MOSCOW - Russia's oil company on April 1 announced that it has reached a settlement with numerous investors, ending long-running litigation and arbitration in several jurisdictions.
THE HAGUE, Netherlands - A decision by the Permanent Court of Arbitration was released April 2 in which the tribunal issued an award addressing arguments made by Chevron Corp. and its subsidiary Texaco Petroleum Co. (TexPet) in relation to settlement agreements with the Republic of Ecuador (Chevron Corporation, et al. v. The Republic of Ecuador, No. 2009-23, PCA).
DENVER - Because complete diversity of citizenship may not exist in an insured's suit seeking coverage for underlying claims stemming from carbon monoxide poisoning at an insured hotel, the 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on March 31 remanded the suit to the Oklahoma federal court to determine if diversity of citizenship existed when the complaint was filed (Siloam Springs Hotel LLC v. Century Surety Co., No. 14-6119, 10th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 5146).
MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Requiring a defendant's attorney to arrange and label responsive discovery documents would improperly reveal her thought processes and is not required under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure (FRCP) 34(b), a West Virginia federal judge found March 30, overruling the plaintiff's objection to a magistrate's discovery ruling (CTL Engineering of West Virginia Inc. v. ms consultants inc., et al., No. 3:14-cv-00090, N.D. W.Va.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 39762).
DETROIT - Genuine issues of material fact exist as to whether improper installation of adhesive that led to building defects constitutes an "occurrence" and "property damage" arising under a commercial general liability insurance policy's coverage period, a Michigan federal judge ruled March 30, denying summary judgment to the insurer (Les Stanford Cadillac Inc. v. The Cincinnati Insurance Co., No. 12-15630, E.D. Mich.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 40063).
ATLANTA - On remand for the second time from the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, Dun & Bradstreet Inc. (D&B) was awarded summary judgment on March 30 for the third time by a Georgia federal court on a former employee's retaliatory hostile work environment claims. In a judgment entered the same day, the court awarded D&B its costs of the action (Richard V. Kelly v. Dun & Bradstreet, Inc., No. 09-1498, N.D. Ga.).
CHICAGO - The Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals April 1 denied a petition for rehearing of an appeal from its ruling holding that expert testimony is required to prove that air bags manufactured by Ford Motor Co. contain design and manufacturing defects (Howard Piltch, et al. v. Ford Motor Co., et al., No. 14-1965, 7th Cir.).
FRANKFORT, Ky. - A federal judge in Kentucky on March 31 partially dismissed a chemical exposure injury case filed by a group of former employees of a glass manufacturing plant, concluding that the claim for fraud failed but that their allegations of fraudulent concealment were not barred by state workers' compensation laws (Elbert Cox Jr., et al. v. Koninklijke Philips NV, et al., No. 13-406, E.D. Ky.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 41120).
TRENTON, N.J. - A federal magistrate judge's rulings denying a motion to compel discovery filed by two environmental groups on companies accused of violating the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and Clean Water Act (CWA) and granting the defendants' motion for a protective order were affirmed March 31 by a federal judge in New Jersey after the judge found that the magistrate judge did not make any clear errors in his decisions (Raritan Baykeeper v. NL Industries Inc., et al., No. 09-4117, D. N.J.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 41166).
SAN DIEGO - A California appeals panel on March 27 affirmed a lower court's ruling that there is no coverage for an underlying claim that was either a real estate sales transaction or a "fraudulent scheme clothed as a mortgage transaction" (Angel Castrejon, et al., v. United States Liability Insurance Co., No. D064679, Calif. App., 4th Dist., Div. 1; 2015 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 2162).
CONCORD, N.H. - Medical records, employment search records and email communications are relevant to a plaintiff's claims against her former employer, a New Hampshire federal judge ruled March 27, mostly granting the defendant's motion to compel production of such materials (Christyna Faulkner v. Mary Hitchcock Medical Center, et al., No. 1:12-cv-00482, D. N.H.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 39371).
BILLINGS, Mont. - The statute of limitations bars the claims of five individuals who allege exposure to asbestos from railcars carrying asbestos from the W.R. Grace mine, a federal judge in Montana held March 27 (Dean Stacy, Norma Stacy, Donald Stacy, Steven Carvey and Anthony Stacy v. BNSF Railway Co., No. 13-87, D. Mont.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 40806).
ATLANTA - An expert's testimony regarding causation from "any exposure" to asbestos is "not controversial" in a case alleging more than de minimis exposure, a divided Georgia appeals court held March 30 (Scapa Dryer Fabrics Inc. v. Knight, et al., No. A14A1587, Ga. App.; 2015 Ga. App. LEXIS 237).
NEW YORK - In a joint motion filed March 31, New York City asbestos defendants asked for a stay of all litigation while the parties work on a "much needed, new, fair and balanced" case management order (CMO) (In re: New York City Asbestos Litigation, No. 40000/1988, N.Y. Sup., New York Co.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A federal judge should ignore "alarmist" rhetoric and instead find that House of Representatives members lack standing to challenge how the government spends Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) funds, the government argues in a March 31 brief (United States House of Representatives v. Sylvia Mathews Burwell, et al., No. 14-1967, D. D.C.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court will not hear an appeal of a Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling in a securities class action lawsuit where an investor sought determination of whether the claims made are preempted under the Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act (SLUSA) (In re Herald, Primeo, and Thema (Dana Trezziova v. Sonja Kohn, et al.), No. 14-736, U.S. Sup.).
LOS ANGELES - A couple asked a federal judge in California on March 30 to exclude a bankruptcy trust estimation order critical of asbestos litigation, while three defendants sought to exclude expert testimony that "each and every exposure" contributes to a disease (Howard Utech, an individual, Joann Utech, an individual v. Asbestos Corporation Limited, et al., No. 14-4977, C.D. Calif.).
MIAMI - A Florida federal judge on March 30 granted a cruise line's motion to compel arbitration of a system manager's personal injury claims, finding that the claims must be arbitrated pursuant to Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards (Francis D'Cruz v. NCL [Bahamas] Ltd., et al., No. 1:15-cv-20240, S.D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 40326).
CLEVELAND - Parties to an appeal of an $815,723 Ohio asbestos verdict against Honeywell International Inc. on March 31 agreed to stay judgment and supersedeas bond in the case, according to the docket (Barbara Watkins, et al. v. Affinia Group, et al., No. CA-15-102538, Ohio App., 8th Dist.).
FRANKFORT, Ky. - A federal judge in Kentucky on March 31 partially granted and partially denied a motion to dismiss groundwater contamination and injury claims against a glass-manufacturing company that released toxins into the environment, concluding that some plaintiffs had established that hazardous substances had been released (Modern Holdings LLC, et al. v. Corning Incorporated, et al., No. 13-405, E.D. Ky.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 41134).