The law concept background.

EPA Announce Final Rule to Prohibit Use of Asbestos in United States

The Environmental Protection Agency announced on March 18 a final rule to prohibit the use of chrysotile asbestos in the United States. Although numerous types of asbestos exist, chrysotile is unique in that it is the only form imported into the country. Industries such as the chlori-alkali industry continue to utilize asbestos products, with imports of raw chrysotile as recent as 2022.  EPA’s ban is set to be the first rule finalized under the 2016 amendments to the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). Passed in …

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Gasket/Packing Manufacturer Prevails after Jury Trial

Court:  United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts

Decedent Arnold L. Pritt was diagnosed with singular mesothelioma, epithelioid type in September 2019. He alleged he was exposed to asbestos during his service in the U.S. Navy and as a civilian electrician. During his service, Pritt served aboard the USS Purdy as a machinist mate from December 1961 to August 1964. He often installed asbestos sheet gaskets and removed and replaced valve and pump packing. He alleged exposure to a number of manufacturer’s gaskets, flanges, pumps, and valves, …

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Courtroom, Gavel And Law Books

Chemical Company’s Renewed Motion to Dismiss Amended Complaint Granted

Jurisdiction: United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida

Plaintiff Douglas S. Johnson, one of the surviving children and personal representative of the estate of decedent French E. Johnson, filed an amended complaint against 50 defendants, including The Dow Chemical Company. The amended complaint alleged that decedent developed mesothelioma due to his exposure to asbestos while serving in the United States Navy, during his employment with NASA at the Kennedy Space Center, and in connection with non-occupational automotive maintenance and repairs.

In response …

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Talc Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment Based on Texas Law Granted on Appeal

Court: Supreme Court of New York, Appellate Division, First Department

In September 2023, the trial court denied talc defendant Colgate-Palmolive Co.’s motion for summary judgment to dismiss the complaint against it. On appeal, the First Department unanimously reversed and granted Colgate’s motion.

“When a foreign resident’s exposure to a toxin occurs in foreign states, New York’s connection to the action is tenuous at best.” See Kush v. Abbot Labs., 238 AD2 172, 172 [1st Dept 1997].

Here, while plaintiff’s decedent allegedly used talcum powder …

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Court Vacates $15m Verdict against Joint Compound Manufacturer; Upholds Evidentiary Rulings

Court: Supreme Court of New York, Appellate Division, First Department

In November 2023, a jury awarded plaintiff $15m for past pain and suffering and found defendant Kaiser Gypsum Company 70-percent liable. Kaiser subsequently filed post-trial motions, which were denied. The instant appeal followed.

First, on appeal Kaiser argued that the trial court should not have permitted plaintiff to admit the videotaped de bene esse deposition of plaintiff’s decedent Munir Seen into evidence because Kaiser was not a party to the action when that event occurred. …

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Defendants’ Motions to Preclude Expert Reports Denied

Court: United States District Court for the Southern District of New York

Plaintiff Brian Joseph Gref alleged that his use of talcum-powder products caused his diagnosis of peritoneal mesothelioma. 

During the course of discovery, the court ordered that plaintiff’s medical reports were to be served on defendants by December 15, 2021. Plaintiff served Dr. Jacqueline Moline’s expert report, dated October 28, 2021, by the court-ordered deadline. Defendants then deposed Dr. Moline on July 6, 2022, and September 23, 2022.

On the first day of her deposition, Dr. …

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Courtroom, Gavel And Law Books

Grant of Summary Judgment to Aluminum Plant Owner Reversed

Jurisdiction: Court of Appeals of Iowa

We previously reported on this matter involving the decedent, Charles Beverage, who was employed as an independent contractor at an aluminum plant between the 1950s and the mid-1970s. Following his death in October 2015, the decedent’s estate filed a products liability suit against several defendants, including Alcoa Inc., the aluminum plant’s owner, and Iowa-Illinois Taylor Insulation Inc., an installer of insulation, alleging that the decedent was exposed to asbestos during his employment and subsequently contracted mesothelioma. 

At that time, …

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Federal Court Denies Plaintiff’s and Defendants’ Motions in Limine on Eve of Trial

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana

Decedent Terry J. LeGendre worked for defendant Huntington Ingalls, Inc. (Avondale) from October 1967 to January 1968. He was later diagnosed with and died from mesothelioma. Prior to the May 2024 trial, defendants General Electric Company, Paramount Global, Eagle Inc., Foster Wheeler LLC, Uniroyal, Inc., and Taylor-Seidenbach Inc. moved to limit or exclude the plaintiff’s experts. Likewise, the plaintiff moved to exclude the expert opinion presented by defendants Avondale and Bayer CropScience, Inc.

The defendants’ motion …

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Court Denies Railway Company’s Renewed Motion for Spoliation; Agrees to Bifurcate Trial

Court: United States District Court for the District of Montana, Great Falls Division

In connection to defendant Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway Company’s ongoing litigation in Libby, Montana (covered extensively by the Asbestos Case Tracker, including most recently HERE), the estate of decedent Mary Diana Moe brought an action against BNSF for wrongful death allegedly resulting from decedent’s exposure to asbestos resulting from BNSF’s activities in Libby.

BNSF previously moved for spoliation sanctions stemming from plaintiff’s failure to preserve decedent’s remains after her death. …

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First Department Affirms Denial of Pipe Manufacturer’s Motion for Summary Judgment

Court: Supreme Court of New York, Appellate Division, First Department

In this asbestos action, decedent Rudolf Horvath alleged that he was exposed to asbestos from Bondstrand pipes manufactured by defendant, Ameron International, at a sewage plant in midtown Manhattan. In response, Ameron filed a motion for summary judgment, arguing the sewage plant referenced by decedent must have been the North River wastewater treatment plant, which did not exist until 1985 at a time when Ameron no longer manufactured Bondstrand pipe using asbestos.

The trial court …

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