Treatise Update: Social Media and the Law

Social Media and the Law (2020 Edition) examines the use of social media in a variety of legal contexts, including privacy, civil litigation, employment, criminal activity and prosecution, intellectual property, defamation, advertising, and regulated industries. Relevant legislation, cases, usage trends, and industry responses are discussed.

Among the new developments covered in the 2020 Edition are:

  • Deepfakes — videos made using a new technology that falsely shows people saying or doing something that they did not say or do. See section 5:4.5.
  • Boeing standard under the NRLA: In one of the first decisions applying the Boeing standard, the NLRB found an employer’s confidentiality rule presumptively lawful under the first step in Boeing and found unlawful an employee handbook policy that workers should not post “derogatory information about the company” on social media sites and instead should use the normal channels for raising grievances and complaints. See sections 6:4.2[B][2][a] and 6:4.2[B][2][b][ii].
  • Guidance for financial services industry: In 2019 FINA released new guidance on disclosure innovations in advertising and other communications with the public.  See section 7:3.2[A].
  • Medical Device Vulnerabilities: A draft guidance issued by the FDA in October 2018 recommends medical device manufacturers and healthcare delivery organizations take steps to ensure appropriate security safeguards are in place. See section 7:3.3[D].
  • Platform Criminality, whereby criminal activities are enabled and funded through data-rich platforms such as Facebook, Amazon and Uber. See section 9:2.11.

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What’s New in PLI PLUS

We add content to PLI PLUS every month to ensure our subscribers have access to the most up-to-date and relevant secondary source legal documents.  Renowned legal experts regularly update our acclaimed treatises, Course Handbooks, Answer Books, transcripts and forms to reflect recent changes and developments in the law.

Click here to see what we added in March!

Introducing Search Alerts!

We are excited to announce the latest enhancement to PLI PLUS – search alerts! In response to customer feedback, we’ve added an email service that notifies users when new content is published by PLI Press on topics in their interest areas.

These alerts are available to all PLI PLUS subscribers for any search they run. Simply look for the bell icon within the document management tools to set your alert.

We save you the step of having to refresh your research – instead, you will find an email in your inbox when new and relevant content is published. 

Treatise Update: Post-Grant Proceedings Before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board

Post-Grant Proceedings Before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board guides readers through the process of initiating a post-grant proceeding, taking discovery, seeking sanctions, proposing and opposing claim amendments, effectively advocating at the oral hearing, appealing to the Federal Circuit, and handling a wide array of issues involving co-pending district court litigation.

Updates from Release #10 include:

  • In Chapter 2, the section on Claim construction discusses changes to the PTAB standard for petitions filed after November 13, 2018, from the broadest reasonable interpretation standard to the Phillips v. AWH Corp. standard used in civil actions and at the International Trade Commission. See § 2:5, at note 57.
  • In Chapter 3, a section on Standing—real party in interest discusses Applications in Internet Time, LLC v. RPX Corp., in which the Federal Circuit held that “the focus of the real-party-in-interest inquiry is on the patentability of the claims challenged in the IPR petition, bearing in mind who will benefit from having those claims canceled or invalidated.” See § 3:2.3[A], at note 46.
  • In Chapter 3, the section called Joinder discusses the first case to be taken up by the PTAB’s Precedential Opinion Panel, which determined that, under appropriate and limited circumstances, a petitioner may join its own previously instituted IPR to request joinder and institution of new issues (Proppant Express Investments, LLC v. Oren Technology, LLC). See § 3:6, at note 193.
  • In Chapter 8, Amendments to claims discusses the notice of proposed rulemaking put forth by the USPTO on October 21, 2019. See § 8:3.1, at note 99.
  • In Chapter 8, under the section Inter partes review—timelines, a new figure 8-1 depicts the anticipated trial flow of an inter partes review proceeding, depending on whether or not a second, revised motion to amend is filed by the patent owner. See § 8:3.1.
  • Chapter 14, Appeals to the Federal Circuit includes updated information on the number of PTO appeals filed in the CAFC. See § 14:1, at note 2.

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Treatise Update: Reinsurance Law

Reinsurance Law examines the intricacies of U.S. reinsurance law in the 21st century, giving readers a practical grasp of the purpose, benefits, markets, and costs of reinsurance; the features, operation, and risk-and-return characteristics of the full range of reinsurance products; state, federal, and international regulation of reinsurance; and a full understanding of resolving disputes in the industry. Enhanced with time-saving checklists and numerous sample clauses and sample agreements, this practical treatise covers federal and state law, industry standards, customs, practice—including the Utmost Good Faith and Follow-the-Fortunes doctrines—and relevant case law in clear, straightforward terms.

Highlights from Release #14 of Reinsurance Law include:

  • Chapter 3: A section on Implied Follow-the-Fortunes Provision addresses whether the follow-the-fortunes doctrine is implied in facultative reinsurance certificates when there is no express working to that effect (see section 3:3).
  • Chapter 3: A section on Reinsurer’s Obligation Regarding Supplemental Benefits Outside of the Applicable Limits of Liability discusses the Second Circuit decision in Utica Mutual Insurance Co. v. Clearwater Insurance Co., holding that the contracts required payment of expenses in addition to the stated liability limits in the facultative contracts. The ruling was based on form language in the contracts and the absence of language stating that the reinsurer’s liability would be “subject to” the stated limits of liability (see section 3:4).
  • Chapter 6: A section on Vacating or Modifying the Award explains how before an arbitrator is officially engaged to perform an arbitration, to ensure the parties’ acceptance of the arbitrator is informed, potential arbitrators must disclose their ownership interests, if any, and the arbitration organizations with whom they are affiliated in connection with the arbitration and those organizations’ nontrivial business dealings with the parties to the arbitration (see section 6:9.2).

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Tune into the inSecurities Podcast!

PLI is proud to announce the launch of inSecurities, a new podcast examining changes to securities rules, regulations, and cases from a practitioner’s perspective in both law and accounting.

Hosted by Chris Ekimoff, a forensic accountant, and Kurt Wolfe, a securities regulatory attorney, inSecurities is a biweekly podcast showcasing practitioner perspectives on changes within the securities field. Recent episodes include a deep dive into insider trading and a lively discussion on equity market structure reform with special guests former SEC Commissioner Robert Jackson and George Mason Law Professor J.W. Verret.

In an increasingly complex business environment where intricate corporate structures reign, inSecurities helps make sense of it all. Available now on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify. Learn more at

Treatise Update: Stocker on Drawing Wills and Trusts

Stocker on Drawing Wills and Trusts (Fourteenth Edition) is a vital planning tool for estates, trusts, and tax planning specialists and any general practitioner involved in crafting wills, trusts or other estate planning documents.

For more than 50 years, attorneys and estate planners have relied on this essential treatise to provide high-quality, comprehensive, field-tested drafting guidance that ensures wills, trusts and other estate planning documents fully express clients’ wishes without provoking costly legal challenges.

Enhanced by hundreds of labor-saving sample forms and clauses, this title provides guidance on how to help clients capitalize on the full range of tax-saving and non-tax opportunities.

Highlights of Release #4 include:

  • Chapter 5: Estate Tax and Planning for the Applicable Credit Amount is updated to discuss the inflation adjusted numbers issued by the Service for 2020, and provides updated figures for transfer tax rates, exemption amounts, and the total (federal and state) estate tax top rate.
  • Chapter 6, Section 4.3[F]: Gift Tax on QTIP Property is updated to explain that a major pitfall for QTIP planning is the surviving spouse’s gifting of a QTIP income interest.
  • Chapter 10, Section 10: Income Tax Planning for Other Considerations is expanded to examine changes to the Kiddie Tax for taxable years 2018–2025, during which the child’s unearned income will be taxed at the ordinary and capital gains rates applicable to trusts and estates.

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New Title! ERISA: Department of Labor Investigations and Litigation

PLI Press is excited to announce the publication of ERISA: Department of Labor Investigations and Litigation, a new treatise focusing on the Department of Labor’s civil enforcement authority and litigation under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA).

This new publication has two primary functions: (1) to serve as a reference guide to the Department’s regulations and informal guidance, and (2) to be a resource for the Department’s views on ERISA fiduciary responsibilities as expressed in litigation by highlighting key cases.

The book examines cases brought by the Department directly as the plaintiff or amicus and how its views have been received by the courts. Cases involving private litigants generally are not discussed but are briefly mentioned if they are particularly significant, such as Supreme Court decisions or key lower court opinions. The primary exception concerns the Department’s amicus curiae briefs, which are filed in private party litigation and touch on significant or novel issues before the Supreme Court and circuit courts across the country.

As much of the Department’s enforcement and litigation has focused on pension plans, so does this book, along with an overview of health plan investigations, enforcement, and litigation, including under ERISA Part 7 and the Affordable Care Act. There is also a short discussion of the Department’s criminal enforcement program, as well as a discussion of the impact of the fiduciary, or conflict of interest, rule on the financial services industry and related litigation.

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New Edition! Consumer Financial Services Answer Book

Consumer Financial Services Answer Book (2020 Edition), written in a clear and accessible Q&A format, provides financial service lawyers and compliance professionals with the practical guidance needed to fully understand and comply with the various laws governing consumer financial services.

This comprehensive guide includes contributions from the well-regarded consumer financial services teams at three law firms—Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP; McGlinchey Stafford; and Dykema Gosset PLLC—as well as from other prominent practitioners.

Highlights from the 2020 edition:

  • Comprehensive coverage of key governing statutes and regulations, including the all-important Title X of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, as well as the core federal laws affecting consumer lending, such as the Truth in Lending Act, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, the Fair Credit Billing Act, and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
  • A chapter on CFPB enforcement answers questions about the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection, explaining the structure of the Office of Enforcement, the scope of its authority, the procedures it follows in enforcement investigations and action, and the nature of its enforcement activity to date.
  • Detailed discussions of the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (ESIGN), the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, and the laws governing unfair and deceptive acts and practices.
  • Chapters dedicated to a variety of specific consumer finance industries, including mortgage lending and servicing, automotive finance, the credit card industry, military lending and loan relief, and short-term lending.

Order your print copy today. 

PLI PLUS subscribers can access this title through their subscription. 

What’s New in PLI PLUS

We add content to PLI PLUS every month to ensure our subscribers have access to the most up-to-date and relevant secondary source legal documents.  Renowned legal experts regularly update our acclaimed treatises, Course Handbooks, Answer Books, transcripts and forms to reflect recent changes and developments in the law.

Click here to see what we added in February!