On August 8, 2011, the attorneys at Lieberman Blecher & Sinkevich P.C. succeeded in attaining an $8.2 million settlement for the class members of two class action suits against DuPont for the contamination of their water supply. The cases arose out of exposure to PFOA resulting from DuPont’s release of the chemical into the Delaware River and a nearby landfill by its DuPont Chamber Works plant. The company’s release of PFOA resulted in the contamination of the water supply, exposing 4,248 homes in Salem County to the chemical.
Judge Renee Bumb of the District of New Jersey upheld the claim of nuisance, due to the potential ill effects of the contamination on the property values of the exposed land, which harmed homeowners’ ability to use and enjoy their property.
Judge Bumb rejected the original settlement put forth by the parties on the basis that the agreement did not provide the class members as a whole with adequate injunctive relief, as required by Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 23(b)(2). Judge Bumb found that the majority of the settlement money would have been distributed to outside organizations and not the homeowners.
A revised settlement was agreed upon by the parties and was subsequently approved by Judge Bumb. The class members are happy with the outcome of the settlement, which gave them a choice between collecting $800 and receiving an in-home water filtration system, replacement cartridges, and $200 for the installation of the system. This outcome gave the class members the ability to protect themselves from the potential harm resulting from DuPont’s actions.
"I highly recommend this law firm because they were responsive and sensitive to my needs and won. I chose this firm after having talked to 6 other firms because within minutes of contacting them I was able to speak to Mr. Lieberman himself. Mr. Lieberman and the junior attorneys did not make me feel small just because I am an individual, a mother, and not a big corporation. My phone calls & emails were returned promptly. They listened to exactly what I wanted & delivered. The defendant was nasty and ignored us and at times I felt like this was going nowhere. The attorneys worked well to reach a settlement that exceeded my expectations. Mr. Lieberman is a very seasoned lawyer who has compassion for his clients. The best thing about Mr. Lieberman is that he trains his staff to have that same level of compassion and respect for clients. " - Z.B., Jersey City, NJ
"I would like to personally thank Lieberman & Blecher for their help and advice to my family in dealing with an environmental cleanup issue. When it is a big company and their legal team against a small property owner, I have learned that you need an expert to protect your property and your rights. The team at Lieberman & Blecher did this for my family in a professional and cost effective manner. I would certainly recommend this firm to anyone in need of legal assistance" - C.K., Woodbridge, NJ