Mealey's Asbestos

  • July 22, 2022

    Texas Court: FELA Settlement Contemplates, Bars Future Asbestos-Cancer Claim

    FORT WORTH, Texas — Because a 2006 settlement of a Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA) asbestosis case unambiguously includes a release for future asbestos-related claims, it bars a subsequent asbestos-related lung cancer action, a Texas appeals court said July 14 in resolving an issue of first impression.

  • July 21, 2022

    N.Y. Court: Nemeth Requires Summary Judgment In Asbestos Floor Tile Case

    NEW YORK — Competing simulation studies involving the release of asbestos from floor tiles cannot help plaintiffs avoid summary judgment under recent New York precedent because the defendant’s simulation purports to show safe levels of exposure, while the plaintiff’s expert merely broadly stated that there is no safe exposure level and that the presence of visible dust demonstrated excessive exposure, a New York appeals court held in a trio of opinions issued July 19.

  • July 21, 2022

    BorgWarner, Plaintiffs Resolve Asbestos-Liability Reporting Securities Case

    DETROIT — A federal judge on June 22 granted preliminary approval to a settlement under which BorgWarner Inc. agreed to “significant” amendments to internal procedures, resolving shareholder claims stemming from the company’s reporting of asbestos liabilities and handling of stock repurchases and allegations of insider trading.

  • July 20, 2022

    Parties Brief Availability Of State Law Damages With Maritime Damages Dismissed

    NEWPORT NEWS, Va. — Even with maritime damages off the table, Virginia wrongful death damages remain available in an asbestos action and a court should permit the case to proceed, a widow told a federal judge.  But John Crane Inc. argued in a July 15 reply in support of its supplemental motion for summary judgment that the woman intentionally abandoned state law claims and should not now be able to strategically wrangle herself out of the situation.

  • July 20, 2022

    New York Court Reverses $120M J&J Asbestos-Talc Verdict

    NEW YORK — A New York intermediate appeals court reversed a $120 million asbestos-talc verdict against two Johnson & Johnson entities on July 19, saying that even accepting evidence about the lifetime asbestos exposure caused by talc use, plaintiffs didn’t establish the level required for causation.

  • July 20, 2022

    $3.9M Owed Under Excess Policies For Underlying Asbestos Injury Verdict

    ROCHESTER, N.Y. — A New York justice on July 18 determined that an insurer owes approximately $3.9 million, based on an all-sums method of allocation, to satisfy an underlying asbestos bodily injury verdict entered against an insured because the underlying claimants timely alleged covered occurrences under the excess policies at issue.

  • July 20, 2022

    Judge Partially Excludes Hygienist’s Asbestos Testing Testimony As Hearsay

    NEW ORLEANS — A shipyard may not disclose to a jury an industrial hygienist’s statements about what federal inspectors told him about air sampling at the facility, and two other defendants’ motion for reconsideration of a ruling imposing time limits on any trial violates an order finding the deadline for all motions closed, a federal judge in Louisiana said in a pair of July 18 rulings.

  • July 20, 2022

    Asbestos Judgment Improperly Awarded Interest On Interest, Company Complains

    LOS ANGELES — A door manufacturing company found 50% liable for a $43.79 million verdict in a take-home asbestos exposure case told the court on July 18 that the subsequent judgment awards interest on interest in violation of governing case law.

  • July 18, 2022

    Pennsylvania Jury Awards $3.82M In Industrial-Talc Asbestos Case

    PHILADELPHIA — A Pennsylvania jury on July 14 awarded $3.82 million to the widow of a man who died of mesothelioma after occupational exposure to asbestos in industrial talc.

  • July 18, 2022

    Sophisticated User Doctrine Frees Asbestos-Micarta Maker From Warning Claims

    NEW ORLEANS — A maker of micarta board has not eliminated the possibility of exposure to asbestos from its product or that the chrysotile asbestos was incapable of causing disease, but it escapes from failure-to-warn claims under the sophisticated user doctrine, a federal judge in Louisiana said July 13.

  • July 18, 2022

    Montana Asbestos Plaintiffs, Zurich Brief Court On Dismissal, Summary Judgment

    GREAT FALLS, Mont. — A federal judge in Montana on July 7 gave W.R. Grace & Co. insurer Zurich Insurance Co. until later in the month to file a reply brief in support of its motion to dismiss claims that it improperly uses retroactive reinsurance to delay asbestos liability claims in an effort to profit off the “float” and gave it until August to respond to a motion for summary judgment in which plaintiffs contend the insurer’s liability is reasonably clear and requires advance payment.

  • July 15, 2022

    Asbestos Case Amici Outline Registration Statute Legitimacy, Limits

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — In 10 U.S. Supreme Court amicus curiae briefs filed July 12 — five filed in support of neither party — amici outlined whether states can make consent to jurisdiction a condition of registering to do business in the state and if so what limits the court might place on such powers in an asbestos case against a railroad.

  • July 15, 2022

    Judge: Removal Untimely, Lack Of Evidence Against Nondiverse Defendant Obvious

    MILWAUKEE — A railroad should have known about the paucity of evidence against the lone nondiverse defendant when that company moved for summary judgment in March, rendering the railroad’s eventual May removal untimely, a federal judge in Wisconsin said July 13 in granting a motion to remand.

  • July 14, 2022

    Man: Precedent, Economic Realities Support Pennsylvania Registration Statute

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Decades of precedent and the realities of commerce warrant finding that Pennsylvania can impose jurisdiction in an asbestos lawsuit over a railway as a consequence of its registering to do business in the state, a man told the U.S. Supreme Court on July 5.

  • July 14, 2022

    Asbestos Expert’s ‘Generic’ Qualitative Assessment Causation Opinion Stricken

    OAKLAND, Calif. — An expert’s qualitative assessment lacks any evaluation of actual exposures, their frequency or how regularly they occurred, a federal judge in California said July 11 in striking the specific causation testimony as “too generic” under federal law.

  • July 14, 2022

    With Parties Engaged In ‘Significant’ Discussions, Deadlines Get Extended

    WILMINGTON, Del. — After a judge adopted her recommendation granting Crane Co. summary judgment on statute of repose grounds, a federal magistrate judge in Delaware issued an oral order July 12 directing the remaining parties to submit an amended scheduling order implementing deadlines from their joint status report after they requested continuing deadlines for 60 days in light of ongoing and “significant” settlement discussions.

  • July 13, 2022

    Judge Partially Grants Summary Judgment On Asbestos Turbine Claims

    NEW ORLEANS — Ample evidence shows that a company specified the use of asbestos-containing gaskets on its turbines, but the evidence shows that while those turbines required insulation and that asbestos was a popular choice, the company did not design its product to use asbestos-containing insulation, a federal judge in Louisiana said July 8 in partially granting summary judgment.

  • July 13, 2022

    Ky. Federal Judge: Absent Foreign Asbestos Defendant May Be Apportioned Liability

    BOWLING GREEN, Ky. — Kentucky law permits apportionment of liability to a defendant dismissed on jurisdictional grounds because apportionment acts more as a defense to asbestos claims by the company at trial and does not require entry of judgment against the absent party, a federal judge in the state said July 11.

  • July 13, 2022

    Majority Says Policies’ Assignment Was Valid, Coverage Owed For Asbestos Liabilities

    MILWAUKEE — The majority of the Wisconsin Court of Appeals on July 8 determined that a trial court erred in finding that the assignment of insurance policies to the insureds’ successor companies for underlying asbestos claims was not valid based on the policies’ anti-assignment provision because under Wisconsin law, anti-assignment provisions are unenforceable if the assignment occurs after the loss for which coverage is sought.

  • July 12, 2022

    Plaintiff/Defense Experts Testifying Since Jan. 1, 2002

    (Includes plaintiff and defense experts who testified in trials covered in The Report since Jan. 1, 2002.)

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