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  • Writer's pictureKirk Hartley

Defense Publication Says: “Defense attorneys give up on jurisdictional fight in Madison County

Defendants have given up on moving cases out of Madison County, at least for now.  That’s the headline and message from an October 29, 2014 post at Legal Newsline. The entire article should be reviewed for full context, including the comments about appellate possibilities, and trial date settings. Two key quotes are as follows:

“Roughly one year after Associate Judge Stephen Stobbs took the bench as Madison County’s asbestos judge and made several well-intended strides to improve the “national” docket, defense attorneys have given up on arguing that cases are being filed improperly in the jurisdiction after four similar motions were denied earlier this year.


Huelsmann explained that when forum non conveniens motions are denied, it results in more filings, which leads to a larger number of trial settings.

“That is where it all stems,” he said. “If the cases are not getting dismissed on forum, they get trial settings.”

However, LaConte and Huelsmann didn’t anticipate much hope for improvement when it comes to seeking a more appropriate jurisdiction for out-of-state claimants in the nation’s epicenter of asbestos litigation.

“It’d like to be able to tell you today that things are different than six months ago,” Huelsmann said, “but it seems like things are staying here.”

“Without a commitment to dramatically reduce the number of trial settings,” LaConte added, “and an equal commitment to making sure that we are spending the resources of the county and all the parties on cases that really belong in Madison County, I don’t see that there’s going to be a lot of change in the current situation.”

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