Toxic Torts Personal Injury

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New York’s Highest Court Reaffirms Specific Causation Rule under Parker in Toxic Tort Cases

On March 27, 2014, New York’s Court of Appeals issued a ruling reversing an Appellate Division decision and sustaining the lower court’s decision granting a defendant’s motion to dismiss the plaintiff’s complaint alleging...more

Toxic Tort and Environmental Litigation: Court of Appeals Revisits and Clarifies Causation Requirements for Expert Opinions

Causation is the crux of any toxic tort litigation. The Court of Appeals’ recent decision in Cornell v. 360 West 51st Street Realty, LLC, No. 16 (N.Y. Mar. 27, 2014) underscores that principle and revisits the causation...more

Storing Heating Oil In Residential Tank Is Not An Abnormally Dangerous Activity In New Jersey

The Appellate Division recent held that the storage of home heating oil in an underground storage tank is not an abnormally dangerous activity. In Ross v. Lowitz, the plaintiffs, John and Pamela Ross, owned property that was...more

Recent Developments in Medical Monitoring Case Law (2013-2014)

Over the last 30 years, state and federal courts have grappled with how best to address claims filed by plaintiffs who do not currently suffer from an actual injury or illness, but rather seek damages for their risk of...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

Toxic Tort and Environmental Litigation: Third Department Clarifies Scope of Recoverable Medical Monitoring Damages in Waterborne...

On the heels of the Court of Appeals’ landmark decision rejecting an independent cause of action for medical monitoring in Caronia v. Phillip Morris USA, on February 20, 2014, the Third Department decided Ivory v. IBM. Ivory...more

Shutting Down a Capital City: How High Will Business Interruption Claims Go?

On Thursday, January 9, 2014, a major chemical spill into West Virginia’s Elk Rivet cut off water to more than 300,000 people in the Kanawha Valley and surrounding nine counties. The chemical leak was from a facility owned by...more

The Use of Forensic Psychiatry in Catastrophic Injury and Multi-Party Litigation

Catastrophic accidents often lead to claims for severe emotional distress including allegations of post-traumatic stress disorder (‘‘PTSD’’). Similarly, allegations of acute neuropsychological disorders and fear of cancer can...more

Threshold for Admissibility of Expert Opinion Affirmed by Pennsylvania Appellate Court

Pennsylvania’s intermediate appellate court recently affirmed an order granting summary judgment for Rohm and Haas (R&H) in a chemical exposure wrongful death action, finding the plaintiff’s expert’s opinion regarding...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

Litigation Risks in Texas Are Reduced –The Merits of New Trial Orders by Texas Courts Are Now Subject to Appellate Review

Significant oil and gas exploration and development has occurred and continues to occur in South Texas. Whenever an injury, death, or environmental damage results from these operations, a defendant energy company have often...more

Lone Pine Orders Called Into Question In Colorado

A Lone Pine order is a case management tool often utilized by courts in complex multi-party toxic tort cases to organize plaintiffs’ claims and to focus the parties on key issues early in the litigation. A Lone Pine order...more

Third Circuit Holds “Source State” Common Law Tort Claims Not Preempted by Federal Clean Air Act

In an opinion filed on Tuesday, August 20, 2013, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit held that the federal Clean Air Act (CAA) does not preempt common law tort claims grounded in state law and brought against a...more

Painting a Picture at Trial for the Court of Appeal

During a trial, the jury and court below will hear the testimony of witnesses and observe their demeanor. Once the case is on appeal, the reviewing court is usually limited to reading transcripts that may or may not convey...more

Man and Son-in-Law Killed by Toxic Gas Exposure

A man and his son-in-law were killed in an oilfield-related accident recently one mile northeast of Clafin, Kansas. The man was fixing a leaky valve and asked his son-in-law to bring him additional parts. Unfortunately, both...more

A Good Offense In Your Toxic Tort Claim Is Knowing The Defense

U.S. tort costs increased by 5.1 percent in 2010, according to the 2011 Update on U.S. Tort Cost Trends, published by Towers Watson. The BP Deepwater Horizon rig explosion and oil spill in April 2010 was the largest...more

Environmental Nuisance Claims — It Helps To Have Experts

The old warning that “past performance is no guarantee of future results” apparently applies not only to investments but also to environmental nuisance suits in Tennessee. ...more

Colorado Ruling Raises Stakes in Fracking Litigation and Beyond

In an Independence Day gift to plaintiffs, the Colorado Court of Appeals ruled in Strudley v. Antero Resources Corp., No. 12CA1251 (July 3, 2013), that Colorado law does not allow pre-discovery Lone Pine orders, often used by...more

Plaintiff's Rights Regarding an Independent Medical Examination

When plaintiff receives a demand for a physical examination he or she have 20 days after the service of the demand to serve their response. More likely than not, plaintiff counsel is going to allow the plaintiff to submit to...more

Recent Massachusetts Decision Applies Pro-Rata Allocation and Continuous Trigger to Progressive Injury Claims, Including Asbestos...

What you need to know: A recent Massachusetts federal trial court ruling applied pro-rata allocation and continuous trigger to progressive injury claims arising from asbestos and toxic chemicals and metals....more

Oklahoma Supreme Court Holds Comprehensive Lawsuit Reform Act of 2009 Unconstitutional

In 2009, Oklahoma joined the list of states attempting to curb “lawsuit abuse” by passing the Comprehensive Lawsuit Reform Act of 2009 (CLRA of 2009). Arguably the most sweeping legislation affecting the practice of law in...more

Historical Tort System Claim Values Cannot Be Reduced By "Nuisance" Settlements and "Implicit Defense Costs" To Determine Present...

Delaware Bankruptcy Judge Judith Fitzgerald in the bankruptcies of Specialty Products Holding Corp. (a/k/a RPM, Inc.) and Bondex International, Inc. rejected the Debtors’ “novel” claim estimation approach that reduced from...more

Illinois Appellate Court Endorses “All Sums” Allocation Rule for Asbestos Bodily Injury Losses under Excess and Umbrella Insurers

On March 5, 2013, the First District Appellate Court of Illinois ruled in John Crane, Inc. v. Admiral Ins. Co., 2013 IL App (1st) 093240-B that excess and umbrella insurers covering asbestos-related injury claims are jointly...more

BP Settlement Claim

After years of litigation, BP Exploration & Production, Inc. and BP America Production Company (collectively, "BP") entered a class-wide settlement ("BP Settlement") that covers most businesses located in the Gulf Coast...more

I've Got This Doctor You Gotta See!

In most personal injury actions the plaintiff is served with a Notice for an Independent Medical Examination. It has become so commonplace that no one really thinks twice about the demand. However, there are a few...more

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