Sunday, August 27, 2006

Tell it to the Jury Guys

It’s been a while since I wrote about Dura (O.K., all-right, or anything at all – that was a cheap shot by the way), as my fingers were tiring from reporting on all those failed motions to dismiss, and my intracranial pressure was at dangerous levels from reading one-too-many defense oriented articles about how Dura changed the world (when, unless you’ve eaten some magic mushrooms, which I hear are quite delicious, it changed virtually nothing except you can no longer allege price inflation by itself – a result that’s completely logical to me).

a new Dura opinion has been issued by Judge Michael M. Baylson (E.D. Penn) (George W. Bush, Class of ‘02) (pictured), and it’s a must-read for you loss causation groupies. In a nutshell, Judge Baylson told the Defendants that couldn’t have summary judgment based on Dura, but they could ask a jury to decide the issue instead. Gee, thanks a lot, just what we need here at CIGNA, a jury of our “peers.”

So, after sorting out the battle of the experts, Judge Baylson held “that (1) Dura Pharmaceuticals does not compel a fundamental change in the way this Court should analyze proof of economic loss; (2) at this time it is not be appropriate to adopt the investment model advanced by Defendants to measure economic loss under the federal securities laws; (3) one of several methods used by courts prior to Dura Pharmaceuticals to analyze and quantify economic loss and damages is a transaction-based methodology; (4) applying that methodology, SERS has a viable claim for economic loss based on particular shares held at the end of the class period; and (5) there are disputes of material fact related to economic loss and damages that make summary judgment particularly inappropriate; and (6) a jury should be permitted to make relevant factual determinations for the purposes of calculating damages.”

So the Nugget lives. It’s good to be back.

You can read In re Cigna, issued August 18, 2006, at 2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 59915.

Nugget: “Granting summary judgment on the present record would deprive the Plaintiffs of their constitutional right under the Seventh Amendment to have a jury decide all issues concerning the award of damages.”

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