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Appellate

  • July 20, 2018

    Fed. Circ. Dissent Slams Alice In Apple, Google Patent Win

    In a partial dissent from a decision handing Google, Apple, AOL and Yahoo a win in a patent infringement suit, a Federal Circuit judge on Friday slammed the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2014 Alice decision, expressing frustration with its definitions of “abstract ideas” and “inventive concepts.”

  • July 20, 2018

    Texas Court Limits Info Toyota Must Disclose In Seats Suit

    A Texas appeals court on Thursday ordered a trial court to dial back its overbroad discovery order against Toyota in a suit launched by the parents of two children who were injured by front seats in a Lexus that collapsed backward in a rear-end collision.

  • July 20, 2018

    Split DC Circ. Reverses Ruling On Amtrak Regulatory Powers

    A split D.C. Circuit panel reversed a lower court’s ruling that a federal statute governing Amtrak’s regulatory authority over its competitors was unconstitutional, saying that by severing an arbitration clause in the statute, Amtrak’s regulatory proposals could be overruled by a federal transportation agency.

  • July 20, 2018

    Sanctuary City Grant Ban Only OK in Chicago, 7th Circ. Told

    In a brief filed before the full Seventh Circuit reconsiders whether to uphold a national injunction barring the Trump administration from imposing new, immigration-focused grant conditions, the U.S. Department of Justice argued that the court should have limited the injunction to Chicago.

  • July 20, 2018

    DC Circ. Finds EPA's Exceptional Events Rule Can Stand

    The D.C. Circuit on Friday upheld a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency rule for so-called “exceptional events,” like wildfires and volcanic eruptions, rejecting environmental advocates’ contention that the rule would let the agency write off human-caused pollution as natural activity.

  • July 20, 2018

    NEPA-Deficient Uranium Mine License Wrongly Kept: DC Circ.

    The D.C. Circuit ruled Friday that the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission wrongly allowed Powertech to keep a uranium mining license after failing to comply with the National Environmental Policy Act over objections from the Oglala Sioux Tribe, holding that such a decision “vitiates” the environmental law’s requirements.

  • July 20, 2018

    2nd Circ. Finds Immigrant Isn't Felon For NY Weed Conviction

    The Second Circuit said Friday that a Jamaican immigrant convicted of a New York state marijuana charge should not be classified as an aggravated felon under the Immigration and Nationality Act.

  • July 20, 2018

    J&J Faces Bid To Revive Cancer Victim's $417M Talc Win

    A woman whose cancer-stricken mother won a $417 million jury verdict saying Johnson & Johnson's talcum baby powder caused her ovarian cancer has appealed a California judge’s “about-face” decision to vacate the award, arguing in a brief Wednesday that there was sufficient evidence to support the jury’s finding.

  • July 20, 2018

    Kavanaugh Bows Out Of Latest DC Circ. Opinions

    U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh did not participate in two opinions handed down Friday by the D.C. Circuit in cases he sat through last fall, suggesting there are no more forthcoming decisions from him while he is being considered by the Senate as Justice Anthony Kennedy’s replacement.

  • July 20, 2018

    NJ Atty Ducks Malpractice Suit From Client's Ex-Biz Partner

    A New Jersey man cannot pursue a legal malpractice claim against his onetime business partner’s attorney over an allegedly bogus real estate transaction because they did not have an attorney-client relationship and the lawyer did not breach a fiduciary duty owed to him, a state appeals court ruled Friday.

  • July 20, 2018

    Ice Co. Beats Firing Suit After Worker Botched Case Transfer

    A Pennsylvania state appeals panel on Thursday affirmed dismissal of a suit alleging ice company Arctic Glacier USA fired a worker after reneging on a promise to give him time to pass a drug test, saying he botched transferring his wrongful termination claim from federal court.

  • July 20, 2018

    Seattle Airport Worker's $40M Injury Award Slashed To $10M

    The Washington Supreme Court has ruled that the Port of Seattle need only pay $10 million to an injured airport baggage handler, rejecting the worker's claim that the port should be on the hook for the entirety of a jury’s $40 million award.

  • July 20, 2018

    DC Circ. Partially Revives Terrorist Attack Liability Case

    The D.C. Circuit on Friday reversed the dismissal of certain terrorism liability claims against Hezbollah and an Iranian bank related to rocket attacks against Israel, saying a district court failed to address necessary jurisdictional issues before ruling, but affirmed the dismissal of tort claims against the bank, citing a recent high court decision.

  • July 20, 2018

    Calif. Court Revives Time Warner Tax Fight With LA County

    A California state appeals court on Thursday found that a Los Angeles County assessor can include revenue from Time Warner Cable Inc.’s broadband and telephone services in valuing the right to use the public rights-of-ways for the purposes of property taxes, partially reversing a trial court ruling over a $10 million property tax refund.

  • July 20, 2018

    Refiner Prevails On Renewable Fuel Exemption In 4th Circ.

    The Fourth Circuit on Friday sided with a small West Virginia refinery and threw out the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s rejection of the company’s application for an exemption to the renewable fuel standard program, saying that the decision had wrongly relied on a faulty economic hardship analysis.

  • July 20, 2018

    Fed. Circ. Revives Secret Service Agent's OT Class Action

    The Federal Circuit on Friday revived a former U.S. Secret Service special agent’s proposed wage-and-hour class action alleging that he and other agents were shorted on overtime, saying the Office of Personnel Management improperly required that certain hours be worked consecutively to trigger overtime.

  • July 20, 2018

    School District Can't Keep Bus Discipline Vid Under Wraps

    A Pennsylvania appeals court Friday affirmed that a video of a teacher described as roughly disciplining a student on a school bus is public record, rejecting the school's position it is exempt under the state's Privacy Act because its release could affect federal funding and it involves a student's performance and employee discipline.

  • July 20, 2018

    Uncertain Clauses Revive Insurer's Bid To Ditch NJ Mold Suit

    A New Jersey appellate court ruled Friday that insurers may not be obligated to defend a policyholder facing a coverage lawsuit if its duty to cover the underlying claim is uncertain, in a decision stemming from a nurse’s mold illness claims against her employer.

  • July 20, 2018

    JB Hunt Owes $4.8M Interest In Indiana Negligence Suit

    An Indiana appeals court on Wednesday affirmed the $4.8 million in prejudgment interest that J.B Hunt Transport Inc. owes to an injured woman awarded $19.5 million following an accident stemming from a J.B. Hunt driver’s negligence in a 2006 tractor-trailer crash, saying the interest was justified.

  • July 20, 2018

    AIG Unit Can't Flip Asbestos Coverage Ruling In Ohio

    An American International Group Inc. unit is stuck paying the same share of a construction company’s asbestos liability as a fellow insurer that settled a coverage dispute early on, an Ohio appeals court affirmed Thursday, despite the unit's argument that the “arbitrary” decision “effectively forced” it into a settlement without its consent.

Expert Analysis

  • Opinion

    Broken Norms Should End Business-As-Usual Nominations

    Neera Tanden

    As we saw with the outcry over Yale Law School's statement about U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, too many in the liberal legal profession still cling to an old view of the rules and norms. Their reputations are now being weaponized on behalf of a judge who has questioned a president’s immunity to legal constraints, says Neera Tanden, president and CEO of the Center for American Progress.

  • Ensure All Relevant Parties Sign Arbitration Agreement

    Michael Cypers

    A California appellate court's decision in Benaroya v. Bruce Willis is one of several recent decisions teaching that if you want the ability to arbitrate against the key individuals in your counterparty, those individuals should be signatories to the arbitration clause in the underlying deal documents, say Michael Cypers and Michael Gerst of Glaser Weil Fink Howard Avchen & Shapiro LLP.

  • Chaos Ahead For Remote Sellers

    Kendrick Smith

    The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in South Dakota v. Wayfair Inc. will cause a massive shift of risk onto remote sellers in the form of state audits, litigation in hostile forums, and state False Claims Act and consumer fraud lawsuits, say attorneys at Jones Day.

  • How NJ Law Protects Tenants By The Entirety

    Bruce Buechler

    A New Jersey state appellate court's decision in Jimenez v. Jimenez shows that when dealing with property owned by a husband and wife as tenants by the entirety, New Jersey law can impose very serious ramifications on a judgment creditor’s efforts to collect or levy on that property, says Bruce Buechler of Lowenstein Sandler LLP.

  • Takeaways From 5th Circ. Wind Farm Scam Case

    Kip Mendrygal

    The misappropriation of funds charge can leave defense attorneys struggling throughout trial to distinguish personal expenses from legitimate business expenses. The Fifth Circuit's decision in U.S. v. Spalding sheds light on how to handle these situations, but also sets out the battles that attorneys won’t win, say Kip Mendrygal and Mario Nguyen of Locke Lord LLP.

  • Suddenly, ALJs Become Political Appointees

    Brian Casey

    Less than three weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court decided Lucia v. Securities and Exchange Commission, President Donald Trump signed an executive order applying the court’s rationale in Lucia to the hiring — and firing — of all administrative law judges in the federal government, making them entirely beholden to the heads of their agencies or the president for their jobs, says Brian Casey of Barnes & Thornburg LLP.

  • DC Circ. Set A Higher Bar For Hydro License Renewal

    Walker Stanovsky

    On July 6, the D.C. Circuit torpedoed a hydroelectric license renewal issued in 2013 because the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service did not consider environmental damage already caused by the project. In doing so, the court rejected FERC’s long-standing practice of using existing conditions and operations as an environmental baseline, say attorneys at Davis Wright Tremaine LLP.

  • 6 Upcoming Supreme Court Cases That Will Affect Insurance

    Mark Bradford

    Next term, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear six cases that might impact insurers, reinsurers and other financial services institutions. These cases will address asbestos, immunity and exemption, class action and arbitration issues, say Mark Bradford and Damon Vocke of Duane Morris LLP.

  • Congressional Forecast: July

    Layth Elhassani

    While Senate hearings on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court will draw much attention during July, Congress remains very busy with fiscal year 2019 appropriations bills. The chambers may go to conference this month on the first of several appropriations "minibuses," says Layth Elhassani of Covington & Burling LLP.

  • What Kavanaugh's Writing Tells Us About His Personality

    Matthew Hall

    People with certain personality traits tend to use certain words. A computer analysis of Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s D.C. Circuit opinions reveals that he is highly extraverted, which means that he would be a prominent voice on the U.S. Supreme Court, says Matthew Hall, a professor at the University of Notre Dame.