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Sunday, August 10, 2014

Legal Week in Review: August 11, 2014

Join us on Monday, August 11, 2014 for our Legal Week in Review. Hosts Peter J. Lamont and Bob Hughes discuss the most relevant cases that affect every day life. Call in with your views and opinions. First on air caller receives a free coffee mug! Our show starts at 10:00 AM EST. Can't listen live? No problem! It is available as a free download on iTunes and on our YouTube channel.

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Here are some of the things we will talk about tomorrow morning. Make sure that you join us!

Parental Rights


  • A federal civil rights suit that was brought over termination of a father's parental rights was found to be wrongly dismissed. 
  • A court recently ruled that making your children do chores is not a federal crime (but you probably shouldn't beat them to enforce your rules). In this particular case, a man brought minors over from a foreign country. They were made to cook, clean, do laundry, serve guests, iron clothes, and clean out the car. If they weren't absolutely obedient, he would beat them with sticks or other objects. The man worked two jobs to support the children, hired tutors to help them with their English, purchased sports equipment, and took them on trips. According to the report, many of the beatings occurred due to poor performance in school. The state convicted him on four counts of forced labor. The 6th Circuit overturned the federal forced labor convictions. The three judge panel stated that his treatment of the children was "reprehensible" but it was not forced labor. They felt that unless the entire statute was read, it would make even the best American parents into federal criminals. 
Disney
  • Disney is being sued by animator Kerry Wilson. Wilson alleges copyright infringement because one of the trailers for the Disney film Frozen is similar to her 2D computer animated short The Snowman.
Caregiver Injuries Limited
  • A recent case regarding injuries caused by a patient to a caregiver split the California Supreme Court. Carolyn Gregory, a caregiver, sued Lorraine Cott, an Alzheimer's patient, and her husband after Gregory was cut with a kitchen knife while trying to subdue Lorraine. The trial court dismissed claims of negligence, premises liability, and battery before trial. The Court of Appeals agreed that the claims were barred by the assumption of risk doctrine that is usually applied to caregivers who work in an institutional setting. Justice Carol Corrigan wrote the majority opinion and stated that California, along with other states, have long held that Alzheimer's patients are not responsible for injuries they cause in hospitals and nursing homes. Justice Corrigan wrote that the doctrine applies because she was hired by an agency contracted by the Cotts. Justice Corrigan did urge lawmakers to focus on better workers' comp and other benefits to minimize these types of cases. Prior to this placement, Gregory had not worked directly with an Alzheimer's patient. Her training consisted of watching a video and visiting a nursing home. 
Employment Law

  • Kyra Moore, former CVS employee, received permission from a federal judge to amend her class action suit against Rite Aid. Ms. Moore alleges that Rite Aid ran an illegal background check through LexisNexis on her as a prospective employee. LexisNexis was also named as a defendant in the suit, but was later dismissed. Moore alleges that Rite Aid refused to hire her after the background check. She worked for CVS for four years. During an interview with loss prevention for CVS, Moore stated she never stole anything from the store, but had maybe set aside some items for future purchasing that were either put back on the shelves or taken by other people. CVS had Moore write a "voluntary admission statement" and it was sent to LexisNexis for use in one of its databases. That means she was classified in their system as a thief. She was sent home and fired. Moore applied to Rite Aid about a year later and received a letter from LexisNexis about her background check report being "non-competitive." Rite Aid withdrew its offer. 
 Civil Law Suits

  • Philadelphia narcotics officers formerly indicted by a grand jury of numerous offenses will now face a civil lawsuit. Sherrianne Kinee alleges that defendants Michael Spicer and Perry Betts stopped her as she walked to pick up her nephew from school. They took her cell phone (never returned), handcuffed her, and put her into an SUV. They drove her to her home where they were met by four more officers. They spouted terrible epitaphs and told her that she should kill herself. 
  • A wrongful death suit may be in the works for this fatal Illinois car crash
Entertainment Law
  • A California judge issued a restraining order against six torrent sites. Lionsgate filed the lawsuit late last week because of the leak of Expendables 3 onto the sites. Lionsgate alleged more than monetary loss. It alleged a threatened relationship with business entities and loss of goodwill. 
  • Sony Computer Entertainment LLC was hit with a federal court action in California with an alleged claim of $5 million in putative damages. The class action alleges that the PS4 game Killzone: Shadow Fall was blurry to the point of distraction. Sony is accused of negligently misrepresenting the PS4 of being capable of rendering 1080p multiplayer graphics. 
Same Sex Marriage

  • Federal appeals courts that cover almost half of the United States will soon hear arguments on same sex marriage. Many believe that this will put pressure on SCOTUS to issue a final decision. 
Make sure that you join us Monday morning for Understanding the Law: Legal Week in Review and join us with your opinions. Send us your questions here, through Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, or Google Plus. We would love to hear from you!


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