NEW YORK - A Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Nov. 26 agreed to hear an appeal of a New York federal judge's ruling granting class certification in a securities class action lawsuit against underwriter Credit Suisse Securities (USA) LLC and others (Credit Suisse Securities (USA) LLC v. Vaszurele Ltd., No. 12-4411, 2nd Cir.). View related prior history, 2011 U.S. App. LEXIS 9567.
WILMINGTON, Del. - The federal bankruptcy judge presiding over the Chapter 11 proceeding of Vertis Holdings Inc. on Nov. 27 approved the company's plan to pay its employees incentives (In Re: Vertis Holdings Inc., No. 12-12821, Chapter 11, D. Del. Bkcy.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Nov. 26 heard oral arguments regarding whether the state-action doctrine applied to immunize a merger between two Georgia hospitals from the Federal Trade Commission's challenge that the transaction substantially lessened competition or tended to create a monopoly (Federal Trade Commission v. Phoebe Putney Health System, Inc., et al., No. 11-1160, U.S. Sup.).
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HOUSTON - A federal judge in Texas on Nov. 26 remanded a man's wrongful foreclosure suit after finding that a nondiverse successor loan servicer was properly joined as a defendant (Richard H. Alsenz v. Aurora Bank FSB, et al., No. H-12-2695, S.D. Texas; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 166902).
LAS VEGAS - A federal judge in Nevada on Nov. 20 ruled that enforcement of a Private Securities Litigation Reform Act (PSLRA) discovery stay is proper in a securities class action lawsuit because a discovery stay is required upon a filing of a motion to dismiss (Frank J. Fosbre Jr. v. Las Vegas Sands Corp., et al., No. 10-765, D. Nev.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 166420).
TEXARKANA, Ark. - A federal judge in Arkansas on Nov. 20 granted a motion to stay a shareholder derivative action against certain current and former officers and directors of Wal-Mart Stores Inc., ruling that abstention is proper under the Colorado River Water Conservation District v. U.S. abstention doctrine (Colorado River Water Conservation District v. U.S. abstention doctrine (In re Wal-Mart Stores Inc. Shareholder Derivative Litigation, No. 12-4041, W.D. Ark.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 165632).
BALTIMORE - A federal judge in Maryland on Nov. 20 held that a woman lacked standing to pursue a claim under the Maryland Mortgage Fraud Protection Act (MMFPA) against her loan servicer because Trial Period Plan (TPP) payments she made while attempting to modify her home loan did not cause her to suffer a concrete injury (Valerie Stoval, et al. v. SunTrust Mortgage Inc., No. RDB-10-2836, D. Md.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 165377).
NEW YORK - Bankrupt law firm Dewey & LeBoeuf on Nov. 21 moved for approval of its plan of liquidation in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York (In Re: Dewey & LeBoeuf, No. 12-12321, Chapter 11, S.D.N.Y. Bkcy.). Subscribers may view the motion available within the full article.
NEW YORK - The federal bankruptcy judge presiding over the Chapter 11 bankruptcy of Hostess Brands Inc. on Nov. 27 issued an interim order approving the company's plan to wind down its business and liquidate its assets (In Re: Hostess Brands Inc., No. 12-22052, Chapter 11, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy.). Subscribers may view the order available within the full article.
WILMINGTON, Del. - A creditor in the Chapter 11 bankruptcy of alternative energy company A123 Systems Inc. on Nov. 26 filed a brief in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware objecting to the company's plan to reject various contracts on grounds that doing so would jeopardize the creditor's ability to continue operating (In Re: A123 Systems Inc., No. 12-12859, Chapter 11, D. Del. Bkcy.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Merck & Co. Inc. on Nov. 20 urged the U.S. Supreme Court to grant review of both its challenge to a Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling and the Federal Trade Commission's challenge to an 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling in Federal Trade Commission v. Watson Pharmaceuticals, Inc., et al. and to set them for parallel briefing and oral argument because both cases present the issue of the appropriate antitrust standard for evaluating settlements involving reverse payments from name-brand drug manufacturers to generic challengers (Merck & Co., Inc. v. Louisiana Wholesale Drug Co., Inc., et al., No. 12-245, U.S. Sup.).
VALDOSTA, Ga. - A Georgia federal judge on Nov. 26 found that borrowers have not met their burden to show that they can pursue claims against the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. as the receiver for a failed bank, granting the FDIC's motion to dismiss the suit in which the borrowers alleged that the bank breached an agreement with them (Jay Gregory Branch Sr., et al. v. Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., No. 11-00044, M.D. Ga.). Subscribers may view the order available within the full article.
NEW YORK - A putative class of former employees of bankrupt Hostess Brands Inc. on Nov. 21 sued the company in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York, alleging violations of the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN), 29 U.S.C.S. § 2101. (Mark Popovich v. Hostess Brands Inc. [In Re: Hostess Brands Inc.], No. 12-22052, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy.).
LOS ANGELES - An organization's class action attacks allegedly false representations about the nature of business ratings, not the protected activity of the ratings themselves, a California appellate court held Nov. 19 in affirming denial of a motion to strike state unfair competition law (UCL) Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code § 17200 claims (The League of California Homeowners v. The Better Business Bureau of The Southland, No. E053423, Calif. App., 4th Dist., Div. 2).
NEW ORLEANS - A lawsuit filed by the State of Mississippi against liquid crystal display (LCD) panel manufacturers and distributors accusing them of engaging in a conspiracy to fix prices for LCD panels qualifies as a "mass action" under the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005, 28 USCS § 1711 and belongs in federal court, the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Nov. 21 (State of Mississippi, ex rel Jim Hood, Attorney General v. AU Optronics Corporation, et al., No. 12-60704, 5th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 24096).
ATLANTA - A federal judge in Georgia on Nov. 21 dismissed a woman's claims that her mortgage lenders and loan servicer engaged in age discrimination resulting in violations of the Fair Housing Act (FHA) and Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA), after finding that her lawsuit was untimely and that her allegations lacked enough information to invoke the continuing violation doctrine (Christina Federer v. Midland Mortgage Co., et al., No. 12-CV-2492, N.D. Ga.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 166188).
ATLANTA - A Georgia federal judge on Nov. 21 granted summary judgment against a borrower and in favor of Bank of the Ozarks, which acquired the borrower's loans from the failed Chestatee State Bank, finding that the borrower breached contracts by defaulting and that Bank of the Ozarks is entitled to collect on the attorneys' fees provided for in the notes (Bank of the Ozarks v. Thomas Carter Lumsden, No. 11-03853, N.D. Ga.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 166184).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A District of Columbia federal judge on Nov. 20 dismissed former Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) Senior Vice President Leanne G. Spencer from a class action arising from Fannie Mae's $6.3 billion in accounting mistakes, ruling that investor plaintiffs failed to show that she intentionally misled investors (In re: Fannie Mae Securities Litigation, No. 04-01639, D. D.C.).
CINCINNATI - A Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Nov. 20 affirmed the dismissal of a woman's wrongful foreclosure action against her loan servicer and the director of the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) but ordered a federal judge in Michigan to determine the amount in damages the plaintiff sustained as a result of the loan servicer's admitted violation of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), 12 U.S.C.S. § 2605. (Marilyn Houston v. U.S Bank Home Mortgage Wisconsin Servicing, et al., No. 11-2444, 6th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 24196).
NEW YORK - A federal judge in New York on Nov. 19 denied Prudential Retirement Insurance and Annuity Co.'s (PRIAC) renewed motion for partial summary judgment dismissing State Street Bank and Trust Co.'s contribution and defamation claims in an action in which PRIAC alleged that State Street breached its fiduciary obligations under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), 29 U.S.C.S. § 1001 et seq., by investing in "undisclosed, highly leveraged positions in mortgage-related financial derivatives" (Prudential Retirement Insurance and Annuity Co. v. State Street Bank and Trust Company, et al., No. 07-8488, S.D. N.Y.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 165763).
WILMINGTON, Del. - The U.S. trustee in the Chapter 11 bankruptcy case of Vertis Holdings Inc. on Nov. 20 filed a brief in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware objecting to an employee incentive plan that would pay company insiders as much as $4.3 million (In Re: Vertis Holdings Inc., No. 12-12821, Chapter 11, D. Del. Bkcy.). View related prior history, 2011 Bankr. LEXIS 5057.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - A poultry company that acquired certain assets of the bankrupt Zacky Farms Inc. on Nov. 20 filed an adversary complaint in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of California alleging that Zacky Farms breached its contract and engaged in unfair competition (Foster Poultry Farms v. Zacky Farms Inc. [In Re: Zacky Farms Inc.], No. 12-37961, Chapter 11, E.D. Calif. Bkcy.).
NEW YORK - The U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, in conjunction with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, on Nov. 21 announced the unsealing of insider trading charges against a former portfolio manager for a division of a group of affiliated hedge funds for his role in an alleged $276 million insider trading scheme (United States of America v. Mathew Martoma, No. 12-2985, S.D. N.Y.).
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RUTLAND, Vt. - A Vermont federal judge on Nov. 19 granted a renewed motion to certify a class and subclasses in an antitrust case filed by dairy farmers over alleged suppression of raw milk prices, nearly a year after denying a class certification motion after finding that the plaintiffs' interest was not representative of all potential class members (Alice H. Allen, et al. v. Dairy Farmers of America, Inc., et al., No. 09-230, D. Vt.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 164718).
NEW YORK - A financial backer of bankrupt MSR Resort Golf Course LLC on Nov. 19 filed a brief in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York arguing that the bankruptcy judge should reject a $61 million default interest payment (In Re: MSR Resort Golf Course LLC, No. 11-10372, Chapter 11, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy.).