Product Liability

  • January 5, 2017

    Enviros Sue DOT Again Over Enbridge Spill Plan Approval

    The U.S. Department of Transportation unlawfully approved oil spill response plans for Enbridge Energy LP's Wisconsin-to-Ontario oil pipeline without properly reviewing whether those plans squared with federal environmental statutes, according to a Michigan federal suit filed Thursday.

  • January 5, 2017

    9th Circ. Stays False Ad Appeal After E-Cig Co.'s Ch. 11

    The Ninth Circuit on Wednesday again agreed to stay an appeal in deceptive marketing litigation against e-cigarette maker NJOY in light of the company filing for bankruptcy, keeping the appeal challenging the denial of class certification paused after it was initially put on hold pending the resolution of several other actions.

  • January 5, 2017

    Coca-Cola, Trade Group Sued Over False Sugary Drink Ads

    A lawsuit launched in California federal court on Wednesday against Coca-Cola by nonprofit group The Praxis Project claims the drink maker engaged in a massive false advertising campaign aimed at hiding the severe negative health consequences of consuming sugary beverages from the public.

  • January 5, 2017

    DuPont Hit With $10.5M Punitive Verdict In Cancer Trial

    An Ohio federal jury awarded $10.5 million in punitive damages on Thursday to a man who said DuPont's chemical dumping caused his cancer, the largest punitive award yet in the multidistrict litigation.

  • January 4, 2017

    RJR, Philip Morris Win Reduction To Engle Damage Awards

    A Florida appeals court Wednesday reversed and remanded two suits with multimillion-dollar awards against R.J. Reynolds and Philip Morris over the deaths of two smokers, ordering the compensatory damages in both to be reduced in proportion with findings of the victims’ comparative fault.

  • January 4, 2017

    Navajo Casino Tort Suit Belongs In NM Court, 10th Circ. Told

    A couple bringing negligence claims over a slip-and-fall accident at a Navajo Nation casino urged the Tenth Circuit on Tuesday to uphold a lower court decision that rejected the tribe’s bid to block their suit, saying the tribe had agreed to face such tort claims in state court in a manner consistent with federal Indian gaming law.

  • January 4, 2017

    DuPont Urges Jury To Forgo Punitives After $2M Verdict

    Industrial conglomerate DuPont urged an Ohio federal jury Wednesday not to add punitive damages to the $2 million the panel recently awarded a cancer survivor who drank and bathed for years in water dirtied by the company’s Teflon manufacturing, disagreeing that decades of inaction constituted malice.

  • January 4, 2017

    VW To Face Investors' Suit Over Emissions Scandal In US

    Volkswagen AG, its former CEO and other individuals must face a lawsuit from investors filed in the wake of its diesel emissions scandal despite their arguments the case belongs in Germany, a California federal judge ruled Wednesday, while allowing the investors to partially amend their complaint.

  • January 4, 2017

    Arnold & Itkin DQ Sought In Sunken Cargo Ship Case

    The owners of the El Faro, a cargo ship that sank near the Bahamas during Hurricane Joaquin in 2015, asked a Florida federal judge Tuesday to disqualify Arnold & Itkin LLP from representing three different wrongful death claimants, saying a cap on potential payouts creates adverse interests between those clients.

  • January 4, 2017

    Sony Gets Early Nod On Settlement In Vaio Laptop Defect Suit

    A California federal judge preliminarily approved on Tuesday a deal that would settle computer buyers' class action lawsuit against Sony Electronics Inc. alleging it knowingly sold Vaio laptops with touchpad defects, finding it fair, reasonable and adequate.

  • January 4, 2017

    Judge Won't Toss Expert In Zimmer Trial, But Trims Claims

    An Illinois federal judge on Wednesday largely declined to exclude a seasoned orthopedic surgeon’s testimony from the third bellwether trial in multidistrict litigation over Zimmer Inc. knee implants, but said the company was entitled to a quick win on allegations the patient didn’t address in opposing a summary judgment motion.

  • January 4, 2017

    Food Processing Cos. Dodge Modified Corn Export Suit

    An Illinois federal judge on Wednesday dismissed a mass action brought by a group of farmers against Archer Daniels Midland and several other companies over an export snafu that led to a decline in corn prices, saying the bulk of their claims were preempted by federal law.

  • January 4, 2017

    Feds Kill Bid To Divvy Settlements In Wis. Superfund Suit

    The judge overseeing a federal enforcement action over a Wisconsin Superfund site polluted by paper industry activity rejected Tuesday a bid by P.H. Glatfelter Co. to present evidence questioning the allocation of previous settlement money in the case.

  • January 4, 2017

    Six Flags Nixes Warranty Claims For Coaster Injury

    Breach of warranty claims by a Six Flags roller-coaster rider who was allegedly blinded in one eye after being hit by a flying cellphone were dismissed Tuesday, with a New Jersey district judge finding his admission ticket was not legally a “good” covered by warranty.

  • January 4, 2017

    Wholesaler To Pay WV $3.5M Over Suspicious Drug Orders

    H.D. Smith Wholesale Drug Co. will pay West Virginia $3.5 million to resolve claims that the company didn’t detect, report or stop the flow of suspicious drug orders from the Mountain State, West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey said on Tuesday.

  • January 4, 2017

    Pa. Justices Snub Appeal Over NCAA's Place In Death Suit

    Pennsylvania’s highest court said Wednesday it would not hear arguments over a ruling that revived claims against the NCAA over the sickle-cell-related death of a Slippery Rock University student during an intense basketball practice.

  • January 4, 2017

    Heart Monitor Suit In No Shape For Cert., Treadmill Co. Says

    Treadmill maker Precor on Tuesday told an Illinois federal judge that certification of a proposed class action over allegedly defective heart rate monitors was inappropriate considering the equipment’s effectiveness varies among users, and the lead consumers admittedly didn’t rely on any advertising material.

  • January 4, 2017

    $9M Wis. Superfund Settlement Gets Judge's OK

    A Wisconsin federal judge on Tuesday signed off on a $9 million settlement in the sprawling litigation over the Lower Fox River and Green Bay Superfund site, resolving cost recovery claims against a city, a sewer agency and three companies brought by Appvion Inc. and NCR Corp.

  • January 4, 2017

    Families Hit Back At GSK'S Zofran Fraud Dismissal Bid

    Plaintiffs in a multidistrict litigation against GlaxoSmithKline PLC told a Massachusetts federal court Tuesday that they adequately set out off-label fraud claims in master complaints linking the anti-nausea drug Zofran to birth defects.

  • January 3, 2017

    J&J Gets $1B Damages Cut In Half In Hip Verdict

    A Texas federal judge on Tuesday slashed nearly in half the more than $1 billion in punitive damages a jury awarded to plaintiffs who claimed Johnson & Johnson and subsidiary DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. rushed a faulty hip implant to market, prompting the plaintiffs to appeal.

Expert Analysis

  • What If The Government Says A False Claim Isn't False?

    Mark Strauss

    The False Claims Act lets whistleblowers with evidence of fraud against the government bring civil suits and recover damages on the government’s behalf. But what if a government agency denies being defrauded, and declares its willingness to keep paying the allegedly false claims? This question — which may be relevant under the Trump administration — is raised by Harman v. Trinity, now before the Fifth Circuit, says Mark Strauss of ... (continued)

  • REVIEW: The Missing American Jury

    Judge William Young

    Face it, the American jury system is dying. The arguments Professor Suja Thomas makes in her new book deserve consideration by everyone interested in how our government actually works and how it might recapture the unifying communitarian experience of direct democracy and actual trial by one’s peers, says U.S. District Court Judge William Young of the District of Massachusetts.

  • The Case Of The Missing Product: What Can A Defendant Do?

    Kevin Sloan

    You get served with a citation in a new products suit. The facts do not look good. But the product itself has been destroyed or misplaced, and is not available for inspection. What happens next? There are substantively powerful and potentially cost-effective procedural paths to go down that can advantageously position a manufacturer’s defenses, says Kevin R. Sloan of Manion Gaynor & Manning LLP.

  • Plumlee V. Pfizer: Don’t Underestimate Statute Of Limitations

    Steven Boranian

    In an opinion that the Ninth Circuit filed recently in a prescription antidepressant class action, the court held that California’s discovery rule did not extend the plaintiff’s time to sue. A closer look at the case reveals how a lack of diligence can doom a lawsuit when the clock is ticking, says Steven Boranian of Reed Smith LLP.

  • Avoiding Law Firm BYOD Risks: Tips For Securing Devices

    Everett Monroe

    Many believe that the solutions to the security problems created by using smartphones for work are primarily technological, but a much larger piece of the puzzle involves the human factor. To achieve reasonable security around mobile devices, law firms must go back to basics — clear policies, effective training and thoughtful oversight, says Everett Monroe of Hanson Bridgett LLP.

  • Tobacco Trial Sheds Light On Punitive Damages Process

    Mitchell Morris

    A Florida jury recently ordered R.J. Reynolds to pay over $8 million in compensatory damages to a man for the smoking-related death of his wife. The next day, in a “Phase II” proceeding, the jury awarded $20 million in punitive damages. The case provides rare insight into the challenges and considerations of punitive damages trials for defendants, says Mitchell Morris of McGuireWoods LLP.

  • 4 Ways Lawyers Can Improve Their Marketing

    Mike Mellor

    Attorneys may not realize the breadth of services that their marketing, design and library teams offer. One of the things I like to do when attorneys start at our firm is give them a download of the kinds of problems we can solve for them so they know how to work with us most effectively, says Mike Mellor, director of marketing at Pryor Cashman LLP.

  • Recipe For Primary Jurisdiction Goes 'Natural'

    James P. Muehlberger

    Last year the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced a formal request for comments to determine if “natural” should be formally defined and, if so, what that definition should be. This change in the FDA’s position has led at least 11 courts to stay litigation involving the term until the agency completes its regulatory proceeding, and the trend is likely to continue, say James Muehlberger and Elizabeth Fessler of Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP.

  • FDA Weighs Pros And Cons Of Off-Label Promotion

    Elizabeth Minerd

    A public meeting held earlier this month by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration demonstrated the diversity of opinion in the current debate over off-label promotion — with some speakers describing it as information sharing based on science and others warning of abuses, says Elizabeth Minerd of Reed Smith LLP.

  • Beyond Bean Counting: How Legal Can Add True Value

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    For legal departments to stay in front of the crowd, cost-cutting alone is not enough. Neither is claims-driven revenue generation, nor running endless analytics of outside legal spend. This is short-term, passive, scarcity-based thinking that keeps legal departments from offering their corporate clients the greatest possible value — competitive advantage, says David Wallace of Herbert Smith Freehills LLP.