Victims of asbestos exposure have every right to take legal action against negligent asbestos companies. Filing a lawsuit can help mesothelioma patients pay for treatment.
Making the decision to file a lawsuit is never easy, regardless of the circumstances. However, mesothelioma patients are in a unique position. The majority of patients are victims of asbestos exposure caused by negligent companies. They deserve just compensation that can help pay for treatment and financially support their families.
Why File a Mesothelioma Lawsuit?
Majority of Cases End in Settlement: Most mesothelioma lawsuits end in an out-of-court settlement that favors the plaintiff.
Attorneys Work on Contingency: In mesothelioma cases, attorneys charge contingency fees, which means the plaintiff only pays a fee if they win their case.
Financial Compensation: Most plaintiffs in a mesothelioma lawsuit are awarded financial compensation, oftentimes thousands to millions of dollars.
The Benefits of Filing a Lawsuit
Filing an asbestos-related lawsuit is free. A mesothelioma attorney does not charge a fee unless he or she wins the case. There are two reasons for this. The first is that asbestos-related cases are not a gamble. Many cases are eventually decided in favor of the victim and most end in a settlement before the case even goes to trial.
The second is that the payout or settlement is usually very large. According to a recently published litigation report, a New York court ruled in favor of a patient who contracted mesothelioma from asbestos exposure while at work. The jury awarded the patient a total of 7 million dollars, 3.5 million for past pain and suffering and 3.5 million for future pain and suffering.
The process of a mesothelioma lawsuit doesn’t cost a patient too much time, either. One of the only actions most patients will be required to take is a video deposition, which can be filmed in the privacy of the patient’s home. Depositions are used as evidence throughout the proceedings and are always filmed in the presence of a patient’s lawyer.
Additionally, mesothelioma attorneys are very flexible and will usually fly to meet patients for a free consultation. This flexibility is especially beneficial for victims who are not mobile due to the advanced stage of their disease.
Another benefit of filing a mesothelioma lawsuit is getting a settlement. The majority of asbestos-related lawsuits end in settlements before going to trial, a result which saves time and nets patients a large amount of compensation they can use to pay for better treatment.
The Legal Process
Most of the legal process is handled directly by a mesothelioma attorney. As a result, minimal involvement is required of the patient. This allows the patient to focus on treatment and getting better. Even so, learning about the basic steps involved can help patients prepare for the process of filing an asbestos-related lawsuit.
Preparing to File: First, the attorney will research the patient’s history of asbestos exposure and gather any relevant information they can use to strengthen their case. This information will help the attorney determine which company or companies to file against and which court the case will be most successful in.
Filing the Claim: The attorney will then file an official claim with the court, which in most cases is in the state where the most asbestos exposure occurred. Filing a claim officially starts the legal process.
It’s generally best to file a claim as soon as possible after you are diagnosed. The amount of time a patient is allowed to file a mesothelioma lawsuit varies from state to state and begins the moment a he or she is officially diagnosed.
Discovery: This is the part of the process that usually takes the most time. During the discovery process, both the patient’s attorneys and the asbestos company’s attorneys look at all the evidence presented for and against the claim.
Deposition: The deposition is technically part of the discovery process and is the only portion of the trial that directly involves the patient. During the deposition, the asbestos company’s attorneys ask the patient questions about his or her medical condition and history of asbestos exposure. The deposition is usually videotaped and can be done from the privacy of the patient’s home.
Trial: The majority of mesothelioma lawsuits end in a settlement before the trial even begins. If the case does proceed to a trial, however, a judge and jury will review the evidence presented by both sides and make a decision.
Choosing the Right Law Firm
Getting help is the first and most important step you can take if you’ve been diagnosed with mesothelioma. This applies to finding treatment and obtaining legal assistance.
Time is of the essence. Depending on the laws in your state, patients have a limited window of time to file a legal claim against a negligent asbestos company or employer. A law firm with experience in mesothelioma litigation can provide more information about the legal process and help you get the compensation you deserve.