Reivitt v. Kaiser Gypsum, Inc.

Case Summary

Richard Reivitt, a lifelong pipefitter, was exposed to asbestos-containing products on the job, including bystander exposure to Kaiser Gypsum’s asbestos-containing joint compound. Mr. Reivitt, who was diagnosed with mesothelioma in January 2003, died 9 months later in October. The defense contended that Mr. Reivitt was not exposed to Kaiser Gypsum’s products and that the company had no reason to know that its products caused harm prior to 1972. Defense also contended that Kaiser Gypsum added product warning labels in 1972. The jury found Kaiser Gypsum 100% liable for Mr. Reivitt’s cancer and death, and also found that Kaiser Gypsum acted with malice in failing to warn and protect workers.


December 5, 2005
$650,000 award to plaintiff
$550,000 compensatory
$100,000 punitive
The case subsequently settled.


Jury found that Kaiser Gypsum knew of the link between asbestos and fatal lung disease at least as early as 1972, but failed to warn and protect workers

Case Information

Norma Jean Reivitt v. Kaiser Gypsum, Inc.
Cause No. 03-5935-C
Trial length 3 weeks Jury deliberation 7 hours


Dallas County, Texas, Court at Law, No. 3
Hon. Sally Montgomery, presiding

Plaintiffs’ Experts

Arnold Brody, MD, cell biologist, Tulane University
Eugene Mark, MD, pathologist, Harvard University

Defense Experts

James Rasmussen, industrial hygienist
Allan Feingold, MD, pulmonologist
Arthur Langer, PH.D, mineralogist

Plaintiffs’ Counsel

Waters Kraus & Paul LLP, Dallas, Texas
C. Andrew Waters
David Greenstone

The Bobbitt Law Firm, Dallas, Texas
Barry Bobbitt

Defense Counsel

Dehay and Elliston, Dallas, Texas
Todd Suddleson (lead)
Kristen Regel

Disclaimer – Results obtained depend on the facts of each case. Award amounts are not actual cash amounts received by plaintiffs. Deductions are made for liens, attorney fees and expenses.

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