Food & Beverage

  • April 03, 2020

    Wonder Bread Co. To Pay $13.3M To End Driver Wage Action

    A national collective and a group of individual state classes of Wonder Bread distributors and drivers in Maryland, New Jersey and Pennsylvania have agreed to end their wage and misclassification suits in Pennsylvania federal court in exchange for $13.25 million, according to a preliminary settlement agreement filed Friday.

  • April 03, 2020

    Payments Co. Seeks Retrial Citing Confused Jury

    Software company iControl Systems USA has asked a Florida federal judge to grant a new trial in a trade secrets case against Financial Information Technologies, claiming that its rival only won at trial after its attorneys confused the jury about the nature of a trade secret.

  • April 03, 2020

    Hawaii Enviros Seek Overfishing Status For Whitetip Shark

    A conservation nonprofit and Native Hawaiian cultural practitioner have sued the federal government, claiming the oceanic whitetip shark population in the Pacific is being drastically reduced because federal agencies failed to properly designate the species as overfished.

  • April 03, 2020

    NLRB Tells Food Co. To Rehire Worker Irked By Union Dues

    The National Labor Relations Board has ordered that a kosher food packaging company has to rehire a worker who was fired after giving the middle finger to a human resources representative and cursing during a meeting where he was told he had to sign a union dues checkoff form.

  • April 03, 2020

    Pa. Sales Rep. Can't Sue Goya Under NJ Wage Law

    A Goya Foods Inc. sales representative can’t lodge a worker misclassification suit under a New Jersey wage law while living and working in Pennsylvania, a New Jersey federal judge ruled Friday.

  • April 03, 2020

    Sbarro Settles Wage Claims As Sex Abuse Suit Heads To Trial

    Pizzeria chain Sbarro has settled several wage claims ahead of trial in a contentious suit filed in Nevada federal court by a former restaurant employee who says she was the victim of repeated sexual abuse while working under a supervisor who actively created a hostile work environment.

  • April 03, 2020

    Coffee Pod Maker Can't Get Fees Due To 'Weakness' Of Its IP

    Reusable coffee pod maker Eko Brands can't tack on attorney fees to its $649,188 trademark infringement win against a rival coffee pod company, a Washington federal judge has ruled, citing the "relative weakness" of Eko Brand's marks and the fact the company dropped its claim for actual damages midtrial.

  • April 03, 2020

    US And China Bump Another Deadline In WTO Food Fight

    For the second time in as many weeks, the U.S. has given China more time to comply with a World Trade Organization ruling faulting Beijing’s agricultural trade rules, according to a WTO document published Friday.

  • April 03, 2020

    Sugar Claims Tossed In Kombucha False Labeling Suit

    A California federal judge has trimmed a suit alleging a kombucha drink maker owned by Safeway Inc. mislabeled its products, saying while claims related to the drinks' sugar content are "threadbare," the complaint adequately pleads that the labels mislead consumers about their alcohol content.

  • April 02, 2020

    Coffee Chain Takes Heat In Investors' New Stock-Drop Suit

    Chinese coffeehouse chain Luckin Coffee Inc. was slapped with a stockholder suit in New York federal court Thursday alleging the company's negligence and misinformation caused the stock to nosedive amid reports that a senior executive and employees fabricated transactions.

  • April 02, 2020

    Ranch Profits Dip Despite COVID-19 Market Surge, Sen. Says

    Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley wants the U.S. Department of Agriculture to investigate why cattle prices are down even though Americans are buying more meat amid the coronavirus pandemic, saying ranchers aren't getting a fair shake.

  • April 02, 2020

    Real Estate Rumors: Bank OZK, Transwestern, Starwood

    Bank OZK has reportedly loaned $265 million for a Bronx distribution center project, Transwestern is said to have bought a Florida site that's received zoning for a mixed-use project, and a Starwood Capital venture has reportedly landed $51 million in financing for a Bronx mixed-use project.

  • April 02, 2020

    11th Circ. Told Dismissal Of Ritz Tips Class Suit Didn't Fit Bill

    A New York man told the Eleventh Circuit Thursday that a Florida federal court wrongly tossed his proposed class action accusing Ritz-Carlton of deceptively adding automatic gratuities on dining bills at its Florida hotels after the judge improperly limited his claims.

  • April 02, 2020

    Franzia Ripped Off Rival's Design For Rebrand, Winery Says

    The maker of the popular boxed wine Franzia stole ideas for a packaging revamp from rival winery JaM Cellars, according to a trademark infringement suit filed in California federal court Wednesday.

  • April 02, 2020

    Kroger Sued For Dipping Out Of Lucky's Market Investment

    Midwestern grocery chain The Kroger Co. was hit with a suit by a shopping center developer Wednesday alleging it abandoned its investment in the now-bankrupt organic food retailer Lucky's Market, which abruptly halted construction on a new store in Florida and left the property exposed to the elements.

  • April 02, 2020

    Ill. Hilton Owner, Food Co. Hit With Finger Scan Privacy Suits

    An Illinois Hilton hotel owner and a prepared-food service owned by Elior Inc. are the latest companies accused of violating Illinois' biometric privacy law by requiring employees to scan their fingerprints for work without getting their informed consent.

  • April 02, 2020

    Cinema Owner Says Mexican Co. Used COVID-19 To Slip Sale

    A Mexican cinema company can't use the coronavirus pandemic as an excuse to back out of a deal to acquire a Houston dine-in movie theater chain, the Houston company's owner told a Texas federal court in a new lawsuit Thursday.

  • April 02, 2020

    Florida Sports Bar Says Lloyd’s Must Cover COVID-19 Closure

    A sports bar in Florida filed a suit against Lloyd’s of London in federal court Thursday after the insurer denied coverage for its state-mandated closure in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • April 02, 2020

    COVID-19 Forces German Eatery Vapiano Into Bankruptcy

    The parent company of German restaurant chain Vapiano has announced it will begin insolvency proceedings, saying it has found no way to escape the liquidity crunch brought on by COVID-19 closures of nearly all its worldwide locations.

  • April 01, 2020

    FTC Sues Altria And Juul, Says $12.8B Deal Hurt Competition

    Altria Group Inc.'s $12.8 billion purchase of a stake in private equity-backed e-cigarette startup Juul Labs Inc. eliminated competition and violated antitrust laws, the Federal Trade Commission said Wednesday in announcing that it filed an administrative complaint against the companies.

  • April 01, 2020

    Anheuser-Busch Parent Gets Australian OK On $11B Unit Sale

    Brewing giant Anheuser-Busch InBev is cleared to move forward with the $11 billion sale of one of its companies to a Japanese rival, after that rival offered conditions that assuaged the concerns of Australia’s competition enforcer.

  • April 01, 2020

    LA Sushi Restaurant Can't Escape 'Hand Roll Bar' TM Suit

    A California federal judge on Tuesday refused to toss a trademark infringement suit brought by the company behind popular Japanese restaurants Sugarfish and KazuNori accusing a Los Angeles sushi bar of ripping off its "Hand Roll Bar" mark.

  • April 01, 2020

    Watchdog Finds Biz Uncertainty Plagues H-2B Visa Program

    Uncertainty surrounding the availability of H-2B guest worker visas makes it difficult for employers to expand operations or predict their business needs, a government watchdog found in a new report published Wednesday.

  • April 01, 2020

    2nd Circ. Hands Chipotle Workers Partial Win In OT Row

    The Second Circuit on Wednesday affirmed a lower court's decision to deny class certification to Chipotle workers in six states claiming they were denied overtime pay, but vacated the court's decision to decertify more than 500 management trainees' collective action on the grounds that their work responsibilities differed too much.

  • April 01, 2020

    Tax Extenders Could Be Candidate For Next Virus Relief Bill

    Despite Congress having just passed $2 trillion in economic relief to mitigate damage from the novel coronavirus pandemic, some lawmakers are already considering another relief bill that could serve as a vehicle to renew expiring tax incentives known as extenders.

Expert Analysis

  • Opinion

    Judicial Shaming Of Attys Is Troubling Even During Pandemic

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    Judges have recently rebuked attorneys for wasting judicial resources to resolve minor issues during the COVID-19 crisis, including in a trademark lawsuit over unicorn drawings. But it is unfair to publicly flog lawyers for doing what they are trained to do, says Ronald Minkoff, chairman of Frankfurt Kurnit's professional responsibility group.

  • Don't Be Social Media Distancing: LinkedIn Tips For Lawyers

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    While we need to be physically apart at this time, lawyers and firms should be leaning into social media to reinforce and build relationships, and help guide clients through the coronavirus crisis, says marketing consultant Stefanie Marrone.

  • Emergency Laws Protect Cos. Enlisted In COVID-19 Fight

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    The Defense Production Act and the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act, recently invoked by the Trump administration to aid in fighting COVID-19, can provide special legal defenses to businesses producing essential supplies — which could protect companies against future tort liability, says Kelly Belnick at Tanenbaum Keale.

  • Remote Depositions: Coming To A Home Office Near You

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    Recent Texas state court orders indicate judges are increasingly requiring parties and nonparties to submit to remote depositions amid the pandemic. However, there are inherent drawbacks to such depositions, including limitations on attorneys’ ability to assess witness credibility, says Edward Duffy at Reed Smith.

  • Revisiting Franchise Agreements In Light Of COVID-19

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    It is not too early for franchisors to review their standard franchise agreements because of the coronavirus pandemic. Eight provisions may need to be revised for new sales going forward, says Michael Gray at Lathrop.

  • How COVID-19 Relief Law Will Aid Small Businesses

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    Franco Furmanski and Carlos Loumiet at Nelson Mullins highlight the benefits of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act’s Paycheck Protection Program for small businesses, as well as what to expect in terms of the loan-qualification process.

  • Ways Lawyers Can Support The Most Vulnerable Right Now

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    In this global health and economic crisis, it is essential that lawyers recommit to inclusion, and fight for colleagues, clients, community members and friends who are most at risk, says Dru Levasseur, head of the National LGBT Bar Association's inclusion coaching and consulting program.

  • What COVID-19 Means For Calif. Real Estate And Use Permits

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    In California, the coronavirus pandemic and the state's response have raised important questions for those involved in pending or approved construction projects, as well as existing businesses that require modification or emergency funding, say Stephanie Smith and Avneet Sidhu at Grid Legal.

  • Calif. Ruling Further Weakens Employee Seating Claims

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    The Los Angeles Superior Court’s recent decision that cashiers' job attributes don’t allow them to sit in LaFace v. Ralphs Grocery should strengthen retailers' defenses against suitable seating claims, and give plaintiffs pause over whether, after their sixth straight loss, they are viable, say attorneys at Paul Hastings.

  • Confronting The Challenges Of Virtual Mediation

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    Conducting mediation via videoconference amid the ongoing pandemic poses significant challenges, including the difficulty of reading people when you are not with them in person. Daniel Garrie at JAMS shares six tips to overcome the limitations.

  • Landlord Lease Enforcement Options During COVID-19

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    As local and state governments continue to impose moratoriums on residential and commercial tenant evictions during the coronavirus pandemic, there are certain steps landlords can take to protect their lease enforcement rights, says Jamie Buggy at Crosbie Gliner.

  • Opinion

    COVID-19 Stimulus Not Enough To Revitalize Alcohol Industry

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    The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act signed into law last week will provide much-needed funds to struggling on-premise alcohol retailers, but without flexibility in alcohol trade practice regulations, relief for the industry will be limited, says Marbet Lewis at Spiritus Law.

  • 3 Steps To Building Effective Teams While On Lockdown

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    When your team is working from different locations due to the COVID-19 outbreak, don’t default to just sending emails. Collaboration is much easier when team members are also communicating in real time over the phone or through videoconferences, say William Oxley and Meghan Rohling Kelly at BakerHostetler.

  • Employer Takeaways From EEOC Virus Screening Guidance

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    Highlighting key elements from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s recently updated guidance, Isaac Mamaysky at Potomac Law Group explains how employers can communicate with employees about potential COVID-19 exposure without running afoul of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

  • How Cyber Cases Can Inform COVID-19 Business Litigation

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    Businesses hoping to understand their COVID-19 litigation risks, including those involving the impracticability of contracts due to shutdowns, can learn from recent complicated privacy and data litigation, says Christopher Ott at Rothwell Figg.

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