Equitable Estoppel

News & Analysis as of

Courts Continue to Reject Claims That Reasonable Reliance on Public Agency Representations Establishes an Entitlement to an...

Property owners should not rely on courts to uphold equitable estoppel claims against local agencies to establish an entitlement to an existing use of property. Under the doctrine of equitable estoppel, a public agency may be...more

High Standard for Invoking Equitable Estoppel Against the Government Reaffirmed

Schafer v. City of Los Angeles; Triangle Center, LLC, Real Party in Interest (6/17/2015, 3d Civil No. E059133) The California Court of Appeal, Second District, recently re-affirmed the heightened standard for invoking...more

Federal Arbitration Case Update | Bound and Determined

Owner Not Bound by Arbitration Clause in Engagement Agreement between Contractor and Law Firm - Auto Parts Manufacturing Mississippi v. King Construction - 2015 WL 1379980 - United States Court of Appeals, Fifth...more

N.C. Court of Appeals Addresses Common Affirmative Defenses In Commercial Foreclosure Context

A recent opinion from the North Carolina Court of Appeals addresses some common borrower defenses within the context of foreclosure and statute of frauds issues: compromise and settlement, accord and satisfaction, the...more

Third Circuit Reverses Equitable Estoppel Ruling Compelling Arbitration Against Non-Signatory Insurer

The trial court had granted the motion to compel arbitration of Flintkote Company against one of its asbestos liability insurers, Aviva PLC, despite the fact that Aviva was a non-signatory to the subject Alternative Dispute...more

McWane, Inc. v. Lanier, C.A. No. 9488-VCP (Del. Ch. Jan. 30, 2015) (Parsons, V.C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery denied defendants’ motion to dismiss or stay for lack of personal jurisdiction. The Court held that a mandatory forum selection clause in a merger agreement controlled over a...more

Sixth Circuit Finds Faulty Handbook Bars Employer from Challenging Employee’s Eligibility for FMLA Leave

The Sixth Circuit recently held that a Michigan county agency was barred from arguing that its employee was ineligible for leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), because the employee relied on an inaccurate...more

Court Of Chancery Explains Equitable Estoppel Jurisdiction

This decision explains how a non-party to a contract with a Delaware forum selection clause may still be subject to the Court’s jurisdiction under an equitable estoppel theory. ...more

School District Advisory: The Pure and Simple Truth - The Truth is Rarely Plain and Never Simple

In the recent case of J.P. v. Carlsbad Unified School District, the California Court of Appeal barred a public entity from enforcing the six-month government tort claim requirement when it prevents the claimant from filing a...more

It's Not the Crime, It's the Cover-Up: Equitable Estoppel in Construction Defect Claims

More than 20 years ago, the Watergate scandal taught us “it’s not the crime, it’s the cover-up” that does the damage. The ensuing decades have brought a steady stream of individuals and companies that had to learn the truth...more

The Construct - December 2014

In This Issue: - Another Perspective: Constructing (and Eating) a Piece of the Energy Sector Pie - An Interview with Melvin Stroble, REM, Project Manager, Energy for Black & Veatch - Executive Order 13658...more

The ERISA Litigation Newsletter

Editor's Overview - As it is well known, in Cigna Corp. v. Amara, 131 S. Ct. 1866 (2011), the U.S. Supreme Court identified several forms of appropriate equitable relief that may be available under Section 502(a)(3) of...more

View From Proskauer: The Availability of Surcharge as Relief for Individual ERISA Fiduciary Breach Claims

Three years ago, the U.S. Supreme Court identified three forms of appropriate equitable relief — reformation, equitable estoppel and surcharge — that are available under Section 502(a)(3) of the Employee Retirement Income...more

Diaper Maker’s Patent Claims Soiled by Delay

SCA Hygiene Prods. AB v. First Quality Baby Prods., LLC - This case relates to adult incontinence products. The district court, based on a delay of more than six-years in filing the lawsuit, held that the patent...more

Absent an Initial Showing That It Is a Fiduciary, Employer Is Immune from Breach of Fiduciary Liability Claim under ERISA in the...

In Moon v. BWX Technologies, Inc., 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 12525 (4th Cir. July 2, 2014), the Fourth Circuit rejected fiduciary breach and equitable estoppel claims, determining that an employer’s failure to alert an employee...more

Court Grants Motion For Partial Judgment On The Pleadings In RESPA Class Action Regarding Private Mortgage Insurance

We have previously reported on a case styled Munoz v. PHH Corp., one of similar suits alleging putative class actions under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act arising from purported “sham” reinsurance transfers...more

Judge Castel Rejects Laches and Equitable Estoppel Defenses

Defendant moved to dismiss Plaintiff’s first amended complaint based on the affirmative defenses of laches and equitable estoppel. The patents-in-suit are U.S Patent Nos. 7,980,095 (“Jewelry method and system”) and 8,479,536...more

Fourth Circuit Rejects Widow’s Claim for Equitable Relief

The Fourth Circuit recently rejected fiduciary breach and equitable estoppel claims for life insurance coverage by Leslie Moon, the widow of a deceased employee, who claimed that the employer’s actions resulted in Mr. Moon’s...more

Take Off Every Zig: The Risk in Tesla’s “All Our Patent Are Belong to You” Message

With a title parodying a classic Internet meme, Elon Musk announced on June 12, 2014, that “Tesla will not initiate patent lawsuits against anyone who, in good faith, wants to use our technology.” Musk plans to continue...more

Ninth Circuit Holds that Monetary “Make-Whole” Relief Is Not Available Absent Loss to Plan or Unjust Enrichment for Defendant...

A Ninth Circuit panel recognized that reformation, equitable estoppel and surcharge were among the “appropriate equitable relief” potentially available under Section 502(a)(3) of ERISA (following dictum in CIGNA Corp. v....more

Ninth Circuit Uncharacteristically Takes the Lead in Limiting Plaintiffs' Rights to Recover for Breach of Fiduciary Duty under...

In 2011, the U.S. Supreme Court recognized, for the first time, that some forms of equitable relief could lead to an award of a monetary payment for breach of fiduciary duty under section 502(a)(3) of ERISA, 29 U.S.C. section...more

Plaintiff’s Claim for Estoppel, Reformation and Surcharge Strikes Out

A divided panel of the Ninth Circuit recently held that plaintiff Gregory Gabriel could not recover, as “appropriate equitable relief,” pension benefits he thought he was owed from the Alaska Electrical Pension Fund, after...more

Petrella v. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc.

Petrella v. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc. - United States Supreme Court, May 19, 2014: Resolving circuit split concerning applicability of laches to copyright claims, U.S. Supreme Court reverses Ninth Circuit ruling that...more

Equity – Establishing the Elements of Equitable Tolling and Equitable Estoppel

Linda Hopkins v. Jurek Kedzierski as Trustee, etc., et al. - Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District (April 16, 2014) - Under the principle of equitable tolling, a statute of limitations will not bar a claim...more

Court Rejects Plaintiff’s Attempt to Prevent Plan from Recouping $250,000 Overpayment

A federal district court in the Northern District of California dismissed an equitable estoppel claim brought by a pension-plan participant seeking to prevent the plan from recouping an overpayment. See Groves v. Kaiser...more

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