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John O'Brien News

Senate bill would bring litigation funders out of the shadows, goes further than opioid judge's recent order

By John O'Brien | May 10, 2018

WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) - Days after a federal judge overseeing some of the most important current litigation demanded to be told if outside interests were funding it, Republican senators have introduced a bill that would do even more in all class action lawsuits.

Appeal to decide future of NYC asbestos court; Companies fed up with their treatment

By John O'Brien | May 3, 2018

NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) – The fight over New York City’s controversial asbestos court is not over, as companies worried about their treatment there are likely to appeal an order that kept alive the possibility for even bigger verdicts.

Hold government to higher standard, former Calif. AG says of climate change lawsuit controversy

By John O'Brien | May 3, 2018

WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) – A Texas judge has decided California officials suing the energy industry over climate change are talking out of both sides of their mouths, and the former top lawyer of the Golden State is disappointed in their actions.

Judge: Calif. cities alleging doom in climate change lawsuits sold investors a different story

By John O'Brien | Apr 28, 2018

FORT WORTH, Texas (Legal Newsline) – California officials who are suing large energy companies are telling two contradictory stories while taking part in a targeted effort featuring state attorneys general, private lawyers and Rockefeller money, a Texas judge has found.

In suing Exxon over climate change, Boulder is hoping company's deep pockets will pay for its left-wing agenda, group says

By John O'Brien | Apr 25, 2018

BOULDER, Colo. (Legal Newsline) – It remains to be seen if Exxon will fight the latest climate change lawsuit against it in the same way it is attacking the first round, by scrubbing municipal documents for evidence of hypocrisy by the public officials filing them.

Recent grants help nonprofits doing 'most of the work' on Boulder's climate change lawsuit

By John O'Brien | Apr 23, 2018

BOULDER, Colo. (Legal Newsline) – Pro bono work that the Niskanen Center is performing in a global warming lawsuit on behalf of the Colorado city of Boulder will be aided by a $200,000 grant awarded less than two months before the case was filed.

As Boulder sues, 15 states - including Colorado - oppose global warming lawsuits

By John O'Brien | Apr 21, 2018

SAN FRANCISCO (Legal Newsline) – Two days after local officials in the Boulder, Colo., area filed a lawsuit that attempts to hold large energy companies liable for the alleged effects of global warming, the state’s top lawyer showed that she disagrees with their legal argument by voicing her opposition to similar lawsuits in California.

Denver environmental and personal injury lawyer files Boulder's climate change lawsuit against energy companies

By John O'Brien | Apr 19, 2018

BOULDER, Colo. (Legal Newsline) – Two environmental groups and a Denver personal injury lawyer are outside counsel for the latest lawsuit filed by public officials against the energy sector over alleged past and future effects of global warming.

Two prominent plaintiffs firms are trying to drown each other in Flint water crisis litigation

By John O'Brien | Apr 12, 2018

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (Legal Newsline) – In the litigation over the water crisis in Flint, Mich., a nasty battle has broken out between nationally known plaintiffs firms that are each accusing the other of greedy behavior during the fight for clients.

Arkansas' attorney general uses five private law firms to file opioid lawsuit

By John O'Brien | Mar 30, 2018

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (Legal Newsline) – Another Republican has officially joined forces with the trial bar to sue the makers of prescription painkillers, as Arkansas’ Leslie Rutledge recently filed her anticipated lawsuit through five different private law firms.

Ice ages, the atmosphere and what Trump thinks: Climate change judge questions it all

By John O'Brien | Mar 15, 2018

SAN FRANCISCO (Legal Newsline) – A federal judge has big questions regarding global warming for the private lawyers pushing lawsuits on behalf of California cities and counties – and about how President Donald Trump feels about blaming the energy industry for climate change.

Exxon-funded analysis criticizes study that claimed company misled public about climate change

By John O'Brien | Mar 3, 2018

FORT WORTH, Texas (Legal Newsline) - Harvard professors who say their analysis proves ExxonMobil misled the public about climate change were obviously biased, a colleague says, and the company says that data shouldn't be used to help a “corrupt enterprise” of private lawyers and California officials suing the energy sector.

First came fire, next water: Calif. city again sues Chevron, its largest employer/taxpayer

By John O'Brien | Mar 1, 2018

RICHMOND, Calif. (Legal Newsline) – Without Chevron, the California city of Richmond wouldn’t exist as it does today. But even though the company is sustaining Richmond's current economy, city officials say it is also destroying its future.

With judge's approval, insurers are looking for double-dipping in case they're forced to pay for asbestos claims

By John O'Brien | Feb 27, 2018

NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) – Insurers looking for evidence of double-dipping in the asbestos recovery system won a legal battle earlier this month when a federal bankruptcy judge refused to strike the subpoenas they issued to the body that processes asbestos personal injury claims.

State AGs united for #MeToo, but changing federal law could be slippery slope

By John O'Brien | Feb 24, 2018

WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) – State attorneys general are united in championing a new cause – abolishing clauses that require sexual harassment claims to be heard in arbitration. But would it set a bad precedent for changing federal law while scoring political points for its supporters?

Wis. Assembly passes legal reform bill

By John O'Brien | Feb 23, 2018

MADISON, Wis. (Legal Newsline) – Legal reform in Wisconsin is now in the hands of its state senators, following passage of an amended version of the bill on Feb. 22.

Oakland would pay 23.5% to private lawyers it hired for global warming lawsuit

By John O'Brien | Feb 8, 2018

OAKLAND (Legal Newsline) – The City of Oakland – one of eight California governments going big-game hunting by suing the energy industry over climate change – will pay private lawyers almost one-quarter of any recovery and says it does not have to disclose any communication with the firm it hired.

House Judiciary Dems attempt hijacking of legal reform hearing to debate role in Trump/Russia

By John O'Brien | Jan 31, 2018

WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) – Ahead of President Donald Trump’s first State of the Union address, Democrats in the House Judiciary Committee attempted a hijacking of sorts Tuesday against Republican leadership during a hearing on legislation that targets insurance costs for infrastructure projects in New York.

Scaffold Law reform considered by House Judiciary; N.Y. law covers construction falls

By John O'Brien | Jan 30, 2018

WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) – A New York congressman is frustrated with one of his state’s laws that he says unnecessarily costs homeowners and taxpayers millions of dollars per year in order to line the pockets of trial lawyers.

Exxon prepares to sue Calif. cities, says they contradict themselves on climate change

By John O'Brien | Jan 10, 2018

FORT WORTH, Texas (Legal Newsline) - Some government officials in California are hypocrites pushing a political agenda that involves using private lawyers to sue and demonize ExxonMobil, the company is now arguing in a Texas state court.

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