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All That Floats is Not A Boat: Eastern District of Louisiana Jettisons Fifth Circuit’s Holmes Decision, Rules That Quarter Barge...

The three men in the tub will no longer have recourse to the federal courts’ admiralty jurisdiction, at least not in the Eastern District of Louisiana. In Martin v. Fab-Con, Inc., 2014 WL 1246073 (E.D. La. Mar. 24, 2014) – a...more

4th Circuit Holds Insurer Not Equitably Estopped From Denying Coverage

In an unpublished opinion, the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a South Carolina District Court judge’s finding that an insurer was equitably estopped from denying coverage to a new owner of the insured business for a...more

Fast Five: Rhode Island Appellate Practice - April 2014

RHODE ISLAND BUSINESSES:ARE YOU TOO CONTROLLING? Your employees, but not your independent contractors, may think so. A Rhode Island Supreme Court decision this term serves as an important reminder for businesses...more

Vicarous Liability Limitations for Actions Outside Scope of Employment of Temporary Worker

Sara Montague, et al. v. AMN Healthcare, Inc. - Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District (February 21, 2014) - Under the doctrine of respondeat superior, an employer is vicariously liable for the torts of its...more

California Employment Law Notes - March 2014

$150,000 Sexual Harassment Verdict And $680,000 Fee Award Affirmed - Taylor v. Nabors Drilling USA, LP, 222 Cal. App. 4th 1228 (2014) Max Taylor worked as a floorhand on an oil rig where he alleged he was...more

What's Pending on the Illinois Supreme Court's Advisement Docket?

As we near the opening of the March docket, it's time to take a look at the civil cases that are argued and pending for decision before the Illinois Supreme Court. The Court is quite up-to-date on its docket at the moment,...more

U.S. Supreme Court Recognizes Airline Immunity for TSA Reports of Suspicious Behavior

In Air Wisconsin Airlines Corp. v. Hoeper (Jan. 27, 2014), the U.S. Supreme Court concluded that airlines are entitled to civil immunity for reporting suspicious behavior to the TSA, provided their reports are not “materially...more

Pennsylvania Effectively Eliminates Workers’ Compensation Act as Source of Protection for Employers from Suits Arising Out of...

On January 29, 2014, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court denied defendants’ Petition for Reargument of the Court’s November 22, 2013, ruling in Tooey v. AK Steel Corp. et al. The ruling held that the Pennsylvania Workers’...more

California Court Holds Food Truck Constitutes Mobile Equipment

In American States Insurance Company v. Travelers Property Casualty Company of America, 2014 Cal. App. LEXIS 74 (January 27, 2014), California’s Second Appellate District had occasion to consider whether a food truck...more

"You Like 'To-May-Toe,' I Like 'To-Mah-Toe'" – Distinctions Without a Material Difference: Supreme Court Reverses Lower Court...

The events of September 11 were by no means the first examples of terrorism involving aviation, but they unified the U.S., if not the world, in its effort to make air travel safer. It was in the wake of 9/11 that Congress...more

Supreme Court Finds Air Carrier Immune From Defamation Claim For Reporting Employee’s Outburst to TSA

On January 27, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States reversed a nearly $1.2 million jury verdict for defamation against Air Wisconsin Airlines Corporation in a case surrounding the airline carrier’s report about a...more

SCOTUS: Airlines Are Entitled to Immunity under the Aviation and Transportation Security Act Unless Statements Are Materially...

Yesterday, the Supreme Court issued its decision in Air Wisconsin Airlines Corp. v. Hoeper, 571 U.S. ---, No. 12-315 (2014), holding that immunity for an air carrier under the Aviation and Transportation Security Act, 49...more

The Removal of the Ancient Mariner - Reprising a Sea-Change in Admiralty Law

As originally discussed in a recent post on Striding the Quarterdeck (December 9, 2013), amendments to 28 U.S.C. §1441 have effected a sea-change in admiralty procedure by ostensibly allowing removal of general maritime law...more

Plaintiff Counsel’s Impact on Limitation Periods

The recent decision in Conrad v. State Farm confirms once again that a Plaintiff cannot successfully argue that they did not understand that an Explanation of Benefits (OCF-9) terminating or denying benefits starts a...more

Weekly Law Resume - The Sophisticated User Defense Does Not Automatically Apply to an Employee of a Sophisticated Employer

Anne Pfeifer v. John Crane, Inc. - Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, Division Four (October 29, 2013) - JCI appealed from a judgment awarding plaintiffs William and Anne Pfeifer over $21 million dollars in...more

Weekly Law Resume - January 2014: Torts – Negligence – Sophisticated User Defense

Buckner v. Milwaukee Electric Tool Corporation - Court of Appeal, Fifth Appellate District (December 20, 2013) - In Johnson v American Standard (2008) 43 Cal.4th 56, the California Supreme Court first recognized the...more

Appellate Court Notes - Week of December 23

AC34963 - Compassionate Care, Inc. v. Travelers Indemnity Co. - The plaintiff was in the business of maintaining a list of nurses it referred out, as needed, to hospitals and nursing homes. It did background checks on...more

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Rules on Workers’ Compensation Act Case

Court finds in Tooey that Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act does not bar latent occupational disease lawsuits against employers. On November 22, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court in Tooey et al. v. AK Steel Corp. et...more

Another One Bites the Dust – U.S. Supreme Court Rules that ERISA Plans May Chase Funds Outside the Control of a Beneficiary

On November 12, the United States State Supreme Court denied cert in ACS Recovery Services, Inc., v. Griffin 723 F.3d 518 (5th Cir. 2013), preserving a 5th Circuit Court ruling which closed the door on another means of...more

Defending Nonsubscriber Lifting Injuries – Part IX – “Foreseeability”

In addition to proving “but for” (a.k.a., cause-in-fact) causation, the plaintiff must also prove as a separate element of causation that the injury was foreseeable to the defendant. In general, to prove foreseeability, the...more

Spilman Alert: W.Va. Supreme Court Rulings Impact Defense of Deliberate Intent Cases

The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals recently issued two rulings that have a significant impact on the way employers may defend cases brought under West Virginia's deliberate intent statute (W.Va. Code § 23-4-2)....more

Louisiana Court Dismisses Excess Insurer’s Claim Against Primary Insurer

In its recent decision in RSUI Indem. Co. v. American States Ins. Co., 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 161805 (E.D. La. Nov. 13, 2013), the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana had occasion to consider the...more

California Employment Law Notes - November 2013

Employer Was Entitled To "Substantial Motivating Factor" Jury Instruction - Alamo v. Practice Mgmt. Info. Corp., 219 Cal. App. 4th 466 (2013) - In one of the first appellate opinions to consider the new jury...more

Driver “Talking On Cell Phone, Looking At Some Papers” Before Accident, Lawsuit Alleges

We all know that police in Ontario are cracking down on distracted drivers, particularly those handling cell phones or texting while driving. But now a private motor vehicle accident lawsuit is alleging that a driver was...more

Yoga and Yogurt: All in a Day’s Work

Question: Is an employer liable for the damage caused by its employee when that employee is involved in an automobile accident outside of work hours and on a personal errand? Answer: As with most things, it...more

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