TortsProf Blog

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

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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Green & Powers Win John G. Fleming Memorial Prize for Torts Scholarship

Professors Michael D. Green (Wake Forest) and William C. Powers Jr. (Texas) have been announced as the 2012 co-winners of the John G. Fleming Memorial Prize for Torts Scholarship.  They will jointly deliver the second Fleming Lecture at Berkeley Law on November 5.   Professors Green and Powers are being honored for, among other things, their outstanding work as American Law Institute co-reporters for two core portions of the Restatement (Third) of Torts.

Berkeley Law Professor John Fleming was among the world’s leading comparative tort law scholars and long-time editor-in-chief of the American Journal of Comparative Law.  When he passed away in 1998, two books were published in his honor and proceeds were used to create the Fleming Prize, which is awarded every other year to a tort law scholar from any country.   The Fleming family later endowed the Fleming Lecture.  Bob Rabin (Stanford), the previous winner of the prize, delivered the first Fleming Lecture.

Professor Stephen Sugarman (Berkeley) can provide more details about this fall’s Fleming Lecture.  Congratulations!

--CJR

July 10, 2012 in Conferences, Roundup, Scholarship, TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, May 27, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 105 (5/27/11)

New Cases

  • NC:  Plaintiff opens argument in dental malpractice claim alleging the dentist pulled too many teeth.  (The Herald-Sun)

Appeals

Damages

Reform, Legislation, Policy

  • Somin on Federalism and Tort Reform (VC)
  • Frank on Somin on Federalism and Tort Reform (Point of Law)
  • Olson on Federalism and Tort Reform (Overlawyered)
  • Bernabe on ATRA's Defense of Tort Reform (Torts)
  • TX:  Senate unanimously passes "loser pays" bill.  (Texas Tribune)
  • WI:  The state dipped into a med mal fund for the general revenue, now Republican lawmakers want to pay it back.  (Green Bay Press Gazette)
  • Med mal cases in freefall  (The Pop Tort)

Miscellaneous

--CJR

May 27, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, May 20, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 104 (5/20/11)

New Cases

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

  • DOJ taps Sheila Birnbaum to administer the fund for ground zero workers. (Bloomberg Bus Week, Huff Post)
  • Judge's impartiality questioned in $322 million asbestos verdict in Mississippi.  (Overlawyered)

Damages

  • Bratz manufacturer MGA seeks $177 million on punitive damages from rival Mattel.  (AmLaw Daily)

Reform, Legislation, Policy

  • Med Mal reform bill passes House committee, but passage by full Congress unlikely. (CT Mirror)
  • NC works on workers-comp reform.  (PR Newswire)
  • TN Senate passes cap on non-economic damages. (Nashville City Paper)

Miscellaneous

  • As we work on our summer projects, Opinio Juris features posts by the Outgoing Exective Articles Editor of the Chicago Law Review about the law review submission process.

--SBS

May 20, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, May 13, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 103 (5/13/11)

Apologies for the lack of a roundup last week -- the twin thrills of drafting finals and a faculty retreat got in the way.

New Cases

  • Defamation suit against Above the Law for suggesting an attorney had been accused of sexual assault multiple times rather than just once.  (Forbes.com)
  • Another suit names the Vatican in sex abuse claims.  (NBC Chicago)
  • Chinese gymnast sues a wide range of people for her paralysis in the 1998 Goodwill Games.  (AP)
  • A mystery celebrity is being sued for allegedly exposing a partner to herpes.  (Examiner.com, and, just so we can link to it, TMZ.)

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

  • Plaintiff hurt on the land of an abandoned amusement park now owns it.  Lucky (?) him.  (ArkansasOnline.com)

Reform, Legislation, Policy

  • House committee approves legislation that would, in med mal cases, cap non-economic and punitive damages, allow collateral source evidence, and impose a sliding scale for attorneys' fees.  (BusinessInsurance.com)

Damages

Miscellaneous

  • Not related to torts in any way, but this is, indeed, the greatest NYTimes correction of all time.  (Gothamist)
  • Only related to torts in that it has to do with correlation and causation, but it's funny.  (FlowingData.com)

--BC

May 13, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, April 29, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 102 (4/29/11)

New Cases

  • TX:  A products case has been filed against the makers of a cold therapy machine based on alleged tissue damage.  (AboutLawsuits.com)

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

  • On the eve of trial, a Major League Baseball umpire reaches settlement in products liability case with Wright Medical over a hip replacement.  (AboutLawsuits.com)

Appeals

  • IL:  Appellate court okays fraudulent misrepresentation claim on behalf of a woman who was tricked, via the internet, into romance or friendship with people who either did not exist or who were not who they appeared to be.  (ABA Journal)
  • NY:  Multi-million dollar verdict affirmed for plaintiff who, after ingesting methadone (I don't even know what that is) and rum (I do know what that is), was hit by a subway train.  (Hochfelder/New York Injury Cases Blog)

Reform, Legislation, Policy

Miscellaneous

--CJR

April 29, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, April 22, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 101 (4/22/11)

It's the last day of classes here at the Charleston School of Law, and I am looking forward to summer as much as the students!

New Cases

  • McDonald's tries to dismiss "Happy Meal" lawsuit.  (Reuters)
  • One year after the Deepwater Horizon Spill, plaintiffs rush to beat the statute of limitations.  (WSJ Law Blog)
  • Even BP joins in, filing suit against Halliburton.  (WSJ Law Blog). 
  • Florida, however, chooses not to file suit.  (Sacramento Bee)

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

Appeals

  • The Supreme Court heard oral argument in AEP v. Connecticut (the global warming case).  Point of Law collects links.  WSJ Law Blog recaps the oral argument.

Reform, Legislation, Policy

  • Tennessee lawmakers debate tort reform bill capping punitive damages.  (NPR)

Miscellaneous

  • Mass torts lawyer James Ferraro settles five year dispute with the widow of his former law partner.  (ABA Journal).
  • Curtis Milhaupt (my former Corporation's professor at Was U, now at Columbia) on Tokyo Electric's liability.  (Mass Torts Prof)

-SBS

April 22, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, April 1, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 99 (4/1/2011)

New Cases

  • TX:  Family of teen who committed suicide sues the Texas school district where he attended school; some of the incidents were videotaped and posted to Youtube.  (ABA Journal)
  • VA:  One defamation case begets another as judge alleges defamation against newspaper based on newspaper's coverage of a defamation case over which he presided.  (VLW Blog)

Appeals

Reform, Legislation, Policy

  • VA:  Governor McDonnell vetoed a compromise plan reached by hospitals, physicians, and trial lawyers providing for annual increases in Virginia's med mal cap from $2M to $3M.  Note this is a total cap, not a cap on non-economic damages.  Apparently an override is possible.  (VLW Blog)
  • MI:  Potential changes to MI no-fault auto law.  (Michigan Auto Lawyers Blog)

Miscellaneous

--CJR

April 1, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, March 25, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 98 (3/25/11)

New Cases

  • Neither incident has yet resulted in litigation, but probably will; two deaths on amusement rides last weekend.  I'm covering them at MassTort.org.
  • Suit alleges casino bus driver fell asleep, resulting in crash that killed fifteen.  (USA Today, and an interesting but only tangetially related story in the New York Times)
  • Suit alleges injuries in fall resulted from shoes materials sticking together.  (Sun Times)
  • Teacher threatens student with defamation suit for complaining about her grades.  (SGVTribune.com)

Appeals

  • Court reinstates cheerleader's lawsuit alleging negligence resulting in her injury at cheerleading camp.  (Chicago Tribune)
  • Indiana appellate court considering claim of woman suing Carnival Cruises for having boats go too fast.  (USA Today via Overlawyered)
  • Preview of important FELA Supreme Court argument.  (SCOTUS blog)

Reform, Legislation, Policy

  • Government launches web portal for reporting produces perceived to be dangerous.  (SaferProducts.gov)

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

  • Lawsuit over post-Katrina deaths in a hospital settles during jury selection.  (Pro Publica)

Miscellaneous

--BC

March 25, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, March 18, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 97 (3/18/11)

New Cases

  • Guatamalans who were deliberately infected with syphilis in the 1940s file class action against U.S. government under Alien Tort Statute. (MSNBC/AP, WSJ Law Blog)

Appeals

Reform, Legislation, Policy

  • Movie theater owners fight calorie disclosure rules for movie menus.  (WaPo)
  • California punitive damages bill fails to pass out of committee.  (Cal Punitive Damages)
  • Florida Senate passes bill allowing evidence of everyone who contributed to accident in "crashworthiness" cases against manufacturers.  (Naples News)

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

  • In honor of spring training, two baseball items:
    • Kansas City Royals not liable for hot dog flung at plaintiff during game. (Overlawyered)
    • MLB Umpire injured by foul ball wins $775k in products suit against manufacturer of face mask. (BLT)

--SBS

March 18, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 96 (3/11/11)

I know it's lean, but it's the week of spring break...

Appeals

Reform, Legislation, Policy

  • Kip Viscusi on "Does Product Liability Make Us Safer?" (SSRN)
  • Texas considers banning texting while driving.  (Perlmutter & Schuelke)

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

  • Royals not liable for wayward frankfurter.  (ABA Journal)

Miscellaneous

  • Verdict statistics on severe leg injuries (Miller/Maryland Injury Lawyer Blog)
  • Congratulations to our own Bill Childs and his team from Western New England.  The team reached the quarterfinals, and won best brief (petitioner) and best oralist at Rendigs.

--CJR

March 10, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, March 4, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 95 (3/4/11)

New Cases

  • Charlie Sheen plans to sue CBS for "mental anguish" following the cancellation of Two and A Half Men. (NY Post)
  • And also from Hollywood:  Katie Holmes has filed a libel suit against American Media. (The Wrap, ABA Journal)
  • Deepwater Horizon Spill claimants sue Feinberg and BP seeking to renounce settlements. (ABA Journal)

Appeals

  • U.S. Supreme Court holds First Amendment protects anti-gay protests at military funerals and thus bars tort claims against protestors.  (TortsProf)
  • Louisiana Supreme Court holds riding an oil pump was not a reasonable foreseeable use.  (Mass Tort Defense)

Reform, Legislation, Policy

  • House holds hearings on Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act.  (Mass Tort Defense)
  • NY Medicaid Redesign Team proposes $250k cap on non-economic losses in med mal cases, NY State Bar Association voices objection.  (NY Law Journal/law.com, Turkewitz)
  • NC Senate Judiciary Committee passed the Medical Liability Reforms Act, which limits noneconomic damages in med mal actions to $500k; the full NC Senate is expected to consider the bill this week.  (Civitas)
  • OK Senate passes bill eliminating joint and several liability.  (The State)

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

  • Medical device preemption summary judgment in Texas.  (Drug & Device)

Miscellaneous

  • Good luck to Bill and the Western New England team at the Rendigs National Products Liability Moot Court competition.  (TortsProf)

--SBS

March 4, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, February 18, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 94 (2/18/11)

Sorry for the break last week, but we're back.  And I'm off to run the Austin Half Marathon on Sunday.  Think good thoughts!

New Cases

  • Suit brought against Disney for burn from nacho cheese.  (TortsProf)

Appeals

  • $42M verdict against fen-phen lawyers, accused of fraud, vacated.  (Courier Journal)

Reform, Legislation, Policy

  • Arizona finds a way to go after undocumented people and punitive damages simultaneously -- denying the former the opportunity to recover the latter.  (East Valley Tribune)
  • A more traditional punitives cap proceeds in South Carolina.  (Claims Journal)
  • Drug & Device Law Blog thinks about compliance presumptions. (Drug & Device Law Blog; see also my post at Point of Law five years ago)
  • Walter Olson's book, critical of law schools' role in many legal developments, is out, and he's doing a bunch of readings.  (Overlawyered)

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

Miscellaneous

  • My friend David Robertson, who has provided invaluable help and advice in my teaching career, was featured in our Torts Masters series this week.  (TortsProf)

--BC

February 18, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 93 (2/4/11)

Appeals

  • NY:  Court affirms $3M for 11 months of pre-death pain and suffering in med mal case.  (Hochfelder/New York Injury Cases Blog)
  • Virginia AG Cuccinelli will request expedited review of the health care constitutionality dispute straight to the USSC.  (VLW Blog)

Reform, Legislation, Policy

  • Ted Frank is skeptical of Obama's intent on med mal reform.  (Washington Examiner)
  • Democrats cool to Obama's willingness to reform med mal.  (Boston.com)
  • MT:  A bill to "freeze and codify statutes" on landowner liability to trespassers was discussed by the House Judiciary Committee.  Mark Behrens of ATRA testified for the bill, calling it needed in light of American Law Institute recommendations.  The Committee took no action.  (The Bismarck Tribune)

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

  • NY:  $3M jury verdict against doctor for injuries a girl suffered in childbirth nearly 18 years ago.  (Glen Falls Post-Star)
  • A federal judge has ruled that Ken Feinberg can't claim neutrality or tell claimants they don't need lawyers in resolving BP oil spill claims.  (ABA Journal

Miscellaneous

  • Ron Miller on Frivolous Malpractice Suits (The Maryland Injury Lawyer Blog)
  • Victor Schwartz is interviewed at TortsProf.
  • Alberto Bernabe on NY's assumption of risk golf case.  (Torts)
  • John Culhane on a potential class action against the NFL for brain injuries.  (Slate)

--CJR

February 3, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, January 28, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 92 (1/28/11)

New Suits

  • Parents of a California woman killed in a gas line explosion filed suit against the pipe owner for negligence and wrongful death.  (Huff Post)
  • Madoff victims sued the SEC for negligence.  (Detroit News)

Appeals

  • Ninth Circuit finds state law duty-to-warn claims are not preempted in generic drug suit.  (FDA Law Blog, Drug & Device)
  • Fifth Circuit rejects Katrina class action settlement.  (Civ Pro Profs)

Reform, Legislation, Policy

  • Wisconsin legislature passes bill limiting punitive damages and pain-and-suffering damages in certain cases.   The Governor is expected to sign the bill.  (Journal Sentinel)
  • New York considers bill to ban e-cigarettes. (AP/WSJ)
  • The federal Tax and Trade Bureau is considering a proposal to require nutritional information on alcohol labels. (AP)
  • Following President Obama's State of the Union, Democrats propose limited tort reform.  (The Hill)

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

  • As the Northeast digs out from another storm, you can enjoy "Snowbird Can't Escape The Statute of Limitations She Left Behind" at Drug & Device.
  • Federal judge in New York dismisses tobacco medical monitoring case.  (Mass Tort Profs)

Miscellaneous

--SBS

January 28, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 91 (1/21/11)

I'm starting to prep this roundup under the threat of yet another snow day.  Oi.

New Suits, Trials

  •  Airplane stowaway's family sues, alleging faulty security allowed the teen to get past security and into an airplane's landing gear (from which he fell to his death).  [TortsProf]
  • Fourth Fosamax trial begins.  [AboutLawsuits.com]
  • Lawsuit looks likely by family of elderly NYC woman who died while waiting for an ambulance during the snowstorm there.  [WAMC]
  • Wisconsin suit over a parking garage collapsed filed in time to beat damages caps.  [Fox6Now.com]

Appeals

  • Argument heard by the Supreme Court on Anti-Injunction Act case involving a federal trial judge, who had already denied class certification, enjoining a state class action.  [SCOTUSblog, transcript at the Supreme Court's website]
  • Dismissal of pro se suit against the Kardashians, alleging that their reality TV show caused extreme emotional distress, affirmed.  [Reuters, which evidently doesn't have anything better to do with their time]

Reform, Legislation, Policy

  •  Drug & Device Law Blog continues its discussion of whether the learned intermediary rule should have an exception for drugs that are marketed directly to consumers.  [Drug & Device Law Blog]

Settlements

  • Tainted spinach lawsuit settled after trial started.  [KSBW.com]

--BC

January 21, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, January 14, 2011

Personal Injury Roundup No. 90 (1/14/11)

New Suits

  •  Drivers in car collisions with moose in Newfoundland, Canada blame the province for failure to control the moose population. (BBC via Olson/Overlawyered
  • Jilted bride sues groom for $100K for breach of promise to marry, IIED.  (Today Show via Olson/Overlawyered)

Appeals

  • IL:  Court affirms summary judgment for a defendant in trampoline injury case and provides a helpful "suggested checklist for summary-judgment practice."  Simmons v. Reichardt (PDF)
  • WV:  A couple attempts to have the state's med mal cap declared unconstitutional.  (J.D. Supra)

Reform, Legislation, Policy

Damages

  • NY:  Rotator cuff injury verdict:  $250K pain-and-suffering award; the case was complicated by legal malpractice and a preexisting shoulder injury.  (Hochfelder/New York Injury Cases Blog)

Miscellaneous

  • Ron Miller at The Maryland Injury Lawyer Blog has started his own roundup as part of a New Year's Resolution.  Here's a sample

Thanks to Gil Lenz for material this week.

--CJR

January 14, 2011 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, December 17, 2010

Personal Injury Roundup No. 89 (12/17/10)

New Suits

Appeals

  • Supreme Court grants cert in three generic preemption cases.  (FDA Law Blog)
  • Fifth Circuit on bellweather trial selection.  (Drug & Device)

Reform, Legislation, Policy

  • FDA begins tracking amount of antibiotics in meat. (The Atlantic)
  • President Obama signs the Healthy, Hunger-Free Act of 2010.  (WaPo)

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

--SBS

December 17, 2010 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, December 10, 2010

Personal Injury Roundup No. 88 (12/10/2010)

My exam's written and now I'm just counting down the days to get to start reading 70 answers.  But we've got the Roundup to keep us warm, right?

New Suits

  • Suit brought in connection with metal bats in Little League (Sun Times).  (Here's a page summarizing the data as of 2006 on the increased speed of hits from metal bats.)
  • Parents allege that Four Loko (energy/alcohol drink) led to son's accidentally shooting himself (ABC News).
  • $20 million sought in suit against transit authority for running over two pedestrians (one of whom died) (OregonLive.com).

Appeals

  • Excessive force defense verdict upheld in case where police officer shot at suspect 14 times (Reuters).
  • Cert. granted in climate change nuisance suit against utilities (ABA Journal).

Reform, Legislation, Policy

Damages

  • $1 in punitive damages against parish for sex abuse case ($30 million in punitives against the individual defendant) (Philadelphia Inquirer)
  • $66 million verdict against exercise equipment manufacturer in case where machine fell on physical therapy assistant (Boston Herald)

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

  • First Levaquin trial ends in $1.82 million verdict against J&J (NY Times).
  • Class certification denied in McDonald's obesity litigation (Mass Tort Defense).

Miscellaneous

  • Need a res ipsa example?  Here you go (WXVT.com).
  • Bed bugs as a niche (FindLaw)

Have a great break, and happy grading!

--BC

December 10, 2010 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, December 3, 2010

Personal Injury Roundup No. 87 (12/3/10)

New Suits

  • Maryland bed bug liability suits (WaPo)

Appeals

Reform, Legislation, Policy

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

Miscellaneous

--CJR

December 3, 2010 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, November 12, 2010

Personal Injury Roundup No. 86 (11/12/10)

New Suits

  • MDL Panel considers consolidation of federal DuPuy hip replacement litigation; oral argument on motion scheduled for next Thursday, November 18th. (About Lawsuits)
  • Food poisoning suit filed against Maryland orchard for e. coli outbreak in apple cider. (About Lawsuits)

Appeals

  • Louisiana appellate court finds child's ride on oil pump could be an anticipated use, and reverses summary judgment for the defendant.  (Mass Tort Defense)
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit on duty under SC law. (Consumer Class Actions)

Reform, Legislation, Policy

Trials, Settlements and Other Ends

  • Missouri jury awards $35M in wrongful death suit stemming from a tractor trailer accident on I-70 in 2006 (About Lawsuits)
  • After eight years of litigation, class certification was denied in the Pelman obesity litigation suit against McDonald's.  The suit alleges that the company's advertising somehow decieved consumers into thinking a regular diet of McDonald's was healthy.   (Mass Tort Defense, Consumer Class Actions)
  • Judge grants new trial in St. Louis "Girls Gone Wild" suit.  (Point of Law)

Miscellaneous

  • NY Times Magazine profiles key players in BP Oil Spill Litigation.  (NYT)

--SBS

November 12, 2010 in Roundup | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)