Bangladesh Garment Factory Collapse Lawsuit Dismissed
A lawsuit against major retailers J.C. Penney Co., Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and The Children’s Place, alleging negligence and wrongful death in connection with the Rana Plaza garment factory collapse in Bangladesh in 2013, was dismissed last week.
According to Business Insurance, Judge Mary M. Johnston, of Delaware Superior Court in Wilmington, dismissed the case, ruling that Bangladesh’s one-year statute of limitations applied to the case and had not been met, and the companies could not be held liable for unsafe working conditions.
Abdur Rahaman, a personal representative of Sharifa Belgum, whose wife died in the collapse, and Mahamudal Hasan Hriedoy, who was injured, filed the lawsuit. The lawsuit originally was filed on April 23, 2015, a little less than two years after the April 24, 2013, tragedy.
While the plaintiffs argued that Delaware’s two-year statute of limitations should apply, the defendants maintained Bangladesh law had the most relevance to the suit and, as such, the case should be tied to the country’s one-year statute instead.
In addition to the statute of limitations, Johnston ruled that the plaintiffs had failed to show that the U.S. companies owed a “duty of care” to the workers, who were employed by the garment factory—not the retailers.