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Proskauer’s perspective on developments and trends in commercial litigation.

Category Archives: Federal Rules

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Two Copyright Claim Wrongs Don’t Make a Copyright Claim Right: Analyzing Melendez v. Sirius XM Radio, Inc.

On October 4, 2022, a Second Circuit panel affirmed the lower court’s decision that defendant Sirius XM Radio Inc.’s ads showcasing The Howard Stern Show do not violate plaintiff John Edward Melendez’s publicity rights. The ruling affirmed the Southern District of New York’s grant of defendant’s motion to dismiss plaintiff’s claims under California common and statutory … Continue Reading

Cryptic Guidance? Despite Regulatory Ambiguity, New SEC Enforcement Could Drive Increase in Cryptocurrency-Related Shareholder Class Actions   

In late-July, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission brought insider trading charges against a former manager at Coinbase—the largest crypto asset trading platform in the United States. The charges are the latest move in the agency’s efforts to regulate cryptocurrency, and could spur an increase in cryptocurrency-related securities litigation. In SEC v. Wahi, et. al, … Continue Reading

E-cigs & E-discovery: When Marriage Cannot Save Sloppy Document Productions

What began as a trademark infringement dispute concerning electronic cigarettes has evolved into a never-ending series of discovery issues, and lessons about the limits of Federal Rule of Evidence 502 and privilege waivers. DR Distributors, LLC filed its initial complaint against 21 Century Smoking, Inc and its owner, Brent Duke, in September 2012 alleging trademark violations. … Continue Reading

Changes to Rules Governing Expert Testimony Imminent

Last month, the Advisory Committee on Evidence of the Judicial Conference of the United States’ Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure voted to unanimously to recommend certain amendments to Federal Rule of Evidence 702, which governs the admissibility of expert witness testimony.  This vote signals imminent changes that could significantly affect federal practitioners’ requirements … Continue Reading

FTC Report Warns Against Overconfidence in AI Tools to Combat Online Harm

Last month, the FTC issued a report to Congress advising governments and companies to exercise “great caution” in using artificial intelligence (“AI”) to combat harmful online content.  The report responds to Congress’s request to look into whether and how AI may be used to identify, remove, or otherwise address a wide variety of specified “online … Continue Reading

Infant Formula Shortage Update

Lawmakers in Washington, D.C., and California have taken recent steps to further protect the infant formula market from price gouging. On June 7, 2022, the D.C. Council passed the “Infant Formula Consumer Protection Emergency Act.” The Act, which will remain in effect for 90 days, targets companies selling baby formula at extremely high prices. The … Continue Reading

Amendment to Rule 7.1 Seeks to Resolve Federal Court Diversity Issues at the Outset of Cases But It May Not Achieve Its Goal

A proposed amendment to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 7.1, which had previously required information so judges could determine if they had a conflict of interest, would require a party in a diversity action to name and disclose the citizenship of every individual or entity whose citizenship is attributed to that party. Chief Justice Roberts … Continue Reading

FTC Announces Inquiry into the Infant Formula Shortage

On May 24, 2022, the FTC announced a widespread inquiry into the ongoing infant formula shortage. The agency had been tasked by the White House with investigating any price gouging or unfair market practices in the industry. The agency is seeking public comments on “various factors that may have contributed to the infant formula shortage…as … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Limits Federal Court Jurisdiction to Vacate or Confirm Arbitration Awards

In an 8-1 decision, the United States Supreme Court recently held in Badgerow v. Walters that federal courts may not examine the substance of arbitration disputes to establish federal question jurisdiction under Sections 9 and 10 of the Federal Arbitration Act (the “FAA”).  Not only did this decision resolve a circuit split, it, in essence, … Continue Reading

Recent Change to New York’s Hearsay Law Could have Implications for Workplace Litigation

New York’s unique approach to evidentiary procedure – and specifically, its rules governing admissions by a party opponent’s agent – have frustrated litigators for years. Recent changes to New York’s rules on civil procedure, however, have brought the state’s approach to hearsay more in line with the standard set by the Federal Rules of Evidence. … Continue Reading

The Administrative State Under Attack: Potentially Far Reaching Implications of Supreme Court’s Decision to Hear Challenge to FTC Administrative Review Process

In 1984, the Supreme Court ruled unanimously that courts must defer to an administrative agency’s reasonable interpretation of an ambiguous statute. But last year, the Supreme Court stripped the FTC of its ability to seek equitable monetary remedies such as disgorgement or restitution. And a couple weeks ago, the Supreme Court dismantled the Occupational Safety … Continue Reading

Federal Judge Finds Copyright Issues “Embedded” in Social Media Re-Posts

Judge Jed Rakoff of the Southern District of New York recently denied a motion to dismiss in a copyright dispute involving the unlicensed “embedding” of a social media video. In doing so, the court explicitly and definitively rejected the Ninth Circuit’s “server rule,” under which the Ninth Circuit held that re-posting of online content does … Continue Reading

How Different Judicial Notice Rules Can Change an Outcome

Judicial notice is one of the less glamorous parts of motion practice. A request for judicial notice is typically a lower-priority background document, drafted towards the end of the brief-writing process, along with a notice of motion and declaration.  But at times, questions relating to judicial notice standards warrant additional consideration, along with the merits … Continue Reading

When Is Less Really More for a Patent Licensee?

In Apple v. Qualcomm, Federal Circuit Finds No Standing to Challenge Validity of a Few Patents When Many Were Licensed The development timeline for small-molecule drugs and biologics is lengthy, estimated to take between 10 and 15 years. As a result, pharmaceutical companies need to consider freedom to operate issues long before they receive FDA … Continue Reading

The FTC’s Enforcement Power: How AMG Reshapes the Landscape

In a unanimous opinion, the U.S. Supreme Court held that Section 13(b) of the FTC Act does not authorize the Federal Trade Commission to seek monetary relief in the form of restitution or disgorgement, despite the agency’s redoubled practice of seeking such relief under the Act since 2012. The Court’s opinion significantly reshapes the FTC’s … Continue Reading

Antitrust Enforcers Preview Incoming Spotlight on Blockchain

The tide of regulation of cryptocurrency and blockchain could be turning in the United States. Following comments by newly-confirmed Treasury Secretary (and former Federal Reserve Chair) Janet Yellen describing Bitcoin as “inefficient” and “extremely volatile,” the price of the coin dropped 10% in 24 hours. During her confirmation hearings, Yellen described cryptocurrencies as a “particular … Continue Reading

No Hearing? No Money: Second Circuit Holds the Government May Not Keep Illegally Seized Rent

The Second Circuit has recently held that the Government must account for rental income it denied a property owner during a period of illegal seizure even though the Government was able to establish probable cause at a post-seizure hearing.  The appeal stemmed from a decades-long sanctions and civil forfeiture action in which the U.S. Department … Continue Reading

CAFC Tightens Enablement Standard for Functional Claiming of Antibodies

In the recent case of Amgen Inc. v. Sanofi, Aventisub LLC, the Federal Circuit affirmed the district court’s invalidation of certain of Amgen’s antibody patent claims, concluding that the claims were not “enable[d]” under 35 U.S.C. § 112. This decision establishes that it is more difficult to satisfy the enablement requirement for antibody claims that … Continue Reading

The House Judiciary Committee Takes on Big Tech

“Mark my words: Change is coming. Laws are coming.” That was the warning David Cicilline (D-RI) – the House Judiciary Antitrust, Commercial, and Administrative Law Subcommittee Chairman – gave on February 25th at the first in a series of hearings following the Subcommittee’s 16-month probe into Big Tech’s gatekeeping power. This one, titled Reviving Competition, … Continue Reading

CLERA or Murkier: Proposed Antitrust Legislation Raises Questions

The Sherman Act was passed in 1890. The Clayton Act in 1914. And they have hardly changed since. Last month, Senator Amy Klobuchar, the new chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights, proposed an overhaul of the antitrust laws: CLERA, the Competition and Antitrust Law Enforcement Reform Act.  … Continue Reading

Could the FTC Pass the Torch to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to Oversee the Fintech Industry?

The change in the White House administration combined with a potential ground-breaking Supreme Court decision may move the oversight and enforcement for marketing by the fintech sector from the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”).  This would be a tectonic shift.… Continue Reading

Key Takeaways from the Amendment to Rule 30(b)(6)

This past year has brought lots of change, including an amendment to Rule 30(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Rule 30(b)(6) governs the deposition of an organization (e.g., a corporation or a partnership) and requires, generally, that the notice of such a deposition set out with reasonable particularity the matters of examination.  The … Continue Reading
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