Williams v. Taylor Seidenbach, Inc., No. 18-31159 (5th Cir. 2019)Annotate this Case
This case arose from a 2008 state court suit by plaintiff, alleging that he contracted mesothelioma from asbestos while working at a NASA facility in Louisiana. The MDL court subsequently granted summary judgment to several defendants and remanded. In 2016, plaintiff moved to voluntarily dismiss the four remaining defendants and the district court dismissed one defendant with prejudice and the other three without specifying either way. Plaintiff subsequently appealed, seeking review of the MDL court's summary judgment grants and other orders. The Fifth Circuit dismissed the appeal for lack of jurisdiction.
In the present appeal, plaintiff appealed the district court's judgment directing entry of a final judgment with prejudice and against plaintiffs but only to the extent any claims might still exist and are not time barred. The court dismissed the appeal for lack of jurisdiction, holding that the Federal Rule 54(b) judgment did not retroactively transform the prior without-prejudice dismissals into with-prejudice dismissals.
The court issued a subsequent related opinion or order on November 11, 2019.