Breach of Contract Fraud

News & Analysis as of

Avatar Wins Against Another Copyright Owner… in an Unusual Manner

A recent decision from the California Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District, ended the hopes and dreams of a copyright owner from receiving a share of the $2.8 billion earned by James Cameron’s Avatar film. In this...more

Bankruptcy Beat: Default Judgment Is Not Automatic Following Entry Of Default

On May 12, 2016, the Honorable Julie A. Manning issued a decision in an adversary proceeding entitled Law Office of W. Martyn Philpot, Jr., LLC v. Day, which addressed two issues. The first issue was whether the plaintiff was...more

Bank of America Wins Reversal of FIRREA $1.27B Penalty

A breach of contract is insufficient to also support a claim for fraud, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled, reversing a $1.2 billion verdict against Countrywide Home Loans in the process. What happened...more

Second Circuit Deals Blow to Government’s Use of FIRREA as an Enforcement Tool

When does a breach of contract amount to fraud? Last week the Second Circuit answered this question and reversed a $1.27 billion judgment against Bank of America and a $1 million judgment against a former executive for their...more

Second Circuit Overturns Fraud Judgment against Bank of America and Former Countrywide Executive

On May 23, 2016, a three-judge panel of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a judgment of fraud against Bank of America, Countrywide, and former Countrywide executive Rebecca Mairone in U.S. v Countrywide Home...more

In a Major FIRREA Victory for the Banks, the Second Circuit Overturns $1.27 Billion Jury Verdict

On Monday, the Second Circuit overturned a jury verdict and $1.27 billion penalty against Bank of America imposed under the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act of 1989 (FIRREA), 12 U.S.C. § 1833a....more

Vanishing premiums part deux?

Those of you with gray hair like me may recall the life insurance vanishing premium lawsuits from the mid-1990s. As a refresher, that flood of lawsuits arose from life insurance policies sold in the 80s (mainly whole or...more

Class Certified in Unique Fixed Indexed Annuity Case

The creative theories of liability and damages on display in the recent certification of multiple classes suggest that the long run of annuity class actions is not over yet. Plaintiff in Abbit v. ING USA Annuity and Life...more

Ryder v. Lightstorm Entertainment, Inc., et al. - California Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, Division Eight, March 25,...

California Court of Appeal affirms summary judgment in favor of James Cameron and Lightstorm Entertainment in idea submission case, finding plaintiff unable to prove that defendants used any of plaintiff’s ideas in...more

Atlantique Productions S.A. v. ION Media Networks Inc. - USCA, Ninth Circuit, March 18, 2016

Ninth Circuit affirms ruling in favor of defendant ION Media Networks on French television producer’s claims for breach of contract, promissory estoppel and fraud, finding no contract existed because parties agreed to be...more

Ninth Circuit Finds First Amendment Protects Against Right Of Publicity Claim Involving Film “The Hurt Locker”

The Ninth Circuit has confirmed that right of publicity claims purporting to arise from expressive works, like films, are content-based restrictions on speech that are presumptively unconstitutional, and generally should not...more

Casino Owner Sues Cybersecurity Services Provider, Alleging Botched Response to Data Breach

On December 24, 2015, Nevada casino owner Affinity Gaming filed suit against Trustwave in federal district court, alleging that Trustwave failed to contain and remediate a data breach at Affinity Gaming. ...more

Do Treble Damages Mean Treble Rescission?

North Carolina law awards treble damages for violations of N.C. Gen. Stat. § 75-1.1 “if damages are assessed.” A recent Fourth Circuit decision asks this question: If a plaintiff seeks rescission, and if the defendant’s...more

Insurance Recovery Law - January 2016

Despite Finding Policy Application Misrepresentation, Jury Rules Against Policy Rescission - Why it matters: A federal jury concluded that Starr Surplus Lines Insurance Company did not have a valid basis to rescind the...more

ESG Capital Partners v. Passport Special Opportunities Master Fund, C.A. No. 11053-VCL (Del. Ch. Dec. 16, 2015) (Laster, V.C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery granted in part and denied in part defendants’ motion to dismiss a complaint seeking declaratory relief in which plaintiffs alleged that certain investors in ESG Capital...more

California District Court Certifies Classes of Fixed Index Annuities Purchasers

The Southern District of California recently certified California and multistate classes of annuities purchasers in a case challenging the allegedly abusive design, execution, and pricing of fixed index annuities (FIA). The...more

Court Of Chancery Explains Jurisdiction For Veil-Piercing

This is an interesting decision for its discussion on what must be pled to obtain Chancery jurisdiction in a claim seeking to pierce the corporate veil. It is not enough to just allege the entity was used to defraud. Rather,...more

Insurance Recovery Law - October 2015

Unfair Trade Practices Exclusion Doesn't Cover Consumer Protection Suits - Why it matters: An unfair trade practices clause did not bar coverage for a policyholder's subsidiary, an Illinois federal court ruled, ordering...more

Insurance Recovery Law - August 2015

Insured's Notice to Broker Satisfied Policy Requirements, Illinois Court Rules - Why it matters: An insured's notice to its broker satisfied the policy's notice requirements, an Illinois appellate panel recently...more

FTC Wins Lawsuit Over Its Robocall Contest

In 2012, the FTC sponsored a contest in which it invited contestants to submit their best solutions to block robocalls. After reviewing almost 800 entries, the FTC announced two winners. As we posted previously, though, one...more

Class action filed against UCLA following data breach

We previously reported that UCLA suffered a data breach affecting 4.5 million patients. Days following the announcement of the breach, plaintiffs filed a proposed class action lawsuit against UCLA, alleging that UCLA should...more

Tenth Circuit Addresses ERISA Limitations Provision in Class Action Decision

In Fulghum v. Embarq. Corp., 785 F.3d 395 (10th Cir. 2015), the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals considered the claims of a class of telephone company retirees whose life and health insurance benefits were reduced or eliminated...more

CMS Investment Holdings, LLC v. Castle et al., C.A. No. 9468–VCP (Del. Ch. June 23, 2015) (Parsons, VC)

In this decision, the Delaware Court of Chancery largely declined to dismiss claims for breach of a limited liability company agreement, breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, unjust enrichment, breach...more

Delaware Superior Court Explains Fraudulent Inducement Claims

ITW Global Investments Inc. v. American International Partners Capital Fund IV, L.P., C.A. No. 14C-10-236 JRJ (June 24, 2015) This decision explains several important aspects of Delaware law. First, a claim for fraud...more

Bankruptcy Beat: Former NFL Player Defeats Fraud Allegations Which Results In Discharge Of Debt

On March 31, 2015, the Honorable Albert S. Dabrowski issued a decision in Hamrah v. Coulette (In re Coulette), Adv. Pro. No. 13-2039, concerning the issue of whether an obligation created by a failed business investment gives...more

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