Silicon Valley giants have teamed up with privacy advocates to fight the U.S. government’s bid, now at the U.S. Supreme Court, to access Microsoft data stored on an Irish server. But that uneasy alliance has crumbled as lawmakers mull a plan to carve out a more concrete path for U.S. prosecutors pursuing data stored abroad, with critics claiming data-sharing deals resulting from the bill could erode human rights.
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Analysis

New Cloud Data Bill Pits Big Tech Against Privacy Hawks

Silicon Valley giants have teamed up with privacy advocates to fight the U.S. government’s bid, now at the U.S. Supreme Court, to access Microsoft data stored on an Irish server. But that uneasy alliance has crumbled as lawmakers mull a plan to carve out a more concrete path for U.S. prosecutors pursuing data stored abroad, with critics claiming data-sharing deals resulting from the bill could erode human rights. Read more »

Dog Food Maker Must Face Suit Saying Pets Were Sickened

A proposed class action accusing a dog food maker of falsely advertising its products as safe and made with premium meats was kept alive Tuesday by a Washington federal judge, who noted that although the suit has issues, they can be addressed with additional facts in an amended complaint. Read more »

Bernstein Litowitz Takes Lead In Equifax Shareholder Suits

A Georgia federal judge on Wednesday appointed Bernstein Litowitz Berger & Grossmann LLP as lead counsel for a proposed consolidated class of Equifax Inc. investors who sued after the company’s share price dropped significantly when it revealed a massive data breach that affected 145 million consumers. Read more »

2nd Circ. Affirms Toss Of Suit Over Rite Aid Flu-Shot Calls

The Second Circuit held Wednesday that a lower court rightly axed claims that Rite Aid violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act by sending prerecorded flu shot reminder messages, saying the shopper leading the proposed class action gave the retailer permission when he provided his phone number. Read more »

LITIGATION

9th Circ. Finds Receipt Suit Falls Short Under Spokeo

A Ninth Circuit panel on Wednesday found that a parking garage customer had not proved he had standing to pursue a class action claiming the garage ran afoul of the Fair Credit Reporting Act by printing credit card expiration dates on receipts, given the standard the Supreme Court set in its Spokeo decision. Read more »

Santander To Pay Conn. Consumers $2.9M In Settlement

Santander Consumer USA has agreed to pay $2.9 million in relief to consumers affected by its alleged violations of Connecticut banking law in handling repossessed motor vehicles found during a 2016 examination by the State of Connecticut Department of Banking, according to a consent order filed on Tuesday. Read more »

Ex-Herbalife Sellers Blast Arbitration Bid In $1B RICO Suit

Former distributors for global nutrition supplement company Herbalife Ltd. are urging a Florida federal court to deny the company's bid to force their potentially $1 billion racketeering suit into arbitration, arguing a unilaterally imposed arbitration clause is unenforceable and inapplicable. Read more »

Apple Says Batteries Piling Up In IPhone Slowdown Suits

Apple Inc. urged a California federal judge Wednesday to find it doesn’t need to hold onto every battery it replaces from iPhones in a slew of proposed class actions alleging it misled consumers by slowing phones with diminished battery capacities, arguing that preserving every battery poses health and environmental hazards. Read more »

Pa. Justices Say State Consumer Law Applies To Nonresidents

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled unanimously Wednesday that nonresidents can use the state’s consumer protection statute to sue Pennsylvania businesses over out-of-state transactions, favoring the California man behind a class action against a home security company. Read more »

Dish Can't Revive TCPA Suit Coverage Bid At 10th Circ.

The penalties being sought against Dish Network LLC for alleged violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act are punitive and not covered by its policy with a Chubb Ltd. unit, the Tenth Circuit affirmed Wednesday. Read more »

Conagra Looks To Bury ‘Natural’ Labeling Suit At 1st Circ.

Conagra Brands Inc. asked the First Circuit on Tuesday to uphold the dismissal of a proposed class action alleging its Wesson brand cooking oils are misrepresented as "natural," arguing the labeling is in fact consistent with decades-old federal policy about the use of the term. Read more »

Google Advertiser Gets 5th Try At Click-Fraud Class Action

A California federal judge Tuesday tossed a businessman’s fourth version of a putative class action alleging Google understates the fraudulent clicks its ads receive, saying he hadn’t shown charges for invalid ad views but the “interests of justice” supported allowing him to submit another amended complaint. Read more »

Jackson Hewitt Faces Franchisee Customer's Fraud Claims

Tax preparation chain Jackson Hewitt must face putative class allegations of fraud and negligence after a California federal judge ruled Tuesday that a former client of a franchisee had presented a plausible theory for his claims to proceed in court. Read more »

LEGAL INDUSTRY

Feature

Why BigLaw Firms Are Hungry To Enter And Grow In Dallas

The desire of large law firms to set up shop and grow in Dallas appears to have reached near-frenzy levels, with reports of new offices springing up, mergers being inked, and fierce competition in the lateral market replete with hefty paychecks. Read more »

Andrews Kurth, Hunton & Williams Will Combine In April

After months of rumors and negotiations, the merger between Texas-based Andrews Kurth Kenyon LLP and Virginia's Hunton & Williams LLP has been resoundingly approved by partner votes at both firms, and the union is on track to completion by the end of the quarter, the firms announced Wednesday. Read more »

LA-Based Ogletree Shareholder Sued For Sexual Harassment

Less than six weeks after being hit with a $300 million gender discrimination class action, labor and employment law firm Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart PC was accused Wednesday in a California state suit of allowing one of its Los Angeles shareholders to sexually harass a married, gay, Latino attorney. Read more »

Baker McKenzie Taps UK Firm For Sexual Assault Inquiry

Baker McKenzie has engaged London-based international firm Simmons & Simmons to perform an independent inquiry into a years-old sexual assault complaint and the firm’s initial response to it, a spokesperson confirmed Wednesday. Read more »

Judiciary Collecting Sexual Harassment Data

In the wake of the scandal surrounding former Ninth Circuit Judge Alex Kozinski, the federal judiciary is tracking and releasing sexual harassment complaint data, the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts announced on its website Wednesday. Read more »

Analysis

Latest Russia Plea A Glimpse Into Mueller’s Universe

The former Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP lawyer who pled guilty to lying to investigators Tuesday offered a peek into the evidence that special counsel Robert Mueller has developed, experts said, and sent a powerful warning to anyone who might lie to investigators. Read more »

Series

What I Learned In My 1st Year: Working For Uncle Wally

My uncle asked me to research some point of law. I left his office to collect my thoughts, then went back in and asked him a question or two. He looked up and gave me his six-word answer: “Do I look like a library?” He taught me that there are no shortcuts to doing your job, says Paul Hamburger of Proskauer Rose LLP. Read more »

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