Supreme Court Sides with Employees, Again
Vaccine makers such as Pfizer are breathing easier now that the Supreme Court has ruled they can't be sued for defective vaccine designs. The majority opinion by Justice Antonin Scalia was unequivocal: Congress has barred lawsuits over the rare but unavoidable side effects of vital vaccines.
Two foreclosure middlemen, LPS Default Solutions and Prommis Solutions, are accused of illegally paying non-attorneys to practice law so banks and law firms could save on document filing costs. It's more than a money issue -- the errors these rushed non-attorneys are making may lead to another messy stage of the mortgage meltdown.
Among the state systems governing foreclosure, Hawaii has a particularly fraud-riddled, draconian process. Suzanne Bonds was unbelievably exploited by the state's foreclosure process in 2004, but Hawaii's courts refused to help. Now, her attorneys have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to intervene.
Note to people who have been murdered, raped, beaten, or robbed by your country's army, with the assistance of a corporation such as transporting the attacking troops, feeding them, paying them, and giving them access to corporate property as a staging ground: You cannot sue the corporation in U.S. courts.
With so many jurors talking about cases they're on via social networks, judges are now updating their warnings to jurors about the sanctity of jury deliberations to include social media. Some are even confiscating smartphones in the courtroom.
The Texas AG is investigating Google for allegedly manipulating search results to hurt its competitors, which could be an antitrust violation. Three companies, two in the U.S. and one in the U.K., have all complained of Google search manipulation.
A group of 700 investors is arguing that Bernard Madoff%u2019s customers should be entitled to recoveries from the Securities Investor Protection Corp. even if they collected more from the fraudulent schemes than they invested. The investors%u2019 lawyer, Helen Chaitman, is arguing that the investors had no knowledge of the fraud, and asking that a bankruptcy judge%u2019s decision that bars them from collecting SIPC money be reversed, Bloomberg News reported.
The House of Representatives has passed the "SPILL Act," which -- if also passed by the Senate -- will allow families of men killed in the Deepwater Horizon accident to sue BP for normal damages. Under current maritime law, BP might get away with payments as low as $1,000 per death.
LimeWire, a peer-to-peer file sharing network that was recently found liable to recording artists for massive copyright piracy faces an additional threat to its existence: Music publishers are suing it too, alleging the same piracy.
Ohio's Supreme Court says its state's cops don't need radar to pull speeders over -- they just need to believe the drivers are speeding. But giving police that authority invites abuses, so two Ohio legislators are trying to pass a law that overturns the decision.
One of the most eagerly watched cases pending before the Supreme Court is Bilski v. Kappos, which will profoundly shape the scope of patent law.
A U.S. District Court judge ruled Wednesday against peer-to-peer file sharing firm LimeWire in a massive music copyright infringement case that will likely bankrupt the company.
Many people have been fuming about a federal law that could cap BP's economic liability for the Gulf of Mexico Deepwater Horizon oil spill at $75 million. Fortunately, the liability cap isn't absolute, and it probably won't protect BP.
New Department of Transportation rules attempt to prevent airlines from keeping passengers trapped for more than three hours without access to food, water or bathrooms while planes idle on the tarmac. Airlines that break the new rules, which take effect Thursday, now face fines of up to $27,500 per passenger.
Social networking site Formspring.me is wildly popular among teenagers and young adults lured by its freewheeling style, where people can ask anyone anything, anonymously. But as one teacher puts it, when it comes to young people: "Anonymity nearly always breeds irresponsibility."
The Wall Street Journal reports that the Securities and Exchange Commission's top cop, Robert Khuzami, not only has 11 years of experience as a prosecutor but he has seven years as an investment banking lawyer.
States are liberalizing liquor laws to allow stores to allow liquor tastings, reports the Chicago Tribune. Virginia recently became the 43rd state to ease its laws. Apparently tastings lead to greater sales of expensive brands, something that makes both companies and states happy. States make a lot of money off sin taxes. And what does it take to be named "New York's Most Obnoxious Lawyer"?
Jurors get paid a pittance to serve -- certainly not enough to make up for lost wages. The right to a trial by our peers may be a pillar of our democracy, but in this era of high underemployment, the pay cut associated with missing work to do your civic duty is cutting deeper than ever.
In a case that may echo into the Google/YouTube v. Viacom copyright showdown, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Thursday that eBay is not liable to Tiffany's for trademark infringement, despite the significant volume of counterfeit Tiffany goods auctioned on the site.
Two Baker Hostetler partners helped defraud nine investors of over $1 million in a classic version of the famous Nigerian email scam. Investors were told their money was needed to pay the taxes on $14.5 million held in nation of Burkina Faso, after which, the fortune would be released.
Top legal news, including how DuPont may be able to avoid paying $283 million in damages for pollution, and the political allegiances of Attorney Generals in the suit to repeal health-care reform.
The Federal Reserve must reveal documents identifying financial companies that received Fed loans to survive the financial crisis, a federal appeals court ruled Friday. A panel of the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan said in two separate opinions that such information isn't automatically exempt from requests under the Freedom of Information Act. News Corp.'s Fox News Network LLC and Bloomberg L.P. sued separately for details about loans that commercial banks and Wall Street firms received and the collateral they put up. Other news agencies including The Associated Press filed briefs with the appellate court in their support.
Ex-Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling appealed his 2006 criminal conviction on 19 counts of conspiracy, fraud, false statements and insider trading.