HARRISBURG, Pa. — A widow on May 18 asked the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to review whether her husband’s settlement involving Federal Employers’ Liability Act (FELA) nonmalignant pulmonary disease claims can bar her subsequent action alleging he contracted and died of lung cancer, after both the trial and intermediate appellate court concluded that it did (Margaret Jarrett, et al. v. Consolidated Rail Corp., No. 210 EAL 2018, Pa. Sup.).
SAGINAW, Mich. — A Michigan judge on April 23 entered a $1,926,618.92 judgment against Ferro Engineering Division of ON Marine Services Co., after a jury found the defendant’s negligence a proximate cause in a man’s lung cancer (Parrott v. ON Marine, No. N/A, Mich. Cir. Saginaw Co.).
SAN FRANCISCO — To prevail on a statute of limitations defense to an asbestos wrongful death claim, a defendant needed to show that all the plaintiffs had actual knowledge that a retailer sold their decedent asbestos-containing products that gave rise to his fatal mesothelioma, including his Alzheimer’s-suffering widow, plaintiffs told a California appeals court on April 2 (Glenn Williams, et al. v. AutoZone West Inc., et al., No. A147937, Calif. App., 1st Dist.).
CLEVELAND — An Ohio jury on May 3 found a railroad 60 percent liable for a former employee’s asbestos-related lung cancer, awarding the man $4,508,488 on his Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA) claim (Kevin E. Howell v. Consolidated Rail Corp., et al., No. CV-15-846529, Ohio Comm. Pls., Cuyahoga Co.).
NEW ORLEANS — A shipyard on May 21 filed a notice of appeal in yet another case in which a judge remanded an asbestos action after finding allegations of negligent failure to warn about the presence of asbestos outside the federal officer removal statute (James A. Latiolais v. Huntington Ingalls Inc., et al., No. 17-11770, E.D. La.).
CHICAGO — The absence of evidence of General Electric Co.’s asbestos-containing products in Illinois defeats specific personal jurisdiction, and the company’s contacts with the state are not large enough to create general personal jurisdiction, a state appeals court held May 18 while declining to adopt jurisdiction by necessity (Arlin Campbell, et al. v. Acme Insulation Inc., et al., No. 1-17-3051, Ill. App., 1st Dist., 2018 Ill. App. LEXIS 294).
NEW ORLEANS — A company’s shell-dredging operations in Louisiana in 1973 keep a company in an asbestos action, a federal judge held May 18 in declining to impose a temporal limitation to the specific jurisdiction analysis (Robert Schindler v. Dravo Basic Materials Company Inc., No. 17-013013, E.D. La., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 83922).
OAKLAND, Calif. — The California Supreme Court on April 11 denied a petition for review or depublication of a ruling finding that a couple had submitted adequate evidence of exposure and reinstating an asbestos case (Keith Turley, et al. v. Familian Corp., No. S246790, Calif. Sup.).
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Missouri appeals court on May 3 held in abeyance a motion to stay an asbestos workers’ compensation case involving whether an employer had to actively accept liability for claims after a new law reinstated the statute’s exclusivity provision but increased liability for the claims (Vincent Hegger v. Valley Farm Dairy Co., No. ED106278, Mo. App., Eastern Dist.).
NEW YORK — A New York justice denied consolidated trial for three asbestos-related cancer sufferers, saying in an opinion posted May 10 that while the three share diseases and an employer, the differences in products and types of exposure are just too great (Anthony T. Bucci, et al. v. Air & Liquid Systems Corp., et al. No. 190354/15, N.Y. Sup., New York Co.).
SYRACUSE, N.Y. — In an April 30 opposition brief, a reinsurer argues that an insurer’s request to reconsider a New York federal judge’s finding of ambiguity in the reinsurance certificate provisions related to an underlying $3.2 million asbestos settlement “is a textbook example of a party improperly seeking to reargue issues already addressed” (Utica Mutual Insurance Co. v. Munich Reinsurance America Inc., Nos. 12-00196 & 13-00743, N.D. N.Y.).
NEW ORLEANS — Technical deficiencies in a complaint are not evidence of improper joinder, and a woman will need discovery to flesh out her claims against a retailer she claims sold asbestos-tainted talc, a federal judge in Louisiana held in finding joinder proper and remanding the case on May 17 (Marilyn Rousseau v. Johnson & Johnson, et al., No. 18-2922, E.D. La., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 83230).
LOS ANGELES — Factually devoid discovery responses and questionable chain of custody over allegedly asbestos-tainted talc samples sinks a man’s case, a California appeals court affirmed May 16 (John Wittman v. Coty Inc., No. B286135, Calif. App., 2nd Dist.).
BRIDGEPORT, Conn. — Two reinsurers on May 4 moved to dismiss a breach of contract lawsuit arising out of the settlement of asbestos claims because a Connecticut federal court lacks personal jurisdiction as the contracts were formed and performed outside of the state (Travelers Casualty and Surety Co. v. Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co., et al., No. 18-00088, D. Conn.).
NEW YORK — Similar types of products at the heart of two men’s asbestos exposures are not enough to overcome different vectors of exposure and diseases, a New York justice held in denying consolidated trial in an opinion posted May 15 (Joseph Montebianco, et al. v. A.O. Smith Corp., et al., No. 190185/15, N.Y. Sup., New York Co.).
WAUSAU, Wis. — A Wisconsin statute governing fraudulent transfer of assets does not alter the fraudulent transfer exception analysis to the general rule against successor liability, a majority of the state’s Supreme Court held May 15 (Penny L. Springer v. Nohl Electric Products Corp., et al., No. 2015AP829, Wis. Sup.).
BOSTON — A federal judge on May 14 filed a certified question to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, asking whether the state’s six-year statute of repose applies to an asbestos case, creating absolute immunity for a turbine generator manufacturer (June Stearns, et al. v. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., et al., No. 15-13490, D. Mass.).
BALTIMORE — An illogical $5 million asbestos verdict finding defendants liable for negligently failing to warn but not the lower standard of strict liability failure to warn likely arose from jury instruction error and warrants a new trial, a Maryland appeals court held May 11 (Mack Trucks Inc., et al. v. Christopher Coates Sr., No. 2706 September Term 2016, Md. Sp. App.).
MIAMI — Parties to a Florida Supreme Court case involving the admissibility of “cumulative exposure” asbestos causation testimony filed a joint stipulation for dismissal on April 18 (Northrop Grumman Systems Corp., et al. v. Rosa-Maria Britt, et al., No. SC17-1780, Fla. Sup.).
TRENTON, N.J. — Experts tested period-specific bottles of talc free from evidence of outside contamination, further confirming the presence of asbestos about which defendants knew, meeting the causation standard regardless of what term is used to describe the mineral’s form, a couple tells a New Jersey court in a trio of May 7 briefs supporting their $117 million verdict (Stephen Lanzo, et al. v. Cyprus Amex Minerals Co., et al., No. MID-L-00738516, N.J. Super., Middlesex Co.).