Last month, Wired reported that researchers hacked the dashboard entertainment system of a vehicle being driven on public streets. Once they had access, they used that entry point to remotely control vehicle systems through the onboard diagnostics port. The researchers warned that they could have easily hacked hundreds of thousands of vulnerable vehicles traveling the world’s highways.

After this demonstration, digital security researchers at the University of California at San Diego went a step further. They showed that they could take control of a vehicle’s onboard diagnostics port to activate the wipers, engage the brakes and even disable the brakes at low speed. That feat — remotely disabling brakes — causes significant safety concerns.
Continue Reading What Happens When Hacking Hits the Road?

The string of retractions of published peer-reviewed medical and scientific articles due concerns about fraud or suspected fraud continues. This week a major publisher of scientific and medical articles has confirmed that it is retracting 64 articles from 10 of its subscription journals based on concerns that the peer review process was “compromised.”

The publisher, Springer, issued this statement:
Continue Reading More Publications Retracted Due to Suspected Fraud

The American Bar Association Journal is seeking recommendations from law blog users about which blogs to include on its 2015 list of the 100 best legal blogs.  Inclusion in the ABA’s Blawg 100 is a prestigious honor that is earned through a rigorous review and voting process.

The ABA is soliciting “friend-of-the-blawg briefs” from readers for its 2015 list through this link right here.


Continue Reading ABA Journal Seeks Recommendations for 2015’s Top Legal Blogs

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has responded to the June 27, 2015 PL&MT Blog’s post Falling off the Fast Track: CPSC’s New “Stop Sale” Demand by Jonathan Judge.  The post was republished by the National Law Review and the CPSC’s comments can be found here.  The back-and-forth is very productive and enlightening.  This post contains Jonathan Judge’s reply to the CPSC’s response.
Continue Reading CPSC Engages in Productive Discussion Following PL&MT Blog Post on Fast Track Program

“Law lags science; it does not lead it.” Our legal system requires proof, and in many cases, only scientific evidence can provide it. With controversies swirling around about fraud and misconduct in scientific publications, how do product liability lawyers distinguish between credible scientific evidence and science that is, as Justice Scalia would say, “junky”?  Here are three ways to spot junk science before it trashes your case:
Continue Reading Three Ways to Spot Junk Science

Warning: That scientific article you just read may be completely bogus. Scientific articles can be retracted for numerous reasons – errors in data, errors in calculation, plagiarism, duplication of publication, and fraud or suspected fraud. An unmistakable trend in the increase of retractions due to one of those categories has emerged, and it is disturbing. A 2012 Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) article, “Misconduct accounts for the majority of retracted scientific publications,” found that the percentage of scientific articles retracted because of fraud has increased dramatically in the last 40 years.  
Continue Reading Scientific Articles and The Retraction Epidemic

Two partners from Schiff Hardin LLP’s Product Liability and Mass Torts Group received separate awards for their pro bono work earlier this month. Edward Casmere, a partner in the firm’s Chicago office, received the Award for Excellence in Pro Bono Service from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Joshua D. Lee, also a partner in the firm’s Chicago office, received the prestigious Edmund S. Muskie Pro Bono Service Award from the American Bar Association’s Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section.
Continue Reading Schiff Hardin Product Liability Partners Honored for Pro Bono Service

The Ninth Circuit’s recent decision in Allen v. The Boeing Company may pave the way for removal of more mass tort claims to federal court. Allen held that an environmental mass tort occurring over many years is removable under the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA), finding the “local single event” rule did not apply.
Continue Reading Ninth Circuit Opens the Door to a Federal Forum for Environmental Mass Torts

A team of Schiff Hardin attorneys compiled the chapter on “Recent Developments in Toxic Torts and Environmental Law” for the American Bar Association’s Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Law Journal published in the winter of 2015 (Vol. 50:2) on the evolving landscape of the environmental and toxic tort areas of law. The Schiff team was led by partners Edward Casmere, Joshua R. More, and J. Michael Showalter.  The article covers new court decisions, proposed and final regulations, and interpretations of regulations in ten areas: class actions, medical monitoring, asbestos, hydraulic fracturing, emerging product regulations and tort claims, punitive damages, the Resource Conservation Act, the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act.
Continue Reading Schiff Hardin Lawyers Author ABA’s Annual Update of Recent Developments in Toxic Torts and Environmental Law

Legal decision-makers are used to seeing other departments employ analytics to understand their customers and be more successful. Many legal departments use software or processes to control costs, but these have little to do with the ultimate outcome of particular cases or investigations. It is past time for those same tools to be put to work in improving and predicting legal outcomes.
Continue Reading Using Analytics to Solve Product Liability Problems