International Paper, and its subsidiary Masonite, needed to prove to a San Francisco jury that its hardboard siding products were not defective, thereby allowing it to recoup costs under various insurance policies for indemnification of past settlements. The litigation focused on educating the jurors about construction techniques and proving that damage caused to numerous condominium units was due to shoddy construction rather than inherent defects in our client’s products.

The Focal Point’s Role

Throughout the 10-week, multi-phased trial, The Focal Point provided Mental Mining® and graphic services to the Plaintiff in a bad faith insurance claim against numerous insurance carriers. Key portions of opening statement, expert testimony, and closing argument were introduced via the “Flash House”—a 360-degree rotating, interactive computer model that allowed witnesses to click on their own hot spots in order to show construction defect evidence (photos, documents, charts, animation, and videos) to the jury within the context of a Masonite-clad house. The “Flash House” was also the launching pad for numerous teaching animations that allowed the lead attorney, Thomas Nolan, to explain construction techniques to the jurors.


A San Francisco jury returned a $383 million verdict in favor of International Paper and its subsidiary Masonite, finding that multiple insurance companies had breached their policies and had failed to indemnify International Paper for a major class action settlement.


Superior Court of California (San Francisco County)

The Focal Point’s Clients

Thomas Nolan (Skadden)
Robert Jacobs
Peter Tracey

NossamanStephen Bickford

International Paper