• Blackwell Burke P.A. Secures Dismissal of Putative, National Window Class Action

    Blackwell Burke P.A. recently secured a complete defense victory on behalf of a national window manufacturer. Plaintiffs alleged negligent product design and manufacture, breach of express and implied warranties, and fraud, on behalf of a putative, national consumer class in a Minnesota federal district court. The lawsuit arose from plaintiffs’ contention that the insulated glass units in their windows had failed, and that the remedies provided by the manufacturer under the terms of the applicable warranties were inadequate. Plaintiffs sought to void the warranties, arguing, inter alia, that they were unconscionable and failed of their essential purpose. Blackwell Burke P.A.,…
  • Blackwell Burke P.A. Wins Dismissal of Hebrew National Putative Nationwide Class Action – This Time in State Court

    In October 2014, a Minnesota state court dismissed with prejudice a putative nationwide class action brought against firm client, ConAgra Foods, Inc.  This is the third victory for the Blackwell Burke defense team (following published decisions in federal court and the Eighth Circuit) in litigation in which the plaintiffs alleged that ConAgra’s Hebrew National brand beef products were not “100% kosher as advertised.” The Dakota County Court agreed with Blackwell Burke’s arguments that the First Amendment barred the plaintiffs’ claims and that the plaintiffs also lacked constitutional and statutory standing. The case, initially filed in 2012, was first dismissed with…
  • Blackwell Burke Secures Win for General Mills in False Ad Suit Over Nature Valley Bars

    Blackwell Burke P.A. secured a complete victory for General Mills, Inc. in a putative nationwide class action over the alleged false advertising of the company’s Nature Valley snack bars.  The named plaintiffs Tracie Chin and Salvatore Montalbano claimed that the company misled consumers by labeling its Nature Valley snack bars as “100% Natural” when the products contained the allegedly non-natural ingredients, high fructose corn syrup, high maltose corn syrup, and maltodextrin.  The plaintiffs sought certification of a nationwide class of Nature Valley purchasers as well as subclasses of New York and New Jersey buyers, in addition to compensatory, treble and…
  • U.S. Supreme Court Victory

    The Supreme Court of the United States denied the certiorari petition of Dr. David Egilman in sub. nom. Egilman v. ConAgra Foods, Inc., 133 S. Ct. 1583.  The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit had affirmed the district court’s exclusion of Dr. Egilman’s testimony and grant of summary judgment to Blackwell Burke client ConAgra in one of the nation’s first consumer “popcorn lung” cases.  By declining Dr. Egilman’s petition, the Supreme Court leaves in place the Ninth Circuit’s decision that affirmed Blackwell Burke’s district court victory. Dr. Egilman, an expert witness for the plaintiff in the district court proceedings,…
  • Blackwell Burke P.A. Wins Dismissal of Hebrew National Putative Nationwide Class Action

    Blackwell Burke P.A. obtained a complete defense victory on behalf of firm client ConAgra Foods, Inc. in federal district court in Minnesota. The dismissal with prejudice comes in a putative nationwide class action where consumers alleged that ConAgra’s Hebrew National brand beef products were not “100% kosher” as advertised. In deciding that the plaintiffs’ claims were barred by the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause, the Court concluded: “The definition of the word ‘kosher’ is intrinsically religious in nature, and this Court may not entertain a lawsuit that will require it to evaluate the veracity of Defendant’s representations that its Hebrew National…
  • Blackwell Burke P.A. Wins Summary Judgment Victory for ExxonMobil

    On January 22, 2013, a New Jersey federal district court granted summary judgment in favor of Blackwell Burke client ExxonMobil Oil Corporation. In JOC Inc. v. ExxonMobil Oil Corp., No. 2:08-cv-05344-SRC-CLW (D.N.J.), the plaintiff, a former franchisee, brought claims for price discrimination and breach of contract. The plaintiff claimed that ExxonMobil’s use of “zone pricing” constituted illegal price discrimination and that ExxonMobil had also violated several provisions of the parties’ franchise agreement. In a 53-page opinion, the court agreed with Blackwell Burke’s arguments that the plaintiff’s claims were either legally barred or lacked sufficient evidence to proceed to trial. The court also…

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