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Study on consumer lawsuit loans finds high rates, confusing terms

Legal Newsline

AUSTIN, Texas (Legal Newsline) - The broadest study yet of consumer litigation finance – money forwarded to lawsuit plaintiffs in anticipation of a victory in court or a legal settlement – found a “very complicated and circuitous” system in which some borrowers appear to subsidize others and the median interest rate exceeds 40%.

Pennsylvania hospital, regional cardiology practice to pay $20 million after alleged kickback scheme

Legal Newsline

WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) — The U.S. Department of Justice announced March 7 that UPMC Hamot (Hamot), an Erie, Pennsylvania, hospital that is affiliated with the with the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC), and Medicor Associates Inc. (Medicor), a regional physician cardiology practice, will pay $20.75 million after allegations of kickbacks and improper financial relationships.

State AGs united for #MeToo, but changing federal law could be slippery slope

Legal Newsline

WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) – State attorneys general are united in championing a new cause – abolishing clauses that require sexual harassment claims to be heard in arbitration. But would it set a bad precedent for changing federal law while scoring political points for its supporters?

RD Legal Funding asks for oral arguments as it fights lawsuit from CFPB, N.Y. AG

PHILADELPHIA – The disagreement over funding by third parties continues to play out in an exchange between Pennsylvania and New York federal courts, as one such company defends itself from New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Lawyer: Spokeo ruling not turning out like defendants hoped

Legal Newsline

WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) – Despite optimism from the defense side, a recent decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to again consider a high-profile class action lawsuit is a boost to plaintiffs lawyer, a Philadelphia attorney says.

Ballard Spahr's CFPB practice will continue, despite federal agency's new leadership

PHILADELPHIA – The federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will become less Draconian and more complaint-based, its new stewards say, and there will likely be a decline in its investigations, but an attorney who focuses on the CFPB said the mission of the agency - and his firm - will continue.

Bad Science at NIOSH?

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) was established by the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 as a research agency focused on the study of worker safety and health.

AMM reaches $1.5 settlement with EPA over alleged Clean Air Act violations in Monessen

PHILADELPHIA – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has announced a settlement with ArcelorMittal Monessen LLC in a case involving alleged Clean Air Act violations at the company’s coke plant in Monessen.

Philly judge voids third-party funding in NFL concussion litigation, but company hopes N.Y. colleague disagrees

PHILADELPHIA – A Philadelphia federal judge says agreements in which RD Legal Funding advanced money to plaintiffs in the pending NFL concussion litigation are void, but the attorney representing RD Legal has asked a judge in New York to ignore that finding.

Lancaster to address sewage discharge into Conestoga River after settlement with state, feds

READING – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Department of Justice and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP) have reached a settlement with the city of Lancaster to take action in ending sewage discharge into local waterways from storm and sewage systems.

SEC files suit against Wayne man over investment advisory fraud allegations

PHILADELPHIA – A federal agency alleges a Wayne resident engaged in fraudulent securities offering and investment advisory fraud.

CFPB alleges Heartland Campus Solutions has not complied with CID

PITTSBURGH – A student loan servicer is alleged to have failed to comply with a federal agency's demand.

Florida tops tort reform group's list of ‘Judicial Hellholes,' while California No. 2

Legal Newsline

California, City of St. Louis Circuit Court, New York City’s asbestos court and Philadelphia round out the American Tort Reform Association’s top five this year.

Missouri Supreme Court rules application of Blaine Amendments unconstitutional

For the first time, The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in a case from the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals that governments must not deny religious entities money simply for being a religious organization.

Amtrak employee seeks more than $150,000 after allegedly falling down steps while cleaning

PHILADELPHIA – A Hyattsville, Maryland, woman employed by Amtrak as a coach cleaner alleges that she was injured while working.

EEOC settlement with Pittsburgh's PPG worth $45K

DETROIT - A recent discrimination settlement involving a Pittsburgh company is worth more than $45,000.

Rite Aid seeks to dismiss complaint over prescription pickup calls, claims exemption under TCPA

PHILADELPHIA – Rite Aid has filed a motion to dismiss the complaint of a woman who claims the drug store violated her rights under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) by calling her cellphone repeatedly without her consent.

Asplundh to pay $95 million for allegedly hiring undocumented immigrants; Case a cautionary tale for employers

PHILADELPHIA – Asplundh Tree Experts, a private company that trims trees and clears brush from gas and power lines headquartered in Willow Grove, will pay a record-breaking settlement of $95 million after allegedly hiring immigrants who were not permitted to work in the U.S.

Amtrak worker seeks damages over alleged injuries from fall

PHILADELPHIA – A Delaware man alleges he was injured while working for Amtrak.

AG Shapiro's CFPU is a real stinker

Passed in the wake of the financial crisis of 2008, the Dodd-Frank Act (named for two controversial members of Congress) was a classic case of a cure worse than the disease.