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More than 25 Years of Legal Experience

Malignant Asbestos Cases

Malignant Asbestos Disease and Benzene Cases

Mr. Nolan has represented more than sixty individuals in asbestos-related personal injury and wrongful death claims. The following is just a partial listing.

Pransky v. Georgia-Pacific Corp., Case No. 188363, Circuit Court for Montgomery County (Beard, J.). Mr. Nolan was lead counsel in a two week jury trial of malignant asbestos disease claim for a 34 year-old mother and wife. Following Mr. Nolan's closing argument, the jury deliberated and returned a verdict totaling $9,188,000.00, finding the Plaintiff's exposure to a product manufactured and distributed by Georgia-Pacific caused her cancer. Michael B. Leh and Stephen Wilson of the Locks Law Firm in Philadelphia were co-counsel throughout the case. Georgia-Pacific appealed the judgment to the Court of Special Appeals challenging the trial court's refusal to apply Maryland's statutory cap on Mrs. Pransky's non-economic damages and attacking the sufficiency of Plaintiff's causation evidence. The Court of Special Appeals held that the loss of consortium claim was capped, but affirmed $7,438,000 of the judgment. Pransky v. Georgia-Pacific Corp., No. 2352, September Term, 1999. Unreported opinion filed July 11, 2001.

Georgia-Pacific petitioned the Court of Appeals for a writ of certiorari, which was granted. In its Opinion filed on June 11, 2002, in Georgia-Pacific Corporation v. Lisa J. Pransky, et al., No. 107, September Term, 2001, the Court of Appeals held that the Plaintiffs successfully passed the evidentiary test for bystander asbestos exposure, that the evidence was sufficient to establish the exposure as a substantial factor in the Plaintiff's contracting asbestos-related cancer, and that the cap did not apply. With interest, the judgment affirmed by the Court amounted to more than $9.5 million. Melvin J. Sykes, Esquire, was lead appellate counsel in both appellate courts. The case is significant not only because Plaintiffs prevailed in establishing that Mrs. Pransky's mesothelioma originated prior to the effective date of Maryland's 1986 cap statute, but also because it is the first plaintiff's verdict to be upheld against Georgia-Pacific arising from its manufacture and sale of asbestos-containing joint compound.

Ringlien, et al. v. W.R. Grace & Co., et al.,Civil No. JFM-97-2471, U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland (Opposing counsel: John J. Boyd, Jr., et al.) From 1997 through January 2002, Mr. Nolan was lead counsel in malignant asbestos disease lawsuit originally filed in the Circuit Court for Montgomery County on behalf of a 58 year-old, former World Bank agronomist and his wife. Defendants removed the case to federal court and it was transferred to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania where it was long delayed because of the Asbestos MDL process (MDL-875). In March, 2000, Judge Charles R. Weiner signed a Suggestion of Remand transferring the case back to Maryland. Prior to trial before Magistrate Judge Beth J. Gesner, the case settled with the sole remaining defendant, PneumoAbex Corporation.

This case is significant because of the complex product identification and causation issues surrounding Mr. Ringlien's asbestos exposure history during his childhood and early adulthood. Because Mr. Nolan promptly obtained Mr. Ringlien's videotaped deposition prior to his death in February, 1998, direct evidence of his bystander asbestos exposure was preserved and confidential settlements against former manufacturers of asbestos-containing products totaled in excess of one million dollars as of January, 2002.

Kerhin v. Owens Corning Fiberglas Corp., et al., Circuit Court for Baltimore City, Case No.9900741 (Rombro, J.) (Opposing counsel: Pamela T. Broache, et al.) Commencing in March 1999, Mr. Nolan served as lead counsel for the surviving spouse of a 52 year-old former steelworker who died from his mesothelioma before he could give a videotaped deposition. The case was significant because of the investigative work Mr. Nolan personally undertook in finally locating a childhood friend and summer coworker of Mr. Kerhin, who never worked with asbestos after graduating from college. Mr. Nolan conducted substantial fact and expert discovery throughout the country. Immediately prior to the September 2000 jury trial, Mr. Nolan settled with all remaining non-bankrupt defendants; the total of all confidential settlement recoveries was in the seven figure dollar range.

Mr. Nolan also served as Special trial Counsel for the local governments of Baltimore County, Maryland & Anne Arundel County, Maryland and the Board of Education of Baltimore County and the Board of Education of Anne Arundel County. From 1984 to 2002, He was lead Plaintiffs' counsel in four, complex asbestos-related property damage actions in the Circuit Court for Baltimore County, the Circuit Court for Anne Arundel County and various bankruptcy proceedings, involving over 400 school and public buildings and over 30 defendants. Mr. Nolan coordinated and conducted extensive discovery involving literally hundreds of witnesses in Maryland and throughout the United States, coordinated computer based management of thousands of documents, prosecuted insurance coverage claims, bankruptcy claims, oversaw clients' asbestos survey programs, and successfully concluded numerous settlement recoveries on behalf of clients. These representations involved a professional commitment of over seventeen years' duration.

The Nolan Law Firm also served as co-lead counsel for a 41-year-old pressman who was diagnosed with Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML) after many years of working with and around benzene-containing chemicals. His work as a pressman in the print shop of a major corporation involved daily use of chemicals to clean and maintain the printing presses, including blanket wash, roller deglazer, copper wash, plate cleaner and rubber rejuvenator. As a result of his cancer, this husband and father was forced to undergo two cycles of intensive chemotherapy. Following substantial discovery relating to product identification, confidential settlements were reached with defendant manufacturers and suppliers.

Georgia-Pacific petitioned the Court of Appeals for a writ of certiorari, which was granted. In its Opinion filed on June 11, 2002, in Georgia-Pacific Corporation v. Lisa J. Pransky, et al., No. 107, September Term, 2001, the Court of Appeals held that the Plaintiffs successfully passed the evidentiary test for bystander asbestos exposure, that the evidence was sufficient to establish the exposure as a substantial factor in the Plaintiff’s contracting asbestos-related cancer, and that the cap did not apply. With interest, the judgment affirmed by the Court amounted to more than $9.5 million. Melvin J. Sykes, Esquire, was lead appellate counsel in both appellate courts. The case is significant not only because Plaintiffs prevailed in establishing that Mrs. Pransky’s mesothelioma originated prior to the effective date of Maryland’s 1986 cap statute, but also because it is the first plaintiff’s verdict to be upheld against Georgia-Pacific arising from its manufacture and sale of asbestos-containing joint compound.

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