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Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Relocation, Investigation Costs Recoverable Under CERCLA, Judge Finds

FORT WAYNE, Ind. - A federal judge in Indiana on July 26 ruled that the costs of investigating the levels of lead and arsenic contamination emanating from a Superfund site near a housing complex as well as the costs the complex's residents incurred in relocating from the property are recoverable...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 6th Circuit Reverses, Remands 2 Flint Water Crisis Cases; Claims Not Preempted

CINCINNATI - A panel of the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 28 reversed two lower court rulings and remanded two cases pertaining to the lead-contaminated water crisis in Flint, Mich., ruling that the claims were not preempted by the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) (Beatrice Boler, et al....

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Florida Jury Awards $4 Million To Widow Of Smoker In Engle Progeny Suit

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - After finding that a man who died from laryngeal cancer was addicted to cigarettes made by R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., a Florida jury on July 28 awarded his widow $4 million in damages (Bertie Thomas v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., No. 2007-CV-036432[19], Fla. 17th Jud. Cir. Broward...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - EPA to Forgive $20.7M Debt Owed by Flint, Mich., For Water Crisis Response

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Aug. 1 issued a press release in which it said it would forgive $20.7 million in debt that the city of Flint, Mich., owes the agency related to the response to the lead-contaminated water crisis in that city.

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Remands Washington's Suit Against Monsanto Over PCB Contamination

SEATTLE - A federal judge in Washington on July 28 granted the state's motion to remand a suit against Monsanto Co. over polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) contamination in the state's water, land and wildlife, rejecting the company's argument that it manufactured the chemicals at the request...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 16 Attorneys General Sue EPA Over Delay In Clean Air Standards

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The attorneys general for 15 states and the District of Columbia on Aug. 1 filed a petition for review in the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, contending that the court should review the final action of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that extended the deadline...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - South Carolina Jury Awards $300,000 To Worker, Wife In Power Plant Asbestos Trial

SPARTANBURG, S.C. - A South Carolina state court jury on Aug. 3 awarded $300,000 to a former power plant inspector and his wife after finding that two defendants negligently exposed the worker to asbestos that caused his mesothelioma (Beverly Dale Jolly, et al. v. General Electric Company, et al., No...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Groups Debate Whether D.C. Circuit Court Can Hear EPA Methane Rule Case

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Petroleum industry groups filed a brief on Aug. 3 in the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, contending that the court lacks jurisdiction to review the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's decision to grant administrative reconsideration of the agency's rule...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge: City's Operation Of Wastewater Treatment Site Triggers CERCLA Liability

HOUSTON - A federal judge in Texas on Aug. 2 denied a motion by the city of Pasadena, Texas, for partial summary judgment, finding that it could face liability under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) because it owned a wastewater treatment plant for 50...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Pipeline Owner Can Seek Contribution Under Oil Pollution Act, Judge Rules

SALT LAKE CITY - The owner of a pipeline that leaked crude oil after it was struck by an electrical arc from another company's transition station can seek contribution under the Oil Pollution Act (OPA) for approximately $30 million in costs it incurred in remediating the spill, a federal judge in...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Stays Cities' Suits Against Monsanto To Exhaust Administrative Remedies

SAN JOSE, Calif. - A federal judge in California on Aug. 4 stayed three lawsuits filed by cities seeking to recover damages from Monsanto Co., Solutia Inc. and Pharmacia Corp. for increased costs the cities have incurred to maintain compliance with permits for discharges of stormwater containing polychlorinated...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Denies Salvage Yard's Motion To Dismiss Group's Clean Water Act Suit

BOSTON - A federal judge in Massachusetts on Aug. 7 denied a salvage yard's motion to dismiss a suit brought by an environmental group accusing it of violating the Clean Water Act (CWA), ruling that the group has jurisdictional standing and that its allegations were sufficient (Clean Water Action...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Asbestos Defendants Seek New Discovery Master Due To Apparent Conflicts

NEWARK, N.J. - Defendants in a seven-year-old asbestos lawsuit on Aug. 8 asked a New Jersey federal judge to replace a special discovery master due to conflict of interest from his past and current law firm associations (Kimberlee Williams, et al. v. BASF Catalysts LLC., et al., No. 11-1754, D. N.J....

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Dismisses Defamation, Whistleblower Case Brought Flint, Mich., City Employee

DETROIT - A federal judge in Michigan on Aug. 9 dismissed a lawsuit brought by a former administrator for the city of Flint, Mich., who sought damages for defamation and sought protection under the state's whistleblower act in relation to actions she took during the Flint lead-contaminated water...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - En Banc D.C. Circuit Will Not Rehear Methane Rule Case

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The en banc District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 10 refused to grant a petition for rehearing en banc sought by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that challenged a split panel decision that found that the EPA did not have the authority to stay the agency's...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Oklahoma Supreme Court Finds New Tobacco Tax Unconstitutional

OKLAHOMA CITY - The Oklahoma Supreme Court on Aug. 10 found that a tobacco tax labeled as a "smoking cessation fee" is a revenue-raising tax because the money generated from it is being used to balance the state's budget and, therefore, that it should be stricken in its entirety (James...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Roundup MDL Judge: Firm Must To Show Cause Why It Should Not Be Sanctioned

SAN FRANCISCO - The federal judge presiding over the multidistrict litigation for Roundup, the herbicide manufactured by Monsanto Co. that contains glyphosate, on Aug. 9 ordered plaintiffs' counsel to show cause why it should not be removed from the case or otherwise sanctioned monetarily in connection...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - South Dakota Federal Judge Denies Motion To Amend Religious Tobacco Use Order

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. - A federal judge in South Dakota on Aug. 9 denied a motion brought by a group of plaintiffs seeking to increase the amount of tobacco used in a religious mixture for Native American religious ceremonies in prison after finding that the amount the court already allowed was sufficient...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Asbestos Discovery Master Says Alleged Conflicts Don't Warrant Disqualification

NEWARK, N.J. - The special master appointed to oversee discovery issues in a seven-year-old asbestos lawsuit involving allegations of fraud on the part of a talc defendant and its lawyer said in an Aug. 11 letter that a law firm's representation of an unrelated party does not disqualify him from...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 9th Circuit Overturns Ruling Finding ASARCO's Cleanup Contribution Suit Untimely

SEATTLE - A Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Aug. 10 reversed a federal judge in Montana's ruling that a contribution lawsuit brought under Section 113(f) of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act was barred by the statute of limitations, holding that...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Plaintiff Urges Florida Court To Allow Asbestos Experts, Award, Reject Daubert

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Two amicus curiae parties on Aug. 15 joined a plaintiff in urging the Florida Supreme Court to reject the Daubert standard and reverse an appellate court's ruling excluding experts and negating an $8 million asbestos award (Richard DeLisle v. Crane Co., et al., No. SC16-2182,...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Glyphosate MDL Attorneys: Monsanto Document Release Not Done In Bad Faith

SAN FRANCISCO - Plaintiffs' attorneys representing people who contend that they developed cancer as a result of exposure to Roundup, the herbicide manufactured by Monsanto Co. that contains glyphosate, on Aug. 14 filed a brief in a California federal court arguing that they did not act in bad faith...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Government's Ownership Of Reservation Triggers CERCLA Liability, Judge Finds

PRESCOTT, Ariz. - A federal judge in Arizona on Aug. 15 ruled that the federal government's fee title ownership of land in the Navajo Reservation that houses 19 uranium mines makes it an owner under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) (El Paso Natural...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Court Says Expert May Offer Causation Opinion On Colon Cancer-Asbestos Link

SAN FRANCISCO - A doctor with 30 years of experience reviewing asbestos and colon cancer cases satisfies the standard for offering an opinion on causation, a California appeals court held Aug. 14 in dismissing a company's complaints about the quality of some of the underlying evidence the expert...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Lago Agrio Attorney Objects To Defense Costs, Seeks Reassignment Of Case

NEW YORK - The attorney representing a group of Ecuadorian residents who won an $18.5 billion judgment against Chevron Corp. for injuries, only to have it reversed, on Aug. 16 filed a letter with the judge presiding over the matter in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York objecting...