LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Ballard Spahr LLP: Concepcion Mandates Individual Arbitration Even When Statutory Rights Cannot Be Vindicated, 3rd Circuit Holds

By the Consumer Financial Services Group The U.S. Supreme Court's decision in AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion , 131 S. Ct. 1740 (2011) [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], obligates courts to compel individual arbitration even where the plaintiff has proven that doing so...

Ballard Spahr LLP: Supreme Court To Decide Class Action Fairness Act Case - Can Plaintiff Limit Class Damages To Avoid Removal?

By the Consumer Financial Services Group On August 31, 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court granted a petition for certiorari in Standard Fire Insurance Co. v. Knowles (11-1450). The question presented by the petition is whether a named plaintiff in a state court class action can avoid removal to federal...

Ballard Spahr LLP: 2nd Circuit Says Online Agreement Did Not Bind Plaintiffs To Subsequent Arbitration Provision

By Alan S. Kaplinsky and Mark J. Levin Although much attention has been paid in the past few years to the enforceability of class action waivers in consumer arbitration agreements, a recent federal appeals court opinion is a stark reminder that there must be an enforceable "agreement" to...

Ballard Spahr LLP: Proposed eDiscovery Rule Would Bring Relief From Specter Of Sanctions

By Philip N. Yannella and Arash Micaily | The Rules Advisory Committee has recommended proposed amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure that would set guidelines for courts to follow when evaluating a request for sanctions for spoliation of discovery information, both paper and electronic...

Ballard Spahr LLP: Maryland Defendants Can Recover Attorneys' Fees Paid By Insurance Company

By Robert A. Scott Litigants that have been forced to defend groundless litigation are entitled to recover their attorneys' fees even if those costs were paid by an insurance company, Maryland's highest court has ruled. In Worsham v. Greenfield [ enhanced opinion available to lexis.com...

Ballard Spahr LLP: 5th Circuit Rejects NLRB Ruling Invalidating Class Action Waivers In Arbitration Agreements

By Steven W. Suflas, Mark J. Levin and Erin K. Clarke On December 3, 2013, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit rejected the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) ruling that an employer violates the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) by requiring employees to waive their rights...

Ballard Spahr LLP: Caveat Venditor (Let the Seller Beware): Consumer Protection Procedures Act Strikes Again in the District of Columbia

By Roger D. Winston, Shelah F. Lynn and Timothy P. Martin A recent court decision emphasizes the need for real estate developers to proceed with caution when making representations to potential home buyers in the District of Columbia, as well as in other jurisdictions with similar consumer protection...

Ballard Spahr LLP: Supreme Court Rules That Severance Payments Are Subject To FICA Taxes

By Wendi L. Kotzen, Timothy F. McCormack, and Christopher A. Jones The U.S. Supreme Court has unanimously held that payments of supplemental unemployment benefits (SUB payments) are taxable wages subject to FICA tax withholding. The Court’s decision in United States v. Quality Stores, Inc. ...

Ballard Spahr LLP: 11th Circuit Agrees Employees Can Waive FLSA Collective Action Rights

By Steven W. Suflas, Donna D. Page, and Mark J. Levin The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit has become the fifth appellate court to hand down a victory for employers in the fight over enforceability of class action waivers. The court ruled that an arbitration agreement that waives an...

Ballard Spahr LLP: Federal Court Ruling In Pa. Narrows Computer Fraud And Abuse Act

By Robert R. Baron, Jr., David S. Fryman, Corinne Militello, and Philip N. Yannella A Pennsylvania federal magistrate judge has tossed an employer’s claims under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA), holding that the CFAA does not extend to punish employees for the misuse of information that...

Ballard Spahr LLP: Delaware Supreme Court Deals Blow To Merger Litigation Plaintiffs

By M. Norman Goldberger and Laura E. Krabill On [March 14], theDelaware Supreme Court adopted the business judgment rule standard of review for some controlling stockholder freeze-out mergers and potentially other interested party transactions. In Kahn, et al. v. M&F Worldwide Corp. , et al. ...

Ballard Spahr LLP: Supreme Court’s Campaign Contribution Decision To Have Substantial Impact

By Joseph A. Kanefield, Brunn (Beau) Roysden, and Lindsay D. Breedlove | Pundits have alternatively saluted and denounced the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision last week striking down aggregate campaign contribution limits as unconstitutional. Few, however, have addressed the decision’s impact...

Ballard Spahr LLP: Supreme Court To Decide Evidentiary Requirements for Removal Notices in Class Actions

By Burt M. Rublin and Jonathan E. Selkowitz The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to review the issue of what, if any, evidence a defendant must present in a notice of removal to remove a case to federal court based on the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA). In granting the petition for a writ of certiorari...

Ballard Spahr LLP: 3rd Circuit Holds That Courts, Not Arbitrators, Should Rule On Classwide Arbitration

By Steven W. Suflas, Alan S. Kaplinsky, Mark J. Levin, Burt M. Rublin, and Michelle M. McGeogh In Opalinski v. Robert Half International, Inc. [ enhanced opinion available to lexis.com subscribers ], the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit held that where an arbitration clause is...

Ballard Spahr LLP: Website Hyperlink Alone Does Not Establish User’s Assent to Arbitration Agreement, 9th Circuit Holds

By the Consumer Financial Services Group In a case intersecting the 89-year-old Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) and the digital era, the Ninth Circuit has ruled that a consumer who did not read the company’s terms of use when ordering a product on its website was not bound by the terms’...

Ballard Spahr LLP: 3rd Circuit Rejects Class Certification in Yet Another Consumer Case

By Burt M. Rublin and Joel E. Tasca Consistent with its recent emphasis on the stringency of class certification requirements in consumer cases, the Third Circuit recently affirmed the denial of class certification in a consumer case involving alleged overbilling practices, which implicated differing...

Ballard Spahr LLP: Federal Court Addresses Frequently Overlooked Nuances of Electronic Document Production

By Philip N. Yannella and Thomas J. Gallagher IV U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul S. Grewal of the Northern District of California recently issued an order in Venture Corp., Ltd. v. Barrett shedding light on the meaning of two Federal Rules of Civil Procedure governing document production. One rule requires...

Ballard Spahr LLP: 11th Circuit: Rule 23 Trumps State Law Limitation On Class Actions

By Michael R. Carroll, Burt M. Rublin, and Neal Walters Dealing a blow to defendants facing consumer fraud litigation in the 11th Circuit, the court of appeals for that circuit has reinstated a class action under the Alabama Deceptive Trade Practice Act (ADTPA), despite that the ADTPA itself expressly...

Ballard Spahr LLP: 3rd Circuit Clarifies Article III Standing For Absent Class Members, Impact Of Comcast

By Burt Rublin, Michael Carroll, and Casey Watkins In a case of first impression in the Third Circuit, the Court of Appeals held that unnamed, putative class members are not required to establish standing under Article III of the U.S. Constitution. Rather, the Court held that so long as any named...

Ballard Spahr LLP: 7th Circuit Green Lights Data Breach Class Action Against Neiman Marcus

By Phillip N. Yannella, Daniel JT McKenna and Suzanne O. Lufadeju An increase in data breach class actions could be the result of a recent decision of the Seventh Circuit holding that allegations of future harm stemming from a data breach can establish Article III standing. The majority...

Ballard Spahr LLP: 7th Circuit Rejects 'Heightened Ascertainability' Requirement For Class Actions

By Michael R. Carroll and Burt M. Rublin Creating a clear circuit split on a class action issue of increasing importance, the Seventh Circuit has rejected the notion that in order to certify a class, a trial court must be able to identify class members in a reliable and administratively...

Ballard Spahr LLP: Pharmaceutical Companies Get Off-Label Marketing Victory

. . . A federal judge ruled that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) cannot prohibit a pharmaceutical company from marketing its drugs for off-label uses if its claims are truthful and not misleading. This ruling, while not precedential, alters the traditional compliance analysis regarding the legality...

Ballard Spahr LLP: The Next EFTA Class Action Wave Has Started

A new type of Electronic Funds Transfer Act (EFTA) class action is now being filed in volume. This trend is highly likely to continue, as the cases are being filed by a consumer class action firm that has filed hundreds of class actions under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act. Other plaintiffs’...

Ballard Spahr LLP: Pennsylvania Data Breach Class Action Survives Motion to Dismiss

By Daniel JT McKenna, Philip N. Yannella and Suzanne O. Lufadeju A federal judge in Pennsylvania has allowed a data breach class action against Coca-Cola and several bottling companies to proceed, finding that the plaintiff has Article III standing even though he had left Coca-Cola’s employment...

Ballard Spahr LLP: Flurry of FCRA Complaints Recently Filed in Nevada Courts

Approximately 50 cases have been filed recently in Nevada state and federal courts against furnishers of information and credit reporting agencies (CRAs) for alleged Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) violations. It appears that consumer rights attorneys have teamed up with consumer bankruptcy firms to...