Labor & Employment Toxic Torts

Read need-to-know updates, commentary, and analysis on Labor & Employment issues written by leading professionals.
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Illinois Supreme Court Narrows Ability for Employees to Sue for Alleged Occupational Diseases

On November 4, 2015, in the case of Folta v. Ferro Engineering, 2015 Il 118070 (2015), the Illinois Supreme Court strengthened the exclusivity provision of the Illinois Workers' Compensation Act and Illinois Occupational...more

U.S. construction companies and manager face fines of nearly $2 million for exposing workers to asbestos

The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OHSA) has cited a construction company and its manager for asbestos-related violations and imposed fines of almost $2 million.  Safety regulators are increasingly taking...more

Hidden Costs of Common Beauty Treatments?

The “toxic trio” is a foreboding name some associate with common and seemingly innocuous manicures and pedicures. Salon workers suffer higher-than-average rates of birth defects, miscarriages, cancers, and skin afflictions...more

Pa. Toxic Tort Settlement Shows Potential Danger in Benzene Exposure Lawsuits

A settlement recently reached between U.S. Steel Corp. and the widow of a Pennsylvania man allegedly exposed to benzene may fuel use of toxic tort lawsuits to sue over benzene exposures. ...more

Getting SSD benefits for asbestos exposure

Asbestos is a set of minerals that occur naturally in the form of fiber bundles. Today, asbestos is recognized as a health hazard and closely regulated. However, asbestos has been used in various products, and as Social...more

Additional Risk: Does Your Company Have Additional Insured Coverage for Claims by Contractors’ Employees?

One of the biggest risks oil and gas companies face is a blowout or other catastrophic event that causes serious injury or death. In the aftermath of such an event, companies often find themselves facing lawsuits by injured...more

Pennsylvania Appeals Court Affirms Defendants’ Summary Judgments on Bystander Exposure Claims

Allegations of bystander exposure to asbestos via laundry is a common claim in cases where a plaintiff has no apparent occupational exposure but instead alleges that her asbestos-related disease was caused by exposure to...more

California Court of Appeal Overturns Nonsuit Granted in Household Exposure Asbestos Case Where Trial Court’s Decision Was Based on...

On May 15, 2014, the First District Court of Appeal in California found that the trial court had erred in granting a nonsuit in favor of Pneumo Abex, LLC (Abex) in the asbestos personal injury action of Johnny Blaine Kesner,...more

Court of Appeal Affirms Dismissal of Cases Brought by Foreign Banana Farm Workers Claiming Exposure to Chemicals Rendered Them...

On March 7, 2014, the California Court of Appeal in Los Angeles put an end to years of toxic tort litigation by affirming a trial court’s ruling to grant petitions for writ of error coram vobis, affirming dismissal of a case...more

Florida Supreme Court Affirms Disqualification of Counsel for Class Action of Toxic Tort Plaintiffs

The Florida Supreme Court clarified that its rules of professional responsibility govern whether counsel for class action plaintiffs should be disqualified based on alleged conflicts of interests that arise after a class...more

Hercules and the Lernaean Hydra: The Hercules Removal Jurisprudence Sprouts Yet Another Head

In yet another twist in the tortured labors of the Hercules jurisprudence regarding removal of general maritime law claims under 28 U.S.C. §1441(a), the Eastern District of Louisiana has generated a new, divergent “head” on...more

New Prop 65 Warning Requirements on the Horizon?

Proposition 65 warnings could soon become a much bigger burden for businesses. On Friday, March 7, the California Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) released a...more

California Appellate Court Finds Employer Has No Duty to Future Child for Parent-Employee’s Preconception Exposure to Toxins

The preconception tort is essentially any tortious conduct occurring prior to a child’s conception that results in harm to the child. This type of claim, which has been recognized in California since 1982, can cover all...more

NAHB Urges OSHA To Rescind Proposed Silica Rule

We recently posted an article about whether silica exposure claims might emerge as the next toxic tort. A particular focus of that article was the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) clearly increasing...more

PA Supreme Court Allows Certain Mesothelioma Claimants to Sue Their Employer

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court recently issued a ground-breaking decision that could potentially expose employers to a wave of new lawsuits by former employees suffering from mesothelioma. In its November 22, 2013 opinion in...more

Silica Exposure Lawsuits: The Next Toxic Tort?

With the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) signaling its increased attention to workers' exposure to crystalline silica, and the plaintiffs' bar evidently in search of new subjects for "toxic tort" claims,...more

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Rules on Workers’ Compensation Act Case

Court finds in Tooey that Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act does not bar latent occupational disease lawsuits against employers. On November 22, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court in Tooey et al. v. AK Steel Corp. et...more

Texas Environmental Update - October 2013

We are pleased to provide you with this issue of Bracewell's Texas Environmental Update, offering the latest news about permitting, enforcement, regulatory developments, and other matters of interest to the regulated...more

The Affordable Care Act’s Employer Mandate and the Collectively Bargained Workforce

As 2014 rapidly approaches, employers of all sizes and all industries are working hard to avoid the Affordable Care Act’s (the “Act”) Employer Mandate, now appearing in the Internal Revenue Code, Section 4980H. For employers...more

When Are Witness Statements Protected As Attorney Work Product?

One of the first things an attorney does when representing a client in a particular matter is interview witnesses to learn the facts of the case, or have an investigator do such on their behalf. The attorney will almost...more

Placing Limits on Forum Shopping

Our preview of the September term of the Illinois Supreme Court continues with Fennell v. Illinois Central Railroad Company, a case which may clarify the standards limiting the ability of a plaintiff - or sometimes, a...more

OSHA Modifies Hazard Communication Standard

This past spring, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) modified its Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) to conform to the United Nations' Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of...more

OSHA's New HazCom Standard and Its Potential Impact on Tort Suits

Mackrell International's Regulatory SubGroup Presents: Regulatory Matters! May 2012 Newsletter: Vol. II, Issue I According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration ("OSHA"), almost a million hazardous chemicals...more

Alleged Chemical Release Did Not "Speak for Itself"

Contractors working at a refinery who were allegedly exposed to chemical fumes cannot rely on the venerable res ipsa loquitur theory because their claimed injuries may have had other causes. See Pearson v. BP Products North...more

Hissey Kientz to Hold Testing Sessions for Victims of Asbestos Exposure

The law firm of Hissey Kientz, LLP is conducting two asbestos testing sessions in the El Paso, Texas area for individuals who may have developed cancers such as mesothelioma or other diseases as a result of asbestos...more

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