Summary Judgment Proper When Plaintiffs Fail to Establish Sufficient Exposure to Asbestos

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, August 5, 2021

Decedent John Dale Wineland, who developed mesothelioma and subsequently died, worked aboard Navy ships and in Navy offices between 1963 and 1984. The plaintiffs allege that the decedent was exposed to asbestos contained in Cleaver-Brooks products while aboard the USS Tuscaloosa, where he worked in the engine rooms. The plaintiffs assert that defendant Cleaver-Brooks is liable for the decedent’s illness and death under theories of negligence and strict liability.

Cleaver-Brooks filed a …

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Premises Defendants Liable for Take-Home Asbestos Exposure

Supreme Court of Utah, August 5, 2021

Larry Boynton brought this suit on behalf of his deceased wife, Barbara Boynton, alleging that her indirect exposure to asbestos from Larry’s job sites in the 1960s and 1970s, through asbestos dust left in the family car and Barbara’s laundering of Larry’s work clothes, caused her mesothelioma and resulting death. The three job site operator defendants each moved for summary judgment, arguing that they did not owe a duty of care to Barbara. The district court denied the …

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Boiler Refractory Contractor’s Summary Judgment Reversed due to Exposure Question of Fact

Court of Appeal of California, First Appellate District, Division Five, August 4, 2021

In this matter, the decedent was diagnosed with mesothelioma in March 2014. The decedent and his wife sued numerous defendants, including Thomas Dee Engineering Company (Thomas Dee) based on the decedent’s exposure to asbestos while serving in the U.S. Navy. Specifically, the plaintiffs alleged that Thomas Dee performed repairs on USS San Jose boilers during fall 1973. The decedent testified that he worked in the boiler room and saw others work in …

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Wallboard Manufacturer Denied Summary Judgment Due to Issue of Fact

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, August 2, 2021

In August 2019, plaintiff Patricia Jackson brought a lawsuit for asbestos exposure in Orleans Parish Civil District Court against a number of defendants. On March 25, 2020, the case was removed to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana by the Avondale defendants following the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit’s decision in Latiolais v. Huntington Ingalls, Inc., which held that removal under section 1442(a) is …

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Valve Manufacturer Granted Summary Judgment on Causation Grounds

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, August 2, 2021

In this asbestos action, the plaintiff alleges that the decedent, John Dale Wineland, worked aboard a series of Navy ships and in Navy offices between 1963 and 1984. The plaintiffs allege that Mr. Wineland was exposed to asbestos contained in Powell products while aboard the USS Tuscaloosa between 1972 and 1974. Mr. Wineland worked primarily in the engine rooms of the ships to which he was assigned, repairing and maintaining machinery and equipment …

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2021 Second Quarter Asbestos Bankruptcy Trust Alert

As previously reported on Asbestos Case Tracker, by the end of the first quarter of 2021 there were 11 trusts which had changes impacting the amount of compensation available to individuals claiming asbestos-related injuries. As the second quarter of 2021 comes to a close, there are now changes to nine trusts, five of which also saw changes at the end of the first quarter. Below is a summary of the changes, to date.

Bankrupt TrustChange
CelotexIncreased its payment percentage from 7.7% to 8%
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Proof of Claim Bankruptcy Documents Ruled Discoverable with Redaction of Settlement Amounts and Sensitive Medical Information

Supreme Court of the State of New York, County of Monroe, July 15, 2021

In this case, the plaintiff moved for a protective order granting partial relief from Subpoenas Duces Tecum served on non-party bankruptcy trusts. The plaintiff requested redactions of information regarding settlement amounts, nonparty-affiant personal information, highly sensitive and personal medical issues, and claim specific identification information generated by the trusts. The plaintiff additionally moved for in-camera inspection citing privacy concerns, while conceding that there was not privilege or prejudice.

The defendants opposed …

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Military Contractor Defense Does Not Apply to Manufacturers of Commercial Insulation

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, July 22, 2021

Plaintiff George Kraemer alleges that he was exposed to asbestos and asbestos-containing products manufactured and sold by defendant Lone Star Industries (Lone Star) that were used at locations where his father worked as an insulator between 1942 and 1945. He also alleges that he was exposed to asbestos through his own workplace. On October 1, 2020, the plaintiff and his wife initiated this action in King County Superior Court against Lone Star and …

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Boiler, Burner, and Furnace Manufacturer Failed to Meet Summary Judgment Burden

Superior Court of Rhode Island, Providence, July 21, 2021

In this asbestos action, Gerard Wallace (decedent) serviced and repaired existing boilers and furnaces, performed coal-to-oil conversions, and installed new boilers and furnaces. Defendant Electrolux moved for summary judgment, arguing that the plaintiff did not adduce evidence showing that the decedent worked with or around an Electrolux or Williams Oil-O-Matic product which had original asbestos-containing components manufactured, sold, or supplied by Electrolux or Williams Oil-O-Matic. While the plaintiff attempted to argue that Rhode Island substantive law …

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Purifier Defendant Granted Summary Judgment as Plaintiffs Failed to Establish Causation

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, July 19, 2021

Defendant Alfa Laval filed this present amended motion for summary judgment. The plaintiffs allege the decedent, John Dale Wineland (decedent or Mr. Wineland), worked aboard a series of Navy ships including the USS Dynamic, USS Pledge, USS Loyalty, USS Tuscaloosa, and USS Esteem from 1963 to 1984, where he was exposed to asbestos from Alfa Laval products aboard these ships. The decedent worked in the engine room where he …

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