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Mealey's Asbestos Bankruptcy

  • June 3, 2019

    Texas Top Court Won’t Review Employer’s Asbestos Liability Case

    AUSTIN, Texas — The Texas Supreme Court on May 31 declined to weigh in on the proper standard for holding an employer grossly negligent for asbestos exposures and whether an appellate court properly reduced punitive damages in the case (The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. v. Vicki Lynn Rogers, et al., No. 18-0056, Texas Sup.).

  • June 3, 2019

    New York Jury Adds $300M In Punitive Damages To J&J Asbestos-Talc Verdict

    NEW YORK — New York County jurors awarded $300 million in punitive damages in an asbestos-talc case against Johnson & Johnson and Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc. on May 31, the first such award in the court since at least 1994, sources told Mealey Publications (Donna Olson v. Brenntag North America Inc., et al., No. 190328/2017, N.Y. Sup., New York Co.).

  • June 3, 2019

    Bankruptcy Judge Approves Oakfabco’s Amended Plan And Asbestos Trust

    CHICAGO — An Illinois federal bankruptcy judge confirmed the Chapter 11 liquidation plan and its asbestos trust for boiler company Oakfabco Inc. on April 11, less than a year after the judge halted payments to attorneys working on the case due to a lack of progress (In re:  Oakfabco, Inc., No. 15-27062, N.D. Ill. Bkcy.).

  • May 30, 2019

    Bankruptcy Judge Seeks More Information From Imerys’ FCR Candidate

    WILMINGTON, Del. — After the proposed candidate for future claimants’ representative (FCR) in the Chapter 11 asbestos case of Imerys Talc America Inc. twice provided additional information to a Delaware federal bankruptcy judge on his lack of conflicts of interest, the bankruptcy judge on May 23 filed a letter seeking more information for her private inspection (In re:  Imerys Talc America, Inc., et al., No. 1:19-bk-10289, D. Del. Bkcy.).

  • May 23, 2019

    W.R. Grace Insurers Dispute Liability For Montana Plaintiffs’ Claims

    WILMINGTON, Del. — Negligence claims leveled by asbestos plaintiffs in Montana against insurers of former Chapter 11 debtor W.R. Grace & Co. are barred by W.R. Grace’s bankruptcy injunction because they meet the derivative liability requirements for injunctive protection, the insurers say in a May 20 reply brief on remand in Delaware federal bankruptcy court (Continental Casualty Co., et al. v. Jeremy B. Carr, et al., No. 15-50766, D. Del. Bkcy.).

  • May 23, 2019

    Kaiser Gypsum Debtors Drop Appeal Over Cleanup Costs At Oregon Site

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — With a $67 million settlement in place, a North Carolina federal court on May 13 dismissed an appeal over whether Chapter 11 asbestos debtors Kaiser Gypsum Co. Inc. and Hanson Permanente Cement Inc. are protected by the automatic stay from environmental cleanup cost state court settlement judgments in Oregon (Kaiser Gypsum Company, Inc., et al. v. Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, No. 3:18-cv-507, W.D. N.C.).

  • May 22, 2019

    J&J Secures Verdict In South Carolina Asbestos-Talc Case

    COLUMBIA, S.C. — A South Carolina jury returned a verdict for Johnson & Johnson on May 21, rejecting allegations that a woman’s personal and theatrical use of talcum powder caused her to develop mesothelioma, sources told Mealey Publications (Beth-Anee Johnson v. Johnson & Johnson, No. 2018CP4001781, S.C. Comm. Pls., Richland Co.). VIDEO FROM THE TRIAL IS AVAILABLE.

  • May 22, 2019

    J&J Fails To Secure Federal Jurisdiction Over California Asbestos-Talc Cases

    LOS ANGELES — Equitable factors weigh heavily in favor of litigating asbestos-talc cases in state court, a federal judge in California held May 21 in remanding 42 actions against Johnson & Johnson (In re:  Removed state court talc actions against Johnson & Johnson, et al., No. 19-3130, C.D. Calif.).

  • May 22, 2019

    Georgia-Pacific Joins Adversary Action To Halt Asbestos Lawsuits

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Georgia-Pacific, an affiliate of Chapter 11 debtor Bestwall LLC, got the go-ahead from a North Carolina federal bankruptcy judge April 5 to intervene in an adversary case filed by the debtor seeking to enjoin all asbestos actions against the company (Bestwall LLC v. Those Parties Listed on Appendix A to Complaint, et al., No. 17-03105, W.D. N.C. Bkcy.).

  • May 21, 2019

    W.R. Grace: Class Cert Denial For Building Asbestos Claims Clearly Not Appealable

    PHILADELPHIA — A bankruptcy court’s denial of certification for a class of property owners seeking damages for asbestos supplied by former Chapter 11 debtor W.R. Grace & Co. was an interlocutory ruling, so a hospital’s appeal of the decision should be dismissed, the former debtor argues May 13 to the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (In re Grace & Co., et al., No. 18-1960, 3rd Cir.).

  • May 21, 2019

    California Jury Awards More Than $3M In Mesothelioma Case

    VAN NUYS, Calif. — A California judge on April 30 entered a $1,311,429.54 judgment on a slightly more than $3 million verdict to a couple in a mesothelioma action (Ervan Groves, et al. v. ABB Inc., et al., No. BC696443, Calif. Super., Los Angeles Co.).

  • May 21, 2019

    Workers’ Comp Insurer Urges Montana High Court To Reject Asbestos Liability

    HELENA, Mont. — The court should reject a plaintiff’s “distorted” and backward-working attempt at creating liability on behalf of a workers’ compensation insurer for asbestos exposures and instead adopt sound analytical framework from the Restatement of Torts, an insurer tells the Montana Supreme Court in a May 3 reply brief (Maryland Casualty Co. v. The Asbestos Claims Court, et al., No. OP 19-0051, Mont. Sup.).

  • May 17, 2019

    Fraser’s Asbestos Claimants Seek To Pursue Recovery Against Insurance Carriers

    TACOMA, Wash. — Asbestos claimants of Chapter 11 debtor Fraser’s Boiler Service Inc. on May 14 sought relief from the automatic stay in Washington federal bankruptcy court so they can continue their lawsuits seeking damages only from the company’s insurers (In re:  Fraser’s Boiler Service, Inc., No. 18-41245, W.D. Wash. Bkcy.).

  • May 16, 2019

    Maremont Adds Fraud Protections To Plan, Says Confirmation Is Expected

    WILMINGTON, Del. — With changes made to asbestos trust procedures to guard against fraud, the plan of reorganization for Chapter 11 debtor Maremont Corp. can now be approved by a Delaware federal bankruptcy court, the debtor says in the May 14 revised procedures and proposed findings (In re:  Maremont Corporation, et al., No. 19-10118, D. Del. Bkcy.).

  • May 13, 2019

    Federal Judge’s Ruling Provides Potential Guidance In J&J Asbestos Removal Fight

    NEW YORK — A federal judge on May 9 declined an emergency motion seeking to bring state court asbestos-talc actions against Johnson & Johnson into federal court, potentially providing some guidance to a judge who on May 6 cited the Imerys Talc America Inc. bankruptcy case at the heart of the motion as the basis for staying more than two dozen asbestos-talc actions while allowing “placeholder” remand motions (In re: Various removed state court action against, inter alia, Johnson & Johnson (State Court Talc Actions), No. 19-3530, S.D. N.Y.).

  • May 13, 2019

    Judge Overseeing Case At Heart Of J&J Stay Motion Denies Asbestos-Talc Transfers

    BUFFALO, N.Y. — Johnson & Johnson said in a May 1 reply brief that a federal judge should follow in the footsteps of a Southern District of New York colleague and stay an asbestos-talc case, but on May 9, a judge in a separate case on which the company relied in its motion denied its emergency motion seeking to use a supplier’s bankruptcy to haul state court talc cases against it into federal court (John Castro, et al. v. Colgate-Palmolive Co., et al., No. 19-279, W.D. N.Y.).

  • May 13, 2019

    Louisiana Court Reinstates Octogenarian’s $1M Future Asbestos Medical Costs Award

    NEW ORLEANS — Sufficient evidence supports a jury’s negligence finding against two employers and the original $1 million awarded to an octogenarian for future medical expenses, a Louisiana appeals court said May 8 (Jerry Craft v. Ports America Gulfport Inc., et al., No. 2018-CA-0814, La. App., 4th Cir.).

  • May 13, 2019

    Johnson & Johnson’s Bid For Speedy Transfer Of State Cases Rejected

    WILMINGTON, Del. — A Delaware federal judge on May 9 denied Johnson & Johnson’s “emergency” request to transfer 2,400 state court talc and asbestos actions to his court due to the bankruptcy filing of talc supplier Imerys Talc America Inc., agreeing with tort plaintiffs that Johnson & Johnson created its own emergency by suddenly removing hundreds of suits before the transfer dispute was decided (In re:  Imerys Talc America, Inc., et al., No. 1:19-mc-00103, D. Del., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 78145).

  • May 10, 2019

    Bankruptcy Judge In Talc Case Sets ‘Undivided Loyalty’ As New Standard For FCR

    WILMINGTON, Del. — A Delaware federal bankruptcy judge on May 8 eschewed the long-used “disinterestedness” standard for naming a legal representative for future claimants in asbestos Chapter 11 cases before ruling that the candidate for future claimants’ representative (FCR) proposed by debtor talc supplier Imerys Talc America Inc. must provide additional disclosures before being appointed (In re:  Imerys Talc America, Inc., et al., No. 1:19-bk-10289, D. Del. Bkcy., 2019 Bankr. LEXIS 1452).

  • May 9, 2019

    New York Justice Affirms Viability Of $7,024,000 Buffalo Asbestos Verdict

    BUFFALO, N.Y. — The jury heard admissible and sufficient evidence supporting a $7,024,000 verdict for a police officer suffering from mesothelioma, a New York justice held in an opinion posted May 7 (James Stock Jr., et al. v. Air & Liquid Systems Corp., et al., No. 807846/2017, N.Y. Sup., Erie Co.).

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