The United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed a directed verdict that Prichard Young obtained on behalf of Grove Cranes. Kevin Young and Daniel Gonzáles Aldape defended the manufacturer in a product liability case tried in Houston federal court. The district court granted the manufacturer’s request to exclude certain opinions from the plaintiff’s expert about safer alternative designs. At trial, the district granted the manufacturer’s request for a directed verdict because the plaintiff failed to present the requisite expert testimony needed to prove a design defect in the crane. David Montpas handled the appeal for the manufacturer and argued the district court did not err in either excluding the expert’s opinions or in granting the directed verdict. The court of appeals affirmed the decision finding that, because of the complex nature of crane design, expert testimony was required to prove a design defect. The court of appeals further concluded that the district court correctly excluded the plaintiff’s expert’s testimony on alternative design. Consequently, the court of appeals held that the directed verdict in favor of the manufacturer was proper.

Norman v. Grove Cranes U.S., L.L.C., No. 17-20631, United States Court of Appeals, for the Fifth Circuit.