Kirk Hartley

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In the UK, an “overalls” case is a shorthand term for a “take home” case, as we refer to them in the US. Of greater note, a UK plaintiff recently succeeded  in such a case, as described in a February 18, 2019 post at AsbestosLaw blog, which is published by UK Barristers who acted for the claimant. The opinion includes a detailed discussion of the evidence; it is online here.
An interesting WSJ opinion article of February 15, 2019 briefly recaps the work of some of the persons involved in private forensic use of DNA databases to track down people for family reasons, to solve “cold cases” or for other reasons. One paragraph explains: “In June police arrested a 49-year-old suspect, Raymond Rowe, a local disc jockey known as “DJ Freez.” They found him with the help of Parabon NanoLabs, a Reston, Va.-based forensic DNA…
One litigation industry industry problem is that foolish actions by one litigant can harm many other similarly situated litigants. This reality arises for parties on either side of the versus. A new example from the corporate defense side arises from the “bad faith” actions of Fitbit and MoFo (Morrison & Foerster) related to a consumer fraud arbitration. In short, Fitbit forced a would be class action into arbitration but then refused to arbitrate, after sending…
In September, 2016, multidisciplinary colleagues and I published and sold our second, in-depth and multidisciplinary analysis of the changes to and new directions in asbestos litigation.  The paper was anchored around law and science innovations, and implications for mass tort claiming. For that effort, I teamed with David Schwartz and other science people at Innovative Science Solutions, and William Wilt, a creative actuary and insurance company analyst who leads a business known as Assured Research. This…
The “mass tort” litigation industry continues to grow. Back in the 1980s and 1990s, many big law firms disdained “mass tort” defense work. However, these days, many big law firms actively recruit in lawyers for mass tort work. This past week, for example, Dechert recruited a group from Quinn Emanuel a group of almost 20 lawyers (plus staffers), as explained in a July 20, 2018 article at American Lawyer.
As litigation becomes more global, new issues arise as parties seek to use local discovery processes in aid of cases in other countries. In Kiobel, the Second Circuit reversed a district court ruling allowing discovery related to the case pending in the Netherlands. The ruling is notable for blocking the local discovery; it is summarized in a July 23, 2018 post by Jones Day.…
Ken Lopez of A2L recently teed up the need for trial lawyers to not stack the deck in mock trials, and to instead go the other direction.  As juries keep pounding defendants with large awards, it’s excellent advice. Perhaps not coincidentally, Ken’s article appeared after the ovarian cancer/talc case verdict for over $4 billion obtained by Mark Lanier and others against well regarded defense lawyers from Orrick. The Lanier firm’s web site collects various reactions
Regardless of arguments about causation, ocean levels plainly are rising.  A recent article at Pricenomics provides some great data and charts about the cities most at risk. The article is detailed and should be read in its entirety, but here’s a teaser: “We decided to analyze data from Priceonomics customer Gavop, an insurance data and research company, how many people in America live near the sea to see where devastation from rising sea levels…