Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery is unswayed by an online petition supporting Shanesha Taylor, an Arizona woman who was arrested when she left her toddler and baby in the car during a 45-minute job interview.Montgomery said he won’t drop felony child-abuse charges against Taylor, despite supporters who say she needs help rather than punishment, the Arizona Republic reports.Montgomery said the 12,000 names on an online petition at Change.org weren’t actual signatures; few were people who lived in Maricopa County or even Arizona; and that the signers probably weren’t fully aware of the circumstances.“I don’t know whether any of the individuals in their pajamas who logged on to the site and put their name on there really had a clue of all the circumstances involved in this particular case,” Montgomery said on Wednesday.“The ‘quote-unquote’ letter addressed to me didn’t mention any of the circumstances that presented those … [Read more...] about Prosecutor won’t drop charges against mom who left her kids in the car during a job interview
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The Pennsylvania lawyer who successfully challenged the Obama health care law cited the Book of Revelation in his suit against the federal government.Lawyer Paul Rossi represents Barbara and Gregory Bachman, Lancaster Online reports. The York County couple say they want to finance a new car, but they are reluctant to take out a five-year loan because they will have to pay for health insurance beginning in 2014 as a result of the new law.U.S. District Judge Christopher Conner of Harrisburg ruled for the Bachmans on Tuesday, holding that Congress had no authority to enact the individual mandate under the commerce clause, report the Legal Intelligencer and the Associated Press. Conner said his ruling was based on constitutional jurisprudence rather than some of the “hyperbolic rhetoric” of plaintiffs lawyers who predicted America would evolve into a socialist state. “These suggestions of cataclysmic results … are both unproductive and unpersuasive,” Conner … [Read more...] about Lawyer Fears the Beast in Successful Challenge to Obama Health Care Law
Under the FTC's Franchise Rule, a franchisor is permitted, but not required, to answer that all-important question asked by would-be franchise buyers: "how much money can I make?" A franchisor that chooses to make a "financial performance representation" ("FPR") must put the representation in its Franchise Disclosure Document ("FDD"). The representation can take one of two forms. It can be: (1) an earnings claim based on historical performance of operating units; or (2) a projection of possible future performance. Allowing franchisors to make FPRs based on projections of future performance is still fairly new to franchising; the allowance of "future projections" was added when the Franchise Rule was amended in 2007. In either case, the touchstone requirement for an FPR is whether the franchisor has a reasonable basis for making it. As a related requirement, the franchise company must also be able to … [Read more...] about When Are A Franchisor’s Financial Performance Representations Actionable?
I. IntroductionPresident Obama and the Democrats are on the verge of making history. Since Theodore Roosevelt first proposed the idea of health care reform, nearly every President has tried, and failed, to enact such reform. The Democrats’ plan, however, includes a controversial policy that, if enacted, would constitute a violation of Congress’s authority under the United States Constitution.There is no denying that President Obama and the Democrats have good intentions in implementing an individual mandate to purchase health insurance. A legitimate argument exists that if all Americans have health insurance, fewer people will freeload the system, leading to a decrease in premiums. At a time when the economy is dwindling and health care costs are on the rise, Americans are surely open to any ideas that will lower costs. But does the federal government have the authority to mandate that all individuals purchase health insurance? In … [Read more...] about Purchase Health Insurance or Else: Why Individual Health Insurance Mandates Enacted by the Federal Government Are Unconstitutional
Court holds that an arbitrator did not exceed his powers under the Federal Arbitration Act in finding that class procedures were authorized because the parties agreed that the arbitrator could decide the question.On June 10, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a unanimous decision in Oxford Health Plans LLC v. Sutter, ruling that an arbitrator's finding that a contract allowed for class arbitration was a proper exercise of his powers under the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) and could not be disturbed by the Court. Critically, the Court found that Oxford had agreed that the arbitrator should determine whether the contract authorized class procedures, and, therefore, the Court did not address whether that question was a "question of arbitrability" that is presumptively for the court to decide or review on a de novo basis. Instead, in light of the parties' agreement that the arbitrator was vested with the authority to answer the question of class arbitration, the Court concluded … [Read more...] about Supreme Court Upholds Arbitrator’s Decision Regarding Class Arbitration
About two-thirds of the adult population of the United States has a presence on a social networking platform. Over 900 million people worldwide are users of Facebook, and over half visit the site at least once a day. In any given month, over 30 billion separate pieces of content (wall posts, photos, etc.) are uploaded to Facebook, while Twitter processes a staggering 340 million tweets daily from its more than 140 million active users. Corporate America, too, has jumped on the bandwagon, with companies now constantly touting their social media presence and exhorting consumers to like them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter. In fact, 2012 will mark the first year that corporate spending for online advertising exceeds spending for print advertising.Claims professionals and risk managers are increasingly seeing the significance of social media in claims investigations and the defense of litigation. As more and more people live their lives online, sites like Facebook, Twitter, … [Read more...] about “Like” It or Not: How Social Media Can Lead to Litigation
As reported in our June 2011 Newsletter, the Judicial Council of California in 2011 proposed revisions to California Civil Jury Instructions (known as CACI) related to the element of the foreseeability and effect of product misuse. The proposed instructions contravened well-settled public policy and precedential limitations on manufacturer liability, including, importantly, an essential element of a plaintiff’s products liability case—proof of reasonably foreseeable use. In our prior report, we explained that the proposed revisions, if adopted, would significantly impact litigation of product liability claims in California.The Advisory Committee on Civil Jury Instructions (Advisory Committee) recommended approval of the proposed revisions in a report dated May 17, 2011.1 Despite objections from at least a dozen commentators, including Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP, the proposed revisions were approved by the Judicial Council on … [Read more...] about Update on California Civil Jury Instructions Concerning Products Liability Litigation
Many insurance professionals believe the next hard market may be lurking right around the corner. Is your self-insurance program ready?Many insurance professionals believe the next hard market may be lurking right around the corner. Historically in hard markets, self-insurance has been used as a risk financing mechanism to offset higher insurance prices and the lack of capacity. But just as a diligent driver would be sure to have a mechanic perform a full tune-up before embarking on a long car trip, a risk manager also needs to periodically conduct a systematic check of insurance exposures in order to maximize the performance of a self-insured program and determine if there are any issues hidden below the surface. The following key questions can guide your assessment.Is Self-Insurance a Viable Option?Self-insurance and large-deductible programs are usually mentioned at the top of the list of ways to control insurance costs in a hard market. A risk manager needs to first determine which … [Read more...] about Does Your Self-Insured Program Need a Tune-Up?
The United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit recently upheld the certification of an Ohio consumer class action in In re: Whirlpool Corporation Front-Loading Washer Products Liability Litigation, 678 F.3d 409 (6th Cir. 2012) (“Glazer”). Glazer is the Sixth Circuit’s second opinion on class certification since the Supreme Court decided Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes, ___ US ___, 131 S.Ct. 2541, 180 L. Ed. 2d 374 (2011). The first opinion, Gooch v Life Investors Ins. Co. of America, 672 F.3d 402 (6th Cir. 2012), involved class certification under Fed. R. Civ. P. 23(b)(2). Glazer was the Sixth Circuit’s first post-Dukes opinion to address certification under Fed. R. Civ. P. 23(b)(3).For a number of years, culminating in Dukes, federal courts have moved away from deciding class certification based on the allegations in the plaintiff’s complaint and have instead focused on … [Read more...] about The Sixth Circuit Steps Back in Time on Certification of Consumer Classes
On March 1, 2016, WRAL Investigates reported that North Carolina Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin wants state lawmakers to tighten up regulations over commercial vehicle insurance, stating that some out-of-state trucking companies are claiming in-state residency to obtain lower insurance rates.It is no secret that North Carolina has some of the lowest vehicle insurance rates in the country. These insurance policies, however, are available only to residents and businesses that reside in the state. According to WRAL, ten years ago, drivers from New York and New Jersey were registering their cars in North Carolina in order to get cheaper car insurance. But, the General Assembly changed the law to stop this from happening.On March 3rd, the same issue is occurring in the $670 million-a-year commercial vehicle insurance market. Reportedly, North Carolina Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin is seeking to have a similar statutory enactment passed. In recent years, the North Carolina … [Read more...] about Tightening Up Regulations Over Commercial Vehicle Insurance