NEW YORK - A panel of the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 31 certified two questions to the New York Court of Appeals related to lease disputes pertaining to hydraulic fracturing. Specifically, the Second Circuit said the New York high court should determine whether a fracking moratorium affected the expiration date of the leases at issue as a group of landowners contends (Walter R. Beardslee, et al. v Inflection Energy LLC, et al., No. 12-4897, 2nd Cir.).
NEW YORK - A group of 156 plaintiffs asked U.S. Judge Jesse M. Furman of the Southern District of New York July 31 for leave to file an omnibus complaint against General Motors LLC (GM) for deaths and injuries that occurred prior to the sale of General Motors Corp. (In re General Motors LLC Ignition Switch Litigation, No. 14-MD-2543 [JMF]; Pamela Edwards, et al. v. General Motors LLC, S.D. N.Y.).
NEW YORK - Claims in an ignition-switch defect class action involve both Old (presale) GM and New (post-sale) GM and are therefore subject to stay, the bankruptcy judge overseeing General Motors Corp.'s (GM) Chapter 11 case ruled July 30 (In re: Chapter 11 Motors Liquidation Co., et al., f/k/a General Motors Corp., et al., No. 09-50026, S.D. N.Y. Bky.).
NEW YORK - A New York federal judge on July 30 ordered Bank of America Corp., as successor to Countrywide Financial Corp. and Countrywide Home Loans, and a former Countrywide officer to pay $1.3 billion in damages in connection with Countrywide's residential mortgage lending business and a scheme to defraud Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (United States of America, ex rel. Edward O'Donnell v. Countrywide Home Loans Inc., No. 12-cv-1422, S.D. N.Y.).
NEW YORK - A suit filed July 28 in the General Motors (GM) Ignition Switch MDL in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York seeks damages for 29 wrongful death plaintiffs and 629 personal injury plaintiffs stemming from ignition-switch defects in GM cars (In re: General Motors LLC Ignition Switch Litigation, No. 14-md-02543-JMF; Bob Abney, et al. v. General Motors LLC, MDL No. 14-5810, S.D. N.Y.).
NEW YORK - The federal judge in New York presiding over the methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) multidistrict litigation court on July 30 denied a motion by ExxonMobil Corp. seeking to establish a trust out of which to pay a $104.69 million award the City of New York won related to the MTBE contamination of five wells (In re: Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether Products Liability Litigation, No. 1:00-1898, MDL 1358, City of New York v. Amerada Hess Corporation, No. 04-3417, S.D. N.Y.).
NEW YORK - In a false advertising case where "willful deception" is proven, "a presumption of injury may be used to award a plaintiff damages in the form of defendant's profits and may . . . warrant enhanced damages," the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled July 29 in a dispute over the labeling for a dietary folate product (Merck Eprova v. Gnosis S.P.A., et al., Nos. 12-4218, 13-513, 2nd Cir.).
NEW YORK - A New York appeals panel on July 24 denied reargument of its earlier decision regarding timeliness of an asbestos-related reinsurance arbitration dispute (In the Matter of ROM Reinsurance Management Company, Inc., et al. v. Continental Insurance Company, Inc., No. M-1783, N.Y. Sup., App. Div., 1st Dept.).
NEW YORK - The Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 24 reinstated hostile work environment claims brought by a former employee of Telesector Resources Group Inc., doing business as Verizon Services Group, and ordered Verizon to compel certain documents requested by the former employee that may support her claims of gender bias (Cindy Moll v. Telesector Resources Group, Inc., DBA Verizon Services Group, AKA Verizon New York Inc., Nos. 12-4688 and 13-918, 2nd Cir.; 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 14066).
BROOKLYN, N.Y. - A New York state appellate panel on July 23 ruled that a trial court properly found that a county water authority had standing to bring a lawsuit against makers of perchloroethylene (PCE) for some wells that were contaminated but said the county's lawsuit as to other wells should be dismissed based on the county's failure to file its complaint in a timely manner (Suffolk County Water Authority v. Dow Chemical Company, et al., No. 2012-07097, N.Y. Sup., App. Div., 2nd Dept.; 2014 N.Y. App. Div. LEXIS 5350).
NEW YORK - After finding that an arbitration panel properly determined that a valid contract existed in relation to an agreement for the shipment of aggregates, a New York federal judge on July 21 confirmed a $1,121,783.12 arbitration award issued in favor of a shipping company (In the Matter of Arbitration between TBS Middle East Carriers Ltd. v. United Quarries, No. 13-8932, S.D. N.Y.; 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 99848).
NEW YORK - A federal judge in New York on July 18 refused to dismiss suits by merchants that opted out of the $7.25 billion class action settlement between approximately 12 million merchants and Visa, MasterCard and a large number of banks, which allegedly fixed the price of interchange fees paid by merchants when customers use Visa and MasterCard credit cards (In re Payment Card Interchange Fee and Merchant Discount Antitrust Litigation $(All Opt-Out Cases$), No. 14-md-1720, E.D. N.Y.).
NEW YORK - The Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 22 reinstated a federal bankruptcy court ruling requiring two insurance companies to pay $510 million to asbestos personal injury plaintiffs under decades-old settlements, finding that conditions precedent to payment under the settlement agreements were satisfied (In re: Johns-Manville Corp., $(Common Law Settlement Counsel, Statutory and Hawaii Direct Action Settlement Counsel and Asbestos Personal Injury Plaintiffs v. The Travelers Indemnity Company and Travelers Casualty and Surety Company, FKA Aetna Casualty and Surety Company$), Nos. 12-1094, 12-1150 and 12-1205, 2nd Cir.).
NEW YORK - The Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 22 reinstated a federal bankruptcy court ruling requiring two insurance companies to pay $510 million to asbestos personal injury plaintiffs under decades-old settlements, finding that conditions precedent to payment under the settlement agreements were satisfied (In re: Johns-Manville Corp., [Common Law Settlement Counsel, Statutory and Hawaii Direct Action Settlement Counsel and Asbestos Personal Injury Plaintiffs v. The Travelers Indemnity Company and Travelers Casualty and Surety Company, FKA Aetna Casualty and Surety Company], Nos. 12-1094, 12-1150 and 12-1205, 2nd Cir.).
NEW YORK - Without providing further opinion, a federal judge in New York on July 15 granted in part and denied in part a motion to dismiss filed by Goldman Sachs & Co. and others in a securities class action lawsuit regarding Goldman's alleged misrepresentations pertaining to the financial condition of one of its subsidiaries (NECA-IBEW Health & Welfare Fund v. Goldman Sachs & Co., et al., No. 08-10783, S.D. N.Y.).
NEW YORK - A federal district court judge did not err in dismissing a shareholder class action lawsuit against Deutsche Bank AG and certain of its subsidiaries and others because the lead plaintiffs in the action failed to state a claim for relief, a Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled July 16 in a summary order (Norbert G. Kaess, et al. v. Deutsche Bank AG, et al., No. 13-2364, 2nd Cir.).
SYRACUSE, N.Y. - A reinsurer told a federal court in New York on July 16 that an insurer breached a number of reinsurance contracts when it failed to allow the reinsurer to audit certain past billings (Utica Mutual Insurance Company v. R&Q Reinsurance Company, No. 14-cv-00699, N.D. N.Y.).
NEW YORK - Apple Inc. has agreed to pay $400 million to 33 states and a certified class of consumers to settle claims that it conspired with publishers to fix prices of electronic books, according to a motion for preliminary approval filed July 16 in federal court in New York (In re Electronic Books Antitrust Litigation, No. 11-md-2293, S.D. N.Y. [State of Texas, et al. v. Penguin Group (USA) Inc., et al., No. 12-cv-3394, S.D. N.Y.]).