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No harm, no foul, concluded a deeply divided U.S. Supreme Court, dismissing a privacy violation claim against the U.S. government. Writing for the 6-3 majority, Justice David Souter found that a mine worker would have had to demonstrate damages in order to collect the $1,000 he’d sought for having his Social Security number displayed on a Labor Department site. The mere publication of private data was not enough to trigger presumed damages, the majority ruled … The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals won Supreme Court backing for its $1.4 million judgment against Olympic Airways. Justice Clarence Thomas, who parted ways with Justice Antonin Scalia on the matter, led the 6-2 majority in finding that a flight attendant’s willful misconduct qualified as an accident under the Warsaw Convention. Consequently, her refusal to move an asthmatic passenger further from the smoking section left the airline liable for the passenger’s death … Information withheld by prosecutors helped Delma Banks step off death row. A 7-2 high court majority scolded prosecutors for failing to reveal that a witness against the accused murderer had been a paid informant. The Court voted unanimously to let Banks appeal through lower courts … Fast-growing firm Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz is setting up shop in New Orleans. The Tennessee-based firm plucked 11 lawyers — including the entire health care practice — from Locke Liddell & Sapp to staff its 10th U.S. location … The U.S. courts newsroom is spreading the word both that bankruptcy judges are sponsoring a program to warn youth against the perils of overusing credit cards (a chief cause of personal bankruptcy) — and that 32 bankruptcy courts now accept credit card payments online. – Lori Patel

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