Louisiana Jury Hands Down $10.3 Million Plaintiff’s Verdict in Mesothelioma Lawsuit

A Louisiana state jury recently handed down a substantial verdict in a mesothelioma cancer lawsuit brought by a former longshoreman who claims he developed a serious form of lung cancer from years of asbestos exposure during the 1960s. The New Orleans jury found that defendants Ports America Gulfport Inc., Cooper T. Smith Stevedoring Co. Inc. and South African Marine Corp. were all responsible for the plaintiff’s mesothelioma diagnosis, and awarded the victim $10.3 million in total compensation for his injuries.

According to the asbestos cancer lawsuit, filed in Louisiana Civil District Court for the Parish of Orleans, the plaintiff developed mesothelioma from unloading raw asbestos from ships docked at the wharfs he worked from 1964 to 1968. The plaintiff further alleged that he came in contact with asbestos through second hand exposure from the work clothes his father would wear while working as a longshoreman himself.

The lawsuit alleged that the defendants knew or should have known about the dangers posed by asbestos and provided warning to the plaintiff and other workers. Instead, the lawsuit alleges, the defendants chose to ignore such information or condoned the concealment of such in order to continue with their business practice of selling asbestos and asbestos-containing products. As a result of the defendants’ negligence, the plaintiff developed mesothelioma and suffered serious injury.

Included in the jury’s award is more than $550,000 for past medical expenses, $4.3 million for past and future physical and mental pain and suffering, $3 million for past and future physical disability, and $2.5 million for past and future loss of enjoyment of life. Further, the verdict was important to the plaintiff to hold wrongdoers accountable for what he saw as the defendants assigning himself and other African American workers to some of the most deadly tasks working at the shipyard.

Asbestos was once commonly used in the shipping industry for its heat resistant properties and ability to be molded to fit a variety of applications. Unfortunately for many workers, the naturally occurring mineral is also carcinogenic and directly linked to developing mesothelioma. The disease is a rare form of cancer that commonly affects the thin linings of tissue surrounding vital organs such as the lungs and heart, as well as the abdominal cavity.

While nothing can undo the harm caused by a mesothelioma cancer diagnosis, victims and their surviving family members have the legal right to hold wrongdoers accountable in a court of law. By filing an asbestos cancer lawsuit, victims can recover compensation for their past and future medical expenses, lost income, and the pain and suffering of living with the disease.

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If you or a loved one were diagnosed with mesothelioma, contact our office to speak to one of our experienced mesothelioma attorneys about your situation. Our office can help investigate your case and determine if compensation can be sought from negligent parties to help pay for your medical treatment.


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