MADISON, Wis. - Defendants are entitled to depose an expert witness regardless of his testimony or their familiarity with it, a federal judge held in an opinion filed Nov. 9, while also consolidating for trial four asbestos cases involving alleged defects in respirators (Milton Boyer and Kathy Boyer v. Weyerhaeuser Co., 3M Co., Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., Owens-Illinois Co., No. 14-286, Katrina Masephol v. Weyerhaeuser Co., 3M Co., Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., Owens-Illinois Co., No. 14-186, Janet Pecher, et al. v. v. Weyerhaeuser Co., 3M Co., Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., Owens-Illinois Co., No. 14-147, Virginia Prust, et al. v. v. Weyerhaeuser Co., 3M Co., Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., Owens-Illinois Co., No. 14-143, Roger Seehafer and Janice Seehafer v. Weyerhaeuser Co. and Owens-Illinois Inc., No. 14-161, Wesley Sydow and Theresa Sydow v. v. Weyerhaeuser Co., 3M Co., Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., Owens-Illinois Co., No. 14-219, Brian Heckel, et al. v. CBS Corp., et al., No. 13-459, Dianne Jacobs v. Rapid American Corp., et al., No. 12-899, W.D. Wis.).
CHICAGO - A faxed magazine subscription renewal form did not violate the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and other laws, an Illinois federal judge ruled Nov. 10, granting the defendant's motion for summary judgment (Grind Lap Services, Inc., et al. v. UBM LLC, et al., No. 14-6448, N.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 152134).
CHICAGO - Although two generic testosterone replacement therapy products are reference listed drugs (RLDs), their manufacturers still cannot add new warnings and claims by plaintiffs in a multidistrict litigation are preempted by federal law, an Illinois federal judge ruled Nov. 9 (In Re: Testosterone Replacement Therapy Products Liability Litigation, No. 14-1748, N.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 151414).
EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. - Boeing Co. and participants in its 401(k) plan on Nov. 5 moved in Illinois federal court for preliminary approval of a $57 million settlement, ending nine years of litigation related to excessive fee claims alleged under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (Gary Spano, et al. v. The Boeing Company, et al., No. 06-743, S.D. Ill.).
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - The Supreme Court of Illinois on Nov. 4 reversed an appeals court ruling reinstating a $10.1 billion consumer fraud verdict stemming from Philip Morris USA Inc.'s marketing of "light" cigarettes (Sharon Price, et al. v. Philip Morris Inc., No. 117687, Ill. Sup.; 2015 Ill. LEXIS 1265).
CHICAGO - While it creates a harsh outcome, Illinois law forecloses on a tort remedy for a man whose mesothelioma arose outside the state's 25-year limit on workers' compensation claims, the majority of the Illinois Supreme Court held Nov. 4 (Ellen Folta, et al. v. Ferro Engineering, a division of ON Marine Services Co., No. 118070, Ill. Sup.).
CHICAGO - In a breach-of-agreement lawsuit, an Illinois federal judge on Nov. 1 excluded testimony regarding a clean-room design, the termination of the supply agreement and the disclosure of trade secrets to third parties (Miller UK Ltd. and Miller International Ltd. v. Caterpillar, Inc., No. 10-03770, N.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 147843).
BENTON, Ill. - After denying several motions to exclude testimony, an Illinois federal judge on Nov. 3 granted a request to certify a statutory consumer fraud class in a lawsuit against the manufacturers of single-serve coffee cups (Linda Suchanek, et al. v. Sturm Foods, Inc. and Treehouse Foods, Inc., No. 11-565, S.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 148729).
EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. - A federal jury in Illinois hearing an asbestosis case involving exposures in the U.S. Navy found for lone remaining defendant John Crane Inc. on Oct. 29 (Andrew V. Kochera v. General Electric Co., et al., No. 14-29, S.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 125726).
PEORIA, Ill. - A federal judge in Illinois on Oct. 30 sustained the federal government's objections to a magistrate judge's recommendation denying its motion for immediate access to property housing asbestos containing material (ACM), finding that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency submitted sufficient evidence concerning the amount of contamination on the property as well as an adequate remedial plan (United States of America v. Donna Gearing, et al., No. 15CV01333, C.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS).
CHICAGO - A Pennsylvania candy company has sufficiently stated its cybersquatting and trademark-related claims against another candy firm, an Illinois federal judge ruled Oct. 22, denying the defendant's motion to dismiss the complaint that had previously been transferred, rather than dismissed, by another federal judge (Mon Aimee Chocolat Inc. v. Tushiya LLC, et al., No. 1:15-cv-04235, N.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 143549).
CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on Oct. 23 stayed an insurer's suit seeking an order compelling the arbitration of an asbestos coverage dispute until a parallel suit in Wisconsin state court is decided because the Wisconsin suit will address the same payment agreement that is at the heart of the Illinois federal petition (Allstate Insurance Co. v. A.O. Smith Corp., No. 15-6574, N.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 143995).
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - The named plaintiff in a Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) class complaint timely moved for class certification by filing such a motion concurrently with the complaint, the Illinois Supreme Court ruled Oct. 22, partially reversing an appellate panel's decision (Ballard RN Center, Inc. v. Kohll's Pharmacy and Homecare, Inc., No. 118644, Ill. Sup.; 2015 Ill. LEXIS 1248).
NEWARK, N.J. - A couple that owns federal copyrights in a number of songs from before 1972 filed a complaint against satellite radio firm Sirius XM Radio Inc. and online streaming service Pandora Media Inc. in New Jersey federal court on Oct. 19, asserting that the companies have been airing their recordings without paying proper royalties (Arthur Sheridan, et al. v. Sirius XM Radio, Inc., et al., No. 2:15-cv-07576, D. N.J. and Arthur Sheridan, et al. v. iHeartMedia Inc., No. 2:15-cv-07574, D. N.J.).
CHICAGO - A Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Oct. 20 upheld a federal judge in Illinois' ruling awarding summary judgment to Ohio National Life Assurance Corp., finding that it provided pro se defendants accused of purchasing stranger-obtained life insurance (STOLI) policies with sufficient notice of the motion (Ohio National Life Assurance Corp. v. Douglas W. Davis, et al., Nos. 14-3664, 14-3725, 7th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 18157).
CHICAGO - A federal magistrate judge in Illinois granted in part an independent diagnostic testing facility's (IDTF) motion to dismiss when finding that a man could not pursue claims that it violated the False Claims Act (FCA) when allowing noncertified technicians to perform remote heart-monitoring services for patients and then billing Medicare for the service, but found that the rest of the man's lawsuit sufficiently stated claims against the defendant (United States of America, ex rel. Matthew Cieszynski v. LifeWatch Services Inc., No. 13 CV 4052, N.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 141721).
CHICAGO - Allegations that the predecessor-in-interest for two declaratory judgment defendants committed fraud before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) in procuring patents for an automated card shuffler were rejected on jurisdictional grounds Oct. 9 by an Illinois federal judge (Shuffle Tech International LLC, et al. v. Bally Technologies Inc., et al., No. 15-3702, N.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 138741).
CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on Oct. 7 denied a motion by Kohl's Corp. and Kohl's Department Stores Inc. (collectively, Kohl's) to strike class claims alleging that the defendants' retail stores are inaccessible to individuals with disabilities (Equal Rights Center, et al. v. Kohl's Corporation, et al., No. 14-8259, N.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 137234).
CHICAGO - A reinsurer on Oct. 7 removed to Illinois federal court a suit in which the holder of the rights to certain accounts receivables due to an insolvent insurer is suing the reinsurer, alleging that it owes more than $180,000 stemming from 1980s reinsurance agreements (Pine Top Receivables of Illinois, LLC v. Transfercom, Ltd., No. 15-cv-8908, N.D. Ill.).