Washington

  • May 02, 2024

    Attys Due For Spam Suit Sanction, But Not $750K, Judges Say

    Class counsel's misconduct in helping instigate a spam text suit against stock-trading app Robinhood Financial LLC warranted sanctions, a Washington state appeals court panel ruled Thursday, but the judges said the $750,000 penalty went over the top in deterring the bad behavior.

  • May 02, 2024

    House Seeks FTC Info On Scuttled Amazon-IRobot Deal

    The Republican-controlled House Committee on Oversight and Accountability is launching an investigation into the Federal Trade Commission's purported efforts to block Amazon's purchase of iRobot, according to a Wednesday letter from Rep. James Comer, R-Ky.

  • May 02, 2024

    Microsoft, Activision Seek Del. Court Patch For $68.7B Sale

    Microsoft Corp. and Activision Blizzard petitioned Delaware's Court of Chancery on Thursday for an order validating Activision's already closed but officially "defective" $68.7 billion sale agreement, arguing that the court pointed the two companies to a "solution for missteps in Delaware's General Corporation Law.

  • May 02, 2024

    9th Circ. Backs Game Developer's Win In Sex Harassment Suit

    The Ninth Circuit declined Thursday to reinstate a lawsuit a former employee brought against a video game developer accusing it of subjecting him to lewd jokes and firing him after he complained, saying a lower court didn't err by admitting certain evidence at trial.

  • May 02, 2024

    USAA Wrongly Denied Fire Damage Claim, Wash. Couple Says

    A Washington couple accused their homeowners insurer of unreasonably denying their fire damage claim despite their timely response to all of the insurer's claim inquiries and requests, further accusing the insurer of violating Washington's Consumer Protection Act and Insurance Fair Conduct Act.

  • May 01, 2024

    Monsanto Gets $185 Million Wash. PCB Verdict Overturned

    A Washington state appeals court sided with Monsanto on Wednesday, undoing a $185 million jury verdict for three teachers who claimed they were sickened by PCBs at a Washington school site and ruling the case could be limited by the Evergreen state's 12-year statute of repose for product liability claims.

  • May 01, 2024

    NLRB Dings Amazon CEO Over 'Better Off Not' Unionizing Talk

    Amazon CEO Andy Jassy violated federal labor law by making public predictions that workers looking to unionize would be "better off not doing so," a National Labor Relations Board judge ruled Wednesday, but determined Jassy's comments that unionization would change workers' relationship with the company were lawful.

  • May 01, 2024

    NJ, NY Law Firms Dominate Class Action Filings Since 2021

    Class actions have been steadily increasing over the past decade, with two firms from New Jersey and New York filing the most suits over the past three years, according to a new Lex Machina report surveying the class action field.

  • May 01, 2024

    Colorado Asks Judge To Review New Kroger Sales At Trial

    Kroger can't throw a new divestiture plan on the table two months before discovery closes and then ask the court to consider it when deciding whether to hand down a preliminary injunction blocking its $25 billion union with Albertsons from moving forward, the state of Colorado says.

  • May 01, 2024

    Chancery Nixes Amazon.com Investor's Antitrust Docs Probe

    An Amazon.com stockholder on Wednesday lost a Delaware Court of Chancery suit seeking court-ordered access to company records to probe claims that the online retailing giant engages in anti-competitive practices, with a court magistrate finding the evidence insufficient to justify the demand.

  • May 01, 2024

    Judges Say Homeowners' Fight Over Airport Not Grounded Yet

    A Washington couple violated their homeowners' association covenants by running a wing-walking flight school out of their home, but it is unclear if they ran afoul of community rules by using an association-owned airstrip for their business, according to a state appeals court opinion reversing a restriction on the couple's use of the airstrip.

  • May 01, 2024

    DOL Announces $6.5M For Seasonal Farmworker Housing

    The U.S. Department of Labor on Wednesday said it will make $6.5 million in grants available to organizations working to improve housing conditions for seasonal and migrant farmworkers and their dependents.

  • May 01, 2024

    9th Circ. Slams Door On Kids' Climate Case

    The Ninth Circuit ordered an Oregon federal judge Wednesday to immediately dismiss a closely watched suit by young adults against the federal government over the effects of climate change, saying its earlier order to end the matter could not be brushed off.

  • May 01, 2024

    53 Govs. Want Say In Moving Nat'l Guard Staff To Space Force

    The governors of 48 states and several U.S. territories warned the U.S. Department of Defense that allowing hundreds of Air National Guard personnel to be transferred to the U.S. Space Force without the governors' approval undermines their authority over their states' military readiness.

  • May 01, 2024

    Microsoft Details How It Addresses AI Risks In New Report

    Microsoft Corp., the leading investor in ChatGPT creator OpenAI, detailed Wednesday in its first-ever artificial intelligence transparency report how the tech giant is working to keep its ballooning stable of AI tools from causing harm in the U.S. and abroad.

  • May 01, 2024

    Vape Wholesaler Can't Escape Suit Over Exploding Battery

    A Washington federal judge has refused to let e-cigarette wholesaler Vapor Beast LLC out of a suit by a man alleging he was injured by an exploding lithium-ion battery, saying there isn't enough evidence for the court to determine whether his claims were filed on time.

  • April 30, 2024

    TracFone Must Pay Wash. City's Utility Tax

    Prepaid phone businesses are utilities and can be taxed as such under Washington state law, according to a state appeals court that had been posed such a question as part of a dispute between TracFone and a Seattle suburb.

  • April 30, 2024

    Wash. Fights GEO's Bid For Final End To ICE Detention Law

    The state of Washington pushed back against GEO Group's effort to scrap its law allowing surprise inspections and raising hygiene standards at immigration detention facilities, saying the private prison operator is already partly shielded from enforcement of the law while a Washington federal court considers its constitutional challenge.

  • April 30, 2024

    9th Circ. Says Calif. Bar Didn't Violate Student's Fed. Rights

    The Ninth Circuit on Tuesday affirmed the dismissal of an octogenarian law school student's claims that the State Bar of California violated his 14th Amendment protected rights when it refused to excuse his delay in taking a first-year exam, saying the California Supreme Court has original jurisdiction over admission matters.

  • April 30, 2024

    Watchdog Says USA Swimming Indemnity Suit Has No Basis

    A nonprofit watchdog overseeing reports of sexual abuse in U.S. sports has urged a Colorado state judge to toss an indemnification suit by USA Swimming, claiming there is no contract between them, much less one requiring the watchdog to pay for separate litigation in Washington state.

  • April 30, 2024

    Microsoft Says Ex-Worker Made 'Trojan Horse' Patent Claims

    Microsoft accused an ex-employee of staging a "Trojan horse" in a breach of contract case to get patent damages otherwise not allowed in state court, urging a Washington federal judge to keep control of the case over Xbox console patents.

  • April 30, 2024

    7th Circ. Backs Costco's Win In Gas Price-Matching Feud

    The Seventh Circuit on Tuesday upheld Costco's victory against a dozen Wisconsin gas stations that claimed the warehouse giant sold regular unleaded fuel below a statutory minimum markup price that allegedly caused a decline in revenue, finding no evidence showing that Costco's pricing practices caused the stations a single lost sale.

  • April 30, 2024

    Split 9th Circ. Finds San Jose Nuisance Laws Constitutional

    A split Ninth Circuit panel held Tuesday that San Jose, California, did not violate the First Amendment rights of a nightclub operator by suspending its license following a shooting, affirming that the public nuisance provisions and licensing scheme for entertainment venues used by the city are not unlawful prior restraints.

  • April 30, 2024

    $626M Fee Award In BCBS Deal Is Unjust, High Court Told

    A member of the class that settled multidistrict litigation with Blue Cross Blue Shield for $2.67 billion over anti-competitive practices has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to take up his challenge to the $626 million attorney fees award in the settlement, arguing the Eleventh Circuit's approval of the award runs counter to high court precedent.

  • April 30, 2024

    Kroger, Albertsons Say FTC Distorts Markets In Merger Case

    Kroger and Albertsons told an Oregon federal court to reject a pending merger challenge by the Federal Trade Commission and a group of states, saying it distorts the competitive landscape for the grocery and labor markets.

Expert Analysis

  • State Regs Sow Discord Between Cannabis, Hemp Industries

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    Connecticut, Maryland and Washington are the latest states choosing to require intoxicating hemp products to comply with the states' recreational marijuana laws, resulting in a widening rift between cannabis and hemp as Congress works on crafting new hemp legislation within the upcoming 2023 Farm Bill, say attorneys at Wilson Elser.

  • Series

    Playing In A Rock Cover Band Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    Performing in a classic rock cover band has driven me to hone several skills — including focus, organization and networking — that have benefited my professional development, demonstrating that taking time to follow your muse outside of work can be a boon to your career, says Michael Gambro at Cadwalader.

  • Series

    The Pop Culture Docket: Judge Espinosa On 'Lincoln Lawyer'

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    The murder trials in Netflix’s “The Lincoln Lawyer” illustrate the stark contrast between the ethical high ground that fosters and maintains the criminal justice system's integrity, and the ethical abyss that can undermine it, with an important reminder for all legal practitioners, say Judge Adam Espinosa and Andrew Howard at the Colorado 2nd Judicial District Court.

  • Series

    In Focus At The EEOC: Advancing Equal Pay

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    The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s recently finalized strategic enforcement plan expresses a renewed commitment to advancing equal pay at a time when employees have unprecedented access to compensation information, highlighting for employers the importance of open communication and ongoing pay equity analyses, say Paul Evans at Baker McKenzie and Christine Hendrickson at Syndio.

  • Return Days Key In Hyatt COVID-19 Layoffs Ruling

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    The Ninth Circuit’s recent decision in Hartstein v. Hyatt, which clarified when the hotel giant had to pay out accrued vacation time after pandemic-prompted temporary layoffs, highlights the importance of whether an employer specifies a return date within the normal pay period, say attorneys at ArentFox Schiff.

  • Opinion

    Newman Suspension Shows Need For Judicial Reform

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    The recent suspension of U.S. Circuit Judge Pauline Newman following her alleged refusal to participate in a disability inquiry reveals the need for judicial misconduct reforms to ensure that judges step down when they can no longer serve effectively, says Aliza Shatzman at The Legal Accountability Project.

  • 9th Circ. Ruling Expands The Horizons Of Debt Discharge

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    The Ninth Circuit Bankruptcy Appellate Panel’s recent ruling in RS Air v. NetJets demonstrates that creditors should not be quick to conclude that their recoveries are limited if a debtor commences bankruptcy and receives a discharge, and should instead consider other potential paths for recovery, like alter ego claims, say Dania Slim and Claire Wu at Pillsbury.

  • How And Why Your Firm Should Implement Fixed-Fee Billing

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    Amid rising burnout in the legal industry and client efforts to curtail spending, pivoting to a fixed-fee billing model may improve client-attorney relationships and offer lawyers financial, logistical and stress relief — while still maintaining profit margins, say Kevin Henderson and Eric Pacifici at SMB Law Group.

  • Opinion

    Judicial Independence Needs Defense Amid Political Threats

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    Amid recent and historic challenges to the judiciary from political forces, safeguarding judicial independence and maintaining the integrity of the legal system is increasingly urgent, says Robert Peck at the Center for Constitutional Litigation.

  • How Life Sciences Cos. Can Prevent Securities Class Actions

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    Though the overall volume of securities fraud class actions has dipped in the last couple of years, life sciences companies remain a particularly popular target for these filings and should employ best practices to minimize risk, say Joni Jacobsen and Angela Liu at Dechert.

  • How Law Firms Can Use Account-Based Marketing Strategies

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    Amid several evolving legal industry trends, account-based marketing can help law firms uncover additional revenue-generating opportunities with existing clients, with key considerations ranging from data analytics to relationship building, say Jennifer Ramsey at stage LLC and consultant Gina Sponzilli.

  • Strategic Succession Planning At Law Firms Is Crucial

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    Senior partners' reluctance to retire, the rise of the nonequity partner tier and generational differences in expectations are all contributing to an increasing number of departures from BigLaw, making it imperative for firms to encourage retirement among senior ranks and provide clearer leadership pathways to junior attorneys, says Laura Leopard at Leopard Solutions.

  • Ruling Shows Barriers Remain For Kids' Privacy Regulation

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    A California federal court’s recent decision halting state officials from enforcing the California Age-Appropriate Design Code Act demonstrates that major roadblocks continue to obstruct regulation intended to make browsing more appropriate for children, say attorneys at Goodwin.

  • To Responsibly Rock Out At Work, Draft A Music Policy

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    Employers may be tempted to turn down the tunes after a Ninth Circuit decision that blasting misogynist music could count as workplace harassment, but companies can safely provide a soundtrack to the workday if they first take practical steps to ensure their playlists don’t demean or disrespect workers or patrons, says Ally Coll at the Purple Method.

  • Autonomous Vehicles Must Navigate Patchwork Of State Regs

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    With only modest action by the federal government on the autonomous vehicle regulatory front in 2023, states and localities remain the predominant source of new regulations affecting AVs — but the result is a mix of rules that both help and hinder AV development and adoption, say attorneys at Faegre Drinker.

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