April 14, 1993 |
The civil rights suit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union three years ago to change Philadelphia's foster-care system may have moved one step closer to a federal trial date. U.S. District Judge Robert F. Kelly yesterday rejected the argument of city and state officials, defendants in the case, that the matter should be resolved in Philadelphia Family Court. He ruled that Family Court does not have the jurisdiction or the scope to consider the claims of the 23 foster children who are plaintiffs in the ACLU suit.
September 25, 1993 |
The Southeast Delco School District has agreed in an out-of-court settlement to pay $80,000 each to two former students who were the victims of sexual abuse by a former special education teacher. The students sued the district in federal court in 1991, saying that district officials had concealed complaints of abuse made against Robert A. Merker Jr., had refused to act on those complaints and had failed to protect students who were minors. Both sides in the civil-rights suits said yesterday that they were glad to put an end to the matter.
September 5, 1994 |
Neighbors of the Paoli rail yard in Tredyffrin Township won a major victory Tuesday when a federal appeals court revived an eight-year-old lawsuit and upheld their right to sue for having been exposed to polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs, which have been linked to cancer in animals. Outspoken Paoli activist Mabel Brown, one of the leaders of the neighborhood movement, said that she had not heard the details of the ruling, but that she was happy to hear that her claims would not be ignored.
November 5, 2002 |
A man who says he was raped by a South Jersey priest at age 14 cannot sue the priest or the church because he waited too long to file his claim, a judge ruled yesterday. Peter Pfister, 41, of Lakeland, Fla., sued the Roman Catholic Diocese of Camden in 1994, contending that he had been sexually assaulted by Msgr. Philip Rigney, who offered to take him in after he ran away from home as a teenager. Pfister said he fled his Camden home three times because his father, now deceased, had beaten him. When his parents sought to have him held in a juvenile-detention facility, Msgr.
July 23, 1996 |
Now it's mostly about the Rev. Betty Patterson and her $8 million lawsuit. The long legal wrangle arising from the 39th District police scandal continued yesterday with a federal judge telling lawyers for the city and the remaining plaintiffs that he wants the remaining five cases settled by the end of the month. If the sides cannot report back to U.S. District Judge Stewart Dalzell by Aug. 1 with news of a settlement, said lawyer Jennifer St. Hill, the parties will resume preparing for trial.
March 16, 2003 |
After nine years of delays, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Camden last week paid $880,000 to 23 men and women who said they had been sexually abused by priests of the diocese. It was a sum far below what the plaintiffs had hoped for, and it left some victims and their attorneys angry. They say that New Jersey law so strictly limits the time young abuse victims can sue their abusers that few cases have a chance to go forward. "It was an absolute travesty," Stephen Rubino, one of the plaintiff lawyers in the case, said Friday.
October 12, 1996 |
Eleven years after the deadly MOVE confrontation, Philadelphia taxpayers are being asked to take out the checkbook again. Lawyers for MOVE member Ramona Africa and others who won a civil rights suit against the city in June want nearly $2 million to cover their fees and expenses from the decade-long litigation. Lawyer Andre L. Dennis, who represented Africa, filed a petition yesterday in U.S. District Court requesting $861,246.92 for his services and those of other lawyers and paralegals at the firm Stradley, Ronon, Stevens & Young.
August 25, 2014 |
After all the hand-wringing and anguish over out-of- state firms flocking to file lawsuits in Philadelphia - the law firms you see advertising on late-night television - is Philadelphia still the notorious plaintiffs' paradise of common lore? It all depends on your idea of civil litigation bliss. A look at medical malpractice awards is revealing. There is no question: Philadelphia remains the most favorable jurisdiction in Pennsylvania for lawyers seeking big payoffs, a maddening fact to the many physicians and hospitals here.
October 22, 2011 |
A federal judge has dismissed a civil rights lawsuit by some Lower Merion School District parents, students, and former students who claimed the district discriminated against them and other African American students by disproportionately and inappropriately placing them in special-education programs and in the lowest-level classes. The ruling in Amber Blunt et al v. Lower Merion School District et al was handed down Thursday by U.S. District Judge Harvey Bartle 3d, who wrote that there was "no direct or circumstantial evidence of racial discrimination.
March 6, 2014 |
In a case that has cost tens of millions in legal fees and riveted the attention of legal experts nationwide, a federal judge in New York on Tuesday found that an $18 billion judgment against energy giant Chevron Corp. for polluting a wide swath of the rain forest in Ecuador was procured through fraud, including bribery and doctored experts' reports. In an exhaustive, 485-page opinion, U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan found that lead plaintiffs' lawyer Steven Donziger initiated the fraud in 2006, after it appeared that the case in Ecuador had begun to go against him. Kaplan found that Donziger, who is based in New York, had concealed the fraud from Kohn Swift & Graf, a Philadelphia plaintiffs firm that financed the case until it pulled out in 2009 over concern that Donziger and his team had acted improperly.