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Heyl Royster

 

Welcome

Kent Plotner (Office Managing Partner/Shareholder)

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Kent concentrates his practice in the defense of toxic tort claims arising from environmental and occupational exposures, including product liability and premises liability claims. He is the managing partner of the Edwardsville office and Vice-Chair of the firm's Toxic Torts & Asbestos practice group. While Kent is primarily involved with the defense of asbestos personal injury cases filed in Illinois and Missouri, he also participates in the defense of benzene and silica lawsuits within the state and federal courts. In addition, Kent also practices in the areas of insurance coverage and general tort defense.

Kent joined the firm in 1985, and has been practicing in the firm's Edwardsville, Illinois office since 1988. Edwardsville is located in Madison County, Illinois, about 20 miles to the northeast of St. Louis, Missouri, which are two venues widely known for their active litigation dockets. He has served as trial counsel for numerous clients including product manufacturers, equipment manufacturers, fiber suppliers, contractors and premises owners. He also has assisted various national coordinating counsel with the defense of toxic tort claims in the states of Illinois and Missouri.

Kent graduated from St. Louis University School of Law in 1985. He received his undergraduate degree in Environmental Health from Illinois State University in 1980. Prior to going to law school, Kent served as the Director of Environmental Health for the Logan County (Illinois) Health Department from 1980 to 1982.

He has been designated one of the "Leading Lawyers" in Illinois as a result of a survey of Illinois attorneys conducted by the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin. Kent has also been named to the 2010-2017 Illinois Super Lawyers list. The Super Lawyers selection process is based on peer recognition and professional achievement. Only five percent of the lawyers in each state earn this designation.

Significant Cases

  • Willis, et al. v. 84 Lumber Co., et al. No. 07-L-0327 (Ill. 7th Jud. Cir. Ct., Sangamon Cty 2008) Defense verdict for CertainTeed Corporation in a living mesothelioma claim.
  • Berry v. American Standard, Inc. 382 Ill. App. 3d 895 (5th Dist. 2008) Denial of use of deceased plaintiff's discovery deposition as admissible evidence to defeat defendant's summary judgment motion.
  • Hobbs v. Hartford Ins. Co. 214 Ill. 2d 11 (2005) Client victory when Illinois Appellate Court (Second District) ruled that no ambiguity existed in auto policy that would allow for stacking of insurance coverage.

Public Speaking

  • “Asbestos Injury Claims Against Employers in Missouri”
    HarrisMartin's Midwest Asbestos Litigation Conference 2010
  • “Asbestos: Current Issues and Effective Litigation Tactics - Overcoming the Complexities of Asbestos Claim Disputes”
    National Business Institute 2009
  • “Outbreak Session: Roundtable Discussion: Hot Jurisdictions/Madison County, IL”
    DRI Asbestos Medicine Seminar 2002
  • “Preexisting Injuries: When Are They Admissible?”
    Heyl Royster 14th Annual Claims Handling Seminar 1999
  • “Exploring the Claimant’s Mind-Has it Been Injured?”
    Heyl Royster 9th Annual Claims Handling Seminar 1994

Professional Recognition

  • Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent
  • Selected as a Leading Lawyer in Illinois. Only five percent of lawyers in the state are named as Leading Lawyers.
  • Named to the Illinois Super Lawyers list (2010-2017). The Super Lawyers selection process is based on peer recognition and professional achievement. Only five percent of the lawyers in each state earn this designation.

Professional Associations

  • Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel
  • Defense Research Institute
  • Illinois State Bar Association
  • Madison County Bar Association
  • St. Clair County Bar Association
  • Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis
  • The Missouri Bar Association

Court Admissions

  • State Courts of Illinois and Missouri
  • United States District Court, Southern and Central Districts of Illinois (Trial Bar)
  • United States District Court, Western District of Missouri
  • United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit

Community Involvement

  • Member, Madison County Capital Campaign Board for Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation, 2015
  • Participant in multiple school and church activities associated with Holy Trinity Catholic Parish, Fairview Heights, IL