Malignant mesothelioma is cancer in the tissue layer covering the internal organs of the chest, abdominal cavity, and pelvis (mesothelium). It is an aggressive and highly fatal cancer with no cure and can spread quickly to other organs.
- What is Asbestos?
- What is Mesothelioma?
- What Are Legal Options for Mesothelioma Victims?
- Mesothelioma Lawsuits for Asbestos Exposure
- Asbestos Trust Fund Claims
- Social Security Disability Insurance for Mesothelioma
- Department of Veterans Affairs Benefits
- Benefits of Mesothelioma Legal Help
- How a Mesothelioma Lawyer Can Help
- Mesothelioma Legal Help FAQs
- Seek Mesothelioma Legal Help from The Best Mesothelioma Law Firm Nationwide
Asbestos exposure is the primary risk factor for mesothelioma. Asbestos is a carcinogenic material found in numerous consumer, commercial, and industrial products, such as building materials and electrical parts. While many asbestos products have been banned, some homes, workplaces, and buildings still have asbestos-containing components that could cause mesothelioma to those exposed to the fibers.
Did you or a loved one develop mesothelioma from asbestos exposure? Our personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC, can help you seek justice from negligent parties and recover financial compensation for you and your family.
Contact our mesothelioma lawyers at (888) 424-5757 to schedule a free consultation and learn more about your legal options.
What is Asbestos?
Asbestos is a mineral containing heat, corrosion, and electricity-resistant fibers. In the past, asbestos was used for many industrial and commercial purposes due to its intrinsic qualities. Before asbestos was regulated in the US, it was a common component in building materials, vehicle parts, insulation, cement, electrical parts, plastic, etc.
Undisturbed asbestos is generally safe. However, the fibers can enter the body through breathing or swallowing when the mineral breaks into dust, such as during mining or demolishing a house made of asbestos cement. Upon settling in the lungs or stomach, these fibers can irritate the organs and mesothelium, potentially leading to mesothelioma.
What is Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is an aggressive and deadly cancer that starts in the mesothelium, the thin lining covering the internal organs. It is most frequently caused by asbestos exposure but generally occurs 20 or 30 years after contact with asbestos fibers.
Currently, mesothelioma has no cure, and most patients are diagnosed when the disease is already at an advanced stage. Thus, many mesothelioma patients undergo treatments focused on increasing their quality of life instead of attempting to remove cancer.
What Are Legal Options for Mesothelioma Victims?
If you or a loved one developed mesothelioma from asbestos exposure, you could recover monetary compensation through the following ways:
- Mesothelioma lawsuits
- Personal injury lawsuits
- Wrongful death lawsuits
- Asbestos trust fund claims
- Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)
- Medicare and Medicaid
- Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) benefits
Mesothelioma Lawsuits for Asbestos Exposure
You can file a mesothelioma lawsuit against a manufacturer of asbestos-containing products for using the dangerous mineral despite knowing its risks. Your suit can either settle out-of-court or proceed to a trial depending on your case’s circumstances.
- Mesothelioma Settlements: Most asbestos-related personal injury lawsuits end in settlements, wherein the defendant agrees to pay a certain amount to the plaintiff in exchange for not going to court.
- Mesothelioma Litigation: If parties cannot successfully negotiate a settlement, the asbestos lawsuit may proceed to civil court before a judge or jury. After hearing evidence from both sides, the court will decide the verdict and determine how much the plaintiff should receive in compensation (or if they should receive any payment).
What Damages Can You Recover Through a Mesothelioma Settlement?
Through mesothelioma claims, asbestos victims can recover financial compensation for the following economic and non-economic damages:
- Medical Expenses: Out-of-pocket expenses for hospitalization, chemotherapy, medication, surgery, and other treatments necessary for treating mesothelioma symptoms and improving the patient’s quality of life.
- Disability: Mobility aid costs, rehabilitation expenses, and other related costs of disability resulting from mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease.
- Pain and Suffering: Financial compensation for physical and psychological harm caused by the disease, including physical pain, emotional trauma, and mental anguish.
- Loss of Quality of Life: Financial compensation for quality or enjoyment of life lost due to the disease, including reduced independence, chronic pain, isolation from loved ones.
- Lost Wages: Salaries, wages, benefits, and other income lost by mesothelioma victims and their families due to the disease and its consequences.
- Wrongful Death: Funeral and burial (or cremation) costs, pre-death medical bills, loss of consortium, loss of financial support, and other related damages if your loved one dies from mesothelioma.
- Punitive Damages: Additional compensation awarded to mesothelioma victims to punish defendants for gross negligence (i.e., producing and distributing asbestos-containing products despite known risks of asbestos exposure).
Our attorneys strive to end mesothelioma cancer cases out-of-court to avoid litigation, which is often more expensive and time-consuming. This way, you can receive the money you need for treatments as soon as possible.
Statute of Limitations for Mesothelioma and Asbestos Claims
The statute of limitations on legal claims arising from asbestos-related diseases begins after diagnosis for a personal injury lawsuit or at the time of death in a wrongful death case.
States have varying statutes of limitations for mesothelioma cases, but generally, plaintiffs have less than two years to file a lawsuit after a mesothelioma diagnosis. However, some states extend the deadline to three to six years.
Our asbestos attorneys will explain the statute of limitations that apply to your case and help ensure you file a lawsuit within the given window.
Asbestos Trust Fund Claims
Many companies that produced asbestos-containing products filed for bankruptcy to avoid paying people exposed to asbestos through their goods. Fortunately, bankruptcy courts forced these negligent asbestos companies to create trust funds to pay for current and future mesothelioma lawsuits.
Trust fund claims allow victims to access this money without going to court. Today, over 60 companies have asbestos bankruptcy trusts, and over $30 billion is available in asbestos trust funds for mesothelioma settlements.
You can access asbestos trust funds if:
- You were exposed to asbestos-containing products
- The company that created the trust made said product
- You were diagnosed with mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease due to the products
How Does the Trust Fund Process Work?
Generally, the trust fund process goes like this:
- You and your mesothelioma lawyer create the claim. The claim contains information on how, where, and when the victim was exposed to asbestos and how this led to mesothelioma.
- Your attorney sends the claim to the board of trustees. Trustees are responsible for operating the trust fund.
- The board of trustees reviews the claim. They will determine whether your asbestos claim is valid and how much you should receive in compensation.
The Average Payout and Time Frame for Asbestos Trust Fund Compensation
Payouts for trust fund claims vary from case to case. These trusts are designed to pay people suffering from mesothelioma and those who may develop it later. Trust funds may only pay out a percentage of what the claim is worth to pay other mesothelioma victims in the future.
The average trust fund payout for asbestos victims is around $41,000 per trust. However, many victims are eligible for more than one trust, meaning you could secure $1 million or more if you qualify for multiple asbestos trust funds.
The average time frame to receive a trust fund payout varies from case to case. You can have the asbestos trust fund complete an expedited claim, where you’ll receive a fixed amount but get paid faster, or an individual review, which takes longer but may result in a higher reward. Some mesothelioma claims pay out within 90 days or less, depending on the case’s complexity.
Medicare is a federally funded health insurance program for people aged 65 and older. Patients under 65 may qualify for Medicare if they have specific diseases, and most mesothelioma patients under 65 are eligible for the program. However, the disease takes decades to develop, meaning most patients are older adults already.
Medicare can help cover the costs of the following:
- Medical services
- Prescription drugs
- Inpatient and outpatient care
Coverage for these benefits depends on the patient’s eligibility and selected payment plan. Our mesothelioma attorneys can help you understand how much your insurance will pay and whether you need additional support from other government programs.
Social Security Disability Insurance for Mesothelioma
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) provides financial support for mesothelioma patients younger than 65 who must stop working due to their condition. After receiving SSDI benefits for two years, recipients can qualify for Medicare coverage.
Applying for SSDI is a better option than accessing your retirement funds early, which will reduce your retirement income. To apply for SSDI, you must meet the following requirements:
- You are younger than 65
- You have earned enough work credits for Social Security retirement benefits
- You have to stop working because of your mesothelioma treatment
- You can prove your mesothelioma diagnosis through medical documentation
Your monthly SSDI income will depend on your lifetime average earnings subject to Social Security taxes. Our mesothelioma attorneys can help you apply for these benefits and maximize your monthly income without affecting your future retirement benefits.
Department of Veterans Affairs Benefits
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides disability benefits for former service members who developed mesothelioma while serving in the military. Disability benefits include health care and compensation.
You are eligible for mesothelioma VA benefits if:
- You were exposed to asbestos during military service
- You did not receive a dishonorable discharge
Furthermore, you must submit the following requirements:
- Medical records stating your illness or disability
- Military service records listing your job or specialty
- A physician’s statement connecting your asbestos exposure during military service and your illness or disability
An asbestos attorney can help determine if your illness was caused by asbestos exposure during your time in the military and, if so, apply for VA benefits. Additionally, our asbestos lawyers can help you file an appeal if your claim was denied or if your benefits are too low.
Benefits of Mesothelioma Legal Help
Recovering financial compensation or applying for financial support is easier with a specialized mesothelioma law firm. Having mesothelioma legal help can lead to the following benefits:
- Faster Compensation: Mesothelioma lawsuits settle faster with the help of attorneys. The sooner you receive payment, the earlier you can start your cancer treatment, which can help lead to a better prognosis. Furthermore, our attorneys seek faster recoveries for mesothelioma verdicts and settlements to ease the financial burden on our clients and their families and help improve their quality of life while battling the disease.
- Avoiding Litigation: Most asbestos lawsuits don’t go to court, but litigation can be expensive and time-consuming when they do. With mesothelioma legal help, you can easily avoid this process and settle your case.
- Maximum Payout: Our asbestos attorneys are patient advocates who want the maximum compensation for their clients. Seeking mesothelioma legal help could help you recover the highest amount for your medical expenses, emotional trauma, and other losses.
- Forcing Accountability: Mesothelioma legal help can hold negligent companies accountable for producing harmful asbestos-containing products. While asbestos was not regulated until the 1970s, many of these manufacturers knew about the risks but failed to act. Today, mesothelioma lawyers work to hold these companies responsible for causing asbestos-related diseases to innocent people.
How a Mesothelioma Lawyer Can Help
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC, is one of the top national mesothelioma law firms focused on helping people diagnosed with mesothelioma recover fair financial compensation from negligent parties or seek support from the government.
Our attorneys can help you take legal action and seek compensation by:
- Determining how, when, and where your asbestos exposure occurred
- Identifying parties who are liable for your exposure, e.g., manufacturers of asbestos-containing products
- Gathering substantial evidence to support your mesothelioma lawsuit
- Filing a claim with appropriate insurance companies, asbestos trust funds, federal programs, etc.
- Negotiating a fair mesothelioma settlement through a personal injury, wrongful death, or asbestos trust fund claim
- File a lawsuit in civil court, if necessary
Our attorneys have a proven track record in taking legal action against negligent manufacturers and recovering substantial mesothelioma verdicts and settlements for clients. We are one of the few mesothelioma law firms that will go above and beyond to build strong asbestos cases without any guarantee of financial recovery.
Mesothelioma Legal Help FAQs
The following are common questions victims and their families ask when their loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma. However, our personal injury attorneys recognize that these answers will not cover all the complexities of an asbestos case.
Should you have more questions, don’t hesitate to contact our legal team. We will help you understand your legal options and determine the best way to take legal action against at-fault parties.
What are asbestos-containing products?
Asbestos was banned in certain products in the 1970s. They were commonly found in:
- Electrical components
- Insulation material
- Vinyl products
- Automotive parts
- Fireproofing materials
- Electrical components
We recommend testing your home for asbestos fibers if built before the 1980s. You should also get tested for an asbestos-related condition if you have worked in an environment with asbestos materials, such as construction, demolition, mining, roofing, etc.
What is the average mesothelioma settlement?
The average payout for mesothelioma lawsuit settlements is up to $1.4 million, while the average verdict award can be up to $11 million. Seek mesothelioma legal help to determine how much you should receive in compensation.
Can you hold an employer responsible for a mesothelioma case?
In most cases, employers are not aware of the presence of asbestos in the workplace. Unless you were hired by a manufacturer producing asbestos-containing products, you most likely could not file a mesothelioma case against your current or former employer.
Instead, mesothelioma lawsuits are filed against the manufacturers. Seeking mesothelioma legal help can determine who should be liable for your damages.
How long does a mesothelioma legal claim take?
It depends on your case’s circumstances. Our legal help attorneys can recover mesothelioma settlements within 90 days or less. However, asbestos verdicts can take longer as they must go through litigation.
On the other hand, recovering asbestos trust fund compensation may take 90 days or less.
Do you need a mesothelioma lawyer to take legal action?
Working with an attorney specializing in mesothelioma legal help can help you recover financial compensation faster and maximize your potential payout. Furthermore, asbestos law firms can readily access mesothelioma legal help resources, such as medical experts and asbestos inspectors.
What should you look for when seeking mesothelioma legal help?
Working with the right representative can help make the mesothelioma legal process more manageable. Seek mesothelioma legal help from law firms that have:
- Specialty: Seek mesothelioma legal help from a law firm specializing in asbestos cases. General or local law firms may not have the experience to recover the best asbestos verdicts and settlements.
- Proven Experience: The best law firms have substantial experience offering mesothelioma legal help to victims and their families. Your mesothelioma lawyer should have the knowledge and expertise to reach the most favorable outcome possible for your legal claim.
- National Reach: Find a law firm licensed to file mesothelioma cases in any state to save you the hassle of finding mesothelioma legal help from a local firm.
Seek Mesothelioma Legal Help from The Best Mesothelioma Law Firm Nationwide
Mesothelioma is an aggressive cancer with a high mortality rate. Sadly, this disease often leads to enormous medical expenses, severe pain, and inevitable trauma for patients and their loved ones.
Fortunately, there are many ways to access mesothelioma legal help. Our Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC attorneys can help you take legal action and recover financial compensation through a personal injury, wrongful death, or asbestos trust fund claim or litigation.
Contact our experienced mesothelioma lawyers at (888) 424-5757 or use the contact form for a free consultation. All confidential or sensitive information you share with our legal team will remain private under an attorney-client relationship.
Our mesothelioma legal help attorneys handle all accepted asbestos lawsuits on a contingency fee basis. This agreement ensures you don’t have to pay our legal fees unless we win your case.