State Appeals Court May Revive Wrongful Death Suit Against Dole
According to a news source, a California appeals court indicated during oral argument that it would likely reverse the dismissal order of a lower court in a wrongful death action alleging that Dole Food Co. paid Colombian paramilitaries to kill 170 people near South American banana plantations. Gomez v. Dole Food Co., Inc., No. B242400 (Cal. Ct. App., 2d App. Div.). During the June 12, 2013, hearing, the court reportedly said “legal problems” with the trial court’s dismissal were sufficient to warrant reversal. In 2012, the lower court dismissed the suit after the plaintiffs’ lawyers failed to file a new complaint within 30 days after an appeals court ruling allowing them to do so became final. Plaintiffs’ counsel apparently claimed that they were unaware of the deadline imposed under California procedural rules and that the court erred by dismissing the case on the basis of Dole’s purported ex parte application. See Law360, June 12, 2013.