Saturday, October 28, 2006

Will New Jersey Workers' Comp Benefits Be Extended to Same Sex Couples

"Disparate treatment of committed same-sex couples, moreover, directly
disadvantages their children. We fail to see any legitimate
governmental purpose in disallowing the child of a deceased same-sex
parent survivor benefits under the Workers' Compensation Act or
Criminal Injuries Compensation Act when children of married parents
would be entitled to such benefits."
Mark Lewis and Dennis Winslow, et al. v. Gwendolyn L. Harris, etc., et al. (A-68-05) Complete Decision:

Bagolie Friedman Injury Lawyers are looking to investigate workers' compensation claims involving same sex couples and may be reached toll free at 1-866-333-3529.

Bankruptcy Court Approves Owens Corning's Plan of Reorganization

Toledo, Ohio – September 26, 2006 – Owens Corning (OWENQ.OB) today announced
that Judge Judith Fitzgerald of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware approved the company’s Plan of Reorganization. The Bankruptcy Court’s
approval of the plan paves the way for Owens Corning to emerge from bankruptcy by
the end of October 2006.

“The court’s approval of Owens Corning’s Plan of Reorganization is a significant
accomplishment for our company,” said Dave Brown, president and chief executive
officer. “As a direct result of the hard work of our employees and the continued support of our customers, suppliers and business partners, Owens Corning has the strong business performance and financial resources necessary to make this plan possible. We are pleased to have court approval on a plan that deals fairly and equitably with all our creditors and permanently resolves our asbestos liability.

“Throughout the Chapter 11 process, Owens Corning has remained committed to fairly
compensating individuals who were made sick by exposure to asbestos-containing
products that we produced until 1972,” said Mr. Brown. “This plan allows us to achieve that objective through the funding of a Trust that will allow those affected by asbestos to be compensated in the near future.”

Owens Corning’s creditors and shareholders overwhelmingly supported the plan,
including the asbestos, bondholder, and trade creditor classes, and bank debt holders. Before Owens Corning can emerge from bankruptcy, the plan must also be approved by Judge John P. Fullam of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. Following district court approval of the plan, Owens Corning must complete certain administrative steps before it can emerge from Chapter 11.

“We will emerge as a strong company,” said Mr. Brown. “Since 2002, we have
strengthened our financial performance, including increased sales, improved income
from operations and reduced SG&A. These financial achievements are reflected in the
preliminary investment-grade credit ratings that we received from both Standard &
Poor’s and Moody’s, an unprecedented accomplishment for a company emerging from a
bankruptcy restructuring.”

The agreement assumes a total distributable value of $8.627 billion, consisting of the total enterprise value of $5.858 billion, assumed excess cash of $1.432 billion, and Fibreboard trust and asbestos trust assets of $1.491 billion, less existing debt of $55 million and $99 million in assumed value of new shares reserved for employee incentive programs. The full Plan of Reorganization and related Disclosure Statement are available at

Owens Corning’s exit financing will come from a combination of new equity, new debt
financing and existing debt at non-debtor Owens Corning entities. The company will
begin distributions to creditors upon the effective date of its emergence from Chapter 11.

About Owens Corning

Owens Corning is a world leader in building materials systems and composite solutions. A Fortune 500 company for more than 50 years, Owens Corning people redefine what is possible each day to deliver high-quality products and services ranging from insulation, roofing, siding and stone, to glass composite materials used in transportation, electronic, telecommunications and other high-performance applications. Since the company’s founding in 1938, Owens Corning has become a market-leading innovator of glass fiber technology with sales of $6.3 billion in 2005 and 20,000 employees in 26 countries. Additional information is available at

On October 5, 2000, Owens Corning and 17 United States subsidiaries filed voluntary petitions for relief under Chapter 11 of the U. S. Bankruptcy Code in the U. S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware. The Debtors are currently
operating their businesses as debtors-in-possession in accordance with provisions of the Bankruptcy Code. The Chapter 11 cases of the Debtors are being jointly administered under Case No. 00-3837 (JKF). The Chapter 11 cases do not
include other U. S. subsidiaries of Owens Corning or any of its foreign subsidiaries. The Debtors filed for relief under Chapter 11 to address the growing demands on Owens Corning's cash flow resulting from the substantial costs of
asbestos personal injury liability.

Owens Illinois Bankruptcy Site:

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Excessive Cancer Deaths Found Among IBM Manufacturing Employees

Excessive Cancer Deaths Found Among IBM Manufacturing Employees
Alliance@IBM CWA Local 1701 Calls on IBM to Take Action
Oct 23, 2006 | PRNewswire
A study by Dr. Richard Clapp an epidemiologist at Boston University School of Public health, and published in Environmental Health Journal has raised alarms with IBM employees and retirees. The study, called "Mortality among US employees of a large computer company: 1969-2001," specifically details cancers and mortality rates among IBM employees.

The study confirmed that overall and cancer related mortality is considerably higher among workers engaged in manufacturing computers and component parts when compared with the general population. While this was generally known, this study includes data from the largest database so far IBM's own "Corporate Mortality File." The data comes from 31,941 records about the deaths of people who had worked at IBM's plants for at least 5 years. The study is on the Alliance web site at

Earl Mongeon, Alliance@IBM Vice President and a manufacturing worker at the IBM Burlington Vermont site, said: "This study confirms to those of us working in IBM manufacturing processes that the rumors and talk about high levels of cancers and other health problems from working with toxic substances wasn't just idle shop floor talk."

The Alliance@IBM, the advocate group for IBM employees, is calling on IBM and local, state and federal officials to take the following actions in response to this study:

Health surveillance of all who worked at IBM by the company and appropriate Health agencies.
Increase the use of non-toxic substances in all processes and reduce the use of harmful substances.
Employee exposure levels of toxic substances within IBM facilities be reduced significantly.
States and municipalities with computer manufacturing plants to compile cancer maps of areas around the facilities and areas where employees are likely to reside. Results to be made public.
The setting up of a fund to help alleviate the medical costs of affected IBM employees and their families

If you or a loved one developed a cancer that may be related to the job, contact Bagolie Friedman Injury Lawyers now for a confidetial and free consultation.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Idaho Teen Sues J&J, Ortho McNeil Over Ortho Evra Birth-Control Patch

Idaho Teen Sues J&J, Ortho McNeil Over Ortho Evra Birth-Control Patch

A new lawsuit was filed in federal court regarding the safety of the popular but controversial birth-control patch Ortho Evra. In the suit, Idaho’s Katy McKellips Braman, who was 17 when she was first prescribed the patch in 2004, claims that Johnson & Johnson and drug company Ortho McNeil failed to sufficiently test the patch before putting it on the market and that they knowingly misled consumers about the risks of the patch when compared to other birth-control alternatives. Braman’s suit is one of hundreds that have been filed throughout the United States.

Braman alleges that she developed deep vein thrombosis, a serious and potentially fatal blood-clot condition, in her left leg because of her use of Ortho Evra. She had been using the drug for little more than a month when she noticed pronounced swelling in the leg, which gradually worsened over the course of days. The condition required hospital treatment and has forced her to take anti-clotting medications on a daily basis. She is suing the companies for damages and all future medical costs related to the condition.

Only last month, the Food and Drug Administration added a warning to the Ortha Evra label, notifying consumers of the increased risks of clotting in legs and lungs for the patch as opposed to the pill. The patch works by releasing estrogen and progestin into the blood. Since it is applied only on a weekly basis, it contains significantly more hormones than more traditional forms of birth control–making the risk of side effects more severe. Last year, there were nearly 9.5 million prescriptions written for Ortho Evra.

In April of this year, the New York Post reported that “women who suffered life-threatening blood clots and strokes on the Ortho Evra birth-control patch have been receiving cash settlements from the manufacturer.” In September, the Post said that “FDA records, obtained by The Post under the Freedom of Information law, show that 17 patch users, ages 17 to 30, suffered fatal heart attacks, blood clots, and possible strokes since August 2002” and added that “scores of other women using the Ortho Evra patch have suffered complications, including 21 ‘life-threatening’ cases of blood clots and other ailments, according to Food and Drug Administration reports obtained by The Post.”

Johnson & Johnson reported in an SEC filing earlier this year that roughly 500 women had filed suit against them over the patch. Earlier today, the company announced profits of more than $2.7 billion in the third quarter alone, on revenues of $13.3 billion. However, hormonal contraceptive sales declined by 4 percent, largely because of the safety issues related to the patch.

Contact Bagolie Friedman Injury Lawyers now for a confidential and free consultation now.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Jury awards a former railroad employee $1.8 million after he claimed exposure to cleaning solvent at work in Louisville and Corbin caused permane

By James Bruggers
According to The Courier-Journal

A Jefferson Circuit Court jury has awarded a former railroad employee $1.8 million after he claimed exposure to cleaning solvent at work in Louisville and Corbin caused permanent brain damage.

Terry L. Williams, 59, of Corbin, had targeted his former employer, CSX Transportation, in the lawsuit. He declined to be interviewed.

CSX spokesman Gary Sease declined to comment. Sease has previously said that the company does not believe solvents sickened workers at CSX or companies that CSX acquired, such as the Louisville & Nashville Railroad.

But the 9-3 verdict in the two-week trial is the latest in a string of litigation in several states involving hundreds of railroad workers.

The Louisville jury awarded Williams $500,000 for medical expenses, $500,000 for loss of income, $500,000 for past mental and physical pain and suffering and $500,000 for future mental and physical pain and suffering, according to court documents filed Tuesday.

Because the jury attributed 10 percent of the negligence to Williams, CSX will be obligated to pay 90 percent of the award, or $1.8 million.

Williams worked for the railroad 34 years, leaving in 2000 after having been diagnosed with toxic encephalopathy. Williams' career as a machinist working on locomotives started at the L&N's old South Louisville shops and ended at a maintenance facility in Corbin.

In 2001 The Courier-Journal found that more than 600 U.S. railroad employees had been diagnosed with brain damage after working years with solvents with little or no protection.

CSX had, as of 2001, paid $35 million in settlements or awards to 466 current or former employees who filed claims under the federal compensation law for railroad employees. Jury verdicts have gone both ways, with railroad companies claiming other factors may have caused illnesses.

Railroads largely phased out use of the chemicals in question by the early 1990s.

Earlier this year, researchers in West Virginia documented that solvents used by railroad workers shrank an area that helps the two sides of the brain communicate.

Contact Bagolie Friedman Injury Lawyers to discuss your potential railroad claim.