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Action Taken Wednesday by Supreme Court

•  Law Center     updated  2008/02/20 20:46

On Wednesday, the Supreme Court:

- Made it harder for consumers to sue makers of federally approved medical devices, ruling 8-1 against the estate of a patient who suffered serious injuries when a catheter burst during a medical procedure.

- Invalidated parts of Maine's law barring Internet tobacco sales to minors, saying in a unanimous decision that the state cannot impose a regulatory scheme on transportation companies making door-to-door deliveries of tobacco products to consumers.

- Declared that individual participants in the most common type of retirement plan can sue under a pension protection law to recover their losses, a unanimous decision with implications for 50 million workers with $2.7 trillion invested in 401(k) retirement plans.

- Ruled 8-1 against the star of the syndicated TV show "Judge Alex," saying that an arbitrator must decide the judge's fee dispute with an attorney who is claiming 12 percent of "Judge Alex's" earnings.

- Decided 7-2 that state courts may apply their rulings to old cases, opening the way for an imprisoned child sex abuser to challenge his conviction.

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