Products Liability Civil Remedies Civil Procedure

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Texas Supreme Court opinions (7/14)

1. No. 10-0775, Bostic v. Georgia-Pacific Corp. -- This is a mesothelioma case. The overarching issue is whether the causation standard announced in Borg-Warner Corp. v. Flores (which was an asbestosis case) also applies to...more

Mississippi High Court Vacates Widow’s $1.1 Million Silica Sand Verdict for Insufficient Evidence

The Mississippi Supreme Court recently reversed a $1.1 million jury verdict of a widow of a former railroad worker. In Mississippi Valley Silica Company, Inc. v. Reeves, (Supreme Court of Mississippi, No. 2012-CA-01702-SCT,...more

Does the Economic-Loss Rule Bar Claims Under Section 75-1.1?

The economic-loss rule says that a contract dispute generally does not state a tort claim. The concern is that if a plaintiff could recover tort damages, that outcome would disregard the expectations reflected in the parties’...more

District Court Rejects Nationwide Class, But Certifies California-Only Consumer Class After Conducting Rigorous Analysis of...

In Werdebaugh v. Blue Diamond Growers, the plaintiff brought suit in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California to certify a nationwide class of consumers who purchased Blue Diamond almond milk...more

Courts Reject Attempts to Pick Off Named Plaintiffs Via Offers Of Judgment

Following the Supreme Court’s 2012 recognition of concurrent federal and state jurisdiction over Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”) class actions in Mims v. Arrow Financial Services, federal courts have issued...more

The Epic Buckyballs® Saga Settles

May 2014 brought an ordinary end to a series of extraordinary events, with the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) settling an unprecedented proceeding against Craig Zucker, the former CEO of Buckyballs® manufacturer...more

Looking to Litigate in Secret? Fourth Circuit Creates Hurdles for Product Manufacturers

In April, the Fourth Circuit ruled in Company Doe v. Public Citizen that a manufacturer could not hide behind a veil of secrecy even after successfully enjoining the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) from publishing...more

Third Circuit Denies Rehearing Of Class Certification Denial In Class Ascertainability Case

On May 2, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit denied a petition for rehearing en banc in Carrera v. Bayer, 727 F.3d 300 (3d Cir. 2013), a closely-watched case on class ascertainability....more

Third Circuit Rejects Effort At End Run Around The Ascertainability Requirement

We previously wrote about the Third Circuit’s decision in Carrera v. Bayer Corp., which reversed a district court’s class-certification order because there was no reliable way to ascertain class membership—indeed, no way to...more

California District Court Finds Plaintiff’s Proposed Damages Models Insufficient Under Comcast; Denies Certification Under Rule...

The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California certified a Rule 23(b)(2) class for injunctive and declaratory relief but denied plaintiff’s motion for class certification under Rule 23(b)(3) because plaintiff...more

Receiving the Benefit of the Bargain: Reconciling Judge King’s Class Certification Rulings in Forcellati and Caldera

Within one week’s time, Judge George H. King, Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, came down on opposite sides of the class certification coin, granting class certification in...more

Beware of Defendants Who Attempt to Push the Boundaries of the Economic Loss Rule (Texas)

In most jurisdictions today, to recover under a strict products liability theory, the Plaintiff must prove that a defect in the subject product was a producing cause of the Plaintiff’s damages. More importantly, in order to...more

Tea Manufacturer Defeats Damages – Seeking Class Action Plaintiff in an Opinion Steeped in Comcast

In Lanovaz v. Twinings North America, Inc., 2014 WL 1652338, Case No. C-12-02646-RMW (N.D. Cal. April 24, 2014), the court granted-in-part and denied-in-part a motion for class certification in a false advertising case about...more

"Company Doe" wins challenge but loses anonymity - ruling makes it tougher for companies to confront erroneous online claims

A new decision by the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeal will require the lower court to unseal court documents, revealing the identity of a manufacturer that claims it was falsely implicated in a consumer report....more

J.M. Smucker Company Gets Out of a Jam in Food Labelling Case

On April 15, 2014, in the case Caldera v. The J.M. Smucker Co., CV 12-4936-GHK, J.M. (C.D. Cal.), Smucker Company (“Defendant”) defeated the plaintiff’s motion for class certification in a case challenging the labels on...more

4th Circuit Unmasks Company Doe & Unseals Entire Record in CPSC Database Case

Yesterday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit rather forcefully reversed one of the key rulings of Maryland District Court Judge Alexander Williams, Jr. in the recent litigation involving the CPSC’s...more

Asbestos Alert: Paulus v Crane Co.

Second District Court of Appeal, Division Three, Action # B246505 (Filed Feb. 21, 2014, modified Mar. 24, 2014) 2014 WL 1157284 ____Cal.App.4th____ - Sufficiency of Expert Testimony to Prove Causation; Bankruptcy Trust...more

Baltimore City Circuit Court Rejects Attempt to Consolidate Asbestos Cases

Order refusing to consolidate more than 13,000 non-mesothelioma cases continues a U.S.-wide trend of courts moving away from mass trial consolidations in asbestos cases. On March 5, the Circuit Court for Baltimore...more

A (POM) Wonderful Result For Consumer Class Action Defendants

On March 25, 2014, the court in In re: POM Wonderful LLC Marketing and Sales Practices Litigation, Case No. ML 10-02199 DDP (C.D. Cal.), granted a motion by defendant POM Wonderful LLC (“POM”) to decertify a previously...more

The Class Action Chronicle - Spring 2014

This is the third edition of The Class Action Chronicle, a quarterly publication that provides an analysis of recent class action trends, along with a summary of class certification and Class Action Fairness Act rulings...more

"Supreme Court Punts on Twin No-Injury Washing Machine Class Actions"

Earlier today, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review decisions upholding class certification in two cases that have garnered increasing scrutiny by the legal community — Butler v. Sears, Roebuck & Co. and Whirlpool Corp....more

Comity and Commonality: A Tale of Two Identical Class Actions Brought By Forum-Shopping Plaintiffs’ Counsel

In Murray v. Sears, Roebuck and Co., No. C 09-5744, 2014 WL 563264 (N.D. Cal. Feb. 12, 2014), the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California denied a motion for class certification that was practically...more

Looking Forward - Canadian Class Actions in 2014

The last few years have been very active years for class actions in Ontario. Bennett Jones continues to have an active and expanding class actions practice....more

Delaware Decision Makes It Increasingly Difficult for Insurers to Evade Coverage for Dissolved Corporations

Can an injured plaintiff obtain compensation from a dissolved company with unexhausted insurance policies and force the insurer to pay? The Delaware Supreme Court says yes—in certain circumstances. Originally published...more

Objectors Seek Writ of Certiorari to SCOTUS Over Monsanto Agent Orange Settlement

On January 21, 2014, objectors to a class action settlement over contamination from Monsanto Agent Orange herbicide filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari with the Unites States Supreme Court. The Petition asked the Court to...more

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