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Klocke v. University of TX at Arlington

(United States Fifth Circuit) - Reversed and remanded. The Texas Citizens Participation Act does not apply to diversity cases in federal court.

Stephens v. Union Pacific Railroad Company

(United States Ninth Circuit) - Affirmed. In a claim of negligence for secondary exposure to asbestos, the plaintiff failed to establish sufficient cause. The panel held that in the context of asbestos claims, the substantial-factor test requires ademonstrating that the injured person had substantial exposure to the relevant asbestos for a substantial period of time.a

Lopez v. Bartlett Care Center, LLC

(California Court of Appeal) - Affirmed. Defendant, a skilled nursing facility, appealed an order denying its petition to compel arbitration for claims of negligent, elder abuse and wrongful death. The trial court found that the claims were not arbitratable because there was no arbitration agreement between Defendant and the decedent.

Churchman v. Bay Area Rapid Transit Dist

(California Court of Appeal) - Affirmed. Plaintiff sued Defendant for a slip and fall accident in the BART station on the theory that the train operator owed a heightened duty of care under Civil Code section 2100. The trial court dismissed the action on the grounds that Defendant had no liability for accidents that did not occur on the train. The appeals court agreed also holding that section 2100 does not apply to minor commonplace hazards in a train station.

Jones v. US

(United States Fifth Circuit) - Affirmed. An injury suit under general maritime law failed because causation evidence was scant and the injured party couldn't prove that grease on a ship deck caused him to slip and fall.

Branom v. Diamond

(California Court of Appeal) - Dismissed appeal. Plaintiff and Defendant agreed to an expedited jury trial process pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure section 630.01. As part of the expedited process, the parties agree to waive the right to appeal. Plaintiff sought to appeal the amount of the damages award, but by executing the consent to expedited jury trial she voluntarily waived her right to appeal.

Huerta v. City of Santa Ana

(California Court of Appeal) - Affirmed. Plaintiffs are the parents of three girls who were killed by a speeding motorist while they crossed the street in a marked crosswalk. Plaintiff brought an action against the City of Santa Ana claiming that the crosswalk qualified as a dangerous condition on public property. The appeals court did not find a dangerous condition or any peculiar condition that would trigger an obligation by the City.

Fuller v. Department of Transportation

(California Court of Appeal) - Affirmed. Plaintiff was injured in a head-on traffic accident that he alleged was partially caused by a dangerous road condition. The jury found that a dangerous condition existed but it was not a reasonably foreseeable risk that this kind of incident would occur. The appeals court agreed and affirmed the judgment in favor of the Defendant.

Moore v. LA Department of Public Safety

(United States Fifth Circuit) - Reversed. The substitution of the guardians of the children of a deceased man discovered a year after the filing of a wrongful death action by his mother was proper despite the substitution occurring after the statutory limitations period. The substitution relates back to the date of the initial complaint.

Martinez v. Walgreen Company

(United States Fifth Circuit) - Affirmed. Walgreens was not responsible for third parties injured on the road by a customer of the pharmacy who was negligently given someone else's prescription. They did not owe a tort duty of care to third parties.

Baughman v. Hickman

(United States Fifth Circuit) - Affirmed. In the case of a man who alleged a constitutional violation related to his injuries while in custody, the dismissal of all federal claims for failure to state a claim affirmed, as was the decision not to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over a Texas law claim.

Voris v. Lampert

(Supreme Court of California) - Affirmed. Plaintiff successfully brought an action against Defendant for contract-based and statutory remedies for nonpayment of wages. On appeal Plaintiff sought to hold Defendant personally liable under a theory of common law conversion. The appeals court held that such a conversion claim is not the appropriate remedy.

Capitol Services Management v. Vesta Corp.

(United States DC Circuit) - Reversed and remanded. The district court's dismissal of a tort claim as time barred was in error because at the motion to dismiss stage dismissal for statute of limitations is only possible if the plaintiff's claims are conclusively time barred on the face of the complaint.

In Re: Deepwater Horizon

(United States Fifth Circuit) - Affirmed. The magistrate judge and district court properly denied the claims of a group of fishermen to a portion of the punitive damages settlement granted to a class of claimants alleging harm as a result of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill because the court was bound to precedent, the plain language of the settlement, and a deferential standard of review.

Doe v. McKesson

(United States Fifth Circuit) - Petition for rehearing granted. A lawsuit by a police officer hit by a thrown object during a protest against Black Lives Matter was properly dismissed, but his suit against the protest organizer should have been permitted to proceed.

Pina v. County of Los Angeles

(California Court of Appeal) - Reversed judgment on the verdict and remand for new trial. Plaintiff brought a personal injury action against Defendant for injuries suffered in a bus accident. The jury found for Plaintiff but awarded minimal damages on the belief from an expert testimony that future surgery would not be required. The court awarded Defendant costs and attorney fees under CCP 998. Plaintiff appealed on the grounds that the expert testimony exceeded the scope of permissible impeachment. The appeals court agreed and ordered the trial court to vacate its order on the post-trial motions.

Timm v. Goodyear Dunlop Tires North America

(United States Seventh Circuit) - Affirmed. A lawsuit arising from a terrible motorcycle accident that alleged defects in the tires and helmets involved failed because the plaintiffs didn't present admissible expert testimony to support their claims.

Smith v. Ogbueh

(California Court of Appeal) - Reversed. Plaintiff is an indigent, self-represented prison inmate pursuing a medical malpractice claim. The trial count denied Plaintiffas request for the appointment of counsel and granted Defendantas motion for summary judgment. The appeals court directed the trial court to conduct further proceedings on Plaintiffas right of access to the courts and right to appointment of counsel and to vacate the order granting the motion for summary judgment.

People v. Superior Court

(California Court of Appeal) - Denied District Attorneyas writ of mandate to declare Senate Bill No. 1391 unconstitutional. Juvenile offender, T.D., shot and killed someone when he was 14. The DA filed charges against T.D. directly as an adult. While the case was pending, Proposition 57 was passed to eliminate the DAas ability to charge minors 14 or younger as adults. Later, SB No. 1391 was passed that prohibited transfers of 14 -15 year-olds to criminal court. The Appeals court found that SB No. 1391 was not unconstitutional and that it was consistent with the intent of Prop 57.

Sheen v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.

(California Court of Appeal) - Affirmed. Plaintiff, a homeowner, attempted a mortgage loan modification with Defendant, but when Plaintiff fell behind in payments, Defendant foreclosed. Plaintiff sued for negligence. The trial court sustained Defendantas demurrer on the grounds that no tort duty is owed on contracts. The appeals court held that a lender does not owe a borrower a duty to offer, consider, or approve a loan modification.

Longoria v. Hunter Express Ltd.

(United States Fifth Circuit) - Vacated and remanded. A $2.8 million verdict in a car accident and injury case was vacated because there was no evidence to support an award for future mental anguish or future pain and suffering.

Lee v. Dept. of Parks and Recreation

(California Court of Appeal) - Affirmed immunity, reversed attorney fees. Plaintiff sued Defendant on a premises liability claim. The trial court found that governmental immunity applied and awarded judgment to Defendant along with attorney fees under Code of Civil Procedure section 1038. The appeals court held that government immunity did apply, but reversed the award of attorney fees because there was a real question of whether government immunity was applicable or not such that Plaintiffas lawsuit had a reasonable cause which defeated the attorney fee award.

Wilson v. County of San Joaquin

(California Court of Appeal) - Reversed. Plaintiff pled no contest to a felony charge of child abuse for injuries to his infant son, but filed this suit against Defendant, Fire Department, for the emergency medical aid that allegedly led to the death of his infant son. Defendant filed a summary judgment motion that was granted by the trial court on the grounds of government immunity. The appeals court held that government immunity applies to situations where fire fighters are supplying firefighting services, not emergency medical services.

Chronis v. USA

(United States Seventh Circuit) - Affirmed. In order for a tort claim to be brought against the US the plaintiff must first exhaust her administrative remedies by presenting her claim to the appropriate federal agencies and demand a sum certain in their claim. The plaintiff in this action failed to make such a demand and the district court properly dismissed the case.

Huckey v. City of Temecula

(California Court of Appeal) - Affirmed. The trial court granted City's motion for summary judgment. Plaintiff sued City for injuries from tripping and falling over a defective sidewalk. The trial court ruled that the defect was trivial as a matter of law.

Dickinson v. Cosby

(California Court of Appeal) - Affirmed. Plaintiff claimed that Defendant, Cosby, raped her in 1982. Defendant responded by claiming Plaintiff was lying in several press releases. Plaintiff filed suit for defamation. Cosby moved to strike the complaint under the anti-SLAPP statute. The trial court denied Cosby's motion to strike and the appeals court held that none of Plaintiffas claims were barred by the anti-SLAPP statute.

Tauscher v. Phoenix Board of Realtors, Inc.

(United States Ninth Circuit) - Reversed summary judgment in favor of the Defendant. Plaintiff brought suit against Defendant under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Plaintiff, who is deaf, requested an American Sign Language interpreter at Defendants' continuing educations courses. Held that while a public accommodation must furnish appropriate assistance to individuals with disabilities, specific aid is not required, but there was an issue of material fact as to whether effective communication was offered to Plaintiff even if different than that requested.

Valentine v. Plum Healthcare Group, LLC.

(California Court of Appeal) - Affirmed order denying petition to compel arbitration. Plaintiffs attempted to enforce arbitration in an action for elder abuse and wrongful death at a skilled nursing facility. The trial court determined that the successor in interest was bound by the agreement to arbitrate, but the children of the decedent were not so bound. The trial court denied the petition to arbitrate to prevent inconsistent findings if both arbitration and litigation proceeded concurrently. The appeals court agreed.

Hollingsworth v. Superior Court

(California Court of Appeal) - Vacated. Plaintiff, the heir of an employee who was killed in a work place accident, filed a complaint alleging that the employer did not have workers compensation insurance. The employer filed a demurrer and sought adjudication with the Workers Compensation Board. The trial court stayed the civil case to allow the WCAB to decide the issue. The Appeals court held that when a civil action and a workersa compensation proceeding are concurrently pending, the tribunal first assuming jurisdiction should have exclusive jurisdiction. The trial court erred by staying the civil case and the WCAB erred by proceeding without deference to the trial court. Order staying civil case is vacated and WCAB proceedings stayed.

Severson & Werson v. Sephery-Fard

(California Court of Appeal) - Reversed. Plaintiff filed a petition for a workplace violence restraining order against Defendant using the mandatory Judicial Council form. The trial court granted the workplace violence restraining order. Appeals court reversed concluding that Defendant was not afforded the required notice under Code of Civil Procedure 527.8 and reversed the ruling.

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