UC Law Journal


Gideon Mark


Millions of American workers have been exposed to asbestos on the job, resulting in serious illness or death. These workers and their survivors have been denied adequate, equitable, and efficient compensation under present remedial systems. This Comment begins by discussing the medical aspects of asbestos exposure. The Comment then examines the currently available remedial systems, workers' compensation and tort compensation. It then discusses the barriers to tort recovery: statutes of limitation, the state of the art defense, proof of causation, the government contract defense, and collateral estoppel. The Comment then analyzes the two current legislative responses in the Senate and the House of Representatives, finding good features in each house's bill. The Comment concludes that the only solution to the national problem of asbestos-related disease is the enactment of a federal compensation law, based on a compromise bill, that would establish adequate minimum standards for a workers' compensation program and would make this program the exclusive remedy for asbestos claimants.

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