LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
    Mealey's Insurance - California Federal Judge Partially Grants Insurers' Motion To Reconsider

    SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on July 15 partially granted a motion for reconsideration on the issue of whether a deductible applies to defense costs in an environmental contamination dispute and said the insurers are free to file a motion to amend their complaint after the underlying suit is adjudicated to allege a claim pertaining to the care, custody or control exclusion in the business auto policies at issue (American Guarantee and Liability Insurance Co., et al. v. Technichem Inc., et al., No. 15-03611, N.D. Calif.).

    Mealey's Insurance - Coverage Afforded Under Insured's Umbrella Policy, Oklahoma Federal Judge Says

    OKLAHOMA CITY - Even though a primary pollution liability policy is not listed as underlying insurance to an umbrella policy, coverage for an underlying environmental contamination suit is still afforded under the umbrella policy, an Oklahoma federal judge said July 15 (BITCO General Insurance Corp. v. Marjo Operating Co. Inc., et al., No. 14-1220, W.D. Okla.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 92083).

    Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Class Certification Partly Granted In Privacy Suit Over Apple Device Contacts

    SAN FRANCISCO - Although a California federal judge on July 15 found the primary proposed class in a dispute over the purported unauthorized sharing of users' address book information to be too broad to support class certification, he granted certification of a subclass of users of Apple Inc.'s devices who activated a particular application (app) designed by Path Inc. (Marc Opperman, et al. v. Path Inc., et al., No. 3:13-CV-00453, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 92403).

    Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Company Tells 3rd Circuit Dismissal Of Injury Claims Against It Was Proper

    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.).

    Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Tesoro Corp., Subsidiaries To Pay $425M Over Allegedly Illegal Emissions

    SAN ANTONIO - Tesoro Corp., Par Hawaii Refining and their subsidiaries on July 18 said in a consent decree filed in Texas federal court that they would pay $425 million to resolve alleged violations of the Clean Air Act (CAA) at six of their refineries in Alaska, California, Hawaii, North Dakota, Utah and Washington (United States of America v. Tesoro Corp., et al., No. 16-cv-722, W.D. Texas).

    Mealey's Banking & Finance - 2nd Circuit Says Court Did Not Err In Decertifying Class Of Borrowers

    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).

    Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 9th Circuit Again Finds Wage Claims Against Craft Stores Are Time-Barred

    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).

    Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 1st Circuit: Judge Did Not Err In Dismissing Couple's Suit Over Discharges

    BOSTON - A federal judge did not err when entering judgment in favor of defendant landowners accused of violating the Clean Water Act (CWA), a First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled July 18, finding that a couple's citizen suit was unnecessary because the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (RIDEM) had addressed allegedly illegal discharges of contaminated storm water (Lois Paolino, et al. v. JF Realty LLC, et al., No. 15-1498, 1st Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 13117).

    Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Insurer's Declaratory Judgment Action In Lead Paint Case May Proceed

    BALTIMORE - A federal judge in Maryland on July 15 refused to dismiss an insurer's lawsuit against a landlord and the couple that sued the landlord in an underlying lawsuit regarding lead-based paint exposure, ruling that the insurer's declaratory judgment action must continue because the couple had not met the burden of having the case dismissed (Allstate Insurance Co. v. Stanley Rochkind, et al., No. 15-1546, D. Md.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 91087).

    Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge Won't Exclude Tylenol Liver Injury Study From 1st MDL Bellwether Case

    PHILADELPHIA - The Pennsylvania federal judge overseeing the Tylenol multidistrict litigation on July 14 denied a defense motion to exclude a key study from the plaintiff's case in the first bellwether trial and excluded testimony by defense experts who criticized the reliability of the study (In Re: Tylenol [Acetaminophen] Marketing, Sales Practices, and Products Liability Litigation, MDL Docket No. 2436, No. 13-md-2436, E.D. Pa. 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 92334).

    Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Lipitor MDL Magistrate Recommends Remand Of 40 California Cases

    CHARLESTON, S.C. - A South Carolina federal magistrate judge on July 14 recommended that 40 California cases be remanded from the Lipitor diabetes multidistrict litigation after finding that they are not mass actions under the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA) and that the naming of drug distributor McKesson Corp. as a defendant has not been shown to be fraudulent misjoinder (In Re: Lipitor [Atorvastatin Calcium] Marketing, Sales Practices and Products Liability Litigation, MDL Docket No. 2502, No. 14-mn-2502, D. S.C.).

    Mealey's Labor & Employment - 7th Circuit Affirms Judgment For Restaurants In Servers' Wage Suit

    CHICAGO - A Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on July 15 affirmed a district court's ruling in favor of the employers in a wage class suit brought by servers alleging violations of state and federal laws regarding their tips (Robert Schaefer, et al. v. Walker Bros. Enterprises, Inc., et al., No. 15-1058, 7th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 12985).

    Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Magistrate Judge Cites Bare-Metal Defense In Granting Judgment To 9

    WILMINGTON, Del. - A federal magistrate judge in Delaware said July 13 that the bare-metal defense and causation standard in Mississippi requires granting judgment in favor of nine asbestos defendants (Robert Lee Winhauer Jr., et al. v. Air & Liquid Systems Corp., et al., No. 15-177, D. Del.).

    Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Kentucky Appeals Court: Mere Possibility Of Exposure Insufficient In Asbestos Case

    FRANKFORT, Ky. - The mere possibility that a man encountered asbestos-containing friction parts at his place of employment falls short of Kentucky's standard for causation, a divided appeals panel held July 14 (Linda Mannahan, et al. v. Eaton Corp., et al., No. 2013-CA-002005-MR, Ky. App.; 2016 Ky. App. LEXIS 120).

    Mealey's Insurance - Special Deputy Receiver Wants Hearing On Disputed Claim

    AUSTIN, Texas - The special deputy receiver (SDR) of an insolvent insurer asked a Texas court on July 13 to hold a hearing on a contested claim regarding compensation for certain losses of an insured due to a house fire (The State of Texas and the Texas Department of Insurance v. Vesta Fire Insurance Corporation, et al., No. D-1-GN-002366, Texas Dist., Travis Co.).

    Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Magistrate Judge Cites Bare-Metal Defense In Granting Judgment To 9

    WILMINGTON, Del. - A federal magistrate judge in Delaware said July 13 that the bare-metal defense and causation standard in Mississippi requires granting judgment in favor of nine asbestos defendants (Robert Lee Winhauer Jr., et al. v. Air & Liquid Systems Corp., et al., No. 15-177, D. Del.).

    Mealey's IP/Tech - New York Federal Judge Sides With Fashion Website In Copyright Dispute

    NEW YORK - Applying Cartoon Network LP v. CSC Holdings, Inc. (536 F.3d 121, 130 [2nd Cir. 2008]) (Cablevision) and related cases, a New York federal judge on July 15 concluded that "no reasonable juror" could find that a defendant Internet service provider "acted volitionally" when it hosted an online community that allowed users to save and display copyrighted photographs (BWP Media USA Inc. v. Polyvore Inc., No. 13-7867, S.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 92121).

    Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge: Insurer's Declaratory Judgment Action In Lead Paint Case May Proceed

    BALTIMORE - A federal judge in Maryland on July 15 refused to dismiss an insurer's lawsuit against a landlord and the couple that sued the landlord in an underlying lawsuit regarding lead-based paint exposure, ruling that the insurer's declaratory judgment action must continue because the couple had not met the burden of having the case dismissed (Allstate Insurance Co. v. Stanley Rochkind, et al., No. 15-1546, D. Md.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 91087).

    Mealey's Litigation Procedure - No Error In Social Worker's Testimony On Sexual Abuse, Ohio Appeals Panel Finds

    CINCINNATI - A social worker was allowed to testify as an expert witness regarding whether children's statements were consistent with sexual abuse, as she was sufficiently qualified for this purpose, an Ohio appeals panel held July 13, affirming a domestic violence civil protection order (DVCPO) against the children's father (Angela Sanchez v. Hugo Sanchez, No. C-150441, Ohio App., 1st Dist.; 2016 Ohio App. LEXIS 2744).

    Mealey's IP/Tech - Federal Circuit Dismisses Appeal, Rejects Request For Corrected Construction

    WASHINGTON, D.C. - A patent owner's efforts to have the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals correct a claim construction rendered by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board were unsuccessful on July 15, when the panel found that it lacks appellate jurisdiction (SkyHawke Technologies LLC v. Deca International Corp., Nos. 2016-1325, 2016-1326, Fed. Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 12977).

    Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 7th Circuit Affirms Judgment For Restaurants In Servers' Wage Suit

    CHICAGO - A Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on July 15 affirmed a district court's ruling in favor of the employers in a wage class suit brought by servers alleging violations of state and federal laws regarding their tips (Robert Schaefer, et al. v. Walker Bros. Enterprises, Inc., et al., No. 15-1058, 7th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 12985).

    Mealey's Insurance - Florida Panel Affirms Court's Denial Of Insured's Motion For Attorney Fees

    LAKELAND, Fla. - A Florida appeals panel on July 15 held that although a lower court denial of insured's motion for attorney fees in a sinkhole coverage dispute was based on two statutory misinterpretations, there is ample basis in the record to affirm (Christopher Shane Miller v. Florida Insurance Guaranty Association Inc., et al., No. 2D15-1350, Fla. App., 2nd Dist.; 2016 Fla. App. LEXIS 10868).

    Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Kentucky Appeals Court: Mere Possibility Of Exposure Insufficient In Asbestos Case

    FRANKFORT, Ky. - The mere possibility that a man encountered asbestos-containing friction parts at his place of employment falls short of Kentucky's standard for causation, a divided appeals panel held July 14 (Linda Mannahan, et al. v. Eaton Corp., et al., No. 2013-CA-002005-MR, Ky. App.; 2016 Ky. App. LEXIS 120).

    Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Lipitor MDL Magistrate Recommends Remand Of 40 California Cases

    CHARLESTON, S.C. - A South Carolina federal magistrate judge on July 14 recommended that 40 California cases be remanded from the Lipitor diabetes multidistrict litigation after finding that they are not mass actions under the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA) and that the naming of drug distributor McKesson Corp. as a defendant has not been shown to be fraudulent misjoinder (In Re: Lipitor [Atorvastatin Calcium] Marketing, Sales Practices and Products Liability Litigation, MDL Docket No. 2502, No. 14-mn-2502, D. S.C.).

    Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Judge Won't Exclude Tylenol Liver Injury Study From 1st MDL Bellwether Case

    PHILADELPHIA - The Pennsylvania federal judge overseeing the Tylenol multidistrict litigation on July 14 denied a defense motion to exclude a key study from the plaintiff's case in the first bellwether trial and excluded testimony by defense experts who criticized the reliability of the study (In Re: Tylenol [Acetaminophen] Marketing, Sales Practices, and Products Liability Litigation, MDL Docket No. 2436, No. 13-md-2436, E.D. Pa. 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 92334).