Courtroom, Gavel And Law Books

Chemical Company’s Renewed Motion to Dismiss Amended Complaint Granted

Jurisdiction: United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida

Plaintiff Douglas S. Johnson, one of the surviving children and personal representative of the estate of decedent French E. Johnson, filed an amended complaint against 50 defendants, including The Dow Chemical Company. The amended complaint alleged that decedent developed mesothelioma due to his exposure to asbestos while serving in the United States Navy, during his employment with NASA at the Kennedy Space Center, and in connection with non-occupational automotive maintenance and repairs.

In response …

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Courtroom, Gavel And Law Books

Florida Jury Returns Defense Verdict in Ovarian Cancer Trial

Court: United States District Court, Middle District of Florida

On Thursday April 18, a Florida jury found the talcum powder in Johnson & Johnson’s baby powder product did not cause the ovarian cancer of deceased Sarasota County resident Patricia Matthey.

The plaintiffs alleged in their complaint that J&J suppressed scientific evidence linking talc products to increased cancer risk and that the corporation knew for decades that the talc used in its baby powder could be contaminated with asbestos. At trial, J&J argued that there was …

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Chicago Jury Returns $45M Plaintiffs Verdict in Talc Trial

Court: Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois

On April 19, a Chicago jury ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $45 million to the family of a Cook County woman named Theresa Garcia who died from mesothelioma, allegedly caused by exposure to asbestos in various talc powder products.

Plaintiffs claimed that Theresa Garcia inhaled asbestos fibers contained in the talc, citing to lab tests, which demonstrated talc products could contain small amounts of asbestos, which they say could then cause mesothelioma.

In a statement issued following …

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District Court Denies Aviation Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment

Jurisdiction:  United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida

Decedent John McCabe died from malignant epithelioid mesothelioma in January 2023, following a career as an aircraft mechanic. His estate initiated this action, alleging strict products liability and negligence against dozens of defendants, including Curtiss-Wright. Curtis-Wright moved for summary judgment, arguing that plaintiff failed to submit any evidence to support the claim the decedent was exposed to asbestos from working on or around its products.

Summary judgment is appropriate when “The movant shows that there is …

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Motion to Dismiss Damages under Maritime Law Granted in Part

Jurisdiction: United States District Court for the Central District of California

In this action, the plaintiffs filed suit on behalf of the decedent, William Banks, in Los Angeles County Superior Court and thereafter removed the case to federal court. The plaintiffs pursued survival and wrongful death causes of action based on Banks’ alleged exposure to asbestos while serving in the United States Navy, and subsequent death from epithelial mesothelioma. Banks served as a machinist mate aboard several ships in the U.S. Navy from 1961 to …

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Talc Defendant Denied Summary Judgment and Summary Adjudication

Court: Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles

In this action, defendant Vanderbilt Materials LLC moved for summary judgment of the plaintiffs’ claim that plaintiff Roberto Gonzalez was exposed to asbestos in the defendant’s talc. Ultimately, the court denied the motion.

Under California law, “[a] defendant seeking summary judgment must conclusively negate a necessary element of the plaintiff’s case, or demonstrate that under no hypothesis is there a material issue of fact that requires the process of trial.” In response to a special interrogatory …

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Courtroom, Gavel And Law Books

Plaintiff’s Motion to Remand Case Removed under Federal Officer Removal Statute Denied

In this asbestos action, plaintiff Michael Marcus alleged that he developed mesothelioma from working with or around asbestos-containing products while serving in the United States Navy. The plaintiff brought claims of design defect and failure to warn against numerous defendants. Defendant Greene Tweed removed this case to federal court under the federal officer removal statute. The plaintiffs moved to remand the case to state court.

Under the federal officer removal statute, doubt is construed in favor of removal. A state court case may be removed …

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Court Issues Final Orders Regarding Various Motions of Automotive Defendants

Jurisdiction: Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles

Defendants Mercedes-Benz USA LLC, Morse Tec LLC, and American Honda Motor Co. Inc. filed various motions for summary judgment, or in the alternative summary adjudication, against the plaintiff Samson Bareh’s claims that he was exposed to asbestos from their products. In addition, the defendant, Volkswagen Group of America Inc., filed a motion to compel discovery.

Mercedes-Benz filed a motion for summary adjudication of the strict liability, negligence, and fraud causes of action, as well as the …

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Summary Judgment and Adjudication Motions Filed by Three Automotive Product Defendants; Some Granted and Some Denied

Jurisdiction: Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles 

In this asbestos action, three defendants filed motions for summary judgment, and in some cases, in the alternative, motions for summary adjudication, against plaintiff Ronald Carpenter’s claims that he was exposed to asbestos from their products.

First, defendant ZF Active Safety US Inc. argued that plaintiffs had no evidence that Carpenter was exposed to any asbestos-containing parts from ZF Active Safety. Specifically, ZF Active Safety served interrogatories asking plaintiffs to identify people with knowledge that Carpenter was …

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Punitive Damages Now Allowed in Illinois Wrongful Death Cases


  • Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker has signed into law HB 219 to allow punitive damages to be recoverable in wrongful death and survival actions.
  • Punitive damages are now recoverable in wrongful death claims on cases filed on or after August 11, 2023, and punitive damages may be sought on existing cases on the effective date.
  • This legislation will drastically affect wrongful death cases statewide, as it adds a new avenue of recovery.

Illinois was one of 16 states that did not allow for the …

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