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Second Circuit Affirms Judge Buchwald in Trump Twitter Case

In the ongoing case regarding whether President Trump can block individual Twitter users under the First Amendment (see our previous coverage here), the Second Circuit earlier this week affirmed Judge Buchwald’s earlier ruling that the president’s Twitter account is a public forum and that blocking individual users represented unconstitutional viewpoint discrimination.… Continue Reading

Judge Caproni: Compliance Communications Prepared Outside of Attorney-Client Relationship Are Not Privileged

Judge Caproni recently held in the context of a SEC enforcement action that communications with an outside compliance firm were not privileged.  The communications at issue contained advice from a compliance consulting firm which, though staffed by attorneys, provided advice pursuant to a consulting agreement that specifically disclaimed the attorney-client relationship.… Continue Reading

Judge Furman: Sensitive Pricing Information Can’t Be Sealed Where It Goes to the “Heart of the Litigation”

In an opinion Tuesday, Judge Furman ruled that the complaint in an “international saga” of fraud in the art world must be filed publicly and without redactions, even though it contained sensitive information about transactions facilitated by the international auction house Sotheby’s. Plaintiffs hired an art dealer to assist in purchasing a world-class art collection, … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Agrees With Judge Furman that Census Citizenship Question Was Added Based on “Contrived” Rationale

The Supreme Court today, in an opinion by Chief Justice Roberts, largely affirmed Judge Furman’s conclusion (see here) that the Commerce Department’s decision to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census was based on a rationale —  to help enforce the Voting Rights Act — that was pretextual, and agreed that the matter must be … Continue Reading

Judge Failla Concludes That Kroger’s Updated Website Moots ADA Lawsuit Over Accessibility for Visually Impaired

In an opinion today, Judge Failla dismissed as moot an ADA lawsuit accusing the supermarket chain Kroger of operating a website that isn’t accessible for the visually impaired.  Kroger apparently addressed all the issues complained of.  There is a huge body of litigation in this area (see this article and this article, for example), but Judge Failla … Continue Reading

Judge Marrero Allows New York State Challenge to Federal Fintech Banking Charters to Proceed

Earlier this month, Judge Marrero denied a motion to dismiss a complaint brought by the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) against the U.S. Comptroller of the Currency (OCC).  The complaint challenged the Comptroller’s decision to begin issuing special purpose national banking (SPNB) charters to financial technology (“fintech”) companies that, among other things, … Continue Reading

Judges Furman and Carter Grant Habeas Petitions Requiring Individualized Bond Hearings for Detaining Awaiting Removal Hearings

In two opinions yesterday (here and here), Judges Furman and Carter concluded that Due Process requires timely, individual bond hearings, with the Government bearing the burden to show a risk of flight, for those awaiting removal hearings. In the case before Judge Furman, the detainee has been held for 21 months with no hearing.  In … Continue Reading

Magistrate Judge Gorenstein: Attorney-Client Communications That Include Outside PR Firm Are Not Privileged

In an opinion this week, Magistrate Judge Gorenstein ruled that sharing attorney-client privileged communications with an outside public relations firm resulted in a waiver of the attorney-client privilege.  The plaintiff, Universal Standard, a manufacturer of “size-inclusive” clothing, filed a complaint against Target alleging trademark infringement.  After discovery, Target filed a motion asking the court to find … Continue Reading

Trump Family Sues Banks to Prevent Compliance with House Subpoenas

In a complaint filed yesterday, President Trump, his children, and entities related to Trump family businesses sued two financial institutions to prevent them from responding to recent subpoenas issued by the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the House Financial Services Committee.  The subpoenas seek banking and financial records related to Trump family businesses;  … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Grants Cert in SDNY Case to Address Whether Sexual Orientation Discrimination Violates Title VII

Today, the Supreme Court granted certiorari in two consolidated cases raising the question of whether sexual orientation discrimination violates Title VII. One of the cases is Zarda v. Altitude Express, Inc., in which Judge Failla applied, but heavily criticized, binding Second Circuit precedent disallowing such claims.  The Second Circuit, sitting en banc, ultimately reversed the precedent, … Continue Reading

Judge Cote: Software for “Dynamic” Tutorials Too Generic to Be Patented

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.  … Continue Reading

Judge Woods: Belatedly Withdrawing A Baseless Claim Does Not Insulate a Litigant from Sanctions

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.  … Continue Reading

Judge Ramos Refuses to Enjoin Initiative to Diversify NYC’s Elite “Specialized” Schools

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 … Continue Reading

Woody Allen Sues Amazon for Cancelling Multi-Film Contract

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, … Continue Reading

Judge Furman Strikes Citizenship Question from Census, Finds The Government’s Stated Rationale to Have Been a Pretext

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 … Continue Reading

Judge Engelmayer Enjoins on Fourth Amendment Grounds City Law Requiring Homesharing Platforms to Routinely Disclose Rental Data

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 … Continue Reading

Cardozo Law Review Publishes Special Issue On Litigation Costs, Inspired by Judge Marrero Essay

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 … Continue Reading

Judge Ramos Strikes Down Executive Order Targeting “Sanctuary Cities”

In an opinion Friday, Judge Ramos, concurring with other federal courts in Pennsylvania, California and Illinois, found that an Executive Order in July 2017 aimed at so-called “sanctuary cities” was unlawful.  The Executive Order conditioned certain federal funds for state and local government law enforcement-related programs (such as drug treatment or witness programs) on those … Continue Reading

“Enough is Enough”: Judge Furman Denies Government’s 12th Attempt to Stay Census Citizenship Question Case

In the ongoing saga of New York State’s attempt to prevent a citizenship question from being added to the 2020 Census, Judge Furman has yet again denied an attempt to stay the proceedings pending review by the U.S. Supreme Court.  The request yesterday came on the heels of a request just before the trial in … Continue Reading
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