LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Golden State Warriors Fan Defends Standing To Sue Team Over Eavesdropping App

SAN FRANCISCO - In a Dec. 1 brief opposing motions to dismiss her putative class action in California federal court against National Basketball Association team the Golden State Warriors, a plaintiff argues that she has sufficiently alleged a concrete injury under the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) in the interception of her private communications via the Warriors' smartphone app (LaTisha Satchell v. Sonic Notify Inc. d/b/a Signal360, et al., No.3:16-cv-04961, N.D. Calif.).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Plaintiff: Good Cause Exists For Expert Substitution In Oil Rig Explosion Case

SAN FRANCISCO - Nigerian residents who contend that they have been injured as a result of an oil rig explosion on Nov. 30 filed a brief in California federal court, contending that their motion to substitute a fisheries expert in place of the expert they originally scheduled is based on good cause under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure (FRCP) 16 (Natto Iyela Gbarabe v. Chevron Corporation, No. 14-173, N.D. Calif.).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - California High Court Finds Duty To Prevent Household Asbestos Exposures

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - California imposes a duty on employers and premises owners to prevent reasonably foreseeable asbestos exposures to household members, the state Supreme Court held Dec. 1 (Johnny Blaine Kesner v. Superior Court of California for the County of Alameda, No. S219534, Haver v. BNSF, No. S219919, Calif. Sup.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Suit Over 'Natural' Products To Be Remanded After Class Scope Is Clarified

SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Nov. 28 agreed to send a class complaint alleging false promotion of cleaning and personal care products as "natural" back to state court after the lead plaintiff amends his complaint to clarify that the scope of the class is limited to California residents (Carlo Labrado v. Method Products, PBC, No. 16-5905, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 163718).

Mealey's Banking & Finance - Judge Allows Part Of RESPA Claim Against Loan Servicer To Proceed

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - A California federal magistrate judge on Nov. 29 partially granted a loan servicer's motion to dismiss claims for fraudulent misrepresentation but allowed part of a borrower's claim for violation of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) to proceed (Frank Malifrando v. Real Time Resolutions Inc., et al., No. 2:16-cv-0223, E.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 164497).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - Plaintiffs In Pinnacle Hip Bellwether Trial Will Seek State Consumer Law Penalties

DALLAS - Six plaintiffs in an ongoing DePuy Pinnacle hip multidistrict litigation bellwether trial on Nov. 28 told a Texas federal court that after the verdict, they intend to ask the court to determine that defendant DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. violated California's unfair competition law (UCL) and to order equitable relief (In Re: DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc. Pinnacle Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation, MDL Docket No. 2244, No. 13-3631, Rosa Metzler, et al. v. DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., et al., No. 12-2066, Michael Weiser v. DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., et al., No. 13-3631, Judith Rodriguez v. DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., et al., No. 13-3938, Linda Standerfer v. DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., et al., No. 14-1730, Kathleen Davis, et al. v. DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., et al., No. 15-1767, Marvin Andrews, et al. v. DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., et al., No. 15-3484, N.D. Texas, Dallas Div.).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - Judge Enters Default Ruling On Claims For Illegal Broadcast

SAN JOSE, Calif. - After the owners of a restaurant where a televised event was allegedly illegally broadcast failed to respond to claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and other claims, a California federal judge on Nov. 28 entered a default ruling in favor of a production company (J&J Sports Productions Inc. v. Manuel Gonzalez, et al., No. 5:16-cv-02284, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 163717).

Mealey's IP/Tech - California Federal Judge Denies Motion By Copyright Plaintiff

LOS ANGELES - A dispute between a fabric designer and a manufacturer and retailer accused of selling garments that infringe upon numerous copyrighted designs will proceed, in light of a Nov. 28 decision by a California federal judge to deny the fabric designer partial summary judgment (Urban Textile v. Mark Edwards Apparel Inc., et al., No. 14-8285, C.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 163650).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - Judge Finds UCL Claims Against Diamond Importer Are Preempted Under CUTSA

SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Nov. 22 dismissed counterclaims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and misappropriation of trade secrets in relation to an Indian diamond importer's use of a confidential customer list, finding that the claims were displaced under California's Uniform Trade Secrets Act (CUTSA) (Kapu Gems, et al. v. Diamond Imports Inc., et al., No. 15-cv-03531, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 162128).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Illinois Wrongful Death Case Sent To Roundup MDL In Northern California

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPMDL) on Nov. 28 issued an order transferring another case to the multidistrict litigation for injuries allegedly caused by exposure to the weed killer Roundup, stating that the wrongful death lawsuit brought against Monsanto Co. by an Illinois man involves questions of fact common to other actions already sent to the MDL (In Re: Roundup Products Liability Litigation, No. 2741, JPMDL).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge Orders Volkswagen To Pay Class Members Despite Attorney Liens

SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Nov. 22 ordered Volkswagen Group of America Inc., Volkswagen AG, Audi of America LLC and Audi AG (collectively, Volkswagen) to pay class members in the clean diesel multidistrict litigation their settlement compensation directly, despite notification of liens placed by attorneys on their clients' recovery and invoked his authority under the All Writs Act to enjoin any state court proceedings regarding the attorneys' lien (In re: Volkswagen "Clean Diesel" Marketing, Sales Practices, and Products Liability Litigation, No. 15-2672, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 162339).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Plaintiffs In Pinnacle Hip Bellwether Trial Will Seek State Consumer Law Penalties

DALLAS - Six plaintiffs in an ongoing DePuy Pinnacle hip multidistrict litigation bellwether trial on Nov. 28 told a Texas federal court that after the verdict, they intend to ask the court to determine that defendant DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. violated California's unfair competition law (UCL) and to order equitable relief (In Re: DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc. Pinnacle Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation, MDL Docket No. 2244, No. 13-3631, Rosa Metzler, et al. v. DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., et al., No. 12-2066, Michael Weiser v. DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., et al., No. 13-3631, Judith Rodriguez v. DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., et al., No. 13-3938, Linda Standerfer v. DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., et al., No. 14-1730, Kathleen Davis, et al. v. DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., et al., No. 15-1767, Marvin Andrews, et al. v. DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., et al., No. 15-3484, N.D. Texas, Dallas Div.).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - 9th Circuit Finds No Support For Borrower's UCL And Negligence Claims

SAN FRANCISCO - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Nov. 23 affirmed a district court's decision to dismiss claims for negligence and violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL), finding that a borrower's claims related to the transfer of his mortgage lacked legal or factual support (George M. Kramer v. Quality Loan Servicing Corporation, et al., No. 14-15973, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 21096).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Calif. Court Upholds Evidence, Instructions On Way To Affirming Asbestos Verdict

LOS ANGELES - Asbestos plaintiffs themselves introduced irrelevant contract provisions about which they now complain, and any error arising from improper jury instructions regarding an employer's duty did not prejudice them, a California appeals court held Nov. 22 (Kenneth Evans, et al. v. American Optical Corp., et al., No. B265222, Calif. App., 2nd Dist.).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Calif. Court Upholds Evidence, Instructions On Way To Affirming Asbestos Verdict

LOS ANGELES - Asbestos plaintiffs themselves introduced irrelevant contract provisions about which they now complain, and any error arising from improper jury instructions regarding an employer's duty did not prejudice them, a California appeals court held Nov. 22 (Kenneth Evans, et al. v. American Optical Corp., et al., No. B265222, Calif. App., 2nd Dist.).

Mealey's Insurance - Insurer Loses Bid For Judgment On Liquidating Trust's Payment Claims

OAKLAND, Calif. - An asbestos personal injury liquidating trust properly submitted proposals to an insurer regarding the payment of allowed claims that triggered the insurer's policies and did not violate two debtors' plan of reorganization by allocating to the insurer 100 percent of the liquidated value of each approved unpaid claim, a California federal bankruptcy judge held Nov. 21 (In re CFB Liquidating Corporation, f/k/a Chicago Fire Brick Co., et al., No. 01-45483, [Barry A. Chatz, as Trustee for the CFB/WFB Liquidating Trust v. Continental Casualty Company, No. 15-4136] N.D. Calif. Bkcy.; 2016 Bankr. LEXIS 4034).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Calif. Court Upholds Evidence, Instructions On Way To Affirming Asbestos Verdict

LOS ANGELES - Asbestos plaintiffs themselves introduced irrelevant contract provisions about which they now complain, and any error arising from improper jury instructions regarding an employer's duty did not prejudice them, a California appeals court held Nov. 22 (Kenneth Evans, et al. v. American Optical Corp., et al., No. B265222, Calif. App., 2nd Dist.).

Mealey's Bankruptcy - Insurer Loses Bid For Judgment On Liquidating Trust's Payment Claims

OAKLAND, Calif. - An asbestos personal injury liquidating trust properly submitted proposals to an insurer regarding the payment of allowed claims that triggered the insurer's policies and did not violate two debtors' plan of reorganization by allocating to the insurer 100 percent of the liquidated value of each approved unpaid claim, a California federal bankruptcy judge held Nov. 21 (In re CFB Liquidating Corporation, f/k/a Chicago Fire Brick Co., et al., No. 01-45483, [Barry A. Chatz, as Trustee for the CFB/WFB Liquidating Trust v. Continental Casualty Company, No. 15-4136] N.D. Calif. Bkcy.; 2016 Bankr. LEXIS 4034).

Mealey's Banking & Finance - 9th Circuit Finds No Support For Borrower's UCL And Negligence Claims

SAN FRANCISCO - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Nov. 23 affirmed a district court's decision to dismiss claims for negligence and violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL), finding that a borrower's claims related to the transfer of his mortgage lacked legal or factual support (George M. Kramer v. Quality Loan Servicing Corporation, et al., No. 14-15973, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 21096).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge: State Law Bars Insurers From Indemnifying For Punitive Damages Awards

FRESNO, Calif. - An insurer is entitled to summary judgment in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit, a federal judge in California ruled Nov. 18, because California law bars insurers from indemnifying their insureds for punitive damages awards (Paul Evert's RV Country Inc., et al. v. Universal Underwriters Insurance Co., et al., No. 15-0124, E.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 160519).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Electronic Arts Prevails Before 9th Circuit In Copyright Dispute

SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge properly awarded Electronic Arts Inc. (EA) judgment as a matter of law (JMOL) that the videogame maker did not infringe the copyrighted computer code of the original John Madden Football series, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Nov. 22 (Robin Antonick v. Electronic Arts Inc., No. 14-15298, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 20933).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - Summary Judgment For Purina Is Granted In Alleged Toxic Pet Food Case

SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Nov. 17 granted a summary judgment motion filed by Nestle Purina Petcare Co. and ordered the file closed in a proposed class complaint accusing the pet food maker of using toxic substances in its Beneful brand dog food (Frank Lucido v. Nestle Purina Petcare Co., et al., No. 15-569, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 159569).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Summary Judgment For Purina Is Granted In Alleged Toxic Pet Food Case

SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Nov. 17 granted a summary judgment motion filed by Nestle Purina Petcare Co. and ordered the file closed in a proposed class complaint accusing the pet food maker of using toxic substances in its Beneful brand dog food (Frank Lucido v. Nestle Purina Petcare Co., et al., No. 15-569, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 159569).

Mealey's Insurance - Amount In Controversy In Bad Faith Suit Doesn't Exceed $75,000, Judge Rules

LOS ANGELES - On his own motion, a federal judge in California on Nov. 17 remanded an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit to state court, ruling that an insurer failed to show that the amount in controversy exceeded the statutory requirement (Maria L. Monroy, et al. v. Infinity Insurance Co., et al., No. 16-5296, C.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 159591).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Terrorism Aiding Suit Against Twitter Again Dismissed By California Federal Judge

OAKLAND, Calif. - Dismissing terrorism aiding claims against Twitter Inc. under the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) for the second time, a California federal judge on Nov. 18 found that two terror victims' family members still sought to hold the social network operator "liable as a publisher of speaker of ISIS's hateful rhetoric," which is barred by the Communications Decency Act (CDA) (Tamara Fields, et al. v. Twitter Inc., No. 4:16-cv-00213, N.D. Calif.).