About a decade ago, I predicted that the Morrison case and litigation financing would drive more litigation around the world; see, e.g., here and here. Today, that reality is increasingly acknowledged in commentary. See this July 14, 2019 post at D&O Diary, and this July 2019 commentary by Dechert.
Avoiding liability for fraudulent conveyances may have just become tougher. Why? Because this week, Kirkland & Ellis explicitly announced it is now seeking out plaintiff’s side contingent fee commercial cases, such as fraudulent conveyance cases. According to the firm’s press release, this move is motivated in part by its massive win in the chapter 11 case of Tronox. There, Kirkland took the plaintiff side in a fraudulent conveyance case involving many years of carving risks and assets out of a large company facing billions of long term legacy liabilities from environmental pollutants and tort claims. According to K&E’s July 10, 2019 press release:
“We took a look at the historical results we’ve achieved on the plaintiffs side over the last one or two decades for plaintiffs, and we’ve had some huge wins,” said partner Andrew Kassof, who co-led the team that represented Tronox Litigation Trust in winning $14 billion in damages in 2013 against Kerr-McGee in a fraudulent conveyance suit.”
A July 5, 2019 book review by Tyler Cowen at Marginal Revolution describes in a glowing terms a book that sounds interesting with respect to opioid issues. Among other things, the review states the following:
“The slightly misleading subtitle is How Rogue Chemists are Creating the Deadliest Wave of the Opioid Epidemic. Why misleading? So many substance abuse books are a mix of hysterical in tone and a disappointing “paint by numbers” in their execution, but this one really stands out for its research, journalism, and overall analysis. To give just one example, it is also a great book on China, and how China and the Chinese chemicals industry works, backed up by extensive original investigation.
Definitely recommended, this will be making my year-end “best of” list for non-fiction.”
A June 24, 2019 post at ThePopTort points out that the Supreme Courts of both Kansas and Oklahoma recently struck down damages cap statutes in their states. A related “fact sheet” provides a cogent summary of rulings on damages cap statutes. In short, caps remain common for medical malpractice statutes (24) but only 9 exist as general caps for a wide range of cases.
The Well Private Equity blog post of June 24, 2019 provides an interesting summary of what court’s say about contracts that are possibly for “forever.” It’s well written for a laugh along with substantive guidance; it is titled: “Forever is a Long Time or No Time at All: More Idiosyncrasies of the Common Law of Contract You Need to Know.”
Interesting to see a new lawsuit that provides numerous very specific allegations to support the claim that some Teslas have an unintended acceleration defect, which allegedly caused a fatal crash at issue in the lawsuit. The complaint is online here, and a June 26, 2019 story at Indiana Lawyer provides a summary story and background information about the crash at issue, which involved a lawyer who was starting up a new business. Apparently he briefly survived an awful crash and fire, but then died. The allegations caught my eye because a local Lexus dealer sold me one of the Lexus cars that had a very real unintended acceleration problem that made me think I was crazy. For a year or two, the dealership spoon fed me the “floor mat problem” and other lies that were later exposed as lies. When they finally admitted the problem and fixed the software, the problem went away. Time will tell.
It’s Tuesday evening; two days after my first public complaint after multiple days of Lexis/Nexis failure. As of now, Lexis/Nexis still has not explained why my laptop cannot access the Lexis/Nexis site so that I can read cases, or read my $500 per month subscriptions to two Mealey’s reports. Same stupid error message still shows up.
Interesting times, to say the least. At the end of last week, the “conservative” block of SCOTUS overruled decades of precedent by holding that a takings claim against a state or local government can be immediately pursued in federal court rather than wading/waiting through state law processes. One also wonders what this ruling means for federal court suits against federal regulatory processes. SCOTUSblog summarizes the ruling – and dissents – in a June 22, 2019 post. The introduction is as follows:
“In its long-awaited opinion in Knick v. Township of Scott, the Supreme Court ruled on Friday that plaintiffs alleging that local governments have violated the takings clause may proceed directly in federal court, rather than first litigating in state court. The opinion overrules a 34-year-old precedent, Williamson County Regional Planning Commission v. Hamilton Bank, triggering a sharp dissent and another debate among the justices about the meaning of stare decisis. The majority opinion also rests on a reading of the takings clause—that a constitutional violation occurs at the moment property is “taken,” even if compensation is paid later—that may have consequences beyond this case.”
For several years, it’s been my experience and opinion that idiocy and failure has been rampant within the technology and management functions of Lexis/Nexis, including its “Advantage” program. A new example is shown below. It is a screen shot of the useless error message that shows up when I try to sign in from my laptop, using the proper name and password.
Like tens of millions of others, I’m very, very tired of wasting my time on dealing with failures created by miserably executed technology. Failure is not ok, for consumers and buyers. Compare https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/aug/21/the-undertakers-of-silicon-valley-how-failure-became-big-business
The litigation industry continues to evolve and grow. Consider, for example, this June 19, 2019 press release by a group of firms brining opioid suits, titled: “Lawsuits Filed by Opioid Justice Team in 34 of the 48 States Reporting Babies Born Opioid-Exposed and/or Dependent.”
Note also that the press release provides yet another example of the growing numbers of claims that involve alleged harms arising in children as a result of events involving parents.