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Articles Posted in Mesothelioma Court Rulings & Legislation

A New York state Supreme Court judge recently issued an important ruling allowing a mesothelioma cancer lawsuit against cigarette manufacturer R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company and its supplier Hollingsworth & Vose. The mesothelioma cancer lawsuit claims that the defendants knew or should have known the asbestos contained in their cigarette filters were dangerous and could cause serious health problems for consumers.

According to the asbestos cancer lawsuit, filed in the Supreme Court of New York County, the plaintiff developed pleural mesothelioma as a result of smoking Kent brand cigarettes, marketed and sold by R.J. Reynolds with materials sourced by Hollingsworth & Vose, in the 1950s. The plaintiff alleges the filters in those cigarettes contained asbestos, which the defendants were aware could cause health complications.

The defendants filed various motions to have the case thrown out of court and dismissed without a trial, claiming they should not be held liable for the plaintiff’s injuries because the health effects of asbestos exposure were not widely known at the time the plaintiff smoked Kent brand cigarettes. Asbestos has only been regulated by the federal government since the 1970s, but due to its widespread use before restrictions were adopted, many companies were fully aware that their asbestos laden products posed a danger to the general public.

A federal jury recently handed down a $32.7 million award to the widow of a North Carolina man who passed away from a mesothelioma his estate claimed was due to asbestos exposure facilitated by hazardous conditions created by the defendants in the case. The mesothelioma cancer lawsuit named a pipe insulation supplier, Covil Corporation, as the main defendant in the case, alleging the company knowingly supplied carcinogenic materials for workers at the Firestone tire factory where the victim worked.

According to the asbestos cancer lawsuit, filed in August 2016 in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina, the now deceased victim in the case was frequently exposed to deadly asbestos fibers while working at a Firestone tire factory from 1975 to 1995. The mesothelioma lawsuit claims that exposure took place due to asbestos-contaminated insulation supplied by the defendant, Covil Corporation.

Despite knowing full well the dangers its asbestos insulation products posed to workers at the Firestone tire plant, Covil Corporation made no attempt to provide warnings about the dangers of exposure to asbestos in its products, according to the lawsuit. After five days of testimony, the federal jury took just two hours to decide in favor of the victim and awarded his surviving spouse $32.7 million in compensatory damages for the harm brought on by the defendant’s negligence.

The family of an asbestos cancer victim may finally find justice after a New York state court ruled in their favor against a tile company they claim is responsible for the death of their loved one. The defendants had filed what is known as a motion for summary judgement to have the case tossed out on evidentiary rules but the judge hearing the case rejected the arguments put forth and will allow the claim to proceed to trial.

In their mesothelioma cancer lawsuit, the plaintiffs claim their father died in April 2017, just six-months after receiving a mesothelioma cancer diagnosis brought on by exposure to asbestos fibers in tiles produced by the defendant, Amtico Tile. The lawsuit alleges the victims spent more than a dozen years renovating homes using the defendant’s floor tiles, which had visible asbestos dust on top of the tiles in the boxes that he opened. The claim states the victim suffered from exposure to asbestos dust raised by cutting, scoring, breaking, and sanding tiles so that they would fit in the rooms where he was installing them.

The defendants attempted to have the case thrown out of court by asserting the plaintiffs had not established a clear connection between exposure to asbestos dust in their products and the terminal health conditions the victim developed. In denying the defendant’s motion for summary judgement, the New York Supreme Court pointed out that the plaintiffs met all the criteria necessary to have the claim proceed under New York laws and eventually be heard in front of a jury if necessary.

An Illinois man recently filed an asbestos related lung cancer lawsuit against a group of manufacturing companies claiming the defendants’ asbestos products are directly responsible for his diagnosis with a terminal form of lung cancer. The asbestos cancer lawsuit names Blackmer Pump Co., Sterling Fluid Systems USA LLC, Aurora Pump Company, and other companies that used asbestos in their products as defendants in the case.

According to the asbestos lung cancer lawsuit, filed in St. Clair County, Illinois Circuit Court, the plaintiff worked various jobs as a painter, waiter, and truck driver during which time he was exposed to deadly asbestos fibers in products manufactured by the defendants. The asbestos cancer lawsuit states the victim developed asbestos related lung cancer in 2017, and seeks damages in excess of $50,000 as well as punitive damages.

The lawsuit claims the plaintiff’s diagnosis came about due to the defendants developing, manufacturing, and marketing asbestos-contaminated products known to be harmful without providing warning to consumers. While asbestos may have been legal to use in manufacturing at one time, companies still knew for decades about the risks associated with their products but did nothing to warn the public.

The U.S. Supreme Court will soon take up arguments in an asbestos cancer lawsuit that could set an important precedent not only for other mesothelioma lawsuit plaintiffs but other innocent people harmed by the negligence of companies that failed to prevent foreseeable injuries. The case was brought by two surviving relatives of a man who developed mesothelioma while working aboard Navy ships, coming in contact with industrial gaskets made with deadly asbestos fibers as part of his job duties.

According to the mesothelioma cancer lawsuit, entitled Air and Liquid Systems Corp. v. Devries, the defendants in the case manufactured equipment for Navy ships that did not contain asbestos themselves, but required replaceable parts manufactured by third parties that used asbestos in the construction. The plaintiffs have asked the court to hold Air and Liquid Systems liable for the victim’s passing because they claim the company knew that its products would need integrated parts manufactured with asbestos gaskets and seals by third parties.

Specifically, the plaintiffs asked the justices hearing the case to apply the “foreseeability” standard of negligence commonly used in maritime injury cases which holds that Air and Liquid Systems could reasonably foresee that aftermarket parts containing deadly chemicals could cause harm. On the other hand, the defense has asked the judges to apply a more simplified standard in tort law, holding that the duty of the party to warn rests with that party that is in the best position to control or avoid the harm, in this case, the gasket maker.

A Maryland appeals court recently upheld justice when it affirmed a multi-million dollar plaintiff’s verdict in an asbestos cancer lawsuit brought by a steamfitter who claimed he developed mesothelioma from the defendant’s defectively made products. The Court of Special Appeals of Maryland sided with the jury’s wisdom when it awarded $7.2 million in compensatory damages for the plaintiff’s medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

The case began years before when the victim and his wife filed their mesothelioma cancer lawsuit in Circuit Court for Baltimore City claiming the husband was exposed to asbestos fibers while working on a construction project at Loch Raven High School in Baltimore, Maryland. The claim went on to assert that the plaintiff was exposed to asbestos fibers in insulation products manufactured by Wallace & Gale.

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that was used for decades in a variety of industrial, commercial, and military capacities for its malleability and heat resistant properties. Asbestos has been heavily regulated by federal law since the mid-1970s when the clear connection between exposure and developing serious health conditions like mesothelioma was finally accepted. Even before federal laws effectively banning the use of asbestos, companies knew fully well of the links between the fibers contained in their products and risk of medical conditions.

A New Jersey state court recently handed down an important decision in an asbestos cancer lawsuit that holds manufacturers can still be responsible for a person’s mesothelioma diagnosis if that person came in contact with asbestos in aftermarket replacement parts, even if the manufacturer did not make or distribute the items. The ruling overturns a lower court decision in favor of the defendants, which consisted of several asbestos manufacturers attempting to skirt their legal responsibility to warn the public about the dangers their products could pose.

According to the asbestos cancer lawsuit, filed in Middlesex County Superior Court, the plaintiff developed a serious form of cancer, mesothelioma, from years of coming in contact with asbestos-contaminated parts as a commercial plumber and auto repair mechanic. Specifically, the plaintiff worked as a boiler technician from the 1950s until the early 1990s and handled valves, steam traps, and brake drums manufactured by Armstrong International Inc., Burnham LLC, Carrier Corp., Cleaver-Brooks Inc., Crown Boiler Co., Ford Motor Co., Johnson Controls Inc., NIBCO Inc., and Oakfabco Inc.

While the parts the plaintiff came in contact with were not manufactured by the named defendants, his lawsuit charged that because the companies knew their products would need routine maintenance and repair with aftermarket parts made with asbestos, that these entities owed a duty to warn. In their decision, the Appellate Judges wrote “We conclude that a duty to warn exists when the manufacturer’s product contains asbestos components, which are integral to the function of the product, and the manufacturer is aware that routine periodic maintenance of the product will require the replacement of the components with other asbestos-containing products.”

A Michigan woman recently filed an asbestos cancer lawsuit against more than two dozen defendants alleging her now deceased husband developed mesothelioma as a result of the companies’ use of deadly carcinogens in products used by the victim. Among the defendants named in the mesothelioma cancer lawsuit are American Optical Corporation, Guard-Line Inc. and Lamons Gasket Company, all accused of negligently designing and manufacturing various products that allegedly caused the victim’s death.

According to the asbestos cancer lawsuit, filed in St. Clair County Circuit Court on behalf of the deceased’s estate, the victim suffered from asbestos exposure while serving as a medic in the Vietnam War. and while operating a BP Amoco gas station in Wood River, Michigan. The lawsuit claims the defendants manufactured the asbestos-contaminated products that caused his terminal illness but did nothing to warn him of the health risks.

The lawsuit states that in October 2016, after many years of using the asbestos-laden products produced by the defendants, the victim received a mesothelioma cancer diagnosis and passed away just one month later. The asbestos cancer lawsuit seeks compensatory damages for the victim’s medical bills and pain and suffering, as well as punitive damages to punish the defendants for knowingly producing dangerous products.

The New Jersey state Supreme Court recently handed down a significant ruling that will have an important impact on asbestos cancer litigation in the state and potentially nationwide for claims against Honeywell International and other asbestos companies. The ruling centers around the insurance many of these asbestos companies retain in order to shield themselves financially from verdicts and settlements in mesothelioma cancer lawsuits for claims related to asbestos-contaminated products.

In its decision, the New Jersey Supreme Court affirmed lower state court rulings holding that a policyholder is not required to contribute in the allocation of insurance liability for periods when the relevant insurance coverage was unavailable to that policyholder in the marketplace. What this means is that insurance companies indemnifying asbestos companies may still be on the hook for legal bills even if the manufacturer did not have continuous coverage from the insurance company in question during the time the defective products were manufactured.

The case arose because Honeywell International, which once manufactured brake pads with asbestos in them, sought coverage from its carrier, Continental Insurance Company, for thousands of mesothelioma cancer claims brought against it. Continental attempted to avoid paying the claims, arguing that Honeywell International did not have coverage during the time periods in which the company manufactured the asbestos-laden products that brought on the lawsuits.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), contrary to recent media reports, the agency is moving closer to closing loopholes on the importation and manufacturing of the deadly carcinogen, asbestos. The EPA cited its newly received powers under a bipartisan Obama-era law that gives the agency the authority to impose a new decision making process known as “significant new use rule,” or SNUR, which will create a “regulatory backstop where none existed before.”

Recent reports across the media indicated that the EPA was actually considering pulling back on strengthening federal regulations against the once-commonly used insulation material responsible for thousands of new cases of mesothelioma cancer each year. Specifically, safety experts asserted that the EPA was actually creating a process by which asbestos companies could submit requests for using the carcinogen in ways such as adhesive, roofing material, and floor tile.

The EPA gained this authority under a 2016 amendment to a decades-old chemical safety law that required the agency to periodically review the hazards posed by certain chemicals and toxic substances that could pose a danger to the public. According to an EPA spokesperson, the agency is currently reviewing the status of certain grandfathered exemptions to federal asbestos bans to determine if these methods are still in production, then closing the loopholes to halt any further production.

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