Who Can I Sue For Asbestos Exposure?
We all heard the stories. Many workers across the United States have developed cancer and other terrible diseases because of their exposure to asbestos. What once was great material for insulation and other products (even crayons!) is now considered deadly. There are dozens of personal injury lawsuits going on for asbestos exposure. But what about someone who was exposed yet not working at the time?
For instance, let’s say you and your boyfriend move into an apartment. At the time, your boyfriend had worked at a shipyard and was exposed to asbestos on a constant basis. Since you lived with the boyfriend, you were exposed through secondhand means when he comes home with asbestos on his clothes. Years go by and your boyfriend has become your husband. Thanks to years of exposure, you both develop illnesses stemming from asbestos exposure. Can you sue your husband’s company for exposure?
The scenario described above is similar to that of the recent New Jersey Supreme Court case Olivo v. Owens-Illinois, Inc., 186 N.J. 394 (2006). In this case, the court found that the employer should have known that the spouse of a worker who was exposed to a workplace toxin would be affected by the toxin as well. It’s called a take-home exposure case – it’s when an employer has a duty of care to protect family members from a toxic material that was taken home by an employee through work clothes.
These types of cases can be difficult to pursue. Like all types of premises liability cases, you need to prove that your illness is the result of your significant other’s work. Plus, the employer needs to have some insight as to how a person’s work can harm his/her family members. If this happens to you, it’s best to get legal advice on your case before pursuing any claims against an employer or landowner.
If you were exposed to asbestos or another harmful toxin in the course of your job, you will need an experienced attorney to assist you. Contact the Law Offices of Anthony Carbone today for a free consultation.