Appellate

  • March 22, 2017

    11th Circ. Affirms $2.1M Verdict In Wright Hip Implants Suit

    The Eleventh Circuit has affirmed a $2.1 million jury verdict in favor of a patient who won the first bellwether trial against Wright Medical Technology over its allegedly defective metal hip implants, supporting the trial judge's decision to order the confused jury to conduct further deliberations.

  • March 22, 2017

    5 Keys To High Court's Cheerleader Uniform Ruling

    To get you up to speed on the U.S. Supreme Court’s complex decision on copyright law and cheerleading uniforms, here are the key things experts say you need to know, including what the ruling says, what it doesn’t and what comes next.

  • March 22, 2017

    Gorsuch Defends Record, Chevron Critiques At Senate Panel

    Tenth Circuit Judge Neil Gorsuch, President Donald Trump’s nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court, defended his approach to constitutional interpretation before the Senate Judiciary Committee Wednesday, as well as his skepticism of so-called Chevron deference to regulatory agencies' interpretations of federal law.

  • March 22, 2017

    9th Circ. Buoys Policyholders In Excess Settlement Fights

    The Ninth Circuit refused Tuesday to disturb California appellate precedent establishing that an excess insurance carrier must either approve a policyholder's settlement of a covered claim or assume the insured's defense if it wishes to avoid litigation, giving policyholders more leverage to secure reluctant excess insurers' participation in settlement talks.

  • March 22, 2017

    Justices Urged To Resolve Split Over Key To $234M Tax Row

    Santander Holdings USA Inc. asked the U.S. Supreme Court to hear its effort to win back a $234 million foreign tax credit refund the First Circuit had overturned, arguing that different courts had conflicting rulings on a key component of the case.

  • March 22, 2017

    Pa. Court Again Says Tax Sale's 'Mineral' Rights Include Gas

    Coming down almost exactly where it did in December, a Pennsylvania appeals court issued its second decision in a gas-rights case finding that a 1932 tax sale of subsurface mineral rights encompassed the sale of oil and gas rights, handing a win to exploration company Range Resources.

  • March 22, 2017

    Ex-Leaders Look To Toss Tribe's 9th Circ. Asset Freeze Row

    Four former Paskenta Band of Nomlaki Indians officials whom the tribe has accused of leading a multimillion-dollar embezzlement scheme asked the Ninth Circuit on Tuesday to dismiss the tribe's challenge to a lower court's refusal to freeze their assets.

  • March 22, 2017

    Lien Spat Certified As Question Of Import To Fla. High Court

    The town of Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, Florida, will get one more shot in its dispute with a landowner over liens on a property bought at a foreclosure sale after an appeals court Wednesday certified the issue as a question of great importance to the Florida Supreme Court.

  • March 22, 2017

    Justices Mull Mail Service Standards Under Hague Convention

    A splash pad company was improperly denied the right to use the mail to serve the Quebec-based defendant in its Texas trade secrets suit, regardless of whether the Hague Service Convention authorizes or merely permits service of process abroad by mail, the company's attorney told the U.S. Supreme Court Wednesday.

  • March 22, 2017

    GOP Push For Gorsuch Vote Puts Politics Ahead Of Cases

    The Republican goal of getting Neil Gorsuch seated on the Supreme Court in April is meant to shine a benevolent light on the party, as much as to secure his vote in at least one of the upcoming cases and his presence among the justices should President Donald Trump’s immigration ban petition reach the high court, experts say.

  • March 22, 2017

    Jared Leto Asks 9th Circ. To Revive TMZ Swift Video Suit

    Singer and actor Jared Leto’s production company asked the Ninth Circuit on Monday to toss out a lower court’s ruling dismissing his copyright infringement suit against TMZ, saying the videographer behind a clip of him criticizing Taylor Swift didn’t have the right to sell the clip.

  • March 22, 2017

    Justices Told Law Nixing Tribal Casino Suit Is Constitutional

    The U.S. Department of the Interior has urged the U.S. Supreme Court to reject a petition by a Michigan man seeking to revive his challenge to a tribal casino project near his land, saying a federal law enacted to block suits opposing the project isn’t unconstitutional.

  • March 22, 2017

    Smigel Anderson Must Face Property-Sale Suit, Court Says

    The New Jersey Appellate Division on Wednesday revived a suit against Smigel Anderson & Sacks LLP over claims that a partner's letter during a separate divorce action ultimately derailed a property sale, saying a trial court improperly tossed the case on jurisdictional and other grounds without examining the full extent of the Pennsylvania firm's work in New Jersey.

  • March 22, 2017

    SF Property Owners Score Win In Tenant Payment Decision

    A California appellate panel on Wednesday sided with San Francisco property owners in two cases over a city ordinance requiring payments of up to $50,000 to evicted tenants when closing down units, finding the law impedes a property owner’s right to exit the rental business under the state’s Ellis Act.

  • March 22, 2017

    Expert Didn't Link Surgery To Injuries, Texas Court Rules

    A Texas appeals court on Tuesday ruled in favor of a doctor who appealed a trial judge’s decision to accept a patient’s expert opinion in a medical malpractice case accusing the doctor of botching a hernia surgery, saying the expert’s report was conclusory and therefore deficient.

  • March 22, 2017

    5th Circ. Sides With EPA In Battle Over Texas Haze Rule

    The Fifth Circuit on Wednesday rejected Texas’ bid to strike down the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s regional haze plan for the Lone Star State, instead granting the EPA’s motion to send the existing regulations back to the agency for revision.

  • March 22, 2017

    High Court Asked To Resolve Claim Construction Uncertainty

    Trash bag maker Poly-America LP has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to rule on how patent claims should be construed, saying the court’s guidance is "urgently needed" to resolve a split among Federal Circuit judges about whether information beyond the claims can be consulted.

  • March 22, 2017

    4th Circ. OKs Firefighter's Dismissal Over Facebook Posts

    A Maryland fire and rescue department did not violate the free speech rights of a battalion chief when it fired him over an intradepartment squabble started when he mused about “beating a liberal to death with another liberal” on Facebook, a Fourth Circuit panel has ruled.

  • March 22, 2017

    6th Circ. Backs Stiffer Tax Fraud Sentence For Chiropractor

    The Sixth Circuit on Wednesday affirmed a roughly two-year prison sentence for a Kentucky chiropractor who pled guilty in 2015 to tax fraud and to structuring transactions to evade reporting requirements, saying he had agreed to sentencing enhancements as part of his plea.

  • March 22, 2017

    8th Circ. Affirms Construction Co. Win In Retaliation Suit

    The Eighth Circuit on Tuesday shot down a woman's lawsuit alleging her government contractor employer violated her civil rights through sexual harassment and retaliation, saying the claims lacked evidence. 

Expert Analysis

  • A Gorsuch Decision In Favor Of Federal Jurisdiction

    Forrest Latta

    Judge Neil Gorsuch's legal path has adhered closely to waypoints of originalism and conservatism in his career. But judicial conservatism and political conservatism do not always follow parallel paths. A recent example is Gorsuch’s opinion for the 10th Circuit in Hammond v. Stamps.com, favoring federal removal jurisdiction despite concerns of federalism and state authority, says Forrest Latta of Burr & Forman LLP.

  • What To Expect From High Court Patent Exhaustion Decision

    Charlie Steenberg

    The U.S. Supreme Court is expected to hold that the patent exhaustion doctrine bars patent owners from using patent law to enforce post-sale restrictions. While this ruling would have consequences, the concerns raised by Lexmark and amici may be somewhat overblown. The briefing and Tuesday's oral arguments were long on policy but short on concrete examples, say Charlie Steenburg and Ethan Marks of Wolf Greenfield & Sacks PC.

  • 10 Tips For Better Legal Negotiations

    Marc J. Siegel

    Like everything else, the art of negotiation starts by having a conversation. It’s about being respectful, finding common ground, knowing what you want and, most importantly, listening. A conversation between two lawyers can be complicated at best, but by employing a few techniques and tactics, it doesn’t have to be that way, says Marc Siegel of Siegel & Dolan Ltd.

  • The Latest On Statistical Sampling In FCA Cases

    Demme Doufekias

    Although the Fourth Circuit's recent Agape decision failed to provide the more definitive guidance about statistical sampling that False Claims Act practitioners on both sides were hoping for, it does offer an opportunity to look at trends emerging from recent settlements and court decisions involving sampling, say Demme Doufekias and Catherine Chapple of Morrison & Foerster LLP.

  • Monthly Column

    Gray Matters: Decision Error

    Gray Matters

    Lawyers make hundreds of decisions during the course of advising a client, consummating a transaction or litigating a case. In this new column, dispute resolution experts Bob Creo and Selina Shultz explore the theory, science and practical aspects of how decisions are made in the legal community.

  • 4th Circ. Joint Employer Test Is Incredibly Broad

    Kurt G. Larkin

    The Fourth Circuit’s recent panel decision in Salinas v. Commercial Interiors, which creates an altogether new and incredibly broad joint employment standard under the Fair Labor Standards Act, makes the National Labor Relations Board’s Browning-Ferris joint employment standard seem temperate at best, say Kurt Larkin and Ryan Glasgow of Hunton & Williams LLP.

  • MLP Agreement Lessons From Delaware High Court

    Matthew J. O’Toole

    Three Delaware Supreme Court decisions over the last year illustrate that the Delaware Revised Uniform Limited Partnership Act provides a master limited partnership sponsor and its counsel substantial flexibility to privately order the affairs of an MLP. The contractual freedom is subject, however, to the limited application of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, say attorneys with Potter Anderson & Corroon LLP.

  • Opinion

    MWI Case Shows The False Claims Act Needs A Change

    William E. Bucknam

    While the U.S. Supreme Court recently ended the 18-year MWI False Claims Act case, the company has absolutely no hope of ever recouping the millions of dollars in lost business or the significant legal fees it spent fighting what was deemed a meritless case brought by the government. The time has come for Congress to amend the FCA, say William Bucknam of MWI Corp. and Robert Rhoad of Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP.

  • Applying 'Footprint' Methodology To Prism V. Sprint

    Aaron R. Fahrenkrog

    The Federal Circuit's decision in Prism v. Sprint this month illustrates an example of the "footprint" approach to patent damages, interesting because of its focus on costs — and not revenues — as a reasonable royalty measure, say attorneys with Robins Kaplan LLP.

  • Law Schools And Law Firms: Seeking Common Ground

    Randy Gordon

    What we don’t know is whether the teaching and practice of law are undergoing massive structural changes or we’re still digging out from the worst economic collapse since the Depression. But what we do know is that the missions of the most forward-looking law schools and law firms are converging in ways that were unimaginable 10 years ago, says Randy Gordon, a partner at Gardere Wynne Sewell LLP and executive professor of law at Te... (continued)