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Volume XII, Number 279

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Ohio Jury in C-8 Exposure Case Awards $1.6M in Compensatory Damages, Denies Punitives

An Ohio federal jury in October handed out the first verdict in multi-district litigation (“MDL”) against E.I. DuPont de Nemours and Co. related to ammonium perfluorooctanoate, or C-8, in drinking water around DuPont’s Washington Works plant in West Virginia.  See Bartlett v. E.I. Du Pont de Nemours & Co., 2:13-cv-170 (S.D. Ohio Oct. 7, 2015). The verdict, awarding $1.6 million in compensatory damages to a Plaintiff who alleged her kidney cancer was caused by C-8, is the first in some 3,500 cases in the MDL.

The jury awarded $1.1 million in damages for Plaintiff’s negligence claim and another $500,000 for her emotional distress claim.  In an August 2015 decision, the judge overseeing the MDL held DuPont may face punitive damages.  In re: E.I. Du Pont de Nemours & Co. C-8 Personal Injury Litigation, 2:13-md-2433 (S.D. Ohio Aug. 19, 2015).  DuPont argued it had implemented affirmative and extensive measures to protect and inform the public, including studying the health effects of C-8 and monitoring worker and public exposure to the substance.  But the Court held that “[a] reasonable jury could find the evidence shows that DuPont knew that C-8 was harmful, that it purposefully manipulated or used inadequate scientific studies to support its position, and/or that it provided false information to the public about the dangers of C-8.”  Id. at *10.  The jury here, though, found Plaintiff had not shown that DuPont acted with actual malice, and it rejected Plaintiff’s bid for punitive damages.

© 2022 Beveridge & Diamond PC National Law Review, Volume V, Number 314
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About this Author

Daniel M. Krainin Environmental Litigation Attorney Beveridge & Diamond New York, NY
Principal

Dan deploys more than two decades of environmental litigation experience to resolve clients’ legal and business challenges.

Primarily focused on environmental and toxic tort litigation, Dan helps clients successfully resolve groundwater contamination, hazardous waste site remediation, natural resource damages, permit defense and product-related matters. He enjoys using his skills as a litigator to help clients solve environmental problems.

Among his many wins, Dan successfully led a team that defeated an emergency challenge to a permit that Dan’s client needed to continue its...

212-702 5417
Graham C. Zorn Environmental, Toxic Tort, Products Liability Litigation Attorney Beveridge & Diamond Washington, DC
Principal

Graham Zorn focuses his practice on environmental, toxic tort, and products liability litigation.

His representative experience includes extensive work on a series of complex products liability and toxic tort cases related to alleged groundwater, and litigation over lead in drinking water. He has represented individual businesses, trade associations, and municipalities in litigation, as well as in compliance, enforcement, and counseling matters involving the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, CERCLA and other state and federal environmental statutes. He also counsels domestic and...

202-789-6024
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