- Cleverer approach NFL might have taken in “Who Dat” affair [Schwimmer, HuffPo, earlier here, here, etc.]
- Justice Anthony Kennedy: influence of unionized prison guards in passing California’s three-strikes law “sick” [LA Times]
- Federal prosecutors going after poster designer Shepard Fairey for untruth in civil lawsuit? How strange is that? [Kennerly]
- Plaintiff in complaint against Mark Steyn before Canadian rights tribunal boasted of having “increase[d] the cost of publishing anti-Islamic material” [NRO “Corner”; earlier here, here, here, etc.]
- Federal jury rejects wrongful birth suit against Elkton, Maryland obstetrician [Miller, more on wrongful birth]
- Forced-reincarnation suit against Oprah Winfrey dismissed, George W. and Laura Bush off hook too [WV Record]
- “How to Report the News”: funny plug-and-use TV reporting template [YouTube/Charlie Brooker, Newswipe, UK]
- “Virginia Legislators Kill Bills to Mandate Child Support for Adult College Students” [Hans Bader/CEI “Open Market”, earlier here and here]
- New court allegations that disgraced Luzerne County, Pa. judges fixed civil cases as well [Legal Intelligencer; earlier here and here]
- Half-hopeful, half-sad story of Florida town’s efforts to live down “Nub City” insurance-fraud notoriety [St. Petersburg Times a while back, but new to me; Errol Morris film; my review of Ken Dornstein’s book]
- Evidence continues to roll in against once-touted theory that bans on smoking in public places result in dramatic overnight drop in heart attack rates [Sullum, Reason “Hit and Run”, earlier here and here]
- Maybe everyone’s too used to such things by now to get riled up by that pic of garishly painted “1-800-LAWYERS” van [Ron Miller; earlier]
- Magazines often found on scene at law enforcement raids = guilty magazines that should be banned from mails? [McClatchy “Suits and Sentences” blog; earlier on cockfighting periodicals Apr. 24, etc.]
- Lawprofs: Let’s carve bigger religious-conscience exemptions into antibias laws [Robin Wilson, L.A. Times; Dale Carpenter series at Volokh; Ira Lupu, ConcurOp via Orin Kerr]
- UK: “Parents sue NHS over ‘wrongful birth’ of disabled son” [Times Online, our earlier coverage of concept]
- Throw bloggers in prison because their posts cause emotional distress? Have fifteen members of Congress gone completely mad? [David Kravets, Wired “Threat Level”, earlier]
An Australian woman asked that her in vitro fertilization (IVF) result in a single baby but two embryos were mistakenly implanted. Now she wants $A400,000 for the cost of raising the child to adulthood. (“Mother sues doctor over twin birth”, ABC (Australian) News, Sept. 18)(via KevinMD). The local branch of the Australian Medical Association says the law should be changed to prevent damage claims over the birth of unimpaired babies: “We’re very concerned [at] the concept that a healthy life is wrongful.” (“Doctors should not be liable for mistake births: AMA”, Sept. 22). More on wrongful birth lawsuits here.
- Grand jury declines to indict Dr. Anna Pou in Katrina hospital deaths, despite heavy breathing from Louisiana AG Charles Foti and TV’s Nancy Grace [Times-Picayune, more; 2005 CNN transcript; Health Care Blog, GruntDoc, Vatul.net]
- Protection from lawsuits for “John Doe” security informants is back in anti-terror legislation moving through Congress, despite back-door effort to eliminate it earlier [Fox News, Malkin; earlier] Addendum: but it’s in altered, much-weakened form, says commenter Bob Smith;
- U.K.: Top law firm Freshfields earns millions advising clients on employment compliance, yet “omitted to check that changes to its own pension scheme were legal” [Times Online]
- Thinking of doing some guestblogging, for us or another site? Some good advice here [Darren Rowse via Kevin O’Keefe]
- Even Conrad Black can have trouble affording lawyers, at least with feds freezing his accounts [PoL on Steyn]
- Shouldn’t have let us become parents again: Florida jury awards $21 million in “wrongful birth” case [Fox News]
- Possibility of gigantic reparations claims adds intensity to big lobbying fight in Washington over whether Turkey’s slaughter of Armenians in 1915 amounted to genocide [Crowley, New Republic]
- Updating colorful coverage case (Jun. 22, 2005): dentist wins $750K verdict on insurer’s duty to defend him for taking gag photos of sedated employee with boar tusks in mouth [Seattle Times, more; dissent in PDF; Althouse]
- Giuliani might use federalism to defuse culture wars [Brownstein, L.A. Times; disclaimer]
- Virginia’s enactment of harsh traffic fines (Jul. 6) follows tryouts of the idea in Michigan and New Jersey, where effects included rise in unlicensed driving [Washington Post]
Multi-billion dollar (and down) extortion edition:
- Merrill Lynch and CSFB appeal extortionate Enron class-action certification. [Point of Law; AEI (Feb. 9); WLF brief]
- More on the extortionate and lawless $500 billion Wal-Mart class certification. [Point of Law]
- Mississippi Supreme Court rejects extortionate medical monitoring class actions. [Behrens @ WLF]
- Lawyer Daniel Hynes tries to extort $2000 from New Hampshire bar holding Ladies’ Night. [Foster’s Daily Democrat (h/t B.C.)]
- Colorado Civil Justice League stops legislative attempt at giveaway to local trial lawyers. [Point of Law]
- Wisconsin court: family can be sued for babysitter’s car accident when returning home from dropping off child. [AP/Insurance Journal]
- Fox seeks to dismiss Borat suit on anti-SLAPP grounds. [Hollywood Reporter Esq. via WSJ Law Blog]
- Passaic County jury: $28M for “wrongful birth.” [NorthJersey.com]
- Former AG (and Dem) Griffin Bell: “Judicial Leadership Emerging In Asbestos And Silica Mass Torts” [WLF]
- Utah legislature considering med-mal reform for ERs. “Neurosurgeons in this town have to pay over $90,000 a year just for the privilege of getting out of bed on a Friday night to drain the blood from the brain of a victim of a drunk driver crash. And they say, I’m not gonna do it. Because the patients are sicker. The procedures are sometimes more invasive and more risky with more complications. Why take that risk if they don’t have to?” [KCPW via Kevin MD; Provo Herald]
- A little-read blog promoting a soon-to-be-pulped fictional account of tort reform is really begging for a link from us, what with three out of the last five posts making amateurish (and often false) personal attacks on this site’s authors or soliciting others to also fling poo. No dice.
- Judge rules paper money illegal under Rehabilitation Act, criticized by National Federation of the Blind
- Taxpayer bill for dog food meal: $2.7 million until the mayor vetoed the settlement
- More on the great 1998 tobacco robbery
- Place kicker cum Illinois Supreme Court justice wins $7 million libel judgment against newspaper daring to criticize him.
- Woman hits truck, sues truck-trailer manufacturer, wins millions
- Thomas Frankovich suspended for vexatious ADA filings
- Obnoxious Chi Psi frat boys sue Borat
- Welsh dragon sausages. Warning: does not contain dragon
- “Wrongful birth” suits reach Germany
- Activists sue, demanding foie gras ban
- Lighter manufacturers ask for more CPSC regulation
Class actions galore:
- Class action plaintiffs: $5 discount on new 2-year cell-phone contract; lawyers, $5.5 million
- Class action plaintiffs: literally worthless coupon; lawyers, $975,000
- Class action against LA Angels seeking $4,000/tote bag leads to Frivolous Lawsuit Night in Altoona
- When bringing a class action complaining about a missing 10 calories in the label, make sure your named plaintiff wasn’t adding crumbled cookie toppings to the low-fat dessert.
- E-mail a lawyer, discover you’re a named class-action plaintiff; whereas Milberg Weiss is accused of just buying their plaintiffs through illegal kickbacks, as well as purchasing a thinktank fellowship.
That’s not to say that there weren’t other types of lawsuits:
By a 4-3 margin, the Ohio Supreme Court has approved (PDF) a “wrongful birth” suit against doctors by parents who say they would have aborted their child had they not been given inaccurate genetic counseling. The court did reject the views of Justices Paul Pfeifer and Alice Resnick (as well as that of a lower court judge) who thought the damages payable should include the cost of raising the child through adulthood, plus pain and suffering. (Andrew Welsh-Huggins, “Supreme Court allows lawsuits over missed genetic disorders”, AP/Akron Beacon Journal, Mar. 3). However, some Ohio legislators are proposing to enact a law precluding wrongful-birth lawsuits; a bill to that effect passed the state senate this past week, but has not yet been considered by the house (Jim Provence, “Bill would protect doctors from ‘wrongful birth’ suits”, Toledo Blade, Mar. 1). More on wrongful-birth suits: Sept. 16, 2004 and links from there; May 1 (Australia) and Jun. 14, 2005. More: WizBang takes an extremely dim view of the parents in the case (Mar. 3).
David Bernstein and commenters (Jun. 10) discuss a 1999 case (Canesi v. Wilson) in which the New Jersey Supreme Court held that a woman could sue over the “wrongful birth” of a baby with birth defects because the doctor didn’t warn her that a drug he prescribed during the pregnancy was suspected of causing such defects, even though she was unable to offer any expert testimony indicating that the drug had actually caused the defects (and scientific evidence was accumulating that it had not in fact done so).
“A disabled woman who unsuccessfully sued her mother’s doctor for wrongful life has won the right to take her case to the High Court.” Alexia Harriton, 24, born with multiple handicaps, says a doctor was negligent for not diagnosing her mother’s rubella infection during pregnancy; had the infection been diagnosed, mom would have had an abortion. (AAP/News.com.au, Apr. 29). More on wrongful life/wrongful birth cases: Sept. 16, 2004 and links from there. Update May 27, 2006: court rules against wrongful life concept.