EAST ST. LOUIS, Mo. - Fifty-year-old military records stored in a government repository fall within the public records exemption to hearsay and help overcome a pump maker's summary judgment effort, a federal judge held April 16 (Richard Spells Jr., et al. v. Air & Liquid Systems Corp., et al., No. 13-129, S.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 50320).
LAS VEGAS - Dismissal of an insurance bad faith lawsuit is proper, a federal judge in Nevada ruled April 13, because an insured's claims are governed by the state's Division of Insurance, which has exclusive jurisdiction over the claims (Desiree DeCastro v. Progressive Northern Insurance Co., et al., No. 14-0983, D. Nev.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 48273).
ST. LOUIS - A trial court properly applied the standards of Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals Inc. (509 U.S. 579, 592-93 ) in partly excluding an insurer's expert report and in admitting a tubing firm's expert's testimony, an Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled April 15, finding no error in the lower court's ruling (American Automobile Insurance Co. v. Omega Flex Inc., No. 14-1783, 8th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 6091).
NEW YORK - A divided Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on April 15 affirmed a federal district court's dismissal of a securities class action lawsuit, ruling that shareholders failed to state a claim for relief (IBEW Local Union No. 58 Pension Trust Fund and Annuity Fund v. The Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC, et al., No. 13-3289, 2nd Cir.).
CHICAGO - A Chicago man who donated $500 to the campaign committee for Aaron Schock filed a class complaint April 15 against Schock and 100 unnamed Does in Illinois federal court, alleging that the former U.S. congressman defrauded donors (Howard Foster, et al. v. Aaron Jon Schock, et al., No. 15-3325, N.D. Ill.).
MADISON, Wis. - A federal judge in Wisconsin on April 15 denied motions filed by a plaintiff company in a Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act case, seeking to exclude expert testimony and supplemental reports filed by the City of Ashland, Wis., finding that the experts' opinions were relevant and that their supplemental reports could not have been prepared without information that was not supplied by the plaintiff company until January (Northern States Power Company v. City of Ashland, Wisconsin, et al., No. 12-cv-602, W.D. Wis.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 49387).
PHILADELPHIA - A district court erred when it found that proposed classes in a putative class action accusing a retailer of improperly spying on its customers via spyware were not ascertainable, a Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled April 16 (Crystal Byrd, et al. v. Aaron's Inc., et al., No. 14-3050, 3rd Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 6190).
CHARLESTON, W.Va. - A West Virginia federal judge on April 16 found that the "common theme" of an underlying complaint against a hospital and a records-imaging and storage company is deliberate, intentional conduct that led to an expected, desired or foreseeable result and not a chance occurrence that arose from unknown causes, finding that an insurer has no duty to defend or indemnify the defendants against claims that they violated public policy by engaging in a scheme that misrepresented the availability of a more reasonable cost of receiving medical records (Westfield Insurance Co. v. Records Imaging & Storage Inc., et al., No. 14-18854, S.D. W.Va.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 49986).
BROOKLYN, N.Y. - Because a policy clearly provides for a maximum of $100,000 in coverage for cleanup and removal of the discharge of a pollutant caused by a "peril" that occurs during a policy period, the maximum amount of coverage available to an insured seeking coverage for the release of gasoline from an underground storage tank at its service station is $100,000, the Second Department Appellate Division of the New York Supreme Court said April 15 (L & D Service Station, Inc., v. Utica First Insurance Co., et al., No. 2013-05805, N.Y. Sup., App. Div., 2nd Dept.; 2015 N.Y. App. Div. LEXIS 3084).
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on April 14 found that an administrative law judge erred when he discounted the severity of a woman's mold-related and other ailments, remanding the case for further review (Luba Yesipovich v. Carolyn W. Colvin, acting commissioner of social security, No. 15-00112, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 49799).
WILMINGTON, Del. - A Delaware federal bankruptcy judge on April 14 authorized a creditors' committee in the Chapter 11 case of Energy Future Holdings Corp. (EFH) to hire an asbestos noticing expert to evaluate the debtor's proposed procedures for notifying asbestos personal injury claimants of a bar date for their claims (In re: Energy Future Holdings Corp., No. 14-10979, D. Del. Bkcy.).
PHOENIX - An Arizona Court of Appeals panel on April 14 affirmed a trial court judge's ruling finding that lawsuits brought by a condominium association and doctors who purchased units for their office space were barred by the state's two-year statute of limitations for negligence claims, holding that the plaintiffs were aware of the defects more than two years before filing suit (Aprajita Nakra DPM PC, et al. v. Porter Brothers Inc., No. 1 CA-CV-13-0739, Ariz. App., Div. 1; 2015 Ariz. App. Unpub. LEXIS 486).
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas - Allegations of an insured's defective work are precluded under a commercial general liability insurance policy's "your work" and subsidence exclusions, a Texas appeals panel affirmed April 16, finding no duty to defend or indemnify (Adolfo Vela d/b/a Adelco Enterprises v. Catlin Specialty Insurance Co., et al., No. 13-13-00475, Texas App., 13th Dist.; 2015 Tex. App. LEXIS 3743).
NEW YORK - A tile company has not satisfied the prima facie standard for summary judgment, the recently appointed New York justice overseeing asbestos litigation in the city held in an opinion posted April 16 (Richard R. Lefrak v. Aerco International Inc., et al., No. 190033/14, N.Y. Sup., New York Co.).
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A settlement proposal rejected by the plaintiff in a medical malpractice case did not meet the requirements under Florida law for an award of attorney fees and costs to the defendant following the entry of a defense verdict, the Florida Supreme Court ruled in a split decision April 16 (Ancel Pratt Jr. v. Michael C. Weiss, D.O., et al., No. SC12-1783, Fla. Sup.).
NEW ORLEANS - The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on April 16 found that a district court erred in finding that an arbitration award violated public policy, reversing a decision that refused to enforce the award in a case filed by a seaman, who alleged that he was injured aboard a vessel (Lito Martinez Asignacion v. Rickmers Genoa Schiffahrts, No. 14-30132, 5th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 6245).
AKRON, Ohio - Allegations that a trademark infringement and dilution lawsuit is barred by the doctrine of res judicata were rejected April 16 by an Ohio federal judge (TSDC LLC v. Antoinette Galvan and Gloria Galvan, No. 14-2699, N.D. Ohio; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 50348).
PHILADELPHIA - Factual questions remain as to whether an insurer had a duty to defend an additional insured against allegations of negligent construction and failure to warn, a Pennsylvania federal judge ruled April 14 (Citizens Insurance Company of America v. Selective Way Insurance Co., No. 14-6232, E.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 49840).
NEW YORK - A sale order and injunction issued pursuant to Section 363 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code shields General Motors LLC (New GM) from liability for the majority of ignition-switch suits stemming from conduct on the part of General Motors Corp. (Old GM), a bankruptcy judge in New York held April 15 (In re: Chapter 11 Motors Liquidation Co., et al., f/k/a General Motors Corp., et al., No. 09-50026, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy.).
WILMINGTON, Del. - A shipyard's motion to dismiss claims against a subsidiary involves merit issues and should be converted into a motion for summary judgment, a federal magistrate judge in Delaware said April 14 (Charles D. Malone and Elizabeth Malone v. Air & Liquid Systems Corp., et al., No. 14-406, D. Del.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 48697).
DETROIT - A defendant's motion to compel a trademark infringement plaintiff to produce sealed documents from related litigation against nonparty NVE Inc. was granted April 15 by a Michigan federal judge (International IP Holdings LLC v. Green Planet Inc., No. 13-13988, E.D. Mich.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 49363).