LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge: Tire Companies Owe $11M For Selling Contaminated Buildings

DES MOINES, Iowa - A federal judge in Iowa on Sept. 5 ruled that two tire companies are liable for $11 million under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) for selling buildings on a Superfund site in the state that were contaminated with polychlorinated biphenyls...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Virginia Top Court Applies 'Risk Of Harm' Analysis To FELA Asbestos Settlement

ROANOKE, Va. - A release precluding liability for future asbestos injuries contemplated by the parties does not violate Federal Employers' Liability Act (FELA), the Virginia Supreme Court held Aug. 31 in applying the risk-of-harm standard (Alan Barry Cole, et al. v. Norfolk Southern Railway Co.,...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Asbestos-Talc Evidence Destruction Spat Parties Continue Throwing Barbs

NEWARK, N.J. - Former asbestos plaintiffs adopted a frivolous interpretation of a discovery ruling in an effort to avoid required production, a talc company told a New Jersey federal judge on Aug. 30. In a Sept. 1 letter, the plaintiffs, who claim that they were defrauded into settling claims for far...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Cleanup Company's Claims Against Gas Station Barred By Arbitration, Judge Says

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. - An environmental remediation company's counterclaims against the owner of a gas station for breach of a fixed price remediation agreement (FPA) were dismissed by a federal judge in New York on Sept. 5 after the judge ruled that the claims were previously litigated during an arbitration...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Magistrate Judge: Bare Metal Defense Frees 5 Companies From Asbestos Case

WILMINGTON, Del. - A couple produces some evidence of exposure to products from named defendants but no evidence the products contained asbestos or that the work in question released asbestos, a federal magistrate judge in Delaware held Aug. 31 in applying the bare metal defense and recommending summary...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Florida Court Allows Cumulative Exposure Opinion, Affirms $9M Asbestos Verdict

MIAMI - A court properly admitted an expert's testimony that cumulative asbestos exposures were sufficient to cause a man's mesothelioma, a Florida appeals court held Sept. 6 in differentiating the testimony from the opinion that every exposure leads to disease and affirming a $9 million verdict...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Alabama Court Reinstates Class Action Over Asbestos Attorneys' Compensation

MONTGOMERY, Ala. - A judge improperly concluded that ambiguity in a contract provision governing how hundreds of asbestos plaintiffs would compensate their counsel overcame class action claims arising from the attorneys' imposition of an additional fee, the Alabama Supreme Court held Sept. 1 in once...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Suspends Clean Water Act Trial To Wait For 9th Circuit Ruling

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - A federal judge in California on Sept. 5 suspended the upcoming trial date for a lawsuit accusing a scrap metal company of violating the Clean Water Act (CWA), agreeing with the defendants that the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals' upcoming ruling in U.S. v. Robertson could...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Attorney: Revive Case Seeking To Unseal Asbestos Client-Coaching Deposition

DALLAS - A motion seeking to unseal Russell Budd's 1997 deposition involving a memo allegedly showing his law firm coaching clients for their own depositions should proceed to a ruling on the merits, an attorney told a Texas appeals court on Sept. 5 (Christine Cole Biederman v. Beverly Jean Brown...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Says Chemical Injury Plaintiff Did Not Allege His Water Was Tainted

ALBANY, N.Y. - A federal judge in New York on Sept. 5 dismissed a chemical injury lawsuit on grounds that the plaintiff failed to allege that his injuries were caused by contamination to his personal water supply (James Donavan v. Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics Corp., No. 16-294, N.D. N.Y.; 2017 U...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Expert Qualified To Testify On Cleanup Costs' Reasonableness, Judge Says

SALT LAKE CITY - An engineer can proffer testimony that Chevron Pipeline Co. (CPL) spent approximately $4.4 million to $5.6 million in unnecessary costs when responding to two oil spills in 2010, a federal judge in Utah ruled Sept. 7, finding that he is qualified and that the methodology underlying his...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Refuses To Conduct 'Autopsy' Of Settlement Over Pipeline Spill

SALT LAKE CITY - A federal judge in Utah on Sept. 6 granted a motion for partial summary judgment filed by Pacificorp, doing business as Rocky Mountain Power, that precludes Chevron Pipeline Co. (CPL) from obtaining a portion of a settlement it paid to homeowners affected by a 2010 oil spill, finding...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Court Affirms Exclusion Of Asbestos Product ID Testimony As Sanction

CLEVELAND - A trial judge properly excluded deposition testimony as a sanction for failing to update interrogatories to indicate potential drywall compound exposures the witnesses testified to in asbestos bankruptcy claim forms, an Ohio appeals court held Sept. 7 (Paul Heaton, et al. v. Ford Motor Co...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Allows Monsanto To Add Counterclaims In PCB Contamination Suit

SEATTLE - Monsanto Co.'s counterclaim for unjust enrichment against the city of Seattle over polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) contamination in the Lower Duwamish River is not futile, a federal judge in Washington ruled Sept. 6 in granting the defendant company's motion to amend its answer and counterclaims...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Split 6th Circuit Panel: Flint Water Crisis Lawsuit Belongs In State Court

CINCINNATI - A split panel of the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 11 affirmed a district court's ruling and held that a lawsuit brought by residents of Flint, Mich., against the city and state environmental quality employees relating to the lead-contaminated drinking water crisis in...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Ohio Court To Define 'Smoker,' Medical Report Status In Asbestos-Lung Cancer Case

COLUMBUS, Ohio - The Ohio Supreme Court on Sept. 13 agreed to decide whether the state requires a medical expert to weigh in on whether a lung cancer plaintiff qualifies as a "smoker" or whether the law simply requires those already recognized as smokers to submit an opinion regarding the role...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Evidence Would 'Inflame' Jury In Cancer Case, Company Says, Should Be Excluded

ASHEVILLE, N.C. - A company being sued for allegedly contaminating a North Carolina man's groundwater on Sept. 11 filed a brief in North Carolina federal court contending that the district court should exclude evidence regarding contamination on the east side of the company's former facility...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Attorney: Chevron Offers 'No Credible Argument' For Cost Tax In Lago Agrio 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 Sept. 12 filed a letter with the presiding judge in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, arguing that the company...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Maryland Court Agrees To Hear Asbestos Case Implicating Statute Of Repose

ANNAPOLIS, Md. - Maryland's top court on Sept. 12 agreed to decide if the state's statute of repose bars a woman's asbestos action involving exposure from insulation applied to a generator whose construction was completed in June 1970 (June Diane Duffy, et al. v. CBS Corp. et al., No. 41...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 9th Circuit: Storage Of Hazardous Waste Is A Crime Of General Intent

SEATTLE - A federal judge in Idaho did not err when excluding a man's evidence pertaining to his diminished capacity, a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled Sept. 13, holding that the storage of hazardous waste in violation of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act is a crime of general...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Sherwin-Williams: Lead Paint Evidence On Risk-Contribution Theory Lacking

MILWAUKEE - The Sherwin-Williams Co. on Sept. 13 filed a statement of proposed material facts in Wisconsin federal court supporting its motion for dismissal of a lead-paint poisoning lawsuit against it and other former manufacturers of lead-based paint on grounds that the plaintiffs have not demonstrated...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Couple: Tort Didn't Impact Bankruptcy, Lack Of Disclosure Shouldn't Bar Action

NEW YORK - Failing to disclose an asbestos claim that arose after confirmation and complete repayment under a bankruptcy plan is not the type of conduct that requires imposing judicial estoppel, a couple told the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals Sept. 12 (John Clark, et al. v. AII Acquisition LLC...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Finds Evidence Lacking In Asbestos Case Against Joint Compound Maker

WILMINGTON, Del. - The record in an asbestos case does not support the conclusions regarding exposure a widow claims it does, a Delaware judge held Sept. 12 in granting summary judgment (In re: Asbestos Litigation, Thelma Lempert, et al. v. CertainTeed Corp., et al., No. N15C-05-221 ASB, Del. Super....

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Finds Delaware Lacks Jurisdiction Over Asbestos Case Against Power Company

WILMINGTON, Del. - An out-of-state power company that allegedly exposed a Connecticut resident to asbestos in that state during service in the U.S. Navy is not subject to personal jurisdiction in Delaware, a federal judge held Sept. 14 (In re: Asbestos Litigation, Michael R. Harding, et al. v. A.O. Smith...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Reinsurer Opposes Motion To Bar Employee's Testimony In Asbestos Coverage Dispute

UTICA, N.Y. - In a dispute over an underlying $325 million settlement of asbestos claims, a reinsurer responds in a Sept. 13 opposition brief to an insurer's motion to exclude testimony from the reinsurer's former employee, arguing to a New York federal court that the former employee has extensive...