U.S. Seventh Circuit - The FindLaw 7th Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

March 2018 News

Jury Awards $3M for AndroGel Heart Attack

When you win more than $3 million in a case, it should be cause for celebration.

For the plaintiff in his case against a drug company, however, it was a big let down. Jesse Mitchell had won $150 million against the company three months earlier, but the judge threw out the verdict and ordered a new trial.

The latest decision wasn't exactly good news for the defendant either. AbbVie, which is facing more than 4,000 similar lawsuits, plans to appeal.

The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals is sure to be spreading joy and cheer in this most wonderful time of the year. A three judge panel just ruled that Concord High School's Christmas Spectacular is not unconstitutional.

The high school's performance had gone on for over four decades before anyone objected. Surprisingly, when an organization that advocates for the separation of church and state objected, the school actually changed the play. However, the group did not believe the changes were adequate and filed a lawsuit and won. In response, the school changed the play even more, and then put the new version on, prompting a new lawsuit from the same group.

Court Takes a Time-Out for a Question in Fantasy Sports Case

Judge Frank Easterbrook, reviewing the law on fantasy sports and publicity rights, punted.

Writing for the U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, Easterbrook asked the Indiana Supreme Court to interpret a state statute on publicity rights. He said there is no clear law on the subject.

The case depends on whether Indiana views paid fantasy sports as illegal gambling, and whether it treats illegality as material to the right-of-publicity. In Daniels v. FanDuel, Inc., the appeals court told the state supreme court to figure it out.

Dairy Churns Battle Over Wisconsin's Butter-Grader Law

Wisconsin is known as America's Dairyland.

So it seems strange that a dairy company is having such a hard time selling butter there. Minerva Dairy, an Ohio company which produces Amish butter, has sued the state over its butter-grader law.

In Minerva Dairy, Inc. v. Brancel, the dairy says the law is unfair to "artisanal butter." Unless you are a Wisconsinite, you may need to look that up.

A transgender individual seeking a name change in Indiana has been denied that right by the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. However, the court did not rule against the individual person so much as they rigidly applied the law to the case at hand, as this was no ordinary name change.

The individual seeking a new name came to the United States at the age of 5, over 20 years ago. Recently, in addition to marrying a U.S. citizen and having a child, they obtained asylum status as returning to their home country as a transgender individual is not safe. Unfortunately, as a result of the asylum status and not being a U.S. citizen, the Indiana courts could not process the name change.

Cop Justified in Killing Teen in Pizzaria Robbery

Four young men walked into a pizza parlor to rob it; one pulled a gun on the manager.

Frank Pobjecky, a customer waiting there for his order, was an armed, off-duty officer. What happened next was like a scene from a Dirty Harry movie.

Unfortunately for one of the robbers, it was not a movie. That was the day he died, and now his family's lawsuit for excessive force is over, too.