Here is the complete list of the cases being argued in the Court of Appeals this week and a brief summary of the civil cases we are watching:
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Kramer v. Phoneix Life Insurance Company: the Second Circuit certified the following question to the Court of Appeals: "Does New York Insurance Law Secs. 3205(b)(1) or (b)(2) prohibit an insured from procuring a policy on his own life and immediately transferring the policy to a person without an insurable interest in the insured's life, if the insured did not ever intend to provide insurance protection for a person with an insurable interest in the insured's life?"
Aquino v. Higgins: parents allowed their daughter to have a party at their house after a high school dance. They later discovered that some of the kids brought in alcohol. They put their son to bed and asked the other guests if they needed rides home, but they all declined. The parents testified at depositions that none of the children appeared intoxicated. They also testified that they were unaware their son later tried to drive Aquino and another guest home. Their son lost control of the car crashing into a tree injuring Aquino. At issue is whether the parents satisfied their duty to provide adequate supervision.
Nostrom v. A.W. Chesterton Company: the plaintiff claimed that her husband was exposed to asbestos in airborne dust and his use of asbestos-containing products while working at power plants. The plaintiff claimed that the defendants were vicariously liable under Labor Law Sec. 241(6) based on the alleged violation of Industrial Code Secs. 12-1.4(b)(3) and (4) and Sec. 12-1.6(a), which relate to airborne contaminants. The First Department declined to follow the Second and Fourth Departments, which permitted liability pursuant to Labor Law Sec. 241(6) under those Industrial Code regulations. The First Department held that these regulations did not specifically relate to construction, demolition or excavation, were not sufficiently specific to support a Labor Law claim and asbestos fibers are not the type of airborne contaminants envisioned by the regulations.
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Giordano v. Market America, Inc.: this federal case claiming personal injuries and wrongful death from the dietary supplement ephedra, raises the following questions:
"(1) Are the provisions of [section] 214-c(4) providing for an extension of the statute of limitations in certain circumstances limited to actions for injuries caused by the latent effects of exposure to a substance?
"(2) Can an injury that occurs within 24 to 48 hours of exposure to a substance be considered 'latent' for these purposes?
"(3) What standards should be applied to determine whether a genuine issue of material fact exists for resolution by a trier of fact as to whether 'technical, scientific or medical knowledge and information sufficient to ascertain the cause of [the plaintiff's] injury' was 'discovered, identified or determined' for [section] 214-c(4) purposes?"