Filing a Asbestos Lawsuit
How will I know if I have been exposed to asbestos?
If you think you may have been exposed to asbestos at some point in your life, you’ll need to have a series of medical tests to see if you have the rare form of cancer called mesothelioma. The most common symptoms include chest pain, abdominal pain and difficulty breathing. Anyone with a history of working in a high-risk industry should watch for these symptoms, report them to a doctor immediately, and discuss any work history that may have involved asbestos exposure. Diagnosing the cancer in its earliest stages supports a wider range of treatments that could extend your life expectancy.
A diagnosis will likely involve several procedures, including X-rays, CT scans, MRIs, biopsies and PET scans.
Who can file a asbestos lawsuit?
More than 75 different types of jobs in America have been known to expose workers to asbestos. Occupations in the construction industry have been hit the hardest – statistics show that workers who were plumbers, pipefitters, steam fitters and electricians are the most likely to develop asbestos-related illnesses. If you’ve been diagnosed with mesothelioma, or another type of cancer caused by asbestos exposure, filing a lawsuit can help you obtain money to cover the costs of your medical expenses, lost income, as well as damages for pain and suffering and other conditions.
Close family members or a financial dependent of someone who died from an asbestos-related illness also may be able to file a wrongful death claim, depending on certain criteria. Since state laws can vary, where the case might be filed is an important consideration, as well as how much time has passed since the victim’s death. An experienced asbestos attorney can walk you through the process and options of filing an asbestos lawsuit after the death of a loved one.
How long does a asbestos lawsuit take?
Most legal claims involving asbestos exposure are settled through a financial agreement before ever going to a jury. Depending on details such as medical condition, work history, and the source of funds, it’s not uncommon to settle claims in less than a year from the date an asbestos lawsuit is filed. If it’s necessary, or to your advantage to go to trial, that process can take two years or more. Fortunately, many courts will fast track asbestos lawsuits based on the diagnosis and life expectancy of the asbestos victim.
What’s needed to file a asbestos lawsuit?
In preparing to file an asbestos lawsuit, you and your attorney will need to gather a range of documents. This information would likely include your employment history, Social Security records, military records, your medical history and reports, and documentation of your physical disabilities and medical expenses since being diagnosed – such as the cost of prescriptions, supplies, tests, and travel expenses for medical reasons. Your attorney will also need to investigate any evidence of asbestos exposure or similar claims from others in places you have worked.
How long do I have to file a claim?
Mesothelioma tends to develop 10 to 40 years after exposure to asbestos. State laws called statutes of limitations usually give people one to five years — depending on the state — from the time the disease is diagnosed or discovered to file a lawsuit. But it’s important to act promptly, because in a few states, the statute of limitations is only one year from diagnosis. If an asbestos victim has already died, the other family members usually have one to three years from the date of death to file a wrongful death claim.
Learn more information on asbestos lawsuit options: