General Business Products Liability

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Ninth Circuit Revives Tort Claims Initially Dismissed Under Economic Loss Doctrine Where Product Caused Damage to “Other Property”

On June 29, 2015, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, in CHMM LLC v. Freeman Marine Equipment, Case No. 13-35163 (D.C. No. 3:12-cv-01484-ST), reversed the District Court’s judgment in an admiralty case, holding that a vessel...more

Let Freedom of Contract Ring - NC Supreme Court Upholds Enforceability of Long-Term Express Warranties

In the summer of 2013, a divided North Carolina Court of Appeals caused a stir in the construction community when it held in Christie v. Hartley Construction, Inc., 745 S.E.2d 60 (N.C. App. 2013) (hereinafter “Christie 1”)...more

The Class Action Chronicle - Summer 2015

In This Issue: - The Fairness in Class Action Litigation Act of 2015 - Class Certification Decisions: ..Decisions Granting Motions to Strike/Dismiss Class Claims ..Decisions Denying Motions to...more

HCS: OSHA Publishes Interim Enforcement Guidance for the Hazard Communication Standard

On May 29, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published the "Interim Enforcement Guidance for Hazard Communication 2012 (HCS 2012) June 1, 2015 Effective Date" (Interim...more

California’s Highest Court Refuses to Review Denial of Coverage Under Contamination Products Insurance Policy for Ground Beef...

On May 20, 2015, the California Supreme Court denied Windsor Food Quality Company, Ltd.’s (Windsor’s) petition for review of the decision of the Court of Appeal for the Fourth Appellate District of California that denied...more

Navigating Product Recalls

Recalls are in the news as much as ever. The number of units recalled in 2014 eclipsed the total from 2010-2013, combined. Takata’s recall is expanding to 34 million vehicles as the company enters a Consent Decree with NHTSA....more

Minding Your (Policy) Language – Indiana Supreme Court Certifies Pro Rata Allocation Ruling From Lower Court

Courts have struggled between two approaches on how to allocate damages when multiple, consecutive CGL policies have been triggered in situations involving continuous injury or property damage. The majority approach, pro rata...more

But We Did Everything Right?: Why Agreements with Shippers are Necessary for Carriers to Protect Themselves from...

As food transporters grapple with the myriad of compliance issues raised by the Food Safety Modernization Act and the FDA’s looming proposed “Food Safety Rule on the Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Food,” carriers...more

Defense and Indemnity Demands in Today’s Global Marketplace

In defending product liability cases, product manufacturers, sellers and distributors often tender a request for defense and indemnity from claims to one of their business partners. Typically, the tender arises from two...more

Technology Companies: When a Product Complaint Arises, Will Your Insurance Cover the Claims?

- Sometimes, technology products contain flaws. - Purchasers may complain to the manufacturer about the flawed products, and some complaints become multi-million dollar liabilities. - After receiving such a...more

Business Litigation Alert: "The Blue Bell Recall - How to Effectively Handle a Very Public Crisis"

Since the beginning of April, Blue Bell has been making headlines, and not for a new flavor of ice cream. The Texas-based ice cream giant decided to recall all products from store shelves following a listeria outbreak....more

Legislative Update for Brand Manufacturers Distributing in Alabama

On April 28, 2015, the Alabama House of Representatives passed SB-80, thereby abolishing the highly criticized theory of innovator liability adopted in Wyeth, Inc. v. Weeks, ___ So.3d___, 2014 WL 4055813 (Ala. Aug. 15, 2014)....more

Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad: Kansas District Court Certifies Settlement Class and Grants Preliminary Approval but Rejects Notice by...

A boy fell through the vinyl guardrail his father installed on the second story deck of their home. After settling his son’s personal injury claims, the father sued Home Depot and the guardrail manufacturer on behalf of...more

Food for Thought: Jail Sentences Send Strong Message to Food Industry

On Monday, U.S. District Court Judge Mark Bennett in Sioux City, Iowa, sentenced Austin (Jack) DeCoster and his son Peter to three months in jail for their role in selling contaminated food across state lines. Their company,...more

Food Labeling, Food Safety & Nutrition

From a national action plan on combating antibiotic-resistant bacteria in food-producing animals and a presidential task force on fishing and seafood fraud, to proposed rules on nutrition and supplement fact labeling, the...more

Even the Great Wall of China Can’t Hide a U.S. Distributor in a Product Defect Lawsuit

The Illinois First District Appellate Court recently held that a U.S. distributor cannot escape liability under the Illinois Distributor Release Statute if the plaintiff was unable to obtain jurisdiction over a Chinese...more

Court Of Appeal Upholds “Safe Harbor” Exemption From Prop 65 Warnings For Lead In Fruit Products

In a much anticipated decision, a California Court of Appeal has upheld a trial court ruling for the defense, finding that trace levels of lead in packaged fruits, vegetables and fruit juice products require no Proposition 65...more

Privileges Can Help Manufacturers in Product Liability Litigation, but Beware

This blog’s earlier post, “Protect Your Safety Investigations and Deliberations From Prying Eyes,” highlighted the three privileges that are useful for Safety Teams – self-critical analysis privilege (or self-evaluation...more

Placement of Checkbox Can Make or Break a Clickwrap Agreement

The enforceability of a wrap agreement (browsewrap, clickwrap and shrinkwrap) can often turn on what to the untrained eye may be mere minutiae. Such minutiae can include the nuances of the design of a website. For example, in...more

Dallas Appeals Court Renders Take-Nothing Judgment for Insurer in Construction Defect Case

In Dallas National Insurance Co. v. Calitex Corp., —S.W.3d—, 2015 WL 968308 (Tex. App.—Dallas Mar. 3, 2015, no pet. h.), the Dallas Court of Appeals reversed a trial court judgment finding coverage for almost $700,000 in...more

California Court Holds Product Contamination Insurance Does Not Cover Ingredients Contaminated by Insured’s Supplier

On February 6th, an intermediate level California appellate court held that a product contamination policy only covered contamination that occurs during or after manufacturing operations by the insured, meaning that there was...more

Insurance Recovery Law - March 2015

New York Federal Court Rejects Insurer’s Request for Recoupment - Why it matters: The federal court, applying New York law, held that an energy drink manufacturer’s advertising coverage claim—arising from underlying...more

Drone Use “Takes Off” as Legal Consequences Remain Uncertain

Drones, also known as unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), have received extensive media coverage over the past few years. Whether the discussions about drones are related to the unmanned...more

Major Donut Chain Reformulates Powdered Sugar Due to Concerns Over Claimed Nanomaterials

A major donut chain has reformulated the powdered sugar used in its donut products to address investor and consumer activist group concerns over the alleged presence of nanomaterials. The move secured the withdrawal of a...more

California Court Considers Contaminated Food Product Coverage

In Windsor Food Quality Company, LTD. v. The Underwriters of Lloyds of London, 2015 Cal. App. LEXIS 195 (Cal. App. Feb. 6, 2015), the California Court of Appeals considered whether an ingredient obtained from a supplier and...more

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