WILMINGTON, Del. - Sporting goods company Prince Sports Inc. on May 1 filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware, citing $65 million in secured debt and $10.2 million in trade debt (In Re: Prince Sports Inc., No. 12-11439, Chapter 11, D. Del. Bkcy.).
TOPEKA, Kan. - An insurance agent was acting as the agent for an insured in submitting an application for insurance to an insurer and not as the insurer's agent, a Kansas appeals panel ruled April 27, reversing a finding that the insurer was in violation of the unfair trade practice law because the insurer should not be held responsible for the agent's acts and omissions (Golden Rule Insurance Co. v. Robert M. Tomlinson as the Kansas assistant insurance commissioner and the Kansas Insurance Department, No. 105,245, Kan. App.; 2012 Kan. App. LEXIS 41).
SAN FRANCISCO - Plaintiffs in a shareholder derivative lawsuit against a company, certain of its directors and officers and its auditor alleged in a California federal court on April 30 that they have given sufficient reason why presuit demand on a company's board of directors would have been futile (In re Diamond Foods, Inc. Derivative Litigation, No. 11-cv-05692, N.D. Calif.).
CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge cannot enjoin a California unfair competition law (UCL) class action involving advertising of stainless steel drums in dryers under the All Writs Act, the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals held May 1 (Steven J. Thorogood, et al. v. Sears, Roebuck and Co., Nos. 10-2407, 11-2133, 7th Cir.).
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - An insurer had no duty to name its insured as a co-plaintiff in seeking recovery from the manufacturer of a defective chair massager, a California appeals panel affirmed April 30, further finding that the insured's negligence claim against the insurer constituted a nonviable cause of action (James Sedlar v. USAA Casualty Insurance Company Inc., No. C066089, Calif. App., 3rd Dist.; 2012 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 3226).
HONOLULU - Finding that construction defects do not amount to an occurrence under certain insurance policies, a federal judge in Hawaii on April 26 dismissed breach of contract and a number of other counterclaims brought by a contractor against its insurers (Illinois National Insurance Company, et al. v. Nordic PCL Construction Inc., f/k/a Nordic Construction, Ltd., No. 11-00515 SOM/KSC, D. Hawaii; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 58464).
SPOKANE, Wash. - A Washington federal judge on April 27 consolidated two related cases stemming from insurance coverage for allegedly defective pipe, ordered a reasonableness hearing into an underlying settlement and transferred the cases to the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana (The Shaw Group Inc., et al. v. Zurich American Insurance Company, No. CV-11-279, E.D. Wash; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 59327).
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - In a case in which the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. substituted as plaintiff for a failed bank that sued defendants because they allegedly defaulted on loans, a federal judge in Puerto Rico on April 26 granted the FDIC's motion to dismiss the defendants' counterclaims against it, finding that the defendants did not exhaust the administrative claims process pursuant to the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act (FIRREA), 12 U.S.C.S. § 1821. (Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation v. Beneficial Mortgage Corp., et al., No. 10-01827, D. Puerto Rico; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 58892).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on April 30 denied review of a Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals Winstar ruling that dismissed a bank's breach of contract claims against the U.S. government regarding more than $13 million in losses the bank sustained when the thrift in which the bank invested was taken over by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. during the savings and loan crisis of the 1980s (First Annapolis Bancorp Inc. v. United States of America, No. 11-912, U.S. Sup.).
CINCINNATI - A Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on April 30 found that a federal judge in Ohio erred in dismissing a pro se couple's Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) lawsuit after finding that the plaintiffs sufficiently alleged that the defendants stated a claim under the statute (Lisa Bridge, et al. v. Ocwen Federal Bank FSB, et al., No. 09-4220, 6th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 8671).
BOSTON - A federal judge in Massachusetts on April 30 held that three proposed classes for residents claiming that loan servicers and law firms improperly foreclosed on their homes by failing to show valid assignments of the underlying mortgage loans after finding that the classes' claims failed to satisfy the requirements of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(a) (Darlene Manson, et al. v. GMAC Mortgage LLC, et al., No. 08-12166-RGS, D. Mass.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 59492).
BANGOR, Maine - A federal judge in Maine on April 27 granted the defendant's motion to dismiss a proposed class action accusing the defendant of violating the Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction Act of 2003 (FACTA), finding that the plaintiff failed to plausibly allege that the defendant committed a willful violation of the act when it included a credit card expiration date on a receipt (Adam Vidoni v. The Acadia Corporation, No. 11-00448, D. Maine; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 59967).
NEW YORK - A federal judge in New York on April 30 upheld a magistrate judge's findings and ordered an insurer to produce documents related to certain asbestos loss reserves (Granite State Insurance Company v. Clearwater Insurance Company, No. 09-cv-10607, S.D. N.Y.).
WILMINGTON, Del. - A shareholder in a securities class action lawsuit has failed to show that a majority of a company's former directors had a conflict of interest in allowing to the sale of the company to Oracle Corp. for a price the shareholder believes was well below the company's true value, a Delaware vice chancellor ruled April 27 (In re Art Technology Group, Inc. Shareholders Litigation, No. 5955-VCL, Del. Chanc.).
CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on April 30 excluded a plaintiff expert's opinion that a jury should award up to $21.3 billion in punitive damages in a Prempro trial and ordered a hearing on how the expert arrived at his determination of defendant Wyeth's net worth (Joe Belle Baldonado v. Wyeth, et al., No. 04-4312, N.D. Ill., E. Div.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 59512).
NEW YORK - The federal bankruptcy judge presiding over the Chapter 11 proceeding of the Eastman Kodak Co. on April 30 approved the company's plan to pay certain employees $13.5 million in bonuses (In Re: Eastman Kodak Company, No. 12-20202, Chapter 11, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy.).
NEW YORK - The federal bankruptcy judge presiding over the Chapter 11 proceeding of MF Global Holdings Ltd. (MFGH) on April 30 declined to grant a stay requested by a group of wealth management companies that objected to the bankruptcy court's decision to lift the automatic stay and permit certain insurers to pay the defense costs of current and former employees of MFGH (In Re: MF Global Holdings Ltd., No. 11-15059, Chapter 11, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - For a second time, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals will weigh in on a dispute over the patentability of diagnostic test kits used to identify an inherited hereditary risk of breast and ovarian cancer, according to an April 30 order (Association for Molecular Pathology et al. v. U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and Myriad Genetics Inc., No. 10-1406, Fed. Cir.).
ATLANTA - A warehouse employee failed to prove that she was the victim of pregnancy discrimination when she was fired three months after giving birth, the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled April 27, affirming (Kendyl Grace v. Adtran, Inc., No. 11-11263, 11th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 8583).
TUCSON, Ariz. - A federal judge in Arizona on April 27 dismissed with prejudice a suit against Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., arising from a foreclosure and trustee's sale and including claims for fraud and fraudulent inducement (Anne Mercy Kakarala v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., No. 10-00208, D. Ariz.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 58956).
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. - The Southern District Missouri Court of Appeals on April 30 reversed a trial court order certifying a class of motorists injured on an allegedly dangerous stretch of highway, concluding that there were too many different circumstances involved with the individual accidents (Sherry Smith, et al. v. Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission, No. SD31590, Mo. App., Southern Dist.; 2012 Mo. App. LEXIS 585).
DETROIT - A federal judge in Michigan on April 26 denied a man's motion to reconsider a ruling awarding summary judgment to defendants in a quiet title action after finding that the plaintiff's new allegations of fraud lacked merit because the court already ruled that the foreclosure on his home was proper (Charlie Smith Jr. v. Litton Loan Servicing LP, et al., No. 10-14700, E.D. Mich.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 58656).
DETROIT - Citing evidence that a trademark infringement defendant's website "welcomed Michigan customers and enabled them to enter into contracts for the purchase of goods," a federal judge on April 30 denied dismissal of a dispute (Masco Corp. of Indiana d/b/a Delta Faucet Company v. Delta Imports LLC, No. 11-14720, E.D. Mich.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 59979).
LOS ANGELES - Sufficient evidence supports punitive damages of $4.5 million and $9 million against two companies in an asbestos case, as well as the defendants' ability to pay such amounts, a California appeals court held in separate opinions, one filed April 26 (Gordon Bankhead, et al. v. ArvinMeritor Inc., Emily Bankhead v. Pneumo Abex LLC, Nos. A131587, A132985, A131378, A135224, Calif. App., 1st Dist.).
LOS ANGELES - Just two days after Google Inc. was granted a motion to enforce a previous discovery order in a copyright dispute with an adult website, a California federal judge on April 26 issued an order dismissing the long-running action in accordance with the parties' stipulation(Perfect 10 Inc. v. Google Inc., No. 2:04-cv-09484, C.D. Calif.).