LOS ANGELES - After finding that it lacked jurisdiction over a former university employee's claims for violation of the California labor code and unfair competition law (UCL) in relation to termination of his employment, a California appeals court on Aug. 12 affirmed a trial court's decision to grant a motion to quash service of summons for lack of personal jurisdiction (Sergio Melgar v. State of Kentucky, et al., No. B264723, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 5; 2016 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 5942).
SAN FRANCISCO - An award of an attorney fee out of a common fund calculated as a percentage of a settlement amount in not per se unreasonable, the California Supreme Court ruled Aug. 11 in the appeal of a nearly $6.34 million attorney fee approved as part of a $19 million class action employment settlement (Mark Laffitte, et al. v. Robert Half International Inc., et al., No. S222996, Calif. Sup.; 2016 Cal. LEXIS 6387).
SAN FRANCISCO - A lead plaintiff in a securities class action lawsuit has failed to plead an actionable misrepresentation, scienter or loss causation in making his federal securities law claims, a federal judge in California ruled Aug. 10 in granting the defendants' motions to dismiss (Likar Rok v. Identiv Inc., et al., No. 15-5775, N.D. Calif.).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - The lead plaintiff in a securities class action lawsuit against a company that sells renewable energy and certain of its executive officers has failed to cure each of the scienter pleading deficiencies in making his claims under federal securities law that resulted in three previous dismissal rulings, a federal judge in California ruled Aug. 9 in dismissing the third amended complaint with prejudice (Tai Jan Bao, et al. v. SolarCity Corp., et al., No. 14-1435, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 105179).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - In a pair of reply briefs filed Aug. 10 in California federal court, Google Inc. seeks to support its pending motions for summary judgment in a putative privacy class action over its Google Wallet feature and to exclude the lead plaintiff's expert's testimony on damages (Alice Svenson v. Google Inc., et al., No. 5:13-cv-04080, N.D. Calif.).
OAKLAND, Calif. - Finding that the family members of two terror attack victims who alleged that Twitter Inc. aided terrorists in violation of the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) sought to treat Twitter as the speaker of messages posted by ISIS, a California federal judge on Aug. 10 dismissed their claims as barred by the Communications Decency Act (CDA) (Tamara Fields v. Twitter Inc., No. 4:16-cv-00213, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 105768).
LOS ANGELES - A California jury on Aug. 9 returned a defense verdict for three companies accused of exposing a woman to asbestos in joint compounds, sources told Mealey Publications (Christine Louise Pass and Joseph David Pass v. Amcord Inc., f/k/a Riverside Cement Co., et al., No. BC587738, Calif. Super., Los Angeles Co.).
LOS ANGELES - A federal judge in California on Aug. 8 granted a motion for default judgment in favor of a hookah tobacco company that sued a couple who was using the company's trademarked brands and ordered the couple to pay $575,000 (Starbuzz Tobacco Inc. v. Issa Hilo, et al., No. SACV 16-0303 AG, C.D. Calif.).
SAN FRANCISCO - Assertions by a patent infringement defendant that a plaintiff committed false advertising and defamation in a letter it sent to the defendant's current and prospective customers were rejected on summary judgment Aug. 8 by a California federal judge (Johnstech International Corp. v. JF Microtechnology SDN BHD, No. 14-2864, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 104380).
LOS ANGELES - A California appeals panel on Aug. 5 held that the lack of an excess judgment against Warner Brothers Entertainment Inc. in an underlying employment injury dispute that settled does not preclude the equitable subrogation and breach of the duty of good faith and fair dealing lawsuit that the entertainment company's excess insurer brought against its primary insurer (Ace American Insurance Co. v. Fireman's Fund Insurance Co., No. B264861, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 4; 2016 Cal. App. LEXIS 647).
SAN FRANCISCO - In an Aug. 8 opposition brief filed in California federal court, Oracle America Inc. calls a post-trial motion for civil contempt and sanctions by Google Inc. "unprecedented," asserting that the discovery trial statements that purportedly disclosed confidential information "were responsive" to arguments from Google and probing questions from the presiding magistrate (Oracle America Inc. v. Google Inc., No. 3:10-cv-03561, N.D. Calif.).
LOS ANGELES - A U.S. magistrate judge in California on Aug. 4 dismissed a groundwater contamination lawsuit against a gas and electric company on grounds that the claim was preempted by federal law (Ken Nitao v. Pacific Gas and Electric Company, No. 16-2532, C.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 102766).
SAN FRANCISCO - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 5 announced that it will rehear en banc a case in which a panel previously found that 401(k) plan participants challenging the selection and retention of certain mutual funds forfeited their right to argue that their employer and its benefits plan failed to adequately monitor those investments because the argument was never raised before a California federal judge or in their initial appeal (Glenn Tibble, et al. v. Edison International, et al., No. 10-56406, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 14413).
OAKLAND, Calif. - The developer of Pokemon Go, a popular "augmented reality" game that is played on smartphones, is liable for nuisance for placing virtual parts of the game known as "Pokestops" and "Pokemon gyms" on or adjacent to private property, a New Jersey man alleges in a class complaint filed July 29 in a California federal court (Jeffrey Marder, et al. v. Niantic, Inc., et al., No. 16-4300, N.D. Calif.).
LOS ANGELES - The parents of deceased actor Anton Yelchin, known for his role as Pavel Chekov in the movie reboots of Star Trek, on Aug. 2 filed a wrongful death and product defect suit in California state court, claiming that the actor's 2015 Jeep Cherokee was outfitted with a faulty gear shifter that allegedly caused it to roll backward and run him over (Victor Yelchin, et al. v. FCA US LLC, et al., No. BC629096, Calif. Super., Los Angeles Co.).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - A California federal judge on July 29 found that borrowers were judicially estopped from asserting claims for rescission under the Truth in Lending Act (TILA), quiet title and declaratory judgment, finding that two lenders were entitled to judgment on the pleadings (Leonard K. Tyson, et al. v. Bank of America N.A., et al., No. 15-cv-01548-BLF, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 99774).
LOS ANGELES - Because homeowners seek more than $7.5 million in an underlying construction defects lawsuit, a California federal judge ruled Aug. 1 that the amount-in-controversy requirement has been met for an insurance coverage dispute involving three insurers (Maryland Casualty Co. and Northern Insurance Company of New York v. Ironshore Specialty Insurance Co., No. 16-00186, E.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 100462).