The most of the lawsuits regarding asbestos exposure are filed by a person who suffers from the related disease. Such are the diseases caused directly by asbestos fibers that come into lungs and blood while breathing. The most of people think that only direct contact with asbestos may cause such conditions, i.e. the person must work with asbestos. The vast majority of cases is like this, but there are exceptions. Sometimes the contact with asbestos occurs indirectly, from one person to another. A man who directly contacted with asbestos can carry the portion of asbestos dust upon himself and expose other people to inhaling the fibers. Such contact is called secondary asbestos exposure.
In this case it becomes more difficult to investigate the source of exposure, because it can be an occasional contact long years before the first signs of the disease. However it is also a matter for filing a lawsuit in order to receive compensation. The diseases like mesothelioma have no other cause than asbestos. The example of a secondary asbestos exposure lawsuit is the case of John Panza, USA. Together with wife he filed a claim against the company, where his father, John Panza, Sr. worked. This company is formerly known as National Fricting Products.
John Panza, Sr. was an employee of Eaton Airflex for more than 30 years, and all this time he brought asbestos dust home on his clothes. The source of asbestos was the brake pads produced by National Friction Products. In 1994 Jogn Panza, Sr. died due to lung cancer, while his son got mesothelioma in 2012. While this type of cancer is caused by asbestos exposure, and John Panza was exposed to its fibers for such a long time, the evidence was obvious. The jury decided that John Panza’s family must receive compensation at the size of $27.5 million. This amount included the repayment for financial damages, moral damage and compensation for loss of consortium.
As a rule in such situation the defendant would appeal in order to decrease the amount of compensation or annul the verdict of the jury. As a result the demandant may receive less money that decided by a jury during the initial trial, depending on the appeal’s result. Nevertheless, if the appeal is rejected, this case will be the biggest individual asbestos case in the history.
More than 600 000 people filed claims for getting compensation from asbestos-related injuries. This is one of the biggest categories of labor violations from the side of employers. The mesothelioma lawsuits based on secondary asbestos exposure often need more detailed preparations to have the powerful arguments in the court that rely on documented facts. Collecting all required papers and building the correct strategy is the work of professional attorney, as well as defining the real amount of damage that should be requested from the defendant. Usually the work of an experienced attorney and conducting such lawsuit is a costly process too. That is why before the beginning you need to see clearly what you can get in the result. The law doesn’t give any guarantee, you can only maximize your chances for successful verdict by hiring a highly qualified lawyer.