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Archive for ‘Substantive Law: Foreign Law’

Law Library of Congress Report on Biometric Data Retention for Passport Applicants and Holders

The Law Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. has published a new comparative report on Biometric Data Retention for Passport Applicants and Holders.

The report compares the regulation of biometric data obtained in connection with passport applications and the preservation of such data in fifteen selected countries: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, South Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Sweden, Ukraine, and the United States.

The Library occasionally publishes reports that compare the laws on a given theme in a number of countries.

Earlier comparative law reports from the Law Library of Congress have covered topics . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Substantive Law: Foreign Law

Guidelines to Sharia Law in Great Britain

On March 13, 2014, the Law Society of England and Wales announced that it had released guidelines to help solicitors in the United Kingdom apply Sharia law succession rules. Specifically, the guide deals with drafting wills, trust issues and disputes over estates, and explains in detail how to write wills that respect Islamic traditions while complying with UK law.
Posted in: Miscellaneous, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Foreign Law

Can You Be Prosecuted for a Facebook ‘like’?

A US appeals court found – properly, in my view – that clicking ‘Like’ on the Facebook page of a political candidate was political speech protected by freedom of expression law.

Another US court found that clicking on ‘Like’ on the Facebook page of someone who has a restraining order against any contact by the clicker is contempt of the restraining order. That too seems sensible, if severe. (Restraining orders often need to be severely enforced.)

Here is an account of a bit of a confused British situation, where someone is apparently being investigated by police for Liking a Facebook . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Foreign Law, Technology: Internet, ulc_ecomm_list

English Law Commission Report on Contempt of Court: Court Reporting

The English Law Commission earlier this week released its report on Contempt of Court: Court Reporting.

The report is part of the Commission’s Contempt of Court Project that also looked at juror misconduct on the Internet and contempt in the face of the court.

Under the Contempt of Court Act 1981, publication of material which has the effect of risking serious prejudice to active court proceedings can in some circumstances be punished as a contempt of court. Liability can arise irrespective of whether the publisher was aware that the publication would create such a substantial risk.

The Commission’s . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Foreign Law

Wearing My Religion: The European View

That’s me in the corner
That’s me in the spotlight
wearing my religion.
[apologies to R.E.M.]

As surely everyone in Canada will know there’s currently an attempt in Québec to impose a “charter of values” that would restrict the ability of some government employees to wear conspicuous religious symbols. Indeed, there has been discussion of extending to employers the freedom to impose rules excluding the use of conspicuous religious symbols.

In light of this, you might be interested to read “Religious Symbols, Conscience, and the Rights of Others” by Andrew Hambler and Ian Leigh in the Oxford Journal of Law . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Foreign Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Collection and Dissemination of Unauthorized Information

Yesterday we concluded the Third Annual UCLA Cyber Crime Moot Court Competition in Los Angeles. This year the moot problem dealt with access of a public website through a scraper program to collect e-mail addresses for the purposes of illustrating security vulnerabilities.

The first issue in the case was roughly modelled after United States v. Auernheimer, 2012 WL 5389142 (D.N.J. 2012), which is expected to appear before the Third Circuit in the near future. In this case, a data breach at AT&T resulted in the theft of personal information of approximately 120,000 AT&T customers through the use of a . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Substantive Law: Foreign Law

Protection Standards on the Horizon for Cryptocurrency Exchanges as First Class Action Filed

Last month saw the collapse of a foundational member of the Bitcoin community, Mt. Gox. A class action lawsuit, that will likely be one of many, has been filed in Illinois against former the bitcoin exchange industry leader, its parent companies, and Mark Karpeles, Mt. Gox’s sole director (Gregory Greene v Mt. Gox Incet al, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, No. 14-01437). The exchange has filed for bankruptcy protection in Japan and, subsequent to the institution of class action proceedings, in the United States as well.

Although the bankruptcy filing temporarily suspends the class action, . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Foreign Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Massachusetts’ Peeping Tom Statute Decision

You may have read yesterday that the Massachusetts Supreme Court decided that a man who covertly took photographs and videos up the skirt of a woman sitting opposite him on a trolley did not violate the local peeping tom law. The court felt it was unable to subsume the accused’s behaviour under the particular, and admittedly awkward, wording of the statute. This is a creepy matter, a creepy subject, and I raise it here for no salacious reason but out of a sense of frustration that such behaviour “could not” be proscribed under Massachusetts law as currently written. And I . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Foreign Law

News From Kiev – a Law Firm Reports

One of my correspondents is a law firm with three offices across the Ukraine.

They posted this open letter this morning:

Dear friends, colleagues and partners,

Herewith we would like to draw your attention to the current political crisis between Ukraine and Russian Federation and the current situation in the Crimea. Being a Ukrainian company we are concerned a lot about the future of our State. We kindly ask you to spare 5 minutes of your time for the issue, which is incredibly important to every person in the world, and read this message to the end.

All the politicians . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Substantive Law: Foreign Law

U.S. Labour Laws More Protective Than Canadian?

It’s not often that I comment on a U.S. legal decision (mostly because I’m not an American attorney), but a recent decision from the US National Labour Relations Board (NLRB or the Board) is particularly interesting from an employment and labour law perspective and because it also highlights a significant area where US and Canada labour law differs.

In the decision Design Technology Group, LLC, 359 NLRB No 96, the Board ordered the employer to reinstate a number of employees who were terminated for critcizing their employer on a semi-public Facebook page. In the US, most employment is “at will” . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Foreign Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Promoting Internet Security: A Charitable Activity?

The Internal Revenue Service of the United States has recently denied charitable status to an organization that promotes a knowledge of internet security to bloggers and civil society groups, notably those in foreign countries whose freedom of expression may be threatened by state bodies.

As one US commentator wrote:

The IRS denial, in short, hinges on the applicant’s activities looking too much like a for-profit trade or business and also the following not qualifying as “charitable” – (1) preserving the fundamental human rights set forth in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights (b/c it is a declaration, not

. . . [more]
Posted in: Substantive Law: Foreign Law, Technology: Internet


The 2008 Law via the Internet conference got things started; October 3, 2011 marked the first meeting specific to the EuroLII initiative. January 2014, the EuroLII Observatory site launched with the aim at answering the question of how European countried promote and improve free access to law.

The site provides a jumping off page to the European Law overview page at WorldLII which helps searchers determine data coverage as well as search.

Some of the new content added to WorldLII January 28, 2014 includes:

Portuguese Constitutional Court Summaries
Portuguese Constitution 2005
Vatican City Laws
Bulgarian Laws
Azerbaijan Laws
Albanian Constitutional . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law: Foreign Law