Statutes of Repose and Asbestos
Publicity is growing in regular media regarding the Indiana Supreme Court knocking out the state’s construction statute of reposed based on state law principles of due process and access to courts. An example is here from an April 4, 2016 article in the IndyStar. This follows on 2014 events in which the Illinois legislature ended Illinois’ counterpart statute.
Defense lawyers may reflexively rue these repeals, but as defendants exit the tort system, the remaining defendants may welcome having more co-defendants in the cases. After all, mesotheliomas in the US remain over 3,000 per year, with over 2,000 lawsuits per year. Some day some (but not all) defendants may look back and wonder why they ever supported statutes of repose. Thus, another example of “be careful what you wish for.”