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Injury & Tort Law
[04/28] Prather v. Sprint Communications, Inc.
In a False Claims Act suit brought the U.S. Government against Sprint Communications, the district court's order denying appellant's Fed. R. Civ. P. 24(a)(2) motion to intervene as of right is affirmed where: 1) although his appeal is not moot, he did not have a significantly protectable interest in the government's False Claims Act suit; and 2) his prior filing of a related, but jurisdictionally barred, qui tam action did not entitle him to any award under the False Claims Act.
[04/26] Salvati v. The American Ins. Co.
In an insurance dispute involving the issue of whether the plaintiff in a wrongful death action, who reached a settlement with the defendants and their primary insurance carrier, can recover the amount exceeding the primary policy limits from the defendants' excess insurer, the district court's grant of defendant's motion to dismiss, on grounds that the settlement agreement did not trigger the excess policy because the agreement was not accompanied by a court judgment, is affirmed on alternate grounds, where plaintiff has not presented a plausible argument that the settlement agreement triggered the excess insurer's duty to indemnify.
[04/25] Lewis v. Clarke
In a personal injury suit brought against an employee of a tribal casino, who was involved in an auto accident while acting in the scope of his employment, the Supreme Court of Connecticut's judgment granting defendant's to dismiss for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction is reversed where: 1) in a suit brought against a tribal employee in his individual capacity, the employee, not the tribe, is the real party in interest and the tribe's sovereign immunity is not implicated; and 2) an indemnification provision cannot, as a matter of law, extend sovereign immunity to individual employees who would otherwise not fall under its protective cloak.
[04/21] General Refractories Co v. First State Insurance Co.
In a dispute involving the rightful allocation of asbestos-related losses under thirty-year-old excess insurance policies, and to decide which of two companies, a historical manufacturer of asbestos-containing products and its insurer, will bear costs associated with a staggering number of asbestos claims, the district court's judgment that the policy is ambiguous is reversed where the phrase 'arising out of' asbestos, when used in a Pennsylvania insurance exclusion, unambiguously requires 'but for' causation.
[04/21] Kwan v. SanMedica Int'l
In a suit alleging that defendants made claims concerning its product, SeroVital, that were unsubstantiated, the district court's ed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6) dismissal of plaintiff's second amended complaint is affirmed where: 1) pursuant to the holding in National Council Against Health Fraud, Inc. v. King Bio Pharmaceuticals, Inc., 107 Cal. App. 4th 1336, 1344 (Cal. App. 2003), the panel held that the district court did not err in concluding that neither the Unfair Competition Law nor the Consumer Legal Remedies Act provided plaintiff with a private cause of action to enforce the substantiation provisions of California's unfair competition and/or consumer protection laws; and 2) the district court did not err in concluding that the second amended complaint failed to allege facts that would support a finding that defendants' claims regarding its product, SerioVital, were actually false.
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