Plaintiff v. Equipment Manufacturer
Sedgwick obtained summary judgment on behalf of our client, a manufacturer of surface and underground mining equipment, in a personal injury action pending in California state court. The plaintiff, who allegedly had worked with our client’s equipment in Texas, had been diagnosed with mesothelioma. Sedgwick was successful in getting the court to apply Texas law, which is significantly more favorable to defendants than California law because it requires a plaintiff to establish a dose of exposure to asbestos such that it could be considered a substantial contributing factor to the plaintiff’s disease. While questioning plaintiff at his deposition, Sedgwick elicited testimony that the plaintiff could not say when or where he allegedly worked with our client’s equipment, or if original parts were in the equipment at the time in question. After vigorous oral argument, the court agreed with Sedgwick that the plaintiff could not carry his burden of proof. The court granted summary judgment and awarded costs to our client. Sedgwick then defeated several motions for reconsideration that the plaintiff filed.