A selection of the need-to-know civil justice news for the week of July 12-18.


‘Most Frivolous’ Wal-Mart Lawsuit Dismissed in NJ

Mike Deak | Asbury Park Press

An appellate court has agreed with the dismissal of what a judge called “the most frivolous complaint I have ever seen,” a lawsuit brought by a man against Wal-Mart and Ticketmaster because he couldn’t get the Beach Boys tickets he wanted.

Full Story.


Midyear Report: Biggest NJ High Court Decisions Of 2014

Martin Bricketto | Law360

While the New Jersey Supreme Court has yet to issue any blockbuster civil decisions in 2014, businesses in the state have benefited from rulings clarifying the reach of an employer’s premises for workers’ compensation purposes, limiting the evidence that can support a health care worker’s whistleblower claim and restricting private lawsuits under the state Civil Rights Act.

Full Story.


U.S. High Court Report Card: How Third Circuit Fared This Term

Howard J. Bashman | New Jersey Law Journal

In the U.S. Supreme Court’s recently concluded 2013-14 term, the high court issued 67 signed opinions. In two of those cases, the high court decided cases on review directly from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. Unfortunately, in both of those cases, the Third Circuit’s judgment was reversed.


In an additional six cases, the Supreme Court expressly noted that it was resolving conflicts that involved the Third Circuit. In three of those six cases, the Supreme Court agreed with the Third Circuit’s approach, while in the remaining three cases the Supreme Court disagreed with the Third Circuit’s approach. Thus, the Third Circuit’s overall approval rate in the Supreme Court this past term was 37.5 percent.

Full Story.


Friends May Be Liable for Man’s Drunken Cliff Fall

Jeff D. Gorman | Courthouse News

A man who fell off a cliff while intoxicated can sue the people who brought him there and waited hours to get him help, a California appeals court ruled.

Full Story.


Lawyers Responding to Negative Online Reviews Tread Tricky Path

Jacob Gershman | Wall Street Journal

Courts these days have seen a surge of lawsuits by small business owners against Yelp reviewers accused of making reckless claims about their services or products online.


Negative reviews are also a source of anxiety for law firms, but lawyers determined to defend their reputation must negotiate an even trickier path.

Full Story.


ERISA Class Action Settles for No Damages, $2.5 Mil Attorney Fee

Mary Pat Gallagher | New Jersey Law Journal

Under a class-action settlement approved by a federal judge in Newark, the state’s largest health insurer, Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, has agreed to reform its practices and pay $2.5 million in fees to class counsel, though nothing to class members.

Full Story.


EEOC Searches for Plaintiffs in Cases Filed Without Named Victims; Are They ‘Hybrid’ Actions?

Debra Cassens Weiss | ABA Journal

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is inviting potential plaintiffs to come forward in pending class actions that were filed by the agency without identifying any alleged bias victims.

Full Story.


New Mass Torts Judge Picked for Atlantic County

David Gialanella | New Jersey Law Journal

Atlantic County Superior Court Judge Nelson Johnson will take over as judge overseeing multicounty litigation, judiciary spokeswoman Tammy Kendig confirmed on Thursday.


Johnson—an experienced jurist who’s nonetheless best known for authoring the book that inspired the TV series “Boardwalk Empire”—will replace Judge Carol Higbee, who is set to be elevated to the Appellate Division as of Aug. 1.

Full Story.