Understanding the Asbestos Claims Process
Facing a mesothelioma diagnosis can be an overwhelming and emotional journey for you and your loved ones. Mesothelioma is a cancer primarily caused by exposure to asbestos, and individuals diagnosed with this aggressive disease often seek compensation through asbestos claims.
The mesothelioma claims process is unique to each case, and an experienced asbestos lawyer can guide you through the complex process and help you secure the compensation you deserve. Here, we will delve into the process for an asbestos claim payout including the claim types, the claim process, and the typical settlement amounts.
Mesothelioma Claim Types
There are several different categories of mesothelioma claims. The type of claim you should pursue depends on the details of your asbestos case.
Personal Injury Claims
Personal injury claims are filed by individuals who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma as a result of asbestos exposure. In most cases, personal injury claims are filed against the companies responsible for the asbestos exposure. This could include manufacturers of asbestos products, companies providing raw asbestos, or negligent employers.
Wrongful Death Claims
When a mesothelioma patient passes away, their surviving family members can file a wrongful death claim. These claims seek compensation for the financial and emotional losses suffered by the family due to their loved one’s death such as remaining medical bills, lost income, and funeral expenses. Wrongful death claims may also target the asbestos manufacturers or employers responsible for the exposure.
Asbestos Trust Fund Claims
Asbestos trust funds allow victims to pursue compensation from bankrupt asbestos companies responsible for their illness. While many asbestos manufacturers tried to avoid responsibility for their harmful products and negligence, the courts ordered them to set aside money in asbestos trusts to pay current and future victims of asbestos exposure. Individuals exposed to asbestos by these companies can file a claim against the trust for compensation.
Mesothelioma VA Claims
U.S. military veterans who have been exposed to asbestos during their time in the military and have consequently developed mesothelioma, may be able to pursue a mesothelioma claim with the Department of Veteran Affairs. If their claim is approved, veterans or their loved ones may be eligible for VA benefits such as monthly disability compensation, healthcare, and dependency and indemnity compensation (DIC).
Mesothelioma Claims Process
The mesothelioma lawyers at Flint Cooper can assist you or your loved ones with filing a mesothelioma claim. The general steps of filing an asbestos claim include:
- Consultation with an attorney. The process typically begins with the mesothelioma patient or their family consulting one of our experienced attorneys specializing in asbestos claims. Our attorney can evaluate the case’s merits and guide the claimant through the legal process.
- Gathering evidence. To support the claim, we will gather documentation, such as medical records, employment history, and information about asbestos exposure sources. This evidence helps establish a strong connection between asbestos exposure and mesothelioma.
- Filing the claim. Once we have sufficient evidence, we will file a mesothelioma claim within the statute of limitations.
- Settlement Negotiations. Many asbestos claims are settled before reaching trial. Our knowledgeable attorneys are able to use the evidence they have collected to negotiate for a just settlement amount.
- Trial. If a settlement can’t be reached, we are prepared to go to trial where we will fight for the compensation you deserve.
The asbestos lawyers at Flint Cooper are ready to help you navigate the mesothelioma claims process and hold the asbestos companies accountable.
Length of Time a Mesothelioma Claim Takes
The amount of time a claim takes depends on the type of claim and the circumstances of each case. Factors that may impact your asbestos claim timeline include the type of claim you file, whether a settlement is reached, and the health of the patient.
Statute of Limitations for Mesothelioma
The statute of limitations refers to the time limit within which a mesothelioma claim must be filed. It varies by state, but it typically starts from the date of the diagnosis for personal injury lawsuits or the date of death in wrongful death claims. For asbestos trust fund claims, each trust fund sets its own time limits for filing a claim.
Most statute of limitations for mesothelioma claims fall between one and three years, with the average being two years. Generally, if you fail to file your lawsuit within the statute of limitations, you could lose the right to file a claim. However, you may still be able to file a claim in a different state with a longer statute of limitations.
If you want to file an asbestos claim, you should speak to a mesothelioma lawyer as soon as possible. It is important to not let the statute of limitations run out, as it may prevent you from having your case heard in court.
Mesothelioma Settlement Amounts
Mesothelioma settlement amounts vary widely based on several factors including the severity of the disease, the extent of asbestos exposure, the type of claim, the amount of damages, and the jurisdiction.
Contact an Attorney
Understanding the mesothelioma asbestos claims process is crucial for individuals and families dealing with this devastating disease. At Flint Cooper, we have helped many clients through the asbestos claims process. The experienced asbestos lawyers at Flint Cooper can help you better navigate the legal complexities and seek the compensation you deserve for the harm caused by asbestos exposure. Contact us today for your free initial consultation.
About the author:
Ethan is a founder and managing partner of Flint Cooper, a law firm specializing in complex litigation. Ethan has extensive experience in personal injury cases, representing clients injured by asbestos, defective pharmaceuticals and medical devices, and leads the firm’s government takings practice.