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Supreme Court Asbestos Ruling Making Waves

mesothelioma lawsuit

Mesothelioma lawsuit

A few weeks ago, the Indiana Supreme Court struck down an existing statute called the statute of repose, which created a cut-off of ten years for those who have been  sickened by asbestos to file a product liability lawsuit against a manufacturer. The ten year limitation had originally been established as starting at the time that the product reached a user or consumer, but this was of little use to victims of asbestos-related diseases, which generally don’t begin to manifest symptoms until decades after exposure. The court struck down this ruling, saying that these manufacturers should not be able to escape liability, but now attorneys for those businesses are asking the justices to revisit their decision.

Though defendants’ attorneys who are asking for the case to be reheard say that the decision is unfair, and that “For manufacturers and property owners in a state where they had put their asbestos problems to bed, they have been woken up,” those who represent mesothelioma victims have little sympathy for this argument. They point out that the original statute was not set in place to put those who had been injured at a disadvantage. “Asbestos product manufacturers seek nothing less than free rein to injure or even kill Indiana residents and workers, so long as those injuries and deaths take more than ten years to manifest themselves. The Indiana Constitution did not permit such a result. The Indiana legislature did not intend such a result.”

Up until the law was overturned, those who have been injured by asbestos in Indiana have been forced to file suits in other states, many of which do not have statutes of repose at all, or have struck them down as unconstitutional.

The attorney representing one of the mesothelioma victims that brought the case to the Supreme Court argues that the law was both unfair and overly complex, particularly to those who were being most affected by it. “These are blue-collar workers. These are people who built our city. These are people who worked very, very hard to support their families. They were the man in the family, and now they are the people who can’t do anything. So it ends up being they’re helpless, and it’s very humiliating. Because they all want to live. They’ve worked hard to live.”

If you or someone you love has been affected by exposure to asbestos, Mesothelioma attorneys at Danziger & De Llano. We have dedicated ourselves to providing compassionate, aggressive legal representation to those diagnosed with mesothelioma. Call us today for a free consultation.


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