Appellate

  • January 20, 2017

    Texas Justices Won't Review Contempt Order In Contract Feud

    The Supreme Court of Texas on Friday denied a mandamus petition filed by a baking soda manufacturer that had sought to nix a $500 fine it received for allegedly violating a restraining order temporarily put in place by a judge overseeing contract litigation between the manufacturer and its former wholesaler.

  • January 20, 2017

    Costco Secures Workers' Class Decertification At 9th Circ.

    A class of workers in a long-running labor law violation case against Costco Wholesale Corp. was rightfully decertified because their circumstances around any allegedly unpaid work varied too much to be litigated together, a Ninth Circuit panel said on Friday.

  • January 20, 2017

    Wyly Urges 2nd Circ. To Hear Arguments In $299M SEC Appeal

    Former Michaels Stores Inc. chair Sam Wyly and his late brother's estate urged a Second Circuit judge Friday to allow oral arguments in their appeal of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's $299.3 million securities fraud victory over the pair, citing “significant legal questions.”

  • January 20, 2017

    FCRA Violation Props Up Horizon Breach Row, 3rd Circ. Says

    The Third Circuit on Friday revived a putative class action over a data breach at Horizon Healthcare, ruling in a published opinion that plaintiffs did not have to allege that their information had been misused but instead could rely on purported violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act to establish standing. 

  • January 20, 2017

    Calif. Court Affirms BofA Win, Reverses Fees In Bias Row

    A California appeals court affirmed on Friday a lower court’s decision giving Bank of America Corp. an early win in a consolidated class action alleging the bank terminated its debt collection employees based on their race, but reversed an order that awarded the bank $620,000 in attorneys' fees.

  • January 20, 2017

    Del. High Court Tosses Goldman Ex-Coder's Fee Demand

    An ex-Goldman Sachs Group Inc. vice president’s long fight for corporate officer legal fee rights flamed out again Friday with the Delaware Supreme Court's refusal to overturn an earlier rejection of claims that commercial bank VPs are due board-level benefits.

  • January 20, 2017

    Texas Justices To Hear Town's Suit Against Gas Cos.

    The Texas Supreme Court on Friday took up three separate petitions stemming from a fight between five energy companies accused of polluting private property by emitting foul-smelling gases and loud noises, and the town and homeowners who launched the accusations.

  • January 20, 2017

    Tribal Lenders Must Respond To CFPB Probe, 9th Circ. Says

    A Ninth Circuit panel on Friday affirmed a district court decision compelling three tribal lending entities to comply with civil investigative demands issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, holding that Congress didn’t expressly exclude from the bureau’s enforcement authority the tribes that told the entities not to respond to the demands.

  • January 20, 2017

    State Farm Intrusive Discovery Case Heads To Texas Justices

    The Texas Supreme Court on Friday agreed to review two State Farm Lloyds discovery disputes in which the insurer argues intrusive and unjustified electronic discovery in multidistrict litigation alleging State Farm defrauded policyholders by underpaying wind and hailstorm claims.

  • January 20, 2017

    Hospital Can’t Turn Nurse’s Slip-And-Fall Suit Into Med Mal

    A Texas appellate court on Thursday rejected a hospital’s argument that a nurse’s claims over injuries sustained in a fall were healthcare liability claims that should’ve been dismissed for lack of an expert medical opinion, saying the hospital’s maintenance of a hallway had nothing to do with medical care.

  • January 20, 2017

    Texas Justices Won't Hear Developer's Appeal Over Deed Spat

    The Texas Supreme Court Friday denied a petition from a developer seeking $9 million from a Dallas suburb for building a library on land the company sold the city, claiming the construction violated terms of the deed.

  • January 20, 2017

    7th Circ. Nixes Time Warner Class' Appeal, Citing Spokeo

    The Seventh Circuit on Friday affirmed the dismissal of a Time Warner Cable Inc. subscriber’s proposed class action against the company for storing former customers’ personal information, saying the man had neither alleged nor offered any evidence of concrete harm, citing Spokeo.

  • January 20, 2017

    Texas Justices To Hear Health Care Noncompete Row

    The Supreme Court of Texas on Friday agreed to hear oral arguments on whether a state appeals court improperly cut $4.2 million in awarded damages from Horizon Health Corp.’s successful employee poaching suit against a competitor and former executives who switched teams.

  • January 20, 2017

    Fla. Court Says Nursing Home Can't Arbitrate Negligence Row

    A Florida appeals court on Friday declined to send to arbitration a woman’s lawsuit alleging that negligent care during her father’s stay at a nursing home led to him being hospitalized, concluding that the nursing home didn’t show a binding arbitration agreement.

  • January 20, 2017

    Texas High Court Won't Hear Legal Recruiter's Fee Fight

    The Texas Supreme Court on Friday declined to hear a dispute between legal recruiter Debra Hren and Recruiting Partners GP over a fee-splitting agreement involving the placement of a former Baker Botts LLP partner, leaving in place a lower court's ruling that Hren had no individual right to sue.

  • January 20, 2017

    Ill. High Court Strikes Down Chicago Tax On Car Rentals

    The Illinois Supreme Court told Chicago on Friday to stop collecting taxes on suburban businesses that may rent cars for use within city limits, saying that the way the city imposes the tax violates the home rule article of the state constitution.

  • January 20, 2017

    Texas High Court To Hear Fight Between Galveston Judges

    The Texas Supreme Court decided Friday to hear a dispute between a Galveston County judge and a Galveston County district court judge that has been framed as a separation-of-powers fight over the firing of a court administrator.

  • January 20, 2017

    Split Pa. High Court Delays End To Local Casino Tax Shares

    Over a stern dissent from Justice David Wecht, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Friday agreed to give state lawmakers an extension on their efforts to craft a solution after a decision concluding that a two-tiered system for taxing casinos to fund host municipalities violated constitutional requirements for uniform taxation.

  • January 20, 2017

    No Coverage For Wastewater Explosion Suit, 6th Circ. Affirms

    The Sixth Circuit on Friday affirmed a Michigan federal court's ruling that two insurers don't have to defend a project engineering firm in litigation over a fatal explosion at a wastewater treatment plant where it supervised upgrades, finding that coverage is barred by exclusions in both policies for claims stemming from the firm's professional services.

  • January 20, 2017

    Retailers Back Challenge To Del. Property Audits At 3rd Circ.

    The National Retail Federation on Thursday backed Marathon Petroleum’s appeal of the dismissal of its challenge to a Delaware law that allows the state to carry out business audits in search of seizable abandoned property, including prepaid gift cards, telling the Third Circuit it's clear the state is abusing the audit process.

Expert Analysis

  • Vessel Owners' Duties To Longshoremen Only Go So Far

    Hansford Wogan

    In Abston v. Jungerhaus Maritime Services, the Fifth Circuit recently held for a vessel owner against a longshoreman injured on the job during heavy rainfall. As the court noted, a vessel owner must exercise reasonable care to prevent injuries in areas under "active control of the vessel," but the owner often relinquishes control to contractors for loading or unloading, says Hansford Wogan of Jones Walker LLP.

  • Life Settlements Industry: 2016 In Review

    Brian T. Casey

    Last year saw several large portfolio trades in the tertiary life settlements market, and the industry faced cost of insurance increases by several major companies. Brian Casey and Thomas Sherman of Locke Lord LLP discuss 2016's most important life settlements court cases from all around the country.

  • ConAgra Opinion May Repair Ascertainability Circuit Split

    Fred Taylor Isquith

    In its systematic, careful and Rule 23-specific opinion in Briseno v. ConAgra, the Ninth Circuit found a way to eviscerate the Third Circuit’s views on “ascertainability.” This important opinion may not end the debate, but it may engender new thinking from the Third and Fourth Circuits, says Fred Taylor Isquith of Wolf Haldenstein Adler Freeman & Herz LLP.

  • What Marblegate Means For Bondholders And Trustees

    Karol K. Denniston

    By not allowing Section 316(b) to be used to disrupt an out-of-court restructuring, the Second Circuit in Marblegate recognized the clear importance of business-oriented consensual restructurings to the detriment of nonconsenting bondholders. The court’s recent ruling also has the potential to be a trap for the unwary indenture trustee, says Karol Denniston of Squire Patton Boggs LLP.

  • Considering 'Crime Of Violence' Vagueness At The High Court

    Michael Carlin

    In Lynch v. Dimaya, the U.S. Supreme Court will need to decide whether the “void for vagueness” standard in the immigration context is the same as the standard used in criminal cases. Adherence to precedent set by the court’s previous decision in Jordan v. de George would lead the court to apply the vagueness standard in this case in the same manner as in criminal cases, says Michael Carlin of the Law Office of Michael Carlin PLLC.

  • How Litigation Funding Is Bringing Champerty Back To Life

    John H. Beisner

    While some courts have declined to apply the common-law doctrine of champerty to invalidate third-party litigation funding agreements, two recent rulings by appellate courts in New York and Pennsylvania have brought renewed attention to champerty principles, casting doubts on the legality of certain forms of third-party litigation funding, say John Beisner and Jordan Schwartz of Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP.

  • 'Take-Home' Asbestos Means A Duty Of Care In California

    Nicole Harrison

    In two coordinated cases, the California Supreme Court recently ruled that employers using asbestos in the workplace have a duty of care to protect employees’ household members from exposure via workers' clothing or persons. This holding may encourage more asbestos lawsuits in California, but the court did offer some limitations of which defendants should be mindful, says Nicole Harrison of Manion Gaynor Manning LLP.

  • The Need For A Limitations Period On SEC Disgorgement Claims

    Daniel McCaughey

    The U.S. Supreme Court recently granted certiorari in U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission v. Kokesh to review whether civil enforcement claims brought by the SEC for the remedy of disgorgement are subject to any statute of limitations. Attorneys with Ropes & Gray LLP examine the significance of the statute of limitations question, especially for private equity firms.

  • Limitation Act Of 1851 Still Relevant To Offshore Energy

    Andrew Stakelum

    From the Titanic to the Deepwater Horizon, an obscure federal law has been invoked after many maritime disasters to limit vessel owners' liability for losses stemming from conditions outside the owners' privity or knowledge. But in today's offshore energy industry, technology can place the owner and its management in the wheelhouse, on the cargo deck and on the rig floor, says Andrew Stakelum of King & Spalding LLP.

  • Attracting And Retaining The Millennial Lawyer

    Christopher Imperiale

    Instead of trying to change the new workforce to follow a law firm's existing processes and procedures, perhaps it's time for firms to start changing their processes and procedures to better accommodate the mentality of this next generation of lawyers, says Christopher Imperiale, a law firm adviser with Berdon LLP.