What are Mesothelioma Claims?
Filing a mesothelioma claim can provide financial security for you and your family.
Mesothelioma claims are legal actions filed by mesothelioma victims or their family members. These claims seek compensation for the financial burdens associated with the disease, such as medical expenses, lost wages, and other related costs.
Filing an Asbestos Claim
A person can be exposed unknowingly to asbestos in either their personal or professional lives. Fortunately, our justice system allows those suffering from mesothelioma to seek compensation from the manufacturers of asbestos and asbestos-containing products — compensation that is necessary for medical and personal needs.
With more than 40 years of experience, we have extensive knowledge of the companies that manufactured, distributed, and supplied asbestos products. Many of them knew of the hazards of asbestos but failed to take precautions to protect or notify workers for decades.
Our attorneys will guide you through the asbestos claims process and appropriate legal steps. It is our goal to seek swift and just compensation for our clients and their families.
Statute of Limitations on Asbestos Claims
The statute of limitations is the window of time within which you must file your mesothelioma claim. It is generally within 1-3 years following the date of diagnosis or death but often varies by state. It’s important to contact a qualified asbestos attorney as soon as possible following a mesothelioma diagnosis so that you do not miss your opportunity to file a claim.
The Typical Mesothelioma Claims Process
The mesothelioma claims process can be confusing and understanding the typical steps involved can help you and your family navigate this process more effectively.
To begin the mesothelioma claims process, we suggest a brief introductory meeting with an experienced and reputable mesothelioma attorney. During that meeting, the attorney will outline the various steps of the legal process; address any questions or concerns you may have related to the legal process; and seek to discuss the ways in which a mesothelioma client has been exposed to asbestos.
After this introductory meeting, the process should proceed as follows:
Phase I: Investigation/Background
An asbestos claim starts with a thorough investigation of your asbestos exposure history, including identifying the products you were exposed to, the locations of exposure, and the companies responsible.
Your attorney will immediately collect all diagnosing medical reports.
In addition, they will collect work history records, including, but not limited to, union records, service-related records (United States Navy, Coast Guard, Merchant Marine, Army, etc.); or other documents detailing employment history.
Your attorneys should seek to identify any potential family members, co-workers, and/or other product identification. They should also identify witnesses who may be able to assist with your asbestos claim moving forward, if possible.
Phase II: Identifying and Submitting Claims to Asbestos Trusts
Numerous companies have admitted past liability for asbestos exposure and have set up asbestos trusts to compensate qualifying mesothelioma clients. Your attorney should be familiar with these trusts and their requirements for mesothelioma claims submission.
Often compensation through these trusts can be obtained very quickly, if your particular case meets each trust’s exposure criteria. An attorney well versed in working with asbestos trusts is critical to the overall success of your case.
Once your case has been evaluated for potential monetary recovery through asbestos trusts, your attorney should then begin investigation of your case against viable companies who have yet to fully admit their asbestos liability.
Phase III: Complaint Filing
Generally, after an investigation period lasting 30-60 days, your attorney will consider scheduling, process timeframe, settlement history, and local laws to determine the proper venue to file the legal action. Your attorney has discretion to file in any forum where a mesothelioma client has resided, worked, or served in the military, as well as in “open forum” states (those states agreeable to allowing non-resident or non-exposure claimants to file).
Once the proper forum is determined, your attorney should file a formal complaint on behalf of the mesothelioma client. The complaint formally commences the legal process of seeking compensation.
The complaint typically asserts various legal causes of action against the asbestos companies likely responsible for causing or contributing to a mesothelioma client’s diagnosis. The number of asbestos companies (“defendants”) named in the complaint varies based on the specific type and amount of exposure a mesothelioma client may have had during his or her lifetime.
Phase IV: Discovery
Upon the filing of the complaint, the discovery phase commences. Discovery is, generally, referred to as “proving the case.” Typically, the discovery phase lasts from 3-4 months.
Discovery allows your attorney to present evidence to the defendant asbestos companies which details where, when, and how the mesothelioma client may have been exposed to a particular asbestos product. Your attorney can present this information in the form of written documents (interrogatories) or oral testimony (deposition) to the defendant asbestos companies. The defendant asbestos companies will also be entitled to present information or documents to your attorney during this period.
Your attorney will also be filing appropriate motions in court during the discovery phase. These motions may include matters such as scheduling or otherwise. Your attorney will likely try to reach some financial settlement(s) for your mesothelioma claim during the discovery phase.
Phase V: Settlement/Trial
Most mesothelioma lawsuits will not go to trial, but rather will resolve in settlements well in advance of the trial date.
Throughout the entire legal process, your attorney will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of seeking trial resolution vs. settlement with the mesothelioma client. Your attorney should value continued client input and respect the client’s right to decide what may be in his or her best legal interests.
Should a matter proceed to trial, your attorney should be experienced, qualified, and prepared to do so.
Phase VI: Appeal
After a trial decision, a defendant asbestos company may seek further review of an adverse decision. This review is called an appeal. Your attorney should also be experienced, qualified, and prepared to handle potential appeals.
Any settlements reached are final and cannot be appealed.
Finding the Right Mesothelioma Lawyer
Choosing the right mesothelioma law firm for your asbestos claim is the first step to achieving justice. An experienced attorney can guide you through the complex claims process, help you understand your legal rights, and work to secure the maximum compensation for your case.
When choosing an attorney, consider their experience in handling mesothelioma cases, their track record of success, and their understanding of asbestos law. A good attorney will not only help you navigate the legal process but also provide the support and guidance you need during this challenging time.
Types of Asbestos Lawsuits
Your mesothelioma attorney will help you understand the various types of asbestos lawsuits, including:
- Personal injury lawsuits: filed by individuals who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma due to asbestos exposure
- Wrongful death lawsuits: filed by the family members of a deceased mesothelioma patient
A qualified attorney can help you determine the best course of action for your case.
Types of Mesothelioma Claims
In addition to lawsuits, there are several types of mesothelioma claims, including asbestos trust fund claims and Veterans Affairs claims.
- Asbestos trust fund claims: filed against the trust funds established by companies that manufactured asbestos-containing products
- VA claims: filed by veterans who were exposed to asbestos during their military service
Your attorney can help you determine the best course of action for your case.
Average Compensation Amounts
Average compensation for mesothelioma victims typically ranges from $1 million to $1.4 million. This amount varies widely based on several factors, including the type of claim filed, the extent of the asbestos exposure, and the severity of the disease.
For more detailed information on compensation amounts, learn about recent mesothelioma settlements that our firm has secured.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long do mesothelioma claims take?
The length of the mesothelioma claims process can vary widely. It can take several months to several years, depending on various factors such as the complexity of the case, the number of companies involved, and whether the case goes to trial or settles out of court.
How much is a mesothelioma claim worth?
The value of a mesothelioma claim depends on several factors, including the severity of the disease, the extent of the asbestos exposure, the type of claim filed, and the laws of the state where the claim is filed. However, successful claims can result in significant compensation that can help cover medical expenses, lost wages, and other related costs.
What are the claims for mesothelioma cases?
Claims for mesothelioma cases typically seek compensation for the financial burdens associated with the disease. This can include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, loss of consortium, and other related costs. The specific claims will depend on the circumstances of the case and the laws of the state where the claim is filed.
Request a Free Case Evaluation
Request a free case evaluation now if you or someone you love has been diagnosed with mesothelioma. The evaluation will cost you nothing. Our lawyers will travel to visit you at your convenience or conference call with you over the phone. We understand how difficult a time this is for you and will assist in any way that we can. You can also call us toll-free at 1-800-336-0086 at any time.