Minding Your Business

Proskauer’s perspective on developments and trends in commercial litigation.

Category Archives: Appellate

Subscribe to Appellate RSS Feed

Supreme Court Decides No Signature, No Problem

On June 1, 2020, the U.S. Supreme Court delivered a unanimous opinion regarding the relationship between domestic equitable estoppel and the enforcement of arbitration agreements. In GE Energy Power Conversion France SAS, Corp., Converteam SAS v. Outokumpufka Stainless USA, LLC, et al., (“GE Energy Power”), the Court addressed the question of whether the Convention on … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Narrowly Rejects Second Circuit’s Sweeping “Defense Preclusion” Doctrine

Earlier this month, the United States Supreme Court unanimously rebuffed the Second Circuit’s attempt to expand the scope of res judicata to include the so-called concept of “defense preclusion” – a novel doctrine that would have barred defendants from raising defenses not asserted in previously adjudicated disputes regardless of whether the disputes share a common … Continue Reading

First Circuit Holds Japan is an Adequate Alternative Forum

On April 24, 2020, the First Circuit affirmed the District of Massachusetts’ dismissal of a case against General Electric on forum non conveniens grounds. In 2011, an earthquake-induced tsunami struck the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in Japan. Individuals and businesses who suffered property damage and/or economic harm from the disaster filed a class action … Continue Reading

Appellate Court in New York Confirms Civil Conspiracy is Not an Independent Cause of Action

In early April 2020, the First Department affirmed the dismissal of a complaint by a Russian lawyer who had received an L.L.M. from Fordham University alleging “civil conspiracy” against Fordham and several American attorneys, reasoning that New York does not recognize a stand-alone claim of civil conspiracy.… Continue Reading

Latest Attack on the Affordable Care Act Soundly Defeated: “The Government should honor its obligations.”

President Obama’s Affordable Care Act has survived yet another challenge in the federal courts. In a resounding 8-1 decision this Monday, April 27, 2020, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that health insurance companies who suffered losses entering the new marketplaces established by the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) were entitled to compensation for those losses.… Continue Reading

Jeep Drivers’ Claims Come to a Screeching Halt: Hypothetical Hacking Threat Does Not Confer Article III Standing

On March 27, 2020, a five-year legal battle between three certified classes of Jeep Cherokee drivers and Fiat Chrysler came to a sudden end, when a federal judge in the Southern District of Illinois held that allegations that the vehicles were vulnerable to cyber-attacks did not give plaintiffs standing to sue under Article III of … Continue Reading

First Circuit Treads “Unchartered Waters”: Holds Copyright Sublicenses Can Be Implied

On March 13, 2020, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, in a case of first impression, held that a copyright licensee given the unrestricted right to grant sublicenses may do so without using express language. The case, Photographic Illustrators Corp. v. Orgill, Inc., stems from a license Photographic Illustrators Corp. (“PIC”), a … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Decision Has Significant Implications for Terms and Conditions in Smartphone Apps

A recent Ninth Circuit decision centered on something most consumers use many times every day: smartphone apps. In Wilson v. Huuuge, Inc., the Ninth Circuit affirmed the denial of defendant Huuuge’s motion to compel arbitration against a user of its smartphone casino app. Addressing a question of first impression, the Court considered the circumstances under … Continue Reading

Fifth Circuit Holds Failure to Mitigate is No Bar to Statutory Damages Under Copyright Act

Recently, copyright owners suing in the jurisdiction of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit were given a new reason to seek statutory damages instead of actual damages under the Copyright Act. Failure to mitigate damages is not an absolute defense to a claim for statutory damages, the Court ruled on Wednesday, … Continue Reading

“Ain’t No River Wide Enough”: Second Circuit Says No Per Se Bar to Extraterritorial Application of Section 1782

This month, the Second Circuit weighed in on open issues relating to discovery under 28 U.S.C. § 1782. Section 1782 allows federal courts to order entities that “reside[] or [are] found” in their district to produce evidence for use in a proceeding before “a foreign or international tribunal” upon request by “any interested person.”… Continue Reading

“ADApt your Website”: Key Takeaways from the Domino’s Website Litigation

The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit recently issued a decision holding that the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) applies to websites that connect customers to goods and services offered at a physical location. In Robles v. Domino’s Pizza LLC, the plaintiff, who is blind, brought suit against Domino’s for failing to … Continue Reading

Divided New York Court of Appeals Restricts Freedom of Information Law Disclosures

A divided New York Court of Appeals recently held that Civil Rights Law § 50-a bars disclosure of police officer personnel records except under very limited circumstances, eliminating access to such records by the press or advocacy groups under the Freedom of Information Law (“FOIL”) even if the police department itself is willing to release them … Continue Reading

Consolidation, Like Marriage, Preserves the Distinct Identities and Rights of Its Constituents

In its recent decision in Hall vs. Hall, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously that after a final decision in one of several consolidated cases, the losing party has the immediate right to appeal that decision, even when other consolidated cases are still pending. Courts may consolidate cases for efficiency. Writing for the Court, Justice … Continue Reading

N.Y. Court of Appeals: No Difference Between “Private” and “Public” Posts in Discovery

Those who thought designating social media posts as “private” would be sufficient to shield them from outsiders—including opposing parties in litigation—had better think again. On February 13, 2018, the New York Court of Appeals, New York’s highest court, unanimously held that the rules generally applicable to discovery in civil actions are just as applicable to … Continue Reading

Deceptive Discovery: Second Circuit Affirms Sanctions for Mishandling of Discoverable Data

Late last month, in Klipsch Grp., Inc. v. ePRO E-Commerce Ltd., the Second Circuit affirmed a $2.7 million sanctions award against defendant ePRO after repeated instances of discovery misconduct. Finding that the district court’s award properly reflected the additional costs plaintiff Klipsch Group Inc. was forced to bear due to ePRO’s actions, the Second Circuit … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Takes its Toll: Holds that Statute of Limitations for State Claims Stops While in Federal Court

On January 22, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its first 5-4 merits decision of the term in Artis v. District of Columbia. In this opinion, the Court held that bringing state claims in federal court stops the clock on the statute of limitations for those claims. Under 28 U.S.C. § 1367, federal courts may … Continue Reading

A Shot in the Arm: Second Circuit Holds Flu Shot Text Messages Didn’t Violate TCPA

Earlier this month, the Second Circuit ruled that Mount Sinai Health System did not violate the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) when it sent automated flu shot text message reminders to patients. The three-judge panel in Latner v. Mount Sinai Health Systems, Inc. affirmed the dismissal of the putative class action, finding that the lead … Continue Reading

To Be or Not To Be: Can Attorney’s Fees Be Recovered on a Void Contract

Trying to collect attorney’s fees based on a void contract? Surprisingly, you can, according to a recent California Court of Appeal case. In California-American Water Co. v. Marina Coast Water Dist., the California Court of Appeal held that prevailing parties were entitled to recover attorney’s fees and costs based on a contract, even though the … Continue Reading

Privacy vs. Security: Will SCOTUS Leave the (Third) Party in 2018?

If the government obtains information about your past locations from your wireless provider, is that a search? If so, is it a search that requires the government to obtain a warrant? Courts have held that, because companies collect this kind of data in the ordinary course of business, consumers who voluntarily provide information to these … Continue Reading

Alibaba Securities Class Action Reinstated

The Second Circuit recently revived a putative securities class action against Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and four of its top executives for alleged material misrepresentations in connection with the company’s $25 billion initial public offering in September 2014 – the largest in U.S. history. Chief Judge Colleen McMahon of the U.S. District Court for the … Continue Reading

Making VHS Relevant Again: The Uncertain Scope of Personal Information Protected by the Video Privacy Protection Act of 1988

The Ninth Circuit recently became the third federal appellate court to tackle what constitutes “personally identifiable information” protected by the Video Privacy Protection Act of 1988 (“VPPA”). Last year, the First Circuit and the Third Circuit propounded different standards for applying this statute, as they each grappled with the necessary leap from the age of VCRs … Continue Reading
LexBlog