WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Department of Justice announced June 16 that a Florida-based skilled nursing facility, its former president and executive director and its subsidiaries have agreed to pay $17 million to resolve allegations that it violated the False Claims Act (FCA) and Anti-Kickback Statute by improperly paying doctors for their referrals of Medicare patients to the defendants' facilities (United States of America, ex. rel. Stephen M. Beaujon v. Hebrew Homes Health Network Inc., et al., No. 12-cv-20951, S.D. Fla.).
TAMPA, Fla. - A Florida federal judge on June 15 declined to exclude testimony from two experts in a breach of contract case based on alleged unreliable methodology and lack of importance, saying there is less need for her to exercise her gatekeeping function as to expert testimony for a bench trial and that the objections to the testimony can be brought up again at trial (Apple Glen Investors, L.P., v. Express Scripts, Inc., No. 8:14-cv-1527; M.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 77060).
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The federal government filed an intervener complaint in Florida federal court on June 12 in a False Claims Act (FCA) and Anti-Kickback Statute lawsuit brought against an ambulance service company accused of engaging in a 10-year scheme in which it fraudulently billed Medicare for services that were medically unnecessary (United States of America v. Liberty Ambulance Services Inc., No. 15-cv-, M.D. Fla.).
LAKELAND, Fla. - A Florida appeals panel on June 12 reversed in part a lower court's final judgment in favor of homeowners insurer in a coverage dispute over sinkhole damage (David Sanchez, et al. v. Royal Palm Insurance Co., No. 2D13-4852, Fla. App., 2nd Dist.; 2015 Fla. App. LEXIS 8991).
SARASOTA, Fla. - A state court jury returned a defense verdict June 10 in a suit alleging that a 33-year-old man's death from a pulmonary embolism stemmed from an electrical accident that occurred at a local school six years earlier (Stephanie Goberman, et al. v. The Out-of-Door Academy, No. 2011CA009250, Fla. 12th Jud. Cir., Manatee Co.).
FORT MYERS, Fla. - The chemical companies being sued by a farm trust that alleges that the companies have contaminated the trust's property with volatile organic compounds moved to dismiss the plaintiff's second amended complaint on June 9, contending that the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida should dismiss the case with prejudice because the trust has failed in a third attempt to "submit a viable pleading" (Noel D. Clark Jr., et al. v. Ashland Inc., No. 13-794, M.D. Fla.).
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - An amendment to the Florida interest-rate statute does not apply to judgments existing at the time of its passage, the plaintiff in an Engle progeny case argues in a brief filed with the state Supreme Court on June 8 (Lyantie Townsend, etc. v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., No. SC15-722, Fla. Sup.).
SARASOTA, Fla. - Trial got under way June 4 in the 12th Judicial Circuit Court for Manatee County, Fla., in a suit alleging that a 33-year-old man's death from a pulmonary embolism stemmed from an electrical accident that occurred at a local school six years earlier (Stephanie Goberman, et al. v. The Out-of-Door Academy, No. 2011CA009250, Fla. 12th Jud. Cir., Manatee Co.).
FORT MYERS, Fla. - A declaratory judgment defendant's counterclaim of inequitable conduct was dismissed June 5 by a Florida federal judge (Chico's Fas Inc. v. Andrea Clair et al., No. 13-792 M.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 73052).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Florida federal judge erred denying a motion to dismiss, on standing grounds, a dispute over a prosthetic liner patent, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled June 5 (Alps South LLC v. The Ohio Willow Wood Company, Nos. 13-1452, -1488, 14-1147, -1426, Fed. Cir.).
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - A notice under Florida Statutes Chapter 558 does not constitute a "civil proceeding" and is not a "suit" under an insurance policy, a Florida federal judge ruled June 4, finding that the insurer had no duty to defend or indemnify an insured regarding construction defect claims (Altman Contractors Inc. v. Crum & Forster Specialty Insurance Co., No. 13-80831, S.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 72466).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Despite a decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to vacate and remand an earlier reversal by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals of a Florida federal judge's claim construction in light of Teva Pharmaceuticals USA Inc. v. Sandoz Inc. (135 S. Ct. 831 ), the Federal Circuit on June 2 held firm, again rejecting the constructions (Shire Development LLC, et al. v. Watson Pharmaceuticals Inc., et al., No. 13-1409, Fed. Cir.).
FORT MYERS, Fla. - A Florida federal judge on June 3 limited the testimony of a damages expert in a patent dispute, directed the expert to file an amended total royalty analysis and questioned the expert's qualifications, reserving ruling on whether he is qualified until he is questioned at trial (Chico's Fas, Inc. v. Andrea Clair, et al., No. 2:13-cv-792, M.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 71716).
MIAMI - Trial got under way in state court on June 4 in a suit alleging that a Florida man's death from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) was caused by his addiction to cigarettes (Joyce Hardin, et al. v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., et al., No. 07-46973-CA-22, Fla. 11th Jud. Cir., Miami-Dade Co.).
TAMPA, Fla. - An insurer did not breach its policy by denying coverage for an insured's damages caused by fungus, rot, rain, decay and termites eating wood, a Florida federal judge ruled June 3 (N.P.V. Realty Corp. d/b/a Park Place Apartments v. Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. and Nationwide Mutual Fire Insurance Co., No. 14-03235, M.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 71744).
TAMPA, Fla. - A Florida federal judge on June 1 held that there are material issues of fact to be determined by a trier of fact regarding whether an insurer is estopped from denying coverage for underlying copyright infringement claims brought against a designer of pre-drawn home plans (State National Insurance Company Inc. v. Highland Holdings Inc., et al., No. 8:14-cv-00524, M.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 70616).
ORLANDO, Fla. - A federal judge in Florida on May 29 granted in part and denied in part an insurer's motion to dismiss claims in an insurance bad faith lawsuit, ruling that insureds' breach of fiduciary duty claim is duplicative of their bad faith claim, but that their breach of contract claim is not (Ryan J. Padilla, et al. v. The Travelers Home and Marine Insurance Co., No. 14-1770, M.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 69961).
MIAMI - A Florida federal judge on June 1 agreed with two declaratory judgment patent infringement plaintiffs that a defendant's counterclaims of patent infringement fail to demonstrate sufficient intent or knowledge of the patents in suit (Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment LLC v. Nissim Corp., No. 14-81349; Paramount Pictures Corp. v. Nissim Corp., No. 14-81350, S.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 70467).
PENSACOLA, Fla. - A Florida state court jury returned a defense verdict May 21 in a suit alleging that the death of a former smoker from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), coronary artery disease and peripheral vascular disease was caused by his years of smoking (Ethel Gray, et al. v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., et al., No. 2013 CA 002813. Fla. Dist., 1st Dist., Escambia Co.).
FORT MYERS, Fla. - A Florida federal judge on May 24 declined to exclude the testimony of a patent validity expert but limited the testimony of a damages expert so that taxes are not deducted from an accused infringer's gross profit margin, finding that if there is infringement, it is more equitable for the patent holder to receive any windfall that may occur by not deducting the taxes paid (Chico's Fas, Inc. v. Andrea Clair, et al., No. 2:13-cv-792, M.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 67394).
ORLANDO, Fla. - Two Florida women have sufficiently alleged defamation against Fox News Networks LLC related to its airing of a video clip of the women on television and posting of it online, a Florida federal judge ruled May 21, denying the network's motion to dismiss (Kathleen M. Duffy, et al. v. Fox News Networks LLC, No. 6:14-cv-01545, M.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 66534).