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West Virginia, Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana, California Ranked Worst Lawsuit Climates In The Nation

LOS ANGELES — The U.S. Chamber’s Institute for Legal Reform (ILR) on March 22 released its survey ranking the states with the best and worst legal climates in the country. According to the survey, the states with the worst legal climates are California (46th), Alabama (47th), Mississippi...

AGs For 5 States Talk Legal Strategy For Oil Spill

MOBILE, Ala. – (AP) The attorneys general from Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas want BP PLC to sign an agreement spelling out exactly what "legitimate expenses" they'll cover from the spill. Florida AG Bill McCollum said after Sunday's meeting in Mobile, Ala...

Mississippi Fishermen File Class Action Seeking Damages From Massive BP Oil Spill

BILOXI, Miss. - (Mealey's) Two Mississippi fishermen on May 3 filed a class action lawsuit in Mississippi federal court against companies they claim are responsible for the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico ( Charlie C. Nguyen, et al. v. Transocean Ltd., et al. , No. 10cv178, S.D. Miss.). ...

Mississippi Lesbian Student Sues Over Rejected Tux Photo

JACKSON, Miss. - (AP) Another teenage lesbian is suing a rural Mississippi school district, this time over a policy banning young women from wearing tuxedos in senior yearbook portraits. Ceara Sturgis' dispute with the central Mississippi Copiah County School District started in 2009, well before...

Chinese Drywall Manufacturer Agrees To Remediate Homes Affected By Defective Product

NEW ORLEANS -- (Mealey's) The Plaintiffs' Steering Committee (PSC) in the Chinese Drywall multidistrict litigation and defendant Knauf Plasterboard Tianjin (KPT) on Oct. 14 announced a settlement to remediate up to 300 homes in Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Florida impacted by KPT's...

Judge: Lawsuit Over Health Overhaul Can Go To Trial

PENSACOLA, Fla. - (AP) Crucial pieces of a lawsuit challenging the Obama administration's health care overhaul can go to trial, with a judge ruling Thursday he wants to hear more arguments over whether it's constitutional to force citizens to buy health insurance. In a written ruling, U.S. District...

Makers Of FEMA Mobile Homes Near Class Action Settlement

NEW ORLEANS - (AP) Companies that manufactured mobile homes for the Federal Emergency Management Agency after Hurricane Katrina are nearing a settlement to resolve thousands of claims that Gulf Coast storm victims were exposed to potentially dangerous fumes, court records show. A proposed class-action...

Lockheed Pays $2 Million To Settle Lawsuit Over Contracts

JACKSON, Miss. - (AP) The U.S. Justice Department says Lockheed Martin Inc. has agreed to pay $2 million to settle a lawsuit that accused several companies and government employees of rigging a contract at Stennis Space Center in Mississippi. The 2009 lawsuit, filed in federal court in Mississippi...

Florida Judge Finds Individual Mandate In Health Care Act Unconstitutional

PENSACOLA, Fla. -- (Mealey's) A Florida federal judge on Jan. 31 struck down as unconstitutional the individual mandate portion of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) and, finding that the provision is not severable, held that the entire act must be declared void ( State of Florida...

Mississippi Judge Dismisses Health Care Overhaul Lawsuit

HATTIESBURG, Miss. - (AP) A federal judge is dismissing a lawsuit in Mississippi that challenges part of the Obama administration's health care law, but giving the plaintiffs 30 days to make changes to their complaint. U.S. District Judge Keith Starrett ruled Thursday that the several people who...

LDF Applauds Confirmation Of James E. Graves Jr. To 5th Circuit

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund Inc. (LDF) said it applauds the U.S. Senate's vote Feb. 14 to confirm James E. Graves Jr. to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. The Fifth Circuit is the federal appellate court for Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas. Graves...

Lawsuit: Company Sought To Hire Illegal Immigrants

JACKSON, Miss. - (AP) A Mississippi company that pleaded guilty to conspiracy related to the nation's largest workplace raid on illegal immigrants is now facing a lawsuit accusing it of discriminating against non-immigrants who applied for jobs. A discrimination lawsuit filed Friday in U.S. District...

EEOC Sues Over India Immigrant Workers' Treatment

PASCAGOULA, Miss. - (AP) A federal agency claims in a lawsuit filed this week that hundreds of people recruited in India to work for an oil rig construction company in Mississippi and Texas in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina were forced into oppressive living arrangements and subjected to harsh language...

Mississippi Jury Awards $322 Million To Man With Asbestosis From Drilling Mud Exposure

Sources say it's the largest single-plaintiff asbestos award in U.S. history RALEIGH, Miss. - (Mealey's) A Mississippi jury on May 4 awarded $322 million - including $300 million in punitive damages - to a man suffering from asbestosis caused by exposure to asbestos in drilling mud products...

Family Of Former Rebels' Player Sues Ole Miss

JACKSON, Miss. - (AP) The family of a former Mississippi football player has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the university, coach Houston Nutt and the NCAA. Bennie Abram was 20 years old when he collapsed during the first day of formal offseason workouts on Feb. 19, 2010, and later died at Baptist...

Mississippi AG Sues Administrator Of BP Oil Spill Fund

JACKSON, Miss. - (AP) Mississippi's attorney general said Tuesday his office is suing the administrator of BP's $20 billion oil spill fund to get access to claims filed by coastal residents. Jim Hood said Tuesday that he has tried to negotiate with the fund's administrator, Washington lawyer...

Mississippi Supreme Court Stays Proceedings In Record-Setting Asbestos Case

JACKSON, Miss. - (Mealey's) The Mississippi Supreme Court on July 13 stayed all proceedings in an asbestos case that resulted in a record-setting $322 million award until it can resolve a petition seeking to disqualify the trial judge for allegedly failing to disclose that his father filed two similar...

5th Circuit Panel Affirms Lack Of Jurisdiction In FEMA Trailer Formaldehyde Suits

NEW ORLEANS - (Mealey's) A unanimous Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Jan. 23 affirmed summary judgment for the United States against Alabama and Mississippi claimants in the multidistrict Federal Emergency Management Agency trailer formaldehyde products liability litigation for lack...

U.S. Supreme Court To Rule On State's Case Qualifying As Mass Action

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (Mealey's) The U.S. Supreme Court on May 28 granted a petition for writ of certiorari in a dispute over whether a state's parens patriae lawsuit may be removed to federal court as a "mass action" under the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA) ( State of Mississippi, ex...

U.S. High Court: State’s Lawsuit On Behalf Of Citizens Is Not Mass Action

WASHINGTON, D.C. — (Mealey's) A state’s lawsuit seeking restitution for itself and its citizens, in which it is the only named plaintiff, does not qualify as a mass action under the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA), the U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously Jan. 14 ( State of Mississippi...

Williams Mullen: State Attorneys General Served ‘Home Cooking’ By The Supreme Court Of The United States

By Charles E. “Chuck” James Jr. and Brendan D. O’Toole On January 14, 2014, in Mississippi v. AU Optronics Corp. , the Supreme Court held that a parens patriae action (one brought by the state on behalf of its injured citizens) does not constitute a ‘mass action’ and...

BP Agrees To Pay $18.7 Billion To Resolve Claims Over Gulf Oil Spill

NEW ORLEANS — (Mealey’s) BP Exploration & Production Inc. will pay $18.7 billion over the course of 18 years to resolve Clean Water Act (CWA) and natural resource damages claims from the federal government and states of Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas stemming from...

State Net Capitol Journal: Gulf Oil Spill Settlement Swells

The U.S. Justice Department has reached a $20.8 billion final settlement with BP over its role in the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil disaster. That sum is $2.1 billion bigger than the $18.7 billion initial settlement announced in July, which was already the largest environmental settlement, as well as the largest...