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Settlement Offers Are Misleading in Time-Barred Debt Collection

One wrong word can make a big difference when a debt collector comes calling.

No, it's not a four-letter word. (Debt collectors can be aggressive.) The word is "settlement."

A company broke the law when it offered a settlement on a time-barred debt, a federal appeals court said. In Tatis v. Allied Interstatethe decision revived a class-action lawsuit. 

Good and Bad Eggs in Antitrust Case

Call it the egg conspiracy case.

It's easier than In Re: Processed Egg Products Antitrust Litigation, but you choose. Unfortunately, like most conspiracy theories, it is not that simple.

When a court has to use diagrams to show the connections between conspirators and non-conspirators, it is at least novel. The U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals also said it presented a question of first impression.

Super Bowl Tickets Case: Forward Motion

It's the Super Bowl of lawsuits. Wait, no, it's the lawsuit of Super Bowls.

Actually, it's a lawsuit against the NFL for allegedly gouging fans for tickets to Super Bowl XLVIII. It's not that complicated, but the NFL has been sued more than once over Super Bowl tickets.

This time, in Finkelman v. National Football League, a fan says the NFL sold out the public by withholding 99 percent of its tickets for league insiders and leaving non-insiders to pay inflated prices on the resale market.

Guard Allegedly Encouraged Inmate's Suicide, Reviving Lawsuit

Ever have one of those days when everything seems to go wrong?

From the moment you roll out of bed and stub your toe, you know it's going to be one of those days. That's how it must have felt for Joan Mullin, only much worse.

She sued prison officials for contributing to her son's suicide. Then her lawyer misfiled some key evidence, and her case was dismissed.

Fortunately, Murphy's law is not a real law. Mullin finally got some relief from the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals in Mullin v. Balicki.

Stephanos Bibas Makes it to the 3rd Circuit

Justice Stephanos Bibas made it to the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals by a Senate vote of 53-43.

He won largely along party lines with only one Democrat crossing the aisle to vote for the Republican nominee. It was close during a week when four judges were confirmed to federal appeals courts.

Critics said Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was rushing the process. But for Bibas, who has never been a judge, it was still a win.

Deaf, Blind Moviegoer Wins Accommodation Appeal

What's the fun for someone sitting in an empty movie theatre?

Exactly, there is none. That's the point the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals made in reversing and remanding McGann v. Cinemark U.S.A., Inc.

The plaintiff, who was deaf and blind, had a right to experience a movie through special interpreters. The theater needs to accommodate him or explain why it cannot, the court said.

Court Denies Sunoco Request for Arbitration

Arbitration agreements are not what they used to be, at least not as far as Sunoco is concerned.

The gasoline company sought to compel arbitration in an alleged fraud involving Citibank, claiming the plaintiff Donald White signed an arbitration agreement with the credit card company. White alleged Sunoco induced him to sign up for a rewards card but did not give him promised discounts.

The U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals said Sunoco wasn't part of the arbitration agreement in White v. Sunoco, Inc. The proposed class-action will move forward.

Divorce is painful enough, but beating a man to sign divorce papers? Oy vey!

Yet that's what three Jewish rabbis were doing. They kidnapped husbands, then beat and tortured them to finalize their religious divorces.

And you thought circumcision was painful!

In May, the Third Circuit ruled on a False Claims Act suit against Genentech. Other major decisions involved asbestos litigation, a petition for IRS relief, and a First Amendment retaliation claim. For a quick review of the top cases from May 2017, we've put together a list from the FindLaw Opinion Summary Archive:

FCA Suit Against Genentech Dismissed

A federal appeals court turned back a lawsuit that said Genentech concealed health risks about Avastin in seeking government approval for the cancer drug.

The U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals said the plaintiff did not show how Genentech's actions would have made any difference under the False Claims Act. In fact, the court said Gerasimos Petratos, the former head of analytics for the company and whistleblower in the suit, acknowledged that the government would have deemed any of the alleged violations insubsubstantial.

"He concedes that Genentech followed all pertinent statutes and regulations," the court said in Petratos v. Genentech. "If those laws and regulations are inadequate to protect patients, it falls to the other branches of government to reform them."