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Former auto worker awarded $25M in mesothelioma lawsuit

November 28th, 2006

A court has ordered DaimlerChrysler AG to pay $20 million in damages to a former auto worker who filed a mesothelioma lawsuit against the automaker. Alfred D’Ulisse reached an earlier settlement with two other companies named in the lawsuit, which were required to each pay 10% of the total $25 million verdict. Daimler was ordered to pay the remaining 80%.

D’Ulisse worked as a brake repairman in Brooklyn, NY at an auto repair shop. He alleged in his lawsuit that he received a mesothelioma diagnosis due to asbestos exposure that occurred on the job. Asbestos, which is used in the manufacturing of brake pads, was once commonly used as an insulator and heat protector until a link between asbestos exposure and mesothelioma was established. The only know cause of mesothelioma symptoms is exposure to asbestos.

Daimler was only found 10% liable for D’Ulisse’s injuries, but was ordered to pay 80% of the damages in the case because the two other companies named in his mesothelioma lawsuit no longer exist. A jury found that the automaker continued using asbestos products in its cars even after the link between mesothelioma and asbestos was widely known. Because of this, the jury said that Daimler should be forced to pay the larger portion of the damages awarded in the case.

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