Mallinckrodt, Cotter Can’t Shake Widows’ Radioactive Waste Claims

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By Peter Hayes

Mallinckrodt Inc. and Cotter Corp. can’t shake wrongful death claims filed by the spouses of men allegedly exposed to radioactive waste stored at St. Louis sites, the Eastern District of Missouri ruled ( McClurg v. MI Holdings, Inc. , E.D. Mo., No. 12-cv-00361, 8/8/17 ).

While the claims weren’t filed within three years of death, as required in a wrongful death action, the court declined to dismiss them.

Leon Anderson, William Donaldson, and William McHenry initially filed personal injury claims on their own behalf.

After each died, their spouses were substituted as plaintiffs. But they failed to file amended complaints within three years alleging wrongful death.

Denying the companies’ motion to dismiss, the court said they were not prejudiced by the delay.

Mallinckrodt and Cotter were put on notice that they would have to defend wrongful death actions when the spouses filed motions to be substituted less than three years after the deaths of their husbands, the court said.

Judge Audrey G. Fleissig issued the opinion.

Environmental Litigation Group PC, Byron, Carlson, Petri & Kalb, LLC, and Tor Hoerman Law LLC represent the spouses.

Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP represents Mallinckrodt.Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP represents Cotter.

To contact the reporter on this story: Peter Hayes in Washington at PHayes@bna.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Steven Patrick at spatrick@bna.com

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