• January 22, 2015

    King Of Pop’s Mom Tries To Revive AEG Wrongful Death Suit

    Michael Jackson's mother Thursday urged a California appellate court to grant a new trial in her case alleging AEG Live LLC was liable for the doctor who fatally overdosed the legendary performer, saying flawed instructions tainted the jury verdict clearing the concert promoter.

  • January 22, 2015

    Stites & Harbison Says Attys Hijacked Social Media Accounts

    Kentucky law firm Stites & Harbison PLLC on Thursday filed a suit in Kentucky federal court accusing three former attorneys of hijacking social media accounts related to the firm’s trademark blog and that they plotted to create a competing firm while they were still employed.

  • January 22, 2015

    Whistleblower In Humana FCA Suit Fights Sanctions Bid

    A whistleblower accusing Humana Inc. of Medicare Advantage fraud in a False Claims Act suit urged a Florida federal judge on Thursday to toss the "heavy-handed" motion for sanctions brought by co-defendant Plaza Medical Centers Corp., saying the defendants already have the information that Plaza claims is being withheld. 

  • January 22, 2015

    US Asks 2nd Circ. To Reinstate Birth Control Opt-Out Plan

    The Obama administration on Thursday asked the Second Circuit to find that opting-out of the Affordable Care Act’s mandate for contraception coverage is not an overly burdensome process for religious groups, saying the law’s carveout for faith-based organizations is sufficient.

  • January 22, 2015

    Insurers Say Chemtura Can't Tap Predecessors' Policies

    A London market insurance company group sued Chemtura Corp., its affiliates and insurers in New York state court Thursday, disclaiming responsibility for environmental remediation costs and food industry employee suits relating to dangerous chemical exposure.

  • January 22, 2015

    No Early Trial In Suit Alleging Groping At Employment Firm

    A California judge on Thursday rebuffed a bid for an early trial by a law firm employee who alleges the former managing partner of the employment dispute-focused firm grabbed her crotch and breasts, ruling potential future discrimination isn’t sufficient to “jump to the front of the line.”

  • January 22, 2015

    Dems Cite 'Frivolous' Delays, Tout NLRB Election Rule

    A group of Democratic Senators urged the National Labor Relations Board's chairman Thursday to “vigorously defend” the board's recently finalized rule to streamline the union election process against lawsuits, saying employers have used “frivolous” challenges to delay elections too frequently.

  • January 22, 2015

    Google Codes Force Users To Give Free Labor, Suit Says

    Google Inc. software used to verify that actual people are trying to access websites by asking them to decipher pictures of words uses some of that data to transcribe text Google’s algorithms can’t read on their own, a putative class action alleged Thursday in Massachusetts federal court.

  • January 22, 2015

    3rd Circ. Nixes NJ Cop's Free Speech Retaliation Suit

    The Third Circuit handed down a precedential ruling Thursday finding that a police officer's testimony disavowing his involvement with the campaign of a Paterson, New Jersey, mayoral hopeful barred him from claiming he'd been demoted in violation of his First Amendment rights after he was seen associating with a staffer for the candidate.

  • January 22, 2015

    Womble Carlyle Disability Suit Wrongly Nixed, EEOC Says

    An U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission suit claiming that Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice LLP unlawfully fired a woman left disabled by breast cancer treatments shouldn't have been tossed, the EEOC told the Fourth Circuit on Wednesday, arguing that a reasonable jury could have found illegal discrimination.

  • January 22, 2015

    Mount Sinai Whistleblowers Deny Stealing Patient Info

    Mount Sinai Hospital whistleblowers on Wednesday rejected allegations they took confidential patient records to build their case, urging a New York federal judge not to dismiss their claims that the hospital fraudulently billed Medicare and New York’s Medicaid program.

  • January 22, 2015

    Signal Can't Use Damning Facebook Photo In Work Visa Trial

    A Louisiana federal judge overseeing a collective action accusing Signal International LLC of coercing Indian citizens to pay expenses for temporary work visas on Wednesday rejected the company’s bid to use a Facebook photo to impeach a plaintiff at trial, saying it’s too late.

  • January 22, 2015

    Lockheed Off The Hook In Age Bias Suit, 6th Circ. Rules

    The Sixth Circuit on Thursday refused to revive an age discrimination suit against Lockheed Martin Corp., finding no evidence that the company’s stated, legitimate reasons for not hiring the plaintiffs were a pretext to reject them for being too old.

  • January 22, 2015

    Athletes Tell 9th Circ. NCAA Pay-Rule Ban Is Appropriate

    Plaintiffs accusing the National Collegiate Athletic Association of forming a cartel to prevent college athletes from getting paid for the use of their likenesses urged the Ninth Circuit on Wednesday to affirm a lower court's ruling that the NCAA violated antitrust law, arguing evidence showed the association exploited students.

  • January 22, 2015

    Pro-Enforcement Sen. Sessions To Lead Immigration Panel

    Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., a vocal proponent of tougher border enforcement, was named the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee's immigration subcommittee on Thursday, drawing sharp criticism from some immigration advocates.

  • January 22, 2015

    McDonald's Ignored Race-Based Firings, Harassment Suit Says

    McDonald's Corp. and a franchisee were slapped with a federal lawsuit Thursday by former workers who claim they faced blatant racial and sexual harassment and that the fast food giant turned a deaf ear to their complaints after they were terminated because they were black.

  • January 22, 2015

    Terminated Visa Holder Not Owed Back Wages, Judge Says

    A Department of Labor administrative law judge on Tuesday affirmed a decision that business consultant Headstrong Inc. does not owe more than $11,000 in back wages to a former H-1B nonimmigrant employee because the parties entered into a settlement resolving the employee’s claims.

  • January 22, 2015

    Cosmetology School To Pay $450K In OT Suit

    A Minnesota federal court on Wednesday approved a $450,000 deal between Regency Corp. and admissions representatives who say the chain of cosmetology schools subjected them to an unwritten policy requiring off-the-clock work.

  • January 22, 2015

    Ariz. County Fights Liability For ID Laws Targeting Immigrants

    Maricopa County asked Arizona’s federal court Tuesday to reconsider its finding in a putative class action that the county is liable for Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s decision to enforce two state identity theft laws, which criminalize the act of identity theft done with the intent to obtain or continue employment.

  • January 22, 2015

    Ex-Managers Skewer Auto Parts Supplier's Trade Secrets Suit

    Several former employees of auto parts supplier National Auto Parts Inc. told an Illinois federal court Wednesday that all but one claim the company made in an October trade secrets suit against them must be tossed because the allegations are either inadequately pled, or are duplicative.

Expert Analysis

  • Watch For 8 First Amendment Legal Issues In 2015

    David Urban

    This will likely be a standout year for new developments in First Amendment law, with federal appellate courts ruling on issues surrounding individuals' speech on social media, the First Amendment rights of government entities and speech by public employees, among others, says David Urban of Liebert Cassidy Whitmore.

  • NLRB Is Showing More Interest In Nonunion Employers

    Robert A. Boonin

    The latest trend at the National Labor Relations Board is clear given the attention it has paid to class action waivers, social media policy and email use in the workplace. No employer, unionized or not, is immune from the NLRB's effort to enforce employees’ Section 7 rights under the National Labor Relations Act to engage in concerted activities, says Robert Boonin of Dykema Gossett PLLC.

  • NYC May See More Unemployment Discrimination Suits

    Cindy S. Minniti

    Although it has thus far been sparsely used by litigants, New York City's unemployment discrimination law may garner increased attention from the plaintiffs’ bar in the coming months and years, particularly given the recent nationwide focus on other aspects of the pre-employment process, say Cindy Minniti and Mark Goldstein of Reed Smith LLP.

  • A Shift In Discoverability Of Litigation Hold Notices?

    Mathieu J. Shapiro

    There is no one-size-fits-all litigation hold notice and no magic language that will ensure the notice is covered by the attorney-client privilege or work product doctrine. But in light of the D.C. District Court’s new, relaxed approach to the discoverability of such notices, be sure your next one does not include confidential company information that you would regret sharing, say attorneys with Obermayer Rebmann Maxwell & Hippel LLP.

  • Calif. Poised To Take Another Look At Secondary Exposure

    Brian M. Davies

    Since Campbell v. Ford Motor Co., parties have parsed the ruling's language to ferret out the true limits of secondary exposure liability, which the California Supreme Court has earnestly taken up with its pending review of Kesner v. Superior Court and Haver v. BNSF Railway Co., says Brian Davies of Sedgwick LLP.

  • Tip-Related Claims Will Continue To Be Served Up In 2015

    Jeffrey H. Ruzal

    The hospitality industry is particularly fertile ground for a wide variety of wage-and-hour issues, and tip credit claims are government regulators’ and plaintiffs’ favorite, with no sign that such claims will abate in the coming year, says Jeffrey Ruzal of Epstein Becker & Green PC.

  • Justices Address Boundaries Of 2 FCA Defenses In KBR Case

    Kirsten Mayer

    The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral argument on Tuesday in the widely anticipated KBR Inc. case that will consider key limitations on civil fraud liability in the False Claims Act context and beyond. Several justices seemed particularly interested in whether the 1944 amendments to the Wartime Suspension of Limitations Act were enough to indicate Congress’ intent to expand significantly the scope of the statute to include civil violat... (continued)

  • How To Fix FLSA For Both Employees And Employers

    Michael S. Kun

    The Fair Labor Standards Act generally doesn’t permit employees and employers to resolve wage disputes short of litigation or agency complaints. There is no good reason why employees can be trusted to resolve other employment disputes without litigation or an agency complaint but can't be trusted to do so with regard to wage claims, says Michael Kun of Epstein Becker & Green PC.

  • Making Way For Religious Accommodation In The Workplace

    Timothy F. Ryan

    While religious accommodation cases are decided on a case-by-case basis, where it is difficult to describe bright lines identifying burdens that are undue and those that are not, courts frequently rule against employers because they fail to provide facts to support their claim of undue burden, says Timothy Ryan of Morrison & Foerster LLP.

  • Affordable Care Act Considerations In M&A

    Robert L. Jensen

    In light of significant penalties for failure to comply with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, acquirers need to undertake a thorough evaluation of the target’s group health plans and will need to consider potential operational issues following the transaction, especially those that relate to the determination of full-time employee status for purposes of the ACA employer mandate rules, says Robert Jensen of Drinker Bi... (continued)