Complex Litigation

December 13, 2013

Following on the heels of Bob Kelly’s July 2013 win in a steel mill case in Louisiana, Mr. Kelly recently succeeded in defeating the plaintiff’s motion for a new trial in the same case.  The plaintiff argued that the verdict sheet, which showed a damage finding exceeding $2.6 million but no liability as to Siemens, demonstrated juror confusion.  The court denied the motion, following the defendant’s arguments demonstrating that the plaintiff had waived objections and that the verdict sheet accurately reflected the requirements of the Louisiana Product Liability Act.  Mr. Kelly argued the motion on a brief written by Bryon Friedman, Christine Emery, and Siemens in-house counsel Skip Lockard and Eric Liebeler.

August 07, 2013

A New Jersey judge dismissed a suit against the firm’s client in which plaintiff alleged exposure to asbestos-containing products while performing his duties as a union pipefitter. Mr. Schmitz successfully argued that, under New Jersey law, a landowner has no duty to protect an independent contractor absent evidence that the landowner exercised control over the means and methods of the work. Additionally, he successfully argued that a landowner is not responsible for the negligence of other contractors working in the plaintiff’s vicinity. The win establishes an important precedent for defendants in the asbestos litigation context. Mr. Schmitz was assisted by Christine M. Delaney and Christine M. Emery.

June 10, 2013

Together with local counsel Romelia S. Leach won Motion to Exclude Plaintiff's Expert and got Plaintiff's $1M products liability case dismissed with prejudice on Summary Judgment. A Washington State Federal Judge found that Plaintiff's liability expert was not qualified to testify as an expert in the case and that the expert's testimony was not reliable. The Court further found that with the expert's testimony excluded and with no genuine issues of material facts, the Plaintiff failed to offer any admissible evidence supporting his claims.