In re Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether (MTBE) Products Liability Litigation (MDL 1358)
Our attorneys represent defendants as co-national coordinating counsel and serves as lead counsel for cases originating on the West Coast in ongoing national MDL proceedings involving the gasoline additive MTBE. The proceedings involve some 80 lawsuits and hundreds of parties arising from groundwater contamination from MTBE. Our firm has successfully briefed and argued several key defense motions and participates actively in developing strategic and tactical priorities for the joint defense group as a whole.
Our firm was a key leader in the "small group" of joint defense lawyers who coordinated motion planning and affirmative discovery in the West Coast cases. We took the lead in conducting discovery for, and preparing, summary judgment briefing for the Orange County focus case involving the statute of limitations, and were actively involved in discovery and briefing related to the three other principal summary judgment motions filed in the West Coast cases. We also played a central role in expert analyses and extensive negotiations with plaintiffs over discovery relating to "threatened" wells. As new MTBE cases continued to be filed on the West Coast, we handled removal proceedings and prepared remand briefing, and joined other defense group counsel in successfully seeking to transfer such cases to the MDL court.