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Last Updated: 12/14/2023
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Why Hire a Portsmouth Mesothelioma Lawyer?

A mesothelioma lawyer in Portsmouth can help you recover compensation for lost wages, medical bills and other related expenses. If you or a loved one have received a mesothelioma diagnosis, consider consulting top asbestos attorneys to file a lawsuit. 

Working With Portsmouth Attorneys
  • Local mesothelioma law firms may have experience litigating similar asbestos-related injury cases, which is important when choosing a mesothelioma lawyer in Portsmouth.
  • The ability to visit a local attorney’s office in person is convenient. However, large mesothelioma law firms also allow for in-home and virtual consultations, especially helpful if you’re immunocompromised.
  • National firms have experience with Virginia and federal laws, important when litigating claims that may involve exposure that occurred in other states.

Many Portsmouth mesothelioma attorneys work for national asbestos law firms with experience filing and litigating asbestos injury claims at the state and federal levels. This is also helpful if your exposure occurred in another state. For many people, the benefits of hiring a national firm outweigh those of going with a small local law office. 

When Do You Need to Hire a Mesothelioma Attorney?

Consider hiring a Portsmouth mesothelioma lawyer soon after your diagnosis. Your lawyer can take relevant statutes of limitations into account and determine where best to file based on the details of your specific case, including where your exposure took place. You can focus on treatment and recovery while your Portsmouth asbestos lawyer starts the paperwork and fights for your rights. 

Every state has unique rules about filing lawsuits. In Virginia, the statute of limitations for personal injury and wrongful death is typically two years. However, certain factors can affect this. Experienced mesothelioma lawyers in each state will file the required paperwork for your case accordingly. 

Asbestos Exposure in Portsmouth 

Most asbestos exposure in Portsmouth occurs at factories, shipyards and other industrial sites. The city has a long history of shipbuilding and naval operations, both of which have links to increased asbestos exposure. 

Community sites can also pose hazards. For example, Portsmouth’s Fire Station 7 closed for two weeks in 2020 to remove asbestos-containing tiles and flooring materials dating to its original 1981 construction. 

Possible Sources of Asbestos Exposure in Portsmouth
  • Chemical Plants: Laboratory furniture and chemical containers contained asbestos, leading to possible exposure atPortsmouth chemical plants such as Murro Chemical and Virginia Chemicals, Inc.
  • Norfolk Naval Shipyard: The nation’s oldest naval shipyard also served as a major contributor to asbestos exposure in Portsmouth. Shipyards such as the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard used asbestos widely for its ability to withstand extreme heat and corrosion.
  • Power Plants: Asbestos was historically used in boilers, conduits and power generation components. Possible exposure occurred at utility companies including Virginia Electric, Portsmouth Berkley and Suffolk Water Company, Portsmouth Gas Company and Westinghouse Electric Company.
  • Railroads: Boilers, coatings, sealants, clutches and brake components contained asbestos. Portsmouth workers may have experienced exposure at companies including Seaboard and Roanoke Railroad, Seaboard Air Line Railway and Portsmouth Station.

Exposure to asbestos in Virginia can also occur in places that store and scrap old equipment and machinery. Sites such as Peck Iron and Metal in Portsmouth expose residents to toxic chemicals, including asbestos, that can contaminate local waterways. 

Portsmouth Occupations & Industries Known for Asbestos Exposure

Portsmouth workers in manufacturing and transportation industries face increased risks of occupational exposure to asbestos. In many cases, these industries widely used asbestos because of its resistance to heat and chemical corrosion.

Portsmouth Occupational Asbestos Exposure
  • Auto mechanics
  • Boilermakers
  • Builders and construction workers
  • Demolition workers
  • Longshoremen
  • Maintenance workers
  • Merchant mariners
  • Pipefitters
  • Refinery workers
  • Shipyard workers
  • Steamfitters
  • U.S. Navy personnel
  • Welders

A wide range of career fields, including manufacturing, automotive repair and building construction and maintenance, contributed to asbestos exposure. If you suspect that you or a loved one experienced asbestos exposure at work, seek help from a Portsmouth mesothelioma lawyer.   

Secondary Asbestos Exposure

Secondary asbestos exposure occurs when exposed workers bring the mineral fibers home on their shoes, clothing and equipment. The fibers may disperse  through handling and washing contaminated clothing, using the same furniture and direct physical contact between people. Secondary asbestos exposure can be just as dangerous as primary exposure.

Reduced use of asbestos and stricter safety regulations have reduced rates of secondary exposure. However, it can and does still occur. Women and children are typically most at risk. 

How to Find The Right Portsmouth Mesothelioma Lawyer

Finding the right Portsmouth mesothelioma attorney involves conducting research and meeting with prospective lawyers. Many personal injury attorneys offer free consultations so you can get answers and gauge compatibility. 

During your appointments, ask questions about each firm’s experience with similar cases and awards they have helped secure. Consultations are also an excellent opportunity to see how you get along with the attorney. Finding a Portsmouth asbestos injury lawyer you’re personally comfortable with will make the process go more smoothly. 

Finding a Portsmouth Mesothelioma Lawyer
  • Schedule a consultation to assess the attorney’s communication style and how well they can put complicated legal jargon into straightforward terms.
  • Ask about their experience with asbestos-related cases and their track record protecting the rights of and securing compensation for clients.
  • Consider the reach of national asbestos law firms and their ability to deal with different states’ legal systems.

You may find that some local law firms are not as well-equipped to handle a mesothelioma case. This is why many individuals searching for Portsmouth asbestos injury attorneys choose national firms. 

Portsmouth Mesothelioma Law Firms

A select group of mesothelioma attorneys handles the majority of cases nationwide, including those filed in Portsmouth. Therefore, using a law firm from another area may be in your best interest when filing a claim. 

Firms such as Weitz & Luxenberg serve clients nationwide. This firm recovered more than $8.5 billion for clients and received a top rating from U.S. News & World Report in 2022. Another national firm, Meirowitz & Wasserberg, is among the top 10 asbestos and mesothelioma trial lawyers, with more than $200 million recovered for clients. 

The Nemeroff firm also serves clients nationwide. The Legal 500 named it a Hall of Fame firm, and it has recovered more than $500 million for clients. Both Simmons Hanly Conroy and Cooney & Conway serve clients nationwide as well. Both received a Tier 1 National Firm rating from U.S. News & World Report in 2022.

What Is It Like to Work With a Portsmouth Mesothelioma Lawyer? 

When you work with an experienced mesothelioma lawyer in Portsmouth, they handle all of the legal details so you can focus on treatment and recovery. It also gives you valuable time with your loved ones. 

Effective communication about your history, including medical records and possible occupational or secondary sources of exposure, is crucial. Your attorney will use this information to establish and argue your legal case. 

Asbestos Litigation Steps
  1. Initially consulting with the attorney
  2. Confirming your eligibility
  3. Filing your legal claim
  4. Proceeding with evidence discovery
  5. Obtaining a settlement or going to trial

Your attorney will help you navigate the legal system and advise you on every step along the way. It typically takes a year to 18 months to resolve a lawsuit, although some may progress much quicker. 

How Do I Know If I’m Eligible for Compensation?

Speaking with an experienced Portsmouth mesothelioma is an excellent way to determine your eligibility for compensation. During your consultation, the attorney will review and discuss your history and any documentation you provide about your malignant mesothelioma diagnosis.

If you decide to proceed, the firm will gather evidence about your work history and asbestos exposure, such as your medical records and testimony from former co-workers. Your Portsmouth asbestos injury lawyer will use this evidence to support your efforts to seek compensation. 

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