Company Ordered to Pay $25 Million to Mesothelioma Victim Only Protected Its Own Employees from Asbestos

Copeland Corporation, a compressor manufacturer, filed an appeal to overturn a jury’s award after being ordered to pay a mesothelioma victim’s family $25 million in damages. But the Court of Appeals of California denied their appeal, noting that the company’s lack of warning about the dangers of asbestos had been responsible for significant harm to the victim and his family.

Compressor Manufacturer Only Company That Refused to Settle with Mesothelioma Victim

When William Phipps was diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma, he and his wife filed a lawsuit that named 23 different companies. All of the companies settled with the family except for Copeland Corporation. When the case went to trial, the jury heard substantial testimony about the asbestos that was present in Copeland compressors’ gaskets, and that Mr. Phipps’ inhalation of the asbestos dust generated when he scraped the old gaskets represented significant exposure. 

The jury was also told that while Mr. Phipps had never been warned about the risk of mesothelioma associated with the asbestos in the equipment, the Copeland Corporation had warned its own employees about the carcinogenic material’s dangers, and had even equipped those employees with respirators to protect them. When questioned as to why the company took that action on behalf of their own workers, an expert witness for the defense acknowledged that mesothelioma was “one of the worst cancers to have” and “a very dreadful disease.”

Asbestos Company Argued that $25 Million Award was “Excessive”

In its appeal of the jury’s $25 million damages award, Copeland Corporation’s attorneys argued that they should not have been found responsible for 60 percent of the blame for Mr. Phipps’ mesothelioma, and that the award amount was “excessive.” In response, the appeals court judges pointed out that the company had not offered an alternative apportionment and that $25 million was appropriate given the significant harm that Mr. Phipps and his family had suffered. The judges also ordered the company to reimburse the family all of the court costs corresponding to fighting the company’s appeal.

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Paul Danziger

Paul Danziger

Writer

Paul Danziger grew up in Houston, Texas and earned a law degree from Northwestern University School of Law in Chicago. For over 25 years years he has focused on representing mesothelioma cancer victims and others hurt by asbestos exposure. Paul and his law firm have represented thousands of people diagnosed with mesothelioma, asbestosis, and lung cancer, recovering significant compensation for injured clients. Every client is extremely important to Paul and he will take every call from clients who want to speak with him. Paul and his law firm handle mesothelioma cases throughout the United States.

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