COLUMBUS, Ohio - The federal judge in Ohio presiding over the lawsuit brought by a class of Ohio residents who contend that E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co. is liable for wrongful death and other injuries from exposure to perfluorooctanoic acid on Dec. 31 issued a conditional transfer order stating that 30 additional actions were being consolidated with the lead case (In re E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Co. C8 Personal Injury Litigation, MDL No. 2433, No. 13-2433, S.D. Ohio).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - An asbestos plaintiff waived the only means of introducing untimely expert testimony in a strategic move designed to thwart summary judgment and cannot complain after it backfired, the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals said Dec. 30 (John M. Tyler and Doris Tyler v. Honeywell Inc., et al., No. 13-7185, D.C. Cir.).
RAPID CITY, S.D. - A South Dakota federal magistrate judge on Jan. 2 granted in part a hotel chain operator's motion to compel "clear and unambiguous answers" to a series of discovery interrogatories in a breach of contract and trade secrets lawsuit, also awarding the plaintiff attorney fees as sanctions related to some of the requests (Atmosphere Hospitality Management LLC v. Shiba Investments Inc., et al., No. 5:13-cv-05040, D. S.D.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 87).
OAKLAND, Calif. - A California federal judge on Dec. 30 granted a motion for attorney fees following the settlement of a class action in which consumers alleged that OfficeMax North America Inc.'s (OfficeMax) policy of requesting ZIP code information during credit card transactions violated the Song-Beverly Credit Card Act of 1971; however, the judge rejected the plaintiffs' request for $500,000 and instead awarded $200,000 (Nancy Dardarian, et al. v. OfficeMax North America, Inc., No. 11-947, N.D. Calif.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 178463).
LOS ANGELES - A California federal judge on Dec. 31 rejected a trucking company's second attempt to remove a wage-and-hour class complaint to federal court (Shawn Leon, et al. v. Gordon Trucking, Inc., No. 14-6574, C.D. Calif.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 179055).
CHICAGO - After finding that an oil equipment company waived its right to remove a dispute over proceeds related to underlying investment and arbitration agreements, an Illinois federal judge on Dec. 31 remanded the case to state court (S&T Oil Equipment & Machinery Ltd., et al. v. Juridica Investments Limited, et al., No. 14-9135, N.D. Ill.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 178758).
PASADENA, Calif. - A majority of the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Dec. 31 denied a putative class representative's appeal as moot in a lawsuit challenging an insurer's practices, finding that the plaintiff has no financial interest or other personal interest in class certification (Douglas J. Campion v. Old Republic Protection Company Inc., No. 12-56784, 9th Cir.; 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 24653).
CHICAGO - In the fifth appeal to the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, the appeals court on Dec. 24 dismissed a class action suit that alleged that a defined-contribution pension plan was partially terminated under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (Robert J. Matz v. Household International Tax Reduction Investment Plan, Nos. 14-1683, 14-2507, 7th Cir.; 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 24448).
HARRISBURG, Pa. - A judge must instruct a jury on the intended-user doctrine and conduct a new trial absent "each and every" exposure to asbestos testimony, a divided en banc Pennsylvania appeals court held Dec. 23 in vacating a $14.5 million verdict and ordering a new trial (Darlene Nelson, executrix of the estate of James Nelson v. Airco Welders Supply, et al., Nos. 864 EDA 2011, 866 EDA 2011, 867 EDA 2011, Pa. Super.).
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - A California federal judge on Dec. 29 dismissed with prejudice claims, including one for violation of the state's unfair competition law (UCL), in a class action lawsuit accusing the owner of a gasoline station of engaging in a "bait-and-switch" scheme by failing to disclose that customers would be charged an additional fee for using a debit card until after they placed the card in the pump to start the transaction (Charles Kelly v. BP West Coast Products LLC, No. 14-1507, E.D. Calif.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 178479).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Dec. 29 dismissed with leave to amend claims, including one for violation of the state's unfair competition law (UCL), in a class action lawsuit alleging that a fitness-tracker wristband was "effectively useless" because it did not perform as advertised (Robert Frenzel v. AliphCom, No. 14-3587, N.D. Calif.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 177880).
TOKYO - A Japanese mobile operator and services provider on Jan. 5 announced that it has submitted a request for arbitration with the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA) in a dispute over a shareholder's agreement.
ATLANTA - A wage dispute against Eli Lilly & Co. belongs in state court for the time being because the employer has failed to prove that the amount in controversy meets the minimum requirements under the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA), the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Dec. 29 (Leslie Pinciaro Dudley, et al. v. Eli Lilly and Company, et al., No. 14-13048, 11th Cir.; 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 24504).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - Two Florida men filed a class complaint on Dec. 30 in California federal court accusing Apple Inc. of misrepresenting the storage capacity needed for its iOS 8 operating system, as well as the actual available storage on its iPhones, iPads and iPods (Paul Orshan, et al. v. Apple Inc., No. 14-5659, N.D. Calif.).
NEW YORK - A New York justice on Dec. 18 declined defendants' motion to renew, reargue or stay a ruling allowing punitive damages in New York City's asbestos litigation (In re: New York City Asbestos Litigation, No. 40000/88, N.Y. Sup., New York Co.).
LAS VEGAS - A Nevada federal judge on Dec. 19 ruled that a firearms functionality expert's testimony would be helpful to the jury in a trade dress infringement lawsuit, finding no case law or compelling reason to grant the plaintiffs' motion to exclude (Cybergun S.A., et al. v. JAG Precision Inc., No. 2:12-cv-00074, D. Nev.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 176281).
CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on Dec. 22 ruled that expert testimony under the "any exposure" causation theory for asbestos exposure was unsupported by case law and not sufficiently reliable to establish specific causation related to the plaintiff's injury and his negligence claims, granting in part several defendants' motions to exclude (Charles Krik v. Crane Co.; ExxonMobil Oil Corp.; Owens-Illinois Inc.; and The Marley-Wylain Co., No. 1:10-cv-70435, N.D. Ill.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 175983).
WORCESTER, Mass. - Granting in part motions by both parties in a patent infringement case pertaining to method patents for treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, a Massachusetts federal judge on Dec. 19 limited certain expert witness testimony related to lost profits, the patent application process and willful infringement (Abbott Biotechnology Ltd., et al. v. Centocor Ortho Biotech Inc., No. 4:09-cv-40089, D. Mass.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 175470).
VANCOUVER, British Columbia - An energy resource company on Dec. 19 announced that an English high court has refused to set aside an arbitration award that was issued in its favor by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) International Court of Arbitration.
NEW YORK - The federal judge in New York presiding over the methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) products litigation on Dec. 18 ruled that, despite her reservations about a plaintiff expert's plume model, dismissal of the expert at this stage of the case was "premature" (In Re: Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether Products Liability Litigation, No. 00-1898, MDL 1358, Orange County Water District v. Unocal Corporation, No. 04-4968, S.D. N.Y.).
SAN DIEGO - A federal judge in California on Dec. 17 granted class action status to a case accusing J.C. Penney Corp. Inc. of violating state law, including the unfair competition law (UCL), by failing to pay vacation benefits as required (Raymond Tschudy v. J.C. Penney Corporation Inc., No. 11-1011, S.D. Calif.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 174382).
ROANOKE, Va. - Finding that multiple fact issues exist in a negligence lawsuit against the manufacturers of a pain medication analgesia pump, a Virginia federal judge on Dec. 19 declined to grant summary judgment to the defendants, while partly granting and partly denying their motions to exclude the testimony of plaintiffs' expert witnesses related to the adequacy of the pump's warnings and instructions (Deirdre Williamson Jain, et al. v. Abbott Laboratories Inc., et al., No. 7:13-cv-00551, W.D. Va.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 175242).
PHILADELPHIA - A doctor may present his report and testimony as to the purported intoxication of the plaintiff in a police excessive force lawsuit, a Pennsylvania federal judge ruled Dec. 17, finding that the report met the criteria of Federal Rule of Evidence 702 and denying the plaintiff's motion in limine to preclude (Hibah Muhammad v. Police Officer James Bolognone, No. 2:13-cv-06440, E.D. Pa.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 173997).
SAN FRANCISCO - Symantec Corp. saw its motions to quash and for a protective order denied Dec. 19, with a California federal judge finding that the cyber-security firm had "not meaningfully disputed the relevance sought by the subpoena" in an underlying consumer class action against Target Corp. related to a 2013 data breach (In Re: Target Corporation Consumer Data Security Breach Litigation, No. 3:14-mc-80302, N.D. Calif.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) Office of the General Counsel announced Dec. 19 that it has filed multiple consolidated complaints against McDonald's USA LLC and the company's franchisees, as joint employers, alleging violations of employees' rights.