Washington and Lee Law professor Christopher Seaman was interviewed recently by Law360. Professor Seaman, along with David S. Levine, Elon University and Sharon Sandeen, Hamline University discuss their arguments against passing the Trade Secrets Protection Act (in the U.S. House of Representatives) or the Defend Trade Secrets Act (in the U.S. Senate.)
Read the full article here.
Read Professor Seaman’s study The Case Against Federalizing Trade Secrecy here.
Washington and Lee Law professor David Baluarte is presenting this week at The Hague, the Netherlands at the first Global Forum on Statelessness. The three-day event is co-hosted by UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the Statelessness Programme of Tilburg University. The program contains presentations and discussion on three major themes: Stateless Children, Statelessness and Security, and Responses to Statelessness.
Professor Baluarte will speak at two presentations:
“Denationalization as Persecution in the United States”
This presentation will provide an overview of the situation of stateless asylum seekers in the United States and specifically explore the question of whether deprivation of nationality qualifies as persecution under US asylum law. This presentation will unfold in three parts. First, the presentation will describe the legal limbo that stateless persons in the United States often occupy, and the vulnerability that characterizes their existence both as a matter of law and fact. Second, the presentation will review the application of US asylum law to stateless persons, and specifically elaborate on the jurisprudence that has explored whether denationalization constitutes persecution under US law. Finally, the presentation will conclude with recommendations for legal representatives, adjudicators, and US government agencies on how to achieve a necessary, uniform recognition of denationalization as persecution under US law.
“A Statelessness Law Clinic in the United States”
This presentation will share the findings of the first legal representation project for stateless persons in the United States. In 2013, Prof. Baluarte initiated a pilot project to assist UNHCR in the design of an intake and referral procedure for the stateless persons, who have no status in the US and enjoy no legal protection. The goals of this project were to assist stateless individuals in addressing the legal challenges that they face, systematizing information about these challenges, and devising advocacy strategies and model advocacy documents.
This presentation will provide an overview of the legal challenges faced by stateless persons in the United States; review some of the advocacy strategies that can be utilized to protect their rights; and describe the educational significance of doing this in the context of a law school clinic in the US.
From the abstract:
Recent revelations have shown that almost all online activity and increasing amounts of offline activity are tracked using Big Data and data mining technologies. The ensuing debate has largely failed to consider an important consequence of mass surveillance: the obligation to provide access to information that might exonerate a criminal defendant. Although information technology can establish innocence—an ability that will only improve with technological advance—the fruits of mass surveillance have been used almost exclusively to convict. To address the imbalance and inform public dialogue, this Article develops the concept of “digital innocence” as a means of leveraging the tools of Big Data, data mining, ubiquitous consumer tracking, and digital forensics to prevent wrongful convictions and to provide hard proof of actual innocence for those already convicted.
Download the full article here.
Washington and Lee law professor Lyman Johnson is co-author on an amicus brief, filed yesterday, September 2, 2014. The brief supports the respondents in Omnicare Inc., et al. v. Laborers Dist. Council Constr. Indus. Pension Fund, et al. a case currently before the United States Supreme Court, docket no. 13-435.
This securities law case, appealed from the sixth circuit, addresses whether a statement of opinion or belief is actionable under 1933 Securities Act §11 only if the speaker knew its disclosures were untrue.
Download the brief here.
Washington and Lee law professor Lyman Johnson was recently invited to contribute to the Business Law Prof Blog. Professor Johnson’s post, Hobby Lobby – A Landmark Corporate Law Decision, discusses the Supreme Court’s decision in the high profile Hobby Lobby case. It appeared on Wednesday, July 2, 2014.
The Court held that a closely-held business corporation was a “person” under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), that such a for-profit corporation could indeed “exercise religion” under that Act, and that as applied to closely-held corporations the contraceptive mandate promulgated under the Affordable Care Act violated RFRA. Two days after the controversial decision, the sky has not fallen, although dire forecasts to that effect still abound. My post today makes a simple but basic point: quite apart from the decision’s implications for religious liberty in the corporate realm – no small thing, to be sure – and notwithstanding the still unfolding legal and political fallout,Hobby Lobby immediately became a landmark decision in which the Supreme Court spoke in unprecedented fashion to an issue going to the very foundation of corporate law, the question of corporate purpose.
Congratulations to Washington and Lee law professor Victoria Shannon! Professor Shannon’s forthcoming work Harmonizing Third-Party Litigation Funding Regulation is named among the top ten papers in the SSRN Negotiation & Dispute Resolution eJournal. The paper will appear in the Cardozo Law Review in the coming academic year.
From the abstract:
Third-party litigation funding is no longer a new phenomenon, but rather is a mainstay in global commerce and dispute resolution. Yet, many observers still consider the third-party litigation funding industry as a “wild west” due to a lack of regulation in many countries. Some of the countries that do have regulations suffer from a lack of uniformity, particularly countries with sub-national political divisions (e.g., states, provinces, territories, etc.) that have conflicting laws. The United States is an example of a country that has a confusing patchwork of laws on third-party litigation funding. This article proposes harmonizing the regulatory framework for third-party litigation funding in the United States by: (1) identifying the three categories of interactions – transactional, procedural, and ethical – that make up third-party litigation funding; (2) proposing areas for regulation within those three categories; and (3) linking those regulations together through cross-references to create a harmonized regulatory framework. This approach will weave a regulatory “safety net” of minimum standards for behaviors and interactions of the players in third-party litigation funding arrangements to ensure the integrity of the dispute resolution system.
Prof. Shannon Presents at the Institute for Transnational Arbitration (ITA) Annual Workshop and Joins the ITA Academic Council
On Thursday, June 19, 2014, Professor Victoria Shannon served as a panelist on a panel about third-party funding at the 26th Annual Workshop of the Institute for Transnational Arbitration (ITA) in Dallas, TX. The workshop, entitled “Modern Enforcement of Arbitral Awards: ‘Show Me the Money,’” is widely recognized as the leading conference in the field.
Professor Shannon has also accepted an invitation to join the prestigious ITA Academic Council, made up of the top academics in the field of international arbitration from around the globe.