Articles

Summary judgment in premises liability case involving asbestos exposure claim

John C. McMeekin II and Susan M. Dean obtained summary judgment on behalf of a premises owner where plaintiff alleged that decedent was exposed to asbestos at various industrial facilities while employed by an independent contractor.  In a premises liability case, plaintiff bears the burden of proof to establish an exception to the general rule that the premises owner/operator has no duty to  warn an independent contractor or his employer of a condition that was as obvious to them as it was to the land owner/operator.  The Pennsylvania Superior Court has already reviewed and affirmed entry of summary judgment on this issue in an almost identical case in Gutschall v. Metropolitan Edison Co., et al., No. 1973 EDA 2014 (Pa. Super., May 1, 2015). Mr. McMeekin and Ms. Dean also represented the prevailing defendant in the Gutschall matter.

John C. McMeekin II is a partner in our Philadelphia office and a member of our Executive Committee.  He represents clients as local, national and trial counsel in environmental, toxic and mass torts product and related class actions, products liability, insurance coverage and aviation litigation. He graduated magna cum laude from the University of Baltimore School of Law. John is admitted to practice in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Maryland and related U.S. District Courts. John is a former firefighter and emergency medical technician, and is Hazmat certified. He has been published in professional and law review journals on a variety of topics related to toxic tort and environmental litigation. He was recently elected Section Secretary of the Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section of the American Bar Association.  He also served as the Section Revenue Officer, Chair of the Toxic Tort & Environmental Law Committee, Chair of the International Law Committee, Chair of the CLE Board and is currently co-Chairing the Corporate Counsel Initiative Task Force.  His significant cases can be found in the BNA Law Reports and Law 360. He has been rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell and has been selected as a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer.

John can be reached directly at: (215) 575-4324 • jmcmeekin@rawle.com

Susan M. Dean is Of Counsel and concentrates her law practice in the areas of environmental, toxic and mass torts, products and professional liability and commercial litigation matters. She has represented major petrochemical companies, REITs, and owners of contaminated properties on environmental obligations and liabilities and in the defense of claims by third parties for property damages, diminution of property value, loss of use, trespass, personal injury and medical monitoring.  She has experience defending clients in environmental and LUST class actions.  She works directly with regulators, consultants, remedial contractors and clients to develop and implement best practices for cost effective remediations and no further action determinations.  She is an active participant in the MTBE MDL. Susan received her law degree in 1994 from the Widener University School of Law. She received her undergraduate degree from Rutgers University in 1989. She is admitted to practice in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, as well as the U.S. District Court for the Eastern and Middle Districts of Pennsylvania, the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.

Susan can be reached directly at: (215) 575-4296 • sdean@rawle.com