After two weeks of in-person trial, a Los Angeles County jury awarded a 64-year-old woman diagnosed with mesothelioma $43 million on May 20, 2022. This verdict is among the largest seen in recent years. The woman, who was diagnosed with mesothelioma in 2019, blamed Algoma Hardwoods Inc. for her condition.
According to the evidence presented, the 64-year-old California woman never directly worked with the toxic substance known as asbestos. However, her husband used to work in a capacity that exposed him to asbestos. He worked with doors that contained asbestos. The asbestos dust from the doors got stuck in his skin, hair, and clothes, and he brought this dust home. Even though the woman sometimes assisted her husband on-site, most of the asbestos exposure she suffered was from the asbestos dust her husband brought home. According to a family representative, the 64-year-old woman suffered asbestos exposure while doing her husband’s laundry. Also, just being inside the home exposed her to asbestos.
From 1977 to 1980, Algoma made fire-resistant asbestos-contaminated doors. The jury found the company 50% liable for the 64-year-old woman’s mesothelioma. The jury then assessed comparative fault against other defendants. The following is a breakdown of the percentage of responsibility each defendant was awarded;