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Chemical/Toxic Exposure

Chemical or Toxic Exposure Lawsuits

Chemical exposure lawsuits involve injuries that are caused either by prolonged exposure, repeated exposure, or exposure to dangerous levels of chemicals. These can happen in a variety of situations, and can result in serious injuries such as chemical burns, birth defects, and other conditions. Some common situations where chemical exposure can occur include:

  • Exposure to chemicals resulting from a spill, leak, or fire
  • Exposure resulting from the use of substances that are not approved by proper authorities (such as the use of an improper type of paint)
  • Work-related chemical exposures
  • Chemical exposures due to materials used in home construction or repair

While chemical exposure cases often involve some type of spill or leak, they can often occur in other situations. For instance, many clothes are recalled each year because they pose chemical exposure risks to consumers who purchase and wear them. An example of this is boots that have been treated with chemicals which may be harmful to the wearer.

Who can be Held Liable for Chemical Exposure Injuries?

Depending on the situation, different parties can be held liable for injuries that are caused by chemical exposure. In many cases, a person who is responsible for the safekeeping of the chemicals can be held liable if they were negligent in handling the chemicals or the chemical container. An example of this is a driver who is transporting dangerous chemicals. They may be held liable for chemical exposure injuries if their negligent or reckless driving results in a spill or chemical fire after a crash.

In other cases, the manager of a building or other property can be held liable if they fail to make the proper inspections or repairs that would remedy a dangerous chemical condition. Employers can also be held liable for similar conditions in a work environment.

It is worth noting that some chemical exposure injuries can take years to develop; proving such cases can sometimes be difficult, especially if the source of the chemicals has changed over time. However, liability can often still be determined using the input of expert witnesses and other similar information. 

What are the Remedies for Chemical Exposure Injuries?

Chemical exposure injuries can involve some fairly complex legal issues, and may require a lawsuit. In most chemical exposure lawsuits, the remedy will involve some form of monetary damages award. The damages will often cover losses such as medical expenses, hospital bills, lost work wages, loss of future earning capacity, and other damages such as those involving pain and suffering.

Many chemical exposure lawsuits are filed as class action suits if many persons are injured by the same cause or source.

Can I Sue for Toxic Exposure?

In toxic exposure cases, such as treated lumber or asbestos. finding those responsible can be difficult. Below is a general list of who might be responsible for causing mass injuries. Each can be a defendant, but may be sued under different legal theories and award size can vary.

Common toxic exposure defendants include:

    • Manufacturers – Manufacturers are those who actually create the chemical or toxic compound. These individuals may be culpable simply by virtue of creating and unleashing a toxic substance into the general population.
    • Processors – Processors are those who apply the chemical to the product, such as those who treat the raw lumber with chromated copper arsenate (CCA) or sprayed asbestos into ceiling insulation.
    • Distributors – Distributors are often the middlemen in the retail end of the process. Still, they may be liable for poorly inspecting the goods they put into the stream of commerce.
    • Retailers – The retailers are the ones who sell directly to consumers. While it may seem unfair to include them in this list, bear in mind that every party that may potentially be liable must be included to preserve a recovery. Plus, it is also entirely possible the retailer was partially or wholly responsible for releasing a toxic substance.

Chemical exposure lawsuits can involve various laws and may require the help of an attorney. It may be in your best interests to hire a personal injury lawyer in your area if you need help with a legal case. Your attorney can provide you with advice and guidance for your claim. Call our office today at 212-994-7777 or complete the convenient online contact form to set up a consultation.