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Brisboy v. Fibreboard Paper Products Corporation

    Brief Fact Summary.

    Brisboy commenced a negligence action against Fibreboard Paper Products Corporation after her husband died due to lung cancer developed by exposure to asbestos.

    Synopsis of Rule of Law.

    Negligence is the proximate cause of a plaintiff’s injury if the conduct is a substantial factor in causing the harm.

    Facts.

    Rand worked for nine companies as an insulator, applying insulation material to pipes that contained asbestos. When Rand died of lung cancer, Rand’s wife, Brisboy, filed suit against Fibreboard Paper Products Corporation (Fibreboard). Fibreboard claimed that the asbestos had nothing to do wit Rand’s lung cancer, and that Ran developed lung cancer as a result of his smoking. The trial court granted judgment to Brisboy and Fibreboard appealed.

    Issue.

    Whether negligence is the proximate cause of a plaintiff’s injury if the conduct is a substantial factor in causing the harm?

    Held.

    Yes. The judgment of the trial court is affirmed. There is sufficient evidence to support that Fibreboard negligence was a substantial factor in Rand’s death.

    Discussion.

    Negligence is the proximate cause of a plaintiff’s injury if the conduct is a substantial factor in causing the harm. Although multiple causes may have contributed to the plaintiff’s injury, that will not relieve the defendant of his negligence conduct that contributed to the harm experienced by the plaintiff.


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