About two years ago we posted this article, “Protect Asbestos Victims: Reasons To Oppose H.R. 982, the Furthering Asbestos Claim Transparency (FACT) Act of 2013”.
Now at the start of 2015 we have to have to report that the FACT Act is back.
As it was before, this pending legislation would make it more difficult for asbestos victims to receive a “day in court” and receive the legal compensation they deserve for their mesothelioma lawsuit or asbestos-related lung cancer claim. Essentially, the “new” FACT Act (H.R. 526) would both violate asbestos victims’ privacy and allow asbestos corporations to delay justice until asbestos victims die.
For more specifics about this unfortunate but not surprising legislative development we turn to a January 2015 item from the Environmental Working Group (EWG), “FACT Act Favors Asbestos Industry Over Justice, Public Health”:
Legislation re-introduced by Rep. Blake Farenthold, R-Texas, would place new burdens on asbestos bankruptcy trusts, slowing compensation to victims suffering from fatal asbestos-related diseases such as mesothelioma, EWG Action Fund said today.
The Furthering Asbestos Claim Transparency Act (HR. 526), or FACT Act, would specifically require the bankruptcy trusts to issue quarterly reports disclosing detailed information about individuals seeking compensation, resulting in significant delays and unnecessary burdens for victims….
As EWG Action Fund documented in its groundbreaking investigation “Asbestos: Think Again”, thousands of Americans die each year from asbestos-related diseases. In addition to lung cancer and other illnesses, exposure to asbestos causes mesothelioma, an extremely painful and fatal cancer that attacks the lining of the lungs, stomach and other organs. Mesothelioma requires expensive medical treatment and often kills sufferers within months of being diagnosed.
We agree with the position taken by this EWG item, which had as a sub-headline: “Would waste assets meant to help victims, invade privacy and delay compensation”.
Those few words capture all that is wrong with this Furthering Asbestos Claim Transparency (FACT) Act of 2015 legislation.
Tell your lawmakers to do the right thing and reject the FACT Act.
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