Illinois law nixes deadline for asbestos lawsuits

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) _ People exposed to asbestos now have more time to file lawsuits over related illnesses under a bill Gov. Pat Quinn has signed.

The Democrat made the measure law late Friday.

It removes a 10-year time limit on filing civil action related to the use of asbestos in construction.

Asbestos was an effective and popular fireproofing material until the 1970s. Regulators banned it because exposure to asbestos fibers has been linked to the aggressive cancer called mesothelioma.

But the previous law prevented anyone from filing a lawsuit against people involved in constructing buildings using asbestos after a decade. Proponents say mesothelioma takes at least 20 years to develop.

Opponents complained the law is too broad, overly expanded liability and would hurt business.

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