Appellate

  • July 31, 2015

    Fla. Court Could Curb Engle Claims In Tort Liability Ruling

    An Eleventh Circuit decision ruling that federal law preempts tort liability against tobacco companies could make it harder for the hundreds of Engle progeny plaintiffs in Florida state court to prove their claims if a state appeals court looking at the matter sides with its federal counterpart.

  • July 31, 2015

    11th Circ. Upholds Yellow Pages Photo Infringement Verdict

    The Eleventh Circuit Thursday affirmed a Florida federal court's $123,000 judgment against Yellow Pages Group LLC following a jury verdict, saying there were sufficient facts at trial to support a finding that YPG willfully infringed copyrighted photos belonging to Yellow Pages Photos Inc.

  • July 31, 2015

    NJ Appeals Court Pares Ex-Police Chief's Conviction

    A New Jersey appeals panel ruled Friday a former Bergen County police chief and former Democratic assemblyman convicted of meddling in cases involving a former girlfriend and her son is cleared of an insurance fraud charge and can be retried on an official misconduct charge due to a prosecutor's improper comments about his political ties.

  • July 31, 2015

    High Court Urged To Allow Collection Of $378M Terror Award

    Families of people killed or injured in a 1972 terrorist attack have urged the U.S. Supreme Court to revisit the Second Circuit's ruling that they are barred under a federal insurance law from collecting on a $378 million judgment against North Korea using blocked electronic transfers held by JPMorgan Chase Bank NA and others.

  • July 31, 2015

    9th Circ. Won't Revive Antitrust Suit Against ICANN

    The Ninth Circuit on Friday refused to revive an antitrust and trademark infringement suit accusing the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers of holding a monopoly on the domain-name market, saying there was no sign ICANN willfully acquired control of that market.

  • July 31, 2015

    Arson Deportation Row Hinges On Similar Case, Justices Told

    A U.S. Supreme Court petition from an El Salvadorian immigrant facing deportation for arson should be put on hold until the high court decides a similar case over the impact of state-level attempted arson under the Immigration and Nationality Act, the government has said.

  • July 31, 2015

    Tribe Urges High Court To Pass On Ex-Contractor's Suit

    California's Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to pass on reviewing a former contractor's sanctions bid against the tribe, arguing that a bankruptcy court's denial of the motion had nothing to do with tribal sovereign immunity.

  • July 31, 2015

    Covidien Urges Supreme Court To Hear 'Secret' Prior Art Row

    Medical supplier Covidien PLC has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to intervene in a $176 million patent dispute with a unit of Johnson & Johnson, arguing an appeals court improperly considered a “secret” prototype when deciding its surgical device patents were obvious.

  • July 31, 2015

    5th Circ. Revives Ex-Tesoro VP's SOX Whistleblower Claim

    The Fifth Circuit on Friday revived a Sarbanes-Oxley Act whistleblower suit leveled against Tesoro Corp. by a former vice president who said he was fired after reporting that the company counted taxes as revenue, saying that although his complaint was garbled it shouldn't have been completely dismissed.

  • July 31, 2015

    Attys Tell Justices 6th Circ. Wrongly Revived FDCPA Suit

    Zwicker & Associates PC asked the Supreme Court to quash a class action claiming the firm violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act by asking for attorneys fees in a separate debt collection suit, saying allowing liability under the law tramples lawyers' constitutional rights.

  • July 31, 2015

    State Law Governs DirecTV Arbitration Row, High Court Told

    The U.S. Supreme Court has accepted seven amicus briefs on behalf of a class of California DirecTV customers challenging an arbitration provision in user agreements, in which professors and others contended that the case is a contract dispute subject to state, not federal, law.

  • July 31, 2015

    Calif. Court Says State Can Keep $11M Of City Bond Funds

    A California appeals court on Thursday upheld a trial court's ruling that the California Department of Finance can withhold $11 million in bond funds the city of Petaluma's redevelopment agency had earmarked for an infrastructure project before the state dissolved redevelopment agencies.

  • July 31, 2015

    Okla. Urges High Court To Hear Casino Suit Against Tribe

    The state of Oklahoma fired back at a brief filed by officials from an Oklahoma tribe that urged the U.S. Supreme Court to refuse to hear the state’s petition to review a Tenth Circuit decision nixing its suit over a proposed casino on another tribe’s land, claiming the decision encouraged attempts to open “blatantly illegal” casinos.

  • July 31, 2015

    9th Circ. Revives Ray Charles Foundation Copyright Suit

    The Ninth Circuit on Friday reversed a lower court’s dismissal of a suit brought by the Ray Charles Foundation challenging the late singer’s heirs’ attempt to reclaim copyrights for dozens of songs, ruling that the foundation had standing since it receives royalties from the copyrights held by Warner/Chappell Music.

  • July 31, 2015

    DirecTV, Dish Renew Plea For High Court To Take Tax Row

    DirecTV and Dish Network Corp. hit back at Tennessee’s attempt to block their request for the U.S. Supreme Court to review decisions upholding state taxes on satellite providers, saying this week that the state's brief fails to prove there isn’t a circuit split on the issue in need of high court review.

  • July 31, 2015

    9th Circ. Won't Revive Netflix Privacy Class Action

    The Ninth Circuit affirmed Friday that Netflix Inc. didn’t violate the Video Privacy Protection Act by allowing subscribers’ family members, friends or guests to view users’ viewing histories and other information, because the password-protected information was only disclosed to consumers.

  • July 31, 2015

    Schwab Urges High Court To Quash Risky CMO Class Action

    Schwab Investments has petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to review a Ninth Circuit decision that revived a proposed class action accusing it of making risky bets on collateralized mortgage obligations despite policies outlined in investment guidelines, arguing the plaintiffs had no standing to sue in the first place.

  • July 31, 2015

    Cablevision Investor Appeals Dismissal Of 'Nepotism' Suit

    The shareholder who pressed derivative claims that Cablevision Systems Corp.'s stock value had been diluted from “nepotism run amok” by the controlling Dolan family appealed Friday a Delaware Chancery judge’s decision that the case didn’t warrant judicial intervention into the cable company’s business decisions.

  • July 31, 2015

    NJ Justices Won't Review Waste Contract Dispute After All

    The New Jersey Supreme Court has backpedaled on its decision to review Mercer County Improvement Authority's battle over a municipal waste contract, centering on whether a lower bidder's opinion letter represented a material deviation that allowed the MCIA to reject its bid.

  • July 31, 2015

    Calif. Court DQs Atty In Brothers' $250M Real Estate Row

    A California appellate court reversed an order denying a bid to disqualify an attorney representing a businessman in a $250 million family feud accusing his brothers of cheating him out of a real estate enterprise, saying the attorney had been involved in the underlying transactions.

Expert Analysis

  • Rebutting Fraud On The Market

    Michelle Reed

    The most recent Halliburton class certification decision addressed one of the key questions left open after the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling last year — the level of proof necessary to rebut the fraud-on-the-market presumption, say attorneys with Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP.

  • 3 Class Actions Before The Supreme Court

    Fred T. Isquith

    Perhaps the case potentially most consequential is Campbell-Ewald Co. v. Gomez, which raises intriguing procedural issues and would affect any class action where the defendant offers to the plaintiff full damages and any feasible fees and costs, says Fred Isquith of Wolf Haldenstein Adler Freeman & Herz LLP.

  • DC Circ.'s Rule Remand Won't Stop EPA On Air Emissions

    Thomas A. Lorenzen

    After the D.C. Circuit's recent ruling in EME Homer City Generation LP v. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the EPA can continue to implement its Cross-State Air Pollution Rule for the foreseeable future, including imposing state emission budgets for sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide that have now been ruled invalid, say Thomas Lorenzen and Robert Meyers of Crowell & Moring LLP.

  • Gilbert Hyatt's Epic Tax Battle Is Far From Over

    Annie H. Huang

    Inventor Gilbert Hyatt has been embattled with the California Franchise Tax Board over residency status and the conduct of FTB auditors for over 20 years. While Hyatt will make a second trip to the U.S. Supreme Court, the court's review will be limited to governmental immunity issues, and it would not be surprising if Hyatt and California continue their battle for another decade or two, say attorneys with Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP.

  • Putting The Brakes On Newman: 3 Recent Rakoff Decisions

    David I. Miller

    Judge Jed Rakoff’s recent instructive decisions have set the stage for a closer analysis of Newman’s potential effect on future insider trading cases. Indeed, in its petition for a writ of certiorari, the government uses Judge Rakoff’s decisions to support its arguments to the U.S. Supreme Court, say attorneys with Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP.

  • 7th Circ. Doesn't End Debate Over Ill.'s Fifield Rule

    Jason B. Hirsh

    The Seventh Circuit's opinion in Instant Technology LLC v. DeFazio did not so much as mention adequacy of consideration, Illinois' Fifield rule and the series of opinions challenging its validity, or the inconsistency in the district court. In the end, with any luck, the Illinois Supreme Court will soon step in and resolve this matter once and for all, says Jason Hirsh of Levenfeld Pearlstein LLC.

  • Lessons From 5th Circ. Application Of Scienter Standard

    David Dodds

    The Fifth Circuit’s recent dismissal of a federal securities fraud class action that arose out of the failure of Guaranty Bank serves as a reminder that even where some specific allegations tend to support an inference of scienter, they may not invariably lead to a finding of the required “strong inference,” says David Dodds of Haynes and Boone LLP.

  • A Potential Basis For Objecting To Certain CFPB Sanctions

    Jennifer L. Sutton

    Much like the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission bar at issue in SEC v. Koch, a number of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s enforcement actions address violations premised on conduct that, at least in part, predates Dodd-Frank. The D.C. Circuit’s ruling in Koch rejecting retroactive Dodd-Frank application could provide a basis for institutions to object to certain CFPB sanctions, say attorneys with Sullivan & Cromwell LLP.

  • How To Get To Federal Circuit Rule 36

    Rachel Hughey

    Under Federal Circuit Rule 36, the court may issue a judgment affirming the lower tribunal’s decision without a written opinion. In this article, Rachel Hughey, co-leader of Merchant & Gould PC's appellate practice, offers tactics for appellees seeking to place themselves in the best positions to obtain Rule 36 affirmances.

  • And Now A Word From The Panel: The Rocket Docket!

    Alan Rothman

    As we celebrate the 46th anniversary of mankind’s first walk on the moon, this month’s column tracking the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation appropriately explores the impact of the “rocket docket” on the selection of an MDL venue. We have discussed various venue selection factors, but is the perceived speed with which a district handles cases relevant? asks Alan Rothman of Kaye Scholer LLP.