Appellate

  • June 21, 2024

    Ga. Panel Orders New Trial In $2M Case Over Car Accident

    The Georgia Court of Appeals on Friday reversed a judgment, vacated an attorney fee award and ordered a new trial in a case in which a jury awarded a man $2 million in damages after he was rear-ended while heading home from work in 2018.

  • June 21, 2024

    Billing Report Order Was 'Overly Broad' In Injury Suit, Panel Says

    A Georgia appeals court on Friday vacated a trial court order requiring a medical provider and its claims manager to produce a database report with financial and billing information during discovery in a car accident case, saying the order was overly broad and didn't do enough to protect the companies' confidential information.

  • June 21, 2024

    Mich. Appeals Panel Rescinds Coverage For Auto Policy Fraud

    A Michigan appeals court panel said a trial court was wrong for not rescinding auto insurance coverage held by a woman who made misstatements on her insurance application before she was injured in an accident. 

  • June 21, 2024

    Ayahuasca Church Is Not Tax-Exempt, DC Circ. Affirms

    An Iowa church that used a psychedelic drug in its rites was correctly denied tax-exempt status, the D.C. Circuit affirmed Friday, saying the church's main purpose is using a federally illegal drug for which it lacked approval for religious use.

  • June 21, 2024

    Ex-GM Workers Can't Prove Anti-White Bias

    A Michigan appeals court rejected efforts from two former General Motors workers to revive claims that they were fired because they are white, ruling that they fundamentally misunderstood the law and failed to rebut GM's argument that their persistent use of coarse language led to the firings.

  • June 21, 2024

    Wrong Address Dooms Removal Relief Bid, 11th Circ. Finds

    The Eleventh Circuit won't reverse the long-ago removal in absentia of a Honduran woman who missed her removal hearing, citing the Board of Immigration Appeals' finding that she'd provided an inaccurate address to receive notice of the hearing.

  • June 21, 2024

    Ex-Chicago Alderman Burke Can't Delay Sentencing

    Former Chicago Alderman Ed Burke can't postpone his Monday sentencing on charges of racketeering, extortion and bribery to await a U.S. Supreme Court ruling on the scope of federal bribery law, an Illinois federal judge ruled Friday, saying that decision will have "little or no impact" on Burke's fate.

  • June 21, 2024

    11th Circ. Rules Hotel Operator Liable For Wages As Employer

    A hotel operator exercised enough control over a front desk worker to be his employer and is therefore liable for minimum wage and overtime, the Eleventh Circuit ruled, also noting that a lower court erred in calculating the damages.

  • June 21, 2024

    Atty Convicted Of Pot Bribe Wins Bail At 1st Circ.

    A suspended Massachusetts attorney convicted last fall of attempting to bribe a police chief to help his client secure a cannabis license will remain free pending his appeal, the First Circuit ruled Friday, reversing a district judge's decision.

  • June 21, 2024

    Mich. Panel Says Default Judgment Covered Per No-Fault Law

    A Progressive unit must pay a $250,000 default judgment in a motor vehicle negligence case even though the insurer said its policyholder failed to cooperate, a Michigan appeals court ruled, finding a state Supreme Court decision predating Michigan's no-fault insurance reform was still applicable.

  • June 21, 2024

    5th Circ. Knocks Out National Block On ACA Preventive Care

    The Fifth Circuit on Friday struck down a national injunction against Affordable Care Act requirements forcing insurers to cover a range of preventive treatments, but kept a block in place that prevents its application to the individuals and businesses in Texas that sued.

  • June 21, 2024

    Pa. Justices Will Weigh If 'Skill Games' Are Slot Machines

    The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania will take up a case and decide whether the "Pennsylvania Skill Games" that combine a chance-based game mode with a secondary memory game fall under the state's definition of "slot machines," potentially affecting many storefronts and bars where the game machines have proliferated.

  • June 21, 2024

    Ga. Appeals Seat Winner Aims To Nix Election Challenge

    The winner of a Georgia appeals court seat says his opponent does not have any proof to support her allegations of his residency discrepancies and her motion to reverse the election should be dismissed.

  • June 21, 2024

    Novel Ruling Backs Contact Sanctions For Texas Pro Se Atty

    Addressing an issue of first impression in the Lone Star State, a Texas appellate court has ruled that an attorney's pro se status did not save him from a sanctions ruling for violating the state's no-contact rule by sending communications directly to members of the Commission for Lawyer Discipline.

  • June 21, 2024

    9/11 Firm Consultant Acted Alone In Depo Leak, 2nd Circ. Told

    A New York law firm representing victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks in a multidistrict litigation told the Second Circuit that a consultant who leaked a deposition transcript to the press acted by himself, asking an appellate panel to reverse millions of dollars in sanctions.

  • June 21, 2024

    6th Circ. Says Counties Not On Hook For Mich. Dam Collapse

    A Sixth Circuit panel agreed that two Michigan counties can't be forced to compensate homeowners for destructive flooding caused by a dam's collapse, finding Thursday that the counties did not cause the damage to the homeowners' properties.

  • June 21, 2024

    High Court Opens Expert Testimony Basis To Confrontation

    The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Friday that Arizona prosecutors may have violated a criminal defendant's Sixth Amendment right to confront witnesses testifying against him by presenting a substitute expert witness at trial, and sent the case back down to state court for further proceedings.

  • June 21, 2024

    Justices Keep Domestic Abusers Disarmed, Clarify Bruen

    The U.S. Supreme Court rejected a Texas man's constitutional challenge to a federal law prohibiting people subject to domestic violence restraining orders from possessing firearms Friday, providing limited guidance to lower courts on how to apply the high court's Second Amendment historical analogue test.

  • June 21, 2024

    Justices Strengthen Jury Trial Rights For Stiffer Sentences

    The constitutional rights to due process and trial by jury extend to a pivotal prong of a prominent sentencing enhancement for recidivism, the U.S. Supreme Court held in a Friday decision that casts doubt on many incarcerations and promises to reshape future trials.

  • June 21, 2024

    Justices Won't Allow Citizens To Contest Denied Spouse Visas

    The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Friday that Americans do not have a constitutional right to challenge the U.S. Department of State's denial of spousal visa applications, rejecting a woman's bid to review the department's rejection of her Salvadoran husband's visa.

  • June 21, 2024

    Justices Say No Feds, No Dice In Texas-NM Water Deal

    The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday ruled that Texas, New Mexico and Colorado improperly excluded the federal government from an agreement that resolved a Rio Grande water sharing dispute, rejecting the states' argument that the conflict was theirs alone to settle.

  • June 20, 2024

    TikTok Says Alternatives To 'Dangerous' Ban Were Ignored

    TikTok said Thursday that federal lawmakers likely didn't even consider its "exhaustive, multi-year efforts" to address national security concerns before deciding to ban the social media platform, slamming the law as "unprecedented" and warning that it sets "a dangerous precedent."

  • June 20, 2024

    5th Circ. Starts Clock For Redo Bid In CFPB Payday Rule Case

    The Fifth Circuit said Wednesday that payday lender trade groups will have an opportunity to ask for another shot at litigating the validity of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's payday lending rule after their constitutional challenge fell flat at the U.S. Supreme Court.

  • June 20, 2024

    Trump Calls For Engoron's Recusal In Civil Fraud Case

    Former President Donald Trump and other defendants fighting a $465 million civil fraud judgment called on New York Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron to recuse himself Thursday in light of a once-suspended real estate attorney's recent judicial misconduct claims, which have since sparked a judicial investigation.

  • June 20, 2024

    Wash. Justices Renew AG's Suit Over Police Eviction Claims

    Washington's highest court said the state attorney general could sue a city for allegedly letting police illegally evict vulnerable residents under the guise of a crime prevention program, ruling Thursday the case involved issues of public concern such as protecting residents' civil rights and preventing police misconduct.

Expert Analysis

  • 5th Circ. Venue-Transfer Cases Highlight Mandamus Limits

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    Three ongoing cases filed within the Fifth Circuit highlight an odd procedural wrinkle that may let district courts defy an appellate writ: orders granting transfer to out-of-circuit districts, but parties opposing intercircuit transfer can work around this hurdle to effective appellate review, says Charles Fowler at McKool Smith.

  • A Healthier Legal Industry Starts With Emotional Intelligence

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    The legal profession has long been plagued by high rates of mental health issues, in part due to attorneys’ early training and broader societal stereotypes — but developing one’s emotional intelligence is one way to foster positive change, collectively and individually, says attorney Esperanza Franco.

  • PTAB Rulings Shed Light On Quantum Computing Patents

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    Recent Patent Trial and Appeal Board decisions on enablement rejections against quantum computing patent claims provide patent practitioners with valuable guidance on best practices for avoiding and overcoming enablement, say Fred Qiu and Alex Nie at Sheppard Mullin.

  • To Make Your Legal Writing Clear, Emulate A Master Chef

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    To deliver clear and effective written advocacy, lawyers should follow the model of a fine dining chef — seasoning a foundation of pure facts with punchy descriptors, spicing it up with analogies, refining the recipe and trimming the fat — thus catering to a sophisticated audience of decision-makers, says Reuben Guttman at Guttman Buschner.

  • Circuit Judge Writes An Opinion, AI Helps: What Now?

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    Last week's Eleventh Circuit opinion in Snell v. United Specialty Insurance, notable for a concurrence outlining the use of artificial intelligence to evaluate a term's common meaning, is hopefully the first step toward developing a coherent basis for the judiciary's generative AI use, says David Zaslowsky at Baker McKenzie.

  • Fed. Circ. Rulings Crystallize Polymorph Patent 'Obviousness'

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    A comparison of two recent Federal Circuit obviousness challenge decisions regarding polymorph patents provides helpful insight into the assessment of screening arguments, particularly the issue of reasonable expectation of success, say Michael Green and John Molenda at Steptoe.

  • DC Circ. Ruling Heightens HHS Contract Pharmacy Challenges

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    The D.C. Circuit's recent ruling that the Section 340B program does not bar manufacturers from restricting deliveries of discounted drugs to contract pharmacies represents a second strike against the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' current contract pharmacy policy and raises the stakes surrounding an upcoming Seventh Circuit ruling on the same issue, say attorneys at Foley Hoag.

  • Series

    In The CFPB Playbook: Regulatory Aims Get High Court Assist

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    Newly emboldened after the U.S. Supreme Court last month found that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's funding is constitutional, the bureau has likely experienced a psychic boost, allowing its already robust enforcement agenda to continue expanding, say attorneys at Husch Blackwell.

  • 3 Infringement Defenses To Consider 10 Years Post-Nautilus

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    In the 10 years since the U.S. Supreme Court’s influential Nautilus ruling, the spirit of the “amenable to construction” test that the opinion rejected persists with many patent litigators and judges, so patent infringement defense counsel should always consider several key arguments, says John Vandenberg at Klarquist Sparkman.

  • NY Ruling Paves A Court Payment Shortcut For More Creditors

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    A recent New York state appeals court ruling expands access to an expedited statutory procedure for court enforcement of promissory notes or unconditional guaranties, allowing more creditors to minimize the risk of potentially challenging litigation on threshold issues, says Alexander Levi at Friedman Kaplan.

  • 9th Circ. COVID 'Cure' Case Shows Perks Of Puffery Defense

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    The Ninth Circuit's March decision in a case surrounding a company's statements about a potential COVID-19 cure may encourage defendants to assert puffery defenses in securities fraud cases, particularly in those involving optimistic statements about breakthrough drugs that are still untested, say attorneys at Cahill Gordon.

  • After Years Of Popularity, PAGA's Fate Is Up In The Air

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    The last two years held important victories for plaintiff-side employment attorneys in California Private Attorneys General Act litigation at the trial and appellate court levels, but this hotbed of activity will quickly lose steam if voters approve a ballot measure in November to enact the California Fair Pay and Employer Accountability Act, says Paul Sherman at Kabat Chapman.

  • 3 Recent Decisions To Note As Climate Litigation Heats Up

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    Three recent rulings on climate-related issues — from a New York federal court, a New York state court and an international tribunal, respectively — demonstrate both regulators' concern about climate change and the complexity of conflicting regulations in different jurisdictions, say J. Michael Showalter and Robert Middleton at ArentFox Schiff.

  • Trending At The PTAB: Real Party In Interest And IPR

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    The Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s recent Luminex v. Signify decision, finding a complaint seeking indemnification may be treated as a public demand sufficient to establish a real party-in-interest, shows that the board continues to apply a broad and expansive definition to that term, say Yicong (Eve) Du and Yieyie Yang at Finnegan.

  • Perspectives

    Justices' Repeat Offender Ruling Eases Prosecutorial Hurdle

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    The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision last week in Brown v. U.S., clarifying which drug law applies to sentencing a repeat offender in a federal firearms case, allows courts to rely on outdated drug schedules to impose increased sentences, thus removing a significant hurdle for prosecutors, says attorney Molly Parmer.

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