PITTSBURGH - A Pennsylvania federal judge on July 14 granted summary judgment in favor of an employer in a wage-and-hour class complaint filed by a former employee finding that employee's severance agreement included a bar on participation in a class or collective action (Jonathan Kubischta, et al. v. Schlumberger Tech Corp., No. 15-1338, W.D. Pa.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 91556).
PHILADELPHIA - A power company that was sued by a group of Pennsylvania residents who contend that it is liable for their injuries, including cancer, that stem from exposure to radioactive materials filed a brief in the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 15, arguing that it should let stand a lower court's summary judgment ruling in the company's favor because the plaintiffs lack admissible evidence of specific causation (Michelle McMunn, et al. v. Babcock & Wilcox Power Generation Group Inc., No. 15-3506 [consolidated], 3rd Cir.).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - The plaintiffs in two putative class actions against antivirus software designer McAfee Inc. filed a motion in California federal court on July 14, seeking preliminary approval of a settlement of their claims related to the auto-renewal program associated with subscriptions for the firm's various software packages (Sam Williamson v. McAfee Inc., No. 5:14-cv-00158, and Samantha Kirby v. McAfee Inc., No. 5:14-cv-02475, N.D. Calif.).
CHICAGO - Yahoo Inc. and the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit brought under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) filed simultaneous briefs in Illinois federal court July 15, debating whether the plaintiff had sufficiently pleaded damages to establish standing under Article III of the U.S. Constitution (Rachel Johnson v. Yahoo! Inc., No. 1:14-cv-02028, N.D. Ill.).
NEW YORK - The Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 15 affirmed a district court's decision to decertify a class of claimants that asserted a claim for breach of contract against lenders in relation to alleged late fees, finding that it had the authority to decertify the class after a jury verdict and that the plaintiffs failed to meet federal requirements for certifying a class (Joseph Mazzei, et al. v. The Money Store, et al., No. 15-2054, 2nd Cir.; 2016 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 12994).
PASADENA, Calif. - A Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 15 granted a petition for panel rehearing and/or clarification filed by the lead plaintiff in lawsuit accusing a retailer of wage violations but issued an accompanying order nearly identical to the one issued on May 19 in which it reversed a district court's denial of the employer's motion for judgment on the pleadings (L. Anderson v. Michaels Stores Inc., No. 14-56726, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 13055 and 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 13056).
NEW ORLEANS - Neither a voluntary motion to dismiss pending when a defendant filed third-party claims nor a foreign entity's late removal warrants remand, a federal judge in Louisiana held July 14 in also declining to sever the claims, which he concluded are probably subject to dismissal (Earl T. Lindsay Jr., et al. v. Ports America Gulfport Inc., et al., No. 16-3054, E.D. La.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 91649).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A tribunal for the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) on July 14 released its order in an arbitration commenced by a group of investors against the Republic of Costa Rica, establishing procedures for the production of documents in the case (David R. Aven, et al. v. The Republic of Costa Rica, No. UNCT/15/3, ICSID).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A trio of cigar rights groups on July 15 filed suit against the Food and Drug Administration, claiming that its new rules and regulations on tobacco and tobacco products violate the U.S. Food Drug and Cosmetic Act because they subject all tobacco products to stricter regulations than prescribed in the act (Cigar Association of America, et al. v. Food and Drug Administration, No. 1:16-cv-01460, D. D.C.).
SAN DIEGO - A Fourth District California Court of Appeal, Division One, panel in an order published July 15 reversed a superior court's approval of a class settlement in a case over supplements that allegedly provide weight loss benefits, finding that the online claim form misstated the settlement terms (Fred Duran v. Obesity Research Institute, LLC, et al., No. D067917, Calif. App., 4th Dist., Div. 1; 2016 Cal. App. LEXIS 586).
NEWARK, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on July 14 rejected an attorney insured's argument that a professional liability insurance policy is voidable for failing to comply with the requirements of New Jersey Rule of Court 1:21-1B(a)(4), denying the insured's motion for summary judgment in a coverage dispute over client funds that were allegedly misappropriated by a legal assistant (Jill Cadre, et al. v. ProAssurance Casualty Co., No. 16-0103, D. N.J.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 91925).
CHICAGO - The judge overseeing the National Collegiate Athletic Association student-athlete concussion injury multidistrict litigation on July 15 granted preliminary approval to the latest incarnation of a settlement between the parties and conditionally certified a settlement class and two subclasses (In Re: National Collegiate Athletic Association Student-Athlete Concussion Injury Litigation, MDL No. 2492, No. 13-cv-9116, N.D. Ill.).
SHERMAN, Texas - An infringement plaintiff's affirmative defenses of unclean hands and estoppel in response to a defendant's counterclaim for cancellation of various trademarks were properly rejected by a Texas federal magistrate judge, a Texas federal judge concluded July 16 (Neal Technologies Inc. v. Unite Motorsports Inc., No. 15-385, E.D. Texas; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 92655).
MARSHALL, Texas - A defendant failed to prove that a patent plaintiff litigated its case in an unreasonable manner or that the claims presented "stand out" from others pursuant to Octane Fitness LLC v. ICON Health & Fitness Inc. (134 S. Ct. 1749, 1756 ), a Texas federal magistrate judge ruled July 18 (Rothschild Connected Devices Innovations LLC v. ADS Security LP, No. 15-1431, E.D. Texas.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 92845).
DENVER - A trial court erred in finding that no coverage is afforded for environmental contamination cleanup costs because the trial court failed to determine if the insurer was prejudiced by the insured's late notice of the claim, the Colorado Court of Appeals said July 14 (MarkWest Energy Partners L.P., v. Zurich American Insurance Co., No. 15-0770, Colo. App., Div. 1; 2016 Colo. App. LEXIS 956).
SALEM, Ore. - A panel of the Oregon Supreme Court on July 14 reversed and remanded a Court of Appeals' decision finding that a challenge brought by two mining associations regarding a rule requiring them to obtain permits to conduct suction dredge mining was moot, holding that the appellate court should determine if the challenge is justiciable under Oregon Revised Statute (ORS) 14.175 (Eastern Oregon Mining Association, et al. v. Department of Environmental Quality, et al., No. SC063549, Ore. Sup.; 2016 Ore. LEXIS 463).
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - A group of former professional wrestlers who sustained long-term neurological injuries sued World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. (WWE) and its chairman, Vince McMahon, in a Connecticut federal court on July 18, claiming that the entity failed to inform and protect them from the danger of repeated head injuries (Joseph M. Laurinaitis, a.k.a. Road Warrior Animal, et al. v. World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc., et al., No. 16-1209, D. Conn.).
ALBANY, N.Y. - A federal judge in New York issued a summary order on July 14 ordering a reinsurer to pay its reinsured nearly $1 million in prejudgment interest on a nearly $6 million principal award regarding an asbestos-related settlement agreement between the reinsured and its insured (Utica Mutual Insurance Co. v. Clearwater Insurance Co., No. 13-1178, N.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 91413).
CHICAGO - In an admiralty case, an Illinois federal magistrate judge on July 14 excluded an expert from testifying that boat captains could have requested that gates again be closed as they were approaching the protection cells (In the matter of the complaint of Ingram Barge Co. as owner of the M/V Dale A. Heller and the IB9525, IN025300, IN085089, IN095041, IN096081, IN107057, and IN117513, petitioning for exoneration from or limitation of liability, No. 13-3453 c/w In the matter of American Commercial Lines, LLC, as owner and Inland Marine Service, Inc., as owner pro hac vice of the M/V Loyd Murphy for exoneration from or limitation of liability, No. 13-4292, N.D. Ill.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 91411).
LAS VEGAS - A federal judge in Nevada on July 14 granted an insurer's motion to amend judgment in an insurance bad faith and breach of contract suit, ruling that an insured failed to show that he was entitled to consequential damages (Andrew Cordova v. American Family Mutual Insurance Co., No. 13-1111, D. Nev.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 143728).