Posted on November 22nd, 2018
Payouts from asbestos trust funds represent the most direct way to hold companies responsible and recover financial compensation. Through them, people suffering from asbestos-related diseases are compensated without the need to make it to a courtroom.
The use of this carcinogenic mineral on a large industrial scale began two hundred years ago, yet the awareness of its adverse health effects started to emerge only in the early 20th century. Holding companies responsible for exposing workers and consumers to this dangerous mineral is a relatively recent phenomenon.
Asbestos is currently the single largest cause of occupational cancer in the U.S. Studies associated more than a dozen different diseases to asbestos exposure. This may cause four distinct malignancies, and it may increase a person's risk for several other diseases. Mesothelioma is the most known related cancer, as exposure to this mineral is the only way someone can develop this disease. In order to recover cancer compensation for the negligence of manufacturers, the victim has the option to file trust fund claims.
Although they were aware of the dangerous impact the carcinogenic mineral could have on their employees, the companies that used asbestos tried to cover up the health risks. As demands for products containing it grew throughout the 1900s, manufacturers prioritized profit over safety. However, the health implications soon became impossible to ignore, and when the first claims were filed, companies promptly looked for ways to protect themselves.
In 1982, one of the biggest manufacturers of products containing it, John-Manville, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, as a result of thousands of individual lawsuits filed against the company based on asbestos-related injuries, such as asbestosis, lung cancer, and mesothelioma. Since then, around one hundred companies have sought bankruptcy protection due to liabilities. Bankruptcy reorganization ensures compensation for current and future claimants.
Asbestos trusts, also known as mesothelioma compensation funds, are organized by bankrupt companies to ensure that monetary compensation is available for victims. The U.S. Bankruptcy Courts have approved new Compensation Trust Funds, with initial funding of over $30 billion, to help and support asbestos-diseases victims and their families.
Trust funds are created by 'trust agreements'. The agreement is between the trust and the company. The trust takes on the company's asbestos liabilities, and the company accepts to fund the trust with the amount authorized by the court. The trust is a separate entity from the company, and the company has no input in paying claims.
Some of the reasons why victims and families decide to pursue claims with these trust funds include:
Eligibility for asbestos trust funds is reviewed by specialized lawyers based on the following criteria:
Choosing the right lawyer to represent you is the first step to benefit from asbestos trust fund compensation. If you meet the eligibility criteria, a lawyer can help gather the necessary documents for the claim, such as medical records, including a physician's statement confirming the disease diagnosis. Our attorneys can assist you each step of the way and help with every aspect of the claiming process.
For many people who developed a disease caused by asbestos exposure, time is short and of the essence, especially if they've been diagnosed in a late stage of cancer. Each asbestos-related impairment has its particular urgency and circumstances. Therefore, time is an essential factor in ensuring claims are paid out promptly and fairly.
There is no specific or set timeline for asbestos compensation claims to get resolved. This depends on the representation a claimant gets from a law firm.
The last thing a person suffering from an asbestos-related disease needs is a long and dragged out legal process. The fastest way to avoid that and obtain financial compensation is by retaining a law firm expert in asbestos-related claims.