Many auto parts were once made with asbestos, and as a result, auto mechanics and those exposed to auto parts are at particular risk for malignant mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases. When Ronald Carpenter died of malignant mesothelioma after a long career as a truck driver, his widow filed a claim against multiple asbestos companies, including auto parts companies. A California court recently decided that two of those companies must stand trial in the widow’s mesothelioma lawsuit.
Widow’s Mesothelioma Lawsuit Names Multiple Asbestos Companies
After her husband’s death from malignant mesothelioma, Patricia Carpenter filed a lawsuit in the Superior Court in California against multiple companies whose asbestos-contaminated products he’d been exposed to. Several of them were auto parts companies, and in response, those companies filed motions for summary judgment asking to be dismissed from the case. They argued that there was no proof that he had been exposed to their products.
In ruling on the case, Judge Laura Seigle first reminded all parties that for a defendant to be granted summary judgment in a mesothelioma case, they must establish that under no hypothesis is there a material issue of fact that requires the process of the trial. She then turned to the arguments submitted by defendants BWDAC, Inc. and Paccar, Inc.
Judge Denies Parts Companies’ Motion to be Excused from Mesothelioma Case
About BWDAC, Inc., the judge pointed to the mesothelioma victim having testified that when he’d worked as a truck driver, the shop that repaired his trucks had used Borg Warner clutches on their trucks and that BWDAC had acquired all of that company’s assets in 1981. Though the company argued it would not have sold clutches to the shop because it only sold to warehouses and distributors, the judge noted that the shop may have purchased from those locations. The judge also refused to dismiss the widow’s claim for punitive damages because she demonstrated that the company had known about the dangers of asbestos.
Concerning Paccar, Inc., the company argued that there was no evidence the mesothelioma victim had been exposed to their brakes, clutches, or gaskets because they had to be installed on vehicles at an assembly plant, but the judge denied that claim as well. She said that their argument did not establish that the plaintiffs had no evidence that the parts were original. Similarly, they will have to defend themselves against a punitive damages claim.
If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease, the Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net can help. To learn more, contact us today at 1-800-692-8608.FREE Mesothelioma Packet