LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's Litigation Procedure - N.J. Federal Judge Sends FACTA Receipt Class Suit Back To Illinois State Court

NEWARK, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on Jan. 11 adopted a federal magistrate judge's recommendations and sent a class complaint alleging that the printing of more than five digits of credit card numbers on receipts violated the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act (FACTA) amendment to the Fair Credit Reporting Act back to an Illinois state court (Anita Parker, et al. v. J. Crew Grp., Inc., et al., No. 17-1214, D. N.J., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 5360).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - U.S. Supreme Court Denies Cert In ERISA Forum-Selection Appeal

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Jan. 16 denied a petition for writ of certiorari filed by a retiree seeking reinstatement of terminated health benefits under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (George W. Mathias v. United States District Court for the Central District of Illinois, et al., No. 17-740, U.S. Sup.).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Refuses To Dismiss Added Plan Participant's Breach Of Fiduciary Duty Claim

CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on Jan. 10 denied the University of Chicago's motion to dismiss a breach of fiduciary duty claim that was brought by a retirement plan participant who was added as a plaintiff in a first amended complaint alleging excessive fees (Winifred J. Daugherty, et al. v. The University of Chicago, No. 17-3736, N.D. Ill.).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Claims That Breast Implant Maker Concealed Leaks Can Proceed, Illinois Judge Says

CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on Jan. 11 said a plaintiff can proceed with her claim that Mentor Worldwide LLC concealed the risk of leaks from its MemoryGel breast implants and dismissed without prejudice her other claims as preempted (Catherine Gravitt, et al. v. Mentor Worldwide, LLC, No. 17-5428, N.D. Ill., Eastern Div., 2018 U.S. Dist. 4822).

Mealey's Insurance - Amici Praise Pregnancy Centers' Efforts, Bemoan Abortion Disclosure Law

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Women helped by crisis pregnancy centers and 23 such centers based in Illinois sang the praises of the volunteer organizations in amicus curiae briefs filed with the U.S. Supreme Court on Jan. 11 in an effort to bolster a Jan. 8 opening brief challenging a California law requiring the centers to disclose the availability of abortions (NIFLA, et al. v. Xavier Becerra, et al., No. 16-1140, U.S. Sup.).

Mealey's Insurance - Bankruptcy Federal Judge Approves Insolvent Mortgage Insurer's Reorganization

WILMINGTON, Del. - A Delaware federal bankruptcy judge on Jan. 9 confirmed an insolvent mortgage insurer's Chapter 11 reorganization over objections from the Office of the U.S. Trustee and Illinois regulators (In re: Triad Guaranty Inc., Chapter 11, No. 13-11452, D. Del. Bkcy.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Nationwide Class Certified In Suit Over Vacuum, Filter In-Home Sales Practices

EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. - An Illinois federal judge on Jan. 2 granted a motion for class certification filed by an Illinois consumer who accuses a company that sells vacuums and filters of engaging in practices that defraud consumers in violation of the Federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act and state laws (Sabra Rench, et al. v. TD Bank, N.A., et al., No. 13-922, S.D. Ill., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 368).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Illinois Supreme Court Orders Partial Summary Judgment In Medical Negligence Suit

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - In a 4-3 decision issued Dec. 29, a majority of the Illinois Supreme Court found that a hospital cannot be held vicariously liable under the doctrine of apparent agency for the acts of the employees of an independent clinic, reversing a lower appellate court's answer to a certified question in a medical negligence suit (Christina Yarbrough, et al. v. Northwestern Memorial Hospital, et al., No. 121367, Ill. Sup., 2017 Ill. LEXIS 1304).

Mealey's Insurance - Panel Says Insured Proved Existence Of Missing Policies In Contamination Dispute

CHICAGO - The First District Illinois Appellate Court on Dec. 29 affirmed a trial court's ruling that an insured seeking coverage for underlying environmental contamination lawsuits proved the existence of missing insurance policies under which it seeks coverage (The Travelers Indemnity Co., et al. v. Rogers Cartage Co., No. 1-16-0780, Ill. App., 1st Dist., 2017 Ill. App. LEXIS 829).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Judge Tosses Punitive Damages Award In AndroGel Injury Suit, Orders New Trial

CHICAGO - The federal judge in Illinois presiding over lawsuits alleging that the use of testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) resulted in injuries on Dec. 22 vacated a jury's $150 million punitive damages award to a man and ordered a new trial on his claim for fraudulent misrepresentation after finding that the jury's verdict, which also found AbbVie Inc. and Abbott Laboratories Inc. (collectively, AbbVie) not liable for negligence and strict liability, was "logically incompatible" (In re: Testosterone Replacement Therapy Products Liability Coordination Pretrial Proceedings, MDL 2545, Case No. 14-1748, Jesse Mitchell v. AbbVie, No. 14 C 9178, N.D. Ill.).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Class Claims Over Airline's Revocation Of Hiring Program Are Preempted By RLA

CHICAGO - An aviation maintenance technician's breach of contract class claims filed after his employer eliminated the program under which he was hired, affecting the speed at which he would achieve the top pay he was promised, are preempted by the Railway Labor Act (RLA), an Illinois federal judge ruled Dec. 18, granting the defendant's motion to dismiss (Thomas Ballard, et al. v. American Airlines, Inc., No. 17-2534, N.D. Ill., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 206948).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Illinois Appeals Panel Affirms Summary Judgment In Premises Liability Suit

ELGIN, Ill. - A panel of the First District Illinois Appellate Court on Dec. 19 found that a trial court did not err in granting summary judgment to a grocery store after finding that a woman who slipped in oil was unable to show that the hazard was caused by an employee of the grocery store (Adela Pantoja v. Pete's Fresh Market 4700 Corporation, No. 1-17-0679, Ill. App., 1st Dist., 2016 Ill. App. Unpub. LEXIS 2680).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Class Claims Over Airline's Revocation Of Hiring Program Are Preempted By RLA

CHICAGO - An aviation maintenance technician's breach of contract class claims filed after his employer eliminated the program under which he was hired, affecting the speed at which he would achieve the top pay he was promised, are preempted by the Railway Labor Act (RLA), an Illinois federal judge ruled Dec. 18, granting the defendant's motion to dismiss (Thomas Ballard, et al. v. American Airlines, Inc., No. 17-2534, N.D. Ill., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 206948).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Testim Bellwether Plaintiff: Off-Label Evidence Probative, New Trial Sought

CHICAGO - A plaintiff who lost his testosterone replacement therapy case on Dec. 14 asked an Illinois federal court for a new trial, arguing that the court erred by excluding evidence the plaintiff says shows that defendant Auxilium Pharmaceuticals LLC pushed off-label sales of the drug Testim to get more sales and profits (In Re: Testosterone Replacement Therapy Products Liability Litigation, MDL Docket No. 2545, No. 14-1748, Steve Holtsclaw v. Auxilium Pharmaceuticals, LLC, et al., No. 15-3941, N.D. Ill.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Assistant Managers Conditionally Certified In Applebee's Franchise Wage Suit

CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on Dec. 8 partially granted conditional certification in a class complaint brought by a restaurant franchise assistant manager (AM) who alleges that she and others were misclassified as exempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and Illinois wage laws but granted a motion to dismiss by one of the franchisee defendants and gave the lead plaintiff one month to amend her complaint to show that that the defendant was her employer (Chamora Ivery, et al. v. RMH Franchise Corp., et al., No. 17-1619, N.D. Ill., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 202270).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Assistant Managers Conditionally Certified In Applebee's Franchise Wage Suit

CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on Dec. 8 partially granted conditional certification in a class complaint brought by a restaurant franchise assistant manager (AM) who alleges that she and others were misclassified as exempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and Illinois wage laws but granted a motion to dismiss by one of the franchisee defendants and gave the lead plaintiff one month to amend her complaint to show that that the defendant was her employer (Chamora Ivery, et al. v. RMH Franchise Corp., et al., No. 17-1619, N.D. Ill., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 202270).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - U.S. Supreme Court Denies Stay In ERISA Forum-Selection Appeals

WASHINGTON, D.C. - On Dec. 8, two days after the U.S. Supreme Court denied a stay request filed by a retiree seeking reinstatement terminated health benefits under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, the employer being sued waived its right to respond to the retiree's petition for writ of certiorari (George W. Mathias v. United States District Court for the Central District of Illinois, et al., No. 17-740, U.S. Sup.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Class Certification, Summary Judgment Motions Filed In Facebook Biometric Suit

SAN FRANCISCO - On Dec. 8, the same day that a group of plaintiffs moved for class certification in their claims under Illinois' Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) against Facebook Inc., the social network moved for summary judgment, telling a California federal court that applying the Illinois law to its out-of-state facial recognition activities would violate the dormant commerce clause of the U.S. Constitution (In re Facebook Biometric Information Privacy Litigation, No. 3:15-cv-03747, N.D. Calif.).

Mealey's Insurance - Panel: Insurance Benefits Company Is Entitled To Producer Commission

CHICAGO - An insurance benefits company is entitled to a producer commission but not a marketer's fee for a health insurer's breach of an oral contract under a marketing agreement amended following the health insurer's termination of a reinsurance agreement, an Illinois appeals panel affirmed Dec. 7 (Insurance Benefit Group Inc. v. Guarantee Trust Life Insurance Co., No. 1-16-2808, Ill. App., 1st Dist., 4th Div., 2017 Ill. App. LEXIS 763).

Mealey's Insurance - Federal Judge Denies Motion To Dismiss In Chemical Exposure Coverage Dispute

CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on Dec. 7 denied an insurer's motion to dismiss after rejecting the insurer's argument that the potential indemnitor for underlying liabilities arising out of exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls should be named as the defendant pursuant to a 1999 settlement between the insurer and the potential indemnitor because the coverage dispute is based on the insured's contracts with the insurer (Magnetek Inc. v. The Travelers Indemnity Co., et al., No. 17-3173, N.D. Ill.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Illinois Federal Judge Dismisses All State Law Claims In 'Church Plans' Class Suit

CHICAGO - Plaintiffs' attempt to bring alternative claims under state law in an Employee Retirement Income Security Act class suit that alleges that two defined-benefits plans were improperly classified as "church plans" creates an "absolute conflict," an Illinois federal judge ruled Dec. 5 dismissing the five state law claims (Sheilar Smith, et al. v. OSF Healthcare System, et al., No. 16-467, S.D. Ill., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 199805).

Mealey's Insurance - Underlying Asbestos Claims Arose Out Of Single Occurrence, Illinois Panel Says

CHICAGO - The First District Illinois Appellate Court on Dec. 5 affirmed a trial court's ruling that underlying asbestos bodily injury claims constitute only one occurrence under an insurer's policies because the underlying claims arose from the single cause of the insured's manufacturing of ash-handling conveyor systems for coal plants (United Conveyor Corp. v. Allstate Insurance Co., et al., No. 1-16-2314, Ill. App., 1st Dist., 2nd Div., 2017 Ill. App. LEXIS 744).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Illinois Federal Judge Dismisses All State Law Claims In 'Church Plans' Class Suit

CHICAGO - Plaintiffs' attempt to bring alternative claims under state law in an Employee Retirement Income Security Act class suit that alleges that two defined-benefits plans were improperly classified as "church plans" creates an "absolute conflict," an Illinois federal judge ruled Dec. 5 dismissing the five state law claims (Sheilar Smith, et al. v. OSF Healthcare System, et al., No. 16-467, S.D. Ill., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 199805).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Pension Fund Found To Have Failed To Plead Falsity, Scienter In Securities Suit

CHICAGO - Dismissal of a securities class action lawsuit against a for-profit college and certain of its current and former senior executives is warranted because the lead plaintiff in the action failed to plead falsity or scienter in making its federal securities law claims against the defendants, a federal judge in Illinois ruled Dec. 6 in granting the defendants' motion (Pension Trust Fund for Operating Engineers v. DeVry Education Group Inc., et al., No. 16-5198, N.D. Ill., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 200272).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Court: Company Must Produce Evidence It Proffered For Asbestos Plaintiff's Review

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - A judge properly ordered a boiler company to produce more than 5,000 index cards after the company voluntarily permitted inspection by an asbestos plaintiff, an Illinois appeals court held Dec. 5 (Larry Salvatore Sr., et al. v. Cleaver-Brooks, et al., No. 4-17-0173, Ill. App., 4th Dist.).