BLJ – Ruling in Colorado bakery case prompts look at bigger picture

Written by Colligan Law on . Posted in Articles, News

The Supreme Court ruled in favor of a Colorado baker last week, handing down a 7-2 decision. The ruling, however, was a narrow victory for those in favor of the baker, as it was dependent on the specific facts of the case. The wide precedent expected in the case was not realized.

In the case, Masterpiece Cakeshop owner Jack Phillips, who cited his beliefs as a Christian, refused to bake a wedding cake for a same-sex couple in Colorado. At the time, same-sex marriage was legal in Colorado but the Supreme Court had yet to weigh in nationally.

The Reason You’re Getting So Many Privacy Policy Update Emails

Written by Colligan Law on . Posted in Articles, News

By Robert Townsley and Shawn Roche

You’ve probably noticed all the notifications about it popping up on your phone and in your email. It’s not just you. Inboxes everywhere are experiencing a flood of emails for privacy policy updates or requests to opt-in to different types of data collection. Spotify, Etsy, Instagram, NVIDIA, Reddit, Yahoo!, and websites across the globe have been updating their privacy policies and terms of service.

Legalized Sports Gambling – Coming to a state near you?

Written by Colligan Law on . Posted in Articles, News

By Robert Townsley

On Monday, the Supreme Court ruled 6-3 to strike down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act. This 1992 law prohibited states from authorizing sports gambling with Nevada being the sole exception.

As a result, states can now “sponsor, operate, advertise, promote, license, or authorize” sports gambling.” Meaning each state can now independently introduce legislation that would legalize sports betting. The specific questions such as must the gambling be done in person or can it be online? Will there be the option to place wagers in the middle of a game? What are the compliance and regulatory restrictions?—will be determined by each state.[i]

No Snakes on a Plane (or Dogs or Cats)? – Breaking Down United Airlines New Pet Policy

Written by Colligan Law on . Posted in Articles, News

By Rob Townsley

After a week in March in which United Airlines loaded three dogs onto the wrong planes and a fourth died in an overhead bin, United decided to review its PetSafe program for pets traveling in the cargo compartment. Of the nearly 507,000 animals that flew on U.S. commercial carriers in 2017, 24 died, with 18 of those deaths happening on United, according to the Department of Transportation.

Effective June 18, 2018, United will implement several new policies and customer requirements for pet air transportation. The biggest change being their prohibition for 47 different breeds of dog and 4 breeds of cats (more on that below).

United’s pet traveling transportation program, named “PetSafe” in an aptly made public relations move, only accepts dogs and cats. No other household pets or animals will be accepted.

University at Buffalo Welcomes Venture Program As Startup Scene Charges Forward

Written by Colligan Law on . Posted in Articles, News

By Matthew Pelkey

A lot can happen in two weeks—especially here in Buffalo. The Buffalo Bills drafted their first-round quarterback of the future (knock on wood). The Sabres finally won the draft lottery and the number one overall pick in the 2018 draft. Alton Brown disparaged Buffalo’s place as the chicken wing capitol of the world. And Avengers: Infinity Wars left us all feeling hopeless after Thanos killed off at least one of your favorite super heroes (rest in peace Dr. Strange). Suffice it to say we’ve had a lot going on lately.

Tenants May Waive Injunctive Relief in Commercial Leases

Written by Colligan Law on . Posted in Articles, News

By Kevin O’Brien

In late January, the Second Department issued a decision in 159 MP Corp. v. Redbridge Bedford, LLC that could have a profound impact on the adjudication of alleged tenant defaults in commercial real estate leases. In a matter that the Second Department identified as one of first impression in the appellate courts of New York, the court held that a voluntary and limited waiver of declaratory judgment remedies by a commercial tenant in a written lease does not violate New York’s public policy, particularly where the tenant did not waive other available remedies.

This waiver prevents the commercial tenant from availing itself of the most commonly used remedy in commercial real estate lease disputes: the Yellowstone injunction.

Colligan Law is First Western New York Law Firm to Accept Bitcoin

Written by Colligan Law on . Posted in Articles, News

Service providers and retailers join the growing list of local companies accepting cryptocurrency

Today Colligan Law LLP announced that it will now accept cryptocurrency, specifically bitcoin, as a form of payment in exchange for its various legal services. Colligan Law’s announcement makes the firm the first in Western New York to accept bitcoin, as the number of retailers and service providers allowing payment in the form of cryptocurrency continues to grow worldwide.

Recent Developments in Cryptocurrency Regulation in the U.S.

Written by Colligan Law on . Posted in Articles, News

By Shawn Roche

In large part, the exchange of cryptocurrencies and Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs), have remained in the wild west from a regulatory standpoint. Developments of the past several months, however, indicate that a change is underway.

The most significant development is the SEC’s increasing assertions that crytocurrencies are securities, and therefore within its jurisdiction.  This was perhaps most clear when the Chairman of the SEC, Jim Clayton, issued his December 11th Statement on Cryptocurrencies and Initial Coin Offerings.  Despite the SEC taking its first enforcement actions in 2017, to that point in time, some had speculated that the SEC might either largely avoid classifying cryptocurrencies as securities, or be hesitant to take enforcement actions.[i]  Clayton put a damper on that speculation, stating that although the determination is always fact-sensitive,

Startup Reads: 5 Recommendations from VCs and Founders

Written by Colligan Law on . Posted in Articles, News

By Matthew Pelkey

Recommended Startup Reads for Entrepreneurs Looking to Start a Business

Starting a business can be a daunting task for even the most experienced entrepreneur. There is no shortage of issues for a founder to address—employees, legal issues, raising money, retaining customers, developing products or service—all of these must be juggled simultaneously. Perseverance is required to even have a chance at success. Books can help, too. But how do you know which startup reads are the best for entrepreneurs?

“The way to get started is to quit talking and start doing.” 

This Upstate City Just Banned Bitcoin Mining

Written by Colligan Law on . Posted in Articles, News

By Matthew Pelkey

Plattsburgh becomes first city in Upstate NY to ban Bitcoin mining. Will opportunities be lost?
As I sit in the Koffee Kat Espresso Bar on Margaret Street in Plattsburgh, you wouldn’t necessarily know that the City was subject to a recent crypto-controversy surrounding Bitcoin mining. Its sleepy main street is reminiscent of many of the rust belt towns scattered across New England. Recently though the City of Plattsburgh voted to become the first city to ban bitcoin mining (and all cryptocurrency operations) citing concerns over energy consumption. A copy of LOCAL LAW P-3 OF 2018 can be found on the City’s website. The ban will be an 18-month moratorium in order to preserve natural resources, protect the health of residents and preserve the “character and direction” of the City.