moneyFor startups looking to raise capital, crowdfunding looks to be a modern solution to capital-raising concerns. In 2015, the SEC issued a rule on crowdfunding (“Regulation Crowdfunding”), which exempts companies from the lengthy registration requirements necessary when offering a sale of securities, including a sale of the company’s equity to the public. Regulation Crowdfunding allows unaccredited investors to invest in companies and allows such companies to raise up to $1,070,000 in a 12- month period through a registered portal.

Here are a few of the risks startups should consider when deciding if crowdfunding is the right option to grow your business: Continue Reading Regulation Crowdfunding: Considerations Before Crowdfunding Your Startup

cargo ship containersOn August 16, 2017, the Coalition of American Flange Producers, composed of Core Pipe Products, Inc. and Maass Flange Corporation, filed a petition for the imposition of antidumping duties and countervailing duties on imports of Stainless Steel Flanges from the People’s Republic of China and India.

Continue Reading Petition Summary: Stainless Steel Flanges From China And India

 

flagsOn August 14, 2017, the Trump Administration moved toward self-initiating a case against China under section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974. That legal provision is broad, and  authorizes the President to “take all appropriate action, including retaliation, to obtain the removal of any act, policy, or practice of a foreign government that violates an international trade agreement or is unjustified, unreasonable, or discriminatory, and that burdens or restricts U.S. commerce.” Past administrations have been hesitant to use the broad powers of the act to impose additional tariffs and quotas due largely to the possibility of retaliation and the uncertain effect on US companies. The Trump Administration announced that it was using the broad statute to zero in on issues involving U.S. intellectual property rights, theft of such trade secrets, and pressures by China forcing U.S. companies to transfer technological knowledge before setting up operations in China.

Continue Reading Trump Administration Moves Forward on Case That Could Affect All Chinese Imports

shipping containersOn August 9, 2017, North Pacific Paper Company filed a petition for the imposition of antidumping duties and countervailing duties on imports of Certain Uncoated Groundwood Paper from Canada.

SCOPE OF THE INVESTIGATION

The merchandise covered by this petition includes certain paper that has not been coated on either side and with 50 percent or more of the cellulose fiber content consisting of groundwood pulp, or deinked pulp made from recycled ONP (old newspapers), weighing not more than 90 grams per square meter. Groundwood pulp includes all forms of pulp produced from a mechanical process, such as thermomechanical process (“TMP”), chemithermo mechanical process (“CTMP”), or bleached chemithermo mechanical process (“BCTMP”) or any other process other than the bleached Kraft process. The scope includes paper shipped in any form, including both rolls and sheets.

Continue Reading Petition Summary: Uncoated Groundwood Paper From Canada

White HouseToday, President Trump officially signed H.R. 3364, the “Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act” (CAATSA) into law. CAATSA originated as a bill which was focused on only Iran. However, partially in response to Russian cyber-interference with the 2016 election, the Senate expanded CAATSA to impose additional sanctions against Russia and also codify into law various sanctions imposed by the Obama Administration in the form of Executive Orders. The House of Representatives then approved these additions and added further sanctions against North Korea. Eventually, the House and Senate approved the final version of CAATSA by a margin of 419-3 and 98-2, respectively. For additional detail on CAATSA’s legislative history, please see our previous alerts here, here and here.

Continue Reading President Signs Russian, Iran and North Korea Sanctions Legislation into Law

chinaReports from numerous sources, including the New York Times and Politico, indicate that the Trump Administration is on the verge of self-initiating a case against China under section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974. That legal provision is broad, and authorizes the President to “take all appropriate action, including retaliation, to obtain the removal of any act, policy, or practice of a foreign government that violates an international trade agreement or is unjustified, unreasonable, or discriminatory, and that burdens or restricts U.S. commerce.” Past administrations have been hesitant to use the broad powers of the act to impose additional tariffs and quotas due largely to the possibility of retaliation and the uncertain effect on US companies. It appears that the Trump Administration may have a very different attitude toward such risks.

Continue Reading Trump Administration Appears To Be Close To Initiating A Major Case That Could Affect All Chinese Imports

White HouseLast night, Thursday, July 27, the U.S. Senate voted to pass the “Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act” by a vote of 98-2. The House of Representatives passed the bill on Tuesday after adding in new sanctions against North Korea. Among other things, the legislation would impose additional sanctions against Russia and restrict President Trump’s ability to withdraw or relax previous Russian sanctions imposed by the Obama Administration.  To learn more about the bill, please see our July 26th post. The Senate created the bill back in June, where it also passed 98-2, before sending it to the House. Despite reports that the addition of North Korea would result in a delay from the Senate, the Senate passed it just over 48 hours after the House.

Continue Reading Senate Sends Russian Sanctions Bill to the President

Stainless steel factoryOn Tuesday, July 25, President Trump spoke with The Wall Street Journal, mentioning that the administration would be taking its time on determining whether to restrict steel imports. Trump and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross announced in April that the Administration would be investigating the effects of steel and aluminum imports on national security under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962. Although the law gives Commerce 270 days to make its recommendations, their self-imposed deadline on the report for steel was June 30, which came and went with no action.

Continue Reading Trump Administration Delays Findings on Section 232 Steel Investigation

Congress ChamberYesterday, July 25th, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the “Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act” by a vote of 419-3. The bill originated as an act in the Senate which was focused on Iran. In response to Russian meddling in the U.S. election, the Senate expanded that bill to include additional sanctions against Russia, codify various Russia-Ukraine sanctions promulgated by the Obama Administration into law and add procedural provisions to delay or prevent any efforts by the Trump Administration to relax those codified Obama Administration sanctions. The Senate passed their revised version of this legislation last month by a vote of 98-2. For more information on the Senate’s earlier approval, please see our post on June 16th.

Continue Reading Congress Passes Russian Sanctions Bill with New Sanctions on Russia, Iran and North Korea

Product Liability Monitor

July 14, 2017
New Developments
Rats! Eco-Friendly Soy-Based Insulation Could Spell Trouble Down the Road
By Sarah Rashid

A new “eco-friendly” biodegradable material used to insulate wiring in newer cars could make for trouble — and lawsuits — down the road for car manufacturers. This insulation is made from soybeans, making it more environmentally friendly and cheaper for car manufacturers. But it has a downside: it serves as an attractive, tasty treat for rats, mice, squirrel, rabbits, and other rodents. [Continue Reading]

The Benefits And Risks Of Autonomous Vehicles
By Leslie Gutierrez

On June 15, 2017, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed a bill that will allow autonomous vehicles (AVs) to operate on the state’s roads. Texas is now one of 17 states (Alabama, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Michigan, New York, Nevada, North Dakota, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, Vermont, plus Washington D.C.) that have passed legislation related to AVs. Governors in Arizona, Massachusetts, Washington and Wisconsin have also issued executive orders related to AVs. Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker has formed a committee to determine AV best practices, and Washington Governor Jay Inslee formed a similar interagency work group. [Continue Reading]

Speak, Corporation!
By Alan Hoffman

Mitt Romney famously told a heckler during his Presidential campaign, “Corporations are people, my friend.” While corporations are not people, they and other organizations surely are legal persons capable of suing and being sued. But how to take the deposition of a corporation or organization which can only speak through employees or representatives? [Continue Reading]

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Product Liability Practice

Manufacturers work hard to develop material goods and product designs that are high-quality, safe and durable. We understand your commitment to excellence and commit ourselves to defending you against product liability allegations. Husch Blackwell’s Product Liability team has insight into your industry-specific challenges. [More information]

Product Liability Monitor Archive
June 2017