News & Analysis as of

Federal Court Holds That “Each and Every Exposure” Theory is Inadmissible

The “single fiber” theory, well known to asbestos litigants and practitioners, is an attempt to circumvent “substantial factor” causation requirements, positing that any exposure to asbestos constitutes an underlying cause of...more

Louisiana Federal Court Excludes “Every Exposure” Testimony

Adding to the growing body of case law that rejects the so-called “every exposure” theory, a federal court in Louisiana has excluded specific causation opinions of a plaintiffs’ expert who relied on the theory, finding that...more

$1 Million Punitive Damages Award in New Jersey Asbestos Case

A $7.5 million verdict was rendered on January 15, 2015, by a Middlesex County jury in the matter of Condon v. Advanced Thermal Hydronics, et al., Docket No.: MID-L-5695-13AS, Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division,...more

No Diagnosis, No "Damages": Wisconsin's Construction Statute of Repose in Asbestos Cases

How to apply Wisconsin’s construction statute of repose, Wis. Stat. § 893.89, in asbestos cases has recently been a hot topic dividing trial courts. The statute bars a broad category of claims if they are brought more than 10...more

DRM client wins important case precluding termination of insurer insolvency before contingent or unliquidated claims can be...

The Vermont Supreme Court has ruled in In Re Ambassador Ins. Co., 2015 VT 4 (Vt. Jan. 23, 2015) that the liquidator of Ambassador Insurance acted unreasonably in setting a December 31, 2013 bar date for policyholder claims...more

The Fourth Circuit, En Banc, Addresses Removal / Remand Litigation

In Barlow v. Colgate Palmolive Co., 772 F.3d 1001 (4th Cir. 2014), an en banc decision, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit considered two cases where plaintiffs allegedly misrepresented their intent to...more

Chicago Federal Court Bars Expert Testimony Espousing the “Any Exposure” Theory

On December 22, 2014, in a pre-trial ruling, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, in Krik v. Crane Co., et al., No. 1:10-cv-07435 (N.D. Ill. December 22, 2014) barred perennial plaintiff’s expert Dr....more

District Court in Louisiana Nixes “Bystander Damages” for Relatives of Asbestos Victims

In Comardelle v. Pennsylvania General Insurance Company et al., 2014 WL 5762841, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana denied a claim for “bystander damages” allegedly resulting from the...more

California Appellate Court Upholds Bar to Liability by Premises Owners for Secondary Exposure

In Wanda Beckering v. Shell Oil Company, 2014 WL 6611088, the Second District of the California Court of Appeal affirmed the granting of summary judgment in favor of defendant Shell Oil Company, finding that the plaintiff was...more

Illinois Appellate Court Finds Defendant Not Liable for “Speculative” Workplace Asbestos Exposure

The Illinois Appellate Court for the Fourth District affirmed a jury’s defense verdict in Holloway v. Sprinkmann Sons Corporation of Illinois, 2014 IL App (4th) 131118 (December 16, 2014). The plaintiff testified that from...more

One Expert In, One Expert Out in Illinois Asbestos Case

An Illinois federal judge recently approved only one of two well-known asbestos experts to testify in a former pipefitter’s asbestos exposure case. U.S. District Judge John Z. Lee of the Northern District of Illinois held...more

The Seemingly Interminable Garlock Saga: Where Are We Now?

As reported in our February 2014 edition, the bankruptcy court estimating Garlock Sealing Technologies, LLC’s asbestos liability uncovered significant evidence “that the last 10 years of its participation in the tort system...more

Cedent Loses Motion For Reinsurance Payments Due To Late Notice And “Unsatisfactory” Proof Of Loss, Notwithstanding “Follow The...

In a reinsurance coverage dispute involving coverage for an underlying settlement of asbestos liability, a New York court considered whether the defenses of failure to provide prompt notice and failure to provide satisfactory...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

Coverage Options for Employee Asbestos Claims

Over the past year, courts in Illinois and Pennsylvania have dramatically altered the ability of an employee to bring claims against past and present employers for asbestos-related injuries. Traditionally, employees were...more

New Jersey Appellate Court Keeps “Running Spigot” Open on Allocation of Defense Costs Under Non-Eroding-Limit Fronting Policies...

New Jersey’s Appellate Division recently affirmed each of several challenged rulings rendered in a long-running coverage dispute between plaintiff IMO Industries and its many historical insurers arising from asbestos...more

Does asbestosis qualify under the Illinois Workers’ Occupational Diseases Act?

Asbestosis is covered under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation and Occupational Diseases Act. In other words, Illinois workers who develop this condition as a consequence of employment are entitled to benefits under state...more

Employers’ Asbestos Liabilities Do Not Extend to Workers’ Spouses

Two federal judges recently dismissed the claims of the spouses of workers who purportedly carried asbestos fibers home from their workplaces. In July 2014, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma...more

Washington Supreme Court Ratifies Employer Immunity for Asbestos Exposure

The Washington Supreme Court recently affirmed summary judgment in favor of an employer defending an asbestos lawsuit brought by a former employee. In Walston v. Boeing Co., No. 88511-7 (September 18, 2014), the Supreme...more

Take-Home Exposure Claims Under Review by California's High Court

On August 20, 2014, the California Supreme Court granted petitions for review in two published decisions that reached different conclusions on whether a defendant owed a duty for take-home exposures. Both matters (Haver v....more

Injured Sailors May Seek Punitive Damages in the Asbestos MDL

U.S. District Judge Eduardo C. Robreno of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, who oversees asbestos multidistrict litigation, issued a decision in July permitting injured sailors to seek punitive damage awards. In Re:...more

Update: California Supreme Court to Review Secondary Asbestos Exposure Cases

In Sedgwick’s June 2014 Toxic Tort and Environmental Law Update, we reported on two conflicting decisions from different California appellate courts regarding companies’ duty to prevent “take home exposures” to asbestos...more

Asbestos Alert: Failure To Recognize A Defendant’s Name Insufficient To Support Summary Judgment

Ganoe v. Metalclad Insulation Corp. - California Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District (July 21, 2014) - Metalclad was an insulation contractor. Mark Ganoe worked in Department 132 at Goodyear Tire &...more

Texas Supreme Court Reaffirms Causation Standard

In Bostic, et. al. v. Georgia-Pacific Corporation, 57 Tex.Sup.Ct.J. 1091, the Supreme Court of Texas reaffirmed that the “substantial factor” causation test applies in asbestos personal injury cases, defined the quantitative...more

Pennsylvania Statute of Repose Applies to Asbestos Claims

In Graver v. Foster Wheeler Corp., 2014 Pa. Super. 132, the Superior Court of Pennsylvania held that the statute of repose applicable to designers and constructors of improvements to real property applied to asbestos claims....more

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