The Plaintiff filed two pro se lawsuits based on the same set of facts – one in federal court and one in state court in Washington. The case in federal court was dismissed for lack of jurisdiction. Plaintiff alleges that the death of his mother, who was exposed to secondhand smoke for 35 years, was partly attributable to her pancreatic cancer. Plaintiff alleges that both a design defect inherent in cigarettes and the Defendants’ failure to warn about the dangers of secondhand smoke were proximate causes of her death. The Defendants argued that, under the doctrine of claim preclusion, the second lawsuit should also be dismissed. The U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington on November 4, 2010 denied the Defendants’ motion to dismiss, ruling that the doctrine of claim preclusion does not apply because the first claim was dismissed not on its merits, but because of a lack of jurisdiction.
The Defendants moved for summary judgment and then argued that the Plaintiff’s response should be deemed untimely and stricken.
Joubert v. Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp., et al., 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 117899 (U.S.D.C. W.D. Wash. 2010).