Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Most Of Expert Witnesses' Testimony Permitted In Excessive Force Lawsuit

ALBANY, Ga. - Expert witnesses proffered by both the plaintiff and defendant in a civil rights, excessive force case will be permitted to testify, a Georgia federal judge ruled Oct. 14, denying in part the parties' respective motions to strike and exclude (Jonathan Collins v. Demetrius Sheppard,...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Plan's Forum-Selection Clause Is Enforceable, Divided 6th Circuit Rules

CINCINNATI - A federal judge properly dismissed without prejudice a pension plan participant's claim that the plan improperly reduced his benefits, where the suit was not brought in the federal court specified in the plan's forum-selection clause, the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Florida Panel Reverses Ruling In Insurer's Favor In Dispute Over Defense Costs

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - A Florida appeals panel on Oct. 15 reversed and remanded a lower court's dismissal of a veterinarian insured's complaint against his insurer for breach of contract and a defense cost determination under Florida Statutes Section 627.426 (Dr. Scott J. Swerdlin v. Florida...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Kansas Federal Judge Dismisses Delivery Drivers' State Wage Claims

KANSAS CITY, Kan. - A Kansas federal judge on Oct. 15 dismissed delivery drivers' claims filed under the Kansas Wage Payment Act (KWPA), finding that Kansas law allows minimum wage claims to be pursued only under the Kansas Minimum Wage Maximum Hour Law (KMWMHL) and that KMWMHL specifically exempts...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge Grants Request For Discovery To Be Used In London Arbitration

TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on Oct. 17 granted an application filed by shipping companies to subpoena certain evidence from an international transportation company for use in a London arbitration dispute over unpaid charter-party invoices (In Re Application of Owl Shipping LLC, et al....

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Unsolicited Text Class Suit Survives Motion To Dismiss

SAN JOSE, Calif. - A California federal judge on Oct. 17 denied a motion seeking to dismiss a class complaint filed by a California man who alleges that he was sent an unsolicited text message advertising a gentlemen's club in violation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) (John Luna v...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge: Liability Expert May Testify In Tire Explosion Negligence Case

MILWAUKEE - A metallurgist retained as a liability expert by a man injured by an exploding tire is qualified to testify at trial, a Wisconsin federal judge ruled Oct. 15, also holding that the expert's "extensive list of testing" related to the incident constitutes reliable methodology...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge Grants Preliminary Approval To Deal Settling Newspaper Carriers' Claims

SAN DIEGO - A newspaper company will pay $3.2 million to resolve claims that it violated California labor laws and the unfair competition law (UCL) by misclassifying newspaper carriers as independent contractors under a class action settlement that received preliminary approval Oct. 17 from a federal...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - District Court's Order Is Not Final Order, Not Appealable, 2nd Circuit Rules

NEW YORK - A federal district court order that held that a plan sponsor is a plan administrator within the meaning of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act and remanded for additional evidence is not an immediately appealable final order, the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Oct. 15 in...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge Excludes Testimony Of 1 Expert Witness In Distracted Driving Suit

MACON, Ga. - In two Oct. 17 rulings, a Georgia federal judge permitted the testimony of one expert witness while excluding a second as unqualified in a lawsuit seeking punitive damages from a trucking firm related to an accident blamed on distracted driving due to cell phone use (Jarrett Little, et al...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Vocational Expert May Testify As To Decedent's Future Earnings, Judge Rules

OMAHA, Neb. - A vocational counselor is qualified to testify as to the value of a decedent's services in a wrongful death suit, a Nebraska federal judge rule Oct .16, denying a defendant's motion to preclude his testimony under the standards of Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals Inc. (509...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Surgeon's Opinion Permitted In Nursing Home Neglect Lawsuit

PITTSBURGH - Finding a treating physician's opinion to be reliable and admissible, a Pennsylvania federal judge Oct. 20 denied a nursing home's motion to exclude it in a lawsuit alleging violations of the Federal Nursing Home Reform Act (FNHRA) (Lawrence M. Clutter v. Washington County Health...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Bankruptcy Judge Unseals Record In Garlock's Estimation Proceeding

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - The North Carolina federal bankruptcy judge overseeing Garlock Sealing Technologies LLC's Chapter 11 case on Oct. 16 unsealed the entire record of last year's hearing to estimate Garlock's asbestos liability, saying he should have kept the proceeding open to the public in...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 6th Circuit Affirms $5M Verdict In 1st Gadolinium MDL Trial

CINCINNATI - A federal appeals court panel on Oct. 20 affirmed a $5 million verdict in the first gadolinium multidistrict litigation trial against GE Healthcare Inc. (Paul Decker, et al. v. GE Healthcare Inc., et al., No. 13-4002, 6th Cir.; 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 20049).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 2nd Circuit Denies Rehearing In Securities Class Action Against Deutsche Bank

NEW YORK - A Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Oct. 16 denied a motion for rehearing or, in the alternative, rehearing en banc in a securities class action against Deutsche Bank AG (DB) and certain of its subsidiaries and others, which were alleged to have misrepresented DB's exposure...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 9th Circuit: Class Representative May Not Appeal After Settling

PASADENA, Calif. - A class representative in a wage-and-hour lawsuit who essentially settled his individual claims, but failed to include any language in the agreement preserving his right to appeal the denial of class certification, may not proceed with the class action, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge Permits Supplemental Expert Report In Age Discrimination Suit

BATON ROUGE, La. - Even though a retirement benefits expert's report was submitted after a court-mandated deadline, a Louisiana federal judge on Oct. 21 found that the filing was permissible because it corrected an identified error and did not prejudice the defendant in an employment discrimination...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Government Challenges Merits, Standing In Anti-Abortion Group's Mandate Case

WASHINGTON, D.C. - An anti-abortion group and its employees lack standing and miscast the standard for review in a futile effort to save a doomed case, the government told a District of Columbia federal judge on Oct. 21 (March for Life, Jeanne F. Monahan and Bethany A. Goodman v. Sylvia M. Burwell, et...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Pneumo Abex Urges California Top Court To Reject Take-Home Liability

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - For legal and public policy reasons, California should side with the majority of other states and reject liability for take-home asbestos exposures, Pneumo Abex LLC told the California Supreme Court on Oct. 17 (Johnny Blaine Kesner v. Superior Court of California for the County of...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Plaintiffs File Master Complaint In Federal NHL Concussion Litigation

MINNEAPOLIS - Plaintiffs in the National Hockey League concussion multidistrict litigation filed their master administrative long-form and class action complaint in the U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota on Oct. 20 (In re: National Hockey League Players Concussion Injury Litigation, MDL...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Wisconsin Appeals Panel Reinstates Teachers' Claims Over Retirement Changes

MADISON, Wis. - A notice served to a school district by two teachers that included an attached list of parties and itemization of damages was sufficient to allow the later lawsuit filed by six teachers to proceed, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals ruled Oct. 22, reversing a ruling by a Wisconsin Circuit...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Pasta Company Settles Labeling Class Claims For $7.9 Million

TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on Oct. 20 granted final approval of a $7.9 million settlement that will end a class complaint accusing a pasta company of deceptively labeling its products as a healthy alternative to traditional pasta (Joseph Mirakay, et al. v. Dakota Growers Pasta Company...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Briefs Address Impact Of En Banc Ruling On Contemporaneous Negligence Case

DALLAS - Parties challenging Texas' stance on a premises owner's liability for allegedly contemporaneous negligent activities recently filed letter briefs addressing a recent en banc decision from an appeals court. The plaintiffs' letter was filed Oct. 21 (Magdalena Adrienna Abutahoun, et...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - California Court Affirms Reduced Compensatory Award, $18 Million In Punitives

LOS ANGELES - A divided California appeals court on Oct. 22 affirmed $18 million in punitive damages against Union Carbide Corp. in an asbestos case and said the plaintiffs' expert testimony went beyond the "every exposure" theory (Bobbie Izell and Helen Izell v Union Carbide Corp., et...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Class Suit Over Reduced Fat Chips Labeling Survives Dismissal Motion

SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Oct. 21 declined to dismiss a class complaint accusing a potato chip maker of falsely labeling its reduced fat chips, finding that the lead plaintiff has sufficient proof to proceed at this stage (Richard Hall v. Diamond Foods, Inc., No. 14-2148, N.D. Calif...