LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's PI/Product Liability - St. Jude Spinal Stimulator Case Dismissed As Preempted With Leave To Amend

WILMINGTON, Del. - A Delaware federal judge on Sept. 15 said a plaintiff in a Protege Spinal Cord Stimulator case cannot overcome federal preemption of her claims but can file an amended complaint to state more plausible claims (Kathleen M. Freed, et al. v. St. Jude Medical, Inc., et al., No. 17-1128...

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Majority Grants Deference To Plan Administrator's Pension Benefit Calculation

PHILADELPHIA - A majority of the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 15 held that an ambiguous pension plan accords the plan administrator discretion to interpret the plan terms and the mere existence of a conflict of interest is not sufficient enough to raise skepticism of the administrator's...

Mealey's IP/Tech - Judgment Premised On Erroneous Claim Construction, Federal Circuit Says

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Michigan federal judge did not abuse her discretion in dismissing patent invalidity defenses and counterclaims in a dispute over soffit panels but did err in granting the patent owner a summary judgment of infringement and permanent injunction, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals...

Mealey's Insurance - 1st Circuit Allows Negligence Claims Against U.S. In Oil Spill Coverage Dispute

BOSTON - The First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 15 reversed a district court's dismissal of admiralty and maritime negligence claims filed against the United States in an oil spill dispute after determining that the negligence claims are viable under the Suits in Admiralty Act (Ironshore...

Mealey's IP/Tech - 9th Circuit Reverses, Remands Trade Dress Functionality Ruling

SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge erred in holding that the overall configuration of a live auction television show is functional, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Sept. 15, reversing and remanding the denial of preliminary injunctive relief in a trade dress infringement and trade...

Mealey's Insurance - Pediatric Firm Can Pursue Federal, State False Claims Act Allegations, Judge Says

NEWARK, N.J. - A firm of pediatric doctors can pursue allegations that a skilled nursing and rehabilitation facility violated the False Claims Act, the New Jersey False Claims Act (NJFCA) and the New York False Claims Act (NYFCA) for unlawfully billing Medicare and Medicaid as primary payers rather than...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Class Suit Over Shutterfly's Facial Recognition Software Survives Motion To Dismiss

CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on Sept. 15 denied a motion to dismiss a class complaint accusing Shutterfly Inc. of violating Illinois' Biometic Information Privacy Act (BIPA) by using facial recognition software to scan faces in uploaded images and then storing that data (Alejandro Monroy,...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judgment Bid Snuffed By Admission Of Experts In MRSA Damages Action

COLUMBUS, Ohio - A cosmetics company is not entitled to summary judgment on a woman's claim that she contracted a methicillin-resistant Staph aureus (MRSA) infection from a makeover at one of the company's stores, an Ohio federal judge held Sept. 15 after finding that the opinions of the woman's...

Mealey's Insurance - Award Of Attorney Fees Warranted As Disability Claimant Achieved Some Success

SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Sept. 14 awarded a disability claimant more than $100,000 in attorney fees after determining that the award was warranted because the claimant achieved "some degree" of success on the merits (Robert Bosley v. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., No...

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Texas Federal Judge Finds Health Plan Must Cover Weight Loss Surgery

HOUSTON - A health plan beneficiary is owed full coverage for a gastric bypass surgery and a follow-up surgery and care required after she experienced complications, a Texas federal judge ruled Sept. 14, finding that the beneficiary's evidence that she has experienced nausea and vomiting placed her...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 9th Circuit Reverses Class Decertification In Aphrodisiac Supplement Suit

PASADENA, Calif. - A Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Sept. 15 reversed a trial court's decertification of a class of consumers suing a supplement maker for allegedly including false claims on the labels of its aphrodisiac supplements, ruling that the trial court abused its discretion...

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Suit Seeking Discovery Filed Over Post-Irma Death At Florida Nursing Home

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - A man whose mother died in a Florida nursing home after the air conditioning system broke following Hurricane Irma filed suit on Sept. 15 against the home, its owners and administrative staff, seeking a pure bill of discovery and to preclude the home, its staff and owner from...

Mealey's Insurance - Illinois Federal Judge Says Disability Insurer Reasonably Terminated Benefits

CHICAGO - A disability insurer did not breach its contract or act unreasonably by terminating a claimant's total disability benefits because the evidence shows that the claimant was able to undertake a number of mentally and physically demanding activities, an Illinois federal judge said Sept. 14...

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - 2nd Criminal Trial In Deadly Fungal Meningitis Outbreak Gets Under Way In Boston

BOSTON - A second federal criminal trial stemming from the deadly 2012 fungal meningitis outbreak tied to New England Compounding Center (NECC) got under way Sept. 19 in Boston (United States of America v. Glenn A. Chin, No. 14-cr-10363, D. Mass.).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - New York Appellate Court Vacates Stay Of New York Asbestos Case Management Order

NEW YORK - A New York appellate court on Sept. 19 vacated the stay it issued in July that halted implementation of the hotly contested case management order (CMO) governing asbestos cases in New York City (In re: New York City Asbestos Litigation, All Asbestos Cases., No. 40000/1988 782000/2017, N.Y...

Mealey's Labor & Employment - 7th Circuit: Firing Just After PTSD Disclosure Is Not Discriminatory

CHICAGO - A decision by the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) to fire a more than 20-year employee shortly after he disclosed a post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) diagnosis did not constitute disability discrimination, a Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled Sept. 18 (Jeff Monroe...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Family Tells Court Asbestos Release Shouldn't Bar Wrongful Death Claim

NEW ORLEANS - Family members mistakenly signed away asbestos wrongful death claims based on their father's attorney's misrepresentations, and the failure to hire their own counsel should not be considered inexcusable neglect, plaintiffs told the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals Sept. 18 (Essie...

Mealey's Insurance - Nevada Federal Judge Says Bad Faith Claim, Unfair Practices Claim Can Stand

LAS VEGAS - A Nevada federal judge on Sept. 19 denied an insurer's motion for summary judgment as it pertained to a plaintiff's claims for unfair settlement practices and bad faith because the plaintiff provided sufficient evidence to support the claims (Melinda Booth Dogra et al., v. Liberty...

Mealey's IP/Tech - 2nd Circuit Affirms Denial Of Request To Disqualify Trademark Counsel

NEW YORK - Although vacating and remanding a permanent injunction, the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 19 affirmed a New York federal judge's decision to deny a request for disqualification of Locke Lord in a dispute over the Swiss Army knife trade dress (Victorinox AG, et al. v. The...

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Adjourns Fraud Trial So Defendant Can Review Recorded Sales Calls

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A federal judge in Tennessee on Sept. 19 granted a motion filed by a man accused of orchestrating a telemarketing scheme to sell insurance products that were not major medical health insurance, finding that he should be allowed to review recordings of approximately 100,000 sales calls...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Limitations Period Has Expired On Claim Of Tainted Groundwater, Company Says

NEW YORK - Northrop Grumman Corp. on Sept. 18 filed a brief in the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals arguing that an amicus brief filed by parties interested in a groundwater contamination lawsuit is premised on "a fundamental misconception" regarding the limitations period for tort claims...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Refuses To Challenge Validity Of State Agency's Radon Emissions Findings

SALT LAKE CITY - A federal judge in Utah on Sept. 15 awarded summary judgment to a uranium mining company after refusing to challenge the validity of a state agency's findings that the company's radon emissions were excessive and in violation of the Clean Air Act (CAA) (Grand Canyon Trust v....

Mealey's Insurance - Bifurcation Of Bad Faith Claim Is Not Warranted, Pennsylvania Federal Judge Says

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. - A Pennsylvania federal judge on Sept. 18 denied an automobile insurer's motion to sever and stay its insureds' bad faith claim after determining that bifurcation would not promote judicial economy and that the insurer would not be prejudiced if the claims are tried together...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Expert's Opinion On Paralysis Tossed When Evidence Shows Accuser Can Walk

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - An expert witness for a woman who says her paralysis was caused by medical malpractice was excluded from testifying by a Puerto Rico federal judge, who ruled Sept. 18 that the expert's opinion on the cause of the paralysis is useless because, despite the woman's claims...

Mealey's Insurance - Breach Of Fiduciary Duty Claim Dismissed In Dispute Over Sham Reinsurer Scheme

NEW YORK - In a dispute over two alleged schemes involving a "sham reinsurance company" and a "sham medical billing company," a New York justice on Sept. 15 dismissed claims by an investment fund for breach of fiduciary duty and aiding and abetting breach of fiduciary duty and unjust...