David R. Erickson has more than 35 years of experience in litigation and environmental law. He has first-chaired trials in state and federal courts. He has been responsible for directing and handling litigation in state and federal court on a variety of issues including environmental liability and allocation of responsibility, as well as individual, group and class action toxic tort claims that have included allegations of personal injuries, property damage and the need for medical monitoring.
In addition to focusing on environmental and toxic tort matters, during the course of his career Dave has also handled bench and jury trials involving commercial and business litigation; construction litigation; insurance coverage disputes; intellectual property issues; product liability; premises liability; and professional liability.
For the last 30 years, Dave has devoted much of his time almost exclusively to environmental litigation, class action and toxic tort litigation, environmental regulatory issues, and environmental transactional issues.
He has filed and defended numerous CERCLA allocation actions involving the government and private parties. A few examples of CERCLA litigation include matters pertaining to contaminated sediment sites on rivers and other waterways, former manufactured gas plant locations, landfills, dry cleaning facilities and drum recycling facilities, as well as private lawsuits and class action lawsuits involving regional groundwater contamination allegedly associated with contamination from industrial facilities for contaminants such as chlorinated solvents, PCBs, dioxins and petroleum products.
In addition to handling CERCLA cases instituted by the government or CERCLA allocation litigation among private parties, Dave has also defended citizen suits under federal statutes such as RCRA, the Clean Water Act and the Clean Air Act for personal injuries, medical monitoring and property damage, and that have been instituted by individuals on their own behalf or by individuals who purport to be representing others in class actions.
Dave has also represented and defended clients on many different types of administrative and regulatory compliance and enforcement matters.
A few examples include alleged violations of §404 under the Clean Water Act; alleged violations of Toxic Substances Control Act provisions regarding new substance development and notification; administrative CERCLA allocation matters; administrative enforcement of permitting requirements under the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act; corrective action under Resource Conservation and Recovery Act and equivalent state statutes; asbestos abatement; investigation and remediation of industrial facilities; voluntary self-audits and self-reporting to federal and state agencies; National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permitting; and Underground Injection Control Deep Well permitting.
Dave has also represented sellers and purchasers on real estate transactions and corporate or commercial transactions. He has planned and participated in conducting Phase I and Phase II Environmental Site Assessments and advised clients on the potential environmental liabilities and exposure associated with such transactions.
He has also participated in the preparation and drafting of stock purchase agreements, asset purchase agreements and real estate contracts.
- Representing a government contractor against claims for personal injury and death as a result of alleged exposure to radioactive waste released as part of the Manhattan Project during the 1940s and 1950s.
- Representing a food and beverage manufacturer against claims asserted by neighbors that historic aspects of the manufacturing process have resulted in groundwater contamination and allegedly caused property damage and personal injuries.
- Represented several industrial manufacturing facilities against claims asserted by employees alleging exposure to chemicals that were manufactured and sold by the employer or its suppliers. The employees have alleged that exposures to these various chemicals have caused personal injuries and damages.
- Represented a major defense contractor in the defense of personal injury and property damage litigation instituted against the company by the neighbors. The plaintiffs who claimed that their private wells and groundwater used for public drinking and consumption was contaminated with TCE and other volatile organic compounds which were allegedly emanating from the plant facility.
- Represented a product manufacturer who was included in a lawsuit by over 50 residents whose private drinking water wells were allegedly contaminated by MTBE and benzene. Those neighbors have asserted property damage and personal injury claims.
- Represented a professional consulting/engineering firm in litigation instituted against the company as a result of claims made by one of their former clients. The former client alleged that the company had failed to properly perform an investigation and cleanup at a gas station facility after leaking underground storage tanks and soil and groundwater contamination were discovered.
- Represented a chemical manufacturing company in lawsuits instituted by one customer’s employees. Those employees claimed that they suffered from neurological, respiratory and circulatory problems as a result of being exposed to chemicals that were contained in products which the manufacturer sold to the plaintiffs’ employer. The plaintiffs used the chemicals at their job.
- Represented a petrochemical manufacturing company in the defense of toxic tort lawsuits that were filed by residents who lived near a landfill. Those residents claimed that chlorinated solvents and other chemicals leached from the landfill into their drinking water supply and also migrated through the air and soil into their homes. The neighbors claimed that they suffered personal injuries, property damages and needed medical monitoring as a result of being exposed to chemicals which had allegedly escaped from the landfill.
- Represented a chemical manufacturer in an action instituted by the residents of a city who have claimed that the municipal water supply has been contaminated by chemicals as a result of historic industrial manufacturing operations by many companies who operate in the area. The claimants instituted a class action on behalf of all residents of the city. They asserted claims for medical monitoring.
- Represented a chemical manufacturing company in individual lawsuits and an action that was filed after a chemical release into the air at an oil refinery. The plaintiffs were residents of a nearby town who claimed that they suffered personal injuries, property damage and required medical monitoring as a result of being exposed to a cloud of chemicals that was released from the refinery during the operation of the refinery.
- Represented a manufacturer of paint products in a lawsuit by a painter who claimed to have been exposed to benzene that were contained in those products. The plaintiff asserted that he contracted leukemia and died as a result of the exposure.
- Represented several manufacturers against neighbors who have claimed injuries as a result of releases of dust and odors into the air at the manufacturing facilities. The neighbors asserted personal injury, property damages and also pursued citizen suit claims for injunctive relief and attorneys’ fees under the Clean Air Act.
- Represented and defended several clients against indoor air quality claims asserted by employees who claim to have suffered personal injuries, requiring medical care and medical monitoring, allegedly as a result of exposure to toxic fumes and other chemicals at their workplaūce.
- Represented a manufacturer of industrial adhesive compounds against personal injury claims by a worker who used the adhesive at his job. The worker claimed to have suffered severe permanent personal injuries as a result of exposure to the chemicals that were contained in the adhesive.
- Susan Ball et al. v. Marley Pump Co.: Represented defendant Marley in an action by approximately 50 people who claimed personal injuries, property damages, and medical monitoring as the result of alleged exposure to gasoline. Four bellwether plaintiffs’ cases were tried to a jury in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. Obtained a defense verdict.
- FAG v. Midcon: Defended Midcon against CERCLA §113 and §107 claims by FAG Bearings. The case was tried in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri. The district judge ruled against FAG and in favor of client on all statutory and common law claims. Client also obtained a judgment for over $2 million in attorneys’ fees, costs and expenses due to FAG’s bad faith in the cost recovery litigation.
- Represented salt mining clients in the defense of subsidence claims. The claims were instituted against solution mining companies and hard rock mining operations by neighbors who alleged that their surface property rights had been injured as a result of a undermining that resulted in subsidence.
- Represented public utility companies in actions instituted against the companies as the result of former manufactured gas plants. These matters have included a close examination of the historic coal gas plant operations and have also focused on successor liability issues since such operations were shut down more than 50 years ago and the liability and responsibility for such operations might have been assumed or transferred to other companies.
- Represented clients in several lawsuits concerning historic operations and responsibility for old gasoline service stations and old dry cleaning operations. In addition to standard questions regarding liability and damages, several of these cases have also presented unique questions regarding personal liability for individuals and successor liability.
- Represented potentially responsible parties in federal and state CERCLA/Superfund actions in Kansas, Missouri, Wisconsin, Iowa, Oklahoma, Vermont, Illinois, Florida, Utah, Texas, Washington, New Jersey and Louisiana.
- J.D., with distinction, University of Iowa College of Law, 1981
- B.A., with high honors, University of Texas at Arlington, 1978
- U.S. District Court, District of Kansas
- U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri
- U.S. District Court, Western District of Missouri
- U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin
- U.S. Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit
- American Bar Association, Section of Environment, Energy and Resources
- American Bar Association, Section of Litigation: Environmental Litigation Committee, Former Co-Chair; CLE Programming Subcommittee, Co-Chair (2009-2010); Judicial Intern Opportunity Program
- American Bar Association, Section of Tort and Insurance Practice
- American College of Environmental Lawyers
- Defense Research Institute
- Environmental Law Institute, Leadership Council (2018-2019)
- International Association of Defense Counsel
- Johnson County Bar Association
- Kansas Bar Association
- Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association, Environmental Law Committee, Former Chair
- The Missouri Bar
Rate : $$$$