Libby asbestos victims may be making a settlement with the state of Montana somewhere in the ballpark of $43 million. The settlement would release the state and some of its agencies from future claims from victims of asbestos-related diseases like mesothelioma in Libby, the site of a former vermiculite mine run by W.R. Grace. If the settlement is approved, state law states that all tort claims against the state that exceed $10,000 would require court approval. The deal could be off the table if clients discuss the details of the settlement before it is finalized.
Some people worry that such a settlement will leave Libby asbestos victims in the dust by releasing the state from further liability. Mesothelioma, a dangerous form of cancer caused by asbestos exposure, can take over 40 years before symptoms manifest. It is uncertain at this time whether or not other victims not named in this claim would be prevented from taking legal action against Montana, which means that people who may yet develop asbestos-related illnesses could be left without recourse.
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