Toxicology Experts & California Courthouse Lawsuits

A settlement has been struck in a group of lawsuits filed by 190 people who claimed they were injured by working around asbestos and other dangerous materials during remodeling at the Salinas, CA, Courthouse. The plaintiffs – courthouse employees, attorneys, a judge and others who worked in the north courthouse wing – all will receive compensation under the omnibus settlement reached during the past few months, an attorney said Thursday. The large number of plaintiffs and defendants and the two-year duration of the construction work being scrutinized were complicating factors. Attorneys were just beginning their work with expert witnesses.

Terms of the settlement were confidential, though one estimate put the total around $5 million.
The settlement covers plaintiffs in three separate lawsuits, later rolled into a single case being heard by Judge Barry Hammer of San Luis Obispo County. The case was moved earlier this year to Santa Clara County at the request of the main defendants, a pair of construction management companies. The courthouse workers and other plaintiffs claimed they were exposed to asbestos, toxic dust and other hazardous materials that were released into the air by demolition work in 2005 and 2006.

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