HP Obtains First-Ever Trial Court Ruling Requiring The Application Of Iranian Law In An Asbestos Case

Posted on Monday, 12 November 2018

HP secured the first trial court ruling in California requiring the application of Iranian Law in an asbestos case. The ruling dismissed plaintiffs’ claims for strict products liability, joint and several liability and punitive damages.


Plaintiffs alleged that Houshang Sabetian suffered asbestos exposure while working at oil refineries and oil fields in Iran from 1959 to 1979 as an employee of the National Iranian Oil Company. Thereafter, he immigrated to the United States, developed mesothelioma and filed his personal injury case in Los Angeles. In granting HUGO PARKER's motion, the court explained why its ruling differed from all prior rulings in Southern California:

The Court is cognizant that this ruling differs from prior rulings in this JCCP. While prior courts were worried about the religious influence on Iranian law, these provisions of law appear well-established, civil, and secular in nature. All laws of civil redress have root in some religious tradition, and these laws do not radically or offensively differ from traditions in the law of the various United States.


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