WASHINGTON, D.C.—Harold Kim, executive vice president of the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform (ILR), made the following statement today applauding the House Judiciary Committee’s passage of the “Furthering Asbestos Claim Transparency (FACT) Act of 2013” (H.R. 982). The legislation would require asbestos personal injury settlement trusts authorized by federal bankruptcy law to disclose information on their claims on a quarterly basis and respond to information requests from parties to asbestos litigation.
“The asbestos compensation system should not allow fraud and abuse to drain the funds available to deserving claimants. Exploitation of the system also saddles solvent companies, their shareholders, and employees with paying unjust claims.
“Asbestos bankruptcy trusts have operated without adequate oversight for too long. Courts around the country have uncovered examples in which plaintiffs’ lawyers have filed inconsistent or fraudulent claims with multiple trusts and in the court system. The bipartisan FACT Act would discourage such wrongdoing.
“We commend the House Judiciary Committee for passing this important legislation, and urge both the House and Senate to swiftly follow suit.”
ILR seeks to promote civil justice reform through legislative, political, judicial, and educational activities at the national, state, and local levels.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations.