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Motor Carriers Face Uphill Battle After California Supreme Court Decision

Harris v. Pac Anchor Transportation, Inc., No. S194388 (July 28, 2014): In a unanimous decision, the California Supreme Court has held that the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act of 1994 (FAAAA) does not...more

Supreme Court Poised to Hear TSA Whistleblower Case

The Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) plays a crucial role in our national safety infrastructure. Yet the agency has been subjected to significant criticism — and even been the butt of jokes — for the last several...more

Supreme Court Grants Certiorari to Review D.C. Circuit Decision Hampering Amtrak's On-Time Performance

On June 23rd, the U.S. Supreme Court granted the government’s Writ of Certiorari to review the decision of the D.C. Circuit that many believe may be hampering Amtrak’s leverage with freight railroads and its on-time...more

D.C. Circuit Rejects Challenge to FAA's Drone Policy as Premature

On Friday, the D.C. Circuit granted the FAA's motion to dismiss a petition for review involving its enforcement policy on unmanned aerial systems, also referred to as drones. The petition was filed by Texas Equusearch, a...more

Six Days on the Road and I'm Gonna Park My Truck to Comply with State Laws Tonight

My apologies to Dave Dudley. The song “Six Days on the Road” just doesn’t stand up to the changes we would have to make after the Ninth Circuit’s decision that the state meal and rest break laws are not preempted by federal...more

Third Circuit affirms dismissal of False Claims Act suit, citing contract ambiguity

Ambiguous contract terms are ordinarily a liability for government contractors, opening the possibility of misunderstandings, expensive disputes, and, potentially, unpaid additional work. However, contract ambiguity recently...more

Eight Is Not Enough: CEQA Challenge To Eighth Addendum To San Jose International Airport Master Plan EIR Is Rejected By Sixth...

In a decision filed June 6, but not certified for publication until July 2, 2014, the Sixth District Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court’s judgment upholding the City of San Jose’s eighth addendum to its Airport Master...more

Third Circuit Holds Ambiguous Contract Precludes FCA Liability

The Third Circuit recently upheld summary judgment in favor of the defendant in U.S. Dept. of Transp. ex rel. Arnold v. CMC Engineering, a whistleblower suit alleging the defendant overbilled Pennsylvania’s Department of...more

Aviation Flyer - Summer 2014

In This Issue: - Forum Non Conveniens - A Defendant’s Initial Impulse Could Be The Riskiest - Providing Information To Expert Witnesses: A Quick Guide To The Proper Procedures And Potential Pitfalls -...more

Ground Control to Major Tom: Appeals Court Shuts Down CEQA Challenge to San Jose Airport Master Plan

In Citizens Against Airport Pollution v. City of San Jose, No. H038781 (Cal. Ct. App. 6th Dist., June 6, 2014), Citizens Against Airport Pollution (“CAAP”) appealed the trial court’s ruling that the City of San Jose’s...more

Illinois Appellate Court: School District’s Subcontracting of Transportation Services is “Part of Bargaining Process” and an...

The Illinois Appellate Court for the Fourth District recently found that a school district did not engage in any unfair labor practices when it subcontracted student transportation services to a third-party vendor and...more

California Delivery Drivers Gain Employee Status Despite Independent Contractor Agreements

On June 16, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled that home-delivery drivers who transported furniture and appliances for a leading transportation and logistics company under independent contractor agreements...more

The Carriage of Goods at Sea Act Requires that Suit Be Brought Within One Year of “Delivery”

In this case, the plaintiff entered into a contract of carriage wherein the defendant agreed to ship pears to a consignee in Brazil. A later inspection discovered that the pears froze during the voyage, causing the fruits to...more

Case Update: Dawson V Thomson Airways Limited1

Lessons on the interplay between the EC Regulation 261/2004 and the Montreal Convention 1999 relearnt - Court of Appeal confirms limitation under EC Regulation 261/2004 to be determined in accordance with domestic law...more

Alcoholic Truck Driver Case Is Good For Transportation Employers, But Be Careful

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, which hears appeals from federal courts in Alabama, Florida, and Georgia, recently affirmed summary judgment for Crete Carrier Corporation. Crete fired one of its truck drivers...more

Enforcing Foreign Judgments in U.S. Admiralty Courts: Second Circuit Prefers Substance Over Form

After protracted and expensive litigation overseas, you obtain a judgment against the defendant. There remains one series of hurdles left to cross: the defendant refuses to pay that judgment and has no assets in the country...more

Pennsylvania Superior Court Reverses Forum Non Conveniens Dismissal of International Air Crash Case, But Don’t Equate Pennsylvania...

United States courts facing forum non conveniens (FNC) motions, at least with respect to lawsuits arising out of air crashes that occur outside of the United States, seem to fall into two distinct camps: Cook County,...more

Delivery Drivers Classified As Employees Despite Signed Agreement Purporting To Establish Independent Contractor Relationship

Recently, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, applying California law, concluded that delivery drivers who signed agreements stating they were independent contractors and not employees would still be...more

Out Of The Extraordinary: The Court Of Appeal's Judgment In Huzar V Jet2.Com

Court of Appeal hands down judgment on the meaning of "extraordinary circumstances" in the case of cancellation or delay arising out of technical faults pursuant to EC Regulation 261/2004 - It is somewhat regrettable...more

Delivery Drivers are Employees, Not Independent Contractors, Ninth Circuit Rules

Sometimes a title tells you all you need to know. If you listen to the 1969 Pink Floyd track, “Several Species of Small Furry Animals Gathered Together in a Cave and Grooving with a Pict,” you pretty much know what you are...more

DOT Proposes to Fine Motor Carriers and Others Who Coerce Drivers to Violate Safety Rules

The Surface Transportation Act currently provides commercial drivers with recourse if they are retaliated against for refusing to violate federal motor carrier safety rules. Earlier this month, the Department of...more

Bankruptcy Court Dismisses Class Action DFR Complaint Involving Airline Merger

One deliberately ironic facet of the 2004 film Howard Hughes bio-pic The Aviator (the one with Leonardo DiCaprio) is the fact that the airlines fighting for world dominance in the 1940s were Howard Hughes’ TWA and Juan...more

District Court Holds Guyana Not a Party to Warsaw Convention

- In deciding treaty status, courts place "controlling importance" on the governmental conduct of the countries at issue. - Guyana's post-independence accession to other treaties – but its failure to formally accede to the...more

Which Insurance-Related Bills Met the California Deadline for Passage?

The deadline for California Assembly and Senate bills to pass their respected houses was May 30, 2014. Bills that met the deadline are eligible for enactment this year. ...more

Aviation Defendants Contend with Challenges to Federal Jurisdiction

- An aircraft manufacturer's ability to remove a case to federal court based on admiralty jurisdiction involved consideration of whether "injury became inevitable" while the aircraft was still over water. ...more

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