Researchers have found a clear link between Parkinson’s disease and paraquat dichloride. This is a significant driver behind many other countries banning the herbicide. The European Union has banned paraquat. Studies that outline these findings include:
- 2011: In 2011, the National Institute of Health conducted a paraquat study. The study found that paraquat users were 2.5 times more likely to develop Parkinson’s disease. The study also linked paraquat exposure with oxidative stress. Oxidative stress can result in the loss of dopaminergic neurons.
- 2014: A study investigated study participants sprayed with the chemical. Participants were twice as likely to develop Parkinson’s disease.
- 2017: A study finds another link between Parkinson’s disease and paraquat exposure. The link was in people who possessed certain genetic traits. The study showed that paraquat caused DNA damage and weak mitochondrial respiration.
A letter was recently sent to California’s Department of Pesticide Registration. The letter urged the department to ban paraquat. It noted that many scientific studies have linked paraquat with Parkinson’s disease.
50,000 pounds of paraquat got used in Monterey County in 2017.
California Pesticide Reform asked The Department of Pesticide Regulation to ban paraquat. They requested the ban due to toxic effects on human health and safety.
“We’re talking about an older group of people exposed to that from 1964 till 1968. They could have bought it in San Benito, in Monterey, in Salinas without a license. We have over 350 clients of people who meet this criterion. These people received Parkinson’s disease diagnoses. Or, they have the symptoms where it’s only a matter of time.” – Jeffrey Nadrich commented – Kion 46 News Channel.
Filing a Paraquat Lawsuit
Your health may suffer due to exposure to paraquat. There are many reasons you should file a paraquat lawsuit with our paraquat lawyers. You could recover compensation for your expenses and losses via a paraquat settlement. You could also hold companies responsible for your Parkinson’s disease.
Your paraquat Parkinson’s disease lawsuit shows others the dangers of this herbicide. It also contributes to stopping future exposure. Overwhelming wins in paraquat lawsuits may sway the EPA and Congress to ban paraquat, too.
The paraquat attorneys at Nadrich & Cohen will help you file a paraquat lawsuit. We may hold the manufacturers accountable for their conduct through an individual claim. We may join a mass tort already in progress, or take other legal action on your behalf.
We are knowledgeable about legal cases based on paraquat exposure. We explain more about the options during our free case assessments.
Who Qualifies for a Paraquat Lawsuit?
You may qualify if you have medical records of your Parkinson’s diagnosis. Proof of paraquat exposure will help, too. So will records of your treatment and prognosis. Even without documentation of exposure, our attorneys can help collect related evidence. Some people who may qualify to file a paraquat lawsuit include:
- Agricultural workers
- Licensed applicators
- Those who bottle or handle paraquat during manufacturing
- Anyone who works around herbicides and commercial weed killers
Talk to our paraquat lawyers to find out if you have a case. Our free case evaluations allow you to learn more about the process. We will assess the strength of your case and explain your options.
Financial Compensation in Paraquat Lawsuits
You must undergo treatment for the rest of your life if you have Parkinson’s disease. Unfortunately, Parkinson’s disease can be very debilitating. Treatment is not a cure, but it will help you live with your condition longer.
Medication, therapy, and lifestyle changes delay symptoms. They also allow some people to live longer, more active lives. This could include continuing to work and enjoying some of your favorite activities.
Still, managing any life-long condition is expensive. Hire our paraquat lawyers to file a paraquat lawsuit. We will help you secure compensation to cover the cost of your long-term treatment. We will also get compensation via a paraquat settlement. It will cover your pain and suffering, and past and future medical bills. It will also cover mental distress, loss of quality of life, and other damages.
Many people overlook extra expenses necessary to live with Parkinson’s disease. These include the cost of home renovations for mobility needs. They also include buying adaptive equipment, and purchasing wheelchairs or walkers.
Wrongful Death Claimants Can Pursue Paraquat Lawsuit Settlements
If you lost a loved one to complications from paraquat exposure, you deserve justice. No amount of money can replace a family member. You should not have to experience financial hardship on top of such a tragedy, though.
We can seek wrongful death damages on your behalf, such as:
- Your loved one’s medical bills
- Your lost wages if you had to miss work to care for them
- Your loved one’s pain and suffering
- Your loved one’s income they would have contributed
- Loss of consortium for a loved one’s companionship
- Funeral and burial costs
Grounds for a Paraquat Lawsuit
The central claims in a paraquat lawsuit are that:
- Those who made and sold paraquat knew or should have known that paraquat is toxic
- They knew or should have known the link between paraquat and Parkinson’s disease
- They failed to warn the public about the Parkinson’s disease risk or take other action to protect users
The courts consolidated paraquat Parkinson’s disease lawsuits in 2021. They formed a multidistrict litigation (MDL).
Based on the latest paraquat lawsuit update, over 2,300 paraquat lawsuits are pending. The lawsuits are against Syngenta and other paraquat manufacturers. These figures are as of January 2023.
Negligence in Paraquat Lawsuits
Those who made and sold paraquat had a duty to be careful in ensuring that paraquat was safe. This duty included doing enough product testing. They should have stayed aware of scientific knowledge of their product’s dangers. They should have warned about any dangers linked with their products.
Companies failed to do these things. This lets us pursue a paraquat settlement on behalf of our client in a paraquat lawsuit. Our paraquat lawsuits against the manufacturers allege negligence occurred in several ways:
- Negligence is failing to exercise reasonable care in the name of preventing harm.
- Negligence is failing to do what a careful person would do in the same situation.
- Negligence is doing what a careful person wouldn’t do in the same situation.
A successful negligence claim requires us to prove the following:
- Negligence happened
- The victim suffered harm
- The negligence caused the harm
In these cases, our attorneys believe:
- It is negligent to not test how far paraquat can drift from where workers sprayed it.
- It is negligent to not test how easy it is for those nearby to absorb it.
- It is negligent to not test the negative health effects in people exposed to paraquat.
- It is negligent to not keep up with any scientific studies that find your product dangerous.
- It is negligent to ignore scientific studies saying your product is dangerous.
- It is negligent to not warn the public about such scientific studies.
We base our clients’ paraquat lawsuits on allegations of negligence. We also base them on findings that link paraquat and Parkinson’s disease. We plan to present strong evidence supporting our clients’ cases.
Strict Liability & Paraquat Litigation
Negligence may have led to people developing Parkinson’s disease from paraquat exposure. Strict liability claims don’t need us to prove negligence, though. Strict liability generally applies to product liability claims like this one.
Those who make and sell products are liable for injuries caused by their products. This may occur if their products contain a manufacturing defect. Design defects and poor instructions can make companies liable. Missed warnings and other serious defects can make companies liable.
Products with a manufacturing defect are defective. This is because something went wrong during the production process. Products with design defects are defective when made and used as intended. Their design itself is defective.
Paraquat appears to contain a design defect. It is unsafe when made and used as intended due to its link with Parkinson’s disease. Altering the manufacturing process will not make the chemical any safer. It will always be dangerous because it can cause Parkinson’s disease.
Some companies know or should know their products are dangerous. They don’t warn others about this danger, though. These companies are liable for injuries caused by their products. This liability exists in California and other states.
The Paraquat Papers
The Guardian published details about internal Syngenta documents. The documents suggest that paraquat manufacturers knew paraquat may be very dangerous. The article by The Guardian alleges the following:
- Syngenta focused on influencing regulators. They focused on refuting scientific research done by external sources. They focused on protecting sales of paraquat.
- Syngenta tried to keep a well-regarded scientist off an EPA advisory panel. They also tried to hide their connection to these efforts. The scientist did work linking paraquat with Parkinson’s disease.
- Scientists knew in the ’60s and ’70s that paraquat accumulated in the brain. These included scientists with Syngenta predecessor Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI). These also included scientists with Chevron Chemical.
- Internal research by Syngenta demonstrated that paraquat had adverse effects on brain tissue. Syngenta withheld this research from regulators.
- Syngenta scientists knew about evidence that paraquat impaired the central nervous system. This led to tremors and other Parkinson’s-like symptoms in animals. A 1975 Chevron communication mentioned “permanent CNS effects from paraquat.”
- An ICI researcher, in 1958, reported on a chemical compound related to paraquat. The compound seemed to have effects on the central nervous system.
- ICI scientists, in 1966, noted that animals exposed to paraquat developed tremors. The animals also developed a stiff gait. These are Parkinson’s symptoms.
- Notes from a 1974 meeting with Chevron mentioned paraquat. The notes mentioned applicators experiencing toxicological effects. One month later, a Chevron lawyer mentioned evidence. This evidence suggested paraquat could “cause industrial injury.” It suggested that Chevron could face lawsuits over it involving millions of dollars.
- A meeting took place between ICI and Chevron in 1975. Meeting notes mentioned an autopsy done on a victim of paraquat poisoning. The autopsy found motor neuron lesions.
- An ICI scientist wrote a December 1975 letter to a Chevron toxicologist. The letter warned about “possible chronic effects, which you see causing legal problems.”
- In 1976, ICI reviewed an autopsy of a farmworker. It demonstrated “degenerative changes” to “cells of the substantia nigra.” This is a Parkinson’s disease hallmark.
- An internal memo to Chevron officials in 1985 mentioned a Canadian study. It discovered a strong correlation between the use of paraquat and Parkinson’s disease. The memo warned about the potential for paraquat to become a large legal liability. The memo compared this potential to asbestos’ potential.
- Syngenta responded to mounting evidence that paraquat may cause Parkinson’s disease. It had its own scientists do similar studies. It made sure their scientists avoided measuring levels of paraquat in the brain. It did this because paraquat detection in the brain would look bad.
- Syngenta, in 2003, did a study involving giving mice paraquat. The study measured the loss of dopaminergic neurons in the brains of the mice. Syngenta used a manual counting technique in this study. It didn’t find a significant impact on the brains of the mice. Syngenta publicized this finding. A scientist for Syngenta repeated the studies utilizing a more accurate counting technique. The impact on the brains of the mice was now found to be significant. Syngenta did not publicize this finding.
- Syngenta mentioned on its website that paraquat doesn’t cross the blood-brain barrier. They also mentioned it doesn’t reach the part of the brain it needs to to cause the symptoms of Parkinson’s. Syngenta knew these statements were false when it made them.
Frequently Asked Questions About Paraquat Exposure
Below you will find some of the most common questions people with paraquat exposure have. This section is not comprehensive. It should answer many of your questions about paraquat lawsuits, though. It should answer questions about the effects of this dangerous herbicide. We will address these questions and others during your free case consultation.
What Is Paraquat, and Why Is It Dangerous?
The chemical herbicide paraquat, or paraquat dichloride, is a toxic herbicide. Common use dates back to the 1960s. Its use is to prevent weed and grass takeover of crops by farmers throughout the world.
More recently, more than 30 countries banned the herbicide. The United States restricted its use to licensed applicators. It remains on the market, though.
Researchers have linked paraquat to many adverse health effects. These include a progressive neurodegenerative disorder known as Parkinson’s disease.
The herbicide is toxic. A small amount of paraquat can be fatal. Even if this is not the immediate result, the health impacts on the victim can be tremendous.
According to the CDC, even light paraquat exposure can cause significant damage. Many adverse health effects can also occur. This includes developing Parkinson’s disease, kidney failure, and other conditions, such as:
- Heart failure
- Kidney disease
- Liver failure
- Lung scarring
- Injury to the heart
- Pulmonary edema
- Respiratory failure
A July 2022 study linked paraquat exposure with thyroid cancer.
Is Paraquat Harmful, Even in Small Amounts?
NatLawReview.com mentions continual exposure to minimal amounts of paraquat. It says this can increase one’s risk of developing Parkinson’s disease.
Parkinson's disease is a progressive condition, and there is no cure. Those diagnosed with the disease often manage it with medication and other treatments. It often contributes to early death, though.
The toxic effects are also worrying. People die from ingesting the herbicide every year in the United States. Paraquat purchased in the United States has additive safeguards to prevent accidental consumption. Products purchased elsewhere might appear clear and odorless. This makes them almost impossible to recognize.
Anyone could mix it with food or water without detection because of this. Paraquat poisoning can also occur from skin exposure, especially from an open wound. Inhalation and absorption through the skin are other methods of paraquat exposure. These are the ones most likely when exposure leads to Parkinson’s disease symptoms.
How Dangerous is Paraquat?
The danger of the chemical herbicide paraquat is far-reaching. The EPA classifies paraquat as a “restricted use” product. This means that it can only those licensed to apply the chemical can use it.
Most restricted use products allow others to apply the products. They can do so when supervised by a licensed applicator. Environmental Protection Agency limits paraquat use to only those certified to apply it.
The EPA restricts paraquat use because of its extreme toxicity. It also restricts it because of its natural tasteless, odorless and clear characteristics. Drinking a thimble to a shot glass of the chemical can take a human life.
Many suicides and suicide attempts include the use of paraquat. At this point, there is no known antidote.
The United States requires paraquat additives. This ensures users can see, smell and taste the chemical. Special packaging is also required. Large warnings about putting the herbicide in other containers are also required.
These rules hope to prevent accidental ingestion of paraquat.
How Do I Determine How Dangerous My Exposure to Paraquat Was?
Several factors determine the level of danger to a person exposed to paraquat. including:
- Quantity of exposure
- Method of exposure (ingestion is most likely and most dangerous)
- Duration of exposure
Ingestion of paraquat causes significant damage in several ways. Paraquat may meet the lining of the mouth, stomach, or intestines. Direct damage will likely occur when this happens. Once inside, it reaches other parts of the body. This causes damage to the lungs, liver, and kidneys.
Paraquat is notorious for its link to various health conditions. These include Parkinson’s disease. This tie to Parkinson’s disease is the basis for the paraquat lawsuits.
Do Pesticides Cause Parkinson’s Disease?
Pesticides and herbicides may play a role in developing Parkinson’s disease. Parkinson's disease is a neurodegenerative disorder. Among others, paraquat is one such herbicide researchers link to Parkinson's disease.
Research continues into how much exposure could trigger Parkinson’s disease symptoms. The research investigates how the exposure generally occurs. The research investigates how long it takes before the disorder develops.
Researchers may also uncover more links to other pesticides and herbicides. The strongest known links are the ones supporting the paraquat lawsuits.
What Are Additional Paraquat Pesticide Products?
Paraquat is a restricted-use herbicide. It is a fast-acting weed killer. It is one of the most popular herbicides used on farms. It is also used in other large-scale agricultural applications. Gramoxone SL 2.0 Herbicide contains paraquat. It is the most common herbicide in the United States.
Some of the other paraquat pesticide products are:
- Helmquat 3SL
- Para-Shot 3.0
- Cyclone SL 2.0
- Ortho Paraquat CL
- Bai Cao Ku
- AH 501
Makers of many of these herbicides are facing lawsuits. The lawsuits cover the connection between toxic paraquat products and Parkinson’s disease.
How Do I Know if I’ve Been Affected by Paraquat Exposure?
You may be experiencing Parkinson's disease symptoms. You may have suffered from paraquat exposure. If so, you must meet with your physician at once. Ingesting a small amount of paraquat can be fatal, and it only takes minutes or hours for death to occur.
Low-level exposure may be enough to cause significant adverse health conditions. Exposure and ingestion of this substance can lead to long-term health issues. It can put you at a greater risk of Parkinson’s disease.
What Are the Signs of Serious Paraquat Exposure?
Immediate signs of serious exposure include:
- Swelling and pain in the mouth or throat
- Muscle fatigue or weakness
- Breathing difficulties or respiratory failure
These symptoms may occur while applying paraquat. They may occur while working in an area where paraquat was recently applied. If so, these symptoms warrant an emergency department visit.
What Are Signs of Low-Level Paraquat Exposure?
Symptoms of low-level exposure affecting your body could include:
- Tremors or shaking at rest
- Muscle stiffness
- Slow movement
- Sleep interruptions
- Issues with bladder control
- Smaller handwriting
- Lost sense of smell
- Depression and anxiety
If You’ve Worked with Paraquat and Developed Symptoms, See a Doctor
You may develop Parkinson’s disease symptoms. You may have worked in an agricultural setting. You may have instead worked somewhere else where paraquat exposure is likely. If so, you should discuss your condition with a doctor. Let them know about your history of working with or near this dangerous chemical.
You may have Parkinson’s disease due to your exposure to paraquat. You may instead believe you were a victim of paraquat poisoning. If so, you need to speak to a paraquat lawsuit lawyer as soon as possible.
Non-Citizens Are Eligible To File Paraquat Lawsuits
You may be wondering if you are eligible to file a paraquat lawsuit if you are not a citizen of the United States.
Yes, non-citizens are eligible to file personal injury lawsuits in the United States. These lawsuits include paraquat lawsuits.
Connect With a Paraquat Lawyer Today at Nadrich & Cohen
You may have developed Parkinson’s disease due to exposure to the herbicide paraquat. You may qualify for financial compensation for damages via a paraquat lawsuit settlement.
We represent agricultural workers. We represent those exposed to paraquat while living near high-use areas. We are a contingency fee personal injury law firm. We handle mass tort, class action, and multidistrict litigation.
We won’t charge you a fee unless we recover money for you. We never ask our clients to pay a retainer or any upfront fees or expenses. We use our firm’s financial resources to investigate, develop and file every case.
Contact a paraquat lawyer at Nadrich & Cohen today or text or email. Contact us to learn how our law firm will hold the manufacturers of paraquat responsible. We can recover compensation for your past and future medical expenses. We can recover compensation for your pain and suffering. We can recover other damages related to your exposure to this deadly weed killer.