U.S. First Circuit - The FindLaw 1st Circuit Court of Appeals News and Information Blog

March 2016 Archives

Forgery Case Against Daughter Affirmed by the First Circuit

The Court of Appeals for the First Circuit affirmed a forgery ruling against the plaintiff's daughter when she transferred certain stock to herself and her step-mother by forging her father's signature. Evidentiary issues arose as to whether or not the father could introduce testimony that supported the eventual ruling against her.

For those attorneys who enjoy evidence, we think you'll appreciate this case.

Maker of Weight Loss Pill Survives Appeal

The weight-loss pill maker Wyeth, LLC will survive an appeal to review jury's favorable verdict for defendant. The First Circuit court found with regards to the plaintiff's negligent design claim, he'd failed some other less dangerous weight loss pill design.

The interesting thing about this case is that it makes it clear that Massachusetts will not hear cases of negligent design unless the plaintiff offers a reasonable alternative. For a weight-loss pill that allegedly causes hypertension? Good luck.

Backpage.com Is Not Liable for Sex Trafficking, 1st Circ. Rules

Backpage.com is not liable for alleged sex trafficking cases that took place on its site after Craigslist perspicaciously shut down the "adult" section of its site, according to the First Circuit.

The decision of the circuit court should come as relief to websites which look to shield themselves from liability from the ribald and illicit acts of its users.

Can the IRS Force Disclosure of Foreign Bank Account Info? Yes, 1st Cir. Rules

The First Circuit partly affirmed a lower district ruling ordering Zhong H. Chen and his wife Chu H. Ng to hand over business and financial records pursuant to the Bank Secrecy Act, the federal act intended to pry open records relating to possible overseas financial criminal activity.

The case highlights the tensions between the right against self incrimination and the government's need to review documents under the Required Records Doctrine.

1st Cir Says Justice Has Been Served for Whitey Bulger

Justice has been served and nothing that happened at the lower federal level warranted a reversal of James "Whitey" Bulger's convictions arising out of his participation with 11 murders and his East Coast criminal enterprise.

One of the issues critical to the case concerned Bulger's claim that he was promised immunity by the former federal prosecutor. The First Circuit Court affirmed the lower court decision and found that Bulger failed to prove that the promise ever took place.

Denial of Child's Insurance Coverage Case Remanded by 1st Circuit

The First Circuit reversed and remanded a lower court decision that favored a health insurance company that denied specialized psychiatric coverage for a child Asperger's. In many ways the decision was one based less on deep matters of psychiatry and more on the proper application of legal procedure.

The case implicated ERISA, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974. Although, the circuit stopped short and decided the case based mostly on procedure rather than on substantive issues.