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Asbestos Bill Cost

Asbestos Bill Cost

Asbestos Bill Cost

Thursday, April 23rd, 2009

Asbestos Bill Will Cost Taxpayers & Protect Businesses, Government Report Shows

December 15, 2005

A report issued by the US Government Accountability Office (GAO), the federal office responsible for overseeing accountability in government, has stated that the proposed asbestos bill awaiting debate in the government next year is rife with inadequacies.

The bill creates a $140 billion fund in order to pay out the expected lawsuits that are on the rise due to people developing serious health problems, including the deadly and rare cancer mesothelioma, from asbestos exposure. Until the 1970s asbestos was commonly used in building materials and fireproofing, among other places, and exposure to the tiny fibers that made up asbestos has recently been directly linked to causing serious health problems.

The GAO has said that the proposed bill does not do enough to protect taxpayers, however, and has said that similar lawsuit trust funds in the past have resulted in businesses getting away with paying less and taxpayers paying much more.

The GAO report looked at four other programs instituted in the past:

1. The Black Lung Program set up for coalminers in 1969
2. The Radiation Exposure Compensation Program set up for uranium miners and nuclear testing victims
3. The Energy Employees Occupational Illness Program (EEOICP), created for workers injured through exposure while working with nuclear weapons
4. The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, instituted in 1986 to help victims injured or disabled from side effects relating to vaccines

In all four cases, victims were expanded to include others not originally thought to be a part of the injured claimant. All four programs resulted in the overpayment by taxpayers of billions of dollars in legal fees and awards.
The GAO cautions that the proposed asbestos bill will do the same thing that these other bills have done in the past: protect businesses at the expense of taxpayers and victims of asbestos.

Contact us for more information on asbestos laws and your legal rights.

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This entry was posted on Thursday, April 23rd, 2009 at 12:00 am.
Asbestos Bill Cost

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