FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - A Florida federal magistrate judge on March 4 ordered a copyright and trademark infringement plaintiff to hand over evidence relating to its finances from 2010 to the present (Exist Inc. v. ESY Inc., No. 14-62429, S.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26248).
MIAMI - A Florida man on March 3 filed a class action lawsuit in federal court, claiming that veneer flooring manufactured in China and sold by Lumber Liquidators Inc. contains toxic levels of the carcinogen formaldehyde (Joaquin Badias, et al. v. Lumber Liquidators Inc., et al., No. 15-cv-20876, S.D. Fla.).
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - A copyright infringement defendant on March 2 won dismissal of the allegations when a Florida federal judge found that exercising jurisdiction would violate due process (Exist Inc. v. Woodland Trading Inc., No. 14-61354, S.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 24872).
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A federal jury in Florida on Feb. 26 awarded $340,000 to the widow of a man who alleged that his lung cancer was the result of smoking cigarettes manufactured by R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. and Philip Morris USA Inc. (Merle Zamboni, et al. v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., No. 3:09-cv-11957, M.D. Fla.).
ATLANTA - The 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 27 reversed and remanded a lower federal court's $166,518.17 judgment in favor of Florida insureds in a sinkhole coverage dispute with their homeowners insurer (Severin Hegel, et al. v. The First Liberty Insurance Corp., No. 14-10549, 11th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 3024).
CHICAGO - Allstate Life Insurance Co.'s breach of contract lawsuit against a former life insurance agent and his agency is better suited to Florida federal court, a federal judge in Illinois ruled Feb. 23, explaining that all of the former agent's allegedly fraudulent conduct occurred in Florida (Allstate Life Insurance Company v. Stanley W. Burns Inc., et al., No. 14-cv-7098, N.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 20905).
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A Florida judge on Feb. 19 ordered a Nevada-domiciled insurer into an ancillary receivership after the insurer was put into liquidation in its home state (State of Florida, ex rel., the Florida Department of Financial Services v. Sensible Home Warranty, LLC, No. 2015-CA-0273, Fla. Cir., 2nd Cir., Leon Co.).
LAKELAND, Fla. - A Florida appellate panel on Feb. 20 reversed and remanded a lower court, holding that ordering the state's insurance guarantor to participate in an appraisal of a home's sinkhole damage is at odds with the guarantor's statutory mandate (Florida Insurance Guaranty Association, Inc. v. Donna Frank, No. 2D13-5453, Fla. App., 2nd Dist.; 2015 Fla. App. LEXIS 2352).
TAMPA, Fla. - A Florida federal judge applied Alabama law on Feb. 20 to dismiss breach of contract and bad faith claims against a commercial liability insurer regarding its duty to indemnify a settlement of an underlying construction defects case (MI Windows & Doors LLC f/k/a MI Windows & Doors Inc. and MI Home Products Inc. v. Liberty Mutual Fire Insurance Co., No. 14-3139, M.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 20544).
MIAMI - A federal magistrate judge in Florida on Feb. 17 recommended accepting a home health care clinic owner's guilty plea in a $13 million Medicare fraud scheme, finding that the defendant was capable and competent in entering an informed plea (United States of America v. Alexander Lara, No. 15-cr-20029-KMM, S.D. Fla.).
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - A plaintiff's proposed jury instructions and verdict form allowed a jury to find that her husband was a member of the Engle class but that his lung cancer and death were not caused by the negligence of R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., a state appeals court ruled Feb. 18 (Shirley B. Baker v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., No. 4D13-570, Fla. App., 4th Dist.).
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Claims filed in 2007 alleging that a Florida city in 1992 unilaterally stopped following a 1982 consent decree requiring certain hiring protocol for its fire department were filed too late and barred by laches, a Florida federal judge ruled Feb. 16 (Olivette Coffey Jr., et al. v. Dwight Braddy, etc., et al., No. 71-44, M.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18424).
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - A Florida appeals panel on Feb. 13 reinstated a general contractor's third-party lawsuit against a subcontractor accused of improperly installing drywall in a single-family home, after finding that the general contractor's allegations, "although inartfully drafted," could survive a motion to dismiss (Ray Coudriet Builders Inc. v. R.K. Edwards Inc., et al., Nos. 5D13-2176, 5D13-4189, Fla. App., 5th Dist.; 2015 Fla. App. LEXIS 1916).
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - A Florida appellate panel on Feb. 13 reversed and remanded a lower court opinion regarding what definition of "covered claim" controls a sinkhole damage suit brought by homeowners against the state's insurance guarantor standing in for an insolvent insurer (Florida Insurance Guaranty Association, Inc. v. William Simmons and Sylvia Simmons, No. 5D13-4095, Fla. App., 5th Dist.).
TAMPA, Fla. - A Florida federal judge on Feb. 10 declined to rule on a summary judgment motion in a copyright infringement file-sharing case, finding that the plaintiff had not had adequate time to conduct relevant discovery prior to the motion's filing (Malibu Media LLC v. Roberto Roldan, No. 8:13-cv-03007, M.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 15944).
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - A Florida appeals panel on Feb. 13 held that damage to insureds' pool deck, rock garden and waterfall resulted directly or indirectly from subsurface water pressure, reversing and remanding a lower court's ruling in favor of insureds in a breach of contract dispute arising from a tropical storm (Liberty Mutual Fire Insurance Co. Nigel Martinez, et al., No. 5D13-2683, Fla. App., 5th Dist.; 2015 Fla. App. LEXIS 1918).
FORT MYERS, Fla. - A federal jury in Florida returned a $4.25 million verdict on Feb. 11 after finding that a man who died of lung cancer was addicted to cigarettes manufactured by R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. and that his addiction was a legal cause of his death (Mary Sowers, et al. v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., et al., No. 3:09 C 11829, M.D. Fla.).
TAMPA, Fla. - Having satisfied its self-insured retentions (SIR) under its insurance policies for three underlying construction defect lawsuits, an insurer correctly defended and paid settlements, a Florida federal judge ruled Feb. 12, finding that an insured is not entitled to reimbursement of the SIR payments (Summit Contractors Inc. v. Crum & Forster Specialty Insurance Co., et al., No. 13-295, M.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 17502).
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Dismissal of a securities class action lawsuit is not proper, a federal judge in Florida ruled Feb. 10, because shareholders have properly pleaded their federal securities law claims alleging that the defendants engaged in an illegal "pump-and-dump" scheme (Todd Stanaford, et al v. Robert Donald Bruce Genovese, et al., No. 13-80923, S.D. Fla.).