Supplier Attempts to Evade Mesothelioma Claim Based on Address Confusion

When a mesothelioma lawsuit is filed against a company, accusing them of being responsible for a person’s terminal illness, there are generally two different paths that they can take. In some cases organizations want the claim to go away as quickly and quietly as possible: they make a settlement offer and negotiate with the victim to provide compensation that both sides find acceptable. In others, companies fight aggressively against the charges, working to counter every aspect of the lawsuit in order to intimidate the victim and cast doubt into the veracity of their accusation. In a case recently heard in the Supreme Court of New York County, a Sherwin Williams store named as the supplier of asbestos-contaminated products attempted to skirt responsibility based upon uncertainty about their store’s address. The judge in the case denied their motion for summary judgment, saying that “it is to the function of the Court deciding a summary judgment motion to make credibility determinations or findings of fact.”

Wrong Address Not Sufficient to Warrant Summary Judgment

The mesothelioma victim in this case is Albert Schwartz. Mr. Schwartz was diagnosed with mesothelioma after years of working with asbestos-containing construction products including ready-to-use joint compound, caulk and window glazing while working for Don Coleman of Coleman Painting. In his lawsuit he names Sherwin-Williams as the store from which the products were purchased and is seeking compensation for the injuries he suffered.  In response, the store argued that there was no proof or admissible evidence that Mr. Schwartz worked with products purchased from their store, arguing against Schwartz’ statement that the store was located on Talmadge Road in Edison, New Jersey. In review of the facts of the case, the judge was clear in pointing out that Schwartz was “not required to show the precise causes of his damages, but only show facts and conditions from which defendant’s liability may be reasonably inferred.” A close examination of Schwartz’ deposition makes clear that he was uncertain as to the address of the store.

When mesothelioma victims choose to pursue claims against those responsible for their illness, it is important that they understand the ferocity with which some will fight the charges against them. It is important to be prepared and fully informed of what to expect in every aspect of your disease, including legal action. If you need answers, the Patient Advocates at have them. Call us today at  1-800-692-8608.

Terri Heimann Oppenheimer

Terri Oppenheimer

Terri Heimann Oppenheimer is the head writer of our news blog. She graduated from the College of William and Mary with a degree in English. Terri believes that knowledge is power and she is committed to sharing news about the impact of mesothelioma, the latest research and medical breakthroughs, and victims’ stories.

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