A jury in Philadelphia has awarded the family and estate of a former shipfitter over $7,000,000, finding that the asbestos containing products manufactured by nine different companies were a substantial factor in causing the Plaintiff’s mesothelioma disease (cancer in the lining surrounding the lungs). This ultimately led to his untimely death at age 62. The decision was reached after only three hours of deliberation and the damages were split almost evenly between wrongful death damages and survival damages.
Eight of the nine companies sued in the case settled with the Plaintiff prior to the jury reaching its’ verdict. The remaining defendant had offered $2,500 prior to trial but will now be responsible for paying its’ proportionate share of the jury’s damage award – over $800,000.
The Plaintiff worked at the old Philadelphia Naval Shipyard from 1965 to 1970 where he was exposed to a number items containing asbestos, including insulation, pumps, gaskets, pipe coverings and electric motors. As was typical during this time period for those working with and around these asbestos containing materials, he was not provided with any protective gear or any type of warning or information regarding the dangers of asbestos exposure, even though asbestos had already been identified as a cause of lung cancer and mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma is an uncommon lung cancer caused by exposure to asbestos that affects the pleura (thin lining surrounding the lungs). The most common form of this cancer is lung or pleural mesothelioma. The symptoms appear over a long period of time and are often not diagnosed as mesothelioma for 20, 30 or even 50 years after exposure – placing the typical victim in his 60s or 70s by the time a definite diagnosis is made.
In the U.S., approximately 3,000 new cases of mesothelioma are diagnosed each year.
The knowledge that exposure to asbestos was a significant health threat to workers dates back to the 1930s when it was linked to lung cancer and asbestosis. The first asbestosis lawsuits were filed around this time on behalf of sickened workers, settled and a large-scale effort to cover up and suppress the mounting evidence tying asbestos to lung disease perpetuated.
This is only one of the latest of many recent cases that have resulted in multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements on behalf of workers and their families, including $48 million (California), $43 million (Montana), $10 million (Missouri) and $8 million (New York).
Trust funds have been established with over $30 billion to provide compensation for workers suffering from asbestos related disease. If you or a family member has been diagnosed with mesothelioma it is important for you to find out what compensation may be available – it can be substantial.
Do not delay in taking action because you think that you cannot afford to consult with or hire a lawyer. Law firms like ours work with mesothelioma attorneys across the country (on a contingent fee basis), so there is absolutely no up-front cost for victims to pursue their claims.
If you have any doubts as to your entitlement to compensation, contact The Lore Law Firm for a FREE and CONFIDENTIAL review of your circumstances.