In an amicus brief filed on behalf of the American Association for Justice, CCL argued that Honeywell and Ford Motor Company had no basis to seek reversal of a federal district court that denied them access to personal information in asbestos filings to which they were not a party.

    The case, In re ACandS, Inc., is pending before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit and involves a challenge to a court order that denied the companies access to tens of thousands of asbestos claimant filings so that they may be examined for possible fraud, even though the companies were not parties to the claims. The companies wanted to use the information, which was not part of the public record, for lobbying purposes. Yet, the only allegations of fraud the companies used to support their claim of access were generalized self-serving statements from asbestos defendants and their lawyers, rather proffer than any objective basis for the claim. Instead, the AAJ brief showed why those statements were based on a purposely skewed understanding of claims made to asbestos trusts and the nature of asbestos litigation. 

     The AAJ brief also rebutted the companies' construction of the bankruptcy statute, which provided no right to non-public information, as well as their attempt to claim a First Amendment basis for access to the information.