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The Importance of Seeking Compensation for Asbestos-Related Injuries

By Shaniqua Williams

Posted on December 15th, 2018

The compensation a lawyer can easily recover for you will not only help you afford the medical care you need but also grant you access to higher-quality treatment, as well as to clinical trials, which may substantially improve your prognosis. Currently, over $18 billion have been paid out from asbestos trust funds.

Although the use of asbestos is nowhere near as widespread today as it was in 1973, when the peak of asbestos use in the U.S. was reached at 801,000 metric tons, the annual number of people who develop terrible diseases as a result of occupational asbestos exposure has been steady for the past three decades.

Every year, between 2,500 and 3,000 new cases of mesothelioma are diagnosed across the country, whereas asbestos-related lung cancer is detected in approximately 4,800 Americans. Due to the long latency period, these illnesses entail, the effects of past asbestos exposure are still surfacing. By 2030, over 10 million individuals will have lost their lives to asbestos-related diseases worldwide.

Despite the outrageous attempts of asbestos manufacturers to keep the health risks of exposure a secret, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, as well as multiple other federal agencies, classified the mineral as a known human carcinogen in the early 1970s, which was soon followed by a series of strict regulations.

Shortly after the dangers of asbestos came to light, more and more people began seeking financial compensation for the diseases they had developed as a consequence of on-the-job exposure. Throughout the last thirty years, over $18 billion have been recovered by former employees from asbestos trust funds, which were set up when companies could no longer afford to pay liabilities to injured individuals. Additionally, numerous other asbestos victims have won lawsuits against culpable manufacturers.

Why It's Worth Making an Asbestos Claim

Since mesothelioma and other asbestos-related cancers respond poorly to treatment and are almost always fatal, many people, often older folks, worry that it's just not worth making a claim or that it won't be finalized before they die.

We understand that it's important to focus on your health and your family, yet, filing an asbestos claim is not an intensive process. An initial meeting is indeed required for us to get to know your work history and the details of your case. But after that, the work is hands-off. We handle everything related to the legal claim, so you can focus on what matters.

Given that compensation

  • Will help you afford the medical care you need
  • Will make an important difference in your quality of life
  • Will secure you justice for being negligently exposed to asbestos
  • Will give you peace of mind that your family will be looked after financially

an asbestos claim is absolutely worth pursuing.

Also, so long as you start a claim in your lifetime, then your entitlement to the payout is protected, and your estate will be able to carry on with your claim if you die before it's finalized.

Another thought pattern we have noticed in our older clients is the belief that they betray their employer if they bring a claim. However, that is not how compensation claims work. You will be bringing a claim against the manufacturers that produced the asbestos-containing products you were exposed to. You won't be taking money from your employer, so you shouldn't hesitate to file a claim. Today, previous manufacturers of asbestos-containing products are well aware they will be subject to asbestos claims and many have funds set aside to pay out victims.

Asbestos Trust Funds - The Primary Source of Compensation

Nowadays, asbestos trust funds represent the primary source of compensation for those whose health was dramatically affected by asbestos exposure in the workplace, with approximately $37 billion available. The 60 asbestos trust funds which are currently active in the U.S. process thousands of claims every year, like mesothelioma and lung cancer, as well as other diseases caused by asbestos exposure, are still very prevalent nationwide. With the aid of a lawyer specialized in asbestos litigation, most people receive financial compensation from asbestos trust funds within one year.

Taking legal action as a victim of asbestos exposure is as important as seeking the expertise of a specialist in asbestos diseases who can provide you with the most effective and, at the same time, low-risk treatment for your illness. If you or a family member is struggling with the aftermath of occupational asbestos exposure, we strongly encourage you to file a claim with the asbestos trust fund operating on behalf of your former employer as soon as possible. The financial compensation a skillful attorney can help you recover will benefit you and your loved ones tremendously.

Filing your asbestos claim with the aid of a specialized attorney is highly recommended, as the process of pursuing compensation is very tedious, complex, and challenging, which means there is a considerable risk of failing to receive the money you deserve. The advantages of working with a lawyer specialized in asbestos litigation are numerous, including:

  • The risk of being denied compensation is minimal. A competent lawyer with relevant experience in asbestos cases will have prepared thousands of claims by the time you request their assistance. Therefore, they have the necessary knowledge to ensure your claim is properly filed before submission. Moreover, their legal team will thoroughly research your case to find other relevant details that might prompt the trustees to process your claim faster.
  • You can continue to focus on your health. As your attorney and their legal team will attend to the vast majority of aspects involved in preparing a claim, from doing additional research to taking care of the paperwork, you will not have to invest a lot of time in pursuing compensation. In fact, all you have to do is provide your lawyer with evidence of your work history and with some medical documents stating your diagnosis, as well as how it relates to asbestos exposure.
  • Having a lawyer file your asbestos claim will not affect your financial resources. Because most law firms specializing in asbestos litigation operate on a contingency fee, you can take legal action without worrying about how you will afford to pay the attorney who will pursue your case. Unless they recover compensation on your behalf, you do not have to remunerate your lawyer. After the asbestos trust fund pays out your claim, the legal fees will be deducted from your compensation. Our firm operates on a standard contingency fee of 40%.

There are multiple reasons why seeking financial compensation is paramount if on-the-job asbestos exposure is responsible for your physical and emotional suffering. These are our main arguments for taking legal action as soon as you have a diagnosis, although there are undoubtedly many others.

1. Financial Compensation Will Help You Pay for Your Treatment

The cost of cancer treatment has always been incredibly high in the U.S. However, to make matters worse, it has doubled within the past 20 years. While the average cost of lung cancer treatment is $48,000 per year, asbestos victims struggling with mesothelioma have to pay approximately $84,796 to receive medical care. Thus, it is probably not surprising that people who suffer from cancer are twice more likely to declare bankruptcy than the general population. In fact, medical bills are accountable for over 60% of personal bankruptcies in the U.S.

Even with health insurance, cancer treatment will inevitably hinder your financial resources. The compensation a lawyer can easily recover for you will not only help you afford the medical care you need, but it will also grant you access to higher-quality treatment, as well as to clinical trials, which may substantially improve your prognosis.

2. The Money You Can Receive from Asbestos Trust Funds Will also Benefit Your Family

As cancer treatment is very expensive, it is bound to affect the budget of your family in the long run. The sum of money you will recover from asbestos trust funds will undoubtedly ease the financial burden of your loved ones since claims often result in substantial compensation. Not having to worry about the financial aspect will also alleviate your stress, allowing you to completely focus on your treatment and on spending quality time with your family. Moreover, compensation could be invaluable to your family in the unfortunate event of your passing away, as it will provide them with a reliable financial resource during those dire moments.

3. Asbestos Companies Will Be Held Liable for Their Neglectful Actions

Last but certainly not least, your taking legal action ultimately means that the asbestos company responsible for your suffering will be held accountable for having knowingly put your health at risk. Up to 11 million workers were exposed to asbestos in the workplace between 1940 and 1978, according to the U.S. National Institutes of Health, many of whom have subsequently been diagnosed with serious diseases. Every year, past asbestos exposure claims the lives of up to 15,000 people in the country. Holding wrongdoers accountable for their appalling actions and careless attitude may help prevent future similar situations by discouraging companies from avoiding responsibility.

You shouldn't have to suffer from diseases that should have been eradicated decades ago. If you, or a loved one, suffer from mesothelioma or another asbestos cancer, you deserve to get compensated. Contact us today at 205.328.9200 to find out how we can help.