Category Archives: Federal Officer Jurisdiction

Timely Removed Take-Home Exposure Case Remanded for Failure to Establish Colorable Federal Defense U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, June 19, 2017

The plaintiffs filed suit against several defendants including Avondale alleging that their decedent, Ms. Blouin, contracted mesothelioma after washing the laundry of her husband’s work clothes. Victor Blouin worked as an electrician for Avondale onboard two government vessels from April 1972 until August 1972. The plaintiffs’ claims were brought in negligence and not for strict liability. Avondale removed the case to federal court on March 28, 2017, 26 days after receiving a copy of the deposition transcript. The plaintiffs’ moved to remand. The plaintiffs took…

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Abandonment of Claims Alleging Asbestos Exposure at Government Facilities Eliminated Federal Jurisdiction U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, May 31, 2017

Defendant Crane Co. appealed the remand ordered by the district court to New York State Court. Crane had removed based upon the federal officer removal statute. The appellate court affirmed the remand without a summary of the underlying facts. First, Crane argued remand was erroneous because the federal courts had original subject matter jurisdiction. The district court had concluded that the plaintiffs had abandoned any claims arising from asbestos exposure occurring at a government facility; thus, the basis on which this action was originally removed…

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Court Denies Defendant’s Motion to Apply Federal Maritime Law U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware, December 29, 2016

Plaintiffs Ralph Elliott Shaw and Joan Sanderson Shaw initiated this action by filing a complaint in the Superior Court of Delaware on February 26, 2015 asserting various causes of action arising out of Mr. Shaw’s alleged exposure to asbestos throughout his employment. Specifically, the plaintiff’s allegations include Mr. Shaw’s occupational exposure as a sheet metal worker in Groton, Connecticut from approximately 1952 to 1954 and 1957 to 1967. Mr. Shaw alleged exposure to asbestos throughout his employment, at various submarine factories and shipyards with respect…

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Remand Denied Under Federal Officer Jurisdiction Analysis for Plaintiff Alleging Asbestos Exposure in U.S. Navy U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Tampa Division, December 27, 2016

Plaintiff Marc Killiam served in the U.S. Navy from 1973 to 1977 aboard the USS McCandless while at sea and in the Philadelphia Navy Yard. He alleges that as a boiler tender he removed and replaced various asbestos containing products and that exposure to asbestos from those products caused his asbestosis. He filed suit in Hillsborough County, Florida on September 26, 2016 against various defendants, including Crane Co. Crane removed the case to the U.S. District Court on October 13, 2016 pursuant to 28 U.S.C.…

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Broad Interpretation of the Federal Officer Removal Statute Keeps Case Against Boeing in Federal Court U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, November 22, 2016

The plaintiff filed a failure-to-warn product liability suit against, among others, The Boeing Company, after his wife Mary became ill from alleged secondary asbestos exposure. Boeing removed to federal court based upon the federal officer removal statute. The district court remanded, and the appellate court reversed. The plaintiff alleged Mary suffered take home asbestos exposure through laundering the clothes of her first husband Robert Keck. While working for New Brunswick Plating Co. in the late 1970s, Keck sandblasted the landing gear of World War II…

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Federal Court Denies Remand on Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act Jurisdiction and Dismisses Fraud Counts of Complaint U.S. District Court for Eastern District Of Louisiana, November 17, 2016

The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana issued two opinions in the matter of Sheppard v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., et al. which denied the plaintiffs’ motion to remand and dismissed the plaintiffs’ fraud cause of action against the defendants. Plaintiff Jesse Frank Sheppard originally filed in the Civil District Court for the Parish of Orleans. Sheppard alleged that he developed lung cancer and/or mesothelioma as a result of exposure to asbestos while working for Freeport Sulphur Company. The plaintiff sued…

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Denial of Administrative Dismissal Turns on Definition of a “Smoker” Under Ohio State Code Court of Appeals of Ohio, Eighth Appellate District, November 17, 2016

Plaintiff Bobby Turner and his wife commenced an action in April 2013 alleging asbestos exposure caused his lung cancer. The plaintiff was a drywall finisher from 1962 to 1978. Defendant Union Carbide moved to administratively dismiss the claim in February 2014, claiming that the plaintiffs failed to submit prima facie evidence pursuant to R.C. 2307.92. (Under Ohio’s Revised Code General Provisions a plaintiff must meet minimum medical requirements for tort actions alleging an asbestos claim). In response, the plaintiffs submitted an affidavit saying that Mr.…

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Government Contractor Defense Applied to Crane Such That Motion to Remand to State Court Denied U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland, September 29, 2016

The decedent’s family filed a complaint in state court, which was removed to federal court by Crane Co. based upon the federal officer defense. The plaintiffs filed a motion to remand or, in the alternative, to sever all claims other than those against Crane and to remand all other claims. The motion to remand was denied. The decedent served in the Navy from 1952-56, and was then employed at Bethlehem Steel Sparrows Point Shipyard from 1956-59; from 1959-63, the decedent worked as a laborer at…

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Case Remanded to State Court as Defendants Could Not Use the Federal Officer Removal Statute Where the Plaintiff Expressly Disclaimed Any Naval Asbestos Exposure U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, May 6, 2016

Plaintiff Richard Batchelor, a former employee of Florida Power & Light Company who was diagnosed with terminal mesothelioma after he was exposed to and inhaled asbestos fibers from asbestos-containing products manufactured, sold, supplied, distributed, or controlled, by the defendants, sued in the Circuit Court for the 11th Judicial District in and for Miami-Dade County Florida alleging three causes of action; (i) negligence; (ii) strict liability; and (iii) loss of consortium. Following Batchelor’s deposition, during which he testified that he served in the U.S. Navy and,…

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Fourth Circuit Upholds Summary Judgment on Substantial Factor Causation and Affirms Denial of Remand Based on Federal Officer Jurisdiction U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, May 6, 2016

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit issued an opinion in two consolidated appeals upholding the granting of summary judgment to defendants CBS Corporation, General Electric Corporation (GE), MCIC (local insulation contractor), Paramount Packing & Rubber Company, Phelps Packing & Rubber Company, SB Decking, Inc., Wallace & Gale Asbestos Settlement Trust (local insulation contractor), and Foster-Wheeler Energy Corporation. The two consolidated cases involved alleged exposures to dust asbestos-containing products manufactured, supplied, or installed by the defendants at Baltimore, Maryland area shipyards. On appeal,…

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