For good reasons, most large companies have been reluctant to launch ambitious offensive litigation programs as plaintiffs: doing so can distract from productive missions, destroy valued business relationships, and harm a company’s public image. But lawyers (who of course may have a stake in the matter) are urging them to turn affirmative suit-filing into a profit center, including not only such relatively common grounds for legal dispute as intellectual property and insurance recovery, but also contractual and other claims against suppliers, tenants, and venture partners. [Vishneski/Souza, Corporate Counsel]
- “Animal activists’ terror tactics drive staff out of laboratories” [Guardian, U.K.]
- Labor Dept. had already shelved unpopular measure: “House acts to stop rules for child labor on farms” [CBS]
- Dole Food, at first a victim of litigation system in banana pesticide fraud, became an aggressor and now pays an image price [NYT]
- “The economics and history of cronyism” [David Henderson, Mercatus]
- Must discard blood-draw tourniquet! It touched your skin! Now go play with the communal waiting-room toys [White Coat]
- New York courts reinstate disbarred attorney Joseph P. Napoli, convicted in 1991 as part of the notorious Morris Eisen injury-faking ring [opinion; NYT coverage of trial and sentencing; from the appeals back then]
- “Your Foot Doctor (and Others) Are Mandated Reporters on Elder Abuse” [Daniel Schwartz, Connecticut Employment Law Blog]
“When people like Rachel Kane stand up to bullies, it makes it a little bit easier for each and every one of us to stand up to bullies,” writes Ken at Popehat about the blogger who runs a site making fun of some of the wares of the fashion chain Forever 21, and who’s not knuckling under despite a cease-and-desist letter from the store’s lawyer. More coverage: Atlantic Wire; press roundup at WTForever 21.
“Spin magazine slapped Eric Rice, a Portland, Oregon Twitter user, with a cease-and-desist over his ‘@Spin‘ Twitter handle…. Spin, however, may just be following the precedent set by other magazines. Entrepreneur, for one, is notorious for bullying small businesses that use the word ‘entrepreneur,’ a term that the magazine claims to own.” [Dylan Stableford, Yahoo Cutline]
At Cato at Liberty, I recall a couple of the tycoon’s ventures into the use of defamation litigation to intimidate critics — Reason #1,001 for thoughtful voters to stay well away from him.
P.S. And here’s Radley Balko with Reason #1,002.
“…It’s a more practical issue. Do you want to send your attorney a check every month indefinitely as I continue to pursue this?” [Paul Alan Levy, CL&P, on a business’s threats against the “Insurance Forums” website]
“Indeed, the cost of litigation would presumably quickly outstrip the asset value of the Washington City Paper,” wrote one Redskins official in a lawsuit-threatening letter to an investor in the alternative weekly. Not that owner Dan Snyder is a bully trying to silence his critics or anything! [letter from City Paper editor Amy Austin; Romenesko, TBD]
- “Vision Media Suit Over Criticism on 800Notes Dismissed” [Paul Alan Levy, Consumer Law & Policy, more; earlier here and here]
- “In Search Of a Definition for the term ‘Patent Troll'” [Gene Quinn, IP Watchdog]
- U.K.: “The end of ‘have-a-go’ litigation?” [Guardian, Telegraph]
- “Lessons in Blogging”: it won’t kill you to link to opposing views [Turkewitz]
- Briefing and fairness hearing in Volkswagen sunroof leak settlement [CCAF]
- Troublesome treaty signed by US on ADA anniversary: “Ratification of the Disabilities Convention Would Erode American Sovereignty” [Steven Groves, Heritage]
- Abolish summary judgment? Now hold on a minute [Ronald Miller]
- A strong liability-reform advocate on a Democratic national ticket? It happened when Gore slated Sen. Lieberman as VP pick [ten years ago on Overlawyered]
If you want to get justice against a bad lawsuit, notes Ron Coleman, you might need to own a Mint.