California

  • October 20, 2014

    Santander Spares $200M Of Auto Debt To Settle Notice Claims

    A California federal judge on Monday approved Santander Consumer USA's agreement to not collect almost $200 million in outstanding car loan debts in order to settle class action claims that the subsidiary of the Spanish banking behemoth issued faulty notices to borrowers after repossessing their cars.

  • October 20, 2014

    'Brisbane's Bernie Madoff' Can't Dodge US Fraud Charges

    A well-connected businessman who fled the U.S. after the collapse of his auto dealership and set up shop in Australia, where he was later dubbed “Brisbane’s Bernie Madoff,” can’t escape charges he defrauded U.S. banks and investors of up to $200 million, a California federal judge ruled Monday.

  • October 20, 2014

    Cinemax Actress Can't Avoid Claims Over Refused Sex Scenes

    An actress suing HBO, Cinemax and a production company saying she was coerced into filming "softcore porn" sex scenes for a late-night adult television series can't avoid counterclaims alleging she breached her contract by refusing to appear nude in the scenes, a California judge ruled Monday.

  • October 20, 2014

    NLRB Judges Knock 2 Employers' Arbitration Pacts

    A California grocery chain and a Las Vegas limousine service were faulted Friday by National Labor Relations Board judges who found the employers violated federal labor law by requiring employees to sign arbitration agreements that interfered with their right to bring collective actions.

  • October 20, 2014

    Robin Thicke Tackles ‘Blurred Lines’ IP Claims In LA Court

    Singer Robin Thicke and producer Pharrell Williams urged a California federal judge on Monday to rule that their megahit “Blurred Lines” doesn't infringe copyrighted material from rhythm-and-blues legend Marvin Gaye, arguing Gaye's family can only assert ownership of a specific composition, not general musical ideas.

  • October 20, 2014

    EPA Watchdog To Audit Calif. Enviro Board Laser Purchase

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of the Inspector General will audit the California Air Resources Board’s purchase of a laser used to monitor air pollution and review allegations that the board is misreporting pollution data, the watchdog recently said.

  • October 20, 2014

    Amgen, CVS Units Hit With Suit Over Arthritis Drug Shipping

    An Amgen Inc. subsidiary and a CVS Health unit have been hit with a proposed class action in California court alleging that the companies knowingly failing to ensure that the arthritis drug Enbrel was kept at a proper temperature during shipping.

  • October 20, 2014

    Deals Rumor Mill: Adidas, Allergan, Sigma-Tau

    Jynwel Capital and funds affiliated with the Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, government plan to offer Adidas AG €1.7 billion ($2.2 billion) for Reebok International Ltd., while Paulson & Co., one of Allergan Inc.'s largest shareholders, has proposed that the California-based Botox maker merge with British drugmaker Shire PLC.

  • October 20, 2014

    PAGA Claims Can Be Waived In Arbitration Pacts, Judge Says

    A federal judge rejected the California Supreme Court's conclusion that workers' right to bring representative Private Attorney General Act claims can't be waived through arbitration agreements, marking the latest federal ruling to eschew the state high court's June Iskanian decision.

  • October 20, 2014

    Scotts Says Rejected Deals Should Kill Toxic Bird Food Suit

    The Scotts Company LLC on Friday asked a California federal judge to toss a proposed class action accusing the company of illegally selling wild bird food that contained toxic pesticides, arguing that the plaintiffs’ refusals to accept individual settlements made the dispute moot.

  • October 20, 2014

    Ask.com Slapped With Anti-Poach Suit Over Deal With Google

    Ask.com on Friday became the latest Silicon Valley tech company to be sued over allegations that it had colluded with Google Inc. and others to keep down salaries by agreeing not to poach each other's directors, according to a proposed California federal antitrust class action.

  • October 20, 2014

    9th Circ. Lavish Spending Tax Ruling Unlikely To Spread Far

    A recent Ninth Circuit ruling that extravagant spending habits aren't enough to prove willful tax evasion appears to hurt one of the IRS's key litigation strategies, but attorneys say the impact will likely be blunted by the circuit's outlier stance.

  • October 20, 2014

    Cooley Steers Breast Implant Maker Sientra's IPO Plans

    Sientra Inc. set terms Monday to raise about $75 million in its initial public offering in an effort led by Cooley LLP, as the California-based breast implant maker looks to grab a piece of the $7.2 billion cosmetic surgery industry from rivals Mentor Worldwide LLC and Allergan Inc.

  • October 20, 2014

    Strong Valeant Earnings Buoy Talk Of Heftier Allergan Bid

    Rounding the six-month mark in its $53 billion hostile pursuit of Allergan Inc., Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. hinted it could raise its bid for the Botox maker after it said strong third-quarter earnings released Monday disprove attacks on its business model.

  • October 20, 2014

    France Telecom Fights Marvell's Bid To Invalidate Patent

    France Telecom SA fought back Monday against Marvell Semiconductor Inc.'s bid to invalidate a data correction patent after a $1.7 million jury verdict against Marvell, calling up its intellectual property expert to tell a California federal judge that the invention contains more than a mathematical formula.

  • October 20, 2014

    Warburg, Bridgepoint Directors Beat $250M Tender Offer Suit

    A California federal judge on Friday said Bridgepoint Education Inc.'s approval of a 2013 tender offer with Warburg Pincus Private Equity VIII LP was based on "classic business judgment," tossing a shareholder derivative suit claiming the offer allowed Warburg to unfairly rake in nearly $250 million in profits via a share buyback.

  • October 20, 2014

    Western Apparel Retailer Boot Barn Struts Toward $75M IPO

    California-based apparel and boots retailer Boot Barn Holdings Inc. set terms for a $75 million initial public offering on Monday as the private equity-backed company seeks to expand its stores throughout the U.S., saying it sees the potential to more than double its store count.

  • October 20, 2014

    Justices To Hear Challenge To LA Hotel Registry Search Law

    The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday agreed to review a Ninth Circuit decision striking down a Los Angeles law allowing warrantless searches of hotel registries, in a case that could determine when Fourth Amendment facial challenges are permitted against such local laws.

  • October 20, 2014

    IBM To Pay $1.5B To Unload Sluggish Chip Unit

    IBM Corp. said Monday it would pay $1.5 billion to hive off its loss-making semiconductor unit, adding its name to a growing list of tech titans refining their operations through spinoffs and other separations.

  • October 17, 2014

    Dish, Fox Each Say Aereo Backs Their Claims In DVR Fight

    Dish Network Corp. and Fox Broadcasting Inc. faced off in a California federal courthouse Friday, each arguing that the U.S. Supreme Court's recent Aereo ruling supports its bid for a quick win in their fight over whether Dish's Internet-streaming DVR features infringe Fox's copyrights.

Expert Analysis

  • Putting Calif.'s $1.4B Fine Against PG&E In Perspective

    Michael C. Dotten

    What constitutes an excessive fine has been articulated by the U.S. Supreme Court as a proportionality test, and, as Pacific Gas & Electric Co. argued in its brief before the California Public Utilities Commission, courts sometimes measure excessiveness in penalties by reference to fines levied in other, like circumstances, says Michael Dotten of Marten Law PLLC.

  • The Latest On Preliminary Injunctions In Trademark Cases

    Richard Kirkpatrick

    For many years, preliminary injunctions have long been the standard remedy of choice to challenge and stop trademark infringements at an early stage, but that long tradition may be in for a big change, says Richard Kirkpatrick of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP.

  • Work Plan Signals Expanded Calif. Green Chemistry Program

    Joshua A. Bloom

    California's Safer Consumer Products Regulation will be closely watched given the potential for its broad application — indeed, following its enactment, Congress attempted to develop nationwide green chemistry initiatives, say Joshua Bloom and Christopher Jensen of Barg Coffin Lewis & Trapp LLP.

  • Calif. Case Opens Door To Property Transfer Tax Rise

    Thomas S. Wisialowski

    A significant number of transactions that we normally would not have expected to trigger real property documentary transfer tax in most California cities and counties may now do so thanks to a ruling in 926 North Ardmore Avenue LLC v. County of Los Angeles, say Thomas Wisialowski and Sarah-Jane Hornbeek of Paul Hastings LLP.

  • 9th Circ. Closes More Doors On ACA Challenges

    Michael W. Lieberman

    The Ninth Circuit's recent ruling in Coons v. Lew serves as a warning to would-be plaintiffs that challenges to the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate based on contrary state laws or the right to medical autonomy are likely to fail, say Mike Lieberman and Harsh Parikh of Crowell & Moring LLP.

  • OPINION: Don't Mess With... Arizona?

    Michael Li

    Fifty years ago, Justice Felix Frankfurter cautioned courts about getting mired in the “political thicket” of redistricting. In agreeing to hear Arizona State Legislature v. Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission, the U.S. Supreme Court could be about to take a big step further into that thicket, says Michael Li, counsel at the Brennan Center for Justice, NYU School of Law.

  • Tug-Of-War: Attorney-Client Privilege Vs. Deposition

    There is an inherent tension between the process of preparing a corporate representative to testify and the protections usually afforded by attorney-client privilege. Judicial decisions addressing these tensions are limited and, as of yet, the Federal Circuit Courts of Appeals do not appear to have weighed in on these issues in any meaningful way, say Vanessa Miller and Nicholas Ellis of Foley & Lardner LLP.

  • RCRA Citizen Suits No Longer Option In Regulating Diesel

    Kirsten L. Nathanson

    The Ninth Circuit's ruling in Center for Community Action and Environmental Justice v. BNSF Railway Co. has potentially broad implications for all diesel exhaust emitters — it may even serve to foreclose future Resource Conservation and Recovery Act citizen suit challenges to air emissions beyond diesel, say attorneys at Crowell & Moring LLP.

  • OPINION: Uphold Reasonable Regs On Judicial Campaigns

    Matthew Menendez

    If the U.S. Supreme Court applies strict scrutiny in Williams-Yulee v. Florida Bar to strike down reasonable restrictions on judicial campaign activity, the increasing flood of judicial campaign spending may further damage the public’s eroding confidence in the judiciary, says Matthew Menendez, counsel in the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center for Justice, NYU School of Law.

  • Don't Disregard Calif.'s Non-Disparagement Clause Ban

    Songmee L. Connolly

    Because AB 2365's ban on nondisparagment clauses in California carries statutory penalties, plaintiffs’ class action attorneys will be incentivized to test its scope and ambiguities next year given the potential size of aggregated penalties, says Songmee Connolly of Fenwick & West LLP.