Special Concurrence

Fourth Circuit Embraces Forum Selection Rule


In FindWhere Holding, Inc. v. Systems Environment Optimization, LLC., (“SEO”), (No. 09-2155), the Fourth Circuit held that the forum selection clause found in the parties’ contract limited jurisdiction to the state courts of Virginia. 


New Jersey Supreme Court Finds Employee Had Reasonable Expectation of Privacy in Personal E-Mail



The conflict between an employee’s privacy interests in e-mail and an employer’s interest in monitoring employee usage of company equipment raises difficult questions.  Even more issues arise when an employee uses a company computer to communicate with her attorney about a suit she plans to file against her employer.  The New Jersey Supreme Court wrestled with these issues in Stengart v. Loving Care Agency, Inc.


Second Circuit Holds ERISA Fiduciary Duties Do Not Apply to Employer Under a Non-ERISA Stock and Incentive Plan



A recent case from the Second Circuit provides useful guidance regarding the scope of ERISA fiduciary duties. In Bell v. Pfizer, Inc., 2010 U. S. App. LEXIS 18111 (2d Cir. Aug. 30, 2010), the court resolved a dispute between a former employee and the Pfizer, Inc. Stock and Incentive Plan (“Pfizer Plan”) concerning the employee’s eligibility to exercise certain stock options after leaving employment with Pfizer.

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Sixth Circuit Excludes Expert Testimony in $20 Million Tort Case



Recently, in Tamraz v. Lincoln Electric Co., the Sixth Circuit overturned a district court verdict awarding $20 million to a plaintiff who claimed that his manganese exposure in the workplace led to his Parkinson’s disease.  Judge Sutton wrote the opinion for the majority while Judge Martin dissented.  The majority opinion helps define the often-elusive line between admissible opinion and inadmissible speculation under Rule 702 of the Federal Rules of Evidence.