Paraquat Litigation August 2023 Update
Beginning in the 1950s, Paraquat has been used as an herbicide in the US. This pesticide has proved very dangerous, and if directly ingested can lead to death. Long-term exposure to this chemical, however, has led to diagnoses of Parkinson’s disease in individuals.
Plaintiffs in these cases have claimed that the manufacturer of Paraquat failed to adequately warn individuals about the dangers of long-term exposure. Although the results in studies are varied, there is a strong correlation between individual exposure and eventual Parkinson’s diagnosis.
Paraquat Litigation Update August 2023
There have been many lawsuits against Paraquat filed individually, but beginning in April of 2021 the class action lawsuit judge held an initial conference with all parties’ counsel. She announced that she would set a date for November of 2022 for the first bellwether trial.
Over the next two years, the Multi-District Litigation (MDL) gained members until August of 2023 when the numbers reached over 4,400 members. By the end of the month, the judge in the MDL decided to admit the scientific causation evidence expert witness during the trial after holding a hearing to determine if his credentials were valid.
The hearing which will address the expert witness, known as Daubert motion, was scheduled to begin on August 21st and continue through the 24th of the month. These proceedings will be remotely accessible via phone conference so that all parties can attend and be privy to the hearing.
Through this hearing, the judge is trying to determine the validity of the plaintiff’s key expert witness and his opinion. The defendants have alleged that this and other expert witnesses used during this trial have faced exclusions in cases before, so their credentials are in question. The defendants have stated that Parkinson’s is largely a genetic disorder and so isn’t caused by their product, Paraquat.
As a result, the opinions and medical statements made by the plaintiff’s expert witnesses hold significant weight in the judge’s verdict in this case.
Who Are the Defendants in This Multi-District Litigation (MDL)?
Manufacturers of Paraquat are the defendants in this litigation. They include Chevron, Syngenta, and its predecessor Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI). These companies are being sued by plaintiffs for, among other things, manipulating internal data and misrepresenting facts.
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Paraquat’s Link to Parkinson’s
Parkinson’s Disease affects the brain’s ability to control motor function throughout the body. This neurologic disorder is caused by the deterioration of specific brain cells which can be affected by the chemicals in Paraquat.
Although initial studies determining the link between Paraquat and Parkinson’s only weakly confirmed the connection between them, later studies have definitively shown that exposure to this herbicide can lead to this neurological disease.
These studies illustrated that Paraquat causes Parkinson’s in some patients because the process it uses to kill plants, oxidative stress, affects brain cells in the same way. This deterioration directly affects the production of dopamine in the body, and without adequate dopamine production, motor signals cannot be transmitted to receptors.
What Kind of Settlement Can You Get from a Paraquat Lawsuit?
If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s after exposure to Paraquat, you may be entitled to compensation. The types of settlement vary between cases, but most generally compensation is determined in one of two categories: economic and non-economic. Economic damages include:
- Medical bills
- Rehab treatments
- Home modification
- Medical equipment
- Lost wages
- Household care
The second type of damages that can affect your settlement are non-economic and can include:
- Emotional distress
- Mental anguish
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
Working with experienced personal injury attorneys can help you navigate all the different aspects of your case. They can also help you determine the best way to seek damages as part of the current Paraquat MDL.
Contact Van Law Firm Today for Your Consultation
If you have suffered as a result of exposure to Paraquat or Gramoxone, the most common trade name for Paraquat, contact one of the experienced attorneys at the Van Law Firm. Our legal team will help guide you through the process of filing a suit, and we work on contingency. That means that we don’t get paid unless your case wins.
If you call us today, we can schedule a free consultation with our team so you can learn all your options. We know how difficult it is to worry about a legal case when you’re also suffering from injury or illness, so let us fight on your behalf. We’ll work hard to earn you the highest settlement and justice for your case. Contact us today!
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