The woman in question is the daughter of a man who worked with asbestos piped for many years. As a young child, some of her chores involved washing his work clothes when he came home from work. She recalled many times how his shirts and pants would be covered in a fine layer of the asbestos dust, which she thought nothing of at the time. Now, many years later, she has been diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma, an aggressive cancer that metastasizes in the lining of the lungs. The link between asbestos and such cancers is well-documented.
The case was dismissed by lower court and then overturned. One charge has been dismissed and remains so, the charge that the company failed to warn her of the dangers of asbestos. both lower and higher courts have upheld that the company did not face a responsibility to warn someone of danger if they could not reasonably have known that she would be in contact with the substance. The second charge, failure of design, has been given the green light to move ahead, although has not been decided. This charge claims that the company failed to produce a reasonably safe product. It remains to be seen how the case will play out.
If you believe that you have been the victim of an unsafe product or workplace, then it is worth exploring the nature of your story with an experienced attorney who can advise you of how the law may apply to you and whether you may qualify for compensation. As this case indicates, it may not be a cut-and-dried answer, as justice rarely is.
Source: The Daily Report, “High Court Grants Woman With Lung Disease Right to Sue Asbestos Pipe-Maker,” Katheryn Hayes Tucker, Dec. 01, 2016