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Court Grants Stay Extending Halliburton’s Asbestos Claims Review

Thu July 24, 2003 - National Edition
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PITTSBURGH (AP) Halliburton Co. was granted more time by a federal bankruptcy court July 22 to review thousands of pending asbestos claims.

Halliburton had sought a temporary restraining order to review the validity of each of the cases, which involve more than 300,000 claimants. The court set a new deadline of Sept. 30 for the review.

It was the third time the court extended the stay since Halliburton agreed to a settlement in December worth about $4 billion in cash and stock.

Halliburton inherited most of the claims four years ago, when the oilfield services, engineering and construction conglomerate once led by Vice President Dick Cheney acquired Dresser Industries Inc. for $7.7 billion. The Dresser acquisition was overseen by Cheney before he left in 2000 to become President Bush’s running mate.

The case is being heard in Pittsburgh because most of the asbestos claims were filed against a former Dresser subsidiary, Pittsburgh-based Harbison-Walker Refractories Co. That company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last year.