Decided - The FindLaw Noteworthy Decisions and Settlements Blog


The Second Amendment protects "the right of the people to keep and bear Arms." But it has little to say about the ammunition for those arms. Given that just about every gun that existed at the time the Constitution was written fired a single shot at a time, it's likely that the framers didn't envision large capacity magazines feeding dozens or hundreds of rounds of ammunition into a single firearm, much less protecting the right to those magazines.

But that's not quite why the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals upheld New Jersey's ban on magazines housing more than 10 rounds of ammunition. Instead, the court cited the recent rise in active and mass shooting incidents, and the common theme that many of those mass shooters take advantage of large capacity magazines (or LCMs), leading to a "significant increase in the frequency and lethality of these incidents."

Pabst and MillerCoors Settle Brewing Contract Lawsuit

In a battle of David vs. Goliath, it appears David has won, or at least survived to fight another battle. That's good news for Pabst fans.

Oakland Can Close Homeless Camp for Sober Women and Children, Judge Rules

Talk about being stuck between a rock and a hard place. Unsheltered women who had formed an unlawful encampment in a gated parking lot for homeless, sober women and their families, have been forced to move.

The City of Oakland had ordered eviction of the residents, consisting of about 13 women and a few male residents, living in makeshift homes in a gated parking lot within the city limits. In denying a request by six of the encampment's residents for a preliminary injunction based on Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment issues, U.S. District Judge Haywood Gilliam Jr. said it was unlikely their lawsuit over the impending closure would prevail.

Fired Marijuana User Can't Sue Employer in Montana

As recreational and medicinal marijuana use becomes legal in more states, companies with drug-free employment policies are wondering how long they will be able to enforce them. So long as marijuana is still illegal at the federal level, states are allowed to choose whether employers can mandate drug-free policies.

Federal Ban on Female Genital Mutilation Struck Down

Sometimes, you have to take the good with the bad, and that is very true of America's governmental system. Based on Federalism principles, Judge Bernard Friedman of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan ruled that Congress overstepped its authority to pass the 1996 law that criminalizes female genital mutilation (FGM), and consequently dismissed many key charges filed against the doctors that performed the FGM procedure, and removed four of the eight defendants from the case.

Ten billion dollars sounds like an awful lot of money. But when you consider that the second largest cable operator in the country was allegedly systematically discriminating against black-owned media companies when choosing channels to carry, it's not hard to imagine that amount of financial cost.

That's what Byron Allen, founder and CEO of Entertainment Studios is claiming in a $10 billion lawsuit against Charter Communications. Charter tried to have the suit dismissed, arguing it has a First Amendment right to editorial discretion. But a district court and now the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals have denied that request, pointing to "arguably-racist statements" by Charter executives and "continued stonewalling and provision of excuses that do not match up with Defendant's practices with non-African-American-owned companies."

Nintendo Reaches $12.2M Settlement With ROM Sites

Hackers are rampant in the video game world, and have been since the days of Atari. Recently, Nintendo has been embroiled in a lawsuit with two ROM sites owned by Jacob and Christen Mathias, LoveROMs.com, and LoveRETRO.co. The suits have recently settled, with the ROM sites agreeing to pay a combined $12.2 million in damages and abiding by a permanent injunction barring the Mathiases from ROM sharing Nintendo games. They must also relinquish to the company all of their Nintendo video games, files and emulators, as well as ownership of the two URLs, LoveROMs.com and LoveRETRO.co

In perhaps a record for shortest litigation ever, the Department of Justice announced that it both filed a lawsuit and agreed to a settlement in the same day with six TV broadcasters, claiming they "engaged in unlawful agreements to share non-public competitively sensitive information with their broadcast television competitors."

What does that mean? Essentially that they conspired to fix ad prices. What does the proposed settlement mean? It would require those broadcasters to cooperate in the DOJ's ongoing investigation, as well as adopt "rigorous antitrust compliance and reporting measures" to make sure they don't cheat again. Here's a look.

President Donald Trump's antipathy to immigration is matched only by his disdain for his predecessor's executive orders. Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, was established under former President Barack Obama, allowing some individuals brought into the United States as children to be eligible for work programs and shielded from deportation, and has long been targeted by Trump.

But those efforts suffered another setback today, as the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the Trump administration must continue the program, calling its attempts to rescind DACA "arbitrary and capricious under settled law."

Georgia's Exact Match Voter-ID Law Tossed by Federal Judge

Things are heating up in Georgia, and that's odd for early November. Unless, of course, it's an election year. Highlighting a recent string of national headlines, U.S. District Court Judge Eleanor Ross declared that Georgia's current voting procedures unconstitutionally disenfranchises certain voters, and therefore the state must change current processes to make it easier for people flagged under the state's restrictive "exact match" law to vote.