According to the latest research, mesothelioma is deadly cancer with a survival rate of only 10% over 5 years. Exposure to asbestos puts over 20 million people in the United States at risk of getting mesothelioma cancer. This chemical component is frequently found in manufacturing, mining, construction, etc. Asbestos is also used in the manufacture of textiles, carpets, paper, gaskets insulation, and synthetic fiber-based products. Prolonged exposure to asbestos causes mesothelioma cancer. It is distressing and shocking for family and friends when a loved one is diagnosed with mesothelioma.
Therefore, if you are diagnosed with mesothelioma cancer after exposure to asbestos at your workplace, you can file a lawsuit to get compensation for medical treatment and management. This article sheds light on mesothelioma lawsuits and six simple steps to file a lawsuit and get compensation.
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Who Can File a Mesothelioma Lawsuit?
A person with mesothelioma cancer who suspects he developed the disease directly from exposure to asbestos at work is eligible to file a mesothelioma lawsuit. To get compensation, you need to prove in court that your employer’s use of asbestos in excessive amounts has caused cancer. Family members can file for compensation if the patient succumbs to cancer and dies. You need a competent attorney to file your lawsuit. If you’re looking for some of the best law firms for mesothelioma settlements and verdicts, consider Simmons Hanly Conroy. They are one of the most trustworthy and experienced attorneys in California. For more information, visit simmonsfirm.com.
Types of Mesothelioma Lawsuits
A mesothelioma lawsuit is a legal action against a company that used asbestos and didn’t ensure workplace safety for its employees, resulting in exposure to the harmful chemical component asbestos. The legal claim aims to win a legal verdict against the employer or get heavy compensation for treating and managing a mesothelioma cancer patient.
There are mainly three types of mesothelioma lawsuits or claims – personal injury, wrongful death, and trust fund claims. Personal injury and wrongful death claims are the most common lawsuits. Some companies created asbestos trust funds for such employees. Let’s briefly discuss each type of claim:
Personal Injury Claim
When a patient is diagnosed with mesothelioma cancer, they are entitled to file a personal injury claim against the employer. Suppose the employee wins the case, or the attorneys bring both parties to a settlement before the court’s verdict. In that case, the mesothelioma patient can get a handsome amount as monetary compensation to cover health loss, medical expenditures, loss of job and income, and physical and psychological pain and suffering the patient endured.
Wrongful Death Claim
When someone dies due to mesothelioma, their heirs, including family members, can claim wrongful death compensation. In certain circumstances, the jury has the authority to award compensation for burial expenses and the cancer treatments done before the patient’s death.
Trust Fund Claim
Many corporations have established asbestos trust funds so that they may pay people who have been harmed by asbestos exposure without fear of being sued again. If the corporation responsible for your personal injury, i.e., asbestos exposure, has a trust fund, an expert mesothelioma legal firm can help you file a claim.
How Much Compensation Can You Get
The monetary compensation for a mesothelioma patient varies from $1 to 1.4 million in case of settlement. However, the compensation amount can go up to $11.4 million in a trial. This amount includes sums to meet the cost of mesothelioma cancer treatment and the loss of income to the patient. On average, many mesothelioma cases get an average of $2.4 million in monetary compensation after negotiation with the employer.
Steps to File a Mesothelioma Lawsuit
A mesothelioma lawsuit might take months to file and process. If you have filed a mesothelioma claim, your attorney may request the court to accelerate the procedure in light of your physical health concerns and treatment process. Here are the procedures you need to follow to file a mesothelioma case. It starts with hiring an attorney to the settlement of your mesothelioma lawsuit:
Hiring a Competent Attorney
It can be tough to win a claim without hiring a competent attorney. Particularly when you have no idea how to file a compensation claim. Hire an attorney with vast experience handling similar cases and a positive reputation. The best option is to get services from a law firm that deals in a specific domain. Mesothelioma law companies also provide their customers with a free consultation and advice on the validity of the lawsuit.
Preparing and Reviewing the Claim
To prepare a strong case, your lawyer will need basic information. It could include personal details, social security numbers, specific details about asbestos exposure, supporting medical records, employer details, etc. The attorney will retrieve all this information and analyze it to prepare your claim.
Filing the Mesothelioma Lawsuit
After smoothing out the kinks, your attorney will file the case. All legal processes will be handled by your attorney. You may accept a settlement offer as soon as possible or choose to bargain further to receive more considerable monetary compensation. Your lawyer may encourage you to take the settlement offer as soon as it comes without wasting much time.
Response from the Defendant
In most cases, defendants must answer a lawsuit within 30 days of filing. History of mesothelioma lawsuits indicates that defendants do not always concur with the accusations stated by the claimant. The defendant will likely alter the information you gave to blame you for illness or death. During the court sessions, the jury may ask each party to submit a written response to the accusations and present any documented proof in the next hearing.
The court will exempt you from appearing if you or a mesothelioma family member is critically ill. Even if your attendance is unavoidable, you can send a recorded statement to be presented before the jury. Since companies care a lot about their public reputation, defendants would do their best to resolve the lawsuit by offering monetary compensation through settlements. The amount offered in the settlement depends on various factors, some of which may not favor you in court. This is why many mesothelioma claims end with an early settlement. Defendants must give compensation within a few months after obtaining a verdict from the court after the trial.
Final Resolution or Settlement
When you file a mesothelioma claim, you can opt for a settlement or trial where the jury decides the amount. Suppose a case doesn’t end in a settlement. In that case, the jury gets to decide whether or not a person is eligible for monetary claims. If the verdict comes in favor of the employee, the defendants are bound to pay the patient. However, the case can also go against the patient if there is insufficient proof of asbestos exposure or if you have a family history of mesothelioma cancer.
In many cases, defendants go for an appeal against the settlement conviction within a specific time range, which is usually between 30 and 180 days following the verdict. Defendants do that to gain more time and delay settlements. It is always recommended that you take the first settlement offer from the defendant. If it is a fair offer, you should take it.
Mesothelioma cancer is fatal and is mainly caused by asbestos exposure. Suppose you’re diagnosed with mesothelioma cancer, and you lose your employment due to your diagnosis. In that case, you must file a mesothelioma lawsuit within the time limit specified to get financial benefits for your treatment and the financial well-being of your loved ones. For this purpose, follow the steps mentioned above to hire an attorney, prepare documents, file a case, and get monetary compensation.