DAYTON, Ohio - An Ohio federal judge on Sept. 18 dismissed with prejudice a hip implant plaintiff's claims of negligent wantonness, breach of implied warranty for a particular purpose and unjust enrichment, but denied dismissal of his punitive damages claim (Vincent Leen v. Wright Medical Technology, Inc., et al., No. 15-125, S.D. Ohio, W. Div.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 125317).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A determination by an Ohio federal judge that claims added during re-examination were not substantially identical to the initial claims of a method patent was not erroneous, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Sept. 17 (R+L Carriers Inc. v. Qualcomm Inc., No. 14-1718, Fed. Cir.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Over the objections of a plaintiff, the Federal Circuit on Sept. 22 granted several amici curiae the right to participate in upcoming oral arguments in a closely watched dispute over the doctrine of patent exhaustion (Lexmark International Inc. v. Impression Products Inc., Nos. 14-1617, -1619, Fed. Cir.).
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Notices of settlement among the U.S. Justice Department, Florida and North Carolina and Adventist Health System-Sunbelt Inc. were filed Sept. 21 in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina stating that Adventist will pay more than $118 million to settle a whistle-blower lawsuit, claims first brought to light by three former employees, alleging that it overpaid doctors to lock in patient referrals (Untied States of America, et al. v. Adventist Health System-Sunbelt, Inc., et al., Nos. 12-856 and 13-217, W.D. N.C.).
SAN FRANCISCO - Concluding that a trial court "erred by conflating restitution calculation with the liability inquiry" for claims brought under California's unfair competition law (UCL) and false advertising law (FAL), a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Sept. 21 reversed a ruling that denied a putative class's motion for certification in its claims that Google Inc. misled them under its AdWords advertising program (Pulaski & Middleman LLC, et al. v. Google Inc., No. 12-16752, 9th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 16723).
OAKLAND, Calif. - Dismissal of federal claims in a securities class action lawsuit is proper because a lead plaintiff has failed to state a viable claim for relief against a software provider and certain of its executive officers, a federal judge in California ruled Sept. 17 (Viswanath V. Shankar v. Imperva Inc., et al., No. 14-1680, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 125279).
MINNEAPOLIS - A general liability insurer has no duty to defend its insured in an underlying suit arising out of the funding of an employee pension benefits plan because the policy at issue clearly excludes coverage for the failure of any investment program to perform as represented by an insured, a Minnesota federal judge said Sept. 16 (Publishing House of the Evangelical Church in America d/b/a Augsburg Fortress Publishers v. Hartford Fire Insurance Co. et al., No. 14-550, D. Minn.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 123473).
ALLENTOWN, Pa. - A Pennsylvania federal judge held Sept. 17 that an underlying lawsuit alleging that an insured's snack trays failed to conform to a contractually specified and required performance standards sounds in breach of contract and fails to allege an "occurrence" pursuant to primary and excess commercial general liability insurance policies, finding that the insurer has no duty to defend its insured (Firemen's Insurance Company of Washington, D.C., Plaintiff, v. Tray-Pak Corporation, No. 13-3711, E.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 124192).
SAN JOSE, Calif. - In a Sept. 19 summary judgment motion in California federal court, Yahoo Inc. asserts that its email scanning functions, which are at the heart of a privacy class action, comprise beneficial antivirus functions and benign targeted advertising but do not violate asserted federal and state privacy laws (In Re Yahoo Mail Litigation, No. 5:13-cv-04980, N.D. Calif.).
LOS ANGELES - The state's workers' compensation exclusivity provision bars a tort action alleging exposures to asbestos from pipes a man brought home from work because it involves the same mesothelioma his occupational exposure triggered, a California appeals panel held Sept. 17 (Mary Melendrez, et al. v. Ameron International Corp., Nos. B256928, B259423, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 4; 2015 Cal. App. LEXIS 820).
PHILADELPHIA - An agreement settling hearing-loss claims that purportedly released a railroad from liability from any and all conditions is too broad to free them from asbestos-related lung cancer claims, a federal judge held Sept. 17 (Roger Lee Hindle and Mary Lou Hindle v. Consolidated Rail Corp., et al., No. 13-6297, E.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 124100).
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - A North Carolina federal judge on Sept. 18 stayed an insurer's coverage lawsuit pending resolution of the underlying action involving its insureds and claims of alleged construction defects in a marina and storm water drainage system (Westfield Insurance Co. v. Mark Saunders, et al., No. 14-176, E.D. N.C.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 125054).
OAKLAND, Calif. - A California federal judge on Sept. 16 granted a bank's motion to dismiss a property owner's foreclosure-related claims against it, finding that his claims were precluded by the lack of any pending foreclosure sale (David P. Garcia v. PNC Mortgage, No. 14-cv-3543, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 123920).
WILMINGTON, Del. - Chapter 11 debtor Energy Future Holdings Corp.'s (EFH) disclosure statement for its fourth amended plan of reorganization, filed Sept. 18 in Delaware federal bankruptcy court, adds language about asbestos claims - including a statement from the asbestos creditors' committee - making clear that the claimants believe the plan cannot be confirmed without using Section 524(g) of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code to address asbestos claims (In re: Energy Future Holdings Corp., No. 14-10979, D. Del. Bkcy.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A federal judge in the District of Columbia on Sept. 17 dismissed a lawsuit brought by R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. (RJR) that had contended that federal agencies wrongly ignored a report the company issued pertaining to tax assessments on cigarette sales (R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company v. United States Department of Agriculture, et al., No. 14-1388, D. D.C.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 124159).
HARRISBURG, Pa. - A Pennsylvania judge on Sept. 18 granted the liquidator of an insolvent insurer's application for the approval of a $15,930,000 commutation agreement with one of the insolvent insurer's reinsurers (In re: Reliance Insurance Co. in liquidation, No. 1 REL 2001, Pa. Cmwlth.).
HOUSTON - A federal judge in Texas on Sept. 17 granted Union Pacific Railroad Co.'s (UPRR) motion for partial summary judgment after finding that a plaintiff company was unable to show that it incurred response costs under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) to prevent or contain a release of hazardous substances on a 1.5 acre piece of land in Houston (Elite Operations Inc. v. Union Pacific Railroad Co., et al., No. H-13-3461, S.D. Texas; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 123972).
NEW YORK - A New York federal judge on Sept. 16 dismissed a pension fund's complaint against its investment advisers because the trustees of the pension fund failed to allege a legally cognizable loss sustained as a result of the placement of assets in Bernard Madoff's Ponzi scheme (Trustees of the Upstate New York Engineers Pension Fund v. Ivy Asset Management et al., No. 13-3180, S.D. N.Y.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 123590).