After nearly one and a half years of appeals, the Washington Appeals Court upheld a $13.5 million verdict from the first Covid-era trial held in Seattle, Washington in September 2020. Chris Madeksho of Madeksho Law Firm and Alex Caggiano of Weinstein Caggiano tried the case together at the Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue, Washington, for nearly a month. The two worked as a great team to tell the story of their client, Ray Budd.
From the age of 10, Mr. Budd started working at his uncle’s drywall business, learning the ropes from his dad as he grew up. Mr. Budd was exposed from 1962 to 1972 to defendant Kaiser Gypsum’s joint compound product. Kaiser’s joint compound contained chrysotile asbestos, which Mr. Budd breathed while mixing and applying it during home construction. His exposures eventually led to a mesothelioma diagnosis years later.
After nearly a month of trial, the jury came back with a verdict for the plaintiff. Kaiser appealed soon after the judgment was entered. Although appeals usually involve just one or two issues, Kaiser Gypsum appealed on nine separate issues. Kaiser claimed errors on jury selection, jury instructions, the transcript, and lack of evidence. Alex Caggiano wrote and argued the appellate arguments.
In the end, the Washington Court of Appeals ruled against Kaiser Gypsum on each of the nine issues, upholding the jury’s verdict.