Abutahoun v. Dow Chemical Co. (Opinion)Annotate this Case
Robert Henderson, a pipeline insulation worker who had contracted mesothelioma, alleged that he was exposed to asbestos-containing products while working as an independent contractor at Dow Chemical Company’s facility. Henderson was allegedly exposed to asbestos both directly from his own insulation work and as a bystander to the insulation work of Dow employees. Dow moved for summary judgment, arguing that Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code 95 applied to Plaintiffs’ negligence claims. Chapter 95 relates to limitations on a property owner’s liability for injury, death, or property damage to an independent contractor. The trial court concluded that Plaintiff’s negligence claims based on Dow’s negligent activities would go to a jury but not his claims based on injuries arising out of his own work. The jury found that Dow’s negligence proximately caused Henderson’s injuries. The court of appeals reversed and rendered a take-nothing judgment in favor of Dow, concluding that Chapter 95 applied to all of Plaintiffs’ claims against Dow and that Plaintiffs had failed to establish Dow’s liability under the standards set forth in Chapter 95. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that Chapter 95 applies to all independent contractor claims for damages caused by a property owner’s negligence when the requirements of section 95.002(2) are satisfied.