Appeals Court Confirms Dismissal Based on Asbestos Supplier’s Lack of Contacts With Florida

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FLORIDA — The plaintiff James Waite was allegedly exposed to asbestos while living in Massachusetts. He filed suit against multiple defendants, including Union Carbide, alleging that his exposure to asbestos caused him to develop mesothelioma. Mr. Waite was diagnosed in Florida, and he and his wife filed suit in Florida state court. Union Carbide removed the case to federal district court where the court determined that it lacked personal jurisdiction over UC.

The Waites appealed, arguing that the district court erred in dismissing UC for lack of personal jurisdiction because the court could “properly exercise both specific and general jurisdiction over Union Carbide.”  The Appeals Court disagreed, holding that “Union Carbide is not subject to specific jurisdiction because the Waites cannot show their claims arise out of Union Carbide’s contacts with Florida.

The Appeals Court upheld the dismissal.

Read the full case decision here.