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Mealey's Asbestos Bankruptcy

  • July 3, 2018

    Bestwall, Official Committee In Discussions Over Law Firms’ Hiring For Estimation

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A North Carolina bankruptcy judge on June 29 gave Chapter 11 debtor Bestwall LLC more time to seek reconsideration of an order allowing the Official Committee of Asbestos Claimants to hire four law firms as special litigation counsel for medical science matters related to a hearing to estimate the debtor’s asbestos liability (In re Bestwall LLC, No. 17-31795, W.D. N.C. Bkcy.).

  • July 2, 2018

    Widow Seeks To Re-enter Suit Against Johns-Manville Insurance Broker

    NEW YORK — A second appeal in a suit seeking to hold Johns-Manville Corp.’s insurance broker independently liable for asbestos personal injury claims now hinges on who is actually prosecuting the case — an asbestos claimant’s estate or the estate’s law firm, according to court ordered supplemental briefs filed June 27 in New York federal court (The Bogdan Law Firm v. Marsh USA, Inc., No. 1:18-cv-01228, S.D. N.Y.).

  • June 21, 2018

    Insurer, Claims Company Deny Fraud Claims, Seek To Remove Bankruptcy Reference

    CHICAGO — Fraud allegations leveled by the Oakfabco Inc. Asbestos Claimants’ Committee against insurers and a claims management company involving missing asbestos policies fail because the committee cannot even prove that the policies exist, the insurers and company say May 30 in an Illinois federal bankruptcy adversary case (Asbestos Claimants Committee v. American Casualty Company of Reading, PA, et al., No. 18-00002, N.D. Ill. Bkcy.).

  • June 21, 2018

    Bankruptcy Judge Closes Geo. V. Hamilton’s Chapter 11 Case

    PITTSBURGH — The relatively brief and uncomplicated Chapter 11 case of insulation distributor Geo. V. Hamilton Inc. came to an end June 13 when a Pennsylvania federal bankruptcy judge issued a final decree closing the case (In re Geo. V. Hamilton, Inc., No. 15-23704, W.D. Pa. Bkcy.).

  • June 20, 2018

    Hospital, W.R. Grace Dispute 3rd Circuit’s Jurisdiction In Latest Appeal

    PHILADELPHIA — A federal judge’s ruling that the reorganization plan for former Chapter 11 debtor W.R. Grace & Co. trumps the federal rules for class certification makes a bankruptcy court’s denial of certification for a class of property owners an appealable decision, a South Carolina hospital tells the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in a June 8 jurisdictional statement (In re Grace & Co., et al., No. 18-1960, 3rd Cir.).

  • June 19, 2018

    Maryland Casualty Says Latest Insurer Liability Action Should Get The Boot

    WILMINGTON, Del. — A recent lawsuit in a string of actions seeking to hold insurers of former Chapter 11 debtor W.R. Grace & Co. liable for claimants’ asbestos diseases should be dismissed because a Delaware federal bankruptcy judge has already found that the claims are barred by the protections afforded the insurers in W.R. Grace’s reorganization, one insurer argues in a June 15 filing (Barbara Hunt, et al. v. Maryland Casualty Company, No. 18-50402, D. Del. Bkcy.).

  • June 19, 2018

    Magistrate Judge Says Allegations Fall Short Of Asbestos Conspiracy Claim

    WILMINGTON, Del. — Nothing in late-added allegations supports the conclusion that Crane Co. conspired with the U.S. Navy to hide the dangers of asbestos, a federal magistrate judge in Delaware said June 6 in recommending judgment for the defendant (Marguerite MacQueen v. Warren Pumps LLC, et al., No. 13-831, D. Del., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 41749).

  • June 19, 2018

    Delaware Jury Hits Ford With $41.6M Asbestos Verdict

    WILMINGTON, Del. — A Delaware jury on June 8 awarded a widow $40,625,000 in compensatory damages for her husband’s fatal mesothelioma, finding Ford Motor Co. 20 percent liable and following the award up with $1 million in punitive damages (Larry Knecht, et al. v. Borg-Warner Corp., et al., No. N14C-08-164, Del. Super., New Castle Co.).

  • June 18, 2018

    Judge: Weyerhaeuser Escapes Household, Environmental Asbestos Exposure Claims

    MADISON, Wis. — A jury could not conclude from the presented evidence that household or environmental exposures to asbestos led to two individuals’ mesotheliomas, a federal judge in Wisconsin held June 8 in granting a premises owner summary judgment (Pamela Kilty, et al. v. Weyerhaeuser Co., et al., No. 16-515, Scott Spatz, et al. v. Weyerhaeuser Co., et al., No. 16-726, W.D. Wis.).

  • June 15, 2018

    Kaiser Gypsum Stay Lifted So Claimant Can Collect Asbestos Judgment

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — An asbestos judgment winner can proceed with her appeal in a California court to recover more than $360,000 from Chapter 11 debtor Kaiser Gypsum Co., despite objections by the company and its primary insurer, a North Carolina federal bankruptcy judge ruled June 14 in a minute order lifting the automatic bankruptcy stay (In re Kaiser Gypsum Company, Inc., et al., No. 16-31602, W.D. N.C. Bkcy.).

  • June 13, 2018

    Iowa Supreme Court Orders Retrial Of $4 Million Asbestos Verdict

    DES MOINES, Iowa — A $4 million asbestos verdict improperly built on closing arguments asking the jury to punish the defendant, so the case must be retried, the Iowa Supreme Court held June 1 (Shari Kinseth, et al. v. Weil-McLain Co., et al., No. 15-0943, Iowa App., 2018 Iowa Sup. LEXIS 59).

  • June 11, 2018

    Representation, Standing Debated In Bid To Hold Johns-Manville Broker Liable

    NEW YORK — The future claimants’ representative (FCR) in the landmark bankruptcy case of Johns-Manville Corp. did not represent an asbestos claimants’ in personam claims against the company’s insurance broker, so the broker can be held independently liable for asbestos personal injury claims, a claimant’s law firm says June 8 on appeal in New York federal court (The Bogdan Law Firm v. Marsh USA, Inc., No. 1:18-cv-01228, S.D. N.Y.).

  • June 11, 2018

    W.R. Grace Says Facts, Law Are On Its Side In Row Over Tax Refund Interest

    WILMINGTON, Del. — The Internal Revenue Service gets the facts wrong and misreads the law in arguing for a reduced interest rate on a tax refund to former Chapter 11 debtor W.R. Grace & Co., the company said June 1 in the IRS’s appeal in Delaware federal court (United States v. W.R. Grace & Co., et al., No. 17-cv-1588, D. Del.).

  • June 5, 2018

    7th Circuit Says Jurisdiction Lacking For John Crane’s RICO Claims Against Firms

    CHICAGO — A Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on June 4 agreed with a federal judge that fraud and racketeering suits filed by frequent asbestos defendant John Crane Inc. (JCI) against two law firms and their principals do not belong in Illinois federal court just because JCI is located in that state (John Crane Inc. v. Shein Law Center Ltd., et al., Nos. 17-1809 and 17-1926, John Crane Inc. v. Simon Greenstone Panatier Bartlett, et al., No. 17-1814, 7th Cir.).

  • May 31, 2018

    Kaiser Gypsum Directed To Assume Insurers’ Asbestos Coverage Agreement

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A North Carolina federal bankruptcy judge on May 29 ordered Chapter 11 debtor Kaiser Gypsum Co. to assume a settlement agreement among the debtor’s insurers for payment of asbestos claims, saying the assumption is conditioned on approval of Kaiser’s plan to send stayed asbestos claims back to the tort system (In re Kaiser Gypsum Company, Inc., et al., No. 16-31602, W.D. N.C. Bkcy.).

  • May 25, 2018

    Johnson & Johnson Loses Second Asbestos Trial; Punitives Push Award To $25.75M

    WEST COVINA, Calif. — A California jury on May 24 added $4 million in punitive damages to an asbestos-tainted talc verdict against Johnson & Johnson, bringing the total verdict to $25.75 million, sources told Mealey’s Publications.  The company has now been hit with more than $142 million in damages a little more than a month (Joanne Anderson, et al. Borg Warner Corp., et al., BC666513, Calif. Super., Los Angeles Co.).

  • May 25, 2018

    Minnesota Court Affirms $3.7M Award, Rejects Expert, Liability Challenges

    ST. PAUL, Minn. — A Minnesota court on May 21 affirmed a $3.7 million asbestos verdict, rejecting a defendant’s claim that experts testified that every exposure to asbestos caused disease, that the expert testimony did not support the verdict and that the court should have applied 2003 amendments to the joint and several liability standard (Jenella Conda v. 3M, et al., Nos. A17-1381, A17-2040, Minn. App., 2018 Minn. App. Unpub. LEXIS 423).

  • May 24, 2018

    Claimants Seek To Have Future Asbestos Claims Against Debtors Reinstated

    WILMINGTON, Del. — The due process violations suffered by future asbestos claimants from the reorganization plan of Chapter 11 debtor Energy Future Holdings Corp. (EFH) are so egregious that the plan’s treatment of the claimants demands reversal, eight such claimants told a Delaware federal court May 21 in their appeal of the plan’s confirmation (Sherry Fenicle, et al. v. Energy Future Holdings Corp., et al., No. 18-381, D. Del.).

  • May 24, 2018

    Ford, Honeywell Appeal, Seeking Unlimited Access To Asbestos Trusts’ Claim Data

    PHILADELPHIA — Ford Motor Co. and Honeywell International Inc. continued their fight to have unfettered access to asbestos claimants’ data from nine asbestos trusts, saying in a May 11 case summary in the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that lower courts violated their rights by limiting their access to the information (In re:  AC&S, Inc., et al., No. 18-1951, 3rd Cir.).

  • May 24, 2018

    Hospital’s 3rd Circuit Appeal In W.R. Grace Row Hits Early Snag

    PHILADELPHIA — The Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on May 15 gave a South Carolina hospital pursuing asbestos property damage claims against former Chapter 11 debtor W.R. Grace & Co. more time to respond to the court’s order that it may not have jurisdiction over the hospital’s latest appeal in the long-running dispute (In re Grace & Co., et al., No. 18-1960, 3rd Cir.).