Florida Supreme Court Strikes Down Cap On Medical Malpractice Damages

The Supreme Court of Florida held that the state’s statutory caps on personal injury noneconomic damages in medical negligence actions violate the Equal Protection Clause of the Florida Constitution. The statute, section 766.118, set noneconomic damages caps of $500,000 per claimant in personal injury or wrongful death actions arising from medical negligence. View Full Post
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Garlic, More Garlic, China Trade and Fairness: An Update

By | China Law Blog | June 26, 2017
Earlier this month I wrote about it was not clear whether the U.S. antidumping order on garlic from China helped domestic garlic producers. One of the unusual consequences of this garlic antidumping order was that the California garlic producers had worked out an arrangement that allowed Chinese garlic to be imported from one “fair” supplier (Harmoni), while blocking the vast majority of all other Chinese garlic sourced from “unfair” suppliers. View Full Post
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Appraisers’ Valuations Are Light-Years Apart, but Does That Make Them Hired Guns?

Gun4HireThe title of this post notwithstanding, the judge’s decision in the recent, high-stakes stock valuation case I’m about to describe, featuring a clash of business appraiser titans whose conclusions of value differed by almost 400%, did not refer to them as “hired guns.” But the judge did not mince her words in expressing the view that, while “unquestionably qualified to testify on the issue of valuation,” the two experts, whose “zealous advocacy” for their respective clients “compromised their reliability,” offered “wildly disparate” values that were “tailored to suit the party who is paying for them.” Ouch! View Full Post
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Good Choice: Important Capital Formation Reforms in Financial CHOICE Act of 2017 Passed by House

By | New York Venture Hub | June 25, 2017
On June 8, 2017, the House of Representatives passed the Financial CHOICE Act of 2017 on a vote of 233-186. Congress loves acronyms, and here “CHOICE” stands for Creating Hope and Opportunity for Investors, Consumers and Financial Choice ActEntrepreneurs. Although the thrust of the bill is focused on repeal or modification of significant portions of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 and address a number of other financial regulations, it also includes a broad range of important provisions aimed at facilitating capital formation, including: Exemption of mergers and acquisitions intermediaries from the broker-dealer registration requirements of the Exchange Act; Expansion of the private resale exemption contained in Section 4(a)(7), which codified the so-called “Section 4(a)(1½)” exemption for resales of restricted securities by persons other than the issuer, by eliminating information requirements and permitting general solicitation, so long as sales are made through a platform available only to accredited investors; Exemption from the auditor attestation requirement under Section 404(b) of Sarbanes-Oxley of companies with average annual gross revenues of less than $50 million; Creation of SEC-registered venture exchanges, a new class of stock exchanges that can provide enhanced liquidity and capital access to smaller issuers; Exemption of small offerings that meet the following requirements: (i) investor has a pre-existing relationship with an officer, director or shareholder with 10 percent or more of the shares of the issuer; (ii) issuer reasonably believes there are no more than 35 purchasers of securities from the issuer that are sold during the 12-month period preceding the transaction; and (iii) aggregate amount of all securities sold by the issuer does not exceed $500,000 over a 12-month period; Exemption from the prohibition in Regulation D against general solicitation for pitch-type events organized by angel groups, venture forums, venture capital associations and trade associations; Streamlining of Form D filing requirements and procedures with the filing of a single notice of sales and prohibiting the SEC from requiring any additional materials; Exemption from the Investment Company Act for any VC fund with no more than $50 million in aggregate capital contributions and uncalled committed capital and having not more than 500 investors; Exempting Title III crowdfunding shareholders from the shareholder number trigger for Exchange Act registration; Amendment of Section 3(b)(2) of the Securities Act (the statutory basis for Regulation A+) to raise the amount of securities that may be offered and sold within a 12-month period from $50 million to $75 million; and Allowing all issuers, not just emerging growth companies, to submit confidential registration statements to the SEC for nonpublic review before an IPO, provided that the registration statement and all amendments are publicly filed not later than 15 days before the first road show. View Full Post
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The High Cost of Cannabis Prohibition

By | Canna Law Blog™ | June 25, 2017
Cannabis prohibition and stigmaOn July 6, 2016, Officer Jeronimo Yanez shot and killed Philando Castile during a traffic stop in Minnesota. On June 16, 2017, Officer Yanez was acquitted of all charges in the killing of Castile. In the days after the acquittal, authorities released investigative reports, including Officer Yanez’s interview with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BSA) where he stated the following:  I thought, I was gonna die. View Full Post
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Sports Broadcast Copyright in China: The Stranglehold of Originality

By | China Law Blog | June 25, 2017
China copyright lawI spoke in Beijing last week at a conference on legal protection of sports broadcasts, organized by the National Copyright Administration of China (NCAC) and the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Other speakers included Chinese judges, Chinese and American lawyers and academics, sports league and broadcaster general counsel, and American and European IP officials. View Full Post
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