An aggressive cancer known as malignant mesothelioma can develop in the thin lining surrounding the heart, testes, abdomen, and lungs. The primary cause of mesothelioma is asbestos exposure, which typically occurs at industrial, manufacturing, and construction job sites. Because asbestos was strong and resistant to heat and electricity, older building materials contained asbestos. At home, asbestos was also present in appliances, building materials, and personal care products that contained talc
Life expectancy for people with mesothelioma is about 12 months with treatment, which is why the prognosis is generally poor for most patients. About 12% of people with pleural mesothelioma and 65% with peritoneal mesothelioma live for five years or longer.
The most common type of mesothelioma is pleural. It forms in the pleura, the protective lining around the outside of the lungs. The second-most common mesothelioma type is peritoneal, which forms in the abdominal lining. It has a much higher survival rate, and surgery is typically more successful than with pleural mesothelioma. The pericardial and testicular types affect about 1% of patients, and their treatment options are much more limited.
“Mesothelioma is a very ugly disease,” said Dr. Andrea Wolf, director of the New York Mesothelioma Program at Mount Sinai Health. “The most important thing I try to convey to patients is the importance of optimism … and focus on the things that give us a better chance for them.”
Table of Content
- Understanding Mesothelioma and Asbestos Exposure
- Legal Implications of Asbestos Exposure
- Role of Mesothelioma Law Firms
- Criteria for Selecting the Top Mesothelioma Law Firms
- The Top Mesothelioma Law Firms
- Legal Process and Compensation for Mesothelioma Victims
- Importance of Legal Assistance for Mesothelioma Victims
What Causes Mesothelioma?
Asbestos is the primary cause of mesothelioma. Repeated exposure to asbestos-contaminated products, such as talc and older construction materials, increases the risk of developing mesothelioma.
Asbestos fibers get stuck in tissues that line and protect vital organs. Over a period of decades, the fibers cause irritation and DNA damage. This damage turns normal cells into cancer cells, which develop into mesothelioma tumors. An average of 20 to 60 years passes between the first asbestos exposure and the development of symptoms, which is called the mesothelioma latency period.
Occupational asbestos exposure is the No. 1 cause of mesothelioma. Construction workers, industrial workers, firefighters, military veterans and those in similar occupations may have been exposed to asbestos.
If you or a loved one were exposed to asbestos long ago, monitoring for signs of disease with X-rays and other tests can help catch cancer early. Tell your doctor about your exposure and ask how frequently you should be tested.
Respiratory symptoms of pleural mesothelioma primarily affect the lungs and chest cavity and include coughing, wheezing and chest pain. Symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma develop in and around the abdomen and include abdominal swelling, distension and pain.
Pericardial mesothelioma symptoms impact the heart, such as heart palpitations and murmurs. Symptoms of testicular mesothelioma include testicular swelling and pain.
- Fever and sweating
- Fluid buildup
- Loss of appetite
- Muscle weakness
- Unexplained weight loss
Fatigue, weight loss and fever commonly occur in cancers. Mesothelioma misdiagnosis is frequent because its symptoms can resemble other cancers and illnesses. Talk to your doctor if you have been exposed to asbestos in the past and are experiencing these symptoms. Early diagnosis of any disease often leads to a better prognosis.
Legal Assistance For Mesothelioma Victims Seeking Compensation
The typical payout from a mesothelioma trial is $2.4 million. The typical compensation falls between $1 and $2 million. Each instance has a different financial recompense for mesothelioma.
A jury may decide on the amount of compensation in the event that the defendant is found accountable for the asbestos exposure, or a settlement may be struck in the event that a mesothelioma cancer claim proceeds to trial. Most cases are settled out of court.
You can be eligible for financial compensation if a loved one passes away from mesothelioma. Wrongful death claims may be brought by dependents, spouses, or family members. Financial compensation for mesothelioma aids in paying for medical bills, missed income, travel expenditures, and other losses. Families benefit financially from it in the event that a loved one is unable to work.
Mesothelioma personal injury lawsuits are often the best type of claims to file. The compensation can pay for medical bills, lost wages and other expenses. A mesothelioma attorney can walk you through the process and handle every legal detail while you focus on treatment and recovery.
Another option is filing a wrongful death claim when a person dies of mesothelioma. Surviving family members often represent the estate when filing this type of claim.
There are two types of mesothelioma lawsuits:
- Personal Injury Claims: People with mesothelioma file these lawsuits for compensation. The reward can cover medical bills, lost wages and other expenses.
- Wrongful Death Claims: The estate of a deceased loved one may file this type of claim.
If the defendants don’t settle and your case goes to trial, a court or jury will decide your case. The trial verdict will include monetary compensation if the defendant is found liable. If you win, the amount you are awarded depends on your case’s facts and other factors, such as medical costs and lost income. Each mesothelioma case is unique, and there are no set guidelines for compensation.
According to a 2021 leading industry report, more than 3,600 mesothelioma lawsuits seeking compensation were filed in the U.S. in 2020.
Understanding Mesothelioma and Asbestos Exposure
Most people who develop mesothelioma were exposed to high levels of asbestos at some point in their lives. You may have had a high level of exposure for just a few months (for example, working a summer construction job) or more long-term, low-level exposure from:
- Your workplace or environment
- A contaminated building
- Washing the clothes of someone who worked with asbestos
Asbestos, a mineral found in nature, was commonly used as insulation in construction, shipbuilding, and automotive products for much of the 20th century. When asbestos is disturbed, tiny particles are released into the air and can be breathed in or swallowed. This is called asbestos exposure.
Because asbestos is found in water, air, and soil, everyone is exposed at some point. Most people do not develop cancer from this kind of low-level exposure. People who work in industries where asbestos is common are more likely to be exposed to levels that can be harmful. These industries include:
- Other manufacturing industries
These workers can also carry asbestos fibers home on their clothes, which may expose anyone living with them. Asbestos is no longer mined in the U.S., but asbestos mines still exist here. People who live close to those mines have a higher risk of developing lung cancer, asbestosis, or mesothelioma due to this exposure.
How Asbestos Exposure Causes Mesothelioma?
Asbestos fibers are inhaled or swallowed. They then travel to the lining of the lungs (pleura), abdomen (peritoneum), or heart (pericardium) where they irritate and inflame the cells in the mesothelium. This irritation creates scar tissue on the surface of the mesothelium, which can progress to cancer.
Malignant mesothelioma tumors form in that scar tissue, anywhere from 20 to 50 years after asbestos exposure. Different types of mesothelioma result from different types of asbestos exposure:
- Pleural mesothelioma develops when asbestos fibers are inhaled and stick in the protective lining of the lungs (pleura). Over time, asbestos fibers cause inflammation and scarring within the lining, leading to progression of the disease.
- Peritoneal mesothelioma can form in the peritoneal (abdominal) lining if asbestos fibers are swallowed.
- Pericardial mesothelioma develops in the pericardium (lining of the heart). This type usually starts as pleural mesothelioma that has spread and invaded the pericardium.
The most common risk factor for mesothelioma is asbestos exposure. Other factors can increase risk but are less common. Having one or more mesothelioma risk factors doesn’t mean you will get cancer—it simply means your risk is elevated.
The risk factors for mesothelioma include:
- Primary asbestos exposure: Primary exposure is direct physical exposure to asbestos fibers. Up to 80 percent of all mesothelioma cases result from primary exposure.
- Secondary asbestos exposure: People who work with asbestos can transfer asbestos fibers from their skin or clothing to other people.
- Radiation exposure: Some research has shown a rare link between radiation therapy for other cancers and increased risk of mesothelioma, with or without asbestos exposure.
- Genetics: In rare cases, family history of mesothelioma is linked to gene mutations, including the BAP1 germline mutation. These genetic changes can increase risk of developing the disease even without asbestos exposure. They also make it more likely that people exposed to even low levels of asbestos will develop mesothelioma.
Understanding your risk factors is important for accurate mesothelioma diagnosis and staging. Mesothelioma specialists at Penn Medicine participate in the Tobacco and Environmental Carcinogenesis Program, a national research group studying environmental exposures and cancer, with a focus on the prevention of asbestos-related cancers like mesothelioma.
Legal Implications of Asbestos Exposure
As long as they are in good condition, asbestos materials are typically regarded as harmless. Damaged asbestos fibers have the potential to become airborne and spread dangerous illnesses such as mesothelioma, asbestosis, lung cancer, and diffuse pleural thickening, which kills about 4,500 people annually.
When construction work is done, such as maintenance, repairs, redevelopment, or demolition work, there is a potential of asbestos damage and many workers may be impacted.
The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 states that if existing asbestos containing materials are in good condition and are unlikely to be damaged then they can be left in situ. However, they must be monitored and remain undisturbed.
If a duty holder does not have a plan for dealing with asbestos in place they could face a fine of up to £20,000 or up to six months imprisonment. A serious breach of the regulations could mean an unlimited fine and/or two years imprisonment.
In 2010 Britannia Hotels Ltd was ordered to pay £200,000 in fines after construction workers and guests were put at risk of exposure to asbestos after the company failed to do a full asbestos assessment before refurbishment of the Grand Burstin Hotel in Folkestone.
In 2013 an industrial property owner was prosecuted for allowing untrained workers to be exposed to dangerous asbestos fibres in a building in Newport.
Role of Mesothelioma Law Firms
Law firms specializing in mesothelioma pursue cases on behalf of asbestos exposure victims. Through settlements and jury verdicts, they support patients and their families in their quest for monetary recompense. Reputable mesothelioma law companies have a track record of successfully representing clients and have high success rates. One of the most crucial choices you will make for your case is selecting the best law firm.
Overview of Mesothelioma Law Firms
The majority of the labor involved in bringing an asbestos claim is taken care of by mesothelioma legal companies, allowing victims to concentrate on getting better and spending time with their loved ones.
A mesothelioma law firm can help you in a number of ways to guarantee the success of your case.
- A Dedicated Legal Team
Everything starts with a complete mesothelioma legal team. The top law firms do not solely rely on lawyers to handle mesothelioma claims. They count on their entire team of medical and legal professionals who will be assigned to work on your case.
These legal teams consist of:
- Medical experts
- Support staff
A law firm is much like a football team with different positions. Law firms have professionals with various critical skills. Each law firm’s legal team member has specific knowledge that can help support your case. The team will gather details about your mesothelioma diagnosis and asbestos exposure.
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The team can also guide you on which documents must be signed to proceed with your asbestos claim.
- Knowledge Building Strong Cases
If the mesothelioma law firm determines you have a case, your legal team will gather supporting evidence for a claim.
During this phase, the team will identify:
- Medical records that confirm your mesothelioma diagnosis
- If you worked on a job site that exposed other victims to asbestos
- What asbestos-containing products (and manufacturers) may have caused your illness
- Any coworkers, family members, or friends who can testify about your exposure
- National Resources to Fight For You
Once the mesothelioma firm’s legal team has gathered the necessary information, they will file your legal claim. The team will determine which manufacturers may have caused your illness and determine the appropriate legal action.
Mesothelioma claims typically fall into one of the following categories:
- If the company is still in business, an asbestos lawsuit may be filed against it.
- If the company has filed for bankruptcy, it cannot be sued, but it may have an active asbestos trust fund set up to compensate victims.
Claims are often filed against multiple manufacturers depending on how the victim was exposed to asbestos. Victims often worked with or around many asbestos-based products made by several manufacturers. Learn if you qualify to pursue mesothelioma compensation through a trust fund or a lawsuit.
- Experience Getting Compensation For Clients
Once a claim has been filed, the mesothelioma law firm will work on your behalf to secure financial compensation for your wrongful asbestos exposure. Mesothelioma compensation is typically secured by reaching settlements with manufacturers still in business or by filing successful asbestos trust fund claims.
Compensation can help pay for:
- Counseling and support services
- Funeral and burial costs
- Living expenses
- Lost wages
- Medical bills
- Physical therapy
- Travel expenses associated with treatment
Mesothelioma compensation is not strictly limited to medical costs and can be used for anything once you receive it. You could get financial assistance within months, depending on what manufacturers or trust funds are in your claim.
Qualities That Make a Law Firm Stand Out
Not only do the top mesothelioma law firms truly care about the people they represent in court, but they also always prioritize the interests of their clients.
The top 5 characteristics to keep in mind when looking into mesothelioma law firms are listed below.
- Free Case Review & No Upfront Fees
Every attorney-client relationship should begin with a free case review. This consultation can help you learn about the law firm and the experience of its team members.
Victims and their families should not have to pay anything upfront if they decide to work with the law firm after this conversation. Mesothelioma law firms work on a contingency fee basis, meaning they only get paid if they secure compensation for victims.
- A Thorough Understanding of Mesothelioma
A top mesothelioma law firm will have access to the latest information from medical experts who work directly with patients.
The medical experts who work with mesothelioma firms understand:
- Mesothelioma signs and symptoms
- Each stage of the disease
- Expected outcomes of a diagnosis
- Treatment options
- Each stage of the disease
- Clinical trials testing new ways to diagnose and treat this cancer
These medical experts will be assigned to work on a mesothelioma victim’s case as part of their dedicated legal team.
- Asbestos Industry Knowledge
Mesothelioma law firms should have in-depth information about asbestos companies that can be used to build strong cases for victims of wrongful exposure.
This asbestos industry knowledge should include:
- What companies produced asbestos-containing products
- When the products were used
- What sites carried a high risk of asbestos exposure
- Which companies have established asbestos trust funds
The best mesothelioma law firms have vast databases worth of information, including what asbestos-containing products each manufacturer made and which manufacturers are still in business.
- Nationwide Network of Mesothelioma Lawyers
Mesothelioma law firms work with skilled lawyers who know how to handle asbestos lawsuits. Top mesothelioma lawyers have years of experience representing victims of wrongful asbestos exposure.
Mesothelioma lawyers have:
- Dedication and passion for helping those affected by mesothelioma
- Access to a comprehensive database of evidence, asbestos products, and locations
- Broad knowledge of asbestos litigation, high-risk occupations, and jurisdiction rules
Victims and their families should find a national law firm with mesothelioma attorneys on staff. General personal injury lawyers who work at local law firms may be unable to file a claim in the jurisdiction that offers the best chance of receiving maximum compensation.
- Success in Securing Top Settlements & Verdicts
Successful mesothelioma law firms have helped thousands of victims obtain mesothelioma settlements or verdicts. The law firm a victim works with should have a proven track record of helping other victims receive compensation. Most lawsuits will be settled out of court, and victims can expect to receive between $1 million and $1.4 million on average from mesothelioma settlements. Some cases may award more or less than this.
Rarely, a lawsuit may go to trial if a settlement can’t be reached. Asbestos lawsuit trial verdicts typically award between $5 million and $11.4 million on average, but there is no guarantee that victims and their loved ones will receive compensation.
Examples of Successful Cases Handled by Law Firms
- Damages of £112,500 net of deductions for state benefits were paid to the widow of a former carpenter who died from mesothelioma. The deceased had been exposed to asbestos in the course of repairing and replacing corrugated asbestos roofing on council owned properties during the 1970’s and early 1980’s. Compensation included damages for the deceased’s injuries, bereavement damages for his widow, a sum to reflect the nursing care and assistance provided by his widow and other close relatives and compensation for the widow’s past and future loss of financial dependency together with various out of pocket expenses incurred. The Defendant in this case was the London Borough of Havering
- A 78 year old former factory worker accepted damages of £35,000 for asbestosis. He had been exposed to asbestos from the late 1960s to the early 1980s cutting marinite boards used for the manufacture of spray booths and was also exposed to asbestos installing trunking for ventilation which required him to cut away asbestos from pipework and also to cut into asbestos corrugated roofing. The Defendant in this case was Burntwood Engineering Limited.
- A 67-year-old man accepted a provisional damages settlement in the sum of £35,000 after he developed asbestos as a result of exposure to asbestos with 2 former employers who exposed him to asbestos in the course of his work carrying out maintenance and repairs on heating and pipework on the Defendant’s premises, namely an RAF base and a hospital. The provisional settlement allowed him to make a further claim for damages in the event of his asbestosis deteriorating significantly if he developed a new disease, namely mesothelioma, asbestos related lung cancer or diffuse pleural thickening. The Defendants in this case were RAF Mildenhall in Suffolk and West Suffolk Health Authority.
- Provisional damages in the sum of £25,000 were agreed on behalf of a 66-year-old man previously exposed to asbestos in the 1960s and 1970s with two different employers. He was initially exposed to asbestos working in a factory where he was required to strip asbestos from pipes and later exposed to asbestos working in a forge. He developed asbestosis resulting in a 10% respiratory disability. The terms of the settlement allowed a further claim in the event of him developing diffuse pleural thickening, mesothelioma or asbestos related lung cancer. The Defendants in this case were Foseco International Limited and Forgings Presswork Limited.
- A 67-year-old former carpenter claimed damages for asbestosis having been exposed to asbestos with two former employers. He had been exposed to asbestos when repairing and replacing corrugated asbestos roofing on Council owned properties and was also exposed to asbestos when cutting and installing Asbestolux sheeting as fireproofing within a factory. Initially, the Defendants were unwilling to pay any damages because the Claimant had no symptoms of breathlessness but a settlement was reached whereby the damages were agreed at £10,000 gross on a provisional basis allowing him to make a further claim in the future if he suffered a deterioration due to asbestosis or if he developed asbestos related pleural thickening, lung cancer or mesothelioma.
- Relatives of a former carpenter accepted gross damages of £35,000 after the deceased died from asbestosis at the age of 81. The deceased had been exposed to asbestos working for three companies in Merseyside shipyards. Two of the Defendant companies had ceased trading and damages were reduced to take into account the fact that there were significant periods of employment for which no Insurer could be traced. Damages were also reduced to take into account the deceased’s other significant medical problems and the fact that he had been unaware of the diagnosis of asbestosis when he died.
- A former laborer and pipe lagger was exposed to asbestos for as little as a few months only and was diagnosed with pleural thickening which resulted in him retiring earlier than anticipated. There was a firm denial of liability. Legal proceedings were issued in Court and the client’s case settled for £110,000.
- The estate of a pipe fitter/plumber who was exposed to asbestos while working on cruise ships in the 1980s and died from mesothelioma received an award of £90,000, the matter being complicated by the deceased having an estranged wife living abroad who in any event was entitled to a limited award for bereavement.
Criteria for Selecting the Top Mesothelioma Law Firms
Mesothelioma and asbestos litigation are the areas of expertise for a mesothelioma law company. These companies are in a position to assist families in obtaining the maximum amount of compensation possible in their case since they are aware of the particular laws and history pertaining to this kind of case.
Skilled mesothelioma law firms usually consist of teams of asbestos lawyers, paralegals, and medical experts who understand the intricate circumstances each family faces, ranging from a dismal prognosis to exorbitant medical expenses.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Mesothelioma Law Firm
Choosing a lawyer with the credentials and experience to manage asbestos litigation successfully is crucial when faced with a mesothelioma diagnosis. The specialized knowledge and experience of top mesothelioma lawyers can have a big impact on how your case turns out.
- Experience: When searching for a top mesothelioma lawyer, finding someone specializing in handling cases is crucial. Mesothelioma lawsuits involve unique medical and legal complexities that require specific knowledge and expertise. Lawyers who focus exclusively on mesothelioma and asbestos litigation have an in-depth understanding of the disease, its causes, and the legal aspects surrounding asbestos exposure. They are familiar with gathering evidence, identifying liable parties, and building a solid case. Opting for a lawyer specializing in mesothelioma cases can significantly enhance your chances of a successful outcome.
- Success rate: A top mesothelioma lawyer should have a proven track record of success in representing mesothelioma victims. Look for lawyers or law firms with a history of securing significant verdicts and settlements in mesothelioma cases. A successful track record indicates their ability to navigate the complexities of the legal system, negotiate effectively, and obtain favorable outcomes for their clients. Research the firm’s past cases and examine the results they have achieved. Lawyers with a strong track record demonstrate their competence. They can provide you with confidence in their ability to handle your case.
- Compassion and Support: Dealing with a mesothelioma diagnosis is emotionally challenging, and a top mesothelioma lawyer should provide legal expertise, sympathy, and support. Look for a lawyer who demonstrates empathy and understands the physical, emotional, and financial toll mesothelioma takes on victims and their families. A compassionate lawyer will prioritize your well-being, actively listen to your concerns, and guide the legal process. Effective communication, responsiveness, and a genuine commitment to fighting for your rights are essential qualities to seek in a mesothelioma lawyer
- Proactive Case Management: A top mesothelioma lawyer, such as Shrader & Associates, will proactively manage your case from start to finish. They will handle all legal aspects, including paperwork, documentation, and court proceedings, allowing you to focus on your health and well-being. Their attention to detail and organizational skills ensure that no critical deadlines or opportunities are missed.
- Access to Expert Witnesses: Top mesothelioma lawyers have access to a network of expert witnesses who can provide crucial testimony to support your case. These experts may include medical, occupational health, and asbestos exposure experts. By leveraging their expertise, your lawyer can strengthen your case and present compelling evidence to establish liability and demonstrate the extent of your damages.
- Negotiation and Trial Skills: A top mesothelioma lawyer possesses excellent negotiation and trial skills. They can effectively negotiate settlement negotiations with asbestos companies and insurance providers on your behalf. If a fair settlement cannot be reached, they are prepared to take your case to trial. Their courtroom experience and persuasive advocacy can help secure maximum compensation for injuries and losses.
How do I Choose a Good Mesothelioma Law Firm?
A good way to choose a high-quality mesothelioma law firm is to look at the law firm’s history of past results and testimonials from former clients. Additionally, the firm’s experience with mesothelioma cases and the resources they have available should be taken into account.
Top asbestos law firms will also provide potential clients with a free legal consultation, during which you can learn more about the options available to you.
Be sure to ask any potential mesothelioma law firm about their fee agreement as well. Those who work on a contingency-fee basis will not be required you to pay any hourly or upfront costs.
The Top Mesothelioma Law Firms
The top mesothelioma law firms offer assistance all through the court proceedings. These firms’ solicitors have a track record of success in asbestos lawsuits. They’ve been successful in getting their clients paid for years.
Early, Lucarelli, Sweeney & Meisenkothen
- Serves Clients: Nationwide
- Offices in: Edwardsville, IL; New Haven, CT; New Orleans, LA; New York, NY; Orlando, FL; St. Louis, MO; Torrance, CA; Washington, D.C.
- Recognized by: Best Lawyers®, Martindale-Hubbell, Super Lawyers®, U.S. News & World Report
Early, Lucarelli, Sweeney & Meisenkothen (ELSM) has represented more than 4,000 individuals impacted by asbestos exposure. ELSM has more than 40 years of experience in asbestos litigation. Their law firm will work tirelessly on behalf of their client’s legal rights.
Shrader & Associates
- Serves Clients: Nationwide
- Offices in: Houston, TX; Maryville, IL; St. Louis, MO; Seattle, WA
- Recognized by: Super Lawyers®, National Trial Lawyers, U.S. News & World Report, The American Association for Justice
Shrader & Associates is a small boutique national trial firm. They only take a select few cases, so they can give personal attention to each client. These national trial attorneys fight tirelessly on behalf of mesothelioma victims and their families and have recovered over a billion dollars in verdicts and settlements. For over three decades, their award-winning legal services have helped families across the United States, leading to their recognition as one of the top mesothelioma law firms in the country.
Motley Rice LLC
- Serves Clients: Nationwide
- Offices in: Mount Pleasant, SC; Providence, RI; Hartford, CT; New York, NY; Morgantown, WV; Charleston, WV; Washington, DC; Cherry Hill, NJ; Philadelphia, PA
- Recognized by: Chambers USA, U.S. News & World Report, Law360, The Legal 500 United States, The National Law Journal
Contact them for legal advice and find out if your asbestos-related case has merit. They litigate asbestos cases across the country and know what it takes.
Dean Omar Branham Shirley, LLP
- Serves Clients: Nationwide
- Offices in: Dallas, TX; Indianapolis, IN
- Recognized by: Super Lawyers®, National Trial Lawyers
The Law Offices of Dean, Omar, Branham and Shirley are dedicated to helping mesothelioma patients get compensation. The firm’s lawyers are experienced in fighting unsafe working conditions and negligent asbestos companies.
The Gori Law Firm
- Serves Clients: Nationwide
- Offices in: Alton, IL; Belleville, IL; Edwardsville, IL; Granite City, IL; New Orleans, LA; New York, NY; Orlando, FL; St. Peters, MO; Torrance, CA; Washington, D.C.
- Recognized by: Super Lawyers®, National Trial Lawyers, The American Society of Legal Advocates (ASLA)
The Gori Law Firm has helped thousands of clients recover mesothelioma compensation. Over the past 15 years, the firm’s lawyers have recovered more than $3 billion in verdicts and settlements. Attorneys at The Gori Law Firm have the knowledge and resources to fight negligent asbestos companies.
Simmons Hanly Conroy
- Serves Clients: Nationwide
- Offices in: Alton, IL; Chicago, IL; El Segundo, CA; New York, NY; St. Louis, MO
- Recognized by: Best Lawyers®, Super Lawyers®, U.S. News & World Report
Simmons Hanly Conroy is one of the top asbestos law firms in the United States. The firm is committed to helping individuals and families affected by asbestos-related diseases. For more than 20 years, the firm has recovered billions of dollars in asbestos verdicts and settlements on behalf of their clients.
Legal Process and Compensation for Mesothelioma Victims
On behalf of asbestos sufferers, mesothelioma attorneys may bring legal action and make claims. Depending on the kind of lawsuits victims and their legal teams seek, different procedures apply to the lawsuit and claims processes. However, there is a standard procedure that must be followed in order to file for mesothelioma compensation.
- Connect With a Mesothelioma Lawyer
The first step for filing any mesothelioma claim is to consult an experienced lawyer. Top law firms usually offer an initial, free case review with no obligation to hire them. Mesothelioma attorneys at these firms have experience with different types of claims and can help get the maximum possible award.
- Research Details for Your Claim
Lawyers can research case details, such as how and when asbestos exposure occurred. It is also important for clients to provide attorneys with any medical or employment documents to prove these facts. Lawyers also have access to previous cases, asbestos product records and exposure reports to help with this stage.
- Determine Your Options
Lawyers will discuss compensation options and help choose the best strategy to achieve clients’ goals.
- File Your Claim
Once a case is prepared, a lawyer can file a lawsuit or claims on behalf of their client. After filing, next steps will vary based on the type of lawsuit or claims. For example, settlement offers may arrive after filing or during lawsuit hearings.
- Negotiate Your Award
After filing a claim or lawsuit, a lawyer can work the case on behalf of their client. For a lawsuit, a lawyer can negotiate settlement amounts and litigate at trial.
The time it takes to receive mesothelioma payouts is different for each individual case. Verdict payouts may take several months to a year, and settlements may pay out quicker depending on when the case settles. Asbestos trust funds typically pay out within a few months. Filing soon after a mesothelioma diagnosis or death can help individuals receive compensation more quickly.
Mesothelioma lawyers can help set expectations for time frames for individual cases. They can explain how things like lawsuit type, party availability and the facts of a case can affect the time it takes to resolve a legal action.
Are Family Members Eligible for Compensation?
Family members may seek compensation for the death of a loved one from mesothelioma. For wrongful death lawsuits, this includes children, spouses and other close relatives or dependents. They may also be entitled to certain benefits, such as monthly VA claim payments or healthcare benefits.
Compensation from wrongful death lawsuits and other sources can help provide financial security. It can also help pay for outstanding medical costs. Mesothelioma attorneys can help family members file asbestos claims after death. They have experience with asbestos cases and claims filed on behalf of mesothelioma patients’ families.
Importance of Legal Assistance for Mesothelioma Victims
With the aid of a mesothelioma attorney, victims, and their families can pursue justice and recompense from the businesses that produced the asbestos-containing goods to which they were exposed. Your legal options following a mesothelioma diagnosis could include bringing a lawsuit, making an asbestos trust fund claim, and requesting VA compensation.
- Focused Legal Advice
When you contact a mesothelioma lawyer, you will receive legal advice that is appropriate for your situation. During a free consultation, an attorney at The Law Offices of Peter T. Nicholl can determine if you have a viable claim and discuss what you must prove to recover compensation. He or she can also tell you the types of compensation you may be able to recover and any time limits for pursuing compensation.
Your mesothelioma lawyer will also determine your options for pursuing compensation. For example, you may be able to file a claim with a trust fund. In other cases, you may need to file a lawsuit. However, even if you file a lawsuit you might not end up in court. We may be able to settle the case before it gets to that point. Your attorney will explain the risks and benefits of the options available to you so that you can make an informed decision that is in your best interest.
- Attention to Detail
The legal process is often very complicated. If you try to pursue your claim yourself, you might make a major mistake that can seriously hurt your chances of recovering fair compensation or any compensation at all.
A lawyer is familiar with filing requirements, procedural requirements and other important aspects of the legal process. He or she can help you protect your claim by following all relevant rules.
Additionally, a mesothelioma lawyer is familiar with the medical records and other records that are common to these types of claims. He or she can help identify and gather documents that are relevant to your case.
Many people may hesitate to contact a lawyer because they believe that they will not be able to afford these services. However, the mesothelioma lawyers at our firm work on a contingency fee basis. This means that you are not responsible for paying the lawyer an hourly rate as he or she works on your case. Instead, he or she receives a percentage of any settlement or award, based on your agreement with the lawyer. If you do not recover any compensation, you do not pay any out-of-pocket attorney fees.
Additionally, the attorneys at The Law Offices of Peter T. Nicholl do not charge any upfront fees, so you can get your case started and your paperwork filed without any immediate cost to you.
Mesothelioma Support Services
Patients and families benefit from programs that address all facets of a cancer diagnosis, treatment, and survivorship because cancer can affect every element of a person’s life. We think that care should go beyond just treating your illness; it should also give you the means to take control of each step of the journey, from comprehending your condition to controlling the side effects and recuperation of your therapy to getting the emotional support you require.
Support services for cancer include:
- Counseling for Patients and Families
- Home Care Services
- Nutritional Counseling
- Palliative Care and Pain Management
- Patient Education
- Patient Navigators
- Stress Management
- Support Groups
When a loved one dies from mesothelioma, families often feel they are owed justice. The law gives families an opportunity to act on these feelings by filing lawsuits and asbestos trust fund claims. These cases can result in compensation, which can help ease financial burdens in the wake of loss. An asbestos lawyer can help handle the process of filing after death.
Families of deceased patients may file wrongful death lawsuits. In some instances, a patient may have filed their own personal injury lawsuit before passing. Family members may be able to take over the deceased’s case while pursuing their own separate wrongful death lawsuit.
Compensation options other than lawsuits may also be available, including trust fund claims and veterans benefits claims. Attorneys from qualified mesothelioma law firms can explain all possible legal options.