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Environmental Quality Board: Is It Time to Make It Truly Independent? >
July 2018
The Legal Intelligencer's Energy & Environmental Law Supplement
By: Michael P. Canavan
Nearly 50 years later, one may question whether the EQB is discharging its duties in the manner envisioned by its creators, or ever has. While the EQB has several other duties, the promulgation of regulations has been its primary role. However, the board has had little or no staff throughout its history, usually limited to one "regulatory coordinator." DEP staff drafts (i.e., formulates) proposed regulations. DEP staff then drafts the comment/response document, prepared in response to public comments, without conferring with the EQB.

Court Addresses Sexual Harassment Claim in Context of #MeToo Movement >
July 11, 2018
The Legal Intelligencer
By: Sidney R. Steinberg
The recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in Minarsky v.Susquehanna County explicitly references #MeToo as it relates to affirmative defenses to sexual harassment claims in the Third Circuit and may help change that dynamic, particularly as it relates to women not coming forward with complaints against their male supervisors.

The Seizure of Attorney-Client Communications: Fighting Back >
Business Crimes Bulletin
By: Ronald H. Levine
The government's seizure of attorney-client communications, a headline event when it involves the President's lawyer Michael Cohen, actually is a recurrent problem in white-collar criminal investigations due to the convergence of several trends.

Pa. Proposes Significant Increase to Overtime Salary Thresholds >
July 2, 2018
The Legal Intelligencer
By: Andrea M. Kirshenbaum and
In response to Gov. Tom Wolf's call to “modernize” Pennsylvania's overtime rules, on June 23, the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry (L&I) proposed rulemaking to update the decades-old regulations applicable to three classes of overtime-exempt employees under the Pennsylvania Minimum Wage Act (PMWA): executive, administrative and professional (EAP).

Medicare Advantage Plan Litigation Challenges CMS Interpretation of 60-Day Overpayment Rule >
June 2018 Issue
ABA Health Lawyer
By: Elizabeth M. Hein
Despite years of being promised clarity and consistency in how the 60-Day Overpayment Rule (60-Day Rule) would be applied to Medicare and Medicaid, providers still face different standards for reporting and returning overpayments depending on the government program involved, as well as possible fraud exposure for conduct that may not satisfy the longstanding "knowledge" requirement of the False Claims Act (FCA)

Court Decision Enjoining Salary History Ordinance Leaves Employers in Limbo >
May 9, 2018
The Legal Intelligencer
By: Sidney R. Steinberg
Laws prohibiting prospective employers from asking applicants about their prior wage history have been part of a growing trend across the country. Philadelphia joined that trend in late 2016 when the city council passed an ordinance prohibiting employers from inquiring about a prospective employee's wage history and making it illegal for an employer to rely on wage history at any stage in the employment process when setting the employee's salary.

Amendment to the FLSA: The Tip Income Protection Act of 2018 >
April 2, 2018
The Legal Intelligencer
By: Andrea M. Kirshenbaum
Restaurants and hotels increasingly have found themselves over the last several years as defendants in lawsuits or the subject of investigation by the DOL's Wage and Hour Division challenging their "tip pooling" practices. hospitality industry employers typically collect a percentage of the tips received from staff who receive tips and redistribute, which often provides additional wages to staff who typically earn less in tips, like hosts or bellhops. On March 23, Congress got into the act via The Omnibus Spending Bill.

Pa. High Court Ruling Erodes Medical Peer Review Protection >
March 30, 2018
By: Robin Locke Nagele
On March 27, 2018, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court decided Reginelli v. Boggs, its first major peer review analysis in more than two decades since its plurality decision in McClellan v. HMO of Pennsylvania. The opinion is striking and signals two very significant shifts in Pennsylvania peer review analysis. First, the court held that a physician practice group that employed physicians and other licensed health care providers did not qualify for peer review privilege protection either for its own internal peer review activities or for peer review activities that it had been engaged to conduct on the hospital's behalf. Second, the court, in dicta, appears to have eliminated peer review protection for hospital credentialing.

Polygraph Protection Act Claim Denied in Recent Case >
March 19, 2018
The Legal Intelligencer
By: Sidney R. Steinberg
Although we often plead or defend various state law claims ancillary to our more usual employment discrimination actions, they rarely drive cases and we rarely have the opportunity to discuss such claims in this column. But the recent post-trial decision in Accurso v. Infra-Red Services involves a wide variety of seldom-litigated claims.

False Claims Act Case Addresses Causation Discrimination Cases >
February 16, 2018
The Legal Intelligencer
By: Sidney R. Steinberg
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit's recent decision in DiFiore v. CSL Behring is instructive, not just for False Claims Act claims, but for a lengthy discussion of the causation standards under Title VII, the Age Discrimination Employment Act and Family and Medical Leave Act. The case also addresses the standard for successfully stating a claim of constructive discharge.

Tax-Exempt Organizations Face A New Excise Tax >
February 8, 2018
By: James R. Malone, Jr.
On Dec. 22, 2016, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act became law. For exempt organizations, the TCJA included a key change: There is now an excise tax applicable to exempt organizations on "excess" executive compensation.

How to Use IRAC Strategies for a Successful Job Interview >
February 1, 2018
The Legal Intelligencer
Some strategies young attorneys and new law school grads can use for successful interviews, using the IRAC paradigm.

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