Paraquat is an herbicide that has been in use in the U.S. since 1962. We now know this weed killer can cause serious health problems in those who come into contact with it.
Have you developed health issues resulting from paraquat exposure? Or, have you lost a loved one as a result of them coming into contact with paraquat?
You may be eligible for compensation if so. You could join a paraquat mass tort case, along with many others who have taken legal action because of the harmful effects of this product.
At Jurewitz Law Group Injury and Accident Lawyers, we’re ready to discuss the details of your case with you. Our Southern California Paraquat attorneys can explain whether you have grounds to file a claim. If so, we’re prepared to offer dedicated representation. Call us today at (855) GET-ROSS for your free consultation.
What Is Paraquat?
Paraquat is a toxic chemical used as an herbicide. In the U.S., the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requires individuals to become certified applicators to use it because of the potential health risks.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), exposure to paraquat can result in such long-term health issues as:
- Heart, kidney, and/or liver failure
- Lung scarring
- Scarring of the esophagus, which can result in difficulty swallowing
Exposure to paraquat may also cause a wide range of acute health complications. Examples range from mild confusion to coma. Sometimes, exposure to paraquat results in death.
These aren’t necessarily the only complications paraquat may lead to. For instance, a study in the American Journal of Epidemiology explains how exposure to paraquat correlates with a high risk of developing Parkinson’s disease. Many paraquat mass tort lawsuits involve plaintiffs who have developed Parkinson’s disease or lost loved ones to this condition.
Seek medical care right away if you believe you’ve been exposed to paraquat. If you’ve developed health conditions you suspect resulted from paraquat exposure, you may be eligible for compensation.
How Does Paraquat Exposure Occur?
There are many ways in which a person might come into contact with paraquat. Living relatively near an area where someone has used or stored paraquat may be enough to result in health problems.
Those who use paraquat often apply it to control weed and grass growth. Paraquat could enter nearby water sources. Someone who works with paraquat may also be at risk of exposure due to defective protective gear or other such factors. Paraquat can be ingested or inhaled.
Seeking Compensation Due to Paraquat Exposure
Someone who has developed Parkinson’s disease or another health condition resulting from paraquat exposure may be entitled to financial compensation. This may include money for such losses as:
- Medical bills (including the cost of future medical care)
- Lost income and loss of earning potential
- Pain and suffering
The specific losses for which you may deserve compensation can depend on the nature of your case.
Paraquat exposure sometimes results in death. When this occurs, the surviving loved ones of a victim may seek compensation by filing a wrongful death claim or lawsuit.
What Is a Paraquat Mass Tort?
Filing a claim as part of a mass tort case is an option to consider if you believe you’re eligible for compensation due to paraquat exposure. Because numerous parties have developed similar health problems after exposure to this chemical, they may have a right to compensation through a group lawsuit.
When a product like paraquat harms many people in the same way, those individuals may sometimes combine their claims into a mass tort. Mass tort cases are often grouped together before one judge into a multi-district litigation (MDL). However, a mass tort is not the same as a class action lawsuit.
A class action lawsuit is just one case with many injured parties acting as the plaintiff. All the plaintiffs in a class action lawsuit are essentially the same entity for the purposes of their case. A single courtroom presides over the matter in a class action lawsuit. When the court arrives at a verdict, or the defendant or their insurer offers a settlement, it applies to all plaintiffs. That means each plaintiff only receives a portion of the settlement or damages.
Mass tort lawsuits are different. With a paraquat mass tort, your settlement will be separate from anyone else’s. This ensures you don’t have to split the payout you receive with any other injured parties.
Evidence Needed in a Paraquat Mass Tort Case
To receive compensation for paraquat exposure, you need to prove that the company knew about the potential adverse side effects exposure to the chemical but failed to warn potential users about them. You also need to prove that paraquat either caused or contributed to your health conditions. The evidence you might present to demonstrate you’re eligible for compensation can vary depending on the circumstances. Examples of evidence for a paraquat mass torts case include:
- Medical records showing a diagnosis that can be linked to paraquat exposure
- Documentation showing you worked in a setting where you were at risk of paraquat exposure
- Documentation showing you lived in an environment where paraquat exposure was possible
Begin saving any documentation you currently have that can support your case. Save your medical bills as well. Save documentation of your lost wages, too.
The documentation you save when preparing to file a paraquat claim can support your claim for a specific amount of compensation.
How Long Do You Have to File a Paraquat Mass Tort Claim?
In California, you have two years from the time you received a diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease or another paraquat-related condition to take legal action. You may waive your right to compensation if you don’t file a lawsuit by the deadline.
Speak With a Southern California Paraquat Mass Tort Attorney Today
Showing you deserve compensation because of a health condition you acquired due to paraquat exposure can be a complex process. At Jurewitz Law Group Injury and Accident Lawyers, our Southern California paraquat mass tort attorneys can handle all the tasks associated with pursuing the compensation you need, from investigating the link between your condition and paraquat exposure to gathering evidence to building your case while you focus on your health. Get started today by calling us at (855) GET-ROSS or by contacting us online for a free case review.