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  • June 21, 2018

    Split 9th Circ. Ditches Own Precedent In Nu Image Union Row

    A divided Ninth Circuit ruled Wednesday that film producer Nu Image Inc. can't sue in federal court over a union contract provision requiring it to pay into health and pension funds, in a decision that pitted a U.S. Supreme Court ruling against the appeals court’s own precedent.

  • June 21, 2018

    Merrill Lynch Lost-Stock Row May Not Be Revived In Court

    A California federal judge on Thursday seemed likely to toss a proposed class action alleging Merrill Lynch breached its fiduciary duty to its clients by losing their shares of various stocks, saying the named plaintiff had already arbitrated the same issue.

  • June 21, 2018

    Uber Unravels Lone Claim In Lyft Driver’s Spy Suit

    A magistrate judge in California has doubled back on her decision that largely tossed a Lyft driver’s proposed class action alleging Uber Technologies Inc. illegally tracked drivers, finding Thursday that the one claim for unfair competition she left intact should have been chucked with the rest of the suit.

  • June 21, 2018

    Calif. Court Affirms Doc’s Win In Baby Brain Damage Suit

    A California appellate court has affirmed a jury’s verdict that a doctor’s negligence did not contribute to the development of brain damage in a baby he helped deliver.

  • June 21, 2018

    Trump Asks Calif. Court To Extend Immigrant Kid Detentions

    The Trump administration on Thursday asked a California federal court to carve out an exception to an order in a long-standing class action known as Flores that restricts the ability of the federal government to detain foreign-born minors so that children and their parents may be detained together for a longer period.

  • June 21, 2018

    Real Estate Rumors: Florida Power, EQ Office, Scott McNealy

    Florida Power has reportedly dropped $10 million on 400 acres of land in the state, Blackstone subsidiary EQ Office is reportedly looking to get $300 million for a New York office tower, and former Sun Microsystems CEO Scott McNealy is reportedly seeking $96.8 million for his Palo Alto, California, mansion.

  • June 21, 2018

    Breitling 'Frack Master' Arrested On $62M Fraud Charges

    The self-proclaimed “Frack Master,” who is the CEO of Breitling Energy Corp., has been arrested on charges he defrauded investors out of $62 million to fund a lavish lifestyle filled with luxury vehicles, private jets and expensive jewelry, according to a statement Thursday from U.S. Attorney Erin Nealy Cox.

  • June 21, 2018

    Apple Ramps Up IP War With Qualcomm In New IPR Filings

    Apple Inc. filed multiple inter partes review petitions at the U.S. Patent Trial and Appeal Board this week challenging the validity of three Qualcomm Inc. patents, which the chipmaker has accused the tech giant of infringing, ramping up their sprawling intellectual property battle.

  • June 21, 2018

    Credit Suisse Can Arbitrate Ex-Worker's $300M Class Suit

    Credit Suisse Securities on Thursday dodged a proposed class action accusing the company of stiffing its workers on up to $300 million in deferred compensation after a California federal judge ruled that the financial adviser bringing the case was bound by an arbitration agreement.

  • June 21, 2018

    Beats’ Expert Disputes $107M Figure In Royalties Row

    A damages expert for Beats Electronics LLC told a California jury Thursday that, if it agrees with an entrepreneur’s interpretation of a 2007 agreement he made with Beats' co-founders, then he is owed about $15 million in additional royalties for his work on the company's headphones — not the $107 million he claims.

  • June 21, 2018

    ICE Detainee Says Feds Are Barring His Wedding

    U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement is violating immigration laws and the U.S. Constitution by standing in the way of a marriage between a Mexican national the agency has detained and his longtime girlfriend, according to his California federal suit Wednesday.

  • June 21, 2018

    Sharper Image Defends Right To Petition PTAB At Fed. Circ.

    A patent licensing agreement between Sharper Image and a virtual reality company doesn’t bar Patent Trial and Appeal Board challenges, as it only limits litigation tied to interpreting the contract, the retailer told the Federal Circuit in a brief made public Thursday.

  • June 21, 2018

    'Super Size Me' Director Escapes Suit Over Ruined Project

    A California federal judge dismissed Morgan Spurlock from a suit brought by Turner Entertainment Networks Inc. to recover cash it gave the documentarian for a project that was later canceled amid allegations of his sexual misconduct, finding Thursday that Spurlock was not a party to his production company’s agreement with Turner.

  • June 21, 2018

    'Walk Of Shame' Suit Unreasonable, 9th Circ. Says

    The Ninth Circuit ruled Thursday that actress Elizabeth Banks was entitled to an award of attorneys' fees after successfully defeating an "objectively unreasonable" copyright lawsuit filed over her 2014 comedy "Walk of Shame."

  • June 21, 2018

    Citing 'Grave Concerns,' Judge Nixes Tesla's $1M OT Deal Bid

    A California federal judge said Thursday she would deny preliminary approval of a $1 million settlement resolving Tesla showroom workers' class action claims on overtime pay and rest breaks, saying she had "grave concerns" that the deal was not "well thought out."

  • June 20, 2018

    Beats Are Nuthin' But A Me Thang, Dre Says In $107M Trial

    Beats Electronics LLC co-founder Dr. Dre told a California jury Wednesday that he came up with the concept and title for the Beats By Dre headphone brand, disputing claims that another entrepreneur deserves as much as $107 million in additional royalties for helping launch the business.

  • June 20, 2018

    Ex-Masimo VP’s 11th-Hour IP Arbitration Bid Earns Eye Roll

    A California appeals court has ruled that a former Masimo Corp. vice president cannot force the medical device maker to arbitrate claims that he stole trade secrets, saying he may have acted in bad faith by litigating for years and then seeking arbitration just weeks before trial.

  • June 20, 2018

    EPA Tells Lockheed, Honeywell To Do $21M In Superfund Work

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said Wednesday it had finalized a set of orders requiring Lockheed Martin Corp. and Honeywell International Inc. to do about $21 million in work largely to improve groundwater treatment at a Superfund site located in the North Hollywood, California, area.

  • June 20, 2018

    Apology For 'Overheated Rhetoric' Can't Revive Patent Suit

    A California attorney who recently apologized for inserting “overheated rhetoric” against his opposing counsel in a motion to revive a patent infringement lawsuit could not make up for a lack of evidence in the case centered on an expired license for MRI imaging, a Massachusetts federal judge ruled Wednesday.

  • June 20, 2018

    Ogletree's Bid To Transfer Sex Bias Row Stalled As Suit Grows

    A San Francisco federal judge held off on deciding whether to transfer a $300 million gender discrimination suit against Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart PC to Orange County, California, saying Wednesday he’d let the proposed class amend its complaint to add equity shareholders, some of whom live in Northern California.

Expert Analysis

  • Opinion

    BigLaw's Associate Salary Model Is A Relic Of A Bygone Era

    William Brewer

    Legal industry compensation practices are once again in the news as BigLaw firms continue to match the new high watermark of $190,000 for first-year associate salaries. The typical model of increasing associate salaries uniformly fails star associates, the firms they work for and, ultimately, the clients they serve, says William Brewer, managing partner of Brewer Attorneys & Counselors.

  • Fund Managers Face Tax Hike If Calif. Passes AB 2731

    Tim Gustafson

    Currently making its way through state assembly committees, California Assembly Bill 2731 would impose an additional 17 percent tax on interest income derived from investment management services. If passed, all asset and fund managers, including those located outside California, could face a significant tax increase, say Kelly Allen and Timothy Gustafson of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP.

  • Defenses Remain For Companies In Calif. Call Recording Suits

    Joshua Briones

    Many defendants settle California Invasion of Privacy Act cases out of fear that courts will find violations even where no confidential information is recorded and where no one is harmed. But several decisions in the first half of 2018 provide these defendants with additional strategies, say Joshua Briones and Crystal Lopez of Mintz Levin Cohn Ferris Glovsky and Popeo PC.

  • #MeToo At Law Firms And What We Can Do About It

    Beth Schroeder.JPG

    While some may say it’s ironic, it’s also embarrassing and enraging that the very industry that offers anti-harassment training, policies and counsel now finds itself the subject of #MeToo headlines. The American Bar Association recommendation that will bring about the greatest change is the call to provide alternative methods for reporting violations, says Beth Schroeder, chair of Raines Feldman LLP's labor and employment group.

  • Scrutinizing Noncash Settlements In Consumer Class Actions

    Thomas Dickerson

    In consumer class action settlements, cash provides the class and the court evaluating a proposed settlement with a quantitatively measurable benefit. Noncash settlements require heightened scrutiny by the court, since they are generally worth less to consumers than cash, and may benefit defendants and class counsel more than class members, says retired judge Thomas Dickerson.

  • Knowledge Lawyers Can Help Firms Stay Ahead Of The Curve

    Vanessa Pinto Villa

    In a profession notoriously averse to change, it should come as no surprise that there is skepticism about the value of having attorneys perform nonbillable tasks. But U.S. law firms have slowly begun to incorporate knowledge lawyers into their operations — and the trend is likely to continue, says Vanessa Pinto Villa of Hogan Lovells.

  • An Anti-SLAPP Motion In Name Only

    Joseph Gjonola

    The Ninth Circuit’s decision last month in Planned Parenthood v. Center for Medical Progress has effectively turned the anti-SLAPP motion into a hybrid of typical motions to dismiss and motions for summary judgment. As a result, defendants have lost the primary benefit of the anti-SLAPP process, says Joseph Gjonola of Roxborough Pomerance Nye & Adreani LLP.

  • Congressional Forecast: June

    Layth Elhassani

    In advance of their weeklong July 4 recess, members of Congress are pursuing a busy legislative schedule, focused on the fiscal year 2019 National Defense Authorization Act and other appropriations bills, reform of export controls, immigration and border security, and the farm bill authorization, says Layth Elhassani of Covington & Burling LLP.

  • Bristol-Myers Squibb: 1 Year Later

    Adam Pollet

    In the year since the U.S. Supreme Court decided Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. v. Superior Court of California — limiting where plaintiffs can bring claims and curbing forum-shopping in mass tort litigation — courts have grappled with questions that the ruling did not address, and defendants have pursued jurisdictional defenses in class actions and federal cases that were not previously available, say attorneys with Eversheds Sutherland LLP.

  • Insights From State AG Coordinated Opioid Investigation

    Richard Lawson

    Much ink has been and will be spilled over the merits and complexities of the lawsuits brought against opioid manufacturers by 23 state attorneys general. However, for any company engaged in a consumer-facing industry, the progress of the recent multistate investigation offers lessons on what to expect when subject to this type of inquiry, says Richard Lawson of Manatt Phelps & Phillips LLP.