Monday, October 22, 2018

Supreme Court hears oral argument in asbestos case under maritime law

A couple of weeks ago, the US Supreme Court heard oral arguments in a case that raises basic principles of tort law as related to maritime jurisdiction.  The case involves equipment that depended on asbestos insulation sold by various manufacturers that was installed many years ago on Navy ships.  The plaintiffs are a group of sailors injured by the asbestos used with the equipment. Because the injuries in question occurred at sea it arises under the general “maritime” law, judge-made federal law for which the Supreme Court is the final authority. The lower court found that the manufacturers could be liable because the injuries were foreseeable. 

The SCotUS blog has analysis here.  You can also access all the relevant documents in the case here.

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