DALLAS - After finding that it is possible that an arbitration clause falling under the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards could provide a defense to claims asserted by two entities against former employees, a Texas federal judge on July 21 refused to remand the case to state court (Valtech Solutions Inc., et al. v. Deborah Davenport, et al., No. 3:15-CV-3361, N.D. Texas; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 95098).
LOS ANGELES - A drug maker will pay $95 million to settle claims that it misrepresented certain safety concerns with two of its products in violation of federal securities laws, according to a motion for preliminary approval of settlement filed July 21 in California federal court (In re Amgen Inc. Securities Litigation, No. 07-2536, C.D. Calif.).
SAN FRANCISCO - Two weeks after the Michigan Supreme Court determined that the lead plaintiff in a putative class action against Pandora Media Inc. did not constitute a customer of Pandora's online streaming service per Michigan's Video Rental Privacy Act (VRPA), a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on July 21 affirmed a lower court's dismissal of the suit (Peter Deacon v. Pandora Media Inc. No. 12-17734, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 13333).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - A California federal judge on July 20 dismissed a petition to confirm an arbitral award, finding that the claimant invoked the wrong cause of action, but granted him leave to refile to properly invoke 9 U.S. Code Section 207 (Xiangkai Xu v. China Sunergy [US] Clean Tech Inc., et al., No. 15-cv-04823-HRL, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 94906).
GREENVILLE, Miss. - The company being sued by a group of residents seeking damages for personal injuries and groundwater contamination caused by hexavalent chromium and trichloroethylene (TCE) on July 20 filed its answer in Mississippi federal court contending that the plaintiffs fail to state a claim upon which relief can be granted (Joe E. Sledge, et al. v. Meritor Inc., et al., No. 16-CV-053, N.D. Miss.).
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - Biotechnology company Biogen Inc. said July 21 that it received civil investigative demands on July 1 from the federal government for documents and information relating to the company's treatment of "certain service agreements with wholesalers when calculating and reporting Average Manufacturing Prices in connection with the Medicaid Drug Rebate Program."
SOUTH BEND, Ind. - An expert did not provide any testimony as to a manufacturing defect to support an insured's motion for interlocutory review, an Indiana federal judge ruled July 19 in an insurer's subrogation lawsuit on claims for design defect and failure to adequately warn (The Cincinnati Insurance Co. a/s/o Jason and Michelle Howard v. Lennox Industries, Inc., No. 14-1731, N.D. Ind.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 93417).
NEW YORK - Although arguments by J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. (JPMC) that an accused product does not include a patent claim limitation as construed and agreed upon by the parties "has merit," a New York federal judge on July 21 nonetheless denied summary judgment of noninfringement (Intellectual Ventures II LLC v. J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., No. 13-3777, S.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 95351).
ALLENTOWN, Pa. - State Farm Fire and Casualty Co.'s motion for judgment was granted July 21 by a federal judge in Pennsylvania who found that the insurer could deny a man's claim under his automobile policy because he misrepresented that he was a resident of New York rather than Pennsylvania (State Farm Fire and Casualty Company v. Gregory A. Hancle, et al., No. 14-6140, E.D. Pa.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 95084).
MILWAUKEE - The man who, through his guardian ad litem, sued a group of paint companies alleging injuries from lead-based paint filed a brief in Wisconsin federal court on July 21, contending that the motion to compel responsive documents filed by one of the defendants should be denied because he provided documents in "substantially the same manner that they were produced by co-defendants to the plaintiffs" (Glenn Burton Jr. v. American Cyanamid Company, et al., No. 07-0303, E.D. Wis.).
DENVER - Because no New Mexico court has addressed the application of the "owned or occupied" exclusion in the context of environmental contamination to sovereign property, the 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals should certify a question regarding the exclusion's application to the New Mexico Supreme Court, an insured maintains in a July 19 motion for certification of a question of state law (Taos Ski Valley Inc. v. Nova Casualty Co., No. 16-2118, 10th Cir.).
CHICAGO - An insurer had no duty to defend an additional insured for construction defects in condominium units because nothing accidental was alleged, an Illinois appeals panel affirmed July 20, finding that the allegations include the additional insured's intentional bad acts or awareness of faulty workmanship (Westfield Insurance Co. v. West Van Buren, LLC and 933 Van Buren Condominium Association, No. 1-14-0862, Ill. App., 1st Dist.; 2016 Ill. App. LEXIS 473).
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - A federal judge in Mississippi on July 18 granted three motions in limine filed by an insurer in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit, precluding an insured from presenting evidence, damages testimony and other testimony to show that the insurer acted in bad faith in conducting an investigation into a claim for coverage under a commercial property insurance policy (JCKP LLC v. Berkley Regional Specialty Insurance Co, et al., No. 14-0117, S.D. Miss.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 93049).
SAN FRANCISCO - Dismissal of a life insurance policy beneficiary's breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit against an insurer is not proper because the beneficiary has shown that his deceased wife timely completed all necessary paperwork and submitted to her employer as administrator of the policy to port her group life insurance policy into an individual policy, a federal judge in California ruled July 20 (Kent Graham v. Standard Insurance Co., No. 16-3407, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 94871).
CHICAGO - An art historian may opine that if a signature were authenticated, the market value for a piece of art would be between $6 million and $8 million, an Illinois federal judge ruled July 21, declining to exclude the historian's testimony (Robert Fletcher and Bartlow Gallery Ltd. v. Peter Doig, No. 13-3270, N.D. Ill.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 95081).
ST. LOUIS - A district court erred when it refused to reconsider post-removal evidence filed by the St. Louis Rams LLC and other associated entities (collectively, Rams) before ruling that a class complaint accusing the defendants of violating the Missouri Merchandising Practices Act in connection with the defendants' relocation of their professional football team to Los Angeles belongs in state, not federal, court, the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled July 19, vacating the District Court's order (James Pudlowski, et al. v. The St. Louis Rams, LLC, et al., No. 16-8009, 8th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 13147).
CHICAGO - A plaintiff responsible for bringing more than 150 trademark lawsuits across the country was properly rebuffed in its effort to hold a pub and its owner liable for playing unauthorized digital copies of various karaoke tracks, the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled July 21 (Slep-Tone Entertainment Corp., et al. v. Danette Rumsey, et al., No. 15-2844, 7th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 13306).
PHOENIX - The common-law original tortfeasor rule (OTR) "does not preclude a defendant from alleging and proving, or the trier of fact from considering and finding, fault of a nonparty physician who treated the plaintiff for injuries allegedly sustained from the defendant's tort," the Arizona Supreme Court held July 18 in a personal injury case for which it granted review because it presented "an unsettled legal question that is of statewide interest and likely to recur" (Courtney Rene Cramer v. Hon. Patricia Ann Starr, et al., No. CV-15-0317-PR, Ariz. Sup.; 2016 Ariz. LEXIS 199).
LOS ANGELES - A California appeals panel on July 21 affirmed an $8.3 million verdict in a DePuy ASR XL metal-on-metal hip case (Sheryl R. Kransky, et al. v. DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., No. B249576, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 7).
TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey panel affirmed July 20 that commercial general liability coverage for an underlying negligence lawsuit against an engineering firm insured is barred by the policy's professional services exclusion (EIC Group LLC v. The Travelers Indemnity Company of America, No. A-2590-14T1, N.J. Super., App. Div.; 2016 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 1683).