Category Archives: Summary Judgment

Summary Judgment Granted to Asbestos Paper Products Manufacturer in Take-Home Exposure Case Based on No Duty to Warn Superior Court of Delaware, February 2, 2017

Plaintiff Dorothy Ramsey, through her estate, alleged that the defendant Georgia Southern University Advanced Development Center (Herty) negligently failed to warn her of the risks of take-home exposure to Herty’s asbestos paper products used at her husband’s work from 1976-80. She alleged this exposure caused her to develop lung cancer. The defendant moved for summary judgment, arguing it did not owe Plaintiff a duty of care. The central issue in this case was whether Price v. E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Co. and Riedel

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Fire Door Manufacturer Obtains Summary Judgment in NYCAL; No Duty to Warn Against Latent Dangers from Unforeseeable Use of Product Supreme Court of New York, January 30, 2017

Defendants International Paper Company and Owens-Illinois, Inc. moved for summary judgment, which was granted. All Craft Fabricators, Inc. was hired to do millwork in refurbishing the United Nations headquarters. The general contractor issued a change order to use salvaged wood panels and doors from the Under-Secretary General’s office. These materials were resized and cut for use as interior cabinets at the United Nations building. External testing performed by All Craft showed that the dust from these materials contained asbestos. An affidavit from a professional engineer…

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In Bystander Exposure Case, Plaintiff Failed to Demonstrate that Defendant Had a Duty to Warn Court of Special Appeals of Maryland, January 27, 2017

Plaintiff Daniel Hiett developed mesothelioma and alleged bystander exposure from his father’s work. The plaintiff alleged negligence and strict liability claims based on a failure to warn theory. The circuit court granted defendant AC&R Insulation Company, Inc,.’s (AC&R) motion for summary judgment. The plaintiff appealed, arguing that several material facts distinguished their case from Georgia Pacific, LLC v. Farrar, 432 Md. 532 (2013), which held that a manufacturer/distributor of a product containing asbestos did not owe a duty to warn the household member of…

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Summary Judgment Affirmed Against School Board Where Exception to Immunity Applied Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania, January 25, 2017

The plaintiffs filed suit against 40 defendants and the Pittsburgh School District Board of Public Education (PBE). The plaintiffs contended the defendants were responsible for Ms. Geier contracting mesothelioma while she worked as a school teacher at South Hill High School from 1959-59. During discovery, Ms. Geier stated in an affidavit that she was occupationally exposed to 1) pipe coverings, 2) floor tile, 3) drywall, and 4) joint compound. At the close of discovery, PBE moved for summary judgment and asserted the defense of governmental…

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Summary Judgment Affirmed in Favor of Successor Premises Owner Where Bankruptcy Code Extinguished Claims Superior Court of Pennsylvania, January 26, 2017

Jacqueline and Thomas Wagner filed suit against Standard Steel LLC for Ms. Wagner’s alleged development of mesothelioma as a result of take home exposure from the work clothes of her husband. Mr. Wagner worked as a laborer and crane operator at Freedom Forge from 1970-72. Freedom Forge filed for Chapter 11 protection in 2001. Appellee Standard Steel LLC purchased the sale of Freedom Forge’s assets in 2002. The bankruptcy court confirmed the sale and found: 1) the sale price was fair and reasonable at an…

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Verdict Against Brand Insulation Upheld on Various Grounds, Including yhat General Negligence Duty of Care Recognized for Take Home Exposure Court of Appeals of Washington, January 23, 2017

The trial court found in favor of the plaintiff, finding Brand Insulation, Inc. liable for the mesothelioma suffered by Barbara Brandes due to secondary asbestos exposure from her husband’s work at ARCO. Brand appealed, and the plaintiff appealed the remittitur reducing the damages award from $3.5 million to $2.5 million. The court affirmed the verdict and reversed the remittitur. Brand was an insulation subcontractor during construction of the ARCO Cherry Point Refinery. At first Brand installed asbestos-free insulation, but later switched to asbestos insulation due…

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Plaintiff’s Inconsistent Testimony is an Issue for Trial; Summary Judgment is Denied Superior Court of Delaware, New Castle, January 17. 2017

On January 17, 2017, the Superior Court of Delaware, New Castle denied RCH Newco II LLC’s (Newco) motion for summary judgment. The plaintiff, Jessie Hastings, alleged that he contracted colon cancer as a result of his exposure to Newco’s asbestos-containing product, Galbestos. Galbestos was a material that protected metal and roofing products. Mr. Hastings was the only product identification witness and testified in two depositions. In his first deposition, Mr. Hastings testified that he began working at DuPont’s Chestnut Run facility in 1951-52. He testified…

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Summary Judgment Affirmed Where Plaintiff Fails to Demonstrate the Frequency, Regularity, or Proximity of Decedent’s Alleged Exposure Superior Court of Pennsylvania, January 19, 2017

Appellant James Floyd, Jr.’s Father, James Floyd Sr. (the decedent), passed away after he was diagnosed with mesothelioma. Mr. Floyd alleged that the decedent was exposed to various asbestos-containing products, including AstenJohnson, Inc.’s dryer felts, while the decedent was employed at Sun Oil from 1939-1951 and at Scott Paper from 1951-1984. AstenJohnson made dryer felts used on paper machines that contained asbestos until 1980. Appellant provided deposition testimony that he worked with the decedent at Scott Paper from 1977-1984. Appellant testified that the decedent replaced…

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New Jersey Court Finds Plaintiff’s Certification Speculative and Grants Defendant’s Summary Judgment Motion Superior Court of New Jersey, Middlesex County, January 10, 2017

Plaintiff John Burton filed suit in the Superior Court of New Jersey, Middlesex County, against various defendants, including Ingersoll Rand, alleging he developed mesothelioma from occupational exposure to asbestos during his work at a New Jersey facility that manufactured aluminum cans. During his discovery deposition, Burton testified that the production of aluminum cans required a washing system to which the facility had two “washing machines” that incorporated washing and decorating the cans. Burton recalled these washing machines had 12 pumps and testified generally that Ingersoll…

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No Error in Recommendation of Summary Judgment Where Plaintiffs Failed to Establish Causation U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware, January 9, 2017

Summary Judgment was recommended by the magistrate for the plaintiffs’ failure to establish causation in this case. The plaintiff appealed and contended that his asbestos related disease was a result of exposure to asbestos from Foster Wheeler boilers while working onboard the USS Gridley. The court noted that the standard of review of a magistrate’s report and recommendation is de novo. In this case, no party objected to the application of maritime law. Accordingly, the plaintiff had the burden to show: 1) The plaintiff…

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