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February 20, 2013
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Legal News in Brief

  Corporate Spotlight 
  • FBI looks into possible insider trading in Heinz options
    The FBI said it was investigating suspicious trading in H.J. Heinz options before the announcement of the company's acquisition by Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway and Brazil's 3G Capital. Options traders noticed unusual activity the day before the deal was made public. Reuters (2/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  National News 
  • Obama warns of harm to economy if sequester takes effect
    President Barack Obama said thousands of jobs and the U.S. economy will be put in danger if the budget sequester takes effect March 1, imposing $85 billion of spending cuts. He appealed to Republican lawmakers to back a debt-reduction plan that relies on a combination of revenues from eliminating tax breaks for the wealthy and a spending reduction. Republicans said Obama was merely trying to shift the blame for the sequester. USA Today (2/19), NBC News/First Read blog (2/19), The Washington Post (2/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Legislative Dispatch 
  Employment Focus 
  • State, federal laws conflict on criminal background checks
    State laws prohibit employers in some sectors from hiring convicted felons, but firms that comply with these laws can be targeted by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission for using criminal background checks, James Bovard writes. The EEOC opened a case in 2010 against a staffing firm that complied with a state law in declining to hire a twice-convicted thief as a security guard. The Wall Street Journal (2/14) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Visa rules drive highly educated foreign students out of U.S.
    Highly educated foreign-born students with skills acquired in the U.S., who are desperately needed by U.S. companies, are routinely forced to leave the country when their student visas expire. These same students are aggressively recruited by countries including Canada, Chile, Germany, the U.K. and Singapore to help their domestic economies become more competitive. Canada is set to launch a "start-up visa" program for tech entrepreneurs on April 1. The Washington Post (2/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Supreme Court and Federal Court Watch 
  Professional and Business Development 
  • Learning to say "no"
    Saying "no" to colleagues is a professional skill that requires practice, and the right mindset, Peter Bregman writes. You'll feel less guilty if you remind yourself that you're not rejecting the person, just his or her request. Be polite and appreciative, but push back against people who are persistent, Bregman writes. Harvard Business Review online/HBR Blog Network (2/15) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  PLI News 
  • The Anatomy of a Venture Capital Deal
    The Feb. 28 program Venture Capital 2013: Nuts and Bolts (in New York and at PLI Online), designed for those seeking a secure foundation in the venture capital field, will teach you the essentials of venture capital. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • A Warning About Making "Casual Statements" to the USPTO
    On PLI's Patent Law Practice Center, Gene Quinn details the saga of Michelle Massicotte, a licensed attorney and expectant mother who found herself on the wrong end of an Office of Enrollment and Discipline action after making false statements in petitions to revive three abandoned trademark applications forgotten during a high-risk pregnancy. Quinn says this should be a warning about the "casual statements" sometimes made in filings. The penalty even for someone with a clean record just isn't worth running the risk. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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We must travel in the direction of our fear."
--John Berryman,
American poet and scholar

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