01. Lawsuit Options
Types of Mesothelioma Lawsuits
Gerbangindonesia.com There are two main types of asbestos proceedings. Personal injury and illegal death. A mesothelioma patient or his surviving loved one may be eligible to file one of these proceedings. The proceedings of mesothelioma and asbestos can be treated as class action or multi-district proceedings in addition to personal injury and wrongful death proceedings.
The type of proceedings filed depends on several factors, including who will file the proceedings and what type of damages will be pursued.
Mesothelioma Personal Injury Lawsuit
There are two main types of asbestos proceedings. Personal injury and illegal death. A mesothelioma patient or his surviving loved one may be eligible to file one of these proceedings. The proceedings of mesothelioma and asbestos can be treated as class action or multi-district proceedings in addition to personal injury and wrongful death proceedings.
The type of proceedings filed depends on several factors, including who will file the proceedings and what type of damages will be pursued.
Mesothelioma Wrongful Death Lawsuit
The death dispute due to mesothelioma is resolved by the relatives of the deceased victim. These claims are different than in the case of personal injury. However, as in the case of personal injury, reports of illegal death have been filed with the victim responsible for asbestos exposure.
These proceedings claim damages related to the death of a loved one. The postmortem mesothelioma proceedings allow families to regain compensation for overdue medical expenses, funeral expenses, loss of potential income, consortium and related costs.
Other Types of Asbestos Exposure Lawsuits
Proceedings for personal injury or unlawful death may be dealt with personally. In some cases, proceedings may be combined with other similar proceedings through a class action proceeding against mesothelioma or a proceeding in multiple districts.
Class Action Lawsuits
- One or more plaintiffs file a lawsuit on behalf of a group of people. The plaintiffs have similar injuries and asbestos-exposure histories. The lawsuit can represent anywhere from a small group to thousands of people.
- Each individual can decide whether to remain part of the class action lawsuit or to opt out. Individuals who leave a class action lawsuit may pursue an individual lawsuit or claim.
- Most asbestos lawsuits are handled as individual cases or as part of multidistrict litigation.
Multidistrict Litigation (MDL)
- Multiple people file individual asbestos lawsuits using a process that standardizes similar complaints.
- The standardized procedure allows the courts to handle a large number of cases quickly.
- The primary MDL handling mesothelioma cases is MDL 875, In re: Asbestos Products Liability Litigation. The Eastern Pennsylvania District of the United States District Court manages the MDL. Since its formation in 2006, more than 186,000 cases have been transferred to MDL 875.
Ultimately, an experienced mesothelioma lawyer will be able to provide you with information regarding all filing options and advise what is best for you.
02. Why File a Lawsuit?
Why File a Mesothelioma Lawsuit?
Litigation over mesothelioma can lead to compensation for financial problems caused by the diagnosis. Mesothelioma lawsuits can help families pay for medical and travel expenses, lost wages, and other related expenses. Financial rewards can also help families have a stable financial future.
Average litigation costs range from $1 million to $1.4 million for asbestos settlements and about $2.4 million for judgments.
Filing a lawsuit can be a solution for mesothelioma patients and their families to cover long-term costs such as treatment and follow-up care. Health insurance can cover health-related expenses, but usually does not cover financial losses. Compensation in mesothelioma litigation generally affects past and projected future costs.
Mesothelioma lawsuits may provide compensation for:
- Treatment costs not covered by insurance
- Lost income
- Travel expenses
- Pain and suffering
In addition to paying compensation to the victims, the mesothelioma lawsuit also holds the asbestos companies and other defendants liable for their negligence. A mesothelioma cancer lawsuit can set a precedent to ensure that future victims receive the compensation they deserve.
Finally decide to continue. An experienced mesothelioma lawyer can help you choose the best legal option for your case.
03. Lawsuit Eligibility
Mesothelioma Lawsuit Eligibility
If you choose to sue, you must meet a number of requirements. The criteria may vary depending on the type of complaint you are filing.
Are You Eligible to File a Mesothelioma Lawsuit?
You may be eligible to file a mesothelioma lawsuit if:
- You have medical documentation of a mesothelioma diagnosis.
- You submit the lawsuit within the time frame of the statute of limitations.
- You and your attorney are able to provide compelling evidence against the defendant, such as proof of asbestos exposure.
Obtaining all this information can be a lengthy process, but proper legal representation can facilitate this process. A mesothelioma law firm can help with the process. They can assist in gathering the required documents and ensure that the action is brought within the appropriate timeframe.
How the Statute of Limitations Impacts Eligibility
The limitation period is a state-specific period for bringing an action for personal injury or wrongful death. These periods begin after the diagnosis of mesothelioma or the death of a loved one.
Most states have up to four years to file a mesothelioma case after these events. Where you send may depend on the state where you live, the state where the suspect is located or the state where the exposure occurred. A solicitor can help you determine in which state you need to apply and whether you are in the right time frame.
04. HOW TO FILE A LAWSUIT
How to File a Mesothelioma Lawsuit
The process of prosecuting mesothelioma begins with consulting a lawyer and gathering information. For example, victims will need medical records of their diagnosis, employment records and evidence of asbestos exposure. Lawyers will help you with the whole process, provide advice and representation.
By filing a lawsuit, plaintiffs can obtain compensation.
Mesothelioma Lawsuit Process
- Receive a Free Consultation
- Research the Details of Your Case
- Determine Your Recovery Options
- File the Lawsuit
- Begin the Discovery Phase
- Reach Resolution: Settlement or Verdict
Step 1: Receive a Free Consultation
Before filing a lawsuit, a mesothelioma law firm usually offers a free consultation to talk about the process. This will give you the opportunity to ask questions and express any concerns you may have.
The counseling also gives your law firm the opportunity to better understand how you or a loved one may have been exposed to asbestos. You will then discuss your medical history, including the diagnosis of asbestos-related disease.
Step 2: Research the Details of Your Lawsuit
Once the initial consultation is completed, your mesothelioma lawyer will start collecting information and documents. This will help build your case to make it as strong as possible. To build a strong mesothelioma lawsuit, your attorney will assist in collecting:
- Medical reports: Medical records confirm a mesothelioma diagnosis and provide verification of treatment costs. These records should come from facilities where the patient received diagnosis or treatment for mesothelioma.
- Employment history: Records from any jobs with potential asbestos exposure are vital for building a case. This may include military service records, union memberships or any other work-history documentation.
- Witness statements: Statements from coworkers, family members and friends who can testify about your exposure can be helpful. Other parties, such as industry experts and specialists, can also provide strong evidence.
Before filing a complaint, it is also important to choose the most appropriate venue to file. A venue is the state where your case will be handled. Factors that can impact which venue is best for your lawsuit include:
- Statute of limitations
- Settlement and verdict history
- Local and state laws
Plaintiffs can file a mesothelioma lawsuit where they lived, worked, or served in the military. There are also cases of “open forums” that allow registration when no other suitable place is available. An attorney can help determine the best place for a person’s case. A mesothelioma attorney will help you organize the details of your case smoothly.
Step 3: Determine Your Recovery Options
Your asbestos attorney will investigate the various options for compensation. In addition to the litigation verdict decision, compensation is available through the Asbestos Trust Fund, Settlement or Veterans’ Claims.
Your legal team will advise you on the best course of action for your case. In some cases, this may include filing lawsuits and pursuing trust lawsuits. An experienced lawyer helps asbestos victims choose these options to give them the best chance of receiving compensation.
Step 4: File the Lawsuit
After investigating and deciding on a position, your attorney will file a formal complaint on your behalf. This complaint must detail the legal grounds for the proceedings against the defendant. The number of defendants nominated in the complaint depends on the history of asbestos exposure. Some individuals may be exposed to different types of asbestos in multiple jobs and nominate all of these employers in a single proceeding.
Step 5: Begin the Discovery Phase
After a lawsuit is filed, the legal process moves to the discovery phase. At this point, your attorney and the defendant’s attorney will provide information to support every aspect of the case. Both parties will file various petitions, often with the intention of reaching a financial settlement before the case goes to court.
Step 6: Reach Resolution Through a Settlement or Verdict
Some complaints are resolved before the judicial process. Mesothelioma billing averages $ 1 million – $ 1.4 million. Your attorney can negotiate on your behalf if a deal is offered.
If the mesothelioma lawsuit goes to court, your attorney can guide you through the process. Court proceedings can result in a decision in your favor. The average verdict for asbestos cases is $2.4 million.
05. WHAT TO EXPECT
What to Expect When You File an Asbestos Lawsuit
Each case is different. Patients and loved ones should consult with an attorney to better understand what to expect.
How Long Does a Mesothelioma Lawsuit Take?
Mesothelioma patients often ask how long they can expect a mesothelioma lawsuit to last. A number of factors can influence a mesothelioma lawsuit timeline, including:
- Number of plaintiffs filing
- Current caseload of chosen venue
- Number of defendants named in the complaint
- Lawsuit type
- Number and type of pretrial motions filed
- Complexity of facts that need to be determined
- Scheduling and availability of all involved parties
- Number of mesothelioma depositions and availability of witnesses
Depending on the case, asbestos lawsuits may take anywhere from several months to one year or longer.
Lawsuits settled without going to trial may be shorter, but the duration can still vary.
Behavioral and Medical Counterclaims
The defendant may try to defend their case by making counterclaims and disputing a case’s validity. Counterclaims can occur before or during the trial. Asbestos companies may try to assert your diagnosis of mesothelioma or asbestos cancer was caused by other factors, including:
- Unhealthy behaviors, such as drinking, smoking or using illegal substances
- Exposure to asbestos elsewhere, such as at home or a different workplace (for those who faced occupational asbestos exposure)
- Genetic problems or a family history of predisposition for mesothelioma or other forms of cancer
They may also challenge the accuracy of your medical diagnosis or the qualifications of the medical professional who gave your diagnosis. Although disconcerting, an experienced asbestos attorney can address these counterclaims on your behalf.
When faced with an asbestos exposure lawsuit, the defendant may also challenge how you filed your complaint. Some possible claims defendants may make include:
- Expiration of the statutes of limitations
- Other technical problems with the petition, even if it is filed within the right time frame
- Problems with the venue chosen or reasons why a different venue is more suitable
- Your authorization to file on behalf of someone who has died from mesothelioma
When handled by an established law firm that has spent time researching and building all aspects of your case, these types of counterclaims are rarely successful.
06. NOTABLE LAWSUIT VERDICTS
Notable Mesothelioma Lawsuit Verdicts
Mesothelioma lawsuit verdicts may result in more compensation for the plaintiff than a trust fund claim or settlement. The amounts won in these cases vary based on a number of details, such as disease severity and exposure history. Many patients and families receive millions of dollars through favorable verdicts.
For trial verdicts, jurors will determine the amount of compensation awarded. Trial verdicts can also be appealed or overturned.
Some notable mesothelioma lawsuit verdicts include:
- In 2010, a California jury awarded a 71-year-old woman $208.8 million in total damages. She developed mesothelioma caused by secondary exposure to asbestos fibers on her husband’s clothing. The trial award included $200 million in punitive damages against CertainTeed Corporation and $8.8 million in compensatory damages.
- In 2017, a jury awarded $82 million in a wrongful death lawsuit. The plaintiff’s wife was exposed to asbestos in auto parts sold by NAPA Auto Parts.
- In 2015, a man won a $7.5 million verdict in his personal injury case. His lawsuit alleged asbestos exposure during his work on boilers and furnaces in the 1970s and 1980s. The total award included $5 million for pain and suffering, $1.5 million to his wife for loss of services and $1 million in punitive damages.
Verdict amounts can vary widely based on the details of specific cases.
07. COMMON QUESTIONS
Common Questions About Mesothelioma Lawsuits
Can I file a lawsuit on behalf of a deceased loved one?
- Family members can file lawsuits on behalf of a lost loved one. This is known as a wrongful death lawsuit. An experienced lawyer can help with your mesothelioma lawsuit and determine if you are eligible.
How do I choose a defendant if I don’t know how I was exposed to asbestos?
- Your mesothelioma legal team will thoroughly research your personal and occupational history to pinpoint potential instances of asbestos exposure. This research will include your employment records, service records and other details.Even individuals exposed at home, school or in other ways are often able to find data to support a case. Based on these details and documents, your lawyer can determine where and how you were exposed to asbestos.
Is it too late to get compensation if a company has been bought or no longer exists?
- You can file claims or lawsuits against companies that no longer exist. For example, companies that have ceased operations are often required to set up asbestos bankruptcy trust funds to pay current and future claims brought against them.If an asbestos company has been acquired by another company, it may be possible to bring a lawsuit against the parent company.
Will I need to travel if I file a lawsuit?
- You will likely not need to travel. Mesothelioma lawyers typically travel to you for interviews, research and other tasks pertaining to the case. They will also appear in court on your behalf, allowing you to avoid travel.
How long does a mesothelioma lawsuit take?
- Each mesothelioma lawsuit is unique, so there is no exact time frame of how long it will take. Depending on the case, a mesothelioma lawsuit may take several months to one year or longer.
Can you sue if you have asbestosis?
- Individuals with asbestosis may be eligible to file a lawsuit against liable parties. This means victims can sue companies responsible for their asbestos exposure and resulting diagnosis. If the court finds the company liable for asbestos exposure, the victim may receive compensation.
How much money can I expect from an asbestos case?
- The average mesothelioma verdict award is around $2.4 million. The average mesothelioma lawsuit settlement ranges between $1 million and $1.4 million. Award amounts vary depending on the unique details of a case and what type of compensation you choose to pursue.
What are my asbestos lawsuit options if the liable company filed for bankruptcy?
- If the liable asbestos company filed for bankruptcy, victims may still have compensation options. Many bankrupt asbestos companies create trust funds to compensate victims. Depending on their case, victims may also be able to file a Veterans Affairs claim, workers’ compensation claim or claims through private health insurance, Medicare, Medicaid or disability insurance.