SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Oct. 20 granted conditional certification to a group of minor league baseball players suing the Office of the Commissioner of Baseball, its member franchises and former Commissioner Allan H. "Bud" Selig for unpaid wages (Aaron Senne, et al. v. Kansas City Royals Baseball Corp., et al., No. 14-608, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 143011).
BALTIMORE - A Maryland federal judge on Oct. 21 dismissed a proposed class action filed by a woman who asserted claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and penal code, in relation to a casino feature in a video game, finding that she failed to allege an economic injury and that she lacked standing to bring a claim under the UCL (Mia Mason v. Machine Zone Inc., No. 15-1107, D. Md.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 142790).
SAN FRANCISCO - Sufficient evidence and testimony existed to support most of the convictions of a man alleged to have committed a crime spree on the basis of being in a street gang, a California appeals panel affirmed Oct. 20; however, the panel reversed and vacated the sentences as to claims for receipt of stolen property and street terrorism (The People v. Joseph Blacknell, No. A135721, Calif. App., 1st Dist., Div. 1; 2015 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 7578).
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Summary judgment in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit is proper, a federal judge in California ruled Oct. 21, because an insurer has shown that its denial of insureds' claim for benefits under an automobile insurance policy was warranted due to the existence of a genuine issue as to the insurer's liability (Misty Dawn Reitz, et al. v. Progressive Direct Insurance Co., et al., No. 14-1614, E.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 143303).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Oct. 16 denied a motion filed jointly by the parties in wage-and-hour class suit brought by workers who were paid on a per-task basis to modify his July 2 order approving a $585,507 settlement (Christopher Otey, et al. v. CrowdFlower, Inc., et al., No. 12-5524, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 141338).
OAKLAND, Calif. - A California federal judge on Oct. 19 found nothing to support a decision that Google Inc. and others were knowingly infringing on a trademarked application and game, but granted the owner of the trademark leave to amend his claims for federal trademark contributory infringement, violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and other claims (Free Kick Master LLC v. Apple Inc., et al., No. 15-cv-03403, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 141993).
VENTURA, Calif. - A California appeals panel on Oct. 20 refused to vacate a jury verdict finding a woman guilty of grand theft and 31 counts of insurance fraud after finding that the woman's legal representation during the trial was adequate (People v. Lisa Henschel, No. B260189, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 6; 2015 Calif. Unpub. App. LEXIS 7473).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Oct. 19 denied an insurer's motion to dismiss a suit filed against its insured and arising out of environmental contamination claims on the basis that the suit is not barred under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (Dave Drilling Environmental Engineering Inc. v. Margaret Thersia Gamblin, No. 14-02851, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 141941).
SAN FRANCISCO - Allegations that Google Inc. willfully infringed various natural language processing patents were dismissed by a California federal judge on Oct. 19 on grounds that the claims are based exclusively on Google's alleged post-filing knowledge of the patents in suit (Word to Info Inc. v. Google Inc., No. 15-3486, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 141966).
LOS ANGELES - The liquidator of an insolvent insurer told a California court on Oct. 16 that the insurer's assets are inadequate to pay certain known claims and that it is therefore necessary to terminate the liquidation proceeding (Insurance Commissioner of the State of California v. Golden State Mutual Life Insurance Company, No BS123005, Calif. Super., Los Angeles Co.).
SAN FRANCISCO - Dismissal of an insured's first amended complaint in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit is proper because the insured failed to cure a number of discrepancies that led to the dismissal of the original complaint, a federal judge in California ruled Oct. 16 (Arryanne Moss v. Infinity Insurance Co., et al., No. 15-3456, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 141311).
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - A California federal judge on Oct. 16 dismissed an insurer's breach of contract counterclaim on the basis that the insureds did not breach their contract by filing environmental contamination claims they knew would not be covered under the policy because the insurer reserved the right to deny coverage for any noncovered claims (Lennar Mare Island LLC v. Steadfast Insurance Co., et al., No. 12-2182, E.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 141305).
SAN FRANCISCO - A former partner-driver of Uber Technologies Inc. failed to plead sufficient injury from the purported theft of his personally identifiable information (PII), a California federal magistrate judge ruled Oct. 19, granting Uber's motion to dismiss the putative unfair competition and failure to secure class claims against it (Sasha Antman v. Uber Technologies Inc., et al., No. 3:15-cv-01175, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 141945).
LOS ANGELES - A California state court jury on Oct. 16 found that Janssen Research and Development LLC was negligent in a Risperdal clinical trial that resulted in the death of a 25-year-old schizophrenic man, and the court entered judgment against the defendant for $5.6 million for its share of liability (Augustine Liu, et al. v. Johnson & Johnson, et al., No. BC432264, Calif. Super., Los Angeles Co.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A federal judge in California on Oct. 14 ruled that the current owner of an industrial and commercial property's statute of limitations defense against a counterclaimant's cost recovery claim under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act is meritless because the current owner was unable to show that the lawsuit is time-barred under the three-year statute for removal actions or the six-year statute for remedial actions (Northern California River Watch v. Fluor Corp., et al., No. 10-cv-05105, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 140047).
LOS ANGELES - After finding that certain terms of an arbitration agreement in an employment contract were unconscionable, a California federal judge on Oct. 14 refused to compel arbitration of the claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and labor laws (Brandyn Ridgeway, et al. v Nabors Completion & Production Services Co., et al., No. 15-03436, C.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 140012).
LOS ANGELES - A California court on Oct. 13 affirmed the dismissal of a property owner's claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL), breach of warranty and other claims, finding that the causes of action were barred by the "claim preclusion" concept in the doctrine of res judicata (Kirsten Cole v. J.P. Morgan Chase, N.A., No. B258403, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 5; 2015 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 7353).
SAN FRANCISCO - The federal judge presiding over the lawsuit brought by the current owner of a contaminated property that has subsequently resulted in groundwater tainted with toxins ruled Oct. 14 that a group owning 28 acres on a portion of the property in question lacks affirmative defenses barring the lawsuit (Northern California River Watch v. Fluor Corporation, No. 10-05105, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 140047).
SAN FRANCISCO - Noting that a borrower's numerous causes of action, including claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL), wrongful foreclosure and other claims were repeatedly dismissed in other cases, a California court on Oct. 13 affirmed dismissal of the case without leave to amend (Honorio R. Millari v. JP Morgan Chase Bank, N.A., No. A142272, Calif. App., 1st Dist., Div. 2; 2015 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 7301).
SAN DIEGO - Citing genuine issues of material fact surrounding the existence of an implied license to use a disputed trademark, a California federal judge on Oct. 13 denied a request by two defendants for summary judgment (Seth Wallack, et al. v. IDEXX Laboratories Inc., et al., No. 11-2996, S.D. Calif.).