Parker Convinces Calif. Supreme Court to Review "Take-Home Exposure" Case

Posted on Thursday, 21 August 2014

August 2014.  Hugo Parker's James C. Parker has convinced the California Supreme Court to accept review of the issue of whether an employer or premises owner owes a duty of care to persons who never visited a work site but were nonetheless exposed to toxins or other dangerous substances through off-premises contact with a workers’ clothing.   California appellate courts first addressed this hot button topic in 2009, deciding in dicta in Oddone v. Superior Court that an employer did not owe such a duty.   That decision was extended to property owners in 2012 in Campbell v. Ford Motor,  which was followed by a split decison in Haver v. BNSF Railway, a 2-1 decision.   However, the First District in May 2014 broke ranks and held in Kesner v. Superior Court (Pneumo Abex) that an employer-manufacturer owed a duty to an employee’s nephew who had regularly visited the employee’s home and was thereby allegedly exposed to asbestos from the uncle’s clothing, causing the nephew to develop peritoneal mesothelioma 40 years later.   Parker, working with Horvitz & Levy of Encino, filed a petition with the Supreme Court arguing that Kesner was out of step with California law and with the majority view in the United States.   On August 20, 2014 the Supreme Court accepted review of Kesner and Haver.
 
A decision from the Supreme Court is not expected until 2015 or later.

(Kesner v. Superior Court (Pneumo Abex), Supreme Court, Case No. S 219534)

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