Asbestos Settlements

If you have been diagnosed with Mesothelioma or Lung Cancer you could be entitled to significant compensation from both the Asbestos Trust Funds and asbestos product manufactures.

Contact us now for a FREE consultation.

Free Case Review

Asbestos Settlements

If you have been diagnosed with Mesothelioma or Lung Cancer you could be entitled to significant compensation from both the Asbestos Trust Funds and asbestos product manufactures.

Contact us now for a FREE consultation.

Free Case Review

Asbestos Lawsuit & Settlements:
Your Rights and Options

Factors in
Asbestos Lawsuits

Several factors determine how much victims or families get in an asbestos lawsuit. For the most part, if there is a diagnosis of mesothelioma, some asbestos exposure or if the patient is over the age of 44, the likelihood of getting compensation is almost a certainty. For younger victims, it really depends on the exposure history. Most victims get paid by numerous defendants or some of the 40 trust funds. In rare cases, there are one or two defendants that decide they want to take their cases to court.

For those cases, the judges typically require both parties to meet and try to resolve the dispute amicably in mediation. Both sides lay out their reasons for wanting to press forward. With the help of a top tier asbestos law firm like ours, the defendants typically settle their cases instead of risking large verdicts at trial. They realize we are not bluffing and we will usually win the lawsuit, and they are going to be potentially liable for 7 to 8 figure verdicts.

Most mesothelioma victims are obviously very ill and once diagnosed near the end of their lives. They are in no shape, either physically, mentally, or emotionally, for a protracted trial. Most of the judges overseeing court cases often require expedited trial dates and mediation so a patient’s medical treatment and daily lives are not interfered with.

Building an Asbestos
Lawsuit Claim

Victims typically do not have to demonstrate exposure in mesothelioma cases or prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt. In most cases, they simply have to show asbestos exposure was likely to have happened. Having victim statements or co-workers support the claims often helps the case. The standard of evidence is very low in civil claims.

That being said, to maximize the value of the case the lawyers need to go the extra mile and provide as much supporting evidence as possible. Ironically, a company’s own record keeping often documents the purchased and used asbestos in their facilities.

Type of Exposure

As far as researchers know, only asbestos exposure causes mesothelioma. It is considered one of the rarest, most aggressive, and deadliest cancers. Making matters worse, mesothelioma has an extremely long latency period. Many victims have asbestos fibers in their bodies for decades, yet they show no mesothelioma symptoms or warning signs. Furthermore, these victims usually have no lifestyle or genetic red flags that might indicate they will get cancer later.

Therefore, doctors can’t use diagnostic tests or biological markers to identify who may be at the most risk. To diagnose the disease, a physician has to do a biopsy, usually only done after identifying cancer symptoms. The testing to confirm mesothelioma is costly and requires both radiological testing and invasive tissue samples. More on that below.

For similar reasons, shipbuilders added asbestos to almost every U.S. Navy vessel made before 1980. Workers who didn’t handle construction materials and sailors who didn’t step aboard ships were also at risk. Microscopic asbestos fibers are only slightly heavier than air.

They easily float to the commissary, mess hall, construction office, parking lot, and other common areas. Determining the when, where, and how of exposure might be the most important part of the claims building process.

Medical Diagnosis

To file a claim, the victim must have a credible medical diagnosis of an asbestos-related illness, such as mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is very real. Because most physicians only see 1 or 2 cases in their entire career, it is often misdiagnosed. The mesothelioma cancer misdiagnosis rate is over 40 percent. The most common misdiagnosis is pneumonia. Pneumonia is a very common disease.

So, when physicians look at the X-rays of a person with mesothelioma, they often misinterpret what they are seeing. Mesothelioma patients often have fluid around the outside of the lung which is called pleural effusion. A pulmonologist or radiologist will eventually pick up on the fact that the fluid is outside the lung and likely mesothelioma. Ultimately, a fluid or tissue biopsy is necessary to confirm the diagnosis.

The Extra Mile

To obtain maximum compensation in court, an experienced mesothelioma attorney will need to have experience with three things. First, a successful asbestos attorney will do a thorough investigation of a client’s work history to determine if asbestos was used in the workplace. Second, they will look to see if the individual did any remodeling of their own home or used talcum powder. Last, they will look at family members who may have inadvertently been exposed to asbestos from their clothes.

Our asbestos exposure lawyers often partner with expert witnesses, such as industrial asbestos experts and other attorneys, to make sure they haven’t missed any previously unreported asbestos products in the victims workplace.

Your Asbestos Lawsuits Options

Legal options for victims or survivors usually relate back to the nature of the asbestos exposure, as follows. Some victims may be eligible for all 3:

Depending on the facts, an asbestos exposure lawyer typically files a negligent failure to warn case or a strict liability defective product claim.

If asbestos exposure, or any other injury, was work-related, no-fault benefits are available that cover economic losses, mostly medical expenses and lost wages.

These claims are very similar to workers’ compensation claim

Most cases settle out of court because a competent mesothelioma attorney will make sure the defendants are very aware of their responsibility in causing asbestos exposure which ultimately caused mesothelioma cancer.

During the mediation, they often elect to resolve the claims because the risks of going to court for them are too high. Mediation is successful in over 90 percent of mesothelioma cases.

Asbestos Compensation Funds – Asbestos Lawsuit Settlements

When asbestos providers declared bankruptcy, mostly in the 1980s, federal judges required them to set up large victim compensation funds. Even today, all these years later, these funds still hold some $30 billion.

As mentioned, the legal claims process can take several years to resolve. The Asbestos Trust claims alternatively, can come in a matter of months. An experienced asbestos attorney will know how to resolve these claims quickly.

Most successful firms have a department entirely dedicated to filing claims. Proper claim filing requires a great degree of technical skill because many trusts can be filed for. Furthermore, a Matrix Report must be created which shows the relative culpability of each Trust fund.

An attorney doesn’t need particularly strong evidence to make a claim but rather demonstrate it was more than likely the victim was exposed to the specific product. This could come from union records, work history, or other sources. But the most important type of evidence is the victim’s own statements or that of a co-worker. 

The fact that it is not a legal proceeding speeds the process. But it also means no looming trial date motivates defendants to make a deal, and no mediator supervises negotiations.

Connect With a Diligent National
Asbestos Cancer Lawyer

Most civil lawsuits eventually settle out of court on victim-friendly terms. For a free consultation with an experienced and successful lawyer in your area, please contact us at MesotheliomaAttorney.com or Michelle Whitman Esq.

We do not charge upfront legal fees in these matters and only get paid if we successfully resolve your asbestos claim.

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