CHILLICOTHE, Ohio - Homeowners' damages from the construction of a mobile home began before a policy period and, thus, are not covered under an insurance policy, an Ohio appeals panel affirmed June 16, finding that an insurer had no duty to defend or indemnify an insured (Lightning Rod Mutual Insurance Co. v. Robert Southworth d/b/a Bob's Home Service, et al., No. 15CA3704, Ohio App., 4th Dist.; 2016 Ohio App. LEXIS 2313).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - In a June 15 reply brief in the U.S. Supreme Court, petitioner Microsoft Corp. argues that because a putative class of Xbox 360 owners voluntarily dismissed their product defect suit against it, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals did not have jurisdiction to hear their appeal of a trial court's denial of class certification (Microsoft Corp. v. Seth Baker, et al., No. 15-457, U.S. Sup.).
BOSTON - The First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on June 17 affirmed dismissal without prejudice of two relators' claims that Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp. and Genentech Inc. marketed the asthma drug Xolair for off-label use and paid physicians to prescribe the drugs (United States of America, ex rel. Allison Kelly, et al. v. Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation, et al., No. 15-1470, 1st Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 11001).
BALTIMORE - A Maryland federal judge on June 15 denied a freight driver union pension plan's motion to hold Penske companies liable for unpaid pension fund contributions (Freight Drivers and Helpers Local Union No. 557 Pension Fund v. Penske Logistics LLC, et al., No. 12-2376, D. Md.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 77685).
SEATTLE - Construing an "all-risk" insurance policy as covering risks of loss due to hidden damage or decay, a Washington federal judge ruled June 16 that two insurers failed to prove that their policy did not cover losses of hidden damage from water intrusion allegedly exposed in 2014 (Holden Manor Homeowners Association v. Safeco Insurance Company of America, et al., No. 15-1676, W.D. Wash.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 78821).
ATLANTA - A Florida federal judge did not err in granting judgment notwithstanding a jury's verdict of copyright infringement, the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled June 17 in a dispute over an architectural floor plan (Home Design Services Inc. v. Turner Heritage Homes Inc. et al., No. 15-11912, 11th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 10962).
PHILADELPHIA - A district court did not err in dismissing a disability claimant's suit because the Employee Retirement Income Security Act preempts his state law contract and fraud claims, the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals said June 16 (Andre D. Butler v. Liberty Mutual Life Assurance Company of Boston, No. 16-1316, 3rd Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 10889).
NATCHEZ, Miss. - A Mississippi federal judge on June 16 granted summary judgment in a Zimmer NexGen knee case because the plaintiff failed to present expert testimony that her knee was defective and caused her injuries (Beatrice Chatman v. Zimmer, Inc., et al., No. 14-102, S.D. Miss., W. Div.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 78657).
SAN FRANCISCO - A purported class action alleging violation of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act and two states' consumer laws was filed June 15 in a California federal court against blood testing manufacturer Theranos Inc. and drugstore chain Walgreens, alleging that Theranos' innovative blood-testing system provides inaccurate laboratory results (C.M., et al. v. Theranos, Inc., et al., No. 16-3349, N.D. Calif.).
NEW YORK - A Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on June 16 upheld a New York federal judge's ruling that a company had cause to fire two employees who refused to answer questions about their possible involvement in an alleged criminal conspiracy (William W. Gilman, et al. v. Marsh & McLennan Companies Inc., et al., No. 15-0603, 2nd Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 10937).
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - A trial judge did not err in denying a tobacco company's request to transfer an asbestos case to counties where the plaintiff either lived or suffered exposed, an Illinois appeals court panel held June 15 (Bill Baugher and Sharon Baugher v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., et al., No. 4-15-0663, Ill. App., 4th Dist.; 2016 Ill. App. Unpub. LEXIS 1214).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - In its June 20 orders list, the U.S. Supreme Court called for the views of the Solicitor General in a patent case that poses the question of whether foreign sales exhaust a patent owner's right to sue, as well as whether patent owners can impose restrictions on the use of patented items to prevent an exhaustion of their rights (Impression Products Inc. v. Lexmark International Inc., No. 15-1189, U.S. Sup.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on June 20 invited the government to weigh in on a Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals' ruling that biosimilar makers must wait until their products receive U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval before providing 180-day advance notice of sales (Sandoz, Inc. v. Amgen, Inc. and Amgen Manufacturing, Ltd., No. 15-1039, U.S. Sup.; Amgen Inc. et al. v. Sandoz Inc., No. 15-1195, U.S. Sup.).
NEW YORK - Mostly affirming a trial court's ruling dismissing copyright infringement claims against video-sharing site operator Vimeo LLC, a Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on June 16 found that the safe harbor provision of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) is available to recorded works from before 1972 that are governed by state law (Capitol Records LLC, et al. v. Vimeo LLC, et al., No. 14-1048, 2nd Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 10884).
AUSTIN, Texas - The Texas Supreme Court denied two motions to rehear a commercial general liability coverage dispute arising from faulty flanges that resulted in an underlying $6,345,824 settlement against the insured, according to its June 17 orders pronounced list (U.S. Metals Inc. v. Liberty Mutual Group Inc., et al., No. 14-0753, Texas Sup.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A criminal trial against FedEx Corp. for allegedly conspiring to deliver controlled substances from illegal Internet pharmacies was dismissed June 17 by the federal government five days into a bench trial (United States of America v. FedEx Corporation, et al., No. 14-cr-380, N.D. Calif.).
SAN DIEGO - A federal judge in California on June 17 granted Kinder Morgan Energy Partners L.P.'s motion to dismiss a lawsuit brought by the state of California and city of San Diego over groundwater contamination under QualComm Stadium after the company agreed to pay $20 million to settle the suit (People of the State of California, et al. v. Kinder Morgan Energy Partners L.P., et al., No.07-cv-1883, S.D. Calif.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on June 20 deemed the Patent Trial and Appeal Board's practice of giving patent claims their "broadest-reasonable-interpretation" (BRI) during inter partes review (IPR) a "reasonable exercise" of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's rulemaking authority (Cuozzo Speed Technologies, LLC v. Michelle K. Lee, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director, Patent and Trademark Office, No. 15-446, U.S. Sup.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on June 20 held that although the presumption against extraterritoriality has been rebutted with respect to certain applications of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act's (RICO) substantive prohibitions in 18 U.S. Code Section 1961, the private right of action under Section 1964(c) does not authorize suit in U.S. courts by the European Community and 26 of its members (collectively, EC) on allegations that RJR Nabisco Inc. engaged in a pattern of racketeering activity, including cigarette smuggling and money laundering (RJR Nabisco, Inc., et al. v. The European Community, et al., No. 15-138, U.S. Sup.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on June 20 granted a petition for writ of certiorari in an appeal of a District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals decision in which the appellate panel held that a former acting general counsel of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) served in violation of the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998 (FVRA) (5 U.S. Code Section 3345, et seq.) for nearly two years and, as a result, the unfair labor practice complaint he issued against an ambulance company was unauthorized (National Labor Relations Board v. SW General, Inc., doing business as Southwest Ambulance, No. 15-1251, U.S. Sup.).
SAN DIEGO - In what is being called a record recovery for shareholders, HSBC Finance Corp. has agreed to pay more than $1.5 billion to settle claims that its predecessor-in-interest, Household International Inc., and certain of its executive officers and directors issued a series of misrepresentations concealing Household's involvement in a predatory lending scheme in violation of federal securities laws, according to a press release issued by shareholder counsel June 16 (Lawrence E. Jaffe Pension Plan v. Household International, Inc., et al., No. 02-5893, N.D. Ill.).
ATLANTA - The 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on June 15 affirmed dismissal 48 Fixodent denture cream lawsuits after a federal judge excluded the plaintiffs' expert causation expert witnesses (Beverly Jones, et al. v. SmithKline Beecham, et al., No 15-12340, 11th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. 10833).
CHICAGO - An expert may not testify that a deceased man may have experienced discomfort breathing soot before losing consciousness or as to how long the man experienced pain and suffering, an Illinois federal judge held June 14; however, the expert may offer her opinion that the man would have remained conscious after he began inhaling carbon monoxide and that he would have lost consciousness at a certain carboxyhemoglobin level (David Ostrinsky, as administrator of the Estate of Michael Ostrinsky, deceased v. Black & Decker [U.S.] Inc., et al., No. 15-1545, N.D. Ill.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 77956).
OKLAHOMA CITY - In a medical malpractice action, a trial judge erred in excluding testimony regarding the use of vasopressin in septic shock, which resulted in a woman's death, the Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled June 14, reversing summary judgment to a doctor and a medical provider and remanding for further proceedings (William P. Nelson, and Jon Nelson, individually and as co-personal representatives and/or co-executors of the estate of Ethel A. Nelson, and as co-trustees of the Ethel A. Nelson Revocable Trust and as heirs and next of kin of Ethel A. Nelson v. Enid Medical Associates, Inc., and David Shepherd, No. 110665, Okla. Sup.; 2016 Okla. LEXIS 69).
LOS ANGELES - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on June 15 rejected a petition arguing that the "exceptional importance" of a case establishing the causation standard in maritime asbestos cases necessitated en banc rehearing (Carol McIndoe, et al. v. Huntington Ingalls Inc., et al., Nos. 13-56762, 13-56764, 9th Cir.).