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Appellate Division Reverses Denial of Door Manufacturer’s Motion to Dismiss

Supreme Court of New York, Appellate Division, First Department

In July 2023, the trial court denied a door manufacturer’s motion to dismiss. Upon appeal, the Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department found that defendant T.M. Cobb Company’s motion to dismiss should have been granted for lack of personal jurisdiction.

The court held that “there is no evidence that the fire doors that allegedly caused the decedent plaintiff’s injury by exposing him to asbestos were manufactured in New York.” The court also stated that T.M. Cobb “did not commit a tortious act ‘within the state’ to confer jurisdiction” as T.M. Cobb did not manufacture any products outside of California, its state of incorporation.

In support, the Appellate Division cited CPLR 302(a)(2), Longines-Wittnauer Watch Co. v. Barnes & Reinecke, Eastwing Mfg. Co. v. Singer, and SOS Capital v. Recycling Paper Partners of PA, LLC. The Appellate Division further determined there was “insufficient evidence of [T.M. Cobb’s] requisite minimal contacts with New York to comport with due process in the exercise of personal jurisdiction over it.” To this point, the Appellate Division cited Williams v. Beemiller, Inc. and Carpino v. National Store Fixtures. Thus, the Appellate Division reversed the trial court’s order.

Read the full decision here.