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As AG nominee Barr commits to defend FCA, Utah hospital asks SCOTUS to review its constitutionality

The Utah hospital chain Intermountain Health Care was already facing extremely long odds in its bid for the U.S. Supreme Court to find the False Claims Act unconstitutional under the Appointments Clause. But this week’s confirmation hearing for Attorney General nominee William Barr may just be the death knell for constitutional challenges to the FCA – even though it was Barr himself who pioneered the theory that the FCA is unconstitutional.

Uber tells its side of the story in mass arbitration fight with 12,500 drivers

Someday, legal historians may look back at litigation between Uber and thousands of Uber drivers who have demanded the company arbitrate their wage-and-hour claims as an inflection point in employment law. The era of wage-and-hour class actions arguably ended with the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2018 ruling in Epic Systems v. Lewis (138 S.Ct. 1612), which locked in employers’ power to force workers to agree to arbitrate their disputes individually. The only way that power could backfire for

Time is short but here's how Supreme Court could have last word on 2020 census

The U.S. Commerce Department cannot ask respondents to the 2020 census if they are U.S. citizens, according to an epic 277-page ruling Tuesday by U.S. District Judge Jesse Furman of Manhattan. Judge Furman concluded that the U.S. Commerce Department and Secretary Wilbur Ross violated the Administrative Procedure Act in myriad ways when they overrode staff recommendations and decided to add the question to census forms.

For plaintiffs' lawyers Mark Lanier and Jayne Conroy, Pinnacle retrial is a family affair

When trial gets underway this week in federal court in Dallas for five bellwether plaintiffs who claim to have suffered severe complications from allegedly defective metal-on-metal Pinnacle hip implants, plaintiffs' lawyers Mark Lanier of the Lanier Law Firm and Jayne Conroy of Simmons Hanly Conroy will be working together again, as they have in several mass torts trials over the past 20 years. But this time is different: Both lawyers will also be litigating alongside their daughters.

Opioid MDL judge refuses to allow defendants to gag plaintiffs' lawyers, state AGs

On Thursday, U.S. District Judge Dan Polster of Cleveland denied a motion by defendants in the gargantuan opioid multidistrict litigation for a gag order precluding plaintiffs' lawyers in the case – including state elected officials – from speaking outside of court about the scope of the litigation and the evidence they’ve obtained.

Law firm for Uber drivers in mass arbitration is bounced from federal court case

The plaintiffs’ firm Keller Lenkner has insisted for months that Uber had an ulterior motive for trying to disqualify Keller Lenkner from representing livery companies in an unfair business practices class action in federal court in San Francisco. According to the plaintiffs’ firm, Uber’s strategy was not simply to bounce Keller Lenkner from the class action but to leverage a disqualification ruling against the firm in more than 10,000 individual arbitration cases in which Keller Lenkner represe

Pharma’s latest tactic in megacases: Try to gag AGs, plaintiffs’ lawyers

In the past few weeks, pharmaceutical company defendants in two gigantic cases – sprawling multidistrict litigation accusing drugmakers and wholesalers of spurring the opioid crisis and an MDL in which 45 state attorneys general have accused generic pharmaceutical manufacturers of fixing the prices of at least 15, and as many as 330, drugs – have sought gag orders to block state attorneys general and private lawyers from talking about their cases outside of court.

Will DOJ side with defendants who want Supreme Court to kill M&A class actions?

On Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to review the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeal’s ruling in Emulex v. Varjabedian, which revived a shareholder class action challenging the company’s disclosures in connection with its 2015 acquisition by Avago Technologies, a Broadcom subsidiary. On its face, as my Reuters colleague Lawrence Hurley reported, the case presents the narrow question of whether shareholders suing over allegedly deficient tender offer disclosures must allege fraud,

Syngenta MDL judge tears up lawyers’ contingency contracts in $500 million fee ruling

The academic debate about whether judges overseeing multidistrict litigation have the power to cap fees for lawyers who signed individual contingency fee contracts with the clients is fierce. Some scholars, notably including William Rubenstein of Harvard, believe that when MDLs are resolved via class action settlements, judges have inherent power to abrogate individual fee contracts. Others contend those fee contracts remain binding.

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Trump proposes wall-for-DACA in bid to end shutdown

U.S. President Donald Trump proposed an immigration deal on Saturday in a bid to end a 29-day partial government shutdown, including temporary protections for "Dreamers" and other immigrants, but Democrats immediately dismissed it.