Defendants’ Request of Sanctions for Plaintiffs’ Counsel Failure to Preserve Lung Tissue Denied

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division, March 31, 2021

In this asbestos action, Mr. James LaFrentz (the decedent) wore a 3M dust mask while working for General Dynamics from 1978 until 1984. The issue of whether the decedent suffered from mesothelioma or lung cancer was in contention before his passing. Several defendants, including General Dynamics and 3M, informed the plaintiffs’ counsel that the decedent’s diagnosis was in dispute and requested that the plaintiffs’ counsel preserve the decedent’s tissue, both orally …

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Defendants Prevail on Removal to Federal Court Based on Federal Officer Removal Statute

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, March 31, 2021

In October 2019, plaintiff Stephen Legendre, filed a lawsuit alleging that he contracted mesothelioma in September 2019. He alleged that his mesothelioma was caused by take-home exposure to asbestos from his father who worked at Avondale from 1943 to 1945.

The defendants removed this matter pursuant to the Federal Officer Removal Statute, 28 U.S.C. § 1442. Thereafter, the plaintiff filed a motion to remand asserting federal jurisdiction is not warranted.

28 U.S.C. § 1442(a)(1) makes removable …

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Equipment Manufacturer’s Motion for Summary Judgment Denied

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, March 31, 2021

In October 2019, Plaintiff Stephen Legendre, filed a lawsuit alleging that he contracted mesothelioma in September 2019. He alleged that his mesothelioma was caused by take-home exposure to asbestos from his father who worked at Avondale from 1943 to 1945.

Avondale removed the case to federal court, and thereafter filed a third-party claim against Mestek, Inc, as the successor corporation to L.J. Wing Manufacturing Company, which had allegedly supplied forced draft blowers and …

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Jurisdictional Discovery Allowed Over Successor Entity in Take-Home Exposure Case

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, March 31, 2021

In October 2019, plaintiff Stephen Legendre, filed a lawsuit alleging that he contracted mesothelioma in September 2019. He alleged that his mesothelioma was caused by take-home exposure to asbestos from his father who worked at Avondale from 1943 to 1945.

Avondale removed the case to federal court, and thereafter filed a third-party claim against Mestek, Inc, as the successor corporation to L.J. Wing Manufacturing Company, which had allegedly supplied forced draft blowers and …

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Partial Summary Judgment Denied to Shipbuilding Company and Auto Parts Retailer

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, March 30, 2021

Before the court are motions for summary judgment filed by defendant National Steel and Shipbuilding Company (NASSCO) and Pep Boys-Manny, Moe & Jack of California.

Defendant NASSCO moves for summary judgment on the theory that, as a government contractor, it enjoys derivative immunity from asbestos- related liability. In the alternative, should material facts regarding its overhaul of the USS Bristol County remain in dispute, NASSCO moves for partial summary judgment as to the plaintiffs’ premises …

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Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Personal Jurisdiction Granted for Boiler Manufacturer

Supreme Court of New York, New York County, March 25, 2021

Defendant Cleaver-Brooks, Inc. filed this instant motion to dismiss the plaintiff’s complaint pursuant to CPLR 3211 (a)(8) on the grounds that the court lacked personal jurisdiction over them. This lawsuit stems from plaintiff Darrell Nelson’s diagnosis of malignant pleural mesothelioma, which plaintiffs allege resulted from Mr. Nelson’s exposure to asbestos from his work as a maintenance worker and boiler operator for the Red Wing School District in Red Wing, Minnesota from 1977 to 1997. The …

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Federal Officer Removal Found to Be Proper and Timely in Another Post-Latiolais Decision

U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana, March 4, 2021

The plaintiffs alleged the decedent, Kirk Reulet, was exposed to asbestos during his own employment at the Avondale Shipyard from 1967 to 1972 and from take-home exposure to asbestos through his father, Pierre Reulet, who worked for Avondale from 1964 to 1977. Defendant Hopeman Brothers, Inc. allegedly performed contracting work with asbestos-containing products at Avondale during Mr. Reulet’s employment. In June 2019, the plaintiffs filed suit against Avondale, Hopeman, and other defendants in …

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Court Finds Testimony of Plaintiffs’ Causation Expert Admissible

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, March 26, 2021

The plaintiffs filed this action alleging decedent developed malignant mesothelioma and later died from exposure to asbestos-containing products or equipment. Specifically, the plaintiffs allege the decedent worked with Bendix brand brakes during his service in the Army and as a machinist. The plaintiffs offered Dr. Carl Brodkin as a causation expert. Dr. Brodkin opined decedent’s work with and around Bendix brakes was a substantial contributing factor in decedent’s development of mesothelioma.

Defendant Honeywell …

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$25.5 Million Punitive Damages Award Reversed; New Trial Ordered on Apportionment of Fault in Automobile Brake Case

Court of Appeal of California, Second Appellate District, Division Two, March 25, 2021

In this asbestos action, plaintiff Arthur Putt replaced brake pads manufactured and supplied by several different entities in connection with cars manufactured by three different companies in two California gas stations from 1966 until 1970. The plaintiff was diagnosed with mesothelioma in 2018 and testified that 40 percent of his brake work involved Ford vehicles, and 40 percent of his total work with Ford vehicles involved removing the factory-installed brake pads. The …

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Summary Judgment Upheld for Motorcycle Manufacturer Based on Lack of Proof of Asbestos in Brake Linings

Court of Appeals of Oregon, March 24, 2021

In this asbestos action, decedent Ronald Laux alleged exposure to asbestos from replacing motorcycle brake linings from 1961 until 2014. Thereafter, he developed mesothelioma and brought negligence and strict products liability actions against numerous defendants. After Mr. Laux’s passing, Mrs. Laux was named as the personal representative of his estate.

Defendant Yamaha moved for summary judgment, arguing that the record was devoid of sufficient evidence to show the decedent was exposed to asbestos from a product manufactured, …

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