Georgia Votes To Restrict Asbestos Suits

|

By Michael Ha

|

NU Online News Service, March 18, 3:06 p.m.EST?An insurance trade group said today it is hopeful thatGeorgia's governor will sign a measure passed by the legislaturethat would bar asbestos lawsuits by persons who have not shownsigns of injury.[@@]

|

The American Insurance Association said they believed themeasure would get the signature of Gov. Sonny Perdue because he hasexpressed himself in favor of litigation reform.

|

Gov. Perdue's office said the governor has not yet taken aposition on the asbestos medical criteria bill given final approvalby the General Assembly yesterday and that he will take time toreview the measure during the upcoming bill-signing period beforemaking his decision.

|

Gov. Perdue's spokesman Derrick Dickey explained, "We have nothad an opportunity to review the bill at this time. The governor'soffice has not taken a position on the bill. It's not part of ourlegislative package."

|

Mr. Dickey said Gov. Perdue will sign the bill or veto it uponreview during the 40-day bill signing period beginning April 1. Thebill, if the governor decides to approve it, would be signedbetween April 1 and mid-May, Mr. Dickey said.

|

The asbestos medical criteria legislation, H.B. 416, willrequire asbestos claimants to meet a minimum level of medicalcriteria before filing any legal action.

|

The bill also tolls the statute of limitations, so thatindividuals who don't yet show signs of impairment will be able tofile a claim when and if they ever do get sick. H.B. 416 alsorequires that those who file claims in Georgia must show that theywere either exposed to asbestos in the state or are residents.

|

AIA commented that this bill could ensure in Georgia that thosewho are truly sick from asbestos exposure will be fullycompensated, instead of being forced to compete for claims dollarswith the growing number of claimants who are not currently sick orwho have had minimal exposure.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free PropertyCasualty360 Digital Reader

  • All PropertyCasualty360.com news coverage, best practices, and in-depth analysis.
  • Educational webcasts, resources from industry leaders, and informative newsletters.
  • Other award-winning websites including BenefitsPRO.com and ThinkAdvisor.com.
NOT FOR REPRINT

© 2024 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from www.copyright.com. All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.