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  • Writer's pictureKirk Hartley

Life in Asbestos Litigation – An Unusual Order for Court on Sunday

Mass tort litigation includes some interesting moments. This article describes the Delaware "asbestos judge" ordering a special Sunday session due to frustration with the parties. The story starts this way:

"WILMINGTON — A Delaware judge apparently had enough of what she saw as attorneys’ childish bickering in a civil case this week and called them all in to serve detention on Labor Day weekend, advising them to bring their "teddy bears and jammies."

Superior Court Judge Peggy L. Ableman, in an unusually blunt Sept. 1 letter, told attorneys involved in a pair of asbestos personal-injury cases to report to the New Castle County Courthouse on Sunday at 10 a.m. for "a ‘special’ emergency refresher course in first year ethics and civility … this gathering is mandatory."

"Attendees are encouraged to bring sleeping bags, toothbrushes, teddy bears and jammies, as the agenda will be exhaustive," she wrote, adding in a footnote, "these terms reflect the court’s impression of the childish level to which this litigation has stooped."

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