Mississippi Supreme Court has indicated to Owens Corning that it cannot sue tobacco companies for the role they may have played in patients’ conditions.
The manufacturing company was hoping to claim back billions that it has already paid out to mesothelioma victims by claiming that tobacco companies also played a part in the onset of the cancer. Although smoking can increase the risk of contracting mesothelioma, it is not the cause of the disease – mesothelioma is the result of exposure to asbestos fibers.
Earlier this year, the Supreme Court ruled that Owens Corning could not sue the tobacco companies as there was no conclusive evidence to show that the tobacco companies were in any way directly responsible for the injuries or deaths of workers who had filed lawsuits. Without this evidence the courts were unable to put any of the blame for injury, disease or death at the door of the tobacco companies, and therefore any lawsuits that have been filed against Owens Corning, whether already settled or still ongoing, will still be the company’s responsibility.
This ruling means that Owens Corning will not be able to recover any of the billions of dollars it has already paid out, and will be fully responsible for settling ongoing and future claims from worker who have been affected through exposure to asbestos.