Defendants’ Request of Sanctions for Plaintiffs’ Counsel Failure to Preserve Lung Tissue Denied

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division, March 31, 2021

In this asbestos action, Mr. James LaFrentz (the decedent) wore a 3M dust mask while working for General Dynamics from 1978 until 1984. The issue of whether the decedent suffered from mesothelioma or lung cancer was in contention before his passing. Several defendants, including General Dynamics and 3M, informed the plaintiffs’ counsel that the decedent’s diagnosis was in dispute and requested that the plaintiffs’ counsel preserve the decedent’s tissue, both orally …

Continue Reading

Motion to Exclude Testimony of Witnesses Denied; No Duty to Remind of Witnesses Existence

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington

Defendant Auburn Technology Inc. filed a motion to exclude testimony of three witnesses who were shipmates of the plaintiff’s decedent. Several other defendants joined in on the motion. The defendants argued that the witnesses were not properly disclosed until the very end of discovery and should therefore be excluded under Fed. R. Civ. P. 37. 

By way of background, in the summer of 2019, the plaintiffs made their initial disclosures, identifying the muster rolls for the …

Continue Reading

Pump Manufacturer Withstands Challenge to Protective Order, Loses Personal Jurisdiction Argument

Appellate Court of Illinois, Fifth District, August 24, 2020

The Appellate Court of Illinois, Fifth District, recently issued a discovery decision in the matter of Linder v. A.W. Chesterton Co., which also touched on the issue of personal jurisdiction. In Linder, the plaintiffs alleged that asbestos dust attributable to industrial pumps manufactured by GIW contributed to plaintiff decedent, Robert Linder’s mesothelioma. At the outset of the case, GIW filed a motion to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction, arguing that as a Georgia …

Continue Reading

Friction Manufacturer’s Objection to Motion to Compel Denied Due to Untimely Submission of Affidavit

KENTUCKY – The plaintiff, Jack Papineau, alleged that he was diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma from exposure to Honeywell’s asbestos-containing brake products. The plaintiff sought an order from the magistrate judge to compel Honeywell to answer one interrogatory and respond to one request for production concerning lawsuits alleging exposure to Honeywell asbestos-containing friction products. Honeywell opposed.

Per the magistrate judge’s order, the plaintiff filed an amended request that limited the scope of the requested documentation. Honeywell responded to the supplemental request and attached the affidavit of …

Continue Reading

Evidence of Prior Asbestos Lawsuits Against Defendant Discoverable

KENTUCKY – The plaintiffs, Jack and Holly Papineau, filed a lawsuit against several defendants alleging damages suffered from exposure to asbestos. The plaintiffs filed a motion to compel the defendant Honeywell to supplement answers to interrogatories and requests for production, specifically regarding prior lawsuits. After oral argument, the court requested that the plaintiffs narrow the scope of their supplemental requests. The plaintiffs complied, requesting information and documents pertaining to all lawsuits filed against Honeywell wherein the claimant alleged an asbestos-related disease from exposure to Honeywell …

Continue Reading

Court Refuses Plaintiff’s Attempt to “Smuggle” New Discovery Requests through Motion Practice

PENNSYLVANIA – The plaintiff filed this lawsuit against several defendants alleging damages suffered from exposure to asbestos. The opinion did not provide any background into exposure, disease or procedural history, other than ongoing motion practice between the plaintiff and the defendant, Space Systems/Loral, LLC (SSL) regarding responses to discovery.The plaintiff filed a motion to compel SSL to provide more adequate responses to interrogatories, specifically Interrogatory No. 3, regarding company background information. On July 22, 2019, the court issued an order compelling the requested discovery from …

Continue Reading

Court Denies Plaintiffs’ Motion to Compel Supplemental Discovery Against Defendant

In McCallister v. McDermott & Co., Inc., et al., the United States District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana recently ruled on the plaintiffs’ motion to compel discovery directed to Armstrong International, Inc., requesting supplemental responses to interrogatories and requests for production. The plaintiffs initially served requests to Armstrong, which were responded to in a timely manner. Several months after receiving the responses, the plaintiffs’ counsel emailed Armstrong’s counsel, arguing that the responses were deficient and required supplemental responses within seven days. On …

Continue Reading

Nonparty Discovery Allowed in Take Home Exposure Case

NEW YORK — The instant motion by the defendants Ford Motor Company and Hennessey Inc. stems from lawsuit filed on behalf of decedent Frances Lange; the plaintiffs assert that Mrs. Francis Lange (Frances) contracted mesothelioma as a result of the inhalation of asbestos during the course of laundering her deceased husband’s (Carl) and son’s (Jeffery) clothing. On November 12, the defendant Ford requested authorizations for Carl and Frances’ Social Security records, in response the plaintiff only provided Francis’ records. Ford also requested Carl and Jeffery’s …

Continue Reading

After Close of Discovery Motion for Release of Pathology Materials Granted

NORTH CAROLINA — Defendant John Crane filed a motion for an order governing the release of pathology materials following the close of discovery. Although pathology materials had been requested from the plaintiff’s counsel nearly a year and a half prior to the discovery end date, they were not produced until eight days after that deadline had passed. John Crane then learned that there were additional pathology materials in the possession of Duke University Hospital System (DHUS). John Crane requested the additional slides in April 2017, …

Continue Reading

Conflicting X-Ray Reports Subject for Cross-Examination, Not Grounds to Compel a CT Scan

Defendants Hess Oil Virgin Islands Corporation and Hess Corporation filed a motion to compel plaintiff Andrew Wilson to undergo a CT scan of his chest to determine whether there was any objective evidence of lung disease. The court denied the motion to compel.

Wilson alleged asbestos exposure and the development of asbestosis due to his work at the oil refinery on St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands. The plaintiff’s case was consolidated with over a hundred cases. The court ordered the plaintiffs to provide …

Continue Reading