Articles matching tag: Law
- Column: Redskins Win Legal CaseJune 29, 2017
On an 8-0 vote, the U.S. Supreme Court (SCOTUS) effectively overturned a U.S. District Court case that decided the Washington Redskins name violated the disparagement clause of the Lanham Act. The irony is that the Redskins weren’t even a party to the case. The Lanham Act, passed by Congress in 1946, allows the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to deny federal registration for trademarks that “may disparage ... persons, living or dead, institutions, beliefs or national symbols.” Any trademark – defined as a word, symbol or other mark that distinguishes a source of goods from others – can be denied protection, even cancelled, if it disparages a substantial percentage of a distinct group of people, be it a racial, ethnic, religious or political group.
- Column: NFL Concussion Case Shows Lawyers At Their WorstApril 20, 2017
“This case has done nothing but show lawyers at their worst.” Attorney Jason Luckasevic Even on their good days attorneys have been known to act, well, not so good. Luckasevic had to be upset to utter such a strong indictment of the legal profession. Luckasevic was referring to the actions of attorneys who are involved in the NFL concussion case, a class action lawsuit that was settled, sort of, in August of 2013. However, none of the plaintiffs in the suit, which was really a combination of hundreds of lawsuits, have yet to see a dime from the settlement and it may be years before they do.
- Column: Cuban Smuggling Case A Stain On MLBMarch 23, 2017
While most baseball fans have been focusing on the excitement of spring training in Florida and Arizona, or the emotion of the World Baseball Classic being played around the globe, a seamy side of the sport was being detailed in a Miami courtroom. For six weeks, Cuban players and other government witnesses testified about a smuggling network that starts in Cuba, goes through Haiti, Mexico and other countries, and ultimately delivers MLB some of its top talent. Last week a federal jury convicted agent Bartolo Hernandez and trainer Julio Estrada of human trafficking. Hernandez is facing 3-15 years in prison while Estrada faces between 5-35 years at their sentencing on July 11.
- Column: Baylor University Brought To TaskJune 2, 2016
After a damning report chronicled the mishandling of numerous sexual assaults on campus, Baylor University announced the suspension with the intent to fire its football coach, the demotion of its President and the probation of its Athletic Director. Despite the apparent severity of those penalties, given the horrific nature of the actions described in the report, they are both insufficient and come way too late.
- Column: Marlins Suing Season Ticket HolderMay 12, 2016
Angry sports fans may have found a lawsuit they can rally around. The Miami Marlins are suing a season ticket holder for failing to pay for tickets he didn’t receive. The fan’s attorney filed a motion to dismiss the suit and claims “the team reneged on everything” it promised. Until the revenue from media rights fees skyrocketed, season tickets were the lifeblood of sports teams. And Mickey Axelband was a sports team’s dream. He had been a Marlins season ticket holder since the team’s first game in 1993. In 2011 he agreed to purchase two season tickets for 2012 and 2013. Axelband paid a total of $24,300 for the first year but after the team allegedly reneged on its promise to provide him certain benefits – e.g., seats in a special lounge - he stopped attending games and refused to pay for the second year of his contract. The Marlins elected to sue.
- Column: Deflategate Keeps On HissingMay 5, 2016
If you feel like you’ve overdosed on Deflategate, you’re not alone. Millions of Americans feel just like you and millions more may join your group before the case hisses its way to a final conclusion. The case that seemingly won’t end has completed its latest chapter. Last week the Second Circuit Court of Appeals voted 2-1 to reinstate Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s four-game suspension for tampering with the air pressure in footballs. Brady was initially suspended by an NFL hearing officer for allegedly tampering with the footballs used in the Patriots’ AFC Championship game rout of the Indianapolis Colts in January of 2015.
- Column: MLB Underpays ScoutsJuly 13, 2015
Almost every group of MLB employees seems to think they’re underpaid. In the past two years the league has been besieged by complaints and/or lawsuits from clubhouse attendants, administrative workers, interns, “volunteers,” and Minor League players. They all complain that MLB violates the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) along with state wage and hour laws by failing to pay minimum wage and overtime. In some cases, the plaintiffs have also alleged that MLB’s practices violate federal and state antitrust laws. Now, scouts have jumped on the litigation bandwagon. Two weeks ago former Kansas City Royals scout Jordan Wyckoff filed a class action lawsuit in a New York federal court claiming that many MLB scouts make less than minimum wage and aren’t properly compensated for overtime, practices that violate the FLSA. In addition to his FLSA argument, Wyckoff also alleges that MLB teams conspire to keep scouts’ wages depressed in violation of state and federal antitrust laws.
- Column: Barry Bonds is Finally ExoneratedApril 26, 2015
The eternal and disturbing saga involving Barry Bonds may finally be over. Last week the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned Bonds’ conviction on obstruction of justice charges, putting to rest - hopefully for good - a sad and frightening chapter in our country’s history. You may recall that Bonds was convicted of obstruction for a meandering, 234-word response to a prosecutor’s question during his testimony before a grand jury in 2003. The government said he should have responded with a “yes” or “no” answer, which he did when prosecutors repeated the question a short time later. But the feds claimed they were “inconvenienced” by Bonds’ initial response so in 2007 they charged him with obstruction along with three counts of perjury. In 2011 a jury deadlocked on the perjury charges but convicted Bonds of obstruction.
- Column: NFL Loses Again in Peterson CaseMarch 2, 2015
If a contest was held to determine the most arrogant and incompetent sports organization in the country, there would be no dearth of worthy candidates, with the NCAA and the NFL topping the list. But the NFL’s recent handling of its Personal Conduct Policy stamps it as the prime contender to take home the trophy. The NCAA’s qualifications for the dubious honor have been well documented in this space. Their insistence on operating above the law that applies to most Americans knows no bounds. The governing body was formed in 1906 to adopt uniform rules for the protection of football players who were dying at unprecedented rates on the field of play. But fealty to the almighty dollar and insistence on absolute and abusive control of student-athletes has become the primary goals at NCAA headquarters.
- Column: MiLB System Under Attack - AgainDecember 22, 2014
Major League Baseball’s Minor League system is under attack - again. In early December four former Minor League Baseball (MiLB) players filed a lawsuit claiming that MLB is in violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act for conspiring to suppress MiLB salaries in a variety of ways. The suit, known as the Miranda case, follows on the heels of the Senne case filed last February. In Senne the Plaintiffs claim that MiLB players are paid less than the minimum wage in violation of the Federal Labor Standards Act (FLSA). MLB countered that MiLB players are seasonal workers; they are apprenticing for a job in MLB; some of the hours devoted to training are for the players’ own benefit; and the players should be classified as interns. If any of those scenarios apply, MLB may be exempt from the provisions of the FLSA.