Nevada Jury Finds Actos Not Defective, Warning Adequate In 3rd Bladder Cancer Trial

    LAS VEGAS - A Nevada state court jury on Dec. 16 found that Takeda Pharmaceuticals Co. Ltd. did not defectively design its Actos diabetes drug or fail to warn a plaintiff about the risk of bladder cancer (Allen K. Alsabagh v. Takeda Pharmaceuticals America, Inc., et al., No. A-12-665708-C, Nev. Dist., Clark Co.).

    11th Circuit Panel Affirms Chevron Must Produce Notes Of Lago Agrio Lawsuit Expert

    ATLANTA - A unanimous 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel affirmed the issuance of an order compelling Chevron Corp. and one of its experts to produce some 1,200 documents to the Republic of Ecuador to permit the country to defend the $9 billion judgment against Chevron in the Lago Agrio litigation for personal injury and contamination damages entered in November by the highest court in Ecuador (Republic of Ecuador, et al. v. Dr. Robert E. Hinchee, No. 12-16216, 11th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 25102).

    Federal Judge Denies Class Certification Over Ambiguous Insurance Exclusions

    SEATTLE - A Washington federal judge on Dec. 17 denied class certification of an insured's lawsuit regarding claims that exclusions for "water seepage" and "wear and tear" are ambiguous and that her claim for water damage was wrongly denied (Wanda Bunch v. Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co., et al., No. 12-1238, W.D. Wash.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 177057).

    Justice: Man's Testimony About Unidentified Co-Worker Goes To Weight Of Evidence

    NEW YORK - A man's testimony that he recalled a defendant from conversations with unidentified co-workers goes to the weight of his evidence, and its admissibility can be determined by the trial judge, a New York justice held in an opinion posted Dec. 18 (Anthony M. Bova and Dorothy Bova v. A.O. Smith Water Products Co., et al., No. 102148/03, N.Y. Sup., New York Co.).

    Panel Upholds Dismissal Of Negligence, Misrepresentation Claims Against Insurance Brokers

    NEW YORK - The First Department New York Supreme Court Appellate Division on Dec. 17 affirmed dismissal of negligence and negligent and fraudulent misrepresentation claims against insurance brokers (Structure Tone Inc. v. Thomas Niland, et al., No. 11357, N.Y. Sup., App. Div., 1st Dept.; 2013 N.Y. App. Div. LEXIS 8332).

    Justice Finds Man's Asbestos-Free Joint Compound Testimony Not Fatal To Action

    NEW YORK - An architect's belief that he worked with asbestos-free joint compound is not dispositive in light of evidence that Georgia-Pacific LLC produced only limited amounts of such a product during the time in question, a New York justice held in an opinion posted Dec. 18 (William Berensmann and Madelyn Berensmann v. 3M Co., et al., No. 190472/12, N.Y. Sup., New York Co.).

    Federal Circuit Affirms: Written Description Limits Disputed Patent

    WASHINGTON, D.C. - A New Jersey federal judge's construction of the terms "alkaline salt" and "pharmaceutically acceptable salt" in two patents relating to the heartburn drug Nexium was not erroneous, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Dec. 19 (AstraZeneca AB et al. v. Hanmi USA Inc., No. 13-1490, Fed. Cir.).

    Jury Deadlocks In Marine-Parts Asbestos Exposure Case

    SEATTLE - A Washington federal judge declared a mistrial in an asbestos action after the jury reported Dec. 16 that it was deadlocked and that additional deliberation was unlikely to change the result (Joanne K. Lipson, et al. v. ON Marine Services Co. LLC, Ferro Engineering Division, No. 13-1747, W.D. Wash.).

    New York City Housing Authority Settles Tenant's Mold-Related Claims

    NEW YORK - The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) on Dec. 17 announced that it has reached an agreement with the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) to settle a class action filed by tenants who claim that their apartments contain mold, resulting in a plan to resolve the widespread mold issues in its housing (Baez et al. v. New York City Housing Authority, No. 1:13-cv-08916, S.D. N.Y.).

    Michigan Appeals Panel Affirms Chemical Exposure Claims Barred By Res Judicata

    GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - A unanimous Michigan Court of Appeals panel on Dec. 17 affirmed summary judgment for redevelopment contractors and the banks that provided funding for the redevelopment accused of negligently moving contaminated soil during a redevelopment project and injuring a plaintiff by exposing him to toxic chemicals in the soil; the trial court correctly found that the negligence claims are barred by the res judicata doctrine, according to the panel (William Q. Tingley III, et uxor v. Pioneer General Contractors Inc., et al., Nos. 309537, 312177, Mich. App.).

    Shareholders Say Presuit Demand On Company's Board Would Have Been Futile

    CHICAGO - Shareholders that brought a shareholder derivative lawsuit against certain of a company's directors and officers told a federal court in Illinois on Dec. 16 that the circumstances of the directors' and officers' conduct show that presuit demand upon the company's board of directors would have been futile (Robert J. Casey, et al. v. Christopher B. Begley, et al., No. 11-cv-09074, N.D. Ill.).

    Tennessee Federal Judge Grants Permanent Injunction In Copyright Case

    CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. - A Tennessee federal judge on Dec. 17 denied a copyright infringement defendant's request for judgment as a matter of law (JMOL) and instead granted a plaintiff's request for permanent injunctive relief (Virtual Studios Inc. v. Beaulieu Group LLC, No. 11-359, E.D. Tenn.).

    Pa. Federal Judge Conditionally Certifies Territory Managers In Overtime Suit

    PITTSBURGH - An employee's failure to show interested similarly situated parties at the early stage of litigation does not doom his motion for conditional certification in his wage-and-hour suit against his former employer, a Pennsylvania federal judge ruled Dec. 16 (Michael Lucke v. PPG Industries, Inc., No. 13-966, W.D. Pa.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 176293).

    Savient Pharmaceuticals Seeks Bankruptcy Court OK For Deal Allowing $2.06M Claim

    WILMINGTON, Del. - Bankrupt Savient Pharmaceuticals Inc. on Dec. 18 moved in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware for approval of a global settlement agreement that would allow its landlord to assert a claim against the bankruptcy estate for $2,062,000 in exchange for an agreement to terminate the lease for the company's headquarters (In Re: Savient Pharmaceuticals Inc., No. 13-12680, Chapter 11, D. Del. Bkcy.).

    11th Circuit Affirms Document Discovery Ruling For Ecuador

    ATLANTA - The 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Dec. 18 affirmed a decision requiring an expert to produce certain documents for use in foreign proceedings, finding that the materials did not contain any core opinion work product of Chevron Corp.'s attorneys (Republic of Ecuador, et al. v. Chevron Corp., No. 12-16216, 11th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 25102).

    Police Conduct Expert Limited In Beaten Inmate's Civil Rights Case In Kansas

    KANSAS CITY, Kan. - A plaintiff's police practices expert can opine regarding standards and training at a jail in a civil rights action stemming from the beating of a mentally ill prison inmate by a jailer, a federal judge in Kansas held Dec. 16 (Ronell Richard v. Robert Hinshaw, et al., No. 09-1278-MLB, D. Kan.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 176391).

    W.R. Grace Gets Approval For $250 Million Payment To Qualified Settlement Fund

    WILMINGTON, Del. - As part of its preparations to emerge from Chapter 11 protection in 2014 and to receive a tax break for 2013, W.R. Grace & Co. received authorization Dec. 17 from a Delaware federal bankruptcy judge to contribute up to $250 million to a qualified settlement fund for eventual distribution to an asbestos personal injury trust (In re: W.R. Grace & Co., et al., No. 01-01139, D. Del. Bkcy.).

    Insurance Broker Had Duty To Procure Full Coverage For Insured, Panel Finds

    INDIANAPOLIS - An insurance broker, based upon a long-term relationship, had a duty to procure full coverage insurance for an insured, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Dec. 17, also finding that there is a genuine issue of material fact as to whether the broker is an insurer's agent (Indiana Restorative Dentistry P.C. v. The Laven Insurance Agency Inc., et al., No. 49A05-1212-PL-627, Ind. App.; 2013 Ind. App. LEXIS 621).

    2nd Circuit Affirms Dismissal Of Account- Freezing Suit Against Banks

    NEW YORK - The Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Dec. 18 affirmed the dismissal of two complaints alleging that TD Bank N.A. and Capital One Bank N.A. illegally froze their accounts, finding that the plaintiffs do not have a private right of action under New York's Exempt Income Protection Act (EIPA) (Gary Cruz, et al. v. TD Bank N.A., No. 12-1200, Geraldo F. Martinez, et al. v. Capital One Bank N.A., No. 12-1342, 2nd Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 25076).

    Los Angeles Jury Awards $8,666,000 For Bystander's Mesothelioma

    LOS ANGELES - A California jury returned an $8,666,000 verdict for the widow of a mesothelioma sufferer, finding Crown Cork & Seal Co. Inc. liable on Dec. 13 in a case that originally produced a defense verdict in 2007 (Donna Saller, et al. v. Bondex International Inc., et al., No. BC342363, Calif. Super., Los Angeles Co.).

    Judge Certifies Union's Appeal Of San Bernardino Bankruptcy To 9th Circuit

    LOS ANGELES - The federal bankruptcy judge presiding over the Chapter 9 case of the City of San Bernardino, Calif., on Dec. 17 certified an appeal by the California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) directly to the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals regarding the city's eligibility to file for bankruptcy (California Public Employees' Retirement System v. City of San Bernardino, California $(In re: City of San Bernardino, California$), Adv. No. 13-01952, No. 12-28006, Chapter 9, C.D. Calif. Bkcy.).

    ICSID Awards Swedish Investors $245 Million In Dispute With Romania

    PARIS - Attorneys representing Swedish investors and their companies on Dec. 16 announced that the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) has issued a $245 million award in their favor in an investment treaty dispute against the Republic of Romania (Ioan Micula, et al. v. Romania, No. ARB/05/20, ICSID).

    11th Circuit: Copyright Claims Against Lowe's Must Fail

    ATLANTA - A Georgia federal judge properly rejected on summary judgment copyright infringement allegations levied against Lowe's Home Centers Inc. and one of its suppliers, the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Dec. 16 (Progressive Lighting Inc. v. Lowe's Home Centers Inc. et al., No. 12-14958, 11th Cir.).

    2nd Circuit Affirms Decision For Railroad In Workplace Injury Case

    NEW YORK - The Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Dec. 17 concluded that a trial court correctly ruled that a railroad employee was not entitled to a new trial after a jury found that his employer was not liable for his early morning slip-and-fall accident at a train station (Daniel Piroscafo v. Metro North Commuter Railroad Co., No. 12-3814-cv, 2nd Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 24921).

    Plaintiffs Move For Approval Of $22M Settlement Of Force-Placed Insurance Suit

    SAN FRANCISCO - Plaintiffs in a putative class action suit against JPMorgan Chase Bank N.A. on Dec. 17 moved in California federal court for approval of a $22 million settlement in which the lender agreed to resolve allegations over its purchasing of force-placed flood insurance policies for borrowers for amounts that exceeded those required by federal law (Shelly Clements, et al. v. JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., et al., No. 12-cv-02179-JCS, N.D. Calif.).