NEW HAVEN, Conn. - A party to a reinsurance contract on Sept. 15 asked a federal court in Connecticut to compel arbitration and appoint an umpire to an arbitration panel (American United Life Insurance Company v. Travelers Indemnity Company, et al., No. 14-cv-01339, D. Conn.).
FRESNO, Calif. - A California federal magistrate judge on Sept. 11 declined to approve a $900,000 settlement by CVS Pharmacy Inc. to end wage claims filed by distribution center workers and ordered the plaintiffs to file an amended motion with additional evidentiary support (Leticia Ceja-Corona, et al. v. CVS Pharmacy, Inc., No. 12-1868, E.D. Calif.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 127946).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Sept. 10 partially certified a class of Wal-Mart truck drivers who are suing the retailer for various wage violations (Charles Ridgeway, et al. v. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., a Delaware Corporation dba Wal-Mart Transportation LLC, et al., No. 08-5221, N.D. Calif.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 126806).
FLINT, Mich. - A Michigan federal judge on Sept. 11 overruled objections to a magistrate judge's order that denied a motion to compel discovery and denied a motion to compel compliance with subpoenas that were filed by a Michigan man in his class complaint accusing his former employer of violating the Employee Retirement Income Security Act by failing to properly determine Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) taxes payable at the time of his retirement (John B. Davidson, et al. v. Henkel Corporation, et al., No. 12-14103, E.D. Mich.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 127152).
WILMINGTON, Del. - A California attorney facing allegations that he filed fraudulent claims against asbestos personal injury trusts cannot pursue a lawsuit seeking to force six trusts that stopped offering settlements to his claimants to resume processing his claims, a Delaware federal judge ruled Sept. 12 (Michael J. Mandelbrot, et al. v. Armstrong World Industries Asbestos Personal Injury Settlement Trust, et al., No. 13-1032, D. Del.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 127652).
PHOENIX - Even though evidence shows that the public frequently uses the word "Google" as a verb, an Arizona federal judge on Sept. 11 held that the primary significance of the mark is still the search engine operated by Google Inc. and, thus, the mark has not become generic (David Elliott, et al. v. Google Inc., No. 2:12-cv-01072, D. Ariz.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 127352).
HARRISBURG, Pa. - A Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court panel on Sept. 12 found that an insolvent insurer's liquidator correctly determined that a certain policy was reinsurance (Alabama Insurance Guaranty Association v. Reliance Insurance Company in Liquidation, No. 6 REL 2012, Pa. Cmwlth.).
PHOENIX - In an unpublished opinion, an Arizona appeals panel on Sept. 11 affirmed summary judgment in favor of a health insurance company in a wrongful denial of health care benefits suit (Nicolai Tavilla, et al. v. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Arizona Inc., No. CV-12-0843, Ariz. App., Div. 1; 2014 Ariz. App. Unpub. LEXIS 1093).
SAN FRANCISCO - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 10 held that an insured has failed to establish that an underlying complaint alleges disparagement on its face or by reasonable implication, affirming a lower court's ruling that an insurer has no duty to defend its insured against the underlying claims (Bullpen Distribution Inc., et al. v. Sentinel Insurance Co. Ltd., No. 12-16369, 9th Cir.; 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 17497).
SAN DIEGO - A federal judge in California on Sept. 12 granted a plaintiff's motion for limited discovery beyond the administrative record in his wrongful denial of benefits case (Christopher Brown v. United Healthcare Insurance Co., et al., No. 14-661, S.D. Calif.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 128219).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - A California appeals court on Sept. 12 revived a state court consumer class action alleging that Apple Inc. marketed and sold defective iPhones in violation of the unfair competition law (UCL), finding that the lower court erred in ruling that a cell phone network carrier was a necessary party to the lawsuit (Ingrid Van Zant v. Apple Inc., No. H039354, Calif. App., 2nd Dist.; 2014 Cal. App. LEXIS 831).
ATLANTA - The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA)'s elimination of the causation requirement in Black Lung benefits cases permits pursuit of a denied claim originally made final in 2006, an 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel held Sept. 12 (Jim Walter Resources Inc. v. Director, Office of Workers' Compensation Programs, Viola L. Davis o.b.o Johnny E. Davis, No. 13-13185, 11th Cir.).
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - A federal judge in Alabama on Sept. 10 dismissed antitrust, Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act and unjust enrichment claims against the third-party administrator of prescription medication and remanded the remaining state law claims to state court (Star Discount Pharmacy Inc., et al. v. MedImpact Healthcare System Inc., et al., No. 11-2206, N.D. Ala.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 126606).
NEW YORK - No discovery should be undertaken in the majority of cases alleging injury caused by defective ignition switches in vehicles manufactured by General Motors LLC (New GM) until key issues are resolved in the General Motors Corp. (Old GM) bankruptcy case, New GM told the federal judge overseeing the ignition-switch multidistrict litigation in a letter brief filed Sept. 10 (In re: General Motors LLC Ignition Switch Litigation, No. 14-md-02543-JMF, S.D. N.Y.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board properly rejected an application for a flying bird design trademark because it would likely confuse consumers in light of a pre-existing trademark, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals affirmed Sept. 15 (Michael Longshore v. Retail Royalty Company, No. 14-1448, Fed. Cir.).
MINNEAPOLIS - An insurer is entitled to collect more than $80,000 from a second insurer that is responsible for one-seventh of the defense costs spent in defending the insured in four underlying benzene-related lawsuits, a Minnesota federal judge said Sept. 12 (Continental Casualty Co. v. National Union Fire Insurance Company of Pittsburgh, Pa., et al., No. 09-287, D. Minn.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 127670).