CLEVELAND - In a case alleging that a neck brace defect caused a 16-year-old motocross rider's paralysis, a federal judge in Ohio on July 15 excluded two of four plaintiffs' causation and warnings experts and refused to exclude a causation defense expert and on July 17 granted the manufacturer partial summary judgment (S.S., et al. v. Leatt Corp., No. 1: 12 CV 483, N.D. Ohio, Eastern Div.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 98366).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The International Centre For Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) on July 17 released its award on jurisdiction in a dispute over the packaging and sale of tobacco products in the Oriental Republic of Uruguay, finding that the tribunal has jurisdiction over the case and that the case can proceed (Philip Morris Brands Sarl, et al. v. Oriental Republic of Uruguay, ARB/10/7, ICSID).
RICHMOND, Va. - A Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on July 17 upheld a ruling barring a co-defendant in an adversary proceeding to a bankruptcy case from testifying as a sanction for numerous discovery violations after finding that the decision was not prejudicial to the challenging defendant (Southern Management Corporation Retirement Trust v. Charles Timothy Jewell, et al., No. 12-2319, 4th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 14434).
SAN ANTONIO - A federal judge on July 12 limited plaintiff and defense police practices experts to discussing nationally recognized excessive force standards in a negligence and civil rights action against a school district police officer who fatally shot a 14-year-old student after a chase (Denys Lopez Moreno v. Northside Independent School District, et al., No. SA-11-CV-746-XR, W.D. Texas; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 97401).
TRENTON, N.J. - Plaintiffs in a shareholder lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson on July 15 asked a New Jersey federal judge to preliminarily approve a $22.9 million settlement of allegations that the drug maker caused their stock value to drop after the company conducted a massive recall of over-the-counter drugs, disclosed quality control problems at a manufacturing plant and revealed a "phantom recall' of Motrin brand pain reliever (Ronald Monk, et al. v. Johnson & Johnson, et al., No. 10-4841, D. N.J.).
ATLANTA - A divided Georgia Court of Appeals panel on July 16 affirmed certification of a class action against the owner of a paper mill for personal injuries and property damage allegedly caused by hydrogen sulfide released from waste lagoons at a Rincon, Ga., mill (Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products v. Kirbi Ratner, et al., No. A13A0455, Ga. App.; 2013 Ga. App. LEXIS 669).
SAN FRANCISCO - The federal judge in California overseeing the film transistor-liquid crystal displays (TFT-LCD) antitrust litigation on Dec. 18 granted final approval to a $30 million settlement between Toshiba Corp. and direct purchasers, vacating a jury award of $87 million in damages to the purchasers on their claims that Toshiba engaged in a conspiracy with other manufacturers to raise and fix the price of TFT-LCD panels and certain products containing those panels imported into the United States (In re: TFT-LCD $(Flat Panel$) Antitrust Litigation $(All Direct Purchaser Actions$), MDL No. 3:07-md-1827 SI, N.D. Calif.; See October 2012).
SAN FRANCISCO - The federal judge in California overseeing the film transistor-liquid crystal displays (TFT-LCD) antitrust litigation on July 12 approved the first distribution of settlement funds to direct purchaser class members on their claims that Toshiba Corp. and other manufacturers engaged in a conspiracy to raise and fix the price of TFT-LCD panels and certain products containing those panels imported into the United States (In re: TFT-LCD $(Flat Panel$) Antitrust Litigation $(All Direct Purchaser Actions$), MDL No. 3:07-md-1827 SI, N.D. Calif.).
PHILADELPHIA - A federal judge in Pennsylvania confirmed an arbitration award on June 15, finding that the award was rational and that the arbitration panel did not exceed its power (Platinum Underwriters Bermuda, Ltd. v. Excalibur Reinsurance Corporation, No. 12-mc-00070, E.D. Pa.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 98671).
CHICAGO - A group of passengers from the Asiana Airlines flight that crashed while attempting to land at the San Francisco International Airport earlier this month filed a petition for discovery in an Illinois state court on July 15, seeking information about the aircraft (Guo Fu Yang, et al. v. The Boeing Co., No. 2013L008002, Ill. Cir., Cook Co.).
HOUSTON - A Texas appeals court on July 16 affirmed a trial court's decision in favor of a school district in a suit filed by a former teacher who alleged that her job was terminated after she complained about mold, finding that the trial court did not abuse its discretion in refusing to submit certain questions and charges to the jury (Dorthea Walker v. Hitchcock Independent School District, 01-11-00797, Texas App.; 2013 Tex. App. LEXIS 8746).
MINNEAPOLIS - A Minnesota federal judge on July 15 conditionally certified a class of beauty school admissions representatives seeking overtime compensation after first dismissing the reps' record-keeping claims (Michelle Le, et al. v. Regency Corporation d/b/a Regency Beauty Institute, et al., No. 13-391, D. Minn.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 98276).
SAN DIEGO - A federal judge in California presiding over an insurance bad faith case on July 15 refused to adopt a magistrate judge's report and recommendation to impose terminating sanctions against a plaintiff company over its delayed production of amended discovery responses, ruling that the company did not engage in bad faith and that the delayed production did not prejudice defendant Travelers Property Casualty Company of America (Fay Avenue Properties LLC, et al. v. Travelers Property Casualty Company of America, et al., No. 12-cv-02389-GPC-WVG, S.D. Calif.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 98991).
MADISON, Wis. - Two meat-packing plant workers have failed to show that all workers in their proposed class were denied overtime in a manner similar enough for certification to be appropriate, a Wisconsin federal judge ruled July 15, denying a motion to certify their state claims and granting a motion by the defendants to decertify federal law claims that were previously granted conditional certification (Gustavo Utrera Viveros, et al. v. VPP Group, LLC, et al., No. 12-129, W.D. Wis.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 97997).
OAKLAND, Calif. - A federal judge in California on July 12 denied preliminary approval of a settlement of a class action in which consumers allege that OfficeMax North America Inc.'s (OfficeMax) policy of requesting ZIP code information during credit card transactions violates the Song-Beverly Credit Card Act of 1971, explaining that she is concerned with the proposed settlement's compliance with the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA) and that the plaintiffs have not demonstrated that the proposed manner of disseminating the class notice complies with Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23 and due process (Nancy Dardarian, et al. v. OfficeMax North America Inc., No. 11-0947, N.D. Calif.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 98653).
SEATTLE - In what it said was "not an easy case," a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on July 15 held that an arbitration clause and an accompanying choice-of-law provision within a subscriber agreement, which was provided by an Internet service provider (ISP) to its customers, was enforceable in the state of Montana and required application of New York law (Dale Mortensen, et al. v. Bresnan Communications LLC, No. 11-35823, 9th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 14211).
PERTH, Australia - An Australian justice on July 16 dismissed a construction firm's appeal of a $1,052,723 arbitration award issued in a dispute over the construction of a power station, finding that the arbitrator did not commit any manifest error of law and that the appellant failed to support any of its grounds for appeal (D&Z Constructions Pty Ltd. v. IHI Corp., No. $(2013$) WASC 265, Western Australia Sup.).
LAS VEGAS - A federal magistrate judge in Nevada on July 11 refused to impose sanctions against the City of Las Vegas in a hostile work environment lawsuit after finding that its deletion of a response to an email in April 2010 occurred as part of its existing practice of purging emails after 45 days and before it was on notice of litigation from a former employee (Jennifer Hixson v. City of Las Vegas, No. 12-cv-00871-RCJ-PAL, D. Nev.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 96952).
WICHITA, Kan. - A federal magistrate judge in Kansas overseeing discovery in a gender discrimination and sexual harassment lawsuit against Kohl's Department Stores Inc. on July 12 granted a majority of the plaintiff's motion to compel records and set parameters for the time frame and geography of relevant documents (Tiffany Kear v. Kohl's Department Stores Inc., No. 12-cv-1235-JAR-KGG, D. Kan.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 97418).
OAKLAND, Calif. - A California federal judge on July 12 dismissed a class complaint alleging mislabeled food products after finding that the court must defer to the authority and expertise of the Food and Drug Administration (Janet Hood, et al. v. Wholesoy & Co., et al., No. 12-5550, N.D. Calif.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 97836).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - Employees who allege that seven high-tech companies conspired to restrict the mobility of technical employees by entering into agreements not to compete for each other's employees told a federal judge in California on July 12 that they have reached an agreement with defendants Pixar and Lucasfilm Ltd. (In re: High-Tech Employee Antitrust Litigation, No. 11-CV-02509, N.D. Calif.).
FRESNO, Calif. - A California federal judge on July 11 ordered additional briefing before she rules on a settlement motion in a class suit over a motorcycle company's post-repossession notices, citing concerns with the parties' request to narrow the scope of an already certified class (Luis Manuel Mora, et al. v. Harley-Davidson Credit Corp., et al., No. 08-1453, E.D. Calif.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 97172).
NEW YORK - A trial court did not err in excluding expert engineering testimony and in granting summary judgment to a ladder manufacturer in a products liability case, a Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel held July 10 (Steven and Janet Russo v. Keough's Turn of the River Hardware, No. 12-4196, 2nd Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 13897).
ATLANTA - The 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 12 affirmed a decision to compel arbitration of a cruise line worker's clams against Carnival Corp., finding that an arbitration agreement in his contract applied and that the dispute was governed by the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards (Jose Alvaro Dolmo Montero v. Carnival Corp., No. 12-15525, 11th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 14141).
ATLANTA - The 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 12 denied a wireless company's request to vacate two arbitration awards, one finding that an arbitration clause permitted class litigation and the other certifying the class, finding that both were permitted under the standard set forth in Oxford Health Plans LLC v. Sutter (569 U.S. __, 133 S. Ct. 2064, __ L.Ed.2d __ $(2013$)) (Southern Communications Services, Inc., d.b.a. SouthernLINC Wireless v. Derek Thomas, et al., No. 11-15587, 11th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 14121).