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Legal News

Barnes & Thornburg Nabs Former AUSA For San Diego Office

Law360 (September 17, 2020, 10:54 PM EDT) -- Barnes & Thornburg LLP announced this week that it has added a veteran assistant U.S. attorney from the Southern District of California as a partner in its litigation department in San Diego. Andrew P. Young, who started in his role at the beginning of the month, brings more than 10 years of experience as a government prosecutor to Barnes & Thornburg after serving as an assistant U.S. attorney in the Major Frauds and Public Corruption Unit for the Southern District of California and as a criminal trial attorney in the U.S. Department of Justice's Tax...

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Instagram User Claims App Improperly Accesses Data

Law360 (September 17, 2020, 10:54 PM EDT) -- An Instagram user filed a putative class action in California federal court on Thursday accusing the app of invading its customers' privacy and monitoring their smartphone data without their permission.The social media giant says it only gets access to users' smartphone cameras with user permission, and when its camera feature is not used it does not access users' smartphone cameras, according to the lawsuit filed by Instagram user Brittany Conditi.But Conditi claims that the company is actually gathering data at many other times, including when users are not interacting with Instagram's camera feature. The practice is...

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Heir-Finder Exec Gets Probation For Working With Competitor

Law360 (September 17, 2020, 10:38 PM EDT) -- The ex-president and CEO of a California company that tracks down lost and unknown heirs was sentenced to two years of probation in Illinois federal court Thursday for conspiring with another company to allocate customers and reduce competition in the heir location service market.U.S. District Judge Matthew Kennelly sentenced former Brandenburger & Davis executive Bradley Davis after he pled guilty in 2016 to participating in a nearly nine-year conspiracy to suppress and eliminate competition in the market for heir location services.Judge Kennelly also sentenced the winding-down company to pay a $890,000 fine...

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9th Circ. Rejects Wash. Workers’ Fee Challenge Under Janus

Law360 (September 17, 2020, 10:36 PM EDT) -- The Ninth Circuit on Wednesday affirmed a decision to toss Washington state employees' proposed class action claiming that automatically deducting union dues from paychecks violates their First Amendment rights, finding the workers agreed to the deductions and therefore they don't run afoul of the U.S. Supreme Court's 2018 Janus precedent.A three-judge panel found the Janus ruling, which held that non-union members cannot be forced to pay "agency fees" that cover collective bargaining costs, doesn't prohibit a union from collecting dues from non-members altogether."We join the swelling chorus of courts recognizing that Janus...

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One-Time Slur Can’t Sustain DA Worker’s Bias Suit

Law360 (September 17, 2020, 10:32 PM EDT) -- A California appeals court has tossed a race bias suit by a longtime employee of the San Francisco District Attorney's Office, saying she had not shown that a co-worker's "highly offensive" but one-time use of the N-word created a hostile work environment.A three-judge panel in California's First Appellate District on Wednesday unanimously upheld the lower court's ruling granting summary judgment to the DA's office on Twanda Bailey's discrimination suit."Bailey did not in the trial court, nor has she on appeal, cited to any case holding that a single, albeit egregious, racial epithet...

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Postal Service Temporarily Blocked From Preelection Changes

Law360 (September 17, 2020, 10:29 PM EDT) -- A federal judge in Washington state temporarily blocked the U.S. Postal Service from going ahead with service changes before the November election, ruling Thursday in a suit brought by more than a dozen states over concerns about how the changes could affect mail-in ballots.U.S. District Judge Stanley A. Bastian in Yakima said the states were likely to win their suit, which is aimed at stopping and undoing changes at the Postal Service that could reduce the volume or slow down the delivery of mail, including the decommissioning of sorting machines, the reduction...

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Newsom Greenlights More COVID-19 Relief For Calif. Workers

Sign up for our Employment newsletter You must correct or enter the following before you can sign up: Thank You! Law360 (September 17, 2020, 10:12 PM EDT) -- California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed off on two bills Thursday imposing new notice requirements on employers experiencing a coronavirus outbreak and extending a policy that makes it easier for frontline workers to receive workers' compensation if they get COVID-19.The governor said in his announcement that the legislation "will help California workers stay safe at work and get the support they need if they are exposed to COVID-19." The laws come on the heels...

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Google Can’t Pursue Quick Appeal In Third-Party Privacy Suit

Law360 (September 17, 2020, 10:07 PM EDT) -- A California federal judge on Wednesday rejected Google's bid for an immediate appeal of the court's order that found users have standing to sue the tech giant over its alleged practice of sharing search terms with third parties, ruling that it isn't an "exceptional" case that merits such an appeal.In early June, U.S. District Judge Edward Davila found that the named plaintiffs, Paloma Gaos and Gabriel Priyev, had pled concrete injury in claiming Google violated the Electronic Stored Communications Act by disclosing their search terms without their authorization.Google had argued that the ruling...

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Fertility App Co. Settles With Calif. AG Over Privacy Concerns

Law360 (September 17, 2020, 10:06 PM EDT) -- Technology company Glow Inc. will pay $250,000 as part of a settlement to resolve claims that its fertility-tracking app had security flaws that put users' sensitive personal and medical information at risk, the California attorney general's office announced Thursday.The Glow app is designed to track personal medical information like medications, fertility test results, medical appointments and records, ovulation cycle calculations and pregnancy history, but from 2013 to 2016 the app had serious basic security failures that put users' data at risk in violation of Golden State law, according to the complaint jointly...

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Retired Admiral Lost Years To Company’s Asbestos, Jury Told

Law360 (September 17, 2020, 10:04 PM EDT) -- A retired Navy admiral's counsel urged a California jury Thursday to award more than $1 million at the close of an online asbestos trial against Metalclad Insulation LLC, arguing that the defense team had tried to denigrate his service and minimize his suffering, even though he's "chasing the Reaper."During rebuttal arguments at the end of a virtual trial held via Zoom, William F. Ruiz of Maune Raichle Hartley French & Mudd LLC told a 12-member jury that the defense attorney's closing arguments "started with a lie, used a lie throughout and ended...

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