WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 23 declined to grant certiorari, which left standing an agreement reached in In re Managed Care Litigation that bars several physicians and physician groups from bringing claims against WellPoint Inc. in In re WellPoint, Inc. Out-of-Network "UCR" Rates Litigation under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act and the Sherman Act but not from bringing certain claims under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (Medical Association of Georgia, et al. v. Wellpoint Inc., No. 14-554, U.S. Sup.).
DENVER - A Colorado federal judge on Feb. 20 declined to dismiss antitrust claims in a suit alleging that health insurers conspired with hospitals to drive multiple ambulatory surgical centers out of business (Arapahoe Surgery Center, et al. v. CIGNA Healthcare Inc., et al., No. 13-3422, D. Colo.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 20488).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 23 denied a petition for writ of certiorari, leaving in place a California Supreme Court decision holding that the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act (FAAAA) does not preempt a California unfair competition law (UCL) lawsuit filed by the state alleging that a trucking company misclassifies drivers as independent contractors to avoid paying payroll taxes or provide workers' compensation (Pac Anchor Transportation, et al. v. People of the State of California, ex rel. Kamala D. Harris, etc., No. 14-491, U.S. Sup.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California state court judge on Feb. 17 issued a final injunction and judgment that will provide City College of San Francisco (CCSF) a new option to pursue to secure its accreditation after a finding that the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) engaged in practices that violated the unlawful prong of the state's unfair competition law (UCL) when, in 2013, it terminated college's accreditation. The court had issued a tentative ruling in January instructing the city attorney to draft the injunction (People of the State of California ex rel. Dennis Herrera, San Francisco City Attorney v. Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, No. CGC-13-533693, Calif. Super., San Francisco Co.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Feb. 12 allowed negligence and state unfair competition law (UCL) claims to continue in a home loan modification dispute, but dismissed a claim for statutory cancellation of instruments (Charlotte Johnson, et al. v. PNC Mortgage, et al., No. 14-2976, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 17485).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge dismissed multiple claims, including one brought under the state's unfair competition law (UCL), in a class action wage and labor dispute, leaving claims for meal break and rest period violations and declining to strike class allegations (Eve Miranda, et al. v. Coach Inc., et al., No. 14-2031, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18278).
SAN DIEGO - A California man on Feb. 9 filed a class action lawsuit in federal court accusing a grower of bananas of violating multiple laws, including the state's unfair competition law (UCL), by falsely representing itself to be an exemplar of environmental stewardship when in reality its production methods damage water supplies, destroy local crops and cause illness in the local population (Justin Jablonowski v. Chiquita Brands Inc., No. 15-262, S.D. Calif.).
LOS ANGELES - A California resident on Feb. 9 filed a class action lawsuit in federal court accusing Anthem Inc. of violating, among other things, the state's unfair competition law (UCL) in failing to safeguard personal information contained on the defendant's information technology (IT) systems after a massive breach of the company's systems (John Doe v. Anthem Inc., et al., No. 15-934, C.D. Calif.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California state unfair competition law (UCL) claim will be among those continuing after a California federal judge on Feb. 5 declined to dismiss a class action lawsuit accusing the seller of a variety of bread and muffin mixes as misleading consumers by wrongly labeling the products as ``all natural'' (Edward Musgrave v. ICC/Marie Callender's Gourmet Products Division, No. 14-2006, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14674).
LOS ANGELES - Following a bench trial, a California judge on Feb. 4 entered judgment in favor of the defendant in a suit accusing a distributor of polyethylene products of falsely advertising that its products meets the Department of Defense's (DOD) specifications and violating, among other things, the state's unfair competition law (UCL) (Caltex Plastics Inc. v. Elkay Plastics Company Inc., No. 12-10033, C.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 13442).
LOS ANGELES - Just two days after Anthem Inc. announced that it "was the target of a very sophisticated external cyber attack" that exposed its customers' personal data to hackers, the health insurance provider on Feb. 5 was hit by putative class actions in California and Alabama federal courts (Samantha Kirby v. Anthem Inc., et al., No. 2:15-cv-00820, C.D. Calif.; Danny Juliano v. Anthem Inc., No. 2:15-cv-00219, N.D. Ala.).
FRESNO, Calif. - A federal judge in California on Jan. 30 for the second time dismissed a case, including a claim for violation of the state's unfair competition law (UCL), alleging that a used car company failed to supply a form showing that all of the components of the vehicle were inspected during the certification process, this time with prejudice (Patricia A. Sigala v. CarMax Auto Superstores, No. 14-1451, E.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 11414).
CHICAGO - A defendant's request to add three counterclaims of Sherman Act violations and an affirmative defense of inequitable conduct was granted Jan. 30 by an Illinois federal judge (BSP Software LLC v. Motio Inc., No. 12-2100, N.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 10799).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Jan. 29 declined to dismiss a putative class action case accusing a short-term car rental company of violating state law, including the unfair competition law (UCL) by setting late fees in an illegal manner (Gabriela Bayol v. Zipcar Inc., No. 14-2483, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 10596).
LOS ANGELES - An attorney's suit alleging that that two principles comingled and mismanaged bank account funds, shorting him of compensation seeks in excess of $75,000, Napoli Bern Ripka & Associates argues in removing the action on Jan. 28 (Marc I. Willick v. Napoli Bern Ripka & Associates, et al., No. 5-652, C.D. Calif.).
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - A California federal judge on Jan. 28 granted summary judgment in favor of a retailer of used cars in a suit alleging that the defendant violated several laws, including the state's unfair competition law (UCL), in the selling of a used vehicle without allegedly certifying that the vehicle had been inspected, saying the plaintiff could not support her claims (Jocelyn Overholt v. CarMax Auto Superstores California, No. 13-2009, E.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 9923).
SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on Jan. 28 dismissed with leave to amend claims alleging that a mortgage company violated state law, including the state's unfair completion law (UCL), in its handling of the foreclosure of a couple's home (Judy Lane, et al. v. Suntrust Mortgage Inc., No. 14-1367, S.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 10421).
KANSAS CITY, Mo. - A Missouri federal judge on Jan. 27 dismissed a class complaint filed by a Missouri woman accusing the producers and marketers of Kettle Cooked Potato Chips of falsely advertising them as "all natural" (Tonya Kelly, et al. v. Cape Cod Potato Chip Company, Inc., et al., No. 14-119, W.D. Mo.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 8988).
PHILADELPHIA - Citing the recently articulated standard in Federal Trade Commission v. Actavis Inc. (133 S. Ct. 2223 ), a Pennsylvania federal judge on Jan. 28 found that myriad plaintiffs challenging a reverse-payment settlement as anti-competitive adequately pleaded their claims to survive a defense motion for summary judgment (King Drug Company of Florence, Inc., et al. v. Cephalon, Inc., et al., No. 2:06-cv-1797, E.D. Pa.; Vista Healthplan, Inc., et al. v. Cephalon, Inc., et al., No. 2:06-cv-1833, E.D. Pa.; Apotex, Inc. v. Cephalon, Inc., et al., No. 2:06-cv-2768, E.D. Pa.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 84818).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - A federal judge in California on Jan. 26 remanded to state court a hospital's lawsuit seeking reimbursement for charges for treatment of a participant in a health plan governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, holding that the hospital's state unfair competition law claims were not completely preempted by ERISA (Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula v. Blue Cross of California, et al., No. 14-CV-04552, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 9248).
PHILADELPHIA - A Pennsylvania federal judge on Jan. 26 found the testimony of an economics expert, proffered by the direct purchaser plaintiffs in a price-fixing class action against egg suppliers, to be reliable and convincing enough to support the plaintiffs' class certification motion, denying the defendants' motion to exclude (In re: Processed Egg Products Antitrust Litigation [All Direct Purchaser Actions], MDL No. 2002, No. 08-md-2002, E.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 8329).
WEST DES MOINES, Iowa - The Iowa insurance commissioner will liquidate CoOportunity Health Inc., a consumer-owned health insurance company started with $146 million in Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) funds, it announced Jan. 23 (State of Iowa, et al. v. CoOpportunity Health Inc., No. N/A, Iowa Dist., Polk Co.).
LOS ANGELES - In reversing a lower court's decision, a California appeals court on Jan. 21 held that a technician was not a hotel worker who traditionally would have been paid a gratuity for providing services and, therefore, was not among the class of hotel workers entitled to be paid service charges collected by the employer; therefore, the defendant did not violate the state's unfair competition law (UCL) by not paying the service charges to the employee (Audio Visual Services Group Inc. v. The Superior Court of Los Angeles County, et al., No. B256266, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 3; 2015 Cal. App. LEXIS 50).
BOSTON - The presence of a few uninjured members in a class does not prevent certification, the First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Jan. 21, affirming the certification of the class of indirect purchasers of Nexium in a pay-for-delay lawsuit over the heartburn drug (In re Nexium Antitrust Litigation, Astrazeneca AB, et al. v. United Food and Commercial Workers Unions and Employers Midwest Health Benefits Fund, et al., Nos. 14-1521 & 14-1522, 1st Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 968).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - In its Jan. 20 orders list, the U.S. Supreme Court announced that it will let stand a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals April ruling that when antitrust harm is speculative at the time of the initial wrong, the law of limitations in federal antitrust actions allows a claimant to file suit once the harm has crystallized (Panasonic Corp. et al. v. Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., No. 14-540, U.S. Sup.).