In an opinion yesterday in a trademark case, Magistrate Judge Parker was critical of both sides to a discovery dispute for having issued boilerplate discovery requests and responses, in violation of the specificity contemplated by Rule 34: Continue Reading
In an opinion yesterday, Judge Cote concluded that a plaintiff’s software patent was not eligible for patent protection because it amounted to an abstract idea. The patent covered a “method of creating a dynamically adaptable tutorial,” and, in essence, it described a method of linking website elements so as to facilitate, and easily update, online tutorials. As Judge Cote explained: Continue Reading
Judge Sweet passed away yesterday at the age of 96, reports Law360.
Our posts relating to Judge Sweet can be viewed here.
UPDATE: The New York Times has an obituary here.
In an opinion today, Judge Woods concluded that sanctions were appropriate as against a plaintiff, referred to as ITM, that brought a claim without evidentiary support, even though the claim was eventually dropped. ITM alleged that it incurred $350,000 in expenses advising the defendant about a certain corporate acquisition, but dropped the claim after discovery. That didn’t solve the problem, as Judge Woods explained: Continue Reading
In an opinion today, Judge Ramos denied a motion to preliminary enjoin recent changes to the admissions process for New York City’s eight elite, specialized schools, which generally admit students based solely on a highly competitive test. Last summer, the City announced modified the criteria somewhat to set aside a larger proportion of each class for disadvantaged students, with the aim of creating greater diversity.
The challengers alleged that the changes discriminate against Asian-Americans, but Judge Ramos, in denying a preliminary injunction, found that they were unlikely to succeed on that claim: Continue Reading
Our prior coverage of the case is here.
In a complaint filed today, Woody Allen’s company sued Amazon for cancelling a multi-film distribution contract. Amazon appears to have relied on the contract law doctrine of “frustration of purpose,” telling Allen’s lawyers in an email:
Amazon’s performance of the Agreement became impracticable as a result of supervening events, including renewed allegations against Mr. Allen, his own controversial comments, and the increasing refusal of top talent to work with or be associated with him in any way, all of which have frustrated the purpose of the Agreement and support Amazon’s decision to terminate it.
In a 277-page decision today, Judge Furman vacated the Commerce Department’s decision to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census, finding that the decision was a violation of the Administrative Procedure Act. (Our prior posts on the case are here.)
Judge Furman found that Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross justified the new question based on a rationale – that doing so would enhance enforcement of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) – that was clearly a pretext. Judge Furman stated he was unable to determine “what Secretary Ross’s real reasons for adding the citizenship question were,” but found the evidence overwhelming that “the VRA was a post hoc rationale for a decision that Secretary had already made”: Continue Reading
In an opinion today, Judge Engelmayer prelminarily enjoined New York City’s new ordinance requiring homesharing platforms to share data about hosts and guests to the Mayor’s Office of Special Enforcement (OSE), adopted to help enforce a law prohibiting short term rentals in certain “multiple dwelling” buildings. (See our prior coverage here.)
He concluded that the Fourth Amendment applied to the compelled production of the data, and that the ordinance was overly broad: Continue Reading
The Cardozo Law Review has published a special issue, inspired by a 2016 essay from Judge Marrero entitled The Costs of Rules, the Rule of Costs, focusing on the way modern practice and procedure have needlessly made litigation so expensive and slow. The special issue includes (among other things) a follow up article from Judge Marrero entitled Motion to Dismiss: A Dismissal of Rule 12(b)(6) and the Retirement of Twonbly/Iqbal, proposing various reforms, including severely limiting motions to dismiss that are aimed at the factual sufficiency of the allegations (as opposed to dispositive legal theories). Judge Marrero argues that the wastefulness that inspired the adoption of the Federal Rules in 1938 (which ushered in the simple, notice pleading standard) has reappeared in a different form in today’s practice: Continue Reading