- Volume 17, Issue #7
- Bankruptcy Judge Abstains From Hearing Injunction Bid For Superfund Site Claims
NEWARK, N.J. - A New Jersey federal bankruptcy judge on Jan. 26 abstained from deciding a request by former Chapter 11 debtor G-I Holdings Inc. to enforce its reorganization plan injunction to bar indemnification claims for cleanup of a polluted industrial site, saying a state court is "fully capable of adjudicating" the claims and G-I's injunction bid (In re: G-I Holdings, Inc., et al., Nos. 01-30135 and 01-38790, D. N.J. Bkcy., 2018 Bankr. LEXIS 214).
- Man's Claims Against Johns-Manville Broker Barred, Court Rules Again
NEW YORK - An asbestosis sufferer "received due process in every possible respect" as a future claimant in the long-running Chapter 11 case of Johns-Manville Corp., so he cannot pursue in personam claims against the company's insurance broker, a New York federal bankruptcy judge held Jan. 24 on remand (In re Johns-Manville Corporation, et al., No. 82-11656, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy., 2018 Bankr. LEXIS 166).
- Maryland Casualty Seeks Protection Of W.R. Grace Injunction For Asbestos Claims
WILMINGTON, Del. - An asbestos liability insurer of former Chapter 11 debtor W.R. Grace & Co. asked a Delaware federal bankruptcy judge Jan. 29 to enforce the protective injunction in the debtor's reorganization plan to halt claimants in Montana from pursuing asbestos claims against the insurer and to impose sanctions on the claimants' attorneys for continuing to prosecute the claims despite a prior order (In re: W.R. Grace & Co., et al., No. 01-01139, D. Del. Bkcy.).
- Rapid-American Denied Protective Order For Insurers' Subpoenas
NEW YORK - Chapter 11 debtor Rapid-American Corp. and asbestos claimants in its bankruptcy case do not have standing to challenge subpoenas served by insurers to asbestos claims-processing facilities seeking evidence of fraud in the asbestos trust system, and besides, the information sought is relevant to the debtor's declaratory judgment action against the insurers, a New York federal bankruptcy judge held Feb. 12 (Rapid-American Corporation, et al. v. Travelers Casualty and Surety Company, et al., No. 15-01095, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy., 2018 Bankr. LEXIS 378).
- Kaiser Gypsum Debtors Agree To Claim Amount In Insolvent Insurers' Run-Off
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - A North Carolina federal bankruptcy judge on Feb. 17 approved in a minute order a settlement between Chapter 11 debtors Kaiser Gypsum Co. Inc. and Hanson Permanente Cement Inc. and the joint scheme administrator for two insolvent British insurers, setting claim values for the debtors in the insurers' run-off proceedings (In re Kaiser Gypsum Company, Inc., et al., No. 16-31602, W.D. N.C. Bkcy.).
- Insurer Asks For Relief From Kaiser Gypsum's Stay To Seek Settlement Reimbursement
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - An insurer of Chapter 11 debtor Hanson Permanente Cement Inc. sought relief from the automatic bankruptcy stay Feb. 13 in North Carolina federal bankruptcy court so it can pursue $2.8 million in reimbursements from other insurers for settlement payments made to asbestos personal injury claimants under a 2009 agreement (In re Kaiser Gypsum Company, Inc., et al., No. 16-31602, W.D. N.C. Bkcy.).
- $750,000 For Claim In Insurer's Liquidation Is Best Deal, Bestwall Says
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Chapter 11 debtor Bestwall LLC is willing to take $750,000 in cash now from a purchaser of a defunct insurer's asbestos policy rather than wait for years to see if it can collect the policy's remaining $3.75 million from the insurer's liquidation proceedings, Bestwall says in a Feb. 1 motion in North Carolina federal bankruptcy court (In re Bestwall LLC, No. 17-31795, W.D. N.C. Bkcy.).
- Insurers Who Had Settlement Rejected Oppose Oakfabco's Disclosure Statement
CHICAGO - Chapter 11 debtor Oakfabco Inc. on Feb. 21 modified its plan of liquidation and disclosure statement to answer questions by three insurers whose $9.78 million settlement offer was rejected by the debtor and who filed the only objection to the disclosure statement in the Illinois federal bankruptcy court case (In re: Oakfabco, Inc., No. 15-27062, N.D. Ill. Bkcy.).
- Geo. V. Hamilton's Plan Draws Only Minor Objections From 2 Insurers
PITTSBURGH - Two insurers of Chapter 11 debtor Geo. V. Hamilton Inc. are the only parties to object to the company's plan of reorganization, and the objections are more like "caveats" that should be resolved in time for the plan confirmation hearing, the insurers said Feb. 20 in an objection and a joinder filed in Pennsylvania federal bankruptcy court (In re Geo. V. Hamilton, Inc., No. 15-23704, W.D. Pa. Bkcy.).
- Geo. V. Hamilton Settles Dispute With Insurance Association For $6 Million
PITTSBURGH - A Pennsylvania insurance guaranty association will pay $6 million to the asbestos trust planned in the Chapter 11 case of debtor Geo. V. Hamilton Inc. to resolve a coverage dispute involving five policies issued to Hamilton by now-insolvent insurers, with a federal bankruptcy judge approving the deal Feb. 14 (In re Geo. V. Hamilton, Inc., No. 15-23704, W.D. Pa. Bkcy.).
- Bestwall Nominates Sander Esserman As Future Claimants' Representative
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Chapter 11 debtor Bestwall LLC asked a North Carolina federal bankruptcy court on Feb. 1 to appoint Dallas attorney Sander L. Esserman to represent future asbestos personal injury claimants in the case (In re Bestwall LLC, No. 17-31795, W.D. N.C. Bkcy.).
- Mississippi Top Court Allows Asbestos Trust Setoffs From FELA Verdict
JACKSON, Miss. - Nothing in the state's precedent or the Federal Employers' Liability Act (FELA) precludes setting off an asbestos verdict with amounts recovered from asbestos trusts, a divided Mississippi Supreme Court held Feb. 15 (Illinois Central Railroad Co. v. Bennie Oakes, et al., No. 2015-TS-00644, Miss. Sup., 2018 Miss. LEXIS 67).
- Arizona Jury Returns Defense Verdict In Asbestos Pipe Case
PHOENIX - An Arizona jury on Feb. 1 returned a defense verdict for CertainTeed Corp. after hearing earlier in the day that plaintiffs had not shown asbestos exposure from the company's pipe and that the case rests on pieces of evidence taken out of context, sources told Mealey Publications (Francisco Herrera, et al. v. CertainTeed Corp., et al., No. CV2014-009632, Ariz. Super., Maricopa Co. VIDEO FROM THE TRIAL IS AVAILABLE.).
- Ohio Supreme Court Finds Cumulative Asbestos Exposure Opinion Lacking
CLEVELAND - Testimony that cumulative asbestos exposures all contribute to mesothelioma does not meet the standard for causation in Ohio, the state's supreme court held Feb. 8 in reversing a ruling that affirmed a more than $1 million judgment against Honeywell International Inc. (Mark Schwartz, et al. v. Honeywell International Inc., et al., No. 2016-1372, Ohio Sup.).
- City Didn't Waive Asbestos-Claim Immunity, Colorado High Court Rules
DENVER - The city of Colorado Springs' complete demolition of an office building did not constitute construction or maintenance of the facility and did not waive its sovereign immunity protection against an asbestos claim, the Colorado Supreme Court held Feb. 5 (Smokebrush Foundation, et al. v. City of Colorado Springs, No. 2018 CO 10, Colo. Sup.).
- Couple Wants Review Of Pennsylvania Fair Share Act Asbestos Liability Ruling
PHILADELPHIA - An appellate court erred in concluding that Pennsylvania's Fair Share Act overrode the existing per capita equal share basis for dividing liability in asbestos cases and in allowing a jury to consider bankrupt defendants as well, a couple told the Pennsylvania Supreme Court Jan. 26 (William Roverano, et al. v. John Crane Inc., et al., Nos. 58 EAL 2018, Pa. Sup.).