WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Jan. 13 agreed to hear the appeal of two consolidated personal injury cases in which the employer, BNSF Railway Co., has asked the high court to decide whether a state court may decline to follow the decision in Daimler AG v. Bauman (134 S. Ct. 746 ) in a lawsuit against an American defendant under the Federal Employers' Liability Act (FELA) (BNSF Railway Company v. Kelli Tyrrell, as Special Administrator for the Estate of Brent T. Tyrrell, et al., No. 16-405, U.S. Sup.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Jan. 13 granted petitions for writ of certiorari filed in three cases challenging the barring of class or collection action waivers in employment agreements, consolidated the three cases and granted a total of one hour for oral arguments (Epic Systems Corp. v. Jacob Lewis, No. 16-285, Ernst & Young, et al. v. Stephen Morris, et al., No. 16-300, NLRB v. Murphy Oil USA, Inc., et al., No. 16-307, U.S. Sup.).
CHARLESTON, S.C - The contents of two PowerPoint presentations made by attorneys during town hall meetings held to persuade homeowners to join a proposed class action suit against the builders of their homes over alleged construction defects waived any work product protection over the information, a federal judge in South Carolina ruled Jan. 12 in denying the plaintiffs' motion to quash subpoenas (Jacqueline L. Craft, as Trustee of the Jacqueline L. Craft Trust, et al. v. South Carolina Plastering LLC, et al., No. 15-cv-5080-PMD, D. S.C.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 4510).
REDMOND, Wash. - Physio-Control Inc. on Jan. 13 initiated an immediate voluntary field action after receiving 34 reports that the company's Lifepak 1000 automatic external defibrillators (AEDs) shut down due to an electrical connection problem, according to a company announcement.
NEW YORK - The United States on Jan. 14 filed suit against a cigar manufacturer in New York federal court, alleging that the company failed to make payments after a civil fine was imposed against it under a law that was created to transition the tobacco industry to a free market (United States of America v. La Casa Grande Tobacco Corporation, No. 17-CV-225, S.D. N.Y.).
HOUSTON - Although granting Viacom International Inc. summary judgment on allegations that a proposed "The Krusty Krab" restaurant would represent trademark infringement, a Texas federal judge on Jan. 11 denied Viacom's request as it relates to trademark dilution (Viacom International Inc. v. IJR Capital Investments LLC, No. 16-257, S.D. Texas.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 3948).
FORT MYERS, Fla. - A Florida federal judge on Jan. 13 entered judgment in favor of an insurer one day after finding that underlying negligent misrepresentation claims against its insured are "for or arising out of or resulting from" the failure of the insured's auction services to conform with a represented quality of performance contained in its advertising (Equipmentfacts LLC v. Beazley Insurance Co., Inc., No: 16-265, M.D. Fla.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 4653).
BATON ROUGE, La. - The First Circuit Louisiana Court of Appeal on Jan. 11 affirmed a trial court's ruling that no coverage is afforded under an auto policy for the discharge of raw sewage into a home caused by a pumping system attached to the insured's truck because the policy excludes coverage for bodily injury, property damage and pollution costs caused by the operation of equipment permanently attached to a vehicle (Shenetta West, et al. v. Clean Rite Septic Tank Service LLC, et al., No. 2016 CA 0306, La. App., 1st Cir.; 2017 La. App. LEXIS 59).
DES MOINES, Iowa - A trial court did not err in granting an insurer's motion for summary judgment because the insured, seeking coverage for damages caused by a sewage backup in his home, cannot prove that he acted to his detriment when he relied on his insurance agent's representation that coverage would be afforded for the damages, the Iowa Court of Appeals said Jan. 11 (Carl Budny v. MemberSelect Insurance Co., No. 16-1189, Iowa App.; 2017 Iowa App. LEXIS 46).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Co. Inc. on Jan. 11 told a federal judge in the District of Columbia that a deceptive marketing suit against it should stay in federal court, arguing that the cost of complying with the injunctive relief sought exceeds the $75,000 threshold regardless of whether the court finds that the named plaintiff, Breathe DC, is the only plaintiff or finds that there are multiple plaintiffs (Breathe DC v. Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Co. Inc., et al., No. 1:16-cv-2378, D. D.C.).
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - A federal judge in New Mexico on Jan. 11 granted the federal government's motion to exclude the testimony of an expert designated to discuss the medical necessity of tests administered by a holistic doctor who is accused of fraudulently billing Medicare and other insurers, after finding that the proposed testimony is not relevant and does not meet the standards of Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (509 U.S. 579, 597 ) (United States of America v. Roy Heilbron, No. 15-CR-2030, D. N.M.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS).
MINNEAPOLIS - Because issues of material fact exist regarding how an outbreak of the avian flu virus was transmitted, a Minnesota federal judge on Jan. 12 denied both the insurer and insured's motions for summary judgment (Rembrandt Enterprises Inc. v. Illinois Union Insurance Co., No. 15-2913, D. Minn.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 4946).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - An Indiana federal judge properly found that under Akamai Technologies Inc. v. Limelight Networks Inc. (797 F.3d 1020, 1022 [Fed. Cir. 2015]) (Akamai V), a proposed generic chemotherapy drug would indirectly infringe "methods of treatment" claimed by an Eli Lilly & Co. patent, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Jan. 12 (Eli Lilly & Co. v. Teva Parental Medicines Inc., et al., No. 15-2067, Fed. Cir.; 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 555).
PHILADELPHIA - The Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 12 affirmed a district court's decision to dismiss causes of action related to the assignment of a mortgage against a bank and a mortgage company, finding that the case was barred by the doctrine established in Rooker v. Fidelity Trust Co. (263 U.S. 413 ) and District of Columbia Court of Appeals v. Feldman (460 U.S. 462 ) (Marieliz Monclova v. U.S. Bank NA, As trustee, on behalf of the holders of the CSMC Mortgage-Backed pass-through certificates series 2007-I, et al., No. 16-3677, 3rd Cir.; 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 597).
SAN FRANCISCO - A district court did not err in determining that an insured seeking coverage from three insurers for an underlying environmental lawsuit is not entitled to coverage under the policies because the insured failed to tender the underlying suit to the insurers and received a defense for the underlying suit from another insurer, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals said Jan. 13 (M.B.L. Inc. v. Federal Insurance Co., et al., No. 14-56107, 9th Cir.; 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 695).
SAN FRANCISCO - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 13 certified two questions to the California Supreme Court regarding whether California's notice-prejudice rule is a fundamental public policy for the purpose of choice-of-law analysis and whether a consent provision can be interpreted as a notice provision (Pitzer College v. Indian Harbor Insurance Co., No.. 14-56017, 9th Cir.; 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 668).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Jan. 17 denied a petition for writ of certiorari filed by the banks accused, in a multidistrict litigation that was reinstated by the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals after being dismissed by the trial court, of an alleged conspiracy to manipulate U.S. Dollar London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) in violation of the Sherman Act (Bank of America Corporation, et al. v. Ellen Gelboim, et al., No. 16-545, U.S. Sup.).
ASHEVILLE, N.C. - Baxter Healthcare Corp. has agreed to pay $18.15 million in criminal and civil penalties to resolve allegations that it continued to manufacture and sell intravenous (IV) solutions made in a clean room outfitted with moldy air filters, the U.S. Justice Department announced Jan. 12 (United States of America v. Baxter Healthcare Corporation, No. 17-10, United States of America v. $8,000,000 in Funds, et al., No. 15-cv15, and United States ex rel. Christopher Wall v. Baxter International, Inc., et al., No. 13-42, W.D. N.C.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Jan. 12 determined that Apple Inc. is a distributor of third-party created apps sold in its App Store, leading the panel to find that putative monopolization class claims related to the store could proceed (In re Apple iPhone Antitrust Litigation, No. 14-15000, 9th Cir.; 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 577).
CHICAGO - The First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 13 affirmed dismissal of a Yasmin blood clot lawsuit, citing admission by the plaintiff's attorneys that did "mostly nothing" to warrant keeping the lawsuit active (Jennifer Dzik v. Bayer Corporation, et al., No. 16-1333, 7th Cir.; 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 684).
NEW ORLEANS - A Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Jan. 13 affirmed a verdict in favor of an insurance company, finding that evidence presented during a trial sufficiently showed that a man intended to destroy a 1956 Mercedes-Benz to obtain insurance proceeds (Foremost Insurance Company v. Charles Pendleton, No. 16-60240, 5th Cir.; 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 706).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Jan. 13 agreed to hear an appeal in which it has been asked to decide whether an appeal of a decision by the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) issued in a "mixed" case - one involving a claim under the federal anti-discrimination laws - should be reviewed in a district court or in the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Anthony W. Perry v. Merit Systems Protection Board, No. 16-399, U.S. Sup.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Jan. 13 agreed to hear an appeal of a Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling affirming that shareholders that filed a securities class action lawsuit after opting out of settlement class against the same defendants were barred from doing so as their claims were outside the statute of repose (California Public Employees' Retirement System v. Moody Investors Service Inc., et al., No. 16-373, U.S. Sup.).