Martha Coakley Speaks with Tim Cheatham of Wal-Mart on Exploring Collaboration with State Attorneys General

This week was the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) Retail Law Conference in Austin, Texas. For the first General Session, Foley Hoag’s Martha Coakley, who chairs our State Attorney General Practice, spoke with Tim Cheatham, Senior Vice President and General Counsel of Wal-Mart, about exploring collaboration between Attorneys General and General Counsel. Martha, a former Attorney General of Massachusetts, and Tim, the General Counsel of America’s largest retailer,… More

Watch: Nine Things You Need To Know About Your Attorney General And Other Regulators

Foley Hoag attorneys Martha Coakley and Emily Nash present a webinar for in-house counsel discussing the best practices for companies to effectively collaborate with the Attorney General and other regulators. They share strategies for building a strong partnership with state government officials and how that can improve business resources and success.

Topics include:

  • Attorney General Offices: How are they structured for decision-making
  • Top issues that Attorneys General are likely to get involved with in the future, either alone, in small groups, in large multistates, or with the Federal Government
  • How to distinguish whether you have an Attorney General problem, a press problem, or both
  • How to engage “friendly” AGs
  • The AG’s tools and tactics of choice, and how to fight back

Click here to download the slides.

Two AGs Notch Another Win Against the President in Emoluments Saga

The Attorneys General of Maryland and the District of Columbia again got a green light to proceed with their case alleging that the President has violated the Emoluments Clauses of the U.S. Constitution.[1] The ruling is the first of its kind to define “Emolument” and to hold that the clause barring foreign emoluments applies to the President.[2]

President Trump assumed office while maintaining ties to his businesses,… More

State AGs Sue to Enjoin Association Health Plans Rule

On July 26, 2018, a coalition of Democratic state attorneys general sued the Department of Labor to enjoin its new rule on association health plans, which was finalized in June.  The Department promulgated the rule in response to an executive order from President Trump, signed in October 2017, that directed various federal agencies to encourage the growth of insurance options outside traditional insurance plans regulated by the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”),… More

Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court: Attorney General’s Exxon Investigation Can Proceed

On April 13, 2018, Massachusetts’ highest court ended a significant chapter in Exxon’s long-running dispute with Attorney General Maura Healey. In 2015, Healey issued a Civil Investigative Demand regarding Exxon’s knowledge of the effects of fossil fuels on climate change.  Exxon then undertook what a federal judge in New York last month called “a sprawling litigation involving four different judges, at least three lawsuits, innumerable motions and a huge waste of the [New York and Massachusetts] AGs’ time and money.”  (You can read a full analysis of that decision by my colleague Seth Jaffe here.)  Exxon’s actions in Massachusetts’ courts have been mercifully compact,… More

Supreme Court Cy Pres Update

Possibly foreshadowing the Supreme Court’s decision on a petition for certiorari we recently chronicled here, last Monday the Court declined to review two separate appeals (Tingle v. Perdue and Mandan v. Perdue) of a substantial cy pres settlement award.  The award is part of a 1999 settlement resolving a class action filed in the District of D.C.… More

ExxonMobil’s AG Claims Are Dismissed — What a Shock!

Yesterday, Judge Valerie Caproni dismissed claims brought by ExxonMobil against New York Attorney General Schneiderman and Massachusetts Attorney General Healey.  Boiled down to their essence, ExxonMobil’s claims were that investigations by Schneiderman and Healey into the possibility that ExxonMobil had committed fraud by misleading investors regarding the risks that climate change poses to ExxonMobil’s business were politically motivated and in bad faith.

The decision was not difficult. … More

Cy Pres: Benevolent Solution or Lever for Collusion?

When does a charitable contribution pique the interest of state consumer protection watchdogs?  When the contribution comes at the expense of a compensatory payment to consumers.  That is precisely the scenario prompting attorneys general from sixteen states to join in an amicus brief supporting a petition for certiorari to the Supreme Court.  At issue is whether the Supreme Court should accept a case that would enable it to provide guidance on when,… More

The Adver-series: State Attorneys General Play Increasing Role in Advertising Regulation

Every day, consumers are bombarded with advertising messages: print ads on the subway, promoted posts on social media, thirty-second spots on the radio, native ad thumbnails on the internet, email blasts from retailers, product labels touting savings and benefits, billboards along the highway, commercial breaks before the “big reveal” on reality TV, robocalls, and the Saturday morning infomercial, to name just a few.

And, for those fortunate or unfortunate enough to have an office right in the middle of Times Square,… More

States Continue to Upgrade Data Privacy Laws – A Look at North Carolina

A recent Security Breach Report published by the North Carolina Attorney General’s Office provides a snapshot of the various data security threats currently riling the state’s public and private sectors.  Since 2006, the year North Carolina businesses and government entities became statutorily obligated to report breaches to the Attorney General’s Office, reported data breaches have skyrocketed from 86 to over one thousand.  In turn, the number of affected consumers has increased ten-fold from 500,000 to well over 5 million during that same period. … More