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September 18, 2018

Garlock offers revised bankruptcy deal for asbestos claims

By Jessica Dye

NEW YORK, Jan 14 (Reuters) – EnPro Industries and a bankrupt subsidiary, Garlock Sealing Technologies, have struck a deal with a plaintiffs’ lawyer to set aside $357.5 million to cover asbestos related claims, but others are expected to oppose the deal.

EnPro and Garlock, a bankrupt maker of asbestos-lined gaskets, said in a release late on Tuesday that the agreement could be approved in 15 to 24 months as part of an amended reorganization plan it will submit to the North Carolina court where Garlock filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in June 2010.

If approved, the plan would allow a reorganized Garlock to shed its liability for asbestos litigation, the latest phase in a bankruptcy touted by manufacturers as fundamentally shifting the legal terrain in asbestos cases in their favor.

The companies estimated the deal’s after-tax value to be roughly $205 million.

The deal was struck with an attorney representing people with future claims for an cancer known as mesothelioma and other asbestos-related health issues.

But EnPro and Garlock said they expect a separate group of plaintiffs’ lawyers representing current asbestos plaintiffs to take the unprecedented step of breaking with the future claimants and challenge the deal.

Those lawyers had previously asked Judge George Hodges to make Garlock put aside up to $1 billion for estimated asbestos claims. Garlock said that figure was inflated by fraud and manipulation in past settlements.

Following a trial, Hodges in January estimated Garlock’s asbestos liability to be just $125 million, and criticized plaintiffs’ lawyers for “infect(ing) fatally the settlement process and historic data.”

EnPro CEO Steve Macadam said in an investor call on Wednesday that the company had attempted to negotiate a settlement of asbestos claims with representatives for both groups of claimants. Macadam said that while a consensual deal would have been preferable, support from future claimants would help the plan win approval.

The agreement marks the first time in an asbestos-related bankruptcy that representatives for future and current claimants had split over a health claims funding agreement, Macadam said.

Asbestos plaintiffs’ lawyer Peter Kraus said the agreement violated a requirement that asbestos trusts secure approval from 75 percent of claimants.

Macadam said that, based on Hodges’ ruling, he believed the majority of Garlock’s liability came from future asbestos claims.

Garlock has also taken the unusual step of suing five plaintiffs’ firms for alleged abusive behavior in asbestos cases. Those cases are pending.

(Reporting by Jessica Dye; Additional reporting by Tom Hals in Delaware; Editing by Christian Plumb)

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Garlock offers revised bankruptcy deal for asbestos claims

Judge To Open Files Supporting Garlock Asbestos Fraud Claims Next Week

A long-secret trove of court filings that bankrupt gasket maker Garlock Sealing Technologies says illustrate a pattern of fraud in asbestos litigation is expected to be opened to public view next next week, possibly as soon as Monday.

The files, Garlock says, will show how plaintiff lawyers withheld evidence their clients were exposed to multiple asbestos products in order to extract higher settlements and court verdicts from Garlock. In one case that generated a $37 million verdict in California, Garlock says, a lawyer with prominent Dallas asbestos firm Waters Waters & Kraus flatly denied exposure to dangerous insulation that his client had already admitted, under penalty of perjury, in another proceeding.

The records in racketeering lawsuits Garlock filed against several asbestos law firms are to be unsealed after a fierce battle by plaintiff lawyers to keep them secret. In January, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge George Hodges in Charlotte, North Carolina slashed Garlock’s estimated liability for asbestos exposure from $1.4 billion to $125 million after determining that the higher estimates were based upon court cases “infected by the manipulation of exposure evidence by plaintiffs and their lawyers.” In a pattern long known to defense attorneys, plaintiff lawyers coach their clients to “remember” working with only products made by the company they are suing, then file claims with bankruptcy trusts alleging other exposures.

Plaintiff lawyers argued unsealing the records would violate the privacy rights of their clients, even though they largely consist of public court filings. Hodges initially went along with them, and even sealed part of Garlock’s bankruptcy proceedings from the public. But a federal judge sided with Legal Newsline on its First Amendment challenge and ordered the files opened in July.

Hodges agreed to open the entire record in October, in a move that could help other manufacturers and insurance companies including Ford, VW and Aetna Aetna as they try to recover money they’ve paid out to plaintiffs who made duplicative and often conflicting claims about their asbestos exposure. As early as December, the public will have access to records covering more than 100,000 people who filed claims against Garlock as well as hundreds of thousands more who filed claims against nearly every trust set up to process claims against companies forced into bankruptcy over asbestos.

Those files are being redacted now to remove confidential information, although they will retain the last four digits of the claimants’ Social Security numbers so claims can be quickly matched up to uncover evidence of double-dipping and conflicting claims.

In a filing this week contesting plaintiff lawyers’ attempt to reopen the bankruptcy case, Garlock offered a preview of what the public will be able to see as soon as Monday. According to that filing, lawyers at Waters & Kraus won a $36.7 million jury verdict in 2004 after Navy veteran Robert Treggett testified that he was exposed to the asbestos in Garlock gaskets, but not the asbestos in Unibestos pipe insulation, which experts say is a hundreds of times more potent cause of mesothelioma.

His attorney, Ron C. Eddins, also told the jury it was “not true” that Unibestos was on the ship he worked on, even though Treggett had filed a bankruptcy claim under penalty of perjury saying he’d been exposed to Unibestos. That verdict induced Garlock to enter an agreement to settle claims with Waters & Kraus under an annual “cap” of payouts and was among the verdicts plaintiff lawyers cited in their claim that Garlock owed more than $1 billion in bankruptcy. Garlock says it could have won the suit, or been assessed with much less liability, if it had known about the Unibestos evidence.

Source:

Judge To Open Files Supporting Garlock Asbestos Fraud Claims Next Week

Garlock Sealing Technologies Files Amended Plan of Reorganization

CHARLOTTE, N.C.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–

Garlock Sealing Technologies LLC (GST), a subsidiary of EnPro Industries, Inc. (NPO), today will file an amended plan of reorganization that provides $275 million for resolution of all unsettled current asbestos claims as well as future asbestos claims against GST. The plan will be filed in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of North Carolina and incorporate the Bankruptcy Court’s determination that $125 million is sufficient to satisfy GST’s aggregate liability for present and future mesothelioma claims. The plan document will be posted in the Investor Relations section of the company’s website, www.enproindustries.com, after the plan is filed.

The plan calls for (1) a $245 million Settlement Facility that would receive and settle claims for cash payments based on objective criteria outlined in the plan and (2) a $30 million Litigation Facility that would defend suits by claimants who choose to litigate. Under the plan, in addition to paying claimants choosing to settle, the Settlement Facility would contribute amounts necessary to defend and resolve each claim subject to litigation up to the settlement amount for which a litigating claimant would qualify under the Settlement Facility’s resolution procedures. The Litigation Facility would pay all costs in excess of such amount. In addition, the plan requires asbestos claimants alleging they reached legally binding settlements with GST before GST’s Chapter 11 filing on June 4, 2010 to file proofs of claim. Any such claimants proving they have binding settlements will be paid in full by GST; these payments will be in addition to GST’s payments to the Settlement and Litigation Facilities.

“GST’s amended plan of reorganization provides fair compensation to claimants and permanent resolution to all asbestos claims against GST,” said Steve Macadam, president and chief executive officer of EnPro. “By providing funding greater than GST’s legal liability, the plan will facilitate the resolution of the vast majority of claims by settlement rather than litigation, saving litigation costs and ensuring that claimants are paid in full. It is solidly based in the U.S. Bankruptcy Code and supported by precedents in other non-asbestos bankruptcy cases.”

The $245 million Settlement Facility will be funded by a $215 million lump-sum cash contribution from GST and a $30 million lump-sum cash contribution by Coltec Industries, Inc., GST’s parent company and a wholly-owned subsidiary of EnPro Industries. Coltec’s $30 million contribution will permanently settle derivative claims seeking to hold Coltec and its affiliates, including EnPro, liable for asbestos diseases allegedly caused by GST’s products. At confirmation of the plan, GST will ask the court to confirm the plan, discharge asbestos claims against GST, approve the settlement with Coltec, and issue an injunction prohibiting claimants from bringing derivative claims against Coltec and its affiliates. The contributions to the Settlement Facility will be made when the plan is confirmed.

During the confirmation process, GST will offer expert and other evidence that the amounts provided for the Settlement Facility and Litigation Facility are sufficient to resolve all mesothelioma claims, other types of asbestos-related cancer and non-cancer claims, and to pay all costs associated with administration of the facilities. The Settlement Facility will be managed by an independent trustee applying objective medical and product exposure criteria. The plan assures that all future claims will receive equivalent treatment to similar current claims and provides sufficient funding to cover all current and future claimants.

Claimants who choose not to resolve their claims through the Settlement Facility will be entitled to litigate their claims against the $30 million Litigation Facility. The Litigation Facility will be funded and managed by GST’s affiliate, Garrison Litigation Management Group, Ltd. Claimants who seek litigation will be entitled to have their cases heard before a jury in federal court under federal rules of evidence and civil procedure. Litigation will be centralized in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina. Importantly, claimants choosing litigation must abide by a case management order that will require the disclosure of information about their claims, and thereby reduce litigation costs for the Litigation Facility and protect the Litigation Facility from the abusive litigation practices that the Bankruptcy Court found inflated GST’s settlements and verdicts prior to the bankruptcy case. Claimants will be required to disclose all of their asbestos product exposures and submit to audit procedures that prevent them from making inconsistent exposure allegations against bankruptcy trusts.

In the confirmation process, GST will offer evidence, including opinions from experts, that the amount proposed for the Litigation Facility is more than sufficient to pay judgments and litigation costs for all claims that are likely to be litigated. GST will also demonstrate that the vast majority of projected claimants will choose settlement over litigation.

“While we continue to believe a consensual plan would offer the most expedient path to resolution,” Macadam said, “we are confident GST’s plan can be approved by the Bankruptcy Court as submitted and provide final and permanent resolution of all asbestos claims against GST.”

Conference Call and Webcast Information

EnPro will host a conference call on Friday, May 30, at 9:00 a.m. Eastern Time to discuss the plan with investors. Investors may access the call by dialing (800) 851-4704 and the access code 52058732. The call will also be webcast on the company’s website, www.enproindustries.com.

Forward Looking Statements

Statements in this press release that express a belief, expectation or intention, as well as those that are not historical fact, are forward-looking statements under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. They involve a number of risks and uncertainties that may cause actual events and results to differ materially from such forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to: the risk that GST may be unable to obtain necessary Bankruptcy Court approval of the plan, the actions and decisions of creditors and other third parties that have an interest in the bankruptcy proceedings, the terms and conditions of any reorganization plan that is ultimately approved by the Bankruptcy Court, delays in the confirmation or effective date of a plan of reorganization due to factors beyond GST’s control, and risks and uncertainties affecting GST and Coltec’s ability to fund anticipated contributions under the plan as a result of adverse changes in their results of operations, financial condition and capital resources, including as a result of economic factors beyond their control. Our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2013, describe other risks and uncertainties. Except as may be required by law, we do not undertake to update any forward-looking statement made in this press release to reflect any change in management’s expectations or any change in the assumptions or circumstances on which such statements are based.

About EnPro Industries

EnPro Industries, Inc. is a leader in sealing products, metal polymer and filament wound bearings, components and service for reciprocating compressors, diesel and dual-fuel engines and other engineered products for use in critical applications by industries worldwide. For more information about EnPro, visit the company’s website at http://www.enproindustries.com.

Contact:
EnPro Industries, Inc.
Don Washington, 704-731-1527
Director, Investor Relations and Corporate Communications
don.washington@enproindustries.com

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Garlock Sealing Technologies Files Amended Plan of Reorganization

Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center Now Urges Aircraft Manufacturing Workers With Mesothelioma Or Related Asbestos …

In more than half the cases it’s not the diagnosed victim of mesothelioma or lung cancer asbestos victims we talk with. Surprisingly, we have found that the adult son or daughter call on the behalf of the diagnosed victim because their parent is too sick

(PRWEB) October 21, 2013

The Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center says, “We know that when many people hear the words “mesothelioma” or “asbestos exposure” lung cancer, they think of US Navy Veterans, shipyard, construction, power plant, or oil refinery workers. In reality, commercial or military aircraft manufacturing workers and aerospace workers make up a significant number of the diagnosed victims talk with every month.

In more than half the cases it’s not the diagnosed victim of mesothelioma or lung cancer asbestos victims we talk with. Surprisingly, we have found that the adult son or daughter call on the behalf of the diagnosed victim because their parent is too sick. We encourage these types of calls to us at 866-714-6466, because it gives us the opportunity to instantly put the diagnosed victim, or their family members, in instant contact with the nation’s most skilled mesothelioma compensation attorneys and asbestos exposure law firms.” http://LungCancerAsbestosVictimsCenter.Com


Important note from the Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center: “Because the average age of the asbestos exposure related lung cancer we talk to is in their late 60’s, or early 70’s, we encourage the adult daughter or son to call us anytime at 866-714-6466.

US states with significant aerospace, or aircraft manufacturing facilities:

  • California
  • Washington
  • Florida
  • Colorado
  • Arizona
  • North Carolina
  • Ohio
  • Virginia
  • Kansas
  • Georgia
  • Missouri
  • Texas
  • Nevada

The Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center says, “Aside from aerospace and aircraft manufacturing facilities, other high-risk workplaces for asbestos exposure include: US Navy, shipyards, power plants, manufacturing factories, chemical plants, oil refineries, mines, smelters, demolition construction work sites, railroads, automotive manufacturing facilities, or auto brake shops.”

With mesothelioma or lung cancer directly caused by exposure to asbestos, symptoms may not show up until decades after the exposure. The Victims Center has found that many victims never smoked and also may not connect their mesothelioma, or lung cancer to asbestos exposure. As long as the victim, or their family members, can provide sufficient answers to our questions about exposure to asbestos, the Center will do everything possible to help them get what might be significant financial compensation.” For more information please call the Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center at 866-714-6466. http://LungCancerAsbestosVictimsCenter.Com

For more information about a rare form of cancer caused by exposure to asbestos called mesothelioma, please visit the US Centers For Disease Control’s web site: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5815a3.htm


Read this article – 

Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center Now Urges Aircraft Manufacturing Workers With Mesothelioma Or Related Asbestos …

Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center Offers New Vital Compensation Tips For US Navy Veterans Diagnosed With …

In the event that mesothelioma is suspected, but the victim is too weak to have a biopsy done, the Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center will design a plan for the victim to see if mesothelioma is present

(PRWEB) October 16, 2013

The Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center is convinced that thousands of US Navy Veterans diagnosed with mesothelioma or asbestos exposure related lung cancer, are financially shortchanged when it comes to compensation. This is because the diagnosed victim or their family members do not take the correct steps in order to secure the best possible financial compensation. To ensure proper compensation, the Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center is offering the following services to diagnosed victims:

  • If a diagnosed victim of mesothelioma or asbestos exposure related lung cancer victim calls the Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center at 866-714-6466, they will receive instant access to the nation’s most skilled mesothelioma compensation attorneys or asbestos exposure law firms.
  • In the event that mesothelioma is suspected, but the victim is too weak to have a biopsy done, the Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center will design a plan for the victim to see if mesothelioma is present.
  • The Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center encourages all diagnosed victims to contact them if there is even the slightest feeling of skepticism about the potential compensation by a local mesothelioma marketing law firm, a less than qualified mesothelioma attorney, or a personal injury attorney.

For more information diagnosed victims of mesothelioma, lung cancer victims, or their family members are urged to call the Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center at 866-714-6466.

Important note from the Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center: “According to the Veterans Administration, there are currently more than 20 million Veterans of the US Navy. The Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center is trying to get the word out to all US Navy Veterans, not just those in the obvious places like: California, Washington, Virginia, Maine, Hawaii, or Georgia, but in all US states such as: Florida, Texas, New York, Michigan, Maryland, Ohio, North Carolina, Louisiana, Tennessee, Missouri, Oklahoma, Kansas, North Dakota, Montana, South Dakota, Wyoming, Colorado, Idaho, New Mexico, Utah, Oregon, Arizona, and Alaska.” http://LungCancerAsbestosVictimsCenter.com

The Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center says, “Aside from the US Navy, other high-risk workplaces for asbestos exposure include: shipyards, power plants, manufacturing factories, chemical plants, oil refineries, mines, smelters, aerospace manufacturing facilities, demolition construction work sites, railroad repair yards, automotive manufacturing facilities, or auto brake shops. Lung cancer caused by asbestos exposure may not show up until decades after the exposure. As long as the victim or their family members can prove evidence for the exposure to asbestos, the center will do everything possible to help get what might be significant financial compensation.” For more information please call the Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center anytime at 866-714-6466. http://LungCancerAsbestosVictimsCenter.com

For more information about a rare form of cancer caused by exposure to asbestos called mesothelioma, please visit the US Centers For Disease Control’s web site: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5815a3.htm


Link: 

Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center Offers New Vital Compensation Tips For US Navy Veterans Diagnosed With …

Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center Former Construction Workers Diagnosed With Mesothelioma Or Asbestos Related Lung …

We are extremely focused on identifying almost any type of residential, or commercial construction worker, who has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, or asbestos related forms of lung cancer

(PRWEB) August 14, 2013

The Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center says, “We are extremely focused on identifying almost any type of residential, or commercial construction worker, who has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, or asbestos related forms of lung cancer, especially if the victim was involved in any type of construction work in the 1950’s, 1960’s, 1970’s, or 1980’s, because so many building products during these time frames contained asbestos. We are incredibly passionate about making certain all diagnosed victims of mesothelioma, or asbestos related forms of lung cancer have on the spot access to the nation’s most experienced mesothelioma attorneys, or asbestos exposure law firms, because these specialist attorneys, or law firms do nothing but mesothelioma, or asbestos exposure financial compensation claims, and they are incredibly good at what they do.” The Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center fears that most people have seen the cable TV marketing law firms advertising for US Navy Veterans, and mesothelioma, but the average person does not consider asbestos exposure, and residential, or commercial construction workers, and mesothelioma, or asbestos exposure forms of lung cancer. If a former construction worker has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, or asbestos exposure lung cancer, the victim, or their family members are urged to contact the Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center anytime at 866-714-6466, because the group is extremely passionate about making certain all diagnosed victims of mesothelioma, or asbestos exposure lung cancer get the best possible legal assistance, in order to ensure they are properly compensated.

Important Note From The Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center: “We want to emphasize we are trying to help victims of mesothelioma, or lung cancer victims who had on the job exposure to asbestos in all states, including California, Florida, New York, New Jersey, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Kentucky, Arkansas, Texas, Missouri, Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, Idaho, Colorado, Washington, Arizona, Nevada, Oregon or any other state. Again we need family members to help us get these victims identified, and a family can call us anytime at 866-714-6466.” http://LungCancerAsbestosVictimsCenter.Com

The Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center says, “Aside from construction workers, other high risk groups for mesothelioma, or asbestos exposure forms of lung cancer include Veterans of the US Navy, because asbestos was in all US Navy ships until recently. Other high risk workplaces for asbestos exposure include shipyards, power plants, manufacturing factories, chemical plants, oil refineries, mines, smelters, aerospace manufacturing facilities, demolition construction work sites, railroad repair yards, automotive manufacturing facilities, or auto brake shops. With mesothelioma, or lung cancer caused by asbestos exposure the cancer may not show up until three, four, or even five decades after the exposure. As long as the victim, or their family members can prove the exposure to asbestos, we will do everything possible to help them get what might be significant financial compensation, by making certain they have access to the most skilled, and accomplished mesothelioma lawyers, or asbestos exposure law firms in the nation.” For more information please call the Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center anytime at 866-714-6466. http://LungCancerAsbestosVictimsCenter.Com

For more information about a rare form of cancer caused by exposure to asbestos called mesothelioma,or lung cancer caused by exposure to asbestos please visit the US Centers For Disease Control’s web site: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5815a3.htm


Excerpt from:  

Lung Cancer Asbestos Victims Center Former Construction Workers Diagnosed With Mesothelioma Or Asbestos Related Lung …