated in the state's tax court, reasoning that parties can still fight tax matters in trial court.

  • July 10, 2024

    Wyoming Officials Urge Court Not To Block New Hemp Law

    Wyoming state officials have urged a federal judge not to block enforcement of a new law targeting hemp-derived intoxicating products, saying the law is not preempted by federal policy and that the state has an interest in cracking down on such wares.

  • July 10, 2024

    Texas Court Severs Constable Workers From OT Collective

    A Texas federal court granted Harris County Sheriff's Department deputies' request to cut several employees from the constable's office from their proposed collective action accusing the department of shorting them on overtime pay, and rejected the county's argument that the case should largely be thrown out.

  • July 10, 2024

    Key Menendez Witness Faces Scrutiny As Closings Drag On

    Closing arguments in U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez's bribery trial are set to go into a fourth calendar day after jurors watched multiple sets of defense counsel Wednesday tear apart the testimony of a key cooperating witness.

  • July 10, 2024

    Behnam Tells Senate CFTC Is Ready To Be Retail Crypto Cop

    U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission Chair Rostin Behnam sought to assure lawmakers that his agency is ready to protect retail investors if it is given oversight of digital asset markets during a Wednesday Senate hearing setting the stage for a coming legislative proposal on the future of cryptocurrency regulation.

  • July 10, 2024

    Rural Broadband Org. Calls For Speedier Permitting Process

    A rural broadband advocacy group is urging Congress to pass two companion bills that would enable the use of online portals to expedite the permitting process to build high-speed networks on federal lands.

  • July 10, 2024

    Mich. County Fights To Keep $217M Edenville Dam Repair Tax

    Homeowners attacking a localized tax to fund the reconstruction of four dams have already had a chance to contest the assessment and shouldn't get a second one, a Michigan county told a federal judge Tuesday.

  • July 10, 2024

    Pa. Judge Skeptical Of Pausing FTC's Noncompete Ban

    A Pennsylvania federal judge on Wednesday seemed hesitant to grant a tree services company's request to halt the Federal Trade Commission's recent ban on noncompete agreements, as attorneys for the company struggled to point to concrete harms it would suffer if the ban were to take effect as scheduled.

  • July 10, 2024

    Former Conn. Top Public Defender Claims Bias Led To Ouster

    The former chief public defender in Connecticut has filed a second action challenging her June 4 ouster for misconduct, lodging an administrative appeal in state court that claims racial bias.

  • July 10, 2024

    House Panel Votes To Nix Biden's Retirement Advice Rule

    A Republican-controlled panel of U.S. House lawmakers advanced legislation Wednesday to block recently finalized regulations from the U.S. Department of Labor that expand the definition of a fiduciary under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, after a brief debate on retirement policy that clearly split along party lines.

  • July 10, 2024

    Senate OKs Two DC Judge Noms As 8 Seats Remain Unfilled

    The U.S. Senate confirmed two nominees to the Superior Court of the District of Columbia on Wednesday, as lawmakers try to pick up the pace in filling the local court's persistent vacancies.

  • July 10, 2024

    Mass. Justices Say Intent Not Factor In Boston Appeal Bonds

    Boston's zoning law does not require that courts make a finding of bad faith before ordering a challenger to post a bond, Massachusetts' highest court concluded on Wednesday in a case involving the appeal of the issuance of a cannabis dispensary permit.

  • July 10, 2024

    Calif. Pick Defends Articles On Biological Sex, Judge Diversity

    A state judge nominated to serve on the U.S. Northern District of California bench fended off questions from Republicans about articles she wrote in recent years regarding biological sex and diversity in the judiciary.

  • July 10, 2024

    Ex-Ill. Senator Gets 3½ Years For Misusing Campaign Funds

    Former Illinois state Sen. William "Sam" McCann has been sentenced to 42 months in prison following his post-trial admission to spending campaign funds on personal items such as trucks and recreational vehicles.

  • July 10, 2024

    DC Circ. Won't Block EPA Methane Rule

    The D.C. Circuit rejected states and industry groups' efforts to block the implementation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's final rule establishing expanded methane emissions control requirements for oil and gas infrastructure.

  • July 10, 2024

    Indiana AG Looks To End City Law Limiting ICE Cooperation

    The Indiana attorney general sued the city of East Chicago in a state court, looking to force the municipality to drop a policy that restricts local officials' and businesses' ability to assist U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

  • July 10, 2024

    CFPB Pitches Plan To 'Streamline' Mortgage Servicing Rules

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau said Wednesday that it wants to revamp its mortgage servicing rules to make it faster and easier for struggling homeowners to access forbearance and other relief options, proposing changes that draw in part on lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Expert Analysis

  • Lower Courts May Finally Be Getting The Memo After Ciminelli

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    A year after the U.S. Supreme Court again limited prosecutors' overbroad theories of fraud in Ciminelli v. U.S., early returns suggest that the message has at least partially landed with the lower courts, spotlighting lessons for defense counsel moving forward, says Kenneth Notter at MoloLamken.

  • After A Brief Hiccup, The 'Rocket Docket' Soars Back To No. 1

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    The Eastern District of Virginia’s precipitous 2022 fall from its storied rocket docket status appears to have been a temporary aberration, as recent statistics reveal that the court is once again back on top as the fastest federal civil trial court in the nation, says Robert Tata at Hunton.

  • Protecting Trade Secrets In US, EU Gov't Agency Submissions

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    Attorneys at Mintz compare U.S. and European Union trade secret laws, and how proprietary information in confidential submissions to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the European Medicines Agency is protected in the face of third-party information requests under government transparency laws.

  • Big Banks Face Potential Broader Recovery Plan Rules

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    The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency's recent call for potentially subjecting more banks to recovery planning standards would represent a significant expansion of the scope of the recovery guidelines, and banks that would be affected should assess whether they’re prepared, say attorneys at Debevoise.

  • New Laws, Regs Mean More Scrutiny Of Airline Carbon Claims

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    Recent climate disclosure laws and regulations in the U.S. and Europe mean that scrutiny of airlines' green claims will likely continue to intensify — so carriers must make sure their efforts to reduce carbon emissions through use of sustainable aviation fuel, hydrogen and carbon offsets measure up to their marketing, say attorneys at Morgan Lewis.

  • Recruitment Trends In Emerging Law Firm Frontiers

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    BigLaw firms are facing local recruitment challenges as they increasingly establish offices in cities outside of the major legal hubs, requiring them to weigh various strategies for attracting talent that present different risks and benefits, says Tom Hanlon at Buchanan Law.

  • How Uyghur Forced Labor Law Affects Importing Companies

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    Amid a growing focus on forced labor in supply chains and a likely increase in enforcement under the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, companies may face costly import delays unless they develop and implement compliance best practices, say Thad McBride and Lauren Gammer at Bass Berry.

  • Series

    Glassblowing Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    I never expected that glassblowing would strongly influence my work as an attorney, but it has taught me the importance of building a solid foundation for your work, learning from others and committing to a lifetime of practice, says Margaret House at Kalijarvi Chuzi.

  • What Employers Need To Know About Colorado's New AI Law

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    The Colorado AI Act, enacted in May and intended to regulate the use of high-risk artificial intelligence systems to prevent algorithmic discrimination, is broad in scope and will apply to businesses using AI for certain employment purposes, imposing numerous compliance obligations and potential liability, say Laura Malugade and Owen Davis at Husch Blackwell.

  • What DOL Fiduciary Rule Means For Private Fund Managers

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    Attorneys at Ropes & Gray discuss how the U.S. Department of Labor's recently released final fiduciary rule, which revises the agency's 1975 regulation, could potentially cause private fund managers' current marketing practices and communications to be considered fiduciary advice, and therefore subject them to strict prohibitions.

  • Best Practices For Chemical Transparency In Supply Chains

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    A flurry of new and forthcoming regulations in different jurisdictions that require disclosure of potentially hazardous substances used in companies' products and processes will require businesses to take proactive steps to build chemical transparency into their supply chains, and engage robustly and systematically with vendors, says Jillian Stacy at Enhesa.

  • What 11th Circ. Fearless Fund Ruling Means For DEI In Courts

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    The Eleventh Circuit's recent backing of a freeze on the Fearless Fund's grants to women of color building new companies marks the latest major development in litigation related to diversity, equity and inclusion and may be used to question other DEI programs targeted at providing opportunities to certain classes of individuals, say attorneys at Simpson Thacher.

  • Opinion

    Paid Noncompetes Offer A Better Solution Than FTC's Ban

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    A better alternative to the Federal Trade Commission's recent and widely contested noncompete ban would be a nationwide bright-line rule requiring employers to pay employees during the noncompete period, says Steven Kayman at Rottenberg Lipman.

  • Opinion

    Flawed Fintiv Rule Should Be Deemed Overreach In Tech Suit

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    A pending federal lawsuit over the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's unilateral changes to key elements of the America Invents Act, Apple v. Vidal, could shift the balance of power between Congress and federal agencies, as it could justify future instances of unelected officials unilaterally changing laws, say Patrick Leahy and Bob Goodlatte.

  • Unpacking The Latest Tranche Of Sanctions Targeting Russia

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    Hundreds of new U.S. sanctions and export-control measures targeting trade with Russia, issued last week in connection with the G7 summit, illustrate the fluidity of trade-focused restrictions and the need to constantly refresh compliance analyses, say attorneys at Ropes & Gray.

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