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Legal Options for Those Affected by Asbestos-Related Disease




According to the EWG Action Fund, approximately 10,000 people die annually from asbestos-related disease.  These figures are expected to escalate over the next decade, not only because of the extended latency period of asbestos-induced illness, but also due to the widespread application of asbestos throughout the 20th century.  These figures are no doubt alarming, but the greatest tragedy of this epidemic is by far the established negligence on behalf of the asbestos industry, which has and will continue to claim thousands of innocent lives.

                Historical records and internal memos distributed within the industry has proved asbestos companies were fully aware of the hazards of asbestos exposure, but opted to preserve profit margins rather than human lives.  Because of this unimaginable negligence, such companies are held responsible for the illness of those suffering with asbestos-induced diseases, such as asbestosis and mesothelioma cancer.

Who has the right to file suit?

                Those afflicted with a condition caused by asbestos exposure have legal options to pursue compensation to cover the costs and personal losses suffered by their undue illness (personal injury suit).  In addition, family members of those who have passed away from an asbestos-related disease also have the option to file a wrongful death suit against the entity that caused their exposure.  In the event that the individual filing a personal injury lawsuit passes away during the legal process, that case must come to an end and a family member must then file a wrongful death suit to cover accrued medical expenses.

Choosing an Attorney

                In order to receive fair compensation, victims of asbestos-related disease should hire a lawyer who is experienced in this very unique division of law. There are vast differences between asbestos exposure and other work-related hazards, and attorneys who are skilled in this arena already have the necessary research and supportive evidence that are indispensible for winning such cases.  A mesothelioma lawyer also has contacts with various organizations that are active in the fight for worker’s rights regarding asbestos-induced disease, such as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the Federal Railroad Administration, AFL-CIO, and the National Transportation Safety Board.  

                It is vital for those deciding to file a claim to experience feelings of comfort and trust with the lawyer they choose, as well as a sense that communication will remain understandable, open, and timely.  In addition, a lawyer should be chosen that meets most of the victim’s needs: close proximity, sound reputation, convenience of meeting times (the sooner the better, since a delay may exceed the state’s statute of limitations, leaving the victim unable to make a claim), and reasonable rate fees (which are typically only paid if the case is won).

                There are many steps and factors to consider when filing an asbestos-related lawsuit—and an experienced mesothelioma lawyer can fully explain and help victims through this often complex process.  For more information about the filing process, trial procedures, settlement matters, and other legal options available to victims of asbestos-related disease, please review the extensive resources at Asbestos.com. 




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