Court mesothelioma cases involving asbestos claims have been known to take a long time to resolve. The earliest asbestos-related lawsuits helped reveal intentional cover-ups of the cancer-causing nature of asbestos. Even after learning of the terrible effects, some employers failed to implement adequate safety practices. Many companies opted to file bankruptcy to avoid paying large sums for their conduct. At the Nemeroff Law Firm, we believe in helping those hurt by asbestos hold responsible parties accountable. And we treat every victim and family member with the utmost respect.
We Know Mesothelioma Cases Are Personal
Mesothelioma is a devastating diagnosis to receive. If you or a close family member has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, you have already endured many procedures and tests before a doctor confirmed the cancer. The prognosis is disheartening. Now, the information you are trying to digest is overwhelming.
Most times, a diagnosis of mesothelioma occurs when the victim is in the late stages of the cancer. The exposure to the asbestos causing the mesothelioma happened years ago. The realization that it is now attacking your health or the health of a family member is turning your world upside down. The health concerns are joined to concerns about your family and to concerns about the financial toll this will take.
You may be a spouse in the unfortunate position of the mesothelioma being diagnosed in your loved one, and shortly thereafter, he or she died. How do you recover medical expenses and get compensation for your family?
Mesothelioma cases occur from exposure to asbestos. The asbestos fibers are small and cannot be seen by the naked eye. These fibers become airborne, are inhaled, and eventually cause malignant tumors in the mesothelium. The mesothelium is the lining around the lungs, heart, or abdominal organs. Most mesothelioma cases involve the lining around the lungs (85% in men and 73% in women). The longer the exposure to asbestos, the greater the risk for developing an asbestos-related illness.
The Centers for Disease Control reports that it takes 20-40 years for mesothelioma to develop in the person exposed to asbestos. There are occupations where persons are working directly with asbestos such as mining, shipyard workers, and insulators. Some occupations expose workers to asbestos through the handling of products that contain asbestos such as construction or manufacturing, or from exposure to disturbed asbestos such as firefighters or contractors. There have also been occurrences of mesothelioma from second hand exposure to the fibers such as from the clothing of a person working around the asbestos.
If Mesothelioma is Rare, Why Are There so Many Mesothelioma Cases?
Simply put, mesothelioma is preventable. Mesothelioma was linked to asbestos in 1960, but workplace restrictions on asbestos were not established until 1971. The Environmental Protection Agency has regulations in place that address indoor air quality and other asbestos-related air pollutant issues.
OSHA (the Occupational Safety and Health Administration) also has standards for the workplace that protect a worker against asbestos exposure. Some employers have been negligent in protecting their workers from the hazards of asbestos exposure. Asbestos is still used in some products and is present in older buildings; the risk still exists.
- New Jersey
- West Virginia
What Legal Steps do I Take?
You have legal options, but none are simple, and the amount of compensation is not certain. You may be eligible for filing a claim with an asbestos trust fund that a company set aside when filing bankruptcy. You may want to reach an agreement or settlement with your employer or the manufacturer on the amount of money it will take to pay for your treatment and provide for your family. Or you may need to pursue litigation in the court to force the persons responsible for your illness, pain and suffering to provide you with the compensation you are rightfully due.
There are two basic types of situations that underlie most claims concerning mesothelioma:
- Claims brought against the supplier of raw asbestos where the worker for the manufacturer was exposed to it, and
- Claims brought against the manufacturer of the products containing asbestos material to which workers or others were exposed. [Products liability: inhalation of asbestos, 39 A.L.R.4th 399, 2a]
Your situation may not neatly fit one of those above, but you still may have a valid claim. Your claim may involve the safety practices or lack of safety practices of your employer that led to your mesothelioma case. There may be a long-term condition in your environment that exposed you to asbestos that is not typical.
An experienced mesothelioma law firm will be able to evaluate your case and provide an honest assessment of your legal standing.
Legal Steps Are Not the Same in All States for Mesothelioma Cases
The legal steps for filing mesothelioma claims vary in state courts. The time you have to pursue your claim also differs from state to state, but there will be a statute of limitations beyond which you cannot file a claim. There is a lot of information for your attorney to assemble about the mesothelioma diagnosis, treatment you have received, the environment or work places where you were exposed to the asbestos, the impact the illness has had on personal and family life, the cost to date, and the cost that is anticipated.
Companies that have been responsible for mesothelioma deaths have used various legal defenses to fight claims from the victims of the disease. Nemeroff Law mesothelioma attorneys know what information is relevant, what questions to ask and what experts are needed to get you what you deserve.
At a time like this, your focus needs to be on your loved ones, your treatment, and your quality of life, not exhausting yourself in trying to wade through a complex legal battle to get compensation for your cancer.
The legal staff at Nemeroff Law Firm have successfully negotiated settlements and litigated claims for mesothelioma victims and their families across the nation. Visit our web page on successful mesothelioma cases and settlements. It is our job to handle the legal battle for you. Contact us today at 866-342-1919 or through our Contact Form. You are not alone. We are here for you, and we believe in what we do.