Invalidating 'Every Exposure' Theory

Law360, New York (July 8, 2011, 3:08 PM EDT) -- Plaintiffs in mesothelioma cases typically sue numerous defendants alleging that asbestos attributable to each contributed to causing the fatal cancer. To support casting their net to include defendants to whose products plaintiffs had only de minimus exposures, plaintiffs’ experts regularly opine that each and every exposure to asbestos above levels found in the ambient “background” air is a substantial factor in causing the disease.

This expansive theory of causation was first proffered in asbestosis cases in the early 1970s and has become a principal driver in...
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