Liquid Aloha: A Case on Beer Brewed on the Shores of the Hawaiian Islands or the Banks of the Big Muddy

By Joe Yeoman

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This Note explores the recent complaint filed against Kona Brewing Co., and the Note argues that the case should not be dismissed on a failure to state a claim. The consumers in the complaint allege that Kona. misrepresented where Kona’s beer is brewed. The complaint alleges that Kona markets that their beer is brewed on the Hawaiian Islands, when it is in fact brewed on the continental United States. The marketing of the beer as a Hawaiian beer remains an important component in the brand’s growth. This Note examines comparable case law that will help the District Court with the complaint. Additionally, this Note proposes how the District Court should rule on Kona’s Motion to Dismiss.… Read the rest

Toeing the Line: Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner’s Possible Conflicts of Interest as Federal Employees

By Elizabeth Rice

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Federal employees are required to adhere to ethical standards of conduct, including eliminating conflicts of interest that may arise from their business and financial assets.  In their roles as federal employees, Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner continue to hold business and financial assets that may result in conflicts of interest in the course of their duties.  This note provides a general background about federal conflicts of interest, including the process of divestiture federal employees must follow.  It then examines more closely the problematic assets of Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, and the ways in which they may manage these assets so as to avoid conflicts of interest.… Read the rest

In Case of ERISA Violation: Exhaust the Exhaustion Requirement

By Niya Ge

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This Note argues that when a cause-of-action is based on a statutory breach, employee benefit plan participants and beneficiaries under ERISA should not be mandated to exhaust internal administrative remedies provided by the plan before filing suit in district court. This Note provides a brief background of the relevant ERISA provisions, and will then overview various court decisions and rationales falling on both sides of the issue. This Note argues that an administrative exhaustion requirement does not align with the plain language and Congressional intent of ERISA, and such a reading will only force aggrieved participants and beneficiaries to partake in an inefficient and futile procedural obstacle.… Read the rest

Staying the Night: Integrating Home-Sharing Platforms into the Hospitality Industry

By Bryan Boccelli

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Home-sharing platforms such as Airbnb have taken the hospitality industry by storm over the last decade, and show no signs of slowing down in terms of use and popularity. This note argues for a better integration of the home-sharing economy into the hospitality industry. An integration such as the one proposed would streamline regulations and taxes applied to short-term living situations such as those applied to the hotel industry. Conversely, there are some aspects of home-sharing that would be beneficial if applied to the hotel industry that would be mutually beneficial. By working to better integrate these two portions of the hospitality industry, the result could be a great benefit to not only the consumer, but to hotel owners, home-sharing patrons, and state economies.… Read the rest

Cosmetics Regulations: Loopholes in the FDA

By Claire Chung

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Cosmetic products in U.S. are very loosely regulated primarily because of the lack of enforcement mechanisms of the regulatory agency. This Note highlights the loopholes in FDA regulation and compares the regulatory scheme in U.S. and EC. There have been efforts both on the federal and state legislation such as introducing Personal Care Products Safety Act Proposal, enacting the California Safe Cosmetics Act of 2005 and Voluntary Cosmetic Registration Program. This Note proposes that the U.S. should pass the Personal Care Products Safety Act to enhance the current regulatory scheme in the U.S., which will make it more aligned with EC policies in cosmetics safety.… Read the rest

Internet Speech as Commerce: Tackling the Violent Left

By Julian Jankowski

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A faction of the left has so increased in boldness in the past few years as to cause violence and an effective reign of terror to any who would dare question the faction’s central tenants.  This faction under the name Antifa gained in strength through the support of college students, academics, university administration, and technological giants that traffic in the dissemination of information.  This constitutes a clear and present threat to the health of the body politic of the United States.  This threat in universities must be met by removing university courses and policies that lend its strength to this violent faction on the left, and by implementing anti-propaganda policies in universities to ensure this threat is not repeated.  Further, technological companies must be given monetary and tax subsidies to create an incentive for affected technological companies to reform their ways, and to … Read the rest

Keeping an AI on Technological Advances in Business Law

By Elizabeth Rice

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This Note explores the role that artificial intelligence plays in the legal world today and the ways in which it may affect the legal profession in the future.  Artificial intelligence programs are being used in a variety of ways to streamline legal research, contracts analysis, and many other tedious and time-consuming legal processes.  As this technology develops, many lawyers are concerned that these efficient programs will begin to replace lawyers, especially at the lower level of big law firms, while others welcome the benefits that this technology will bring to law firms.  This Note touches on competing views concerning the implications of the use of artificial intelligence in the legal field, and how the implementation of these programs will ultimately benefit the profession as a whole.… Read the rest

Timing Brexit Right: Theresa May’s Great Political Challenge

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By Julian Jankowski

The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Theresa May, in her expressed pursuit for a hard Brexit, faces economic, legal, and political challenges in her endeavors to gain a hard Brexit deal.  Each of these challenges individually presents much difficulty, but together, these challenges appear daunting.  Nonetheless, these are challenges that can ultimately be overcome, and this Note proposes a way to overcome these challenges, and deliver a final deal to Queen Elizabeth II for royal assent.… Read the rest

Driving Solo: Solutions to the Current Patchwork of Legislation Concerning Automated Vehicles

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By Bryan Boccelli

This Note argues that states across the nation should expand upon and in some cases begin to introduce legislation in regards to self-driving vehicles. Although there are currently a handful of states that already have some form of regulation in effect regarding self-driving vehicles, the current patchwork of legislation is not very conducive for companies and entrepreneurs that wish to enter this market. This Note looks at a gradient system of automation as the basis for legislation that could potentially lead to greater investment from car manufactures in this area of technology. If adopted, a gradient system would mean that the automated vehicle would be subject to specific regulations based on a car’s level of automation. The more autonomous the car is, the more highly regulated it will become.… Read the rest

Is Your Bank Account Safe? Financial Institutions’ Bad Faith Malpractice

By Claire Chung

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This Note argues that a poisonous culture in the banking industry, to indiscriminately profit by cutting legal and ethical corners, led to the Wells Fargo scandal in 2016. Wells Fargo had wrongfully profited by incentivizing its employees to meet sales quotas by creating phony accounts using confidential customer information without consent. Although the employees acted alone, liability lies on the employer, Wells Fargo, under the theory of respondeat superior. In doing so, Wells Fargo violated unfair and deceptive financial practices law. Also the scandal raised the issue of whether the mandatory arbitration clause in a financial product purchase agreement should be enforced against consumers or not. This Note proposes a multifaceted solution to address the pandemic of bad faith banking practices.… Read the rest