What is the scope of an employer’s legal duty to make room for employees with religious beliefs that may conflict with business objectives? The Supreme Court heard oral arguments addressing this issue on Wednesday, February 25, in the case of the EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores. This case arose when Abercrombie & Fitch refused to hire a Muslim teenager who was deemed not to fit the company’s “Look Policy” because she wore a black headscarf to her job interview. […] (More →)
The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) prohibits U.S. based or U.S.-listed companies from providing, with corrupt intent, money or other items of value to foreign officials in order to generate business. Essentially, the act bars companies or representatives of companies from bribing officials in order to gain a business advantage. Recent regulatory investigations and enforcement actions reveal that hiring practices have come under greater FCPA scrutiny. But what qualifies as something of value? Would the hiring of the relative of […] (More →)
In his most recent State of the Union Address, President Obama unveiled a series of reforms designed to mitigate the effects of middle-class wage stagnation. The President’s proposal would offer short-term assistance in the form of tax breaks to middle-income earners, and credits for childcare and education. Equally significant in the President’s plan is a strategy for long-term relief, offering qualifying Americans access to free community college. The component elements of President Obama’s plan are fairly uncontroversial, with many receiving […] (More →)
What’s Future is Prologue: How Anticipating Policy Shifts in Fiduciary Duty Analyses Helps and Harms the Environmentalist Movement
Is a pension fund manager’s choice to invest in coal mines, oil companies, and old power plants so financially unwise as to constitute a breach of fiduciary duty to the pensioners? This is the novel theory that the Asset Owners Disclosure Project [AODP], an organization formed to “protect members’ retirement savings from the risks posed by climate change[,]” hopes to employ in a planned lawsuit against thousands of pension funds. Having identified funds that are heavily invested in “high-carbon assets” […] (More →)
We live in a world that is increasingly driven by data. Minute Men on Wall Street trade on data just seconds before the rest of the market and are able to capture millions of dollars off penny spreads. Social media networks expose private details to the bored, the curious, and the interviewers alike. A security breach at a major health insurer can mean over eight million victims of identity theft. As yet, the legal market in the United States has […] (More →)
A federal appeals court in Manhattan will soon select a test for federal trial judges to apply in lawsuits by unpaid interns seeking back pay. If the court opts for the plaintiff-friendly test supported by the Department of Labor (DOL), expect a huge increase in the number of suits brought by former unpaid interns, and possibly an end to the unpaid internship as we know it. On January 30, a three-judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for […] (More →)
On July 22, 2011, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit vacated Rule 14a-11 in the case of Business Roundtable and Chamber of Commerce v. Securities and Exchange Commission. However, the court’s decision does not end the proxy access debate. On September 6, 2011, the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) announced that it would not appeal the D.C. Circuit’s ruling, but instead would reinstate its amendments to rule 14a-8. Effective on September 14, 2011, the SEC adopted […] (More →)
The United States Supreme Court evokes a sense of mystique and exclusivity among laymen and lawyers alike. Its front doors are locked, its proceedings are not televised, and its public plaza is not as open to the public as you might believe. A recent Reuters report shows that this exclusivity extends to the court’s functionality: the justices accept only a sliver of the petitions they receive each year. Moreover, Reuters discovered that 66 of the 17,000 lawyers who petitioned the […] (More →)
In his State of the Union address on January 20th, President Barack Obama outlined a broad tax reform plan that would eliminate tax loopholes for wealthy individuals and corporations, thereby making more revenue available for state-provided education and childcare. In addition to increasing the total top capital gains and dividend rate to 28 percent and imposing a tax on lifetime gifts of property, the President’s plan would eliminate the “step up” in basis at death. The “step up” provision, which […] (More →)
Should the SEC allow corporations to prevent shareholder access by offering a conflicting proposal that is unlikely to assist shareholders in nominating and electing directors?
Recent events have given the SEC an opportunity to review whether it will allow corporations to rely on the conflicting shareholder proposal provision of Rule 14a-8(i)(9) to exclude shareholder access proposals. Given the important effects of increasing shareholders’ role in nominating and electing directors, the SEC should not allow corporations to exclude a shareholder access proposal by offering a management proposal that, while similar, would apply to so few shareholders that it will not effectively increase shareholder access. Background […] (More →)
Columbia Business Law Review is the first legal periodical at a national law school to be devoted solely to the publication of articles focusing on the interaction of the legal profession and the business community. The review publishes three issues yearly, which involve students in the editing of leading articles in business law, as well as the production of student-written notes.