Many of lung cancer’s causes are lifestyle-related, such as cigarette smoking and breathing in secondhand smoke. However, lung cancer can also be caused by exposure to asbestos and other harmful particles. And in many cases, exposure-related lung cancer results from someone’s negligence.

Did you develop lung cancer caused by someone else’s actions or lack thereof? If so, you have the legal right to hold responsible parties accountable.


At Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC, our personal injury attorneys work tirelessly to defend the legal rights of victims of other people’s negligence. With our lawyers’ experience and expertise, you can pursue financial compensation for this disease and its effects on your life, family, and livelihood.

Contact our Chicago medical malpractice lawyers at (888) 424-5757 for a free legal consultation. All confidential or sensitive information you share with our legal team will remain private under an attorney-client relationship.

What Is Lung Cancer?

Cancer is a disease wherein the body’s cells grow uncontrollably. Lung cancer starts in the lungs and may spread to other body parts, such as the lymph nodes or brain. It is the most common cancer worldwide, accounting for 2.1 million new patients and 1.8 million deaths in 2018.

When it comes to gender and racial or ethnic differences, more men develop the disease than women. Moreover, black men and women are more likely to develop and die from the disease than people of any other racial or ethnic group.

The five-year survival rate of this disease is 56% for cases detected when the cancerous cells are still within the lungs. However, only 16% of patients are diagnosed at an early stage. When tumors spread to other organs, the survival rate decreases to 5%.

Types of Lung Cancer

There are two main types of lung cancer:

  • Small Cell Lung Cancer: This form of cancer occurs almost exclusively in heavy smokers.
  • Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer: This refers to several lung cancers, including squamous cell carcinoma, adenocarcinoma, and large cell carcinoma.


Mesothelioma is cancer caused by asbestos. It is characterized by malignant tumors that develop in the protective tissue around the organs called mesothelium. Mesothelioma in the lungs is referred to as pleural mesothelioma.

Risk Factors of Lung Cancer

Your risk of lung cancer may increase due to several factors, including:


Smoking is the leading risk factor for lung cancer. Smoking is associated with 80% to 90% of lung cancer deaths in the US. The possibility of this disease developing increases the more cigarettes a person smokes and the more years they spend smoking.

Secondhand Smoke

Even if a person does not smoke, their chances of developing lung cancer rise if they are constantly exposed to secondhand smoke.

Asbestos Fibers and Other Carcinogens

Exposure to asbestos fibers increases the possibility of lung cancer. Research links this harmful substance and a chemical reaction called DNA methylation that changes specific genes.

Researchers stated that DNA methylation is essential in regulating gene expression and carcinogenesis. Carcinogenesis is the formation of cancer.

Previous Radiation Therapy

Cancer survivors undergoing radiation therapy on the chest have a higher lung cancer predisposition.

Radon Gas

Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the US. Radon is an invisible, odor-free, and tasteless gas that naturally occurs in rocks, soil, and water. People who live or work in buildings with high radon content have a higher risk of developing the disease over time.

Personal and Family History

You may have a higher predisposition to lung cancer if your parents, siblings, or children have had lung cancer. You may also develop another type of lung cancer if you are a cancer survivor.

Symptoms of Lung Cancer

Early-stage lung cancer does not typically cause signs. Instead, signs and symptoms usually occur when the disease has advanced.

Lung cancer signs and symptoms may include:

  • Persistent coughing
  • Coughing up blood
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Hoarseness
  • Weight loss
  • Bone pain
  • Headaches

Seek medical attention as soon as possible if you experience one or more of these symptoms. Early diagnosis is the key to preventing lung cancer from worsening.

Complications of Lung Cancer

Developing cancer in the lungs can lead to several complications, such as:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Coughing up blood
  • Pain
  • Fluid in the chest
  • Cancer that spreads to other body parts (metastasis)

Diagnosis and Treatment

Lung cancer is diagnosed in several ways, including:

  • Imaging tests
  • Sputum cytology
  • A tissue sample (biopsy)

Treatment may include:

Who Is Most Likely to Develop Mesothelioma?

People with the highest chance of developing this disease have handled large amounts of asbestos or were exposed to it for an extended period, including:

  • Veterans
  • Construction workers
  • HVAC technicians
  • Electricians
  • Chimney sweeps
  • Miners
  • Firefighters
  • Textile mill workers
  • Auto mechanics

Contact your doctor for screening as soon as possible if you are part of these at-risk groups.

Who Can Be Held Liable for Your Lung Cancer?

In some cases, lung cancer can be caused by someone else’s negligence. Responsible parties may include:

  • Employers are required to protect workers from harmful substances, including in disaster conditions.If you developed lung cancer due to your occupation, your employer could be liable for failing to protect you from the risks.
  • Contractors: Architects, engineers, and other professionals could be liable for failing to detect cancer-causing substances in homes and other buildings.
  • Schools: School districts must perform surveillance of asbestos-containing materials every six months. Failing to detect this harmful substance due to non-compliance may serve as grounds for legal action.
  • Doctors: Early diagnosis is the key to treating lung cancer. Doctors and other medical professionals must ensure that they detect potential signs of the disease as early as possible. Otherwise, the patient’s cancer may worsen. Failure to detect lung cancer despite present signs may be medical malpractice.

Filing a Lung Cancer Claim

Did someone else’s negligence cause your lung cancer? If so, you could hold the negligent party accountable by filing a legal claim.

Medical Malpractice

You could file a medical malpractice case if a medical professional’s negligence caused your disease. Possible forms of medical malpractice that can worsen a patient’s lung cancer include:

  • Wrong diagnosis
  • Failure to order proper tests
  • Inadequate usage of diagnostic tools
  • Failure to enact accurate treatment methods on time
  • Incorrect administration of treatment

Occupational Hazard

You could file an occupational health claim or lawsuit against an employer, contractor, or company if your lung cancer resulted from hazardous workplace conditions. Negligent actions that can lead to occupational cancer include:

Construction Negligence

Non-workers that develop lung cancer due to negligent construction can take legal action against contractors and construction companies by filing a personal injury claim. Cases of negligent construction include:

  • Using harmful materials (with or without knowledge)
  • Failing to detect carcinogens
  • Disturbing carcinogen-containing material


By filing a legal claim against responsible parties, you could recover financial compensation for:

  • Medical Bills: Compensation for treatment, including hospitalization, medication, surgery, chemotherapy, and palliative care that include supportive care to treat your illness
  • Disability: Compensation for disability-related damages if you become permanently disabled from the disease, such as loss of future earning potential, rehabilitation, and disability aids.
  • Lost Wages: Compensation for wages, income, and benefits lost while undergoing treatment or recovering.
  • Pain and Suffering: Compensation for physical and non-physical injuries, such as physical pain, emotional distress, and mental anguish.
  • Loss of Quality of Life: Compensation for quality of life lost caused by lung cancer.
  • Wrongful Death: Compensation for death-related damages if your loved one dies, including funeral and burial costs, pre-death medical treatment, loss of consortium, etc

Legal Options

You could recover financial compensation for your damages by filing a legal claim. The defendant may use insurance coverage to pay for your settlement, meaning negotiations with the insurance company could be necessary to ensure you recover fair compensation.

However, your lawyer could help you file a lawsuit if negotiations are unsuccessful or the defendant refuses to take responsibility for your damages. Your case will then go to civil court, where a judge or jury will hear evidence from both parties and determine a verdict.

To avoid litigation, your lawyer could help you pursue compensation through alternative dispute resolution methods, such as arbitration or mediation.

Our lawyers have the experience and skills to tackle any legal case, regardless of what path you have to take.

Talk to a Chicago Lung Cancer Lawyer Today

Like many other severe health problems, lung cancer can take a significant physical, emotional, and financial toll on you and your family. Aside from the stress of getting a correct diagnosis and finding the best forms of treatment, you may also be burdened by the extreme financial consequences of dealing with this disease.

If someone else’s negligence caused your cancer, don’t hesitate to take legal action. With the help of a Chicago lung cancer lawyer, you can pursue financial compensation from responsible parties and ease some of the burdens you are carrying.

Contact our law offices today at (888) 424-5757, or use the contact form for a free consultation on your case. Your Chicago lung cancer lawyer will be the one to analyze the specifics of your case and recommend proper legal action.

Our attorneys handle all accepted cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning you don’t have to pay for legal services unless we win your case.


Client Reviews

Jonathan Rosenfeld was professionally objective, timely, and knowledgeable. Also, his advice was extremely effective regarding my case. In addition, Jonathan was understanding and patient pertaining to any of my questions or concerns. I was very happy with the end result and I highly recommend Jonathan Rosenfeld.

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Extremely impressed with this law firm. They took control of a bad motorcycle crash that left my uncle seriously injured. Without any guarantee of a financial recovery, they went out and hired accident investigators and engineers to help prove how the accident happened. I am grateful that they worked on a contingency fee basis as there was no way we could have paid for these services on our own.

- Ethan Armstrong

Jonathan helped my family heal and get compensation after our child was suffered a life threatening injury at daycare. He was sympathetic and in constant contact with us letting us know all he knew every step of the way. We were so blessed to find Jonathan!

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This lawyer really helped me get compensation for my motorcycle accident case. I know there is no way that I could have gotten anywhere near the amount that Mr. Rosenfeld was able to get to settle my case. Thank you.

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Jonathan did a great job helping my family navigate through a lengthy lawsuit involving my grandmother's death in a nursing home. Through every step of the case, Jonathan kept my family informed of the progression of the case. Although our case eventually settled at a mediation, I really was impressed at how well prepared Jonathan was to take the case to trial.

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