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Texas Senate OKs asbestos reform



By a startling 30-0 vote, the upper house in Austin has given its assent to a bill requiring asbestos and silica claimants to demonstrate actual impairment as a condition of filing suit, while also suspending the statute of limitations for the benefit of claimants who do develop illness. In Florida, meanwhile, a Senate panel has given approval to a bill that would tighten standards for filing asbestos suits. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce earlier this month "asked the Justice Department to investigate 'compelling evidence of fraud' in asbestos injury claims filed across the country". Also on the national level, a newly formed organization calling itself the Senate Accountability Project "has purchased more than $200,000 worth of ads in Arkansas, Montana, Nebraska and the Washington, D.C.-area" urging opposition to the asbestos trust fund idea now pending in the U.S. Senate; the group is headed by a Texas lawyer named Mark Iola who has filed asbestos suits, and it would appear to have notably deep pockets, since it says it "plans to spend $10 million to $15 million in the 2005-06 election cycle".

 

 


Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy
rmangual@manhattan-institute.org

Katherine Lazarski
Manhattan Institute
klazarski@manhattan-institute.org

 

Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.