14 J.L. & Pol'y 39 (2006)
Evaluating Disease Causation in Humans Exposed to Toxic Substances

handle is hein.journals/jlawp14 and id is 49 raw text is: EVALUATING DISEASE CAUSATION IN
HUMANS EXPOSED TO TOXIC SUBSTANCES
Joseph V. Rodricks, Ph.D., D.A.B.T.
INTRODUCTION
Individuals claiming they have been harmed by exposures to
chemical substances may seek compensation by bringing lawsuits
against those whose actions caused the exposures to occur.
Exposures may involve specific products, such as pharmaceuticals,
foods and many other consumer products, or industrial chemicals
used by workers in commercial operations of many types, or
chemicals emitted to the environment during their manufacture,
distribution, use, or disposal. Under our judicial system, those
making claims of harm, i.e. plaintiffs, are generally required to
offer evidence, through experts in medicine, epidemiology,
toxicology, and perhaps several other scientific disciplines, that a
causal relationship exists between the exposures they have
allegedly experienced and the specific type of medical injury or
disease they claim to have incurred. Defendants in such cases will
also seek out experts to evaluate and, if possible, counter the
evaluations of experts engaged by plaintiffs. Plaintiffs are
generally not faced with the scientifically impossible burden of
demonstrating causality with absolute proof; rather, the legal
standard is typically expressed as a need to demonstrate that
causality is demonstrable with a reasonable degree of scientific
certainty, or that it is more likely true than not true that the harm
Joseph V. Rodricks is a Founding Principal in the Arlington, Virginia
office of ENVIRON International Corporation. A version of this paper was
presented at Brooklyn Law School, Science for Judges seminar on April 1,
2005.

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