LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Excess Insurer Did Not Breach Contract; No Ultimate Net Loss Incurred

SAN FRANCISCO - Because an insured suffered no "ultimate net loss" under an excess insurance policy and did not incur compensable property damage, the excess insurer did not breach its contract with the insured or its implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing by failing to cover an underlying settlement of claims arising out of a construction project, a California federal judge ruled May 2 (Thompson Pacific Construction, Inc. v. American International Group, Inc., et al., No. 15-01091, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 58237).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Asbestos Brake Maker, Amici Urge California Court To Take 'Every Exposure' Case

LOS ANGELES - California's high court should accept review of a $2 million verdict in an asbestos case and firmly establish that testimony that any exposure to asbestos causes disease falls short of the state's causation standard, amici curiae argue in an April 29 brief (Nickole Davis, as personal representative, etc. v. Honeywell International Inc., No. S233753, Calif. Sup.).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Asbestos Brake Maker, Amici Urge California Court To Take 'Every Exposure' Case

LOS ANGELES - California's high court should accept review of a $2 million verdict in an asbestos case and firmly establish that testimony that any exposure to asbestos causes disease falls short of the state's causation standard, amici curiae argue in an April 29 brief (Nickole Davis, as personal representative, etc. v. Honeywell International Inc., No. S233753, Calif. Sup.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 2nd Circuit Asked To Uphold Award To Swedish Investors

NEW YORK - In an April 28 brief, several investors urge the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to uphold a New York federal court decision recognizing a $185,530,618 award issued in their favor by the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) (Ioan Micula, et al. v. Government of Romania, No. 15-3109-cv, 2nd Cir.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Patent Board Institutes Review Of Commodities Trading Patent

ALEXANDRIA, Va. - In a 46-page ruling issued April 28, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) indicated that it will review the patentability of an invention that claims repositioning of market information on a graphical user interface (GUI) and electronic trading (IBG LLC and Interactive Brokers LLC v. Trading Technologies International Inc., No. CBM2016-0009, PTAB).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Virginia Federal Judge Confirms 3 Awards Totaling $16.5 Million

NORFOLK, Va. - A Virginia federal judge on April 26 confirmed three arbitration awards totaling more than $16.5 million from the International Commercial Arbitration Court at The Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation (ICAC) (Research and Development Center "teploenergetika" v. EP International LLC, et al., No. 2:15-cv-362, E.D. Va.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 55843).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Federal Circuit Upholds Dismissal Of Patent Case On Mootness Grounds

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Texas federal judge properly dismissed as moot a patent infringement action, despite the addition of newly added patent claims following re-examination by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled April 22 (Target Training International Ltd. v. Extended DISC North America Inc., Nos. 15-1873, -1908, Fed. Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 7292).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Nevada Federal Judge Denies Approval Of $250,000 Resort Fees Class Settlement

LAS VEGAS - A Nevada federal judge on April 18 denied preliminary approval of a $250,000 settlement to be paid by a rental management company in a suit over the collection of "resort fees," finding that the plaintiff failed to show that the terms were fair and reasonable (Alice Sinanyan, et al. v. Luxury Suites International, LLC, et al., No. 15-225, D. Nev.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 51511).

Mealey's IP/Tech - 9th Circuit Vacates Rejection Of Lanham Act, Unfair Competition Claims

SAN FRANCISCO - An Arizona federal judge erroneously deemed six counts of false advertising under the Lanham Act preempted by the Food, Drug & Cosmetic Act (FDCA), as amended by the Dietary Supplement Health Education Act (DSHEA), the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled April 14 (ThermoLife International LLC v. Gaspari Nutrition Inc., No. 14-15180, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 6807).

Mealey's Insurance - Panel: 'Corporate Screw-ups' Do No Excuse Insured's Failure To Give Timely Notice

RICHMOND, Va. - The Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals held April 14 that internal "corporate screw-ups" provide no basis to excuse an insured's failure to give its professional liability insurer timely notice of an underlying lawsuit after being validly served with process, further finding that the insurer suffered "actual prejudice" from the late notice (St. Paul Mercury Insurance Company v. American Bank Holdings, Inc., No. 15-1559, 4th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 6793).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - On Remand, 9th Circuit Again Finds For Employer In Mutual Fund Dispute

SAN FRANCISCO - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on April 13 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.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Reinsurer Asks Court To Enforce Confirmation Of Arbitration Award

NEW YORK - A reinsurer asked a federal court in New York on April 5 to enforce its earlier order confirming an arbitration award and direct an international insurer to pay the reinsurer more than $460,000 in fees and costs incurred in a different, but allegedly related, litigation (National Indemnity Company v. IRB Brasil Resseguros S.A., No. 15-cv-03975, S.D. N.Y.).

Mealey's Insurance - Reinsurer Asks Court To Enforce Confirmation Of Arbitration Award

NEW YORK - A reinsurer asked a federal court in New York on April 5 to enforce its earlier order confirming an arbitration award and direct an international insurer to pay the reinsurer more than $460,000 in fees and costs incurred in a different, but allegedly related, litigation (National Indemnity Company v. IRB Brasil Resseguros S.A., No. 15-cv-03975, S.D. N.Y.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - ICSID Ad Hoc Committee Annuls Damages Section Of $28.6 Million Award

WASHINGTON, D.C. - An ad hoc committee of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) on April 5 granted the request of a Delaware company to annul the damages and costs sections of a $28.6 million award in its favor against the Republic of Guatemala because an ICSID tribunal denied its request for compensation for future losses (TECO Guatemala Holdings LLC v. Republic of Guatemala, No. ARB/10/23, ICSID).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Federal Judge: Fact Issues Exist As To Whether Unfair Business Practices Occurred

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - A Connecticut federal judge on April 5 held that there are genuine issues of material fact as to whether an employment practices liability insurer's investigation of an unlawful discharge claim was reasonable, sufficient and/or properly conducted, allowing part of a claim that the insurer violated Connecticut Unfair Insurance Practices Act (CUIPA) and the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act (CUTPA) to proceed (Teri Tucker v. American International Group Inc., et al., No. 09-1499, D. Conn.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 46676).

Mealey's Insurance - Federal Judge: Fact Issues Exist As To Whether Unfair Business Practices Occurred

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - A Connecticut federal judge on April 5 held that there are genuine issues of material fact as to whether an employment practices liability insurer's investigation of an unlawful discharge claim was reasonable, sufficient and/or properly conducted, allowing part of a claim that the insurer violated Connecticut Unfair Insurance Practices Act (CUIPA) and the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act (CUTPA) to proceed (Teri Tucker v. American International Group Inc., et al., No. 09-1499, D. Conn.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 46676).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - U.S. High Court Declines To Consider Child Care Workers' Union Fee Challenge

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on April 4 denied a petition for writ of certiorari filed by Michigan child care providers who oppose union dues or agency fees automatically being withdrawn from their state subsidies (Carrie Schlaud, et al. v. International Union, UAW, et al., No. 15-166, U.S. Sup.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Mining Company Submits ICSID Arbitration Request Seeking $268.3 Million

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Dominion Minerals Corp. on March 29 submitted a request for arbitration with the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), seeking an order directing the Republic of Panama to pay at least $268.3 million in a dispute over mining projects (Dominion Minerals Corp. v. Republic of Panama, ICSID ARB No. n/a).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Certiorari Denied In Dispute Over Inconsistent Patent Expert Testimony

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A July 2015 ruling by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that affirmed a judgment of noninfringement based upon internally inconsistent testimony from a patent plaintiff's expert witness remains intact, thanks to a denial of certiorari March 28 by the U.S. Supreme Court (ParkerVision Inc. v. Qualcomm Inc., No. 15-1092, U.S. Sup.).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Novartis To Pay $25M To Settle International Bribery Claims In SEC Action

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Pharmaceutical company Novartis AG will pay $25 million to settle claims that it violated provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) by engaging in "pay-to-prescribe" scheme to increase sales of its products in China, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission administrative proceeding order filed March 23 (In the Matter of Novartis AG, No. 3-17177, SEC).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - California Federal Judge: Changes To Plan Were Authorized By Pension Act

SAN FRANCISCO - A defendant won partial judgment on the pleadings March 22, when a California federal judge agreed that an amendment that eliminated the ability of pension plan participants to "age into" a subsidized early retirement benefit "appear to be the types of changes contemplated and authorized" by the Pension Protection Act of 2006 (PPA) (Juan R. Reyes v. Bakery and Confectionary Union and Industry International Pension Fund, No. 14-5596, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 37221).

Mealey's Securities/D&O Liability - Novartis To Pay $25M To Settle International Bribery Claims In SEC Action

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Pharmaceutical company Novartis AG will pay $25 million to settle claims that it violated provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) by engaging in "pay-to-prescribe" scheme to increase sales of its products in China, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission administrative proceeding order filed March 23 (In the Matter of Novartis AG, No. 3-17177, SEC).

Mealey's Insurance - Futility Exception Applies In Benefits Denial Suit, 9th Circuit Panel Says

SAN FRANCISCO - A district court abused its discretion in granting summary judgment in favor of a disability insurer because a reasonable insured would have believed that filing an internal appeal of the insurer's denial of benefits would have been futile, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals said March 21 in noting that the futility exception to the exhaustion requirement under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act should have been applied (Richard Carey v. RMB United of Omaha Life Insurance Co., No. 14-55483, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 5149).

Mealey's IP/Tech - 4th Circuit Vacates, Remands Dispute Over 'Flanax' Trademark

RICHMOND, Va. - A Virginia federal judge's reversal of a trademark cancellation ordered by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO)'s Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) was vacated and remanded March 23 by the Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, which found that under the framework of Lexmark International Inc. v. Static Control Components Inc. (134 S. Ct. 1377 [2014]), a drug maker and foreign trademark owner is authorized under Section 43(a) of the Lanham Act to bring an action against the owner of the same mark in the United States (Belmora LLC v. Bayer Consumer Care AG and Bayer Healthcare LLC, No. 15-1335, 4th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 5380).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Software At Center Of New Copyright Dispute Between Oracle, HP

SAN FRANCISCO - Oracle America Inc. and Oracle International Corp. (Oracle, collectively) on March 22 took aim at Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co. (HP) in a new copyright infringement complaint filed in California federal court (Oracle America Inc. v. Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company, No. 16-1393, N.D. Calif.).