Bloomberg Law
July 20, 2020, 9:06 AM

Sued Over Covid-19, Companies Scramble for Federal Court Shelter

Fatima Hussein
Fatima Hussein
Legal Reporter

The poultry processor Pilgrim’s Pride Corp., faced with a wrongful death lawsuit from the family of a plant worker who died from Covid-19, has raised a novel legal argument: The president made us do it.

Citing Donald Trump‘s April 28 executive order compelling Pilgrim’s Pride and other meatpackers to remain open, and OSHA guidance on worker safety during the pandemic, the company claimed federal court was the proper place for the lawsuit filed by the sons of deceased employee Maria Hernandez, and pulled it from a state courthouse in Lufkin, Texas.

“Any duty ascribed to Pilgrim’s unavoidably implicates ...

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