CLEVELAND — A woman’s testimony regarding her regular visits to a mechanic’s garage to visit her fiance and the work she witnessed while there satisfies Ohio’s standard of proof for asbestos cases, a federal judge held Dec. 13 (Julia C. Alexander, et al. v. Honeywell International Inc., et al., No. 17-504, N.D. Ohio, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 205053).
MINNEAPOLIS — Asbestos plaintiffs appealing a summary judgment ruling must respond to defendants’ claim that the time to appeal began with the original judgment, not an amended one, making the appeal four days too late, the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals said Dec. 11 (Marlin P. Filipek, et al. v. The Boeing Co., et al., No. 17-3363, 8th Cir.).
OAKLAND, Calif. — A California jury on Dec. 11 added $4.6 million in punitive damages after finding two talc companies liable for $17.5 million in compensatory damages for a man’s asbestos-related mesothelioma (Booker v. Vanderbilt Minerals, No. RG15796166, Calif. Super., Alameda Co.).
NEW YORK — The New York Court of Appeals heard oral arguments on Nov. 15 on whether the “follow-the-form” provision mandates concurrency between insurance and reinsurance in the context of expense coverage (Global Reinsurance Corporation of America v. Century Indemnity Co., No. CTQ-2016, 0005, N.Y. App.).
DALLAS — A judge stepped outside the bounds of a motion challenging jurisdiction and resolved merit questions, a woman told a Texas appeals court on Dec. 8 in asking it to reinstate her case seeking to obtain a copy of a deposition she claims will show an asbestos law firm coaching witnesses (Christine Cole Biederman v. Beverly Jean Brown, et al., No. 01-07-00263-CV, Texas App., 1st Dist.).
WILMINGTON, Del. — A man’s testimony that he worked on his wife’s new Ford Motor Co. Mustang is sufficient evidence on which to allege exposure to asbestos in originally installed parts, products the company had a duty to warn about, a federal magistrate judge in Delaware said Dec. 12 while granting judgment on other alleged exposures (Gerald L. Hickman v. A.W. Chesterton Co., et al., No. 16-308, D. Del., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 203692).
DALLAS — A Texas appeals court on Dec. 12 declined to once again wade into a dispute over whether a company preserved the right to appeal a ruling on the role radiation may have played in a man’s lung cancer and the resulting $18.6 million asbestos verdict (The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. v. Vicki Lynn Rogers, et al., No. 05-15-00001-CV, Texas App., 5th Dist.).
NEW ORLEANS — The presence of a second defendant entitled to federal jurisdiction means that despite proper elimination of claims against a shipyard, an asbestos case will stay in federal court, a federal judge in Louisiana held Dec. 6 (Diane Pitre, et al. v. Huntington Ingalls Inc., et al., No. 17-7029, E.D. La., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 200355).
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Supreme Court on Dec. 8 asked a man awarded $6 million for his mesothelioma to respond to a drywall materials company’s petition asking the court to find jurisdiction lacking and vacate the verdict (Murco Wall Products Inc. v. Michael D. Galier, No. 17-733, U.S. Sup.).
DURHAM, N.C. — Two co-workers’ inability to recall how a man could have been exposed to a defendant’s product is the extent of a man’s asbestos case and falls short of the regular, frequent, proximate standard for causation, a federal judge in North Carolina said Dec. 7 (Jonathan A. Queen, et al. v. CBS Corp., et al., No. 16-330, M.D. N.C., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 201299).
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — A judge properly ordered a boiler company to produce more than 5,000 index cards after the company voluntarily permitted inspection by an asbestos plaintiff, an Illinois appeals court held Dec. 5 (Larry Salvatore Sr., et al. v. Cleaver-Brooks, et al., No. 4-17-0173, Ill. App., 4th Dist.).
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Requiring every asbestos lung cancer plaintiff who ever smoked tobacco to provide a medical expert opinion that the person doesn’t qualify as a “smoker” would produce absurd results, burden nonsmokers and is at odds with a decade of precedent and the law’s intent, a man told the Ohio Supreme Court Dec. 6 (Bobby Turner, et al. v. Union Carbide Corp., et al., No. 17-0004, Ohio Sup.).
PHILADELPHIA — The exclusion of two experts did little to change the state of a case as two other experts hold the same opinions regarding asbestos-contaminated talc’s role in causing mesothelioma, a woman told a Pennsylvania judge on Dec. 4 (Sally Brandt, et al. v. The Bon-Ton Stores Inc., et al., No. 151202987, Pa. Comm. Pls., Philadelphia Co.).
WILMINGTON, Del. — A medical expert cannot simply conclude that occupational exposures included a defendant’s product, and absent that link, the claim fails, a Delaware judge held Nov. 8 (Tawnya Ardis v. ArvinMeritor Inc., et al., No. N13C-10-020 ASB, Del. Super., New Castle Co.).
ADELAIDE, South Australia — An Australian appeals court on Oct. 30 dramatically increased an exemplary asbestos damages award, increasing the verdict to a record-setting $250,000, saying that while Australian courts are loath to award such damages, James Hardie’s “reprehensible” conduct renders the original award “manifestly inadequate” (Amaca Pty Ltd v. Latz, No.  SASCFC 145, S. Australia Sup.).
WILMINGTON, Del. — A man presents sufficient evidence that he regularly used a company’s brakes during the time it used asbestos, but his claims against a raw asbestos fiber supplier fail, a Delaware judge held Nov. 8 in applying Rhode Island law (Raymond K. Leathers v. Borgwarner Morse Tec, et al., No. N15C-11-224 ASB, Del. Super., New Castle Co.).
NEW YORK — Two boiler makers have failed to show that they could not have foreseen that their products would need to be demolished for removal from residences, thereby exposing the worker to asbestos, a New York justice held Nov. 1 (Mary Murphy-Clagett, et al. v. A.O. Smith Water Products, et al., No. 190311/2015, N.Y. Sup., New York Co., 2017 N.Y. Misc. LEXIS 4145, 2017 N.Y. Misc. LEXIS 4152).
PHILADELPHIA — Three maritime plaintiffs whose cases were part of the federal asbestos multidistrict litigation judge’s order dismissing 4,400 cases for lack of personal jurisdiction appealed that 2014 decision on Nov. 9 to the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Louis Munnier, William D. Schroeder, Richard G. Williams v. Charles Kurz & Co. Inc.., No. 17-3471, 3rd Cir.).
BATON ROUGE, La. — A Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel is set to decide whether deposition testimony counts as “other paper” and triggers the time for removing an action or whether the clock starts only after defendants receive the transcript, after the court held oral arguments Nov. 8 in an asbestos case (Curtis D. Morgan v. Dow Chemical Co., et al., No. 17-30523, 5th Cir.).
NEW YORK — Claims by two defendants that they designed and manufactured products at the direction of the U.S. Navy are sufficient to remove an asbestos case, a federal judge in New York held Nov. 27 (Michael B. Donohue, et al. v. CBS Corp., et al., No. 17-7232, S.D. N.Y., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 195159).