LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
    Appeals Court Affirms Case Dismissal, Orders Transfer To Insurance Department

    TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey appeals court in a Nov. 4 unpublished opinion affirmed the dismissal of chiropractors' challenge to a health insurer's policy provision limiting reimbursement of diagnostic imaging services but ordered the case transferred to the state insurance department for review of a claim alleging violation of a state law requiring group health policies to cover services performed by chiropractors if the services are also reimbursed when provided by other health providers (The Association of New Jersey Chiropractors Inc., et al. v. Horizon Healthcare Services Inc., et al., No. A-6022-11T4, N.J. Super., App. Div.; 2013 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 2677).

    Lack Of Standing For Injunctive Relief No Bar To Restitution, Judge Says

    SAN DIEGO - Injunctive relief and restitution constitute separate remedies under the California unfair competition law (UCL), and lack of standing to pursue one does not bar the other, a California federal judge held Nov. 1 (Gino Maraventano and Neesha Kurji v. Nordstrom Inc., a Washington corporation, and DOES 1-100 inclusive, Gina Balasanyan and Nune Nalbandian, et al. v. Nordstrom Inc., et al. Nos. 10-2671, 11-2609, S.D. Calif.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 157194).

    Calif. Court Rules On $1.1B Settlement Claims Procedure In Microsoft Antitrust Case

    SAN FRANCISCO - A procedure for determining the portion of settlement proceeds to be awarded to certain class members in a consumer antitrust action against Microsoft Corp. does not violate the terms of the underlying $1.1 billion settlement agreement, a California appellate court affirmed Oct. 31 in an unpublished opinion (Charles J. Longo, et al. v. Microsoft Corporation, No. A136531, Calif. App., 1st Dist.; 2013 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 7931).

    Class Seeks OK To File Amicus Brief In DOJ's Antitrust Case Against Airline Merger

    WASHINGTON, D.C. - The class suing US Airways Group Inc. and American Airlines Inc. in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on Nov. 4 moved for permission to intervene in the U.S. Department of Justice's (DOJ) antitrust lawsuit against the airlines by filing an amicus curiae brief (United States of America v. US Airways Group Inc., et al., No. 13-01236, D. D.C.).

    Divided Court: Man May Amend California Competition Law Action Against Lender

    SANTA ANA, Calif. - Alleged misrepresentations about the steps a lender would take to help a customer appear to provide adequate basis for a California unfair competition law (UCL) claim, and the resulting home foreclosure appears to constitute an injury, a divided appeals court held Oct. 31 (Richard Lueras v. BAC Home Loans Servicing LP, et al., No. G046799, Calif. App., 4th Dist., Div. 3; 2013 Cal. App. LEXIS 886).

    Rehearing En Banc Denied In Novell's Monopolization Suit Against Microsoft

    DENVER - The 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Nov. 1 denied Novell Inc.'s petition for rehearing en banc of a panel ruling that Novell failed to present evidence sufficient for a jury to find that Microsoft Corp. unlawfully used its dominant position in the personal computing operating-systems market to monopolize the word-processing and spreadsheet applications markets when it withdrew access to its namespace extensions (Novell, Inc. v. Microsoft Corporation, No. 12-4143, 10th Cir.).

    9th Circuit Reinstates Class Suit Challenging Wal-Mart's California Battery Fee

    PASADENA, Calif. - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Oct. 30 reinstated a class complaint accusing Wal-Mart Stores Inc. of falsely claiming that its battery recycling fee was required by California law (June Woolverton Johnson, et al. v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., No. 12-55233, 9th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 22119).

    College Athletes Antitrust Claims Against NCAA Survive, Federal Judge Rules

    OAKLAND, Calif. - Former and current student athletes may continue with their claim that the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) violated federal antitrust law by conspiring with Electronic Arts Inc. (EA) and Collegiate Licensing Co. (CLC) to restrain competition in the market for the commercial use of their names, images and likenesses in game footage, a federal judge in California ruled Oct. 25 in denying the NCAA's motion to dismiss (In Re NCAA Student-Athlete Name & Likeness Licensing Litigation, No. 09-1967, N.D. Calif.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 153730).

    6 Chambers Of Commerce: Merger Of US Airways, American Airlines Should Be Allowed

    WASHINGTON, D.C. - Six chambers of commerce on Oct. 29 moved in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia for permission to file amicus curiae briefs in the antitrust lawsuit brought by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) against US Airways Group Inc. and American Airlines Inc. related to the proposed merger of the two airlines. The chambers of commerce contend that their respective communities will benefit from the proposed merger (United States of America v. US Airways Group Inc., et al., No. 13-01236, D. D.C.).

    9th Circuit Nixes Rule Barring Arbitration Of Public Injunctive Relief Claims

    SAN FRANCISCO - California's rule prohibiting arbitration of public injunctive relief claims runs afoul of the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA), the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals held Oct. 28 in reversing a ruling denying arbitration of California unfair competition law (UCL) claims (Kevin Ferguson, et al. v. Corinthian Colleges Inc., et al., No. 11-56965, 9th Cir.).

    Judge: Refrigerator Maker Must Face Energy Star-Based Competition Law Claims

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Whirlpool Corp.'s alleged misrepresentation of its refrigerators' compliance with Energy Star program requirements supports unfair and fraudulent claims under the California unfair competition law (UCL), a federal judge held Oct. 25 (Kyle Dei Rossi and Mark Linthicum, et al. v. Whirlpool Corp., No. 12-125, E.D. Calif.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 153682).

    Class Certification Granted In Employees' Antitrust Suit Against High-Tech Companies

    SAN JOSE, Calif. - A California federal judge on Oct. 24 granted a supplemental motion for class certification in an antitrust suit accusing high-tech companies of conspiring to fix and suppress employee compensation and to restrict employee mobility by entering into agreements not to compete for one another's employees (In Re: High-Tech Employee Antitrust Litigation, No. 11-2509, N.D. Calif.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 153752).

    Federal Judge Dismisses Claims From Overdraft Fees Class Action

    SAN FRANCISCO - A federal judge in California on Oct. 25 granted in part and denied in part Umpqua Bank's motion for judgment on the pleadings in a putative class action alleging that the bank illegally reordered customers' debit card transactions in order to maximize profits, finding that some of the plaintiff's claims are preempted by the National Bank Act (NBA) (Amber Hawthorne, et al. v. Umpqua Bank, No. 11-6700, N.D. Calif.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 153697).

    Judge Finds Standing, Specificity In Splenda Web Advertising Claims

    SAN FRANCISCO - Inconsistencies in allegations of website exposure between complaints do not warrant dismissal of a California unfair competition law (UCL) claim challenging the advertising of Splenda, a federal judge held Oct. 21 (Barbara Bronson, et al. v. Johnson & Johnson Inc. and McNeil Nutritionals Inc., No. 12-4184, N.D. Calif.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 151842).

    Federal Judge Rules On Expert Testimony, Access In Merger Trial

    BOISE, Idaho - The federal judge in Idaho overseeing the trial involving an antitrust challenge to a consummated merger between a hospital system and a physician group on Oct. 18 refused to exclude certain expert testimony regarding the impact of unwinding the merger and ruled that the Associated Press' counsel may review all trial material under the same obligation as counsel for the parties (Saint Alphonsus Medical Center - Nampa, Inc., et al. v. St. Luke's Health System, Ltd., No. 12-560, D. Idaho; Federal Trade Commission, et al. v. St. Luke's Health System, Ltd., et al., No. 13-116, D. Idaho; 2013 U.S. LEXIS 150450, 2013 U.S. LEXIS 150451).

    Novell Seeks Rehearing En Banc In Monopolization Suit Against Microsoft

    DENVER - Novell Inc. on Oct. 22 filed a petition for rehearing en banc of a 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling that Novell failed to present evidence sufficient for a jury to find that Microsoft Corp. unlawfully used its dominant position in the personal computing operating-systems market to monopolize the word-processing and spreadsheet applications markets when it withdrew access to its namespace extensions (Novell, Inc. v. Microsoft Corporation, No. 12-4143, 10th Cir.).

    Software Maker Fails To Allege Agreement; Antitrust Claims Fail, 2nd Circuit Holds

    NEW YORK - A software company failed to allege facts demonstrating that insurers' requiring the use of a rival estimating software was anything more than parallel conduct, the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Oct. 18 in an unpublished order affirming the dismissal of antitrust and trademark infringement claims (Vedder Software Group Ltd. v. Insurance Services Office, Inc., et al., No. 13-1267, 2nd Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 21118).

    Judge: Competition Law Claim Involving GM Steering Component Proceeds

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. - A man's claim that General Motors LLC knowingly sold vehicles with defective steering components then replaced those parts with equally defective replacements supports a claim under all three prongs of the California unfair competition law (UCL), a federal judge held Oct. 16 (Chris Aguilar, et al. v. General Motors LLC, No. 13-437, E.D. Calif.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 149108).

    Trial Order Proposed In American Airlines, US Airways Merger Antitrust Lawsuit

    WASHINGTON, D.C. - Attorneys for the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), US Airways Group Inc. and American Airlines Inc. on Oct. 17 filed a joint proposed procedural order for the upcoming antitrust trial on the DOJ's claims that the proposed merger of the two airlines violates federal law. The proposed order calls for closing arguments to be held Jan. 6 (United States of America v. US Airways Group Inc., et al., No. 13-01236, D. D.C.).

    Judge: Provider Neither Competitor Not Consumer Of Insurer; Unfair Claim Fails

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Claims that a health insurer misrepresented its power to authorize and provide coverage for treatment form the basis for a California unfair competition law (UCL) unlawful-prong claim, but because the provider is neither a consumer nor a competitor, its unfair-prong claim fails, a federal judge held Oct. 15 (Centre for Neuro Skills v. Blue Cross of California dba Anthem Blue Cross, et al., No. 13-743, E.D. Calif.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 148432).

    Ohio Federal Judge Grants In Part Motions To Compel Against Non-Party

    DAYTON, Ohio - Non-party Community Insurance Co., doing business as Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield (Anthem), must produce certain documents regarding its deliberations not to contract with a medical center in the medical center's lawsuit claiming that it was denied contracts with managed care providers as a result of a purported conspiracy involving other hospitals to exclude the medical center from the marketplace in violation of federal antitrust law, a federal judge in Ohio ruled Oct. 16 (The Medical Center at Elizabeth Place, LLC v. Premier Health Partners, et al., No. 3:12-cv-26, S.D. Ohio; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 148839).

    Court Finds 'Substantially Identical' Labeling Law Preempted, Denies Rehearing

    LOS ANGELES - A California appeals court on Oct. 15 denied a petition for rehearing, leaving stand a ruling that "substantially identical" food labeling laws are not "identical" to federal law and cannot avoid preemption, according to the court's docket (Mary L. Simpson v. The Kroger Corp., et al., No. B242405, Calif. App., 2nd Dist.).

    New Trial Sought After $113M Verdict In Attempted Monopolization Case

    MARSHALL, Texas - Becton, Dickinson & Co. (BD) on Oct. 11 moved for judgment as a matter of law or, alternatively, a new trial following a federal jury in Texas' $133,508,014 damage award in favor of Retractable Technologies Inc.(RTI) on its claim of attempted monopolization of the market for safety syringes through deceptive practices (Retractable Technologies, Inc., et al. v. Becton Dickinson & Company, No. 2:08-cv-16, E.D. Texas).

    Judge Rejects Primary Jurisdiction In 'Natural' Products Cases, Denies Stay

    SAN FRANCISCO - A federal judge in California on Oct. 10 declined General Mills Inc.'s request to stay three cases challenging the advertising of "natural" products, saying primary jurisdiction did not apply (Judith Janney, et al. v. General Mills, Gabriel Rojas v. General Mills Inc., Sean Bohac v. General Mills Inc., Nos. 12-03919, 12-5099, 12-5280, N.D. Calif.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 147024, 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 147019, 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 147530).

    Judge Finds MLB's Antitrust Exemption Dooms Competition Law Claim

    SAN JOSE, Calif. - Exemption from antitrust regulation dooms a California unfair competition law (UCL) action challenging Major League Baseball's role in preventing a franchise from moving to San Jose, a federal judge held Oct. 11 (City of San Jose; City of San Jose as successor agency to the Redevelopment Agency of the City of San Jose, et al. v. Office of the Commissioner of Baseball, et al., No. 13-02787, N.D. Calif.).