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CA Flag 1The Supreme Court of California has overturned prior case law and imposed broad new liability on “employers and premises owners” in “take-home” toxic exposure cases. In a lengthy opinion issued in the consolidated Kesner v. Superior Court  and Haver v. BNSF Railway Co. matters, the Court stated:

We hold that the duty of employers and premises owners to exercise ordinary care in their use of asbestos includes preventing exposure to asbestos carried by the bodies and clothing of on-site workers. Where it is reasonably foreseeable that workers, their clothing, or personal effects will act as vectors carrying asbestos from the premises to household members, employers have a duty to take reasonable care to prevent this means of transmission. This duty also applies to premises owners who use asbestos on their property, subject to any exceptions and affirmative defenses generally applicable to premises owners, such as the rules of contractor liability.
Continue Reading California Imposes Broad Liability in “Take-Home” Toxic Exposure Cases

Columns in the courtyard of the Palace of the Legion of Honor.The California Court of Appeal has confirmed that the “government contractor” defense may apply to products made available to both the federal government and commercial markets, even where the defendant did not design or produce the product at issue.

Continue Reading Government Contractor Defense May Apply to Commercially Available Products