LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's Insurance - Judge Declines To Apply 'Fraudulent Misjoinder' Standard In Bad Faith Suit

SAN FRANCISCO - Remand of an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit to state court is necessary because the Ninth Circuit U.S. Courts of Appeals has yet to adopt the "fraudulent misjoinder" standard established by the 11th Circuit, which an insurer argues is the basis for the action's...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Navajo Nation, New Mexico Claims Against EPA Contractor Survive Dismissal Bid

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - A federal judge on Feb. 12 mostly declined to dismiss claims leveled by the Navajo Nation and state of New Mexico against a company that worked on the Gold King Mine, where a 3-million-gallon spill in 2015 turned rivers yellow with acid mine drainage and 800,000 pounds of heavy metals...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Grants Directed Verdict For Defense In Tobacco Lawsuit

MIAMI - Following the closing arguments in an Engle progeny suit on Feb. 15, a judge in Florida state court granted a tobacco company's oral motion for directed verdict in a punitive damages-only trial (Joyce Hardin v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., No. 07-46973-CA-22, Fla. 11th Jud. Cir. Miami-Dade...

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Texas Appeals Panel Affirms $250,000 Judgment In Premises Liability Suit

DALLAS - A panel of the Fifth District Texas Court of Appeals on Feb. 14 affirmed $250,000 in damages to a man who claimed that he crashed his motorcycle because of a dangerous condition on a state-owned road after finding that the evidence presented at trial was more than enough to show that the Texas...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Crane Co. Says Judgment Warranted Even After 3rd Circuit Bare-Metal Ruling

WILMINGTON, Del. - Recent Third Circuit precedent muddies the bare-metal defense, but ultimately does not save a man's case alleging exposure to third-party asbestos parts added to Crane Co. valves, the company argues in a supplemental brief filed with a judge in the U.S. District Court for the District...

Mealey's Labor & Employment - U.S. High Court Reverses 6th Circuit Ruling On Retirees' Lifetime Benefits

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 20 issued a per curiam decision in an appeal over retiree's health care benefits and reversed a ruling by a Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel majority for the retirees, referencing a dissenting opinion that called the decision "Yard-Man...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Supreme Court Vacates, Remands Jurisdiction Issue In Oklahoma Asbestos Case

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Supreme Court on Feb. 20 vacated a ruling finding jurisdiction in Oklahoma over a Texas-based asbestos defendant and the resulting $6 million verdict and remanded the case for further consideration in light of recent precedent on the issue. In its petition, the drywall materials...

Mealey's Insurance - U.S. High Court Refuses To Review Arbitration Dispute Over Sexual Abuse Claims

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 20 denied an excess insurer's petition for writ of certiorari challenging a California appeals court's denial of its motion to compel arbitration of a coverage dispute with a school district over sexual abuse claims (Safety National Casualty Corp...

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Supreme Court Won't Hear Foot Locker Pension Plan Charges Appeal

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 20 denied a petition for writ of certiorari filed by Foot Locker Inc. asking the high court to decide whether a class of pension plan participants could be certified in a case alleging violations of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act when Foot...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Cert Denied For Ruling On Causation Expert In Nuclear Facility Injury Case

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 20 denied a petition for a writ of certiorari filed by 137 residents of a Pennsylvania town who say that illegal releases of radioactive materials from a nearby plant caused their cancers and the deaths of their family members and that a federal appeals...

Mealey's Labor & Employment - U.S. Supreme Court Won't Hear Appeal On Employer Stopping Its Contributions

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 20 denied a petition for writ of certiorari filed by an employer challenging a District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel's decision finding that it violated the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) when it suspended contributions to...

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - West Virginia Opioid Suit Remanded To State Court For 2nd Time

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - A West Virginia federal judge on Feb. 15 remanded for a second time West Virginia's lawsuit against drug distributor McKesson Corp. for allegedly violating state law by not flagging suspicious shipments of opioid drugs (West Virginia, et al. v. McKesson Corporation, No. 17-3555...

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Pennsylvania Appeals Court Orders New Trial For Stainless Steel Tubing Maker

PHILADELPHIA - A trial court judge erred when denying a corrugated stainless steel tube (CSST) manufacturer's motion for a new products liability trial because the jury was improperly instructed on whether the product was unreasonably dangerous, a Pennsylvania appeals panel held Feb. 16 in reversing...

Mealey's Health Law - Aetna Says California Investigation Based On 'Out Of Context' Comments

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Lawyers took deposition comments from a medical claims reviewer out of context to create trial and media leverage, Aetna Inc. says in a Feb. 14 response to an announcement that California would investigate the insurer's claims processing.

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - U.S. High Court Declines Appeal On FCC's Opt-Out Notice For Solicited Faxes

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 20 denied a petition for writ of certiorari that was filed by corporations that were intervenors on the side of the Federal Communications Commission in proceedings below and that challenged a decision by a split District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court...

Mealey's Labor & Employment - U.S. High Court Grants Divided Argument In Janus Agency Fee Suit

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 16 granted a motion for divided argument by the respondents in an appeal over mandatory public-sector agency fees for employees who choose not to join a union and also granted a motion by the solicitor general for leave to participate in the oral arguments...

Mealey's Securities/D&O Liability - Petitioners Permitted To Forgo Preparation Of Joint Index In SEC Judges Appeal

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 20 granted a motion for leave to dispense with preparation of joint index filed by petitioners in an appeal of a District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling that Securities and Exchange Commission administrative law judges (ALJs) are constitutional...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Supreme Court Declines To Consider Data Breach Article III Standing Appeal

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In its Feb. 20 order list, the U.S. Supreme Court denied a petition for certiorari by a health insurer that argued that the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals did not apply the proper actual or imminent harm standing in determining class members' standing under...

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Allergan Reports It Settled TNS Cosmeceuticals Case Ahead Of Class Motion

SANTA ANA, Calif. - Allergan plc and subsidiary SkinMedica on Feb. 16 said they settled a purported class action lawsuit alleging that certain "cosmeceuticals" contain undeclared and unapproved human growth factors (Josette Ruhnke, et al. v. SkinMedica, Inc., et al., No. 14-420, C.D. Calif...

Mealey's IP/Tech - Disputed Claim Construed By Federal Circuit; Validity Of Patent Confirmed

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In a Feb. 16 holding, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals found that although the Patent Trial and Appeal Board erred in omitting the word "average" from its claim construction of a disputed limitation, the board nonetheless correctly deemed three patents nonobvious...

Mealey's Insurance - Magistrate Judge Lifts Stay Against Idaho Insurance Guaranty Association

BOISE, Idaho - An Idaho federal magistrate judge on Feb. 16 lifted a stay against the Idaho Insurance Guaranty Association (IIGA) in a trust bank's coverage dispute but declined to lift a stay and grant a preliminary injunction against an insolvent insurer (Idaho Trust Bank v. BancInsure Inc., et...

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Mississippi High Court Affirms Keeping Medical Malpractice Trial In Hinds County

JACKSON, Miss. - A Mississippi Supreme Court majority on Feb. 15 affirmed a trial court's decision to deny a motion to sever and transfer a medical malpractice suit to another county after finding that there is no language in a state statute that prohibits permissive joinder (Mississippi Baptist...

Mealey's Labor & Employment - 7th Circuit: Sales Manager Waived Untimeliness Argument In LTD Dispute

CHICAGO - An employee seeking long-term disability (LTD) benefits effectively waived his right to challenge the untimeliness of the initial denial of his claim as he chose to pursue an appeal first rather than filing suit, a Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled Feb. 14 (John Dragus v. Reliance...

Mealey's IP/Tech - Federal Circuit Sides With Coca-Cola, Deems Claims Patent-Ineligible

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In a Feb. 16 ruling, four patents directed to a specialized radio frequency identification (RFID) were confirmed by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals as unpatentable pursuant to Section 101 of the Patent Act, 35 U.S.C. 101 (Automated Tracking Solutions LLC v. The Coca-Cola...

Mealey's Insurance - Insurer's Liquidator Has No Interest To Land, New York Bankruptcy Judge Says

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. - Reversionary interests in land parcels are property of a reorganized debtor, and an insurer's liquidator is precluded from interfering with those interests, a New York federal bankruptcy judge ruled Feb. 15, ordering transfer of title to the reorganized debtor (In re: Frontier...