Letters to the Editor

Castagno letter: U.S. Senate, pass H.R. 985

I’m the owner of a manufacturing business that deals with potentially dangerous chemicals every day. I know how to protect my employees against the risk of injury, yet, I can’t protect myself against fraudulent lawsuits based on legal theories concocted by fee-hungry trial lawyers.

The welding industry, which I participate in, was overwhelmed with thousands of lawsuits for overexposure to supposed toxic fumes. These came to a partial end after plaintiffs lost most of their cases at trial. But companies like mine still face lawsuits and million-dollar verdicts based on questionable evidence.

I’m urging the U.S. Senate to pass a law that will make it harder for trial lawyers to operate these types of shakedowns against businesses like mine. The U.S. House passed H.R. 985, the Fairness in Class Action Litigation and Furthering Asbestos Claim Transparency Act, but it remains stalled in the Senate. This bill would make it less profitable for lawyers to file frivolous class actions based on questionable evidence and will require clients get paid before plaintiff lawyers earn their fees. It will also help identify those who are trying to collect multiple payments over the same injury.

Please pass H.R. 985 now.

Leo Castagno, Rexburg

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