TortsProf Blog

Editor: Christopher J. Robinette
Widener Univ. School of Law

A Member of the Law Professor Blogs Network

Thursday, August 29, 2013

NFL Concussion Suit Settles

Yesterday thousands of former football players and their families reached a settlement with the NFL for $765M to fund medical exams, concussion-related compensation, medical research for retired NFL players and their families, and litigation expenses.  The settlement must still be approved.  The full CNN story is here.  Howard Wasserman has commentary at Prawfs

--CJR

August 29, 2013 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Sandusky's Son & 6 Other Victims Settle With Penn State

Seven men have reached settlements with Penn State over allegations of abuse by former coach, Jerry Sandusky.  The settlement terms have not been released.  AP has the full story.

- SBS

August 27, 2013 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Nearly 30 Bills To Re-Enact OK Tort Reform

The Oklahoman Speaker of the House has reportedly stated that "it will take 26 to 28 separate bills to reenact the lawsuit reform legislation of 2009." The OK Supreme Court struck down the tort reform bill back in June.  More from the Oklahoma Watchdog.

- SBS

August 21, 2013 in Current Affairs, Legislation, Reforms, & Political News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Cert Petition in Second Hand Smoking Case

Our friends at Mass Tort Litigation report that the tobacco companies have filed a cert petition in an Engle progeny case.

- SBS

August 20, 2013 in Current Affairs, MDLs and Class Actions | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, August 19, 2013

International Comparisons of Litigation Costs: Europe, the United States and Canada

The Chamber's Institute for Legal Reform recently released International Comparisons of Litigation Costs: Europe, the United States and Canada.  From the description:

The purpose of this study is to compare liability costs – a phrase used here to describe the costs of claims, whether resolved through litigation or other claims resolution processes – as a fraction of GDP across Europe, the U.S. and Canada. General liability insurance sold to companies provides a basis for comparison because it covers similar types of liability costs in each country....

Key findings are as follows:

  •  The U.S. has the highest liability costs as a percentage of GDP of the countries surveyed, with liability costs at 2.6 times the average level of the Eurozone economies (see Figure 1).

  • U.S. liability costs are four times higher than those of the least costly European countries in our study – Belgium, the Netherlands and Portugal.

  • Although the U.S. has by far the most costly liability system, our analysis shows that liability costs in the U.K., Germany and Denmark have risen between 13% and 25% per year since 2008. 

 

- SBS

August 19, 2013 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Engstrom & Rabin Op-Ed: Raise the MICRA Cap

Monday, August 12, 2013

New Blog: Opinions on High

For readers with an interest in comparative or international tort law, Melbourne Law School has launched a new blog, Opinions on High, which focuses on decisions of the High Court of Australia.  A recent post, for examples, examines the duty to warn in the medical malpractice context under Australian law.

- SBS

August 12, 2013 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, August 9, 2013

Bystander-of-a-Bystander Duty to Warn

Deborah J. LaFetra has an informative post at Pacific Legal Foundation on the Maryland Court of Appeals' decision in Georgia-Pacific v. Farrar.  This, of course, is the "bystander of a bystander" asbestos case, where the grandaughter of a worker who worked near another worker who worked with asbestos-products sued for her mesothelioma.  The Court of Appeals rejected the duty to warn.   

- SBS

August 9, 2013 in Current Affairs, Teaching Torts | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Overhaul of DC Office of Risk Management

The BLT reports on recent changes at DC's Office of Risk Management, the mandatory first stop in any tort claim against the city.

- SBS

August 8, 2013 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Update on Pittsburgh Zoo Mauling

Back in June, Chris provided a thorough summary of the Pittsburgh zoo mauling case. Yesterday, the Pittsburgh Tribune reported that the judge refused to dismiss the plaintiff's punitive damages and strict liability claims.   Discovery will now begin in the case.

- SBS

August 7, 2013 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

CT Personal Injury Lawyer Charged In Insurance Fraud Scheme

The Connecticut Law Tribune reports that a Connecticut attorney has been "charged with nine federal offenses" related to an insurance fraud scheme.  The article reports:

As alleged in the indictment, Haddad, who lives in Orange, and the others defrauded insurance companies by exaggerating the auto accident injuries sustained by Haddad's clients, and the cost of their medical care, to justify larger monetary settlements with insurance companies. Authorities say more than 10 insurance carriers lost a total of approximately $2.5 million. The Connecticut Post lists Travelers, Metropolitan, Progressive, Esurance and Nationwide as being among those that were defrauded from December 2006 to February 2010.

In June, Allstate and Deerbrook insurance companies filed a federal civil lawsuit against Haddad and others involved allegedly involved in the scheme. According to the suit, beginning in 2006, Haddad and others began to "defraud Allstate by submitting bils for medical treatment that was unneccessary, worthless, and often based on fictitious clinical findings or diagnosis."

Thanks to Lisa-Smith Butler for the alert. 

- SBS

August 6, 2013 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Gifford on Maryland's Retention of Contrib

Don Gifford (Maryland) reacts to the Court of Appeals of Maryland's decision to retain contrib in the Maryland Law Review's Endnotes.  The piece (pdf) is here.

--CJR

July 31, 2013 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, July 29, 2013

"Ten Years of Tort Reform in Texas"

Joseph Nixon and the Texas Policy Foundation have posted  "Ten Years of Tort Reform in Texas: A Review." The abstract provides:

Ten years of tort reform have provided greater access to health care and helped make Texas the nation’s leading job producer. Indeed, by recognizing the causal connection between economic prosperity and efficient, fair courts, the Texas legislature passed and Governor Rick Perry signed House Bill 4 (HB4)—powerful tort reform legislation that is the foundation of the Texas economic miracle. Yet, despite the awesome economic growth and increased access to health care triggered by HB4, members of the trial bar are still working to overturn this reform. While Texans should stand their ground and rebuff efforts to undo HB4’s successful tort reforms, all Americans should take notice of Texas’s remarkable transformation and look to enact similar reforms in their own states.

 

- SBS

July 29, 2013 in Current Affairs, Legislation, Reforms, & Political News, Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, July 22, 2013

Ralph Nader Plans Tort Museum

The Litchfield County Times (CT) has an article about Ralph Nader's plans for a tort museum in the small town of Winfield, Connecticut (Nader's hometown).  Nader has been discussing building the "American Museum of Tort Law" in his home town since the 1990s.   He recently purchased the former Winsted Savings Bank building for the musuem, and renovations are scheduled to begin in August.  Nader states that he plans to have the museum open within the next two years.

- SBS

July 22, 2013 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Cheerleader Wins Libel Suit Against Website Operator

The National Law Journal reports that a former Cincinatti Bengals cheerleader has won over $300,000 in damages in her libel suit against a website operator based on a third-party's posts on the site.

The full story is behind a free registration wall.

Thanks to Lisa Smith-Butler for the alert.

- SBS

July 17, 2013 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

In Memoriam: Professor Kathy Brickey (Wash U)

Kathleen_brickey_001Professor Kathleen F. Brickey, the James Carr Professor of Criminal Jurisprudence at Washington University in St. Louis, passed away on June 19, 2013.  Professor Brickey was a giant in the field of white collar crime, authoring one of the first case books in the area, and studying the field long before Enron, Arthur Anderson, etc., made it popular.  She similarly broke ground with her environmental law case book, the first law school text book dedicated to the study of environmental law.  

I worked as Professor Brickey's reasearch assistant from my 1L summer through graduation.  She inspired me to join the academy, and was a constant mentor.   She will be deeply missed.

- SBS

July 16, 2013 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, July 15, 2013

Penn State Authorizes Sandusky Settlements

The AP reports that Penn State's Board of Trustees has approved settlement agreements with the child abuse victims of former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky.   Penn State will release the total amount of the individual settlements at a later date.  Over 30 claims have been presented.  The full story is here

- SBS

July 15, 2013 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Turkewitz on Perjury in PI Cases

Over at New York Personal Injury Law Blog, Eric Turkewitz has a series on perjury in PI cases:  post 1, post 2, post 3.  There have been stories in the past about fraud by plaintiffs; this series is about fraud on behalf of defendants.

--CJR

July 10, 2013 in Current Affairs, Weblogs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Breaking News: MD Retains Contrib

In an opinion that was just released, the Maryland Court of Appeals retained contributory negligence.

--CJR

July 9, 2013 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Lawyers Challenge FL Med Mal Reform

One of the medical malpractice reforms recently adopted in Florida allows lawyers for health care providers in med mal claims to collect information on private conversations between patients and other health care providers without the patient's consent.  Five lawsuits filed yesterday challenge the reform on the grounds that it violates both the state constitution and federal law (HIPAA).  The Miami Herald blog has details.

--CJR

July 2, 2013 in Current Affairs, Legislation, Reforms, & Political News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)