Courts Litigation

An Employee Spoke Out on, and Now the EEOC Is Suing His Company

By Erin Mulvaney |

The EEOC on Wednesday sued IXL Learning Inc. over claims the company violated federal law and retaliated against a transgender employee who'd posted anti-discrimination comments on the job recruiting website The case could serve as the latest example showing how companies and courts are grappling with protections for employees as technology platforms evolve.

Fox News offices in Washington, D.C.

Counsel for Fox News Seeks Sanctions Against Ex-Show Host's Lawyer

By Jason Grant |

Fox News fired back at Andrea Tantaros on Wednesday, claiming that her allegations against the network were an "outright hoax," and requesting sanctions that include a dismissal of the case and a disciplinary referral for Judd Burstein, Tantaros' Manhattan-based lawyer.

U.S. Justice Department headquarters in Washington.

Proposed DOJ Corporate Crime-Fighting Budget Suffers Few Cuts

By Sue Reisinger |

Though the U.S. Department of Justice took a small hit in President Donald Trump's 2018 budget request, the Criminal Division actually saw its budget increase slightly. By comparison, however, the Civil Division did not fare quite as well.

Ted Olson, of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, testifies before the House Financial Services Committee, during a hearing entitled “The Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection’s Unconstitutional Design,” on March 21, 2017.

DC Circuit Shows No Sign of Punting on CFPB's Constitutionality

By C. Ryan Barber |

The D.C. Circuit's en banc argument in PHH v. CFPB was one of the hottest tickets in Washington on Wednesday. Here are some highlights from the 90-minute hearing over the constitutionality of the single-director structure at the President Barack Obama-era agency long in the crosshairs of Republicans and criticized by business advocates and financial companies.

CFPB director Richard Cordray.

The CFPB Is Fighting for Its Life. Here's What to Know

By C. Ryan Barber |

From the day it was born out of the Dodd-Frank reforms, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has faced questions over the constitutionality of its independent, single-director structure. On Wednesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit will take a step toward providing an answer, as a full panel of 11 judges will hear arguments in the mortgage provider PHH Corp.'s appeal of a $109 million penalty. Here are seven things to know.

President Donald Trump

Trump's DOJ Can't Quickly End Suit Over Rule-Rollback Order

By Marcia Coyle |

A lawsuit challenging the Trump administration's order that agencies eliminate two existing regulations for each new one will go forward despite the U.S. Justice Department's effort to end it quickly on procedural grounds.

EEOC Fights Ninth Circuit Ruling That 'Institutionalizes' Gender Pay Gap

By Erin Mulvaney |

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission said a recent federal appeals court decision "institutionalizes" the gender pay gap by allowing employers to pay women less than men based on previous salaries.

Bud Abbott and Lou Costello perform

Strike 3 for Abbott & Costello Heirs' 'Who's on First' Copyright Dispute

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

After a swing and a miss at both the trial court and appellate level, a copyright infringement lawsuit over the use of comedy duo Bud Abbott and Lou Costello's "Who’s on First" routine has struck out, with the U.S. Supreme Court declining to review the case.

Skadden Loses a Tax Dispute, and Jenner Wins Fee Fight

By Marcia Coyle |

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday delivered multimillion-dollar good news and bad news to two major law firms. Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom lost its challenge to a tax refund in Michigan. Jenner & Block prevailed in a fee dispute that involved a former client. Here's a snapshot of the two cases.

U.S. Capitol building in Washington, D.C.

Insurers Mount Pressure as US House, HHS Try to Resolve ACA Case

By Mike Scarcella |

Lawyers for the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services on Monday asked a federal appeals court to freeze for another 90 days a dispute over billions of dollars in insurance industry subsidies under the Affordable Care Act, a delay that could further unnerve the health insurance markets.

U.S. Supreme Court building

Supreme Court Limits Venue Shopping in Patent Litigation

By Tony Mauro |

Justice Clarence Thomas, writing for an 8-0 court in TC Heartland v. Kraft Foods Group Brands, said “a domestic corporation ‘resides’ only in its state of incorporation for purposes of the patent venue statute.”

Roger Ailes poses at Fox News in New York on Sept. 29, 2006.

Will 'Dead Man's Statute' Help Fox Mount Defense Without Ailes?

By Todd Cunningham |

The 19th century evidentiary rule could make it harder for Fox News employees to prove they were sexually harassed by the iconic conservative newsman Roger Ailes.

St. Louis downtown at twilight.

Missouri High Court Voids Ferguson-Inspired Court Fine Cap

By Michael Booth |

The Missouri Supreme Court has struck down a law — drafted based on city funding information revealed during the investigation into the 2014 Ferguson shooting of Michael Brown — that capped revenues raised from traffic fines at 12.5 percent for a group of municipalities in St. Louis County.

A rainbow flag outside the U.S. Supreme Court in 2015.

Wal-Mart Settlement in First LGBT Workers' Class Action Reflects Larger Shift

By Erin Mulvaney |

Wal-Mart Stores Inc.'s multimillion-dollar agreement this week to compensate employees who were refused benefits for same-sex partners marks one of the first class action settlements brought on behalf of LGBT workers, and it comes at a time when the legal and corporate landscapes are moving toward embracing equal protections.

Zillow Faces CFPB Scrutiny, Amazon Mulls Pharma Play, and SEC Drains Big Law

By Mike Scarcella |

Escape the daily flood of Trump news dominating the Washington headlines with this roundup of big regulatory developments. Zillow is facing CFPB scrutiny, Amazon mulls a pharmaceuticals play, Democratic state AGs move to defend a key part of Obamacare, and the SEC is boosting its ranks in new hires from Big Law. And here's a story about ducks at the U.S. Capitol.

David Sanford.

Can Litigation Solve Big Law's Gender Equity Problem?

By Scott Flaherty |

Big Law has a major gender equality problem, according to David Sanford, the chairman of Sanford Heisler Sharp, who is the lead lawyer in a trio of high-profile gender discrimination cases brought by female partners at Am Law 200 firms.

Paul Hanly of Hanly Conroy Bierstein Sheridan Fisher & Hayes, a firm that has now merged with Simmons Browder Gianaris Angelides & Barnerd to form Simmons Hanly Conroy. HANDOUT.

Meet the Plaintiffs Lawyers Signing on to Help Gov'ts Sue Big Pharma Over Opioid Epidemic

By Kristen Rasmussen |

A growing wave of plaintiffs lawyers are joining state and local governments in filing lawsuits against big pharmaceutical companies blaming them for the prescription opioid addiction epidemic and trying to recover taxpayer funds spent dealing with it.

U.S. District Judge Federico A. Moreno.

4 Automakers Agree to Pay $553M on Takata Air Bag Claims

By Celia Ampel |

Toyota, Subaru, Mazda and BMW agree to the settlement affecting more than 15 million consumers.

U.S. Justice Department headquarters in Washington.

FCPA Pilot Program Nets 22 Voluntary Disclosures in Past Year: DOJ

By Sue Reisinger |

The U.S. Department of Justice's pilot program for violators of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act brought in 22 voluntary disclosures in its first year, a significant increase from 13 voluntary disclosures the year before.


What Happens When Your Practice Management Software Goes Dark?

By Gabrielle Orum Hernández |

LexisNexis decision to shutter its Firm Manager software could be a reminder to revisit firm data exit strategies.

Willkie Partner, Other Lawyers Land SEC Appointments

By Katelyn Polantz |

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has staffed up with five Big Law alumni, including a rainmaker at Willkie Farr & Gallagher in New York.

Judge Janice Rogers Brown

DC Circuit Judge Derides $380M Cy Pres Decision as Slush Fund

By Cogan Schneier |

The 2-1 decision from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit allows the use of the controversial practice in a decades-old class action discrimination case.

The Bushmaster AR-15 rifle Adam Lanza used in the December 2012 shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut. The shooting killed 20 children and six adults.

Gunmakers Urge Conn. Supreme Court to Toss Sandy Hook Case


Remington and Bushmaster claim the families lack standing to bring the liability lawsuit, and that they are protected by a federal law.

Linda Klein, president of the American Bar Association, speaks at the group's midyear meeting in February in Miami.

ABA Counters Trump's Transgender Directive in Appeals Court

By Marcia Coyle |

The consequences of discrimination follow transgender students and their classmates into the legal profession, warned the American Bar Association in an amicus brief that urged a federal appellate court to find that such unfairness violates federal civil rights.

Orly Lobel, a professor of employment and labor law at the University of San Diego School of Law.

Use of Noncompete Clauses Grows Even as More States Move to Limit Them

By Sue Reisinger |

Companies and law firms increasingly are inserting noncompete clauses into employment contracts but more of those contracts are winding up in litigation and more states in the United States are passing laws to restrict their use.

These Two Firms Are Driving a Surge in Health Sector Securities Class Actions

By Amanda Bronstad |

Securities lawsuits have become a major headache for life sciences companies, according to recent reports. And two plaintiffs' firms, Pomerantz and The Rosen Law Firm, are leading the charge.

David Stras, Associate Justice of the Minnesota Supreme Court, speaking at the Federalist Society’s 2016 National Lawyers Convention, at The Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2016.

David Stras: Trump Judicial Nominee and SCOTUS Reformer

By Tony Mauro |

David Stras once wrote that U.S. Supreme Court justices should not have term limits. Instead, he said they should be incentivized to leave when they get old, through "golden parachute" pensions and a heavier workload, including being forced to hear cases around the country by "riding the circuits." Stras, 42, an associate justice of the Minnesota Supreme Court, may be able to continue his scholarly scrutiny from the inside. President Donald Trump this month announced plans to nominate Stras to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit.

Partner Hits Proskauer with $50 Million Gender Bias Suit

By Scott Flaherty |

An unnamed Proskauer partner in Washington, D.C., alleges she is a victim of gender discrimination and accused a prominent partner in the office of harassment.

Walter C. Little

Ex-Foley & Lardner Partner Charged With Insider Trading After Move to Bradley Arant

By Brian Baxter |

Walter "Chet" Little, who left Foley & Lardner last summer to join the Tampa office of Bradley Arant Boult Cummings, has been hit with criminal insider trading charges by federal prosecutors in New York. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has also filed a parallel civil case against Little and a co-defendant.

CFPB Director Richard Cordray.

Trump's Justice Department Works Both Sides of the CFPB

By Marcia Coyle |

The Trump administration's U.S. Justice Department is both simultaneously challenging and backing the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, creating a litigation whirlwind as Republicans and business advocates push reforms that would strip some power from the Obama-era federal agency.

Justice Neil Gorsuch.

Neil Gorsuch Lays Down Some Early Markers

By Marcia Coyle |

What have U.S. Supreme Court advocates learned from Justice Neil Gorsuch based on his early sittings? "Justice Gorsuch comes as advertised: someone deeply committed to ruling by the text and the Constitution's underpinnings, like federalism," Mayer Brown's Timothy Bishop, a veteran high court advocate, says. Here's a look at some early observations of the court's newest member.


US Supreme Court to Look at Corporate Liability Over Mosquito Bites

By Erin Mulvaney |

Mosquitoes now are at the center of a liability question the U.S. Supreme Court could consider for the first time Thursday: Should the Union Pacific railroad company have protected employee William Nami and other workers from the mosquitoes? In a 5-1 ruling, the Texas Supreme Court ruled in favor of the rail company. But courts are split on the issue.

A large crowd rallies on the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court, led by top Democrat lawmakers, to denounce President Donald Trump’s executive order banning immigration from 7 Muslim-majority countries, on January 30, 2017.

Marcia Coyle, on PBS NewsHour, Reviews Travel Ban Arguments

By ALM Staff |

Marcia Coyle, the National Law Journal's senior Washington correspondent and a veteran Supreme Court reporter, on Monday spoke with PBS NewsHour's William Brangham about the oral arguments in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

Could Fox News Woes Lead to Sky Deal Falling?

By Todd Cunningham |

With fallout from the network's sexual harassment scandal threatening Chairman Rupert Murdoch’s bid to complete 21st Century Fox’s $14.8 billion acquisition of Sky News in the U.K., approval could turn on what's known as the "fit and proper" test.


Lit Funders Get a Little Sunshine—Whether They Want It or Not

By Ben Hancock |

Publicizing a litigation funding deal is one way for a small company—or a small law firm—to signal that it's ready to fight. Still, the industry is a long way from full transparency.

Court Confronts Scope of EEOC's Power to Dig Into Company Files

By Erin Mulvaney |

The accounting firm BDO USA could be forced to disclose certain internal documents to U.S. regulators who are investigating claims the company discriminated and retaliated against female employees, including the chief human resources officer. A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit on Thursday overturned a lower court's decision that blocked enforcement of EEOC subpoena.

Emojis taken from Surveying the Law of Emojis paper, published by Eric Goldman, Santa Clara University - School of Law.

What You Need to Know About Emoji Law (Yes, That's a Thing)

By Ross Todd |

"Prepare for the coming emoji onslaught," warns Santa Clara University law professor Eric Goldman, who sees ramifications for contract law, criminal evidence and IP disputes.

5 Questions Would-Be Whistleblowers Need to Ask

By David Ruiz |

Becoming a whistleblower is emotionally exhausting and potentially career-ending. We reached out to labor and employment attorneys about which questions employees should ask themselves when they're considering whether to expose wrongdoing by their companies.

Casino Surveillance Technicians' Labor Dispute Draws 'Ocean's Eleven' Comparison

By Erin Mulvaney |

Casino surveillance technicians may have unique power to work covertly with managers to spy on other employees, or even pull off sabotage a la "Ocean's Eleven," and therefore should not be able to unionize with other workers, attorneys for major Las Vegas casinos argued recently in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.

Noel Francisco

Noel Francisco, Trump's SG Nominee, Reveals Divestiture Plan in Ethics Pledge

By Marcia Coyle |

Noel Francisco, still awaiting a hearing on his nomination as U.S. solicitor general, has promised to divest his interests in technology, financial and pharmaceutical companies—including Apple Inc., Vanguard Financials and Merck & Co.—if he wins Senate confirmation. In his financial disclosure form, the former Jones Day partner reported $4.6M in his partnership share plus earnings supplement.

Thomas G. Hungar. Aaron C. Hayes/Daily Report. 11/17/2009

Gov't Doesn't Owe Health Insurers, US House Tells Court

By By Kristen Rasmussen |

The U.S. House of Representatives on Monday asked for permission from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit to file an amicus brief urging it to affirm the lower court’s ruling in a case involving failed Chicago-based health insurer Land of Lincoln Mutual Health Insurance. The insurer is arguing the government owes it money under the ACA Risk Corridor program; the U.S. government says it doesn't.

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit Chief Judge Sharon Prost.

Appellate Court Won't Overhaul 'On-Sale' Patent Bar

By Scott Graham |

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled a drug used to treat chemotherapy symptoms did not avoid the on-sale bar for patents despite keeping some details of its drug sale confidential.

The NLJ Monthly: Sharp Curves Ahead on Federal Regulation

Like other reports in this month’s NLJ, Cheryl Miller’s piece about driverless cars addresses a common theme we’ll revisit in each upcoming issue: What does the Trump administration mean for regulation?

Kara Brockmeyer, chief of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Unit at the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission, at Georgetown Law's Sixteenth Annual Corporate Counsel Institute on March 8, 2012.

SEC's FCPA Ace Kara Brockmeyer Joins Debevoise & Plimpton

By Sue Reisinger |

Kara Brockmeyer, former chief of the SEC Enforcement Division's Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Unit, is joining Debevoise & Plimpton's Washington, D.C., office as a partner and member of the white-collar and regulatory defense and the strategic crisis response and solutions groups, the firm announced Monday.

Lori Andrus of Andrus Anderson.

Women Push for Lead Roles in Mass Torts

By Meredith Hobbs |

In 20 years as a San Francisco plaintiffs lawyer, Lori Andrus has secured top roles in mass tort cases against companies including Farmers Group, Bayer and Johnson & Johnson over pay discrimination, defective birth control and other ills. She wants more women to join her.

Nina Pillard.

DC Circuit Judge Warns Ruling Could 'Destabilize' Most Arbitration Awards

By Erin Mulvaney |

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit on Friday invoked a rare public-policy exception that "threatens to destabilize" arbitration awards in future cases, a federal appeals judge said in her dissent. "The court's decision to vacate the arbitral award in this case contradicts decades of precedent delineating a narrow public policy exception and threatens as a practical matter to destabilize many, if not most, arbitral awards," Judge Nina Pillard wrote.

Julie Brill

Microsoft Hires Ex-FTC Commissioner as Cybersecurity, Privacy Lead

By David Ruiz |

Former commissioner for the U.S. Federal Trade Commission Julie Brill will be deputy general counsel and report directly to Microsoft president and chief legal officer Brad Smith. Brill joins the company after roughly a year with Hogan Lovells.

Justice Samuel Alito speaking at the Federalist Society 2016 National Lawyers Convention at The Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, November 17, 2016.

Take a 'Journey' Through the Justices' Bookshelves

By Marcia Coyle |

In the U.S. Supreme Court term that ended last June, Justice Samuel Alito turned to books most often to bolster his opinions, while Justice Anthony Kennedy—the court's most influential voter—made least use of the wisdom embodied in books. Justices cite books for a variety of reasons, Yale Law School's Linda Greenhouse, a veteran high court observer, writes in "The Books of the Justices" in the latest Michigan Law Review.

Uber sticker on a parked car on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. September 4, 2015. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/THE NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

States Take On Battle Over Regulating the Gig Economy

By Erin Mulvaney |

Florida lawmakers will likely pass a measure that classifies drivers for companies such as Uber and Lyft as independent contractors rather than employees, marking the latest state to attempt to regulate the rapidly growing and litigious ride-hailing workforce.

United Airlines Airbus A320.Source: wiki / CC.

United Settles With Passenger Forcibly Removed From Flight

By Cogan Schneier |

Details of the settlement were not disclosed, but attorneys said it would cover David Dao's injuries.

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions

Need Help Fighting the CFPB? One Company Turns to Trump's Justice Department

By C. Ryan Barber |

Ocwen Financial Corp., the mortgage loan servicer fighting a new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau lawsuit, has turned to an unlikely source for help: the U.S. Justice Department. In a federal court filing styled as a motion "to invite the views of the attorney general of the United States," the company on Wednesday took the remarkable step of asking the Justice Department to weigh in on the side of a corporation fighting another federal agency.

Judge Amul Thapar testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee during his confirmation hearing to be U.S. Circuit Judge for the Sixth Circuit, on April 26, 2017.

Trump Tweets About Judges Become Fodder in 6th Circuit Confirmation

By Cogan Schneier |

Judge Amul Thapar was asked Wednesday at his U.S. Senate confirmation hearing about President Donald Trump's recent criticism of judges who have ruled against him.

Judge Neil Gorsuch testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee during the second day of his confirmation hearing to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia at the U.S. Supreme Court. March 21, 2017.

On Patent Dance, Justices Struggle to Find Rhythm

By Scott Graham |

The U.S. Supreme Court justices indicated they could remand a case involving the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act, a decision that would leave pharmaceutical companies without needed clarity on the law.

A large crowd rallies in front of the U.S. Capitol to denounce President Donald Trump’s travel ban order.

In First, Fourth Circuit to Livestream Travel Ban Hearing

By Cogan Schneier |

Lawyers who cheered the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit’s live broadcast of oral arguments in President Donald Trump’s first travel ban case now have another show to look forward to after the Fourth Circuit said it will live livestream oral arguments in its case next month.

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission building in Washington, D.C.

Whistleblower Pockets $4 Million SEC Award

By Sue Reisinger |

A whistleblower who tipped the agency with information about serious securities misconduct—which was not identified by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission—was rewarded with a $4 million award.

Ronald Machen Jr., left, and David Ogden, right.

Wilmer Partners Win Tenet Health Care Work as Monitor Gigs Stay Hot

By Katelyn Polantz |

In another sign that independent monitorships are attracting top-shelf legal talent, Tenet Healthcare Corp. has tapped David Ogden and Ronald Machen to monitor its compliance under a non-prosecution agreement.

Don't Call This Supreme Court Term a 'Sleeper'

By Marcia Coyle |

The U.S. Supreme Court wrapped up oral arguments for the term on Wednesday. The justices' quest for unanimity is always tested toward the end of a term when some of the most difficult cases await decision. This term is no different. Here's a snapshot of some of the big cases that await decisions.

Financial technology and business investment concept.

State Banking Regulators Sue Feds Over Fintech Charter Proposal

By Stephanie Forshee |

State banking regulators are taking the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency to court over its proposal to establish a special-purpose national bank charter for financial technology companies.

Should You 'Facebook' the Jury? Yes. No. Probably.

By Ben Hancock |

Social media is now a fixture in our lives. But court rules around researching jurors online still vary from state to state and judge to judge.

When Government's Need for Secrecy Clashes With the Public's Right to Know

By Sue Reisinger |

A panel sponsored by the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Law and National Security explored those lines in a webcast Tuesday. "Whistleblowers, Leaks and the Media: The Legal Rules" included lawyers and journalists who have been caught up in national security issues.

Johnson & Johnson's baby powder.

Jury Awards in Talc Cases Led Top 100 Verdicts in 2016

By John Deming |

There are three talc cases in the Top 100 Verdicts of 2016.

Top 100 Verdicts 2016: Juries Return Four Billion-Dollar Awards

By John Schneider |

The billions are back. After a drop in 2015, which saw a top verdict of only $845 million, four verdicts in 2016 came in at more than a billion dollars each, according to the annual Top 100 Verdicts by ALM's VerdictSearch.

CHART: The Top 100 Verdicts 2016

The Top 100 Verdicts report is compiled by NLJ affiliate VerdictSearch, which strives to report as many jury verdicts, decisions and settlements as possible.

E. Barrett Prettyman Court House.

9 Firms Drop Off DC Circuit's Pro Bono Leaders List

By Cogan Schneier |

Of the record-breaking 33 firms that made the Judicial Conference of the District of Columbia Circuit's list of pro bono leaders in 2015, 24 are back on the list this year for their work in 2016. But, those who dropped off the list include some big names like Paul Weiss and Kirkland & Ellis.

Top 100 Verdicts 2016: The Billions Are Back

After a drop in 2015, which saw a top verdict of only $845 million, four verdicts in 2016 came in at more than a billion dollars each, according to the annual Top 100 Verdicts by ALM's VerdictSearch.

A painting titled “Untitled 1,” by Missouri high school student David Pulphus, appears after it was rehung, January 10, 2017. The painting was removed from the Congressional Art Competition display in Cannon tunnel by Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif.

Capitol Painting Lawsuit Doomed, Legal Scholars Say

By Cogan Schneier |

Experts say the case pitting government speech against free speech seems more like a scenario that would play out in a law school exam question.

Judge David Sentelle of the United States Court of Appeals for the District.of Columbia Circuit (2008)

DC Circuit Rejects CFPB Subpoena Targeting For-Profit College Accreditor

By C. Ryan Barber |

A Washington federal appeals court on Friday rejected the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's attempt to investigate an embattled accreditor of for-profit colleges, upholding a trial judge’s ruling that faulted the Obama-era agency for straying outside its jurisdiction.

Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll offices in Washington, D.C. September 10, 2015. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/THE NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

$28M Settlement Ends Decade-Old Securities Fraud Case

By Cogan Schneier |

The case involved allegations that Harman International Industries artificially inflated its stock prices.

Judge Lorna Schofield, of the Southern District of New York at the Five Year Anniversary of the Prosecutors' Committee of the Asian American Bar Association, a reception for two newly appointed federal judges was held at the New York County Lawyers' Association’s Vesey Street headquarters on Wednesday June 19, 2013.

Judge Lorna Schofield Lands MDL Over Diabetes Drug

By Amanda Bronstad |
Judge Gary Feinerman of the U.S. District Court for Northern District of Illinois.

Judge Gary Feinerman Likely to See More MDLs

By Amanda Bronstad |
Paul A. Engelmayer, during his nomination hearing to be United States District Judge for the Southern District of New York. March 16, 2011. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/THE NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

Judge Paul Engelmayer Hit With MDL Double-Duty

By Amanda Bronstad |
(Clockwise from top left) Brian Martinotti, Vince Chhabria, Kentanji Brown Jackson, Paul Engelmayer, Indira Talwani, Gary Feinerman, Andre Birotte, and Lorna Schofield.

Meet the Next Generation of MDL Judges

By Amanda Bronstad |

Here’s a look at eight judges who are handling their first multidistrict litigation assignments and why they’re likely to be tapped again.

Indira Talwani, during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee to be United States District Judge for the District of Massachusetts. January 8, 2013.

Rookie Judges Start to Wrangle MDL Dockets

By Amanda Bronstad |

The panel that assigns sprawling litigation to individual judges to manage is looking beyond repeat players and bringing more women and minority judges into the mix.

Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut

Law Profs Say Gun Makers Should Be Liable for Sandy Hook Shooting


Professors from some of the nation’s top law schools filed an amicus brief with the Connecticut Supreme Court saying case law clearly shows negligent entrustment applies, even in cases involving guns.

Kerrie Campbell.

Chadbourne Ousts Partner Suing Firm for Gender Bias

By Brian Baxter |

Kerrie Campbell, a litigator at Chadbourne & Parke who brought a $100 million gender bias suit against the firm, was expelled from its partnership Thursday. In a memo to all Chadbourne partners, Campbell sought to avoid such a fate, which came after 70 partners voted in favor of her exit. She was the only dissenting vote.

Professor Stuart Banner of UCLA School of Law.

A Supreme Court First-Timer Scores on the Money

By Marcia Coyle |

Stuart Banner is a legal historian who has written books on the history of baseball's antitrust exemption, the struggle to control airspace and how American Indians lost their land. On Wednesday, Banner achieved a new distinction: He won his first U.S. Supreme Court argument.

UC Berkeley School of Law campus.

Choudhry's Accuser Gets $1.7M From UC-Berkeley in Sexual Harassment Settlement

By Ben Hancock |

According a copy of the settlement agreement, Tyann Sorrell, the ex-law dean's former assistant, will receive an initial lump sum payment followed by monthly payments over 10 years.

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission building.

Supreme Court May Clip SEC's Enforcement Power

By Tony Mauro |

A case argued Tuesday considers whether the use of "disgorgement" by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission should be considered a penalty subject to a five-year statute of limitations.

Goldstein & Russell's Thomas Goldstein

With Full Bench, SCOTUS Resumes Skepticism Toward Class Actions

By Tony Mauro |

The case before the court deals with a narrow issue of deadlines for initiating litigation. Representing CalPERS, Thomas Goldstein of Goldstein & Russell told the justices litigation could overwhelm the courts if statutory deadlines for opt-out lawsuits are interpreted too strictly.

Sujit Choudhry.

Berkeley Law, Ex-Dean Settle Suits Over Alleged Sexual Harassment

By Ben Hancock |

Sujit Choudhry, the former law dean, will pay $50,000 to his accuser's attorneys and another $50,000 to charity. He will also be allowed to remain a tenured professor "in good standing" until spring 2018.

The Lewis F. Powell Jr. U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit Courthouse and Annex in Richmond, Virginia.

4th Circuit Mulls Livestreaming Travel Ban Hearing


The decision to have a live broadcast would mark the first time the appeals court has done so. Audio recordings of hearings are generally available the following day.

U.S. Supreme Court building

SCOTUS Takes Up Key Timing Question in Securities Suits

By Amanda Bronstad |

In a case closely watched by institutional investors, CalPERS is hoping to reverse the Second Circuit and extend the window for opt-out suits.

U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer, Northern District of California

Judge Axes Hagens Berman Fee Request in VW Case

By Amanda Bronstad |

U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer awarded the Seattle plaintiffs firm $2.3 million, a small fraction of its request.

Workers clean the inside of a cafeteria hours after a bomb exploded at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, killing nine, four of them Americans, and wounding more than 70, on July 31, 2002.

Big Law Bench Runs Deep in $655M Terror Case at High Court

By Marcia Coyle |

Thirteen years after suing the Palestine Liberation Organization and the Palestinian Authority—and winning a $655 million jury award in 2015—the American victims and estates of victims of a series of bombings and shootings in Israel are asking the justices to overturn a federal appeals court decision that jettisoned them out of court.

Qualcomm Headquarters in San Diego, CA.

Sullivan & Cromwell Guides BlackBerry to $815M Arbitration Win

By Scott Graham |

Qualcomm was ordered to pay a refund of royalties for phone and chip modem sales that exceeded a per-unit cap.

United Passenger Has 'Every Right to Bring Legal Action'

By Stephanie Forshee |

United Airlines' reputation has taken a bruising since Sunday, when police forcibly removed a passenger from a flight in Chicago that the company initially said was overbooked. But will the airline face legal challenges as a result of the incident?

Orlando Richmond at Butler Snow during talc powder suit

J&J, Backed by Battalion of Lawyers, Opens 5th Talcum Powder Trial

By Amanda Bronstad |

With eight figures potentially on the line, Johnson & Johnson isn't skimping on its defense. Covington & Burling products liability partners Phyllis Jones and Paul Schmidt were on hand in the St. Louis courtroom Tuesday, backing up national coordinating counsel from Butler Snow and Shook, Hardy & Bacon.

Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll offices in Washington, D.C. September 10, 2015. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/THE NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

Humanitarian Aid Lawsuit Targets Former Yahoo Lawyers

By Cogan Schneier |

A lawsuit filed Tuesday claims only a fraction of a $17 million trust created under a Yahoo settlement has been used to provide humanitarian aid to Chinese dissidents.

Jusir and Juicero

Knockoff Chinese Juicer Hits US Kitchens, Says Quinn Emanuel

By Scott Graham |

A federal court complaint on behalf of Juicero Inc. says a Chinese company has copied the "luxurious yet approachable" style of its juicer.

E. Barrett Prettyman Court House.

Fight Over 2 Big Law Accounts Sparks Legal Tech Spat

By Cogan Schneier |

In a new suit, eSentio Technologies accuses HBR Consulting of derailing its bid for document management work from Akin Gump and King & Spalding.

Scott Wolas.

After 20 Years as Fugitive, Ex-Hunton Partner Arrested in Florida

By Brian Baxter |

He was not quite Whitey Bulger, but federal prosecutors in Boston announced Friday the arrest in Florida of Scott Wolas, a disbarred lawyer accused of perpetrating a $1.5 million real estate investment fraud in Massachusetts. Wolas, booted from Hunton & Williams in 1995, has been on the run for two decades.

The Capitol Building in Washington, D.C.

'Crisis' Looms Without New Bankruptcy Judges, Courts Say

By Cogan Schneier |

The U.S. Judicial Conference is asking Congress to add four new positions and make another 14 temporary positions permanent to deal with case volumes in select districts.

Chef José Andrés

José Andrés, Trump Organization Settle DC Hotel Feud

By Cogan Schneier |

Details of the settlement were not disclosed, but the two sides had sued each other for millions of dollars in a breach of contract suit sparked by President Donald Trump's campaign rhetoric.

Judge Neil Gorsuch testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee during the second day of his confirmation hearing to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia at the U.S. Supreme Court. March 21, 2017.

Gorsuch's SCOTUS Vote Could Soon Prove Decisive on Many Cases

By Marcia Coyle and Tony Mauro |

The final round of arguments in the U.S. Supreme Court this month will give soon-to-be Justice Neil Gorsuch opportunities to reveal how he would deal with a range of issues, including government support of religious institutions and requirements for securities and product liability claims.

Mark Lemley

Federal Circuit Faces Facts: District Judges Call Shots on Fee Awards

By Scott Graham |

Appellate jurists suggest Eastern District ignored their instructions, but there's not much they can do about it.

Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.Lewis F. Powell Jr. Courthouse & Anne at 1100 East Main Street, in Richmond, VA.

Group Floods Fourth Circuit Judges With Pro Travel Ban Emails

By Cogan Schneier |

The Fourth Circuit issued a rare notice alerting the attorneys in the case that the judges are receiving unsolicited emails from the public.

In Gay Rights 'Gamechanger,' Appeals Court Bars Employment Bias Based on Sexual Orientation

By Ben Hancock |

Overruling years of precedent, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit on Tuesday concluded that discrimination against employees on the basis of sexual orientation violates the Civil Rights Act.

Plaintiffs Firm Sued for Defamation, 'Self-Aggrandizement'

By Amanda Bronstad |

Jay Edelson, founding partner of Edelson PC, called the complaint filed by a litigation foe "an attempt to do some late-in-the-game damage control" and promised an aggressive response.

Ryan Howard and Ryan Zimmerman

In MLB Defamation Suit, Judge Says Play Ball

By Cogan Schneier |

The D.C. district judge threw out a part of the case involving a print story accusing two players of using steroids, but allowed a defamation claim against an accompanying video to move forward.

(Clockwise from top left) Julia Salasky of Crowdjustice, Jay Greenberg of LexShares, Howard Shams of Parabellum Capital, Susan Dunn of Harbour Litigation Finance, Ralph Sutton of Bentham IMF, and Christopher Bogart of Burford.

Who Rules the World of Litigation Funding?

By Ben Hancock |

Commercial litigation finance is a growing industry. But when it comes to the people who laid its foundations and those who are propelling the business today, it is an exceedingly small and interconnected world. Many key figures trace their roots to elite law firms or Wall Street institutions.

UPS truck with driver

NY Judge Blasts UPS for 'Non-Compliance' Culture

By Andrew Denney |

In a ruling that could expose the shipper to steep penalties, a judge faulted UPS for turning a blind eye to illegal cigarette shipments until it was faced with legal action.

A large crowd rallies in front of the U.S. Capitol to denounce President Donald Trump’s travel ban order.

Web of Litigation Grows Around Trump Travel Ban


As Hawaii prepares for a hearing Wednesday, the Trump administration looks to capitalize on an early win in Virginia.

American Bar Association office in Washington, D.C. June 23, 2014. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/THE NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

Blind Law School Applicant Loses High Court Case, But Vows Continued Fight

By Marcia Coyle |

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear a legally blind man's challenge to what he claims is the discriminatory logic-games portion of the Law School Admission Test. His lawyer said the legal fight will continue.

Daniel Gallagher.

Mylan Taps Ex-SEC Commissioner as Top Lawyer

By Kristen Rasmussen |

EpiPen maker Mylan N.V. announced Tuesday that Daniel Gallagher has been appointed chief legal officer, effective April 17. Gallagher served as a commissioner of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission from late 2011 to late 2015. He previously held various staff roles at the agency, including as counsel to two commissioners.

Makan Delrahim listens to testimony during the confirmation hearing of judge Neil Gorsuch to replace the late Antonin Scalia at the U.S. Supreme Court.  March 20, 2017.

What to Know About Makan Delrahim, Trump's Antitrust Division Pick

By C. Ryan Barber |

Makan Delrahim, a former top lobbyist for tech and health care companies who now serves as a deputy White House counsel, is the Trump administration's pick to lead the U.S. Justice Department's Antitrust Division, a key post that would put him, and his front-office staff, in the spotlight of in-house legal departments looking to win approval for mergers and acquisitions.

DC Court Upholds $1.2B Award Against Venezuela for Seizing Gold Mine

By Cogan Schneier |

The ruling issued March 25 upholds an arbitration panel's award entered for Canadian company Crystallex.

U.S. Supreme Court building.

Supreme Court May Preserve EDTX Grip on Patent Cases

By Tony Mauro |

During arguments Monday in the closely watched TC Heartland v. Kraft Foods Group Brands, several justices seemed resistant to shaking up the status quo, which allows broad latitude in where patent cases may be filed.

U.S. Supreme Court building

Patent Lawyers, Anticipating a Shake-Up, Warily Watch SCOTUS

By Scott Graham |

The U.S. Supreme Court is being asked to reassert a previous interpretation of the rules, which limited patent suits to the districts where companies are incorporated.

Judge Neil Gorsuch testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee during the second day of his confirmation hearing to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia at the U.S. Supreme Court. March 21, 2017.

Justice Gorsuch? Judge Awaits Vote as Democrats Strategize

By Marcia Coyle and Tony Mauro |

U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch emerged unscathed from two very long days of questioning by the Senate Judiciary Committee but his biggest hurdle may be yet to come.

<b>INVESTIGATED:</b> An inspector general report in 2006 found that Amtrak failed to take steps to limit legal costs and review work performed by outside counsel. The carrier adopted a series of reforms.

Gibson Seizes Win as Railroad Regulation Dispute Reaches End of the Line

By Cogan Schneier |

After six years of litigation and a trip to the U.S. Supreme Court, a federal judge on Thursday struck down a 2008 railway regulation.

Jon Corzine

PwC Settles Midtrial in MF Global Accounting Malpractice Case

By Mark Hamblett |

The multibillion-dollar fight between the bankruptcy administrator for MF Global and PricewaterhouseCoopers has been settled midtrial.

Sullivan & Cromwell partner Jay Clayton testifies before the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs during his confirmation hearing to become the next Chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in Washington.  March 23, 2017.

Jay Clayton, SEC Chair Nominee, Grilled Over Wall Street Ties

By C. Ryan Barber |

Fending off questions about his lucrative law practice and potential conflicts of interest, Jay Clayton, the Sullivan & Cromwell partner who was nominated to lead the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, on Thursday defended his private sector experience as an asset and said he was "committed to showing no favoritism to anyone in this position."

Donald Trump speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on February 10, 2011.

Fourth Circuit Expedites Travel Ban Case, Sets May 8 Hearing

By Cogan Schneier |

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit agreed Thursday to expedite a challenge to President Donald Trump’s travel ban executive order, setting oral arguments in the case for May 8 at the court in Richmond.

ZTE Corp. Pleads Guilty to Violating Iran Trade Sanctions

By Sue Reisinger |

Chinese telecom giant ZTE Corp. pleaded guilty Wednesday to illegally shipping communications and surveillance equipment to Iran in violation of U.S. export controls, and agreed to pay record penalties that could reach $1.2 billion.


Lawyers Sound Off on First-in-a-Decade Class Action Changes

By Amanda Bronstad |

Here's what plaintiffs lawyers, public interest groups, class action critics and claim administrators have to say about proposed amendments that would crack down on serial objectors and promote modern means of communicating with class members.

R. Alexander Acosta testifies before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions during his confirmation hearing to become the next Secretary of Labor at the U.S. Department of Labor.  March 22, 2017.

Labor Secretary Nominee Acosta Says He'll Follow Trump on Fiduciary Rule

By Melanie Waddell |

R. Alexander Acosta, President Donald Trump's nominee to be secretary of the U.S. Labor Department, said Wednesday he would follow the president's Feb. 3 executive order directing the agency to review its fiduciary rule.

Regulators Seek Rare Lifetime Ban for Two Bankers

By Sue Reisinger |

The Federal Reserve Board wants to ban from banking for life two former managing directors of JPMorgan Securities in Hong Kong in connection with violations of bribery and other anti-corruption laws.

Donald Trump speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on February 10, 2011.

Thapar Is First to Be Tapped by Trump for Circuit Judgeship

By Cogan Schneier |

President Donald Trump announced Tuesday that he nominated his first circuit judge, tapping Judge Amul Thapar, of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky, to sit on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.

HERSHEY, PA - DECEMBER 15, 2016: President-Elect Donald Trump waves to the crowd as he arrives on stage to deliver a speech at a Thank You tour held at the Giant Center.

Trump Comments Highlight Need for a Plan When Clients Go Rogue

By Cogan Schneier |

Attorneys said there's little they can do when it comes to controlling what a client says publicly, but they still have a plan to handle the ensuing controversy.

U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C.

Gorsuch's Hearing Will Be Memorable. As So Many Others Were.

By Marcia Coyle and Tony Mauro |

What memories will Neil Gorsuch's confirmation hearing make? Time will tell. Here are highlights—and lowlights—from the 10 most recent Supreme Court confirmation hearings.

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau building in Washington, D.C.

Trump's Justice Department Abandons Defense of CFPB

By C. Ryan Barber |

The U.S. Justice Department argued Friday that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau should be stripped of its independence, a reversal of an earlier stance that the president only had the power to remove the Obama-era agency's director for cause, not at will.

Jones Day's Munich office

VW Defends Jones Day After German Prosecutors' Raid

By Brian Baxter |

Jones Day, a firm with close ties to the current U.S. president, saw its offices in Germany raided Wednesday by local prosecutors investigating its client, Volkswagen AG, as part of a probe into an emissions software scandal at the auto giant.

National Labor Relations Board in Washington, D.C.

Dozens of Companies Await SCOTUS Ruling on Workplace Class-Action Bans

By Marcia Coyle |

Dozens of companies in retail, banking, health care and technology await the U.S. Supreme Court's answer to whether workplace arbitration agreements that ban class actions violate federal labor law.

Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch meets with Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) at the Capitol on Tuesday, February 7, 2017.

In Speech Notes, Neil Gorsuch Painted a Dark Picture of Litigation

By Tony Mauro |

New documents provided to the Senate Judiciary Committee include the notes Gorsuch prepared for a speech at the annual dove hunt hosted by Colorado billionaire Phil Anschutz.

Michael Kaufman.

Loyola Chicago Names Michael Kaufman as Dean

By Karen Sloan |

The expert in education law and securities regulation will start the job immediately.

U.S. Labor Department in Washington, D.C.

Business Groups Want Texas Court to Freeze Fiduciary Rule

By Melanie Waddell |

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and industry groups are urging a Texas federal judge to block an Obama-era retirement advice rule pending an appeal and as federal regulators consider halting implementation of the rule for 60 days.

Neal Katyal of Hogan Lovells. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/THE NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

Hogan Lovells Publishes Docs Online in Hawaii’s Trump Travel Ban Challenge

By Ian Lopez |

Hogan Lovells’ Neal Katyal, counsel to Hawaii in the case, says “We want everyone to be able to read our work.”

SEC Hits Another Marijuana Company Over Alleged Sham Earnings

By C. Ryan Barber |

The nascent legalized marijuana industry has never been easy for regulators, forcing difficult decisions over how to enforce federal laws in states that have cleared cannabis for medical and—in some cases—recreational use. But the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has a decidedly simpler calculation: If a marijuana company misleads investors, it's as ripe an enforcement target as another firm.

U.S. District Court Judge Beth Labson Freeman, Northern District of California

Silicon Valley Judge Freeman Developing Brand Name for IP Trials

By Scott Graham |

Those who have watched U.S. District Judge Beth Labson Freeman say she is a quick study who's willing to dive into complicated subject matter.

U.S. Capitol.

Why Lit Funders Didn't Lobby to Stop Class Action Bill

By Ben Hancock |

The bill approved Thursday by the House of Representatives would mandate disclosure of third-party financing in class actions. The industry was nowhere to be seen.

Neal Katyal of Hogan Lovells.

At Hogan, Trump Travel Ban Led to Dash Against the Clock

By Cogan Schneier |

A team of lawyers led by partner Neal Katyal spent nearly 36 hours working with the Hawaii attorney general to meet a filing deadline in preparation for a hearing on Trump's travel ban.

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission building in Washington, D.C.

Jay Clayton, SEC Chair Nominee, Pulled in $7M From Sullivan & Cromwell Last Year

By C. Ryan Barber |

Benefitting from a client roster that includes big banks, British Airways and Volkswagen AG, longtime Sullivan & Cromwell partner Jay Clayton raked in $7.6 million in the year leading up to his nomination to lead the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Matthew Moore of Latham & Watkins.

Financial Institutions Bank Another Win Over Intellectual Ventures at Federal Circuit

By Scott Graham |

The court found three patents cover ineligible subject matter and the fourth is not clearly owned.

Sherri Simpson.

Meet the Florida Lawyer Trying to Block Trump U Settlement

By Amanda Bronstad |

A Fort Lauderdale bankruptcy attorney who appeared in political ads opposing Donald Trump wants the right to opt out of the settlement deal.

Johnson & Johnson's baby powder.

J&J Wins Jury Trial, Ends String of Losses in Talc Cases

By Amanda Bronstad |

New Jersey-based Johnson & Johnson scored a defense win on Friday as a jury in Missouri found its baby powder did not cause a Tennessee woman’s ovarian cancer.

Apple headquarters at 1 Infinite Loop in Cupertino

Apple Snuffs Out NPE Patents That Almost Cost Company $533M

By Scott Graham |

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit on Wednesday rejected three mobile payment patents that led an Eastern District of Texas jury to hit Apple with a $533 million verdict in 2015.

Trump Turns to Scalia to Narrow Protected US Waters

By Marcia Coyle |

Search online for the U.S. Supreme Court's 2006 decision in Rapanos v. United States and various descriptions will pop up—including "quagmire" and "first official mess of the Roberts era." The case, and the late Justice Antonin Scalia's plurality opinion in particular, is central to President Donald Trump's push to rein in one of the most consequential regulations ever issued under the Clean Water Act.

password cracking

When Lawyers Become Hackers

By Gabrielle Orum Hernández |

A look at how attorneys might find “ethical hacking” useful in the e-discovery process.

Federal Trade Commission

Judge Refuses Fee Award to State AGs in Antitrust Case

By C. Ryan Barber |

Nearly a year after striking down Staples Inc.'s proposed takeover of Office Depot, a federal judge in Washington refused Tuesday to award $175,000 in legal fees to the Pennsylvania and District of Columbia attorneys general for their role in challenging the office supply chains' $6.3 billion deal.

Call for Nominations: Washington D.C. Litigation Departments of the Year

The National Law Journal is accepting nominations for our 2017 Washington D.C. Litigation Department of the Year contest.

National Labor Relations Board in Washington, D.C.

Companies, Regulators to Face Off Over NLRB's New 'Joint-Employer' Standard

By Mike Scarcella |

A Washington appeals court next week will take up a major business dispute over the circumstances in which two companies, working together, are "joint employers" whose business ties extend federal labor-law protections to all the employees.