Special Master Recommendation Upheld Denying Plaintiff’s Discovery Requests Supreme Court of New York, New York County, October 27, 2016

Plaintiff Lori LoGiudice developed mesothelioma and brought suit, alleging her disease was caused by her use of asbestos-containing Cashmere Bouquet talcum powder made by Colgate-Palmolive. The only other defendants were suppliers of asbestos-containing talc to Colgate. After the Special Master denied certain discovery requests made by the plaintiff, the plaintiff moved for relief. The court affirmed the recommendations made by the Special Master. At issue was one request for production involving conversations between Dr. Marie Capdevielle and individuals interviewed by her in preparation for her…
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Pump Manufacturer’s Motion for Summary Judgement Denied Because Burden of Proof Unsatisfied Supreme Court of New York, New York County, October 27, 2016

Plaintiffs Patrick and Joy Demartino brought suit against various defendants after Patrick Demartino developed mesothelioma. Defendant Aurora Pump Company moved for summary judgment, arguing that it did not use or sell external asbestos-containing gaskets. The court denied this motion. It was undisputed that during the plaintiff’s time of alleged exposure to Aurora pumps while working at Walker-Prismatic from 1975-1986, Aurora used and sold asbestos-containing gaskets. The plaintiff testified that his only source of asbestos exposure from Aurora pumps was from replacement of external flange gaskets.…
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Pump Manufacturer Granted Summary Judgment for Plaintiff’s Failure to Establish Sufficient Exposure U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, October 19, 2016

Plaintiff-Decedent William Holzworth filed suit against various defendants in the New York Supreme Court on July 9, 2012 alleging personal injuries pursuant to his diagnosis of mesothelioma allegedly caused by his occupational exposure to asbestos. Specifically, Holzworth alleged exposure to asbestos-containing products during this employment, both as a sonarman serving in the U.S. Navy between 1952 and 1955, and as a construction and project manager between 1963 and 2007. The defendants removed this action to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New…
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Denial of Summary Judgment of Boiler Manufacturer Affirmed on Appeal Supreme Court of New York, Appellate Division, First Department, October 13, 2016

Relying on Koulermos v. A.O. Smith Water Prods., the New York Appellate Division, First Department upheld the trial court’s denial of summary judgment. The court found that the trial court used the correct standard and that Cleaver Brooks failed to put forth evidence illustrating how it was entitled to summary judgment. Read the decision here. Read a full summary of the case here.…
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Court Rejects Appeals of Crane Co. in Three NYCAL Matters Supreme Court of New York, Appellate Division, October 6, 2016

The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New York issued three decisions rejecting appeals of Crane Co. arising from verdicts for Plaintiffs in three separate trials out of New York County. In Peraica v. A.O. Smith, et al., a jury on December 3, 2013 awarded the plaintiffs $9,900,000 for past pain and suffering against defendant Crane Co., with an order to vacate the award and order new trial as to such damages unless the plaintiffs stipulated to a reduced award of $4.25…
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Court Grants Summary Judgment After Plaintiff Fails to Establish Elements to Pierce the Corporate Veil U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York , August 23, 2016

The plaintiff, Kelan Unterberg, brought this action against multiple defendants for his alleged development of mesothelioma. His complaint lodged three separate causes of action including negligence under the Jones Act, breach of warranty of sea worthiness and reasonable fitness under U.S. Maritime law, and remedy of maintenance and cure. All of the counts were related to Unterberg’s alleged exposure to asbestos aboard several civilian vessels while working as a chief engineer and merchant seaman from 1973-78. The plaintiff, a citizen of Germany, first brought this…
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Summary Judgment Denied Where Defendant Merely Pointed to Gaps in Evidence and Asked Court to Weigh Credibility of Witness Supreme Court of New York, New York County, August 22, 2016

In this case, the plaintiff Gaspar Hernandez-Vega alleges that he developed mesothelioma as a result of his alleged exposure to asbestos-containing products while working as a pipefitter. At his deposition, Hernandez-Vega testified interchangeably to work with “Edward valves,” “Vogt valves,” and “Edward-Vogt valves” that exposed him to asbestos through his changing of the packing and gaskets applied to those valves. The defendant Flowserve is the successor in interest for Edward Valves, Inc., the Vogt Valve Company, and Edward-Vogt (created following a merger of the two…
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Court Rules Summary Judgment Not Appropriate Due to Ambiguity on How Non-Cumulation Clause Operated U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, August 5, 2016

Liberty Mutual Insurance Company issued successive annual insurance policies to the Fairbanks Company from January 1, 1974 to January 1, 1982. Liberty issued both comprehensive general liability and umbrella policies. Multiple lawsuits were filed in several jurisdictions against Fairbanks, alleging injuries due to exposure to asbestos, and this coverage litigation resulted. On March 21, 2016, the court ruled on Liberty’s motion for summary judgment, concluding that the policies were subject to pro rata allocation such that Liberty was only liable to indemnify Fairbanks for the…
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$3.5 Million Verdict Against National Grid Generation, LLC Upheld Supreme Court of New York, August 4, 2016

On August 4, 2016, the Supreme Court of New York affirmed the jury’s award of $3.5 million against defendant National Grid Generation, LLC. The evidence showed that LILCO, National Grid’s predecessor in interest, issued detailed specifications directing contractors on how to mix and apply asbestos-containing concrete and insulation at a power plant. This supported the jury’s finding of a violation of Labor Law § 200. The fact that LILCO ensured that its directives were followed by supervising the superintendents, rather than by directly supervising the…
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Court Refuses to Consolidate Four In Extremis Cases for Joint Trial Supreme Court of New York, New York County, July 27, 2016

The plaintiffs moved pursuant to CPLR 602 for an order consolidating four in extremis cases for a joint trial: Herman Anderson, Mercedes Abreu, Patrick Demartino, and Mario Scalera. Defendant Ford opposed consolidation in all four cases. Ingersoll Rand Co. and Aurora Pump Co. also opposed in the Demartino case, Weil-McClain opposed in the Abreu case, Genuine Parts Co. and ArvinMeritor, Inc. opposed in Anderson, and Pneumo Abex Corp. and Maremont Corp. opposed in Anderson and Demartino. In denying the plaintiffs motion to consolidate,…
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