Mesothelioma is a truly nasty condition that has been sadly brought on by asbestos poisoning. It involves the growth of malignant tumors in the lungs, abdominal area, or heart all caused by the inhalation of asbestos fibers. Sadly, this has happened far too much.
In the years since asbestos was being commonly used, these cases have started to creep up more and more, in fact, they are all too common. In this article, we are going to discuss everything you need to know about asbestos, mesothelioma, and how to claim if this has affected you or your family.
History of Asbestos Use
Asbestos has been used throughout much of human history due to its fire-retardant properties. Even dating back as far as 4000 B.C. it is claimed that asbestos may have been used in the production of candles. In more recent times, its flameproof qualities made it an essential material after the industrial revolution.
In the 1900s asbestos became the material of choice in roofing and insulation, again due to its fire-retardant properties. It was around the mid-1900s that a certain Johns Manville became the biggest asbestos manufacturer in the US, then died of suspected asbestosis – though at the time it was recorded as “dust pneumonitis.” As the threats became more clear, people slowly reduced the use of the material at the end of the century after a peak in the 1960s and 1970s. In 2002, the last asbestos mine in the US closed its doors for good.
Mesollithioma is a benign or malignant tumor, mostly affecting the lining of the chest or abdomen – this lining is called the mesothelium. It is most often malignant and aggressive in nature, with only a small percentage of cases being curable. It is caused by the inhalation or digestion of microfibres in asbestos dust. It is not fully known how these cancers form, but it is clear it can take anywhere from 20-60 years post asbestos exposure to be detected.
Types of Lawsuit
If you or anyone you know has been affected by this, it may be time to enlist the aid of a lawyer. The professionals behind mesothelioma law firm emphasize that an experienced attorney will be able to help with either of the two main types of lawsuits associated with mesothelioma. Let’s quickly take a look at these.
Wrongful Death Claims
Unfortunately, as discussed, most cases of mesothelioma end up being fatal. If someone in your immediate family, or your estate, has died and you believe that was due to mesothelioma from asbestos exposure, you may be able to claim for wrongful death. In this case, you could claim against loss of family earnings, legal fees, funeral costs, personal damages, and more.
Personal Injury Claims
If you are currently living with mesothelioma and believe it to be caused by asbestos, you may be able to claim for your own personal injury. As with many personal injury cases, you will be able to claim against loss of earnings, ongoing medical bills, plus special claims for mental health and other ongoing issues.
In either of these cases, you will need to prove asbestos liability. This means proving that an employer, contractor, construction company, or someone else was responsible for the asbestos exposure. More on that later.
Should You Claim?
Claiming against another’s negligence is, in our opinion, always worth doing. Why should you suffer due to someone else’s inability to protect you properly? You could, in the USA, spend tens of thousands of dollars on treatment for mesothelioma, leaving your family with very little left after you’ve gone. Plus, living with a horrible disease is never easy, but having some of the financial burdens eased can certainly help.
How Much Could You Get?
Figures vary massively in mesothelioma cases. It depends on whether your case goes to court or is settled outside of court. If your case is heard at trial and you win, you could receive between $2 and $2.5 million. Outside of court, settlements often sit in the $1-1.4 million range. These sums of money may not cure mesothelioma, but they’ll certainly help to ease the financial burdens suffered by yourself and your loved ones.
Get A Lawyer
If you think all or any of this applies to you, the first thing to do is reach out to a specialist lawyer in the field. Many firms have full departments focused on mesothelioma cases. They will hear your story free of charge and then help you work out the best plan of action to take your case to trial – or get you the biggest possible settlement. The lawyer or firm will advise you every step of the way.
The claims process involves many stages once you have sat down with your chosen lawyer. First, your law firm will conduct what is known as a case review. This is where they will ask you questions about your employment history, asbestos exposure, medical records, etc. Then, they may ask you and your colleagues, employees, friends, and other people to provide verbal and written testimony. All the while, lawyers will be gathering other necessary evidence to build your case. This includes your medical records, employment logs, and any other physical evidence possible to build the strongest case.
Once they have all this, they will help you decide exactly what type of case to file and when to do it. They’ll know whether to settle or get you in front of a trial judge. Either way, it is in their best interest to get you the best result possible as it is likely that they will operate on a commission. In some cases, they will claim all their legal costs from the losing side, in others, they may charge you a retainer fee to secure their services.
Unfortunately, these kinds of cases have become all too common. The need for specialist mesothelioma lawyers speaks for itself. Luckily, they are there to help and you could walk away with a huge settlement to at least right some of the wrongs that have happened to you. If this has affected you, we strongly recommend reaching out to a law firm as soon as possible.