Dear Mesothelioma Clients,
Your help is urgently needed to prevent Congress from stripping away your rights as a victim of mesothelioma. Senate leaders are promising a vote on the Asbestos Bailout Bill in January.
Once again, Congress has announced that it will try to pass an Asbestos Bailout Bill that helps powerful special interests at the expense of the victims suffering from mesothelioma.
The so-called “Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act” – known as the “FAIR” bill – is underfunded, unworkable, unconstitutional and unfair. Numerous studies report that the trust fund created by the bill would delay and deny help for you and thousands of other victims of mesothelioma.
To help stop this harmful legislation, please take part in the following:
1) Call your Senator and tell them to oppose the “FAIR” bill (S.852). You can reach the main switchboard at (202) 224-3121. Tell them your state and they will connect you to your Senators’ offices. Tell them your story and why you want them to oppose the bill.
If you have access to the internet you can send a message to your Senators by going to http://action.peopleoverprofits.org/action/
2) Sign the attached petition and have your family and friends sign it too. Then return it to our office at 180 Miaden Lane, New York, NY 10038 by January 6th. We’ll make sure your petition is delivered your Senators. The petition alerts Congress to the damage S. 852 will cause people suffering with mesothelioma.
Call your Senators and sign the petition now!
Your lawyers at Weitz & Luxenberg
Tell your Senators What’s Wrong with the So-called “FAIR” Act….
The FAIR Act is unworkable, underfunded, unconstitutional and UNFAIR
All people with pending cases – including those with settlement agreements and court dates – would be forced to start all over again in the fund, in most cases delaying compensation for 2 or more years.
Some victims of asbestos-related lung cancer and other cancers would receive NO compensation and others would receive very little.
The “one-size-fits-all” approach of the FAIR Act would prevent many victims of mesothelioma from recovering enough to pay for life-saving medical advances – which they currently can receive through the courts or in settlement agreements.
Any money you would get from the fund would be reduced by the amount of money you’ve already received through settlements and court judgments.
The bill does not make clear who will pay – or how much. And if there is not enough money, victims will still not be able to go back to court without a long delay.
PETITION TO U.S. SENATE
BY MESOTHELIOMA VICTIMS AND THEIR FAMILY MEMBERS
IN OPPOSITION TO S. 852
We, the undersigned, hereby petition the United States Senate on behalf of mesothelioma victims.
We are mesothelioma victims and families of mesothelioma victims who are opposed to Senate bill 852, the “FAIR ACT.”
Mesothelioma is an always fatal cancer caused by asbestos exposure. In many instances, we are not only suffering from a painful and terminal asbestos caused cancer but our families face many hundreds of thousands of dollars, or more, in extraordinary medical bills and wage loss.
Although the Bill’s Senate sponsors intend to help victims, this Bill only helps a few large companies at the expense of mesothelioma victims and most businesses.
In addition to our opposition, we observe that the bill is also opposed by most insurance companies, numerous businesses, and most labor unions.
The reasons we oppose S. 852 are as follows:
(1) The bill does not provide a reliable mechanism for providing compensation quickly to dying mesothelioma victims. If anything, the Bill backtracks on protections already promised by the Senate in an earlier version which passed in the Judiciary Committee with substantial bipartisan support.
(2) If the Trust Fund runs out of money, as predicted by some experts, the Bill does not contain reliable sunset provisions. Mesothelioma victims will be left in limbo.
(3) In many instances, the compensation for mesothelioma victims is far less than victims’ actual damages and far less than victims currently receive in the judicial system.
(4) The Bill allows companies to reneg on settlement commitments and settlement trust amounts already promised and set aside for mesothelioma victims and their families.
(5) Although it is universally agreed that mesothelioma victims are by far the most seriously injured victims of asbestos exposure, most of the S. 852 compensation will go to people who have much less serious conditions.
(6) The Bill does not have reliable, transparent funding mechanisms. Instead, it sets up a complex system of administrative challenges and court challenges that will allow companies to contest their funding obligations.
(7) Contrary to prior Senate commitments contained in earlier versions of the Bill, this Bill will stop the current system of compensation before an up and running reliable system is established to take its place.
(8) This Bill was written to benefit a group of companies who have spent a fortune lobbying for its passage to the detriment of other companies and insurers who have promised to fight the Bill in the courts. This will result in further delays all to the further detriment of mesothelioma victims.