National News

Courts & Litigation

Federal Judge Overturns Massachusetts' Ban on Painkiller

By Sheri Qualters |

A Boston federal judge on Tuesday struck down a Massachusetts ban on the painkiller Zohydro ER because the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s approval of the drug trumped the state’s authority.

Boston Marathon bomb suspect Dzhokar Tsarnaev, age 19

Judge Favors Unsupervised Family Visits for Bomb Suspect

By Sheri Qualters |

A Boston federal judge said Wednesday that accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev should be able to see his sisters without a Federal Bureau of Investigation agent present.

Professor Paul Secunda of Marquette University Law School

Court Asked to Protect Public Worker’s Subpoenaed Speech

By Marcia Coyle |

The Roberts Court has been lauded as one of the most protective of speech rights in modern times. But there is at least one area where that praise is less effusive: speech by public employees. The justices on April 28 will revisit that area in a public employee's claim that he was fired for giving subpoenaed testimony during the trial of a corrupt state legislator.

Court Orders Identity of 'Company Doe' Revealed

By Mike Scarcella |

The sealing of the identity of a company that fought to block public access to a consumer safety report was improper, a federal appeals court said Wednesday in ordering the disclosure of its name and publication of case documents.

Mayer Brown's Andrew Pincus

A Busy Two Weeks for Court as Adjournment Draws Nigh

By Marcia Coyle |

Lying, streaming and phoning top the April argument docket of the U.S. Supreme Court as the justices enter the homestretch of the October 2013 term.

Claims Dismissed Against Dialysis Company

By Lisa Hoffman |

Adding water to a compound used in hemodialysis does not make a clinic operator a "manufacturer" of the solution, a federal judge in Colorado has ruled in tossing part of a putative class action against DaVita Healthcare Partners Inc.

Grower Loses Motion to Dismiss Farmworker Claims

By Lisa Hoffman |

A federal magistrate has denied a motion by a California fruit grower to dismiss a putative class action by farmworkers alleging they have not been fully paid for their work and have been cheated out of 10-minute rest breaks.

Robocall Lawsuit Survives Against Cruise Line

By Lisa Hoffman |

Caribbean Cruise Lines has failed to sink a putative class action that claimed the company unlawfully used robocalls to drum up business, but a federal judge allowed the company’s president to disembark from the suit.

Insurer Wins Access to Evidence in Asbestos Case

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

The bankruptcy judge who found widespread evidence of misrepresentation by plaintiffs' lawyers in asbestos cases has granted access to some of that evidence to an insurer and to a cost-containment vendor for insurers.

Ninth Circuit Sustains Attorney’s Extortion Conviction

By Amanda Bronstad |

A California attorney serving prison time for attempting to extort money from the lawyer representing a rabbi in an immigration visa fraud investigation has failed to convince a federal appeals court to reverse his conviction.

A Ford

Asbestos Defendants Seek Access to Bankruptcy Documents

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

Litigation over access to evidence of misrepresentation in asbestos cases is not quite over yet.

50 mg pills of Zoloft

Zoloft Plaintiffs Argue Against Limiting Expert Testimony

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

A key causation witness for plaintiffs who allege Zoloft caused birth defects is not limited to testifying to the four corners of her expert report, plaintiffs attorneys argued in a court filing.

Actos.

Takeda Pharmaceuticals Faces More Actos Plaintiffs

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

One plaintiff's lawsuit in Louisiana federal court over allegations that diabetes drug Actos increases the risk of bladder cancer resulted in a $9 billion verdict. What might a jury do in a case consolidating claims by two plaintiffs?

Ryobi BTS10 table saw.

Table Saw Targeted as Lacking Safety Technology

By Laura Castro |

A Pennsylvania consumer who claims he suffered severe and permanent injuries while using an "unreasonably dangerous" table saw has filed a products liability suit against the manufacturers of the device.

Whole Foods Market. March 25, 2009. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/LEGAL TIMES.

Mislabeling Lawsuit Against Whole Foods Proceeds

By Laura Castro |

A California federal judge has refused to dismiss a class action lawsuit against Whole Foods Market California that accused it of mislabeling several food products as natural when they contain artificial ingredients.

Medical bill

Employee Trust Files Antitrust Action over Hospital Costs

By Laura Castro |

A union trust fund for grocery store workers has filed a class action lawsuit against Sutter Health for violations of California’s antitrust and unfair competition statutes, alleging the unchecked, anti-competitive behavior by the health care provider and its affiliates resulted in substantial overcharges by its hospitals.

A natural gas facility.

Appeals Court Pushes Judge in Gas Suit to Speed It Up

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

A federal appeals court has directed a lower court judge to make up his mind about whether an arbitration agreement pertains to a class-action dispute over a business deal.

Forman Mills

Retailer Penalized for Children’s Clothing Hazard

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

The Consumer Product Safety Commission provisionally approved a $600,000 civil penalty with retail chain Forman Mills Inc. for its failure to report the sale of garments that could put kids at risk of strangulation.

Consolidation of Diet Supplement Cases Rejected

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

Two dietary supplements made by the same company don't have enough in common to warrant pre-trial consolidation, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation has ruled.

Students in school.

Settlements Pending for Los Angeles Schools, Homeless

By Amanda Bronstad |

Pro bono organization Public Counsel has inked two class action settlements that would reinstitute funds to struggling schools and homeless residents in the Los Angeles area affected by California’s budget crisis.

A debt collection notice

Debt Collection Class Action Sent Back to Federal Court

By Lisa Hoffman |

Plaintiffs in a proposed class action against an Illinois debt collector have suffered a setback in their efforts to trade a potentially greater award of damages available in federal court for a presumed friendlier state venue.

Federal Magistrate Judge John Facciola

D.C. Judge Battles DOJ On Searches

By Zoe Tillman |

Federal Magistrate Judge John Facciola was introduced during a 2008 conference as the "Italian Stallion of e-discovery." Long at the forefront on technology and the law, Facciola is back in the national spotlight over the scope of prosecutors' power to access elec­tronically stored information.

Family members of people killed in accidents attributed to General Motors’ defective ignition switch gathered in Washington on April 1, 2014.

GM Docket Is Growing

By Amanda Bronstad |

General Motors Co.'s legal troubles have shifted into overdrive, with plaintiffs lawyers insisting that drivers of recalled cars are risking their lives by getting behind the wheel.

Attorneys David Boies, left, and Theodore B. Olson discuss the issue of gay marriage at the Civil Rights Summit at the LBJ Presidential Library, Tuesday, April 8, 2014 in Austin, Texas.

Next Step for Marriage Equality

By Marcia Coyle |

Two federal appellate courts are poised to decide the constitutionality of three state bans against same-sex marriage and move the fundamental question closer to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Civil Actions

Cases recently filed in the Washington-area district courts.

Christine Searls, Senior Associate General Counsel of CenturyLink.

CENTURYLINK INC.

By George Erb |

The communication company's Denver legal department and the local office of Bryan Cave were instrumental in establishing a pro bono hotline for pro se litigants.

Hungarian Vizsla dog behind a fence

Court OKs Warrantless Animal Rescue When 'Appropriate'

By Sheri Qualters |

Massachusetts' highest court has ruled that officials may enter private property without a search warrant to rescue animals "in appropriate circumstances."

Sealed court documents.

Insurers Join in Efforts to Unseal Asbestos 'Misrepresentation' Evidence

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

Two insurance companies are joining Ford Motor Company's effort to unseal the evidence that led a bankruptcy judge to find “demonstrable misrepresentation” in several asbestos cases.

U.S. District Judge Cathy Seibel

Bayer Moves to Eliminate Mirena IUD Claims

By Amanda Bronstad |

Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals Inc. has moved to dismiss some of about 450 lawsuits filed over its Mirena intrauterine contraceptive device on ground that the cases exceed the applicable statute of limitations.

Horizon organic milk

Defendant Criticizes 'Do-Over' By Experts in Organic Milk Class Actions

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

A milk company defending its labeling against seven proposed class actions said that the plaintiffs are attempting a “do-over” of their expert testimony by having their experts complete new reports.

A stack of documents

Pelvic Mesh Maker Must Provide Discovery About Hernia Products

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

A federal judge has ruled that Cook Medical Inc. must disclose information about its medical devices used to repair hernias even though the manufacturer argued they have nothing to do with the pelvic mesh products plaintiffs have sued over.

A Golden Corral

Class Action Accuses Restaurant of Overtime Violations

By Lisa Hoffman |

A Florida restaurant worker alleges his bosses required him to work under his own name and also under an “alter ego” so the company would not have to pay him overtime or comply with health care reform mandates, according to a proposed class action filed in federal court.

A nursing home

Residents Allege Negligence at Nursing Home in N.D.

By Lisa Hoffman |

At least 44 residents of a North Dakota nursing home have contracted Hepatitis C through the negligence of the ManorCare facility, a proposed class action alleges.

Members of the Arkansas Supreme Court

Arkansas Supreme Court Rejects Class Action Over Medical Records

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

Class action plaintiffs suing over the charges levied to get copies of their medical records are not exempt from taxes, the Arkansas Supreme Court has ruled.

A vaccination

Divided Federal Circuit Rejects Vaccine Injury Claim

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled 2-1 that a claimant did not prove it was more likely than not that her son's brain injury was related to a vaccine he received.

Electronic bingo

Class Certification for Electronic Bingo Players Reversed

By Lisa Hoffman |

Ruling that a lower federal court abused its discretion, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit reversed a decision granting class status to electronic bingo players suing to recover their losses at an Alabama greyhound race track.

Oral surgeon at work

Court: Testimony from Oral Surgeon Improperly Excluded

By Lisa Hoffman |

The expert testimony of an oral surgeon should have been allowed in a product liability suit brought by a patient who contends her use of the drug Zometa led to the destruction of bone in her jaw, a federal appeals court has ruled, reversing a lower court’s decision and remanding the case.

An X26 Taser

Court Dismisses Design Claim Against Taser

By Laura Castro |

A federal appeals court has dismissed a defective design claim brought against Taser International Inc. by the mother of a Missouri man who died of cardiac arrest after being shot in the chest with the device.

Anonymous user on the NOLA website

Court: Newspaper Must Reveal Commenters' Identities

By Mike Scarcella |

The Times-Picayune newspaper in New Orleans cannot shield private identifying information about two people who posted anonymous comments on its website about a corruption probe, a federal appeals court has ruled.

Court Weighs Whether Deportation Fits Crime

By Sheri Qualters |

A federal appellate court heard oral arguments Wednesday about whether immigration judges must consider whether deportation amounts to disproportional punishment for a legal permanent resident following a criminal conviction.

Department of Labor headquarters at the Frances Perkins Building in Washington, DC

Judge Socks Labor Department With Costs of Failed Lawsuit

By Andrew Ramonas |

The U.S. Department of Labor must pay more than $565,000 in attorney fees to an oilfield services company it accused of wage-and-hour violations totaling more than $6 million, a federal judge has ruled.

The Detroit Police and Fire Retirement System.

Judge Reinstates Claims Against Goldman Sachs

By Lisa Hoffman |

After throwing out a putative class action against Goldman Sachs twice before, a federal judge has switched gears on the mortgage securities suit brought by Detroit police and fire retirees and allowed it to proceed.

Class Certified in Download Insurance Lawsuit

By Lisa Hoffman |

Computer security firm Symantec Corp. and one of its contractors face a certified class action brought by consumers who say the companies duped them into buying “download insurance” when the same service was available for free.

Alder Law founder Michael Alder

Lawyer Warns Against California Medical-Bill Precedent

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

The California Supreme Court ruled 2 1/2 years ago that tort plaintiffs can't recover the full amounts billed by their health care providers, only the discounted amounts actually paid by health insurers.

Hebrew National beef hot dogs.

Hotdog Class Action Thrown Out of Federal Court

By Lisa Hoffman |

A federal appeals panel, acting as the “higher authority” to which the maker and consumers of Hebrew National hotdogs must answer, has ruled that a proposed consumer class action challenging the product’s kosher status belongs in state, not federal, court.

Vaginal mesh

Mesh Defendant Objects to Plaintiffs' Sanctions Bid

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

The plaintiffs suing Cook Medical Inc. over its pelvic mesh products have asked for sanctions because they say the defendant made a last-minute document dump that required the cancellation of a deposition of a defense witness.

W. Mark Lanier

Huge Punitive Damages Award in Actos Bellwether Trial

By Amanda Bronstad |

A jury in Louisiana has awarded more than $9 billion in the first federal bellwether trial over claims that taking Actos increases the risk of getting bladder cancer.

Hearings Open Over Plaintiffs' Experts in Zoloft MDL

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

Drugmaker Pfizer Inc. has been aggressively attacking the experts the plaintiffs want to use to show a causal relationship between Zoloft and birth defects. Now the battle over those experts has moved into the courtroom, with hearings this week in Philadelphia on the admissibility of their opinions.

The Temple of Justice at the Washington State Capitol in Olympia, Washington.

Court Upholds $57M Class Action Against Agency

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

The Washington Supreme Court has upheld a $57 million contract class action against the Washington Department of Social and Health Services in favor of caretakers for people with disabilities.

Toyota

Complaint Says Toyota Ignored Oil Problem

By Lisa Hoffman |

Some of the most popular Toyota models suffer from a potentially dangerous defect that causes rapid oil burning, a problem that manifests at about the time the warranty expires and for which Toyota Motor Corp. claims no responsibility, a newly filed class action alleges.

Massachusetts state governor Deval Patrick

Judge: State's Painkiller Ban Appears 'Out of Line'

By Sheri Qualters |

A Boston federal judge said Tuesday that pharmaceutical company Zogenix Inc. would likely win its bid to temporarily stop a Massachusetts state ban on its painkiller Zohydro, but postponed ruling until next week.

Courthouse News Service

Reinstatement for Suit Seeking Access to Court Filings

By Amanda Bronstad |

Courthouse News Service should be able to pursue a lawsuit seeking access to civil complaints because it “presents an important First Amendment question” for the federal courts, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has ruled.

Laundry

Samsung Defeats Washing Machine Class Actions—For Now

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

Samsung has defeated parts of two proposed class actions in New Jersey federal court over its front-loading washing machines.

Plaintiffs Reduce Fee Demand in Prius Litigation

By Amanda Bronstad |

Five plaintiffs law firms that originally sought $4.7 million in fees in a class action settlement over Prius headlight defects have agreed to lower their demand to $855,000.

U.S. Supreme Court building

Conservatives Plan Follow-Up Affirmative Action Attack

By Marcia Coyle |

Edward Blum, head of the one-man Project on Fair Representation, announced on Monday that he is targeting three major universities for potential legal challenges to their use of race in admissions: Harvard University, the University of North Carolina and the University of Wisconsin.

Target.

Target Data-Breach Litigation Coordinated in Minnesota

By Amanda Bronstad |

A federal panel has ordered about 100 consumer class actions filed against Target Corp. over its data breach transferred to Minnesota, where lawyers in related derivative shareholder actions have moved to appoint lead counsel.

Jury box

Dallas Jury Bestows $1.2 Million to Plaintiff in Mesh Suit

By Amanda Bronstad |

A jury in Dallas has awarded $1.2 million against a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary after finding that its pelvic mesh sling was defectively designed.

A Walmart in Charlotte, NC.

Court Overturns Wal-Mart Discrimination Dismissal

By Laura Castro |

A federal appeals court has reversed a Texas district court's dismissal of Stephanie Odle's individual sex discrimination claims against Wal-Mart Stores Inc., finding that the former Lubbock Wal-Mart employee's suit can move forward because it was filed in a timely manner.

A 12-inch Subway ham sandwich

Subway 'Footlong' Settlement Draws Near

By Lisa Hoffman |

The legal saga of Subway's not-quite footlong subs is closing in on settlement, with all major issues resolved except for determining attorney's fees, according to a filing in the case.

A Ford

Lawyers in Ford Acceleration Suit Ordered to File Report

By Amanda Bronstad |

A federal judge has ordered lawyers in a class action alleging sudden acceleration defects against Ford Motor Co. to file a joint report by April 25 outlining what remains of their case following his recent dismissal ruling.

Cigarette Makers Launch New Bid to End Engle Woes

By Julie Triedman |

After several previous efforts fell flat, cigarette companies facing thousands of smoker lawsuits in Florida filed their latest batch of U.S. Supreme Court petitions last week. In nine new petitions for certiorari, they argue that the Florida courts are violating their due process rights, and that "billions of dollars are at risk in what amounts to little more than legal poker."

A subpoena

Mesh Defendant Wants Ex-Supplier’s Subpoena Quashed

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

Mesh defendant C.R. Bard Inc. wants a federal judge to quash a subpoena issued by plaintiffs to a former supplier of monofilaments for its pelvic mesh system products

Neodymium magnet (

Safety Commission Sued Over Buckyball Recall

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

A government watchdog group has filed a freedom of information lawsuit against the Consumer Product Safety Commission over the agency's efforts to hold the former general manager of a company that sold allegedly dangerous rare-earth magnet toys personally responsible for a product recall.

Patton Boggs, Washington, D.C.

A Slimmer Patton Boggs Draws Looks

By Katelyn Polantz |

The end of March brought another flurry of change at Patton Boggs, as several partners in Dallas decamped to McGuireWoods and a New York judge ruled that Chevron Corp. can sue the firm for alleged misconduct.

Civil Actions

Cases recently filed in the Washington-area district courts.

Verdicts & Settlements

Correction

An unidentified soldier holds flowers dropped off at Fort Hood's main gate for shooting victims, Thursday, April 3, 2014, in Fort Hood, Texas. A soldier opened fire Wednesday on fellow service members at the Fort Hood military base, killing three people and wounding 16 before committing suicide.

Security at Fort Hood Could Become Litigation Focus

By Zoe Tillman |

An attorney suing the federal government over the 2009 mass shooting at Fort Hood, Texas, said he expects plaintiffs lawyers are paying close attention as the investigation into this week's fatal shooting at the base unfolds.

Sets of birth control pills

More NuvaRing Cases Transferred to MDL

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

Four California plaintiffs, who objected to the transfer of their cases to Missouri federal court, have had their lawsuits over the NuvaRing birth control transferred to multidistrict litigation pending in the federal Eastern District of Missouri.

Horizon organic milk

Organic Milk Plaintiffs Oppose Efforts to Exclude Their Expert

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

The plaintiffs' nutritional expert in litigation over the marketing of Horizon Organic Milk should be allowed to testify because he has personally researched how the brain is affected by nutrition and has concluded that the representation that this brand of milk helps brain health is untrue, the plaintiffs argued in a recent court filing.

Pharmacy Cleaning Service Tries to Get Out of MDL Over Tainted Steroids

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

A defendant seeking its dismissal from litigation over injectable steroids tainted with fungus said it was only brought into the case because the pharmacy that compounded the medicines has filed for bankruptcy.

X-ray of hand with rheumatoid arthritis.

Preliminary Agreement Reached in Suit Over Arthritis Care Supplements

By Lisa Hoffman |

Schiff Nutrition has reached a preliminary agreement to pay at least $2 million to consumers who purchased arthritis care supplements the company promoted as effective in repairing and rebuilding joints wracked with the painful condition although no scientific evidence backs up the claims.

A nest thermostat.

Nest Accused of False, Misleading Advertising

By Laura Castro |

A Maryland consumer has filed a class action in a California federal court against the maker of a "new generation," wireless thermostat that allegedly fails on its promise to save energy and money.

Whole Foods Market. March 25, 2009. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/LEGAL TIMES.

Suit Accuses Whole Foods of Violating Credit Reporting Act

By Laura Castro |

Whole Foods Market California Inc. has violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act by allegedly conducting background checks and obtaining credit reports on potential employees without valid authorization, a federal class action lawsuit claims.

Facebook signup page

Plaintiffs to File Appeal in Facebook Service Terms Class Action

By Lisa Hoffman |

The plaintiffs in a case that accuses Facebook, Inc. of using children’s names and faces, without consent, for advertising purposes will appeal a federal judge’s dismissal of their proposed class action.

India's search areas for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370

Obstacles to U.S. Lawsuits in Malaysia Airlines Mystery

By Amanda Bronstad |

The disappearance of Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 is unlikely to lead to lawsuits in the United States because, unlike the Asiana Airlines crash last year, there’s no potential case against the American manufacturer, The Boeing Co., according to lawyers with aviation litigation expertise.

Anadarko Agrees to Record $5B Environmental Settlement

By Jenna Greene |

In the U.S. Justice Department’s largest environmental enforcement recovery ever, Kerr-McGee Corp. and its parent Anadarko Petroleum Corp. today agreed to pay $5.15 billion to settle charges that they fraudulently tried to duck responsibility to pay for environmental cleanup after decades of contamination.

Protesters gather outside the Supreme Court during October 2013 arguments in McCutcheon v. FEC

The Post-'McCutcheon' World

By Tony Mauro |

Campaign reform advocates grappled with the possibility that a constitutional amendment might be their only remaining option to limit the power of money in politics in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court's landmark April 2 ruling in McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission.

A Vitamin Shoppe

Class Action Alleges Supplement Labels are Bulked Up

By Lisa Hoffman |

A chain of nutritional supplement stores is the target of a putative class action filed by a consumer who alleges some of the products the business claims are packed with a protein enzyme actually contain less of the compound than advertised, while another ingredient is effectively useless.

A Detroit police car

Detroit Police, Fire Retirement Class Action to Proceed

By Lisa Hoffman |

After throwing out a putative class action against Goldman Sachs twice before, a federal judge has switched gears on the mortgage securities suit brought by Detroit police and fire retirees and allowed it to proceed.

Warning: Password Security Breach

Security Breach Suit Against LinkedIn Pared Down

By Lisa Hoffman |

A putative class action against LinkedIn that follows a computer attack that made public millions of users' passwords, has been pared down. The case will proceed with a focus on allegations that the professional networking site misrepresented the strength of its security protections.

Alabama Supreme Court Reverses Legal Fees in Class Action

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

Nationwide Retirement Solutions, Inc. is not responsible for paying a codefendant's attorney fees and court costs in a class action because a party can't be indemnified for defending claims stemming from its own allegedly wrongful actions, the Alabama Supreme Court has ruled.

A subpoena

Accounts Receivable Firm Gets Proprietary Protection in Vaginal Mesh MDL

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

A company that purchased medical accounts receivable of patients who had pelvic mesh implanted into their bodies does not have to reveal documents that would show the difference between what the firm paid for those accounts and what it gets paid on those accounts at a later time, a federal judge has ruled.

Hurricane Katrina.

Fed Court has Jurisdiction Over Katrina Suits Severed from Class Action

By Laura Castro |

A federal appeals court has ruled that Katrina insurance lawsuits severed from a class action against American National Property and Casualty Co. (ANPAC) belong in federal court, not state court.

General Motors Headquarters in Detorit, MI.

GM Recall Concessions Hardly Mollify Plaintiffs Bar

By Amanda Bronstad |

General Motors Corp.'s hiring of noted claims attorney Kenneth Feinberg has raised the possibility that it might set up a fund to compensate victims of accidents linked to its recent recalls. But the announcement, made by CEO Mary Barra during testimony before Congress, has done little to placate the plaintiffs bar.

Protesters gather outside the Supreme Court in response to the court's ruling in McCutcheon v. FEC

Divided Court Strikes Total Limits on Campaign Contributions

By Marcia Coyle |

In another major blow to the regulation of money in elections, a sharply divided U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday struck down federal limits on the total amounts that individuals may contribute to candidates and political committees.

Protesters gather outside the Supreme Court in response to the court's ruling in McCutcheon v. FEC

Divided Court Strikes Total Limits on Campaign Contributions

By Marcia Coyle |

In another major blow to the regulation of money in elections, a sharply divided U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday struck down federal limits on the total amounts individuals may contribute to candidates and political committees.

Jurisdiction Question Could Settle Hardware Dispute

By Jamie Schuman |

For more than 15 years, assorted tribunals have been trying to figure out whether construction materials "Sealtight" and "Sealtite" are likely to "cause confusion" under the Lanham Act. Now a cert petition asks the U.S. Supreme Court to make sense of the matter.

Protesters gather outside the Supreme Court in response to the court's ruling in McCutcheon v. FEC

Campaign Reform Advocates, Opponents Clash After McCutcheon Ruling

By Tony Mauro |

Campaign reform advocates reacted angrily Wednesday to the U.S. Supreme Court's McCutcheon decision, attacking the justices for coming close to dismantling the long-standing legal structure for limiting the influence of money in political campaigns.

John Roberts in 2003 at his Senate Judiciary confirmation hearing for a seat on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals

Latest Roberts Recusal Highlights Past Legal Work at Hogan

By Tony Mauro |

Eleven years after leaving private practice, Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. on Monday recused from a case almost certainly because of a long-ago law firm representation.

Richard Charnley of Arent Fox.

Attorney Sees Need for Film-Crew Safety Training

By Amanda Bronstad |

The Feb. 20 death of Sarah Jones, a camera assistant during a film shoot in Georgia, has prompted calls for improved safety measures on television and movie sets. Richard Charnley, a partner in the Los Angeles office of Washington's Arent Fox, talks to the NLJ about the incident.

Anna Nicole Smith

Judge Weighs Sanctions in Favor of Anna Nicole Estate

By Amanda Bronstad |

A federal judge is set to decide whether to impose sanctions of up to $44 million against the estate of Anna Nicole Smith’s former stepson.

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan

Justices Skeptical of Broad Claims for Bank Fraud Law

By Marcia Coyle |

The U.S. Department of Justice encountered heavy skepticism in the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday as it defended its aggressive prosecution of bank fraud even when a bank suffers no risk of loss.

theater masks

Play Brings Supreme Court Drama to the Masses

By Tony Mauro |

Starting tonight and for the rest of April, Supreme Court aficionados in Washington won't have to go to the court building to watch an oral argument. They can attend instead a performance of "Arguendo" at the Woolly Mammoth Theatre in Penn Quarter in D.C.

A Samsung Galaxy.

Samsung Accused of Exaggerating Battery Claims

By Lisa Hoffman |

Samsung has been slapped with a putative class action that claims the advertised battery life of the Galaxy S4 smartphone is based on manipulated testing conditions that bear no relation to how consumers actually use the device.

Kay Jewelers is one of the brands of Sterling Jewelers, which had been accused of shortchanging women in pay and promotions.

Arbitration Report Pending in Jeweler’s Sex Bias Lawsuit

By Laura Castro |

A dozen women are suing Sterling Jewelers Inc., the largest specialty jeweler in the United States and parent company of Kay Jewelers, for alleged sex discrimination in its pay and promotion practices since 2003.

steroids

Plaintiffs Seek to Keep Clinics in Tainted Steroid MDL

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

A Tennessee clinic at which patients were injected with steroids infected with a fungus should face liability in the deaths of 150 people who died or suffered illnesses, the plaintiffs argue in court papers.

Alexandra D. Lahav

Professor Argues For Sample Trials in Mass Torts

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

The U.S. Supreme Court disfavored setting individual damages through statistical sampling in Wal-Mart Stores Inc. v. Dukes. But Alexandra Lahav, a University of Connecticut School of Law professor, argues there remains a role for sample trials in mass torts.

50 mg pills of Zoloft

Zoloft Master Recommends Limitations on Discovery

By Amaris Elliott-Engel |

A special discovery master appointed in the Zoloft multidistrict litigation has recommended that the Pfizer Inc. need not provide information about its internal communications about plaintiffs' doctors just yet.