NCAA Responds to Objections Over Concussion Settlement

On November 16, 2015, the NCAA responded to objections made earlier this month in relation to the proposed $75 million concussion settlement offered by the NCAA to monitor symptoms of concussions in current and former athletes. A couple of weeks ago, Adrian Arrington — former member of the Eastern Illinois University football program — objected to the proposed NCAA settlement, claiming that it will not help former college athletes that have already incurred out-of-pocket expenses related to diagnosed injuries. Arrington also voiced his concern that…
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Former Sous Chef Wants Florida Golf Club to Fork Over OT Pay

On November 6, 2015, former sous chef Marcos Castro initiated a putative class action against a Florida golf club, claiming that the club withheld overtime compensation in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Castro alleges that his former employer, Windstar Club Inc., failed to compensate him with “time-and-a-half” pay for hours worked in excess of 40 hours per week. Castro claims that other employees in similar positions were also intentionally deprived of overtime compensation and he seeks an expedited order so that he…
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Illinois Judge Grants Temporary Restraining Order Against MLB, NHL, and NBA Counterfeiters

On November 6, 2015, U.S. District Judge Andrea R. Wood filed a temporary restraining order (TRO), prohibiting unidentified online retailers from producing and distributing counterfeit sporting merchandise. The suit, brought in Illinois federal court last month by MLB, NHL, and NBA league affiliates, seeks to prevent the defendant retailers from selling products featuring their logos and claims $2 million in damages for the use of their trademarks. In their suit, the leagues claim that online retailers — believed to be based in China — have…
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Taylor Swift Shakes Off Lawsuit with Settlement

Taylor Swift appears to be out of the woods as she has reached a settlement to resolve a trademark infringement lawsuit filed by clothing brand “Lucky 13” last year. The bad blood started in May 2014 when Lucky 13 filed its complaint alleging that Taylor Swift and her affiliated companies, such as Taylor Nation LLC and Taylor Swift Productions, Inc., infringed on the registered trademark “Lucky 13.” According to the complaint, Taylor Swift, who claims her lucky number is 13, began using “Lucky 13” to…
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Who’s Next? Patent Holder Targets NFL in Latest Lawsuit

Virtual Gaming Technologies LLC (VGT) is no stranger to filing infringement suits against fantasy sports operators. This week, the patent holder has filed lawsuits against FanDuel, DraftKings, Fox Sports, ESPN, Draftpot, and DraftDay. On November 5, 2015, the company targeted a new defendant—the National Football League. In its complaint, filed in the Eastern District of Texas, the company alleges that the NFL Interactive Gaming Platform infringes upon its patents which similarly offer live scoring in relation to player performance. The plaintiff patent holder…
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Former Weber State Cornerback Files Antitrust Class Action Against NCAA

On November 5, 2015, a class action was filed against the NCAA in Indiana federal court. The NCAA, which has been the target of several lawsuits over student-athlete compensation restrictions, is now being attacked for anti-competitive transfer regulations. Devin Pugh, named plaintiff and former Weber State cornerback, challenges the NCAA’s year-in-residence requirement and seeks to abolish scholarship caps. The NCAA’s current residency restrictions require student-athletes to take one season off when transferring between top-level schools. In the complaint, Pugh urges that the “NCAA’s limitation on…
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Uncertainty Looms for Arizona Cardinals’ Stadium Bond Holders

Over the past year, operators of University of Phoenix Stadium — home of the National Football League’s Arizona Cardinals — have lost two lawsuits over the legality of its rental-car taxes used to fund the stadium. Back in 2000, Arizona’s legislature issued bonds for funding backed by a number of sources, with a car rental tax making up about one-third of revenue. Arizona voters approved the car rental tax, and the stadium was completed in 2006. Since its completion, however, the rental-car tax has been…
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Hulk Hogan Takes First Bout Against Gawker

On Wednesday, October 21, 2015, a Florida state judge granted former WWE star Hulk Hogan the opportunity to search private electronic communications of employees of Gawker Media LLC, which is being sued by Hogan for intentionally leaking confidential and racist remarks made by the wrestler. The incident stems from the $100 million lawsuit filed by Hogan for Gawker’s role in allegedly releasing and covering the publication of a sex tape involving Hogan in 2012. The famed-wrestler believes that employees of Gawker intentionally released information that…
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NHL Wants to Keep Concussion Lawsuit in the Courtroom, Not in the Media

On Wednesday, October 21, 2015, the National Hockey League filed an official opposition in a Minnesota federal court against the release of what they believe to be privileged documents to the public. In its memorandum of law, the league argues against the “de-designation” of confidential documents sought after by the plaintiffs, who are made up of a class of former NHLers bringing suit to recover under a theory that they suffer, or are at risk of continued medical complications, due to sustained head trauma while…
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NFL and Others Seek Continued Stay in Discovery Proceedings — At Least for Now

The National Football League, Associated Press, and seven professional photographers recently took shots at each other in an attempt to persuade the court on whether or not to grant a motion to stay discovery indefinitely, or at least until the federal court has had the opportunity to rule on the defendants’ motions to dismiss. Brought in the Southern District of New York, the lawsuit relates to claims made by the photographers against the NFL, AP, Getty Images, and NFL Replay for copyright infringement and antitrust…
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