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Fojo Law Files Lawsuit Challenging Keene’s Face Mask Ordinance and Governor Sununu’s Emergency Order Requiring Face Masks for Gatherings of 100 or More People, Requests Order Enjoining Both Measures

This morning, we filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the District of New Hampshire challenging the City of Nashua’s recent enactment of an ordinance requiring individuals to wear face masks and Governor Sununu’s Emergency Order #63, which requires individuals to wear face masks in certain gatherings of 100 people or more. The lawsuit, filed on behalf of three Keene business owners (Ian B. Freeman, Malaise Lindenfeld, and Aria DiMezzo), challenges (1) the City of Keene’s enactment of an ordinance (O-2020-09-A) requiring individuals who enter any business, who are present in any outdoor area serviced by a business, or who enter or are present in the common areas of any business, or in the common areas of any residential building with three or more units, to wear face masks or coverings; and (2) Governor Sununu’s Emergency Order #63, which requires individuals to wear face masks in certain gatherings of 100 people or more.  The lawsuit, like the first action we filed on behalf of Mary Rivard, and the lawsuit challenging the Governor’s order closing schools and implementing remote instruction, also includes an emergency motion for a temporary restraining order enjoining the Governor and the City from enforcing the order and the ordinance, respectively. More specifically, the lawsuit addresses two main concerns. First, the purpose for, and supposed “emergency” underlying, Governor Sununu’s original shutdown orders in March 2020 was that New Hampshire needed to “slow the spread” of the Coronavirus so the state’s healthcare system would not be overwhelmed.  Over several months later, there is no question New Hampshire’s hospitals never reached capacity, and New Hampshire’s curve...

Federal Appeals Court Schedules Oral Argument in Appeal of District Court’s Denial of New York Life’s Motion to Compel Arbitration of Former Agent’s $14 Million Lawsuit

Yesterday, the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit scheduled oral argument in an appeal by New York Life (and two related companies) of the United States District Court for the District of New Hampshire’s denial of a motion to compel arbitration filed by New York Life in a lawsuit filed by Ketler Bossé, a former soliciting agent and district agent for the company. The parties filed their appellate briefs earlier this year and then, at the First Circuit’s request, supplemental briefs in July.  Oral argument is scheduled for September 24, 2020, at 10 a.m.  It will be conducted via Zoom due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Factual Background Mr. Bossé engaged Fojo Law and filed a Complaint in the District Court in January 2019, asserting various federal and state employment-related claims against New York Life, including claims for discrimination and retaliation under 42 U.S.C. § 1981, conspiracy to interfere with civil rights under 42 U.S.C. § 1985, and breach of contract under 42 U.S.C. § 1981, and various state law claims, including claims for breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing, fraud, wrongful termination, tortious interference with economic advantage, violation of New Hampshire’s Consumer Protection Act (RSA 358-A), breach of fiduciary duty, unjust enrichment, quantum meruit, conversion, and defamation. Mr. Bossé alleged that, despite excelling as an agent for New York Life and the many accolades he earned during his 14-year affiliation with the company, New York Life terminated him because he is black and then defamed him and appropriated his clients. He alleged he is owed over $14 million in lost commissions, residual commissions,...