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Michigan state lawmakers recently passed legislation that could severely restrict access to justice for mesothelioma cancer victims seeking their day in court to recover vital compensation and hold asbestos companies responsible for their dangerous products. The 58-51 vote, along party lines, passed the Asbestos Bankruptcy Trust Claims Transparency Act as a means to prevent so-called “double dipping” by plaintiffs seeking to recover the compensation they need to pay for medical bills and lost wages.

In some states, mesothelioma cancer victims have the option to file administrative claims with asbestos bankruptcy trusts set up by companies wthat sought federal bankruptcy protections but still needed to fund settlements for future liabilities. Michigan is one of numerous states that recently passed similar legislation forcing plaintiffs in civil lawsuits against solvent parties to disclose whether or not they have filed claims with any asbestos bankruptcy trusts.

Unfortunately for plaintiffs, the law also has another built-in component designed to deny and delay otherwise meritorious claims Under the bill, if the defendant in an asbestos action identified an asbestos trust claim not previously identified that the defendant thinks the plaintiff could file, the defendant could request a stay of the proceeding.

After receiving a mesothelioma diagnosis you might be considering treatment options available. For those interested in cutting edge and alternative treatment options, clinical trials might be a choice. Before signing up for a trial, it is important to understand the potential risks and benefits associated with clinical trials.

What is a clinical trial?

Clinical trials use human subjects to test new medicines and experimental treatment options in a structured and safe environment. The trials are a live setting way for scientists to test new technology, medicines or a combination of both. Clinical trials for mesothelioma patients test drug and other therapy approaches to see if certain therapy treatments are more effective than others. Trials can last for weeks, months or years depending on what is being tested. Often the trials are sponsored by a government agency, but pharmaceutical companies frequently fund clinical trials.

Michigan Congresswoman Debbie Dingell recently introduced legislation to protect children from the hidden dangers in makeup products recently pulled from store shelves after news investigations revealed the contaminated merchandise was circulating in popular stores. The legislation, dubbed the Children’s Product Warning Label Act of 2018, would impose new labeling requirements on all cosmetic products marketing to children and inform consumers whether or not the items have been properly vetted.

If passed, the Children’s Product Warning Label Act of 2018 would require cosmetics companies to include a warning label that the product has not been evaluated for asbestos contamination unless certain testing is performed. This includes the manufacturer attesting in writing to the Secretary of the FDA that the source of the cosmetic products comes from an asbestos free-mine, and that they demonstrated to FDA that the product is asbestos-free using the transmission electron microscopy method.

“Parents across the country should have the peace of mind in knowing that the cosmetics they buy for their children are safe. Yet we were all stunned when the retailer Claire’s pulled 17 products from their shelves after asbestos was found in cosmetics marketed to children, including glitter and eye shadow,” said Dingell. “No child should be exposed to asbestos through the use of common, everyday products.”

Mesothelioma does not affect only the patient: It can have a ripple effect through an entire family. It often falls to family members to care for their loved one who has been diagnosed with the disease. Caring for a family member who has mesothelioma requires immeasurable compassion, strength and patience.

As the relative of someone who has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, you may be feeling overwhelmed. You may be wondering how you can even begin to care for your loved one in their time of need. Fortunately, there are several ways to help care for a family member who has mesothelioma.

1. Offer your support

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