Category Archives: Other Asbestos News

Reversal of $72 Million Ovarian Cancer/Talc Verdict on Jurisdiction May Lead to Fewer Asbestos Filings in Missouri Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District, October 17, 2017

MISSOURI — In a case that could lead to fewer asbestos filings in Missouri, Johnson and Johnson successfully argued that the trial court lacked personal jurisdiction over it after a $72 million dollar plaintiff verdict in an ovarian cancer / talc case. Plaintiff Jacqueline Fox was one of 65 plaintiffs who filed suit against Johnson and Johnson (J and J) and Imerys Talc. J and J is a New Jersey resident and Imerys is a Delaware corporation. Both were sued in Missouri. The plaintiffs alleged…

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Personal Jurisdiction Challenges Growing in Madison County; May Lead to Fewer Asbestos Filings Supreme Court of Illinois, September 21, 2017

ILLINOIS — Continuing a national trend following the Bristol Myers Squibb Co. v. Supreme Court of California (2017) and Daimler AG v. Bauman (2014), the Supreme Court of Illinois has issued a personal jurisdiction opinion that will limit the ability of out-of-state plaintiffs to file suit in Illinois against “non-resident” or foreign defendants. In the matter of Aspen American Insurance Company v. Interstate Warehousing, Inc., Eastern Fish Company (Eastern) is a New Jersey-based corporation that sources and imports fish products. In 2013, Eastern contracted with…

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Appellate Division Grants Temporary Stay on NYCAL CMO

On July 19, 2017, Justice Ellen Gesmer of the Appellate Division, First Department generally granted various NYCAL defendants’ order to show cause seeking a temporary stay of the implementation of a new NYCAL Case Management Order (CMO), which was issued by prior NYCAL Justice Peter Moulton. The order provides for a minor exception to the temporary stay. The order includes a briefing schedule for the motion seeking a stay of the New CMO during the pendency of the NYCAL defendants’ appeal from the NYCAL CMO…

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NYCAL Justice Peter Moulton Issues New CMO

On June 20, 2016, NYCAL Justice Peter Moulton issued a new case management order (New CMO) and an accompanying case management decision (the Decision). As the Decision states, the court’s New CMO follows from a 2014 decision from prior NYCAL Justice Heitler as to whether punitive damages should continue to be deferred in NYCAL. After negotiations to craft a new CMO failed, Judge Moulton decided to issue the New CMO without consent of the parties. The Decision acknowledges that many of the new provisions “differ[]…

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NYCAL Justices Appointed to First Department-Appellate Division

On May 22, 2017, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo appointed New York City Asbestos Litigation (NYCAL) Supreme Court Justices Cynthia S. Kern and Peter H. Moulton to the First Department-Appellate Division. Associate Justice Rolando Acosta was designated to the Presiding Justice of this Appellate Division and Supreme Court Justices Jeffrey Oing and Anil Singh will fill the remaining Associate Justice vacancies. The First Department covers New York and Bronx Counties. Justice Cynthia S. Kern has been a justice in the 1st Judicial District of…

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Compound Manufacturer’s Directed Verdict Reversed Appellate Court of Illinois, First District, Second Division, May 9, 2017

The estate of decedent Ronnie Startley filed a complaint against multiple defendants, including Welco Manufacturing Company, alleging that the defendants’ products caused the decedent to contract mesothelioma. All defendants except Welco either were dismissed or settled with plaintiffs prior to trial. Welco proceeded to trial. After trial, the trial court directed a verdict in favor of Welco, holding that there was not sufficient evidence to create an issue of material fact as to whether the use of Welco’s products caused the decedent to develop mesothelioma.…

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Mississippi House and Senate Approves Conference Committee Report Requiring Transparency in Asbestos Bankruptcy Trust Submissions

The Mississippi House and Senate approved a conference report regarding asbestos bankruptcy trust transparency legislation. The bill is expected to be signed into law. Findings of the Conference Committee include an acknowledgement that approximately 100 employers have declared bankruptcy related to asbestos litigation. Further, 85 percent of industries in the U.S. economy have been named as defendants in asbestos litigation. As a result, trusts have been established in asbestos related bankruptcy proceedings “to form a multibillion dollar asbestos bankruptcy trust compensation system outside of the…

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John Crane Fails to Establish Personal Jurisdiction against Plaintiff’s Firm in Fraud Complaint Filed in Federal Court U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division, March 23, 2017

John Crane, Inc. (JCI) filed suit against Benjamin Shein and the Shein Law Center (the defendant) for fraud, alleging that the defendant fraudulently obtained settlements with and verdicts against JCI by misrepresenting the exposure of asbestos plaintiffs to JCI’s products and concealing the plaintiffs’ exposure to products of other manufacturers. The complaint focused on four specific asbestos cases filed against JCI in Pennsylvania in which verdicts were rendered against JCI. It alleged specific behavior done by the defendants, such as delaying filing claims with bankruptcy…

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John Crane Fails to Establish Personal Jurisdiction in RICO Claim Against Plaintiff Law Firm

Plaintiff John Crane Inc. brought a six-count complaint against defendants Simon Greenstone Panatier Bartlett, P.C., Jeffrey B. Simon, and David C. Greenstone, alleging violations of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), 18 U.S.C. § 1961, et seq., and common law claims for conspiracy and fraud in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division. The defendants contemporaneously filed a motion to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction and failure to state a claim, however, as a matter of…

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South Dakota Enacts Legislation Allowing Transparency in Bankruptcy Trust Claims

An ongoing issue in asbestos litigation is whether plaintiffs have received monies from bankruptcy trusts. The plaintiff’s bar has traditionally fought discovery of this information, but recently South Dakota became the first state to enact legislation regarding this issue.  Senate Bill No. 138 recommends amending the code to order plaintiffs to identify any asbestos trust claims filed by them not more than one hundred and twenty days before trial. Such identification shall include: information about the trust claim itself; the amount claimed, or to be…

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