[2023 Guide] AFFF Lawsuit FAQ: What is the AFFF MDL?

Use the chatbot on this page to find out if you qualify to file an AFFF Lawsuit.

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AFFF Firefighting Foam Lawsuits Consolidated into AFFF MDL

Question: What is the AFFF MDL?

In short, the AFFF MDL refers to the multidistrict litigation involving approximately five hundred cases related to Aqueous Film-Forming Foams (AFFF) and their alleged contamination of groundwater with harmful substances.

The AFFF Lawsuits primarily revolves around claims that AFFFs, containing perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and/or perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), have led to groundwater contamination near various sites, such as military bases and airports.

This contamination has allegedly caused personal injuries, a need for medical monitoring, property damages, and other economic losses to the plaintiffs.

On this page, we’ll discuss an overview of the AFFF MDL, potential health risks linked to AFFF exposure, the AFFF Lawsuit being consolidated into a Multidistrict Litigation (MDL), and much more.

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Intro to the AFFF Lawsuits

Aqueous film forming foam (AFFF) has been linked to a number of serious and life-threatening health effects due to containing per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).

People who have suffered from exposure are filing personal injury claims against AFFF manufacturers, pursuing financial compensation and accountability for how they have suffered.

AFFF Firefighting Foam Lawsuits have been consolidated into multidistrict litigation (MDL), a type of special legal procedure where lawsuits are centralized in a single district court for efficiency and consistency of decision-making.

The AFFF Firefighting Foam MDL is centralized in the US District Court for the District of South Carolina, comprised of thousands of individual pending AFFF Lawsuits.

If you or a loved one were exposed to toxic firefighting foam and subsequently developed health problems or cancer, you may be eligible to file an AFFF Lawsuit.

Contact TorHoerman Law for a free consultation.

You can also use the chatbot on this page to find out if you qualify to file an AFFF Lawsuit instantly.

Our AFFF Lawyers understand the dangers of forever chemicals in AFFF firefighting foam, and we are here to represent those who have suffered.

Reach out to our firm today and find out how our attorneys can help you seek justice.

Frequently Asked Questions

No, there is not an AFFF Class Action Lawsuit for individuals suffering from AFFF Foam Exposure.

Personal injury claims related to AFFF exposure are consolidated into multidistrict litigation (MDL).

The AFFF MDL is comprised of thousands of individual AFFF Lawsuits filed by those who have been exposed to toxic firefighting foam and subsequently developed health problems and other damages.

Many law firms advertise their services for the “AFFF Class Action Lawsuit”, or the “AFFF Class Action MDL”, but these terms are incorrect.

Municipal water contamination cases filed by governmental bodies are also included in the multidistrict litigation.

Multi-district litigation and class action lawsuits are different from one another.

In multidistrict litigation, plaintiffs retain their individuality throughout the lawsuit.

This is visible in the settlement phase in multidistrict litigation vs. class action lawsuits.

In the event of an AFFF Lawsuit settlement, compensation would be distributed to claimants according to each person’s unique circumstances, damages, and injuries suffered.

In a class action lawsuit settlement, compensation is divided evenly amongst all claimants regardless of how they have been individually impacted.

In AFFF firefighting foam lawsuits, plaintiffs generally allege that exposure to PFAS chemicals present in certain aqueous film forming foam (AFFF) products caused them to develop health problems including various types of cancer.

AFFF exposure has been linked to numerous health risks and various types of cancer.

Cancers linked to AFFF exposure include:

  • Bladder cancer
  • Breast cancer
  • Colon cancer
  • Kidney cancer
  • Liver cancer
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Prostate cancer
  • Rectal cancer
  • Testicle cancer
  • Thyroid cancer

The AFFF Lawyers at THL work on a contingency fee basis.

A contingency fee agreement means that you DO NOT have to pay any money for legal representation unless your AFFF Lawsuit ends in success.

No win, no fee.

This also means that you do not have to pay any money up-front for legal representation.

No settlements have been reached in the AFFF litigation as of yet.

Despite this, lawyers estimate that AFFF lawsuit settlement amounts may fall between $40,000 to $300,000 or more depending on the strength of the case and other individual factors.

These firefighter foam lawsuit settlement figures are by no means a guarantee of financial compensation, they are merely projections based on knowledge of prior mass tort cases and settlements for cancer diagnosis.

Contact experienced firefighting foam cancer lawyers for more unique insight on your case and what to expect when filing an AFFF Lawsuit.

Aqueous film forming foam (AFFF) is a type of firefighting foam used to extinguish liquid fuel fires started by class-B materials such as jet fuel, oil, gasoline, chemicals, and more.

Aqueous Film-Forming Foam was widely used for fire suppression in industries dealing with flammable liquids.

Used at airports, military bases, factories and plants, and in municipal fire departments, a large amount of people handled AFFF routinely.

AFFF firefighting foam works by creating a thin layer on top of flammable liquids, like gasoline or oil, which stops the release of dangerous vapors and cuts off the oxygen that fuels the fire.

This helps put out the fire. The foam also cools down the hot surfaces, making it harder for the fire to start again.

In short, AFFF firefighting foam helps control and extinguish liquid fires by forming a barrier, reducing oxygen, and cooling down the heat.

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Table of Contents

AFFF Lawsuit Overview

AFFF firefighting foam cancer lawsuits are being filed by people who were exposed to firefighting foam and subsequently developed cancer or other serious health problems.

Many firefighting foams contain PFAS chemicals, also known as “forever chemicals”.

Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a group of synthetic chemicals known for their resistance to heat, water, and oil.

While these properties make PFAS compounds invaluable in firefighting situations, they come at a high cost to human health and the environment.

Exposure to PFAS-containing firefighting foam has been linked to prostate cancer, bladder cancer, kidney and testicular cancer, and other forms of cancer.

PFAS chemicals also pose long-term risks to ecosystems and public health, seeping into groundwater and the environment close to where firefighting foam is used.

Individuals are filing AFFF Lawsuits against manufacturers who have used toxic chemicals in the development of their products.

If you or a loved one were exposed to AFFF firefighting foam and subsequently developed cancer or other related health risks, you may be eligible to file an AFFF Lawsuit.

Contact TorHoerman Law’s firefighting foam attorneys for a free consultation.

You can also use the chatbot on this page to find out if you qualify to file an AFFF Lawsuit instantly.

What is the AFFF MDL?

Current AFFF Lawsuits are being consolidated into multidistrict litigation in the US District Court for the District of South Carolina (MDL 2873).

The AFFF Firefighting Foam Lawsuits consolidated into the MDL center around claims that AFFF products contributed to health risks and cancer diagnoses in individuals exposed.

Specifically, the AFFF MDL is centered around the use of AFFF products at airports, military bases, and industrial causing individual injuries and water contamination.

What Injuries Are Linked to AFFF Exposure?

As the litigation against AFFF manufacturers continues, many victims are filing personal injury claims to hold these corporations accountable.

The harmful chemicals in AFFF have been found to seep into the ground and contaminate soil and water sources, and have been associated with various injuries that affect the well-being of firefighters, workers, and individuals exposed to AFFF.

Potential health risks associated with AFFF exposure include:

  • Bladder cancer
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Kidney cancer
  • Liver cancer
  • Leukemia
  • Testicular cancer
  • Prostate cancer
  • Breast cancer
  • Mesothelioma
  • Lymphoma
  • Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Endometrial cancer
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Neuroendocrine tumors
  • Other types of cancer
  • Thyroid disease
  • Developmental delays
  • Reproductive issues
  • Reduced immune system response
  • Ulcerative colitis

What Is Multidistrict Litigation (MDL)?

Multidistrict litigation (MDL) emerges as the legal recourse to address the multifaceted concerns surrounding AFFF.

MDL is a legal procedure that consolidates the litigation process for multiple related cases into a single court.

This mechanism allows for the efficient handling of complex and widespread legal disputes while maintaining consistency and avoiding duplication of efforts across various courts.

How Do MDLs Operate?

The AFFF firefighting foam MDL process encompasses several stages designed to ensure a fair and effective resolution for all parties involved.

Determining if an MDL Is Needed

Before the MDL process can be initiated, a critical threshold must be met: the cases at hand must share common issues of fact.

In the context of AFFF firefighting foam lawsuits, the common thread is the presence of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in firefighting foam, the alleged health effects associated with these toxic chemicals, and the potential responsibility of manufacturers and distributors in producing and supplying AFFF.

These shared elements provide the foundation for consolidating lawsuits into a single court, where the complexities of the cases can be streamlined, and justice can be pursued collectively.

By consolidating these cases, the legal system aims to prevent duplicative efforts, facilitate efficient discovery processes, and promote consistent rulings.

JPML Consolidates All Qualified Lawsuits Into a Single Court

Once the need for an MDL is established, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) comes into play.

Comprising federal judges from various districts, the JPML evaluates the eligible cases and determines the most appropriate federal district court for the MDL.

This pivotal decision ensures that the MDL court possesses the necessary jurisdiction and expertise to handle the complexities of the AFFF firefighting foam lawsuit.

The JPML’s decision to consolidate the AFFF lawsuits serves to centralize the AFFF litigation, preventing fragmentation across multiple jurisdictions and enhancing the efficiency of the legal process.

By uniting these cases under a single court’s purview, the JPML facilitates cohesive management and coordination.

Establishing the Steering Committee

One of the cornerstones of the MDL process is the formation of the Steering Committee.

This committee comprises experienced attorneys representing various parties, including plaintiffs, defendants, and other stakeholders.

The Steering Committee plays a vital role in guiding the litigation, streamlining communication, and managing the logistics of the consolidated cases.

The Steering Committee collaborates to develop strategies, coordinate discovery efforts, and present arguments before the MDL court.

This collective approach ensures that all parties’ diverse perspectives are considered, promoting a balanced and comprehensive resolution process.

The Bellwether Trial

The bellwether trial is one of the most significant milestones within the MDL process.

This trial involves selecting a representative case from the consolidated lawsuits to proceed to trial.

The bellwether trial serves as a litmus test, offering insights into the strengths and weaknesses of the arguments presented by both sides.

The outcome of the bellwether trial has far-reaching implications.

It can provide a basis for evaluating potential settlements, encouraging parties to negotiate to reach a mutually acceptable resolution.

Additionally, the insights gleaned from the bellwether trial can influence the trajectory of the remaining cases within the MDL, potentially prompting parties to reassess their positions or approaches.

Recovering MDL Settlements

As the MDL process advances, parties may opt for settlements to expedite the resolution of the cases.

Settlements can take various forms, including monetary compensation for affected individuals, changes in practices or procedures to prevent future harm, and commitments to environmental remediation.

The MDL process provides a framework for negotiating and implementing settlements addressing the multifaceted concerns of AFFF foam lawsuits.

These settlements deliver redress to affected individuals while prompting industry actors to acknowledge their responsibilities and take corrective actions.

How MDL Differs From Class Action Lawsuits

In MDL, individual lawsuits remain distinct and retain their unique identities.

Unlike a class action lawsuit, where plaintiffs are represented collectively by a class representative, MDL plaintiffs maintain their representation.

MDL cases, such as discovery and motion practice, are consolidated for pretrial purposes to avoid redundant efforts and conflicting rulings across multiple jurisdictions.

The ultimate goal of an MDL is to promote efficiency in pretrial proceedings and facilitate consistent rulings.

However, after pretrial proceedings, cases may return to their original jurisdictions for trial or may be settled individually.

The MDL process primarily serves as a mechanism for managing the complexities of discovery and pretrial motions.

Class action lawsuits often seek a global resolution for all class members.

If the case succeeds, damages or compensation are distributed among the class according to a predetermined formula.

However, if the case is unsuccessful, all class members are bound by the unfavorable outcome, even if they would have fared better pursuing an individual lawsuit.

How To File an AFFF Lawsuit

When facing the daunting task of filing an AFFF lawsuit due to the detrimental health effects of PFAS exposure, it’s essential to understand the steps involved in seeking justice.

Here are some steps to guide you through taking legal action:

  • Contact a Firefighting Foam Attorney
  • Gather evidence related to AFFF exposure and your health problems
  • Work with experienced firefighting foam attorneys to build your case, assessing and calculating damages

Speak With an Experienced AFFF Lawyer

The foundation of any successful AFFF lawsuit lies in partnering with seasoned and knowledgeable firefighting foam lawyers.

Legal professionals who specialize in toxic exposure cases have the expertise to navigate the complexities of the legal system, ensuring that your case is evaluated, strategized, and executed correctly.

During your initial consultation, an experienced AFFF lawyer will listen carefully to your story, assess the details of your exposure, and determine the potential strength of your case.

They will help you understand your rights, the legal avenues available, and what you can expect throughout the process.

Their expertise will guide you toward making informed decisions that will shape the trajectory of your lawsuit.

Gather Evidence To Strengthen Your Case

Compelling evidence is the cornerstone of any successful lawsuit.

Your attorney will guide you in assembling a comprehensive set of evidence that establishes a clear link between your health issues and AFFF exposure.

Evidence in an AFFF Lawsuit may include:

  • Medical records
  • Diagnostic tests
  • Treatment history
  • Employment records
  • Witness testimony
  • Safety protocols related to your exposure to PFAS-containing AFFF firefighting foam
  • Any other documentation that supports your claims.

An attorney’s expertise in evidence collection and preservation will be invaluable in strengthening the foundation of your lawsuit.

Assessing Damages for AFFF Lawsuits

Once your evidence is collected, your AFFF lawyer will work collaboratively with you to build a compelling and well-structured case.

This includes assessing and calculating damages.

Damages refer to the total amount of losses, economic or non-economic, incurred as a result of AFFF exposure.

Potential damages in AFFF Lawsuits may include:

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering, emotional distress
  • Lost earning ability
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Permanent disability
  • Future medical expenses and therapy costs
  • Other compensatory and punitive damages
  • Loss of consortium

Your attorney’s expertise in toxic exposure litigation will help ensure that your case is effectively presented and your rights are advocated for.

TorHoerman Law: Your Firefighting Foam Law Firm

Our law firm is accepting AFFF firefighting foam cases from all 50 states.

Our firefighting foam attorneys are here to help you through the legal process and advocate for your rights.

If you or a loved one were exposed to toxic chemicals in firefighting foam and developed cancer or other health problems, you may be eligible to file an AFFF Lawsuit.

Contact our firefighting foam lawyers today for a free consultation.

You can also use the chatbot on this page to find out if you qualify to file an AFFF Lawsuit instantly.

Toxic firefighting foam products have been associated with a number of health risks, and litigation is targeting manufacturers.

Reach out to us for more information and to find out if you are eligible to join others in filing AFFF cases against manufacturers.

Tor Hoerman

Tor Hoerman

Owner & Attorney - TorHoerman Law


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