October 5, 2015

Conflict Minerals: SEC Files Petition to Overturn Court Decision

As noted in this Schulte Roth memo, the SEC & Amnesty International filed petitions (here’s the SEC’s petition – and here’s Amnesty International’s) on Friday seeking an en banc rehearing of the panel decision from August in which a divided three-judge panel of the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit reaffirmed its April 2014 majority decision that the requirement under the SEC’s rule to describe products as having “not been found to be DRC conflict free” is compelled speech that violates the First Amendment (see more in this Cooley blog). Here’s a key excerpt from the memo:

We think it is likely that the Conflict Minerals Rule litigation will continue for some time still, which is likely to preserve the status quo for at least the current compliance period (i.e., calendar year 2015 and the related filing due on May 31, 2016). Accordingly, registrants — and their direct and indirect suppliers — must continue with their conflict minerals compliance and traceability initiatives.

Resource Extraction: SEC Proposes to Adopt Rules Within 270 Days

As we blogged about a few weeks ago, the US District Court for the District of Massachusetts – in Oxfam America v. SEC – held that the delay in implementing the resource extraction rules violated the Administrative Procedures Act and ordered the SEC to file an expedited schedule for rule adoption within 30 days. On Friday, the SEC filed this notice with the court that it “proposes” to adopt a new rule within 270 days, June 27th 2016 (although the notice lays out how this will be difficult to accomplish for a variety of reasons).

Webcast: “Regulation A/A+ – Developing Market Practices”

Tune in tomorrow for the webcast – “Regulation A/A+: Developing Market Practices” – to hear Morrison & Foerster’s Marty Dunn & Dave Lynn, as well as Greenberg Traurig’s Jean Harris and Locke Lord’s Stan Keller, as they look at Regulation A/A+’s developing market practices and discuss how these new offering alternatives stack up against traditional offering techniques.

– Broc Romanek