According to the World Health Organization, 90,000 around the globe die from asbestos-related diseases each year. Companies who receive claims of asbestos exposure must take the process seriously.
Asbestos-related claims can be complex legal battles, and those facing such claims may explore various defenses to challenge the allegations. Understanding these potential defenses is important for building a strong case.
1. Product identification
One defense involves challenging the identification of the asbestos-containing product alleged to have caused harm. Establishing that the plaintiff cannot definitively identify the specific product or manufacturer may weaken their case. Accurate product identification is important for a successful asbestos claim.
Arguing against causation asserts that other factors, not asbestos exposure, may have contributed to the plaintiff’s health issues. Demonstrating that the alleged exposure did not substantially contribute to the harm can be a powerful defense. It may involve presenting evidence of alternative sources or medical history that could explain the health condition.
3. Statute of limitations
Challenging the timeliness of the claim involves asserting that the plaintiff exceeded the allowable time to file a lawsuit. Statutes of limitations vary, and proving that the plaintiff filed the claim after the legally prescribed period may provide a valid defense against the asbestos allegations.
4. Lack of duty
Contending that the defendant did not owe a duty of care to the plaintiff is another avenue of defense. Establishing that your company was not responsible for the alleged asbestos exposure can weaken the connection between the accused party and the harm suffered by the plaintiff.
5. Government contracts and immunity
Some entities may enjoy governmental immunity or defense contractor immunity due to their involvement in government projects. This defense strategy asserts that the defendant was acting under government orders or contracts, shielding them from liability in certain situations.
Facing an asbestos claim involves navigating complex legal terrain, and potential defenses may vary depending on the specific circumstances. Adhering to these defenses may prove important in building a robust case and safeguarding the interests of those accused of asbestos-related liabilities.