Latest News

NFL Players Ask Court to Push Back Settlement Opt-Out Date

By Saranac Hale Spencer |

Former football players who have questioned the terms of the settlement reached this summer with the NFL over head injuries asked the federal judge handling the case to push back the deadline for opting out of the settlement.

Pharma Whistleblower Can Bring Wrongful-Termination Claim

By Saranac Hale Spencer |

A marketing director who blew the whistle on the pharmaceutical company she worked for can bring her state-law claim that she was forced out of her job in retaliation in federal court.

EDPA Nominees Move to Senate Floor

By Saranac Hale Spencer |

The four nominees to the Eastern District of Pennsylvania have won approval from the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, which voted Thursday morning to move them to the Senate floor for a full vote.

Dismissal of Malpractice Case Against Morgan Lewis Upheld

By Gina Passarella |

The state Superior Court has upheld the grant of summary judgment to Morgan, Lewis & Bockius and some of its partners in a legal malpractice case involving a $112.5 million real-estate finance deal.


Pittsburgh Lawyer's Defamation Suit Moved From Phila.

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

A Pittsburgh attorney who was falsely called a child molester in fliers cannot keep his defamation suit in Philadelphia, the state Superior Court has ruled, despite his claims that having the case in his home county would damage his reputation.


'Loan-to-Own' Strategy May Lead to Limitation on Credit-Bidding

By Rudolph J. Di Massa Jr. and James G. Schu Jr. |

On April 14, in In re Free Lance-Star Publishing, 512 B.R. 798 (Bankr. E.D. Va. 2014), the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia considered the objection of Chapter 11 debtors to a secured creditor's right to credit bid at a sale of the debtors' assets pursuant to 11 U.S.C. Section 363. The court concluded that the secured creditor—which sought to acquire the debtors rather than collect on the loan—had engaged in inequitable conduct with the intention of depressing the value of the debtors' assets for its own benefit as a buyer, rather than enhance value for the benefit of all creditors. Consequently, the court held that cause existed to limit the secured creditor's right to credit bid at the Section 363 sale.

TSCA on Hydraulic Fracturing: Gateway to New Federal Rules?

By Michael L. Krancer, Margaret Anne Hill and Frank L. Tamulonis III |

Historically, states have taken the lead in regulating oil and gas development given the states' primary interest in securing rational oil and gas development in their own boundaries. Hydraulic fracturing—a 60-year-old technology used for oil and gas development—is a temporary process of pumping fluids underground for the purpose of extraction of natural gas or oil from deep formations lying 5,000 to 8,000 feet or more below the surface. Fresh groundwater is located from about less than 600 feet below the surface. Hydraulic fracturing has been practiced routinely for decades by operators in many states, including New York.

Michelle Koplitz

Deaf Juror Sues Over Reassignment Decision by Court

By Zoe Tillman |

Michelle Koplitz, a deaf District of Columbia resident, was summoned for grand jury service earlier this year. The court wouldn't let her serve, she claims, because administrators wouldn't pay for a sign-language interpreter.

Proponents of same-sex marriage rallied at the high court in 2013.

U.S. Supreme Court to Consider Same-Sex Marriage

By Tony Mauro and Scott Graham |

The U.S. Supreme Court last week placed the same-sex marriage cases from five states on the agenda for discussion during its private conference Sept. 29.

People in the News - Sept. 19, 2014 - Albero Joins Obermayer Rebmann

The Delaware Valley Law Firm Marketing Group is scheduled to host "Client Satisfaction Programs: Lessons From the Trenches" at a free event at noon Sept. 23 at World Cafe Live Philadelphia, located at 3025 Walnut St.

Supreme court building in Washington DC, USA.

Will the Supreme Court Take a Stand on Standing in BP Case?

By Abby L. Sacunas and Michael Melusky |

It is axiomatic that to certify a class, plaintiffs must show all members satisfy Article III standing and Rule 23 requirements. While federal courts "do not require each member of a class to submit evidence of personal standing, a class cannot be certified if it contains members who lack standing" to pursue the claim(s) asserted, according to Halvorson v. Auto Owners Insurance.

Drexel University School of Law Dean Roger Dennis, Tom Kline of Kline & Specter, and Drexel University President John A. Fry

Drexel Renames Law School After Kline Donates $50 Mil.

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

Drexel University's law school is to be renamed the Thomas R. Kline School of Law in honor of the Philadelphia litigator's $50 million donation to the university.


Discovery Battles in McCaffery Defamation Case Persist

By Gina Passarella |

The discovery battles in a defamation lawsuit brought by Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Seamus P. McCaffery and his wife and chief judicial assistant, Lise Rapaport, against the owners of Philadelphia's two major daily newspapers have shed light on a number of topics raised by the papers' publications at issue.

Justices Decline to Hear Reglan Preemption Cases

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

The state Supreme Court has denied allocatur to defendants appealing a ruling that federal preemption only applies to negligent failure-to-warn claims that predate the Food and Drug Administration Amendments Act of 2007 and are based solely on a generic drug's label that was in conformity with the brand-name equivalent's label.

Jury box..Photo by Jason Doiy.2-9-11.054-2011

Cash Payments for Referrals Alleged In Row Between Pitt Firm, Lundy Law

By Saranac Hale Spencer |

A former managing partner of several medical centers—who has twice been found liable for insurance fraud—testified in the highly contentious case between two of Philadelphia's personal-injury firms that Lundy Law had required payments from him before it would refer clients to his offices.

Experts: Few Options for Del. to Stop Corporate ‘Inversion’ Impact

By Jeff Mordock |

Delaware’s corporate legal community has become increasingly concerned about the rise in “inversions,” or businesses reincorporating in a foreign jurisdiction to reduce their tax burden. Although legal analysts debate the impact inversions will have on Delaware’s corporate dominance, they all agree the only remedy to the problem is at the national level.

Why I Became a Paralegal in the Diverse Area of Corporate Law

By Theresa Coger |

When I think back, I don't think I chose corporate law, I truly believe that corporate law chose me. As far as I can remember, I wanted to work in the law profession but I wanted to be a legal secretary; so I did what was recommended and went to school for two years and I received my associate degree in legal secretarial studies.

The Philadelphia Association of Paralegals Calendar of Events

On Sept. 22, the in-house practice group committee meeting is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. at Comeau & Bunker, 1600 John F. Kennedy Blvd., Suite 500. The topic of the meeting is "Paralegal Ethics, Rules and Guidelines: Know When to Follow Your Moral Compass." The guest speaker will be Montgomery County Community College professor Monica Proffitt Osborne. Contact Tamika Way, committee chair, at if you plan to attend this meeting, either in person or via conference call.

People in the News - Sept. 18, 2014 - Palmer Joins Pepper Hamilton

J. Bryan Tuk of Eastburn and Gray is set to speak at the Central Bucks Chamber of Commerce seminar from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. today at the Health and Wellness Center in Warrington, Pa.

Appeals Court Reverses Emailed Threats Conviction

By Tony Mauro |

Not waiting for the U.S. Supreme Court to rule on the same issue, a federal appeals court panel Monday invoked the First Amendment in nullifying the conviction of a Utah man on charges of sending an interstate threat.

<b>EMINEM:</b> Rappers' posturing, one attorney says,

In First Amendment Case, Justices Get Schooled in Rap

By Tony Mauro |

The musical tastes of several U.S. Supreme Court justices run toward opera. But as the start of its fall term approaches, the court is getting an intense education in another genre: the rhythmic, slangy—sometimes violent—poetry of rap music.

Three Steps for Finding an Ideal Job Fresh Out of Law School

By Justin J. Koterba |

Searching for the right job has always been an integral part of law school. Sitting in front of your computer and applying to jobs is easy, but it rarely works. Employers want to protect their asset (the company or firm), and only want to hire someone who will go above and beyond for the job. And the only way they can judge a potential employee is to determine whether the prospect is willing (and able) to go above and beyond to get the job.

Relief for Residential Builders: Too Little Too Late?

By Elizabeth D. Lubker |

Over the past several years, small to medium-sized residential builder/developers in Pennsylvania have been devastated by a combination of a weakened economy, an epidemic of "stucco failure" claims and the Kvaerner/Gambone litany of cases that essentially eliminated insurance coverage (both to defend and indemnify) against negligent-construction claims by their customers. The lack of insurance coverage for general contractor companies led many plaintiffs to attempt to pierce the corporate veil and force business owners to pay for repairs to their homes.

Jury box..Photo by Jason Doiy.2-9-11.054-2011

Allegheny Jury Awards $16 Million in Auto Case

By Max Mitchell |

An Allegheny County jury has awarded nearly $16 million to a woman who sustained a severe brain injury in an auto accident while on her way to the rehearsal dinner for her daughter's wedding.

Greenberg Traurig Seeks to Affirm $673K Award in Partner Row

By Gina Passarella |

Greenberg Traurig has asked a Philadelphia judge to affirm an arbitration award of $673,060 in its favor and against two former shareholders who left to form their own firm.

Antique Map New England

Joinder of Pa. Bank Returns MERS Case to State Court

By Saranac Hale Spencer |

Since a federal judge agreed to join a Pennsylvania-based bank to a lawsuit against the owner and operator of the mortgage recording system MERS, the case has bounced back to the state court where it was first filed.

AmerisourceBergen Denied Attorney Fee Coverage

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

AmerisourceBergen is not entitled to coverage from its insurance carrier for attorney fees incurred because of a Massachusetts qui tam suit, the state Superior Court has ruled.

Marc Zwillinger.

Meet the Lawyer Behind Yahoo's Fight Over Surveillance

By Zoe Tillman |

Marc Zwillinger has long been a "technology guy," he said. It's an interest that brought him to the U.S. Department of Justice in the late 1990s to prosecute cybercrimes, and that landed him in charge of the information-security practices at two large law firms before he opened up his own shop in 2010.

People in the News - Sept. 17, 2014 - Family Building Expo Set for Saturday

The Family Building Expo, a free event scheduled from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday at the Four Seasons Hotel in Philadelphia, offers a unique opportunity for individuals and families to ask questions and learn more about adoption and assisted reproductive technology resources.

Close up of a Smartphone Camera

Preventing the Leak of Embarrassing Information Online

By Hayes Hunt and Jillian R. Thornton |

You are general counsel to a company, and your CEO steps into your office, clutching his iPhone in one hand and wiping sweat from his brow with the other, and tells you that a compromising photograph of him was stolen from his phone and posted online. You start thinking not if, but when, shareholders will discover this embarrassment, how much it will cost the company and what legal action to take.

Directly above photograph of an application for a visa.

What EB-5 Investor Visa Quotas for China Mean to the Industry

By Daniel B. Lundy |

The EB-5 visa is a popular choice for investors from abroad, as it allows a foreign national to immigrate if he or she invests $500,000 in a business that creates at least 10 jobs for U.S. workers and sustains those jobs for at least two years. The program is particularly popular with Chinese investors, who accounted for roughly 80 percent of EB-5 visas issued last year. On Aug. 23, the Department of State—for the first time ever—announced that the maximum number of EB-5 visas allowed to be issued to individuals born in China in a given fiscal year had been reached, making EB-5 visas unavailable for natives of China until the start of the new fiscal year Oct. 1. Although the effects of reaching the quota for this year will be minimal, industry experts anticipate that the quota will again be reached for natives of China in the middle of FY 2015, resulting in a significant backlog of EB-5 visa numbers for China. This news is significant because it means that for the first time in the history of the EB-5 program, all of the approximately 10,000 EB-5 visas available annually will be used. A quota backlog for China in 2015 will have a number of effects, both for Chinese investors and for developers who use EB-5 funding to develop their projects.

Judge William Pryor Jr. wrote the opinion for the three-judge panel.

11th Circuit Revives $500K Verdict Against MARTA

By Alyson M. Palmer |

A federal appeals court panel has reinstated a $500,000 verdict awarded last year to a former MARTA manager who claims he was fired for telling his supervisor he was going to file a discrimination complaint.

The Future of Your Health Care Clients

By Terry Silver |

With the regulatory changes created by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, many physician practices are considering whether this is the time to rethink the business of health care by either bringing in strategic or financial partners or aligning with health care institutions.

Judge Rules New Trial for Damages in Email Defamation Case

By Saranac Hale Spencer |

A heavy-equipment dealer that alleged a competitor had torpedoed its impending exclusivity deal with Hyundai by sending an allegedly defamatory eleventh-hour email to the president of Hyundai Construction Equipment Americas won a new trial on damages in federal court in Pittsburgh.

examining the city

Pennsylvania Firms Look to 'Reassert' Themselves Locally

By Gina Passarella |

As Pennsylvania-based law firms were setting their sights on national and international markets, out-of-town firms started opening up shop in the state. With foreign expansion slowing down for many Pennsylvania firms and competition in the local market increasing, area firms are refocusing their efforts on their own backyards.

Discovery of Doctor Reviews Halted to Address Privilege

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

Based on an insurer's position that there is no case law to refute its claims that its physician reviews are privileged, a Lackawanna County judge has stayed an order compelling discovery of those documents pending the outcome of an appeal.

Dechert Hires Ex-Akin Gump Director as New Chief Operating Officer

By Gina Passarella |

Dechert has hired former Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld Executive Director James N. Leary as its new chief operating officer, effective Monday.

Justices Eye Counsel Fees as Loss Under UTPCPL

By Max Mitchell |

Allowing the costs associated with retaining counsel to count as an ascertainable loss under the Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law would lead to a "cottage industry" of "private attorneys general," an attorney representing a car rental company argued before the state Supreme Court in Philadelphia last week.

Executive, Legislative Action for Week of Sept. 8, 2014

By John L. Kennedy |

Following is a listing of executive and legislative action for the week of Sept. 8. Members of the General Assembly were scheduled to return to session Sept. 15.

Lawyer Argues Before Justices That MRI Use Should Be Tax-Free

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

Counsel for a radiology practice argued before the state Supreme Court last week that medical equipment, including MRI and CT machines, software and the electricity used to power the equipment, qualify for the manufacturing exclusion under the Tax Reform Code.

verdicts and settlements

Painter Claimed Intersection Accident Caused Brain Injury

By Max Mitchell |

On March 11, 2010, plaintiff Bruce Roemer, 54, a contractor-painter, was driving a pickup truck westward along Oxford Valley Road in Falls Township, when the side of his vehicle was struck by an SUV being driven along Trenton Road by Patricia Cattani, according to court documents. Cattani's vehicle was owned by Cattani's Beverages Inc., doing business as Cattani's US 1 Beer. The plaintiffs' memo said Roemer sustained fractures, back and neck soft-tissue injuries and permanent traumatic brain injury.

verdicts and settlements

Worker Fired Over Nerve Stimulator, EEOC Claimed

On July 23, 2012, a laborer, whose suit was filed on behalf of plaintiff Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, was hired by MPW Industrial Services Inc., a provider of industrial cleaning, facility management and labor support services, in Dravosburg, Pa.

Parties Spar Over Court's Role in Insurance Liquidation Process

By Max Mitchell |

An attorney representing the Pennsylvania insurance commissioner argued before the state Supreme Court that when considering a rehabilitator's plan to liquidate an insurance carrier, the courts should defer to the experts.


Hobby Lobby Demonstrates a Sharp Divide

By Clifford A. Rieders |

On a dreary Shabbat afternoon, I sat down and read the entirety of the much debated, applauded and excoriated Hobby Lobby Stores case. Since I support both freedom of religion and women's health issues, it occurred to me that I could read the brilliant opinions of Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg with complete objectivity.

Cross-Examining Hospital Expert Witnesses in Claims Regarding Employees

By Brandon Swartz |

Intuitively, one can appreciate that if an individual is otherwise inclined to harm another through bad behavior, having the cover of a job as a medical professional or medical support staff in a hospital seems like an opportunity to commit the perfect crime. By working in a hospital setting, the so-called bad actor would have two built-in advantages to execute his or her crimes.

Pa. Law Weekly - People in the News - Sept. 16, 2014 - Vertz Elected Secretary of PA Chapter of AAML

Divorce attorney Brian C. Vertz, partner of family law firm Pollock Begg Komar Glasser & Vertz, was elected secretary of the Pennsylvania chapter of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML).

Study: Pa. Employee Pension Plan One of the Worst

By John L. Kennedy |

The Pennsylvania State Employees' Retirement System is one of the three most inequitable in the country, according to a recent study by the Washington-based Urban Institute.

Poll Shows No Gain for Corbett in Re-election Race

By John L. Kennedy |

The results of a new poll show Gov. Tom Corbett has made up little ground, if any, on Democratic challenger Tom Wolf in the gubernatorial race.

People in the News - Sept. 16, 2014 - Stradley Ronon's Swirsky to Present Webinar

Stradley Ronon Stevens & Young counsel Joan Ohlbaum Swirsky is set to present "Money Market Fund Reform: What the Board Needs to Know" as part of the Mutual Fund Directors Forum's webinar series Wednesday.

Abraham J. Gafni

Ruling Shows Difficulty Establishing Arbitrator Partiality

By Abraham J. Gafni |

Unlike judges, arbitrators are generally selected either by the disputants themselves or through a party-approved process. In such circumstances, it might be imagined that both partiality and correctness of decision would be subject to close judicial scrutiny. In fact, reviewing courts will rarely vacate arbitrators' awards on these bases.

Alan Nochumson

Out-of-Possession Landlord Not Liable for Guest's Injury

By Alan Nochumson |

Earlier this year, in Hymes v. Great Lakes Warehouse, 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 34064 (March 17, 2014), U.S. District Judge Petrese B. Tucker of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania explained why it is so difficult for a third party to obtain damages against an out-of-possession landlord due to injuries sustained by the third party on the leased property.


Parties Spar Over Court's Role in Insurance Liquidation Process

By Max Mitchell |

An attorney representing the Pennsylvania insurance commissioner argued before the state Supreme Court that when considering a rehabilitator's plan to liquidate an insurance carrier, the courts should defer to the experts.


The Case That Could Disrupt a Century of Settled Law

By Steven Chadwick, Michael Joy and Robert Jochen |

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court will hear the appeal of the Superior Court decision in Shedden v. Anadarko E&P, 88 A.3d 228 (Pa. Super. Ct. 2014), and its decision will have far-reaching implications for the constantly evolving relationship between landowners and producers in the state.

Involuntary Plaintiffs Are Subject to Counterclaims

By Max Mitchell |

A party joined in a case as an involuntary plaintiff is not immune to counterclaims brought by a defendant, the state Superior Court has ruled.

Sam Stretton

The Rules in Judicial Campaigns are Still Strict

By Samuel C. Stretton |

I am considering running for judicial office in Pennsylvania in 2015. Under the new Code of Judicial Conduct, what can I say or not say during the judicial campaign?

On-Air Critic of Lehigh DA Told to Preserve Records

By Max Mitchell |

A critic of the Lehigh County district attorney has been asked by a lawyer for the DA not to destroy documents related to statements the critic made on a talk radio program.

Rosemary Collyer.

Lawsuit to Proceed Over EPA's Deleted Text Messages

By Nate Beck |

A pro-business advocacy group can move forward with a suit against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that challenges top officials' deletions of text messages, a federal judge has ruled.

Lawyer Who Called Opposing Counsel Gay Slur Suspended

By David Gialanella |

A New Jersey lawyer who called opposing counsel a "fag" and said he whined "like a little girl" and needed to "grow a pair" has been suspended for three months.

Considerations for When to Disclose Patent Prior Art

By Bryan Walker |

Discovering that a client's competitor has a pending, published patent application can provide both opportunities and challenges, particularly if the client has information that predates the patent application and that could reasonably be considered to be prior art. Having a strong prior art reference is certainly helpful, but also raises strategic questions.

Leaders of Midsized Firms Aim to Keep Practice Focus

By Max Mitchell and Gina Passarella |

For the leader of a midsized law firm, daily life is marked by constant balancing between keeping an active practice and managing the firm's business and strategic operations.

Football isolated on a white background as a professional sport ball for traditional American and Canadian game play on a white background.

Data Underpinning First NFL Settlement Disclosed

By Saranac Hale Spencer |

Number-crunchers for both the NFL and the former players who sued the league after they suffered head injuries found that the original settlement amount of $760 million—which was rejected in January by the federal judge handling the case—would have been able to cover the claims former players are likely to make over the next 65 years.
That actuarial information, which had been kept confidential from all but a small number of lawyers representing the thousands of plaintiffs in the case, has been a source of contention over the last year as dozens of lawyers in the case sought to get access to it. The two reports were disclosed Friday.


Judge Rejects Instant Certificate of Merit Appeal

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

A hospital cannot instantly appeal a trial judge's order denying its request to have the plaintiff in a medical malpractice suit file separate certificates of merit for hospital personnel who are not defendants in the case, a Philadelphia judge has ruled.

Global Bar Conference Hosted in Phila. Focuses on Ethics

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

Judicial campaigning and self-regulation of attorney discipline were some of the topics tackled during a panel discussion at the World City Bar Leaders Conference, hosted for the first time in Philadelphia.

Phila. Amendment Requires Accommodations for Nursing Mothers

By Megan E. Grossman and John M. Borelli |

On Sept. 3, Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter signed legislation that amends Philadelphia's Fair Practices Ordinance, Phila. Code Section 9-1100 et seq., which applies to any employer with one or more employees, exclusive of parents, a spouse, life partner or children, to make it an unlawful employment practice for the employer to fail to reasonably accommodate an employee's need to express breast milk. The reasonable accommodations include providing unpaid break time or permitting an employee to utilize paid break time, mealtime, or both, to pump breast milk. Further, the new law requires that an employer provide a private and sanitary space, which is not a bathroom, where an employee can express breast milk provided the requirements do not pose an undue hardship on the employer.

Incorporating Karma Into Practice of Law Can Reap Benefits

By Frank Michael D'Amore |

Most litigators spend their early years in the trenches handling discovery issues, many of which evolve (or devolve, depending on your perspective) into disputes of various types. As that was my world, I commiserated with fellow young litigators in quite a few other firms. A common thread for many of us was that we were raised in environments in which even a simple motion to compel was treated as if it were a passion play in which good and evil battled for the souls of humanity (or at least the future of our clients).

Elizabeth Warren.

Warren Blames Bank Regulators for Lack of Prosecutions

By Jenna Greene |

Criticizing government prosecutors for failing to hold senior bank executives criminally liable for the financial crisis is nothing new, but Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., in a hearing Sept. 9 spread the blame further, lambasting the Federal Reserve and other banking regulators who appeared before the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs.

Howard T. Markey National Courts Building/U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, DC.

First Biosimilars Challenge Unfolds in Federal Circuit

By Jenna Greene |

In the first appellate challenge to a new regulatory path for creating generic versions of biologic medicines derived from living organisms, advocates for Sandoz Inc. and Amgen Inc. on Sept. 10 faced tough questions from a three-judge panel at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

People in the News - Sept. 15, 2014 - Avakian-Hardaway to Receive Rising Star Award

Meredith Avakian-Hardaway, director of communications and marketing at the Philadelphia Bar Association, is scheduled to receive the Rising Star Award on Sept. 26 at Temple University's 14th annual Lew Klein Alumni in the Media Awards.

Paterno Suit Pared but Survives Objections

By Max Mitchell |

A Centre County judge said he will allow to proceed the lawsuit by the estate of Joe Paterno against the NCAA, but with 16 former plaintiffs stripped from the case.

gevel in a courtroom

Fraud Case Opens Class Certification Question for Third Circuit

By Saranac Hale Spencer |

A suit alleging mass-market fraud on the part of Zions First National Bank and its subsidiaries gave the Third Circuit a chance to examine the standards for class certification.


Third Circuit Tosses NFL Objectors' Appeal

By Saranac Hale Spencer |

A day after the Third Circuit heard arguments over the right of several former NFL players to appeal from the trial court's preliminary approval of the class settlement in the concussion litigation, it declined to exercise jurisdiction.

penn state

Spanier Asks AG to Turn Over Purported Emails

By Max Mitchell |

The attorney for former Penn State University President Graham B. Spanier is pointing to the Moulton report as reason to believe that prosecutors have access to several emails pertaining to the three former university administrators facing charges related to the handling of the Jerry Sandusky sex-abuse scandal.

Fake Dictionary, Dictionary definition of the word Evidence.

Aviation Lawyer Sues NTSB for Delaying Investigations

By Gina Passarella |

Aviation attorney Arthur Wolk of The Wolk Law Firm has sued the National Transportation Safety Board in federal court for allegedly failing to properly respond to FOIA requests related to his clients' cases.

High Court Declines Appeal of $10 Mil. Survival Act Case

By Gina Passarella |

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court appears to have put an end to a $10 million Survival Act case against UPMC Shadyside Hospital that originated from the 2003 death of a patient who suffered a brain herniation.

People in the News - Sept. 12, 2014 - Schwartzman Appointed to Pa. Judicial Conduct Board

Stevens & Lee shareholder James C. Schwartzman was appointed by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania as a member of the Judicial Conduct Board.

U.S. District Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, seen here in 2012 at her confirmation hearing, said Tuesday a former AUSA can proceed under a pseudonym in his suit against DOJ.

Former Prosecutor May Sue DOJ Under Pseudonym

By Zoe Tillman |

A former federal prosecutor can keep his real name secret in his suit against the U.S. Department of Justice over alleged discrimination, a judge in Washington ruled Tuesday.

Criminal Conduct and Corporate Liability

By Schaun D. Henry |

Some blame a general quest for the almighty dollar, others, a decline in moral fiber, but white-collar crime has been around as long as commerce itself, or at least as long as there have been white collars. The term "white-collar crime" though, encompasses a wide variety of wrongdoing. While it is often viewed as a crime committed by the elite, its meaning today is probably broader than originally intended.


New Arguments on Privilege Waiver and Selective Disclosure

By Mark I. Bernstein and Maura McCarthy |

Novel privilege arguments have been raised in discovery proceedings. This article is intended to discuss these new arguments and their shortfalls.

A New Look at the Litigation Privilege in Asbestos Case

By Adrianne Walvoord Webb |

In a unanimous, precedential—and exceptional—opinion issued last week in Williams v. BASF Catalysts LLC, No. 13-1089 (3d Cir. N.J. Sept. 3, 2014), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit partly overturned the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey and reinstated the fraud and fraudulent concealment claims for asbestos victims and their families in a case against BASF Catalysts LLC, the world's largest chemical maker. Factually speaking, asbestos victims still have a claim against BASF. Emotionally speaking, this decision is a powerful wake-up call for lawyers who take creative license in stretching, and manipulating, legal privileges beyond the point that ethics and the law allows.

Fla. Lawyer's Pro Hac Vice Admission Denied in N.J. Case

By Charles Toutant |

A Newark, N.J., federal judge has denied pro hac vice admission to a disability lawyer from Florida based on his frequent use of that mechanism to practice in the District of New Jersey.


Third Circuit Eyes Timing of NFL Concussion Accord Appeal

By Saranac Hale Spencer |

All three judges on the appellate panel summoned by objectors to the settlement in the NFL concussion case wanted to know why their review had been sought at this point—before the trial judge has held the fairness hearing scheduled for November.

Antique Map New England

Third Circuit Weighs GSK's 'Re-Removal' Efforts

By Saranac Hale Spencer |

Since closing the question about GSK's corporate citizenship last year, the Third Circuit opened the narrower question about where the remaining cases over its antidepressant drug Paxil would be heard. That issue was before the appeals court Wednesday.

Cozen O'Connor Argues Brady's $450K Legal Debt Forgivable

By Gina Passarella |

It is "irrational" and "illogical" to suggest U.S. Rep. Bob Brady, D-Pa., is still a candidate for Philadelphia mayor and thus bound by city campaign finance laws in repaying $450,000 in legal fees seven years after Brady lost the primary, his attorney argued before the state Supreme Court.

vote sign

Pa. Supreme Court Hears Arguments Over Electronic Voting Machines

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

The state Supreme Court on Wednesday heard arguments as to whether electronic voting machines that do not produce simultaneous paper records of each vote cast violate the Pennsylvania Election Code.

Mastering the Art of Career Transitions

By Dena Lefkowitz |

Brenda was 57 years old when she was suddenly laid off from a major Philadelphia law firm in 2011 after 20 years. This is the story of how she learned the new terrain of seeking employment, repackaged herself and how you can too.

Craig Jones

11th Circuit: Cop Who Shot Teen Is Immune From Liability

By R. Robin McDonald |

The federal court of appeals in Atlanta on Sept. 2 held that a Fulton County, Ga., police officer who shot a 16-year-old teen in the back of the head after the youth surrendered and was kneeling on the ground is entitled to immunity from liability under state law.

California Lawyer, Banned in Boston, Protests to Court

By Sheri Qualters |

A California lawyer argued before a federal appeals court Sept. 5 that a Boston magistrate violated his rights by barring him from the District of Massachusetts after finding that he lied to opposing counsel and misrepresented facts to the court.

People in the News - Sept. 11, 2014 - Cozen O'Connor Takes Part in ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

The Metropolitan Philadelphia chapter of the Legal Marketing Association is scheduled to host "Business Development Training for Lawyers: Planning, Executing, and Measuring Success" on Sept. 18.

Get It Right the First Time: Making a Good Impression

By Anthony M. Bottenfield |

It's that time of year: the unofficial start of fall, football season, back to school and the first day of work for many new attorneys. For some, this may be their first real job or at least their first full-time job working as an attorney in a law firm.

Nuclear power plant, Dukovany, Czech Republic

Federal Agencies Shine Spotlight on Chemical Facilities

By Carol F. McCabe |

President Obama's August 2013 Executive Order 13650, "Improving Chemical Facility Safety and Security," set in motion a series of events that has the potential to greatly impact the management of chemicals at a broad range of facilities. The executive order, issued in response to recent tragic and deadly chemical accidents such as the April 2013 explosion at a West, Texas, fertilizer facility, directs federal agencies to evaluate changes to existing chemical safety and security regulations. The executive order established the Chemical Facility Safety and Security Working Group, which is co-chaired by the secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the secretary of the Department of Labor, and the administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) or their delegates. The working group has been hard at work over the past year, and is offering opportunities for input at all levels of government, communities and industrial facilities as it reevaluates all aspects of chemical management practices and response activities.

Duane Morris Forms Alliance to Enter Sri Lankan Market

By Gina Passarella |

Duane Morris appears to be the first U.S. law firm to enter the Sri Lankan legal market in some capacity.

gavel and book

Law Firm Loses Bid to Limit Damages Evidence in Fraud Trial

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

Although a law firm being sued for a fraudulent transfer stemming from a foreclosure claimed the liquidator had been paid in full through settlement with other parties, a federal judge has ruled the liquidator cannot be barred from showing at trial that the firm still owes money.

Former Temple Law Dean Singley Joins Tucker Law Group

By Gina Passarella |

While expanding his diverse litigation boutique to 13 lawyers and a cadre of litigation capabilities, Joe H. Tucker Jr. of the Tucker Law Group has found his own litigation practice has grown, leaving less time for him to focus on increasing administrative responsibilities.

Jury box..Photo by Jason Doiy.2-9-11.054-2011

Third Circuit Grapples With Golden Parachute Regulations

By Saranac Hale Spencer |

In an effort to save his "golden parachute" after being fired from the bank he founded, Vernon Hill argued to the Third Circuit that the trial judge's answer to a question from the jury was an error sufficient to warrant a new trial.

People in the News - Sept. 10, 2014 - Siegel to Speak at PBA Meeting

Andrew J. Trevelise, a partner at Reed Smith in Philadelphia, was elected to serve on the Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania for a three-year term.

Bingham's Merger Talks With Morgan Lewis Progress

By Brian Baxter and Julie Triedman |

James Roome, a London-based managing partner, global financial restructuring co-chair and executive board member at Bingham McCutchen, could lead an overseas exodus of international partners from the firm should it push forward with merger talks with Morgan, Lewis & Bockius.

Sid Steinberg

NLRB: Calling Employer Vulgarity OK in Context of Complaint

By Sid Steinberg |

Usually, an employee who tells a co-worker that his boss is an "asshole" can expect to be collecting unemployment compensation benefits shortly thereafter. But, depending upon the context and the medium, such a comment, even made by a non-union employee, may be "protected concerted activity," and therefore entitled to legal protection, after the National Labor Relations Board's recent decision in Triple Play Sports Bar and Grille, 361 NLRB No. 31 (Aug. 22, 2014).

Protecting Confidential Information During Litigation

By Marco J. Quina and Stephen T. Bychowski |

Commercial litigation invariably requires the disclosure of confidential information. These disclosures are facilitated by a protective order, which sets the terms for the disclosure and use of such information. If best practices and effective case-management techniques are followed, protective orders are invaluable for ensuring the protection of confidential information at minimal cost. But if best practices are not followed and something goes wrong—as occurred in the high-stakes litigation between Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co.—the results can be distracting and expensive.

Yeshiva University High School for Boys

Dismissal of Yeshiva Sex-Abuse Case Upheld by Circuit

By Mark Hamblett |

It didn't take long for a federal appeals court to hold that the statute of limitations had since expired on claims by dozens of former students that they had been sexually abused by a former principal and two others at Yeshiva University High School for Boys.

U.S. Federal Trade Commission building. October 16, 2012. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/THE NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

FTC Continues Its Pay-for-Delay Battle Through AbbVie Suit

By Gina Passarella |

As the pharmaceutical industry awaits the Third Circuit's decision in a case over whether pay-for-delay settlements are anti-competitive even without including a direct cash payment, the Federal Trade Commission has sued a number of pharmaceutical companies in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania over one such accord.