Friday, February 27, 2004

Asbestos Commercials: Stingy With the Truth

Had the local DC NBC affiliate news on tonight and saw a commercial about asbestos. I didn't catch who produced it, although it may be the one referred to near the end of this Washington Post article.

If only trial lawyers were as economical about their fees as this commercial is with the truth.

The commercial claims that people in the U.S. Senate are trying to tell a worker that he's not sick with an asbestos-related disorder. That's not what's going on in the Senate with asbestos at all.

Here's the truth: Some in the Senate, prominently Judiciary Committee Orrin Hatch, are trying to fashion a trust fund, to be paid for by corporations facing asbestos litigation, to which persons who are sick can apply for compensation without having to pay a lawyer.

The trial lawyers don't like this idea.

I am very critical of Senator Hatch on the "memogate" issue, but he and others laboring in near-obscurity to try to help solve the asbestos crisis deserve better than dishonest commercials. And people who truly are sick with asbestos-related illness deserve better than abusive profiteering by lawyers that has resulted in 60 percent of the awards in asbestos lawsuits going to lawyers and court costs, not to those who are truly ill and their families.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:08 AM

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