Monday, November 27, 2006
According to this report in the Belleville News Democrat -- Asbestos lawsuits drop third year in a row -- filings of asbestos-related lawsuits have declined dramatically in Madison County, Illinois. The number dropped from 953 in 2003, to 477 in 2004, to 375 in 2005; and to 287 so far this year. Madison County is often regarded as a magnet jurisdiction for mass tort plaintiffs. The president of the Illinois Civil Justice League, a tort-reform organization, offered two reasons for the drop: judges who are making it harder for out-of-state plaintiffs to file in Madison County, and the fact that potential asbestos defendants are running out of money. A plaintiffs' lawyer offered a third explanation, that with time, there are simply fewer asbestos cases to be found.