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Product Liability

  • September 6, 2018

    11th Circ. OKs Tobacco Loss On Engle Concealment Claims

    The Eleventh Circuit ruled Wednesday that the due process rights of tobacco companies are not violated when juries in smokers’ trials rely on the original Engle jury’s determinations to find for individual plaintiffs on their claims that the companies concealed the health risks of smoking to the public.

  • September 6, 2018

    Kona Beer Drinkers Seek Class Cert. In Packaging Suit

    Kona Brewing Co. customers claiming the company dupes consumers into thinking mainland-made beer is brewed in Hawaii urged a California federal judge Thursday to certify a Golden State shoppers class, arguing that the product’s packaging confusingly lists Kona among its brewing locations, when only Hawaii-sold suds are made there.

  • September 6, 2018

    Ford Issues Recall Of About 2M Vehicles Over Fire Concerns

    Ford Motor Co. Thursday issued a recall of nearly 2 million F-150 Regular Cab and SuperCrew Cab pickup trucks, saying the front seat belts in the vehicles have the potential to start fires during collisions.

  • September 6, 2018

    Caterpillar Says Couple Is Forum Shopping In Injury Row

    Caterpillar Inc. urged a Michigan federal court to sanction a couple the heavy equipment maker accuses of forum shopping their “reckless” and “misleading” suit over an allegedly negligently designed front-end loader, the third suit of its kind from the pair.

  • September 6, 2018

    Committee In Drywall MDL Urges La. Court To Stay Fla. Claims

    The steering committee in the Chinese drywall multidistrict litigation fired back Thursday at Chinese manufacturers' motion to dismiss all individuals with properties in Florida from the Louisiana property damage action, telling a Louisiana federal court that the claims should be stayed as a protective measure since their appropriate venue has been challenged.

  • September 6, 2018

    Monsanto Can't Round Up Chemical Docs From Advocacy Org

    A New York judge handed a defeat to agrichemical giant Monsanto Co. on Thursday in its fight for documents from an advocacy group that has called for a halt on the use of glyphosate, the key ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup weed killer, with the judge saying the subpoena risked "chilling" free speech and political activity.

  • September 6, 2018

    American Airlines Slips Out Of Toxic Uniforms Suit

    An Illinois federal judge let American Airlines loose from a proposed class action over a batch of uniforms that allegedly caused health problems among flight attendants and pilots, saying the employees' claims are barred by state worker compensation laws.

  • September 5, 2018

    Fla. Appeals Court Affirms DQ Of Ferraro Firm In Engle Case

    A Florida appeals court weighed in Wednesday on the ongoing fight to disqualify a law firm battling Philip Morris in dozens of smokers’ lawsuits, ruling that the trial court did not err when it disqualified the firm because it had hired a lawyer who had done work for the cigarette company.

  • September 5, 2018

    Utah Driver Sues Tesla After Car Crashes In Autopilot

    A Utah woman who rear-ended stopped traffic while operating a Telsa car in autopilot mode has sued the company in state court claiming sales representatives told her the vehicle would brake automatically. 

  • September 5, 2018

    Drivers Say Bosch, GM Can't Ax Diesel Emissions RICO Suit

    Drivers fired back Tuesday at Bosch and General Motors' joint bid to slash an amended proposed class action alleging the companies schemed to install emissions-cheating devices on Chevrolet Cruze diesel cars, saying they have ample evidence backing their Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act claims.

  • September 5, 2018

    Kinder Morgan Takes Groundwater Case To High Court

    A Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP subsidiary has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to review the Fourth Circuit’s ruling that the Clean Water Act prohibits pollution to groundwater that’s connected to other waterways, arguing states — not the federal government — have the authority to regulate such discharges.

  • September 5, 2018

    Monster Energy Says Rival Markets 'Modern-Day Snake Oil'

    Monster Energy Co. sued Vital Pharmaceuticals Inc. in California federal court Tuesday, saying the rival energy drink maker falsely advertises its Bang beverage as a miracle potion that delivers cures “that have evaded scientists” while disparaging the quality and advantages of Monster drinks.

  • September 5, 2018

    Ford Gets Initial OK On $300M Deal To Exit Takata MDL

    A Florida federal judge granted preliminary approval on Wednesday to a $299.1 million deal for Ford Motor Co. to exit multidistrict litigation over defective Takata Corp. air bags and hasten the removal of dangerous air bag inflators from 6 million affected vehicles.

  • September 5, 2018

    FDA Ordered To Finish Overdue Graphics For Tobacco Labels

    A federal judge in Massachusetts ordered the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday to finish designing full-color, graphic warning labels that were due seven years ago under a law mandating the ugly imagery of tobacco’s health consequences be placed on cigarette packs and advertisements.

  • September 5, 2018

    Gwyneth Paltrow's Co. Settles Vaginal Egg Health Claims Suit

    Goop Inc., Gwyneth Paltrow’s women's fashion and wellness company, agreed to pay $145,000 to settle a lawsuit brought by California officials accusing it of making bogus health claims about its vaginal "egg" products because the benefits were not backed by scientific evidence. 

  • September 5, 2018

    Jimmy John's Store Sued Over Salmonella Outbreak

    A Wisconsin Jimmy John’s allegedly at the center of a 2017 salmonella outbreak was sued Tuesday by one of its purported victims, a woman who said the chain had long known of safety issues with the believed culprit, sprouts.

  • September 5, 2018

    Tribes Can't Have Opioid Suits Sent To State Court From MDL

    An Ohio federal judge rejected bids by two tribes to remand to state court their suits against McKesson Corp. and other companies over the opioid crisis, ruling that the claims belong in federal court because McKesson was subject to federal control under a government contract when it allegedly allowed the drugs to be diverted.

  • September 5, 2018

    Bell & Howell Can't Nix Pest Repeller False Ad Suit

    A New York federal judge on Wednesday refused to dismiss a putative class action claiming Bell & Howell sold an ultrasonic pest repeller that failed to work as advertised, noting the plaintiffs’ evidence included a picture of a mouse apparently resting on top of an active repeller.

  • September 5, 2018

    Toyota Recalls 1M Vehicles Over Electrical Wire Fire Risk

    Toyota will recall nearly 1 million of its Prius and C-HR compact SUV vehicles over concerns that an exposed wire in the engine can short-circuit and cause fires, the company said Wednesday.

  • September 5, 2018

    NJ Construction Co. Must Face Accident Suit, Court Says

    A New Jersey appeals court on Wednesday reversed part of a ruling that dismissed a construction worker's personal injury suit against two companies over liability for his fall off scaffolding, finding that the company that supplied the equipment was not at fault but remanding the suit for trial to determine who was in charge of operations at the site.

Expert Analysis

  • For Self-Driving Car Makers, Industry Standards Matter

    Allen Patatanyan

    When a self-driving Uber car ran over an Arizona pedestrian earlier this year, the company inadvertently shone a spotlight on the importance of industry standards. Failing to meet these benchmarks could be interpreted as a violation of the standard of care owed to a plaintiff by a corporate defendant, says Allen Patatanyan of West Coast Trial Lawyers.

  • Innovator Liability Flunks The Dormant Commerce Clause

    Richard Dean

    Two circuit court decisions issued in May invoked the dormant commerce clause to strike down enforcement of state laws beyond state borders. It is not surprising that there is also a dormant commerce clause argument in regard to innovator liability, says Richard Dean of Tucker Ellis LLP.

  • Jones Day Case Highlights Questions Of Atty Privilege Abroad

    Ana Reyes

    Germany’s highest court ruled this month that prosecutors may review the Jones Day documents they seized related to the firm’s representation of Volkswagen. This is a stark reminder that American litigators need to be aware of how attorney-client privilege laws abroad can impact litigation in the United States, say Ana Reyes and Matthew Heins of Williams & Connolly LLP.

  • Bristol-Myers Unlikely To Shake Up Class Action Landscape

    Alec Schultz

    The U.S. Supreme Court’s Bristol-Myers opinion last year set a high jurisdictional bar for some mass tort claims. Now plaintiffs lawyers fear — and defense lawyers hope — that courts will apply the same reasoning to stifle nationwide class actions. But the effect of this ruling on national class actions is likely to be minimal, say Alec Schultz and Aaron Brownell of Léon Cosgrove LLP.

  • The Future Of Authenticating Audio And Video Evidence

    Jonathan Mraunac

    The recent emergence of artificial intelligence-based technology has prompted serious concerns about the future integrity of recordings. Attorneys must think critically about standards for authenticating audio and video evidence as well as legislative and regulatory safeguards to discourage pervasive manipulation and forgery, says Jonathan Mraunac of Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart PC.

  • It's All Too Easy To Sell An 'Unregistered Pesticide'

    Jesse Medlong

    Whether a product is legally considered a “pesticide” depends as much on the label as on the chemicals it contains. Retailers and manufacturers face significant liability for selling products that would not, in fact, be pesticides if not for careless labeling. And the problem only increases as e-retailing grows, say Jesse Medlong and George Gigounas of DLA Piper.

  • And Now A Word From The Panel: A Flood Of MDLs

    Alan Rothman

    At its most recent meeting, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation considered and denied a petition for an MDL proceeding to centralize flood insurance claims arising from recent hurricanes. The decision shows the careful line the panel must walk when considering petitions featuring cases with a variety of circumstances, says Alan Rothman of Arnold & Porter.

  • Opinion

    Law360's Global 20 Doesn't Acknowledge Global Networks

    Glenn Cunningham

    While I read with interest Law360's report analyzing the top 20 global law firms of 2018, I also noticed it doesn't tell the whole story. Global networks of independent law firms compare favorably with multinational firms in terms of geographic coverage, legal expertise, and awareness of local cultures and customs, says Glenn Cunningham of Interlaw Ltd.

  • Will Blood Testing Revive Medical Monitoring Claims?

    Tony Hopp

    In Burdick v. Tonoga, a New York state trial court recently certified what appears to be the first medical monitoring class defined by the level of a particular chemical measured in class members’ blood serum, signaling a potential revival of interest in medical monitoring class actions, say attorneys with Steptoe & Johnson LLP.

  • Time For Sunshine On 3rd-Party Litigation Funding

    Mary Novacheck

    On July 1, Wisconsin became the first state to require disclosure of third-party litigation financing contingent on the outcome of cases. Individual states' and courts' efforts to shed more light on such funding arrangements are an inconsistent patchwork. The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure should be revised to require such disclosure nationwide, says Mary Novacheck of Bowman and Brooke LLP.