A recent jury verdict awarding the plaintiff and his wife the combined sum of $27.5 million offers hope for North Carolina asbestos victims. The plaintiff suffers from mesothelioma, a type of lung cancer that is most commonly the result of inhaling asbestos fibers. The man, an English teacher and musician, was never directly exposed to asbestos, but his father worked for a brake manufacturer.
The teacher was able to prove that he ingested asbestos fibers from his father’s clothing and that these fibers caused him to contract mesothelioma. The father died from lung cancer at the age of 52. The large verdict was the result, in part, of the decision of the trial judge to allow the jury to disregard the damage limitations imposed by state statutes.
North Carolina residents who suffer from mesothelioma or asbestosis can find several reasons in this case for being optimistic about succeeding in their claims based on asbestos exposure. First, cases of this nature, which involving indirect or second-hand exposure to asbestos fibers, can be difficult to prove. This case demonstrates that favorable verdicts for second-hand exposure are not impossible to achieve.
Second, the amount of damages and the trial judge’s decision to disregard the statutory limit on damages shows that persons who suffer from mesothelioma — or the survivors of such persons – may be able to win adequate compensation for the horrible consequences of living with this disease.
Any person who suffers from an asbestos-related disease in North Carolina, or who is a relative of such a person, may choose to seek competent legal advice about how to pursue a claim for damages caused by contracting this disease. An experienced attorney can evaluate the claim, help with finding competent medical care and supervise the preparation and potential trial of the case.
Source: Akron Legal News, “UA Law alum wins largest ever Ohio asbestos case,” Richard Weiner, Feb. 19, 2014