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Weekly Caselaw Updates

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Jones v. McGreevy

The Pennsylvania Superior Court dove deep into the creditor-debtor practice and post-trial civil procedure in this 41-page opus. The case started when a contract for the sale of two vintage shotguns fell through. The seller sought to garnish the buyer's bank accounts to recover the money he was owed. A…

Jones v. McGreevy
Pennsylvania Superior Court

The Pennsylvania Superior Court dove deep into the creditor-debtor practice and post-trial civil procedure in this 41-page opus. The case started when a contract for the sale of two vintage shotguns fell through. The seller sought to garnish the buyer’s bank accounts to recover the money he was owed. A bench trial was held on… Continue reading Jones v. McGreevy

Mallory v. Norfolk Southern Railway Co.
Pennsylvania Supreme Court

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court issued an opinion straight out of your first-year CivPro book. Pennsylvania requires any corporation that does business in the state to register with the Department of State. The Judiciary and Judicial Procedure Title renders any corporation registered with the state subject to the courts’ personal jurisdiction. Here, a Virginia resident filed… Continue reading Mallory v. Norfolk Southern Railway Co.

CPR Mgmt., S.A. v. Devon Park Bioventures, L.P.
3rd Circuit

The Third Circuit found itself at the tail end of arbitration and litigation that spanned multiple countries, at least three state courts, and the federal courts. Deutsche Bank loaned money to a company, and that company used the money to partner with and acquire the defendant. But when Deutsche Bank issued margin calls on the… Continue reading CPR Mgmt., S.A. v. Devon Park Bioventures, L.P.

IRS v. Blue Mountain Ministry, Inc.
Pennsylvania Superior Court

The Pennsylvania Superior Court clarified the difference between a judgment and a lien — and sidestepped ruling on the defendants’ claim that the IRS is a for-profit Delaware corporation, which is merely a debt collector. After the IRS placed a lien on their property, the defendants argued in the Court of Common Pleas that the… Continue reading IRS v. Blue Mountain Ministry, Inc.

Polansky v. Exec. Health Res. Inc.
3rd Circuit

The False Claims Act empowers private citizens to bring claims for fraud on behalf of the United States “not unlike the bounty hunting common in the rough-and-tumble world of the mid-nineteenth century.” Private citizens who bring these cases are called “relators” and can receive up to 30 percent of the funds recovered in what are… Continue reading Polansky v. Exec. Health Res. Inc.

Parkinson v. Diamond Chemical Co., Inc.
New Jersey Appellate Division

The New Jersey Appellate Division issued a critical decision regarding discovery and parties’ tax returns. Under the Court’s ruling in Ullmann v. Hartford Fire Ins. Co., a party seeking tax returns in discovery must meet a heightened standard outlined in a three-part test. Here, in a wrongful discharge action, the plaintiff sought the tax returns… Continue reading Parkinson v. Diamond Chemical Co., Inc.

Frisch v. James River Ins. Co.
Pennsylvania Superior Court

After being involved in a car crash, the plaintiff sued his insurer and sought compensation under his policy’s underinsured motorist coverage. The primary trial issue was the plaintiff’s pre-existing condition — a low back injury from a prior fall. A jury returned a plaintiff’s verdict. But the lower court granted a new trial because it… Continue reading Frisch v. James River Ins. Co.

Rellick Smith v. Rellick
Pennsylvania Supreme Court

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court took the oft-misunderstood coordinate jurisdiction rule and ensured it would continue to confound attorneys. The Court was unable to cobble together a majority on this critical issue of civil procedure, thus, leaving Justice Todd to author an opinion announcing the Court’s judgment. The case involved a suit over certificates of deposit… Continue reading Rellick Smith v. Rellick

HTR Rest., Inc. v. Erie Ins. Exch.
Pennsylvania Superior Court

The Pennsylvania Superior Court addressed what will surely be a booming business for litigators in the coming years: lawsuits filed by companies seeking coverage for losses related to COVID-19 shutdowns. The Court reviewed an order from the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas consolidating numerous similar cases against Erie Insurance Exchange filed by its insureds… Continue reading HTR Rest., Inc. v. Erie Ins. Exch.

Int’l Brotherhood of Elec. Workers Local 400 v. Borough of Tinton Falls
New Jersey Appellate Division

The New Jersey Appellate Division affirmed the Law Division’s order dismissing a union’s complaint seeking declaratory relief. The union sought to halt work on a massive solar panel installation that its workers were not involved in. But the project was on a federal military base and not on state or local land. The Appellate Division… Continue reading Int’l Brotherhood of Elec. Workers Local 400 v. Borough of Tinton Falls