person testifying

Valve Defendant Summary Judgment Motion Denied

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Court: Supreme Court of New York, New York County (NYCAL)

In this asbestos action, defendant Crosby Valve LLC moved to dismiss the action, alleging that plaintiff, John Holland was not exposed to asbestos from any Crosby product. In opposition, plaintiffs highlighted Holland’s deposition testimony, which identified Crosby as a manufacturer. Plaintiffs also pointed to the purported lack of personal knowledge in Crosby’s supporting affidavit and the testimony of Crosby’s corporate affidavit, which confirmed asbestos-containing Crosby products.

Summary judgment motions are denied if the opposing party presents admissible evidence establishing that a genuine issue of fact remains. According to New York’s Appellate Division First Department, “[t]he deposition testimony of a litigant is sufficient to raise an issue of fact so as to preclude the grant of summary judgment dismissing the complaint.” Dollas v. W.R. Grace and Co., 639 N.Y.S.2d 323 (1st Dep’t 1996). Here, the court noted that Holland provided unequivocal testimony identifying Crosby products as a source of his asbestos exposure, and that Crosby’s corporate representative and historical Crosby catalogue confirmed the presence and circulation of asbestos-containing products manufactured by Crosby. The court also noted that Crosby’s supporting affidavit papers provided no basis for contradictory conclusions, as it failed to reference any company materials used. As such, the court determined that conflicting evidence was presented, and that sufficient issues of fact existed to preclude summary judgment as to Crosby. Thus, Crosby’s motion was denied.

Read the full decision here.