The Federal Circuit on Friday refused to overturn a lower court’s ruling that found Google, Yahoo, HSBC and a laundry list of more than 50 companies did not infringe on fax-to-internet patents with email-based messaging systems and ordered the patent owners to pay attorneys’ fees to the companies for their “lack of candor and transparency” in the proceedings.
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TOP NEWS

Fed. Circ. Affirms Patent Win, Fees For Yahoo, Twitter, HSBC

The Federal Circuit on Friday refused to overturn a lower court’s ruling that found Google, Yahoo, HSBC and a laundry list of more than 50 companies did not infringe on fax-to-internet patents with email-based messaging systems and ordered the patent owners to pay attorneys’ fees to the companies for their “lack of candor and transparency” in the proceedings. Read more »

9th Circuit's Kozinski Accused Of Showing Staffers Porn

After reports surfaced claiming Ninth Circuit Judge Alex Kozinski had showed female clerks pornography and engaged in other misconduct, the high-profile jurist told Law360 on Friday it was “regrettable” if he had offended any of his staffers. Read more »

Trump's Tweets Crop Up At 4th Circ. Travel Ban Arguments

The Fourth Circuit on Friday heard oral arguments in an appeal over President Donald Trump’s latest travel ban, with some of the judges highlighting the president's recent tweets, capping off a week of appellate developments over the entry restrictions. Read more »

DOJ Tells High Court 2nd Circ. Erred In AmEx Ruling

The U.S. Department of Justice told the U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday that it should vacate and remand the Second Circuit’s ruling that the use of increased fees to fund rewards for cardholders justifies American Express' anti-steering provisions imposed on merchants, claiming the ruling overlooked the central concern of antitrust laws: the preservation of competitive prices.  Read more »

9th Circ. Says Wealth Doesn't Merit Asylum

The Ninth Circuit affirmed on Thursday a Board of Immigration Appeals’ decision tossing a Mexican native’s pleading that he qualified for protection from removal proceedings because he is part of a social group of those perceived to have money, saying the group was “too amorphous to be particular.” Read more »

SUPREME COURT

Justices Should Nix Online Tax Case, Foes Of SD Action Say

Congress, not the U.S. Supreme Court, is the body that should appropriately decide whether states may require remote sellers to collect and remit use tax, the online companies in litigation over the issue told the nation’s highest court in a brief filed Thursday. Read more »

Amicis Back Wayfair's Opposition To Quill High Court Review

Three interested parties each submitted an amicus brief Thursday in South Dakota v. Wayfair, urging the U.S. Supreme Court to reject South Dakota’s petition for certiorari, arguing, among other things, there would be an undue burden on businesses and violations of due process and the commerce clause should the court abrogate its physical presence nexus rule. Read more »

High Court To Revisit American Pipe In New Class Action Row

The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday granted certiorari to fertilizer manufacturer China Agritech Inc. in an appeal that will determine whether the American Pipe decision allows new named plaintiffs to borrow statute of limitations tolling from prior failed suits in which they were unnamed class members. Read more »

DC CIRCUIT

DC Circ. Doesn't Think Treasury Must Provide Privileged Docs

The D.C. Circuit on Friday remanded back to district court an order that the U.S. Department of the Treasury must turn over evidence related to decisions it made in General Motors’ 2009 bankruptcy for a related pension plan dispute, saying the lower court had not explained why a privilege claim by the White House should be disregarded.  Read more »

FEDERAL CIRCUIT

Fed. Circ. Undoes Nixing Of IP After USPTO Says It Erred

The Federal Circuit on Friday reversed the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s rejection of several claims included in a patent application for an arithmetic processor after the agency acknowledged that it had made an error when it rejected them as indefinite. Read more »

En Banc Denial Shows Fed. Circ. Split On Claim Construction

The full Federal Circuit on Friday declined to rehear a decision tossing a $2 million patent infringement verdict for NobelBiz Inc., although three judges filed a strong dissent saying the court should address “growing confusion” about when judges must construe patent claims. Read more »

Priceline Founder Owes Fees For Post-Alice Row: Fed. Circ.

The Federal Circuit found on Friday that a district court got it right when it ordered Priceline founder's patent holding company to pay Bed Bath & Beyond $932,000 in attorneys’ fees for pursuing a meritless patent infringement suit against the retailer, saying the company should have known its arguments were weak. Read more »

SECOND CIRCUIT

Hearst Interns Not Employees, 2nd Circ. Rules

A group of Hearst Corp. interns can’t revive their proposed class action seeking minimum wages because they don’t qualify as employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Second Circuit ruled Friday. Read more »

FOURTH CIRCUIT

Sierra Club Asks 4th Circ. To Uphold CWA Groundwater Ruling

The Sierra Club on Thursday asked the Fourth Circuit to uphold a lower court’s finding that a Dominion Energy Inc. unit violated the Clean Water Act by discharging arsenic from coal ash lagoons into groundwater, but also asked the appeals court to find the company liable for other CWA violations. Read more »

Amputee Vet Tells 4th Circ. W.Va. Tolling Law Saves Suit

A veteran who had his lower leg amputated due to fractures and an infection following dialysis treatment at a VA hospital has told the Fourth Circuit that a lower court was wrong to toss his suit, arguing that a West Virginia tolling statute should have delayed the statute of limitations. Read more »

NINTH CIRCUIT

MLB Fans Strike Out At 9th Circ. In Safety Netting Row

The Ninth Circuit on Friday refused to revive a suit from two Major League Baseball fans demanding extended safety nets at ballparks, finding their standing argument fell short because they weren’t likely to be injured by foul balls or thrown bats in the future. Read more »

FTC Wants In On Oral Args Over Seattle's Uber Union Law

The Federal Trade Commission asked the Ninth Circuit on Thursday to allow the agency to participate in oral arguments in a challenge to Seattle's ordinance allowing Uber and Lyft drivers to unionize, saying the law runs afoul of the so-called state action doctrine and could lead to too many antitrust exemptions. Read more »

9th Circ. Mulls 'Moral Right' In ‘Big Pimpin'’ Suit

A Ninth Circuit panel on Friday pressed an Egyptian composer's nephew who claims the Jay-Z song "Big Pimpin'" illegally sampled a 1957 ballad by his late uncle to explain why foreign copyright ownership gives him the right to economic damages in the United States. Read more »

NEW YORK

Hustler Club Loses $2M Bid To Escape NY Sales Tax

A New York appeas court upheld a lower court decision Thursday that semi-nude dancing at the Hustler Club in Manhattan was not the type of performance that would exempt it from $2.1 million of sales tax. Read more »

CALIFORNIA

Calif. Justices Urged To Undo Cup Maker's Win In OT Fight

A former Dart Container Corp. employee asked the California Supreme Court on Thursday to overturn a decision that quashed his overtime case against the foam cup maker, claiming Dart's win conflicted with years of precedent holding that the Golden State has its own method of calculating overtime on flat-rate bonuses that's distinct from federal law. Read more »

TEXAS

Gas Co. Covered By Texas 'Safe Harbor' In Royalties Fight

A Texas appellate court refused Thursday to award prejudgment interest to a trust that successfully sued for oil and gas royalties, ruling that the natural gas company was protected by a "safe harbor" provision in the Texas Natural Resources Code allowing it to suspend payments when rights are in dispute. Read more »

Texas High Court Won't Hear $2.2B Payout Deduction Dispute

The Supreme Court of Texas on Friday declined to take up Owens Corning’s challenge to a Texas appellate court ruling that found the manufacturer could not deduct from its businesses taxes a $2.2 billion payment made as part of an asbestos product liability settlement. Read more »

Texas Justices To Hear Oncor's Row With Chaparral Energy

The Texas Supreme Court on Friday agreed to hear oral arguments in a case where Oncor Electric Delivery Co. LLC argues that a trial court judgment siding with Chaparral Energy LLC in a contract dispute over electric service to oil wells should be tossed because the Public Utility Commission of Texas is the only entity allowed to hear the dispute. Read more »

Texas Justices To Hear Challenge To $9.6M MedMal Verdict

The Texas Supreme Court on Friday agreed to hear a case in which Obstetrical and Gynecological Associates and one of its doctors argue that there was legally insufficient evidence to support a $9.6 million jury award in favor of the husband of a woman who alleges the substandard care she received resulted in a brain injury. Read more »

Texas Appellate Panel Allows Amendments To Med Mal Suit

A Texas appellate court on Friday reversed and remanded a medical malpractice suit over a man who died following surgery from a lack of oxygen to his brain, determining that the trial judge should have allowed his family time to amend their expert reports. Read more »

FLORIDA

Fla. Justices Stay Case To Mull Judge's Facebook Friendship

The Florida Supreme Court on Thursday paused lower court proceedings in a suit seeking to get a judge disqualified for being Facebook friends with opposing counsel, indicating the court might take up the case. Read more »

NEW JERSEY

NJ High Court OKs Roche's Bids To Review Accutane Rulings

Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd. has convinced the New Jersey Supreme Court to review two state appellate decisions related to the company's acne medication Accutane, with the justices agreeing to consider rulings over the adequacy of the drug's label and the admissibility of expert testimony. Read more »

MISSOURI

Judge Won’t Hold Order To Kill Climate Suit Against Peabody

A Missouri bankruptcy judge won’t hold off on his order forcing two California counties and a city to drop post-bankruptcy Peabody Energy from their case against a group of oil, gas and coal companies alleging they are responsible for billions in climate change-related damages. Read more »

EXPERT ANALYSIS

EPA Maintains Renewable Fuel Standard Status Quo, For Now

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Renewable Fuel Standard program has been the subject of considerable controversy this year, with important developments across all three branches of government. Joel Beauvais and Steven Croley of Latham & Watkins LLP analyze key elements of two recent EPA actions in this area, and highlight one of the looming questions for the program. Read more »

The Most Noteworthy Class Action Developments Of 2017

2017 has seen significant developments in the field of class action litigation. The impact of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Spokeo decision continued to work its way through the courts, the courts of appeals have made strides on issues like ascertainability and standing to pursue injunctive relief, and Congress is currently considering legislation that would alter the class action landscape, say attorneys with Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP. Read more »

LEGAL INDUSTRY

Legal Sector Picks Up 600 New Jobs In November

U.S. legal services jobs climbed by 600 jobs in November, marking four consecutive months of job growth and the second-highest total for the sector so far in 2017, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said Friday in its latest jobs report. Read more »

Podcast

Law360's Pro Say: Kennedy Torn In Masterpiece Cakeshop

On the latest episode of Law360's Pro Say podcast, the team discusses Justice Kennedy's swing vote in a case pitting religious freedom and free speech against gay rights, a bizarre trial over a scheme to skirt sanctions on Iran, and Katy Perry's win in a suit over her purchase of a convent. Read more »

GC Cheat Sheet: The Hottest Corporate News Of The Week

Legislators introduced a bill to prevent businesses from enforcing mandatory arbitration agreements in instances where employees allege workplace sexual harassment, and a credit union sued President Donald Trump to block Mick Mulvaney from leading the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. These are some of the top stories in corporate legal news you may have missed this past week. Read more »

In Case You Missed It: Hottest Firms And Stories On Law360

For those who missed out, here's a look back at the law firms, stories and expert analyses that generated the most buzz on Law360 last week. Read more »

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LAW FIRMS

Akin Gump

Armstrong Teasdale

Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer

BakerHostetler

Bangs McCullen

BatesCarey LLP

Best Best

Brafman & Associates

Brann & Isaacson

Brower Piven

Browne George

Bryan Cave

Capshaw DeRieux

Covington & Burling

Cravath Swaine

Deans & Lyons

Duane Morris

Dughi Hewit

Durham Jones

Finnegan

Fish & Richardson

Flachsbart & Greenspoon

Foley & Lardner

Frederic Dorwart

Gentry Locke

Gibbons PC

Gibson Dunn

Goldstein & Russell

Greenberg Traurig

Hagens Berman

Hall Render

Harris Hilburn

Heartfield Law Firm

Herssein Law Group

Hilliard Munoz

Hogan Lovells

Jenner & Block

Jones Day

Keker Van Nest & Peters

Kirkland & Ellis

Latham & Watkins

Lavi & Ebrahimian

Lite DePalma

Locke Lord

Marshall Gerstein

McDermott Will

Miller & Chevalier

Mitchell Silberberg

MoloLamken LLP

Morgan Lewis

Morrison & Foerster

Munger Tolles

Nelson Bumgardner

Nixon Peabody

O'Melveny & Myers

Orrick Herrington

Outten & Golden

Paul Hastings

Pepper Hamilton

Polsinelli

Proskauer Rose

Reed Smith

Richman Greer

Ropes & Gray

Rumberger Kirk

Ryan Law Firm

Seeger Weiss

Shutts & Bowen

Sidley Austin

Simon Law Firm

Stamoulis & Weinblatt

Standley Law Group

Strasburger & Price

Thompson & Knight

Thompson Coburn

Troutman Sanders

Venable LLP

Waller Lansden

Weitz & Luxenberg

Wiand Guerra

Wolf Haldenstein

COMPANIES

21st Century Fox Inc.

7-Eleven Inc.

Acacia Research Corporation

Aetna Inc.

Allscripts Healthcare Solutions Inc.

Allstate Corporation

Amazon.com Inc.

American Civil Liberties Union

American Express Company

American Medical Association Inc.

Bayer AG

Bed Bath & Beyond Inc.

Bristol-Myers Squibb Company

CVS Caremark Corporation

Chaparral Energy Inc.

Chesapeake Energy Corporation

Chevron Corporation

China Agritech Inc.

ConAgra Foods, Inc.

Dart Container Corp.

Dominion Energy Inc.

Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc.

EMI Group Ltd.

EQT Corporation

Entergy Corporation

Exceed Company Ltd.

Facebook

General Motors

Google Inc.

HSBC Holdings PLC

International Brotherhood of Teamsters

J2 Global Inc.

Johnson & Johnson

Kimberly-Clark Corporation

LinkedIn Corp.

Lyft Inc.

MTV Networks Co.

Madison Square Garden, Inc.

Major League Baseball Inc.

MasterCard Incorporated

National Association of Manufacturers

National Immigration Law Center

Newegg Inc.

Oakland Athletics

Ocwen Financial Corporation

Oncor Electric Delivery Co. LLC

Overstock.com Inc.

Owens Corning

Paramount Pictures Corp.

PayNearMe Inc.

Peabody Energy Corp.

Petrobras

Procter & Gamble Co.

Roche Holding AG

Sears Holdings Corporation

Siemens AG

Sierra Club

Southern Environmental Law Center

Spokeo Inc.

Synapse Group Inc.

The Priceline Group Inc.

Twitter Inc.

Tyson Foods Inc.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Uber Technologies Inc.

United Services Automobile Association

VPX Sports

Visa Inc.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc.

Warner Bros.

Washington Post Co.

Wayfair LLC

Yahoo! Inc.

GOVERNMENT AGENCIES

Bureau of Labor Statistics

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

Department of Commerce

European Commission

European Union

Federal Trade Commission

Food and Drug Administration

National Labor Relations Board

New York State Department of Taxation and Finance

Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp.

Public Utility Commission of Texas

Securities and Exchange Commission

Texas Legislature

U.S. Department of Agriculture

U.S. Department of Energy

U.S. Department of Homeland Security

U.S. Department of Justice

U.S. Department of Labor

U.S. Department of State

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

U.S. Department of the Treasury

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

U.S. House of Representatives

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

U.S. Supreme Court

Virginia Department of Environmental Quality