The Importance of the Corporate Veil

By: Charles Cavanagh, 3L, Journal Staff Member

In her recent article, Preserving Entity Shielding: How Corporations Should Respond to Reverse Piercing of the Corporate Veil, author Kathryn Hespe pointed to the importance of the corporate veil in terms of protecting the shareholders of a corporation.  For Carlyle Group LP (CG), the importance of the corporate veil became all too apparent in its recent dealings in Brazil. 

The New Technologies of Debt Collection: Why it Matters Who Your Friends Are

By: Hillary Szawala, 2L, Journal Staff Member

Perhaps there is nothing more exhilarating than logging into Facebook and seeing that glorious red notification pop-up indicating that you have a new friend request; however modern debt collection practices, including the use of social media to either harass a debtor-user or impersonate a debtor-user’s friend, should make all of us think twice before we click “confirm.”

Hedge Funds and Systemic Risk

By: Bonnie North, 3L, Journal Staff Member

Bonnie NorthWe are now in the year 2014 and the financial crisis that occurred in 2007-2008 should be well behind us. Although the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is authorized through the Dodd-Frank Act to work on numerous rules, it appears that the SEC has been slow to issue regulations that would help to safeguard the American economy in the future. In his New York Times Article “Pick Up the Pace at the S.E.C.”, Simon Johnson seems to agree that the SEC should move more quickly with regard to its systemic stability regulations.

Holistic Review of Scienter Pleading Becomes a Black Hole for Plaintiffs’ Attorneys

By: Robert Wright, 2L, Journal Staff Member

Robert Wright

Failure to establish the "strong inference" of scienter under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act (PSLRA) presents one of the biggest problems for plaintiffs’ attorneys in securities litigation.  The difficulties facing plaintiffs’ attorneys is a result of confusion in U.S. District and Circuit Courts, which have time and again misconstrued the scienter analysis established by the United States Supreme Court case of Tellabs, Inc. v. Makor Issues & Rights, Ltd. and its progeny.  In Tellabs, the Court sought to clarify the necessary steps in a scienter analysis by looking at each scienter-related allegation individually, and then determining the probative value of the scienter-related issue collectively.  This "holistic" review has been misinterpreted by lower courts that either consider only individual scrutiny or disregard it entirely in favor of reviewing allegations collectively.  Such analysis short-changes plaintiffs by failing to provide them with the necessary inferences to survive a motion to dismiss.  

Hedge Funds and the Russian Invasion of Ukraine

By: Varun Sharma, 3L, Journal Staff Member

When Russia invaded the self-autonomous region Crimea in Ukraine, global financial markets tumbled.  According to Politico, the Russian Micex index dropped 11% and its currency the ruble fell against the dollar.  However, the global financial markets bounced back after Russian President Vladimir Putin stated that Russia would not send troops into mainland Ukraine. 

What is Communication? Understanding the FDCPA's Limitations on Third-Party Callback Messages

By: Gregory VanderWoude, 2L, Journal Staff Member

Gregory VanderWoude

When it comes to debt collection, society has certainly progressed, a far cry from the “debtor’s prisons” of yore. Thanks to the Fair Debt Collection Act (FDCPA), debtors are shielded from harassment, embarrassment, and abuse. A real-world example of this law can be seen in the recent media buzz surrounding Capital One’s claimed right to visit delinquent debtors in person. As a result of the negative press, Capital One ultimately backpedaled, stating it only visited debtors in person to secure collateral, which only  occurs in a narrow set of cases. 

The Hitchhiker's Guide to Protecting Against Reverse Corporate Veil Piercing

By: Alan Williams, 2L, Journal Staff Member

Alan Williams

In an age where corporate profits have never been higher, wise corporate leaders must always be mindful of judicial equity doctrines that seek to discard the corporate form, and the limited liability that comes with it, in the name of finding relief for plaintiffs.  Check out a couple articles form JDSupra here and here to see more of what I am talking about.  

Deterrent Effect of SAC Capital Probe and Settlement

By: Hengzhe Jiang, 2L, Journal Staff Member

Hengzhe JiangThe probe into the Connecticut-based hedge fund SAC Capital by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has lasted for a decade.  On November 4, 2013, in a press conference, federal prosecution office announced that SAC Capital would plead guilty to the charged counts of fraud with a record fine of $1.8 billion.  One interesting aspect of the case is that although several former employees of the firm had already pleaded guilty to insider trading charges, the hedge fund’s founder and owner, Mr. Steve Cohen, seems to be insulated from the whole situation so far since the Justice Department has not formally accused him of any wrongdoing. However, Mr. Cohen does face a civil administrative complaint by the SEC alleging that he failed to oversee the behavior of his employees in the firm.

Dukes & Daubert

By: Gregory VanderWoude, 2L, Journal Staff Member

Greg Gregory VanderWoudeThe somewhat recently decided Supreme Court case, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes, 131 S. Ct. 2541, 2561 (2011), which centered on numerous female workers’ claims of gender discrimination, has raised the bar for class action suits.  According to Amit Bindra, who was published in the Journal's Volume 13, Issue 2Dukes places a greater requirement of commonality on would-be certified members of a class.  Thus, in the same way that Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2077) raised the pleading standard, so does Dukes raise the standard for class certification.

Battle Tested? SEC Conflict Minerals Rule: Trials & Tribulations

By: Brian Cullin, 3L, Journal Staff Member

Brian Cullin The Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) conflict minerals rule, issued pursuant to Section 1502 of the Dodd-Frank Act, withstood its first legal challenge on July 23, 2013 in National Association of Manufacturers v. SEC, 13-CV-635 RLW, 2013 WL 3803918 (D.D.C. July 23, 2013). The Rule requires publicly traded corporations that manufacture products utilizing “conflict minerals” (coltan, tin, tungsten, gold) to file an annual report with the SEC and publicly disclose whether the minerals originated from the Democratic Republic of Congo or an adjoining country. If the minerals are used in products, the corporation must conduct a country of origin inquiry to determine if the minerals used originated from a covered country and whether the purchase funded an armed group.


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