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Jurisdictional question revived in suits over coastal loss

Thursday’s ruling in New Orleans gave the oil companies what they wanted in at least some of the 42 pending lawsuits.
Credit: WWL-TV
According to some estimates, Louisiana loses a football-field-sized piece of land every 100 minutes to coastal erosion.

NEW ORLEANS — The question of whether lawsuits blaming oil companies for loss of Louisiana coastal wetlands will be tried in state courts or federal courts has been revived by a federal appeals panel. 

Thursday’s ruling in New Orleans gave the oil companies what they wanted in at least some of the 42 pending lawsuits — another chance to argue that the cases belong in federal court. 

But a lead attorney in the lawsuits pitting six parishes against oil companies says the decision effectively means approximately 15 of the cases will still face trials in state courts; and the remainder still could wind up in state courts after further review by federal judges.

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