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Federal Asbestos Legislation: The Winners Are...

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Publication Date: May 2005

Publisher(s): Public Citizen, inc.

Author(s): Frank Clemente; Chris Schmitt

Topic: Environment (Radioactive and dangerous substances)
Justice (Legal procedure)
Law and ethics (Liability, torts, and personal injury)
Politics (Campaigns, lobbying, and pressure groups)

Keywords: tort reform; class action; asbestos; lobbying

Type: Report

Coverage: United States


A bill Congress is now considering promises to help victims of asbestos exposure, but ends up being more of a special interest bailout. The legislation, S. 852, would bar victims from suing in court, in favor of seeking payments from a national trust funded by asbestos makers and companies that used asbestos. But under the plan, victims would see their damages capped -- some would not even qualify for payments -- while companies, including Fortune 500 firms, would see their asbestos liabilities cut by tens of billions of dollars.