Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP

The current government shutdown is now the longest in U.S. history, and many federal contractors are incurring costs as a result of shutdown-related work stoppages and delays.  Luckily, many federal contracts contain clauses that provide a potential avenue for recovery of such costs. Further, there are practical steps that contractors can take to increase their chances of recovering shutdown-related costs from the government. What contract clauses might apply? Several Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) clauses, including…
On January 16, 2019, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) and the Attorney General for the State of New York announced a consent order with Sterling Jewelers, Inc. (“Sterling”) related to Sterling’s credit card practices. The consent order alleges that Sterling employees indicated they were either checking to see how much credit the consumer would qualify for or that the consumers were completing a survey or enrolling in a rewards program, when, in reality, Sterling…
On December 22, 2017, President Trump signed into law the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (the “2017 Act”) which, among other items, made several changes to the federal wealth transfer tax system with respect to transfers occurring during calendar years 2018 through 2025. Here we are, another year older, another year wiser, and with a full year of living under the 2017 Act under our belts. So, what have we learned? By way of quick…
When considering a position’s requirements and responsibilities, most people would assume that attendance is a given. Before any other job duties can be fulfilled, an employee must actually come to work. However, since individuals increasingly perform their job duties away from their employer (think technology, work-at-home policies, virtual positions, etc.), attendance has slowly but surely become a regularly contested issue in disability discrimination cases. In Lipp v. Cargill Meat Solutions Corporation, the Eighth Circuit…
On November 26, 2018, the Fifth Circuit released its opinion in Acosta v. Hensel Phelps Construction Co., which held that despite prior rulings to the contrary, OSHA is authorized to issue citations against contractors for safety violations regardless if the employer actually employs the employee(s) exposed to the hazard. Under OSHA’s multi-employer worksite policy, an employer who causes a hazardous condition, often referred to as the “creating employer” or a general contractor or other employer…
With no immediate end in sight to the current federal shutdown, financial regulators are seeking to minimize the adverse impacts of the shutdown on individuals. In a January 11, 2019, press release, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and other regulators issued a joint press release wherein the agencies acknowledged that “affected borrowers may face a temporary hardship in…
Remember when I told you “The Secret Tip that Will Transform Your Property Owners Association Annual Meeting?” Today, I’m giving you a tool that will help you put that tip into action. First, let’s recap. In brief, the secret tip is to add a members forum to the meeting. The members forum allows people to say their piece. It’s a super democratic move on your part to give voice to members of your…
As the popularity and diverse nature of drones increase, the liability risks associated with drone operations increase as well. A California federal judge recently held that a standard CGL aircraft exclusion barred liability coverage for injuries related to drone operations. The case arose out of a wedding reception gone wrong when a wedding photography company operated a drone to capture the big day. While the drone was hovering at eye level, a guest collided with…
On December 22, 2018, the federal funding for certain agencies lapsed, and the United States government entered into a partial shutdown. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), including the United States Trustee Program (USTP), was one of the agencies that shut down. United States Trustees (“UST”) representing the USTP appear and litigate in a multitude of bankruptcy proceedings. USTs also actively participate in out-of-court settlement discussions, plan negotiations, and the like. Pursuant to the partial…
Although marijuana is an illegal drug under federal law, a majority of states have now legalized its use in one form or another. Additionally, Canada recently legalized the use of marijuana, and proposals for loosening America’s federal prohibition abound in Congress. This rapidly evolving legal landscape presents new challenges for contractors (and other employers), particularly those working in several states. Contractors must balance complying with often divergent federal and state laws, maintaining a safe work…