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Caruolo v. John Crane, Inc.

ELR Citation: 31 ELR 20093
Nos. 99-7430(L), -7501(XAP), 226 F.3d 46/(2d Cir., 08/31/2000)

The court upholds a jury verdict finding a manufacturer of asbestos-containing sealing devices liable to an individual for injuries sustained due to asbestos exposure in the workplace.

The court first holds that there was sufficient evidence to support an inference that the individual's work with the manufacturer's product produced dangerous levels of asbestos exposure. Although doubt was cast on expert witnesses' testimony, it was in the province of the jury to assess their credibility. The court next holds that the district court properly denied the manufacturer's motion for a new trial. The district court did not abuse its discretion in admitting expert testimony and state-of-the-art documents. Moreover, none of the manufacturer's claims concerning the jury charge justify granting a new trial. Further, it was within the district court's discretion to find that plaintiff counsel's suggestion of a specific damage amount did not warrant a new trial. Additionally, the court holds that the district court was correct in applying Rhode Island law to the issue of joint and several liability. The individual was domiciled in Rhode Island and the injury occurred there. The court, however, holds that the district court erred in applying New York rather than Rhode Island law in computing prejudgment interest.

The full text of this decision is available from ELR (11 pp., ELR Order No. L-268).

Counsel for Plaintiffs
Moshe Maimon
Levy, Phillips & Konigsberg
520 Madison Ave., New York NY 10022
(212) 605-6200

Counsel for Defendant
Suzanne M. Halbardier
Barry, McTiernan & Moore
25 Broadway, New York NY 10004
(212) 509-8999