If you work in an environment where you might be exposed to asbestos, you need to be properly informed about the risks of working near this material. Often, people are unaware that they are working or living in buildings that contain asbestos, and they usually don’t know the medical risks of working near this substance. This material has been used in the past as a building material because it is fire retardant, strong, and durable.
The problem with asbestos is that it can release microscopic fibers when damaged. If a person inhales these fibers, they can become stuck in the lungs. Eventually, these fibers can lead to mesothelioma, asbestosis, and lung cancer. Many people have been unwittingly exposed to asbestos, and if you suspect you are a victim of corporate negligence, you may have legal options.
Can I File a Lawsuit?
Meet with an attorney to discuss your case. They will determine if you are eligible to sue your former employer for negligence related to asbestos exposure. Typically, the company you worked for, or the company that manufactured or installed the asbestos will be the party that pays for damages. There are also trust funds set up for asbestos victims in cases where individuals have died from asbestos exposure. To obtain detailed information on your case, or to determine if you are eligible for financial compensation, meet with an attorney.
The troubling aspect to mesothelioma cases is that the disease does not develop or progress on a predictable path. For many people, mesothelioma will take upwards of 10 to 40 years to develop from the time of original exposure. It is important to meet with an attorney and act quickly if you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma. In most states, you only have one year to file a lawsuit after your diagnosis.
Based on the evidence in your case, you might end up settling out of court. This is a common practice with mesothelioma cases, particularly if an attorney is able to collect evidence of negligence and can identify a payment source. Usually an insurance company or an asbestos victims’ trust fund are the financial sources attorneys will use when working on a mesothelioma case. If you wind up going to court, your case can take two years or longer to close if it proceeds to trial.
The amount of money you can recover is difficult to determine. The victims’ funds are almost completely depleted of money, and most companies that produced asbestos are bankrupt. The amount you can obtain will depend on the jury, along with the uniqueness of your case and how much you have suffered from asbestos exposure.
Was I Exposed?
There are a lot of people living in homes that were built before the 1990s. The majority of these homes will have construction materials that contain asbestos. If the materials are not disturbed, the asbestos fibers will probably not be released into the air. If the fibers are released, you should deal with the problem immediately.
Older buildings may undergo renovations from time-to-time, which can easily disturb asbestos material. If your employer isn’t hiring professionals trained in asbestos removal, they could be placing your health at-risk. You will have a legal claim against your employer if they have put your health at-risk during the removal process.
Byline: Frank Anderson recommends visiting yourmesotheliomalawfirm.com if you feel like you have been a victim of asbestos exposure.