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Ninth Circuit Upholds FDA’s Primary Jurisdiction Over “Natural” Labeling On Cosmetics But Orders Stay Rather Than Dismissal

Plaintiffs’ lawyers love to challenge products labeled as “natural,” with hundreds of false advertising class actions filed in just the last few years. Recently, in Astiana v. Hain Celestial (pdf), the Ninth Circuit reversed...more

TracFone Files Supplement to Emergency Petition for FCC Preemption on 911 Fees

As noted in our prior update, in November 2014, the FCC Wireline Competition Bureau issued a Public Notice requesting industry comment on a Petition filed by TracFone Wireless regarding 911 fees charged to Lifeline...more

“Common” Defense No Bar to Removal in Preemption Case

We’re not law professors. We don’t typically read opinions with an eye to where they fit (or don’t) in some grand jurisprudential scheme. We’re litigators, so we read opinions with an eye to whether they can help our...more

Food Litigation Newsletter - March 2015 # 2

In This Issue: - RECENT SIGNIFICANT DEVELOPMENTS AND RULINGS ..Ninth Circuit Reverses Dismissal Based on Standing, Preemption ..Court Applies Common Sense Standard in Dismissing ‘No Refined Sugars’...more

A+ or Not?

The SEC has scheduled an open meeting for this Wednesday to consider whether to adopt rules and forms related to the offer and sale of securities pursuant to Section 3(b) of the Securities Act of 1933 to implement Section 401...more

Court Finds that Class Action Plaintiffs’ False Advertising Claims are Stripped Bayer Based on Federal Preemption

In the recent case of Gallagher v. Bayer AG, Case No. 14-cv-04601-WHO (N.D. Cal. March 10, 2015), the plaintiffs asserted that the defendants Bayer AG and related entities (collectively, “Bayer”) engaged in false advertising...more

FCC Releases Full Text of Order Preempting State Laws Limiting Municipal Broadband

On March 12, 2015, the Federal Communications Commission released the text of its order preempting provisions of North Carolina and Tennessee law that allow municipalities to provide broadband service but otherwise limit the...more

FCC Preempts Two State Laws That Limit the Geographic Reach of Municipal Broadband Systems

On February 26, 2015, the Federal Communications Commission voted to strike down provisions of North Carolina and Tennessee laws that restrict the area in which municipally-owned broadband systems in those states are allowed...more

First Circuit Finds Federal Preemption of State Tort Claims That Conflict With A Medication’s FDA-Approved Labeling & Warnings

An opinion issued by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit on February 20, 2015 held that the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (“FDCA”) preempted claims that Lexapro’s U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)...more

POM Wonderful: The New Prescription for False Advertising

The ability of private parties to pursue mislabelling claims depends on whether allowing such claims to proceed would conflict with the purpose and intent of federal labelling laws and implementing regulations, such as those...more

Food for Thought: 2014 Litigation Annual Review

Food for Thought reports on significant court decisions affecting the food industry. The focus of this edition is on several food-related cases pertaining to class certification; particularly, on district court decisions...more

California Court Of Appeal Sides With Federal Arbitration Act Over State Law Unconscionability Rule

The California Court of Appeals recently held that the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”) preempts California’s Broughton-Cruz rule, which states that arbitration agreements for injunctive relief under California’s unfair...more

Plaintiff’s Mislabeling Claims Against Honest Tea Survive Motion to Dismiss

On January 5, 2015 Judge Kimberly Mueller of the Eastern District of California denied Honest Tea’s motion to dismiss a case involving accusations that the company misled consumers about the antioxidant content of one of its...more

Advertising Law - January 2015 #3

President Obama Focuses on Cybersecurity, Privacy, Data Breach Notification - Data security and privacy concerns received special attention in President Obama’s State of the Union address where the President advocated...more

FCC Clarifies That Competitive Cable Franchising Rules Do Not Preempt State Franchising Laws, And Affirms Application Of Its 621...

Nearly eight years after issuing its so-called “621 Order” limiting local governments’ actions and authority over competitive cable franchising, and its 2007 Second Report and Order which extended to incumbent cable operators...more

Vermont Doubles Down: Representative Testifies Before Congress Against Federal GMO Labeling Bill

As we’ve explored in past posts, Congress is currently considering a bill that aims to harmonize the patchwork of state efforts at regulating GMO labeling by placing such regulation firmly within FDA’s jurisdiction. Dubbed...more

The Day the Exception Swallowed the Rule: Is Any Software Patent Eligible After Ultramercial III?

The Supreme Court has consistently cautioned that the judicial exceptions to patent eligibility need to be carefully applied: At the same time, we tread carefully in construing this exclusionary principle lest it...more

Q&A Series: Class Action Litigation Has Focused On Claims By Spirits Producers on Labels, Websites, and In Marketing Campaigns

In some cases class action plaintiffs are making claims based on an allegedly incorrect statement on a label. Does TTB approval of a label protect a producer against claims based on the content of the label? TJC: There...more

Consumer Products Companies Should Take Care to Comply with California “Made in USA” Labeling Law

New cases are being brought by plaintiff attorneys under the California “Made in USA” labeling law, which prohibits use of that claim or similar language if the "merchandise or any article, unit, or part thereof" was made...more

November Elections Impact the Food & Beverage Industry (Part 1)

Bids to require mandatory labeling of foods containing genetically modified organisms (GMO) were voted down in Colorado and Oregon on Tuesday. Colorado voters rejected Proposition 105, with nearly 70% of voters saying no;...more

Beginning to Close the POM Circle? – POM Wonderful and Drug Advertising: JHP Pharmaceuticals

Earlier this year, in POM Wonderful LLC v. Coca-Cola Co.,[1] the Supreme Court examined the interaction between the Lanham Act’s prohibition against false advertising and the FDCA’s prohibition against food, drug and...more

Pom Wonderful Drops Ninth Circuit Appeal of State Claims Filed Against Coca-Cola

On September 19, 2014, Pom Wonderful, LLC dropped its Ninth Circuit appeal of a ruling that dismissed its state deceptive advertising and unfair competition claims against Coca-Cola, a sibling case to a recent Supreme Court...more

California Court of Appeal Rules Models’ Right of Publicity Claims Assignable, Not Preempted by Copyright Act

The California Court of Appeal held earlier this month that certain right of publicity claims are freely assignable, and that the Copyright Act does not preempt a right of publicity claim where the defendant has no legal...more

Fox News Network, LLC v. TVEyes, Inc. - USDC, S.D.N.Y, September 9, 2014

District court finds that TVEyes’ media-monitoring service that continuously records vast amounts of television and radio content and allows subscribers to search transcripts and video clips of that content constitutes fair...more

Ninth Circuit: AG’s Suit Challenging Add-On Products Stays in State Court

Lawsuits filed by the Hawaii Attorney General alleging that card issuers deceptively advertised add-on products belong in state court – and are not preempted by the National Bank Act (NBA), the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of...more

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