United States Third Circuit

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In re: Grossman's Inc., 09-1563

In Chapter 11 proceedings, district court's affirmance of a bankruptcy court's holding that the plaintiffs' tort claims, arising from exposure to asbestos contained in home improvement products sold by the debtor, were not "claims" under 11 U.S.C. section 101(5) is reversed where: 1) the Frenville accrual test is overruled as it imposes too narrow an interpretation of a "claim" under the Bankruptcy Code; 2) a "claim" arises when an individual is exposed pre-petition to a product or other conduct giving rise to an injury, which underlies a "right to payment" under the Bankruptcy Code, and here, plaintiffs' claims arose sometime in 1977, the date the plaintiff alleged that debtor's product exposed her to asbestos; and 3) on remand, whether a particular claim has been discharged by a plan of reorganization depends on factors applicable to the particular case and is best determined by the appropriate bankruptcy court or the district court.

Appellate Information

  • Submitted 02/10/2010
  • Decided 06/02/2010
  • Published 06/02/2010

Judges

  • Before: SLOVITER, ROTH, and TASHIMA, Circuit Judges., Before: McKEE, Chief Judge, SLOVITER, SCIRICA, BARRY AMBRO, FUENTES, SMITH, FISHER, CHAGARES, JORDAN, HARDIMAN, GREENAWAY, VANASKIE and ROTH, Circuit Judges.

Court

  • United States Third Circuit

Counsel

  • For Appellant:
  • Christopher M. Alston, Foster Pepper PLLC, Seattle, WA, Frederick B. Rosner, Messana Rosner & Stern LLP, Wilmington, DE, Attorneys for Appellant.

  • For Appellees:
  • Sander L. Esserman, David J. Parsons, Cliff I. Taylor, Stutzman, Bromberg, Esserman & Plifka, P.C., Dallas, TX, Daniel K. Hogan, Wilmington, DE, Attorneys for Appellee.

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