Denial of Summary Judgment Affirmed as to Fireproofing Contractor

As previously reported by the Asbestos Case Tracker, Judge Manuel Mendez, former NYCAL coordinating judge, denied defendant Mario & DiBono Plastering Co., Inc.’s (M&D) motion for summary judgment. M&D appealed this decision. The Appellate Division noted that the court properly denied M&D’s smmary judgment motion since it failed to unequivocally establish that the materials it used could not have contributed to plaintiff’s injury. Moreover, the court noted that in light of the decedent’s testimony, which M&D submitted in support of it motion, identifying the …

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Wire and Cable Company’s Motion for Summary Judgment on Causation Denied

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

The plaintiff alleged that the decedent, Alvin Smith, was exposed to asbestos from skinning, stripping, and pulling asbestos-containing wire and cable manufactured by the defendant, Ericsson, Inc.’s predecessors, Anaconda Wire & Cable Company and Continental Wire & Cable Company, at various locations throughout his career. Mr. Smith testified during his deposition that he was exposed to asbestos dust during his work with these products. Ericsson moved for summary judgment arguing that the plaintiff failed …

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Premise Owner Denied Summary Judgment due to Issues of Fact

Supreme Court of New York, New York County, May 10, 2021

Before the court is defendant National Grid Generation LLC d/b/a National Grid’s motion for summary judgment, pursuant to CPLR 3212, for a finding in favor of National Grid on the grounds that there is no merit to the allegations in the plaintiff’s complaint against National Grid, and there are no triable issues of fact against National Grid. 

By way of background, this matter arises from Alvin Smith’s (the decedent) diagnosis of malignant mesothelioma, which the …

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Two Friction-Based Juni Motions Denied in Nassau County

Supreme Court of the State of New York, Nassau County, May 12, 2021

The plaintiff in this matter was a career auto-mechanic. He alleged asbestos exposure from car parts manufactured by various defendants, including Ford and Mercedes, caused his lung cancer.

Ford and Mercedes each filed summary judgement motions alleging that (1) the plaintiff could not establish specific exposure and (2) that the causation opinions of the plaintiff’s experts should be precluded. Ford sought an order for a Frye hearing while Mercedes sought a hearing …

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Denial of Summary Judgment Reversed as to Joint Compound Manufacturer

Supreme Court of New York, Appellate Division, First Department, April 20, 2021

In this matter, Judge Manuel Mendez, former NYCAL coordinating judge, denied defendant Kaiser Gypsum Company, Inc’s motion for summary judgment on January 13, 2020. Kaiser Gypsum appealed arguing that plaintiffs failed to identify defendant’s products as a source of the decedent’s alleged exposure to asbestos. Further, the only evidence presented was the inadmissible hearsay statement of a coworker of the decedent and his son when they were working together at some point from …

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Motions for Summary Judgment on Causation Issues Denied as Issues of Fact Exist

Supreme Court of New York, New York County

In this asbestos action, the decedent, Donald Avakian, was diagnosed with lung cancer in August 2017 and subsequently passed away in June 2019. The decedent contended that he worked with asbestos-containing products throughout his career, including friction products and floor tiles.

Two defendants moved for summary judgment. They argued that the plaintiff cannot establish general or specific causation against them. Specifically, the floor tile defendant set forth that “plaintiff has not offered any scientific evidence to prove …

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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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Plaintiffs’ Federal Court Action Time-Barred After Choice of Law Analysis

U.S. District Court for the Western District Court of New York, April 6, 2021

In this asbestos action, plaintiffs John and Joyce Castro commenced this lawsuit against several talc defendants in February 2019. As per their interrogatory responses, the plaintiff was diagnosed with mesothelioma on February 29, 2016. As to defendant Revlon, the plaintiff’s alleged indirect exposure to one of Revlon’s talcum powder products occurred only in Virginia.

Revlon filed a motion for summary judgment, arguing that the plaintiffs’ claims are time-barred under New York …

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Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Personal Jurisdiction Granted for Boiler Manufacturer

Supreme Court of New York, New York County, March 25, 2021

Defendant Cleaver-Brooks, Inc. filed this instant motion to dismiss the plaintiff’s complaint pursuant to CPLR 3211 (a)(8) on the grounds that the court lacked personal jurisdiction over them. This lawsuit stems from plaintiff Darrell Nelson’s diagnosis of malignant pleural mesothelioma, which plaintiffs allege resulted from Mr. Nelson’s exposure to asbestos from his work as a maintenance worker and boiler operator for the Red Wing School District in Red Wing, Minnesota from 1977 to 1997. The …

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Signed Unopposed Summary Judgment Motions and Orders Vacated in NYCAL Due to Law Office Failure

Supreme Court of New York, New York County, March 15, 2021

In this asbestos action, the plaintiff’s counsel signed two unopposed summary judgment motions and orders submitted by counsel for Nash Engineering and Atwood & Morrill, respectively. The plaintiff’s counsel filed a motion to vacate the orders pursuant to NY CPLR § 5015(a)(1), and defense counsel opposed the motions. Ultimately, Justice Silvera granted the plaintiff’s motion to vacate both orders.

Under NY CPLR § 5015(a)(1), a motion to vacate a default judgment or order can …

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