KANSAS CITY, Kan. - A Kansas federal magistrate judge on Aug. 22 agreed to order an employer to send a corrective notice to its employees informing them that a terminated employee was not fired for his participation in a wage-and-hour class suit, but the judge denied the other forms of relief sought by the lead plaintiffs in their motion for sanctions (Nancy Koehler, et al. v. Freightquote.com, Inc., No. 12-2505, D. Kan.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 119262).
NEWARK, N.J. - A federal judge in New Jersey on Aug. 22 dismissed claims by a multiemployer health fund seeking to recover from insurers amounts the fund allegedly overpaid to its beneficiaries under the fund's coordination of benefits (COB) provision, finding that the claims did not seek equitable relief under Employee Retirement Income Security Act Section 502(a)(3) (Central States, Southeast and Southwest Areas Health and Welfare Fund, et al. v. Bollinger, Inc., et al., No. 13-2760, D. N.J.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 119295).
NEWARK, N.J. - In an unpublished decision, a New Jersey federal judge on Aug. 21 granted summary judgment in favor of a health plan administrator in a reimbursement suit, saying the claims at issue were properly processed (Montvale Surgical Center v. Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, et al., No. 12-2378, D. N.J.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 119630).
CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on Aug. 22 certified one of two classes requested by union electricians who allege that their collective bargaining agreement (CBA) was breached and that they were denied fair representation when they claim they were effectively excluded from employment at the Chicago convention center (Joseph Healy, et al. v. International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, et al., No. 11-8892, N.D. Ill.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 119102).
LOS ANGELES - A California appellate panel on Aug. 21 upheld the denial of a motion to compel arbitration, finding that the filing of the order prior to a ruling on class certification was premature (Anthony Nguyen v. Inter-Coast International Training, Inc., No. B241938, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 4; 2013 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 5803).
SAN FRANCISCO - An employer did not waive its right to arbitration by waiting to file such a request until a second class complaint was filed against it and consolidated with the first, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Aug. 21, reversing a trial court's order (Michelle Richards, et al. v. Ernst & Young, LLP, No. 11-17530, 9th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 17488).
NEW ORLEANS - A former police lieutenant who ultimately resigned after several transfers failed to show that he was subjected to discrimination or retaliation, the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Aug. 19, upholding the dismissal of his lawsuit (Marlon Waters v. City of Dallas, Texas, No. 12-11127, 5th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 17176).
PHILADELPHIA - The Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 19 vacated the dismissal of a class complaint filed by public transportation drivers seeking wages for work performed each morning prior to driving (David Bell, et al. v. Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority, No. 12-4031, 3rd Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 17166).
TULSA, Okla. - A federal magistrate judge in Oklahoma on Aug. 21 ruled that a former employee did not engage in conduct worthy of sanctions by making copies of company documents before filing her lawsuit but ordered her to return any original documents she may have and stressed that the information can be used only for the subject litigation (Amanda Long v. Stand By Personnel Inc., No. 12-CV-297-GKF-PJC, N.D. Okla.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 118528).
ST. PAUL, Minn. - A split Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Aug. 20 declined to rule on a challenge to the U.S. president's recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board, opining that it lacked the authority to do so (National Labor Relations Board v. RELCO Locomotives, Inc., Nos. 12-2111 and 12-2447, 8th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 17272).
CINCINNATI - The production of a draft copy of an employment termination letter that contained handwritten notes by the associate relations manager who wrote the document did not result in a waiver of the attorney-client privilege, a federal magistrate judge in Ohio ruled Aug. 19, because the notes did not contain the advice of counsel (John Yarberry v. Gregg Appliances Inc., No. 12-cv-611, S.D. Ohio; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 117198).
CINCINNATI - A split Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Aug. 15 reinstated a dispatcher's lawsuit against his former employer under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), finding that because the city's volunteer firefighters were actually employees, the city had the requisite number of employees for application of the FMLA (Paul Mendel v. City of Gibraltar, No. 12-1231, 6th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 16922).
PASADENA, Calif. - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 15 upheld a trial court's determination that a nurse had no constitutionally protected property interest in an independent contractor position (Christine Blantz v. California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, et al., No. 11-56525, 9th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 16940).
PHILADELPHIA - A Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Aug. 16 reversed a putative class action reimbursement dispute against a health insurer, saying the lower court improperly relied on the defendant's competing account of events when dismissing the claim (TRi3 Enterprises v. Aetna Inc., et al., No. 12-2308, 3rd Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 17071).
CINCINNATI - The National Labor Relations Board has wide discretion to define which employees will form a bargaining unit to vote on union representation, the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Aug. 15, denying a petition for review filed by an employer wishing to expand the definition of the unit of its employees (Kindred Nursing Centers East, LLC v. National Labor Relations Board, Nos. 12-1027/1174, 6th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 16919).
TACOMA, Wash. - A Washington federal judge on Aug. 13 dismissed a National Labor Relations Board regional director's petition for preliminary injunctive relief against an employer accused of violating the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), finding that the regional director lacked authority to file the underlying complaints because the NLRB lacked a quorum at the time (Ronald K. Hooks, et al. v. Kitsap Tenant Support Services, Inc., No. 13-5470, W.D. Wash.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 114320).
CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on Aug. 13 partially granted a motion for conditional certification of a class of salaried store managers and managers-in-training who allege that they should have been compensated for overtime (Alina Tamas, et al. v. Family Video Movie Club, Inc., No. 11-1024, N.D. Ill.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 114130).
SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on Aug. 12 partially certified a state class of retail employees alleging that their wages were improperly calculated but denied certification to a nationwide class (Gina Balasanyan, et al. v. Nordstrom, Inc., et al., No. 11-2609, Gina Maraventano, et al. v. Nordstrom, Inc., et al., No. 10-2671, S.D. Calif.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 113630).
CINCINNATI - The Multiemployer Pension Plan Amendments Act of 1980 (MPPAA) prohibits courts from issuing injunctions enjoining multiemployer plans from collecting withdrawal liability pending a final decision by an arbitrator, and the act does not provide an exception to the arbitration requirement for "union-mandated" withdrawals, the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Aug. 9 (Findlay Truck Line, Inc. v. Central States, Southeast & Southwest Areas Pension Fund, Nos. 12-3450, 12-3531, 6th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 16520).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The settlement of claims by the lead named plaintiff in a race bias class complaint against the U.S. attorney general does not bar the other named plaintiffs from proceeding with their claims even though they failed to exhaust their administrative remedies, a District of Columbia federal judge ruled Aug. 9 (Herman Brewer, et al. v. Eric H. Holder, No. 08-1747, D. D.C.).
PHILADELPHIA - A claimant's lawsuit alleging that his disability benefits were terminated in violation of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act was rendered moot by the plan's reinstatement of his benefits, the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Aug. 8 in an unpublished opinion (Jeffrey Lemons v. Reliance Standard Life Insurance Company, et al., No. 12-4001, 3rd Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 16409).
CHICAGO - The Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 9 ruled that the statute of limitations barred claims by certain cash balance plan participants who alleged that the plan violated the Employee Retirement Income Security Act in calculating lump-sum distributions paid to participants who left their employment before reaching normal retirement age (Lawrence G. Ruppert, et al. v. Alliant Energy Cash Balance Pension Plan, No. 12-3067, 7th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 16572).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) on Aug. 12 announced that for the first time since Aug. 21, 2003, it is composed of five Senate-confirmed members.
NEW YORK - A New York federal judge on Aug. 8 partially decertified a class of drugstore assistant store managers (ASM) seeking overtime pay for hours worked in excess of 40 per week (Mani Jacob, et al. v. Duane Reade, Inc., et al., No. 11-160, S.D. N.Y.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 111989).
NEWARK, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge in an Aug. 7 unpublished opinion denied an ambulatory surgery center's request to amend its complaint against a health plan for wrongful denial of benefits, saying amendment would be futile (Montvale Surgical Center v. Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield Of New Jersey Inc., et al., No. 12-4166, D. N.J.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 111771).