Justia Injury Law Opinion SummariesArticles Posted in U.S. 8th Circuit Court of Appeals
Schedin v. Ortho-McNeil-Janssen Pharmaceuticals
OMJP appealed from the district court's denial of its motion for relief from judgment under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 60(b)(2) and (3). In Levaquin I, the court upheld a jury award in compensatory damages against OMJP for Achilles tendon injuries plaintiff suffered while taking OMJP's prescription antibiotic Levaquin. In this appeal, OMJP contended that the district court abused its discretion in denying OMJP relief under Rule (60)(b)(2) based on the delinquent and belated disclosure of an expert's calculation regarding the relative risk of Achilles tendon rupture to certain patients. The court concluded that the district court did not abuse its discretion in denying relief based on OMJP's claim of "newly discovered evidence" where the evidence was merely cumulative or impeaching and OMJP had not demonstrated that it was probable it would produce a different result. In regards to OMJP's misconduct claim under Rule 60(b)(3), the court concluded that the district court did not abuse its discretion in finding that the lack of the expert's calculation did not prevent OMJP from mounting a vigorous defense and that any misconduct did not warrant a new trial. Accordingly, the court affirmed the judgment of the district court. View "Schedin v. Ortho-McNeil-Janssen Pharmaceuticals" on Justia Law
Brown v. CRST Malone
Plaintiff filed suit against CRST in state court alleging that CRST negligently failed to maintain his workers' compensation insurance coverage. CRST removed the case to federal court and the district court granted summary judgment to CRST. The court affirmed the district court's holding that plaintiff's action was barred by the applicable Missouri statute of limitations. View "Brown v. CRST Malone" on Justia Law
Wallace v. Wallace
Collateral to an ongoing divorce proceeding in Missouri state court, husband filed an identity theft tort claim in federal court under Mo. Rev. Stat. 570.223 against his wife. The district court dismissed the case for lack of subject matter jurisdiction under the domestic relations exception to federal jurisdiction. Because the remedies requested here effectively would nullify part of the divorce court's judgment based on the same conduct, the two cases were "inextricably intertwined" within the meaning of Kahn v. Kahn. Accordingly, the domestic relations exception precluded subject matter jurisdiction over the case and the court affirmed the judgment of the district court. View "Wallace v. Wallace" on Justia Law
Eichholz, et al. v. Secura Supreme Ins. Co.
Plaintiffs are survivors of the victims who were murdered inside an apartment building owned by the landlords. A state court found that the landlords breached their landlord-tenant duty to provide security to the victims and awarded plaintiffs $4 million in total damages. Plaintiffs then filed an equitable garnishment action to recover insurance proceeds from one of the landlord's insurers to satisfy a portion of the wrongful death judgments. The district court ruled that plaintiffs were entitled to collect $1 million in insurance proceeds from the insurer. The court reversed and remanded, holding that the insurance policy unambiguously precluded coverage of the wrongful death damages where the business property exclusion unambiguously precluded coverage of the wrongful death judgments plaintiffs obtained against the landlords. View "Eichholz, et al. v. Secura Supreme Ins. Co." on Justia Law
Aragon v. Wal-Mart Stores East, et al.
Plaintiff, driver of commercial motor vehicles, filed suit against Wal-Mart and others after he was injured when pallets fell onto him from a trailer. The court affirmed the district court's grant of summary judgment to defendants, concluding that no reasonable jury could have found that the absence of securing devices was anything other than open and obvious to plaintiff. Further, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations placed the duty to secure cargo on carriers to inspect cargo to confirm that it is secure before and during transport of the cargo in a commercial motor vehicle. Plaintiff failed to demonstrate that the exceptions to this rule applied to him where he had not set forth sufficient facts to show that he was carrying a sealed load and was ordered to break the seal to secure the load, nor has he established that inspecting the cargo was impracticable. Accordingly, the court affirmed the judgment of the district court. View "Aragon v. Wal-Mart Stores East, et al." on Justia Law
Munroe, et al. v. Continental Western Ins.
Plaintiff was injured operating his employer's truck and came to a settlement with the tortfeasors. Then plaintiff and his wife filed suit against Continental for underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage in his employer's policy. The district court granted Continental's motion for partial summary judgment, concluding that plaintiffs could not stack their claims. The court concluded that the district court erred in finding a $2 million UIM limit where there was no ambiguity in the policy's selection form because the declarations page and UIM coverage endorsement specify a $500,000 UIM limit and the selection form did not contradict this limit. The court concluded that plaintiffs' failure to timely file their cross petition did not preclude review of the stacking claim. However, the court concluded that plaintiffs' arguments lacked merit and affirmed the district court's denial of plaintiffs' stacking claim. Accordingly, the court affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded for further proceedings. View "Munroe, et al. v. Continental Western Ins." on Justia Law
Dannix Painting v. Sherwin-Williams Co.
Dannix, a commercial painting contractor, filed suit against SWC alleging that SWC negligently misrepresented that a certain paint product SWC sold was appropriate for a particular painting project. The court concluded that the district court did not err in deciding that Missouri's economic loss doctrine precluded Dannix's negligent misrepresentation claim. The economic loss doctrine prohibited a commercial buyer of goods from seeking to recover in tort for economic losses that were contractual in nature. The court also concluded that the district court correctly dismissed Dannix's misrepresentation complaint where the complaint did not set forth any allegations of property damage to surfaces Dannix painted. Accordingly, the court affirmed the district court's dismissal of Dannix's complaint. View "Dannix Painting v. Sherwin-Williams Co." on Justia Law
Page, et al. v. Farm Credit Services, etc., et al.
Appellants, owners and/or managers of Big Drive Cattle, LLC, appealed the district court's dismissal of their counterclaims against Farm Credit. Big Drive executed various promissory notes and loan agreements with Farm Credit. Farm Credit subsequently filed suit against appellants to enforce appellants' guarantees. Appellants filed counterclaims against Farm Credit for negligence, negligent misrepresentations, and breach of the duty of good faith and fair dealing. The court concluded that appellants could not rely on the loan agreements, the notes, the guarantees, or any other contracts for the source of the legal duty of accurate reporting they alleged Farm Credit owed to them; appellants' allegations that Farm Credit ignored an "express directive" to remove a particular employee from Big Drive's line of credit was not relevant to their amended counterclaims; and appellants failed to state a claim for negligence where appellants have not plead any plausible duty requiring Farm Credit to provide appellants with accurate reports on the loan collateral, negligent misrepresentation where appellants did not plead the element of intent, and breach of the duty of good faith and fair dealing where appellants failed to plead sufficient specific facts to establish damages arising from Farm Credit's breach. Accordingly, the court affirmed the judgment of the district court. View "Page, et al. v. Farm Credit Services, etc., et al." on Justia Law
Jones v. United States
Plaintiff filed suit under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA), 28 U.S.C. 2671 et seq., alleging that the VA negligently withheld benefits. Determining that the court had jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. 1291, the court concluded that resolving plaintiff's claim would require the district court to determine whether the VA acted negligently in the benefits determination. Therefore, the district court lacked jurisdiction under 38 U.S.C. 511(a) and the district court properly dismissed the case. Accordingly, the court affirmed the judgment of the district court. View "Jones v. United States" on Justia Law
Kingman, et al. v. Dillards, Inc.
After the district court awarded plaintiff and her husband damages for an injury she sustained as a result of a clothing rack breaking free from a wall at Dillard's department store and striking her in the shoulder, Dillard's appealed. The court affirmed plaintiff's award but vacated the husband's loss of consortium award. On remand, the district court reduced the husband's award. Both parties subsequently appealed. The court concluded that the "heavy lifting and adjustment" that plaintiff performed in order to help her husband, who is a quadriplegic, before her shoulder injury was encompassed by the notion of consortium under Missouri law; there was sufficient evidence in the record to support the specific award amount; and, although the district court did not employ any mathematical analysis to arrive at its new consortium award amount, the court did not believe that a seventy-five percent reduction in the award based on the limited services that plaintiff could no longer perform was clearly erroneous. Accordingly, the court affirmed the judgment. View "Kingman, et al. v. Dillards, Inc." on Justia Law