When workers are exposed to deadly asbestos dust as a result of a company’s negligent or willful disregard for safety, their risk for developing mesothelioma and other asbestos-related illnesses increases. For these workers, mesothelioma litigation provides a measure of justice in a world where profits often come first.
Mesothelioma Litigation: A Brief History
Mesothelioma, or cancer of the mesothelium, is a rare but aggressive form of cancer that is almost always caused by asbestos exposure.
The first mesothelioma litigation in the U.S. was filed in December 1966 in Beaumont, Texas, when a former asbestos worker sued 11 named defendants, including Johns Manville and Owens Corning, among others.
The plaintiff, who suffered from a condition his doctor called “pulmonary dust disease,” alleged that the defendants either knew or were obligated to know about the health hazards of asbestos.
Five defendants were ultimately dropped from the suit, and the jury ruled in favor of a sixth. When the other five defendants agreed to an out-of-court settlement, this mesothelioma litigation established legal vulnerability in the asbestos industry.
Because companies failed to warn workers that came in contact with asbestos of its dangers, some workers are now entitled to compensation for their suffering.
In a second, similar case of mesothelioma litigation filed in 1969 against many of the same defendants.
The court ruled in favor of the plaintiff. In this case, the accident prevention manager for Johns Manville, one of the defendants in the case, testified that he had never heard of asbestos toxicity until 1964.
The court ruled the company could not be held accountable for asbestos injuries that occurred prior to 1964.
Mesothelioma Litigation and the Cover Up
New evidence uncovered in 1977, however, clearly showed that asbestos companies were well aware of the toxic nature of asbestos as early as 1940.
Following this revelation, the number of mesothelioma litigation cases rose exponentially. More than 600,000 mesothelioma litigation cases have been filed to date, resulting in millions of dollars in compensation for asbestos victims and their families.
In some cases, a settlement may be reached outside of the courtroom to avoid the time, expense, and strain of a trial for asbestos-related cases.
For more than 30 years, Sokolove Law has been at the forefront of mesothelioma litigation in the U.S.
If you have mesothelioma, we may be able to help you win compensation to pay for your medical treatments and provide financial stability for your family.