April 2018

Today, news reports, academic articles, and corporate reports are flush with mentions of “blockchain,” “Bitcoin,” and “distributed ledger technology.” At first glance, many readers see the discussion as hype, generating a great deal of actionless attention, curiosity, and investment opportunities. However, on another level, some of the conversation regards developments in technology that may specifically shape or impact a company’s contract or legal risk profile – even for those companies that don’t have or deal in Bitcoin. Blockchain technology is expected to have a broad and sweeping impact across industries worldwide, with one commentator identifying a financial impact of over
The Fifth Circuit has not yet ruled on the issue of whether transgender status is a protected category under Title VII, but earlier this month, a federal district judge in the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division, assumed that it was.   In Wittmer v. Phillips 66 Company, No. H-17-2188 (S.D. Tex. April 4, 2018), the plaintiff sued Phillips 66 claiming it rescinded her job offer based on her identity as a transgender woman and her failure to conform to female sex stereotypes.    Noting the prohibition against gender stereotyping in Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins, 490 U.S. 228, 250-51 (1989)…