Infant formula antitrust litigation (Cir. Cts. Shelby, Calhoun, Mobile Cos., Ala.)
This controversy, involving alleged price-fixing by infant formula manufacturers, resulted in three putative statewide class actions in Alabama state court. The courts in the first two cases denied class certification after extensive briefing and evidentiary hearings; the court in the third case voluntarily dismissed the action with prejudice prior to reaching the class certification issue. The controversy resulted in the first ruling by an Alabama court that denial of class certification, if based on a ground other than inadequacy of representation, operates as res judicata as to the remainder of the class members as to class certification.
Brand-name prescription drug antitrust litigation
Ongoing for the better part of a decade, this litigation was centered in multidistrict proceedings in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. In addition to a nationwide class action there, the litigation included thousands of individual Robinson-Patman claims, and putative statewide class actions in nearly a dozen states. The firm, in addition to involvement in the nationwide proceedings, represented one of multiple defendants (the entire industry was sued) in four Alabama class actions. The Alabama litigation resulted in, among other things, the first denial anywhere in the nation of certification of a consumer class in this controversy, a decision of the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals regarding aggregation of claims in the class action context, and a decision of the Alabama Supreme Court holding that the state’s antitrust statute does not apply to transactions in interstate commerce.
Floyd v. Express Oil Change, LLC, 552 F. Supp. 2d 1302 (N.D. Ala. 2008)
This putative class action involved claims that defendant (which faced statutory penalties amounting to multiples of its net worth) violated the federal Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction Act (FACTA) by failing to truncate customers’ credit numbers on purchase receipts. The court held that FACTA as applied to the transactions at issue was unconstitutional, and dismissed the case. While the district court’s ruling (made in consolidated cases) was subsequently vacated on appeal, plaintiffs elected not to appeal that ruling with respect to the firm’s client.
Vandenberg v. Aramark Educational Services and the Board of Trustees of the University of Alabama, 81 So. 3d 326 (Ala. 2011)
This putative class action challenged, on antitrust and constitutional grounds, the University’s mandatory student dining program, operated by a private company. The Alabama Supreme Court affirmed the trial court’s grant of a motion to dismiss on the ground that the challenged program partook of immune state action immunity.
William Gaudet et al. v. American Home Shield Corp. (E.D. La.)
Nationwide class action challenging home warranty company’s claims handling practices. Class certification denied; individual claims settled.
Faught v. American Home Shield Corp. (N.D. Ala.)
Nationwide class action challenging home warranty company’s claims handling practices. Case settled on class basis over objection, and upheld on appeal. Injunction against prosecution of competing class action granted and upheld on appeal (660 F.3d 1289 (11th Cir. 2011)).
Homestead 2000 v. Federal Express Corp. (Cir. Ct. Obion Co., Tenn.)
Challenge to fuel surcharge by defendant on its customers; plaintiffs sought damages in excess of $100 million. Albe Conte, author of the treatise Newberg on Class Actions, testified as an expert for plaintiffs at class certification. Class certification denied; plaintiffs’ individual claims settled.
Orange juice marketing class action litigation, 2013 WL 120716 (N.D. Ala. Jan. 8, 2013)
These two putative nationwide class actions challenged defendants’ marketing of their orange juice as “all natural.” Plaintiffs’ effort to create an MDL defeated; motion to dismiss granted without leave to replead; no class certified.
Dellaveccia v. Bayer Corp. (N.D. Ala.)
Nationwide class action based on allegedly deceptive print and television advertising for aspirin. Claims asserted for fraud and deceptive trade practices. Class certification denied and case dismissed.
Seroyer v. Pfizer (Cir. Ct. Chambers Co., Ala.)
Nationwide class action based on allegedly deceptive print and on‑product advertising of dental rinse. Claims asserted for fraud and deceptive trade practices. Class certification denied and case dismissed.
Custer v. HomeSide Lending, 858 So. 2d 233 (Ala. 2003)
This nationwide class action involved a mortgage lender’s force‑placed insurance practices. Class certification was denied and summary judgment granted for defendant, rulings upheld by the Alabama Supreme Court.
American Auto Ins. Co. v. McDonald, 812 So. 2d 309 (Ala. 2001)
In this putative class action, the Alabama Supreme Court held that the lessees of rental cars had no private right of action against the rental car company for unlicensed sale of insurance.
Naughton v. Corinthian Mortgage Corp. (E.D. Va.)
Alleged nationwide class action asserting claims under Fair Credit Reporting Act. Summary judgment for defendant granted; no class certified.
Metzger v. American Fidelity Assurance Corp. (W.D. Okla.)
Putative statewide class contesting supplemental health insurer’s construction of policy language as to claims payment. Class certification denied at 249 F.R.D. 375 (W.D. Okla. 2007) on the basis of intraclass conflicts; subsequently settled.
Abney v. American Home Shield Corp. (N.D. Ala.)
Nationwide class action claiming that home warranty company’s payment of compensation to real estate agents violated RESPA. Case settled on class basis.
Klutho v. Corinthian Mortgage Corp. (E.D. Mo.)
Putative nationwide class challenging defendant’s “firm offer of credit” circular under the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act. Defendant’s motion to dismiss granted; no class certified.
Roosevelt Hardaway, et al. v. GMAC Mortgage, LLC and Homecomings Financial LLC (U.S. Bankruptcy Ct., N.D. Miss.)
Putative nationwide class action alleging improper proof of claim practices against creditor, seeking disgorgement of overpayments, turnover and sanctions. Settled on individual basis; no class certified.
Luckie v. DirectBuy (Cir. Ct. Jefferson Co., Ala.)
Putative statewide class action alleging that defendant improperly charged sales tax on shipping and handling charges in connection with out-of-state purchases. Motion to dismiss granted; no class certified.
Abbott Point of Care, Inc. v. Epocal, Inc. (N.D. Ala.)
This matter involved claims against the defendant manufacturer of patient point-of-care testing equipment in two separate lawsuits, where plaintiff asserted claims of infringement related to four patents, interference with noncompetition agreements with former employees of plaintiff, and ownership over the subject patents. Represented the defendants and was lead trial counsel on all aspects of plaintiff’s state law claims. Following a two-week trial, the jury returned a verdict for defendant on all counts. Aspects of the case are reported at 908 F. Supp. 2d 1231 (N.D. Ala. 2012).
Pixsys Technologies, Inc. v. Agemni, LLC (N.D. Ala.)
This case involved innovative use of the federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act to stop the competitor of the firm’s client from utilizing a legitimate customer’s credentialing and password to access the client’s internet-based proprietary software. Obtained a temporary restraining order against the competitor; following intensive discovery, the case was favorably settled. Aspects of the case are reported at 2013 WL 5739027 (N.D. Ala. Oct. 22, 2013). See additional case commentary here.
E.S. Robbins Corp. v. Schwertner (N.D. Ala.)
This case involved misappropriation of manufacturing process secrets belonging to the inventor of poly-coated livestock fencing, by the company’s former chief technical officer. The officer was attempting to use the technology in a competing manufacturing operation with one of the company’s distributors. Following discovery and a multiple day non-jury trial, the court entered a seven-year permanent injunction in favor of the firm’s client and against the former officer and his new employer. The injunction was affirmed on appeal by the Eleventh Circuit. The case was notable both for the length of the injunction granted and because the case raised for the first time in Alabama the inevitable disclosure doctrine.
Marketron International, Inc. v. OneDomain, Inc. (Cir. Ct. Jefferson Co., Ala.)
Represented defendants in this software case, alleging trade secret misappropriation and violation of noncompetition covenants, brought against them by their former employer. Although an ex parte TRO was initially granted, the plaintiff’s motion for preliminary injunction was defeated; won summary judgment on all claims. The court also awarded defendants’ attorneys’ fees under the Alabama Litigation Accountability Act.
Ormco Corp. v. Johns, 869 So. 2d 1109 (Ala. 2003)
Represented the plaintiff medical supply company in this noncompete action against its former employee. The trial court’s denial of preliminary injunctive relief was reversed on appeal, in a case that established the standard in Alabama for proving irreparable injury in the noncompetition context.
Askew v. DCH Health Care Authority, 995 F.2d 1033 (11th Cir. 1993)
This landmark decision applied the state action doctrine in the context of a monopolization claim against a hospital organized under the Alabama Health Care Authority Act.
Ram Tool Supply Co., Inc. v. White Cap Construction Supply Co. (N.D. Ala.)
Served as lead counsel for defendants in an action by a construction supply company against its former employees and their new employer, alleging trade secret misappropriation. Following extensive discovery and a lengthy evidentiary hearing, the court denied plaintiffs’ motion for preliminary injunction. The case was subsequently refiled in Tennessee, where defendants sought and were granted summary judgment.
Diamond Game Enterprises v. Enfinger (Cir. Ct. Jefferson Co., Ala.)
This case involved representation of defendants in claims by former employer based on alleged breach of nonsolicitation and confidentiality agreement. Plaintiff’s motion for preliminary injunction was denied based on Alabama’s door-closing statute, and the case was dismissed with prejudice.
SRS Technologies v. Physitron (N.D. Ala.)
Represented plaintiff, a designer and manufacturer of space-ready antennae technology, alleging trade secret misappropriation by a former employer and a competitor. The case settled favorably during the hearing on plaintiff’s motion for preliminary injunction, with the entry of a consent injunction.
Wyatt Safety Supply Co. v. Industrial Safety Prods., 566 So. 2d 728 (Ala. 1990)
Represented defendants in noncompete action; trial court’s preliminary injunction reversed on appeal. The case established the law in Alabama at that time that successor corporations could not enforce noncompetion agreements entered into by their predecessors.
Corinthian Mortgage Corp. v. Choicepoint Precision Marketing, LLC (E.D. Va.)
Suit by bank alleging breach of confidentiality agreement by defendant mailing list vendor, resulting in competitor’s acquisition of plaintiff’s information. Settled favorably.
Integrity Rehab Group v. Arkansas Specialty Orthopaedics (E.D. Ark.)
Representation of orthopedic rehabilitation management company in suit for specific performance and breach of contract arising out agreement with doctor group containing noncompetition covenants. Preliminary injunction denied, but case settled favorably prior to trial.
Hot New Products, Inc. v. Trotter, Inc. (N.D. Ala.)
Representation of seller of exercise equipment against manufacturer, alleging resale price maintenance under antitrust laws. Jury verdict for defendant, but case settled on appeal.
HealthSouth v. Clark (D. S.C.)
Representation of plaintiff in case alleging violation of duty of loyalty and breach of confidentiality agreement against former employee; case favorably settled following preliminary injunction hearing.
Nutreco Canada, Inc. v. Douglas (Cir. Ct. Madison Co., Ala.)
Representation of defendants in alleged misappropriation of trade secrets action. Favorably settled.
Southern Pipe & Supply Co. v. Long (S.D. Miss.)
Representation of plaintiff seeking enforcement of noncompete agreement; preliminary injunction granted and case settled favorably.
Citadel Broadcasting Corp. v. Haney (N.D. Ala.)
Representation of former sports radio employee in action seeking enforcement of noncompetition agreement. Favorably settled.
Southern Pipe & Supply Co. v. Pruitt (S.D. Miss.)
Representation of plaintiff manufacturer in noncompete action against former employee. Favorably settled.
Alfa Mut. Ins. Co. v. Price (Cir. Ct. Jefferson Co., Ala.)
Representation of plaintiff insurer in noncompete action against its former CFO; case settled favorably.
Cardinal Health 200, Inc. v. Dortch (Cir. Ct. Jefferson Co., Ala.)
Representation of defendant former employees and new employer in noncompete action; case settled favorably.
Johnson v. Unisource Worldwide, Inc. (M.D. Ala.)
Representation of defendant employer in declaratory judgment action regarding noncompete agreement; case favorably settled.
Red Clay Technology Group, Inc. v. Bentrup (Cir. Ct. Jefferson Co., Ala.)
Representation of plaintiff in noncompete action; settled favorably.
Southland Tube v. Long (Cir. Ct. Jefferson Co., Ala.)
Representation of plaintiff manufacturer in noncompete action against former employee; case favorably settled.
Cashpoint Network Servs., Inc. v. Sligh(Cir. Ct. Shelby Co., Ala.)
Representation of employer in action against former employee for breach of a nondisclosure and confidentiality agreement. Case favorably settled.
Randall Publishing Co. v. O’Brien (N.D. Ala.)
Representation of plaintiff publishing company against former employees for violation of noncompetition agreements; case favorably settled.
Wood v. McGriff, Seibels & Williams, Inc. (Cir. Ct. Jefferson Co., Ala.)
Representation of defendant employer in declaratory judgment action involving noncompete agreement; case favorably settled.
Rust Plant Servs, Inc. v. Koehler (N.D. Ala.)
Representation of employer in action against employee for violation of nondisclosure agreement; case favorably settled.
McGriff, Seibels & Williams, Inc.v. Colvin (Cir. Ct. Jefferson Co., Ala.)
Representation of employer in action to enforce noncompete agreement; case favorably settled.
H&R Block Eastern Enterprises, Inc. v. Lewis (N.D. Ala.)
Action seeking enforcement of noncompetition agreement; settled favorably.
Roto-Rooter Corp. v. Cobb (N.D. Ala.)
Suit to enforce noncompetition agreement; settled by consent injunction.
Institutional Sales Systems, Inc. v. Mullins (Cir. Ct. Jefferson Co., Ala.)
Representation of new employer in action seeking enforcement of noncompete; summary judgment for new employer granted on tortious interference claim.
Towns v. Stryka (N.D. Ala.)
Representation of seller of health products in noncompete case against former employee. Favorably settled.
Blue Medical Supply v. Mayfield (Cir. Ct. Jefferson Co., Ala.)
Representation of plaintiff in suit alleging violation of noncompetition agreement. Favorably settled.