Judgment on the Pleadings Upheld for Dissolved Washington Corporation U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, July 20, 2018
WASHINGTON — The plaintiffs allege that William Clayton developed mesothelioma after being exposed to asbestos during his military service. They sued numerous defendants, including Saberhagen Holdings, Inc. (Saberhagen), which was a Washington corporation that dissolved on August 22, 2013. Based on plaintiffs’ failure to file suit against Saberhagen within three years of dissolution, as required by Washington law, Saberhagen filed a motion for judgment on the pleadings. The plaintiffs opposed the motion and filed their own to extend the response deadline.
Pursuant to Washington statutory law, a claim survives against a dissolved corporation for three years. The plaintiffs countered that legal argument by stating that Saberhagen failed to furnish proper notice to known creditors and intended to defraud known or reasonably ascertainable creditors. The plaintiffs also argued that the motion should be continued so that discovery could be taken to demonstrate the dissolution was invalid. The court held that the plaintiffs were not known creditors, and that even if Saberhagen gave insufficient notice, the plaintiffs’ claims had not sufficiently matured. Likewise, Washington statutory law states that the failure to publish proper notice does not affect the validity of the dissolution. For all of these reasons, the court granted Saberhagen’s motion for judgment on the pleadings and denied as moot the plaintiffs’ motion for relief from a deadline.