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Being diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease such as mesothelioma, lung cancer or asbestosis is overwhelming news. Unfortunately, every year thousands of people suffer from diseases related to direct, household or bystander asbestos exposure.
Attorneys with Motley Rice have been deeply involved in asbestos litigation for decades, with late firm co-founder Ron Motley being recognized for his groundbreaking work in the 1970s when he uncovered and revealed the internal company documents showing some companies’ concealment of the knowledge that asbestos was harmful. For this and other trailblazing efforts in asbestos litigation, American Lawyer dubbed Motley “The Man who Took on Manville.”
Asbestos Judgment Final: Second Circuit confirms asbestos judgment against Travelers
On Jan. 5, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, by denying a request for rehearing and a rehearing en banc, confirmed that the Settlement Agreements Travelers agreed to in 2004 were binding and enforceable contracts between the parties, that all conditions had been satisfied, and that, in an attempt to avoid its obligation to thousands of asbestos victims, whatever Travelers’ “private hopes and dreams were,” they were not supported by the language of the agreement… Read More
Our attorneys are compassionate about the incredibly difficult situation of asbestos victims and are deeply committed to holding accountable those companies responsible for allowing this potentially deadly exposure helping victims receive fair compensation.
Additionally, we strive to give our clients a voice at a time in their lives when they feel the most vulnerable and seek improvements in workplace safety to prevent future asbestos-related diseases from occurring.
What is Asbestos?
Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral fiber that was once valued for its resistance to heat, electrical and chemical damage, and was used by dozens of trades. With millions of microscopic fibers, asbestos can easily break apart and become airborne and possibly inhaled. Should asbestos fibers be inhaled, they may become lodged in your lungs, potentially leading to lung cancer, mesothelioma or other asbestos-related diseases. Additionally, because asbestos fibers travel so easily through the air, not only the person working with asbestos-containing products but also bystanders run the risk of inhaling these fibers and developing an asbestos-related disease even decades after exposure.
From the early 1900s through the 1980s, asbestos was used in thousands of different industrial products, including pipe and furnace insulation materials, roofing shingles, floor tiles, millboard, textured paints and other coating materials.
In 1989, the United States banned asbestos in specific products. This ban, however, did not ban the use of asbestos altogether. Additionally, other countries continue to mine asbestos. As a result, asbestos can still be found in a number of consumer products, including building materials, friction products and heat-resistant fabrics.
Mesothelioma and Asbestos-Related Diseases
Asbestos exposure is strongly associated with several potentially fatal illnesses, the most serious of which is malignant mesothelioma. This aggressive cancer affects the lining of the lungs, heart, abdomen and other organs, and, as with all asbestos-related diseases, it often doesn’t manifest for years or even decades after the initial exposure. Because mesothelioma, asbestos lung cancer and other related diseases can almost always be attributed to asbestos exposure, you should tell your doctor about any past exposure, including your work or family history. Learn more about our cases involving mesothelioma and asbestos-related diseases.
Motley Rice is prepared to help asbestos victims and their families obtain the compensation they deserve from companies responsible for their exposure.
If you would like to explore your legal rights regarding a potential asbestos lawsuit, please contact our asbestos team by email or call 1.800.768.4026.
Exposure to Asbestos
Companies and manufacturers dealing with asbestos have known for almost a century that the inhalation of asbestos fibers is associated with mesothelioma, lung cancer, asbestosis and several other debilitating and often fatal asbestos-related diseases. Thousands of unsuspecting workers were exposed daily to this dangerous carcinogen as they worked in factories, mills, railroads and other industrial occupations, often bringing asbestos fibers home and unknowingly exposing their family through household asbestos exposure.
For decades, asbestos manufacturers chose profit over people’s health by continuing to manufacture, distribute and supply asbestos-containing products. Until this harmful carcinogen is banned once and for all, asbestos exposure, asbestos-related diseases and mesothelioma will continue to be major national and international health concerns.
Our History in Asbestos Litigation
Motley Rice lawyers have more than three decades of experience litigating asbestos-related lawsuits, taking on giant asbestos corporations and fighting for the rights of mesothelioma victims and victims of asbestos cancers and other related diseases.
Motley Rice co-founder Ron Motley began working on asbestos cases in 1976, but it wasn’t until 1978, when he secured the infamous “Sumner Simpson” papers demonstrating manufacturer knowledge of the hazards of asbestos as early as the 1920’s, that the tide began to turn against asbestos defendants.
Many firms also turn to Motley Rice to help with their cases due to our experience and resources in challenging asbestos- and mesothelioma-related litigation. Along with litigating asbestos cases across the country, our attorneys also hold leadership and liaison roles in asbestos litigation in several of the states where our offices are located, including West Virginia, South Carolina, Rhode Island and New York.
Asbestos Occupations and Trades
Along with our offices located around the country, we’re proud to have asbestos-focused attorneys working from Morgantown, West Virginia. For more than 30 years, our attorneys have worked closely with West Virginians who have been exposed to asbestos through their employment at one of the many industrial plants located throughout the state.
Our attorneys have also served as U.S. legal counsel for Canadian provincial workers’ compensation boards since 1987, helping Canadians seek U.S. legal recoveries from non-employer third parties who may be responsible for a Canadian employee’s workplace-related injury.
Asbestos, World Trade Center Dust and the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund
On Oct. 3, 2011, the United States government reopened the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund for people physically injured or exposed to toxins such as asbestos and other harmful dust at the World Trade Center crash site following the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. The new 9/11 VCF enables more people, including 9/11 workers and volunteers who were hurt, got sick or died as a result of the attacks and the aftermath, to obtain compensation from the program. Learn more about this fund and how we can help.
Nearly 100 asbestos industry companies have filed for and entered bankruptcy in the past three decades, with more than 30 trusts created through asbestos bankruptcy reorganization in the past 10 years. The majority of the asbestos bankruptcy plans involve a settlement trust that processes asbestos personal injury claims and disburses compensation.
Motley Rice co-founder Joe Rice has been instrumental in developing and negotiating structured settlements with asbestos manufacturers emerging from bankruptcy. Through our many years in asbestos litigation and working with asbestos trusts in particular, we have acquired a strong understanding of the bankruptcy trust process as well as the wide variety of jobsites and trades involved.
This historic background gives our firm the in-depth knowledge and experience to help asbestos victims navigate an often complicated claims system and to receive fair, expeditious and timely recovery from bankrupt asbestos manufacturers.
Asbestos-related Disease Resources
The resources below are meant to provide information that might prove helpful to those who may have been hurt by asbestos. These resources are not meant to serve as legal advice and are not intended to foster an attorney-client relationship. They are strictly for convenience and aid.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: safety and health guidelines regarding asbestos in the workplace
International Mesothelioma Program: Located at Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Boston, IMP provides research updates, resources and helpful information regarding mesothelioma.
National Cancer Institute: Malignant Mesothelioma: Provides up-to-date information on mesothelioma and clinical trials, resources for people dealing with mesothelioma and details for researchers and health professionals.
National Comprehensive Cancer Network: An excellent resource for finding hospitals and physicians, current guidelines in oncology and clinical trials.
Princess Margaret Mesothelioma Research Program: One of the top cancer research centers in the world.
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs: resources available to veterans exposed to asbestos while in service
Advocacy, Education and Support
Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization: ADAO provides a unified voice for asbestos victims in working toward awareness, education, advocacy, prevention support and a cure for asbestos-related diseases.
Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation: Non-profit organization dedicated to ending mesothelioma and the suffering caused by it through research, education, support and advocacy.
Coping with Serious Illness
AARP: Provides a wealth of information about AARP grief programs, resources and support.
Hospice Foundation of America: information on the benefits of hospice and assistance in locating a hospice near you.
Motley Rice LLC, a South Carolina Limited Liability Company, is engaged in the New Jersey practice of law through Motley Rice New Jersey LLC. Esther Berezofsky attorney responsible for New Jersey practice.