Litigation Funding for Innovators Can Be Used to Fight Patent Infringement

If an individual or corporation infringes on someone’s patented invention, there is no patent police force to pursue justice. Instead, the inventor must dip into their own pockets – which might not be very deep – to fight this infringement action. This type of patent usurpation even has a name – efficient infringement.

But there is a way to access help. Litigation funding markets can be tapped and have proven to be effective in derailing efficient infringement patent actions.

From the infringing companies’ or individuals’ standpoints, it is cheaper to move in on a patent than it would be to simply play fair and pay licensing fees. They know patent owners cannot afford protracted legal battles to protect their products or logos.

The way the current system is set up, should the patent owner sue, the efficient infringer only has to deliver a “reasonable royalty,” i.e., the same sum they would have paid to legally license the patented product. With most lawsuits, that’s the extent of the matter. Even when the patent owner prevails, they may be out tens of thousands in legal fees and court costs.

Punitive damages that triple what defendants must pay to winning plaintiffs only apply if the courts find the defendants willfully infringed on the patents they used without paying licensing fees. Unfortunately, the standards of proof are high, and these damages are rarely awarded in patent cases.

Worst of all, the usurpers can seek to invalidate the original patents through inter-partes reviews.

All Is Not Lost

Litigation funders have a trove of financial and legal resources to offer patent owners who are victims of efficient infringement. Intellectual property cases are a popular choice for these legal professionals to back with their funding and knowledge of the intricacies of patent laws.

Two academic institutions, the California Institute of Technology and Columbia University, used litigation funding in recent patent infringement cases. Both won huge settlements – and Columbia still has a treble damage claim pending that could swell its $150 million award considerably.

Efficient infringement remains a problem even with litigation funding available. Closely examine all your legal options when faced with usurpation of your patented idea or product.

Federal Court Hears Cannabis Patients’ Class Action Suit Over Insurance

A lawsuit that was filed earlier this year by medical cannabis patients and a cannabis production company has now been moved to federal court. This class action lawsuit seeks to challenge health insurance companies after they have refused to cover costs of medical cannabis.

The group of six medical cannabis patients in New Mexico and Ultra Health, a cannabis producer, asked in June that a state district court judge order health insurance companies in New Mexico for coverage of medical cannabis for its members. They brought this lawsuit after the enactment of a state law that requires insurance providers to cover behavioral health services, stating that this should include medical cannabis.

These seven providers refiled in federal court after being advised by their lawyers and arguing it would be the appropriate venue when the plaintiffs’ claims are tied to federal law. This is due to the fact that the federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act sets the standards for many of these plans, so it preempts plaintiffs’ claims. They also say that this move is justified since this lawsuit raises disputed and substantial federal law issues. The main issue it raises is whether a state is allowed to mandate coverage of a substance that’s illegal under federal law.

Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham praised the bill that led to the state law which prohibits cost-sharing when it comes to behavioral health services. She said, “We can make a real, meaningful difference by reducing the costs for those with insurance who seek help by eliminating the co-pays for behavioral health services”. Even with this support from the official, the state agency for regulating insurance maintains that it doesn’t have the authority to make providers cover cannabis.

New Mexican State senator and attorney Jacob Candelaria is one of the plaintiffs in this lawsuit. He’s been open about cannabis use and that he’s been a medical cannabis patient for years. Senator Candelaria has litigated worker’s compensation cases in the past. He believes that this move is being used as a stalling tactic and that the matter eventually will be heard in a state court to determine New Mexico’s policy in regard to Senate Bill 317.


What You Must Know About Car Accident Lawsuit

What You Must Know About Car Accident Lawsuit

Have you or your loved one been injured in a car accident? Filing a lawsuit may be in your best interest. However, it would be wise to understand your rights before moving forward. Take note of timelines and legal requirements to ensure you get the best compensation for your personal and property damages.

The Deadline for Filing Your Car Accident Lawsuit

Each state has unique laws and deadlines. They determine how long legal proceedings should be initiated after a car accident. This timeline is a statute of limitations. It is the maximum timeline for a party to go to court and initiate legal proceedings. This typically takes one to six years.

The deadline for filing your claim isn’t the same as filing an accident claim under your insurance. Most policies require that you make claims as soon as possible. Reach out to your insurer for more details of your policy requirements.

Should You File an Auto Accident Lawsuit?

Many car accident lawsuits can be settled before filing the lawsuit. Most of them are settled before a court hearing. You typically have the opportunity to settle your claim before filing a lawsuit. This way, you can avoid expensive legal costs, litigation stress, and time.

However, you may need to go to court if there is a dispute over critical evidence. It could include proving the plaintiff’s guilt or the extent of their injury. Many states have negligence laws. In other words, the insurance company that caused the accident must compensate for the damage.

Twelve states have no-fault laws. This is to say that your insurance should cover your injuries regardless of who is at fault. However, sometimes it is necessary to sue the perpetrator of a traffic accident. You may receive lower settlement offers that do not cover all property damage and personal injury costs. The offer may not take into account actual and projected long-term medical costs. You should file a lawsuit if your loved one died wrongly in an accident.

Potential Damages In a Car Accident

If you file a lawsuit, you could receive compensation for:

  • Permanent disability and disfigurement
  • Medical expenses
  • Pain and suffering/mental anguish
  • Property damage
  • Lost wages/earning potential
  • Loss of affection or companionship from a spouse

The amount you receive in damages for a car accident depends on the extent of property damage or severity of your injury. The more severe the injury, the higher the compensation should be.

Mild soft tissue injuries, for example, will fetch less compensation than concussions. In addition, soft tissue injuries may be more difficult to establish than broken bones.


Investors in Bankrupt Crypto Lender Celsius Face Uncertainty

The crypto market has always been volatile, but the last several months have been disastrous for crypto investors and companies. Several well-known crypto companies have gone bankrupt. One of the most prominent crypto investment firms, Celsius, recently filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy. They were severely affected by the downturn in the crypto market. Many investors did not receive refunds for the money they invested with the company. Read on to learn more about Celsius filing for bankruptcy and what this means for their investors.

Celsius Files for Bankruptcy

Celsius filed for bankruptcy in July 2022, which was a surprise to many in the crypto industry. However, insiders and Celsius investors may not have been entirely surprised. The company froze withdrawals several weeks before it filed for bankruptcy. When a crypto company does this, this often means that the company is in serious trouble. Celsius is not the first company to freeze withdrawals and file for bankruptcy shortly after. Some investors were able to get their money out before all withdrawals were frozen. However, the majority of investors were not able to withdraw their money.

Massive Downturn in Crypto Market

The crypto market is notoriously volatile and has been through several major downturns in recent years. However, the massive downturn in the crypto market that started in Spring 2022 and continued into Summer 2022 was unexpected and unprecedented. Major cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum have lost 40 to 50% of their value since the beginning of the year. The severity of this downturn has led many to question whether crypto has a future. Unsurprisingly, Celsius is hardly the only crypto company to go bust during this period.

Investors Will Have to Wait for Refunds

Celsius has ensured investors that they will go to great lengths to refund their money. Most investment firms that have declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy do end up refunding most, if not all, of their investors’ money. However, this process could take months or even years. Also, there is a good chance that investors will not get all of their money back.

Professor Sues University of Washington After Freedom of Speech Debate

The University of Washington is under fire because of an alleged freedom of speech violation reported by one of their professors. The professor decided to sue the institution after reprimanding him for his take on a Native American land ownership debate.

The focus of the lawsuit is the disagreement between a respected member of the University of Washington’s educational staff and the university itself. This lawsuit is especially perplexing because the incident which sparked it stems directly from a request by the governing faculty to include a statement about the professor’s beliefs in regard to the ownership of the land on which the university resides.

Stuart Reges is an engineering and computer science professor at the University of Washington. He offered his opinion on the topic at the urging of the school. However, his take on the subject was met with harsh criticism from the university. His statement offended the University of Washington because he cited the “labor theory” introduced by John Locke. John Locke was a philosopher who created the Second Treatise on Government based on the labor theory of appropriation or a natural law theory.

The theory loosely translates some subject quoted from the Bible that basically states that when a person works the land, it becomes the individual’s property. The basis of the theory was that ownership of the land on which the university sits should be historically the property of Coast Salish people. This group of Native Indigenous people resides throughout British Columbia, the Pacific Northwest, and throughout the United States and Canada. Their native language is Coast Salish.

In order to give further insight into the professor’s opinion piece inserted into his syllabus, we can refer back to the Washington Law Review’s published article recognizing the ownership of the land where the University of Washington campus sits as their property by way of this labor theory. This stance was created and adopted by the Washington Law Review in conjunction with Professor Emeritus Bob Anderson.No more details are currently available regarding the lawsuit’s progress or any other parties involved in the dispute.

Department of Justice Sues Chicago Cubs for ADA Violations after Wrigley Field Renovation

Wrigley Field in Chicago is one of major league baseball’s most iconic stadiums. More than 100 years old, the ballpark recently completed more than a hundred-million-dollar renovation to modernize and update it.

However, the Cubs organization is now facing a federal lawsuit for allegations that the stadium violates the Americans with Disabilities Act.

According to public filings, the lawsuit alleges that the remodeling “removed the best wheelchair seating in the stadium, failed to incorporate wheelchair seating into new premium clubs and group seating areas, designed and constructed wheelchair seating in the last row of general admission areas that does not meet the requirements of the ADA Standards for Accessible Design, and failed to remove architectural barriers to access in unaltered portions of Wrigley Field where it was readily achievable to do so.”

The 1060 Project, as the renovation was known, is charged with discriminating against individuals with disabilities in a statement by the United States Attorney’s Office. “The Cubs rebuilt much of Wrigley Field and had ample opportunity – and a significant ADA obligation – to incorporate wheelchair seating and other accessible elements into the updated facility,” said John Lausch, Jr., U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois via statement.

Lausch said that the renovation, including tearing down and rebuilding the bleacher and lower grandstand, was subject to ADA requirements, but failed to provide the necessary accommodations.

Title III of the ADA makes it illegal for public accommodations (including sports stadiums) to exclude people with disabilities from enjoying the facilities. The lawsuit provides several specific examples of how the renovations affected people with disabilities:

  • The renovations added new premium and club seating while eliminating wheelchair seating except for those that are part of a group that has rented the space.
  • The only general wheelchair seats on the bleacher concourse are now in areas that are often obscured by television cameras or covered by a mesh tarp that prevents a line of sight to the field if spectators are standing.
  • Some new group seating areas are not wheelchair-accessible.
  • More than half of the wheelchair seats in the lower grandstand are in the very last row with obstructed views from overhangs.

Besides field viewing, the lawsuit also alleges that counters for ticket windows and concession stands are too high for wheelchair users and restrooms have paper towel dispensers that are too high.

In a statement, the Cubs said they are disappointed with the decision by the Department of Justice to file suit and hope to resolve the matter amicably. The DOJ is seeking changes to the facility and fines.

Over 500 Women Sue Uber Over Sexual Assault Allegations

Hundreds of women have sued Uber over alleged sexual assault from the drivers. About 550 women claim to have been battered, sexually assaulted, stalked, attacked, harassed, or falsely imprisoned when using the ride-sharing app.

According to Adam Slater, the founding partner of Slater Slater Schulman LLP, Uber promises its customers a safe ride home. No one should need to fear for their safety. Since 2015, however, many clients claim to have been abused.

Uber has been accused of responding slowly and inadequately despite being aware of the allegations since 2014. The consequences of their nonchalant attitude have been horrific.

Complainants feel that Uber has been prioritizing growth and profits over safety. It has been overlooking basic background checks to get new drivers fast. Previously, the company had disclosed that it got 3,824 complaints from 2019 to 2020 alone. The allegations ranged from non-consensual kissing to violent rape.

Uber doesn’t seem to have instituted any long-term solutions to the problem. Many complainants believe that it should have installed cameras in vehicles or created warning systems to alert passengers should the driver head off their designated route. Conducting robust background checks would help Uber get better drivers.

The three-strike policy is pretty problematic as well. It keeps predators in the business even after serious complaints.

Uber Doesn’t Agree

Despite the numerous complaints, Uber contests the claims. In their statement to Washington Examiner, Uber said, ‘Sexual assault is a significant crime, and the company takes every report seriously. According to them, nothing is more important than safety. Uber is creating survivor-centric policies. It is being transparent about significant incidents. Even though Uber is unwilling to comment on pending litigation, it promises to prioritize safety.

It added that the company claiming to represent over 550 women has only filed 12 cases at the moment. They haven’t provided essential incident details that would help identify any connection to Uber.

The platform has also availed a list of the safety features it has added on its platform. The ‘RideCheck’ feature is incredible. It uses GPS data and sensors to determine if the trip is going off course.

Even though the lawsuit targets Uber, other ride-sharing apps could learn from it. Lyft, for example, reported receiving 4,000 sexual assault reports from 2017 to 2018. The suit could also highlight the best ways to keep their clients safe.

$7 million class action settlement for Google Adwords invalid activity

Google agreed to pay $7 million to settle charges that it did not reimburse or credit its AdWords advertisers for fraudulent conduct/invalid activity.The 7$ million class action settlement helps Google AdWords advertisers who were charged for clicks on ads displayed on DoubleClick Ad Exchange websites. Between the timeline December 13, 2013, to April 28, 2022, whose accounts were not subject to an arbitration clause in their terms.

Businesses can advertise on Google search results using Google Ads (Google Adwords). These advertisements show up in pertinent searches and bring in customers for businesses.

Although these adverts can be helpful for companies trying to draw in clients, Google may not adequately reward advertisers. For example, according to a Google AdWords class-action lawsuit, Google refused some advertisers refunds or credits for clicks or impressions resulting from “invalid activity” or a breach of Google standards.

Plaintiffs contend that Google should have provided a refund or credit when clicks or impressions were discovered to result from fraudulent sources. In addition, the rules of Google’s advertising, the California False Advertising Law, and the California Unfair Competition Law were allegedly broken by failing to comply.

Despite refusing to acknowledge wrongdoing, Google consented to settle this class action lawsuit for $7 million. In addition, class members will receive a cash award under the terms of the Google AdWords settlement.

According to the money that class members have spent (on Google AdWords advertisements) on any of the DoubleClick Ad Exchange publisher site, each payment will represent a proportionate share of the net settlement fund. At this moment, there are no payment projections available. But the settlement excludes any payment from class members with less than a $1 proportional share of the settlement fund.

Now the question arises of who qualifies for the settlement? The settlement helps Google AdWords advertisers who were charged for clicks or impressions on ads that appear on DoubleClick Ad Exchange websites. The timeline for that is between December 13, 2013, to April 28, 2022, but whose accounts were not subject to an arbitration clause in their terms. Class members must submit a valid claim form by August 30, 2022, to be eligible for a payout from the Google AdWords settlement.

After settlement payments have been distributed, any extra money will be given to the non-profit advocacy organization Public Justice. The deadline date is August 20, 2022. The settlement’s final approval hearing is slated for October 27, 2022.

Judge Dismisses Wells Fargo Class-action Lawsuit

A federal judge in California dismissed a class-action lawsuit brought against Wells Fargo by its shareholders. The plaintiffs claimed they had been defrauded when they bought Wells Fargo stock from Jan 1, 2012, through Aug 3, 2016. They sued the bank for misleading its shareholders about its deteriorating loan performance — and because it halted dividend payments during that same period. The investors in question were demanding a payout of $1 billion. The judge felt there was no evidence that anyone else had purchased stock during those three years and therefore dismissed the case with prejudice.

Wells Fargo Has Been Dealing with a $185 Million Fake Account Scandal

The bank has been fighting against a class-action lawsuit, which alleges that the company’s staff opened millions of fake accounts in customers’ names without their consent or knowledge.

Wells Fargo has admitted that it created millions of fake accounts but claims it did not intend to do so. On Friday, the bank announced that it would be dismissing the case filed by a dozen customers who claimed they were victims of fraud by Wells Fargo employees.

The reason? The judge decided that because these customers signed up for online banking services, they consented to have their information shared with Wells Fargo’s internal fraud department.

Judge Said Wells Fargo Customers Would Have to Take Their Case to Arbitration

In a decision that could have wide-ranging implications for other companies, U.S. District Judge William Alsup on Tuesday dismissed a class-action lawsuit against Wells Fargo, alleging that the bank used illegal sales practices to boost its financial results.

The ruling means that customers harmed by Wells Fargo’s alleged practices will not be able to pursue their claims in court. Instead, they will have to take their case to arbitration — a process that is less costly than going through the courts and which many consumers are unaware even exists.

Bottom Line

Even though the legal battle is far from over, this dismissal is good news for Wells Fargo. It means the judge agrees with Wells Fargo’s argument that the court does not have jurisdiction to hear its claims because Wells Fargo has fallen short of the minimum number of defendants required. But even if Wells Fargo is ultimately successful, it will have to re-file its lawsuit–and in some ways, its strategy going forward may have to change.

Google Will Pay $7 Million in False Ad Clicks

Google accepts to pay its AdWord advertisers $7 million. The settlement covers the claims that Google did not commit to paying some AdWord advertisers for clicks and impressions from invalid activity.

When advertisers use Google Ads, every click from a client means they get many conversions or profits for their businesses. Unfortunately, sometimes Google doesn’t give them the proper compensation; hence, they charge them for the ads.

However, Google agreed to pay the settlement, but it has not accepted any wrongdoing on the issue.

Class Members Eligible for The Settlement

The beneficiaries will be advertisers who have operated AdWords accounts between 12/13/2013 to 4/28/2022. The accounts should not be subject to arbitration clause terms and must have been billed for clicks and ads.

AdWords advertisers argue that when Google found out there were invalid activities, they could have given out a refund. Failure to do that means there was a violation of advertisement terms by Google. California False Advertising Law supports this argument.

How the Refund Will Be Shared

According to Google, every payment will represent a specified percentage of the net settlement fund. That will be determined by how much each class member spent on Googe AdWords advertisements and has appeared on any publisher’s website of the DoubleClick Ad Exchange.

They can collect their refund as cash though it should be above $1. However, the class members with amounts below $1 will not get any refund. Notably, when Google refunds all the affected, the remainder will be given as a donation to Public Justice.

When is the Deadline?

Google announced that the deadline for exclusion is on 20/8/2022, and the final settlement hearing is on 27/10/2022. The class members are required to submit their claims by 30/8/2022.

Are there Any Potential Reward?

Google will discuss that, but so far, there is none.

How Do You Claim?

Class members who qualify should use a claim form found on the settlement website. Those who don’t qualify are advised to avoid filling out the form because it is illegal. It will also affect other class members because it is false. If members wish to know whether they are eligible, they can go through the Settlement Administrators Website and get the answers from FAQ.