Welcome to The Contingency‘s Commercial Roundup for June 28!
Since our last issue, much has happened, not least FeedSpot’s recognition of The Contingency as one of the 30 Best Antitrust Law Blogs and Websites.
The courts have also stayed busy as spring turned to summer. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in two cases of interest to commercial trial lawyers and their clients. One of them breathes new life into a “consent” basis for personal jurisdiction (see Due process allows), and other resolves whether the federal Arbitration Act requires district courts that grant motions to compel arbitration to stay their proceedings (yes) (see Court must stay).
The Federal Circuit issued opinions in patent cases on obviousness (Use of two compounds) and co-inventors (Expandable hose patent). The Court also tossed the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board’s decision in a dispute over registration of a trademark that a trademark holder claimed would confuse consumers (TTAB mis-weighed), while the First Circuit upheld denial of attorney’s fees under the Copyright Act (Fight over who authored).
Meanwhile, the Third Circuit addressed a question of “falsity” under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (Claim that life insurer knew) and a question of “wrong-forum tolling” of limitations as an alternative to tolling that applies in the class-action context (American Pipe tolling).
The Eleventh Circuit’s decision in an appeal about discovery sanctions provides guidance on using “memory aids” and instructing witnesses not to answer question in depositions (WItness’s overuse).
The New York Court of Appeals upheld a “negligent supervision” claim against an investment bank (Investor stated), and the Supreme Court of Texas handed down several opinions on an array of subjects–limitations (Limitations defense may work), spoliation (Loss of video), sovereign immunity for claims arising from Winter Storm Uri (ERCOT dodges), non-liability of a plant owner’s owners under a “negligent undertaking” theory (Explosion of plant), and redemption of a law firm shareholder’s shares (Law firm founders).
Have a terrific Fourth of July weekend and holiday.
- Claim that life insurer knew death rate had risen a lot when its CFO called it “normal” and only “slightly negative” met “falsity” test under Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
- The Contingency lands on FeedSpot’s 30 Best Antitrust Law Blogs and Websites.
- Limitations defense may work despite no proof of exact date when claims accrued.
- Loss of video didn’t require court to tell jury to infer its contents hurt plaintiff’s case.
- Investor stated negligent supervision claim against investment bank that suspected account executive of diverting an $8.1 million fee from it.
- American Pipe tolling didn’t save class member’s untimely lawsuit, but wrong-forum tolling might.
- Conflict between broad catch-all exclusion and statement of coverage in business insurance policy for “advertising injury” raised ambiguity that required insurer to defend business in class actions claiming violations of state statute limiting use of personal biometric-data.
- Witness’s overuse of “memory aids” and counsel’s blocking of factual answers in 30(b)(6) depositions despite court’s cautions warranted dismissal of agency’s claims.
- Using two compounds to achieve a better result than using either would produce on its own was obvious.
- Expandable hose patent should have included aerospace engineer/physicist as co-inventor with sociologist he sought as investor.
- Sanctions against party for misuse of other party’s secret list didn’t satisfy due process.
- ERCOT dodges claims for power outages during Winter Storm Uri.
- Explosion of plant didn’t expose its owner’s owners to “negligent undertaking” claim.
- Law firm founders could not force shareholder to accept their terms for redeeming his shares.
- Court must stay its own proceedings during appeal from order denying request to compel arbitration.
- Fight over who authored Game of Life didn’t warrant fee award under Copyright Act.
- TTAB mis-weighed likelihood of confusion factors in barring registration of trademark.
- State law barred legislature from changing election outcome.
- Due process allows personal jurisdiction over firms whose registration to do business in forum state includes consent to appear in state courts.