United States District Court, E.D. Missouri, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
E. JACKSON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter is before the Court on the motions of defendant
Federal-Mogul Asbestos Injury Trust, as successor to the
former Vellumoid Division of Federal-Mogul and as successor
to Felt-Products Manufacturing Co. (collectively,
“Federal-Mogul”), to dismiss for lack of personal
jurisdiction. Plaintiff has not responded to the motions, and
the time allowed for doing so has expired.
to the complaint, plaintiff was a civilian employee of the
United States Navy from 1958 until 1964, in Boston,
Massachusetts. Compl. ¶ 1. He was also “employed
with Kambien” from 1966 until 1969 and “employed
with Polaroid” from 1969 until 1997, in Cambridge,
Massachusetts. Id. “During the course of [his]
employment at [those] locations . . ., during
non-occupational work projects and/or in other ways, [he] was
exposed to and inhaled, ingested or otherwise absorbed
asbestos fibers and/or asbestiform fibers emanating from
certain products [he] was working with and around[, ] which
were manufactured, sold, distributed or installed by the
[d]efendants and each of them.” Id. ¶ 2.
Plaintiff alleges he was “first exposed to and inhaled,
ingested or otherwise absorbed asbestos fibers and/or
asbestiform fibers emanating from certain products [he]
worked with or around outside the State of Missouri
. . . .” Id. ¶ 3 (emphasis added).
complaint names seventy-eight defendants. Plaintiff contends
that all of the defendants are “amenable to suit in the
State of Missouri by reason [of] having sold, distributed
and/or installed the aforementioned asbestos-containing
products in Missouri or by reason of having placed the same
into the stream of commerce for use in Missouri, and by
reason of having committed a tortious act against [p]laintiff
in Missouri.” Id. ¶ 7. However, the
complaint does not identify any connection between plaintiff
and the sale of Federal-Mogul’s products in Missouri or
any tortious act committed against plaintiff in this state.
to the complaint, Federal-Mogul is not incorporated in nor
does it maintain its principal place of business in Missouri.
The complaint also alleges that Federal-Mogul is not
registered to do business in Missouri. The same is true of
the entities to which Federal-Mogul is the successor.
personal jurisdiction is challenged by a defendant, the
plaintiff bears the burden to show that jurisdiction
exists.” Fastpath, Inc. v. Arbela Techs.
Corp., 760 F.3d 816, 820 (8th Cir. 2014) (citations
omitted). “To successfully survive a motion to dismiss
challenging personal jurisdiction, a plaintiff must make a
prima facie showing of personal jurisdiction over the
challenging defendant.” Id. (citations
omitted). “A plaintiff’s prima facie showing must
be tested, not by the pleadings alone, but by affidavits and
exhibits supporting or opposing the motion.”
Id. (quotation marks and citation omitted).
“Where no hearing is held on the motion, [a court] must
view the evidence in a light most favorable to the plaintiff
and resolve factual conflicts in the plaintiff’s favor;
however, the party seeking to establish the court’s
personal jurisdiction carries the burden of proof and that
burden does not shift to the party challenging
jurisdiction.” Id. (citation omitted).
allegations in the complaint foreclose exercise of personal
jurisdiction over Federal-Mogul. The Court need not consider
any evidence to prove the allegations in the complaint
because even if all of the allegations in the complaint are
true, no personal jurisdiction exists over Federal-Mogul in
Missouri. Under the facts alleged, Federal-Mogul would not be
subject to general or specific jurisdiction in Missouri.
See Walden v. Fiore, 134 S.Ct. 1115 (2014)
(describing specific jurisdiction); Daimler AG v.
Bauman, 134 S.Ct. 746 (2014) (delineating general
jurisdiction). By the same measure, plaintiff pled that
Federal-Mogul does not maintain a registered agent in
Missouri. Thus, no basis exists to find Federal-Mogul has
consented to the exercise of personal jurisdiction in this
state. See Knowlton v. Allied Van Lines, Inc., 900
F.2d 1196 (8th Cir. 1990) (explaining personal jurisdiction
based on consent); Mitchell v. Eli Lilly & Co.,
No. 4:15-CV-1846-CEJ, 2016 WL 362441 (E.D. Mo. Jan. 29, 2016)
(applying Knowlton). Therefore, the Court will grant
the motions to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction.
See Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(2).
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the motions of defendant
Federal-Mogul Asbestos Injury Trust, as successor the former
Vellumoid Division of Federal-Mogul and as successor to
Felt-Products Manufacturing Co., to ...