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Premises Defendant’s Motion to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim Granted

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Plaintiff Marvin Evans was diagnosed with lung cancer in September 2022. Subsequently, the plaintiff sued a number of defendants in the Civil District Court for Orleans Parish, alleging that his lung cancer was caused by exposure to asbestos during his employment as a boilermaker with various companies between 1969 and 1980. The case was eventually removed to the Eastern District of Louisiana.

In the instant motion, one of the defendants, Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products LP, alleged that the plaintiff failed to state a claim against it. Specifically, Georgia-Pacific asserted that the only facts surrounding Georgia-Pacific’s alleged liability is a statement in the complaint, which reads that the plaintiff was “exposed to asbestos at a Georgia-Pacific worksite in Zachary, Louisiana, which contributed to or caused” his disease. Significantly, Georgia-Pacific averred that it has never operated a facility in Zachary, Louisiana. As such, Georgia-Pacific argued that there was not a sufficient factual basis for the claims against it.

Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) provides that an action may be dismissed for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. To survive a motion to dismiss, a complaint must contain sufficient factual matters, accepted as true, to state a claim for relief that is plausible on its face. Importantly, factual allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above speculative level.

Here, the court noted that Georgia-Pacific asserted that it never operated a facility in Zachary, Louisiana, where the plaintiff alleged exposure. Notably, the plaintiff failed to oppose Georgia-Pacific’s motion, despite the opportunity to do so. As a result, the court granted Georgia-Pacific’s motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim.

Read the full decision here.