Alex R. DeSevo


In toxic tort litigation, plaintiffs must ordinarily establish causation through the use of expert testimony. This paper provides a discussion and analysis of the New Jersey Supreme Court's decisions in Rubanick v. Witco Chemical Corp. and Landrigan v. Celotex Corp., which broaden the standard governing the admissibility of expert testimony in toxic tort litigation. The author begins with a discussion of the "general acceptance" standard and the cases leading up to Rubanick and Landrigan. Next, the author analyzes and discusses the Rubanick and Landrigan decisions, and the split between the federal circuits as to whether district courts should "actively" or "passively" review expert testimony. The author concludes by stating that other jurisdictions should follow the Rubanick and Landrigan holdings in determining the admissibility of scientific theories of causation in toxic tort litigation.