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Despite Asbestos Company Arguments, NY Court Decides for Mesothelioma Victim

When a person has been diagnosed with mesothelioma and makes the decision to pursue a lawsuit against the asbestos companies responsible, they have to be prepared for a fight. Despite the fact that most companies that used asbestos in the fabrication of their products were aware of the dangers that the material posed, they still use every legal argument available to defend themselves against having to provide compensation to their victims. An excellent example of this was recently seen in the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New York.

The court heard arguments regarding a case that had been dismissed in April of 2016 by the Supreme Court in Saratoga County. That court had agreed with three scientific equipment manufacturers – Fisher Scientific Company, Thomas Scientific, Inc., and VWR International – that they each were entitled to have the cases filed against them by Mrs. Eileen A. O’Connor dismissed. Mrs. O’Connor had been an employee of the Westchester County Department of Labs and Research from 1975 to 1979, and after having been diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma in 2015 she had charged each of the companies with negligence for having provided the asbestos-contaminated equipment to her employer. The original judge agreed with the three companies that Mrs. O’Connor had provided insufficient evidence to support her case, as well as with other technicality-based arguments.

Upon review of the arguments made by the asbestos companies, the appeals court reversed the lower courts’ decision, in large part because of the weakness of the reasoning provided by the asbestos companies. Among the arguments that the companies had provided were an assertion that Mrs. O’Connor had not provided enough proof that it was their specific product that caused her illness and that too much time had gone by since 1979, and the company no longer had any records of having sold asbestos-contaminated products to Mrs. O’Connor’s employer. The court pointed out that in asbestos cases, the asbestos companies have the burden of showing that they could not have caused Mrs. O’Connor’s mesothelioma. They also held that the fact that the companies no longer had documentation from the 1970s was not the same as proving that they did not, in fact, sell asbestos-contaminated products.  The cases will be permitted to proceed and Mrs. O’Connor and her family will have the opportunity to pursue justice through the courts.

If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma, you face many challenges. Whether you have questions about your medical condition, your financial outlook, or your legal opportunities, the Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net can help. Contact us today at  1-800-692-8608 to get the answers to all of your questions.

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