Our Toxic Tort Experience is National in Scope
We have served as trial counsel, national and regional coordinating counsel, and appellate counsel for Fortune 500 clients coast to coast throughout the United States. We handle defense of air, ground and drinking water contamination litigation, citizen suits, class actions, government enforcement matters and other complex environmental, toxic exposure and products liability litigation in both state and federal courts.
Our toxic tort experience involves a wide range of chemicals and alleged “toxic” substances:
We Provide the Interdisciplinary Approach Toxic Tort Litigation Demands
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Our approach to toxic tort litigation is interdisciplinary, integrating core knowledge in areas that many firms either lack or cannot effectively bring together as a team. Our resources include:
- experienced toxic tort trial lawyers with national reputations for success in some of the most challenging jurisdictions;
- premier class action specialists who understand the particular challenges posed by major toxic tort cases;
- environmental regulatory lawyers who know how to handle plaintiffs’ lawyers’ misuse of regulatory investigations and cleanup activities as leverage in toxic tort cases; and
- science-oriented lawyers with a proven track record of effectively bringing scientific principles to the courtroom and successful Daubert challenges of plaintiffs’ experts.
We Have Represented Some of the Biggest Companies in Their Biggest Toxic Tort Cases
Isocyanate Litigation: Alston & Bird served as national litigation and trial counsel for Flexible Products, a subsidiary of The Dow Chemical Company, in lawsuits for alleged exposure to isocyanates. Our work included defending a 1,600-plus plaintiff lawsuit in Alabama and a 30,000 plaintiff nationwide putative class action involving a variety of health diseases caused by alleged isocyanate exposures.
Dioxin Litigation: We represented a national building products company in mass tort litigation involving more than 1,300 plaintiffs in nine lawsuits alleging personal injuries caused by air and surface water emissions from a former wood treatment site. The principal chemicals of concern were dioxin, arsenic, creosote and chromium. Plaintiffs alleged exposures to these chemicals resulted in wrongful death, cancers, birth defects and certain diseases. We obtained a significant early victory with the successful removal of all of the cases to federal court on fraudulent joinder grounds, and successfully settled all claims in a two-day mediation following the close of fact discovery for less than 10 percent of plaintiffs’ pre-litigation demand.
Asbestos Litigation: Our lawyers serve on the national trial team for a Fortune 50 chemical company in the defense of its asbestos matters. We have tried cases in a number of jurisdictions around the country, including many of the “judicial hellholes.” We lead virtual trial teams comprised of lawyers from top-tier national and local firms. For this same client, we act as regional counsel, supervising local counsel in the management of dockets comprising hundreds to thousands of cases, and we serve as local counsel in Georgia.
We also serve as co-national counsel to a major auto parts supplier of friction products in its asbestos litigation. In that capacity we also serve on the national trial team and manage local counsel nationwide.
PCE Litigation: We serve as national counsel for a global appliance manufacturer in lawsuits involving alleged perchloroethylene (PCE) contamination in soil, sewer system and drinking water supplies. In prior California litigation, plaintiffs sought $150 million in damages from nine defendant companies. Based on our client’s defense experts’ reports and testimony, we resolved all claims in a pre-trial mediation for less than one percent of the damages sought.
Bringing Value to Our Clients
We Excel at “Bet-the-Company” Litigation
We understand the impact toxic tort litigation, or even the threat of such litigation, can have on clients’ businesses. Our experience with a wide range of corporate clients gives us special insight into how litigation can affect day-to-day and long-term business needs and company exposure. This allows us to conduct litigation with the entire business picture in mind and to ensure that you win “the bet.”
From public relations priorities to shareholder concerns; from the intersection of litigation with regulatory and reporting requirements to sensitive relationships with upstream and downstream business constituents who may also be co-defendants; from the intrusion on executives and other key employees caused by discovery demands to the need for regular updates and realistic assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of your case—we keep your business’ priorities in the forefront during both litigation planning and the conduct of the litigation itself. Most importantly, we do all of this while placing a premium on client service, cost effectiveness, teamwork and diversity.