Randy Holcomb died from mesothelioma in December 2008 in Las Vegas. His widow and four children filed a lawsuit against three companies that used products that emitted asbestos dust in construction jobs, claiming his exposure to asbestos in jobs in Florida and Nevada caused his lung cancer. The Nevada Supreme Court ruled that Holcomb’s family can proceed to trial in Las Vegas in their lawsuit against Georgia Pacific, Kaiser Gypsum and Kelly Moore Paint Co., according to a December story in the Las Vegas Sun.
The unanimous decision, written by Chief Justice Michael Cherry, overturned the pre-trial summary judgment by District Judge Douglas Herndon in favor of the three companies. “We take a balanced approach to find a causation test that is not overly rigorous or too relaxed in order to ensure protection for both manufacturers and consumers,” Cherry wrote.
According to the Sun, the court said that the injured party must produce evidence “that supports an inference of probable exposure to the defendant’s asbestos product” for the case to proceed from the pre-trial and summary judgment stage to trial. It also said there “must be a showing that the decedent was exposed on a regular basis over an extended time to the asbestos and it is reasonable to infer the exposure caused the mesothelioma.” A jury will decide whether the exposure was sufficient to cause the fatal disease, but the court said the family produced evidence to meet the “minimum burden” demonstrating Randy was exposed to the asbestos dust in order to move the case to trial.
We are pleased that the Nevada Supreme Court is letting this case be decided exactly as the US Constitution intended it: by an impartial jury. Additional information about occupations with high risk for mesothelioma can be found on our website. Use the form on this page or contact our firm at (800) 687-3333 to see how our Dallas litigation lawyers may be able to help if you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma.
Stanley Iola, LLP – Dallas litigation attorneys