Mass Tort, Toxic Tort, and Environmental Litigation

Successfully defending mass actions, toxic torts, and radiation injury litigation requires substantial expertise, integrated legal disciplines, and a detailed understanding of complex scientific technical issues. We can help.

Client Successes

  • We represented the development entity (Mission Street Development LLC) in resolution of the most complex construction defect litigation matters in California history, related to the “sinking” of one of San Francisco’s iconic buildings. Construction of the Millennium Tower in downtown San Francisco was completed in 2009, and after its construction and the construction of three major nearby structures, the 58-story high-rise sank approximately 17 inches. Because of the high-profile nature of the development (its residents have included NFL legend Joe Montana and basketball star Kevin Durant), the case attracted major international press attention. The litigation involved more than 400 plaintiffs and approximately 30 defendants and cross-defendants. After more than three years of litigation, the parties reached an agreement on financial terms for a global resolution of all pending claims.

  • Represented the world’s largest pork producer in several trials, stemming from several class actions in North Carolina related to alleged material harm caused by its hog farming operations in the state. Paul Hastings was hired to work with prior counsel after a series of crushing defeats, the client facing verdicts of over $550 million in damages prior to the firm’s hiring. In two subsequent trials, juries returned verdicts for our client for total damages in aggregate under $550,000, which was considered a major victory by our client given the damages sought and the history of previous trials. In a related third trial, secured a motion to dismiss for our client early, saving the client millions of dollars in discovery and trial costs, and sparing further reputational harm to its American operations.

  • Successfully eliminated all claims for The Boeing Company alleging that releases of radioactive substances and a wide variety of chemicals from three facilities in Southern California allegedly caused personal injury, deaths and property damage.

  • Obtained Third Circuit appellate victory affirming summary judgment for Babcock & Wilcox in 17 mass actions filed on behalf of hundreds of plaintiffs arising from the operation of two nuclear fuel fabrication facilities in Western Pennsylvania

  • Defended Exelon Generation Company against claims related to the operation of the Dresden Generating Station in Illinois

  • Defended Verizon in cases involving more than 300 plaintiffs who had lived near a nuclear fuel production facility in Hicksville, New York

  • Top 10 in Global Investigation Review’s GIR Top 100

  • Ranked in Global Arbitration Review's GAR Top 30

A Strategic Approach to Litigation

We work closely with our clients to develop winning strategies for defending mass actions, toxic torts, and radiation injury litigation.

Whether acting as national counsel, teaming up with local counsel, or handling multi-party cases with similar issues in other forums, we bring deep trial experience and a mastery of the strategic issues to every case.

  • Top 10 in Global Investigation Review's GIR Top 100

Guiding Our Clients to Success

  • We have decades of experience defending personal injury, wrongful death, and property damage claims involving aerospace and defense facilities, nuclear power plants, fuel fabrication facilities, manufacturing plants, and research facilities.

  • We have a particular focus on representing defendants involved in many aspects of the uranium fuel cycle and in commercial nuclear power, as well as in matters involving the U.S. Department of Energy and the Department of Defense.

  • Our lawyers have extensive class action experience in mass tort cases.

  • We have strong working relationships with many of the world’s preeminent experts in the relevant scientific and medical disciplines.

  • In addition to our trial skills, we draw on our breadth of knowledge in critical related areas such as environmental and industry regulations, risk assessment, political concerns, environmental remediation, and government agency interactions.

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Image: William K. Whitner
William K. Whitner


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