Chinese drywall litigation fast-tracked, trials by end of the year

It looks like the MDL proceedings dealing with Chinese drywall will be moving along quite quickly, or is at least planned to be according to the judge in charge. Meeting with attorneys, with attorney Jeffrey Berniard in attendance, Judge Fallon notified both sides that the litigation would be moving forward and that he hoped to even have cases beginning just after the new year.

The Herald Tribune reports

Judge Eldon E. Fallon, who plans to begin “bellwether” trials in January, told both sides during a status conference in New Orleans on Tuesday that he expected discovery to begin in a few weeks.

The process will be sped along by the use of “profile forms” rather than traditional interrogatories that can get mired in procedural delays.

Fallon also said he wanted an agreed-upon plan for inspecting and identifying affected homes by Friday. The inspections should determine whether a home had Chinese drywall and, if so, what kind of damage was present, Fallon said.

That homeowners dealing with the Chinese drywall in their homes will not be waiting years for trial proceedings to get kick-started is a very positive thing. Judge Fallon has experience in class action suits and his expedition has some positive results. Having such speedy results may encourage settlements on the part of those involved and narrow the scope of the matters being handled.

The Am Law Daily provides the first joint drywall report here.

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