Ninth Circuit Affirms District Court Ruling Based On Government Contractor Defense


Today, the Ninth Circuit, issued a seminal decision regarding the Government Contractor Defense in Getz et al. v. The Boeing Co. et al., No. 10-15284 (D.C. No. 4:07-cv-06396-CW) (9th Cir. Aug. 2, 2011). The decision was authored by Senior Circuit Judge Wallace and joined by Judge Noonan and Judge Clifton. The Ninth Circuit’s fact-intensive analysis of the three prongs of Boyle, as well as the state law failure-to-warn claim, provides a well-written analysis of current Ninth Circuit precedent, and serves as a roadmap for future government contractor defense cases in the Ninth Circuit.

The Government Contractor Defense establishes that government contractors can be protected from tort liability that arises as a result of the contractor’s “compli[ance] with the specifications of a federal government contract.” Getz, No. 10-15284 at 9963, citing In re Hanford Nuclear Reservation Litig., 534 F.3d 986, 1000 (9th Cir. 2008). In order to establish the government contractor defense, a contractor needs to establish: (1) government approval of reasonably precise specifications, (2) conformance to those specifications, and (3) warnings of dangers known to the contractor but not the government. See Boyle v. United Technologies Corp., 487 U.S. 500, 512 (1988).

Please see full alert below for more information.

LOADING PDF: If there are any problems, click here to download the file.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Morrison & Foerster LLP | Attorney Advertising

Written by:


Morrison & Foerster LLP on:

JD Supra Readers' Choice 2016 Awards
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:

Sign up to create your digest using LinkedIn*

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.

Already signed up? Log in here

*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.