The novel coronavirus has brought jury trials to a standstill in one of the pandemic’s most immediate blows to the legal sector, including court battles over whether Johnson & Johnson and Bayer products cause cancer and the New York attorney general’s effort to hold drugmakers liable for the opioid crisis. Here’s a look at some of the highly anticipated trials that are on pause.
A New Mexico federal judge has reversed Interior Board of Indian Appeals decisions that rejected the renewal of an oil pipeline company's right-of-way over land belonging to Navajo Nation members, saying the board shouldn't have resolved a crucial issue without letting the parties involved weigh in.
Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez has vetoed a resolution that aimed to fast-track the launch of the tribe’s own managed health care group to aid efforts against the COVID-19 pandemic, sparking a dispute among tribal leaders and the tribe's business arm, Naat'áanii Development Corporation.
The Ohio federal judge overseeing the multidistrict litigation over the opioid crisis tossed a bid brought by pharmacy chains, including CVS Pharmacy Inc., Walgreen Co. and Walmart Inc., to shift blame onto prescribers, saying he found no basis for the pharmacies to transfer their liability.
Enforcement activities at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency are down across the board over a recent 10-year period, in some categories by more than 50%, the EPA's internal watchdog said in a report issued Wednesday.
Alaska and an oil industry trade group told the Ninth Circuit that no statute bars the Trump administration from rescinding an Obama-era block on oil and gas drilling in large areas of the Arctic and Atlantic oceans.
A Massachusetts tribe urged a D.C. federal court on Monday to issue a preliminary injunction to block the federal government from taking the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe's reservation lands “out of trust” and revoking its reservation proclamation, which the U.S. Department of the Interior has said it will do soon.
Environmental and indigenous groups have accused a California water district of “acting as a law unto itself” by ignoring court deadlines to design fish passages to help the protected steelhead navigate the Vern Freeman Dam.
The Kalispel Tribe of Indians and its casino have filed a $21 million lawsuit in Washington federal court against companies including 3M Co. and Tyco Fire Products LP, as well as the United States, saying "forever chemicals" in firefighting foam contaminated their drinking water for years.
BNSF Railway Co. has urged the Ninth Circuit to revisit a ruling that the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community can try to block the company’s increase in oil shipments across reservation land, saying that the Surface Transportation Board alone can regulate the railroad’s common carrier responsibilities.
As Cadwalader pauses partner distributions and cuts staff pay and Pryor Cashman furloughs associates, a slew of other firms are likely to follow suit as the legal industry goes into crisis mode to weather the economic storm caused by COVID-19.
The U.S. Department of Defense must deploy a 248-bed combat support hospital to Albuquerque, New Mexico, to fight a “surge” of COVID-19 patients in the state, a delegation of lawmakers told the DOD and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
The Federal Communications Commission’s two Democrats put forth a slate of ideas Tuesday to curb the spread of the coronavirus and keep vulnerable Americans connected amid the pandemic, saying their agency could move ahead with several action items immediately.
The U.S. Department of the Interior said Monday it is rescinding a decision to take Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe land into trust as part of a casino construction plan, citing a recent First Circuit ruling that it wrongly interpreted the Indian Reorganization Act.
A South Dakota federal judge said Monday that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services owes some level of health care to the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, though his order did not go as far as the tribe wanted.
The Natural Resources Defense Council has told a New York federal court that a recent First Circuit decision bolsters its ongoing bid to vacate a 2017 U.S. Environmental Protection Agency policy regarding the allocation of EPA grants.
Individual members of a tribe have told a California federal court that a gaming developer can't pursue racketeering claims against them in its $5.38 million breach of contract suit over a sham casino project, saying it already agreed to seek damages from the tribe itself.
A California federal judge on Friday granted a stipulated pause of a lawsuit by the Yurok Tribe that seeks to protect a species of salmon the tribe says is vital to its livelihood and cultural identity from impacts of an irrigation project in the Klamath River.
The San Carlos Apache Tribe has urged an Arizona federal judge to deny the government's bid to trim the tribe's $8.6 million suit alleging the Indian Health Service failed to reimburse it for indirect costs for health care coverage the tribe provided under contract with the agency.
The U.S. Department of the Interior told a New York federal court its decision to loosen enforcement on the incidental killing of migratory birds is an accurate interpretation of a 100-year-old statute and will streamline "a convoluted patchwork of legal standards."
After two record years for U.S. law firm combinations, deal-making has come to a screeching halt this spring as the nation grapples with a pandemic, in what could be the first time in four years the industry will see a decline in deals.
The attorneys helping draft cities’ and states’ stay-at-home orders during the coronavirus pandemic have been tiptoeing through a legal minefield, working long hours to carve out the kind of work that should be considered “essential” and to ensure local governments aren’t overstepping their authority.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's decision to temporarily suspend some compliance obligations for entities affected by the coronavirus crisis was condemned by green groups as a free pass for polluters, but attorneys who work with companies say it's appropriate for the circumstances as long as clients don't stretch their interpretations too far.
The head of the U.S. Department of Justice's environmental unit said Friday that after prohibiting environmental projects as an option in enforcement settlements with private parties, officials are studying whether steps should be taken to curtail their use in citizen suits that environmentalists frequently pursue.
As the COVID-19 pandemic worsens in Indian Country, House Democrats praised the inclusion of over $10 billion for tribes in the $2 trillion coronavirus relief bill signed by the president Friday, but said more federal funding would be needed to tackle the crisis.
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.
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.
As the judiciary implements telephone and video hearings in response to the coronavirus pandemic, attorneys can deliver effective advocacy by following certain best practices, such as using backup materials and specially preparing witnesses and exhibits, say attorneys at Fish & Richardson.
Remote depositions are a useful tool for meeting discovery deadlines while allowing all parties to stay at home amid the COVID-19 outbreak. But they come with a unique set of challenges, say Eliot Williams and Daniel Rabinowitz at Baker Botts.
The American Bar Association's Model Rules of Professional Conduct require lawyers to be zealous advocates for clients' interests, but how do these rules apply in this unprecedented time of COVID-19? Anne Lockner at Robins Kaplan offers some pointers.
In the midst of this health crisis when lawyers are working from home with their loved ones around all day, practitioners need to ensure their “home” and “office” settings coexist without one trumping the needs of the other, says Luciana Fragali at Design Solutions.
The COVID-19 crisis will continue to affect e-discovery long after we overcome this pandemic. When litigation and investigations reengage and courts start moving their schedules forward, these concerns will need to be addressed, say David Kessler and Andrea D'Ambra at Norton Rose.
The financial impact of COVID-19 is already starting to ripple through law firms in the form of diminished demand and time entry. A few lessons from the 2008 financial crisis and some new ideas can help firm leaders navigate the storm, says Peter Zeughauser at Zeughauser Group.
Remote working doesn’t work when people feel they must apologize for or hide it, and lawyers often feel that way — even in unavoidable, disaster-related scenarios like we see with the pandemic today, says David Pierce at Axiom.
While mediating via an internet conferencing platform during the COVID-19 crisis, remember that visual interactions are of vital importance. A simple phrase can be transformed into a sincere inquiry, a shocked response or a sarcastic put-down depending upon how we visually convey that message, says mediator Sidney Kanazawa at ARC.
With law firms across the country implementing policies to ensure the safety of attorneys and staff and prevent the spread of coronavirus, Andrew Russell at Shaw Keller shares some tips for firms, particularly smaller firms, that may be transitioning to remote work now or in the coming days.
Many law firms are quickly adopting remote working policies during the coronavirus pandemic to keep their employees safe while providing a high level of client service, but it's also important to continue fostering diversity, equity and inclusion, says Yusuf Zakir, director of diversity and inclusion at Holland & Knight.
As lawyers find their typical interactions with clients, prospects and referral sources abruptly postponed or canceled due to COVID-19, there are sanitary and safe business development and marketing opportunities to consider, says Jonathan Fitzgarrald at Equinox Strategy Partners.
Lawyers should keep in mind that they may well be held responsible for the conduct of lead generation services they employ, even though the ethical and legal requirements in this area can be murky, say Lucian Pera at Adams and Reese, Peter Jarvis at Holland & Knight and attorney William Hornsby.
Pipeline programs that focus on increasing underrepresented law school applicants beyond those with traditionally favored credentials will help close law schools' diversity gap better than existing programs that aid high achievers already being admitted to law school, says Aaron Taylor at AccessLex Institute.