MISSOULA, Mont. — A Libby, Mont., screening company’s submission of Medicare coverage claims under a special asbestos-related disease provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) without the required diagnosis from a medical professional constitutes the submission of false claims, a railway tells a federal judge in Montana May 9 in opposing summary judgment.
TRENTON, N.J. — Johnson & Johnson (J&J) induced thousands of plaintiffs to dismiss their industrial talc lawsuits by withholding evidence and claiming that there was no asbestos contamination, despite knowing as early as the 1970s from testing and experts that such contamination existed, a May 9 New Jersey Superior Court class action lawsuit alleges.
RALEIGH, N.C. — Claims that including asbestos in insulation rendered it defectively designed and that an alleged professional services company is responsible for the product’s use keep it in a couple’s action, a federal judge in North Carolina said May 13.
EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. — With the lone defendant asserting a federal officer defense to an asbestos action now dropped from an amended complaint, there is nothing keeping the action in federal court, a federal judge in Illinois said May 16 granting remand.
NEW ORLEANS — A Louisiana federal judge on May 11 granted an insurer’s motion for summary judgment on a punitive damages claim brought by an asbestos claimant under a former Louisiana Civil Code article after determining that the insurer’s policy was not effective during the time in which the Louisiana law was effective.
Asserting that National Indemnity Co. (NICO) recently entered into an agreement with Montana to settle its potential liability to the state for claims related to alleged asbestos exposure to milling and mining operations in the Libby, Mont., area between July 1973 and July 1975, Global Reinsurance Corporation of America and R&Q Reinsurance Co. on May 10 filed similar suits in Pennsylvania and New York federal courts seeking declarations regarding their rights and obligations under facultative reinsurance certificates that their predecessors-in-interest issued to NICO.
NEW YORK — Not producing even basic discovery for more than a year despite court rules and opinions requiring production evidences an intent at delaying discovery and trial, a New York justice said May 9 in imposing $10,000 in sanctions each on two companies and their law firm while denying the defendants’ motion for summary judgment.
BOWLING GREEN, Ky. — Even though a Brazilian manufacturer’s brakes ended up in Kentucky, the tenuous connection between the two renders exercising jurisdiction impossible, a federal judge in Kentucky said May 6 in dismissing the case for lack of personal jurisdiction.
LOS ANGELES — A jury’s $5 million award in an asbestos case is well within reason, but its apportionment of no liability to a defendant it found was a substantial factor in a man’s mesothelioma must be retried, a California judge said May 9 in partially granting a plaintiffs’ motion for a new trial.
MISSOULA, Mont. — A railway’s subpoena to a third-party law firm seeks evidence previously produced by a party to the False Claims Act lawsuit, and the 10-day deadline for producing more than a decade worth of communications constitutes an undue burden, a federal judge in Montana said in quashing the subpoena May 6 and imposing sanctions on the railway.
SEATTLE — A trial court properly excluded two experts’ testimony in a dust-mask asbestos case, but it improperly included but-for and superseding cause instructions, requiring a new trial on negligence, a Washington appeals court said May 9.
NEW YORK — The ability to submit interrogatories resolves a defendant’s concerns about not being able to question a plaintiff after her truncated deposition, and having asked the court to exclude the testimony, that defendant cannot now complain that the court lacked the authority to make such a ruling, a New York justice held April 7.
The following is a listing of plaintiff and defense experts who testified in trials covered by Mealey's Litigation Report: Asbestos since Jan. 1, 2002.
NEW YORK — Interrogatories represent a feasible alternative to continuing the deposition of an 84-year-old woman whose anxiety forced her to prematurely end her testimony, a New York justice said in denying a motion to reargue on April 7.
SAN FRANCISCO — A woman’s knowledge that a company manufactured brake assemblies did not put her on notice that it could be liable for her husband’s asbestos exposures and its naming as a Doe defendant related back to the original complaint and was timely, a California appeals court said April 25 in reversing summary judgment for the defendant.
TRENTON, N.J. — Two Johnson & Johnson entities have not shown that the private communications between the news media and attorneys or their asbestos expert is sufficiently relevant to securities litigation against the company over representations about its talc as to be discoverable, a federal magistrate judge in New Jersey said April 29 in quashing subpoenas.
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — John Crane Inc. overstates or misstates its case in challenges to how a trial court handled the admission of a causation expert, Florida asbestos law and jury instructions, a widow says April 25 in defending an $18 million verdict.
SAN FRANCISCO — The three-year statute of limitations on a maritime wrongful death asbestos action began when the seaman died, not when he first learned of his injury, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals said April 29 in reversing summary judgment for three defendants
MISSOULA, Mont. — The United States on April 21 told a judge that federal law protects private Medicare and Social Security information and argued that the information would become relevant to a railway’s case against a Libby, Mont., asbestos screening company only in the event that the court awarded damages. But in an April 28 reply in support of its second motion to compel, the railway said any privacy issues can be remedied by subjecting the relevant evidence to an existing protective order.
TRENTON, N.J. — A federal judge in New Jersey on May 3 granted final approval of a $10 million class action settlement for claims that Honeywell International Inc. used a five-year reporting window in an effort to avoid disclosing more than $1 billion in asbestos liabilities.