PHILADELPHIA - Pennsylvania would not burden employers with a duty to protect against take-home asbestos exposures given the weight the state gives public policy considerations, the judge overseeing the federal asbestos multidistrict litigation held Aug. 27 (Marilyn Gillen v. The Boeing Co., et al., No. MDL 875, 13-3118, E.D. Pa.).
LOS ANGELES - Supermarket chain Whole Foods Market Inc. dupes customers into buying its Greek yogurt products by vastly understating on the product labels how much sugar the yogurt contains, in violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL), according to a consumer class action complaint filed Aug. 26 in federal court (Chas Jackson, et al. v. Whole Foods Market, Inc., No. 14-6705, C.D. Calif.).
WESTPORT, Conn. - An American energy firm on Aug. 28 announced that it has filed legal proceedings in Pakistan in relation to interim orders issued by a tribunal for the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC).
THE HAGUE, Netherlands - The International Court of Justice (ICJ) on Aug. 28 announced that the Republic of Somalia has commenced arbitration against the Republic of Kenya in relation to an Indian Ocean maritime boundary dispute.
LOS ANGELES - Sallie Mae Inc.'s objections to electronic discovery requests by a group of students in a fraud lawsuit were without merit, a California appeals panel found Aug. 27, affirming an award of attorney fees to the students related to their opposition to Sallie Mae's motion to quash their subpoena (Daniel Vasquez, et al. v. California School of Culinary Arts Inc., et al., No. B250600, Calif. App., 2nd Dist.; 2014 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 6051).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 28 vacated a Texas federal judge's decision to dismiss a patent case with prejudice, after deeming the dismissal an abuse of discretion (Ki Ventures LLC v. CTA Digital Inc., No. 14-1187, Fed. Cir.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Federal Claims Court judge on Aug. 25 denied the U.S. government's attempt at summary judgment in a securities fraud class action lawsuit, ruling that the action must be determined at trial (Starr International Company Inc. v. The United States, No. 11-779, Fed. Clms.).
SAN FRANCISCO - The organizations that govern youth soccer in the United States have failed to take steps to protect players from suffering traumatic brain injuries while playing the sport, a putative class action filed Aug. 27 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California asserts (Rachel Mehr, et al. v. Federation Internationale de Football Association a/k/a FIFA, et al., No.14-cv-3879, N.D. Calif.).
PORTLAND, Ore. - A Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel issued two opinions on Aug. 27, finding that FedEx Ground Package System Inc. drivers were employees, not contractors, as a matter of law under Oregon and California law (Edward Slayman, et al. v. FedEx Ground Package System, Inc., DBA FedEx Home Delivery, Inc., Nos. 12-35525 and 12-35559; Dean Alexander, et al. v. FedEx Ground Package System, Inc., DBA FedEx Home Delivery, Nos. 12-17458 and 12-17509, 9th Cir.; 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 16585).
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Because a doctor and nurse who filed memoranda in a medical malpractice lawsuit have been designated as just consulting experts and not testifying experts at this juncture, a Connecticut federal magistrate judge on Aug. 25 ruled that the memoranda are not discoverable by the defendant hospital and doctor (Maud F. Colas, et al. v. Cynthia M. Ronan M.D., et al., No. 3:13-cv-00855, D. Conn.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 117768).
PHILADELPHIA - Philadelphia-area health care workers who alleged wage violations in five separate class actions failed to prove that any of the named plaintiffs actually worked any overtime hours for which they were not paid, the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Aug. 26 in a single opinion addressing all of the cases (Collette Davis, et al. v. Abington Memorial Hospital, et al., No. 12-3512, Kenneth Lynn, et al. v. Aria Health System, et al., No. 12-3514, Kenneth Lynn, et al. v. Jefferson Health System, et al., No. 12-3515, Cassandra Ruff, et al. v. Albert Einstein Healthcare Network, et al., No. 12-3521, John Duncheskie, et al. v. Temple University Health, et al., No. 12-3522, 3rd Cir.; 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 16472).
CHICAGO - After finding that all of the claims asserted by two accountants in relation to an accounting firm being expelled from a network of firms relate to a London arbitration provision, an Illinois appeals court on Aug. 27 affirmed a trial court's ruling compelling arbitration of the dispute (Tang Chung Wah, aka Alan CW Tang, et al. v. Grant Thornton International Limited, et al., No. 1-13-1808, Ill. App., 1st Dist., Div. 3; 2014 Ill. App. Unpub. LEXIS 1859).
JAKARTA, Indonesia - A copper and gold mine on Aug. 26 announced that it has withdrawn its arbitration claim against the government of Indonesia from the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) due to a recent commitment from the government to attempt settlement.
NEWARK, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on Aug. 26 granted an electronic corporation's motion to dismiss certain claims in a class action complaint filed by purchasers of allegedly defective washing machines but allowed claims for negligent misrepresentation and fraud to proceed (Robert N. Durso, et al. v. Samsung Electronics America Inc., No. 12-cv-5352, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 118467).
TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on Aug. 25 found the methodology used by a purported expert on vehicle damage and diminished value to be unreliable, granting a vehicle manufacturer's motion to strike his testimony in a dispute over a repair settlement agreement (Robert Deficcio, et al. v. Winnebago Industries Inc., No. 3:11-cv-07406, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 118082).
LOS ANGELES - A former transportation supervisor failed to show that all employees with that title had the same duties and that a class action is the superior method to adjudicate the employees' wage-and-hour claims, a California federal judge ruled Aug. 22 (Curtis Hamilton, et al. v. Genesis Logistics, Inc., No. 13-1848, C.D. Calif.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 117607).
CHICAGO - The medical expert witness proffered by the U.S. government in a mail and wire fraud case against a dermatologist is qualified and presents reliable evidence, an Illinois federal judge found Aug. 26, denying the dermatologist's motion to exclude under Daubert standards (United States of America v. Robert Kolbusz, No. 1:12-cv-00782, N.D. Ill.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 118585).
OAKLAND, Calif. - A federal judge on Aug. 21 denied a bid by The Coca-Cola Co. to dismiss consumer class action claims that the company violated California's unfair competition law (UCL) by not listing phosphoric acid as an artificial flavor or chemical preservative on product labels. The judge then warned the consumers not to use the case as a vehicle to seek a large attorney fee award through settlement (George Engurasoff, et al. v. The Coca-Cola Company, et al., No. 13-3990, N.D. Calif.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 116936).
HARRISBURG, Pa. - The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Aug. 25 declined to hear an appeal by Dow Chemical Co. pertaining to a motion to quash a subpoena served by plaintiffs alleging injury from exposure to vinyl chloride at a plant operated by a Dow subsidiary (Joanne Branham, et al. v. Rohm & Haas Co., et al., No. 39 EAL 2014, Pa. Sup.).
JACKSON, Miss. - A defendant's expert witness medical doctor does not need to specialize in every area in which he testifies, a Mississippi federal judge ruled Aug. 21, finding the doctor qualified to opine on what caused the death of a man injured in a highway accident and denying a Daubert challenge brought by the plaintiff (Billy Buckalew v. Schneider National Carriers Inc., et al., No. 3:13-cv-00189, S.D. Miss.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 116627).
ST. PAUL, Minn. - The Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 25 upheld a trial court's ruling finding that Tyson Foods Inc. meat-processing workers are not owed wages for time spent donning and doffing equipment and clothing beyond the compensation the employer already provides to them (Maria Guyton, et al. v. Tyson Foods, Inc., doing business as Tyson Fresh Meats, Inc., No. 13-2036, 8th Cir.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 16278).
CHICAGO - Although an Illinois federal judge on Aug. 21 found merit to some of a car hauler manufacturer's arguments regarding its motion to preclude a plaintiff's expert witness from testifying in a product liability case, overall the judge deemed the expert qualified to testify regarding such matters as safety, defective design and alternative design (Emad Hasan v. Cottrell Inc., No. 1:10-cv-05534, N.D. Ill.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 116748).
ST. PAUL, Minn. - A split Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Aug. 25 affirmed a final judgment totaling $5,785,757.40 for a class of employees who sued Tyson Foods Inc., alleging that they were denied pay for overtime activities including donning and doffing before and after their shifts (Peg Bouaphakeo, et al. v. Tyson Foods, Inc., No. 12-3753, 8th Cir.; 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 16283).
WILMINGTON, Del. - A Delaware federal judge on Aug. 21 found expert witnesses proffered by the plaintiff and one defendant in a personal injury case mostly qualified to opine in the areas for which they were retained, while limiting an engineer to testify only on physical evidence (Mark Wagner v. Sea Esta Motel 1, et al., No. 1:13-cv-00081, D. Del.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 116468).
OLYMPIA, Wash. - An en banc Washington Supreme Court on Aug. 21 affirmed a trial court's decision on how to determine the value of damages suffered by a group of state employees who were denied health benefits, saying that contrary to the defendants' argument, class members suffered more damages than the nonpayment of immediate medical expenses (Douglas L. Moore, et al. v. The Health Care Authority, et al., No. 89774-3, Wash. Sup.; 2014 Wash LEXIS 641).