Weitz & Luxenberg’s ongoing efforts to achieve justice on behalf of residents of Hoosick Falls, New York, takes another step forward. Recently, our attorneys have been appointed co-lead counsel in the class action lawsuit against E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Co.
This lawsuit is over Hoosick Fall’s groundwater being contaminated with perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA). Earlier this year, W&L secured a $65.25 million settlement against all other defendants in this case. We were joined in that effort by a team of environmental pollution litigators.
Final Hoosick Falls Court Order
The order granting class certification was filed with the U.S. District Court, Northern District of New York, at the end of September.
The court appointed W&L attorneys to serve as co-lead class counsel in the litigation.
- Robin L. Greenwald and James J. Bilsborrow of Weitz & Luxenberg, P.C.
- Stephen G. Schwarz and Hadley L. Matarazzo of Faraci Lange, LLP.
Plaintiffs’ liaison counsel:
- John K. Powers of Powers & Santola, LLP.
Four Classes Were Approved
“Plaintiffs bring strict product liability for failure to warn and negligence claims against DuPont.”
In our motion for class certification, we proposed four classes:
- Municipal Water Property Damage Class
- Private Well Water Property Damage Class
- Nuisance Damage Class
- PFOA Invasion Injury Class.
Participants in the class action consist of property owners and residents of Hoosick Falls whose homes lost property value as a result of the widespread contamination of the community with PFOA, as well as individuals who were exposed to drinking water contaminated with PFOA and are seeking the establishment of a medical monitoring program.
DuPont Held Out from Settlement
Defendants Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics Corp., 3M Co., and Honeywell International Inc. agreed to settle and were removed from this lawsuit. E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Co. chose not to settle.
“Now it’s time for DuPont to face the music,” says James Bilsborrow, partner and practice group co-chair W&L’s Environmental, Toxic Tort & Consumer Protection Unit. “Our motion for class certification against DuPont has been granted and we look forward to going to trial against them. We aim to get justice for the people of Hoosick Falls who are suffering due to this big corporation’s negligence.”
Robin L. Greenwald, partner and practice group co-chair adds “When these ‘forever chemicals’ get in your groundwater, they stay there. PFOAs accumulate, both in your drinking water supplies and in your body. Corporations such as DuPont sold products containing these toxic chemicals to companies like Saint-Gobain and did not adequately warn them that the chemicals would pollute the environment through manufacturing and waste disposal processes. As we have seen in Hoosick Falls, when PFOA is emitted into communities, residents get sick and property values decline.”