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.
The bill was introduced just two weeks before the end of the session and supported by the Law Offices of Peter Angelos, one of the state’s most powerful asbestos plaintiffs’ firms. It would have created an office that would oversee mediation of Baltimore’s nearly 30,000 case backlog. Judge W. Michel Pierson, the asbestos court’s administrative judge, told the legislature that the law was unnecessary.
Judge Pierson noted that plaintiffs’ firms have failed to take advantage of many opportunities to clear the backlog in the recent past. The Angelos firm alone has missed out on 2,888 trial opportunities over the past 10 years.