Schwartz v. Honeywell: A Rejection of the Cumulative Exposure Theory in Asbestos Litigation
For years now, both federal and state courts across the country have grappled with the permissibility of the "cumulative exposure" theory—which posits that every exposure to asbestos beyond mere background exposure is a substantial factor in causing an asbestos-related injury—to establish causation in asbestos litigation. In Schwartz v. Honeywell Int'l, Inc., 153 Ohio St.3d 175, 2018-Ohio-474, asbestos defendants secured a significant victory when the Ohio Supreme Court rejected this theory as a vehicle for proving causation in asbestos litigation, finding it inconsistent with the test for causation set forth in Ohio Revised Code 2307.96. In doing so, Schwartz brings Ohio in line with several other federal and state jurisdictions in rejecting this theory of causation.
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“Schwartz v. Honeywell: A Rejection of the Cumulative Exposure Theory in Asbestos Litigation,” by David J. Oberly was published on March 31, 2019, in Ohio Lawyer (Winter 2019, Vol. 33, No. 1), a member magazine of the Ohio State Bar Association.