Mesothelioma in Pennsylvania

Recently, a case about mesothelioma in Pennsylvania was decided by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.  The court found that if you developed the occupational disease mesothelioma in Pennsylvania that you are able to file a common law claim against your employer.

Prior to this decision, an decided by lower courts in Pennsyslvania, was that if you worked in Pennsylvania and developed mesothelioma in Pennsylvania from occupational exposure, you could not bring a claim for mesothelioma in Pennsylvania against your employer.

This ruling allows employees to bring lawsuits for all latent exposure diseases against employers without the employer’s using the  Pennsylvania Workers’ mesothelioma, asbestos, mesothelioma cancerCompensation Act (“Act”) to bar the lawsuit.  The case facts –

  • John Tooey worked for Ferro Engineering (“Ferro”), a division of Oglebay-Norton Co. (“Oglebay”)
  • He was an industrial salesman of asbestos products from 1964 until 1982
  • During his employment he was exposed to asbestos dust
  • In December 2007, Tooey developed mesothelioma and died less than one year later
  • Spurgeon Landis worked for Alloy Rods, Inc. (“Alloy”), predecessor in interest to Chemetron Corp. (“Chemetron”), and ESAB Group, Inc. (“ESAB”)
  • He worked from 1946 until 1992
  • He was exposed to asbestos throughout his employment
  • In July 2007, was diagnosed with mesothelioma
  • Employer’s used the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act (“Act”) to defeat the lawsuits
  • Pennsylvania Supreme Court found that the a particular section of the Workers’ Compensation Act (“Act”) did not apply 303(a) of the Act, 77 P.S. § 481, does not apply
    • “For the reasons that follow, we conclude that claims for occupational disease which manifests outside of the 300-week period prescribed by the Act do not fall within the purview of the Act, and, therefore, that the exclusivity provision of Section 303(a) does not apply to preclude an employee from filing a common law claim against an employer.”

Asbestos fibers have been used in the manufacturing of a wide variety of industrial and household products in the United States and around the world.

For more on mesothelioma and asbestos, please visit the links below:


At the Gooch Law Firm, we pride ourselves on providing our clients reliable representation for even the most challenging cases. If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, contact our office at 1.844.329.5955.