Written By: Joe Lahav, Esquire,
Last modified: June 14, 2021

Filing an Asbestos Claim in Louisiana

Workers have been subjected to asbestos exposure in both small and large cities in Louisiana, including New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Lafayette and Slidell. Those who develop mesothelioma and other diseases may be eligible to seek compensation through personal injury lawsuits and trust fund claims. Families who lost a loved one to mesothelioma may qualify to file a wrongful death lawsuit. 

Veterans of the U.S. armed forces have been exposed to asbestos at Louisiana shipyards and military bases. For example, veterans may have been exposed at NSA New Orleans Navy Base, Marine Corps Support Facility in New Orleans and Camp Beauregard Army Base in Pineville, Louisiana.

Unlike most other states, which tend to offer a two-year statute of limitations for asbestos claims, Louisiana offers just one year from the time of diagnosis to file a claim for both personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits. This means you may have less time to file a claim in Louisiana. 

But don’t be discouraged if you’ve already passed that time frame, because an experienced mesothelioma attorney may be able to file your claim in another state.

You should not rely on any information herein to make a determination about your legal rights. Please speak to an attorney licensed to practice law in your area to best understand your legal options.

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Asbestos Exposure in Louisiana

With no naturally occurring asbestos within the state, occupational exposure is likely the main source of asbestos exposure in Louisiana. 

The industries in Louisiana most known for asbestos exposure include oil refining and shipbuilding. Workers have also been exposed in power plants, chemical plants and schools. 

Demolition crews who worked on homes and buildings damaged by Hurricane Katrina were exposed to asbestos through cleanup efforts. First responders, firefighters and police were also exposed in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

Industries in Louisiana Known for Asbestos Exposure
  • Oil refining
  • Shipbuilding
  • Salt mining
  • Chemical production
  • Power generation
  • Manufacturing
  • Demolition

Law Firms Practicing in Louisiana

Lawyers at national mesothelioma law firms are licensed to practice throughout the U.S., and at least one of them has an office in Louisiana. Nemeroff Law has an office in New Orleans, and the firm has a reputation for securing some of the highest verdicts and settlements in Louisiana. 

Nationwide Mesothelioma Law Firms

  • Weitz & Luxenberg
  • Simmons Hanly Conroy
  • Cooney & Conway
  • Nemeroff Law
  • Galiher DeRobertis & Waxman

If you are unable to travel, one of the perks of selecting a national law firm is they will typically travel to you. They regularly travel long distances to meet with clients and record depositions, and often don’t charge clients for these travel expenses.

Notable Asbestos Verdicts Awarded to Louisiana Workers

  • $10.3 Million in 2020: After a six-week trial, a New Orleans jury awarded $10.3 million to Henry Pete, who claimed he developed mesothelioma from exposure to asbestos while working as a longshoreman. Pete was represented by Simmons Hanly Conroy.
  • $7.55 Million in 2011: A Louisiana man was awarded $7.55 million in a mesothelioma lawsuit involving asbestos product manufacturers John Crane and Haveg. Thomas Kenney claimed he developed mesothelioma from exposure to John Crane’s asbestos gaskets and Haveg’s asbestos pipes while working at Tenneco.
  • $6 Million in 2006: The surviving family of an insulation worker who died of lung cancer was awarded more than $6 million by a Louisiana jury in 2006 in a wrongful death lawsuit.
  • $4.5 Million in 2007: A millwright’s family was awarded more than $4.5 million in a mesothelioma lawsuit involving asbestos exposure in a paper mill located in West Monroe, Louisiana. Walter Graves filed a personal injury lawsuit against the mill after developing mesothelioma, and his family continued the lawsuit when he died of the disease in 2000.
  • $4.35 Million in 2013: The surviving family of a mechanic who died of mesothelioma was awarded $4.35 million by a Louisiana court jury in 2013. The mechanic worked at three Entergy facilities in Louisiana from 1967 through 2005, where his family claims he was exposed to asbestos that caused him to develop mesothelioma.
  • $3.6 Million in 2006: A Louisiana jury awarded $3.6 million to the family of a laborer who died of asbestos-related laryngeal cancer in 2001. The surviving family of Alfred Watts claimed he developed the cancer as a result of asbestos exposure he encountered while working for Hebert Brothers Engineers Inc. from 1963 to 1994, during which time he performed contract work at The Dow Company.

Louisiana Asbestos Laws and Regulations

Louisiana employs federal and state laws to regulate asbestos and prevent exposure among residents. It also takes federal regulations around asbestos in schools a step further with its own regulations, including provisions for training and accreditation. The state has set a statute of limitations for asbestos lawsuits at one year from the date of diagnosis of an asbestos-related disease, which is shorter than the two-year national average.

Regulations Governing Asbestos in Louisiana
  • Louisiana Revised Statutes Title 30, Section 2341: Outlines the Louisiana School Abatement Act
  • Louisiana Environmental Regulatory Code Title 33, Part III: Defines air quality standards for asbestos in Louisiana
  • Louisiana Administrative Code Chapter 27: Guidelines on how to manage asbestos in schools and state buildings.
  • Louisiana Administrative Code Chapter 51, Subchapter M, Section 5151: Defines the emission standard for asbestos, including definitions and standards for demolition and renovation
State Departments Overseeing Louisiana’s Asbestos Laws
  • Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality

The Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality oversees asbestos regulations in the state, including regulations that apply to school and state buildings. It also oversees training and accreditation of abatement workers. Louisiana is unique in that it requires an additional two-hour asbestos regulations course in order to become an accredited asbestos abatement worker in the state.

Louisiana Laws Affecting Asbestos Lawsuits
  • Louisiana Laws Civil Code Section 3492: Defines the statutes of limitations for personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits in Louisiana
  • Louisiana Laws Civil Code Section 2323: Defines Louisiana’s negligence laws
  • Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Law: Since 1975, the Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Law has listed mesothelioma as an occupational disease, which has often had the effect of requiring those with mesothelioma to file workers’ compensation claims instead of product liability claims if their exposure occurred after 1975.

Louisiana’s workers’ compensation laws may impact your case depending on when you were exposed to asbestos. Make sure you find a Louisiana-licensed mesothelioma attorney with experience applying these laws to asbestos claims.

This experience taught me that cancer is a constant fight. If it’s not the side effects of treatment or the insurance company fighting you on everything, it’s suddenly learning you have a new doctor. But what keeps me going is my desire to live and be there for my family. I won’t let cancer take that from me.
Kasie Coleman
Peritoneal mesothelioma survivor from Louisiana
Things happen to people in life, things that might not be pleasurable. So you deal with them as best as you can. A lot of people get sick. I’ve done my best to not let [mesothelioma] become our focus or consume my family.
Randy Jarreau
Peritoneal mesothelioma survivor from Louisiana

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