PHILADELPHIA - A Pennsylvania federal judge on July 15 dismissed strict liability and negligent marketing claims involving two Synthes spine rods but denied it as to manufacturing defect, negligent design and negligence per se (James P. Wilson, et al. v. Synthes USA Products, LLC, et al., No. 14-4724, E.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 92347).
PHILADELPHIA - An insider who blew the whistle on off-label marketing of Lidoderm by drug maker Endo Pharmaceuticals Inc. stands to get a $41.25 million share of a false claims settlement after a Pennsylvania federal judge on July 15 ruled that the relator contributed significantly to the resolution of the case (United States of America, ex rel. Peggy Ryan v. Endo Pharmaceuticals, Inc., No. 05-3450, E.D. Pa.).
HARRISBURG, Pa. - Because the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has a more significant relationship than the State of New York with the parties involved in an asbestos coverage dispute, Pennsylvania law must be applied when determining whether a duty to indemnify exists, a Pennsylvania federal judge said July 9 (York International Corp. v. Liberty Mutual Insurance Co., No. 1:10-CV-0692, M.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 88847).
PHILADELPHIA - A Pennsylvania Superior Court panel on July 7 affirmed the conviction of a pain clinic owner for conspiracy, theft and insurance fraud after finding that the evidence presented during his trial supported the verdict and that the trial court judge did not err when allowing the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania's insurance billing expert to offer lay testimony (Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Owen Rogal, No. 5 EDA 2014, Pa. Super.; 2015 Pa. Super. LEXIS 397).
PHILADELPHIA - A federal judge in Pennsylvania on July 7 granted two insurers' motion to dismiss a reinsurance dispute and transfer the suit to a federal court in Connecticut (Excalibur Reinsurance Corporation v. Select Insurance Company, et al., No. 15-cv-02522, E.D. Pa.).
PHILADELPHIA - An electrical engineer's forensic evaluation of an electrical-current-reducing device that started a fire in a home is sufficient enough to be tested in the adversary process at trial, and his testimony will help the trier of fact, a Pennsylvania federal judge ruled July 7 in denying a bid to preclude the expert from testifying (Donald Dalton, et al., v. McCourt Electric LLC, et al., No. 12-3568, E.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 87609).
WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. - A federal judge in Pennsylvania on July 7 granted summary judgment in favor of an insurer in a bad faith lawsuit, ruling that the insured failed to state a claim for relief (Arthur J. Morris v. American National Insurance Corp, No. 13-2236, M.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 88093).
PHILADELPHIA - A Pennsylvania federal judge on July 2 denied a motion by Allergan Inc. to certify an interlocutory review of his ruling that the company paid kickbacks to doctors which, in turn, caused false claims for prescription drugs to be submitted to government health care programs (United States of America, ex rel. Herbert J. Nevyas, M.D., et al. v. Allergan, Inc., No. 09-532, E.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 86243).
PHILADELPHIA - The National Railroad Passenger Corp. (Amtrak) on June 30 joined in the request of 16 plaintiffs to consolidate in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania all suits stemming from the May 12 derailment of an Amtrak passenger train in Philadelphia (In re Amtrak Train Derailment in Philadelphia, PA, on May 12, 2015, No. 2654, JPMDL).
HARRISBURG, Pa. - A federal judge in Pennsylvania on June 30 denied as moot a hydraulic fracturing company's motion to partially dismiss a complaint filed by residents who contend that the company contaminated their groundwater (Tammy Manning v. WPX Energy Appalachia LLC, No. 12-0646, M.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 84473).
PHILADELPHIA - The wife of a man killed in the May 12 derailment of an Amtrak passenger train filed suit in federal court on June 29 on her own behalf and on behalf of her husband's estate (Danna Gildersleeve, et al. v. National Railroad Passenger Corp. a/k/a Amtrak, No. 2:15-cv-03626, E.D. Pa.).
PITTSBURGH - A group of residents on June 26 filed a purported class action in Pennsylvania federal court against a power company and its affiliates, contending that they have been injured as a result of the defendant's "reckless" operation of two nuclear materials processing facilities (Russell Crocker, et al. v. Babcock & Wilcox Power Generation Group Inc., et al., No. 15-00844, W.D. Pa.).
HARRISBURG, Pa. - An appeals court improperly vacated a $4.6 million award against a Pennsylvania utility company, a man who was injured while working as a contractor on poles owned by the utility argues in a brief filed in the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on June 25 (Vincent P. Nertavich Jr. v. PPL Electric Utilities Corp., et al., No. 21 EAP 2015, Pa. Sup.).
PHILADELPHIA - A group of 16 plaintiffs on June 23 asked the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation to consolidate in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania all suits stemming from the May 12 derailment of an Amtrak passenger train in Philadelphia (In re Amtrak Train Derailment in Philadelphia, PA, on May 12, 2015, No. N/A, JPMDL)
SCRANTON, Pa. - A federal judge in Pennsylvania on June 23 substantially denied an insurer's motion to dismiss in an insurance bad faith lawsuit, ruling that an insured has properly shown that her bad faith claim does not "fall within the purview" of Pennsylvania's Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Law (Kerry Odgers v. Progressive Northern Insurance Co., No. 15-329, M.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 80981).
PHILADELPHIA - A man's omission in his bankruptcy filing of an asbestos action under an eight-year stay does not evidence bad faith, but the trustee still gets the first shot at prosecuting the since-reinstated claim, a federal judge in Pennsylvania held June 23 (Willard E. Bartel, administrator for James T. McQueen v. Charles Kurz & Company Inc., et al., No. MDL 875, 11-30511, E.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 81387).
HARRISBURG, Pa. - An insurance policy's wear-and-tear provision excludes coverage for an insured's claimed loss from water damage during Superstorm Sandy, a Pennsylvania federal judge ruled June 22 (Steven J. Inc. v. Landmark American Insurance Co., No. 14-0474, M.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 80278).
HARRISBURG, Pa. - Subsequent Pennsylvania Supreme Court precedent allowing tort actions where a disease arises outside the usual bar for workers' compensation claims requires parties to conduct further discovery in an asbestos action, a state appeals court panel held June 17 (Wendy Ann McCloskey, et al. v. Cemline Corp, et al., Nos. 482 WDA 2014, 530 WDA 2014, Pa. Super.; 2015 Pa. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 1793).