LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Further Evidence Is Needed In Coverage Suit Arising From Molestation Claims

SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on July 8 denied an insurer's motion for judgment on the pleadings in its lawsuit seeking equitable contribution from another insurer for $15.8 million in underlying settlements over students' claims that a school district and its administrators were negligent in their supervision of a teacher accused of sexual molestation (Westport Insurance Corp. v. California Casualty Management Co., No. 16-01246, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 88924).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - Federal Judge Finds UCL Claim Against Loan Servicer Is Time-Barred

RIVERSIDE, Calif. - A California federal judge on July 8 denied an application filed by property owners for a temporary restraining order, finding that their claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing were time-barred (Manuel Womandress, et al. v. Specialized Loan Servicing LLC, et al., No. 5:16-cv-01007, C.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 88959).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - 9th Circuit Reverses Dismissal Of Claims Related To Caffeine Content In Drink

PASADENA, Calif. - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 8 reversed a district court's dismissal of claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and other claims in relation to a company's labeling of its energy drinks, finding that certain statements it made could have been misleading (Alec Fisher, et al. v. Monster Beverage Corporation, et al., No. 13-57094, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 12608).

Mealey's Insurance - Insured Opposes Motion To Reconsider, Says Motion Was Filed In Bad Faith

SAN FRANCISCO - Reconsideration of a California federal judge's finding that a policy deductible does not apply to defense costs incurred as a result of an environmental contamination dispute is not warranted, an insured argues in its July 7 response to the insurers' motion for reconsideration (American Guarantee and Liability Insurance Co., et al. v. Technichem Inc., et al., No. 15-03611, N.D. Calif.).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge: Glyphosate Cancer Case Against Monsanto Proceeds

FRESNO, Calif. - A federal judge in California on July 7 denied Monsanto Co.'s motion to dismiss a lawsuit brought by a woman who contends that her exposure to the company's herbicide containing glyphosate caused her to develop cancer, ruling that none of the evidence relied upon by Monsanto established that the herbicide is not carcinogenic, nor did it establish that the product in question was not misbranded under federal law (Yolanda Mendoza v. Monsanto Company, No. 16-406, E.D. Calif.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Federal Judge Dismisses Patent Invalidity Declaratory Judgment Complaint

SAN FRANCISCO - Failed efforts by a nationwide provider of health care services for patients with AIDS to solicit generic drug manufacturers to develop products containing tenofir alafenamide fumarate (TAF) do not represent a sufficiently real and immediate dispute to confer standing in a declaratory judgment action with the TAF brand name manufacturer, a California federal judge concluded July 6 (AIDS Healthcare Foundation Inc. v. Gilead Sciences Inc., et al., No. 16-443, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 87578).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 2 Minor League Baseball Players Removed As Named Plaintiffs In Wage Suit

SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal magistrate judge on July 6 granted a motion to remove two minor league baseball players who no longer wish to be class representatives in a lawsuit seeking unpaid wages from the Office of the Commissioner of Baseball, its member franchises and former Commissioner Allan H. "Bud" Selig (Aaron Senne, et al. v. Kansas City Royals Baseball Corp., et al., No. 14-608, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 88014).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - California Court Remands To Allow For Amendments On Animal Research Claims

SAN JOSE, Calif. - A California appeals court on July 5 reversed and remanded a case filed by an animal welfare organization that asserted that a research facility violated California's unfair competition law in relation to its research on goats and rabbits to allow for an amendment to include allegations regarding other species (Stop Animal Exploitation Now v. Santa Cruz Biotechnology Inc., No. H039770, Calif. App., 6th Dist.; 2016 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 5017).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - Class Action Alleges Snapchat Exposes Minors To Adult Content

LOS ANGELES - In a putative class action filed July 7 in California federal court, a minor user of Snapchat Inc.'s photo messaging application alleges that editorial content on Snapchat's app exposes minors to sexually offensive content in violation of the Communications Decency Act (CDA) and California's unfair competition law (UCL) (John Doe v. Snapchat Inc., et al., No. 2:16-cv-04955, C.D. Calif.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Class Action Alleges Snapchat Exposes Minors To Adult Content

LOS ANGELES - In a putative class action filed July 7 in California federal court, a minor user of Snapchat Inc.'s photo messaging application alleges that editorial content on Snapchat's app exposes minors to sexually offensive content in violation of the Communications Decency Act (CDA) and California's unfair competition law (UCL) (John Doe v. Snapchat Inc., et al., No. 2:16-cv-04955, C.D. Calif.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Class Action Alleges Snapchat Exposes Minors To Adult Content

LOS ANGELES - In a putative class action filed July 7 in California federal court, a minor user of Snapchat Inc.'s photo messaging application alleges that editorial content on Snapchat's app exposes minors to sexually offensive content in violation of the Communications Decency Act (CDA) and California's unfair competition law (UCL) (John Doe v. Snapchat Inc., et al., No. 2:16-cv-04955, C.D. Calif.).

Mealey's Insurance - Termination Of Benefits Was Reasonable, California Federal Judge Determines

FRESNO, Calif. - A California federal judge on July 5 determined that a disability claims administrator did not abuse its discretion in terminating a claimant's benefits because the administrator identified two reasonable jobs within the proper zone that could be performed by the claimant (William Barnett v. Southern California Edison Company Long Term Disability Plan, No. 12-130, E.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 86828).

Mealey's Insurance - Magistrate Judge: Insurer Hasn't Shown That Judicial Estoppel Should Be Invoked

FRESNO, Calif. - Summary judgment is not warranted in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit because an insurer has failed to show that the doctrine of judicial estoppel should be invoked and has failed to show that no genuine issue of material fact exists related to claims made by insureds in suing the insurer, a federal magistrate judge in California ruled July 5 (Halonda Naff, et al. v. State Farm General Insurance Co., No. 15-0515, E.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 86854).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Volkswagen To Pay Additional $86M To California Over Emissions Defeat Devices

SAN FRANCISCO - Volkswagen AG agreed on July 7 to pay an additional $86 million in civil penalties to the state of California to resolve allegations that the car manufacturer installed "defeat devices" in its 2.0- and 3.0-liter diesel vehicles to evade emissions, according to an unopposed motion to enter a partial consent decree filed in California federal court (In re: Volkswagen "Clean Diesel" Marketing, Sales Practices, and Products Liability Litigation, MDL 2672, Case No. 15-md-2672, People of the State of California v. Volkswagen AG, et al., No. 16-cv-3620, N.D. Calif.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge Certifies Class For California Homeowners With Allegedly Defective Roof Tiles

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - In an order entered July 5, a California federal judge certified a class for consumers whose homes have roofing tiles that were made by Dura-Loc Roofing Systems Limited that are allegedly defective because they are not UV resistant, finding that common evidence and proof can determine if the shingles are defective, if the shingles did not comply with the limited warranty and if Metals USA Inc., the successor to Dura-Loc, can be liable for damages (James Wilson, et al. v. Metals USA Inc., No. 12-CV-0568-KJM-CKD, E.D. Calif.).

Mealey's Insurance - Plan Administrator Failed To Consider All Evidence, Calif. Federal Judge Says

SAN JOSE, Calif. - A plan administrator abused its discretion by failing to consider a disability claimant's functional capacity evaluation and an award of Social Security disability benefits before terminating the claimant's long-term disability benefits, a California federal judge said June 30 in remanding the benefits claim to the plan administrator (Olga Gorbacheva v. Abbott Laboratories Extended Disability Plan et al., No. 14-2524, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 85702).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Denies Approval Of $16M Settlement, Finds Terms Inconsistent With CERCLA

LOS ANGELES - A federal judge in California on July 1 refused to approve a proposed $16 million settlement to resolve a Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) lawsuit over a contaminated site in Compton, Calif., finding that the proposed agreement did not properly assure that the settlement money would be used for recoverable costs (Rev 973 LLC v. John Mouren-Laurens, et al., No. 98-10690, C.D. Calif.).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Judge Certifies Class For California Homeowners With Allegedly Defective Roof Tiles

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - In an order entered July 5, a California federal judge certified a class for consumers whose homes have roofing tiles that were made by Dura-Loc Roofing Systems Limited that are allegedly defective because they are not UV resistant, finding that common evidence and proof can determine if the shingles are defective, if the shingles did not comply with the limited warranty and if Metals USA Inc., the successor to Dura-Loc, can be liable for damages (James Wilson, et al. v. Metals USA Inc., No. 12-CV-0568-KJM-CKD, E.D. Calif.).

Mealey's Insurance - Insurer Urges Illinois Federal Court To Transfer Reinsurance Case To California

CHICAGO - An insurer told a federal court in Illinois on July 5 that its reinsurer's case against it should be transferred to a federal court in California because the dispute is centered in California and not Illinois (R&Q Reinsurance Company v. The American Insurance Company, No. 16-cv-04199, N.D. Ill.).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Grants District's Motion To Approve Settlement In Contamination Case

FRESNO, Calif. - A federal judge in California on July 1 granted Visalia Unified School District's (VUSD) motion to approve the settlement of a groundwater contamination case in which it agreed to pay $110,000 toward remediation of tetrachloroethylene (PCE) contamination, after finding that the agreement was reached in good faith (Viola Coppola, et al. v. Gregory Smith, et al., No. 11-cv-01257, E.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 86257).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Uber Drops Comcast Subpoena In Data Breach Suit; Related Appeal Dismissed

SAN FRANCISCO - Two days after Uber Technologies Inc. filed a notice in a California federal court that it was withdrawing a subpoena on Comcast, through which Uber had sought to identify a particular subscriber as part of its suit over a 2014 breach of its network, Uber and that unnamed subscriber stipulated June 29 to dismiss an appeal in the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that resulted from a ruling on the subpoena (Uber Technologies Inc. v. John Doe I v. Subscriber, No. 15-16532, 9th Cir.).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - California Federal Judge Denies TRO Against IRS For Pension Plan Levies

SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on June 29 denied a motion for a temporary restraining order (TRO) sought to stop the Internal Revenue Service from tapping a pension plan to collect back taxes (Jim Nemlowill v. United States of America, No. 16CV1642, S.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 84843).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Institutional Investor Appointed Lead Plaintiff In Securities Class Action

SAN JOSE, Calif. - Appointment of an institutional investor as lead plaintiff in a securities class action lawsuit is proper because the investor has met all statutory requirements to serve in the role and because no other investor has properly rebutted the presumption that the institutional investor is the most adequate lead plaintiff, a federal judge in California ruled June 28 (In re Extreme Networks Inc. Securities Litigation, No. 15-4883, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 84005).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - Judge Allows UCL And FAL Claims Against Design Firm To Proceed

SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on June 29 granted a motion filed by a design company and its employees to dismiss claims against them for violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) in relation to the construction of a dog daycare facility, but allowed claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and False Advertising Law (FAL) to proceed (Raymond Yu v. Resign Learned, Inc., et al., No. 15-cv-05345, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 85591).

Mealey's Securities/D&O Liability - Institutional Investor Appointed Lead Plaintiff In Securities Class Action

SAN JOSE, Calif. - Appointment of an institutional investor as lead plaintiff in a securities class action lawsuit is proper because the investor has met all statutory requirements to serve in the role and because no other investor has properly rebutted the presumption that the institutional investor is the most adequate lead plaintiff, a federal judge in California ruled June 28 (In re Extreme Networks Inc. Securities Litigation, No. 15-4883, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 84005).