UC Legal - Office of the General Counsel
U.S. Supreme Court Rules in Favor of DACA and UC PDFJuly 1, 2020
The Supreme Court vacated the Trump administration's rescission of DACA, holding that it was arbitrary and capricious.
Governor Newsom Signs AB 5 Limiting Who Can Be Classified as an Independent Contractor PDFDecember 20, 2019
California adopts new restrictive test to determine whether workers can be classified as independent contractors.
California Supreme Court Holds That Colleges Have a Legal Duty to Protect Students from Foreseeable Violence during Curricular Activities PDFJune 1, 2018
California Supreme Court holds that colleges and universities have a special relationship with enrolled students that requires warning or protection from foreseeable violence in the classroom or during curricular activities.
California Supreme Court Holds That Messages about Public Business in Personal Accounts May be Public Records PDFMarch 16, 2017
California Supreme Court holds that, when a public employee uses a personal account to communicate about public business, the message may be subject to public disclosure.
California Court of Appeal Upholds UC San Diego’s Discipline of Student for Sexual Misconduct PDFMarch 1, 2017
The California Court of Appeal unanimously held that substantial evidence supported UCSD’s findings of student misconduct findings, that its procedures provided the accused student with a fair hearing, and that the suspension imposed was not an abuse of discretion.
Appeals Court Upholds University’s Tuition and Financial Aid Programs for Undocumented Students PDFJanuary 17, 2017
California Court of Appeal confirms undocumented UC students are eligible for financial benefits as set forth in California state law and UC policies.
Supreme Court Upholds Race-Conscious Admissions PDFJuly 11, 2016
On June 23, 2016, the United States Supreme Court found the University of Texas at Austin undergraduate admissions program to be lawful under the Equal Protection Clause and reaffirmed that colleges and universities have a compelling constitutional interest in achieving “the educational benefits that flow from student body diversity."
The Department Of Labor Publishes Its Final Rule On Overtime PDFMay 27, 2016
The Department of Labor’s Final Rule, effective December 1, 2016, will significantly increase the minimum salary level generally required for exemption from minimum wage and overtime obligations, raising it from $455 per week ($23,660 annually) to $913 per week ($47,476 annually).
O’Bannon v. NCAA Decision Examines the Antitrust Limits on Compensating College Athletes PDFJanuary 26, 2016
Ninth Circuit decision says college athletes may be compensated for education-related costs, but questions remain as to future payment limits and how compensation may affect college sports programs
U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Kimble v. Marvel Entertainment, LLC., addresses patent royalties PDFJuly 20, 2015
On June 22, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a ruling in Kimble v. Marvel Entertainment, LLC, affirming that a patent owner cannot receive patent royalties from its patent licensee on sales of a product covered by the patent after the patent expires.
Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc. v. Sandoz, Inc. (“Teva”) case. PDFMarch 9, 2015
U.S. Supreme Court ruling may encourage early disposition of patent infringement suits and also result in fewer appeals and reversals.
U.S. Supreme Court Invalidates Company Patents on Business Methods PDFJuly 18, 2014
U.S. Supreme Court invalidates company’s business method patents for being too abstract to qualify as patent-eligible subject matter.
Second Circuit Affirms that University Project for Digitization of Library Holdings is Permitted Under Copyright Law PDFJune 17, 2014
The Second Circuit affirms that university’s digitization of library holdings is permissible under copyright law and that its goals of increasing access to print-disabled patrons and ease of full-text searches are a “fair use” of copyrighted materials.
U.S. Supreme Court Rulings May Discourage Abusive Patent Suits PDFMay 22, 2014
U.S. Supreme Court rulings may discourage abusive patent suits by making it easier for prevailing parties to recover attorneys’ fees from losing parties.
U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Michigan’s Affirmative Action Ban PDFMay 16, 2014
Supreme Court decision opens the door for more state affirmative action bans. The University’s experience under Proposition 209 will be central to the national debate about these measures.
Academic Workers’ Speech & First Amendment Protection PDFMarch 3, 2014
The Ninth Circuit recently held that academic employees’ speech, pursuant to their official duties, may be protected by the first amendment.
SB 400: Expanded Employment Protection for Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, and Stalking Victims PDFFebruary 26, 2014
Effective January 1, 2014, the California legislature amended Labor Code sections 230 and 230.1 to extend existing prohibitions against discrimination toward employee victims of domestic violence or sexual assault to victims of stalking, as defined under California law. The amendments also require employers to provide reasonable accommodations to such victims.
Obstacle to Patent Challenges by Licensees Removed PDFFebruary 3, 2014
The U.S. Supreme Court, in Medtronic v. Mirowski, held that when a licensee sues a patent owner in a “declaratory judgment” action, the patent owner has the burden of proving infringement by the licensee.
Recent Cases Regarding Public Records Act Issues PDFAugust 5, 2013
Two recent rulings address significant issues related to the California Public Records Act (PRA). One court upheld the University’s ability to protect researcher communications and scholarly research data. Another court concluded that the City of San Jose was required to disclose city-related communications even though they were sent on employees’ private devices.
Recent Supreme Court Cases on Employment PDFJuly 8, 2013
Two recent U.S. Supreme Court cases defined “supervisor” for purposes of discriminatory harassment claims and adopted the “but for” causation standard for retaliation claims. The rulings will have limited effect in California because they apply to federal claims under Title VII but not claims brought under California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA).
Fisher v. University of Texas PDFJune 27, 2013
U.S. Supreme Court leaves intact its prior holdings regarding race- conscious admissions programs and defers ruling specifically on UT’s program.
Association for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics, Inc. PDFJune 17, 2013
U.S. Supreme Court holds that unmodified genes cannot be patented, but modified genes can be.
Bowman v. Monsanto PDFMay 16, 2013
U.S. Supreme Court affirms the right of a patent owner to control self-replicating plant seed inventions.
Michigan's Affirmative Action Ban PDFDecember 12, 2012
A recent U.S. Court of Appeals decision holding Michigan’s anti-affirmative action law unconstitutional may lead the U.S. Supreme Court to review the constitutionality of California’s Proposition 209.
Unpublished Research Materials PDFSeptember 26, 2012
A recent federal case creates significant uncertainty for University researchers who wish to protect their unpublished research materials.
eReserves PDFAugust 24, 2012
Recent legal developments recommend a comprehensive and thoughtful approach to eReserves.
Brinker Decision PDFJune 12, 2012
The California Supreme Court's highly publicized Brinker decision clarifies meal and rest break requirements for private sector employers but has little effect on the University.
Medical Diagnostic Methods PDFMarch 21, 2012
U.S. Supreme Court holds that medical diagnostic methods must have an inventive feature to qualify as patent-eligible subject matter.
Credit Information for Employment Purposes PDFMarch 20, 2012
New California laws limit the use of credit related information for employment purposes and affect the type of notice employers are required to give applicants and employees prior to obtaining a consumer credit report about them.
Redevelopment Agencies PDFFebruary 27, 2012
The California Supreme Court upholds legislation abolishing redevelopment agencies and strikes down the legislative attempt to save them.
Leahy-Smith America Invents Act PDFSEPTEMBER 9, 2011
Congress passes patent reform legislation to promote innovation.
Nondiscrimination PDFAUGUST 25, 2011
The U.S. Supreme Court held that a nondiscrimination policy requiring registered student organizations to allow any interested students to participate is constitutional. The Ninth Circuit has now held that a more specific prohibition (e.g., a prohibition of discrimination specifically based on religion but not political beliefs) may also be constitutional.
Ruling in Sex Discrimination Case PDFJULY 6, 2011
Supreme Court ruling in closely-watched sex discrimination case is likely to deter large class actions.
Inventions PDFJUNE 10, 2011
U.S. Supreme Court affirms that a company's contract with a university inventor regarding future inventions trumps the rights of the university employer in federally-funded inventions.
Protected Speech PDFAPRIL 19, 2011
On March 2, 2011, the Supreme Court issued a decision in Snyder v. Phelps in which it reaffirmed that speech on issues of public concern is constitutionally protected.
Nonresident Tuition PDFMARCH 8, 2011
Plaintiffs in Martinez v. Regents of the University of California are petitioning the U.S. Supreme Court to review the California Supreme Court's affirmation that nonresidents may pay in-state tuition at public colleges and universities.
Layoffs PDFFEBRUARY 8, 2011
The California Supreme Court affirmed that public employers have the right to decide to lay off employees for budgetary reasons without bargaining that decision with their unions. The effects of a layoff remain subject to bargaining.
Exchange with Cuba PDFJANUARY 21, 2011
White House directs changes to regulations and policies to promote educational exchange between accredited colleges and universities and Cuba.
Proposition 26 and Fees PDFDECEMBER 17, 2010
Fees assessed by the Regents of the University of California are unaffected by the supermajority vote requirement imposed under Proposition 26 approved by voters in November 2010.
Non-exclusion in Student Organizations PDFJUNE 29, 2010
The U.S. Supreme Court has upheld a Hastings College of the Law policy that prohibits registered student organizations from excluding students from membership or leadership positions on the basis of their status or beliefs.
Contractual Indemnification PDFJUNE 23, 2010
A recent court ruling reaffirms that contractual indemnification is an essential tool to minimize financial risk in business transactions.
Reimbursement Reporting PDFMAY 13, 2010
The FPPC requires designated officials to report all reimbursements for speeches, panels and seminars from non-governmental third parties regardless of location.
CEQA PDFOCTOBER 28, 2009
The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) applies any time the University approves a project that could have an adverse effect on the environment.
E-Discovery Act PDFSEPTEMBER 24, 2009
California's E-Discovery Act requires the University to preserve relevant electronically stored information (ESI) in state court litigation.
CCARD Act PDFAUGUST 17, 2009
Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009 increases safeguards and transparency for young consumers.
Disparate Impact Standard PDFJULY 10, 2009
U.S. Supreme Court requires "Strong Basis in Evidence" standard for showing disparate impact in employee selection tests.
State Contract Funding Suspension PDFJUNE 26, 2009
Executive order suspends funding for specific state contracts entered into, on or after March 1, 2009.