A special Christmas week blog roundup just for litigators:
* Does the Fourth District's Division Three have it in for class actions predicated on statutory violations? The Complex Litigator thinks it might. That's based in part on the court's ruling last week that an L.A. Angels' Mother's Day tote bag promotion for mothers only did not violate the state's Unruh Civil Right Act. The court pointedly noted that the suit had been brought by attorneys "involved in numerous of what have been characterized as 'shake down’ lawsuits." (Legal Pad's off-the-cuff take: Division Three's politics are probably in the mainstream of the state's appellate courts, but its language tends to be more bellicose.)
* Hey plaintiff lawyers: You want punitive damages? You have to present evidence of the defendant's financial condition. California Punitive Damages blog is surprised how many plaintiff lawyers drop the ball on this one. Legal Pad thinks it's time for a published appellate opinion on the subject that gets lawyers' attention. We nominate Fourth District Division Three.
* The Blog of Legal Times describes an awkward reunion between lawyers for Whole Foods Co. and the Federal Trade Commission in the courtroom of U.S. District Judge Paul Friedman of Washington, D.C. The parties had been sent back there courtesy of an unusual 1-1-1 ruling by the D.C. Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals [.pdf] reversing Friedman, who had previously forbade the FTC from blocking Whole Foods' merger with Wild Oats. Former California Supreme Court Justice Janice Rogers Brown wrote the lead opinion for the D.C. Circuit. Friedman asked for briefing on how to interpret the fractured D.C. Circuit opinion, which he said "doesn't stand for anything."
— Scott Graham