April 2023 Legal Trends and News
Stay up-to-date with the latest legal issues by reading this monthly recap.
This post is a new “series,” where I will recap every month in all of its legal glory. I decided to write—and pin—this article to the top of my Substack newsletter. Anyone stopping by can get a glimpse of the recent legal issues. This post is written in reverse order.
Without further ado …
This month marked a whole storm of unprecedented lawsuits with super-sized payouts:
- In the big settlement category, Dominion v. Fox, Fox settled a defamation lawsuit for $787+ million.
- Johnson & Johnson has increased the amount it set aside for its talc-causing-cancer allegation to nearly $9 billion.
- Juul agreed to pay $462 mil over its marketing tactics, in the largest settlement the company has ever had, to settle claims that it intentionally geared its e-cigarettes toward young teens.
- Facebook has to pony up $700+ million in a legal settlement. You can get your own piece of that money pie here.
On the other end of the spectrum, Gwyneth Paltrow is victorious in her counter-lawsuit against Dr. Terry Sanderson for $1 from an accident that occurred … on the bunny slops.
The Supreme Court was in the news twice this month, the first when Justice Clarence Thomas got heat … again … for his questionable ethical behavior. It also decided that Mifepristone will remain in the market pending the appeal process of U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk’s order to not allow the drug to be mailed.
Meanwhile, President Trump was arraigned (pled not guilty) on more than 34 felony counts of falsifying business records related to the Stormy Daniels hush money. This would be the first time that a president was arraigned.
- He also decided to file a lawsuit against his ex-attorney Michael Cohen for $500 mil in a breach of contract claim.
- The President will square off with E. Jean Carroll in a civil lawsuit for defamation.
Reps. Justin Jones and Justin Pearson (two Democrats) were expelled from the chamber after they joined gun control protests at the Tennessee State Capitol, in this rarely used maneuver. That a third person, Rep. Gloria Johnson, was not expelled after missing by a narrow margin of 1, had people speculating about the racial component … as the two who were expelled were Black.
And speaking of lawsuits, Disney sued DeSantis, claiming he organized retaliatory efforts against the company for exercising its free speech rights.
We also got the first possible AI defamation lawsuit. First of many, I think.