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Yahoo Settles Data Breach for $50 Million

Yahoo has agreed to pay $50 million to users affected by data breaches in 2013 and 2014, finally bringing to a close one of the darkest days in Yahoo's history. The settlement was filed with the United States District Court in California, and should be approved at a hearing on November 29. The settlement will compensate an estimated 200 million affected individuals. In addition,Yahoo must provide a minimum of two years of free credit monitoring to those involved. For those that already have credit monitoring, a $100 award may be issued instead.

Girl Can Use Cannabis Medicine at School, California Court Rules

Imagine watching your child have a tonic-clonic seizure for an hour, with no way to stop it, until an ambulance arrives and administers emergency medication. If you're lucky enough not to be familiar with a tonic-clonic seizure, it's when you slump over, potentially falling on the ground and injuring yourself, eyes rolled back, in the fetal position, hands clocked inward, foaming at the mouth, convulsing violently, biting your tongue until it bleeds, and urinating on yourself. It is nothing short of horrific, for both the child and the parent.

Most tonic-clonic seizures last a minute or so, but in Brooke Adams' case, who has Dravet's Syndrome, they would go on for an hour, causing irreparable damage to her brain and entire nervous system. None of the standard medications were curbing these seizures. It was, as they say, uncontrollable. Brooke would have 20 seizures per month, until the Adams discovered that CBD oil significantly curbed the number of seizures, and THC oil would stop any prolonged seizures within three minutes. This was nothing short of a life-changing miracle for the Adams family.

But there was a catch: how could she take the cannabis medicine to school?

Craft beer fans have watched for years as macro beer outfits like Heineken gobbled up all their favorite microbreweries. This time, though, it was one behemoth merging with another, and the ale aficionados came armed with an antitrust lawsuit.

Unfortunately for them, a federal appeals court rejected their legal challenge to Anheuser-Busch InBev's $107 billion purchase of SABMiller in 2016. In the words of the court, the "consumers' allegations do not belly up to this bar."

Breakfast Cereals Don't Need Cancer Warning

A California Court of Appeals overturned a lower court's finding that breakfast cereals containing acrylamide, a known carcinogen, must contain a cancer warning, in accordance with Prop. 65. In a huge win for the Big Three cereal manufacturers, the court decided that the benefits of a Prop. 65 warning were not outweighed by the costs.

Soda Tax Is Legal in Pennsylvania

Philadelphia legislatures have tighten the screw caps a bit more on those naughty soda drinkers. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court upheld the Philadelphia Beverage Tax (PBT), which adds a 1.5 cent per fluid ounce tax, paid by beverage distributors, on "sugar sweetened beverages."

Dubbed the "Soda Tax," this applies to sweetened and sugar-substitute sodas, as well as some juices and sports drinks. Philadelphia now joins the ranks of fellow Soda Tax cities San Francisco, Oakland, Berkeley, Boulder, and Seattle. And the list keeps growing.

A Pokemon Go Fest without Pokemon Go isn't much of a fest at all, as game creator Niantic quickly learned last summer. The first (and perhaps last) of its kind, the festival was held in Chicago's Grant Park and attracted over 20,000 of the game's most ardent fans. But, as attendee Andrew Goldfarb described, "for much of the day, most people couldn't even get the game to start, leaving them standing in the hot, crowded park with not much to do but wander aimlessly."

"Others could connect but found the game laggy and unresponsive," Goldfarb added, "or encountered crashes every time something good popped up." Of course, this led to quite a few lawsuits, most of which were settled by Niantic this week, to the tune of $1,575,000.

Coffee in California Must Include Cancer Warning, Court Rules

There are a variety of laws that protect people from various types of harm. For example, California's Proposition 65 -- the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act -- requires businesses to inform Californians about exposure to chemicals that are known to cause cancer. And, now coffee companies and retailers have been added to the list of businesses.

A Los Angeles Superior Court judge released a decision that says coffee retailers and companies need to post cancer warnings for coffee that's sold in California. Judge Elihu Berle found that the coffee companies involved in the lawsuit didn't "sufficiently argue that their products had insignificant levels of a carcinogen found in coffee."

Powerball Jackpot Winner Wins Anonymity

Many people dream about winning the lottery. They think of all the things they would buy, the good they could do, and how they would spend their time. What they probably don't think about is how everyone knowing that you won the lottery could actually have a negative impact on your life.

The winner of the $560 million dollar Powerball jackpot did actually realize the negative impact that comes with making your lottery win public, and requested to remain anonymous. Lucky for the New Hampshire woman, the judge in her case agreed, ruling that she can remain anonymous because her "right to privacy outweighs public interests."

9th Circuit Upholds $25M Trump University Settlement

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has upheld a $25 million settlement involving Trump University and thousands of disgruntled former students.

The three-judge panel unanimously affirmed the district court's approval of the class action lawsuit, turning away the long-shot appeal of a single objecting class member.

It was a busy year for the Supreme Court, which started 2017 down one justice. Then Neil Gorsuch joined the Court in April, and immediately began making an impact. Lower federal and state courts handed down some influential rulings as well.

Here are the major court decisions from 2017: