Mesothelioma, a life-threatening type of cancer that can affect the lungs, abdomen, and several other major organs, has been linked to prolonged exposure to asbestos. Many people who were victims of exposure have sought the advice of a mesothelioma law firm to get justice and help them cover the overwhelming expenses associated with this disease.
Most victims were exposed to asbestos at work. In many cases, the manufacturers of asbestos and asbestos-containing materials knew of the hidden dangers and risks of asbestos, yet failed to inform the public. Because of this, workers who developed health issues from asbestos exposure may be eligible for financial compensation to cover expenses such as lost wages, medical bills, emotional suffering, physical pain, and more.
If you suffer from mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, or asbestosis, you may be eligible for a large amount of compensation. Currently, there is over $30 billion in asbestos trust funds, set up for those who have been diagnosed with an asbestos-related illness. Fill out our form to receive our free Financial Compensation Packet. Our packet is loaded with information on leading mesothelioma attorneys in your area, how to file a claim for asbestos trust funds, how to get paid in 90 days, and more.
What Does a Mesothelioma Law Firm Do?
Law firms specializing in mesothelioma focus primarily on victims of this type of cancer as well as those with other asbestos-related diseases. For the best chance of a positive outcome for an asbestos case, it is important to avoid settling for a law firm that takes on all kinds of personal injury cases. You need a legal team that specializes in mesothelioma cases, as these types of lawsuits are complicated and require an in-depth understanding of asbestos exposure and diseases.
Attorneys at asbestos law firms have a deep knowledge of federal and state laws regarding asbestos use and how it has been used in a range of industries where workers were exposed. They also have sharp investigative skills and are able to dig deep to uncover when and where companies exposed workers to asbestos. You need the guidance and advice of this kind of law firm to have the best chance of a successful claim or lawsuit.
How Can an Asbestos Law Firm Help Me?
The legal process can be confusing for lay people, especially victims of asbestos exposure who are battling illness. A good law firm can guide you and help you better understand the process, your options, and the likely outcomes. Asbestos lawyers can give you answers to important questions:
Can We Prove there was Asbestos at My Workplace? If you can provide the law firm with your work history, they should be able to investigate and determine how asbestos was used at your workplace. In some cases, they may already have the information available.
Do I Have a Valid Asbestos Claim? Asbestos law firms know what you need to have a true asbestos claim. They can determine how strong your case is and estimate the chances that you’ll win. Most attorneys make sure they’re confident in your case before taking it on.
What is My Case Worth? If the firm decides you have an asbestos case, they will then be able to come up with an estimated figure for how much your case is worth. This estimation is based on past expenses, daily expenses, medical bills, lost wages, emotional trauma, physical suffering, future expenses, and much more. Keep in mind, however, that there is no set formula as to how much your award amount may be.
Who is Responsible for My Illness? It can be difficult for the average person to determine who exactly is responsible for exposing victims to asbestos. For example, companies can move, go out of business, hide, suppress relevant information, and change ownerships. Part of the law firm’s job is to research, seek out, and determine the entity or responsible parties that are liable for your exposure to asbestos.
What Should I Look for When Hiring an Asbestos Law Firm?
Simply choosing a law firm that claims to specialize in asbestos cases is not enough. Some firms may be a better fit for you than others, and some may advertise taking on asbestos cases while in reality they take on all kinds of cases. In addition to choosing lawyers you feel comfortable with, consider these factors:
The law firm should be able to prove it has experience in dealing with mesothelioma cases.
The law firm should be extremely knowledgeable in asbestos laws and prior cases.
The law firm should not only understand asbestos laws, but should also have extensive knowledge of medical problems associated with asbestos diseases.
Look for a law firm that focuses solely on asbestos-related cases.
Look for law firms with a stellar reputation in handling asbestos cases.
The law firm should always keep you updated on what’s going on in your case.
A reputable firm will give you an initial consultation at no charge before deciding on a firm.
Never go with a law firm that promises you a certain outcome. A good firm will explain your chances, but will never guarantee a win.
How to Work with an Asbestos Law Firm
There are things you can do to make sure the legal process goes as smoothly as possible and that your legal team has what they need to make your case. First, make all of your medical documents available to your lawyers. Next, be prepared to provide the law firm with your work history and information including the full company names, addresses, phone numbers, your job roles, and how long and when you worked at each job.
Finally, start keeping track of all expenses used pertaining to your disease. For example, always keep a copy of medical bills, hospital visits, mileage used to get to appointments, medical supplies, and any other expense you paid out due to your illness.
How Asbestos Law Firms Charge for Services
An experienced and caring law firm understands that victims of asbestos-related diseases are already financially burdened and are unable to afford up-front fees for legal representation. As a result, many firms work on what’s known as a contingency fee basis, meaning that they only get paid when you get paid.
Law firms usually charge based on a percentage taken out of your total settlement or verdict amount, and again, the percentage amount will vary depending upon the firm. Make sure you understand how the fees and percentages work with the firm beforehand so that there will be no confusion later on.
If a law firm doesn’t provide a contingency fee option for payment, there is a good chance that they don’t have the financial resources to successfully research and prove your case. Select a firm that has the financial capability to take on your case on a contingency fee basis.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I have to go to court?
This is one of the most commonly asked questions, which is understandable, as most people who are dealing with an asbestos-related illness generally do not want to spend time in a court room. Most mesothelioma lawsuits are settled out of court, so going to trial is unusual.
In some instances, however, if the defense doesn’t agree on a settlement, or if you don’t agree on a settlement, you may have to go to trial, which requires going to court. An experienced law firm will help you through every step of the way, and if you are too ill to attend, arrangements can be made to record your testimony beforehand.
What if I don’t know which company exposed me to asbestos?
Part of an asbestos law firm’s job is to uncover the parties responsible for your asbestos exposure. The culpable parties are typically manufacturers who supplied asbestos to job sites, which could be one or multiple companies.
I have workers’ compensation benefits. Can a law firm still help me even if I have other compensation benefits?
Other compensation benefits, such as workers’ compensation or VA benefits, do not disqualify you from seeking compensation from the companies who exposed you to asbestos. An asbestos law firm can help you file a lawsuit against the responsible parties.
Where Can I Get Help Finding an Experienced Asbestos Law Firm?
Simply fill out our form to get your free Financial Compensation Packet, with information on top asbestos and mesothelioma lawyers in your area. For additional assistance, contact us at 800-793-4540.
For any patient, being told by a physician that they’ve been diagnosed with any type of cancer is a difficult, life-changing experience. Getting a diagnosis for malignant mesothelioma can be particularly hard to bear, partly because it is still comparatively rare, but mostly because it can be a capricious cancer due to its unpredictable and hard-hitting nature. This unpredictability, coupled with its aggressive character and long period of dormancy, makes it difficult for physicians to provide consistently predictable progress.
If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, or asbestosis, you may be entitled to substantial compensation. Fill out our form to receive our free Financial Compensation Packet. Our packet is loaded with information on leading mesothelioma attorneys in your area, how to file a claim for asbestos trust funds, how to get paid in 90 days, and more.
Mesothelioma is a cancer that results from mostly long-term exposure to asbestos fibers. It has different versions which affect various parts of the body. It’s not always easy for healthcare providers to give an early enough diagnosis to catch and treat the disease in time for a positive prognosis.
As with all types of cancer, each individual case is unique and a patient’s longevity is determined by several different factors. Early detection is perhaps the most important factor of all. Furthermore, the type of mesothelioma and where it is found in the patient’s body also weigh heavily on how well – and how long – someone will live after treatment begins.
Generally, the earlier a diagnosis is made the better the chances are for a mesothelioma patient to get effective treatment and to live longer. This is of course true in all cancer cases, but getting a positive mesothelioma prognosis is usually more unpredictable because there are several variable factors involved.
Different Strains of Mesothelioma
Mesothelioma has several different strains, each of which affects different parts of the body. The most commonly diagnosed mesothelioma is the type known as pleural mesothelioma. This type of mesothelioma affects the pleura, the lining of the lungs and internal chest wall. Once this strain gets severe, it can expand past the chest wall and into other organs, such as the abdomen and heart.
The other major strain is called peritoneal mesothelioma; it affects the lining of the abdominal cavity (peritoneum) and can damage major organs there. Asbestos typically reaches the peritoneum area via ingestion or inhalation. Asbestos fiber are almost impossible to expel once they get caught in the peritoneum area of the body.
Other areas which are susceptible to mesothelioma are the pericardium, which is the sac which surrounds the heart, and the tunica vaginalis, which surrounds the testes. Pericardial mesothelioma, although, rare, cause a substantial amount of damage to the pericardial lining of the heart. As of today, pericardial mesothelioma represents only 10% of the total mesothelioma cases.
The most positive prognosis of mesothelioma occurs in patients with the pleural strain. It’s the most common type of mesothelioma and can be treated due to its easily accessible location: the lining of the lungs.
Mesothelioma Cell Types
There are three cell types which are associated with mesothelioma cancer. The most common is the epithelioid mesothelioma; it occurs in between 50 and 60% of all diagnosis and it is the most responsive to medical treatment. These cells, when viewed through a microscope, appear stretched out.
The second most common cell type is biphasic mesothelioma; this cell type combines genetic characteristics of epithelioid and sarcomatoid cells and occurs in 30 to 40% of mesothelioma cases. The rarest cell type, sarcomatoid, looks like fibers and appears only in about 10-20% of all cases.
Determining Factors for Mesothelioma Prognosis
There are several determining factors that will play a part in a patient’s prognosis, including the following:
#1- How Soon Mesothelioma is Detected
A positive prognosis, a physician’s estimate on how long and how well a patient will live with mesothelioma, depends on how soon this type of cancer is detected. If caught early enough, some patients can live for several years depending on what stage the cancer is and where it is located. Again, patients with pleural mesothelioma usually stand a better chance of living longer because of the cancer’s easier-to-treat location.
As aforementioned, mesothelioma lies dormant for long periods of time and eludes quick diagnosis. Symptoms of mesothelioma can take up to 50 years to surface. It’s also hard to detect because the process of finding its presence is a matter of finding out what disease it’s not rather than what it is.
Mesothelioma symptoms can often be confused for less serious health issues, especially respiratory illnesses such as the common cold, pneumonia, or influenza. In fact, many victims will contract pneumonia which even further confuses a proper diagnosis.
By the time a doctor realizes that a patient has developed asbestos cancer, it is usually already in Stage 3 of development due to its long latency period. This means that even if a patient asks about his or her prognosis, doctors can only give educated guesses, not definitive answers.
#3- Patient Health
The last determining factor is how young and how fit the patient is at the time of the initial diagnosis. Generally, a 30-year-old patient who doesn’t smoke, exercises regularly, and is in good physical and emotional health has better longevity odds than an older patient who smokes and is in poor physical condition. However, keep in mind that mesothelioma has intrinsic issues that defy easy diagnosis. As previously mentioned, its symptoms can be confused for common respiratory ailments.
Furthermore, mesothelioma is still rare even though more cases are diagnosed each year, and its characteristics are incredibly variable. Some patients might look as if they have been given a death sentence and then rally due to successful treatment. Others might look extremely healthy during one visit to their doctor or a specialist, only to succumb within a short period of time to a fast metastasis of the cancer when it spreads from its original location to other parts of the body.
Remember to fill out our from to get your free Financial Compensation Packet, with information on top asbestos and mesothelioma lawyers in your area. Keep in mind that if you have mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, or asbestosis, you may be eligible for considerable compensation. For additional assistance, contact us at 800-793-4540.
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