LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
    Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Florida Jury Awards $8.5 Million To Woman's Estate For Leg Amputation

    WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - A state court jury Feb. 10 found that a physician and the concierge medical care plan with which he was associated are liable to the estate of a plan member who alleged that a blood clot in her leg went undiagnosed for almost a month, causing her to undergo an above-the-knee amputation and returned a verdict of more than $8.5 million in damages (Robert Beber, et al. v. Charles Metzger Jr., et al., No. 50-2009-CA-034380, Fla. 15th Jud. Cir., Palm Beach Co.).

    Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Oil Exploration Company Files ICC Arbitration Against Kenyan Entity

    NAIROBI, Kenya - An oil exploration company on Feb. 9 announced that its subsidiary has filed a request for international arbitration against a Kenyan entity over operation of an exploration block.

    Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Dutch Firm Files ICC Arbitration Against Client Over Refinery Expansion

    NIEUWEGEIN, Netherlands - A Dutch construction company on Feb. 9 announced that it has submitted a request for international arbitration against one of its clients, seeking more than $50 million in damages.

    Mealey's Litigation Procedure - ICC Issues Award On Rights To Papua New Guinea Gas Fields

    SINGAPORE - A Singapore oil and gas company on Feb. 10 announced that an international arbitration tribunal has issued an award dismissing claims in relation to rights over the development of a gas field in Papua New Guinea.

    Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - New York Justice Finds Executive's Testimony Lacks Documentary Support

    NEW YORK - An executive's testimony regarding company asbestos practices before his arrival is conclusory absent the documents on which he claims he relied, a New York justice held in an opinion posted Feb. 6 (Madeline E. Izbicki, et al. v. Advance Auto Supply, No. 190140/13, N.Y. Sup., New York Co.; 2015 N.Y. Misc. LEXIS 281).

    Mealey's IP/Tech - Copyright, Trademark Plaintiff Wins Partial Summary Judgment

    SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Feb. 6 awarded a plaintiff summary judgment on claims of copyright and trademark infringement, as well as violations of the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA) (Digby Adler Group LLC v. Image Rent A Car Inc., et al., No. 10-617, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14664).

    Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 'Ex-Gay' Experts Barred From Testifying At Consumer Fraud Trial

    JERSEY CITY, N.J. - Stating that "[t]he overwhelming weight of scientific authority concludes that homosexuality is not a disorder or abnormal," a New Jersey judge on Feb. 5 mostly granted a motion to exclude the expert testimony of a "reparative therapy" organization in a consumer fraud case brought by some of its former clients who had unsuccessfully sought conversion from their same-sex attraction from the organization (Michael Ferguson, et al. v. JONAH [Jews Offering New Alternatives for Healing], et al., No. HUD-L-5473-12, N.J. Super, Law Div.; 2015 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 236).

    Mealey's Health Law - Kentucky Appeals Court: Insurer Breached Contract In Terminating Agreement

    STANTON, Ky. - In an unpublished opinion, the Kentucky Court of Appeals on Feb. 6 affirmed that a managed care company that had contracted with the Commonwealth of Kentucky breached its contract to provide Medicaid services to state residents by terminating the contract early (Kentucky Spirit Health Plan Inc. v. Commonwealth of Kentucky, et al., Nos. 2014-CA-1050-MR, 2013-CA-1201-MR, Ky. App.; 2015 Ky. App. Unpub. LEXIS 85).

    Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - Class Action Lawsuit Accuses Anthem Of Failing To Secure Private Data

    LOS ANGELES - A California resident on Feb. 9 filed a class action lawsuit in federal court accusing Anthem Inc. of violating, among other things, the state's unfair competition law (UCL) in failing to safeguard personal information contained on the defendant's information technology (IT) systems after a massive breach of the company's systems (John Doe v. Anthem Inc., et al., No. 15-934, C.D. Calif.).

    Mealey's Labor & Employment - 8th Circuit Reinstates Police Lieutenant's Age Discrimination Suit

    ST. PAUL, Minn. - A police lieutenant who was denied a promotion to police chief may proceed with his claims that he was denied the promotion due to his age, the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Feb. 5, reversing a trial court's summary judgment ruling for the city (Lt. LeRoy Hilde v. City of Eveleth, a Minnesota political sub-division, No. 14-1016, 8th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 1802).

    Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Florida Jury Hears Opposing Views On Liability For Amputation

    WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Attorneys for a corporation that offers membership in a plan providing concierge medical care and the widower of a plan member who alleged that blood clot in her leg went undiagnosed for almost a month, causing her to undergo an above-the-knee amputation, presented opposing arguments on Feb. 9 on the issue of whether the corporation is liable for the actions of one of its affiliated physicians (Robert Beber, et al. v. MDVIP Inc., et al., No. 50-2009-CA-034380, Fla. 15th Jud. Cir., Palm Beach Co.).

    Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Medtronic Pays $2.8M For False Claims For Experimental Spine Stimulator Procedure

    BUFFALO, N.Y. - Medical device manufacturer Medtronic Inc. will pay $2.8 million to resolve allegations that it caused some doctors to submit false claims for experimental procedures using the company's spinal cord stimulators, the U.S. Justice Department announced Feb. 6 (United States of America, ex rel. Jason W. Nickell v. Medtronic, Inc., No. 09-203, W.D. N.Y.).

    Mealey's Insurance - Exclusion Clearly Bars Coverage For Damages Caused By Sewage Backup

    LOS ANGELES - A water-damage exclusion clearly bars coverage for damages caused to an insured home by a sewer backup, the Second District California Court of Appeal said Feb. 5, rejecting the insureds' proposed narrow reading of the exclusion (Maxim Tselevich, et al. v. Allstate Insurance Co., et al., No. B250792, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 3; 2015 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 839).

    Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Remands Agent Orange Benefits Appeal, Says Board Did Not Explain Decision

    WASHINGTON, D.C. - A federal judge in the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims on Feb. 6 remanded a lawsuit regarding Agent Orange benefits on grounds that the Board of Veterans Appeals failed to explain why it found that the widow of a veteran lacked credibility or probative weight in her request for compensation (Frankie J. Bowen v. Robert A. McDonald, No.13-3315, Vet. Clms.; 2015 U.S. App. Vet. Claims LEXIS 145).

    Mealey's Insurance - Policy Does Not Cover Cleanup Costs Owed To Property Owner, Judge Says

    FORT PIERCE, Fla. - An insurer owes no coverage to an insured tenant seeking costs associated with the cleanup of a petroleum spill because the policy at issue provides coverage for cleanup costs owed only to a governmental authority and not the owner of the property, a Florida federal judge said Feb. 5 (786 Golden Petroleum Inc. v. Zurich American Insurance Co., No. 13-62641, S. D. Fla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 13854).

    Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Finds Defendant Company Cannot Pursue CERCLA Claims

    LOS ANGELES - A defendant company hired by Anheuser-Busch Inc. to design and construct holding tanks on a 21.1 acre site in California cannot pursue claims for cost recovery and contribution under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) against two of its co-defendants, a federal judge in California ruled Feb. 5, holding that the company could not seek cost recovery under the statute because it was a potentially responsible party (PRP) and because it did not release its liability to one of its co-defendants as part of a settlement with the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA) (Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles v. PCC Technical Industries Inc., et al., No. 11-1626, C.D. Calif.).

    Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Insurers Were Not Parties To Homeowners Policy In Bad Faith Suit

    DENVER - Dismissal of breach of contract and insurance bad faith claims against certain defendants is proper because an insured has failed to show that those companies were parties to his homeowners insurance policy, a federal judge in Colorado ruled Feb. 6 (Patrick Slavin v. USAA Casualty Insurance Co., et al., No. 14-1839, D. Colo.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14481).

    Mealey's Insurance - Panel: Stock Certificate Is Not 'Counterfeit' Under Financial Institution Bond

    ATLANTA - The 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 9 held that although a stock certificate was procured under false pretenses, it is an authentic document and not "counterfeit" under the terms of a financial institution bond, affirming a lower federal court's ruling in favor of the insurer in a dispute over coverage for a bank's alleged loss over defaulted loans (Bank of Brewton v. The Travelers Companies, Inc., et al., No. 14-12472, 11th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 1988).

    Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Judge: Failure To Timely Amend Personal Injury Action Dooms Wrongful Death Case

    GREENSBORO, N.C. - A man's failure to file a timely motion to substitute himself as personal representative in a personal injury asbestos action bars a subsequently filed wrongful death action, a federal judge in North Carolina held Feb. 6 (Richard Eric Taylor, et al. v. Norfolk Southern Railway Co., No. 12-688, M.D. N.C.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14388).

    Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Tolling Agreement Ended With Crown Cork Ruling; Claim Untimely, Judge Says

    DALLAS - An agreement tolling the statute of limitations in an asbestos action ended when with a decision on the constitutionality of retroactive application of a law shielding Crown Cork & Seal Co. Inc. from liability, a federal judge held Feb. 5 in dismissing a widow's case (William G. Lett and Maria Lett v. Crown Cork & Seal Company Inc. and Guardline Inc., No. 14-860, Patricia Lusk, et al. v. Crown Cork & Seal Company Inc. and Guardline Inc., No. 14-861, Debra White, et al. v. Crown Cork & Seal Company Inc. and Guardline Inc., No. 14-862, N.D. Texas).

    Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Tolling Agreement Ended With Crown Cork Ruling; Claim Untimely, Judge Says

    DALLAS - An agreement tolling the statute of limitations in an asbestos action ended when with a decision on the constitutionality of retroactive application of a law shielding Crown Cork & Seal Co. Inc. from liability, a federal judge held Feb. 5 in dismissing a widow's case (William G. Lett and Maria Lett v. Crown Cork & Seal Company Inc. and Guardline Inc., No. 14-860, Patricia Lusk, et al. v. Crown Cork & Seal Company Inc. and Guardline Inc., No. 14-861, Debra White, et al. v. Crown Cork & Seal Company Inc. and Guardline Inc., No. 14-862, N.D. Texas).

    Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Lead Plaintiffs Failed To Plead Scienter In Securities Class Action, Panel Rules

    BOSTON - A federal district court did not err in dismissing a securities class action lawsuit against a medical device manufacturer and certain of its executive officers because lead plaintiffs failed to properly plead scienter, a First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled Feb. 6 (Fire and Police Pension Association of Colorado, et al. v. Abiomed Inc., et al., No. 14-1502, 1st Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 1944).

    Mealey's Bankruptcy - Objector Loses Bid To Contest Value Of Water Rights In Utility Bankruptcy

    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - A New Mexico bankruptcy judge on Feb. 5 denied a request by objectors to retain the proceeds from the sale of a utility company because a state receiver allegedly undervalued the water rights belonging to a bankrupt company (In Re: Picacho Hills Utility Company, Inc., No. 13-10742, D. N.M. Bkcy.; 2015 Bankr. LEXIS 371).

    Mealey's Bankruptcy - Panel: Insurance Guarantor's Obligations Based On When Insurer Was Liquidated

    LAKELAND, Fla. - A Florida appeals panel on Feb. 6 reversed and remanded a lower court decision against the state's insurance guaranty association, citing a recent case in which the appellate court determined the guarantor's obligations based on the statutory definition of "covered claim" that stood when the insurer at issue became insolvent (Florida Insurance Guaranty Association, Inc. v. Darlene Waters, No. 2D13-4455, Fla. App., 2nd Dist.; 2015 Fla. App. LEXIS 1585).

    Mealey's Bankruptcy - 2nd Circuit: Bankruptcy Court Cannot Award Compensation From Plan Assets

    NEW YORK - Bankruptcy courts do not have jurisdiction to award compensation to a Chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney and his retained legal accounting professionals out of assets in a 401(k) plan governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals affirmed Feb. 5 (In the Matter of: Robert Plan Corporation [Kenneth Kirschenbaum v. United States Department of Labor], No. 14-1144, 2nd Cir.; 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 1807).