Product Liability

  • April 4, 2018

    L'Oreal Hair Relaxer Injury Suit Trimmed Of Most Claims

    A New York federal judge Tuesday tossed the bulk of a class action accusing L'Oreal USA Inc. of misrepresenting the safety of a hair relaxer that allegedly causes pain and damage to the hair and scalp.

  • April 3, 2018

    Uber Settlement Marks Turning Point For Crash Litigation

    The Uber fatality and quick settlement could herald big changes for personal injury practice. Driverless cars collect more objective evidence and data than conventional ones, making settlements more likely. But the incident also highlights uncertainties about liability.

  • April 3, 2018

    Exxon, Others Can't Halt Remand Of Climate Torts, Gov'ts Say

    A California federal judge should not delay sending three municipalities’ climate change tort suits against Chevron Corp., Exxon Mobil Corp. and others back to state court, the local governments said Monday, arguing the energy giants were unlikely to convince the Ninth Circuit to accept their grounds for removal on appeal.

  • April 3, 2018

    GM Loses Quick-Win Bid In Faulty Ignition Switch MDL

    A New York federal judge declined Tuesday to grant General Motors LLC’s bid for a quick win on certain claims in multidistrict litigation over defective ignition switches, saying it was too early to decide the viability of allegations that consumers paid more than they would have for cars had they known about the problems.

  • April 3, 2018

    SC Johnson Can’t Escape Suit Over Sunscreen SPF Value

    An Illinois federal judge has kept alive a proposed class action alleging a mineral-based sunscreen has an SPF of 30 or less rather than the advertised SPF of 50+, saying the SPF testing conducted by the consumers who brought the suit complies with U.S. Food and Drug Administration protocol and therefore is not preempted by federal law.

  • April 3, 2018

    J&J Tests Weren't Meant To Find Asbestos In Talc, Jury Told

    Johnson & Johnson’s talcum powder contained asbestos for years, and the company hid this fact from consumers and regulators by using tests it knew wouldn’t detect the toxic mineral, counsel for a man alleging J&J products caused his mesothelioma said Tuesday during closing arguments in a New Jersey trial.

  • April 3, 2018

    Vitamin Shoppe Answer Claims It Pumped Up Powder Benefits

    The Vitamin Shoppe has escaped “hypothetical” allegations against two of its signature amino acid-based dietary supplements but must confront a proposed class action complaint that the company inflated the muscle-building power of its creatine-glutamine powder.

  • April 3, 2018

    FDA Orders Kratom Product Recall After Salmonella Scare

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday ordered a mandatory recall for all food products manufactured by Las Vegas-based Triangle Pharmanaturals LLC that contain powdered kratom, a plant used as an opioid substitute, saying several packages contained salmonella and the company refused to voluntarily comply with the recall.

  • April 3, 2018

    Insurer's Late Offer To Defend Can't Nix Builder's Suit

    A Washington federal judge Tuesday sided with a general contractor in a lawsuit over coverage for claims of allegedly shoddy work in building a mixed-use development, saying the insurer acted in bad faith despite a belated offer to defend the construction company from the underlying lawsuit.

  • April 3, 2018

    Citgo Urges Full 5th Circ. To Rethink $81M CWA Penalty

    Citgo Petroleum Corp. on Monday asked the full Fifth Circuit to reconsider its confirmation of an $81 million Clean Water Act penalty related to a 2006 oil spill, arguing that the U.S. government’s expert testimony should not have been allowed in the damage calculations.

  • April 3, 2018

    Hain Celestial Dodges Bulk Of Juice False Ad Suit

    A New York federal judge tossed the bulk of a proposed class action alleging The Hain Celestial Group Inc. misrepresents that its juices are cold-pressed, raw and “fresh,” finding Tuesday that the allegations related to heat processing can proceed but the remainder cannot.

  • April 3, 2018

    SEPTA Fatal Bus Crash Suit Sent Back To State Court

    A Pennsylvania federal court has dismissed claims for violation of due process from a suit against the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority over a fatal bus collision and sent the remaining claims back to state court.

  • April 3, 2018

    DOJ Looks To Help Resolve Opioid MDL As Friend Of Court

    The U.S. Department of Justice sought Monday to step into multidistrict litigation alleging opioid manufacturers overstated the drugs' benefits and downplayed risks when marketing them to doctors, looking to help craft nonmonetary settlements to aid the public and reimburse the government for treatment of users.

  • April 3, 2018

    Class Claims Pared In Suit Over Faulty Wood Shingles

    A New Jersey federal judge pared claims from a putative class action over Maibec Inc.'s allegedly defective wood shingles, ruling Monday that the suing consumers hadn't entered into a contract with the California manufacturer that ensured the product's performance.

  • April 3, 2018

    Insurer Needn't Cover Tuna Labeling Fight, 11th Circ. Says

    Auto-Owners Insurance Co. had no duty to defend tuna purveyor Anova Food Inc. in two false marketing suits brought by competitor King Tuna, the Eleventh Circuit affirmed on Tuesday, agreeing with a lower court that the allegations in the underlying actions fall squarely within an exclusion in Anova's policy.

  • April 3, 2018

    Passenger Claims Lasting Distress As Boeing Trial Begins

    An attorney for a woman suing Boeing for emotional and physical injuries after a two-foot hole opened up in the plane during a 2010 flight told a Massachusetts federal jury Tuesday their client's life has been irreparably altered by the incident, but the airplane maker said her claims "simply don't add up."

  • April 3, 2018

    Fla. Jury Blames Ex-Bolivian Prez For Civilian Deaths

    A Florida federal jury found a former Bolivian president and a government minister liable Tuesday for the deaths of eight bystanders shot by soldiers during protests in 2003 and awarded the victims' families $10 million in damages for their loss.

  • April 3, 2018

    Pa. Bill Would Return Asbestos Claims To Workers' Comp

    A Pennsylvania lawmaker introduced a bill on Monday that would once again make the workers’ compensation system the exclusive remedy for job-related asbestos claims following a landmark ruling by the state’s Supreme Court allowing employers to face civil lawsuits over certain long-latency diseases.

  • April 3, 2018

    Target Says Its Makeup Wipes Are Appropriately Advertised

    Target Corp. urged a Minnesota federal court Monday to toss a proposed class action alleging misrepresentations about its makeup wipes, saying the statements at issue are “quintessential puffery” and would not deceive a reasonable consumer.

  • April 2, 2018

    AIG, CNA Can't Prorate Ship Interior Co.'s Asbestos Coverage

    Ship interior company Hopeman Brothers Inc. can seek the full limits of AIG Inc. and CNA Financial Corp. excess insurance policies in a single year to cover costs tied to asbestos injury claims, a Virginia federal judge ruled on Monday, rejecting the insurers’ bid to restrict their potential coverage to a proportional share of the company’s losses.

Expert Analysis

  • Litigating The Internet Of Things

    Leslie Gutierrez

    With the rise of the internet of things, vast new quantities of data are traversing the cloud. Companies that do not actively and continuously strengthen their cybersecurity protocols are at risk for breaches — and for the consumer class actions that may follow, says Leslie Gutierrez of Husch Blackwell LLP.

  • After A Drone Accident, Who Can Be Held Responsible?

    John O'Brien

    The Federal Aviation Administration's evolving regulations on the use of unmanned aerial vehicles, as well as new anti-collision technologies, may prevent some drone-related accidents. But collisions, near-misses and malfunctions can still occur, with serious consequences. So citizen access to the courts is particularly important in the context of drone safety, says John O'Brien of John O'Brien & Associates.

  • Reading The 9th Circ.'s Tea Leaves On Injunctive Standing

    Alexandra Laks

    In Victor v. Bigelow and Khasin v. Bigelow, the Ninth Circuit recently found that injunctive standing in the misbranding context is limited and requires a current intent to purchase challenged products in the future. Whether a plaintiff has standing to pursue an injunction may depend on the plaintiff’s deposition testimony, say Alexandra Laks and Lucia Roibal of Morrison & Foerster LLP.

  • Overcoming The Mistrust Of Science In An Alt-Fact Age

    Kirstin Abel

    You cannot fight alternative facts with facts alone. But with a combination of inoculation, changing the narrative, and building common ground between the jury and your experts, you should be able to significantly lessen their impact, says Kirstin Abel, managing partner at Bodyfelt Mount LLP and vice chair of the Trial Techniques and Tactics Committee of the International Association of Defense Counsel.

  • Insurance Tips For Defendants In Opioid Litigation

    Anna Engh

    Several types of insurance policies can potentially cover costs of defense and ultimate liability for pharmaceutical manufacturers, wholesale distributors and retailers defending against opioid-related lawsuits, but policyholders must be wary of the potential issues that may arise, say Anna Engh and Cléa Liquard of Covington & Burling LLP.

  • The Continuing Evolution Of Personal Jurisdiction

    Kevin Penhallegon

    It was anticipated that last year's U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Bristol-Myers Squibb would have immediate and significant impacts nationwide. Those impacts have been seen at the state level in recent months, as evidenced by several trial courts dismissing out-of-state plaintiffs’ claims where specific personal jurisdiction could not be established, says Kevin Penhallegon of Miles & Stockbridge PC.

  • California's Evolving Standard On Expert Opinion Evidence

    Peter Choate

    A California appeals court's recent decision in Apple v. Superior Court explicitly holds that the Sargon standard applies when a party seeks to admit expert opinion evidence. Practitioners should seek to preserve this issue for appeal and urge the California Supreme Court to resolve it, say Peter Choate and William Dance of Tucker Ellis LLP.

  • Massachusetts Focuses On The Elements Of Spoliation

    Alexander Zodikoff

    The Massachusetts Appeals Court recently held that a finding of spoliation requires both the negligent and intentional loss or destruction of evidence, and awareness at the time that the evidence could help resolve a dispute. This strict interpretation of the doctrine of spoliation follows a trend in Massachusetts litigation, says Alexander Zodikoff of Manion Gaynor & Manning LLP. 

  • How Emerging Sources Of ESI Will Impact Discovery

    Charles McGee

    Late last year, the Sedona Conference released the third edition of its principles addressing electronic document production, updated to account for innovations like Snapchat and Twitter. It may be necessary for these principles to be updated more often in order to keep pace with technology, says Charles McGee III of Murphy & McGonigle PC.

  • Car Seat Heaters Still Producing Burns — And Litigation

    Sean Kane

    Despite decades of research on safe temperature thresholds for car seat heaters, some automakers are still designing heaters to work in higher temperature ranges, still manufacturing heaters that get much hotter than their design specifications and still forgoing simple countermeasures that their peers have been implementing since the 1980s, say Sean Kane and Ellen Liberman of Safety Research & Strategies Inc.