Mesothelioma News: January 2016

Posted on Monday, October 24th, 2016 at 10:23 am    

Mesothelioma News: January 2016

The Mesothelioma News series will highlight significant events that took place in 2016 in respect of mesothelioma.

Furthering Asbestos Claims Transparency (FACT) Act

During week one of January 2016, the U. S House of Representatives approved law which included the Furthering Asbestos Claims Transparency (FACT) Act. The Act set out stiffer requirements for asbestos exposure victims who were seeking compensation through the legal system. There have been two other attempts passed through the House of Representatives. While this Act was the first of its kind to be attached to the Fairness in Class Action Litigation Act (also known as the H.R. 1927).

Furthering Asbestos Claims Transparency (FACT) Act – Requirements

Most noteworthy is how the law put a burden on asbestos exposure victims to provide more personal information in respect of their claim. While the additional information would not be hard to provide, the Act requires that this information be made public. Some of this information includes:

  • Work history
  • Asbestos exposure history
  • The basis for compensation
  • Personal data including part of their Social Security numbers

Supporters of the asbestos exposure victims voiced their disapproval of the FACT Act. They felt that the Act exposed victims to identity theft and scam artists by publicizing the victim’s personal information. Therefore making them victims of such crimes. Furthermore, supporters believed the Act would add delays in the already delayed compensation process. Rather, the current process was said to arrive too late for seriously ill victims.

Supporters of the FACT Act felt that the Act was made to protect the trust funds from fraudulent claims. Most of all, they felt that the Act was designed as a protection from claimants whose claim amounts were inflated.

By January 13, 2016 the FACT Act had moved to the U. S Senate and was measured as having an eleven percent (11%) chance of enactment. It was noted that this was to be the first time such an Act had been moved to the Senate where the majority were Republicans.

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