Archives: Class Actions

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States (and Cities) Rush In Where Congress Fears to Tread

Some manufacturers may interpret the “Epic Fail” of Congress to repeal the Affordable Care Act as a sign of stability in the labor and employment landscape.  After all, one thing which the new Administration and Congressional Republicans had in common was their seven-year pledge to repeal “Obamacare.”  When compared to the divergent views on other … Continue Reading

The 2017 “Manufacturers’ Lawyer’s Shrug”

I am a really big fan of the NPR radio show, “Car Talk,” where two Boston auto mechanics took callers’ questions and tried to answer them.  Since the November 8 election, I have freely adapted one of their signature phrases – I call it the “Manufacturers’ Lawyers’ Shrug.”  Basically, when I attend any event and … Continue Reading

Complying With Conflict Minerals Laws: Global Best Practices for Manufacturers and Distributors

Last month, I gave a presentation to manufacturers and distributors throughout the United States on Conflict Minerals Laws.   The program was sponsored by the United States Department of Commerce.  These laws attempt to curb the acquisition of certain minerals from a certain part of Africa that are believed to support regional conflicts. Here are some … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Strikes Down Presumption of Lifetime Retiree Medical Benefits

The New Year holiday is barely over and 2015 has delivered its first significant development affecting manufacturers and their labor unions.  On January 26, 2015, in M&G Polymers U.S.A. v. Tackett, a unanimous United States Supreme Court took the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals to the woodshed with the wholesale repudiation of its thirty-year old … Continue Reading

Five 2015 Corporate Compliance / Litigation Issues Manufacturers Need To Keep An Eye On

It is our annual tradition at the beginning of each year to report on significant issues that face manufacturers/distributors in the year ahead.  Two weeks ago, Matt reported on significant issues in the labor/employment arena.  Last week, Pam reported on Environmental, Health and Safefy (EH&S) issues.  To round out the series, I’ll be writing about … Continue Reading

The Gift-Giving Season? Three “Game-Changing” Employment Developments Impacting Manufacturers

The approaching holidays may have put Congress, the National Labor Relations Board and the United States Supreme Court in the “gift-giving” mood.  In the last week, three significant developments occurred which may radically affect manufacturers in 2015. On December 11, in Purple Communications, a divided National Labor Relations Board ruled that employees had a statutory … Continue Reading

Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Settles Complaint Against Patent Troll That Manufacturers Should Be Aware Of

Earlier this year, I wrote about efforts to reform the patent system to curtail abuses by “patent trolls.”  Patent trolls do not manufacture anything.  Rather, they often buy up patents and then bring lawsuits against businesses seeking to extract licensing fees.  Last week, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) reported on its blog that it had settled a … Continue Reading

The Importance of Having A Document Retention Policy

Last week, I had the privilege of speaking at ACI’s 2nd Annual Consumer Products Regulation & Litigation Conference in Chicago.  During the conference, I moderated a panel of in-house attorneys that worked at General Electric, Williams-Sonoma, Deere & Co., and Nordstrom.  One of the issues that always comes up at conferences involving litigation is “e-discovery.”  For … Continue Reading

A Renewed Call To Reform The Patent System To Address “Patent Trolls”

The words “manufacturer” and “innovation” often go together like “peanut butter” and “jelly.”  Many manufacturers spend years developing processes and products that they then must protect by using the legal system such as through obtaining patents, trademarks, etc. Over the past several years, many manufacturers have learned that there are entities in the marketplace known as “patent … Continue Reading

Looking Forward to 2014 For Manufacturers – Part III (Corporate Compliance/Litigation)

From a corporate compliance/litigation perspective, my watchlist includes 3-D printing (“additive manufacturing”) and the rise of consumer class actions particularly in the area of food and beverage and nutritional/dietary supplements and the impact those cases might have on all manufacturers and distributors. 3-D Printing / Additive Manufacturing: Almost every day, I see some sort of article … Continue Reading

U.S. Supreme Court Roundup – Part II

The Manufacturing Law Blog provides timely commentary on issues of importance to manufacturers and distributors.  Contributors from the law firm of Robinson & Cole LLP are corporate compliance and litigation attorney, Jeff White; environmental, health and safety attorney, Pam Elkow;  and labor and employment attorney, Nicole Bernabo. As Part II of our U.S. Supreme Court roundup, this … Continue Reading

A SIGNIFICANT CHANGE TO CALIFORNIA PROP. 65?

California’s legislature has moved closer to approving a measure that may significantly curb lawsuits filed against manufacturers and distributors under California Proposition 65 (“Prop. 65”).  A California assemblyman, Mike Gatto, has spearheaded an effort to pass an amendment to Prop. 65 that would allow a manufacturer or distributor to avoid both lawsuits and governmental enforcement … Continue Reading

The Launch of the Manufacturing Law Blog

For many months, I had been thinking about creating a blog that would focus on legal and related business issues that are facing manufacturers and distributors both within our firm’s northeast region footprint and through the country.  Although there are thousands of bloggers out there, few, if any, are focused on legal issues that face … Continue Reading
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