Archive for Novembro 2014

Plymouth lawyers join elite set of asbestos case specialists

TWO Plymouth solicitors have been nationally accredited as asbestos disease specialists by the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL).
Partner James Walsh and associate lawyer John Messham both work for North Hill-based Wolferstans.

They are among just 15 lawyers nationally, and only ones west of Bristol, awarded this specialist qualification for asbestos disease litigation.
This accreditation scheme, running now for 15 years, confirms lawyers have achieved a high standard of expertise, competence and excellence in dealing with mesothelioma- and asbestos-related disease litigation.
"James and John should be congratulated as applicants must prove themselves before becoming accredited," said APIL president John Spencer.
"People who have sustained injuries because someone else did not take proper care are already vulnerable, especially so when asbestos has been involved.
"The APIL accreditation shows who they can trust and who is an expert in this specialised area of law."
Mr Walsh and Mr Messham have also been appointed as national assessors by APIL to examine and assess lawyers in other firms wanting to obtain the accreditation.
This involves a detailed audit and examination of applicants' skill in asbestos litigation.
Mr Walsh and Mr Messham have more than 50 years of combined experience dealing with asbestos-related litigation, and have dealt with hundreds of cases, recovering millions of pounds for sufferers of mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases.
"Our asbestos disease team has grown in the past decade," said Mr Walsh. "John and I are proud to achieve this national recognition and will continue to offer clients and their families the care and support they deserve."

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Accurso wins $10.8M asbestos settlement

The Accurso Law Firm reached a $10.8 million settlement on behalf of the family of a former mechanic who died of mesothelioma after asbestos exposure.asbestos
The man, a former Jackson County resident and mechanic, worked for two years for a company where he was exposed to dust from friction products, such as brake pads, that contained asbestos. The name of the company is confidential as part of the settlement agreement, said Lou Accurso, who represented the man.
The plaintiff was diagnosed with mesothelioma in 2012 and died three months later at age 45.
"I had an opportunity to meet the victim before he died, and he came from an unbelievable family — just wonderful people," Accurso said. "They were some of the greatest clients I've ever had the honor of representing."
Accurso said that to his knowledge, the $10.8 million settlement is the highest for a single victim in Missouri history. Previously, the record was a $10 million settlement that Accurso also helped orchestrate for the family of a Jackson County Courthouse employee who died of mesothelioma.
The biggest challenge in the case was tracking down the man's former co-workers who could testify to the working conditions.
"I knocked on doors from the day after Christmas through Valentine's Day," he said. "I finally found six of them. ... It was critical because then I had someone who could testify to his exposure to asbestos.
They described in great detail where his workspace was located, how often he did brake jobs, how often other mechanics did brake jobs, even what the asbestos dust level was like in the workplace and the total lack of safety procedures or equipment to reduce or eliminate the exposure."
Brianne covers legal affairs, health care, life sciences, animal health and biosciences.

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Texas SC agrees to rehear asbestos case against Dow

The Texas Supreme Court has set a date for oral arguments in the rehearing of an asbestos case against The Dow Chemical Co.
The case deals with the question of whether a premises defendant is liable for a contract employee’s exposure to asbestos. 10-dow-chemical-large
It originated in the Dallas County 160th District Court, and resulted in a jury verdict of $2.64 million against Dow.
When the company appealed, the jury verdict reversed in Dow’s favor in February 2013.
The plaintiffs want the case reheard, and on Nov. 21 the Texas Supreme Court granted the motion and set oral arguments for Jan. 14.
Case background
Back in 1967, Robert Wayne Henderson worked at Dow’s Freeport facility as a contractor for Win-Way Industries Inc.
Win-Way workers were installing asbestos-containing insulation on pipes, while a few feet away Dow employees were tearing off old pipe insulation and installing new insulation.
Henderson contracted mesothelioma and died, which his family blames on the asbestos exposure at the Dow facility. The family sued Dow, Alcoa Inc., Crane Co. and Hercules Inc.
They argued Henderson’s asbestos exposure did not come from the work he was doing for Win-Way, but from the asbestos dust released by the work of the Dow employees being done within feet of his work area.
Chapter 95 arguments 
After the case was filed in Dallas County, it was transferred to the Asbestos MDL in Harris County for pretrial proceedings.
In response to the suit, Dow argued that the claims against it were barred by Chapter 95 of the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code.
Chapter 95 states that a property owner is not liable for personal injury, death or property damage to a contractor or an employee of a contractor unless it 1) retains control over the work, other than the right to order the work to start or stop or inspect progress, and 2) that the property owner had actual knowledge of the danger.
The MDL pretrial court granted summary judgment in favor of Dow on the claims that Henderson “was injured by exposure to respirable asbestos as the result of the activities of (Mr. Henderson) and/or the activities of (Mr. Henderson’s) employer on any premises of (Dow),” and denied Dow’s summary judgment motion on all other claims, including “claims that (Mr. Henderson) was injured by virtue of the activities of Dow employees.”
Henderson’s case then went back to Dallas County Judge Jim Jordan’s trial court, where a jury trial was held. The jury found Dow negligent and attributed 30 percent of the responsibility for Henderson’s injuries to Dow. They returned a $2.64 million against the company. The jury applied 70 percent of the blame to Alcoa Inc.
Dow appealed, and argued that contrary to the MDL pretrial court’s ruling, Chapter 95 “does not distinguish between a property owner’s liability for exposure caused by the activities of contractors and their employees on the one hand, and exposures caused from its own employees’ activities on the other.”
The company claimed there was no evidence at trial that Dow had both control over Henderson’s work and actual knowledge of the danger, which makes Chapter 95 apply to all of the claims against Dow. In deposition, Henderson had said that he worked for a single independent contractor and stated that Dow had no control over his work.
But the family argued that Henderson was helping insulators by mixing up insulation cement, while Dow employees were spending eight to 10 hours per week within five to 10 feet of him tearing off pipe insulation from steam lines and sawing and cutting block insulation.
They claimed that Dow substantially contributed to Henderson’s injuries by exposing him to air at its premises contaminated with asbestos dust and fibers due to the work of its employees, as opposed to work that Henderson was on the premises to perform. They said therefore Chapter 95 does not apply.
The family also argued that even if Chapter 95 does apply, Dow “would still nonetheless have owed Mr. Henderson a duty, because it exercised some control over the injury causing work since it obviously had control of its own employees.”
At trial, Dow requested a directed verdict and objected to question No. 1 on the charge of the court, which instructed the jury to “consider only the activities of the Dow Chemical employees at Dow Chemical Co. facilities.”
The question “incorrectly stated the law,” Dow argued, because any negligence claim regarding Henderson’s exposure to asbestos at Dow’s Freeport facility was subject to Chapter 95.
Additionally, Dow requested jury instructions and questions pertaining to Dow’s “control over the manner in which the work was performed” and Dow’s “actual knowledge of the danger” to Henderson. The trial court denied both of Dow’s requests.
Following the trial, Dow sought a motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict, but it was denied.
But when the company appealed, and the Court of Appeals for the Fifth District of Texas in Dallas found in favor of Dow on Feb. 8, 2013. It reversed the trial court’s judgment and rendered a take-nothing judgment in favor of Dow.
Petition for review
The family submitted a petition for review to the Supreme Court, which was denied May 2.
In a brief submitted to the Supreme Court on Oct. 21, the plaintiffs argued that there is a conflict between what the 5th District Appellate Court ruled in the case, and what the 14th District Appellate Court ruled in another (Oncor v Murillo).
“The Fifth Court in this case adopted a categorical rule of law that Chapter 95 applies to bar a contractor’s contemporaneous negligent activity in a claim … In contrast, the Fourteenth Court adopted the diametrically opposite rule of law based on virtually identical fact and the same statutory language.”
In short, the family argued, the conflict between the courts is “irreconcilable” unless the Supreme Court intervenes to resolve it.
Henderson’s family is now seeking a rehearing, which the Texas Supreme Court has granted.
The family is represented by Denyse F. Clancy, John Langdoc and Christine Tamer of Baron & Budd PC in Dallas.
Dow is represented by Stephen G. Tipps, Amy Pharr Hefley, David P. Herrick, Matthew Eagan and Macey Reasoner Stokes.

Trial Court Case No. DC10-007003
Appellate Case No. 05-11-01277-CV
Supreme Court Case No. 13-0175

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181 asbestos cases set for trial Dec. 1; One plaintiff is from Madison County

Of the 181 asbestos cases scheduled for trial Dec. 1 in a single Madison County courtroom, just one of the plaintiffs is from Madison County.
Plaintiff Evelyn Howland of Godfrey, who suffers from mesothelioma, filed her claim in 2011. She represents about one half of one percent of the total number of cases set for trial next week. Howland is represented by the Simmons Hanly Conroy firm in Alton.
PlotnerIt took Howland roughly three years to get her case to trial while hundreds of out-of-state claimants secured a trial position sooner.
The asbestos court prioritizes claimants’ position on the calendar based largely upon their life expectancy.
Asbestos defense attorney Kent Plotner of the Heyl Royster law firm in Edwardsville explained that a large number of cases set for trial at the end of the year is not unusual.
Throughout the year, numerous asbestos cases with prior trial settings are continued to a later date for several reasons, such as issues with depositions or scheduling. As a result, the number of cases set for trial builds up over time resulting in a heavy December trial docket.
Plotner added that it appears that a little more than 20 of the 181 cases are “first out” settings – meaning it is the first time they’re getting a trial slot. The remaining cases have been continued from previous dockets, he said.
Associate Judge Stephen Stobbs, who presides over the Madison County asbestos docket, will be responsible for managing the large number of cases on Monday.
While Plotner said the large number of cases is an added burden on parties trying to prepare for trial, he explained that attorneys have already prepared for many of the continued cases – making it easier to handle the larger number of cases set for trial the Monday after a holiday weekend.
Regardless, Plotner said the county has some work to do in reducing the number of cases set for trial.
“We want to limit the number of cases set for any given trial docket,” he said. “But we are already looking at 2016.”
Last month, defense attorney Brian Huelsmann of HeplerBroom said that as of Oct. 15, 820 first time trial settings and 254 cases continued from the 2014 trial docket have been set for 2015. That makes a total of 1,074 cases already set for trial in 2015. At that time, there were already 256 first time trial settings for 2016.
This is all in a jurisdiction where there are 30 trial weeks and 20 judges, only one of which presides over the asbestos docket.
As for the 181 cases set for trial next week, 15 plaintiffs are Illinoisans who do not reside in Madison County.
Plaintiff Frank Casale of Puerto Rico, who suffers from mesothelioma, would have to travel the farthest to attend trial. He is represented by the Simmons firm.
The vast majority of the claimants in the cases on next week’s trial docket allege mesothelioma, with five claiming lung cancer and two citing an “asbestos related disease.”
At least 164 of the 181 claimants are represented by the Simmons firm.
Gori Julian & Associates, P.C., represents at least three claimants on the docket.
Napoli Bern Ripka Shkolnik, LLP, has at least three cases.
At least two cases are Manue Raichle Hartley French & Mudd, LLC, cases.
The O’Brien law firm represents at least one claimant.
Complete information on eight of the 181 cases was not immediately available. However, none of the claimants in those cases are Madison County residents.

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Pharmaceutical and Environmental Law Firm Baron and Budd Now Accepting Power Morcellator Lawsuits

Medical Devices Linked to Increased Risk of Cancer in Women Undergoing Hysterectomies and Other Gynecological Surgeries

DALLAS--()--The national pharmaceutical law firm of Baron and Budd is now accepting cases on behalf of women who underwent hysterectomies and other gynecological surgeries and were harmed by the use of a power morcellator during their procedure. The device – which, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal, is used in between 55,000 and 75,000 hysterectomies in the U.S. per year – has been linked to an increased risk of cancer. (
“We firmly believe the fault lies with morcellator manufacturers that should have made those risks clear for both doctors and their patients.”
Power morcellators have been used in several types of hysterectomies since the 1990s. The device, which is used to cut into and then remove the uterus, is designed to be easier than other surgical alternatives. It is also designed to help patients recover faster. However, in some instances, a power morcellator can leave behind tissue fragments in a patient – if this tissue is cancerous it can allow the disease to rapidly spread. Morcellators have also been used in myomectomies, which involve the removal of non-cancerous growths known as uterine fibroids.
On April 17, 2014, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a safety communication discouraging the use of power morcellators in hysterectomies or myomectomies. According to the FDA, approximately 1 in 350 women who undergo one of these procedures have uterine sarcoma, which is a type of uterine cancer. The use of power morcellation presents a risk that cancerous tissue will be spread throughout the pelvis and abdomen and substantially lessen a patient’s chances of survival. (
“Even though the risk of using power morcellators has been known for decades, many women undergoing hysterectomies and myomectomies were unaware of the potential danger,” said Russell Budd, manager of national law firm Baron and Budd. “We firmly believe the fault lies with morcellator manufacturers that should have made those risks clear for both doctors and their patients.”
If you or a loved one underwent a hysterectomy or other gynecological procedure that involved the use of a power morcellator and were harmed as a result, you may be able to take legal action. Contact the national law firm of Baron and Budd by calling 1.866.472.9108 or sending an e-mail to learn more.
About Baron & Budd
The law firm of Baron & Budd, P.C., with offices in Dallas, Baton Rouge, Austin and Los Angeles, is a nationally recognized law firm with almost four decades of experience "Protecting What’s Right" for people, communities and businesses harmed by negligence. Baron & Budd’s size and resources enable the firm to take on exceptionally large and complex cases. The firm represents individuals, governmental and business entities in areas as diverse as PCB contamination in schools, FLSA (overtime) violations, pharmaceutical and medical implant injuries, water contamination, GM ignition problems, California Proposition 65 violations, mortgage and credit card fraud and asbestos-related illnesses such as mesothelioma.


Baron & Budd, P.C.
Susan Knape, 214-629-0596

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Prominent Product Safety Attorney Joins Locks Law Firm as Of Counsel

John-Gehlhausen-WebLocks Law Firm announced that John Gehlhausen, Lamar, CO attorney, has joined the firm as Of Counsel. Gehlhausen will merge his national practice into Locks Law.
Gehlhausen has more than 40 years experience specializing in lawn, farm and construction equipment product liability, needle stick injuries and complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) litigation. He started his civil practice in the early 1970s after serving four years in the Judge Advocate General Corps of the United States Air Force in Denver.
“We are excited to welcome such an experienced and successful attorney to the firm,” said Locks Law Firm Founding Partner Gene Locks. “We’ve worked with John on a number of cases and felt this merger was a good fit for all parties involved. John and our team of attorneys both share a dedication to protect the rights of injured victims and are used to hard-fought litigation with major defendants.”
A recipient of the Kenneth Norman Kripke 2004 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association, Gehlhausen has held every elected office in that organization, including the presidency from 1990-1991. He is also a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers and a member of the American Association for Justice, AAJ CRPS Litigation Group (Chairman, 2013), AAJ Leaders Forum, American Board of Trial Advocates, Public Justice Foundation, and Public Justice.
Gehlhausen is a member of the Colorado and 10th Circuit Court of Appeals bar associations, as well as the bar of the U.S. Court of Military Appeals, U.S. District Court for Colorado and U.S. Claims Court. He has lectured numerous times on civil law topics for the Colorado and North Dakota trial lawyers associations, the Colorado and Oklahoma bar associations, and the American Association for Justice, as well as being an instructor for the National Institute for Trial Advocacy.
Gehlhausen earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Evansville (B.A., 1965) and his law degree from Vanderbilt University (J.D., 1968).
About Locks Law Firm:
With a litigation team of 23 personal injury attorneys and nearly 100 outstanding legal professionals and auxiliary staff members, Locks Law Firm serves plaintiffs and is dedicated to victims of corporate neglect and malfeasance. The firm, with offices in Philadelphia, New York, and Cherry Hill, NJ is known for groundbreaking verdicts and settlements in mesothelioma, asbestos, pharmaceutical, mass tort, personal injury, and product liability cases. For more information, please visit

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Mesothelioma Victims Center Focuses on US Navy Force Levels in 1960s-1970s, Urges Veterans to Contact Physicians about Possible Asbestos Exposure

WASHINGTONNov. 25, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- The Mesothelioma Victims Center is urging US Navy Veterans who served between the 1950s and the 1980s to tell their primary care physician if they were exposed to asbestos on a US Navy ship, or at a US Navy installation because early detection of mesothelioma can open numerous treatment option possibilities as well as help the nation's most skilled mesothelioma compensation lawyers design a much better claim for the victim. For more information about the Mesothelioma Victims Center's remarkable services focused on the best possible treatment options and the best possible compensation, all diagnosed victims and/or their family members are urged to call the center anytime at 866-714-6466 or visit http://MesotheliomaVictimsCenter.Com.
The Mesothelioma Victims Center says, "In the last five decades, millions of US Navy sailors were possibly exposed to asbestos while on a US Navy ship, at a shipyard, or at a US Navy installation. We are urging these individuals to tell their primary care physician if they were exposed to asbestos during their time in the navy because we are convinced thousands of US citizens die each year from mesothelioma without proper diagnosis. Tragically, without a diagnosis there can be no compensation for this rare form of cancer.
"We also need to emphasize compensation for diagnosed victims of mesothelioma who served in the US Navy, and were exposed to asbestos while serving in the US Navy can easily exceed hundreds of thousands of dollars, sometimes over one million dollars."
If a medical doctor has suggested mesothelioma, or is concerned about mesothelioma as a possibility the Mesothelioma Victims Center is urging the potential victim, or their family members to call them anytime at 866-714-6466 for the specifics as to what must be done to confirm a mesothelioma diagnosis. http://MesotheliomaVictimsCenter.Com
For attribution purposes please refer to the infoplease statistical chart referred as Active Duty Military Personnel, 1940–2011 courtesy of the United States Department of Defense.
Information About Mesothelioma For Diagnosed Victims And Their Families From The Mesothelioma Victims Center:
According to the US Center for Disease Control the average age for a diagnosed victim of mesothelioma is 72 years old.  Frequently victims of mesothelioma are initially misdiagnosed with pneumonia. This year between 2500, and 3000 US citizens will be diagnosed with mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is attributable to exposure to asbestos.
According to the CDC the states indicated with the highest incidence of mesothelioma include MaineMassachusettsConnecticut, Maryland, New Jersey,PennsylvaniaOhioWest Virginia, Virginia, Michigan, IllinoisMinnesota,LouisianaWashington, and Oregon. However, based on the calls the Mesothelioma Victims Center receives a diagnosed victim of mesothelioma could live in any state including New YorkFloridaCaliforniaTexas, Rhode Island, Illinois, Ohio, Iowa, Indiana, Missouri, North Carolina, Kentucky,Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, MissouriOklahomaArkansasKansasNebraska,North DakotaWyomingColoradoNevadaNew MexicoUtahArizonaIdaho, orAlaska.
For an up-to-date map from the CDC showing the states with the highest incidence of mesothelioma please refer to their web site on this topic.
High risk work groups for exposure to asbestos include US Navy Veterans, power plant workers, shipyard workers, oil refinery workers, manufacturing, or industrial workers, plumbers, electricians, auto mechanics, machinists, or construction workers. Typically the exposure to asbestos occurred in the 1950's, 1960's, 1970's, or 1980's. http://MesotheliomaVictimsCenter.Com
The Mesothelioma Victims Center says, "Before you hire a mesothelioma attorney please call us at 866-714-6466, and compare the qualifications of who we consider to be the nation's most skilled mesothelioma attorneys to any other lawyer, or law firm. When it comes to obtaining the best mesothelioma settlement, the quality of the attorney matters, as we would like to explain." http://MesotheliomaVictimsCenter.Com
For more information about mesothelioma please refer to the National Institutes of Health's web site related to this rare form of cancer:
Media Contact:
M. Thomas Martin

SOURCE Mesothelioma Victims Center

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Mesothelioma Lawyers & Personal Injury Attorney at LK Named Best Lawyers

Six lawyers, including five mesothelioma lawyers and a personal injury attorney, at the nationally-renowned law firm of Levy Konigsberg LLP ("LK") have recently been named Best Lawyers by US News-Best Lawyers' 2015 Edition. Among these lawyers are Stanley J. Levy, Alan J. Konigsberg, Robert I. Komitor, Moshe Maimon, Jerome H. Block, and Audrey Perlman Raphael, most of whom have made the list of Best Lawyers for many years.
Stanley J. Levy, a founding partner, now serving as Of Counsel to the firm, has represented mesothelioma victims and their families for over 40 years. Mr. Levy is known to have introduced some of the nation's earliest asbestos lawsuits, many of which were groundbreaking cases that established the knowledge of the dangers of asbestos exposure, that were known within the asbestos industry but kept from workers. He has been recognized by Best Lawyers every year since 1999 and by other leading peer-review publications, such as Super Lawyers and Martindale-Hubbell.
Alan J. Konigsberg, a founding partner and a practicing personal injury attorney at LK, is actively engaged in the leadership of the firm's keys areas of practice, including child lead poisoning, medical malpractice, and whistleblower law. In 2012, US News-Best Lawyers named Mr. Konigsberg "Lawyer of the Year" in the area of plaintiff's product liability litigation for the year 2013.
Robert I. Komitor is an LK partner and a nationally-acclaimed mesothelioma lawyer, who, throughout his career, has won some of the highest mesothelioma verdicts in the nation. In a recent case, Mr. Komitor obtained a verdict of $7.3 million for the family of a truck driver who died of mesothelioma (1). For his remarkable legal victories, Mr. Komitor was recognized by Best Lawyers every year since 2006.
Moshe Maimon, a partner at LK, is a highly-accomplished New Jersey mesothelioma lawyer, who has obtained multiple multimillion-dollar verdicts on behalf of asbestos cancer victims from NJ. Recently he won a staggering $90 million verdict for eleven families from Manville, New Jersey, against an international asbestos conglomerate (2). Just like the other mesothelioma lawyers at LK, Mr. Maimon has been recognized by Best Lawyers, Super Lawyers, and Martindale Hubbell for many years.
Jerome H. Block is a partner at LK and one of the most distinguished mesothelioma lawyers in the nation. Over the course of his career, Mr. Block has won tens of millions of dollars on behalf of victims of asbestos exposure who come from all walks of life and all corners of America. In a recent case, he obtained a $7 million verdict for a mesothelioma patient who was exposed to asbestos during his work at the construction of LILCO's Northport power station in Long Island, New York (3). For many years, he has made the list of Best Lawyers, Super Lawyers, Martindale Hubbell's AV Preeminent lawyers, and the National Trial Lawyers' 100 Trial Lawyers list.
Audrey Perlman Raphael is yet another LK partner who was included in the 2015 Best Lawyers list. She leads the firm's asbestos bankruptcy claims department, which is responsible for recovering compensation on claims against bankrupt asbestos companies. Every year, Mrs. Perlman Raphael has secured multimillion-dollar settlements on behalf of mesothelioma clients nationwide.
In 2013, LK was named by US News-Best Lawyers "The Law Firm of the Year" in the area of product liability litigation. For over 25 years, it has fought for justice for workers and their family members who were unknowingly exposed to cancer-causing asbestos fibers and developed mesothelioma, lung cancer, or asbestosis. The firm also prides itself for obtaining multimillion-dollar verdicts and settlements for victims of lead paint poisoning and medical malpractice.
For more information about the firm, please call 1-212-605-6200 or visit the firm's website at
(1) Carlucci vs. A.W. Chesterton Co., Inc., et. al., No. 90486/11 (N.Y. Sup. Ct., New York County);
(2) North v. National Grid Generation LLC, et. al., No. 190114-13 (N.Y. Sup. Ct., New York County);
(3) Tuturice v. Anova Holdings AG, et al., No. MID-L-2030-10AS (N.J. Super., Middlesex County);
DiTolvo v. Anova Holdings AG, et al., No. MID-L-0464-10AS (N.J. Super., Middlesex County);
Durlester v. Anova Holdings AG, et al., No. MID-L-9677-08AS (N.J. Super., Middlesex County);
Greene v. Anova Holdings AG, et al., No. MID-L-8113-09AS (N.J. Super., Middlesex County);
Ketchem v. Anova Holdings AG, et al., No. MID-L-10217-08AS (N.J. Super., Middlesex County);
Koshinsky v. Anova Holdings AG, et al., No. MID-L-4059-08AS (N.J. Super., Middlesex County);
Lindsay v. Anova Holdings AG, et al., No. MID-L-6858-09AS (N.J. Super., Middlesex County);
Slepokura v. Anova Holdings AG, et al., No. MID-L-7717-09AS (N.J. Super., Middlesex County);
Tafil v. Anova Holdings AG, et al., No. MID-L-215-09AS (N.J. Super., Middlesex County);
Troth v. Anova Holdings AG, et al., No. MID-L-9794-09AS (N.J. Super., Middlesex County);
Upshaw v. Anova Holdings AG, et al., No. MID-L-7638-11AS (N.J. Super., Middlesex County).
Read the full story at

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This weeks asbestos news

Students and Staff in India at Risk of Asbestos Exposure
More than 60 schools in India still contain asbestos roofs putting students and staff at risk of exposure. According to the article, “the Human Rights Commission prohibited the use of asbestos as roofs in state schools in January 2009, and nearly 60 schools are yet to implement the order.” The article also states the reason why these schools have not met these requirements is due to the lack of monies. Sreedevi Chitharanjan, The Times of India 07/15/2012
Read Article: The Times of India
Libby, Mont., Turns Asbestos Tragedy into Triumph
Libby Mont., has turned an old W.R. Grace site, infested with Asbestos, into a beautiful town park. According to the article, it took a decade to clean-up and more than $440 million dollars to finish this part of the project. The town park has already held a wedding and has scheduled other events for this year. Matthew Brown, The Spokesman-Review 07/16/2012
Read Article: The Spokesman-Review
Demolition of a Massachusetts Foundry Halted due to Asbestos
Demolition of the old Bechler Foundry in Easton, Mass., has come to a halt after asbestos was found in the ceiling tiles. According to state officials, the contracting company filed a demolition permit with the city but did not file proper asbestos abatement paperwork with the state. Spokesman for the Department of Environmental Services Edmund Coleeta said the portion of the building that was “demolished contained asbestos but the amounts were small enough to not be a safety concern.” Justin Graeber, Enterprise News 07/14/2012
Read Article: Enterprise News
Top Public School in England Fined for Asbestos Violations
England’s top public school, Sherborne, and its director Peter Eldridge were prosecuted and fined more than £60,000 for negligently exposing workers and students to asbestos during a renovation. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) also found the school failed to carry out a full asbestos survey before the renovation and negligently continued the construction. Staff Report, The Construction Index 07/16/2012
Read Article: The Construction Index
Iberville Residents Could be at Risk of Asbestos Exposure
Residents of Iberville, La., are in fear of being exposed to asbestos and other toxic substances after the city decided to implode a nearby hotel this Sunday. According to observers, “the state has planned the demolition carefully and that contractors have already stripped the building down to its skeleton.” The newspaper reported “that those toxins shouldn’t be a major part of Sunday’s debris cloud.” Katy Reckdahl, New Orleans Times-Picayune 07/17/2012
Read Article: New Orleans Times-Picayune

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Mesothelioma Lawyer Provides Advice to Sheetmetal Workers Exposed to Asbestos

Chris Placitella serves as  Special Occupational Injury Counsel to numerous sheetmetal locals. In that capacity, Chris  often teaches at apprentice training programs. His course is dedicated to informing people in the trade about the dangers of asbestos and how to avoid asbestos exposure on the job. In this video, Chris provides a summary of the information from his course. Chris discusses the diseases caused by asbestos including asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma. Chris also provides information on industry knowledge about the dangers of asbestos and what you should do if you are ever diagnosed with an asbestos related disease..

Two Major Victories for Asbestos Plaintiffs Exposed to Brakes Which Contained Asbestos

This week there were two major victories for asbestos plaintiffs, who were exposed to asbestos containing brakes. The first case was against Ford.
After a long, tough, hard fought battle with Ford, a New York City jury returned a verdict in favor of Arthur Juni and his wife Mary Jo Juni. Mr. Juni died of mesothelioma at age 74 (during the middle of jury selection). Mr. Juni was a career Orange and Rockland County auto mechanic.
Eight million dollars was awarded for pain and suffering and $3 million loss of consortium.  Ford was found 49 percent responsible and the jury also concluded that Ford’s conduct was reckless. Congratulations to my friends and colleagues Adam Cooper, Benjamin Darche and Jerry Kristal who tired the case to verdict.
The second case was against Bendix who manufactured asbestos containing brakes. The second case was brought on behalf of Charity Phillips, the estate of descendent James Phillips and their children Jaycee Smith, Michael Phillips, and JT Phillips.
A Fresno County Ca  jury awarded $6,538,500 in non-economic damages and a stipulated amount of $900,000 in economic damages for a total of $7,438,500. The jury assigned 30 percent fault to Honeywell (Bendix). Honewywell (Bendix) was also hit with $3.5 million in punitive damages, bringing the total verdict to approximately 11 million. Congratulations to my friends and colleagues Stu Purdy and Rob Green who represented the Phillips family.

The Truth Not Told By The Wall Street Journal

Today the Wall Street Journal published an article about the civil justice system that was obviously slanted and anything but fair and balanced journalism. Cynics argue that the article echoed the agenda of the Chamber of Commerce and ALEC to delay and deny the wrongfully injured their right to fair compensation. Whatever the motive, the following article tells the truth and sets the record straight .
The following is taken directly from
On March 11, 2013, the Wall Street Journal published an article that fits neatly in the play book of Big Asbestos’ campaign to avoid compensating the asbestos victims they deliberately harmed by vilifying the victims and accusing them and their families of “fraud.” The goal of this campaign, led by asbestos corporations, their insurers and their front groups, is to delay and deny until asbestos victims die.
Rather than focusing on these victims and their families who have been devastated by asbestos disease, the WSJ article perpetuates the same deceptive and inaccurate claims about the asbestos trusts that Big Asbestos has been campaigning on for years. At no point does the article claim to have actual evidence of widespread fraud; instead, the article relies on unnamed, unidentified “politicians, judges and defense lawyers” that claim that the “opportunity for abuse flourishes.” What the WSJ’s data analysis does show that the trusts have a very low error rate and are operating efficiently, especially for such a massive system.
These unfounded accusations are used by Big Asbestos to push legislation at the state and federal levels that would add significant time and costs to the justice process for victims. The following are some of the most deceptive claims in the article:
Myth: There are too many asbestos lawsuits and claims.
Fact: There are many asbestos lawsuits and claims because Big Asbestos knowingly exposed millions of Americans to this deadly product and covered up the dangers for profit. Asbestos has killed hundreds of thousands of Americans and 10,000 more are killed each year. Lives could have been saved and lawsuits prevented if Big Asbestos was transparent about the dangers decades ago.
Myth: Asbestos victims recover windfalls of money from asbestos bankruptcy trusts.
Fact: The majority of asbestos victims are grossly undercompensated for the astronomical medical costs and loss associated with asbestos disease.
Asbestos corporations that admitted they are responsible for killing thousands of Americans have taken advantage of a special bankruptcy process that allows them to shed all of their asbestos liability through the creation of a trust and go on to make huge profits. The trusts were underfunded by the corporations when they were created and the number of people made sick by asbestos was underestimated. As a result, asbestos victims only recover pennies on the dollar from those trusts. Even the asbestos-industry funded RAND study found that most “trusts do not have sufficient funds to pay every claim in full.” The median payment percentage to victims is 25 percent, but some trusts pay as low as 1.1 percent of the value of a claim.
Myth: Asbestos victims are inappropriately recovering from multiple asbestos corporations.
Fact: Most victims were exposed to multiple asbestos products. Multiple corporations are responsible and should be held accountable for their portion of the blame. State laws exist to ensure that every defendant, whether a traditional defendant or a trust, only pays its share of liability. Defendants routinely seek and are awarded off sets in accordance with state law.
Myth: Fraudulent claims run rampant in the asbestos trust system.
Fact: First, there is no record of fraud and abuse in the trust system. In fact, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) looked into this question and found none. Additionally, at no point does the WSJ article claim to have actual evidence of systemic fraud. Instead, the the article relies on unnamed, unidentified “politicians, judges and defense lawyers” that claim that the “opportunity for abuse flourishes.”
Second, human error in data entry is not fraud. It is a misinterpretation of the data to conclude that data entry cases constitute fraud. Even if the WSJ’s numbers are accurate, they only prove that out of the millions who have filed claims with asbestos trusts, the error rate is 0.42%, an amount far lower than similar large trust systems. What the WSJ’s data analysis does show is that the trusts have a very low error rate and are operating efficiently, especially for such a massive system.
Myth: Federal legislation is necessary to prevent fraud and abuse in the trust system.
Fact: Federal legislation is unnecessary and offensive. Proposed federal legislation would require private asbestos trusts to publicly release extensive individual information about asbestos victims and would slow down asbestos cases by allowing asbestos defendants to bury the trusts in information requests, no matter how unnecessary or irrelevant.
Asbestos corporations are already able to obtain all relevant information without this legislation. State courts can and routinely do demand that both sides turn over all information relevant to a pending action. The WSJ article admitted that judges across the country have granted defense requests to subpoena bankruptcy trusts. The article notes that corporations that have been found guilty by jury of knowingly killing Americans want the additional data from the trusts so they can save “hundreds of millions of dollars in jury verdicts.” What asbestos defendants really want, beyond what they can get now, is information irrelevant to a case that would only serve to delay compensation to victims and shift blame. In other words, asbestos defendants want to delay and deny until the asbestos victim dies.
Myth: Trusts are ripe for fraud because they do not require any real proof from claimants.
Fact: Asbestos corporations that have taken advantage of the trusts system already admit that their products are responsible for asbestos diseases. The only proof claimants need to show is that they were exposed to that corporation’s asbestos and that they are sick with asbestos disease. The trusts examine evidence of claims before payments are made and according to GAO, trusts have a system in place to address allegations of fraud. Additionally, state courts are fully equipped to handle such allegations.
Myth: There is no limit to how many trusts a person can tap.
Fact: Claimants must prove they were exposed to the corporation’s asbestos product and that they were harmed by that exposure in order to file a claim with that corporation’s trust.

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National Comprehensive Cancer Network’s Patient Guidelines for Mesothelioma®, Sponsored By Mesothelioma Law Firm Baron and Budd, Now Available on

 — The National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN), comprised of several of the world’s leading cancer treatment centers, recently announced that printed versions of its NCCN Guidelines for Patients® are now available through, the mesothelioma law firm of Baron and Budd reports. These guidelines offer information to help cancer patients discuss their disease with physicians so they have the clearest possible picture of potential treatment options. (
One of the NCCN Guidelines for Patients® available on Amazon.comincludes the NCCN Patient Guidelines for Mesothelioma®. Baron and Budd sponsored the writing, printing and distribution of the publication.
The NCCN has helped physicians nationwide develop treatment schedules tailored to the individual needs of their patients. The organization plans to make NCCN Guidelines for Patients® for additional forms of cancer available through the website in the coming months. The NCCN Guidelines® are developed by experts from NCCN Member Institutions, featuring algorithms addressing specific disease management options from initial work-up to treatment and surveillance. The NCCN Guidelines for Patients® are easy-to-understand translations of the guidelines that help better inform cancer patients who wish to speak with their doctors regarding different methods of treatment.
“This is an extremely significant step on the part of the NCCN because it will further empower cancer patients so they can be as well educated as possible regarding the strategies that will be used to fight their disease,” said Russell Budd, co-founder and shareholder of the mesothelioma law firm of Baron and Budd. “We are honored to support the continued efforts of the NCCN to help improve the quality of these patients’ lives.” Budd is a past member of the NCCN Foundation Board, the philanthropic arm of the organization.
Other types of cancer covered in the guidelines include:
  • Breast (Stages 0-IV)
  • Colon
  • Pancreatic
  • Melanoma
  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Soft Tissue Sarcoma
For nearly four decades, the mesothelioma lawyers with Baron and Budd have fought for malignant pleural mesothelioma patients by targeting the manufacturers responsible for the asbestos exposure that caused their disease. If you or a loved one has been harmed due to such exposure and would like more information on potential legal options, call our mesothelioma law firm at 1.866.495.1255 or e-mail
The law firm of Baron & Budd, P.C., with offices in Dallas, Baton Rouge, Austin and Los Angeles, is a nationally recognized law firm with almost four decades of experience "Protecting What’s Right" for people, communities and businesses harmed by negligence. Baron & Budd’s size and resources enable the firm to take on large and complex cases. The firm represents individuals, governmental and business entities in areas as diverse as PCB contamination in schools, FLSA (overtime) violations, pharmaceutical and medical implant injuries, water contamination, GM ignition problems, California Proposition 65 violations, mortgage and credit card fraud and asbestos-related illnesses such as mesothelioma.

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