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Sunday, January 7, 2024

Household Contact Awarded $30 Million Verdict for Mesothelioma

Employers have a responsibility not only to their employees but also to their household contacts, individuals who live in the employee’s home. Employees who are exposed at work may carry the toxic substances home on their clothes or their body.

A Cook County Illinois jury awarded a $30 million mesothelioma verdict against tire manufacturer Bridgestone Firestone in a case where the deceased's only exposure to asbestos was through his father's employment decades earlier at a tire manufacturing facility in Decatur. 

The employee died one month before his 65th birthday and only five weeks after his diagnosis of peritoneal mesothelioma, a cancer of the membrane that lines the body's abdominal organs. Mesothelioma is causally related to exposure to asbestos fiber.

Attorneys for the employee’s wife demonstrated that the Decatur facility used talc mined in Vermont and New York to keep tires and rubber components from sticking together. The talc contained raw asbestos, which experts say the employee, a manager at the plant, inadvertently carried home with him on his clothing.

Household contact exposure to asbestos resulting in mesothelioma has been well documented in medical literature, and prior claims have resulted in awards.

Dorothy J. Jackson, Independent Administrator of the Estate of Thomas J. Jackson, Deceased vs. A.W. Chesterton Company et al., no. 19 L 009793 in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois (December 22, 2024)