May 20, 2016

Inside Business Law (May 2016)

With more than 1,800 attendees from 19 countries, the Business Law Section’s 2016 Spring Meeting in Montréal, April 7–9, hosted a wide variety of programming that appealed to all business lawyers. The range of topics included programs on “Legal Project Management in M&A Transactions”; “How Arbitration and Meditation Clauses Work on Paper and in Practice”; “The Emerging Cashless Society”; “Alternative Legal Careers for 21st Century: Practical Advice and Ethical Considerations”; and “Diversity & Inclusion: Your Clients Care and This is Why You Should Too!”

In all, there were 79 CLE programs (11 more than the 2015 Spring Meeting in San Francisco), over 300 committee business meetings, and 15 committee dinners were held. The 2016 Business Law Section Spring Meeting App was extremely successful: there were approximately 900 users.

Those unable to attend the Montréal Meeting and those attendees who want to enjoy more quality programming can access the written materials and audio recordings from 79 committee-sponsored CLE programs in the Program Materials Library. Overviews of the most in-demand and high attendance CLE programs are presented below.

From Enron to Volkswagen: The Critical Importance of Governance, Culture, Compliance, and Ethics (Corporate Governance)

The recent revelation by Volkswagen of its installation of software that operated emissions controls only in the presence of testing and the fraudulent reporting of compliance with emission-control standards clearly surpasses the governance and financial fallout associated with the downfall of Enron more than a decade ago. This program highlights the critical importance of board oversight, an ethical culture and a functional compliance system.

Recent Developments in the Debt Collection and Loan Servicing Space (Consumer Financial Services)

This program offers government and industry perspectives on the CFPB’s soon-to-be-released SBREFA outline of proposals for a debt collection rulemaking. Panelists examine recent CFPB, FTC, and state AG actions involving debt collection and debt sales.

Economic Sanctions Enforcement in an Evolving Environment (Banking Law)

in this program, panelists discuss how: (1) world events are shaping economic sanctions regimes; (2) economic sanctions law are being enforced against financial institutions; and (3) bank counsel can help their clients cope with these evolving issues.

Cases That Matter: Recent Cases Affecting M&A Negotiations and Drafting (Mergers and Acquisitions)

Topics on drafting include: (1) financial advisor engagement letters; (2) non-disclosure agreements; (3) indemnification and release by non-signatories; (4) negligence clauses and fraud waivers; and (5) privilege and conflict provisions.

Update on the Telephone Consumer Protection Act – Does the Federal Communications Committee Really Want Your Client to use a Rotary Phone? (Consumer Financial Services)

This program addresses the evolving landscape and high risk exposure under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), including recent key litigation trends and rulings. The panel discusses the regulatory and enforcement activity by the FCC and the FTC.


BLS Trivia Answer: One hundred ten years before Edward Snowden, in 1903, Nevil Maskelyne “hacked” John Ambrose Fleming’s demonstration of Guglielmo Marconi’s wireless telegraph to the Royal Institute by tapping into a flaw in the technology underlying Marconi’s wireless telegraph.