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On Friday, the Supreme Court came out with its long awaited decision in Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins. In a nutshell, the Court really decided little: it vacated the previous 9th Circuit decision and remanded the case back to that court for further consideration. In some quarters, that would be called a “punt.”
Nevertheless, perhaps the result can be summarized at best as a tie for defendants – the Court was clear that the mere allegation of the violation of a statute that contains a monetary penalty would not support standing. But at worst for defendants the decision clearly leaves the door open for claims that involve only a statutory violation and penalty can proceed where there is some sort of undefined link between the penalty and some tangible or intangible harm. Read More ›
In March, the Supreme Court decided Tyson Foods v. Bouaphakeo,a much watched case involving the propriety of class certification.
Since the landmark decision in Wal-Mart v. Dukes, lower courts have found ways of restricting the applicability of Dukes and Comcast v. Behrend in ways to find certification despite the apparent suggestion in Dukes that certification was limited and the notion of trial by formula was discredited. (See our October 2014 post.) Many commentators, including me, thought that Tyson would provide the opportunity for the Court to restrain these lower court interpretations. (See our blog posts of June 2015 and November 2015.) Read More ›
Supreme Court Issues Final Word on Whether Unaccepted Rule 68 Offers of Judgment Moot Putative Class Actions… Or Does It?
Yesterday, the Supreme Court issued a decision in which it held that an unaccepted Rule 68 offer of judgment made to the named plaintiff in a putative class action does not moot the case. In doing so, the Court seemingly put an end to what was a contentious class action issue—an issue that this blog has followed closely. Interestingly, however, the Court chose not to decide whether a Rule 68 offer could moot a case if accompanied by a payment in the amount of that offer. Read More ›
The Financial Services Blog offers the latest information on banking development and litigation trends. Topics range from commercial and consumer lending through bankruptcy, lender liability defense, and the Dodd-Frank Act through Regulations JJ.
Prepaid cards are increasingly popular—they are frequently used instead of traditional bank accounts to shop, withdraw cash from ATMs, pay for healthcare costs from health savings accounts, distribute natural disaster aid, and pay wages. Read More ›
A Cautionary Tale for Money Service Businesses: How Violating the Bank Secrecy Act Could Cost Millions
On February 27, 2017, The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”) fined Merchants Bank of California (“Merchants”) $7 million for what it called “egregious” violations of the Bank Secrecy Act (“BSA”). The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency simultaneously assessed a $1 million civil monetary penalty against Merchants because it violated two previous consent orders. Merchants is a community bank located in Carson City, California. The Bank had a large portfolio of Money Service Businesses (“MSBs”) customers. MSBs are generally recognized by federal regulators to include: (1) currency dealers or exchangers; (2) check cashers; (3) issuers of traveler’s checks, money orders, or stored value; (4) sellers or redeemers of traveler’s checks, money orders, or stored value; and (5) money transmitters. In Merchants’ case, it had 165 check-cashing and 44 money-transmitter customers, who often operated at great distances from the Bank. Compounding the situation was the fact that Bank insiders owned or managed a number of the MSB customers. Read More ›
New Hampshire legislators may exempt people who provide money transfer services for virtual currency, such as bitcoin, from being considered “money transmitters” for the purposes of the state’s licensing requirements. Specifically, the bill, HB436, would amend the definitions section (RSA 399-G:1) and the exemptions (RSA 399-G:3). As modified, the definitions would clearly define what a “virtual currency” is. The amended version would also create a new licensing exemption for “[p]ersons conducting business using transactions conducted in whole or in part in virtual currency.” Read More ›
The International Services Group Blog is a resource for business leaders within the international commerce industry. Frost Brown Todd's international lawyers discuss the latest challenges for international trade and regulation, as well as solutions for those challenges.
During his campaign for presidency, President-elect Donald Trump frequently called the North American Free Trade Agreement “the worst trade deal in history.” He promised the American people that he would renegotiate or withdraw from NAFTA and raise tariffs on imports from Mexico and Canada. NAFTA is a free trade agreement signed by Canada, Mexico and the United States, creating a trilateral trade bloc in North America. In the aftermath of the election, Americans with international business interests may be wondering whether President-elect Trump has the legal authority to unilaterally withdraw the U.S. from NAFTA and how to prepare for that scenario.
Mr. Trump’s transition team has sketched out his plan for the first 200 days of his presidency. According to post-election memorandum and video, the president-elect intends to push for substantial changes to NAFTA and trade relations between the United States, Canada and Mexico. Read More ›
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