Yesterday an Illinois jury handed down a surprising verdict against two former asbestos product manufacturers. According to the attorneys involved in the case, the verdict was returned on the novel liability theory of corporate conspiracy. Typically this means that the factfinder determined that the defendants acted in concert with one another and caused the plaintiffs injury. This is different than a typical mesothelioma product liability case where the verdict is based upon a failure to warn about a particular product manufactured or sold by the defendant.
In this case, the plaintiff,Jayne Menssen, is 65 years old, widowed, and has no children. She was exposed to asbestos from 1967-1969 when she worked as a secretary at the UNARCO plant in Bloomington, IL. The jury returned the following verdict:
$4,370,000 punitives against Abex
$10,000,000 punitives against Honeywell
Congratulations to my friends ,Lisa Corwin & Jim Wydler, who represented the plaintiff for this extraordinary result.