The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has expressed skepticism that Travelers Indemnity Co. has the right to abandon its agreement to pay $510 million to thousands of asbestos victims. Travelers argues that the settlements were invalidated when part of a bankruptcy court's order was overturned but attorneys for the asbestos victims insist that the ruling doesn't jeapordize the entire settlement.
"In hindsight, they may wish they had signed a different contract," said Ronald Barliant. "But they didn't sign that. They are entitled only to the protections in the agreements." Mr. Barliant's comments were included in the Law360 article, "2nd Circ. Mulls Travelers' Exit From $510M Asbestos Deals," published Jan. 10, 2013.
The long-running dispute stems from asbestos claims that pushed Johns-Manville into bankruptcy. The company, which Travelers insured, was the nation's largest supplier of raw asbestos and a manufacturer of asbestos-containing products for more than 30 years.