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Appellate

  • June 20, 2018

    No-Cause Payout Subject To Workers' Comp Lien, Court Says

    A New Jersey appeals court on Wednesday said a police officer receiving the low amount in a high-low agreement with parties he sued for malpractice after being injured in a work-related accident owes some of that money toward a workers' compensation lien, despite an arbitrator finding no cause in his case.

  • June 20, 2018

    Texas Justices Won't Let Walmart Ax $1.4M Injury Verdict

    A Texas appellate court has rejected Wal-Mart Stores Texas LLC's request to toss a $1.39 million verdict awarded to a woman who was injured in a store when a box fell on her head, holding that the retail giant had not shown that the verdict and amount of the damages award were reached in error.

  • June 20, 2018

    BofA Workers Ask Full 4th Circ. To Mull ERISA Accounting Bid

    A proposed class of current and former Bank of America Corp. employees has urged the full Fourth Circuit to reconsider a panel's decision to nix their Employment Retirement Income Security Act lawsuit seeking to recover profits the bank made from illegally transferring the balances of their separate 401(k) plan accounts into its general pension plan account.

  • June 20, 2018

    Missing Docs Mean Builder Must Follow New Reg: NJ Justices

    A New Jersey developer is not protected by a rule requiring a municipality to follow regulations in effect when an application is filed because the builder did not include all of the requisite documents in submitting its proposal, that state's Supreme Court said Wednesday in affirming a lower court ruling.

  • June 20, 2018

    Judicial Nominees Talk Cocaine, Incest At Bizarre Hearing

    At times echoing a law school classroom, the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday probed judicial nominees for the Fourth Circuit and a Florida district court about the limits of government power, asking about the ability to crack down on cocaine use and stop incest.

  • June 20, 2018

    Pa. High Court Rules Insurer Can't Get Maimed Worker's Cash

    The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ruled that the state's workers' compensation law doesn't entitle a butcher or its insurer to recover the cost of providing ongoing medical care from an employee's injury settlement.

  • June 20, 2018

    Buc-ee's TM Win Could Draw Fire Over Unheard Evidence

    Texas intellectual property lawyers did a double take when jurors sided with convenience store chain Buc-ee's in a trademark infringement fight over its beaver logo, and say rival convenience store Choke Canyon's best shot on appeal may be challenging rulings that restricted their evidence in the case.

  • June 20, 2018

    Ex-Pa. Lawmaker Loses Corruption Conviction Appeal Bid

    The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Tuesday declined to hear an appeal from a former state representative pushing to dodge a conviction for using public funds on campaign-related technology purchases on grounds that prosecutors had destroyed potentially exculpatory evidence.

  • June 20, 2018

    NJ County Loses Fee Bid In Fatal Construction Accident Row

    A New Jersey state appellate court ruled Wednesday that Middlesex County couldn’t require a construction company and an engineering consultant to cover its legal expenses in a suit brought by the family of a worker who died after an accident at a bridge construction site.

  • June 20, 2018

    Full Fed. Circ. Won't Review Nix Of Voting Patent

    The Federal Circuit on Tuesday said it would stick by its decision to uphold the invalidation of a vote verification patent that described an abstract idea, shooting down Voter Verified Inc.’s arguments that the validity issue had been litigated and decided in the company’s favor years ago.

  • June 20, 2018

    ConEd Wins Appeal Over Electrocution During Sandy

    A woman who was electrocuted by downed power lines during Superstorm Sandy and whose family sued Consolidated Edison of New York Inc. for negligence in not taking precautions they argue could have saved her life was killed by her own recklessness and therefore has no case, a New York state appellate court has ruled.

  • June 20, 2018

    K. Hov Unit Not Liable For Worker Death, Texas Court Says

    A Dallas appeals court has backed a ruling that a K. Hovnanian unit couldn't be held responsible for a worker's death, saying the lower court rightfully concluded the building contractor did not have direct control over the worker's activities and thus didn't have a duty to ensure his safety.

  • June 20, 2018

    Coca-Cola Loses 'Zero' Trademark Case At Fed. Circ.

    The Federal Circuit ruled Wednesday that The Coca-Cola Co. might not be able to register its “Zero” brand as a trademark, ordering more proceedings on whether it’s just a generic term for calorie-free soda.

  • June 19, 2018

    NLRB Wants To Tackle Union Group's Class Waiver Questions

    The National Labor Relations Board urged the Seventh Circuit on Tuesday to remand a Hobby Lobby appeal over whether its arbitration agreements pass legal muster, saying that while the blockbuster Epic Systems ruling wiped out the board's initial rationale, numerous unanswered questions remain. 

  • June 19, 2018

    Del. Class Slams UnitedHealth's Appeal On Books Access

    Class attorneys accused UnitedHealth Group on Tuesday of “manufacturing” an appellate legal dispute and raising issues before the Delaware Supreme Court that were never argued in its failed Chancery Court challenge to a books and records demand targeting Medicare overbilling allegations.

  • June 19, 2018

    Ambac Opens 1st Circ. Fight Over Puerto Rico Bond Diversion

    Ambac Assurance Corp. on Monday launched its opening arguments in an appeal over the diversion of highway bond revenues in Puerto Rico stemming from a ruling in the territory's bankruptcy-type cases, saying the underlying acts by the island's government violated the Constitution.

  • June 19, 2018

    Doctor Can't Shake Convictions In Motorcycle Gang Drug Ring

    The Third Circuit on Tuesday refused to overturn a former Philadelphia doctor's convictions on charges of causing a patient's death and taking part in a drug trafficking conspiracy with members of a motorcycle gang in which he wrote bogus prescriptions in exchange for cash and sexual favors.

  • June 19, 2018

    11th Circ. Revives Hooters Website Accessibility Suit

    Hooters will have to face claims that the company’s website doesn’t provide proper accessibility features for the blind in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Eleventh Circuit ruled Tuesday, concluding the claims weren’t mooted by an earlier settlement in a similar suit.

  • June 19, 2018

    HSBC Loses Stay Protection In China Fishery Ch. 11 Probe

    A New York bankruptcy judge Monday ended a stay on discovery by the trustee overseeing China Fishery Group Ltd.'s Chapter 11 inquiry into HSBC’s debt collection efforts against the company a month after the Second Circuit turned down HSBC’s attempt to stop it.

  • June 19, 2018

    Ga. Justices Disbar Atty For Seizing Art, Hiding Funds

    The Georgia Supreme Court has disbarred an attorney who allegedly improperly handled money for an art dealer client and seized art pieces to force payment of legal bills, rejecting a recommendation by a special master to suspend him for four years and instead opting to yank his license entirely.

Expert Analysis

  • Impediments To Legal Industry's 'Inevitable' Future: Part 2

    Craig Levinson

    I agree with the legal pundits speculating that NewLaw’s present and future disruptors will radically change the legal services industry, but that change may not come quite as rapidly as predicted. Regardless, now is the time for both the incumbents and the challengers to best position themselves for the eventual shakeup, says Craig Levinson, founder of Levity Partners.

  • Negligent Hiring And Supervision Can Be An 'Accident'

    Tyler Gerking

    The California Supreme Court's decision in Liberty v. Ledesma strengthens insureds' rights to coverage under general liability policies and establishes that they are entitled to a defense where the injury alleged was unintended and unforeseen from the insured's perspective, say Tyler Gerking and David Hofmayer of Farella Braun & Martel LLP.

  • Limited Comfort For Corporate Defendants Post-LabMD Ruling

    Stuart Gerson

    On the face of it, the Eleventh Circuit’s recent opinion in Federal Trade Commission v. LabMD might appear to be a major defeat for the agency and a significant victory for the company. But there is a problem: The panel undertook a cursory and questionable analysis of the scope of the FTC’s jurisdiction and ignored what should be a more fundamental question, says Stuart Gerson of Epstein Becker Green.

  • Series

    Masterpiece Cakeshop: Employment Law Considerations

    Kara Ariail

    The U.S. Supreme Court's decision Monday in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission provides little practical guidance for employees and employers navigating the balance between accommodating religious beliefs and preventing discrimination. Nevertheless, employers should note three likely outcomes that have the potential to impact workplace discrimination claims, says Kara Ariail of Holland & Knight LLP.

  • A Breath Of Life For Calif. FCA Insurance Coverage

    Jan Larson

    The Ninth Circuit recently revived an insurance coverage dispute between Office Depot and AIG, holding that coverage for alleged violations of the California False Claims Act is not categorically precluded by California law. Similarities between the CFCA and the federal False Claims Act raise potential for broad application of this decision, say Jan Larson and Sebastian Brady of Jenner & Block LLP.

  • Why High Court May Not Rein In Gerrymandering This Term

    Junaid Odubeko

    This term, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in two redistricting cases involving claims of partisan gerrymandering. But there are indications that the court may not yet have settled on a constitutional test to resolve the issue, says Junaid Odubeko of Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP.

  • Defining A Shareholder's Bankruptcy Veto Power

    Sarah Borders

    The Fifth Circuit's recent decision in Franchise Services of North America should give comfort to investors that seek to negotiate consent rights with respect to a bankruptcy filing. The fact that an investor also holds a claim against the company will not, in and of itself, invalidate a bankruptcy consent provision, say attorneys with King & Spalding LLP.

  • Impediments To Legal Industry's 'Inevitable' Future: Part 1

    Craig Levinson

    Legal pundits continue to make predictions that newer entrants into the industry — NewLaw firms, the Big Four and alternative legal service providers — will progressively seize greater amounts of market share from traditional law firms. But the BigLaw response has been underwhelming at best, and a glimpse at the market forces puts its lack of urgency into perspective, says Craig Levinson, founder of Levity Partners.

  • ADA Burden-Of-Proof Answers From 9th Circ.

    Joanne Alnajjar Buser

    In Snapp v. Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway, the Ninth Circuit recently clarified that an employer’s summary judgment burden to show the unavailability of an employee accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act does not apply at trial. Rather, the employee still bears the ultimate burden of proving the existence of a reasonable accommodation, say attorneys at Paul Plevin Sullivan & Connaughton LLP.

  • Series

    Masterpiece Cakeshop: Core Questions Left For Another Day

    Crozier_Christina_Hi_Head.jpg

    In its majority opinion Monday in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, the U.S. Supreme Court did not attempt to decide between free exercise of religion and speech or civil rights for gay Americans. Instead, it decided the case on grounds that are so narrow and case-specific that they are hardly useful as precedent, says Christina Crozier of Haynes and Boone LLP.