California Case Removed During Jury Selection Sent Back to State Court U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, August 9, 2019

CALIFORNIA – The plaintiff, Arthur Putt, filed suit in Los Angeles Superior Court on December 3, 2018, alleging he developed mesothelioma from his use of automobile brakes. Among the 16 defendants sued were Ford, Pneumo Abex and Pep Boys. On August 7, 2019, jury selection began with Ford and Pep Boys participating. Pneumo Abex did not participate in the process, but the superior court had not dismissed the plaintiff’s claims against it. On August 8, the plaintiff’s counsel informed the superior court that the claims…
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U.S. Supreme Court Decision Quells Disagreement Over Bare Metal Defense in Maritime Cases U.S. District Court for Western District of Washington, August 9, 2019

In the past few years, the bare metal defense has seen inconsistent and nebulous holdings around the nation. The bare metal defense vindicates an asbestos defendant that manufactured a product that was made of only metal without asbestos but later utilized asbestos components within its products. The defense is commonly seen amongst pump and valve manufacturers and also in United States Navy cases, thereby implicating maritime law. Examples of trial courts granting summary judgment for the defense only to be overturned on appeal are readily…
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Supplier Defendant Granted Summary Judgment for Lack of Evidence of Exposure

As the Asbestos Case Tracker recently reported, on August 5, 2019, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington recently ruled on several defendants motions for summary judgment. In the complaint, the plaintiff alleges that Rudie Klopman-Baerselman (decedent) was exposed to asbestos-containing products sold or supplied by the supplier defendant, causing the decedent to develop mesothelioma in July 2017 and pass away in November 2017. In the supplier defendant’s motion for summary judgment, it argued that:
  1. The plaintiff was unable to identify

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Summary Judgment Denial Upheld by Kentucky Court of Appeals Denying Application of Workers’ Compensation Bar

In Schneider Electric USA, Inc. v. Paul Williams, as Executor of the Estate of Vickie Williams, the court of appeals affirmed a trial court’s denial of the sole defendant’s motion for summary judgment. In this case, Vickie Williams’ father worked for Schneider Electric USA, Inc., formerly known as Square D Company (Square D), for several years. During that time, she allegedly encountered asbestos brought home on her father’s clothing. Ms. Williams also worked for Square D for a few months as a teenager. She…
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Talc Defendant Successfully Excludes Expert Opinion Pursuant to Daubert

The plaintiff, Doris Gordon, alleged that she developed fatal mesothelioma in part from her use of asbestos-contaminated Cashmere Bouquet talcum powder that was manufactured, marketed, and sold by the defendant, Colgate-Palmolive. Colgate sought exclusion of the testimony of the plaintiff’s expert, Dr. Ronald Gordon. The court considered Colgate’s Daubert motion to exclude Dr. Gordon’s testimony and a separate motion in limine to preclude evidence regarding the plaintiff’s testing because of lack of authenticity and relevance of the talc tested. The Daubert motion was granted, and…
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U.S. Supreme Court Decision Quells Disagreement Over Bare Metal Defense in Maritime Cases

In the past few years, the bare metal defense has seen inconsistent and nebulous holdings around the nation. The bare metal defense vindicates an asbestos defendant that manufactured a product that was made of only metal without asbestos but later utilized asbestos components within its products. The defense is commonly seen amongst pump and valve manufacturers and also in United States Navy cases, thereby implicating maritime law. Examples of trial courts granting summary judgment for the defense only to be overturned on appeal are readily…
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Summary Judgment Granted for Brake Manufacturer Based Upon Lack of Product Identification U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, August 5, 2019

WASHINGTON – The plaintiff filed suit in Washington state court alleging that decedent, Rudie Klopman-Baerselman, developed mesothelioma from exposure to brakes manufactured by Standard Motor Products (SMP), which he used while performing maintenance on his vehicles from 1966 to 1997. The case was removed to federal court. SMP moved for summary judgment based upon a lack of product identification evidence. The plaintiff did not oppose the motion. Although the plaintiff alleged in the complaint that the decedent used SMP products, no witnesses testified as such.…
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“Dusty Conditions” Alone Not Enough to Defeat Defendants’ Motions for Summary Judgment United States District Court, W.D. Washington. August 2, 2019

WASHINGTON – In Marietta Dianne Yaw, Individually and as Executor of the Estate of Donald Arthur Yaw v. Air & Liquid Systems Corp., et al, pending in the United States District Court for the Western District of Washington, the court recently granted motions for summary judgment for three defendants. The plaintiffs, Donald and Marietta Yaw, filed the lawsuit in May 2018 alleging that Donald Yaw was injured from his exposure to asbestos as a result of his work with and around several defendants’ products.…
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J&J Wins Defense Verdict in Kentucky Talc Case Louisville State Court, August 2, 2019

KENTUCKY – A Louisville state court deliberated for approximately a half hour on August 2, 2019 before finding in favor of Johnson & Johnson in a talc case. The lawsuit alleged that Donna Ann Hayes died from mesothelioma caused by her use of talcum powder products. The plaintiff’s lawyers argued that the talc was contaminated with asbestos, but J&J disputed those allegations.  …
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Talc Case Remanded To State Court When Fraudulent Joinder Theory Fails United States District Court, N.D. New York, July 31, 2019

NEW YORK – The plaintiff, Marilyn LaFlair, sued Port Jervis, New York resident Kolmar Laboratories, Inc. (Kolmar) and Johnson & Johnson (J&J) in state court in St. Lawrence County, New York. She alleged that asbestos-contaminated cosmetic talcum powder products manufactured and supplied by these defendants caused her mesothelioma. J&J removed the action to federal court and argued that non-diverse defendant Kolmar was fraudulently joined to the action. J&J contended that the “boilerplate allegations” of the plaintiff’s pleadings at most only suggested that Kolmar manufactured, sampled…
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