O’Stricker v. Jim Walter Corp.

4 Ohio St.3d 84, 447 N.E.2d 727 (1983)

O’Stricker claimed he was injured by exposure to asbestos products sometime between 1969 and 1979. Jim Walter Corp. stopped manufacturing asbestos products by 1973. The plaintiff’s cancer was discovered in 1979, and the suit was filed in 1979. The defendants asserted that O’Stricker’s claim was barred by a two-year statute of limitations, since the last exposure to defendant’s asbestos was in 1973. The trial court dismissed the case and applied the two-year statute of limitations.

The Supreme Court of Ohio reversed and adopted a more “liberal” discovery rule. The more lenient rule stated that when an injury doesn’t manifest itself immediately, the cause of action arises upon the date on which a doctor informed the plaintiff that he or she had been injured. Since O’Stricker brought his claim within two years after his doctor informed him that he had been injured by exposure to asbestos, his action was not barred.