Punitive Damages

News & Analysis as of

SC Supreme Court extends Statute of Limitations in Lawyer Malpractice - Precedent reversed & hybrid rule adopted

The South Carolina Supreme Court, in the case of Stokes-Craven Holding Corp. v. Robinson, Op. No. 27572 (S.C.Sup.Ct. filed May 25, 2016)(Shearouse Adv.Sh. No. 21 at 17), reversed precedent and adopted a hybrid rule for the...more

Kentucky Court Of Appeals Slashes Punitive Award Against Grant Thornton

A couple of months ago, the Kentucky Court of Appeals in Grant Thornton LLP v. Yung cut a trial court’s award of punitive damages from $80 million to $20 million—reducing the punitive/compensatory ratio to 1:1....more

How Concerned Should Insurers be About Punitive Damages in California?

The California Court of Appeal recently published another opinion about the Nickerson v. Stonebridge Life Insurance case. The court held to its maximum 10:1 punitive-to-compensatory-damages ratio and analyzed whether this...more

Awful Missouri Venue/Joinder Ruling Offers Way Out – Take It!

Even after having read it through twice, we find the result in Barron v. Abbott Laboratories, Inc., ___ S.W.3d ___, 2016 WL 6596091 (Mo. App. Nov. 8, 2016), hard to fathom, and even harder to stomach. For several years after...more

Missouri Supreme Court resets the rules for collecting leaking underground storage tank cleanup costs in litigation

An impactful decision from the Missouri Supreme Court will likely affect how leaking underground storage tank (“UST”) owners collect cleanup costs from the Petroleum Storage Tank Insurance Fund (“Fund”) in the future....more

Real Property & Title Insurance Update: Weeks Ending November 4 & 11, 2016

REAL PROPERTY UPDATE - Foreclosure/Constitutional Challenge: record title owner’s argument that Florida Statutes section 702.035, governing “Legal notice concerning foreclosure proceedings,” is an unconstitutional...more

EEOC Sues Spec Formliners for Pay Discrimination

Concrete Liner Company Failed to Pay Female and Male Sales Representatives Equally, Federal Agency Charges - LOS ANGELES - Spec Formliners, Inc., a Santa Ana, Calif.-based concrete liner company, violated federal law...more

Seeking Punitive Damages Can Expand Scope of Discovery

As litigators are well aware, a lawsuit frequently begins and ends with discovery. Complaints must be carefully worded and allegations carefully chosen in order to maximize success in developing a record and in exploring...more

Tiffany Wins the Generic Battle, and the Spoils of War are Significant

In February of 2013, high-end jeweler Tiffany & Co. sued Costco Wholesale Corp. in the federal court for the Southern District of New York for using the designation “Tiffany setting” since 2007 in the sale of two styles of...more

Nickerson Redux: Five Lessons On Punitive Damages For Bad Faith Attorneys

This past June the California Supreme Court issued its decision in Nickerson v. Stonebridge Life Insurance Company, 63 Cal.4th 363 (2016), holding that post-trial Brandt fees could be included in the damage calculus for...more

Change in How SC Supreme Court Views Conspiracy Claims May be Coming

As our various courts decide cases, we watch to see if there are any trends that seem to be developing or whether a case signals that the courts are beginning to change how they view a particular issue or type of case. We've...more

Appeals Court Explains Punitive Damages Awards For Extreme Reprehensibility Or Unusually Small, Hard-To-Detect Or Hard-To-Measure...

In Nickerson v. Stonebridge Life Ins. Co. (No. B234271A, filed 11/3/16), (“Nickerson II”) a California appeals court outlined the requirements for complying with the single-digit multiplier annunciated as a Constitutional...more

EEOC Sues JL Schwieters Construction For Severe Race Harassment

Supervisor Threatened Black Workers With Gun and Noose, Federal Agency Charged - MINNEAPOLIS - A Hugo, Minn., construction company violated federal civil rights law by subjecting African-American employees to a hostile...more

St. Louis Jury Returns Another Jaw-Dropping Verdict Against Johnson & Johnson

In recent years, St. Louis has done much to earn a place on the American Tort Reform Association’s list of judicial hell holes. Not content to rest on its laurels, the St. Louis circuit court grabbed the headlines again last...more

EEOC Files Religious Discrimination Lawsuit Against Akebono Brake Corporation

Company Refused to Hire Woman as Temp Worker Because Her Religion Forbade Her to Wear Trousers, Federal Agency Charges - COLUMBIA, S.C. - Akebono Brake Corporation, a Michigan-based company that designs and manufactures...more

Second Circuit Seeks Guidance from NY Court of Appeals on Standard for Awarding Punitive Damages Under the New York City Human...

The Second Circuit is once again seeking guidance from the New York Court of Appeals, this time on the question of the appropriate standard for awarding punitive damages for unlawful discriminatory acts under the New York...more

SPINAL TAPPED OUT: Harry Shearer’s Lawsuit is No Laughing Matter

For many of us, This is Spinal Tap remains the benchmark (if not the first great example) of the so-called “Mockumentary” genre of film. Since its first release in 1984 (it had a subsequent theatrical release thereafter) to...more

Arizona Court of Appeals Reverses $1 Million Award of Punitive Damages in Insurance Bad Faith Case for Alleged “Institutional Bad...

In Sobieski v. Am. Standard Ins. Co. of Wisconsin, 2016 WL 5436588 (Ariz.App. Sept. 29, 2016), despite upholding a bad faith judgment for an insurer conducting an unreasonable investigation and denying a claim, the Arizona...more

Southern District of New York Jury Orders Costco to Pay Tiffany & Co. $8.25 Million in Punitive Damages for Selling...

On October 5, 2016, a Southern District of New York jury ordered Costco Wholesale Corp. (“Costco”) to pay Tiffany & Co. (“Tiffany”) an additional $8.25 million in punitive damages for selling “Tiffany” engagement rings that...more

Ninth Circuit Substantially Reduces Punitive Award Against Walgreen

Things have been quiet in the world of punitive damages for the last few months, but two recent decisions substantially reducing punitive awards under the BMW/State Farm factors warrant mention. My colleague Miriam Nemetz...more

4.5 Million Reasons to Abide by a Non-Solicitation Agreement

On September 9, 2016, the Pennsylvania Superior Court upheld an award of $4.5 million in punitive damages against several former employees, who violated non-compete/non-solicitation agreements with their former employers. In...more

Greektown Casino Sued By EEOC For Disability Discrimination

Employer Failed to Grant Leave Extension for Employee With Stress-Anxiety Disorder And Fired Him Instead, Federal Agency Charges - DETROIT - A Detroit casino operator violated federal law by denying a reasonable...more

University Of Denver Sued By EEOC for Sex-Based Pay Discrimination

University Paid Female Full Law Professors Significantly Less Than Male Counterparts, Federal Agency Charges - DENVER, Colo. - The University of Denver violated federal law by paying female employees lower wages than...more

Punitive Damages Claim Blocked by First Impression Bar

In a case pitting the 1960s band The Turtles — best known for the 1967 hit “Happy Together” — against satellite radio, a federal court in California recently granted summary judgment for Sirius XM Radio on the plaintiffs’...more

Hedge Fund Wins $40 Million Defamation Judgment

Following a three-week trial in New Jersey Superior Court, a jury awarded $40 million to NuWave Investment Corp., a hedge fund based in Parsippany, New Jersey. The case centered around reports provided to prospective...more

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