Steel Worker Diagnosed With Asbestosis
Arthur worked for decades in an Ohio steel mill where he was constantly exposed to asbestos dust. After retiring, Arthur was diagnosed with asbestosis which is a nonmalignant scarring process in the lungs. A couple of years later Arthur was diagnosed with lung cancer which eventually took his life. Arthur’s widow Lydia came to McDermott & Hickey, LLC, for help. In addition to filing claims with various Asbestos Bankruptcy Trusts, we filed a claim on behalf of Lydia seeking workers’ compensation death benefits. Arthur’s asbestos-related lung cancer is an “occupational disease” which is compensable under Ohio’s workers’ compensation laws. The steel company fought Lydia’s claim and said his lung cancer was caused by smoking. The law states that if asbestos exposure is a substantial contributing cause of lung cancer then it is covered under workers’ compensation. While few workers’ compensation claims end up in a trial court, the steel company took their fight to the Lorain County Court of Common Pleas. Kevin McDermott and Mary Brigid Sweeney presented Lydia’s case to the jury.
Result: After a week-long trial, the jury ruled in Lydia’s favor confirming that Arthur’s asbestos exposure contributed to his lung cancer. Lydia would continue to receive her bi-monthly benefit checks for the rest of her life.
Plant Worker Develops Mesothelioma
Joe worked for several years in the 1960s in a plant where he dumped bags of raw asbestos fiber into a large mixer on a daily basis. He was given no warnings about asbestos hazards nor was he given a mask or respirator. 40 years later, Joe was diagnosed with mesothelioma as a result of this exposure. He was retired and living in another state at the time of his diagnosis. McDermott & Hickey, LLC, quickly filed suit on behalf of Joe and his wife Ellen and did a videotaped deposition to preserve Joe’s testimony regarding his exposure. Joe faded quickly and died of mesothelioma. McDermott & Hickey, LLC, filed for workers’ compensation death benefits on behalf of Ellen.
Result: The exposure evidence developed by McDermott & Hickey, LLC, was so strong that the employer did not even challenge Ellen’s claim. She was awarded bimonthly death benefits for the rest of her life. This helped her live in the dignity which she certainly deserves after losing her husband to a horrible occupational disease.
Fabrication Shop Worker Exposed To Asbestos
Betty’s husband Ron owned and operated his own small fabrication shop where he cut and sanded asbestos cement board on a daily basis. Since there were no warnings on the products, Ron had no idea he was being exposed to toxic asbestos fibers which would eventually lead to his diagnosis of mesothelioma. After Ron’s death, Betty turned to McDermott & Hickey, LLC, for help. We were able to locate documents that showed Ron’s purchase of the asbestos-containing board. We were also able to locate a former employee of Ron’s who described their work with and exposure to the asbestos board.
Result: With this information, we were able to obtain workers’ compensation death benefits for Betty. We also obtained a large confidential settlement with the company that supplied the asbestos board to Ron’s business.
Home Builder Diagnosed With Mesothelioma
Gary was in his mid-40s when he was diagnosed with mesothelioma.
He was happily married and had two young daughters.
Every mesothelioma case is tragic but when it strikes a young man in his prime who has children dependent on him it makes it even more devastating.
Like his father, Gary was a homebuilder and used various asbestos-containing products such as asbestos cement pipe, joint compound and masonry fill.
These companies were fully aware of the hazards posed by their products but gave no warning to people like Gary who had no idea of the danger they faced.
We brought suit against the manufacturers of these products on behalf of Gary and his family.
Results: On the eve of trial, after months of discovery and motion practice, we were able to negotiate a multimillion-dollar settlement on behalf of our clients. At least Gary knew that the people who depended on him would continue living securely and with dignity.
Millwright Exposure To Asbestos
Rich worked for many years as a millwright at an Ohio plant owned by one of the largest multi-national corporations in the world.
He was exposed to asbestos insulation products even though OSHA laws requiring the company to protect him from asbestos had been in effect for years.
The company knowingly exposed him without giving him the warnings and protections required by federal law.
McDermott & Hickey, LLC, filed suit on behalf of Rich and retained the top experts in the field to review his case.
The company filed a Motion for Summary Judgement asking the court to dismiss Rich’s case. McDermott & Hickey, LLC, successfully defeated the company’s attempt to dodge responsibility.
Results: McDermott & Hickey, LLC, negotiated settlements on behalf of Rich in excesses of $1 million.
Plastic Molding Asbestos Exposure
Ohio had a large number of molding companies that used asbestos molding compounds to manufacture many types of plastic parts and products.
Tragically, many of the workers in these plastic molding plants had no idea that the “plastic molding compounds” they were working with actually contained up to 50% asbestos. This has resulted in these workers developing asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma.
Results: McDermott & Hickey, LLC, recently obtained a substantial settlement for an Ohio worker exposed to asbestos-containing plastic molding compounds and developed mesothelioma from this exposure.
Railroad Asbestos Exposure
Lester, Charley, Lee and Baxter all worked for the Norfolk Southern Railway company dating back to the 1950s and were heavily exposed to various asbestos insulation products over many years.
As a result of this exposure, each of them developed asbestosis and lung cancer.
We filed lawsuits on behalf of their survivors under the FELA, which is a special Federal Law enacted to compensate railroad workers who are injured or develop an occupational disease as a result of their work.
When the railroad refused to offer what the family deemed fair compensation we went to trial against the railroad.
The railroad argued that these men were old and did not deserve much compensation. The railroad also argued that smoking was the only cause of lung cancer and that the jury should ignore the asbestos exposure and men’s asbestosis.
The railroad also wanted the jury to ignore the company documents showing that the railroad was fully aware in the 1930s that asbestos exposure was highly toxic to workers. After a three-week trial, the jury awarded over three million dollars to the families of the men who had all passed away from their asbestos cancer.
The railroad appealed these verdicts all the way to the Ohio Supreme Court where Kevin McDermott argued on behalf of the families. The Ohio Supreme Court ruled in favor of our clients on all issues.
Results: After a three-week trial, the jury awarded over three million dollars to the families of the men who had all passed away from their asbestos cancer.
Ship Asbestos Exposure
John was referred to McDermott & Hickey, LLC, by his family attorney after being diagnosed with mesothelioma.
He was exposed to asbestos during years as an engineer aboard Great Lakes ships hauling coal and iron ore.
Later, he received further exposure working in a steel mill.
We filed a lawsuit on behalf of John and his spouse against the manufacturers of asbestos-containing products and equipment that he was exposed to aboard ship.
We also filed a Jone’s Act claim against the ship-owner.
The Jone’s Act is a special Federal Law that allows injured seamen like John to bring compensation claims against the ship’s owner.
Results: After conducting discovery, including depositions and summary judgment motions, Kevin and Chip negotiated a combined multimillion-dollar settlement prior to trial for John and his wife.
Fabrication Shop Exposure
Betty’s husband Ron owned and operated his own small fabrication shop where he cut and sanded asbestos cement board on a daily basis.
Since there were no warnings on the products, Ron had no idea he was being exposed to toxic asbestos fibers which would eventually lead to his diagnosis of mesothelioma.
After Ron’s death, Betty turned to McDermott & Hickey, LLC, for help.
We were able to locate documents that showed Ron’s purchase of the asbestos-containing board.
We were also able to locate a former employee of Ron’s who described their work with and exposure to the asbestos board.
Results: With this information, we were able to obtain workers’ compensation death benefits for Betty. We also obtained a large confidential settlement with the company that supplied the asbestos board to Ron’s business.