1. JD Supra Morning Brief: Burma Investments, COPPA Guidance, Solar Panels, College Taxes

    What’s black and white and read all over? The JD Supra Morning Brief, of course…

    This interview of Christine Beshar, the first female partner at Cravath, Swaine & Moore in 1971, will make your day (Bloomberg Law

    Burma has acceded to the New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards. And that’s good news for investors (Orrick

    The new FTC guidance on the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act is out. And none too soon… (Morrison & Foerster

    After 41 years, the IRS is challenging Sumner Redstone’s transfer of stock in a family company to other family members as a taxable gift (Charles “Chuck” Rubin

    Ready or not, here I (9) come! (Sherman & Howard

    15 minutes to save 15%? How about 15 minutes to make sure you and your family have adequate protection? (Hoffman DiMuzio

    Think you might install solar panels in the new house you’re building? If you live in Lancaster, CA, it’s the law… (Foley & Lardner

    New Mexico’s new Fair Pay for Women Act will go into effect on June 14, 2013. Here’s what it means for employers in the state (Proskauer

    IRS to higher education: you’re not doing it right (and we’re going to teach you how…) (Morgan Lewis

    —- 

    Follow @JDSupraBuzz on Twitter»

  2. JD Supra Morning Brief: Madden NFL, Yoga Pants, Dunkin’ Donuts, More

    Did you know you can get the JD Supra Morning Brief delivered to your digital doorstep, every day of the work week? Click here to sign up. In the meantime, enjoy the latest edition right here:

    How do we pay for lower corporate tax rates as contemplated by President Obama? With great difficulty… (Bloomberg Law

    This Madden NFL game is so realistic, it commits copyright infringement just like the real NFL did! (Manatt, Phelps & Phillips

    Looks like somebody skipped class the day Supremacy Clause of the US Constitution was discussed… Oklahoma’s Supreme Court violates federal law, gets schooled by the US Supreme Court (Sands Anderson) (Franczek Radelet) (Leonard, Street and Deinard) (Allen Matkins

    Just in time for the holidays: the US has begun to lift its ban on imports from Burma (Myanmar) (BakerHostetler

    Lululemon found its zen: the exercise apparel company is dropping its design patent infringement lawsuit against Calvin Klein (Mintz Levin

    Goodbye, sweet Twinkie. Farewell, dear Ho Ho. So long, Donette. This time it’s really happening – Hostess Brands is going out of business (Cadwalader

    Take THAT, unresponsive Boards of Directors! Starting in 2014, ISS will recommend voting against boards that fail to act on shareholder proposals that win approval in the coming proxy season (Proskauer

    UK employment law needs to protect workers from being fired for their political beliefs, says the European Court of Human Rights (McDermott Will & Emery

    It’s just like the proverb, where the shoemaker is the CFPB, and the children are data in the agency’s computer systems, and the shoes are an agency-wide information security policy and procedures (Ballard Spahr

    “Best Coffee in America”? Sorry, Dunkin’ Donuts – the USPTO thinks that’s “mere puffery and incapable of functioning as a trademark” (Balough Law Offices

    —- 

    @JDSupraBuzz

  3. JD Supra Morning Brief: It’s What Burma, China, Hostess, the NLRB, and Cloud Computing Have in Common

    Heading over the river and through the woods today? Here’s a little reading material to make those pesky travel delays go oh so much more quickly:

    One reason behind the merger of book publishers Random House and Penguin: uncertainty over costs of developing an e-book delivery platform (Bloomberg Law

    If you spent more than $5 on a box of Twinkies over the weekend, you probably overpaid (Cadwalader

    Yet another barrier to doing business in and with Burma has fallen (Pillsbury

    You might think of design patents as easy to circumvent, too cheap to matter, and ineffective at protecting your intellectual property. The people at Apple would disagree (Winthrop & Weinstine

    Should the US legal system recognize the droit moral of artists? It might help rid the art world of a growing number of quality forgeries (BakerHostetler

    If it’s posted on a social networking site, it’s fair game in employment litigation (Orrick

    Employers who hire veterans between now and the end of the year might be eligible for a tax credit (Poyner Spruill

    Remember the Volcker Rule? Still not implemented (but probably not going away, either) (Shipkevich

    China just announced that all major industrial projects must pass a “social risk assessment” before they’re allowed to begin (Foley Hoag

    The 2012 fiscal year ending September 30 was a very busy one at the Securities and Exchange Commission (Warner Norcross & Judd

    Wondering what’s in store for the post-election NLRB? Looks like more of the same… (Proskauer

    Do business in the cloud? Read before you click (MoFo Tech

    —- 

    @JDSupraBuzz

  4. Today’s Buzz: LIBOR, Gibson Guitar, Burma, Jose Canseco, More

    What we learned in law today:

    The criminal enforcement action agreed to by Gibson Guitar for its Lacey Act violations is music to the ears of an FCPA lawyer (Thomas Fox

    The London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) is the provides the basis for more than $350 trillion of financial products ranging from corporate loans to credit cards, mortgages and savings accounts (McDermott Will & Emery

    U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has fined companies more than $10 million over the past four years for illegal and improper immigration practices – including sloppy paperwork (Warner Norcross & Judd

    Investing in Burma (Myanmar) offers significant opportunities for Western companies, but it isn’t for the faint-hearted (Foley Hoag LLP

    Taxpayers who still haven’t disclosed their foreign accounts to the IRS might be able to avoid criminal prosecution if they come clean now (Duane Morris LLP

    The NLRB wants to teach more workers about protected concerted activity (Poyner Spruill LLP

    The first real-money gambling app has arrived on Facebook (but it’s not open to players in the US) (Pillsbury

    Baseball’s 1998 MVP filed for bankruptcy listing debts of more than $1.7 million and  assets of $21,000 (Lawyers.com

    Cheerleading is not a sport – in the Second Circuit, anyway (Kronick, Moskovitz, Tiedemann & Girard)

    Europeans are entitled to extra leave if they get sick while on vacation (Bryan Cave

    An Olympic gold medal is worth $650 (for tax purposes, anyway) (Davis, Brown, Koehn, Shors & Roberts, P.C.

    The FBI just changed its rules to allow any copyright owner to use its anti-piracy warning seal (Morgan Lewis)

    —-

    Follow the Buzz on Twitter: @JDSupraBuzz

  5. Burma/Myanmar: the Next (Investment) Frontier?

    For businesses on the forefront of globalization, there haven’t been many opportunities to “go where no one has gone before” in recent years. But there’s hope.

    After nearly 50 years of military rule, Burma’s government has been taking steps toward democratization of the county, including landmark elections this year that saw opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi elected to parliament.

    The international community has responded in kind. Europe, the United States, and Canada have begun to lift long-standing economic and trade barriers that prohibit multinational companies from investing in or doing business with the country.

    For your convenience, a roundup of recent legal advisories on the changing sanctions: 

    United States Eases Sanctions on New Investment in Burma / Myanmar (Foley Hoag LLP)

    “On Thursday, May 17, 2012, President Obama announced that the U.S. would issue a general license easing sanctions on the export of financial services and new investment in Burma, although he did not lift them, meaning that they could be reinstated if there is backsliding on reforms. Although senior Administration officials had previously indicated that sanctions would only be eased on a few industries, the White House today announced that the general license would apply to all new investments in Burma, regardless of industry.” Read the update»

    Burma/Myanmar: The Suspension of EU Sanctions “A New Chapter in Trade and Investment” (Dechert LLP)

    “The European Council on the 14 May adopted Regulation that will give full legal effect to the suspension of EU sanctions against Burma/Myanmar. EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy has welcomed the announcement as opening ‘a new chapter’ in the EU’s trade and investment relationship with the country. The suspension of EU restrictions follows agreement by European ministers, at the Foreign Affairs Council on 23 April 2012, to re-open trade and investment across a range of sectors including logging, timber processing, and mining of precious stones.” Read the update»

    EU Suspends Most Sanctions Against Burma/Myanmar; US Only Eases Some (White & Case LLP)

    “In response to the ongoing democratic reforms in Burma/Myanmar, the Council of the European Union agreed on April 23, 2012 to suspend all sanctions for one year, but to leave the arms embargo and the embargo on equipment that might be used for internal repression in place. The United States partially eased sanctions against Burma/Myanmar on April 18, 2012 by [authorizing] the export and reexport to Burma/Myanmar of certain financial services by US entities that support specific not-for-profit activities. At present, US sanctions on other types of financial services, investments, imports and dealings with blocked parties remain in place.” Read the update»

    United States Takes First Step in Liberalizing Sanctions on Burma (Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP)

    “In a statement on Burma made on April 4, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced, among other things, that the United States would take measures to enable ‘private organizations in the United States to pursue a broad range of nonprofit activities from democracy building to health and education,’ and would begin ‘the process of a targeted easing of our ban on the export of U.S. financial services and investment as part of a broader effort to help accelerate economic modernization and political reform.’ The new General License represents an important first step toward these goals.” Read the update»

    Burma/Myanmar Sanctions Lifted - New Opportunities for Canadian Business (John Boscariol)

    “Most of Canada’s economic sanctions against Burma (Myanmar) have been repealed effective today. Enacted in 2007 and touted as being among the most aggressive in the world, Canada’s sanctions and export controls prohibited most activities with Burma, including investment, exports and imports, the provision of financial services and technical data, the transiting of ships and aircraft, and dealings with designated persons. These developments will raise new trade and investment opportunities for Canadian business, however firms should proceed with caution as certain restrictions remain in effect.” Read the update»

    United States Eases Sanctions on Financing for Development Organizations in Burma (Foley Hoag LLP)

    “On April 17, the U.S. Treasury issued new General License No. 14-C, which relaxes sanctions on financial services with respect to certain humanitarian and not-for-profit activities in Burma. This License allows financial services to support a broader range of development projects than was previously permitted, and includes: (1) projects to meet basic human needs; (2) democracy building and good governance projects; (3) educational activities; (4) sporting activities; (5) non-commercial development projects directly benefiting the Burmese people; and (6) religious activities.” Read the update»

    —- 

    Related reading: 

    Floating the Kyat: A First Step in Fighting Corruption in Burma (Foley Hoag LLP) 

    Fools Rush In: Social and Environmental Due Diligence in Burma (Foley Hoag LLP) 

    —- 

    Looking for more? You’ll find it here»