LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's Litigation Procedure - All Expert Testimony Trimmed In Negligence Suit Over Motorcyclist's Death

HAMMOND, Ind. - An Indiana federal judge on May 11 limited the testimony of all four expert witnesses in a lawsuit filed by the estate of a deceased motorcyclist alleging that the truck driver that hit him and the driver's company are liable for the biker's death (The Estate of John Arama v. Bryant Winfield, et al., No. 2:13-cv-381, N.D. Ind., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 71712).

Mealey's Insurance - Insurer's Liquidator Seeks Additional $362,788 Claim Against Reinsurer

NEW YORK - In a dispute over reinsurance proceeds allegedly owed to the estate of The Home Insurance Co., the liquidator on May 11 requested a pre-motion conference in a New York federal court to address an amendment to his complaint against a reinsurer to assert an additional claim of $362,787.84 (Roger A. Sevigny, the Commissioner of Insurance of the State of New Hampshire, as Liquidator of The Home Insurance Company v. Trygvesta Forsikring A/S, as successor in interest to Skandinavia Insurance Company Ltd., Trygvesta Forsikring A/S v. Cerberus Holding Company, LLC., No. 16-cv-04874, S.D. N.Y.).

Mealey's Banking & Finance - Judge Dismisses RESPA Claim Against Ocwen Without Leave To Amend

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - A Florida federal judge on May 2 decided that claims for violation of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) against a loan servicer failed because a borrower failed to show that it did not respond to her request for information (Shelisa Todd v. Ocwen Loan Servicing LLC, No. 17-cv-60454, S.D. Fla., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 66541).

Mealey's Insurance - Wisconsin Majority: Appeal Of Misrepresentation Dispute 'Improvidently Granted'

MADISON, Wis. - A majority of the Wisconsin Supreme Court on April 27 dismissed as "improvidently granted" a review of an appeals court's finding that a business owner's liability insurer had no duty to defend an allegation of misrepresentation against its contractor insured (Maya Elaine Smith v. Jeff Anderson, d/b/a Anderson Real Estate Services v. 4th Dimension Design, Inc., No. 2015AP79, Wis. Sup., 2017 Wisc. LEXIS 234).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge: Captive Reinsurance Scheme Is A Continuing Violation Of Real Estate Act

PHILADELPHIA - An alleged captive reinsurance scheme between banks and an insurer constitutes a continuing violation of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), each time an "illegal kickback, fee, or referral was given or received," a Pennsylvania federal judge ruled April 26, finding that the statute of limitations ran from the date of the last violation rather than the first based upon the continuing violations doctrine (Christopher Blake and James Orkis v. JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., et al., No. 13-6433, E.D. Pa., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 64392).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Captive Reinsurance Scheme Is A Continuing Violation Of Real Estate Act

PHILADELPHIA - An alleged captive reinsurance scheme between banks and an insurer constitutes a continuing violation of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), each time an "illegal kickback, fee, or referral was given or received," a Pennsylvania federal judge ruled April 26, finding that the statute of limitations ran from the date of the last violation rather than the first based upon the continuing violations doctrine (Christopher Blake and James Orkis v. JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., et al., No. 13-6433, E.D. Pa., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 64392).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - 11th Circuit Affirms Expert, Household Duty Rulings, In $3M Asbestos Verdict

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - A federal judge in Alabama did not err in admitting expert testimony that all significant asbestos exposures contribute to mesothelioma nor in concluding that an employer can be liable for exposing household members to asbestos, an 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel held April 26 (Melissa Ann Bobo and Sharon Jean Cox, as co-personal representatives of the estate of Barbara Bobo v. Tennessee Valley Authority, No. 12-S-1930, N.D. Ala., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 130741).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 11th Circuit Affirms Expert, Household Duty Rulings, In $3M Asbestos Verdict

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - A federal judge in Alabama did not err in admitting expert testimony that all significant asbestos exposures contribute to mesothelioma nor in concluding that an employer can be liable for exposing household members to asbestos, an 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel held April 26 (Melissa Ann Bobo and Sharon Jean Cox, as co-personal representatives of the estate of Barbara Bobo v. Tennessee Valley Authority, No. 12-S-1930, N.D. Ala., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 130741).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 11th Circuit Affirms Expert, Household Duty Rulings In $3M Asbestos Verdict

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - A federal judge in Alabama did not err in admitting expert testimony that all significant asbestos exposures contribute to mesothelioma nor in concluding that an employer can be liable for exposing household members to asbestos, an 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel held April 26 (Melissa Ann Bobo and Sharon Jean Cox, as co-personal representatives of the estate of Barbara Bobo v. Tennessee Valley Authority, No. 12-S-1930, N.D. Ala., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 130741).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Supreme Court Hears Arguments On Personal Jurisdiction For BNSF Injury Suits

WASHINGTON, D.C. - BNSF Railway Co. is not subject to general personal jurisdiction in Montana because it is not at home in that state, the attorney representing BNSF argued on April 25 before the U.S. Supreme Court in the appeal of two personal injury cases that were consolidated by the Montana Supreme Court (BNSF Railway Company v. Kelli Tyrrell, as Special Administrator for the Estate of Brent T. Tyrrell, et al., No. 16-405, U.S. Sup.).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Supreme Court Hears Arguments On Personal Jurisdiction For BNSF Injury Suits

WASHINGTON, D.C. - BNSF Railway Co. is not subject to general personal jurisdiction in Montana because it is not at home in that state, the attorney representing BNSF argued on April 25 before the U.S. Supreme Court in the appeal of two personal injury cases that were consolidated by the Montana Supreme Court (BNSF Railway Company v. Kelli Tyrrell, as Special Administrator for the Estate of Brent T. Tyrrell, et al., No. 16-405, U.S. Sup.).

Mealey's Banking & Finance - Federal Judge Finds Claims Related To Modification Request Can Proceed

KANSAS CITY, Kan. - A Kansas federal judge on April 20 partially granted a motion filed by a loan management company to dismiss numerous claims asserted against it in relation to the denial of a loan modification, but found that claims for violation of the Truth In Lending Act (TILA) and Regulation X of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) can proceed (Douglas and Serenity Boedicker v. Rushmore Loan Management Services, LLC, No. 2:16-cv-02798, D. Kan., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 60597).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Appeals Court Reinstates Association's Warranty Claim Against Developer

MINNEAPOLIS - An appellate court panel in Minnesota on April 17 overturned a trial court judge's ruling finding that a building association's breach of express warranty claim arising from water intrusion caused by a lack of proper caulking was untimely, ruling that the judge applied the wrong statute of limitations period (Town Center Office Plaza Association, Inc. v. Carlson Real Estate Ventures, LLC, et al., No. A16-1230, Minn. App., 2017 Minn. App. Unpub. LEXIS 349).

Mealey's Banking & Finance - Panel: Insurer Breached Duty To Defend Claims Of Suspicious 'Flip' Transactions

CHICAGO - The Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on April 10 found that an errors and omissions liability insurer has a duty to defend against underlying claims that its title insurance agency insured executed real estate "flip" transactions "contrary to the spirit and purpose" of its agency contract (Title Industry Assurance Co. v. First American Title Ins. Co., et al., No. 15-3310, 7th Cir., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 6092).

Mealey's Insurance - Panel: Insurer Breached Duty To Defend Claims Of Suspicious 'Flip' Transactions

CHICAGO - The Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on April 10 found that an errors and omissions liability insurer has a duty to defend against underlying claims that its title insurance agency insured executed real estate "flip" transactions "contrary to the spirit and purpose" of its agency contract (Title Industry Assurance Co. v. First American Title Ins. Co., et al., No. 15-3310, 7th Cir., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 6092).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - Federal Judge Finds No Facts Showing Loan Transfer Was Void

SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on April 5 dismissed numerous claims asserted by a property owner, including causes of action for violations of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), finding that he failed to plead the claims with the required specificity (Fernando D. Lopez v. Wells Fargo, N.A., et al., No. 16-cv-0811, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 52527).

Mealey's Banking & Finance - Federal Judge Finds No Facts Showing Loan Transfer Was Void

SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on April 5 dismissed numerous claims asserted by a property owner, including causes of action for violations of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), finding that he failed to plead the claims with the required specificity (Fernando D. Lopez v. Wells Fargo, N.A., et al., No. 16-cv-0811, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 52527).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Federal Magistrate Judge Refuses To Exclude Real Estate Appraisal Testimony

CHICAGO - An Illinois federal magistrate judge on April 4 declined to bar testimony from real estate appraisers in a dispute over a lease's purchase option between a gasoline retailer and a landlord because excluding either appraisal would upset the current balance (Buchanan Energy [N] LLC v. Lake Bluff Holdings LLC, No. 15-3851, N.D. Ill., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 51403).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Expert Testimony Partially Excluded But Fact Issues Exist On Police Indifference

CHICAGO - While partially excluding testimony on an alleged history of indifference by the Chicago Police Department (CPD), an Illinois federal judge ruled March 31 that fact issues remain as to whether the city of Chicago was responsible for a fatal drunken driving accident involving one of its officers (Jose Andres Cazares, as special administrator of the estate of Andrew Cazares, and Fausto T. Manzera, as special administrator of the estate of Fausto A. Manzera, et al. v. Joseph Frugoli, et al., No. 13-5626, N.D. Ill., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 49938).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Expert Testimony Partially Excluded But Fact Issues Exist On Police Indifference

CHICAGO - While partially excluding testimony on an alleged history of indifference by the Chicago Police Department (CPD), an Illinois federal judge ruled March 31 that fact issues remain as to whether the city of Chicago was responsible for a fatal drunken driving accident involving one of its officers (Jose Andres Cazares, as special administrator of the estate of Andrew Cazares, and Fausto T. Manzera, as special administrator of the estate of Fausto A. Manzera, et al. v. Joseph Frugoli, et al., No. 13-5626, N.D. Ill., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 49938).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - Judge Dismisses UCL Claims Related To Allegedly Unfair Rental Late Fees

SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on March 31 granted a real estate company's motion to dismiss claims that it violated California's unfair competition law (UCL) when it charged a tenant a late fee, finding that the tenant failed to show that the fees were not practicable (Jordan Kohler v. Greystar Real Estate Partners, LLC, No. 15-cv-02195, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 49762).

Mealey's Insurance - Having Been Told That Insolvent Insurer Is Without Assets, Judge Closes Estate

CHICAGO - An Illinois judge on March 31 ordered the end of the rehabilitation of a workers' compensation trust at the request of the state's director of insurance (In the Matter of the Rehabilitation of Illinois State Bowling Proprietors' & recreational Industry Workers' Compensation Trust, No. 11 CH 36870, Ill. Cir., Cook Co.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Purchase Of Retirement Home Is Relevant To Claim For Disability Benefits, Judge Says

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Because certain circumstances regarding a disability claimant's move to Florida may be relevant to a claim for total disability benefits, a Florida federal judge on March 29 determined that a disability insurer is entitled to information regarding the claimant's real estate transactions (Mark Goodman v. Security Mutual Life Insurance Company of New York, No. 16-81742, S.D. Fla.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 45966).

Mealey's Insurance - Purchase Of Retirement Home Is Relevant To Claim For Disability Benefits, Judge Says

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Because certain circumstances regarding a disability claimant's move to Florida may be relevant to a claim for total disability benefits, a Florida federal judge on March 29 determined that a disability insurer is entitled to information regarding the claimant's real estate transactions (Mark Goodman v. Security Mutual Life Insurance Company of New York, No. 16-81742, S.D. Fla.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 45966).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Panel: Lead-Poisoning Case Against Kennedy Krieger Researchers Properly Dismissed

ANNAPOLIS, Md. - A Maryland appeals panel on March 22 affirmed a trial court ruling that dismissed a lawsuit against the Kennedy Krieger Institute Inc. (KKI) brought by the estate of a deceased man who contended that he had suffered from lead-paint poisoning as a result of participating in a lead abatement study KKI ran in the 1990s (Kimberly Smith, personal representative of the Estate of Cecil Harris III v. Kennedy Krieger Institute Inc., No. 2241, Sept. Term, 2014; 2017 Md. App. LEXIS 305).