Asbestos

Over the past 40 years, asbestos-related litigation has forced over 100 companies into bankruptcy — devastating workers, retirees, and entire communities. Some project the total cost of asbestos claims at more than $260 billion. Plaintiffs’ attorneys efforts to target companies that had little to do with the manufacture or supply of asbestos-containing products contributes to this astounding figure.  Read More...

An avalanche of asbestos claims has led to the creation of numerous bankruptcy trust funds, which were intended to allow businesses to restructure while providing compensation to affected individuals. Unfortunately, each trust operates completely independently and opaquely, hiding information from other trusts and defendant companies. This lack of transparency fosters an environment ripe for waste, fraud, and abuse, and the unsurprising result has been a significant decline in resources for victims.

Recently, four U.S. senators introduced the PROTECT Asbestos Victims Act, a bill that aims to protect future asbestos victims by implementing necessary reforms to the bankruptcy trust system. Plaintiffs’ lawyers often double-dip by making multiple, inconsistent claims against companies and trusts on behalf of their clients. The PROTECT Act would strengthen the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) ability to investigate double-dipping and other misconduct of asbestos claims while shining much-needed light on the operations of asbestos trusts.

Genuine reforms will protect job-creating businesses from abusive lawsuits and ensure that legitimate victims receive the compensation they deserve.

01/01/2019

Suggested Resources

Research
  • Dubious Distribution: Asbestos Bankruptcy Trust Assets and Compensation

    Dubious Distribution: Asbestos Bankruptcy Trust Assets and Compensation

    March 08, 2018

    The asbestos bankruptcy trusts, created with the goal of sustainably processing and paying valid asbestos personal injury claims, are quickly being depleted. ILR's research finds that of the 35 asbestos trusts operating as of early 2008, 21 are paying an average of 40 percent less today than in 2008, putting future compensation for asbestos victims in doubt. The paper documents the causes of this rapid depletion, including the highly significant impact of attorney contingency fees. Read More

  • On the Edge: New York County Asbestos Litigation at a Tipping Point

    On the Edge: New York County Asbestos Litigation at a Tipping Point

    August 03, 2017

    This report examines the history and current state of the New York County Asbestos Litigation (NYCAL) unit of New York City's state trial court. The analysis concludes that the procedural features that have driven verdicts and settlements higher than those in other jurisdictions are likely to continue under the Revised Case Management Order, absent fresh judicial interpretation and methods of implementation that correct current problems. Read More

All Results for Asbestos

  1. Maryland Tackling Asbestos Backlog

    October 17, 2019 | News

    The Maryland court system is finally working through the more than 35,000 unresolved asbestos lawsuits, Maryland Matters reports.... Read More

  2. Asbestos Bill Falls Short in Maryland

    April 10, 2019 | News

    A last-minute push for a bill that would have created a new program for asbestos litigation failed in the Maryland Senate in the session's final hours, Legal Newsline reports.... Read More

  3. Stop Fraud, PROTECT Asbestos Victims

    March 14, 2019 | Blogs

    Fraud and abuse have become entrenched in the nation's asbestos bankruptcy trust system. Lawmakers must act to fix it.... Read More

  4. In the News Today - March 7 , 2019

    March 07, 2019 | News

    2nd Circuit Tosses "Creative" Securities Suit Against Cigna; Pa. Supreme Court Warns Against Questionable Evidence in Asbestos Cases... Read More

  5. In the News Today - February 1, 2019

    February 01, 2019 | News

    Three Firms Have Been Driving The Securities Litigation Boom; New York City Asbestos Court Cites Higher Evidentiary Standard In Dismissal... Read More

  6. New York Court May Play Big Role in Talc Litigation This Year

    January 03, 2019 | News

    The New York City Asbestos Litigation Court, or NYCAL, may play a big role in upcoming litigation over talcum powder, Legal Newsline reports in Forbes. ... Read More

  7. In the News Today - November 15, 2018

    November 15, 2018 | News

    Is the Scope of Illinois' Biometric Privacy Law Expanding?; California Jury Clears Johnson & Johnson in Talc Case... Read More

  8. In the News Today - November 8, 2018

    November 08, 2018 | News

    Defendants In New York Asbestos Courts Now Using Jurisdictional Defenses... Read More

  9. ILR EVP Harold Kim: Increased DOJ Oversight Can Keep Bankruptcy Trusts "Honest"

    October 31, 2018 | News

    U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform Executive Vice President Harold Kim told the Associated Press that the U.S. Department of Justice's (DOJ) increased oversight of asbestos bankruptcy trusts will "hopefully keep these trusts honest."... Read More

  10. DOJ "Turning Up the Heat" in Asbestos Bankruptcy Trust System

    October 09, 2018 | News

    Recent developments at the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) suggest the agency is "turning up the heat to ferret out abuses and potential cases of fraud," according to an article in Law360.... Read More