Boston Business Litigation
   October 9, 2012
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Die Dulce Freure


"The Infield Fly Rule is neither a rule of law nor one of equity: it is a rule of baseball."


- William S. Stevens, The Common Law Origins of the Infield Fly Rule. For all you baseball fans, the infield fly rule was applied last Friday in the Braves-Cardinals game. Hat tip: WSJ Law Blog



New Litigation


Nothing Worse Than Bad Seafood...

Hanover Ins. Group, Inc. v. Raw Seafoods, Inc.


Hanover Insurance Group, Inc. is seeking a declaration that a liability policy it issued to a raw seafood processor does not cover liability to its customers for spoilage - at least when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration orders the product destroyed.  In the underlying claim, Atlantic Fisheries, Inc. alleges that the insured, Raw Seafoods, Inc., mishandled $300,000 worth of raw scallops that the FDA ordered destroyed for spoilage or contamination.  Hanover claims that the loss described in the lawsuit does not describe a covered "occurrence," and falls within policy exclusions applicable to product recalls and damage to the insured's own property.


Dentists Show Teeth in Battle Over Noncompete

Dental Wellness Group, P.C. v. Maher, et al.


Dental Wellness Group, P.C. of South Weymouth is seeking to enjoin  Gerald Maher, D.M.D. from practicing dentistry with a competing Marshfield practice while the parties arbitrate whether Dr. Maher has violated  non-competition and non-solicitation  covenants. Dental Wellness Group purchased Dr. Maher's dental practice in September 2009, and the purchase and sale agreement contained a provision prohibiting Dr. Maher from practicing dentistry within a 15 mile radius of Dental Wellness's office in South Weymouth. (According to Mapquest, the driving distance between the two offices in question is 16.73 miles.)  A separate employment agreement between the parties prohibited Dr. Maher from soliciting any of Dental Wellness's patients. The duration of both restrictive covenants was "three years from the date [Dr. Maher] permanently discontinues practicing dentistry [at the Dental Wellness office]," although it is unclear when, if ever, Dr. Maher permanently discontinued practicing dentistry at the Dental Wellness office.* Dental Wellness is also suing the  Marshfield dental practice where Dr. Maher is currently working for torious interference.

*Pages 6 and 7 were inexplicably missing from the copy of the Complaint we obtained. We assume the missing information is in those pages.


Retired NFL Players Recover Fumble; Payment Processing Company Seeks Further Review

Litle & Co., LLC. V. Nat'l Football League Alumni Ass'n


Litle & Co., LLC, is suing National Football League Alumni Association ("NFLAA") to recover funds that were mistakenly transferred to NFLAA, and which NFLAA has allegedly retained despite acknowledging that it has no right to the funds. NFLAA engaged Litle & Co. to process payments made to NFLAA via credit or debit card. After processing the transactions, Litle & Co. deposits the amount owed to NFLAA's account. Litle & Co. mistakenly deposited approximately $100,000 into NFLAA's account in March 2012 that was instead payable to a third party, and is now seeking to recover those funds.   This sounds like a case of a turnover that has a good chance of being reversed upon further review.



News & Updates 

SJC Issues Ethics Opinion on Judges Hearing Cases Litigated By the Judge's Former Firm

The SJC recently issued an opinion regarding the propriety of a judge sitting in a two-judge division of the trial court hearing matters where one of the parties is represented by a member of the judge's former firm, a small firm that the judge had founded. The bottom line from the opinion is that the judge is not required to recuse himself unless he was involved in the matter in controversy, but factors that may be considered in determining whether recusal is require are the length of time that has passed since the judge left his former firm, and the disruption to the court and litigants that recusal would cause.



Governor's Council Rejects Judicial Nominee

The Governor's Council recently voted against confirming Michael McCarthy for a Southern Berkshire District Court judgeship, in a deadlocked 3-3 vote. In voting against confirmation, Marilyn Devaney stated that she felt he was indecisive. Hat tip: Mass Lawyer's Weekly (subscription required).

Blog, Blog, Blog...   


At Issue & In Focus (Attorney General Martha Coakley)

No new posts

IP Update (Sunstein Kann Murphy & Timbers LLP

10/3/12 - Bears Beat Yetis! Another Copyright Defeat for Video Game Clones

Letters Blogatory (Ted Folkman, Esq.)

10/9/12 - Case of the Day: Burgan Express v. Atwood

10/8/12 - Case of the Day: Orsi v. Falah

Massachusetts Law Updates (Massachusetts Trial Court Libraries
No new posts.

Media Law Blog (Robert Ambrogi, Esq.)  

No new posts.

Trademark & Copyright Law Blog (Foley Hoag     

10/5/12 - Google Settles Long-Running Copyright Dispute With Book Publishers

TTABlog (Lando & Anastasi, LLP)

10/9/12 - Precedential No. 33: Federal Registration Defense Yields TTAB Dismissal of Dilution Claim

10/8/12 - Campo's Deli Files Civil Action to Review TTAB's "PHILADELPHIA'S CHEESESTEAK" Decision


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