U.S. Tenth Circuit - The FindLaw 10th Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog


Colorado Woman Sues Off Duty Pilot for Alleged Groping

A long time ago in a stratosphere far, far away, United Airlines invited people to "fly the friendly skies of United."

But after airline police publicly dragged a passenger off a United plane, "the friendly skies" became a hard sell. Now comes an even more difficult case.

A woman is suing the airlines because a passenger grabbed her butt while masturbating mid-flight. That's not friendly; that's gross.

Sugar Alcohol Case Not So Sweet for Lawyers

One thing is sure in litigation. The attorneys will get paid.

Well, that's a half-truth because one side may not get anything. Plaintiffs' lawyers -- especially the contingency fee kind -- know this all too well.

But in Xlear v. Focus Nutrition, it remains to be seen whether the defense attorneys will get their fees. A trial court awarded them, but the U.S. Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals wants the trial judge to rethink it.

Folks in Kansas know, when it rains, it pours. And Kris Kobach, the state's Secretary of State, was just doused with a loss in federal court over the state's voter ID law, as well as some rather embarrassing court ordered sanctions against him personally.

And if you're thinking it's a repeat of his prior embarrassing actions in the same case, perhaps not surprisingly, you'd be wrong. But if you've been following the case, then you know, this was just the logical ends, given there was a contempt order issued over non-compliance with the court's order.

Court Upholds Utah's Signature-Gathering Law

Utah politics have always been a little different.

From its theocratic beginnings, Utah has long been a bastion of conservatives. If you are a Democrat in Utah, you may have a hard time winning an election.

So it is not too surprising that Utah's most recent political battle is between Republicans and Republicans. In Utah Republican Party v. Cox, the U.S. Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals may have put an end to it -- for now.

In a case that is about as sad as it comes, the children survivors of a really bad foster home have had a good portion of their cases dismissed due the appellate court's finding that the social workers charged with overseeing their wellbeing met the requirements for qualified immunity.

The appellate court, in holding that the social workers have qualified immunity, was disgusted and explained that their ruling was contrary to logic as "any layperson would think a court justified in throwing ODHS and its caseworkers 'under the bus.'"

Energy Lawyer Confirmed to 10th Circuit Court of Appeals

When President Trump nominated Joel Carson to the U.S. Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals, it was a practical decision as much as a political one.

Carson, a part-time magistrate judge, was also a principal attorney at a law firm specializing in oil, gas, and energy law. There is a lot of that in the Tenth Circiut, which includes resource-rich states such as Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Utah, and Wyoming.

The 71 Senators who confirmed his nomination can't wait to see what Carson can do. The 21 who opposed him have some concerns.

An inmate in a Colorado state prison is suing after being raped and abused, presumably by another inmate, while in custody. The inmate is a transgender individual that identifies as a woman, but she is nevertheless housed in a men's prison.

Before the rape occurred, the inmate sought the protection of the court against a disciplinary transfer. The had been housed in that unit before, and was assaulted. Unfortunately for the inmate, the court did not find her past experiences merited overturning the prison officials' disciplinary decisions. Sadly, the rape occurred in the unit that the inmate was seeking not to be sent to.

A lawsuit filed just days ago in Colorado's state courts against two of the biggest oil companies, Exxon and Suncor, alleges that the oil producers have caused climate change and damages to the citizens of the state of Colorado.

Unlike similar cases filed in New York and California, Colorado is not alleging damages based upon sea level change. Rather, the state claims that the "dwindling" snow pack, increased fire risk, and changes in the amount of annual precipitation, caused by climate change, are its damages.

Court: Plaintiff Can't Prove Benzene Caused Leukemia

The U.S. Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals turned down a leukemia victim who said a refinery gave her cancer.

In Hall v. Conoco, Samantha Hall sued Conoco for strict liability and negligence, alleging the company's refinery emitted cancer-causing benzene into the air where she grew up. A trial judge excluded her expert witness, however, saying the doctor's opinion was unreliable.

The expert said benzene particles potentially caused her disease, but did not rule out an unknown cause of the cancer. So it turns out what you don't know really can hurt you.

Overstock Sued for Allegedly Following Bitcoin Frenzy

If Overstock.com continues to loose market value, at least it won't be alone.

To start the month, the stock market dove more than 750 points before rebounding to an overall loss of 459 points for the day. Investors were scared off by tariff wars and problems in technology companies.

It was bad for Overstock.com, too, but not as bad as the allegations in a new stockholder lawsuit. A new class action claims the company defrauded shareholders by using blockchain technology as "a thinly veiled strategy to take advantage of the Bitcoin Frenzy."