New York Asbestos Litigation
Mesothelioma patients in New York can receive compensation from an attorney for mesothelioma. The exposure to asbestos is often the cause of these types of illnesses; symptoms may develop for years before they appear.
Judges who manage the caseload of NYCAL have developed a system that favors plaintiffs. A recent ruling could further erode the rights of defendants.
Upstate New York Asbestos Litigation Dockets
Asbestos litigation is different from a typical personal injury lawsuit. These cases involve many defendants (companies who are being accused of being sued) and law firms representing plaintiffs and multiple expert witnesses. In addition there are typically specific job sites that are the focus of these cases because asbestos was employed in a variety of products and workers were exposed to it during their work. Asbestos-related victims are often diagnosed with serious illnesses such as mesothelioma and lung cancer.
New York has a unique approach to asbestos litigation. In reality, it is one of the largest dockets in the United States. It is governed under a special Case Management Order. This CMO was created to handle asbestos cases with numerous defendants. The judges who are part of the NYCAL docket have extensive experience in asbestos cases. The docket has also seen some of the most prestigious award for plaintiffs in recent times.
The New York Court of Appeals has recently made significant changes to the NYCAL docket. In 2015, the political system in Albany was rocked to its foundations by the conviction of former Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver on federal corruption charges. Silver was accused of sabotaging tort reform bills in the legislature over a period of 20 years while working at the plaintiffs ‘ firm Weitz & Luxenberg.
Justice Sherry Klein Heitler, the long-time supervisor of the NYCAL docket, resigned in April 2014 amid reports that she had given the Weitz & Luxenberg law firm “red-carpet treatment.” She was replaced by Justice Peter Moulton, who implemented a number of changes to the docket.
Moulton introduced a new rule in the NYCAL docket that requires defendants to provide evidence that their products are not responsible for the mesothelioma that plaintiffs suffer from. He also instituted new rules that stipulated that he wouldn’t dismiss cases until the expert witness testimony was completed. This new policy could have a significant impact on the pace of discovery in cases on the NYCAL docket, and could lead to a more favorable outcome for defendants.
A federal judge in the Eastern District of Virginia dismissed MDL 875 recently and ordered that all asbestos cases in the future be transferred to another District. This change will hopefully bring about more uniform and efficient handling of these cases since the MDL currently MDL has developed reputation for a history of abuse of discovery in the past, unjustified sanctions, and minimal evidentiary requirements.
Central New York Asbestos Litigation Dockets
After years of mismanagement and corruption by former Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, the scandals regarding his connections to asbestos lawyers have focused attention on New York City’s asbestos docket that is rigged. Justice Peter Moulton is now presided over NYCAL and has already held a town hall meeting with defense attorneys to hear complaints about the “rigged” system that favors one mighty asbestos law firm.
Asbestos litigation is different from the typical personal injury case because it involves a number of the same defendants and plaintiffs. Asbestos cases also typically involve similar workplaces where a lot of workers were exposed to asbestos, frequently leading to mesothelioma or lung cancer, as well as other illnesses. This can result in large verdicts that can block court dockets.
To address the problem, several states have adopted laws that limit these kinds of claims. They typically deal with medical criteria two disease rules, expedited scheduling, joinders and forum shopping, punitive damages and successor liability.
Despite these laws, some states continue see a high number of asbestos lawsuits. Certain courts have created special “asbestos Dockets” to reduce the number and speed up the resolution of these cases. These dockets apply various rules that are specifically designed for asbestos cases. The New York City asbestos court for instance, requires applicants to meet certain medical standards as well as has two-disease rules. It also uses an accelerated schedule.
Some states have passed laws that restrict the amount of punitive damages awarded in asbestos cases. These laws are designed to discourage bad conduct and provide greater compensation to victims. Whatever the case is filed in federal or state court, you must work with an New York mesothelioma lawyer to know how these laws impact your specific case.
Alfred Sargente focuses his practice on environmental and Latest asbestos Litigation toxic tort litigation as well as product liability, commercial litigation and general liability issues. He has a wealth of experience representing clients in cases of exposure to asbestos, lead and World Trade Center Dust in both New York City and New Jersey. He also regularly defends cases alleging exposure to other contaminants and hazards like noise, mold, vibration and environmental contaminants.
Southern New York Asbestos Litigation Dockets
Thousands of people have died from asbestos exposure in New York. In five counties, mesothelioma patients and their families have filed lawsuits against manufacturers of asbestos-based products for compensation. Mesothelioma lawsuits that succeed hold negligent asbestos companies responsible for their rash decisions.
New York mesothelioma attorneys have expertise in representing clients from all backgrounds against the largest asbestos manufacturers in the country. Their legal strategies could lead to an impressive settlement or verdict.
Asbestos litigation has a long-standing history in New York, and continues to draw attention. The 2022 mesothelioma claim national report by KCIC states that New York as the third most popular place for mesothelioma lawsuits, following California and Pennsylvania.
The state’s judicial system has been shaken by the flurry of latest asbestos litigation (https://www.asbestoslitigation.top/) lawsuits. In 2015, former Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver was convicted on federal corruption charges partly related to millions of dollars in referral fees he received from the politically-powerful plaintiffs law firm Weitz & Luxenberg from handling asbestos cases. After the scandal, Justice Sherry Klein Heitler who had been the head of NYCAL since 2008, was dismissed amid reports that she provided “red-carpet treatment” to Weitz & Luxenberg asbestos lawsuits.
Justice Peter Moulton succeeded Justice Heitler as NYCAL judge. He has declared that defendants won’t be able to obtain summary judgment unless they have a “scientifically valid and legally admissible research” proving the measured dose of exposure a plaintiff received was too low to cause a mesothelioma. This effectively ends the possibility that NYCAL defendants can obtain summary judgment.
Justice Moulton also ruled that the plaintiff must show injury to their health as a result of asbestos exposure to be able for the judge to award compensatory damages. This ruling, along with a decision made in early 2016 which ruled that medical monitoring is not a tort, makes it almost impossible for an asbestos defense lawyer to prevail on a NYCAL Summary Judgment motion.
In the case that Judge Toal was in charge of mesothelioma lawsuit brought against DOVER Green, a company that is accused of violating asbestos work practices regulations when it renovated Manhattan campus buildings in October 2013 to raise money for a charity. The lawsuit claims that DOVER GREENS didn’t adhere to CAA and Asbestos NESHAP regulations by failing to notify and inspect the EPA prior to starting renovation activities, properly remove, store and dispose of asbestos, and having a trained representative at renovation activities.
Eastern New York Asbestos Litigation Dockets
Asbestos-related personal injury and death cases once were a major source of delays in federal court dockets and judges’ resources were drained, making it difficult for them from addressing criminal matters or other important civil disputes. The bloated litigation impeded the timely compensation of victims as well as frustrated innocent families. Additionally, it caused businesses to spend excessive amounts of money on defense.
Asbestos claims can be filed by those diagnosed with mesothelioma, or other asbestos-related ailments, after exposure to asbestos while at work. Most asbestos claims are filed by construction workers shipyard workers, construction workers, and other tradesmen who worked on buildings constructed or that contain asbestos-containing materials. These individuals were exposed by asbestos fibers that could be harmful during the manufacturing process or while working on the structure.
The first major mass tort was asbestos litigation. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, an avalanche of personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits arising from exposure to asbestos engulfed the courts. This happened in federal and state courts across the nation.
These lawsuits are brought by plaintiffs who claim their ailments were the result from the negligence of asbestos manufacturing products. They also claim that companies failed to inform them of the dangers that come with asbestos exposure. While the majority of asbestos cases were brought in state courts, a majority were brought in federal courts.
In the early 1990s, after recognizing that this litigation constituted “terrible calendar congestion,” District Judge Jack B. Weinstein and New York Supreme Court Justice Helen Freedman jointly consolidated for settlement as well as pretrial and discovery purposes hundreds of state and federal lawsuits which claimed asbestos exposure at the Brooklyn Navy Yard. Under the supervision of a Special Master, Judge Weinstein and Justice Freedman consolidated these cases and referred to them as Brooklyn Navy Yard consolidation.
While the majority of these cases were connected to the Brooklyn Navy Yard, many of the defendants were defendants in other asbestos cases. The defendants were Garlock, Inc, H & A Construction Company, Latest Asbestos litigation both individually and as successors to Spraycraft Corporation, CRH, Inc. as successors to E.I. Dupont; W.R. Grace and Company; Empire-Ace Insulation Manufacturing Corporation; Bell/Atlas Asbestos Corp.; and DNS Metal Industries, Inc.