In The News

The Week at Ropes & Gray
  ❖ Ropes & Gray Grows Private Equity Presence in Chicago
  ❖ Applying Behavioral Science to Compliance
  ❖ Podcast – ERISA Plan Fiduciaries’ Proxy Voting
  ❖ Harmonizing Conflicting Rules on Human Subject Research
  ❖ DOJ Dismissals of Life Sciences False Claims Act Cases
  ❖ Examining International Trade Commission Exclusion Orders
  ❖ Risks and Rewards of Social Media Defamation Cases
  ❖ New Guide on Tax Issues Affecting Victims of Human Trafficking
  ❖ Attorneys Recognized for Legal Excellence and Pro Bono Work

This week, Ropes & Gray launched a guidebook on tax issues faced by victims of human trafficking, released podcasts on compliance and ESG-related topics, and shared insights on key legal developments in health care, life sciences and IP litigation. The firm also welcomed a new private capital transactions partner to its Chicago office, and received honors for pro bono service and exceptional legal work. Here’s a summary of the week’s highlights:

  • Ropes & Gray enhanced its growing presence in the Midwest with the addition of Marty Ruhaak, a private equity lawyer with more than a decade of experience. Marty joins a team of over 90 lawyers in Chicago and a network of more than 180 private equity transaction attorneys around the world.
  • Regulators are increasingly warning against the dangers of check-the-box compliance programs and encouraging companies to evaluate their respective cultures and the corresponding impact on compliance. In a new podcast, litigation & enforcement attorneys Amanda Raad and Tina Yu sit down with Richard Bistrong, CEO of Front-Line Anti-Bribery LLC, to discuss a behavioral science approach to compliance.
  • In a new podcast focusing on ESG and social responsibility issues, asset management partner Lindsey Goldstein and ERISA partner Josh Lichtenstein address ERISA plan fiduciary proxy activities. The podcast examines the existing regulatory guidance and some of its ambiguities, as well as what clarifications new guidance might include.
  • Several developments in health care, life sciences and IP litigation are capturing headlines. Ropes & Gray lawyers addressed the following topics in the media:
    • The FDA has delayed harmonizing its human subject research protections with those of the Common Rule. Health care associate David Peloquin discusses how conflicting rules can complicate research on new drugs and medical devices in Bloomberg Law.
    • Recent False Claims Act (FCA) cases highlight key considerations for FDA-regulated life sciences defendants navigating FCA litigation and considering requests for government-initiated dismissal. A cross-practice team, including appellate & Supreme Court partner Douglas Hallward-Driemeier, life sciences regulatory & compliance counsel Beth Weinman and associates Joshua Oyster and Deborah Cho, and litigation & enforcement partner Kirsten Mayer, examined the issue in Law360.
    • As increasingly complex tech products are imported into the United States, difficult questions arise regarding which products are subject to exclusion by the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC). IP litigation partner Matt Rizzolo and associate Brendan McLaughlin examine the multifactor tests applied by the USITC when considering the issuance of exclusion orders in Law360.
    • Social media defamation cases present a wide array of legal challenges. IP litigation counsel Evan Gourvitz discusses some of these challenges in Legaltech News and Law.com. 
  • Traffickers often use their power over victims to commit tax fraud, saddling their victims with IRS investigations. A Ropes & Gray pro bono tax team, together with the University of Baltimore School of Law Human Trafficking Prevention Project, the University of Baltimore Low-Income Taxpayer Clinic, and the Human Trafficking Legal Center, co-authored a guide examining the tax consequences for survivors of human trafficking.
  • Ropes & Gray attorneys earned recognition for exceptional legal work across practice areas and geographies:
    • Litigation & enforcement partners Eva Carman and Joan McPhee and asset management partner Laurel FitzPatrick were recognized as “Notable Women in Law” by Crain’s New York Business. The list honors New York’s most “dedicated, gifted and determined female lawyers.” Joan was also honored by the Police Athletic League of New York at its 31st annual Women of the Year Luncheon. The event celebrates New York women who have achieved distinction in their careers and “personify the essence and vitality of our city and our country.”
    • Asia managing partner Arthur Mok, Shanghai office managing partner Geoffrey Lin and life sciences partner Katherine Wang were named to the “A-List” as three of China Business Law Journal’s top 100 private practice lawyers for the China market. The list recognizes the best legal partners to handle significant China-related transactions and matters.
    • Litigation & enforcement partner Christopher Conniff and a Ropes & Gray pro bono team were presented with the New York Center for Law and Justice Access to Justice Award. The team was honored for its work on Aranow et al. v. City of New York, representing deaf New Yorkers who have been denied proper accommodation by the Human Resources Administration of New York.
    • Private Equity International named Ropes & Gray a finalist in multiple categories in its 2019 Annual Awards. The firm was shortlisted for “Law Firm of the Year in North America” in fund formation, transactions and secondaries, and for “Law Firm of the Year in Asia” in secondaries.
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