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Judge Denies Honeywell’s Attempt to Block Mesothelioma Widow’s Testimony

Posted by Michael Throneberry | Jan 17, 2024

For purposes of this article, the widow in this case will be referred to as S.B., and the deceased husband will be referred to as Mr. B.

In a recent court decision, a judge denied Honeywell's motion for summary judgment, which would have blocked a mesothelioma widow's testimony. Honeywell, which was among many companies named in a personal injury lawsuit filed by S.B. in the Southern District of Illinois, filed the motion for summary judgment on many grounds, asking that the court remove them from the case. However, the judge hearing the case denied all the arguments Honeywell presented, giving S.B. an opportunity to be heard in court.

After S.B.'s husband died of malignant mesothelioma, she filed a personal injury claim against several parties in the Southern District of Illinois. In her claim, S.B. talked about the numerous times her late husband had serviced brakes for family members in the 60s and 70s. According to S.B., she sued Honeywell because of the company's Bendix automotive brakes and the contaminated dust her husband inhaled while changing brakes. According to S.B.'s claim, the asbestos in Honeywell's brake lining had been a significant factor in Mr. B's illness and subsequent death.

In response to being named in S.B.'s mesothelioma claim, Honeywell decided to petition the court to dismiss the widow's claim against them. Honeywell filed a motion for summary judgment on several grounds. The company argued that the widow's testimony should be blocked as it was hearsay and inadmissible since she had been deposed before they were added to the case. Additionally, Honeywell claimed there was no proof that Mr. B's mesothelioma had been caused by exposure to asbestos in the company's products.

The judge presiding over the case took time to consider arguments from both sides before making a decision. After carefully considering both sides' arguments, the judge denied the defendant's request to dismiss the case against them. The judge rejected Honeywell's argument that S.B.'s testimony was hearsay. The judge offered the defendant a clear definition of the term hearsay. The judge also corrected Honeywell's interpretation of deposition deadlines. In regards to the defendant's arguments that there wasn't evidence that their products had played a role in Mr. B's illness, the judge referred to past rulings involving “every exposure” to asbestos in mesothelioma claims. According to the judge, S.B. provided enough evidence to raise a factual question for a jury to decide. The case was allowed to proceed for consideration by a jury. The widow now has a chance to see justice prevail. She has a chance to recover much-needed monetary compensation.  

As this case moves forward, it is a reminder of the challenges mesothelioma victims and their families face in pursuit of justice. It is a reminder of how liable parties are rarely ready to take responsibility and compensate victims and their families. Considering the challenges mesothelioma victims and their families face, it is best to work with an attorney. Working with an experienced mesothelioma attorney significantly increases the chances of succeeding.

Arizona Mesothelioma Lawyers

If you or a loved one were diagnosed with mesothelioma, contact our office to speak to one of our experienced Arizona mesothelioma attorneys about your situation. Our office can help investigate your case and determine if compensation can be sought from negligent parties to help pay for your medical treatment to help you and your family live a more comfortable life.


About the Author

Michael Throneberry

Attorney Michael Throneberry graduated from Purdue University with a Civil Engineering degree. He then served with the United States Army...

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