7/22/10 – Wis. Supreme Court Denies Asbestos Death Claim

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July 27th, 2010

The Wisconsin State Supreme Court says a brake maker wasn’t negligent in a machinist’s death.

Walter Tatera, a former Hales Corners machine shop worker, died of cancer in 2004. His estate sued FMC Corp., a Milwaukee brake manufacturer, alleging disks the company sent to Tatera’s shop contained asbestos and caused his cancer.

A Milwaukee judge found the company was not liable or negligent in Tatera’s death. A state appeals court last year, however, ruled FMC could be sued for negligence.

The Supreme Court reversed that ruling in a 4-3 decision. The court says FMC’s conduct didn’t amount to affirmative negligence.

Jill Rakauski, an attorney for Tatera’s estate, says she’s disappointed and believes the estate should be allowed to make a claim.

Tom Boudreau Comment  – I would have to assume this individual did receive workers compensation benefits but the family felt the company was negligent and that they should have had the opportunity to make a liability claim for additional benefits – such as pain and suffering which could amount to a much larger award.   WI has a strong history of keeping work injuries and resulting statutory benefits under workers compensation coverage, and not allowing suits under liability policies. 
Best Regards,
Tom Boudreau

Read more: http://www.insurancejournal.com/news/midwest/2010/07/22/111791.htm#ixzz0utDoJ41L

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