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New bill would limit Indiana mesothelioma victims’ rights

Mesothelioma is a type of cancer with one known cause: Exposure to asbestos.

When someone is diagnosed with mesothelioma, asbestos exposure decades ago can usually be pinpointed. Often, this exposure occurred in a work setting.

A mesothelioma diagnosis is devastating to the victim and family members, but many find closure by pursuing a legal claim against the company that exposed its workers to asbestos.

In 2016, the Indiana State Supreme Court upheld a previous court ruling that allowed mesothelioma victims to pursue a claim long after the exposure occurred. Due to the unique nature of this cancer – the fact that it usually takes decades to fully develop – this allowed mesothelioma victims in Indiana to seek legal help at an appropriate time.

But a new bill that is going through Indiana’s General Assembly could undo the Supreme Court’s ruling. The bill would reinstate the statute of repose – which means victims would only have 10 years from the date of exposure to file a claim.

This is problematic because mesothelioma is often diagnosed several decades after asbestos exposure occurred. This could greatly limit the rights of mesothelioma victims who are seeking legal recourse in Indiana.

Additionally, the bill would limit individuals whose diagnoses occurred more than 15 years after asbestos exposure. Again, this is rare, since mesothelioma is diagnosed so much later than when the asbestos exposure occurred.

If the bill passes, Indiana will be the only state that restricts mesothelioma victims in this way.

Victims should be able to seek legal recourse after a mesothelioma diagnosis, no matter when the asbestos exposure occurred.

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, talk to one of our attorneys in a free consultation. We represent clients nationwide.

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