Four State AGs Launch Consumer Protection Investigation of Major Republican and Democratic Fundraising Platforms, Congressional Effort Underway to Head Off Future Related Incidents

This blog post was written by Foley Hoag Summer Associate, Joshua Rosen

Major national media sources including The Hill, New York Times, Washington Post, and others, recently reported that four attorneys general have launched a consumer protection investigation of two popular political fundraising websites, WinRed and ActBlue. WinRed and ActBlue are primary fundraising platforms used by the Republican and Democratic parties,… More

WinRed Fights Back Against State Attorneys General Investigations

This blog post was written by Foley Hoag Summer Associate, Nicholas Hanel

Does federal election law preempt state AG investigations against Political Action Committees? WinRed believes so – the GOP fundraising platform has recently filed suit in the District of Minnesota seeking declaratory relief stating that only the Federal Election Commission (FEC) has enforcement power over the organization. A favorable court decision holding that federal law preempts the AGs’ investigations here could create a serious obstacle to future state investigations.… More

AGs Weigh in on SEC Regulation of Climate Change Disclosures

This blog post was written by Foley Hoag Summer Associate, Adam Aguirre

When would-be investors research a company, they often look to the company’s balance sheet and cash flow. But what about the company’s contribution to greenhouse gas emissions? Such information may become readily available if the SEC follows the advice of a coalition of Democratic Attorneys General.

In March 2021, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) began to re-evaluate its regulation of how companies must disclose information regarding climate change,… More

Massachusetts Claims Against ExxonMobil Survive — Wave of the Future or Litigation Sideshow?

This week, Judge Karen Green denied Exxon Mobil’s motion to dismiss claims brought by Massachusetts under its Consumer Protection Act. The complaint alleges that Exxon Mobil both mislead Massachusetts investors in its marketing to them of Exxon Mobil securities and mislead Massachusetts consumers in its marketing of its products to those consumers.  Judge Green rejected Exxon Mobil’s arguments that it was not subject to jurisdiction in Massachusetts with respect to these claims. … More

Supreme Court to Review Sixth Circuit Decision Involving Sovereignty of State Attorney General

Can a state attorney general stand alone?  That is the question posed by an upcoming Supreme Court case concerning Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s effort to intervene to defend to a Kentucky statute that was recently struck down by the Sixth Circuit.  The Supreme Court’s answer is likely to have implications in many future situations in which the political persuasions of state attorneys general and other state elected officials differ sharply.… More

Twitter Challenges Texas AG’s Civil Investigative Demand

A recent lawsuit filed by Twitter against Texas AG Ken Paxton claims that an investigation into the company’s internal content moderation policies violates the First Amendment.

On January 13, Paxton issued a civil investigative demand (CID) to Twitter seeking information related to the company’s policies and procedures for content moderation. In addition to requesting all versions of Twitter’s terms of use,… More

Massachusetts Attorney General Strikes Down First Municipal Fossil Fuel Ban

Just over a year ago, the city of Berkeley, California, became the first City in the United States to ban natural gas hookups in new buildings.  The trend of municipalities enacting fossil fuel bans, driven by a desire to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and combat climate change, has spread across California and a few other states and has now reached the east coast.  Yesterday, the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Municipal Law Unit struck down the first such municipal fossil fuel ban to come across its desk as inconsistent with the general laws of the Commonwealth.… More

Massachusetts AG Petitions DPU to Investigate Gas Industry Future in Light of Commonwealth’s GHG Emissions Goals

On June 4, 2020, the Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General (AGO) filed a petition with the Department of Public Utilities (DPU) requesting that the DPU open an investigation “to assess the future of local gas distribution company (LDC) operations and planning in light of the Commonwealth’s legally binding statewide limit of net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050.” Citing Massachusetts’ Global Warming Solutions Act, and the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs’ Determination of Statewide Emissions Limit for 2020,… More

Maura Healey’s COVID-19 Debt Collection Ban Struck Down

Last week, a federal judge blocked the enforcement of Massachusetts regulations that temporarily restrict debt collection practices during COVID-19.  According to the judge, the regulations violate the First Amendment rights of collection agencies without adding useful protections for consumers.

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey issued the emergency regulations (which Foley Hoag summarized here) on March 27, 2020.  The regulations prohibit creditors from confronting a debtor in person,… More

The Equifax/Massachusetts Attorney General Consent Judgment: A Guide for Privacy and Security Compliance

What do businesses need to do to comply with privacy and data security laws?  The first place to look is to relevant statutes.  If you store or process the personal information of Massachusetts residents, then you will at least be subject to the Massachusetts Data Breach Notification Statute and related security regulations.  These are important guides that require certain operational activities, such as maintaining a written information security program,… More