Claiming Compensation after a Mesothelioma Diagnosis
Mesothelioma is a type of cancerous tumor that usually affects the lungs. It is rare and aggressive and can even lead to death.
The main cause of this disease is asbestos exposure. People who work around asbestos are at a greater risk of developing this condition.
If you or your loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, you have a right to seek compensation from the employer.
In this guide, we'll show you how to file for a compensation claim after a mesothelioma diagnosis.
For those who are looking for a good asbestos attorney, hire Vogelzang Law. They have 20+ years of experience in mesothelioma litigation and can help you seek fair compensation.
Malignant mesothelioma is a serious type of cancer that can develop in the thin tissue covering your internal organs. It's aggressive and often fatal, and while treatments exist, a complete cure is not always possible.
Doctors categorize mesothelioma into different types based on where it appears in the body. The most common type, pleural mesothelioma, affects the tissue around the lungs. There are also rarer forms that impact the abdomen (peritoneal mesothelioma), the area around the heart, and the testicles.
Here are some symptoms of mesothelioma:
- Shortness of breath
- Extreme tiredness
- Chest pain
- Excessive sweating
- Persistent cough
- Unexplained weight loss
- Lack of appetite
- Swollen fingertips
If you've been around asbestos either at work or home, your chances of getting mesothelioma go up. Even living with someone who works with asbestos can be risky because they might bring home asbestos fibers on their clothes or skin.
Types of Mesothelioma Claims
Mesothelioma claims are filed to provide compensation to asbestos victims and their loved ones. There are two main types of claims under this category:
Personal Injury Claims
If you have been exposed to asbestos at work and later develop any related disease, you can file for a personal injury claim. You can file a claim against the asbestos company to receive compensation.
Apart from occupational exposure, you can also file a claim if you develop the disease after using asbestos products or secondary exposure. Here's what you can get from the compensation claim:
- All the medical expenses (diagnosis, treatment, and travel)
- Compensation for lost income
- Financial security for the patient and the family
Wrongful Death Claims
When the patient dies from asbestos-related diseases, the family members can file for wrongful death claims. To know whether you are eligible for this type of claim, it is best to consult an asbestos attorney. Here's what the claim covers:
- Financial help with outstanding medical bills
- Funeral costs
- Replaces lost income
- Financial security of family
This type of claim can get very complicated, so it is wise to hire a mesothelioma lawyer to help you with all the legal formalities.
Asbestos Bankruptcy Trust Fund Claims
When an asbestos company files for bankruptcy, an asbestos bankruptcy trust is created to pay out current and future claims. Individuals who have been exposed to asbestos due to the company's negligence can file a claim against the trust to receive compensation.
You can get help from asbestos attorneys to gather the necessary information and file a successful bankruptcy trust claim. Anyone with mesothelioma disease and proof of exposure can file for this claim.
Documents You'll Need to File Mesothelioma Claim
If you decide to file for a claim, you will need to present various documents as proof. Here are some important documents you'll need:
- Proof of financial hardship
- All the medical documents of asbestos-related diagnosis
- Proof showing exposure to asbestos
- Documented papers showing your entire work history at the asbestos company
- Your testimony regarding the exposure and related diagnosis
Asbestos attorneys with expertise in the field can help you with all the necessary documentation to file the claim.
How to File a Mesothelioma Compensation Claim?
Here are the steps you need to follow to file a mesothelioma compensation claim:
Step 1: Know whether you are eligible
The first thing you need to do is understand the eligibility requirements. It can vary depending on the type of claim. A good mesothelioma lawyer can help you understand what type of compensation is suitable for your case as per the eligibility criteria.
In most cases, you are deemed eligible if you have a mesothelioma diagnosis and proof of exposure. You also need to file the claim within a specific period of time. The timeline also depends on the type of claim.
Step 2: Collect all the documents
Once you know that you are eligible for a specific type of claim, it is time to gather all the necessary documents. You'll need mesothelioma medical records, documented work history, and exposure proof. A mesothelioma lawyer will make these steps easy for you by gathering all the important documents.
Step 3: File the mesothelioma claim
Now, you just need to file the claim by submitting all the required documents. The rules vary depending on the State where you are living, so it is best to hire an asbestos attorney. They can help file the claim on your behalf. They are experts and know where and how to file the claim. This way, you can focus on your treatment while they handle all the legal work for you.
In some cases, you can file the claim in the State where you are living. However, you can also file the case in the State of your previous residence, the location of the asbestos company, or the place where the exposure tool is located. In rare cases, you may have to file the case in multiple States.
Step 4: Review of claim and compensation
After you submit the claim in the court of law, it will go through a review process. This ensures that your claim is legitimate and you are not making things up. Your mesothelioma lawyer will start negotiations with the claimant to help you get fair compensation.
The review process differs on the basis of the type of claim. Once the review is done and your claim seems valid, you'll be awarded the compensation. The amount of compensation depends on the claim type and individual circumstances.
Veterans who are exposed to asbestos are entitled to review additions, help, and support from the Department of Veterans Affairs. They offer financial benefits, additional treatment costs as well as benefits to the family members.
These are the important steps you need to follow to seek compensation for a mesothelioma claim. It can take anywhere from a few months to a year to receive the benefits if you win the claim. Mesothelioma claims involve numerous legal procedures due to the high compensation amount. So, it is best to hire a mesothelioma lawyer to get the maximum amount.