Asbestos Laws in West Virginia
West Virginia Mesothelioma Lawyer
A Goldberg, Persky & White asbestos attorney can help anyone diagnosed with mesothelioma get the compensation they deserve. West Virginia is one of the many states which had heavy mining and industries which exposed thousands of workers to asbestos. The main health risk of being exposed to asbestos is the development of mesothelioma. Exposure to asbestos is the only known cause of mesothelioma. Asbestos-containing products were used in steel mills, railroads, power plants, oil refineries, and other industries throughout West Virginia.
Between the years of 1999 and 2013, West Virginia’s asbestos-related death rate was nine deaths per one hundred thousand people. That number is almost twice the national average, which was reported by the Environmental Working Group Action Fund.
The asbestos-related death rate is more than three times the national average in some West Virginia counties. This does include Kanawha County, which is the state’s center of industry.
Kanawha County was ranked among the top ten counties in the nation for asbestos litigation in 2017, which was reported by a KCIC industry. Even though there was a national descending trend happening, Kanawha County had shown an increase in claims from the years of 2016 to 2017.
How Can A West Virginia Mesothelioma Lawyer Help Me?
A West Virginia mesothelioma attorney at Goldberg, Persky & White PC can help you file a claim for compensation against the companies who exposed you to asbestos. Our law firm specializes in asbestos litigation and we are standing by with a West Virginia asbestos exposure lawyer to help you 24/7.
West Virginia Asbestos Laws and Regulations
The DEP enforces Hazardous Air Pollutant Emission standards in West Virginia’s. There are licensing requirements set for professionals who audit and abolish asbestos-containing materials. Before any renovation or demolition operations can begin, all buildings must be inspected for asbestos. The DEP should be notified in advance when asbestos-containing materials will be placed in a spot where they would be disturbed.
Asbestos-abatement professionals must go through specialized training through the state so that they can effectively remove asbestos-containing materials.
How To File a Mesothelioma Lawsuit in West Virginia
In order to manage the large number of disease cases, specific rules and regulations have been enacted by the West Virginia Legislature and state courts. The attorneys at Goldberg, Persky & White are familiar with regulations and the case process in West Virginia.
Mass Litigation Panel
There is a specialized panel, established by West Virginia’s Supreme Court of Appeals, which is set in place to help handle large litigation cases such as asbestos self-injury lawsuits. Asbestos cases that are filed in West Virginia are referred to the Circuit Court of Kanawha County.
The Mass Litigation Panel (MLP) Asbestos Case Management Order holds the procedures for filing asbestos cases.
Plaintiff’s in a pending asbestos self-injury case are required by the MLP to submit a “Plaintiff Fact Sheet”. In this fact sheet, the plaintiff’s must report their work history, medical providers, smoking history, and any kind of benefits such as workers’ compensation and/or disability.
Case consolidation is a method that the courts use to categorize similar claims for processing. The courts use this as a tool to lessen filings, streamline case scheduling, and expedite trials.
Currently, under the Asbestos Case Management Order, the plaintiff’s attorney designates a “trial group” of twenty cases. After that happens, the court will schedule trials for three of those groups every year.
The Asbestos cases are divided into different categories based off of the plaintiff’s illnesses. The categories are used to group cases for scheduling.
- Category I cases involve living plaintiffs who have been diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma or asbestos-related lung cancer. This category’s plaintiffs receive first priority in trial groups, and any category I plaintiff who dies before being deposed is automatically moved to category II.
- Category II cases involve plaintiffs who are deceased. These plaintiffs were diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma or asbestos-related lung cancer.
- Category III cases involve plaintiffs who have been diagnosed with nonmalignant asbestos-related diseases, such as asbestosis.
Punitive damages are used to punish defendants who lose and deter them from causing more avoidable injuries. Since 2015, punitive damage awards in West Virginia have been limited to four times compensatory damages, or $500,000, whichever is higher.
Plaintiffs must disclose any claims that may exist against bankruptcy trusts no later than 120 days before their trial date; the Asbestos Case Management Order requires this.
Defendants have information about trust claims. The courts, however, may require claimants to disclose the amount that they receive or that they expect to receive from bankruptcy trusts. The defendants are entitled to reduce these amounts from verdicts as “set-off’s.”
West Virginia Mesothelioma Lawsuit Statute of Limitations
West Virginia’s statutes of limitations indicate patients with mesothelioma have two years from their time of diagnosis to file a personal injury lawsuit against those responsible for their asbestos exposure; the time limit is the same for filing a wrongful-death lawsuit.
Job Sites in West Virginia With Documented Asbestos Exposure
- Beckley Mining Academy
- West Virginia Electric Supply
- Barium Reduction
- Cecil Walker Machinery
- Dupont Chemical
- Fike Chemical
- FMC Ordnance
- General Electric
- Gordon Gasket and Packing Company
- Ingersoll Rand
- Norfolk Southern Railroad
- P&H MinePro Services Appalachia
- Union Carbide Mines
- Vimasco Corporation
- Allegheny Energy Supply
- Brockway Glass
- Centurial Products
- Fourco Glass
- Dominion Virginia Power
- Consolidation Coal Company
- FMC Chemical
- Monongahela Power Company
- American Car Foundry
- Ensign Electric
- International Nickel Company
- Union Carbide Mines
- Appalachian Power Company
- Fort Martin Power Plant
- Hubbell Incorporated
- Union Carbide Mines
- Allied Chemical
- Analine Chemical
- Ben Franklin Coal Company
- Ergon-West Virginia
- Mobay Chemical
- PPG Industries
- Borg Warner
- West Virginia Ordnance
- Kaiser Aluminum
- Kellwood Industries
- Demuth Glass
- Weirton Steel
- Blaw Knox Rolls
- Wheeling Pittsburgh Steel
West Virginia Mesothelioma Lawsuits
West Virginia mesothelioma lawsuits are filed against employers who put profit before their workers’ safety by exposing them to asbestos. These companies are held accountable by mesothelioma lawyers when those workers end up being diagnosed with mesothelioma. There are many ways in West Virginia for people with mesothelioma to receive compensation for their suffering as well as expenses.
The ultimate way to hold a company accountable for causing workplace asbestos exposure is to take that company to a trial. Juries in the state of West Virginia have also held companies responsible for secondhand asbestos exposure.
DuPont was told to pay $6.4 million in expenses to the family of Leonard Cox in 2002. Cox died two years before from mesothelioma. Professionals traced his cancer back to asbestos dust, which was brought home on his father’s work clothes when Cox was still a child. His father was working at the time at the asbestos insulation at DuPont’s Belle chemical plant.
Plenty of defendants in asbestos lawsuits will choose to settle their issues outside of the courtroom, rather than risk a jury verdict.
Out-of-court settlements amounts are usually less than verdict awards; out-of-court settlement amounts are kept confidential to keep the defendant from the news. Professional lawyers are known to seal mesothelioma settlements worth more than $1 million for the clients they work with.
Asbestos trust funds are issued by liable companies so that they avoid going bankrupt because of lawsuits. An attorney that is familiar with asbestos cases can help determine which asbestos trusts individuals may be able to file a claim. For more information on how to file a claim, visit our blog post found here: https://www.gpwlaw-mi.com/how-to-file-a-mesothelioma-claim/
Or our West Virginia Site found here: https://gpwlaw-wv.com/
For those diagnosed with mesothelioma in New York: https://www.gpwlaw-mi.com/new-york-mesothelioma-lawyer/