PHILADELPHIA - In a misappropriation of trade secrets lawsuit, a company's employee in its marketing department is unqualified due to a lack of technical knowledge to testify on issues such as "branding, trademark confusion, customer reactions, business ethics, or trademark law," a Pennsylvania federal judge ruled Oct. 12, excluding the testimony (Alpha Pro Tech Inc. v. VWR International LLC, No. 12-1615, E.D. Pa.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 141030).
PHILADELPHIA - Under Pennsylvania law, allegations of an insured's faulty workmanship do not constitute an "occurrence," a Pennsylvania federal judge ruled Oct. 5, finding that a comprehensive business liability insurer has no duty to defend or indemnify an underlying negligent construction lawsuit (State Farm Fire and Casualty Co. v. Kim's Asia Construction, No. 15-6619, E.D. Pa.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 138915).
PITTSBURGH - Pennsylvania law imposing jurisdiction over companies that register to do business in the state applies only to periods where the company was actually registered, a federal judge held Sept. 16 in granting dismissal and remanding an asbestos case (Leona George, et al. v. A.W. Chesterton Co., et al., No. 16-115, W.D. Pa.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 126176).
LOS ANGELES - A shareholder filed a securities class action lawsuit against an infrastructure assets designer and certain of its current and former executive officers on Sept. 1 in California federal court, alleging that the defendants concealed issues with the company's business, operational and compliance policies in violation of federal securities laws (William Graves v. AECOM, et al., No. 16-6605, C.D. Calif.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The National Labor Relations Board on Aug. 18 enforced, with some modifications, a decision by an administrative law judge (ALJ) finding that the social media code of Chipotle Services LLC (doing business as Chipotle Mexican Grill) violates the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and that the fast food chain committed further violations by directing an employee to delete certain tweets, prohibiting the employee from circulating a petition challenging the chain's break policy and terminating the employee for his actions (Chipotle Services LLC d/b/a Chipotle Mexican Grill and Pennsylvania Workers Organizing Committee, a project of the Fast Food Workers Committee, Nos. 04-CA-147314 and 04-CA-149551, NLRB).
TOLEDO, Ohio - Defendants in a long-running securities class action lawsuit will pay $64 million to settle claims that they misrepresented a company's business and financial condition in violation of federal securities laws, according to a motion for preliminary approval of settlement filed in Ohio federal court on July 14 (Plumbers & Pipefitters National Pension Fund, et al. v. Michael Burns, et al., No. 05-7393, N.D. Ohio).
MADISON, Wis. - A majority of the Wisconsin Supreme Court on June 30 affirmed that a professional liability errors and omissions insurance policy's business enterprise exclusion bars coverage for six underlying lawsuits against a professional trustee insured, finding that the insured relied on a "stunted strand of law" in arguing that the insurer has a duty to defend (David M. Marks v. Houston Casualty Co., et al., No. 2013AP2756, Wis. Sup.; 2016 Wisc. LEXIS 162).
PHILADELPHIA - Urban Outfitters Inc. and certain of its executive officers will pay $8.5 million to settle claims that they misrepresented the clothing retailer's business and financial condition in violation of federal securities laws, according to a stipulation of settlement filed June 8 in Pennsylvania federal court by the lead plaintiff in the action (In re Urban Outfitters Inc. Securities Litigation, No. 13-5978, E.D. Pa.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 24915).
LOS ANGELES - A California federal judge on May 26 granted summary judgment on numerous claims asserted by a commercial distributor of sporting events for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and violation of certain broadcasting laws, ordering the owner of an establishment who unlawfully broadcast a program to pay damages (Joe Hand Promotions Inc. v. Danny Kim, No. 14-05951, C.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 69413).
SANTA ANA, Calif. - A California federal judge on May 25 found that a claim for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and copyright infringement asserted by a meditation center business and its owners should be dismissed, finding that the UCL claim was preempted by copyright law and that the plaintiffs failed to allege substantial similarity in relation to the copyrighted works (Divine Dharma Meditation Int'l Inc., et al. v. Institute of Latent Energy Studies, No. 16-226, C.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 68890).
CHICAGO - The Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on May 16 affirmed a lower federal court's ruling that there is no coverage under the "employee benefits liability provision" of a business owners insurance policy for underlying claims that two law firms and their principals breached an employment agreement (Hartford Casualty Insurance Co. v. Karlin, Fleisher & Falkenberg, LLC, et al., No. 15-3417, 7th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 8921).
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - Defendants in a securities class action lawsuit will pay more than $41 million to settle claims that they misrepresented a company's business and financial condition in violation of federal securities laws, according to a motion for preliminary approval of settlement filed in Virginia federal court on April 18 (In re NII Holdings Inc. Securities Litigation, No. 14-227, E.D. Va.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A judge on April 15 asked for additional briefing on how to handle differences between California consumer protection laws and those of other states in a UCL, Business and Professions Code Section 17200, et seq., suit over an alleged misrepresentations about a joint supplement (Vincent D. Mullins, et al. v. Premier Nutrition Corp., No. 13-1271, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 51139, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 51140).
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A Florida appeals panel on April 6 found that blunt wraps used to wrap homemade cigars are not subject to taxation because they are not legally considered "loose tobacco" under Florida law, reversing an assessment against a company that sold blunts in the state between 2009 and 2011 (Brandy's Products Inc. v. Department of Business and Professional Regulation, Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco, No. 1D15-3101, Fla. App. 1st Dist.; 2016 Fla. App. LEXIS 5244).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - Plaintiffs cannot point to sufficiently specific advertisements or claims made by Apple Inc. regarding the iPhone's Bluetooth or Wi-Fi capabilities, a federal judge in California held March 25 in dismissing unfair competition law (UCL), Business and Professions Code Section 17200, et seq., claims with prejudice (David Yastrab, et al. v. Apple Inc., No. 14-1974, N.D. Calif.).