LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's Insurance - Policy Clearly Bars Coverage For Damages Caused By Oil Spill, New Jersey Panel Says

TRENTON, N.J. - No coverage is available to homeowners for damages caused to their own property by a leaking underground fuel storage tank because the policy clearly excludes coverage under the owned property exclusion and limits coverage related to liability claims related to oil spills, the New Jersey Superior Court Appellate Division said May 15 (Stanley and Leah Weiss v. New Jersey Manufacturers Insurance Co., No.A-5219-13T3, N.J. Super., App. Div.; 2015 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 1134).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Conductor On Derailed Amtrak Train Files Suit In New Jersey State Court

NEWARK, N.J. - A conductor who was working on Amtrak Train No. 188 when it derailed in Philadelphia on May 12 filed suit in New Jersey state court May 18, seeking damages for his injuries (Emilio Fonseca, et al. v. National Railroad Passenger Corp. d/b/a Amtrak, No. N/A, N.J. Super. Essex Co.).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Legislator: Criminal Probe Needed In Paulsboro Train Derailment Case

CAMDEN, N.J. - A New Jersey legislator on May 13 sent a letter to the U.S. attorney for the District of New Jersey renewing his call for a criminal investigation into the train derailment that spilled vinyl chloride into the Mantua Creek in 2012 (In re: Paulsboro Derailment Cases, No. 13-784, D. N.J.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 3rd Circuit Remands Worker Classification Suit After New Jersey High Court Ruling

PHILADELPHIA - A New Jersey federal court must reconsider a class complaint filed by deliverers alleging that they were misclassified as independent contractors following a ruling by the New Jersey Supreme Court regarding what employment test applies to those claims, the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled May 12 (Sam Hargrove, et al. v. Sleepy's LLC, Nos. 12-2540 and 12-2541, 3rd Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 7832).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - 3rd Circuit Remands Worker Classification Suit After New Jersey High Court Ruling

PHILADELPHIA - A New Jersey federal court must reconsider a class complaint filed by deliverers alleging that they were misclassified as independent contractors following a ruling by the New Jersey Supreme Court regarding what employment test applies to those claims, the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled May 12 (Sam Hargrove, et al. v. Sleepy's LLC, Nos. 12-2540 and 12-2541, 3rd Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 7832).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - New Jersey Panel Remands Counsel Fee Issue In Professional Liability Coverage Suit

TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey appeals panel on May 12 affirmed a lower court's rulings in a coverage dispute over underlying legal malpractice claims but remanded to consider the attorney insured's application for counsel fees and costs (Law Offices of Anthony Carbone v. Chicago Insurance Co., et al., No. A-3384-13T2, N.J. Super., App. Div.; 2015 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 1080).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - New Jersey Panel Remands Counsel Fee Issue In Professional Liability Coverage Suit

TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey appeals panel on May 12 affirmed a lower court's rulings in a coverage dispute over underlying legal malpractice claims but remanded to consider the attorney insured's application for counsel fees and costs (Law Offices of Anthony Carbone v. Chicago Insurance Co., et al., No. A-3384-13T2, N.J. Super., App. Div.; 2015 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 1080).

Mealey's IP/Tech - 3rd Circuit: Website, Emails Do Not Confer Jurisdiction In Classic Car Dispute

PHILADELPHIA - A New Jersey man claiming fraud over his purchase of a classic car from a California dealer did not establish that state's jurisdiction over the defendants, a Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled May 11, finding that the dealer's interactive website and two emails did not constitute purposeful availment of its activities toward New Jersey (John Corigliano v. Classic Motor Inc., et al., No. 14-3586, 3rd Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 7722).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Paulsboro Train Derailment Defendant: Transcript Should Be Sealed And Redacted

CAMDEN, N.J. - One of the railroad company defendants sued by New Jersey residents who allege personal injuries from vinyl chloride that was spilled as a result of a train derailment filed a document in New Jersey federal court on May 12 containing findings of fact contending that the judge should seal and redact portions of the transcript of the proceedings because a failure to do so is "highly likely to cause them serious injury" (In re: Paulsboro Derailment Cases, No. 13-784, D. N.J.).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Implied Covenant Claim Is Duplicative Of Insureds' Bad Faith Claim

NEWARK, N.J. - A federal judge in New Jersey on May 12 partially dismissed an insurance bad faith lawsuit, ruling that although insureds have properly shown that their insurer owed them a fiduciary duty and breached it, other claims are either duplicative or are not permissible due to the parties' involvement in a valid insurance contract (Adolf Senft, et al. v. Fireman's Fund Insurance Co., et al., No. 14-7805, D. N.J.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 61870).

Mealey's Insurance - New Jersey Panel Remands Counsel Fee Issue In Professional Liability Coverage Suit

TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey appeals panel on May 12 affirmed a lower court's rulings in a coverage dispute over underlying legal malpractice claims but remanded to consider the attorney insured's application for counsel fees and costs (Law Offices of Anthony Carbone v. Chicago Insurance Co., et al., No. A-3384-13T2, N.J. Super., App. Div.; 2015 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 1080).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge: No Evidentiary Basis Warranting Dismissal Of Superstorm Sandy Coverage Suit

NEWARK, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on May 12 denied an insurer's motion to dismiss a Superstorm Sandy coverage dispute, finding that the insurer presented no admissible evidence supporting its contention that the insureds' attorney violated discovery and scheduling orders (Peter Blaso & Demeglio Family v. Alterra Excess & Surplus Insurance Co., No. 14-2574 [WHW-CLW], D. N.J.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 61869).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge: No Evidentiary Basis Warranting Dismissal Of Superstorm Sandy Coverage Suit

NEWARK, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on May 12 denied an insurer's motion to dismiss a Superstorm Sandy coverage dispute, finding that the insurer presented no admissible evidence supporting its contention that the insureds' attorney violated discovery and scheduling orders (Peter Blaso & Demeglio Family v. Alterra Excess & Surplus Insurance Co., No. 14-2574 [WHW-CLW], D. N.J.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 61869).

Mealey's Banking & Finance - Federal Judge Finds RESPA And HOEPA Claims Are Time-Barred

NEWARK, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on May 12 granted a motion to dismiss numerous claims asserted by a borrower attempting to avoid foreclosure, finding that his claims for violation of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) and the Home Ownership Equity Protection Act (HOEPA) were time-barred and that he failed to state a claim to support his other allegations (Benjamin Coleman v. Deutsche Bank National Trust Company, et al., No. 15-1080, D. N.J.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 61875).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Class Action Over Insurer's Stolen Laptops Dismissed For Lack Of Injury

NEWARK, N.J. - In accordance with a previously issued opinion, a New Jersey federal judge on May 7 granted Horizon Healthcare Services Inc.'s motion to dismiss a putative class action against it pertaining to the theft of two unencrypted company computers, with the judge finding that the plaintiffs failed to plead the necessary injury to establish standing (In Re Horizon Healthcare Services Inc. Data Breach Litigation, No. 2:13-cv-07418, D. N.J.).

Mealey's Insurance - New Jersey High Court Awards Fees For Defense In Insurer's Coverage Suit

TRENTON, N.J. - The owner of a manufacturing company was "a successful claimant" against a subcontractor's insurer in obtaining a declaration of the insurer's duty to indemnify in the owner's underlying negligent construction lawsuit against the subcontractor, the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled May 7, reversing the denial of attorney fees to the owner (Robert Occhifinto and NVE Inc. v. Olivo Construction Co. LLC, et al., No. 073174, N.J. Sup.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Federal Circuit Affirms: Drug Patent Is Invalid As Obvious

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In its second ruling in the case, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on May 7 agreed with a New Jersey federal judge's determination that a pharmaceutical composition patent is infringed, but invalid (AstraZeneca LP, et al. v. Breath Limited, et al., No. 15-1335, Fed. Cir.).

Mealey's Banking & Finance - Federal Judge Grants Motion For Default Ruling Against Lenders

TRENTON, N.J. - After finding that a borrower sufficiently pleaded her claim for violation of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act (CFA), a New Jersey federal judge on May 6 granted her motion for a default ruling against various lenders (Maria Galarza v. Lydian Private Bank, et al., No. 12-2729, D. N.J.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 59173).

Mealey's Banking & Finance - Federal Magistrate Dismisses Predatory Lending Claims For Failure To Prosecute

NEWARK, N.J. - After finding that numerous plaintiffs failed to prosecute their claims in relation to alleged predatory lending practices, a New Jersey federal magistrate judge on May 4 recommended that the court dismiss their claims (Leonard Calvaruso, et al. v. JP Morgan Chase Bank, N.A., No. 14-4515, D. N.J.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 58417).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 3rd Circuit: Consumer Law Ruling Applies Retroactively In Restaurant.com Case

PHILADELPHIA - Although a trial court judge correctly found that the New Jersey Supreme Court's new rule regarding the state's Truth-in-Consumer Contract, Warrant and Notice Act (TCCWNA) was not fully retroactive, a Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on April 30 ruled that the new rule should apply to the present plaintiffs that had alleged violation of the act by Restaurant.com Inc. in a putative class complaint (Larissa Shelton, et al. v. Restaurant.com Inc., No. 14-3316, 3rd Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 7145).

Mealey's IP/Tech - 3rd Circuit: Consumer Law Ruling Applies Retroactively In Restaurant.com Case

PHILADELPHIA - Although a trial court judge correctly found that the New Jersey Supreme Court's new rule regarding the state's Truth-in-Consumer Contract, Warrant and Notice Act (TCCWNA) was not fully retroactive, a Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on April 30 ruled that the new rule should apply to the present plaintiffs that had alleged violation of the act by Restaurant.com Inc. in a putative class complaint (Larissa Shelton, et al. v. Restaurant.com Inc., No. 14-3316, 3rd Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 7145).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Train Derailment Plaintiffs: Prima Facie Case Established, Experts Not Needed

CAMDEN, N.J. - The plaintiffs who sued railroad company defendants alleging personal injury from vinyl chloride that was spilled as a result of a train derailment filed a brief on April 23 in federal court in New Jersey, contending that although they have provided expert reports to the defendants, no expert testimony is required to establish a prima facie case (In re: Paulsboro Derailment Cases, No. 13-784, D. N.J.).

Mealey's Insurance - Panel Finds Insured's Settlement Of Defects Lawsuit Was Reasonable

TRENTON, N.J. - A trial court erred in finding that a window installer's $1.6 million settlement of a condominium association's construction defects lawsuit was not reasonable, a New Jersey appeals panel held April 27, reversing a decision granting an insurer's motion to dismiss the association's complaint (Fox Development Co. Inc., et al. v. Praetorian Insurance Co. f/k/a Insurance Corporation of Hanover, et al., No. A-0386-13T2, N.J. Super., App. Div.; 2015 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 958).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Groups Dismiss Clean Water Act Claim Against New Jersey Transportation Agency

TRENTON, N.J. - Raritan Baykeeper Inc. and Edison Wetlands Association Inc. on April 24 agreed to dismiss their claim accusing the New Jersey Department of Transportation (N.J. DOT) of violating the Clean Water Act (CWA) at a site in Sayreville, N.J., after finding that the agency did not violate the terms of its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit for discharges of storm water (Raritan Baykeeper v. NL Industries Inc., et al., No. 09-4117, D. N.J.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - New Jersey Devils Sued By Season Ticket Holders For Obstructing Sales

NEWARK, N.J. - Two New York residents filed a class complaint on April 21 against New Jersey Devils LLC in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, alleging that the hockey team improperly prohibits them and other season ticket holders from selling individual or blocks of game tickets (Rey Olsen, et al. v. New Jersey Devils, LLC, No. 15-2807, D. N.J.).