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Using Modern Medical Evidence and the Keasbey Opinion to Defend Asbestos Coverage Suits

Carriers defending against asbestos claims—and possibly other long-tail claims such as those involving silica, benzene, and talc—would be wise to review the Keasbey case to identify strategies for limiting coverage.  Cont’l Cas. Co. v. Emp. Ins. Co. of Wausau, 871 N.Y.S.2d 48 (N.Y. App. Div. 2008) (Keasbey).  There, the court found that “one indisputable fact . . . to emerge from [the] medical evidence . . . is that actual injury . . . does not occur upon [initial] exposure to asbestos.”  Id. at 62.  This ruling, which has implications for trigger of coverage, nonproducts coverage, allocation, and corporate succession, has been underused by insurers litigating asbestos coverage issues, especially given that since the Keasbey trial, which was held in 2005, the medical evidence has become stronger that “bodily injury” does not occur at or soon after initial exposure.

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Fighting Fraudulent Joinder: Getting Your Case into Federal Court

Tort actions involving pharmaceuticals and medical devices usually involve state law claims, and therefore, diversity jurisdiction is often the only way to proceed in a federal court.  Plaintiffs, however, may join doctors, sales representatives, hospitals, or pharmacies as nondiverse defendants, or in some cases, they may even join multiple plaintiffs from several states to defeat diversity jurisdiction.  Because defendants most often prefer to litigate in federal courts, fighting the joinder of these nondiverse defendants is critical. 

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Negligence Claims for Defective, Non-Dangerous Products Do Not Belong in Ontario Tort Law

In the recent case of Arora v. Whirlpool Canada LP,  [2013] S.C.C.A. No. 498, the Supreme Court of Canada has refused leave to appeal the decision of the Ontario Court of Appeal which determined that plaintiffs cannot recover for pure economic loss resulting from the negligent design of a non-dangerous product.

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Drugmakers to join forces to make millions of Ebola vaccine doses  - Reuters 10/22/2014
J&J Accused at Trial of Ignoring Pinnacle Hip Failures  - Bloomberg 10/22/2014
U.S. government probes medical devices for possible cyber flaws  - Reuters 10/22/2014
Getting more bang for your IP buck, Pt 2  - Inside Counsel 10/22/2014
Trinity Ordered to Deliver Guardrail Crash-Test Plan  - Bloomberg 10/22/2014
U.S. Settles With Getty Over N.Y. Oil Spill  - Courthouse News Service 10/22/2014
EEOC Investigating Mandatory Retirement Age for Law Firm Partners  - Insurance Journal 10/22/2014
Employee lawsuit could complicate sale of California hospital chain  - Los Angeles Times 10/22/2014
Faulty airbags warning expanded to 6.1. million U.S. cars: NHTSA  - Reuters 10/22/2014
Pennsylvania Supreme Court suspends its own Justice McCaffery, asks for ethics investigation  - ABA Journal 10/22/2014
Facebook files suit against legal representation of Paul Ceglia  - Inside Counsel 10/22/2014
States, enviros slam ozone limits in contentious court hearing  - E&E Publishing 10/22/2014
Smoker Fails to Prove Tobacco Cancer Claim  - Courthouse News Service 10/22/2014
NCAA, Pro Leagues Sue to Block New Jersey Sports Betting  - Bloomberg 10/22/2014
Tips for attorneys when speaking with the news media  - Inside Counsel 10/22/2014

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