Kurtis B. Reeg, a partner in Goldberg Segalla’s Product Liability and Toxic Torts Practice Groups, explores the significant impact of the Folta v. Ferro decision in the latest edition of the National Forum for Environmental and Toxic Tort Issues (FETTI) Case Law Update Newsletter.
In this decision, Kurt writes, the Illinois Supreme Court examined the question of whether an employee can bring an action against his employer outside of the Workers’ Compensation Act and the Workers’ Occupational Diseases Act when the employee’s injury or disease first manifests itself after the expiration of the time limitations of those acts. The court held that the exclusivity and repose provisions of those acts bar plaintiff’s recovery.
“Plaintiffs’ counsel often file assault, battery, nuisance, ultra-hazardous strict liability, and spoliation claims against their client’s employers in an effort to pile-on and end-run the exclusivity of the Illinois Workers’ Compensation and Occupational Disease Acts,” Kurt writes in the “Practice Pointers” section of this article. “The Folta v. Ferro case gives defense counsel and insurers ammunition to thwart such claims.”