Motion for Reconsideration on Removal in Shipyard Case Granted

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana

The plaintiff, Patricia Jackson, alleges asbestos exposure while employed by Avondale Shipyard between 1970 and 1977. She further alleged asbestos exposure from father’s work clothing while he was employed by Avondale between 1962 and 1975. The plaintiff filed suit against numerous defendants including Huntington Ingalls Incorporated, Albert L. Bossier, Jr., and Lamorak Insurance Company (collectively, the Avondale defendants), Taylor Seidenbach, International Paper, Eagle, Inc., Liberty Mutual Insurance Company, and Hopeman Brothers, Inc. in state court. The case …

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Remand of Trailer Manufacturer’s Removal Granted Based on Lack of Diversity

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana

The plaintiffs brought the instant action alleging that decedent John Brindell was exposed to asbestos-containing products during his employment for Puerto Rico Marine Management (PRMM) as a mechanic at the Port of New Orleans. The plaintiffs filed a petition in the Civil District Court for the Parish of Orleans against several defendants including Utility Trailer Manufacturing Company, Taylor-Seidenbach, Inc., Eagle Inc., and Eagle’s insurers-First State Insurance Company, and United States Fidelity and Guaranty Company.

Defendant Utility …

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Plaintiff’s Motion to Remand on Timeliness of Defendant’s Removal on Federal Officer Jurisdiction Denied

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana

Plaintiff H. Francis alleged he was diagnosed with lung cancer as a result of his work as a rod clerk for Avondale Shipyards from 1973 to 1974. Mr. Francis was deposed on January 21, 2020 regarding these allegations, and Avondale received his deposition transcript on February 4, 2020. On March 24, 2020, Avondale filed a Notice of Removal, seeking to remove the case from Louisiana State court to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District …

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Motion to Remand Denied Based Upon Two Sources of Federal Jurisdiction

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, May 20, 2020

This case was initially filed by the plaintiff in Louisiana state court. The plaintiff alleged that Louis Elie, Jr. (the decedent) contracted and died from lung cancer as a result of his exposure to asbestos, while working as a laborer for Sperry Rand Corp. at the Louisiana Army Ammunition Plant (LAAP) from 1967 to 1974. Defendant Unisys Corp. (successor in interest to Sperry Rand Corp.) removed this action to federal court. The plaintiff …

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Shipyard Owner’s Removal Deemed Timely Under Recent Fifth Circuit Decision

Plaintiff Robert Bourgeois II originally filed his lawsuit in the Civil District Court for the Parish of Orleans, State of Louisiana, alleging his exposure while employed at Avondale Shipyards caused him to develop mesothelioma. Defendant Avondale removed the case to the Eastern District of Louisiana; in response, the plaintiff filed the instant Motion for Remand.

The plaintiff asserted four arguments as to why remand is proper:

  1. Removal was untimely because Avondale learned of the case’s potentially removability when it received the transcript of Plaintiff’s May
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Court Grant Plaintiffs’ Motion to Voluntarily Dismiss in Federal Court Under the Zagano Factors

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, May 5, 2020

On February 25, 2020, plaintiffs Laura McDaniel and Edward McDaniel filed a complaint in the New York Supreme Court, New York County, against the defendants, Whittaker, Clark & Daniels, Inc. (WCD) and Revlon, Inc., for asbestos-related personal injury claims relating to Laura McDaniels’ mesothelioma. The next day, on February 26, 2020, WCD removed the case to federal court under 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a) on the basis of complete diversity between the plaintiffs and defendants. …

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Colorable Federal Officer Defense Leads to Denial of Remand in Shipyard Mesothelioma Case

United States District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana.

Plaintiff Jesse Hernandez filed suit against several defendants alleging he developed mesothelioma while working summers in 1968, 1969 and 1970 at the Avondale Shipyard as a painter’s helper and assistant clerk. During his deposition, he recalled working on board several vessels in the main yard and U.S. Navy destroyers. The defendants removed the case based on federal officer removal. Plaintiff moved to remand.

The Court quickly concluded that the defendants had a colorable federal defense. Relying on …

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Montana District Court Interprets Local Controversy Exception to Class Action Fairness Act

United States District Court for the District of Montana.

Plaintiff Korey L. Aarstad, along with 191 other plaintiffs moved to remand their case back to state court in Montana on the basis that the case had been improperly removed under the local controversy exception to the Class Action Fairness Act (“CAFA”) (28 U.S.C. §1332(d)(4)(A)). Defendants BNSF Railway Company and John Swing opposed, arguing that the case had been properly removed as a mass action. Following the parties’ briefings before the Magistrate Judge, and the court’s …

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Louisiana District Court Upholds Federal Officer Removal Following Recent Fifth Circuit Precedent

U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana

The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana has issued its first remand decision following the Fifth Circuit’s clarification of removal under the Federal Officer Removal Statute in February 2020.

Plaintiff, Edward J. Boudreaux, Jr. alleged, among other things, that he was exposed to asbestos while working as a welder, pipefitter, and laborer at the Avondale shipyards between 1963 and 1969. Plaintiff filed suit against numerous defendants, several of which represented the interests of the …

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Remand in Meso Case Denied Upon Finding that Common Defense Exception Inapplicable

U.S. District Court C.D. of Illinois, February 25, 2020

ILLINOIS – The plaintiff sued several defendants alleging that Roy Hicks developed mesothelioma as a result of his exposure to asbestos for which the defendants were allegedly responsible. Specifically, Mr. Hicks alleged exposure to asbestos while working for the City of Bloomington, where he encountered asbestos from vehicles made by Ford, and others. He also alleged exposure to products from John Crane as a result of his wife’s work at General Electric. As trial approached, the …

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