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Category Archives: Litigation Trends

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U.S. District Court for the District of CT Determines that Connecticut’s Medical Marijuana Law Protects Qualifying Patients from Workplace Discrimination

Posted in Connecticut Courts, Employment Litigation, Litigation Trends, Rhode Island Courts

This article is Part Five of our Medical Marijuana and the Workplace: Recent Decisions from New England Courts Provide Significant Protections to Medical Marijuana Patient Employees Five-Part Series. See Parts One, Two, Three and Four for reference. A federal court in Connecticut has continued the recent trend of New England courts recognizing a cause of action under state law for patient-employees… Continue Reading

Florida Supreme Court’s Recent Decision Places Objections to Amendment 7 Discovery on Life Support

Posted in Florida Courts, Medical Malpractice

Since 2004, the Florida Supreme Court has examined a series of objections raised by defendants to avoid producing records of “adverse medical incidents.”  In each case, the Court has found that Amendment 7 to the Florida Constitution, which grants broad rights of record access to medical patients, abrogates any Florida statute that would otherwise prohibit… Continue Reading

California Appeals Court Reverses Summary Judgment in Favor of Defendant Employer on PAGA Cause of Action

Posted in California Courts, Employment Litigation, Litigation Trends

In a recent decision, Lopez v. Friant., 2017 WL 2451126, the California First District Court of Appeal provided guidance as to the meaning of the Private Attorneys General Act, or PAGA.  The Lopez ruling reversed an Alameda County trial court’s ruling, which had granted summary judgment in favor of defendant-employer Friant & Associates on the… Continue Reading

RI Superior Court Finds Implied Private Cause of Action Within the State’s Medical Marijuana Law for Adverse Action Taken Against Qualifying Patients & Recognizes that the RICRA Provides Similar Protections for Qualifying Patients Faced with Workplace Discrimination

Posted in Employment Litigation, Litigation Trends, Massachusetts Courts, Rhode Island Courts

This article is Part Three of our Medical Marijuana and the Workplace: Recent Decisions from New England Courts Provide Significant Protections to Medical Marijuana Patient Employees Five-Part Series.   A few months before the Barbuto opinion, see Parts 1 and 2, a Rhode Island court issued a summary judgment ruling making it easier for employees to claim… Continue Reading

Supreme Judicial Court’s Decision in Barbuto vs. Advantage Sales & Marketing LLC and Another is Contrary to Federal Law, Marks Significant Departure from Rulings in Other States

Posted in California Courts, Employment Litigation, Litigation Trends, Massachusetts Courts

This article is Part Two of our Medical Marijuana and the Workplace: Recent Decisions from New England Courts Provide Significant Protections to Medical Marijuana Patient Employees Five-Part Series. Read Part One here. The Supreme Judicial Court’s ruling in Barbuto marks a significant departure from case law arising under the medical marijuana laws of other states, and in particular,… Continue Reading

Product Liability: California’s Consumer Expectation and Risk Benefit Test Applied in the Same Case

Posted in California Courts, Litigation Trends, Products Liability, Uncategorized

Defendant The Raymond Co. saw its summary judgment victory overturned by California’s 4th District Court of Appeal in a surprising turn of events in its ongoing product liability case in San Diego Superior Court. In its July 2017 decision, the 4th District held that The Raymond Co. failed to meet its burden to show that… Continue Reading

Ogletree, Deakins & Nash Attorneys Get Smoked by Supreme Judicial Court of MA: Employer’s Termination of Employee For Failing Drug Test for Use of Medical Marijuana States a Claim for Workplace Discrimination

Posted in Employment Litigation, Litigation Trends, Massachusetts Courts

This article is Part One of our Medical Marijuana and the Workplace: Recent Decisions from New England Courts Provide Significant Protections to Medical Marijuana Patient Employees Five-Part Series   In Cristina Barbuto vs. Advantage Sales and Marketing, LLC, & another, SJC-12226 (July 17, 2017), slip opinion[1], the Supreme Judicial Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts was… Continue Reading

The Cumulative Exposure Theory is no Different from the “Each and Every Exposure” Theory

Posted in Asbestos Litigation, Litigation Trends, Uncategorized

On August 31, 2017 the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division’s decision in Charles Krik v. Exxon Mobil Corporation, et al. excluding the testimony of plaintiff’s expert Dr. Arthur Frank. Dr. Frank’s theory was based on a premise… Continue Reading

Johnson & Johnson Hit With $417 Million Verdict In Spite of Inconclusive Scientific Evidence

Posted in California Courts, Litigation Trends, Talc Litigation

A new wave of lawsuits alleging an association between ovarian cancer and the use of talcum powder for feminine hygiene purposes – a claim that many believe is based on questionable science – has hit an all-time high.  Last week, a Los Angeles jury returned a verdict against Johnson & Johnson in the amount of… Continue Reading

Application of Bristol-Myers in the Los Angeles Superior Court

Posted in Asbestos Litigation, California Courts, Litigation Trends, Uncategorized

As previously reported, the issue of establishing personal jurisdiction when there is no causal link between defendant’s forum contacts and plaintiff’s claims was recently decided by the United States Supreme Court in Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. v. Superior Court of California, 137 S. Ct. 1773 (2017). Last week, the Bristol-Myers decision was applied by Judge Kleifield,… Continue Reading

Federal Court Sustains Summary Judgment Motion While Drawing Clear Distinction Between Pleural and Peritoneal Mesothelioma

Posted in Asbestos Litigation, Maryland Courts, Toxic Tort, Uncategorized

In what asbestos litigation defendants hope will become a growing trend, the United States District Court for the District of Maryland recently drew a clear distinction between expert testimony as it relates to causation of both pleural mesothelioma (affecting the lining of the lung) and peritoneal mesothelioma (affecting the stomach).  In Rockman v. Union Carbide… Continue Reading

Bulk Supplier, Sophisticated User, and Component Parts Doctrines May Provide Effective Defense to Talc Suppliers Whose Products are “Inherently Safe”

Posted in Asbestos Litigation, California Courts, Litigation Trends, Massachusetts Courts, Talc Litigation, Uncategorized

Mineral talc, as a raw material, was determined to be “inherently safe” by Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Maren Nelson in the days leading up to the first Johnson & Johnson California ovarian cancer trial in the Johnson & Johnson Talcum Powder Cases, number JCCP4872.  According to Law360.com, on July 10 the judge dismissed Imerys… Continue Reading

Fourth Circuit Joins Unanimous Federal Circuits – No Requirement That Government Prohibit Contractor From Warning About Asbestos For Government Contractor Defense To Apply

Posted in Asbestos Litigation, Litigation Trends, Products Liability

Recently, in Sawyer v. Foster Wheeler LLC, the Fourth Circuit held that a government contractor is entitled to federal jurisdiction, even in product liability failure-to-warn actions, based on the contractor’s assertion that it has a colorable federal defense of government contractor immunity. 860 F.3d 249 (4th Cir. 2017). The big takeaway from this case, however,… Continue Reading

Massachusetts Superior Court Invalidates Forum Selection Clause and Dismisses Employer’s Action To Enforce a Noncompetition Agreement

Posted in California Courts, Commercial Litigation, Employment Litigation, Litigation Trends, Massachusetts Courts

  Oxford Global Resources, LLC v. Hernandez Superior Court of Massachusetts (Suffolk, Business Litigation Session) Docket No. 1684-CV-03911-BLS-2   The Business Litigation Session of the Suffolk Superior Court in Massachusetts invalidated a contractual forum selection clause and dismissed an employer’s action to enforce a noncompetition agreement signed by a former employee, because the employer forced a… Continue Reading

Petitpas v. Ford Motor Co., et al.: A Look at the Evolving Landscape of Asbestos Litigation in California

Posted in Asbestos Litigation, California Courts, Litigation Trends, Premises Liability, Products Liability, Uncategorized

The Second District Court of Appeal, Division Four in Los Angeles handed down a decision in an asbestos case that involved appellate issues pertaining to causes of action for strict products liability and premises liability, primary and secondary (“take-home”) exposure, liability for replacement component parts, and proper jury instructions to be given in asbestos cases… Continue Reading

Rhode Island Superior Court Denies Plaintiff’s Motion to Preclude Expert Testimony in Products Liability Action

Posted in Asbestos Litigation, Litigation Trends, Premises Liability, Products Liability, Rhode Island Courts, Uncategorized

Plaintiff’s attempt to preclude testimony of expert witness in asbestos related products liability litigation meets impasse—court refuses to circumscribe competent experts to narrowly defined fields or specific licensure. On Friday, June 9, 2017, Presiding Justice Alice Gibney of the Rhode Island Superior Court, Providence County, issued a decision denying a plaintiff’s motion to preclude the… Continue Reading

U.S. Supreme Court Sets the Stage For Jurisdictional Limitations in Product Liability Matters

Posted in California Courts, Litigation Trends, Missouri Courts, Pharmaceutical and Medical Devices, Products Liability

In a groundbreaking decision that follows closely on the heels of its jurisdictional decision in BNSF Railway Co. v. Tyrrell, 581 U.S. __ (May 30, 2017) (“Tyrrell”), the United States Supreme Court held that the California Supreme Court was wrong to let approximately 600 non-California residents join 86 state residents in a pharmaceutical claim against… Continue Reading

Florida Medical Malpractice Non-economic Damage Caps: Before and After Kalitan

Posted in Florida Courts, Insurance Litigation, Litigation Trends, Medical Malpractice

No, this is not déjà vu. On June 8, 2017, the Supreme Court of Florida struck down another legislative mechanism to limit damages in personal injury cases. In North Broward Hospital District v. Kalitan, the Supreme Court decided that non-economic damage caps on medical malpractice actions violate the Equal Protection Clause of the Florida Constitution…. Continue Reading

Supreme Court Reaffirms Limits on General Personal Jurisdiction For Foreign Corporate Defendants

Posted in Litigation Trends

With the United States Supreme Court hearing less than 100 cases every year, it is exceedingly rare for the Court to address a particular issue more than once.  However, with state courts throughout the country failing to properly apply its 2014 decision in Daimler AG v. Bauman, 134 S.Ct. 746 (“Daimler”), the Supreme Court recently… Continue Reading

MG+M Obtains Summary Judgment Via Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia’s Decision that Plaintiff Lacked Constitutional Standing to Bring Class Action Claim

Posted in Class Action Litigation, Litigation Trends

Manion Gaynor & Manning LLP (“MG+M”) has obtained a summary judgment on behalf of client HealthPort Technologies (“HealthPort”) in Basil Crookshanks, on behalf of himself and all others similarly situated, v. HealthPort and Charlestown Area Medical Center (“CAMC”).  On Wednesday, May 25, 2017, the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia issued a writ of prohibition ordering the trial court to dismiss a… Continue Reading

Delaware Court of Chancery Ends Massey Stockholder Litigation Saga and Dismisses Claims

Posted in Corporate Litigation, Delaware Courts, Litigation Trends

Under Delaware law, when a derivative plaintiff loses its stockholder status as the result of a merger, the plaintiff usually also loses its standing to pursue a derivative suit on behalf of the corporation.  This rule is subject to only two limited exceptions: (1) when “the merger itself is the subject of a claim of… Continue Reading

Williams v. Yamaha Motor Co.: No Jurisdiction over a Foreign Company

Posted in California Courts, Litigation Trends, Products Liability, Uncategorized

In its recent decision in Williams v. Yamaha Motor Co., 851 F.3d 1015 (9th Cir. 2017), the Ninth Circuit affirmed dismissal against a Japanese manufacturer because it was not “at home” in the forum. This consistent application of Daimler provides the benefit of predictable results. In 2013, George Williams filed suit, on behalf of himself… Continue Reading

A Tale of Two Verdicts

Posted in Asbestos Litigation, Louisiana Courts, Louisiana Courts, Toxic Tort, Uncategorized

Frequently as litigators, we are faced with questions about which factors can make or break a trial. The facts of each case and skill of counsel are obvious elements to obtaining a favorable verdict, but outcomes can also be heavily influenced by the venue, pre-trial rulings, voir dire, jury instructions and even the sheer whim… Continue Reading