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Product Liability

  • June 7, 2018

    Fiat Chrysler Drivers Seek Cert. In Emissions MDL

    Drivers suing Fiat Chrysler and Bosch in multidistrict litigation over alleged evasion of emissions testing asked a California federal court Wednesday for class certification, saying common questions about the purported misconduct “decisively predominate” over individual questions.

  • June 7, 2018

    Calif. Gov'ts Say 9th Circ. Must Limit Climate Tort Appeals

    Two counties and one city in California said Wednesday that fossil fuel companies are trying to expand their appeal of a lower court's remand of climate change suits to state court to cover grounds that aren't appealable, and urged the Ninth Circuit to limit its review accordingly.

  • June 7, 2018

    Schlichtmann Must Face Avandia Settlement Malpractice Row

    Jan Schlichtmann, the attorney whose work repping Massachusetts residents inspired the book “A Civil Action,” must continue to fight claims he botched a $2 million settlement designed to repay GlaxoSmithKline for money improperly disbursed to a plaintiffs attorney in multidistrict litigation over the diabetes drug Avandia, a Pennsylvania federal judge has ruled.

  • June 7, 2018

    Proposed Bill Targets Cancer Risk Product Labeling

    A bipartisan group of senators and congressmen on Thursday said that legislation they simultaneously introduced in the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives would require labels to clearly identify the potential cancer risks of a product in a clear way that is backed by science.

  • June 7, 2018

    9th Circ. OKs Toss Of Twinings Tea Antioxidant Case

    The Ninth Circuit on Wednesday upheld the dismissal of a proposed class action seeking to block tea maker Twinings from selling products with allegedly misleading health claims, finding the customer who brought the suit did not allege that she would repurchase the product.

  • June 6, 2018

    VW To Pay Oklahoma $8.5M Over Eco-Friendly Diesel Ads

    The Oklahoma attorney general announced Wednesday that Volkswagen and related auto manufacturers have agreed to pay $8.5 million to settle the state’s allegations they used false and deceptive advertising in carrying out Volkswagen’s diesel emissions scandal.

  • June 6, 2018

    San Francisco Votes To Uphold Flavored Tobacco Ban

    San Francisco voters on Tuesday voted overwhelmingly to approve a local ordinance banning the sale of flavored tobacco products, such as menthol cigarettes and flavored e-cigarette liquids, with nearly 70 percent in favor of the ban, likely the most restrictive in the country.

  • June 6, 2018

    No Third-Party Content Means Snapchat Must Face Suit: Court

    A Georgia appeals court has revived a suit alleging photo app Snapchat’s “speed filter” feature distracted a motorist and caused her to hit a man who suffered brain injuries, saying Snapchat can’t claim immunity under the Communications Decency Act because it was not a publisher of third-party content.

  • June 6, 2018

    Fla. High Court Asked To Restore $20M Engle Verdict

    The daughter of a lifelong smoker who died of cancer argued Wednesday to the Florida Supreme Court that a state appeals court imposed an improper cap on damages awards when it overturned a $20 million jury verdict in her favor in an Engle progeny case.

  • June 6, 2018

    Latest J&J Talc Trial Pits Co. Against 22 Women

    Twenty-two women who say they got cancer from longtime use of Johnson & Johnson talcum powder went to trial against the company Wednesday morning in St. Louis, saying J&J willfully ignored evidence that the powder, a daily ritual for millions, was riddled with asbestos.

  • June 6, 2018

    SEC Says BioChemics Is Unable To Pay $17M Bill To Investors

    Enough is enough, counsel for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission told a Massachusetts federal judge Wednesday in a letter insisting three years was ample time for BioChemics Inc. to find a buyer and cough up $17 million it owes investors for lying about product testing.

  • June 6, 2018

    Faulty Coffee Filter Claims Survive Walmart Toss Attempt

    A California federal judge on Tuesday allowed breach of warranty and unfair business practice claims to move forward in a suit brought by a putative class of consumers who say that single-serve coffee filters they bought from Walmart do not work in Keurig 2.0 machines.

  • June 6, 2018

    RJR Can Hold Off On $38M Award To Smoker's Kin, For Now

    A Florida appeals court said Wednesday that R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. can delay paying a $38 million award to the family of a woman who died of lung cancer until the judgment is final.

  • June 6, 2018

    Alston Picks Up Ex-Drinker Biddle Product Liability Partner

    Alston & Bird LLP has hired a product liability and consumer class action pro from Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP to bolster the budding litigation and mass tort team at the firm’s year-old San Francisco office.

  • June 6, 2018

    Fosamax Users Urge High Court To Turn Down Merck Appeal

    Fosamax users on Tuesday urged the U.S. Supreme Court not to hear Merck’s appeal of a Third Circuit decision reviving multidistrict litigation over the pharmaceutical giant's alleged failure to warn about its osteoporosis drug, saying that the case doesn’t meet the court’s usual standard for review.

  • June 6, 2018

    J&J Battles To Throw Out $117M Verdicts In NJ Talc Case

    A New Jersey state court received competing pitches Wednesday over the fate of verdicts totaling $117 million in a lawsuit alleging Johnson & Johnson’s asbestos-containing talcum powder contributed to a man’s mesothelioma, with the man’s attorney accusing the pharmaceutical giant of reprehensible conduct, and a company lawyer calling such damages unjustified.

  • June 6, 2018

    7th Circ. Knocks Down Bid To Kill Wis. Highway Project

    The Seventh Circuit on Tuesday rejected a challenge to a Wisconsin highway upgrade by environmental groups who claimed its impact was not properly analyzed, saying a 141-page report was sufficient to show it wouldn't have a significant impact and was properly exempted from further study.

  • June 6, 2018

    Greenspoon Marder Snags Miami Mayor From Carlton Fields

    Miami Mayor Francis X. Suarez and litigator Olga Vieira have left Carlton Fields to join Greenspoon Marder LLP’s Miami office, the firm announced Tuesday.

  • June 6, 2018

    VW Escapes Illinois' $1B Suit Over Emissions Scandal

    An Illinois state judge on Tuesday tossed a lawsuit brought by the state of Illinois seeking more than $1 billion from Volkswagen AG for installing devices and software that cheated emissions tests, finding that the state claims are preempted by the federal Clean Air Act.

  • June 6, 2018

    Montgomery McCracken Faces $620M Suit For Toxic Tort Work

    Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads LLP is facing a $620 million class action in Pennsylvania federal court over allegations the firm botched efforts to collect toxic tort damages owed to neighbors of a Kerr-McGee Corp. plant for claims brought before the company filed for bankruptcy.

Expert Analysis

  • FDA's Hand Can't Be Forced On 'Natural' Tobacco Labeling

    Robert Claiborne

    A federal court in Florida last month dismissed a case challenging the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s allowance of the word “natural” in the product packaging and labeling of Natural American Spirit cigarettes. The plaintiff in this case was attempting to use the courts to force regulatory action against another party not before the court, say Robert Claiborne Jr. and Bryan Haynes of Troutman Sanders LLP.

  • A General Counsel's Tips For Succeeding As A New Associate

    Jason Idilbi

    Based on his experience as a BigLaw associate for six years and now as general counsel for a tech startup, Jason Idilbi of Passport Labs offers some best practices for newer associates — whether they are serving external clients or senior attorneys within their firms.

  • Pay Attention To The Law And The Science Of Cannabidiol

    Brett Taylor

    Many health claims have been made for cannabidiol, a substance derived from the cannabis plant. But producers and retailers of cannabidiol should understand that, while it may be permitted under some state laws, it remains illegal under federal law. They must also avoid claims of benefits that are unsubstantiated, say Brett Taylor and Amy Alderfer of Cozen O'Connor.

  • Food Contamination: When Responsible Parties Are Identified

    Eldon Edson

    Following outbreaks of foodborne illnesses, such as the recent E. coli case attributed to romaine lettuce, public agencies investigate to control further exposure and prevent similar incidents in the future. However, once identified, members of the overall chain of supply are all potential defendants in lawsuits likely to be brought by those affected by the outbreak, says Eldon Edson of Selman Breitman LLP.

  • 'Made In USA' Ruling Reflects New, Looser Calif. Standard

    Richard Fama

    The Ninth Circuit recently concluded that a California lawsuit brought over product labeling was governed by the amended version of the state's "Made in the USA" statute, even though the plaintiff purchased the goods in question before the statute was amended. Manufacturers faced with similar suits should look to this decision for guidance, say Richard Fama and F. Brenden Coller of Cozen O'Connor.

  • Series

    Judging A Book: Berzon Reviews 'We The Corporations'

    Judge Marsha Berzon

    My advice to prospective clerks will now include the suggestion that they read Adam Winkler's new book, "We the Corporations: How American Businesses Won Their Civil Rights," for the same reason I recommend taking a corporations course — appreciating the critical role of business corporations in American life and law, says Ninth Circuit Judge Marsha Berzon.

  • New Regs Pave Way For China's Self-Driving Car Strategy

    Mark Schaub

    Last month, three Chinese government ministries jointly issued national regulations for road testing of autonomous vehicles. The national rules supplement local regulations recently issued in Beijing, Shanghai and Chongqing, and are just one indication of China’s ambitions to lead the world in this new technology, say Mark Schaub and Atticus Zhao of King & Wood Mallesons.

  • What ABA’s Position On Harassment Means For Employers

    Minjae Song

    In the #MeToo era, the American Bar Association’s recently passed Resolution 302 is a reminder of harassment policy best practices to all employers, and it should be of particular interest to employers in the legal industry, say attorneys with Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP.

  • Inside The New GMO Labeling Disclosure Proposal

    Robert Hibbert

    Last week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture released its highly anticipated rule for labeling foods that contain genetically modified organisms, or “GMOs.” The proposal suggests a sweeping national disclosure requirement and, given the variety of consumer perceptions of bioengineered foods, could generate debate over certain label ideas, say Robert Hibbert and Ryan Fournier of Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP.

  • New Era Of Falling Space Debris, Old Treaties On Liability

    Tod Northman

    With the steady increase in space activity by both the public and private sectors comes an increased chance that a failed launch or obsolete space objects will fall back to Earth and cause damage to people and property. It may be time to re-examine where the responsibility lies for such damage, say Tod Northman and Christine Snyder of Tucker Ellis LLP.