Tag Archives: Judge Furman

City in Iowa Brings Class Action Alleging that “Flushable” Wipes Are Not Flushable At All

In a class action filed Monday, the city of Perry, Iowa alleges that “flushable” wipes are not flushable, and in reality are harmful to local sewer systems: In order to maintain “wet strength,” and despite the Defendants’ claims otherwise, flushable wipes do not degrade after flushing. Rather, once in the sewer system, they ultimately wrap around structures within … Continue Reading

Judge Furman: Employee Cannot Assert Advice-of-Counsel Defense When Employer Refuses to Waive Privilege

In a decision last week in the government’s FIRREA action against Wells Fargo (previous coverage here), Judge Furman ruled that, at least in civil cases, an individual cannot force his former employer to waive privilege so the employee can assert an advice-of-counsel defense.  Judge Furman found that allowing a forced waiver in these circumstances would make the privilege “intolerably uncertain”:… Continue Reading

SDNY Blog Returns as Steptoe Blog

The SDNY Blog is relaunching as a publication of Steptoe & Johnson LLP.  We expect to post several times a week on decisions and other developments in the Southern District of New York.  You can find us right here at www.sdnyblog.com, or follow us on Twitter or Facebook. Here’s a quick summary of what’s been happening in the Southern … Continue Reading

Judge Furman Dismisses Gender Discrimination Suit by Male Student Suspended from Columbia for Sexual Assault

In an opinion today, Judge Furman ruled that a male student, who was suspended from Columbia University for sexual assault, did not allege facts sufficient to go forward with his gender discrimination suit against the school.  The plaintiff alleged that the school’s disciplinary process was unfair and came to the wrong conclusion, but Judge Furman … Continue Reading

Judge Furman Allows GM to Withhold Jenner & Block Interview Notes Underlying Public Report on Ignition Switch Issues

In an opinion today, Judge Furman upheld GM’s decision to withhold, on privilege and work product grounds, interview notes underlying a publicly-released report prepared by GM’s attorneys at Jenner & Block regarding GM’s recall of around 800,000 vehicles that may have had defective ignition switches. The plaintiffs argued (among other things) that the interviews were … Continue Reading

Judge Furman Dismisses Class Action Accusing Match.Com of Using Photos It Does Not Own to Make Phony Dating Profiles

In an opinion today, Judge Furman dismissed a class action brought by a company called Meltech, which owns the rights to certain pictures of an adult movie actor known professionally as Melissa Midwest, against against Match.com and various affiliated dating websites.  Meltech alleged that Match and the other websites used photos of Ms. Midwest without authorization to make … Continue Reading

Judge Furman: James Cameron’s Avatar Movie Does Not Infringe Copyright of Noted Rock Album Cover Artist

In a decision issued yesterday, Judge Furman dismissed a lawsuit alleging that director James Cameron infringed the copyrights of artist William Roger Dean in Cameron’s blockbuster movie Avatar.  The artist, whose work has graced the covers of many major rock albums, claimed that many of the movie’s fantastical settings are copied from 14 works he produced … Continue Reading

Judge Furman Sends Suits by States Against Ratings Agencies Back to State Court

In an opinion today, Judge Furman sent back to state court a multi-district litigation comprised of 19 cases in which various states accused Standard & Poor’s (and, in one instance, Moody’s) of falsely representing that their bond ratings were independent and objective. He found that, despite the efficiencies of a federally-managed MDL proceeding, there was … Continue Reading

Judge Furman Dismisses Anti-Terrorism Act Suit Against Alleged Funders of Israeli Settlements

In an opinion yesterday, Judge Furman dismissed a suit brought by 13 West Bank residents who alleged that Israeli settlers victimized them in various ways, including by stoning and vandalism. The plaintiffs did not sue the perpetrators, but instead sued five U.S. groups that allegedly provided financial support to the settlements. Judge Furman found that … Continue Reading

“Commercial Activities” Exception to Sovereign Immunity Rule Applies to Kazakhstan-Owned Investment Fund

In an opinion issued yesterday, Judge Furman allowed the majority of securities fraud claims against a state-owned sovereign wealth fund in Kazakhstan to proceed, denying the fund’s motion to dismiss on sovereign immunity and other grounds.  The plaintiffs purchased notes in a Kazakh bank majority owned by the fund.  The notes were sold only over the … Continue Reading

Judge Furman Rules That New York City’s Emergency Planning Violates Disability Laws; Orders Parties to Confer on Remedy

The 119-page pinion, published this morning, states in the introduction: This mountain of evidence and argument confirms that planning for, and responding to, emergencies and disasters is a Herculean task, and that, in many — perhaps most — respects, the City has done an outstanding job. But it also reveals that while the City’s emergency … Continue Reading

Judge Furman Joins Consensus Endorsing “Self-Affecting” Theory of FIRREA; Splits with Judge Marrero on Scope of Predicate Bank Fraud Law

In an opinion today, Judge Furman largely denied Wells Fargo’s motion to dismiss a government lawsuit relating to its underwriting of government-insured mortgage loans. Judge Furman joined Judges Rakoff and Kaplan in holding that the Financial Institutional Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act (“FIRREA”), which allows the government to pursue civil charges against those who commit … Continue Reading

Thomson Reuters’s Dismissal Motion Argues that Dodd-Frank Covers Only Whistleblowers Reporting to SEC

Thomson Reuters today moved to dismiss a whistleblower complaint from a former employee who claimed that he was fired for complaining internally, and to the FBI, that the company’s selective release of certain survey data constituted insider trading. The motion argues that the Dodd-Frank whistleblower protections apply only to those who raise complaints with the SEC, … Continue Reading

Raft of Orders on John Doe Copyright Complaints Reveals Split Among Southern District Judges

In a series of opinions issued on Tuesday and Wednesday this week, judges in four cases dealt with issues arising from complaints filed against unidentified “John Doe” defendants who allegedly used peer-to-peer file sharing programs to unlawfully share adult films over the Internet. The complaint in each case was accompanied by an ex parte motion … Continue Reading