Published on October 11, 2022
When Joseph Skrzynski was diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma, he and his wife Deborah filed suit against Ford Motor Company, blaming the company for his exposure to asbestos-containing parts during the years that he was employed by Towne Lincoln Ford Mercury dealership in Orchard Park, New York. Though Ford does not dispute the presence of asbestos in their parts or the fact that it was a toxin, the company petitioned to have the case against it dismissed. The Supreme Court of the State of New York denied their motion for summary judgment.
Man’s Mesothelioma Blamed on Asbestos-Contaminated Parts
Mr. Skrzynski was diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma of the peritoneum at the age of 65. In his lawsuit, he points to his years working as a parts supply guy/delivery man for the dealership. He claims that he was exposed to dust containing asbestos when he opened boxes and handled Ford brakes and clutches, as well as from his proximity to mechanics performing brake and clutch jobs. His claim also cites his sweeping, cleaning, and maintenance duties.
In their response to the mesothelioma claim, Ford Motors did not dispute that asbestos is a toxin that can cause injuries, nor did it deny that Mr. Skrzynski worked with asbestos-containing friction products that it supplied. Their arguments centered on whether chrysotile asbestos caused risk as compared to amphibole asbestos and whether the victim’s proximity to their parts would have led to sufficient exposure to asbestos to cause his illness. They also suggested that his illness could have been caused by therapeutic radiation that he’d received and argued that the victim’s inclusion of punitive damages in his claim should be struck.
Court Rejects Each of Ford’s Arguments Against Mesothelioma Claim
After review of Ford’s arguments, the court noted that New York law requires that evidence be considered in the light most favorable to the plaintiff and that the mesothelioma victim had presented enough evidence to raise issues of fact that needed to be decided by a jury. They also refused to strike the punitive damages claim, saying that the issue should not be decided until after the trial.
If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma, the Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net can answer all your questions and provide invaluable guidance. Contact us today at 1-800-692-8608.
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Written by Terri Oppenheimer
Terri Heimann Oppenheimer is the head writer of our Mesothelioma.net news blog. She graduated from the College of William and Mary with a degree in English. Terri believes that knowledge is power and she is committed to sharing news about the impact of mesothelioma, the latest research and medical breakthroughs, and victims’ stories.
Learn more about and contact Terri