An Indiana Supreme Court decision last month changed the Product Liability rule for asbestos products, clearing the way for more mesothelioma suits in the state.
The April ruling overturned part of the state’s Product Liability law. The part of the law at issue placed gave individuals 10 years after the product reached consumers to file suit for damages. This rule posed a huge problem for persons exposed to asbestos. Mesothelioma is a slow-moving disease that does not produce symptoms for as long as 20-50 years after the individual’s exposure to loose asbestos fibers.
The 10-year time limit on claims cut out almost every possible claim for damages. Now that there is no time limit, many more individuals have grounds to file a claim for damages. With this so-called statute of repose removed, many mesothelioma patients in Indiana can begin to file lawsuits.
The court’s ruling further helps mesothelioma victims by giving them two years from when their disease is diagnosed to file a claim. The previous state law only allowed a two-year grace period for individuals who were exposed to raw asbestos. The April court ruling extended that two-year window to anyone exposed to a product that contained asbestos.
With April’s ruling, Indiana joined a number of states that have removed their own statute of repose limitations on claims for mesothelioma patients who were exposed to asbestos from any source. Other states also relaxed their post-diagnosis time limits as well.
Mesothelioma is a devastating illness that imposes huge costs on individuals and their families. If you or a family member have a life-threatening illness because of asbestos exposure, contact the Indiana mesothelioma lawyers at Wilson Kehoe Winingham to discuss your case.