Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that increases the chances of lung cancer and mesothelioma, a rare, untreatable illness. As a result, asbestos-related claims have compounded to form the longest-sustaining mass tort in the history of litigation within the US. Almost all cases involving asbestos either come from industrial employees, construction workers, consumers of asbestos-containing products, residents of asbestos-infused building structures, or from the family members of all these against the respective entities responsible.
As stated by a 2005 study by the Rand Corp., industrial concerns and insurers have combinedly been held liable and made to pay fortunes well over $70 million as settlement monies to injured plaintiffs resulting from asbestos-containing goods.
The BASF-Cahill Asbestos Controversy
The BASF-Cahill story has hit the legal space since the corporation-attorney couplet submitted its agreement to settle a joint class-action lawsuit against the corporation.
The lawsuit is based on the claims that the BASF, with the abetment of its attorneys, purposefully concealed the fact that the talc excavated from its duly owned Vermont-based mines contained certain levels of asbestos and even went to the extent of lying about the same.
BASF is the world’s largest chemical manufacturing company, whereas its asbestos-related disputes are handled by the New York-based law firm Cahill, Gordon & Reindel LLP.
For a brief introduction, Engelhard Corp. owned a talc mine in Vermont. This company produced the mineral for use in industrial settings. It manufactured consumer products such as wallboard and balloons for kids’ parties. The corporation was later acquired by BASF for $5 billion in 2006 and was renamed BASF Catalysts LLC.
Previous Asbestos Litigations in the Spotlight
As mentioned earlier, asbestos-related claims have existed, emanating from industrial and construction operations, and have bothered companies since the 1970s. BASF and other manufacturers of similar materials have dealt with mounds of asbestos litigations, principally beginning in the 1970s and continuing to date.
Engelhard has itself been dealing with such claims robustly for well over four decades now; the first-ever lawsuit being filed in 1979 resulted in the death of a tired worker employed with the Engelhard talc entity.
The cause of death was found to be mesothelioma, a critical finding compelling Engelhard to take stringent measures to prevent the onset of a wildfire.
The lawsuit finally ended up in a settlement in 1983, and the evidence gathered to be exhibited pre-trial, including confirmed testing reports proving quantities of asbestos in the company-owned Vermont mine extracts, were all sealed through a confidentiality order being reached upon between both parties.
The No-Asbestos Defense & the Instant Case
After the 1979 lawsuit, the company remained steadfast to its unambiguous stance presenting the no-asbestos defense before any forums, be it courts of law or media briefings.
In the present case, however, the parent corporation BASF, as well as the law firm representing it, have been held answerable for the belied statements and concealment of ground realities as to the actual state of facts pertaining to the presence of asbestos in its products being marketed and sold across the US for a number of purposes.
The said lawsuit was initially thrown out of court by a judge but reinstated back by the Philadelphia Federal Court of Appeals on the grounds that the defendant law firm duo had “rigged the game from the beginning” through concealment of the tests revealing asbestos presence in the Engelhard talc.
As per the exact terms of the deal, thousands of claimants aggrieved of injuries through asbestos exposures, who had sued Engelhard and BASF between March 7, 1984, and March 30, 2011, shall be eligible to receive compensations from a combined fortune of $72.5 million dedicated for compensatory purposes.
The case has been extended to those plaintiffs who either got their cases dismissed or withdrawn from the courts. These said assertions were, however, made in the court filings submitted by the duo before the New Jersey court a while back and are still subject to approval by the court.
The break-up of this amount, as revealed, consists of a sum of $175,000 to be paid to plaintiffs who had sued any of the two corporations, given that the suits were either dropped, settled, or tossed during the above-mentioned timeframe.
The Cahill Gordon and BASF coalition is also bent upon paying $22.5 million as attorney fees/costs of litigation incurred by the plaintiffs. Even after offering such hefty sums as compensations to the claimants having fierce contentions of misrepresentation and unethical conduct committed on the accused companies’ part, BASF and Cahill still do not admit to having done any wrongdoings whatsoever.
BASF Asbestos and Talc Post-Settlement Loans For Settled Claims
Typically, settlement amounts for asbestos claims are undoubtedly a fortune to obtain. However, it can take months or maybe years for the settlement to be formalized and for the amount to be cashed out. And even where no such hefty amounts are involved, recovering compensation agreed upon by both parties takes this long due to delays already caused during the course of the court proceedings.
Once a settlement is concluded, it usually takes 3 to 6 months for victims to receive their duly awarded settlement monies which can be inconvenient for them in the face of urgencies. The good news is that post-settlement funding can be of great help to people waiting for an asbestos settlement check. Lawsuit funding for settled asbestos lawsuits assists plaintiffs at the receiving end in obtaining the financial assistance they need while waiting for the compensation to get paid.
Lawsuit loans for settled asbestos cases allow you to bail out any financial obligations imposed due to the subject litigation or expenses/costs that resulted from the injury. This financial option can be of great help, regardless of if the settlement amounts are small or substantial.
If you need a lawsuit settlement loan against your Asbestos and Talc settled claim—apply today.