For the second time this week, Forbes’ Daniel Fisher shines a spotlight on the “wall of secrecy” that surrounds asbestos bankruptcy trusts.
Earlier this week, he posted about the Garlock order.
Today, he writes about a plaintiffs’ lawyer inside look at “institutionalized fraud” at the asbestos trusts.
“The trusts lawyers set up to pay the asbestos claims of bankrupt companies are platforms for ‘institutionalized fraud,’ a former plaintiff lawyer says, thanks to lax rules that allow claimants and their relatives to obtain money without firm evidence they were ever actually exposed to asbestos,” writes Fisher.
Fisher is citing a May 7 article in Mealey’s Litigation Report (subscription required) by Thomas M. Wilson, a former partner with the Cleveland plaintiff firm of Kelley & Ferraro. Wilson, “represented asbestos plaintiffs from 1999 to 2013 and helped set up some of the trusts he now accuses of facilitating fraud.”
Fisher continues, “With lists of work sites and asbestos product names conveniently provided online and no process for verifying most reports of exposure, attorney Thomas M. Wilson says, “The trusts are virtual factories for processing claims that wouldn’t pass muster in court.”