Trial Court’s Exception of Prescription Reversed; Decedent Found to Have no Prior notice of his potential Mesothelioma Court of Appeal of Louisiana, Third Circuit November 6, 2019

LOUISIANA – David Lee’s heirs alleged that he was exposed to asbestos while working in various jobs from the 1950s to the 1970s. Lee had various abdominal issues throughout his life, and had a carcinoid tumor removed in 2008. The final pathology report for the tumor showed well-differentiated papillary mesothelioma. However, Lee was asymptomatic after the tumor removal and never learned of the specific diagnosis. In 2012, Lee suffered more abdominal discomfort, and peritoneal mesothelioma was discovered. Lee passed away that year, and his heirs…
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Court Nullifies Insurer’s Agreement with Insured to Allow Plaintiff to Proceed Directly Against Insurer Court of Appeal of Louisiana, Fourth Circuit, October 21, 2019

LOUISIANA – Nelcome Courville contracted and later died of mesothelioma. Before his death, he filed a lawsuit against a variety of parties based on his exposure to asbestos, and his wife and children were substituted as plaintiffs after Courville’s death. One of those parties, Reilly-Benton Company, Inc., filed for bankruptcy in 2017. Thereafter, the plaintiffs named Reilly-Benton’s insurer as a direct defendant pursuant to Louisiana’s direct action statute. The insurer moved for summary judgment, arguing that a 2013 settlement agreement it had entered into with…
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Unclear Testimony Regarding Location of Exposure Leads to Dismissal Due to Lack of Personal Jurisdiction U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, October 7, 2019

LOUISIANA – The plaintiff, Terry BonDurant, alleged that he was exposed to asbestos while working as an electrician at various refineries in Louisiana, Texas and Florida from 1964 to 1979, and that he contracted mesothelioma from that exposure. He filed suit against numerous defendants, including Gould Electronics. However, at his deposition, the plaintiff did not provide any testimony with regard to exposure from a Gould product. Gould is incorporated in Arizona and maintains its principal place of business there. Gould filed a motion to dismiss…
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Allegation in Complaint of Exposure at Shipyard Renders Defendant’s Removal Untimely United States District Court, E.D. Louisiana, September 11, 2019

LOUISIANA – The plaintiff, Charles Merlin Parfait, Sr., alleged that he contracted mesothelioma from exposure to asbestos during his work at the Avondale Shipyards from 1968 to 1978, and sued various defendants in state court in Orleans Parish Louisiana. The plaintiff alleged strict liability claims in his state court petition, but specifically disclaimed strict liability claims against Avondale Shipyards’ successor, Huntington Ingalls Incorporated.  Less than 30 days after the plaintiff’s deposition, Huntington Ingalls removed the case to federal court and claimed that the plaintiff’s deposition…
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Plaintiff’s Failure to Show General and Specific Jurisdiction Results in Premises Defendant’s Dismissal U.S. District Court, E.D. of Louisiana, August 15, 2019

LOUISIANA – The plaintiff, Terry Bondurant, alleged exposure to asbestos while working as an electrician at various chemical plants in Texas and Louisiana, including a plant located in Texas that belonged to the defendant, Eastman Kodak. . Kodak, however, was incorporated in New Jersey and has its principal place of business in New York. Kodak moved to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(2), on personal jurisdiction grounds, asserting that the court lacked general jurisdiction, as well as specific jurisdiction. Kodak claimed that because neither its state of…
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Equitable Considerations Warrant Granting Plaintiff’s Motion to Remand in Talc Matter United States District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana, July 24, 2019

LOUISIANA – In the first motion to remand ruled on after Johnson & Johnson’s (J&J)motion to fix venue in the United States District Court, District of Delaware was denied, the court considered the plaintiff Phyllis Lea’s motion. The plaintiff filed suit against multiple defendants, including J&J, alleging that her exposure to asbestos-containing talcum powder products caused her to develop ovarian cancer. On April 24, 2019, J&J removed the matter to the district court, and the plaintiff filed the instant motion on June 6, 2019. The…
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Louisiana Court of Appeal, Fourth Circuit Modifies Trial Court’s Denial of Motion to Quash Trial Subpoenas the Court of Appeal of Louisiana, Fourth Circuit, July 18, 2019

LOUISIANA – In McMaster v. Union Carbide Corp., et al, pending in the Court of Appeal of Louisiana, Fourth Circuit, plaintiff Ronald McMaster filed suit against various defendants alleging that he was exposed to asbestos while employed at Gulf Oil from 1978 to 1980. The plaintiff requested that the clerk of court issue trial subpoenas to multiple corporate defendants, but did not specify the names of any witnesses sought for examination, nor the subject matter of which the witnesses would be examined. Two defendants…
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Additional Discovery Ordered to Determine Location of Exposure in Facility Defendant’s Personal Jurisdiction Challenge U.S. District Court E.D. of Louisiana, June 21, 2019

LOUISIANA — The plaintiff, Frederico Lopez, filed suit against the defendants, alleging he developed mesothelioma from exposure to asbestos while working as a gasket cutter for Lamons Gasket Company from 1971-1973 and as a pipefitter for Kellogg Brown and Root (KBR) from 1973-1986. Lopez passed away on November 9, 2017. The plaintiffs amended their complaint to include ConocoPhillips (Conoco) as a defendant. The amended complaint claimed that Lopez was “exposed to asbestos during his work for KBR at premises/sites owned and/or operated by…ConocoPhillips, as successor…
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Shipyard Defendant Obtains Summary Judgment as to Whether Certain Prior Asbestosis Releases Apply to Future Mesothelioma Claim U.S. District Court, E.D. Louisiana, June 10, 2019

LOUISIANA – The family of Joseph Savoie, Jr. filed suit against multiple defendants alleging he passed away from mesothelioma as a result of exposure to asbestos while working at Avondale Shipyards from 1948-1995. Savoie was originally diagnosed with asbestosis in 1990 and settled with several defendants. Years later, he developed mesothelioma. Avondale sought summary judgment on the issue of whether the plaintiff released his future claim for mesothelioma with respect to eight entities with whom he previously settled in his asbestosis action. Avondale’s reasoning for…
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Court of Appeals of New York Rejects Argument that Coke Ovens Are not Products For Purposes of Strict Liability Court of Appeals of New York, June 11, 2019

NEW YORK – The plaintiff, Donald Terwilliger, brought an asbestos suit against multiple defendants. The complaint included a count that Honeywell, as successor in interest to the Wilputte Coke Oven Division of the Allied Chemical Corporation (Honeywell), was strictly liable for emissions coming from its coke ovens at Bethlehem Steel’s Lackawanna Plant in New York. Specifically, Terwilliger alleged that he was exposed to the coke oven emissions while working as a lid man from 1966-1993. He passed away from lung cancer in 2012. At the…
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