AFFF Lawsuit Update

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Picture of Researcher: Ariana Arce​

Researcher: Ariana Arce​

Picture of Journalist: Aaron Vivanco

Journalist: Aaron Vivanco

Picture of Editor: Daniela Polo

Editor: Daniela Polo

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AFFF Lawsuit Update

On the latest news from the Aqueous Film-Forming Foam (AFFF) Lawsuit, DC’s Attorney Generak Brian Schawlb announced that he is taking legal action against 3M, DuPont, and other 25 manufacturers of these products. He alleges that AFFF contains poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), better known as “forever chemicals,” that harmed his district’s drinking water supplies, public health, and natural resources.

The AFFF Foam Lawsuit claims that manufacturers knew that their products contain toxic chemicals, which have been associated with an increased risk of cancer and other adverse health effects among firefighters. Therefore, complainants are now fighting back through individual claims so that all these corporations will be held accountable. 

If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with different types of cancer due to exposure to these substances, reach out and contact us to see if you qualify for a legal action. 

What Is the Latest on the AFFF Foam Cancer Lawsuit?

The Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) for the AFFF Foam Lawsuit began in 2018 to handle all the cases. The decision was made due to the growing number of complaints that appeared in the US Legal System. Nearly 950 cases were filed just by early 2021, and this number has exponentially increased to date. The outcomes of these bellwether trials will set an expectation for future settlements. 

June 2023: 3M settles before the first AFFF lawsuit trial 

The statement released by 3M indicated that the company has agreed to pay public water suppliers up to $10.3 billion for 13 years as part of a settlement. This is in response to the detection of certain substances in drinking water nationwide. 

The trial regarding municipal water contamination cases was delayed due to a joint motion between the Plaintiff Leadership Committee and 3M. The motion stated that negotiations were ongoing and close to resolution, and the attorneys believed they best focus on settlement rather than trial preparations. 

In addition to the City of Stuart settlement, 3M Co. reached another agreement to pay as much as $12.5 billion to local governments for introducing PFAS into their water supplies. Only a portion of this financial settlement goes to the public water system contamination lawsuits. These Firefighting Foam settlement payouts will be distributed annually from 2024 to 2036.

Juries taking into account the resolution of claims made by municipalities and towns nationwide are considered good news for personal injury claims regarding potential health risks in the human body.

May 2023

The Environmental Working Group reported that the cost for the US Government to fully clean up the PFAS contamination of >50 military bases is estimated to be over $30 billion.

April 2023

Increased cancer rates facilitated the creation of the National Firefighter Registry for cancer by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. This initiative encourages the enrollment of firefighters diagnosed with different types of cancer to seek retribution.

March 2023 

The cases keep piling up in the District of South Carolina. A new case brought attention to the AFFF Lawsuit on March 2, 2023. A Texan individual, who served as a military firefighter in the Marine Corps, claims he developed prostate cancer due to his long-term occupational exposure to Firefighting Foam with PFAS chemicals.

With the increasing number of lawsuits, it is hoped that the judge will take the first steps toward a settlement for all parties involved in the class action lawsuit regarding cancer risk.

February 2023 

The number of pending cases in the MDL suddenly went up to 3,704. Judge Richard M. Gergelis set to make crucial decisions on Daubert motions, indicating that he will challenge the admissibility of scientific evidence. 

Finally, the date for the first bellwether trial, City of Stuart v. 3M Co., is set. The parties involved in the AFFF lawsuit should present their arguments on June 5, 2023. Although this is a water environmental contamination case, its rulings could impact the evidence presented in cancer lawsuits. 

January 2023 

Some of the defendants are claiming to be excluded from the first bellwether trial (City of Stuart v. 3M Co.) in June 2023, stating that the plaintiff’s scientific experts do not have adequate proof to make the connection between their products and the victims’ health issues. 

Until this date, 3,387 cases were included in the MDL in the District of South Carolina, presided over by Judge Richard M. Gergel. 

2022 Summary of the Firefighter Foam Lawsuits 

The year began with a total of 2,034 individual lawsuits in the AFFF MDL, indicating that the court workload in the District of South Carolina is continuously increasing, without settlement talks in sight. 

In addition, 3M, one of the main defendants, tried to bring up a government contract immunity argument in February 2022. Conversely, scientific research gained momentum, and a new study connected the PFAS in the Firefighting Foam with reduced bone mineral density. 

Plaintiffs in the MDL asked the court in June to be transparent about the communications between DuPont and Chemours Co., the two main corporations involved in the case. The plaintiffs alleged that DuPont created Chemours to get rid of liabilities in a fraudulent transfer; however, the defendants filed a response in opposition. 

The judge in charge of the AFFF Firefighting Foam Lawsuit MDL rejected 3M’s government contractor defense in September 2022. However, the company tried to claim immunity for liabilities related to its product. 

After 1 month, the court decided on the lawsuit for the first bellwether trial. It went for the City of Stuart v. 3M Company case, in which the city is seeking compensation for the damages to its water system, contaminated with PFAS-containing Firefighting Foam. 

Finally, the Firefighter Foam settlement mediator was selected in the person of Layn Phillips, a retired judge. Approximately 1,300 Firefighting Foam Cancer Lawsuits were added to the AFFF MDL by the end of 2022.

Are You Qualified for an AFFF Firefighting Foam Lawsuit?

To establish a valid case for a personal injury lawsuit, individuals seeking legal options must show consistent and prolonged exposure to PFAS through Firefighting Foam exposure. Meeting this requirement should not be difficult for occupations involving the frequent use of AFFF products, such as firefighters, military personnel, airport workers, and factory workers, among others.

If you have been exposed to forever chemicals in Firefighting Foam and have experienced any injuries or adverse effects, please contact Firefighting Foam Cancer Lawyers to discuss your situation.

The AFFF Lawyers can help you understand your situation and determine if you are eligible for compensation due to PFAS exposure from AFFF manufacturers, your employer, or other responsible companies or agencies.

This will help determine whether hiring an AFFF attorney is necessary to pursue a claim.

If you or someone you know has been exposed to PFAS from Toxic Firefighting Foam and has experienced related injuries or complications, you might be eligible for compensation through an AFFF lawsuit.

Evidence in Foam Class Action Lawsuit may include:

  • Medical records
  • Cancer diagnosis information
  • Employment records
  • History of AFFF exposure
  • Personal and witness testimony
  • Any other information validating the exposure to Firefighting Foam