Paraquat Herbicide Lawsuit

farmer spraying paraquat pesticide

Paraquat is one of the most commonly used herbicides for weed and grass control. However, some of the chemicals in paraquat herbicide have been linked to adverse health effects, including Parkinson’s disease. If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s or suffered other serious side effects after exposure to Paraquat, you may be eligible to file a paraquat lawsuit to seek compensation.

The defective product lawyers at Gordon & Partners are investigating these claims. We are prepared to meet with you to review your situation and discuss your potential legal options in a free consultation. For more than two decades, our firm has recovered millions in compensation, including a recovery of $13.5 million in a defective product case. Founder Robert Gordon formerly served on the Board of Directors for the Brain Injury Association of America and is an American Justice Association member.

There is no cost to talk to a lawyer and no obligation to take legal action. We charge no upfront fees to retain our services and no fees while we investigate and work on a case.

We are here to help. Call 1 (855) 722-2552

Am I Eligible to File a Case?

Multiple factors are involved in defective product cases. Everyone’s situation is unique, which is why we recommend you reach out to our experienced lawyers to evaluate your circumstances. In a free case evaluation, we are prepared to determine if you may be able to take legal action by reviewing:

  • Your specific diagnosis
  • How you were exposed to paraquat
  • Length of exposure to paraquat
  • If you knew about the potential risks of using this product

These cases can be complex as well as time-consuming and time-sensitive. If you have a case and hire our firm, we are ready to handle the building of your case, including determining liability for your diagnosis. We are well-versed in the laws that apply to defective product cases and what we need to provide in a lawsuit to help you obtain the maximum amount of compensation possible.

Compensation Available for Injured Victims

As with any lawsuit, the types and amount of compensation that may be available will be based on the specific details of your situation. This includes but is not limited to the severity of your illness, the length of time you were exposed to paraquat and your long-term prognosis.

If we validate your claim, you may be eligible to seek compensation for the cost of your medical treatment (i.e. hospital stays, imaging tests, surgery, medications and doctor’s appointments).

You could also be compensated for the wages you lost while being unable to work and lost earning capacity if your illness prevents you from working.

If you lost a loved one who was exposed to paraquat and suffered complications, it may be possible to file a wrongful death claim on his or her behalf. Some of the damages that could be available include:

  • Lost support and services
  • Lost companionship
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional anguish
  • Medical expenses
  • Funeral expenses

Compensation can be so important for those who are diagnosed with a debilitating, irreversible condition. The individual annual economic burden for someone with Parkinson’s disease amounts to about $52,000 (this covers nonacute institutional care, inpatient hospitalization and outpatient care).

Our lawyers are prepared to hold product manufacturers accountable if their products cause harm to others. Filing lawsuits against these companies may help protect others from dangerous products.

Paraquat Use in the U.S.

Paraquat is a toxic chemical that is widely used as an herbicide, primarily for weed and grass control. It is also used as a defoliant prior to crops being harvested. Paraquat is available in the U.S. in liquid form with a blue dye so as to not be confused with beverages and other liquid consumables.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has classified paraquat as a restricted use product due to its extreme toxicity. This means that it can only be used by commercially licensed applicators.

Despite being highly poisonous, the EPA reapproved paraquat for use in the U.S. in October of 2020, along with other pesticides and herbicides. Paraquat is currently banned in 32 countries, including Switzerland. China began phasing out paraquat in 2012 and the European Union banned it in 2013.

Risks of Exposure to Paraquat

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the risk of exposure to paraquat depends on the amount, route and duration of exposure, and the individual’s health condition at the time of exposure.

People who work or have worked in the agricultural industry may have been exposed to the dangerous herbicide while spraying it on weeds and grass for extended periods of time over many years. Certain jobs in the industry that put people at greater risk of exposure include:

  • Farmers
  • Agricultural workers
  • Groundskeepers
  • Professional landscapers
  • Residential gardeners

Commercially licensed applicators may have been exposed in the following ways:

  • Ingestion or swallowing – This is the most likely the route of exposure.
  • Contaminated food or drinks – If a safeguard addictive was not used in paraquat, such as a dye, odor or vomiting agent, an individual may not realize his or her food or drink is contaminated.
  • Through the skin – The skin must have been exposed for a long period of time to cause serious side effects. If the paraquat, however, was particularly concentrated or came into the skin through a sore, cut or severe rash, it may be more likely to enter the body and cause harm.
  • Inhalation – Breathing in this toxic herbicide can lead to lung damage.

Side Effects from Paraquat Exposure

If a great amount of paraquat is ingested, victims may experience immediate pain and swelling in the mouth and throat area. This is often followed by nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and bloody diarrhea. Victims may also become severely dehydrated, have an electrolyte imbalance and low blood pressure.

Even ingesting smaller amounts of the herbicide can be dangerous. Within a few days or weeks, victims may develop adverse health effects, such as:

  • Heart failure
  • Kidney failure
  • Liver failure
  • Lung scarring
  • Fluid in the lungs
  • Respiratory failure
  • Seizures
  • Coma

If you think you may have been exposed to paraquat, it is important to see a doctor as soon as possible and then contact Gordon & Partners for legal help.

Free Case Evaluation. Ph: 1 (855) 722-2552

Studies Linking Paraquat to Parkinson’s Disease

Research has indicated a potential link between exposure to paraquat and the development of Parkinson’s disease. Parkinson’s is a progressive brain disorder that affects movement. Symptoms include tremors or shaking, slowed movement, rigid muscles, and impaired balance and coordination.

A report published by Scientific American indicates that Parkinson’s disease and other neurological effects may result from pesticides and herbicides, including paraquat. The journal Environmental Health Perspectives also published a robust study strongly associating Parkinson’s disease with paraquat.

In 2011, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) conducted a study – the Farming and Movement Evaluation (FAME) – to explore the likelihood of farmers who used paraquat developing Parkinson’s disease. The results included data from the Agricultural Health Study, which examined a total of 80,000 farmers, agricultural workers as well as their spouses.

FAME researchers identified 115 people who developed Parkinson’s. A similar study was done in 2012, the Genetic Modification of the Association of Paraquat and Parkinson’s Disease. It found that those who used paraquat and had a specific genetic variation were 11 times more likely to get Parkinson’s.

Paraquat Herbicide Lawsuits Filed

A paraquat lawsuit was filed in October of 2017 on behalf of farmers and other agricultural workers who developed Parkinson’s disease after being exposed to this herbicide. Plaintiffs in the lawsuit claim they were unaware paraquat, which is manufactured by Syngenta and Growmark, posed any serious, long-term health risks. Several lawsuits have since been filed in state and federal courts.

In 2018, two personal injury and product liability claims lawsuits were filed alleging the manufacturer failed to warn about the dangers of using this chemical. One lawsuit was filed on behalf of 12 individuals and their spouses who have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s and the other lawsuit was filed on behalf of someone’s spouse whose Parkinson’s was caused by chronic low-dose exposure to the herbicide.

In a lawsuit filed in December of 2020 in Illinois, a former farmworker who worked as a crop duster claims that he was never informed about the risks of exposure to paraquat. Another farmworker in California was also diagnosed with Parkinson’s after inhaling and ingesting paraquat. In a lawsuit filed in March of 2021, the farmworker claims the manufacturer knew or should have known of the risks.

Get Answers to Your Legal Questions Today

The defective products lawyers at Gordon and Partners are here to help determine if you may be eligible to file a paraquat lawsuit and discuss the damages that may be available.

If you have a case and hire our firm, we are prepared to handle every aspect of the legal process on your behalf so you can focus on what matters most – your treatment and spending time with family. We are dedicated to pursuing maximum compensation on behalf of those injured by dangerous products.

A consultation is free without any legal obligations. There are no upfront fees to retain our services.

Free Case Evaluation

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