Federal regulations affect the practices of a broad spectrum of lawyers. For corporate counsel, federal regulations may directly touch on their company’s core business, or they may impose additional general compliance requirements, such as in human resources, as an example. Attorneys in both private practice and public interest law face a similar impact whether they practice labor and employment, immigration, criminal law or in a completely different area.
Here are some federal regulations that attorneys in the corresponding practice areas or industries may find of interest:
|Regulatory Agency||Practice Areas / Industry|
|US Citizenship and Immigration Services||Immigration, Employment|
|Internal Revenue Service||Estate Planning, Tax|
|Patent and Trademark Office||Intellectual Property|
|Federal Energy Regulatory Commission||Energy, Government Relations|
|Food and Drug Administration||Personal Injury, Pharmaceutical, Government Relations|
|Department of State||International Law, Immigration|
|Thrift Supervision Office||Financial Services|
|Securities and Exchange Commission||Financial Services, Securities, Consumer Law|
|Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation||Labor and Employment, Employee Benefits|
|DOJ Antitrust Division||Antitrust, Business, Consumer Law|
If you practice in an area affected by federal regulations, you probably already recognize that keeping abreast of new regulatory developments is essential. To assist you, Justia has released the free Justia Regulations Tracker, found at http://regulations.justia.com/ (currently in beta). Justia Regulations Tracker allows a user to focus on regulations originating from a specific federal agency and subscribe to an RSS feed of those regulations.
Better yet, you can further refine the RSS feed by specifying the type of regulation or stage in the regulation making process (i.e., rules, administrative orders, notices, proposed rules, executive orders, and proclamations) or even defining certain search terms, such as all regulations that mention bovine spongiform encephalitis.
If you aren’t already on the RSS bandwagon, now is a great time hop aboard. RSS feeds allow you to take a particular set of data and view it using your RSS reader. So, instead of opening a print newspaper and reading the articles that the editors have selected for you, and RSS reader allows you create your own custom news and information source from data sources that you select. For lawyers, this means reading the federal regulations, court filings, legal commentary and other resources that you decide are worth tracking. Enjoy!