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The Eviction Moratorium: A Texas Federal Court Holds the CDC Lacks Authority to Regulate Private Property Rights—BUT Eviction Moratorium Remains
Dykema, March 2021

On Thursday, February 25, 2021, a Federal Court Judge in the Eastern District of Texas sided with a group of landlords by holding that the eviction moratorium instituted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is unconstitutional by extending “far beyond the legitimate scope of federal power...

Is Wi-Fi Sickness a Disability? California Appellate Court Holds That It Is Under FEHA
Dykema, February 2021

Is Wi-Fi sickness a disability? The California Court of Appeal just said it is in Brown v. Los Angeles Unified School District (2d Dist., Div. Eight), Case No. B294240. In a case that tests the limits of California’s liberal pleading standard, the appellate court green-lighted a claim of a woman who asserted a disability of “electromagnetic hypersensitivity,” or, as the concurring justice put it, “Wi-Fi sickness...

Adding up the Numbers: DOJ Announces Its False Claims Act Recoveries for 2020
Dykema, February 2021

In January 2021, the U.S. Dept. of Justice (DOJ) announced $2.2 billion in False Claims Act (FCA) recoveries for fiscal year 2020, which ended on September 30.[1] Although this amount is substantial, it nonetheless represents the smallest recovery figure in 10 years. These figures reflect the Trump administration’s unaggressive enforcement efforts and its restrictive view of the FCA. As recently as 2016, FCA recovery exceeded $4.5 billion. Recoveries in 2019 were $3...

Could This Little-Used FDA Submission Process Help Secure Approval for Your Medical Device?
Dykema, February 2021

The de novo medical device process is a little-used but potentially valuable means of securing approval for your medical device. The pathway was established in 1997 subject to the Federal Food Drug & Cosmetic Act, Section 513 (f) (2). It was designed to employ a risk-based strategy for novel devices that have not yet been classified. Basically, it establishes a new device type including classification, regulation, appropriate controls and product code...

2021 Notice of Tax Assessments Will Be Issued in February
Dykema, February 2021

The 2021 tax assessment of real and personal property will be determined by local Assessors in February, at which time a Notice of Assessment will be issued and mailed to property owners. Property owners should make sure to check the mail for a copy of the Notice in order to determine whether an appeal of their taxable value should be filed...

Knowing Your Options – The Michigan Court of Appeals Enforces Option to Purchase Without Fixed Price Clause
Dykema, February 2021

Leases often include language that gives a tenant the option to purchase the leased property during or at the end of the lease term. The Michigan Supreme Court has held that these options to purchase, or “options” as they are commonly referred, are “simply a contract by which the owner of the property agrees with another that he shall have a right to buy the property at a fixed price within a specified time...

What Changes Are in Store for the FDA Under the Biden Administration?
Dykema, January 2021

A change in administrations from Republican to Democratic usually ushers in increased enforcement, regulation and strategic initiatives. Most of the Trump regulations and initiatives will likely be scrapped where possible. They will be replaced by rules and guidance documents that have been held in abeyance during the previous administration, as well as numerous new initiatives...

The New Normal – The Consolidated Appropriations Act Temporarily Codifies Pandemic-Related Bankruptcy Relief for Commercial Tenants (But It’s Not All Bad For Landlords)
Dykema, January 2021

On December 27, 2020, the Consolidated Appropriation Act of 2021 (the “CAA”) was enacted to provide additional coronavirus stimulus and relief for businesses challenged by the ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic...

New Tools for Clean Money: Congress Enacts Expansive Measures in AML Act
Dykema, January 2021

On January 1, 2020, Congress overrode President Trump’s veto to pass the National Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 6395 – 116th Congress (2019-20)), which includes the Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2020 (the “AML Act”). The AML Act revises the Bank Secrecy Act to bolster the government’s power to identify and regulate suspicious banking activity...

Intellectual Property Update and Year in Review
Dykema, January 2021

CONGRESS PASSES TRADEMARK MODERNIZATION ACT LEGISLATION In December 2020, the U.S. Congress took action that will have a significant effect on brand holders. At the end of the year, Congress passed the Trademark Modernization Act (“TMA”) that, inter alia, provides additional tools to the USPTO to respond to the rise in improper behavior in trademark filings including filing fraudulent claims of use...

PPP Loans REDUX
Dykema, January 2021

On December 27, 2020, the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits and Venues Act (the “Economic Aid Act”) was enacted which, among other things, reauthorized lending under the Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”) to first-time borrowers (“First Draw PPP Loans”) and for second draws by certain borrowers who have previously received PPP loans (“Second Draw PPP Loans”)...

Employee Retention Tax Credits Expanded Under Consolidated Appropriations Act
Dykema, January 2021

The Consolidated Appropriations Act, Pub. L...

Illinois Passes Bill Prohibiting Lenders From Charging More Than 36% APR on Consumer Loans
Dykema, January 2021

On January 13, the Illinois legislature unanimously passed the Predatory Loan Prevention Act (SB 1792) (“PLPA”), which would prohibit lenders from charging more than 36% APR on consumer loans. Specifically, the PLPA would apply to any non-commercial loan made to a consumer in Illinois, including closed-end and open-end credit, retail installment sales contracts, and motor vehicle retail installment sales contracts...

CDC to Require Negative COVID Tests for All International Air Passengers
Dykema, January 2021

The United States’ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued an order that will take effect on January 26, 2021, requiring all arriving international airline passengers to provide proof of a negative COVID test taken within three days of the flight’s foreign departure. For those who have had it, the CDC will require proof of recovery...

USCIS to Select H-1Bs Based on Offered Wage
Dykema, January 2021

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has published a new final rule substituting last year’s random selection registration process with one based on the wage offered the worker with those cases with higher wages being more likely to be chosen...

New ALTA/NSPS Land Title Survey Standards to Take Effect in February 2021
Dykema, January 2021

Effective February 23, 2021, the 2016 Minimum Standard Detail Requirements for ALTA/NSPS Land Title Surveys are being replaced with the new 2021 Minimum Standard Detail Requirements for ALTA/NSPS Land Title Surveys (“2021 Standards”). The 2021 Standards include a variety of changes which seek to further limit surveyor’s liability and provide better clarity...

New Michigan Amendments Allow Public Bodies to Continue Remote Meetings
Dykema, January 2021

With the ability of public bodies to meet remotely under “any circumstances” set to expire on December 31, 2020, the Michigan Legislature recently amended the Open Meetings Act to extend any reason remote meetings through March 31, 2021. These amendments also now mandate certain safety protocols for in-person meetings held before April 1, 2021...

Whistle While You Work: Congress Strengthens Protections for Employees Reporting Antitrust Violations
Dykema, January 2021

The President recently signed into law the Criminal Antitrust Anti-Retaliation Act (S. 2258) (116th Cong. (2020)), which amends the Antitrust Criminal Penalty Enhancement and Reform Act of 2004. It grants stronger protections to employees who come forward with claims of antitrust violations. Specifically, the law prohibits employers from discharge, demotion, or suspension, as well as any discrimination against any employee who assists in a government antitrust investigation...

California Employment Law Alert: New Employment Laws Effective On or Before January 1, 2021
Dykema, December 2020

The emergence of COVID-19 has changed the workplace as we once knew it. California employers need to be prepared for unprecedented compliance challenges in recent legislation related to the ongoing pandemic, expanding leave protections, wage and hour compliance risks, and much more. Employers will need to review and adapt their policies and procedures in order to keep up in the coming year with California’s ever-changing employment laws...

EEOC Issues Technical Assistance Regarding Vaccination and Anti-Discrimination Laws
Dykema, December 2020

Ever since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the promise of an effective vaccine has been held out as a key component to a return to normality. Now, with the Pfizer vaccine approved, and the Moderna vaccine on the path to approval shortly, employers have begun struggling to determine what their legal obligations are towards employees who refuse to be vaccinated. While we have addressed these issues recently in a Dec...

The CDC’s New Definition of “Close Contact”: What You Need To Know
Dykema, November 2020

                The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has expanded the definition of close contact to now evaluate exposure cumulatively over a 24-hour period such that “15 cumulative minutes of exposure at a distance of 6 feet or less can be used as an operational definition for contact investigation,”[1] Because the newly expanded definition is not limited, it impacts many different industries (inclu

Michigan Employers Must Now Demonstrate Infeasibility of Working from Home
Dykema, November 2020

On November 15, 2020, Michigan’s Department of Health and Human Services (“DHHS”) issued a new Gatherings and Face Mask Order that further limits in-person gatherings and employer operations, but does not meaningfully change requirements for most businesses. With limited exceptions, this Order prohibits all indoor gatherings at “non-residential venues” of “two or more persons from more than one household… in a shared space...

What Happened to My Capital Account? New Partnership Reporting Requirements for 2020 and Beyond
Dykema, November 2020

On June 5, 2020 the Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) issued Notice 2020-43 (the “Notice”) proposing two alternative methods to satisfy tax capital account reporting requirements as the only methods for reporting partner’s capital accounts under the tax basis method for taxable years that end on or after December 31, 2020...

Michigan Voters Add Constitutional Protections for Electronic Data and Communications
Dykema, November 2020

While public attention focused on the federal and state elections, Michigan voters made an important decision—they adopted Proposal 20-2, which amended Michigan’s Constitution to extend its protection from unreasonable searches and seizures to electronic data and communications...

Michigan Increasing Enforcement of Emergency COVID-19 Rules to Ensure In-Person Work Happening Only When Strictly Required
Dykema, November 2020

Governor Whitmer announced last week that MIOSHA is increasing enforcement of its October 14 Emergency COVID-19 Rules, with a focus on promoting more remote work for offices...

 

 

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