Types of Mesothelioma Claims

The most common types of mesothelioma claims are personal injury claims, wrongful death claims and asbestos trust fund claims. Mesothelioma patients and their families can file mesothelioma claims to obtain compensation for their injuries. These claims are also known as asbestos claims, and they are filed as a result of asbestos exposure.

Descriptions of the three types of mesothelioma claims: personal injury, wrongful death and asbestos trust fund claims
Patients and families have multiple options to seek mesothelioma compensation.

Payouts from settlements, asbestos trust funds or trial verdicts vary depending on the type of claim filed, but some claims are worth more than $1 million. Experienced mesothelioma lawyers have extensive knowledge of building strong legal claims against the appropriate manufacturers and companies that expose you to asbestos. Their expertise is invaluable to successfully filing and resolving your mesothelioma-related legal claims.

Personal Injury Lawsuits

A personal injury lawsuit is a legal claim filed by the person diagnosed with mesothelioma. In this type of legal claim, the patient must prove the cause of their mesothelioma was exposure to asbestos. 

Compensation from a personal injury lawsuit can cover medical expenses, lost income, loss of consortium and pain and suffering. In some cases, juries can also award mesothelioma patients punitive damages, which are monetary damages awarded to discourage future wrongdoing. Most mesothelioma lawsuits are settled out of court before a trial takes place.

Wrongful Death Claims

Wrongful death lawsuits are lawsuits the estate, including family members, can file after a person has died of mesothelioma. In these cases, juries may award compensation for various losses, including funeral costs and cancer-related expenses. 

The estate representative, such as the spouse or child of the deceased, brings the lawsuit on behalf of the estate and acts in the interest of the estate in seeking compensation through a wrongful death claim.

Trust Fund Claims

Many bankrupt asbestos companies have set up a mesothelioma and asbestos trust funds list. Companies do this to set aside funds to compensate people with asbestos-related diseases from exposure while avoiding further lawsuits. Pursuing an asbestos trust fund claim can help survivors recover significant compensation.

A top mesothelioma law firm can help you determine whether the company responsible for your injuries has a trust fund. If so, your lawyer will walk you through the claim filing process.

Product Liability Claims

Product liability claims focus on protecting individuals exposed to asbestos-containing products. These claims target companies that manufacture or distribute the materials that lead to exposure. 

People who file a product liability claim must provide evidence that the product was defective and high-risk because of the asbestos content. They must also establish a link between that product and their asbestos-related illness.

How Do I File a Mesothelioma Claim?

An attorney specializing in asbestos litigation will help you gather the necessary documentation of your mesothelioma diagnostic tests and asbestos exposure history. It’s also important to share your financial statements, such as hospital bills and other health care-associated expenses, to build a strong case.

Documentation You Will Need:
  • Medical records proving the diagnosis
  • Work history records showing you or your loved one worked for the company named in the claim
  • Testimony required to prove the cause of your asbestos exposure and the resulting cancer diagnosis
  • Financial records showing financial hardships the illness has caused your family

An experienced attorney can determine the best strategy to help you receive compensation for your losses. These can include medical bills, travel for treatments, funeral costs and other expenses.

Mesothelioma Claims Process

The most important thing you can do when filing a mesothelioma claim is speak to an experienced lawyer who can advise you of your rights. They will walk you through the process and answer any questions.

  1. Consult an Experienced Asbestos Lawyer: A lawyer with a successful track record in mesothelioma cases can draw on their experience to determine the best options for your individual case.
  2. Confirm Eligibility: A mesothelioma lawyer will research your exposure history and gather evidence and important information to understand how and why you were diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease. If possible, they will determine which asbestos products you were exposed to and whether you qualify to file a claim.
  3. File the Claim: Your attorney will handle every legal step, including filing your claim in the right court.
  4. Discovery Period: After your claim is filed, defendants and your attorney will enter the discovery phase of the legal process where both sides conduct research, interviews and depositions to collect evidence and build their cases.
  5. Settlements, Trials and Verdicts: Most of these claims are resolved through a mesothelioma settlement. It’s rare for a mesothelioma case to go to trial. Most plaintiffs receive compensation through a settlement rather than a verdict.

The mesothelioma claims process is complex. An experienced attorney can determine the best strategy to help you receive compensation for your losses. These can include medical bills, travel for treatments, funeral costs and other expenses.

There are strict time limits, known as the statute of limitations, for filing mesothelioma claims after diagnosis. An attorney can help determine the deadline for your case and ensure claims are filed on time before the mesothelioma statute of limitations expires.

Deadlines for Filing a Claim

State laws, called mesothelioma statutes of limitations, limit how long you can wait to file a mesothelioma claim. This time limit ranges from one year to a few years, depending on the state. The clock generally starts ticking at the date of diagnosis for personal injury claims and the date of death for wrongful death claims.

You may have the option of filing mesothelioma claims in multiple states, depending on the location of the companies identified as defendants and where your asbestos exposure occurred. Work with a qualified mesothelioma attorney to decide where to file, make sure your claim paperwork is filled out properly and ensure your claim is filed on time.

If Your Loved One Can’t Participate in the Claims Process

If your loved one isn’t feeling well enough to initiate a claim, a family member can start the process on their behalf. After their death, the estate can file a wrongful death claim. 

You can contact a mesothelioma lawyer to start the claim filing process. Initiating the claims process allows the mesothelioma law firm to begin gathering evidence.

Your lawyer will conduct research and interviews, locate witnesses and record testimony. Witnesses become even more important to the case if your loved one can’t record testimony on their own behalf. Filing a claim as soon as possible affords time for the investigatory period.

Why Should You File an Asbestos Claim?

One of the top reasons people file asbestos claims is to receive compensation to help cover medical expenses and lost wages. Compensation from wrongful death claims can help you cover funeral costs and medical bills and provide financial support for surviving family members. Mesothelioma often requires expensive cancer treatments, travel and caregiving that health insurance doesn’t fully cover.

Mesothelioma is a preventable, aggressive illness. Mesothelioma claims are designed to hold companies accountable for asbestos exposure resulting from negligence. According to consulting firm KCIC, Americans diagnosed with asbestos exposure-related diseases filed more than 3,600 lawsuits in 2020.

If you or your family member has been diagnosed with mesothelioma or another asbestos-related cancer, speak with a mesothelioma attorney about your case. A top asbestos law firm will provide free consultation and case review.

Who Pays My Mesothelioma Compensation Claims?

Receiving asbestos exposure compensation can come from several sources, including liable companies, asbestos trust funds, insurance companies and the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Depending on the circumstances of the asbestos exposure, the type of claim you file and the status of the liable companies, you may be eligible to receive financial compensation from multiple sources. This may involve filing different types of claims resulting in compensation that liable companies, insurance companies and even the VA will pay if you’re a veteran with mesothelioma.

Paying Mesothelioma Claims:
  • Liable Companies: These can include asbestos mine operators, asbestos product manufacturers and companies that distributed or used asbestos products.
  • Asbestos Trust Funds: Many liable companies have set up trust funds to pay asbestos claims in exchange for protection from future liability.
  • Insurance Companies: Many companies have liability insurance that covers lawsuit claims. Workers’ compensation claims also fall into this category.
  • Department of Veterans Affairs: The VA recognizes mesothelioma as a service-connected illness if your asbestos exposure happened during military service.

A qualified mesothelioma attorney has the expertise to review your case and advise you on the types of compensation you may be entitled to receive. Many of the nation’s top mesothelioma law firms can help you work with health insurance and the VA to access your eligible compensation.

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Insurance and Benefit Claims

Filing a claim for veteran benefits or workers’ comp may provide you compensation without the need to file a lawsuit in court. The most immediate financial resource for families is health insurance claims. 

Working with an experienced claims agent or lawyer can help ensure you receive all the health insurance benefits available. An experienced VA-accredited claims agent can help you file for VA benefits.

Veterans Benefits

Many veterans develop asbestos-related diseases during active-duty service. The Department of Veterans Affairs recognizes mesothelioma as a potentially service-connected illness, which makes patients and family members eligible for disability compensation and survivor benefits.

Thank you for helping me file my brother’s VA claim. If you hadn’t guided me each step of the way, I would have felt helpless. The Mesothelioma Center made it easier than I could have imagined.
Carrie D.
sister of a veteran diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma

Our VA-accredited claims agent can help veterans with mesothelioma understand their options and file a claim. VA-accredited team members at The Mesothelioma Center are available to help veterans seven days a week.

Workers’ Compensation

You can file for workers’ compensation over a mesothelioma diagnosis. Most workers’ comp systems, however, are not designed to compensate people for occupational cancer adequately.

Filing for workers’ comp usually means giving up your right to file a lawsuit. Consult an asbestos attorney about the option that will best serve your needs.

Insurance Claims

Health insurance coverage for mesothelioma may cover a lot of cancer treatment costs but still leave asbestos victims with significant out-of-pocket expenses. A disability insurance policy can compensate you for your loss of income during cancer treatment. Some people have disability insurance coverage through their employer.

Workers who have mesothelioma and are eligible for Social Security retirement benefits can file to receive these benefits early through Social Security Disability Insurance, which provides monthly compensation to those who qualify. A mesothelioma diagnosis qualifies for compassionate allowance, which speeds up processing and allows victims to receive payments faster.

A life insurance policy purchased individually or through an employer can ease a family’s financial burden when their loved one dies from mesothelioma. To file a life insurance claim, you often need the original policy documentation and a copy of the death certificate.

Common Questions About Mesothelioma Claims

What are the different types of mesothelioma claims?

One type of mesothelioma claim is against viable defendants, which are defendants who have not filed bankruptcy. You’re gonna sue them in a traditional way, and sometimes, you’re gonna settle with them and go to court.

But then you’ve also got your bankruptcy trust, and these are against nonviable defendants, meaning bankrupt companies.

Answered By: Joe Lahav, Esq. – Lawyer and Legal Advisor

How long does it take to resolve a mesothelioma claim?

There are a lot of methods put in place because the courts realize you’re very sick. You’re dying of cancer typically. To try to speed up the process, there are dockets called rocket docs, which are expedited hearings to try to speed the situation along.

Answered By: Joe Lahav, Esq. – Lawyer and Legal Advisor

How much does an asbestos claim pay out?

It’s difficult to determine the amount of compensation that any individual plaintiff or mesothelioma patient may be entitled to from the outset of their case. We do know, based on the track record of a firm like Weitz & Luxenberg, that these cases have substantial value.

Answered By: Peter Tambini, Mesothelioma Attorney – Weitz & Luxenberg Law Firm

Can family members of a mesothelioma patient file a claim?

In cases where a family member may be a mesothelioma victim and unable to testify or start the process themselves, family members can step into their shoes to start the process. And what that means is talking to a mesothelioma lawyer to begin the process of filing the case, finding other people who could be witnesses in that case, who could speak about the type of work that the mesothelioma patient may have done, the types of products that person may have used, and the types of asbestos exposures that person may have had.

Answered By: Jim Kramer, Mesothelioma Attorney, Simmons Hanly Conroy Law Firm

Is it possible for more than one company to be held legally responsible?

Yes, it’s quite common for multiple companies to be ruled responsible. Asbestos workers encountered different types of asbestos products from different manufacturers. Juries are tasked with appropriately allocating responsibility to all liable defendants.

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