The House of Representatives approved H.R. 982, the Furthering Asbestos Claim Transparency Act (the FACT Act)by a vote of 221-199. Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and Regulatory Reform, Commercial and Antitrust Law Subcommittee Vice-Chairman Blake Farenthold (R-Texas), chief sponsor of the FACT Act, praised the bill's passage which will strengthen the asbestos trust system by promoting transparency, reducing fraud and enhancing the recoveries of victims.
Chairman Goodlatte: "The FACT Act is common-sense legislation that I was pleased to bring to the House Floor today. The legislation promotes transparency, discourages fraud, and protects legitimate victims of asbestos through a quarterly disclosure requirement. The disclosure requires the same type of information that would be contained in public state court documents and is designed to be simple, safeguard the privacy of victims, and ensure that duplicitous and conflicting claims are detected and stopped. If asbestos trusts are to have assets available to pay victims tomorrow, Congress must take steps to assure that trust assets and victims of asbestos are better protected today."
Subcommittee Vice-Chairman Farenthold: "The FACT Act protects asbestos exposure victims by ensuring there are funds available to compensate those whose symptoms are not apparent yet. It is unfortunate unscrupulous attorneys are gaming the system and double dipping with both state and federal claims. The FACT Act strikes a balance between transparency and privacy and should improve the asbestos trusts system. It will also help all victims of asbestos exposure get the financial support they need."