Coordination with State Courts

Because asbestos cases are usually diversity cases, a substantial number of them are filed in the state courts.85 Some federal courts have undertaken formal steps to coordinate activities with state courts. The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia and the circuit courts for the City of Norfolk and the City of Portsmouth conferred and issued a consolidated pretrial order covering a wide spectrum of pretrial activities.86Judge Thomas D.

Lambros of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio issued a “Federal-State Memorandum of Accord on Asbestos Litigation” and considered the joint hiring of a special master.87

Coordination with state courts often becomes critical in scheduling of trials because the same counsel are frequently involved in both courts. In addition, development of standardized pleadings and orders presents an opportunity to economize and avoid duplicative efforts.

  1. See, e.g., Parrish, supra note 2, at 5.
  2. Bailey v. Johns-Manville, Initial Pre-Trial Order, No. 76-155-NN (E.D. Va.
    Aug. 25, 1977).

    1. In re Ohio Asbestos Litig. (U.S.D.C., N.D. Ohio; Cuyahoga Cty. C.P, July 14,
      1983); see Lambros et al., supra note 45, at 4-5.