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General Motors revealed in court filings late Tuesday that it will soon ask a federal bankruptcy judge to shield the company from legal claims for conduct that occurred before its 2009 bankruptcy.

The automaker's strategy is in a motion filed in a Corpus Christi, Texas, federal court case, and in other cases across the nation that involve the defective ignition switches that have led GM to recall 2.6 million small cars.

The motion asks U.S. District Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos to delay action on the lawsuit until the bankruptcy court rules and other federal courts decide if the case should be combined with other lawsuits. But GM says it's not asking to halt action on a motion to force GM to tell customers not to drive their cars that are being recalled.

GM has said at least 13 deaths have been linked to the switch problem. The switch can unexpectedly slip out of the "run" position, shutting down the engine, knocking out power-assisted steering and power brakes, and disabling the air bags. GM admits knowing about the problem for at least a decade, but it didn't start recalling the cars, including Chevrolet Cobalts and Saturn Ions, until February.

The company's motion says GM will ask the bankruptcy court in New York to enforce an order made during the 2009 bankruptcy case that split GM into a new company and an old company. Claims from before the bankruptcy would go to "Old GM," called Motors Liquidation Co., while claims after the bankruptcy would go to the new General Motors Co.



Court arguments over Oklahoma's ban on same-sex marriage will center on whether voters singled out gay people for unfair treatment when they overwhelmingly defined marriage as a union between one man and one woman.

Judges at a federal appeals court in Denver will hear arguments Thursday from lawyers representing a couple challenging Oklahoma's ban and the Tulsa County clerk who refused to grant them a license. The judges heard a similar case from Utah last week.

Oklahoma voters approved the ban in 2004 by a 3-1 margin. The Tulsa couple tried to obtain a marriage license shortly afterward.

A federal judge overturned the ban in January, saying it violated the equal-protection clause of the U.S. Constitution. Lawyers for the state say voters have a right to set their own laws.



India's top court on Tuesday issued a landmark verdict recognizing transgender rights as human rights, saying people can identify themselves as a third gender on official documents.

The Supreme Court directed the federal and state governments to include transgendered people in all welfare programs for the poor, including education, health care and jobs to help them overcome social and economic challenges. Previously, transgendered Indians could only identify themselves as male or female in all official documents.

The decision was praised as giving relief to the estimated 3 million Indians who are transgender.

The court noted that it was the right of every human being to choose their gender while granting rights to those who identify themselves as neither male nor female.

"All documents will now have a third category marked 'transgender.' This verdict has come as a great relief for all of us. Today I am proud to be an Indian," said Laxmi Narayan Tripathi, a transgender activist who, along with a legal agency, had petitioned the court.

The court's decision would apply to individuals who have acquired the physical characteristics of the opposite sex or present themselves in a way that does not correspond with their sex at birth.

"The spirit of the (Indian) Constitution is to provide equal opportunity to every citizen to grow and attain their potential, irrespective of caste, religion or gender," the court said in its order.

The Supreme Court specified its ruling would only apply to transgender people but not to gays, lesbians or bisexuals. India's LGBT communities have been protesting the court's recent decision to reinstate a colonial-era law banning gay sex, which they say will make them vulnerable to police harassment.

The court also ordered the government to put in place public awareness campaigns to lessen the social stigma against transgender people.



Prosecutors want South Carolina's highest court to reinstate the conviction of a Dillon County man whose dogs attacked and killed a 10-year-old boy in 2006.

The state Supreme Court on Tuesday hears an appeal in the case of Bentley Collins. In 2012, the state Court of Appeals overturned Collins' involuntary manslaughter conviction and prison sentence, ruling a judge shouldn't have allowed prosecutors to show pictures of the boy taken before his autopsy.

The photographs showed the extent of the boy's injuries, including how the dogs mauled him so badly his bones were exposed and his ears and nose were eaten.

The judges said the pathologist testified to the injuries, so the photographs did nothing more than rile the jury's emotions.



Salvatore Scanio, Attorney

Salvatore Scanio, Attorney

T: 202-289-7605
O: 202-289-1800
F: 202-289-1804

Mr. Scanio has extensive experience in complex domestic and international litigation and regulatory matters, involving federal and state banking, financial transactions, insurance coverage, and contract and other commercial disputes.

Mr. Scanio represents banks, insurers and other companies in cases involving negotiable instruments under the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC), electronic bank payments, fraud, fiduciary duty, accounting, lender liability, loan losses, lost profits, statutory and regulatory violations, professional liability, class actions, and claims against the federal government. He advises clients as to liability, defenses and loss recovery on a wide range of bank fraud and corporate fraud schemes, including check fraud, credit and debit card fraud, unauthorized electronic funds transfers (EFT) including fraudulent wire transfers and ACH transactions, identity theft, check kiting, deposit account fraud, malware attacks, cybercrime, account takeovers,loan and mortgage fraud, embezzlement, and bank insider fraud.

Ludwig &Robinson PLLC. Attorneys


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