• Louisiana Law Applies In Product Liability Suit Stemming From Natural Gas Well Blowout
  • November 28, 2014
  • Law Firm: Sutherland Asbill Brennan LLP - Washington Office
  • Following a 2009 natural gas well blowout in Louisiana, the well operator brought suit against the manufacturer and supplier of lock screw assemblies alleging that the products were defective and that this defect caused the blowout. The parties asked the court to determine whether Louisiana or Texas law applied. The parties agreed that Louisiana choice of law rules should apply, but the defendants argued for Texas law whereas the plaintiff argued for Louisiana law. Interpreting Louisiana’s choice of law rules for product liability cases, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana held last week that Louisiana law should apply because the alleged injury occurred in Louisiana and the product was “acquired” in Louisiana, even though the product was manufactured or produced elsewhere. Specifically, Article 3545 of Louisiana’s Civil Code provides, “Delictual and quasi-delictual liability for injury caused by a product, as well as damages, whether compensatory, special, or punitive, are governed by the law of this state... (2) when the product was manufactured, produced, or acquired in this state and caused the injury either in this state or in another state to a person domiciled in this state.”