How a Clearwater Mesothelioma/Asbestos Attorney Can Help You
When you need to file a personal injury claim, working with an experienced attorney can make a huge difference in the outcome. When you need to file a claim for mesothelioma or an asbestos-related disease, an attorney can offer even more advantages. If you think you qualify to file an asbestos or mesothelioma claim, read on for more information. Below, we discuss several reasons why you should consider retaining an attorney to help with your claim.
1. An experienced mesothelioma attorney will help you understand your options.
When you file a mesothelioma claim, you may need to consider several different legal options and pick one. In some cases, though rare, you may participate in a class action claim against the entity that exposed you to asbestos, usually an employer.
Most people suffering from mesothelioma or an asbestos-related disease, however, find that this strategy does not work as well for them, since proce eds from a class action claim will get distributed equally between all participants, rather than providing each claimant with compensation according to the severity of their illnesses and injuries.
If the company that caused you to face asbestos exposure has gone bankrupt, as many have over the past several years, you may have access to a claim through a mesothelioma trust fund (also known as an asbestos trust fund). These trust funds offer compensation based on specific damages and diagnoses suffered as a result of your asbestos exposure.
If the company remains in operation, on the other hand, you will file a standard personal injury claim for the damages, both physical and financial, that you suffered as a result of asbestos exposure.
2. A mesothelioma attorney can help you understand how much compensation to seek.
How do you seek compensation for asbestos-related claims? If you faced exposure to asbestos due to your employer’s negligence, either before or after the dangers of asbestos exposure became common knowledge, you may have the right to file a claim against your employer. An experienced asbestos attorney can help you understand how much compensation you should seek, including the factors that will contribute to your claim.
How much did you have to pay in medical expenses related to an asbestos diagnosis?
Workers with pleural plaques or pleural effusion may face relatively low medical expenses, especially if they do not have significant medical expenses related to their illness. Workers who develop mesothelioma or a cancer related to asbestos exposure, including ovarian, lung, and laryngeal cancers, may have significantly higher medical bills.
You may need to seek compensation for expenses for chemotherapy, radiation, surgery, and hospitalization throughout your illness. Not only that, but many victims may also need in-home or end-of-life care that will help them maintain quality of life for as long as possible.
An attorney can help you calculate all of your medical expenses and give you a better idea of how they may impact your claim.
How much have your asbestos diseases impacted your life?
Some people—generally those with benign asbestos-related conditions—may have few or even no symptoms of asbestos-related diseases. Others, however, may have much more serious damage and, as a result, more serious limitations.
While undergoing treatment for mesothelioma or cancer, many people have substantial limitations that may prevent them from enjoying their usual hobbies and activities or that may make it difficult to get around at all. An attorney will help you assess how your conditions and diagnosis have limited your life and what impact they may have on your claim.
How much work did you have to miss due to your diagnosis?
A serious diagnosis can make it necessary for a patient to miss work for some time while undergoing treatment. Patients may also lose the ability to continue to work in their fields due to their diagnoses. For example, many asbestos-related illnesses can cause shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, which can make it hard for employees to continue working in construction-related fields, in mining, or in other fields that require significant physical labor.
An attorney can help you calculate how much work you missed due to your diagnosis and include it as part of your claim.
In some cases, your employer or your employer’s insurance company may attempt to minimize the compensation paid out for your asbestos-related illnesses. Sometimes, that company may issue a response to your initial claim that does not reflect adequate compensation given your illnesses and suffering. An attorney can help you fully understand exactly how much compensation you should expect and help you seek that amount of compensation.
3. An experienced attorney can help you maximize the compensation you receive from an asbestos trust fund claim.
In many cases, asbestos trust funds now set limits on the compensation that claimants may receive. Many more individuals have received diagnoses of asbestos-related illnesses than the creators of the funds initially expected. As a result, the funds often now provide a percentage of the scheduled payment that most victims would receive for specific ailments.
For example, if the fund’s original schedule set out to pay $1 million for a mesothelioma or cancer diagnosis, the same fund might now only offer 50 or 25 percent of that amount. Now, a victim might claim $500,000 or $250,000 for a similar diagnosis due to the depleting funds within the trust funds.
An experienced attorney can help you maximize the compensation you receive to cover the costs of your diagnosis. This may include a full evaluation of all your limitations and any conditions you face as a result of asbestos exposure, including benign conditions that could help increase your final payout.
4. An experienced attorney can help gather evidence to prove your claim.
You will need to show that you have an illness or condition caused by asbestos exposure. Some conditions, like mesothelioma, may establish that on their own, as people do not usually have mesothelioma without asbestos exposure. Other conditions, however, may require more substantial proof.
You will also need to show evidence of whether a company bears liability for your exposure and, if so, what company. To hold a company liable for your asbestos-related diagnosis, you will need to show that the company committed an act of negligence that caused you to face asbestos exposure, either before or after the dangers of asbestos became widely known. In some cases, you may have grounds for a claim against more than one party, especially if you worked for multiple companies in an industry known for asbestos exposure.
For example, individuals who worked in construction or demolition often come into contact with high levels of asbestos over the course of their work.
An experienced asbestos attorney knows how to gather the evidence necessary to prove what companies you worked for when you worked for them, and what safety precautions those companies took—or failed to take—during your period of employment. For example, the attorney may go through employment records, check photos, or evaluate tax records to get a better idea of what companies you worked for and who may bear liability for your asbestos exposure.
Asbestos exposure often takes between twenty and fifty years to lead to the development of mesothelioma or other asbestos-related diseases. As a result, attorneys must often dig through old evidence to find the information that they need. Some of that evidence may not even exist on a computer filing system, depending on what year the evidence is from. An experienced attorney, however, will know how to gather that evidence and provide the information you need to help establish your claim.
5. An experienced attorney can help you decide when you need to take a claim to court.
Often, you may need to go through significant negotiations before reaching a settlement agreement. Mesothelioma settlements often total over $1 million, which may prove a substantial expense for the company. As a result, the company may try to argue it down as much as possible. An attorney can help you through each round of negotiation and, if the claim calls for it, let you know when you need to take it to court.
Often, a jury verdict increases the compensation you can receive for a mesothelioma settlement; however, increased legal fees and a longer time period to receive compensation lead most people to settle out of court before trial. An attorney can provide valuable advice about when you need to make those decisions and what will most likely work best for you.
6. An attorney can help ensure that the statute of limitations does not prevent you from filing a claim for the damages you faced as a result of asbestos exposure.
Each state sets its own statute of limitations for recovering damages from an asbestos-related claim. Generally, you must file a claim for compensation within one to two years of an asbestos-related diagnosis. Since asbestos exposure takes so long to lead to many serious illnesses and conditions, the clock does not start counting on the statute of limitations until you receive a diagnosis.
Failing to file a claim before the statute of limitations runs out, however, could limit or eliminate the compensation that you receive for your illness and expenses. An attorney can help ensure that you do not miss the filing deadline in your case or, in some cases, help find exceptions to the statute of limitations that can help extend the time you have before you must file a claim.
7. An attorney can help you recover much-needed funds after a loved one dies of mesothelioma or an asbestos-related disease.
After a loved one dies from mesothelioma or an asbestos-related disease, the surviving family members have grounds for a claim that can help provide vital compensation. While a claim will not bring back a loved one lost to those illnesses, it can help you rebuild your life, pay for your loved one’s final expenses, or ensure that the family has the money it needs while recovering from that loss.
An experienced asbestos attorney can provide you with more information about your rights after losing a loved one to mesothelioma or an asbestos-related disease.
Choosing an Experienced Asbestos Attorney
Are you facing a mesothelioma or asbestos-related diagnosis? Do you have medical bills mounting? Did you lose a loved one to mesothelioma or an asbestos-related diagnosis? If so, make sure you choose the right attorney for your needs. When evaluating potential attorneys, consider:
How much experience does the attorney have? Has the law firm worked with mesothelioma patients in the state before? Mesothelioma and asbestos-related diseases bring a unique element to many claims, and you don’t want just any personal injury attorney to represent you. Instead, look for an experienced attorney that can guide you through every stage of your claim.
You will spend a great deal of time communicating with your asbestos attorney, so you should choose an attorney whose communication style reflects your needs. How often does the attorney communicate with clients? Will he get in touch even if he has nothing to report? How does he prefer to communicate? Get answers to these questions upfront to help you choose the right attorney for your needs.
Does the attorney have a proven success rate? Can past clients testify that he or she has achieved favorable results in past claims? Not only does experience matter, but also the attorney’s success rate can make a huge difference to your claim.
Seek an Experienced Florida Mesothelioma/Asbestos Attorney
If you need a mesothelioma attorney, do not wait. The clock starts ticking the moment that you receive your diagnosis. The sooner you start working with an attorney, the sooner that attorney can start working on your behalf to file your claim and ensure that you receive the support you need.
Contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible to learn more about your legal rights, conduct a free claim evaluation, or start the process of filing your mesothelioma claim today. The sooner you start working on your claim, the more likely you are to recover compensation.
Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33765
(833) 700-MESO