LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Consolidated Data Breach Class Suits Dismissed For Lack Of Actual Injury

HARRISBURG, Pa. - Two groups of plaintiffs in consolidated class complaints accusing a payroll service company of breach of contract and other violations following a breach of their computer system lack standing to sue because they present no evidence of actual injury, a Pennsylvania federal judge ruled March 13 (Daniel B. Storm, et al. v. Paytime, Inc., Barbara Holt, et al. v. Paytime Harrisburg, Inc., d/b/a Paytime, Inc., No. 14-1138, M.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 31286).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Remands Insurance Bad Faith, Breach Of Contract Suit To State Court

OKLAHOMA CITY - A federal judge in Oklahoma ruled on March 13 that an insurance agent was not improperly joined in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit because a possibility exists that insureds can establish a claim for negligence in the procurement of insurance against the agent (Larry Mattocks, et al. v. State Farm Fire and Casualty Co., et al., No. 15-2-M, W.D. Okla.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 31024).

Mealey's Securities/D&O Liability - Judge: Class May Amend Case Alleging Fracking Company Ran A Bill-Padding Scheme

PHOENIX - A federal judge in Arizona who earlier dismissed a shareholder class action against a hydraulic fracturing company on March 12 granted the class permission to amend the complaint to include claims against two of the company's principals related to a specific contract the class contends was part of an illicit bill-padding scheme that artificially boosted the fracking company's earnings (In Re: Nuverra Environmental Solutions Inc. Securities Litigation, No. 13-01800, D. Ariz.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge: Class May Amend Case Alleging Fracking Company Ran A Bill-Padding Scheme

PHOENIX - A federal judge in Arizona who earlier dismissed a shareholder class action against a hydraulic fracturing company on March 12 granted the class permission to amend the complaint to include claims against two of the company's principals related to a specific contract the class contends was part of an illicit bill-padding scheme that artificially boosted the fracking company's earnings (In Re: Nuverra Environmental Solutions Inc. Securities Litigation, No. 13-01800, D. Ariz.).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge: Class May Amend Case Alleging Fracking Company Ran A Bill-Padding Scheme

PHOENIX - A federal judge in Arizona who earlier dismissed a shareholder class action against a hydraulic fracturing company on March 12 granted the class permission to amend the complaint to include claims against two of the company's principals related to a specific contract the class contends was part of an illicit bill-padding scheme that artificially boosted the fracking company's earnings (In Re: Nuverra Environmental Solutions Inc. Securities Litigation, No. 13-01800, D. Ariz.).

Mealey's Insurance - Magistrate Judge: Insurer Did Not Breach Contract By Denying Water Damage Claim

DAYTON, Ohio - An insurer did not act in breach of contract by denying coverage for water damage to insureds based upon an exclusion for damage arising from a sewer backup, an Ohio federal magistrate judge found March 11, recommending that the insurer's motion for summary judgment be granted (Charles Holt and Pennie Harris-Holt v. Fidelity National Insurance Co., et al., No. 14-00031, S.D. Ohio; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 29926).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Tosses Competing Breach Of Contract Claims In Professional Liability Suit

DALLAS - A Texas federal judge on March 9 threw out competing breach of contract claims in a professional liability coverage dispute, finding that the insurer did not commit breach of contract because it has already paid one-third of its attorney insured's underlying defense expenses and the anti-subrogation rule prohibits the insurer's breach of contract counterclaim against the insured (Charla G. Aldous, et al. v. Darwin National Assurance Co., No. 13-3310, N.D. Texas.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 29061).

Mealey's Insurance - 4th Circuit Affirms Summary Judgment Ruling In Insurance Bad Faith Suit

RICHMOND, Va. - A federal district court did not err in granting summary judgment in a breach of contract and insurance bad faith lawsuit or denying reconsideration of its ruling, a Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled March 10 in an unpublished opinion (Nancy K. Wactor v. Jackson National Life Insurance Co., No. 13-2367, 4th Cir.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 3697).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Grants Summary Judgment In Breach Of Contract, Bad Faith Suit

SANTA ANA, Calif. - A federal judge in California on March 4 granted summary judgment in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit, ruling that an insured's material misrepresentations regarding her history of alcohol abuse in the application process caused the insurer to rescind the policy (Bipin Bhakta v. Hartford Life and Annuity Insurance Co., No. 14-0351, C.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26508).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Texas Appeals Court Orders Parties To Arbitrate Construction Defect Claims

HOUSTON - A Texas appeals court panel on March 5 overturned a trial court judge's ruling denying a construction company's motion to compel arbitration in a defects lawsuit, holding that an arbitration clause was included in part of a separate document that attached to the construction contract (LDF Construction Inc. v. Texas Friends of Chabad Lubavitch, d/b/a Chabad Lubavitch Center of Houston, No. 14-14-00113-CV, Texas App., 14th Dist.; 2015 Texas App. LEXIS 2111).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Dismisses Insurers' Breach Of Contract Claim Against Insured As Moot

FRESNO, Calif. - A California federal judge on March 4 dismissed insurers' breach of contract claim against insureds regarding an insurance policy's potential coverage for an underlying construction defects case because the insureds are not pursuing coverage under that policy (Travelers Property Casualty Company of America, et al. v. Centex Homes, et al., No. 14-1450, E.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 27182).

Mealey's Insurance - Direct Action Provision Does Not Apply In Bad Faith Lawsuit, Judge Rules

AUSTIN, Texas - Remand of an insured's breach of contract and insurance bad faith lawsuit to state court is not proper because it is not subject to the "direct action" provision in 28 U.S. Code Section 1332(c)(1), a federal judge in Texas ruled March 5 (Kenneth Harris v. Peerless Indemnity Insurance Co., No. 14-1087, W.D. Texas; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26859).

Mealey's Insurance - Halloween Merchandise Was Not 'Covered Property' Under Policy, Federal Judge Says

DENVER - A Colorado federal judge on March 2 held that an insured's claim for $106,000 in Halloween merchandise is not "covered property" under a commercial insurance policy, granting the insurer's motion for summary judgment on the insured's claims for breach of contract and bad faith (Crazy Willy's Inc. v. Valley Forge Insurance Co., et al., No. 13-cv-03154, D. Colo.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 25494).

Mealey's Insurance - Bad Faith Claim Not Recognized In Pennsylvania, Federal Judge Rules

SCRANTON, Pa. - A federal judge in Pennsylvania on March 4 granted in part and denied in part an insurer's motion to dismiss a breach of contract and insurance bad faith lawsuit, ruling that dismissal of the bad faith claim is proper because that claim is not recognized in Pennsylvania (Joseph Cicon, et al. v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co., No. 14-2187, M.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 25780).

Mealey's Banking & Finance - Federal Judge Grants Judgment For Bank On Borrower's Fraud Claims

HOUSTON - A Texas federal judge on March 2 granted summary judgment for a bank, finding that a borrower's claims for fraud and breach of contract in relation to his loan modification failed (Andre Matthews v. JPMorgan Chase Bank N.A., No. 14-2266, S.D. Texas; 2015 U.S. Dist LEXIS 24723).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - New York Appeals Court Finds Contract Claims Over Condo Sale Untimely

NEW YORK - A New York appellate panel majority on March 3 found that a breach of contract claim brought by the purchaser of a 115-apartment residential building over air infiltration issues was barred by the purchase agreement's statute of limitations and that the buyer could pursue claims over allegedly fraudulent statements made by the sellers of the building (TIAA Global Investments LLC, et al. v. One Astoria Square LLC, et al., No. 652907/12, N.Y. Sup., App. Div., 1st Dept.; 2015 N.Y. App. Div. LEXIS 1756).

Mealey's IP/Tech - 9th Circuit Reverses Preliminary Injunction In Trademark, Contract Case

SAN FRANCISCO - A dispute over jewelry designs was remanded to a California federal court on March 3 by the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, which found that the judge in the case abused his discretion in awarding a preliminary injunction (Philippe Charriol International Ltd. v. A'lor International Ltd., Nos. 13-56854, 14-55769, 9th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 3355).

Mealey's Insurance - Massachusetts Appellate Panel Trims Majority Of Claims From Bad Faith Lawsuit

BOSTON - A Massachusetts Appeals Court panel on Feb. 27 affirmed in part and reversed in part a state Superior Court ruling dismissing an insured's breach of contract and insurance bad faith lawsuit, finding that the insured has failed to state a majority of her claims (Nataly Minkina v. Medical Professional Mutual Insurance Co., No. 13-P-1898, Mass. App.; 2015 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 140).

Mealey's Antitrust/Unfair Competition - Federal Judge Dismisses Fraud, UCL Claim In Breach Of Contract Case

SAN JOSE, Calif. - A federal judge in California on Feb. 27 dismissed a fraud and state unfair competition law (UCL) claim against defendants accused of breach of contract for failing to deliver computers or refund the bitcoin used to pay for the merchandise (Pete Morici v. Hashfast Technologies, et al., No. 14-87, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 24251).

Mealey's Health Law - Indiana Federal Judge Grants Plaintiff Summary Judgment In Medicaid Dispute

FORT WAYNE, Ind. - An Indiana federal judge on March 2 granted summary judgment in favor of a nursing facility in its suit against another nursing facility for breach of contract for the defendant's failure to pay for the transfer of Medicaid certification rights that the defendant had sought so it could increase the number of comprehensive care beds it could obtain reimbursement for by Medicaid (Lutheran Homes Inc. v. Lock Realty Corporation IX, No. 14-102, N.D. Ind.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 24588).

Mealey's Insurance - Colorado Federal Judge Declines To Dismiss Health Care Breach Of Contract Suit

DENVER - A federal judge in Colorado on Feb. 25 declined to dismiss a suit in which the plaintiff accused his health insurance company of breach of contract for allegedly wrongfully informing him that the effective date of his coverage was later than it really was, causing the plaintiff to receive treatment for pancreatic cancer later than necessary (Kent Wilson v. Humana Health Plan Inc., No. 14-3259, D. Colo.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 22672).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Wisconsin Panel: Sanctions Affirmed For Attorneys In Frack Sand Lawsuit

MADISON, Wis. - A Wisconsin appellate panel on Feb. 26 affirmed a lower court's decision to impose sanctions and revoke an attorney's pro hac vice status in lawsuit pertaining to a dispute over a contract for the supply of frack sand on grounds that the parties acted in bad faith (In the Matter of Sanctions in Minerals Development & Supply Company Inc. v. Hunton & Williams LLP, No. 2014AP287, Wis. App., Dist. 4; 2015 Wisc. App. LEXIS 154).

Mealey's Health Law - Colorado Federal Judge Declines To Dismiss Health Care Breach Of Contract Suit

DENVER - A federal judge in Colorado on Feb. 25 declined to dismiss a suit in which the plaintiff accused his health insurance company of breach of contract for allegedly wrongfully informing him that the effective date of his coverage was later than it really was, causing the plaintiff to receive treatment for pancreatic cancer later than necessary (Kent Wilson v. Humana Health Plan Inc., No. 14-3259, D. Colo.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 22672).

Mealey's Insurance - Statute Of Limitations Bars Insurer's Negligence Contract Claims, Judge Says

WILMINGTON, N.C. - The three-year statute of limitations precludes a subrogated insurer's negligence and breach of contract claims against manufacturers and individuals who allegedly failed to repair a dryer that caused a fire to insureds, a North Carolina federal judge ruled Feb. 25 (State Farm Fire and Casualty Insurance Co. v. Lowe's Companies Inc., et al., No. 14-441, E.D. N.C.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 23625).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Transfers Allstate's Suit Against Former Agency To Florida Federal Court

CHICAGO - Allstate Life Insurance Co.'s breach of contract lawsuit against a former life insurance agent and his agency is better suited to Florida federal court, a federal judge in Illinois ruled Feb. 23, explaining that all of the former agent's allegedly fraudulent conduct occurred in Florida (Allstate Life Insurance Company v. Stanley W. Burns Inc., et al., No. 14-cv-7098, N.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 20905).