Law Firm Fights for “Little Guy” Sickened by Asbestos

By Robert Kelly
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
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Mike Angelides is managing shareholder of an 11-year-old law firm that built its reputation on winning multimillion-dollar verdicts that compensated people who were injured or sickened by conditions in their workplaces.

His firm, Simmons Hanly Conroy LLC, recently moved into a large, renovated building on an Alton river bluff, having one of the best views of the Mississippi River in the metropolitan area. The five-story building stands as a testament to the firm’s successes.

And Angelides has been at the forefront of several successful lawsuits. He oversees the firm’s asbestos, toxic tort, pharmaceutical injury, intellectual property infringement and contingent-fee commercial litigation practices.

During his 10 years as managing shareholder, the law firm has expanded to more than 50 lawyers from seven and has grown to accept more new asbestos cases annually than any other law firm in the United States.

And in 2010, the firm’s commercial litigation department demonstrated the benefit of contingent-fee arrangements in commercial cases when it successfully negotiated a $32 million settlement for an antitrust case. The case was filed on behalf of Synergetics USA Inc., a medical instruments company, against a much larger international competitor, Alcon Inc.

There seems to have been a remarkably large number of mesothelioma (a cancer linked to asbestos exposure) cases filed in St. Louis and Metro East area courts. Is the disease more of a problem here than elsewhere?

It’s not really a unique problem to the St. Louis metropolitan area. The St. Louis area does have an increased incidence of mesothelioma because a number of industries here have used asbestos products over the years, and some still use them.

Our firm specializes to a large extent in helping and representing victims of mesothelioma, many of whom worked for local industries.

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