$19.5 million asbestos settlement for Montana town proposed by W.R. Grace

Associated Press

KALISPELL, Mont. — A $19.5 million settlement has been proposed for Montana asbestos victims in the W.R. Grace and Co. bankruptcy case.

The Daily Inter Lake reported Wednesday that the money would fund the Libby Medical Program for victims sickened by the company’s now-shuttered vermiculite plant.

Grace began the Libby Medical Program in 2000 after news reports exposed the widespread disease and deaths linked to asbestos exposure.

Jon Heberling, the attorney representing the Libby claimants, says the proposed settlement ensures that the company won’t terminate the medical program. He says the claimants’ appeals will be withdrawn once the bankruptcy court approves the documents.

Heberling says claimants also will be eligible to receive distributions from the separate Asbestos Personal Injury Trust to be established as part of Grace’s reorganization plan.

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Information from: Daily Inter Lake, http://www.dailyinterlake.com