Friable Thoughts

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Who Needs an Asbestos-Containing Product for an Asbestos Claim?

Plaintiff's trial lawyers love to paint all the defendants in asbestos litigation as "asbestos manufacturers" even though most of the defendants nowadays used only very minute amounts of asbestos in small component parts. Most of the real "asbestos manufacturers" are simply bankrupt and trial lawyers need someone to pay their sick clients and (more realistically) for their mansions, luxury cars and mistresses.

So, in California at least, they may now be able to sue companies that never used asbestos in their products. A court held last week that if someone uses your product with another product that has a toxic substance, you may be on the hook for failing to include a warning (i.e. do not use with a toxic material). In asbestos litigation, this could dramatically expand the number of folks that can get sued. Pity the poor plastic bucket maker that made the bucket that was used to mix insulation mud. Or, the sandpaper manufacturer whose sandpaper was used to smooth out joint compound.

Hopefully, other courts will limit this holding or, if we're really lucky, the California Supreme Court may reverse it and restore some sanity to product liability law.

TELLEZ-CORDOVA v. CAMPBELL-HAUSFELD No B172127, California Court of Appeals, 2d App. Dist. May 18, 2005

1 Comments:

  • An interesting find, but not what I was looking for on asbestos lawsuits. My search for asbestos lawsuits returned your results so I clicked and here I be.

    Interesting, but not what I need to know about asbestos lawsuits, so I will continue my journey.... Off I go.

    By Blogger Jakub, at 5:30 PM  

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