PFAS Litigation Updates

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The world of PFAS litigation is quickly evolving. As regulatory scrutiny of these compounds increases, so, too, will the body of associated case law. From class actions to multidistrict litigation, this section will regularly highlight developments in PFAS-related litigation.

Content in this section does not reflect the opinion of Alston & Bird or its attorneys.

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DuPont Appeals $40 Million Judgment in PFAS Injury Case

DuPont appealed the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio’s judgment in a PFAS exposure case that required the company to pay the plaintiff, a cancer survivor, $40 million. The case is part of a group of lawsuits by Ohio and West Virginia residents who alleged that DuPont’s plant in Parkersburg, West Virginia contaminated their drinking water. DuPont is appealing all previous judgments in the case. The company unsuccessfully sought a new trial but prevailed on its request to lower the $10 million award to the victim’s wife for loss of consortium.

April 27, 2021 | In re E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co. C-8 Personal Injury Litigation, No. 2:13-md-2433 (S.D. Ohio)

Court Rejects Solvay’s Bid for Dismissal of New Jersey Residents’ Putative Class Action

Judge Noel L. Hillman of the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey denied Solvay’s motion to dismiss Plaintiffs’ tort claims stemming from alleged Teflon-related PFAS contamination, finding the putative class had sufficiently pled its claims and demonstrated standing. Judge Hillman only dismissed Plaintiffs’ punitive damages claim, leaving their other claimed damages—bodily, economic, and property-related—intact.

March 10, 2021 | Kenneth Severa, et al. v. Solvay Specialty Polymers USA LLC, et al., No. 1:20-cv-06906-NLH-KMW (D.N.J.)

3M Removes Michigan AG’s Case to Federal Court

3M removed Michigan’s PFAS contamination case to federal court, arguing that its AFFF was developed in accordance with applicable federal military requirements and that, as a result, removal is proper because defendants sued for acts committed at a federal officer’s direction may remove. 3M also argues it plans to invoke the government contractor defense. Although the complaint says its claims do not involve AFFF, 3M argues otherwise.

March 2, 2021 | Dana Nessel et al. v. 3M Co. et al., No. 1:21-cv-00205 (W.D. Mich.)

Residents Near Summerville, Georgia File Suit, Alleging Contamination of Farms and Town Water Supply

Residents and property owners near Summerville, Georgia filed a putative class action alleging PFAS-contaminated sludge and biosolids from Trion, Georgia’s water pollution control plant are migrating and contaminating their properties and farms. Plaintiffs’ complaint, which alleges causes of action in tort and under the Clean Water Act and Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, seeks injunctive relief, civil penalties, and attorneys’ fees.

February 23, 2021 | Parris v. 3M Co., No. 4:21-cv-40 (N.D. Ga.)

Pennsylvania Water Utility Alleges Illegal DuPont Spinoff in New PFAS Contamination Case

Pennsylvania-American Water Co. alleges in a new PFAS contamination suit against PFAS manufacturers that DuPont violated the Pennsylvania Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act by illegally transferring its PFAS business to Chemours in an attempt to avoid PFAS-related liability. The suit, which names many PFAS manufacturers, also alleges strict liability, products liability, negligence, and nuisance claims.

February 11, 2021 | Pennsylvania-American Water Co. v. 3M Co. et al., No. 1:21-cv-00258 (M.D. Pa.)