Former New York Governor Mario Cuomo was in attendance today as the Supreme Court heard arguments in a long running asbestos settlement case. Johns-Manville, once the country’s largest asbestos mining and manufacturing corporation, went bankrupt in 1986 as it faced a deluge of asbestos injury lawsuits. As part of it’s reorganization plan the Manville Personal Injury Settlement Trust was created to shield Manville and it’s insurers from future claims, but in 2001 the asbestos plaintiffs’ bar asserted new grounds on which to sue Manville’s insurer, Travellers Insurance. Mario Cuomo led the mediation which reached a settlement in which Travellers would pay $500 million into a new trust in exchange for an order from the bankruptcy court “clarifying” the 1986 injuction. But not so fast! A number of third parties have objected to the proposed settlement and so here we are.
I really just posted this for my mom. She’s a Mario Cuomo fan.
Tony Mauro of Legal Times blogs about it here.
UPDATE: Tony Mauro later spoke with Mario Cuomo about his visit to the Court, and has a BLT post here.