June 10, 2014 Articles

Decisions Limiting Toxic-Tort Claims: Aberration or Potential Trend?

By Andrew J. Scholz

In defending against toxic-tort claims, New York stands out as one of the most difficult jurisdictions for defendants and their insurers. To illustrate, within the last decade, New York juries have rendered shockingly high multimillion-dollar verdicts in asbestos litigation as well as lead-paint litigation. See, e.g., In re New York City Asbestos Litig., Index Nos. 190008/12, 190026/12, 190200/12, 190183/12, 190184/12 (N.Y. Sup. Ct., N.Y. Cnty. July 13, 2013) ($190 million verdict involving consolidated trial of five plaintiffs); Sandra Guerrero v. 2246 Holding Corp. and Chama Holding Corp., Index No. 1683/2004 (N.Y. Sup. Ct., Kings Cnty. Oct. 17, 2007) ($5 million single plaintiff).

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