Asbestos Companies with Trust Funds
Lawsuits over asbestos exposure have gone on for over 40 years. This is the longest-running mass tort in American history.
Many of the companies that were found to be responsible for widespread injury and death have filed for bankruptcy, forming bankruptcy trust funds to pay claims on their behalf.
Some companies were even found to have been hiding the deadly truth about asbestos exposure. Companies such as Johns-Manville were paying out claims in secret so they could continue using the poisonous material.
When the public began to find out, the courts were flooded with lawsuits. Larger companies sought bankruptcy protection through the courts.
When bankruptcy trusts are created:
- Companies may be able to stay in business.
- Companies can no longer be sued because victims can get compensation from the trust fund.
- Victims who developed mesothelioma can take legal action to get money through the trusts.
Asbestos Victims Legal Rights
Innocent victims who developed asbestos-caused diseases like mesothelioma, lung cancer, and asbestosis were forced to sue asbestos producers, manufacturers, and suppliers for compensation.
This compensation could help pay for:
- Medical costs
- Lost income
- Specialized living equipment
- Personal injury damages for pain and suffering
Mass lawsuits forced many smaller companies out of business. They weren’t able to cover court-ordered awards and filed for bankruptcy to pay for settlements.
Larger companies with deep pockets took a different approach. They sought bankruptcy protection through the courts. This gave time to restructure and use a specialized legal mechanism called trust accounts. These accounts to limited the companies’ responsibility and allowed them to stay in business.