TRENTON, N.J. - Purchasers of cedar shingles that allegedly cup and curl due to water retention asked a federal judge in New Jersey on May 3 to stay proceedings pending their appeal of a March 28 decision denying their motion for class certification and striking testimony from an expert (Ilene Stern, et al. v. Maibec, Inc., No. 11-3951, D. N.J.).
NEW YORK - The New York International Arbitration Centre (NYIAC) on May 3 announced that the secretary general of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) outlined the top areas for reform of the ICSID rules and regulations at a recent lecture held at the NYIAC.
HOUSTON - A federal judge in Texas on May 2 overruled objections filed by a plaintiff in a misappropriation of trade secrets lawsuit in response to a federal magistrate judge's order allowing defendants to view certain confidential expert reports, finding that the plaintiff failed to show that the order was "clearly erroneous or is contrary to law" (Dresser-Rand Co. v. Schutte & Koerting Acquisition Co., et al., No. 12-184, S.D. Texas, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 66424).
MIAMI - A Florida federal judge on May 2 rejected all of a Costa Rican company's objections to confirmation of a $29,290,440 international arbitral award issued in favor of Del Monte International GMBH (Inversiones Y Procesadora Tropical Inprotsa, S.A. v. Del Monte International GMBH, No. 16-24275, S.D. Fla., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 66544).
LOS ANGELES - In a May 1 ruling, a California appeals panel majority ruled that the psychotherapist-patient privilege does not protect patient records from disclosure via an administrative subpoena issued in conjunction with an investigation into improper prescription practices, affirming in part a trial court's ruling compelling enforcement of three such subpoenas (Alisa Cross v. The Superior Court of Los Angeles County, No. B277600, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., 2017 Cal. App. LEXIS 398).
SAN FRANCISCO - The lead plaintiff in a securities class action lawsuit against GoPro Inc. and certain of its current and former executive officers failed to plead any material misrepresentations or omissions or scienter in making his federal securities laws claims, a federal judge in California ruled May 1 in granting the defendants' motion to dismiss (Joseph Bodri v. GoPro Inc., et al., No. 16-0232, N.D. Calif.).
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - A Missouri federal judge on May 1 granted insureds' motion for class certification in a dispute over whether a homeowners insurer should have applied a deductible to the actual cash value (ACV) payment it issued the insureds for their hail damage loss (David Bond, et al. v. Liberty Insurance Corp., No. 15-04236, W.D. Mo., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 65701).
NEWARK, N.J. - Class counsel's failure to comply with basic discovery obligations requires imposing sanctions and an order mandating compliance, a company accused of hiding and destroying evidence of asbestos-contamination of its talc 25-years ago told a federal judge in New Jersey on May 1. Meanwhile, the parties continue to battle over whether third-party attorneys and firms must turn over evidence relating to the underlying asbestos tort claims (Kimberlee Williams, et al. v. BASF Catalysts LLC, et al., No. 11-1754, D. N.J.).
LOS ANGELES - A California federal judge on April 28 granted a motion filed by the maker and distributor of alcohol monitoring devices to dismiss claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and fraud claims against them, finding that they failed to plead sufficient facts to support the causes of action (Hansen, et al. v. Scram of California Inc., et al., No. 2:17-cv-01474, C.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 65341).
LOS ANGELES - The promoters of the Fyre Festival promised attendees a posh music festival featuring "first-class culinary experiences and a luxury atmosphere" and instead provided an event that lacked adequate food, water, shelter and medical care, one attendee claims in a class complaint filed April 30 in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California seeking damages in excess of $100 million (Daniel Jung, et al. v. Billy McFarland, et al., No. 17-3245, C.D. Calif.).
SAN FRANCISCO - In a May 1 reply brief in the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, the lead plaintiffs in a putative class action against Zappos.com Inc. argue that the theft of their personally identifiable information (PII) in a 2012 data breach constituted a concrete injury that established their standing to pursue negligence and deceptive trade practices claims against the online retailer (Theresa Stevens, et al. v Zappos.com Inc., No. 16-16860, 9th Cir.).
CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on May 2 refused to certify a class of disabled persons suing a retailer with stores in numerous states for failing to make the stores fully accessible to individuals who required mobility devices, finding that the plaintiffs have not demonstrated that the class meets all the requirements of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23 (Equal Rights Center, et al. v. Kohl's Corporation, et al., No. 14-8259, N.D. Ill., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 66390).
FRANKFORT, Ky. - A neurologist used proper methodology and produced sufficient documentation to support his opinion that a man is suffering from toxic encephalopathy caused by his exposure to the chemical toluene in the spray paint he used at work, the Kentucky Supreme Court held April 28 in affirming a ruling on the man's disability in a workers' compensation case (Armstrong Coal Company, Inc. v. Nathan Attebury, et al., No. 2016-SC-000368-WC, Ky. Sup., 2017 Ky. Unpub. LEXIS 10).
LOS ANGELES - The class of consumers that sued Guthy-Renker LLC and Wen By Chaz Dean Inc. in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California claiming that the defendants' line of WEN hair care products caused hair loss moved May 1 for final approval of a $26.25 million settlement (Amy Friedman, et al. v. Guthy-Renker, LLC, et al., No. 14-6009, C.D. Calif.).
NEWARK, N.J. - A federal judge in New Jersey on May 1 limited the testimony of a robbery defendant's expert on eyewitness identification so that the expert's testimony will assist, not impinge upon, the jury's fact-finding role (United States of America v. Gregory A. Jones, No. 16-516, D. N.J., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 65721).
PHILADELPHIA - On April 27, a Pennsylvania federal judge presiding over a suit brought by a nationwide class of former sales agents accusing Allstate Insurance Co. and its president of age discrimination and violating the Employee Retirement Income Security Act ruled that Allstate did not violate ERISA's anti-cutback rules when it eliminated an early retirement subsidy known as the "beef-up" because it had offered plan participants the greater of two alternatives with a baseline of their beef-up subsidy as of the time of the amendment (Gene R. Romero, et al. v. Allstate Insurance Company, et al., No. 01-3894, consolidated with No. 01-6764, 03-6872, 15-1017, 15-1049. 15-1190, 15-2602, 15-2961, 15-3047, E.D. Pa., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 64150).
NEW YORK - A Brazilian intermediary of securities and derivatives for investment funds on April 28 filed a petition to confirm a Brazilian arbitral award in the amount of $3,588,347 that was issued in its favor in relation to another entity's breach of its obligations to make a bonus payment under a service agreement (TBC Consultoria em Investimentos Financeiros Ltda. v. Gradual Corretora de Cambio, Titulos e Valores Mobiliarios S.A., et al., No. 17-cv-3145, S.D. N.Y.).
TOKYO - A Japanese mobile service provider on May 1 announced that an Indian court has found that an arbitral award issued in its favor is enforceable in India and ordered a teleservices company to pay it $1.18 billion in satisfaction of the ruling.
NEW YORK - A New York federal judge on April 28 awarded more than $705,000 in attorney fees for class counsel who settled a wage-and-hour class dispute, nearly $389,000 less than counsel was seeking, but conditioned the award on paying to class members approximately $131,000 that would have, under the reversionary nature of the settlement, been returned to the defendant (Margaret McGreevy, et al. v. Life Alert Emergency Response, Inc., No. 14-7457, S.D. N.Y., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 65085).
NEW YORK - A Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on May 2 affirmed dismissal of a putative class action against Michaels Stores Inc., finding that the lead plaintiff failed to allege any damages from the retail chain's data breach and, thus, did not establish standing (Mary Jane Whalen, et al. v. Michaels Stores Inc., No. 16-260 and 16-352, 2nd Cir.).
NEW ORLEANS - A divided Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in a 7-7 vote on April 28 denied a petition for rehearing en banc in an appeal by Bass Pro Outdoor World LLC and Tracker Marine Retail LLC (collectively, Bass Pro) that the court notes is one of "first impression" in that circuit, concerning whether the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission can bring a "pattern or practice" case under Sections 706 and 707 of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 asserting the violation of the rights of 50,000 job applicants (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Bass Pro Outdoor World, L.L.C., et al., No. 15-20078, 5th Cir., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 7628).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - In a majority ruling, the Supreme Court of the United States on May 1 reversed an appeals court decision that found that the City of Miami sufficiently asserted claims for proximate cause in relation to the alleged discriminatory lending practices of two banks, but affirmed a ruling that Miami's claims fell within the zone of interests of the Fair Housing Act (FHA) (Bank of American Corporation, et al. v. City of Miami, et al., Nos. 15-1111 and 15-1112., U.S. Sup., 2017 U.S. LEXIS 2801).
TYLER, Texas - A shareholder filed a securities class action lawsuit on April 27 in Texas federal court, alleging that an operator of a network of free-standing emergency rooms and certain of its current and former executive officers and directors misrepresented the company's business condition in violation of federal securities laws (Sascha Troll v. Adeptus Health Inc., No. 17-0241, E.D. Texas).
SAN DIEGO - Defendants in a securities class action lawsuit against a drug company and certain of its current and former executive officers have failed to show that the lead plaintiff failed to plead any material misrepresentations or omissions in arguing that the defendants concealed adverse clinical test results for its development of a diet drug in violation of federal securities laws, a federal judge in California ruled April 28 in denying the defendants' motion to dismiss (Todd Schueneman, et al. v. Arena Pharmaceuticals Inc., et al., No. 10-1959, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 65275).
CHARLESTON, W.Va. - Residents of West Virginia and a group of defendants filed a joint brief in West Virginia federal court on April 27, arguing that the court should approve a $151 million settlement deal reached among the parties in a groundwater contamination lawsuit related to the chemical spill of 4-methylcyclohexane methanol (MCHM) (Crystal Good, et al. v. American Water Works Co. Inc., No. 14-1374, S.D. W.Va.).