Ship Exposure

John was referred to McDermott-Hickey by his family attorney after being diagnosed with mesothelioma. He was exposed to asbestos during years as an engineer aboard Great Lakes ships hauling coal and iron ore. Later, he received further exposure working in a steel mill. We filed a lawsuit on behalf of John and his spouse against the manufacturers of asbestos containing products and equipment that he was exposed to aboard ship. We also filed a Jone’s Act claim against the ship-owner. The Jone’s Act is a special Federal Law which allows injured seamen like John to bring compensation claims against the ship’s owner.

RESULTS: After conducting discovery, including depositions and summary judgement motions, Kevin and Chip negotiated a combined multimillion dollar settlement prior to trial for John and his wife.


Charley worked as a deckhand on a Great Lake’s ore boat as a young man where he was exposed to asbestos insulation used on steam-lines throughout the ship. He later became a union painter and worked at a number of industrial sites in northeast Ohio where he also came in contact with asbestos products. After being retired a few years he began to feel sore in his right shoulder. He thought it was just “old age” but his wife encouraged him to see their doctor. After various tests were conducted, including a biopsy, his doctors told him he had mesothelioma caused by asbestos exposure. He was 68. Charley turned to McDermott-Hickey for help. After meeting with Charley several times and getting his complete work and exposure history, we filed suit on behalf of Charley and his wife against the manufacturers and suppliers of the asbestos products he used during his career. Because he worked as a seaman on the Great Lakes we were also able to file a Jones Act claim on his behalf against the ship owner. Discovery and depositions were conducted by both sides.

RESULTS: Settlements of more than two million dollars were obtained for Charley prior to trial.


Railroad Exposure

Lester, Charley, Lee and Baxter all worked for the Norfolk Southern Railway company dating back to the 1950s and were heavily exposed to various asbestos insulation products over many years. As a result of this exposure each of them developed asbestosis and lung cancer. We filed lawsuits on behalf of their survivors under the FELA, which is a special Federal Law enacted to compensate railroad workers who are injured or develop occupational disease as a result of their work. When the railroad refused to offer what the family deemed fair compensation we went to trial against the railroad. The railroad argued that these men were old and did not deserve much compensation. The railroad also argued that smoking was the only cause of the lung cancer and that the jury should ignore the asbestos exposure and men’s asbestosis. The Railroad also wanted the jury to ignore the company documents showing that the Railroad was fully aware in the 1930’s that asbestos exposure was highly toxic to workers. After a three week trial the jury awarded over 3 million dollars to the families of the men who had all passed away from their asbestos cancer. The railroad appealed these verdicts all the way to the Ohio Supreme Court where Kevin McDermott argued on behalf of the families. The Ohio Supreme Court ruled in favor of our clients on all issues.

RESULTS: After a three week trial the jury awarded over 3 million dollars to the families of the men who had all passed away from their asbestos cancer.


Home Builder Exposure

Gary was in his mid-40s when he was diagnosed with mesothelioma. He was happily married and had two young daughters. Every mesothelioma case is tragic but when it strikes a young man in his prime who has children dependent on him it makes it even more devastating. Like his father, Gary was a homebuilder and used various asbestos containing products such as asbestos cement pipe, joint compound and masonry fill. These companies were fully aware of the hazards posed by their products but gave no warning to people like Gary who had no idea of the danger they faced. We brought suit against the manufacturers of these products on behalf of Gary and his family.

RESULTS: On the eve of trial, after months of discovery and motion practice, we were able to negotiate a multi-million dollar settlement on behalf of our clients. At least Gary knew that the people who depended on him would continue live securely and with dignity.


Millright Exposure

Rich worked for many years as a millwright at an Ohio plant owned by one of the largest multi-national corporations in the world. He was exposed to asbestos insulation products even though OSHA laws requiring the company to protect him from asbestos had been in effect for years. The company knowingly exposed him without giving him the warnings and protections required by federal law. McDermott-Hickey filed suit on behalf of Rich and retained the top experts in the field to review his case.  The company filed a Motion for Summary Judgement asking the court to dismiss Rich's case. McDermott & Hickey successfully defeated the company's attempt to dodge responsibility.

RESULTS: McDermott & Hickey negotiated settlements on behalf of Rich in excesses of $1 million.


*Above are descriptions of cases previously handled by Chip Hickey and Kevin McDermott. Most cases, of any type, are resolved prior to trial and the terms of the settlement are normally confidential. The Case Summaries listed below are intended to give prospective clients some information about our experience in handling different types of cases. This is by no means a list of every case that we’ve handled over our many years of practice. In many of the following summaries we have had to change the name of the client and are prohibited from disclosing settlement amounts due to Confidentiality Agreements. This is not meant to be a guarantee of any recovery. Each case stands on it’s own particular set of facts.