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Attorney Spotlight

Learn about Richard Arnholt's diverse government contracts practice and why he chose to pursue a career in the legal field. Read more>

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Experience Spotlight

In June 2017, Pinnacle Financial Partners, Inc. (NASDAQ: PNFP) closed a $1.9 billion merger with BNC Bancorp (NASDAQ: BNCN) pursuant to which BNC merged with and into Pinnacle. With the completion of the transaction, Pinnacle becomes a Top 50 U.S. Bank. The merger will create a four state footprint concentrated in 12 of the largest urban markets in the Southeast. 

Bass, Berry & Sims has served Pinnacle as primary corporate and securities counsel for more than 15 years and served as counsel on the transaction. Our attorneys were involved in all aspects related to the agreement, including tax, employee benefits and litigation. 

Read more details about the transaction here.

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Thought Leadership

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Regulation A+

It seems that lately there has been a noticeable uptick in Regulation A+ activity, including several recent Reg A+ securities offerings where the stock now successfully trades on national exchanges. In light of this activity, we have published a set of FAQs about Regulation A+ securities offerings to help companies better understand this "mini-IPO" offering process, as well as pros and cons compared to a traditional underwritten IPO.

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Arbitration Regulation Bars Class Action Waivers

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July 11, 2017

On July 10, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau(CFPB) issued its final rule preventing certain financial product and service providers from including in their consumer contracts pre-dispute arbitration provisions that bar consumers from filing or participating in class action lawsuits.

The rule requires those companies that include arbitration provisions in their contracts, and rely on the arbitration provision to dismiss or delay a lawsuit, to provide the CFPB court records relating to that proceeding, documents created as a result of an arbitration, and the award made, if any, The rule further requires the submission of any communication received from an arbitrator or arbitration administrator that an arbitration agreement does not meet the administrator's fairness principles, rules or other requirements.

The rule also mandates several specific disclosures be included in contracts containing a permitted arbitration provision, and contains optional disclosures allowed under certain circumstances.

Legal challenges to the rule are anticipated based on several grounds, including the reliability and accuracy of the data relied on to support the need for the rule to protect consumers, the methodology used by the CFPB, and that the CFPB exceeded its statutory authority. Further, Congress could nullify the rule, as Chairman Cordray himself acknowledged.

The final rule is effective 60 days after it is published in the Federal Register, but applies only to agreements entered into 180 days after the effective date.


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