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Bar News - December 21, 2016

US District Court Decision Listing

November 2016

* Published


Doe, et al. v. Phillips Exeter Academy
Case No. 16-cv-396-JL, Opinion No. 2016 DNH 205

The court denied plaintiff’s motion to amend her complaint on the eve of trial in this contract action, concluding that plaintiff failed to demonstrate good cause because the plaintiff possessed the necessary facts for half of the condensed litigation schedule. The court also found the proposed amendments futile. 7 pages. Judge Joseph N. Laplante.


Brown v. Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics Corp.
Case Nos. 16-cv-242-JL, 16-cv-243-JL, Opinion No. 2016 DNH 213

The court denied the plaintiffs’ motions to remand these purported class actions under the local-controversy exception to the Class Action Fairness Act. Defendants removed these environmental trespass actions, invoking the United States District Court’s jurisdiction under the Class Action Fairness Act, 28 U.S.C. § 1332(d)(2). Plaintiffs sought remand of these actions under the local-controversy exception to that jurisdiction. Though the court concluded that the plaintiffs made a strong showing on several elements of that exception, it decided that the exception did not apply here because multiple class actions had been filed in New York and Vermont asserting similar factual allegations against Saint-Gobain during the three years preceding the filing of these actions. 28 pages. Judge Joseph N. Laplante.


Proffe Publishing v. Lindner
Case No. 16-cv-93-JL, Opinion No. 2016 DNH 211

Plaintiff, a financial newsletter publisher, sued former editor, companies editor controlled and individuals editor hired under several theories alleging that defendants were paid fees to which they were not entitled. Defendants moved to dismiss based on forum selection clauses, failure to allege jurisdictionally adequate damages, statute of limitations and failure to state a claim, pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(1) and (6). The court denied the motion. The court found that neither of the potentially operative forum selection clauses were mandatory and that the Complaint sufficiently alleged both monetary damages that exceed the jurisdictional threshold and facts that support each cause of action. The court did not reach the statute of limitations issue as it was targeted only at cutting off damages, rather than any particular cause of action. 22 pages. Judge Joseph N. Laplante.


Reynolds v. InVivo Therapeutics Holdings Corp.
Case No. 16-cv-384-JL, Opinion No. 2016 DNH 214

Defendants in this defamation action moved to dismiss it for lack of personal jurisdiction. Concluding that the plaintiffs failed to satisfy the relatedness and purposeful availment elements of the personal jurisdiction analysis mandated by the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution and New Hampshire’s long-arm statute, the court agreed and granted defendants’ motion. Specifically, the court concluded that the defendants had not purposefully availed themselves of the forum because the plaintiff failed to demonstrate any reputational injury in New Hampshire or that the defendants purposefully directed the allegedly-defamatory statements at New Hampshire. 20 pages. Judge Joseph N. Laplante.


Nancy Hersey v. SSA
Case No. 16-cv-68-JL, Opinion No. 2016 DNH 203

On appeal from the Social Security Administration’s denial of the claimant’s application for disability benefits, the court affirmed the decision of the Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”). The court concluded that the ALJ did not err in her assessment of Hersey’s subjective complaints or in discounting the opinion of Hersey’s treating nurse practitioner. 12 pages. Judge Joseph N. Laplante.

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