FRESNO, Calif. - A California federal judge on March 16 denied an insured's petition to substitute her as the plaintiff in an action in which her husband sought coverage for theft under an insurance policy, finding that she failed to submit sufficient medical evidence to support a finding that he was incompetent to proceed as a plaintiff (Ray Gibson v. Hagerty Insurance Agency, et al., No. 1:16-cv-00677, E.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 38231).
SANTA ANA, Calif. - Lead plaintiffs in a securities class action lawsuit against a drug maker and certain of its executive officers asked a federal judge in California on March 15 to certify a class of investors, arguing that class certification is statutorily appropriate (Hsingching Hsu v. Puma Biotechnology Inc., et al., No. 15-0865, C.D. Calif.).
CHICAGO - An Illinois judge on March 14 approved a liquidator's recommendation of a payment to a class of homeowners that won a construction defect lawsuit against a group of developers insured by an insolvent insurer (In the matter of the liquidation of Legion Indemnity Co., No. 02 CH 06695, Ill. Cir., Cook Co., Chanc. Div.).
NEW YORK - Underwriters Royal Bank of Scotland Securities Inc., Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. and Wells Fargo Advisors LLC on March 15 agreed to pay a combined $165 million to settle claims that they took part in a fraudulent scheme to misrepresent the underwriting standards they used in the offering documents for a series of mortgage-backed securities (MBS) (New Jersey Health Fund v. Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC, et al., No. 08-5310, S.D. N.Y.).
LOS ANGELES - A federal judge in California on March 15 substantially dismissed a securities class action complaint against a solar energy products manufacturer and certain of its executive officers, ruling that shareholders failed to plead the requisite elements of a majority of their federal securities laws claims (Kevin T. Know, et al. v. Yingli Green Energy Holding Co. Ltd., et al., No. 15-4003, C.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 37223).
BROOKLYN, N.Y. - Shareholders in a securities class action lawsuit against the operator of an online marketplace and certain of its executive officers have failed to show that the defendants issued any material misrepresentations or omission or acted with the requisite scienter, a federal judge in New York ruled March 16 in granting the defendants' motion to dismiss (Saleh Altayyar, et al. v. Etsy Inc., et al., No. 15-2785, E.D. N.Y.).
GRETNA, La. - A Louisiana appeals panel on March 15 reversed a lower court's dismissal of a lawsuit alleging that an insured breached a partnership agreement involving the opening of a new restaurant/bar and nightclub, concluding that the lower court erred in granting motions by the insured and his professional liability insurer to dismiss the case due to abandonment (Marlen Nunez v. Cesar R. Burgos, et al., No. 16-CA-568, La. App., 5th Cir.).
TULSA, Okla. - An Oklahoma federal judge on March 14 excluded testimony from an expert on estimates to repair a master control center (MCC) and electrical costs as a result of insureds' damages caused by a contractor and subcontractor's inadequate design and installation of the concrete columns but allowed other estimates to be admitted (Lexington Insurance Co., et al. v. Newbern Fabricating Inc. and Baucom Concrete Construction Inc. & Newbern Fabricating Inc. v. Doveland Engineering Co., No. 14-0610, N.D. Okla.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 36133).
TULSA, Okla. - Rendering moot a federal magistrate judge's report and recommendation that a pilot's expert testimony in an aviation negligence and products liability lawsuit should be partially excluded under Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals Inc., 509 U.S. 579 (1993), an Oklahoma federal judge ruled March 14 that the entire testimony should be excluded for the pilot's failure to prepare the report himself (James Rodgers, et al. v. Beechcraft Corp. f/k/a Hawker Beechcraft Corp., et al., No. 15-0129, N.D. Okla., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 36131).
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - An insurer cannot pursue arbitration against Chapter 11 debtor Garlock Sealing Technologies LLC and affiliates for a coverage dispute with a third-party manufacturer but can file a late proof of claim against the debtors without prejudice to its arbitration rights, according to a consent order filed March 16 in North Carolina federal bankruptcy court (In re: Garlock Sealing Technologies, LLC, et al., No. 10-31607, W.D. N.C. Bkcy.).
CHICAGO - An Illinois judge on March 16 approved the rate of compensation for an internal auditor of an insolvent insurer's liquidation proceeding (People of the State of Illinois, ex rel. Andrew Boron, Director of Insurance of the State of Illinois v. Lumbermens Mutual Casualty Co., No. 12-24227, Ill. Cir., Cook Co.).
CHICAGO - An Illinois appeals panel on March 14 rejected an insured's assignee's appeal in a coverage dispute arising from unsolicited fax transmissions, finding the assignee's claims barred by the doctrine of res judicata (CE Design Ltd. v. HealthCraft Products, Inc., et al., No. 1-14-3000, Ill. App., 1st Dist., 2nd Div., 2017 Ill. App. Unpub. LEXIS 490).
SEATTLE - A Washington federal judge on March 15 granted judgment for a bank, finding that a borrower's claims related to a nonjudicial foreclosure were barred because the same facts underlying the case were already asserted in two other previously filed actions (Paul Frederick Genung v. Clear Recon Corp., No. 16-692, W.D. Wash., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 37215).
CINCINNATI - A glass factory worker who suffered from bipolar disorder and was fired after losing his temper at work and screaming at co-workers failed to show that his firing constituted violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), a Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled March 14 (Michael Waggoner v. Carlex Glass America, LLC, No. 16-6241, 6th Cir., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 4621).
TROY, Mich. - A Michigan appeals panel on March 14 affirmed a lower court's grant of summary disposition and dismissal of a suit in which a man claimed that he slipped and injured himself on a property because the ice he slipped on was an open and obvious hazard (Nick Zimmer v. Harbour Cove on the Lake Condominium Community, No. 331545, Mich. App. 2nd Dist.,2017 Mich. App. LEXIS 391).
NEW YORK - While noting that it is not prudent law or policy, New York appellate panel on March 15 said a trial court was right to grant summary judgment to a man who was sued because his dog caused an injury to a pedestrian even though the dog was not vicious because New York law does not allow for negligence claims to be brought against a dog's owner when the dog did not attack the plaintiff (Gregory Scavetta, et al. v. Stuart Wechsler, No. 155262/14 2235, N.Y. Sup., App. Div., 1st Dept. 2017 N.Y. App. Div. LEXIS 1943).
NEW YORK - Parties in the 37-day-old Eliquis multidistrict litigation on March 16 told the judge they disagree whether a preemption ruling in one case will be dispositive of all cases in the litigation (In Re: Eliquis [Apixaban] Products Liability Litigation, MDL Docket No. 2754, No. 17-md-2754, S.D. N.Y.).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - In a March 15 order, a California federal judge denied preliminary approval of a proposed settlement of a class action over Google Inc.'s practice of scanning emails of non-Gmail users, faulting the lack of clear notice and disclosures in the settlement and finding it unclear that the settlement is "fundamentally fair, adequate, and reasonable" (Daniel Matera, et al. v. Google Inc., No. 5:15-cv-04062, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 37370).