While representing our clients, the law firm of Galiher DeRobertis & Waxman uncovered fraud committed by Combustion Engineering, Inc., a named defendant in hundreds of Hawai‘i asbestos lawsuits and in lawsuits around the country. Combustion Engineering has since gone into bankruptcy.
Travelers Insurance Company insured many asbestos defendants, including Combustion Engineering. Travelers and its local and national counsel also helped Combustion Engineering commit fraud in order to avoid its obligation to compensate hundreds of Hawai‘i residents who were exposed to asbestos while working on Combustion Engineering products. With Travelers’ help, Combustion Engineering swore under penalty of perjury that Combustion Engineering did not sell asbestos products in Hawai‘i including any used at Pearl Harbor.
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Galiher’s Tenacity Pays Off
The attorneys at Galiher DeRobertis & Waxman worked tirelessly to uncover evidence that Combustion Engineering had, in fact, sold its products in Hawai‘i. We discovered company records which proved that Combustion Engineering was well aware that it had sold asbestos products in Hawai‘i, and had deliberately concealed that information. As a result, Galiher DeRobertis & Waxman filed a lawsuit against Combustion Engineering and Travelers for fraudulent misrepresentation and suppression of evidence that Combustion Engineering products were in fact sold in Hawai‘i and found at Pearl Harbor.
Court Ruled Galiher Could See Key Documents
Judge Eden Elizabeth Hifo, the Hawai‘i State Asbestos judge who retired at the end of 2009, presided over various motions against Combustion Engineering. Combustion Engineering claimed that some of its documents were privileged, and that the plaintiffs should not be allowed to see them or use them in their case. Judge Hifo viewed these documents herself and then ruled in favor of the plaintiffs by allowing them to see key documents.
Combustion Engineering declared bankruptcy several years ago. However, plaintiffs were able to reach a settlement with Travelers Insurance Company to compensate the Hawai‘i plaintiffs for Travelers’ role in Combustion Engineering’s discovery fraud.
Status of Travelers Insurance Settlement
After many appeals, the Travelers settlement is finally being funded. There will be an aggregate settlement fund of up to $15 million for qualified claimants. Qualified claimants are plaintiffs who had an asbestos lawsuit filed in the state of Hawai‘i and who settled with Combustion Engineering before 2001 based on the fraudulent misrepresentation that this defendant did not sell asbestos in Hawai‘i especially at Pearl Harbor.
L. Richard DeRobertis
Partner & Lead Appellate Lawyer
L. Richard DeRobertis joined the firm in 1983 and serves as the lead appellate lawyer in the firm. Rick has helped to preserve and expand the legal rights of Hawai’i workers, mesothelioma victims and consumers, and represents them in court appeals against manufacturers and large corporations.Meet Rick
Born and raised in Hawai'i, Ilana Waxman joined the Galiher team in 2007 and focuses her practice on clients with mesothelioma and other asbestos diseases. She also represents the families of children born with birth defects due to chemical exposures, Hawai'i residents suffering from Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma as a result of Roundup exposure, survivors of childhood sexual abuse, and other catastrophic injury cases.Meet Ilana
Born and raised in Hawaii, Allison Aoki attended Georgetown University in Washington D.C. and Keio University in Tokyo before returning to attend the University of Hawaii for law school. Her practice focuses on representing victims of asbestos disease, pesticide exposure, and other catastrophic injuries. She approaches every case with sensitivity and determination as she works to help local families seek justice.Meet Allison
Alyssa R. Segawa
A native of Honolulu, Hawaii, Alyssa Segawa’s practice concentrates on asbestos litigation, personal injury, product liability, Roundup litigation, appellate and federal practice matters. She has a particular interest in helping victims of mesothelioma seek justice through the legal system as her grandfather passed away from mesothelioma when she was 16.Meet Alyssa
Peter A. Kraus
Partner Peter Kraus focuses on toxic torts, whistleblower qui tam cases and pharmaceutical litigation. He has tried numerous asbestos, benzene exposure, and pharmaceutical cases including many multimillion-dollar verdicts and is an ardent supporter of consumer and victims’ rights.Meet Peter
Christopher L. Johnson
Chris Johnson represents plaintiffs involved in toxic tort and complex civil matters. He focuses on helping victims achieve justice after suffering catastrophic injuries from dangerous products and toxic substances. This includes people dealing with mesothelioma resulting from asbestos exposure.Meet Christopher
About Our Founder
Gary O. Galiher
Gary Galiher, the late founder of Galiher DeRobertis & Waxman, began practicing law in 1977 and started his own law firm the following year when he took on the first mesothelioma case in Hawai’i. We are proud to carry on his legacy, his personal commitment and his willingness to take on big organizations and companies on behalf of our clients.
Our Core Values
We take your case personally and put your needs first. That means you will receive individual attention from our attorneys who work as a team. We leverage our vast experience and resources to ensure you get the best possible results, even if that means going to court. No kou pono drives our resolve — everything we do is on your behalf. And at the end of the day, nothing is more important to us than honesty and integrity.
We fearlessly take on large companies on behalf of locals and win. With over $1 billion in recoveries our track record speaks for itself. For decades, we’ve negotiated substantial settlements, obtained successful verdicts at trial and have been successful at appeal.
No Recovery, No Fee
If there’s no recovery in your case, you will not
have to pay a fee. We handle everything on a
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We Can Help
We provide free initial consultations. If you believe you or a loved one has a claim or a potential lawsuit, we are willing to meet with you to evaluate your claim with no obligation on your part. To learn more about your legal rights and options, please contact us to receive a free initial consultation.