As reported on the Hunton Insurance Recovery blog, Hunton product liability and mass tort attorneys Elizabeth Reese and Alexandra Brisky Cunningham and insurance attorney Latosha Ellis recently published an article in Risk Management discussing key lessons from Peloton’s Tread+ Recall.
As reported on the Hunton Andrews Kurth Privacy & Information Security Law Blog, on August 16, 2021, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) announced that Pearson plc (“Pearson”), a publicly traded British multinational educational publishing and services company, agreed to pay a $1 million civil penalty in a settlement related to charges that Pearson misled investors about a 2018 data breach resulting in the theft of millions of student records. The SEC’s order found that Pearson made material misstatements and omissions about the data breach in a report furnished to the SEC and in a media statement.
The Children’s Advertising Review Unit (“CARU”), a part of BBB National Programs (“BBBNP”), released its revised Children’s Advertising Guidelines earlier this month. These new Guidelines will go into effect in January 2022 and contain some notable changes.
In May of 2021, the CDC issued guidance that fully vaccinated individuals could stop wearing masks and observing social distancing in most indoor and outdoor settings. However, in the following months, the delta variant of COVID-19 has presented a resurgence in cases across the country. This uptick forced the CDC to reevaluate its guidance to again recommend that even vaccinated people wear masks in certain indoor public spaces, especially considering many of these COVID spikes are occurring in the least vaccinated areas of the United States.
In the US, NIL rights (name, image, and likeness) are grouped under the right of publicity, which generally “prevents the unauthorized commercial use of an individual’s name, likeness, or other recognizable aspects of one’s persona. It gives an individual the exclusive right to license the use of their identity for commercial promotion.” NIL rules allow athletes to profit off their personal brands with promotions for various services and products through social media posts, appearances, sponsorships, autograph sales, endorsement deals and private training classes or camps. Prior to the introduction of these laws, college athletes could not endorse products or services, under any circumstances.
Environmental justice (“EJ”) is a central focus of the Biden administration’s environmental agenda. On Day One in January, the administration emphasized the importance of EJ in the federal government’s efforts to tackle climate change and to address the disparate impact of decisions affecting natural resources. In addition, many states are implementing their own EJ requirements. In the wake of issuance of new and enhanced EJ policies by both the federal government and states, it behooves lawyers in multiple disciplines to account for EJ issues in their legal practice. Continue Reading Environmental Justice Considerations in Business Transactions
In response to a challenge by animal rights organization Animal Outlook, the NAD has determined that Butterball, LLC should discontinue several ad claims and slogans for its “all natural” turkeys.
The CPSC (by a 3-1 vote) recently filed an administrative complaint against Amazon.com, Inc. (“Amazon”) seeking to force the characterization of Amazon as a “distributor” of products under the Consumer Product Safety Act. If the CPSC prevails on that characterization, Amazon would become responsible under the CPSA for recalling potentially hazard products sold via its “fulfilled by Amazon” program. Although Amazon has engaged in recalls on what it has characterized as a voluntary basis, it has not conceded CPSC authority over it as a distributor. The Amazon complaint that tees this issue up for judicial resolution involves carbon monoxide detectors that fail to alert, children’s pajamas that do not meet flammability requirements, and hair dryers without required water immersion protection devices. Amazon has stopped selling some of these products, notified consumers who purchased the products about the potential hazards, and offered refunds via Amazon gift cards. The CPSC views these steps as insufficient and aims to force Amazon to issue recalls and destroy the returned products. Under the CPSA, a “distributor” is “a person to whom a consumer product is delivered or sold for purposes of distribution in commerce.” 15 U.S.C. § 2052(a)(8). Under the “fulfilled by Amazon” program, merchants keep title to their products but store them at Amazon fulfillment centers, where Amazon packs and ships the products for a fee. Although the CPSC views Amazon as a “distributor,” Amazon argues it is merely an intermediary for other retailers because it does not hold title to the products and therefore cannot be held liable for them.
On July 29, 2021, the US Department of Labor filed a final rule rescinding the Trump-era “Joint Employer Status Under the Fair Labor Standards Act” rule (29 CFR part 791), which went into effect on March 16, 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic caused supply chain interruptions across industries, from toilet paper and cleaning supplies, to red meat. Although most states have resumed close to “normal” capacity and operations, the nation still faces an historic and unprecedented lumber shortage. The shortage is the result of growing demand for bigger homes, new construction, and a surge of new DIY-ers amid the pandemic, coupled with supply chain disruption caused by the virus as production cuts and government shutdown orders stifled production at both domestic and foreign mills. As a result of this perfect storm, prices for lumber and other building materials have skyrocketed since the start of the pandemic, and have only just begun to fall, as the increasing supply struggles to catch up with still very high demand. According to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), the average price of a newly constructed single-family home has increased by about $36,000 since April 2020, and the “price per thousand board feet” went from $350 to over $1,400 in May 2021.