Asbestos Claimants Appeal Dana Corp Chapter 11 Plan

A group known as the Ad Hoc Committee of Asbestos Claimants has filed an appeal on behalf of “tens of thousands” of individuals who are opposed to the confirmation of auto parts supplier Dana Corporation’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization plan.

According to an article in the Toledo Blade, the committee believes that Toledo-based Dana Corp. has not set aside enough money to settle all the asbestos-related personal injury claims that have been filed against them.

Dana says it has $240 million in cash and other assets earmarked to cover future asbestos and environmental contamination liabilities. The company believes that amount to be sufficient, based on the number of active cases pending against them and the number of dismissed cases.

David Lilly, a spokesman for Dana, said the appeal “was not unexpected” and notes that the appeal will not affect Dana’s plans to emerge from Chapter 11 protection by the end of January.

As the company made its way through the bankruptcy proceedings, it reached settlements with many of the asbestos claimants. For example, the company agreed to pay a total of $2 million to a group of about 7,500 who claim they were injured by asbestos in Dana products. Dana’s plan allows other asbestos claimants to retain their right to sue Dana once the company emerges from bankruptcy, the article explains.

Dana Corporation manufactures driveshafts, axles, and other parts, many of which contained asbestos prior to the warnings issued in the late 1970s as to the dangers of the toxic mineral.

Nearly two years ago, the company filed bankruptcy, faced with a downturn in the vehicle manufacturing industry and an onslaught of asbestos-related lawsuits.

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