Product Liability

  • May 15, 2024

    UnitedHealth Concealed DOJ Merger Investigation, Suit Says

    UnitedHealth Group has been hit with a proposed shareholder class action alleging that it failed to disclose that the U.S. Department of Justice had reopened an antitrust investigation into the health insurance giant following its acquisition of a healthcare data company, and that top executives had sold more than $120 million of shares knowing about the investigation before a news report revealed it to the public.

  • May 15, 2024

    Monsanto Trials Over Wash. School PCBs Could Merge

    In the wake of a Washington Court of Appeals ruling resolving key questions in a series of toxic torts against Monsanto, a state Superior Court judge is considering merging plaintiff cohorts into larger groups ahead of trial, looking to curtail years of costly litigation over alleged PCB contamination at a public school site.

  • May 15, 2024

    Exec Wants No Jail In Landmark Product Safety Conviction

    A former Gree USA executive convicted of failing to immediately report defective dehumidifiers known to catch fire, has asked a California federal judge to sentence him to probation and not incarceration, citing several companies that delayed reporting longer than he did and caused greater harm to customers but weren't criminally charged.

  • May 15, 2024

    Tesla Must Face Trimmed 'Full Self-Driving' False Ad Suit

    Tesla can escape warranty claims in an amended proposed class action alleging the electric automotive giant deceived drivers into falsely believing that its cars can fully pilot themselves, a California federal judge ruled Wednesday, but it must face fraud- and negligence-based claims related to representations made about the vehicles' hardware.

  • May 15, 2024

    House Panel Weighs Baltimore Bridge Rebuilding Costs

    Rebuilding Baltimore's Francis Scott Key Bridge may cost up to $1.9 billion and take at least four years, as accident investigators continue to examine how a cargo ship slammed into the bridge in March and knocked it down, officials told a House panel Wednesday.

  • May 15, 2024

    Media Coverage Not Enough To Move Flint Water Case

    A water engineering company accused by the Michigan attorney general of prolonging Flint residents' lead exposure cannot move its eventual trial out of the region, a Michigan state judge ruled Wednesday, saying the company could not assume the entire jury pool was biased. 

  • May 15, 2024

    Monsanto's $23M False Ad Deal Challenged At 9th Circ.

    Counsel representing a certified class of Missouri consumers urged the Ninth Circuit on Wednesday to reverse Monsanto's nationwide $23 million settlement resolving consumer false ad claims over risks associated with its Roundup weedkiller, arguing that Monsanto hid the settlement from the Missouri plaintiffs and that the class is effectively "getting absolutely nothing."

  • May 15, 2024

    House-Passed FAA Reauthorization Bill Now Heads To Biden

    The U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday approved multiyear legislation reauthorizing the Federal Aviation Administration's safety and airport improvement programs, sending to President Joe Biden a package that would hire more air traffic controllers and enhance passenger protections amid high-profile aviation industry mishaps.

  • May 15, 2024

    Senators Release 'Road Map' For Crafting Federal AI Policy

    A bipartisan group of senators on Wednesday laid out a "road map" for artificial intelligence policy that calls for increased AI innovation funding, testing of potential harms posed by AI and consideration of the technology's workforce implications.

  • May 14, 2024

    Bedsheet Buyer Attys Clinch $3.5M Fee For Macy's Deal

    Lawyers representing a class of consumers that accused Macy's of lying about the thread count of its sheets will get $3.5 million as part of a $10.5 million settlement with the retailer, an Ohio federal judge ruled, but gave the lead plaintiffs a pittance, saying they did not work hard enough to get more.

  • May 14, 2024

    DOJ Says Boeing Violated 737 Max Deferred Prosecution Deal

    Boeing breached its deferred prosecution agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice stemming from the deadly 737 Max 8 crashes, but the government hasn't yet decided whether it will criminally prosecute the American aerospace giant for defrauding regulators, the DOJ said in a Texas federal court filing Tuesday.

  • May 14, 2024

    Fighters Likely Killed Victims In Chiquita Case, Academic Says

    A Colorado professor took the stand Tuesday in Chiquita's trial over accusations that it financed a right-wing Colombian paramilitary group that committed war crimes against civilians, testifying in Florida federal court that it was "extremely likely" the militants killed several men whose deaths family members blame on the banana company.

  • May 14, 2024

    NC State Fights Cancer Patient's Presuit Building Access

    North Carolina State University is pressing the state appeals court to find it is insulated from an "unusual" order allowing a former graduate student worker diagnosed with cancer to inspect a campus building that tested high for levels of carcinogens.

  • May 14, 2024

    Ship Had Blackouts Day Before Baltimore Bridge Crash, NTSB Says

    A container carrier that slammed into Baltimore's Francis Scott Key Bridge and caused its collapse in March experienced two electrical outages during maintenance the day before it even left port, the National Transportation Safety Board said in a preliminary report Tuesday.

  • May 14, 2024

    Calif. City Sues Dow, Shell Over TCP-Tainted Water

    Dow Chemical and Shell USA are facing a negligence suit in California federal court by the city of Pomona, alleging the companies are responsible for manufacturing commercial products containing the toxic 1,2,3-trichloropropane that has migrated into the city's water supply and seeking to recoup costs over response efforts.

  • May 14, 2024

    Insurer Wants Tainted Wine Coverage Suit Axed For Good

    A Nationwide unit asked a California federal court to permanently toss a wine bottling company's suit seeking reimbursement for costs incurred in defending and settling an underlying suit claiming the bottler damaged nearly $1.2 million of wine, saying the company failed to allege facts that would trigger coverage.

  • May 14, 2024

    Tesla Sued By Enviro Group Over Air Pollution At Calif. Plant

    An environmental justice organization filed a citizen action against Tesla on Monday in California federal court alleging that the electric-car maker's plant in Northern California has spewed dangerous pollutants into the air for years and has failed to take sufficient precautions to prevent the emissions.

  • May 14, 2024

    Mich. AG Says Eli Lilly 'Cherry-Picking' Enforcement Data

    Michigan's attorney general has hit back against Eli Lilly's arguments that recent consumer protection law recoveries show her office is not being hampered in its investigations, as she seeks subpoenas in a probe of the pharmaceutical giant's pricing for an insulin drug.

  • May 14, 2024

    Mother Sues American Airlines Over Son's In-Flight Death

    A mother has hit American Airlines with a wrongful death lawsuit, claiming its flight crew members were ill trained and poorly equipped to deal with a medical emergency her teenage son suffered during a flight, according to the complaint filed in Texas federal court.

  • May 14, 2024

    Firms Escape Malpractice Suit Over Chicken Plant Pollution

    Baird Mandalas Brockstedt & Federico LLC and Schochor Staton Goldberg and Cardea PA have escaped a malpractice suit filed in Delaware Superior Court by parents who hired the firms to pursue claims alleging contamination from a Mountaire Corp. chicken plant caused "catastrophic injuries" to their child.

  • May 14, 2024

    Chinese Drug Co. Sanctioned After 'Tortuous' 3-Year Info Fight

    Chinese drug firm Zhejiang Huahai Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. has been hit with sanctions after its chief executive officer failed to sit for a court-ordered deposition in sprawling multidistrict litigation taking place in New Jersey over generic drugs that U.S. authorities say were contaminated with carcinogens.

  • May 14, 2024

    What's Behind 'Nuclear' Verdicts? Skeptical Juries, Attys Say

    Jurors becoming more skeptical of corporations are handing down sky-high verdicts, and trial attorneys say it's forcing a shift in the strategies they employ as they aim to score — or prevent — so-called nuclear verdicts.

  • May 13, 2024

    Whirlpool Service Plans Don't Guarantee Repairs, Suit Says

    Whirlpool Corp. violates Washington consumer protection laws by selling extended service plans that give the company the option to buy back broken appliances instead of fixing them, according to a proposed class action filed in federal court.

  • May 13, 2024

    Flint Judge Threatens Sanctions After Water Firm's PR Stunt

    The Michigan federal judge overseeing Flint, Michigan, water crisis cases excoriated a water engineering firm and its PR agency for apparently running a smear campaign targeting a lawyer for Flint children, saying Monday she will sanction the firm if it doesn't turn over documents about the campaign by next week. 

  • May 13, 2024

    Zuckerberg Challenges Basis Of Personal Claims In Meta MDL

    Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is asking a California federal court to throw out claims against him in multidistrict litigation over social media platforms' allegedly addictive design, saying the personal injury plaintiffs haven't shown he took affirmative actions that would make him personally liable.

Expert Analysis

  • Teach Your Party Representative The Art Of Nonverbal Cues

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    As illustrated by recent reports about President Donald Trump’s nonverbal communication in court, jurors notice what’s happening at counsel table, which may color their perceptions of the case as a whole, so trial attorneys should teach party representatives to self-monitor their nonverbal behaviors, says Clint Townson at Townson Consulting.

  • Considering CGL Defense For Social Media Addiction Claims

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    A recent lawsuit filed in California state court against Meta seeks damages from technology companies for the costs of treating children allegedly suffering from social media addiction, but the prospects of defense coverage under commercial general liability insurance policies for a potential new wave of claims look promising, say Craig Hirsch and Tae Andrews at Pasich.

  • 4 Ways To Refresh Your Law Firm's Marketing Strategy

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    With many BigLaw firms relying on an increasingly obsolete marketing approach that prioritizes stiff professionalism over authentic connection, adopting a few key communications strategies to better connect with today's clients and prospects can make all the difference, say Eric Pacifici and Kevin Henderson at SMB Law.

  • Cos. Must Prepare For Calif. Legislation That Would Ban PFAS

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    Pending California legislation that would ban the sale or distribution of new products containing intentionally added per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances could affect thousands of businesses — and given the bill's expected passage, and its draconian enforcement regime, companies must act now to prepare for it, say attorneys at Alston & Bird.

  • FDA Warning Letter Tightens Reins On 'Research Only' Labels

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    A recent warning letter from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to Agena Bioscience alleged the company’s diagnostic devices were labeled for research use only, but improperly promoted for human clinical purposes, signifying a reinforcement — and a potential narrowing — of the agency's policy on products labeled “research only,” say attorneys at Sheppard Mullin.

  • Assigning Liability In Key Bridge Collapse May Be Challenging

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    In the wake of a cargo ship's collision with Baltimore's Key Bridge last month, claimants may focus on the vessel's owners and the agencies responsible for the design and maintenance of the bridge — but allocating legal liability to either private or governmental entities may be difficult under applicable state and federal laws, says Clay Robbins at Wisner Baum.

  • Strategies For Challenging A Fla. Grand Jury Report's Release

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    A Florida grand jury’s recent report on potential wrongdoing related to COVID-19 vaccines should serve as a reminder to attorneys to review the myriad legal mechanisms available to challenge the lawfulness of a grand jury report’s publication and expunge the names of their clients, says Cary Aronovitz at Holland & Knight.

  • NC Rulings Show Bankruptcy Isn't Only For Insolvent Debtors

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    Two recent rulings from a North Carolina bankruptcy court show that lack of financial distress is not a requirement for bankruptcy protection, particularly in the Fourth Circuit, but these types of cases can still be dismissed for other reasons, say Stuart Gordon and Alexandria Vath at Rivkin Radler.

  • Series

    Whitewater Kayaking Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    Whether it's seeing clients and their issues from a new perspective, or staying nimble in a moment of intense challenge, the lessons learned from whitewater kayaking transcend the rapids of a river and prepare attorneys for the courtroom and beyond, says Matthew Kent at Alston & Bird.

  • AI In The Operating Room: Liability Issues For Device Makers

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    As healthcare providers consider medical devices that use artificial intelligence — including systems to help surgeons make decisions in the operating room — and lobby to shift liability to device manufacturers, companies making these products must review potential product liability risks and important design considerations for such equipment, say attorneys at Troutman Pepper.

  • 3 Lessons From Family Dollar's Record $41.7M Guilty Plea

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    Family Dollar's recent plea deal in connection with a rodent infestation at one of its distribution facilities — resulting in the largest ever monetary criminal penalty in a food safety case — offers key takeaways for those practicing in the interconnected fields of compliance, internal investigations and white collar defense, says Jonathan Porter at Husch Blackwell.

  • This Earth Day, Consider How Your Firm Can Go Greener

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    As Earth Day approaches, law firms and attorneys should consider adopting more sustainable practices to reduce their carbon footprint — from minimizing single-use plastics to purchasing carbon offsets for air travel — which ultimately can also reduce costs for clients, say M’Lynn Phillips and Lisa Walters at IMS Legal Strategies.

  • Circumstantial Evidence Requires A Pointillist Approach

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    Because complex cases with sophisticated defendants are unlikely to reveal much, if any, direct evidence, attorneys must aggregate many pieces of circumstantial evidence into a cohesive narrative — much like the painting technique of pointillism, says Reuben Guttman at Guttman Buschner.

  • Benzene Contamination Concerns: Drugmakers' Next Steps

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    After a citizen petition to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and a flurry of class actions over benzene contamination in benzoyl peroxide acne products, affected manufacturers should consider a thoughtful approach that includes assembling internal data and possibly contacting the FDA for product-specific discussions, say attorneys at Morgan Lewis.

  • Opinion

    States Should Follow Federal Lead On Expert Evidence Rules

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    The recently amended Federal Rule of Evidence 702 will help ensure expert testimony in federal courts reflects adequate data and reliable methods properly applied to a given case, and state courts — home to the overwhelming majority of U.S. litigation — should adopt similar changes, says retired attorney Michael Harrington.

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