LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Appeals Court Affirms Dismissal Of Man's Claims Over Contaminated Groundwater

TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey Superior Court Appellate Division panel on Aug. 27 upheld the dismissal of a landowner's claims for nuisance and trespass against an oil company whose leaks from underground storage tanks resulted in contamination of a portion of the plaintiff's property, finding that the man agreed to have the company remediate the property (Anthony F. Favorito v. Puritan Oil Company Inc., et al., No. A-3426-12T1, N.J. Super., App. Div.; 2014 N.J. Super. Unpub. 2109).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Federal Judge Dismisses Claims In Moldy Washing Machine Class Action

NEWARK, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on Aug. 26 granted an electronic corporation's motion to dismiss certain claims in a class action complaint filed by purchasers of allegedly defective washing machines but allowed claims for negligent misrepresentation and fraud to proceed (Robert N. Durso, et al. v. Samsung Electronics America Inc., No. 12-cv-5352, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 118467).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge Finds Vehicle Value Diminution Method Unreliable, Strikes Expert Testimony

TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on Aug. 25 found the methodology used by a purported expert on vehicle damage and diminished value to be unreliable, granting a vehicle manufacturer's motion to strike his testimony in a dispute over a repair settlement agreement (Robert Deficcio, et al. v. Winnebago Industries Inc., No. 3:11-cv-07406, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 118082).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Federal Judge Dismisses Claims In Moldy Washing Machine Class Action

NEWARK, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on Aug. 26 granted an electronic corporation's motion to dismiss certain claims in a class action complaint filed by purchasers of allegedly defective washing machines but allowed claims for negligent misrepresentation and fraud to proceed (Robert N. Durso, et al. v. Samsung Electronics America Inc., No. 12-cv-5352, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 118467).

Mealey's IP/Tech - New Jersey Federal Judge Won't Declare Patent Ineligible

TRENTON, N.J. - Although two defendants "persuasively" argued that a method patent is patent-ineligible, a New Jersey federal judge on Aug. 19 nonetheless denied their motion to dismiss without prejudice (Data Distribution Technologies LLC v. BRER Affiliates Inc. et al., No. 12-4878, D. N.J.).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - New Jersey Federal Judge Remands Breach Of Contract Suit; No Preemption Exists

NEWARK, N.J. - In an unpublished opinion, a New Jersey federal judge on Aug. 15 remanded a health insurance breach of contract case to state court, holding that the Employee Retirement Income Security Act did not preempt the claims (Thomas R. Peterson, M.D., et al. v. Cigna Insurance Co., et al., No. 14-03818, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 11349).

Mealey's Insurance - New Jersey Federal Judge Remands Breach Of Contract Suit; No Preemption Exists

NEWARK, N.J. - In an unpublished opinion, a New Jersey federal judge on Aug. 15 remanded a health insurance breach of contract case to state court, holding that the Employee Retirement Income Security Act did not preempt the claims (Thomas R. Peterson, M.D., et al. v. Cigna Insurance Co., et al., No. 14-03818, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 11349).

Mealey's Health Law - New Jersey Federal Judge Remands Breach Of Contract Suit; No Preemption Exists

NEWARK, N.J. - In an unpublished opinion, a New Jersey federal judge on Aug. 15 remanded a health insurance breach of contract case to state court, holding that the Employee Retirement Income Security Act did not preempt the claims (Thomas R. Peterson, M.D., et al. v. Cigna Insurance Co., et al., No. 14-03818, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 11349).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Price-Fixing Class Action Claims Against DIPF Sellers Will Continue

TRENTON, N.J. - Direct purchasers of ductile iron pipe fittings (DIPF) have adequately pleaded facts suggesting that sellers of DIPF engaged in a price-fixing conspiracy, a federal judge in New Jersey ruled Aug. 13 in denying the sellers' motions to dismiss (In re Ductile Iron Pipe Fittings [DIPF] Direct Purchaser Antitrust Litigation, No. 12-711, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 111988).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Hotel Company Seeks $1.2M From Exxon, Alleges Failure To Remediate Contamination

TRENTON, N.J. - A hotel company on Aug. 14 filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey against Exxon Mobil Corp. seeking $1.2 million for damages allegedly caused by Exxon's failure to remediate an environmental hazard that contaminated the property on which the hotels sits and caused the hotel's deal to sell the property to fall through (Rose Hotels Ltd. Inc. v. Exxon Mobil Corporation, No. 14-05111, D. N.J.).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - Price-Fixing Class Action Claims Against DIPF Sellers Will Continue

TRENTON, N.J. - Direct purchasers of ductile iron pipe fittings (DIPF) have adequately pleaded facts suggesting that sellers of DIPF engaged in a price-fixing conspiracy, a federal judge in New Jersey ruled Aug. 13 in denying the sellers' motions to dismiss (In re Ductile Iron Pipe Fittings [DIPF] Direct Purchaser Antitrust Litigation, No. 12-711, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 111988).

Mealey's IP/Tech - 3rd Circuit Affirms Liability Holding, Vacates Damages In Copyright Case

PHILADELPHIA - A New Jersey federal judge properly found that a copyright defendant had knowledge of a company's infringing activities, but she erred in awarding the prevailing plaintiff $4.5 million in damages, the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals held Aug. 6 (Star Pacific Corp. v. Star Atlantic Corp., et al., No. 12-2253, 3rd Cir.).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - $2M N.J. Accutane Verdict Reversed, 2 Defense Verdicts Affirmed On Appeal

TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey appeals panel on Aug. 4 vacated a $2,125,617 Accutane bowel injury verdict and affirmed defense verdicts in two other cases tried at the same time (Gillian Gaghan v. Hoffman-La Roche Inc., et al., Nos. A-2717-11T2, A-3211-11T2 and A-3217-11T2, N.J. Super., App. Div.).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Norfolk Southern Denies Liability In Chemical Spill From N.J. Train Derailment

CAMDEN, N.J. - Norfolk Southern Railway Co. (Norfolk), one of the defendants in the consolidated Paulsboro, N.J., train derailment litigation in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, on July 29 filed an answer and affirmative defenses denying liability for the spill of vinyl chloride and other chemicals into Mantua Creek (In re: Paulsboro Derailment Cases, No. 13-784, D. N.J.).

Mealey's Insurance - 3rd Circuit: Plaintiff Must Reimburse Medicare For Medical Expenses

PHILADELPHIA - A panel of the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 29 held that the Medicare as a Secondary Payer Act (MSP Act) authorizes the government to seek reimbursement from a settlement a plaintiff receives from a tortfeasor because the funds came from a "primary plan" and that the plaintiff cannot invoke a New Jersey state law to avoid her reimbursement obligations (Cecelia A. Taransky v. Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, et al., No. 13-3483, 3rd Cir.; 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 14408).

Mealey's Health Law - 3rd Circuit: Plaintiff Must Reimburse Medicare For Medical Expenses

PHILADELPHIA - A panel of the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 29 held that the Medicare as a Secondary Payer Act (MSP Act) authorizes the government to seek reimbursement from a settlement a plaintiff receives from a tortfeasor because the funds came from a "primary plan" and that the plaintiff cannot invoke a New Jersey state law to avoid her reimbursement obligations (Cecelia A. Taransky v. Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, et al., No. 13-3483, 3rd Cir.; 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 14408).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Judge Finds New Jersey Adopted 'Bare Metal' Defense In Recent Ruling

NEWARK, N.J. - New Jersey does not impose liability for third-party asbestos-containing gaskets, packing or insulation applied to a manufacturers' pump, a New Jersey federal judge held July 23 in citing a state appeals court's April decision (William J. Robinson and Gail A. Robinson v. Air & Liquid Systems Corp., et al., No. 11-4078, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 99778).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Finds New Jersey Adopted 'Bare Metal' Defense In Recent Ruling

NEWARK, N.J. - New Jersey does not impose liability for third-party asbestos-containing gaskets, packing or insulation applied to a manufacturers' pump, a New Jersey federal judge held July 23 in citing a state appeals court's April decision (William J. Robinson and Gail A. Robinson v. Air & Liquid Systems Corp., et al., No. 11-4078, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 99778).

Mealey's IP/Tech - New Jersey Federal Judge Rejects False Endorsement Claim

TRENTON, N.J. - Allegations that a defendant used a plaintiff's image in promotional materials without her consent in violation of Section 43(a) of the Lanham Act were rejected by a New Jersey federal judge on July 24 (Khadi Madama v. Genesis Rehab, No. 12-1451, D. N.J.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - New Jersey Federal Judge: Faxed Ad Class Complaint Is Time-Barred

NEWARK, N.J. - A prior class complaint filed in New Jersey state court that, for a time, tolled the statute of limitations for Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) claims brought by recipients of allegedly unauthorized faxed ads failed to save the otherwise untimely TCPA claim filed in New Jersey federal court more than six years after the fax was sent, a New Jersey federal judge ruled July 22 (A & L Industries, Inc., et al. v. P. Cipollini, Inc., No. 12-7598, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 99285).

Mealey's Insurance - Insurance Bad Faith Claim Preempted By Federal Law, Judge Rules

TRENTON, N.J. - A federal judge in New Jersey on July 22 issued an order dismissing an insured's bad faith claim against an insurer for failure to pay on a flood insurance policy after Hurricane Sandy, ruling that the claim is preempted by federal law (Mark Damiano v. Harleysville Insurance Co. of New Jersey, No. 13-7239, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 97988).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Appeals Court Affirms Summary Judgment Awards To Contractor, Subcontractor

TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey Superior Court, Appellate Division, panel on July 17 affirmed rulings awarding summary judgment to a contractor and concrete subcontractor that built a condominium complex that allegedly had issues with water infiltration caused by the use of black tar paper as opposed to Tyvek building wrap, ruling that the plaintiff was unable to sufficiently state claims for negligence and breach of contract (Saratoga at Toms River Condominium Association Inc. v. Menk Corporation Inc., et al., No. A-5421-11T3, N.J. Super, App. Div.).

Mealey's Insurance - Bad Faith, Attorney Fees Claims In Sandy Suit Preempted By Federal Law, Judge Says

TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on July 17 dismissed an insured's claims for bad faith, attorney fees and "any other relief" deemed reasonable in a coverage dispute arising from Superstorm Sandy damage (Mark Damiano v. Harleysville Insurance Company of New Jersey, No. 3:13-cv-07239-FLW-LHG, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 97988).

Mealey's Insurance - No Additional Coverage Owed For Roof Damage, New Jersey Panel Affirms

TRENTON, N.J. - No additional coverage is afforded for water and mold damage to an insured patio roof because it is clear that the damages were not hidden and the policy at issue precludes losses caused by wear and tear, the New Jersey Superior Court Appellate Division said July 18 (Gerald Romano et al. v. Metropolitan Property & Casualty Insurance Co., No. A-3525-11T1, N.J. Super., App. Div.; 2014 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 1768).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - N.J. Federal Judge Grants Final Approval In Class Action Reimbursement Suit

NEWARK, N.J. - In an unpublished opinion, a New Jersey federal judge on July 9 granted final approval of a class action settlement over wrongful reimbursements for out-of-network health care services (Cathleen McDonough v. Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, No. 09-571, D. N.J.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 93559).