Westlaw Journals weekly round-up

March 13, 2015

Westlaw Journals Weekly RoundupSome highlights from recent litigation news headlines over at the Westlaw Journal blog include a Supreme Court antitrust opinion and oral arguments in Obamacare subsidies case:

Supreme Court drills hole in dental board’s claim of antitrust immunity: A North Carolina dental board cannot prohibit non-dentists from providing teeth-whitening services in the state because it is not immune from antitrust scrutiny, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled. On Feb. 25, the high court held in a 6-3 decision that the North Carolina State Board of Dental Examiners cannot claim immunity from the antitrust laws under the “state action” doctrine formulated in Parker v. Brown, 317 U.S. 341 (1943). Under the doctrine, antitrust laws do not apply to anti-competitive conduct by a state agency if the conduct is considered a governmental action. (Antitrust)

Arguments in Obamacare subsidies case focus on federalism: During oral argument March 4 in a case that could determine whether Obamacare’s crucial Healthcare.gov insurance exchange thrives or collapses, the U.S. Supreme Court’s key “swing” justice signaled repeatedly that he thinks the argument against the law might suffer from fatal constitutional flaws. Throughout the 90-minute session, Justice Anthony Kennedy, whose vote could decide the fate of President Barack Obama’s signature health care reform law, expressed concern that the Affordable Care Act challengers are relying on a reading of the law that would needlessly violate the high court’s federalism precedents. (Health Law)

Barclays must face fraud suit, 10th Circuit rules: The National Credit Union Administration’s mortgage-backed securities fraud lawsuit against Barclays Capital was timely filed because of a tolling agreement between the regulator and the investment bank, a federal appeals court has determined. On March 3, the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel said the NCUA timely filed its suit despite filing beyond the time permitted by the “extender statute” in the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act of 1989 thanks to the private tolling agreement. (Derivatives)

9th Circuit won’t revive Zicam user’s toxic injury suit: The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has declined to disturb a summary judgment order for the former producer of Zicam nasal spray in the case of a user who alleged toxic ingredients in the product caused his permanent loss of smell. In February, the appeals court panel said a California federal judge correctly found plaintiff Michael D. Nelson failed to produce sufficient expert testimony on the cause of his injuries. (Expert and Scientific Evidence)