United Kingdom

Alison Frankel

Dela. judge okays Supreme Court review of controversial books-and-records decision

13 Feb 2020

Vice-Chancellor Travis Laster of Delaware Chancery Court signaled Wednesday that he really did intend to reset the course of books-and-records litigation when he ruled last month that the wholesale pharmaceutical distributor AmerisourceBergen give shareholders formal board materials related to opioid distribution.

House Dems introduce bill to combat defense tactic of ‘snap removals’

13 Feb 2020

Representatives Jerrold Nadler (Democrat, N.Y.) and Hank Johnson (Democrat, Georgia) of the House Judiciary Committee introduced a bill last week to counter what Nadler has called the “important and growing problem” of jurisdictional gamesmanship by defendants using so-called “snap removal” to evade state court. Ten other House Democrats have signed onto the bill. And though the proposed legislation seems unlikely to become law in this Congress – given how few House bills have received Senate approval – it’s notable that what had been an obscure quirk of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure has become an issue that congressional Democrats now deem worthy of legislative attention.

‘This hypocrisy will not be blessed’: Judge orders DoorDash to arbitrate 5,000 couriers’ claims

11 Feb 2020

U.S. District Judge William Alsup of San Francisco spoke a brutal truth in a short opinion Monday night, ordering the delivery service DoorDash to arbitrate wage-and-hour claims by 5,010 couriers.

SEC commissioner’s crypto enforcement proposal could impact landmark case v. Telegram

10 Feb 2020

On Feb. 19, U.S. District Judge Kevin Castel of Manhattan will hear competing motions for summary judgment in the Securities and Exchange Commission’s most significant enforcement action to date against a blockchain developer. The SEC will argue that entrepreneurs from the encrypted messaging app Telegram breached securities laws when they raised nearly $2 billion to develop a new blockchain platform. Telegram will counter that it wasn’t required to register its offering – and that the cryptocurrency tokens investors will receive are not in the SEC’s purview. Blockchain industry groups, as I told you last month, filed amicus briefs in the case, pleading with the SEC to provide clearer regulations for digital assets and to set out a better-defined path to launch blockchains.

Case claiming antitrust manipulation of Bitcoin Cash network falls short, for now

06 Feb 2020

The telecom company United American Corp alleged a breathtaking conspiracy to rig the market for Bitcoin Cash in a complaint filed in federal court in Miami in 2018. But in an order this week, incorporating her reasoning from a Jan. 28 hearing, U.S. Magistrate Judge Chris McAliley said UnitedCorp’s lawyers at Akerman still have a long way to go to make a case. The judge dismissed the case without prejudice, giving the company until Feb. 28 to file an amended complaint but warning that she doesn’t yet see how the alleged scheme impeded competition.

Elon Musk’s liability for Tesla’s SolarCity deal could come down to a question of his control

05 Feb 2020

Does Elon Musk, who owns just 22.1% of Tesla’s shares, control the company he founded and continues to lead? If so, according to a summary judgment ruling issued Tuesday by Vice-Chancellor Joseph Slights of Delaware Chancery Court, Delaware law presumes that he wielded coercive influence over Tesla shareholders who voted to approve the company’s $2.6 billion acquisition of the Musk startup SolarCity in 2016.

Defendants want en banc review of ‘radical’ 2nd Circuit insider trading decision

04 Feb 2020

Four defendants convicted in a 2018 insider trading trial have asked the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to review en banc the appellate court’s split decision in U.S. v. Blaszczak (947 F.3d 19), which upheld the judgment against them.

In California, mandatory arbitration wins again

03 Feb 2020

In the latest victory for proponents of mandatory arbitration, U.S. District Judge Kimberly Mueller of Sacramento on Friday enjoined California officials from enforcing a new law that would have barred employers from requiring workers, as a condition of their employment, to waive “any right, forum or procedure” for resolving employment disputes. The law, which had been scheduled to take effect on Jan. 1, would have imposed civil and misdemeanor criminal penalties on employers that required workers or prospective workers to agree to restrictions on their ability to enforce employment rights.

Does Facebook’s $550 million settlement change the privacy class action game?

30 Jan 2020

Facebook disclosed Wednesday that it has agreed to pay $550 million to settle a class action that accuses the company of violating Illinois’ Biometric Information Privacy Act by using facial recognition technology to allow users to “tag” photos of their friends. Though the settlement must still be approved by U.S. District Judge James Donato of San Francisco, class counsel from Edelson, Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd and Labaton Sucharow said in a press release that the deal will deliver more cash to class members than any previous privacy settlement. Paul Geller of Robbins Geller said the $550 million deal should serve as a warning to other companies: “Consumers are recognized, identified and surveilled more than we like and certainly more than we know,” he said. “While I applaud advances in technology, now more than ever we can’t lose sight of the need to protect our civil liberties and right to privacy.”

Foreign issuers, beware: Toshiba didn’t sponsor ADRs, but investor class action gets green light

29 Jan 2020

A new trial court ruling in a securities fraud class action by holders of Toshiba American Depository Receipts doesn't just revive investors' claims. It should also reanimate warnings that allies of the Japanese electronics company presented last year to the U.S. Supreme Court.

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