Court Compels Discovery from Non-Testifying Expert Finding Exceptional Circumstances Under Rule 26

U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina, September 27, 2021

Plaintiff Laura M. Walls filed a products liability action on behalf of the estate of her husband, Robie W. Walls (decedent). The plaintiff alleged that defendant Pneumo Abex LLC, among others, manufactured, sold, and/or distributed asbestos-containing products or raw asbestos materials for use in North Carolina and other states at times relevant to this action, and the decedent’s exposure to such products caused him to develop mesothelioma, resulting in his death on …

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Plaintiff Prevails on Defendant’s Expert Appeal; Court Affirms Seven-Figure Judgment

Court of Appeal of California, Second Appellate District, Division Eight, September 13, 2021

This matter was brought on behalf of decedent Donald Vanni in 2014, alleging two causes of action for negligence and strict product liability against defendant Honeywell International, Inc. among others. The plaintiff alleged that the decedent was exposed to asbestos from owning and operating a bowling alley from 1957 to 1986. Specifically, the decedent was responsible for drilling finger holes in plastic bowling bowls manufactured by Ebonite. The decedent was diagnosed with …

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Brake and Clutch Manufacturer’s Motion for Summary Judgment Denied

Supreme Court of New York, Nassau County, April 12, 2021

Plaintiff William Stodoloski worked as an auto mechanic from 1965 to 1969 and from 1971 to 1978.  The plaintiff testified that as a mechanic he performed all aspects of car repair including removing and replacing the defendant’s brakes and clutches. He filed an asbestos lawsuit on April 5, 2019 alleging his work as an auto mechanic caused him to suffer from lung cancer. The case was certified ready for trial on January 23, 2020 and …

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Plaintiff Expert Opinion on “Every Exposure” Testimony Precluded under Daubert

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California

Plaintiffs Thomas Toy, Jr. and Agnes Toy allege that Mr. Toy developed malignant mesothelioma and later died from exposure to asbestos-containing products or equipment that Defendants manufactured or supplied. Pending before the court are motions to strike or exclude the anticipated testimony of the plaintiffs’ causation expert Dr. Arnold Brody and motions to exclude evidence or testimony that “every exposure” to asbestos causes mesothelioma, as well as the plaintiffs’ motion to strike two defense experts.

The …

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Plaintiff’s Naval Expert Excluded Based on Lack of Qualifications

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, March 31, 2021

In this asbestos action, Mr. Toy (the plaintiff) alleges that his work with or around Warren pumps and Armstrong steam traps while serving in the United States Navy exposed him to asbestos. In support of his allegations, the plaintiff served an expert report of Captain Francis Burger, who opined as to asbestos-containing products and materials on Navy ships and in Naval shipyards. Captain Burger based his opinions on his extensive experience gained throughout …

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Court Finds Testimony of Plaintiffs’ Causation Expert Admissible

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, March 26, 2021

The plaintiffs filed this action alleging decedent developed malignant mesothelioma and later died from exposure to asbestos-containing products or equipment. Specifically, the plaintiffs allege the decedent worked with Bendix brand brakes during his service in the Army and as a machinist. The plaintiffs offered Dr. Carl Brodkin as a causation expert. Dr. Brodkin opined decedent’s work with and around Bendix brakes was a substantial contributing factor in decedent’s development of mesothelioma.

Defendant Honeywell …

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Summary Judgment and Motion in Limine Awarded to Pipe Insulation Company Due to Speculation

U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina, March 23, 2021

Plaintiff Kenneth McDaniel was employed by Duke Power as an operator at its Belews Creek power plant in North Carolina from 1974 to 2005. Deborah McDaniel was married to Mr. McDaniel. Mrs. McDaniel was diagnosed with lung cancer, which the plaintiffs argue was a result of exposure to asbestos through her husband’s contaminated work clothing.

Mr. McDaniel recalled that Duke Power’s employees typically removed the insulation, while Covil employees typically installed new …

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Plaintiffs’ Expert Report Stricken as Improper Rebuttal

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, March 19, 2021

Plaintiffs Thomas Toy, Jr. and Agnes Toy allege that Mr. Toy developed malignant mesothelioma and later died from exposure to asbestos-containing products or equipment that the defendants manufactured or supplied. The defendants removed this action to federal court, which set forth a case schedule, including deadlines for the close of discovery and expert reports and depositions. The parties failed to comply with the court’s scheduling order, and several defendants filed a motion to …

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Talc Manufacturer’s Motion for Summary Judgment Denied Due to Conflicting Expert Reports

Supreme Court of New York, New York County, March 11, 2021

Defendant Vanderbilt Minerals LLC filed this instant motion for summary judgment, pursuant to CPLR 3212, dismissing all claims and causes of action, including any and all cross claims, against Vanderbilt or in the alternative granting partial summary judgment in favor of Vanderbilt as to any and all claims and causes of action, including cross-claims, relating to products manufactured by defendant American Art Clay Company, Inc. (AMACO). The plaintiff opposes the motion.

The case at issue …

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Railway Company Denied Summary Judgment; Service and Expert Issues Remain

The plaintiff, the Estate of Gregorio Sanchez Valdez, alleged occupational exposure to asbestos and diesel fumes while working as a machinist for defendant BNSF Railway Company from 1996 until 2016. Valdez was diagnosed with laryngeal cancer in 2014. BNSF moved for summary judgment on three grounds, of which the court denied all three.

First, BNSF argued that Valdez failed to serve BNSF with process within the three-year statute of limitations under the Federal Employers’ Liability Act. The court observed that the crux of this argument …

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