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Commercial Contracts

  • July 31, 2018

    Michael Cohen Loses Bid To Gag Stormy Daniels' Attorney

    A California federal judge on Tuesday denied a request by President Donald Trump’s longtime former attorney Michael Cohen to impose a gag order on his counterpart Michael Avenatti in the suit brought by adult film star Stormy Daniels, saying Avenatti’s relentless public statements may not affect the outcome of the case.

  • July 31, 2018

    Vacancy Provision Sinks Coverage For Burst Pipe: DC Circ.

    The D.C. Circuit on Tuesday upheld a lower court’s ruling that Windsor-Mount Joy Mutual Insurance Co. doesn't have to cover a couple’s costs to repair severe damage to their Delaware beach house from a burst pipe, holding that coverage is clearly barred because the homeowners failed to shut off water to the residence before leaving for 10 days.

  • July 31, 2018

    Ex-Playboy Model Says GOP Donor Breached $1.6M Hush Deal

    California state court on Tuesday unsealed a lawsuit filed by Shera Bechard, a former Playboy model, against Republican fundraiser Elliott Broidy and attorneys Michael Avenatti and Keith M. Davidson, revealing allegations of breach of contract and legal malpractice surrounding a broken $1.6 million hush deal stemming from her affair with Broidy.

  • July 31, 2018

    Calif. Ruling On DQ Appeals May Mean Delays, Miffed Clients

    A recently published California state court decision on attorney disqualifications and resulting pauses in litigation provides some welcome direction for lawyers fighting their removal but also brings some added risk of unhappy clients, experts said.

  • July 31, 2018

    Utah Justices Toss $2.75M Distress Award In Malpractice Case

    The Supreme Court of Utah has set aside a $2.75 million jury verdict for emotional strain caused by an attorney’s malpractice in a personal injury case, finding that, with rare exception, a breach of contract claim cannot support this kind of damages.

  • July 31, 2018

    Partners In Russian Oil Co. TNK Cry Fraud In $2B Fight

    Two former owners of the Russian oil firm TNK told a New York court on Monday that they had found "devastating" evidence that proves their former partner Leonid Lebedev had repeatedly lied about his ownership of an Irish entity that took in at least $600 million in TNK-related payments.

  • July 31, 2018

    11th Circ. Reverses NLRB On Samsung Employment Pact

    A panel of the 11th Circuit on Tuesday said that in light of the Supreme Court’s ruling in Epic Systems, the National Labor Relations Board’s finding that Samsung Electronics’ class waivers violate the National Labor Relations Act must be reversed.

  • July 31, 2018

    Investors Want Ex-Director's Hands Off $35M Settlement

    Stockholder attorneys asked a Delaware vice chancellor on Tuesday to reject a former Good Technology Corp. director’s bid for a share of a $35 million partial settlement over the company’s allegedly underpriced sale, saying director and class interests never lined up.

  • July 31, 2018

    Gulfport Hit With $2.3M Suit Over Oil, Gas Lease Royalties

    Gulfport Energy Corp. has been hit with a suit in Ohio federal court seeking more than $2.3 million in damages over allegations that it violated lease agreements by subtracting taxes and other costs from royalty payments on one lease and not paying royalties due on the other.

  • July 31, 2018

    Ore. Farm Co. Let Out Of Suit Over Texas Truck Driver’s Death

    A Texas appeals panel on Tuesday dismissed an Oregon farm store company from a wrongful death suit filed by the family of a truck driver killed by falling cargo while unloading a shipment at the company's facility, finding there are not enough legally pertinent connections between the company and Texas for it to face claims there.

  • July 30, 2018

    NY Judge Facilitates Deal In Creditor’s $2M Ticket Biz Suit

    A man who did business with ticket-sales executive Joseph Schnaier and saw an opportunity to collect on a $2 million judgment against him when Schnaier sued someone else struck a deal in Manhattan state court on Monday that could result in him getting paid.

  • July 30, 2018

    Shumaker Loop Attys Dodge DQ In $25M Trade Secrets Suit

    A Florida federal magistrate judge on Monday denied a motion to disqualify two Shumaker Loop & Kendrick attorneys from defending a glassware company in a $25 million trade secrets suit, finding no conflict of interest over the firm’s having represented the other party in an unrelated intellectual property matter in 2016.

  • July 30, 2018

    Ranch Says Permian Operator Owes $2M For Breaches

    The Mabee Ranch Royalty Partnership LP filed a lawsuit Monday in Texas state court against Permian Basin operator Concho Resources, alleging it's owed $2 million or more for multiple and repeated breaches of a lease for its acreage in West Texas that includes drilling across lease lines and not paying royalties on flared gas.

  • July 30, 2018

    Artist Blasts Pittsburgh, Norfolk Southern Over Mural Loss

    A Pennsylvania mural artist slammed the city of Pittsburgh, several property owners and developers in his effort to keep Norfolk Southern Railway Co. involved in his claim that dozens of his projects around the city were destroyed by being painted over or through redevelopment in violation of the Visual Artists Rights Act.

  • July 30, 2018

    Relativity Media Sees Pushback On Ch. 11 Sale To Lenders

    Relativity Media LLC will have to fight to advance a sale of the company to its senior lenders after the U.S. Trustee's office asked for heightened scrutiny of litigation releases and content distributor Netflix alleged the transaction is tainted by self-dealing orchestrated by the company founder.

  • July 30, 2018

    Property Co. Workers Seek $8M For Attorneys In Wage Suit

    A class of vendors for Field Asset Services on Friday asked a California federal judge to award more than $8 million in attorneys' fees for work on a wage lawsuit against the property servicing company, saying the amount is fair considering the complexity of the case.

  • July 30, 2018

    Ill. Court Affirms Builder's Win In Injured Worker's Suit

    A contractor leading a warehouse construction project isn’t responsible for injuries suffered by a subcontracted worker who fell through a roof because it didn’t tell the roofing contractor how to do its work, an Illinois appeals court said Friday.

  • July 30, 2018

    Norton Simon Can Keep Nazi-Looted Art, 9th Circ. Says

    The Ninth Circuit on Monday upheld a lower court's finding that the Dutch government's selling of two notable paintings once possessed by the Nazis were "sovereign acts," thus invalidating a Holocaust survivor's claim to recover the paintings from the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena, California.

  • July 30, 2018

    Texas Shipper Buys Plant For $15M In Gas Gathering Dispute

    A settlement Monday ended a Texas state court trial over a natural gas gathering and processing dispute in which Badger Midstream Energy LP accused Scout Energy Group III LP of surreptitiously taking about $20 million worth of product from the pipeline stream, with Scout agreeing to purchase Badger's processing plant for $15 million.

  • July 30, 2018

    Charter, Calif. City End Court Fight Over Blacked-Out Stations

    Charter Communications and a California city dropped their federal court dispute Friday over Charter’s blackout of NBC and CBS affiliates from its cable package before the Super Bowl, and the telecom’s countersuit accusing the city of interfering in its negotiations with a broadcaster allegedly demanding exorbitant fees.

Expert Analysis

  • Why Lawyers Shouldn't Accept Fees In Cryptocurrency: Part 1

    John Reed Stark

    Law firms are increasingly accepting cryptocurrency as payment for services. While this might seem innovative and forward-thinking, ironically it is much more of a throwback, says John Reed Stark of John Reed Stark Consulting LLC.

  • Opinion

    Don’t Revoke The Music Licensing Antitrust Decrees

    Glenn Manishin

    The U.S. Department of Justice's Antitrust Division is reconsidering recommending revisions to — or wholesale elimination of — the consent decrees with ASCAP and BMI. But the antitrust purpose of these decrees remains just as valid today as when they were entered by the federal courts, says attorney Glenn Manishin.

  • 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.

  • Revamping Contracts For GDPR: You're Just Getting Started

    Zachary Foreman

    With the May 25 deadline come and gone for the EU General Data Protection Regulation, you may find yourself tempted to breathe a sigh of relief. A job well done, right? But GDPR compliance means exercising constant vigilance, says Zachary Foreman of Axiom Law.

  • 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.

  • How Immigration Issues Can Sour M&A Deals

    Christine Fuqua Gay

    Because the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's E-Verify program is frequently overlooked and misunderstood, immigration compliance issues have become more common in mergers and acquisitions and a basis of post-closing claims, such as those alleged in Post Holdings v. NPE Seller Rep, currently pending in the Delaware Chancery Court, say Christine Fuqua Gay and Ashley Hamilton of Holland & Knight LLP.

  • Establishing Diversity When A Trust Is Involved

    Andrew McClain

    The Third Circuit's opinion in GBForefront v. Forefront Management makes clear that traditional trusts and business trusts are treated differently for purposes of diversity jurisdiction. At the same time, the case begs the question of how to differentiate between a business trust and a traditional trust, says Andrew McClain of Foley & Lardner LLP.

  • El Pollo Loco Verdict Hinges On Good Faith, Fair Dealing

    Steven Yatvin

    Last month, a California court awarded an El Pollo Loco franchisee over $8 million after a company-owned restaurant was established near his operation. The case suggests that, regardless of any contractual agreements, franchisors should consider how a neutral third party would view their dealings with franchisees, says Steven Yatvin of Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg LLP.

  • Opinion

    Why Widespread Use Of Live Video Testimony Is Not Justified

    Geoffrey Wyatt

    Despite the partiality some courts have shown to live video testimony, it provides no advantages — and several disadvantages — over the tried-and-true method of videotaped depositions, say attorneys with Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP.

  • Series

    Judging A Book: Wallach Reviews 'Uncivil Warriors'

    Judge Evan Wallach

    "Uncivil Warriors: The Lawyers' Civil War," by Peter Hoffer, is a new book about the involvement of lawyers on both sides in the American Civil War. The discussion is enlightening and often fascinating, but falls short in several key areas, says Federal Circuit Judge Evan Wallach.