ALEXANDRIA, Va. - In a Jan. 11 final written decision, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board deemed all 24 challenged claims of a data compression patent obvious under Section 103(a) of the Patent Act, 35 U.S.C. 103(a) (Apple Inc. v. Realtime Data LLC, No. IPR2016-01366, PTAB).
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - A reinsurance executive accused of engaging in a $2.5 million fraudulent scheme settled claims brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission on Jan. 11 after the SEC filed a complaint in Connecticut federal court (Securities and Exchange Commission v. David S. Haddad, et al., No. 18-00055, D. Conn.).
CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on Jan. 11 said a plaintiff can proceed with her claim that Mentor Worldwide LLC concealed the risk of leaks from its MemoryGel breast implants and dismissed without prejudice her other claims as preempted (Catherine Gravitt, et al. v. Mentor Worldwide, LLC, No. 17-5428, N.D. Ill., Eastern Div., 2018 U.S. Dist. 4822).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - Ruling on dueling summary judgment motions in an insurer's lawsuit seeking equitable contribution from a second insurer, a California federal judge on Jan. 9 found that two underlying lawsuits against Narconon International and its affiliates triggered commercial general liability and improper sexual conduct coverage and, therefore, the second insurer also has a duty to defend (Western World Insurance Company v. Nonprofits Insurance Alliance of California, No. 14-04466, N.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 4720).
NEWARK, N.J. - A Range Rover owner who alleged that the car marker's contract for buyers barring them from reselling their vehicles overseas violates the Sherman Act and numerous state antitrust and consumer protection laws may not proceed with his class claims because he failed to allege actions that restrained trade or identify a cognizable relevant market, a New Jersey federal judge ruled Jan. 9 (Brian Baar v. Jaguar Land Rover North America, LLC, et al., No. 17-4142, D. N.J., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 3867).
HARRISBURG, Pa. - A Pennsylvania federal judge on Jan. 11 refused to dismiss for failure to join indispensable parties an insurer's lawsuit seeking a declaration that it has no duty to defend or indemnify an insured in a breach of contract case (Atlantic Casualty Insurance Co. v. Dover Roofing & General Remodeling Exteriors Unlimited Inc., No. 17-228, M.D. Pa., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 4814).
WILMINGTON, Del. - Insurers' rights to audit the T H Agriculture & Nutrition LLC (THAN) asbestos trust for evidence fraud must be decided at trial because the insurers and the trust put forth reasonable definitions of what those audit rights are, defeating summary judgment or dismissal, a Delaware state vice chancellor decided Jan. 11 (AIU Insurance Company, et al. v. Philips Electronics North America Corporation, et al., No. 9852, Del. Chanc.).
COLUMBIA, S.C. - A subcontractor accused of construction defects is not required to indemnify or contribute to a $150,000 arbitration award issued to a woman in her lawsuit against D.R. Horton Inc., a South Carolina appeals panel ruled Jan. 10, finding that the indemnification clause in the agreement between the builder and subcontractor violated state law (D.R. Horton Inc. v. Builders FirstSource Southeast Group LLC, et al., No. 5529, S.C. App., 2018 S.C. App. LEXIS 2).
SAN FRANCISCO - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 9 affirmed a district court's dismissal of a class action complaint alleging that 401(k) plan fiduciaries concealed information regarding the company's stock value after determining that the class plaintiffs failed to support their allegations that the company concealed any information (Mike Laffen et al. v. Hewlett-Packard Company 401(k) Plan et al., No. 15-16360, 9th Cir., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 577).
SHERMAN, Texas - Two cigar shops and a merchant association on Jan. 11 sued the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and other government departments in a Texas federal court, claiming that the warning the organizations required on cigar packages would violate the First Amendment rights of the cigar sellers and merchants (En Fuego Tobacco Shop, et al., v. United States Food and Drug Administration, et al., No. 4:18cv28, E.D. Texas).
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - A Florida appeals panel on Jan. 10 reversed a $4.5 million verdict in an Engle progeny suit without explanation but ordered that a plaintiff who represents her mother's estate be able to file leave to add punitive damages (Philip Morris USA Inc., et al. v. Jacqueline Mechelle Blackwood, No. 4D16-897, Fla. App., 4th Dist., 2018 Fla. App. LEXIS 309).
SAN FRANCISCO - Insureds' claims in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit over coverage under a homeowners insurance and a standard flood insurance policy (SFIP) are preempted by federal law, a federal judge in California ruled Jan. 10 in granting the insurer's motion to dismiss (Alicia Martin, et al. v. CSAA Insurance Exchange, No. 17-4066, N.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 4675).
CINCINNATI - A rejection on summary judgment of allegations that a riflescope maker committed trade dress infringement through the design of its knurling was erroneous, the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Jan. 10 (Leapers Inc. v. SMTS LLC, et al., No. 17-1007, 6th Cir., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 599).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - A California federal judge on Jan. 10 ruled that claims for unpaid minimum and overtime wages, wage statement violations and violations of California's unfair competition law (UCL) are appropriate for class treatment in a lawsuit brought by Eddie Bauer LLC employees who allege that they were denied pay for time spent undergoing bag checks before they left the stores (Stephanie Heredia v. Eddie Bauer LLC, No. 16-6236, N.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 4747).
ST. LOUIS - A federal judge in Missouri on Jan. 11 denied a motion for reconsideration, saying the U.S. Supreme Court issued an opinion clarifying the standard for jurisdiction before he issued his own opinion, while also saying the newly minted precedent would not change the outcome (Willie Everett, et al. v. Aurora Pump Co., et al., No. 17-230, E.D. Mo.).
ATLANTA - A metallurgy and engineering expert in a dispute over whether lightning striking a faulty gas line caused a fire that destroyed a home is abundantly qualified and his opinions are reliable and helpful, the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals held Jan. 10 in affirming a $1.4 million jury award against the pipe manufacturer (Mazen Hanna, et al. v. Ward Manufacturing, Inc., No. 16-14806, 11th Cir., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 703).
NEW ORLEANS - Two personal injury lawsuits related to naturally occurring radioactive material (NORM), one of which was filed before the effective date of the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA), may be removed to a federal court under CAFA as a mass action after the plaintiffs sought to consolidate the two cases, a divided Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled Jan. 9 (Warren Lester, et al. v. Exxon Mobil Corporation, et al., Shirley Bottley, et al. v. Exxon Mobil Corporation, et al., No. 14-31383, 5th Cir., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 547).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Women helped by crisis pregnancy centers and 23 such centers based in Illinois sang the praises of the volunteer organizations in amicus curiae briefs filed with the U.S. Supreme Court on Jan. 11 in an effort to bolster a Jan. 8 opening brief challenging a California law requiring the centers to disclose the availability of abortions (NIFLA, et al. v. Xavier Becerra, et al., No. 16-1140, U.S. Sup.).
PHILADELPHIA - A Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Jan. 10 reversed a federal judge in New Jersey's ruling that allowed the Government Employees Insurance Co. (GEICO) to withhold payment on $2.1 million in pending personal injury protection (PIP) claims submitted by a neurology and rehabilitation facility, holding that under the New Jersey Automobile Insurance Cost Reduction Act, the dispute is subject to arbitration (Government Employees Insurance Co. v. Tri County Neurology & Rehab LLC, No. 17-2113, 3rd Cir., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 617).
CINCINNATI - The Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 8 affirmed a lower federal court's dismissal of a putative class action alleging that the fiduciaries of a publically traded company's stock ownership plan breached their duties by failing to protect the plan from harm caused by the artificial inflation of the company's stock price due to fraud and misrepresentation (Todd Graham, et al v. v. Richard Fearon, et al., No. 17-3407, 6th Cir., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 407).
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - After finding that an insurer did not violate California's unfair competition law (UCL) when it denied coverage for injuries suffered by an insured in a vehicle accident that had already been paid under a medical plan, a California federal judge on Jan. 8 granted the insurer's motion to dismiss the claim against it without leave to amend (Deborah Quattrocchi v. Allstate Indemnity Company, No. 2:17-cv-01578, E.D. Calif., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 3922).
DUBLIN, Ireland - Endo International plc on Jan. 11 announced that subsidiary Endo Pharmaceuticals Inc. has received a grand jury subpoena from the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Florida for documents and information about the company's oxymorphone products.
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A dispute over the question of whether an "exceptional case" finding in a district court can be based on events that occur during an inter partes re-examination or review was argued before the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 10 (SAP America Inc. v. Wellogix Inc., No. 17-1176, Fed. Cir.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - An inter partes review (IPR) petitioner that successfully established obviousness of 32 claims of three patents nonetheless argues in a Jan. 9 brief that the Patent Trial and Appeal Board ruling did not go far enough and should have instead invalidated all challenged claims (Vivint Inc. v. Alarm.com Inc., Nos. 2017-2218, -2219, -2220, -2260, -2261, -2262, Fed. Cir.).