Parkinson’s disease is a debilitating neurodegenerative disease that primarily affects older adults. While the exact cause of Parkinson’s is unknown, research suggests that both genetic and environmental factors can contribute to its development.
One environmental risk includes exposure to herbicides, in particular paraquat. Without proper protective gear, people who worked with or near this industrial weed killer were at greater risk of paraquat exposure and its dangerous effects.
You may be eligible to file a paraquat Parkinson’s lawsuit and seek compensation for your medical bills and other damages if you meet certain criteria, such as:
- You are a certified paraquat applicator who handled paraquat as a mixer, loader, or applicator
- You lived near an area treated with paraquat and could have been exposed through drift, overspray, or groundwater contamination
- You were diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease
Qualifying for a paraquat lawsuit requires a lot of evidence and knowledge of the legal system. Retaining the services of an experienced mass tort lawyer can significantly improve your chances of a positive outcome.
What is Paraquat and How Dangerous is It?
Paraquat is a toxic industrial herbicide sold under the brand name Gramoxone and manufactured by chemical companies like Syngenta and Chevron Corporation.
Exposure through skin contact, ingestion, or inhalation can lead to paraquat poisoning, which can cause immediate life-threatening symptoms. Research indicates paraquat exposure may have long-term health effects as well.
Paraquat is so dangerous that 32 countries have banned the herbicide. The U.S. still uses it primarily for controlling weed and grass growth. Through the years, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has tightened the use of paraquat to only industrial use.
The EPA recognizes that people who mix, load, and apply the herbicide are at greater risk of paraquat exposure. Therefore, these workers must hold a paraquat applicator certification and wear protective gear when using the herbicide, such as chemical-resistant gloves. Mixers and loaders must also wear a full-face shield and a chemical-resistant apron, and applicators must use respiratory protection and safety glasses with splash guards.
According to the EPA, “Paraquat is highly toxic to humans; one small accidental sip can be fatal and there is no antidote.” Accidental ingestion has occurred when people put paraquat in soda bottles and leave them unattended. The consequences are often deadly.
Paraquat poisoning is also possible after skin exposure, such as if the herbicide stays on the skin for a prolonged period of time or if it is splashed on a cut or broken skin. Inhaling paraquat fumes is also toxic and can damage the lungs. But even if symptoms of paraquat exposure do not present right away, researchers say the herbicide may damage brain cells and contribute to chronic inflammation, increasing the risk of long-term health problems, including Parkinson’s.
Who is at Risk of Paraquat Exposure?
Some occupations where people may have worked with or around paraquat include:
- Agriculture workers
- Crop dusters
- Chemical mixers
- Tank fillers
- Herbicide applicators
People who live in rural areas may also be exposed to paraquat through drift, agriculture overspray, or contaminated groundwater.
What Evidence Do I Need to Qualify for a Paraquat Lawsuit?
Qualifying for a paraquat Parkinson's lawsuit typically involves meeting certain requirements, although the specific criteria may vary depending on the jurisdiction in which you're filing the lawsuit. Here is some evidence that can help bolster your case:
- Diagnosis of Parkinson's Disease: You will generally need to have a confirmed diagnosis of Parkinson's disease by a medical professional. Medical records and documentation of your diagnosis will be crucial in your case.
- Paraquat Exposure: You must demonstrate that you were exposed to paraquat in a way that is linked to your Parkinson's disease. This could include occupational exposure (farmers, agricultural workers), residential exposure (living near a farm that used paraquat), or other forms of exposure. Providing evidence of how, when, and where you were exposed is essential.
- Causation: You'll need to establish a causal link between your paraquat exposure and the development of Parkinson's disease. This often requires expert testimony and scientific evidence to show that paraquat exposure can increase the risk of Parkinson's disease.
- Statute of Limitations: There are time limits for filing personal injury lawsuits, and these can vary by jurisdiction. It's crucial to file within the prescribed timeframe to avoid losing your right to pursue a claim.
- Medical Records and Documentation: Collect all medical records related to your Parkinson's diagnosis and any records that document your paraquat exposure, including work records, pesticide application records, and any relevant medical history.
- Witness Testimonies: If there are witnesses who can attest to your paraquat exposure or the progression of your Parkinson's disease, their statements can be valuable in your case.
Consulting with an attorney experienced in paraquat-related litigation is crucial to understand your specific circumstances and determine whether you qualify for a lawsuit. They can provide guidance on the legal process and help you build a strong case if you meet the necessary requirements.
Contact an Experienced Lawyer for your Paraquat Parkinson’s Lawsuit
The legal team at Lawsuit Legal News has experience handling paraquat Parkinson’s claims. Our lawyers can review the evidence in your case during a free consultation to determine if you qualify to seek compensation through a paraquat claim. If you or someone you love suffered harm from paraquat exposure, you deserve justice. Call our experienced mass tort lawyers today at 866-467-0943 or complete our online contact form to hear your legal options.