In its ongoing effort to hold corporations responsible for recklessly exposing workers to the lethal toxin asbestos, Weitz & Luxenberg, P.C. obtained a jury verdict ordering DaimlerChrysler AG to pay $25 million to a New York City brake reliner who lost his right lung to mesothelioma, a rare cancer caused by asbestos.
Chrysler, the world’s fifth-largest automaker, was found to have acted in “reckless disregard for the safety of others,” in its failure to warn of the hazards of asbestos, which it has known about since the 1930’s. The case (Index no. 113939/04, New York Supreme Court, Manhattan) was brought by Alfred D’Ulisse, 73 and his wife, Margaret, of North Massapequa, New York. Mr. D’Ulisse, a retired police officer, was exposed to asbestos while relining Chrysler brakes at Morak Brakes in Brooklyn, New York, from 1960 to 1981.
Michael Roberts, Weitz & Luxenberg trial team attorney said, “The jury obviously disbelieved Chrysler’s bogus litigation-defense that working with asbestos brakes is safe.”
The Weitz & Luxenberg trial team included Roberts, Adam Cooper and Jerry Kristal, with additional support by associate attorney Patti Burshtyn. Prior to this case, Chrysler had boasted of winning 14 asbestos-related cases in a row. In this suit, Chrysler was found to be “jointly and severally liable,” thus requiring the company to pay 80 percent of the verdict—its 10 percent share and an additional 70 percent for the shares of two other companies. This is believed to be the highest verdict against Chrysler, to date.
Weitz & Luxenberg is known for spearheading asbestos cases, among others, winning a historic consolidated trial in 1991 involving men who had worked at the Brooklyn Navy Yard in the 1940s and 1950s. Weitz & Luxenberg represented 36 clients in that case and secured verdicts of $75 million. In 1996, Weitz & Luxenberg obtained a $64.65 million award for four asbestos plaintiffs and in 2002, the firm won a $53 million verdict for a brake mechanic suffering from mesothelioma. The firm has recovered hundreds of millions more for its clients, many of whom formed the backbone of the victorious Allied war effort in World War II.
Most people who develop mesothelioma have worked on jobs where they inhaled asbestos particles. Weitz & Luxenberg represents numerous individuals who have serious injuries related to asbestos. These injuries include mesothelioma, lung cancer, asbestosis (a noncancerous, chronic lung ailment), and other cancers, such as those of the larynx and kidney.
About Weitz & Luxenberg, P.C.
Weitz & Luxenberg (weitzlux.com), founded in 1986, is one of the leading plaintiffs, mass torts, product liability, and personal injury litigation law firms in America. The firm has played leading roles in national and local litigations involving asbestos, DES, silicone breast implants, medical malpractice, and general negligence, among others. A forerunner in the legal fight against environmental polluters, Weitz & Luxenberg has worked with clients harmed by MTBE and mercury, among other toxins. The firm has won numerous cases involving dangerous pharmaceuticals, including Vioxx, achieving a $13.5 million verdict against Merck & Co. (docket No. ATLL129605). It also recently filed a case related to the harmful acne medicine, Accutane, manufactured by Hoffman-La Roche Inc. (State Supreme Court of New Jersey, May 2, 2006, Mass Tort general docket No. 271). The firm’s other active pharmaceutical litigations include actions against the manufacturers of Bextra, Celebrex, Ortho Evra and Seroquel.
People who have been injured by asbestos can contact Weitz & Luxenberg. Interested parties should call the Client Relations department e-mail by writing to client relations.