Civil Procedure Civil Remedies Energy & Utilities

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Recent Pro-Cooperative Decisions in Class Action Patronage Capital Cases

Cooperatives facing patronage capital lawsuits have recently enjoyed a series of favorable court opinions. Over the past few months, the Eleventh Circuit and state and federal courts in Florida have all dismissed claims for...more

Award for Nuisance From Gas Wells Squelched

It was a bad day for the Parrs in Aruba Petroleum v. Parr. The trial court judgment was against the operator for intentional nuisance. The Parrs recovered $2.9 million for pain and suffering and mental anguish and for loss of...more

Dallas Court of Appeals Reverses $2.9 Million Jury Verdict, Finding Insufficient Evidence of Intent

In 2014, the jury awarded $2.9 million to plaintiff landowners in Lisa Parr et.al. v. Aruba Petroleum, Inc., a case involving alleged hydrocarbon exposure due to hydraulic fracturing operations. Earlier this week, the Dallas...more

The Supreme Court May Review Whether Regulatory Enforcement Actions Seeking Disgorgement are Subject to a Five-Year Statute of...

Federal regulatory agencies, such as the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC”), and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”), have the authority to impose...more

Delaware Law Updates – The Court of Chancery Determines $2 Billion Dispute Is One for an Independent Auditor to Decide

In Chicago Bridge & Iron Company N.V. v. Westinghouse Electric Company LLC, C.A. No. 12585-VCL (Del. Ch. Dec. 5, 2016), the Court of Chancery granted a buyer’s motion for judgment on the pleadings, holding that the plain...more

Idaho Supreme Court Refuses to Modify the Workers Compensation Exclusive Remedy Doctrine

In order to provide near certain relief for employees injured in the course of employment, the Idaho Worker’s Compensation Act withdrew the common law remedies workers traditionally held against their employers. This...more

Missouri Supreme Court resets the rules for collecting leaking underground storage tank cleanup costs in litigation

An impactful decision from the Missouri Supreme Court will likely affect how leaking underground storage tank (“UST”) owners collect cleanup costs from the Petroleum Storage Tank Insurance Fund (“Fund”) in the future....more

Ninth Circuit Expands the Octane Fitness Attorneys’ Fee Standard to the Lanham Act

Following several other circuits as well as patent law precedent, in SunEarth, Inc. v. Sun Earth Solar Power Co., the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit recently made it easier for Lanham Act litigants to recover...more

Act Now To Preserve Your Section 1603 Grant

In Depth - We recently reported that on October 31, 2016, the US Court of Federal Claims issued its opinion in Alta Wind I Owner v. United States, in which the court determined that the value of the property eligible for...more

Court Awards $206 Million to Alta Wind Projects in Section 1603 Grant Litigation; Smaller Award to Biomass Facility

The US Court of Federal Claims awarded damages of more than $206 million to Plaintiffs/applicants in a case with respect to the cash grant under Section 1603 of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Public Law...more

Operator – Don’t Get Burned by Paying an Insolvent Contractor

Just received notice of a Texas subcontractor’s mineral lien? DO NOT continue to pay the contractor. He hasn’t paid the subcontractor. Think you owe nothing on the well on which the lien will be filed? Think what you owe the...more

Supreme Court Allows Early Challenges to Wetlands Jurisdictional Determinations

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that a property owner can go to court to challenge a determination by the Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) that part of the property is “waters of the U.S.” or connected wetlands and therefore...more

Quicksands and Cutting Edges of the Law: Do Municipal Utility Customers possess Due Process and Vested Rights to Continued...

Sometimes, I read a court’s opinion and put it aside because it is thought provoking beyond its facts and outcome. The case of United States Cold Storage, Inc. v. Town of Warsaw, __ N.C. App. ___, 784 S.E. 2d 575 (April 5,...more

Florida Court Deals Big Blow to Plaintiffs Challenging Rural Electric Cooperatives - Ruling Involved Patronage Capital Case Filed...

Since April 2014, seven cases have been filed in Florida against rural electric cooperatives regarding the distribution of patronage capital. In each of these putative class action cases, the plaintiff – a customer and member...more

FERC Enforcement Targets Entitled To Due Process Protections In De Novo Review Of Penalty Assessments

In a line of much-anticipated decisions, two federal district courts ruled to protect the procedural due process rights of entities targeted by FERC enforcement actions. Recent decisions in Massachusetts and the District of...more

Back to the Bulgarian Bad Guy, So Say the Justices

My blogging sensei Cordell Parvin says the title should always inform the reader of the content. Mea culpa on this one; I couldn’t resist the alliterations. Some time back I reported on Carlton Energy Group et al v....more

Choice-Of-Law Ruling In Massachusetts Diminishes Coverage For Rhode Island Public Utility

The Appeals Court of Massachusetts recently dealt a blow to policyholders by choosing to apply Massachusetts law to the coverage of environmental contamination in Rhode Island. In OneBeacon America Insurance Company v....more

Court’s Tentative Decision Sides in Favor of DOGGR in CBD’s Wastewater Injection Lawsuit

As reported in a previous blog post, Earthjustice, on behalf of the Center for Biological Diversity (“CBD”), filed a lawsuit against the California Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (“DOGGR”) in May 2015. The...more

Sometimes, Finding Justice is Subtle

Justice delayed is Justice denied is a favorite aphorism. Most times, the aphorism criticizes the deliberative process of our judicial system. But, in fact, the aphorism is broader - the mere passage of time - regardless of...more

FERC Civil Penalties May Be Subject to Full Judicial Review

A Federal District Court recently held that a proposed civil penalty assessed by FERC was subject to a full trial de novo where the respondent elects to forego a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge, a matter of first...more

Forecast is Hazy For EPA’s Regional Haze Oversight Authority

Earlier this month, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals stayed EPA’s disapproval of the Texas and Oklahoma regional haze state implementation plans, as well as EPA’s promulgation of its own federal implementation plan. The...more

Supreme Court of Missouri Holds No Right to an Immediate Appeal from an Interlocutory Order Overruling a Motion to Intervene as a...

State ex rel. Koster v. ConocoPhillips Company, 2016 WL 3554339 (Mo.banc June 28, 2016), abrogating Eckhoff v. Eckhoff, 242 S.W.3d 466 (Mo.App. W.D. 2008), Coon ex rel. Coon v. American Compressed Steel, 133 S.W.3d 75...more

US Circuit Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit delays oral arguments in Clean Power Plan litigation

On May 16, the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit announced that it was delaying scheduled June 2 oral arguments before a three-judge panel in litigation over the Clean Power Plan. Instead, the DC...more

5th Circuit Vacates Verdict for ExxonMobil in CAA Citizen Suit: Still Not Much of a Win for the Plaintiffs

Last Friday, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals vacated a District Court decision which had refused to impose penalties on ExxonMobil for various violations of the Clean Air Act at ExxonMobil’s Baytown refinery. While the...more

What’s To Know About the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016

Congress has passed the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 and the president is expected to sign it into law. The DTSA allows suits in federal court for misappropriation of trade secrets. Before the DTSA, most litigants would...more

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