Declaratory Judgments

News & Analysis as of

A DJ is a Sometime Thing: In Declaratory Judgment Actions Over Coverage, the Sixth Circuit Gives Trial Courts a Wide Berth

The Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201, gives federal district courts “unique and substantial discretion” over whether to hear suits seeking a declaration of rights. Wilton v. Seven Falls Co., 515 U.S. 277, 286...more

An Energized Trademark Monster?

Three months ago we discussed a “trademark bullying” allegation against Monster Energy, detailed in a declaratory judgment complaint filed in Montana federal district court by energy-drink competitor Victory Energize....more

Judge Forrest rejects Leveraged Innovations’ second bite at the apple in seeking to enforce its patented technology because of its...

Direxion Shares, ETF Trust v. Leveraged Innovations L.L.C. Case Number: 1:14-cv-01777-KBF - On March 14, 2014, Direxion Shares, ETF Trust (“Direxion”) filed a declaratory judgment action against Leveraged...more

Federal Circuit’s Sandoz v. Amgen Decision Forecloses Early Declaratory Judgment Suits by Biosimilars Applicants

On December 5, in the closely watched Sandoz v. Amgen case, the Federal Circuit held that a biosimilars applicant cannot use the Declaratory Judgment Act to challenge a reference product sponsor's patent prior to filing a...more

Federal Circuit Rules Against Patent Declaratory Judgment Actions Before Biosimilar Application Is Filed

On December 5, 2014, the Federal Circuit issued its opinion in Sandoz Inc. v. Amgen Inc. et al. In a unanimous panel opinion (Judges Dyk, Taranto and Chen), the Court held that clinical trials initiated to support a possible...more

Sandoz Inc. v. Amgen Inc. (Fed. Cir. 2014)

Last year, Sandoz filed a declaratory judgment action against Amgen and Roche related to its etanercept biosimilar drug product, which it developed to compete with Amgen's Enbrel® TNF inhibitor. Specifically, Enbrel® is a...more

Louisiana Town Files Second Suit to Block Oil and Gas Well

The Town of Abita Springs filed a suit on December 1, 2014, seeking a declaratory judgment to block the drilling of an oil and gas well about 40 miles north of New Orleans into the Tuscaloosa Marine Shale. Earlier this year,...more

Insurance Alert: Insurer Delay Extends Time to Repair or Replace Damaged Property

In Stephens & Stephens XII v. Fireman's Fund Ins. (No. A135938, filed November 24, 2014), the plaintiffs obtained property insurance on a warehouse. Within a month, it was discovered to be stripped of all wiring and metal....more

Sandoz and Celltrion Decline the Invitation to Dance: Biosimilars Challenge the Applicability of the BPCIA’s Exchange Provisions...

In our blog post of November 18, 2013 (“No Avoiding BPCIA For Biosimilars: No Patent Declaratory Judgment Before Biosimilars Application is Filed”), we discussed the decision of the U.S. District Court for the Northern...more

Court Orders Company to Comply with Rule 34

On October 16, a California district court issued a declaratory judgment ordering a company to comply with Rule 34 as cited in the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure....more

Missouri Court Imposes Bad Faith Liability Despite Judicial Finding Of No Coverage For Underlying Claim

In Advantage Building, the Western District of Missouri Court of Appeals affirmed a judgment against an insurer for extra-contractual liability for bad faith failure to settle a claim within the policy limits. Interestingly,...more

Just the Fax: Illinois Appellate Court Concerned That TCPA Settlement Between Insured and Class Action Plaintiffs May Be Collusive

An all too familiar scenario: an insurer believes there is no coverage for a claim, but has a duty to defend its insured. In these situations, an insurer often pays for the insured’s independently-selected defense counsel and...more

Judge in NY County Supreme Court encourages insured to appeal her decision, following Mighty Midgets case, ruling that insured is...

In a highly unusual decision, Judge Shirley Kornreich in Madison 96th Associates v. 17th East Owners Corporation, 43 Misc.3d 1210(A), denied an attorney-fee award to a prevailing plaintiff-insured in a declaratory judgment...more

Court Denies Declaratory Judgment Defendant's Request to Re-Align Parties as Realignment Would Frustrate the Purpose of the...

Plaintiffs filed the declaratory judgment complaint in this patent case after receiving a letter from defendants alleging that Plaintiffs' products infringe two of defendants' patents. Plaintiffs sough declaratory judgment...more

Losing The Home-Team Advantage – The Supreme Court’s Narrowing of the Doctrine of General Personal Jurisdiction and its Impact on...

A recent Supreme Court opinion in a non-patent case, Daimler AG v. Bauman, likely will have a far-reaching impact on the prevalence of patent declaratory judgment actions. In the past, an accused patent infringer often could...more

Illinois Court Holds Insurer Improperly Delayed Declaratory Judgment Action

In FCCI Ins. Co. v. Westfield Ins. Co., 2014 Ill. App. Unpub. LEXIS 1421 (Ill. App. June 27, 2014), the Appellate Court of Illinois had occasion to consider whether an insurer was estopped from asserting policy defenses to...more

Connecticut Supreme Court addresses insurer standing to pursue DJ against another insurer, “known injury” exclusion, allocation...

In Travelers Cas. & Sur. Co. of America v. The Netherlands Ins. Co., the Connecticut Supreme Court recently ruled on several significant insurance coverage issues, including whether an insurer has standing to pursue a...more

Nutmeg, Sí, Palmetto, No!: Travelers Wins Both Sides of Insurer-vs.-Insurer Dispute

Although large or protracted losses can implicate more than one liability policy, sometimes only one insurer steps up to provide a defense. When that happens, the insurer can try any of several ways to recover its expenses...more

Supreme Court of PA Reaffirms the Broad Scope of the Commonwealth Court’s Declaratory Judgment Jurisdiction in Challenges to...

Many Pennsylvania Lawyers only encounter the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania in its appellate guise, but the court enjoys an unusual hybrid nature, having both appellate and original jurisdiction. The court’s original...more

In a Case of First Impression, District Court Finds an Insurer May Not Seek a Declaration as to Another Insurer’s Duty to Defend

An insurance company may not seek to require another insurer to defend its insured via declaratory judgment according to the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina in Auto-Owners Insurance Company v....more

Appellate Court Notes

SC19089 - Travelers Casualty & Surety Co. of America v. Netherlands Ins. Co. - Travelers brought a declaratory judgment action, claiming that the Netherlands Insurance Company had to participate in the defense costs of...more

No “Plausible Basis” to Establish Federal Circuit Jurisdiction in Transfer From Eleventh Circuit

Krauser v. Biohorizons, Inc. - Addressing whether a declaratory judgment action qualified as a civil action relating to patents for purposes of establishing appellate jurisdiction, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the...more

FCC Seeks Comment on Petitions Concerning the FCC’s Rule on Opt-Out Notices for Fax Advertisements

On July 25, 2014, the FCC issued a Public Notice seeking comment on five petitions, filed by American Caresource Holdings, Inc. (“ACH”), CARFAX, Inc.(“CARFAX”), UnitedHealth Group, Inc. (“UnitedHealth”), MedLearning, Inc. and...more

PTAB Issues Its First Precedential Opinion in CBM Review Proceeding Litigated by Goodwin Procter

On July 31, 2014, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) designated as “precedential” its decision in Covered Business Method Review (CBM) proceeding SecureBuy, LLC v. CardinalCommerce Corporation, CBM 2014-00035 (Pat. Tr....more

Owner Permitted to Redeem Property from Tax Claim Bureau

A panel of the Commonwealth Court held that the Westmoreland Tax Claim Bureau had the discretion under the Real Estate Tax Sale Law (RETSL) to allow an owner of a tax delinquent property (Rowe) to redeem the property through...more

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