Appeals court reinstates asbestos exposure lawsuit

A lawsuit against the Ford Motor Company will proceed after it was reinstated by an appeals court. The lawsuit was filed by the widow and children of a mesothelioma victim. Mesothelioma is a fatal cancer caused by asbestos exposure, and seeking compensation via legal action is a common choice that surviving family members in Ohio make.

According to the lawsuit, the victim worked as a civilian at a naval base for 26 years before he retired. During the first 12 years of his employment, there were no regulations or protective measures that guarded workers from dust contaminated with asbestos that was dislodged during work on motor vehicle brakes. His family claims that, as a civilian trainer, he often had to visit the vehicle repair shop and was routinely exposed to asbestos in the air.

Although the family succeeded in achieving settlements with multiple companies responsible for that specific exposure risk, Ford Motor Co. was not one of them. Ford claimed that there was insufficient evidence that the victim was in the vehicle repair shop during brake work, although it did not deny that asbestos exposure did occur in that area. In 2012, a judge agreed and ultimately dismissed the lawsuit. However, the family provided additional evidence that an appeals court felt justified the reinstatement of the suit, giving them a second chance at justice.

The deadly mesothelioma cancer is only one of the many devastating illnesses that can arise from asbestos exposure. No one in Ohio deserves to suffer through the pain of such serious health issues, especially when proper safety precautions could have prevented the exposure in the first place. While financial compensation cannot undo the harm that has already been inflicted, the recourse achieved from successfully navigated claims can help address related damages such as medical bills and daily necessities as well as end-of-life expenses.

Source: sfgate.com, "S.F. court says family can sue over lethal asbestos exposure", Bob Egelko, Feb. 9, 2016

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