Secondary exposure to asbestos is also known as take home asbestos exposure. This type of asbestos exposure occurs when the primary exposure is brought home on clothes or spread to coworkers and family members through skin contact or inhalation of disturbed asbestos fibers.
When an family member is exposed to asbestos which was brought into the home they may also develop asbestos related lung cancer or mesothelioma decades after exposure.
This type of exposure and resulting illness can create liability on the employer or asbestos product manufacturers who created the asbestos exposure risk.
A “secondary exposure” happens after a primary exposure causes others to become exposed when take home the asbestos. There are many types of secondary asbestos exposure, which can include:
- Laundering contaminated clothes
- Touching an individual whose skin, clothes, hair or belongings have been contaminated
- Entering environments contaminated by a primary exposure victim, such as a restaurant booth
How Are Secondary Exposure Lawsuits Formed?
Unlike a primary asbestos exposure case, secondary exposure incidents may be much more difficult to prove. However, a recent California Supreme Court opinion ruled that victims of asbestos exposure in the home have legal rights to sue the responsible employer or product manufacturer.
Detailed work history of the primary asbestos exposure victim will need to be gathered quickly. Secondary exposure cases require a strong legal team to demonstrate the factors needed to prove that a defendant is responsible for the exposure and resulting injury.
These cases are typically more favorable to the plaintiff when the injured parties are direct family members or have an expectation of encountering the primary exposure victim on a regular basis.
As an example, it would be difficult to allege that a one-time meeting with an insulation worker led to mesothelioma, which is the fault of the insulation employer.
However, a family that lived with the worker or a relative that the worker frequently visited after work can more directly trace their exposure to the employer’s actions.
These are just examples and guidelines, however. The strength of any secondary asbestos exposure lawsuit will depend on the available facts and the skill of the representative legal team to assemble those facts and present them in a compelling way.
If you or someone close to you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma or asbestos-related lung cancer, contact Mesowatch today. You will receive a free, confidential case evaluation.
Our team of nationwide best asbestos lawyers can determine how you were exposed and fight for justice to quickly obtain maximum compensation from all liable parties and trust funds.