Santos v. Minn. Life Ins. Co., No. 20-cv-06707-PJH,  2021 WL 5302950 (N.D. Cal. Nov. 15, 2021) (Judge Phyllis J. Hamilton). 

Mother of forensics, Frances Glessner Lee, created the Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death as a teaching instrument for detectives to help them determine causes of death at crime scenes. Such a tool would have been instrumental in this case in determining whether decedent Samuel Chong’s death was an accident, suicide, or homicide, and consequently whether AD&D benefits ought to be paid to plaintiff Eva Marie Santos, Mr. Chong’s cousin and the administrator of the estate. During a well-being check by the San Francisco police, Mr. Chong was found dead “on the floor in the kitchen, near a table. The gas oven door was found open, but the oven was not in use. Blood (and dried vomit) was noted near his head.” The autopsy report listed the cause of death as blunt force head trauma with subdural hematoma. The manner of death was listed as an accident. The toxicology report found methamphetamine, amphetamine, and Temazepam in the decedent’s blood and urine. 
Continue Reading Long-Term Meth User Could Not Have Foreseen Death

Hursh v. DST Systems, Inc., No. 4:21-mc-09017, 2021 WL 4526849 (W.D. Mo. Oct. 4, 2021) (Judge Nanette K. Laughrey).

It is no secret that employers like arbitration provisions, and ERISA case law generally allows them to include such provisions in their employee benefit plans. However, this case is an object lesson in being careful what you ask for – because you just might get it.

Continue Reading Be Careful What You Wish For: Employer Can’t Escape Hundreds of Arbitration Awards