Commercial Contracts

  • January 19, 2017

    DNA Testing Customer Says Privacy Row Ideal For Class Cert.

    A consumer accusing DNA testing company Gene by Gene of illegally posting the results of customers' genetic tests on public websites asked an Alaska federal judge Wednesday to certify a class of nearly 900 individuals whose information was allegedly exposed, calling the dispute a “textbook case” for certification.

  • January 19, 2017

    Blecher Collins Settles $50M Malpractice Row, Ending Trial

    Blecher Collins & Pepperman PC on Thursday told a California judge it had reached a settlement resolving a military products consultant's $50 million malpractice suit accusing the firm of bungling a contract dispute, ending the parties' jury trial just after their opening statements.

  • January 19, 2017

    In The Polarized Era Of Trump, BigLaw Searches For Balance

    The alignment of law firms with or against the new administration in legal battles to come could open rifts among attorneys and clients. But the publicity earned for taking on a potentially unpopular case could ultimately be worth any public fallout.

  • January 19, 2017

    Rolling Back Regulation In The Age Of Trump

    The incoming president’s plans to rein in the power of federal agencies will lead to uncertainty for lawyers and their clients as pending investigations and rulemaking are stopped in their tracks.

  • January 19, 2017

    Most Influential Judges On Trump’s Supreme Court Short List

    A new look at the potential U.S. Supreme Court nominees’ rulings reveals a ranking of judicial influence with some surprises at the top — and at the bottom.

  • January 19, 2017

    The Lawyer Who Will Shape Trump’s Presidency

    Jones Day’s Donald McGahn is stepping into the role of White House counsel, a powerful but little-understood position that has a strong history of impacting the president’s authority.

  • January 19, 2017

    Foreign Car Dealers Not Protected From Arbitration: Judge

    A Michigan federal judge ruled on Thursday that a Kuwaiti auto dealer must arbitrate its breach of contract claims against Ford Motor Co., rejecting its contention that a federal law that protects “any” dealership from a powerful automaker’s demand for arbitration applies outside the U.S.

  • January 19, 2017

    Bear Fund Liquidators Again Target S&P, Others Over RMBS

    Liquidators for two Bear Stearns & Co. Inc. feeder funds on Thursday asked a New York state appeals court to revive their fraud suit accusing the big three credit rating agencies of lying about the creditworthiness of debt obligations backed by subprime mortgages, saying it was wrongly dismissed on timeliness and standing grounds.

  • January 19, 2017

    Samsung Loses In-Box Arbitration Clause Bids At 9th Circ.

    Samsung cell phone buyers saw victories in two separate class actions in the Ninth Circuit on Thursday when a panel denied the tech giant’s bid to arbitrate claims based off a provision in an in-box warranty brochure, saying the consumers hadn’t given consent under California law.

  • January 19, 2017

    Ex-Speaker Hastert Sues To Reclaim Sex Abuse Hush Money

    Former House Speaker Dennis Hastert struck back Wednesday at a civil suit filed by the sexual abuse victim whose accusations helped send the politician to prison, saying that the unnamed individual should return the $1.7 million Hastert paid to keep him silent.

  • January 19, 2017

    Chinese Geothermal Plant Builders Want Claims Arbitrated

    A pair of Chinese companies that built a troubled power plant in New Mexico urged a New York federal judge on Wednesday to pause the buyer's claims against them for arbitration with them while their parent company said the suit against it should be thrown out, saying its stand is rooted in “principled reasons,” not some “shell game.”

  • January 19, 2017

    Fox Can’t Dodge Netflix Counterfire In Exec Poaching Suit

    The California judge overseeing Twentieth Century Fox’s claims that Netflix improperly poached executives tentatively ruled on Thursday that Fox can’t dodge cross-claims that its employment agreements amount to “involuntary servitude,” rejecting arguments that Netflix’s countersuit targets conduct protected by the state’s anti-SLAPP law.

  • January 19, 2017

    Shipping Cos. Ask For Pause In Suit Over Charter Breach

    A group of shipping companies and affiliates accused of breaching a charter agreement urged a Florida judge on Thursday to pause their Mexican accuser's suit while the judge considers their bid to force arbitration in London, an effort aimed at saving costs as a June trial in the litigation looms.

  • January 19, 2017

    Insurers Must Split School's Fire Damage, 10th Circ. Says

    A Tenth Circuit panel in a 2-1 ruling on Thursday affirmed that Lexington Insurance Co. and Philadelphia Indemnity Insurance Co. must split coverage of the roughly $6 million in fire damage an Oklahoma school building sustained in 2012, finding that their identical “other insurance” provisions canceled each other out.

  • January 19, 2017

    IP Profs Favor Rejected Programmer In $3.6M Madden Row

    A group of seven intellectual property law professors waded into a high-profile video game copyright case on Wednesday, calling the criteria used by the Ninth Circuit to reject a programmer's bid to reinstate his $3.6 million jury award from game company Electronic Arts Inc. "deeply problematic."

  • January 19, 2017

    FCC's Wheeler Touts Success Of E-Rate Program

    Efforts to modernize the Federal Communication Commission’s E-Rate program in 2014 have increased broadband and Wi-Fi connectivity in U.S. schools and libraries, outgoing FCC chair Tom Wheeler told Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass., Wednesday.

  • January 19, 2017

    English Judge Won't Weigh In On Tribunal In Shipping Row

    An English High Court judge on Wednesday declined to state that a tribunal had been properly constituted in an arbitration between maritime companies — one of which was dissolved before the arbitration began — over an alleged $5 million secret commission paid to a son of former Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi.

  • January 19, 2017

    Ford Scores $531K Judgment Against Indebted Ohio Dealer

    Ford Motor Co. on Thursday won a $531,000 judgment against the owner of a now closed Ohio dealership for failing to pay back a loan given out through the automaker’s credit arm, when a Florida federal judge ruled Ford won by default after the owner never responded to the suit.

  • January 19, 2017

    Fla. Judge Seeks Clarity On Garnishing Unconfirmed Awards

    A Florida federal magistrate judge on Wednesday asked a unit of Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc. and a juice company whose debt to a pineapple grower Del Monte is trying to intercept to search far and wide for any cases that address whether unconfirmed arbitral awards can serve as the basis for debt garnishment.

  • January 19, 2017

    Lab Vendor Urges 9th Circ. To Revive RICO Suit

    Diagnostic Laboratories is urging the Ninth Circuit to revive a Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act suit against the owners of health care vendor and bookkeeping company North American Health Care, arguing the district court wrongly defined what constitutes a continuous scheme.

Expert Analysis

  • 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.

  • The New IP Antitrust Licensing Guidelines' Silence On SEPs

    Kelly Smith Fayne

    The new intellectual property licensing guidelines from the Federal Trade Commission and the U.S. Department of Justice — the first update in more than 20 years — largely adopted the revisions proposed last August. Despite requests during the comment period, the agencies did not make any changes to address standard-essential patents directly, say Kelly Smith Fayne and Joshua Holian of Latham & Watkins LLP.

  • It’s Time To Change The Law Firm Business Model

    Lucia Chiocchio

    Every year, statistics reveal very little change in the number of women and minorities in the ranks of partnership. So how do law firms change this painfully slow rate of progress? It takes more than adding a diversity policy or a women’s leadership program to the current law firm business model, says Lucia Chiocchio, co-chair of Cuddy & Feder LLP's telecommunications and land use, zoning & development groups.

  • Hague Convention’s Impact On Secured Transactions

    Edwin E. Smith

    Choice-of-law rules for the perfection and priority of a security interest in “securities credited to a securities account” will change on April 1, 2017, when the Hague Securities Convention comes into effect. Edwin Smith and Alan Beloff of Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP describe what steps secured parties may need to take now for existing secured transactions and in planning for new ones.

  • Amended Rule 37(e): 1 Year Later

    Samantha Southall

    After a full year in effect, the amended Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37(e) has been tested in a variety of district courts. A sampling of these decisions reveals that courts seem to be adhering closely to the amended rule and ordering adverse inference instructions only where there was intent to deprive another party of access to relevant information, say Carrie Amezcua and Samantha Southall of Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney PC.

  • Avoiding The Hidden Costs Of Bargain-Priced E-Discovery

    Michael Cousino

    Many organizations are interested in finding electronic discovery partners who offer tantalizingly low prices for electronic discovery services. However, unforeseen gaps, lax security practices, ignorance of global practices and delayed deliverables can all add up to a surprisingly large final cost, says Michael Cousino of Epiq Systems.

  • Retail Trends: Outlets As Destination Centers

    In this episode of Fashion Counsel, Arent Fox LLP partner Anthony Lupo and retail consultant Steve Birkhold (former CEO of Lacoste, Diesel, BEBE and Earl Jeans) discuss factory outlets — the nation’s fastest developing retail sector. Increasingly, outlets are “destination centers,” offering entertainment and amenities, not just retail stores. But they may raise special legal issues for participants.

  • When Making The Sale Isn't 'Offering To Sell'

    JD Wooten

    Is Amazon legally the seller of items made available by third parties on Amazon.com? And is the e-commerce giant liable if those products infringe someone else's patents? A Washington federal court answered no to both questions. As the Federal Circuit considers the case, it must balance patent protection with market access, says JD Wooten of Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice LLP.

  • The Fate Of Distribution Rights After Bankruptcy

    Shmuel Vasser

    In Mission Product Holdings v. Tempnology, the bankruptcy appellate panel for the First Circuit held that Section 365(n) did not protect the exclusive distribution rights granted to the licensee of the debtor’s intellectual property, leaving unaddressed the practical implication that an IP license may be rendered worthless without the accompanying distribution rights, say Shmuel Vasser and Andrew Harmeyer of Dechert LLP.

  • Saving Lawyers 1 Breath At A Time: Mindfulness In The Law

    Jennifer Gibbs

    As critical as lawyers are to society, they are reported to be the most frequently depressed occupational group in the United States. In response to the inherently stressful nature of the practice of law, more and more lawyers are turning to an ancient contemplative practice called “mindfulness,” says Jennifer Gibbs of Zelle LLP.