Toxic tort litigation is an important area of personal injury law which allows those who are exposed to toxic chemicals to recover for the resulting ill effects of those chemicals. Toxic torts can arise in a variety of circumstances, including industrial sites, military bases, and even our own homes. Toxic tort litigation frequently involves environmental factors, particularly pertaining to the purity of drinking water sources.
The biggest example of a toxic tort in recent years, of course, is the Deepwater Horizon oil spill of 2010. That accident, massive as it was, has resulted in a great deal of litigation, not only for those who were injured or killed in the accident, but also for those who suffered economic losses caused by the accident.
There has been some lash back recently about an article published in Politico Magazine which essentially downplays BP’s role in causing environmental damage to the Gulf of Mexico. Aside from the question of whether or not BP was behind the op-ed, some critics have pointed out that the damage wreaked by oil spills of that size extends far beyond the immediate region where the incident occurred and takes decades to resolve itself. Damage to marine life and to human life resulting from spills of this magnitude is far reaching and deserves a far-reaching response not only environmentally, but also legally.
Toxic tort litigation is not necessarily easy to pursue. Oftentimes such litigation involves class-action status in which hundreds and even thousands of plaintiffs might be involved, as well as issues concerning causation. Cases which grow to be large, unsurprisingly, can be expensive and time-consuming, so it is important for plaintiffs to work with an experienced attorney.
Source: International Business Times, “Politico BP Oil Spill Article Raises Eyebrows; Magazine And Oil Company Deny Pay-For-Play,” Christopher Zara, Oct. 22, 2014.