U.S. Second Circuit - The FindLaw 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog


When President Donald Trump crashes a wedding, even at own of his own golf courses, even in New Jersey, it's "news." And when things start trending or going viral on social media, online publishers are always eager to jump on the bandwagon chasing after those clicks and views, which translates into revenue.

Unfortunately for "news" publishers, using a photo sourced from social media may be getting a little bit trickier due to one wedding attendee's claim to fame, or perhaps more accurately, his copyright. The recent case against Hearst was filed by a wedding attendee at one of Trump's golf courses in New Jersey, whose photo, which was posted on social media by someone else, ended up being republished by Hearst and other big sources.

Plaintiffs Get Another Crack at Cheez-Its

Something about Cheez-Its makes you want more.

Now the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals is giving plaintiffs something more. In Mantikas v. Kellogg Company, the appeals court is giving them another crack at the cracker maker.

The plaintiffs say the "whole grain" claim on the Cheez-It box could mislead customers to think the crackers are made mainly out of whole grains. The appeals panel basically said, well yeah and pass some of that to the trial court.

Veterans Discharged for Mental Health Reasons Can Sue

Since terrorists attacked the Twin Towers on Sept. 11, 2001, hundreds of thousands of American soldiers have received "less-than-honorable" discharges.

Many of those veterans served in the aftermath wars against Iraq and Afghanistan, and returned with post-traumatic stress disorders. But according to a new class-action lawsuit, they have been unfairly denied veterans' benefits to treat their mental health conditions.

In Manker v. Spencer, the plaintiffs say the Navy has failed them. A federal judge says they have a case.

After a Bomb Search, 'El Chapo' Trial Begins

Murderous drug lord, or just a myth?

Those are two faces of Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, as described by lawyers in a New York courtroom. He is on trial for multiple counts of alleged drug-trafficking and murder.

"Money, drugs, murder, a vast global trafficking organization, that's what this trial is about," prosecutor Adam Fels told jurors as the courtroom drama began.

Girl Scouts Sue Boy Scouts

In what is definitely not a battle of the sexes, the Girl Scouts of the United States of America are suing the Boy Scouts of America.

The principle allegations involve trademark infringement on the use of the word "Scouts" without a gender modifier, and the Boy Scouts' recent decision to start allowing girls to join. The Girl Scouts, being a large, fully established and independent organization claims that Boy Scouts is now marketing to girls and tricking parents into signing girls up for Boy Scouts when the intention was to sign up for Girl Scouts.

The National Rifle Association's lawsuit against New York's Governor Cuomo will be allowed to proceed after the state failed to get the entire case tossed out.

According to the recent Decision and Order, issued by the Northern District of New York federal court, the NRA's case meets the initial pleading threshold requirements to state a case against the governor for pressuring banks, insurers, and other regulated industries, to not do business with the divisive organization.

Trumps Sued for Pyramid Scheme

A recently filed federal lawsuit accuses President Trump, Eric, Donald Jr., and Ivanka, as well as several of the Trump family's organizations, of deliberately defrauding thousands of individuals via the ACN pyramid scheme.

The lawsuit alleges that ACN preyed upon individuals who simply couldn't afford to be scammed and were seeking new ways to earn a living. The Montana Securities and Insurance Commissioner even shut it down two years ago in the state as an unlawful pyramid scheme (rather than the multi-level marketing scheme that it purports to be).

Former NY State Senate Leader Gets Federal Prison

Former New York State Senator Dean Skelos got a new term -- four years and three months in prison.

The ex-majority leader was convicted of federal corruption charges, including soliciting bribes and defrauding the public. A jury found him guilty -- for the second time -- in July.

Skelos got a break last year when an appeals court threw out his conviction due to faulty jury instructions in United States v. Skelos. This time, Seklos only has himself to blame.

The members of the epic band Lynyrd Skynyrd may have taken a blood oath to never use the name Lynyrd Skynyrd again, but the Second Circuit Court of Appeals just ruled that their blood oath isn't strong enough to stop the Lynyrd Skynyrd movie, Street Survivors: The True Story of the Lynyrd Skynyrd Plane Crash, from being distributed and released.

The district court ruled that the filmmaker could not release the film because it had partnered with one of the original members, Artimus Pyle, who had taken the blood oath. As reported, the court explained that but for his blood oath (i.e. making a deal prohibiting him from doing anything with the name Lynyrd Skynyrd), the filmmaker would have been "as free as a bird" to do so.

'Friday the 13th' Writer Can Claw Back Copyright

Everybody has nightmares, but some people are really good at writing about them.

Judge Stefan Underhill gave it a try. In Horror, Inc. v. Miller, he put some effort into writing about the famous "Friday the 13th" horror film.

The backstory started out with a handshake deal between the author and a producer. In the end, it turned into a nightmare for a company that exploited the work.