Consumers and workers often assume that product manufacturers and employers look out for them and that they have their best interests at heart. While there’s nothing wrong with this line of thinking, it’s unfortunately not always the case. Even worse, many individuals don’t learn that it’s not the case until they have already suffered irreparable harm.
If this sounds familiar to you or someone you love, the attorneys at Steven A. Bagen & Associates, P.A. want to extend their sincere condolences. However, we also want you to know that you have legal rights and can qualify for injury compensation.
People with toxic exposure injuries might file individual claims or join similarly injured people to file a lawsuit as a group. In either case, these claims are highly technical and complex, as they generally involve manufacturers or other large corporations. To learn more about your options, get in touch with one of our Ocala toxic tort lawyers as soon as possible.
Steven A. Bagen & Associates, P.A.: The Obvious Choice
For more than four decades, the Ocala personal injury lawyers at Steven A. Bagen & Associates, P.A. have been serving personal injury victims in and around Gainesville, Ocala, Lake City, The Villages, Jacksonville, Orlando, Tallahassee, Tampa, Palatka, and St. Augustine. We have helped injury victims and their families recover hundreds of millions of dollars in damages, delivering the justice they deserved in their claims.
You can count on us to fight for the same in your case. Some of our recent case results include:
- $3.4 million for a woman hit from behind while slowing her vehicle for I-75 traffic
- $1.125 million for an elderly car accident victim who was hit from behind by a distracted driver
- $1 million for a product liability client who was changing a flashlight battery when it exploded, causing a severe knee injury
- $1 million for a product liability client whose gun holster was manufactured to the wrong specification, causing his gun to discharge.
- $111,000 for a dog bite client attacked by a pit bull
Legal Basis for Toxic Tort Cases
Toxic tort cases can arise from several different legal standpoints; it all depends on the specifics of your case and who you can blame for your damages. Typically, a toxic tort arises from one or more of the following legal concepts.
Negligence is the most common personal injury legal framework.
In any negligence claim, the injured party or their injury attorney must establish to the court that:
- The other party owed them a duty to warn about the dangers of a particular chemical in a product.
- The other party violated that duty of care in some way.
- The injured party or the general public suffered harm due to the breach of duty.
- The harm resulted in damages such as medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Some behaviors are so hazardous that anyone engaging in them will be held legally responsible or strictly liable for any resulting harm. Transporting dangerous chemicals is a prime example of this. Under the legal framework of strict liability, those injured don’t have to prove that the other party acted negligently or carelessly. Instead, their dangerous behaviors speak for themselves.
A manufacturer must keep consumers safe when using their products. Sometimes this is a duty to make a product safe or to warn consumers of certain risks associated with using the product. Unfortunately, many product manufacturers violate their duty in favor of making more money or rushing products onto the market before they are ready. A product’s designer, manufacturer, or distributor might be responsible for the harm suffered to consumers under product liability laws.
Fraud or Falsification
Sometimes a business, manufacturer, or another party knows that ingestion or exposure to a substance harms your health. However, instead of pulling it off the market or warning the public, they intentionally hide its dangers and deceivingly continue to market the product.
When this occurs, injured parties have a potential claim based on fraud or deliberate falsification of information.
It’s crucial to note that you don’t have to know what legal basis you have in a toxic tort claim that is for your Ocala toxic torts attorney to figure out. All you need to know to pursue a legal claim is that you suffered harm, possibly due to exposure to a toxic chemical or other substance. Your attorney will determine the rest.
Types of Toxic Torts
Toxic tort claims can arise from many different situations. From where you work to the products you use and even where you live, toxins are potentially lurking and causing you harm.
The most common types of toxic tort lawsuits involve:
- Consumer products: Unintended injuries or illnesses can arise from consumer product use related to dangerous substances, for instance, the weedkiller Roundup/glyphosate and other chemical-based products.
- Home or garden exposures: Inhaling or ingesting dangerous substances or chemicals while in the home, including toxic mold or chemicals within the water supply.
- Occupational exposures: Industrial workers might be exposed to various hazardous substances while on the clock, including silica, asbestos, beryllium, and benzene.
- Pharmaceutical medications: Over-the-counter (OTC) or prescription drugs may cause unintended side effects intentionally hidden by drug manufacturers such as the case with Zantac cancer lawsuits.
Toxic Torts and the Statute of Limitations
The statute of limitations is a legally-imposed deadline for filing a personal injury claim. Each state sets different deadlines.
In Florida, the statute of limitations for toxic torts is four years after discovering the illness or injury. Work may expose you to asbestos at work, or a doctor may prescribe a medication you thought was safe. Decades later, they may cause cancer.
It can take years to realize that your body sustained harm from those toxic substances you once thought were safe.
However, suppose you or your Ocala toxic torts lawyer on your behalf don’t file a lawsuit within four years of discovering your injuries or illnesses. In that case, you forfeit your right to use the legal system to obtain compensation for your damages. To avoid this grave mistake, it’s in your best interest to meet with an attorney as soon as you realize you might have suffered harm from toxic exposure.
The Benefits of Toxic Tort Litigation
Toxic tort litigation provides a way for individuals or groups who have suffered adverse health effects from toxic substances to obtain financial compensation for their damages. Toxic tort cases are challenging to win. The injured parties and society both need them to succeed.
In our modern world, hazardous substances and pollutants are pervasive. Unfortunately, many people are in regular contact with various dangerous substances daily. The impact of these pollutants and toxic substances frequently goes unnoticed for weeks, years, and sometimes even lifetimes.
Most people don’t know how these substances interact with the human body. Toxic tort law cases are often the only way to publicize the dangers and risks of certain chemicals, pollutants, or other toxins. These lawsuits can set a precedent and help prevent future harmful exposures.
Toxic Torts FAQs
What is the Role of an Ocala Toxic Torts Lawyer?
A toxic tort lawyer specializes in tort law, specializing in toxic tort cases. It’s not necessarily as simple as it might seem. Toxic tort attorneys represent their client, known in a lawsuit as the plaintiff, requesting monetary damages from the at-fault party, known as the defendant or group of defendants.
Toxic tort lawyers need a deep understanding of the law. They are current on toxic tort law and related cases and have a vast knowledge of toxic tort cases throughout U.S. history. Since toxic tort law cases are quite complex, it’s imperative to have a toxic tort lawyer with this knowledge and experience.
What Qualifies as a Toxic Tort Case?
Toxic tort cases involve someone who suffered injury or illness directly from exposure to toxic substances. Exposure to dangerous substances in a workplace is a common type of toxic tort case, such as workplace exposures to benzene and asbestos. Both materials can cause cancer and other serious health problems for those with ongoing and long-term exposure.
Exposure to certain substances in the home, including mold (known for causing severe respiratory issues) and radon (known to increase cancer risks in individuals who smoke), can also give rise to a toxic torts claim. In addition, some medications and household cleaning products can also trigger a toxic tort claim if their labeling doesn’t warn consumers of the potential for causing devastating side effects.
Toxic tort lawsuits can involve a single injured person or a large group of people who have suffered similar harm and damages because of their exposure to a toxic substance. The latter type of case is known as a class-action lawsuit.
Who Can Victims Sue for Their Injuries or Illnesses?
Determining who is responsible for a toxic tort victim’s exposure to a hazardous substance can be challenging.
Typically, injured parties file a lawsuit against anyone that had a link to the toxin, such as:
- Its manufacturer
- The manufacturer of machinery that exposes certain workers to toxins
- The lessor or owner of a building or property containing or emitting a toxin
- Companies that store toxins
- Manufacturers of safety equipment made to protect employees from certain toxins.
Hiring an experienced Ocala toxic torts lawyer can determine which parties are likely responsible for your toxic substance exposure.
Can You Get Compensation for Your Illness If You Suffered Exposure to Asbestos on the Job Decades Ago?
Most likely, the answer is yes. Mesothelioma is a potentially deadly lung disease that often results from extended exposure to the toxic substance asbestos. Countless older lawsuits have shown that for many decades, the asbestos industry wasn’t honest about the health risks associated with asbestos. As such, during that time, workers were unnecessarily exposed to this severe carcinogen.
Suppose you were diagnosed with mesothelioma and previously worked with or near asbestos. In that case, you have an extremely high chance of obtaining monetary damages for your diagnosis and injuries. Your compensation can come from the manufacturer or installer of the asbestos or through an insurer or victims’ compensation fund that took on liability for the at-fault company. Your Ocala toxic tort attorney will know which source of potential compensation applies to your claim.
How Do You Win a Toxic Tort Case?
A toxic tort case relies on three crucial points that the injured party or their Ocala toxic torts attorney must prove.
First, they must show that the substance in question has toxic properties.
Second, they must establish that they sustained harm.
Third, they must convince the court that their injury or illness directly resulted from exposure to the harmful substance.
It takes skill and experience to prove these points and have a successful case; that’s why nearly all people with toxic tort cases hire a qualified attorney to represent them in such a matter. There’s a lot at stake with toxic torts, and they don’t want to risk their case.
Are You Suffering an Illness or Injury Related to Exposure to a Toxic Substance? Get Help from an Ocala Toxic Torts Lawyer Today
Suppose you or someone you love was recently diagnosed with an injury or illness related to exposure to a toxic substance. In that case, you have rights under Florida laws and deserve compensation for your damages.
Steven A. Bagen & Associates, P.A. are here for you. Our legal team understands what it takes to obtain fair compensation for toxic tort claims whether they are individual or mass tort claims. Start your case today by scheduling a free, no-obligation case consultation. Contact us online or call (352) 377-9000.
1521 S Pine Avenue
Ocala, FL 34471
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