Senate to Review Asbestos Legislation

May 21, 2003

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) inserted draft asbestos litigation management legislation in the Congressional Record May 19 for review by Senate colleagues. The purpose of a final bill, expected to be introduced later this week, is to reportedly create a fair and efficient system to resolve claims of victims for bodily injury caused by asbestos exposure.

“The National Association of Independent Insurers (NAII) applauds Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Hatch for working hard to develop bipartisan compromise legislation to resolve the asbestos litigation crisis. NAII supports enactment of reform legislation because asbestos litigation is harming businesses, insurers and the economy,” Carl Parks, senior vice president of government relations, commented.

“NAII looks forward to a final bill that will include provisions such as medical criteria that would bring some control to asbestos litigation. Asbestos litigation reform is about conserving scarce resources to care for people who have become ill from asbestos exposure and it’s also about protecting businesses and preserving jobs.

“NAII strongly supports provisions to protect peripheral/tertiary defendants who are unfairly dragged into asbestos litigation. Small businesses should not have their futures jeopardized because they once sold products that contained asbestos, or installed such products, or owned buildings where asbestos was installed,” Parks added.

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