Mesothelioma claims are legal actions asbestos victims take to seek compensation. Patients and family members may file personal injury or wrongful death lawsuits. If a company has established an asbestos trust fund, victims may file a claim against the trust. Veterans may be entitled to VA benefits.

01. Types of Claims

Types of Mesothelioma Claims

The three main types of mesothelioma claims are personal injury lawsuits, wrongful death lawsuits and asbestos trust fund claims. Veterans with mesothelioma may also be eligible for benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Claim compensation can help cover treatment costs and other disease-related expenses.

Claims may be available to those who develop mesothelioma after asbestos exposure. People may be able to seek compensation through multiple claim types. Those diagnosed with other asbestos-related diseases, like lung cancer, may also be eligible to file.

Personal Injury Lawsuits

Mesothelioma lawyers file personal injury lawsuits on behalf of clients with asbestos diseases. They file against companies responsible for exposing their clients to asbestos. Exposure may occur in several ways, including:

Some mesothelioma patients may have trouble pinpointing the when and where of their exposure. The disease has a long latency period. A diagnosis may occur decades after initial exposure.

Lawyers at mesothelioma law firms can help. They have the resources and knowledge to figure out which asbestos companies may have exposed their clients.

Wrongful Death Lawsuits

Lawyers file wrongful death lawsuits on behalf of deceased mesothelioma patients’ families. They file against asbestos companies responsible for patients’ exposures.

Wrongful death actions are separate from personal injury actions. A personal injury lawsuit does not convert to a wrongful death lawsuit when a patient dies. A representative can take over the personal injury case. Compensation may be paid to the deceased’s estate. Families can simultaneously file their own wrongful death lawsuits.

The two types serve different purposes. Personal injury lawsuits compensate patients for expenses related to their diagnosis. Wrongful death lawsuits compensate family members for expenses related to their loss.

Asbestos Bankruptcy Trust Fund Claims

Lawyers file asbestos trust fund claims on behalf of asbestos victims and their loved ones. They file against specific bankruptcy trusts created by asbestos companies.

Companies with high asbestos liabilities have filed for bankruptcy. As part of their bankruptcy plans, many set aside money in trusts to compensate current and future victims.

VA Claims

Lawyers file benefit claims with the VA on behalf of eligible veterans with mesothelioma and their families. Veterans exposed to asbestos during their time in the armed services may be entitled to monthly benefits from the VA. The United States sets aside this money to acknowledge veterans’ service to the country.

02. How to File

How to File a Mesothelioma Claim

Experienced mesothelioma attorneys are available to file claims on behalf of asbestos victims. Victims can reach out to attorneys for case reviews and to discuss filing options. Once hired, an attorney can help gather evidence and handle the claims process on their client’s behalf.

What You’ll Need to File an Asbestos Claim

Successful asbestos claims present evidence that asbestos companies caused the exposure that led a person to develop mesothelioma. Or, in the case of VA claims, the evidence must show that exposure occurred during military service. Asbestos attorneys can help gather documentation and present evidence in a compelling way.

Documents that can help with an asbestos claim include medical records, military records and work history.

Can You File a Claim for Asbestos Exposure?

No, people exposed to asbestos who have not received an asbestos disease diagnosis are generally ineligible for compensation. People who know or suspect exposure can discuss this with their healthcare provider. A doctor can watch for early symptoms of asbestos-related illness.

Claims Filing Process

The claims process begins with a free consultation with a mesothelioma lawyer. The lawyer can offer a case review and answer questions related to the legal process and eligibility. Eligibility requirements may include proof of diagnosis and filing within a certain time limit.

Statute of Limitations by Claim Type

Different types of legal claims may have time limits to file for compensation. State laws called statutes of limitations govern lawsuit filing timelines. Most states provide one to three years to file. Asbestos trust funds may adopt state statute of limitation timelines for claims. VA claim deadlines depend on the program the victim is filing for entitlements under.

Once a victim hires a mesothelioma law firm to represent them, the firm’s lawyers can begin filing one or more claims on behalf of patients and their families. The claims process can involve:

  • Filing motions
  • Negotiating lawsuit settlements
  • Negotiating payouts during the claims review process
  • Responding to communications from courts, trusts and the VA

A victim’s legal team can keep them updated about the status of their asbestos case. They will also present any settlement offers to victims for their approval.

03. How Long Do Claims Take?

How Long Does a Mesothelioma Claim Take?

Mesothelioma legal actions have different time frames for resolution depending on claim type. Mesothelioma lawsuits can take anywhere from several months to a year or longer to resolve. Asbestos trust fund claims may be resolved faster, especially if the claim receives expedited review. VA benefits may take several months to complete the review process.

The complexity of the facts and available documentation may also affect the claims process. Experienced mesothelioma lawyers can offer estimates of how long a specific claim may take from filing to final decision.

04. Benefits of Filing

What Are the Benefits of Filing a Mesothelioma Claim?

Filing a mesothelioma claim comes with several potential benefits, including:

  • Getting financial compensation to help cover medical bills and lost wages
  • Holding asbestos manufacturers and other companies accountable

As part of their services, asbestos lawyers work to make the claims process as easy as possible for their clients. They serve as family and patient advocates, acting as their representatives during each step of the asbestos legal process. This leaves families time to focus on mesothelioma treatment and quality time together.

05. Compensation

Compensation From Mesothelioma Claims

Mesothelioma compensation can come from several sources. Lawsuits may result in settlements or trial verdicts, which both average over a million dollars per case. Average mesothelioma trust fund payouts range from $10,000 to $100,000. VA claims may result in thousands of dollars in monthly benefits.

Factors like age, asbestos exposure history and severity of disease may all affect the amount of compensation received.

Patients and their families may have other types of financial assistance available to them. Victims can discuss these other legal options with their lawyer.

Insurance Claims

Different types of insurance claims may be available to patients and their families, including:

  • Disability insurance: Employers may have policies that provide disability compensation for off-the-job illnesses.
  • Health insurance: An individual’s policy may wholly or partially cover certain medical expenses.
  • Life insurance: Families of deceased mesothelioma patients may receive coverage under any life insurance policy the patient owned.
  • Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI): SSDI may provide monthly income to pre-retirement-age patients who are unable to work.
  • Workers’ compensation: Many employers are required to take out workers’ compensation insurance policies to provide money for workers injured on the job.

Eligibility and coverage may vary based on an individual’s situation. A lawyer can help determine these things or help victims get in contact with insurance claims experts.

06. Common Questions

Common Questions About Mesothelioma Claims

How much compensation may I receive from a mesothelioma claim?

Mesothelioma settlements and jury verdicts from lawsuits both average over a million dollars. Trust fund claims average payouts between $10,000 and $100,000. Veterans with mesothelioma may be entitled to thousands of dollars in monthly benefits from the VA.

How do I file a mesothelioma claim?

After a mesothelioma diagnosis or death, victims can contact an asbestos law firm to begin the claims process. Lawyers can determine eligibility to file different types of claims and file on behalf of their clients. Victims may be asked to provide medical records and work history documents.

How long does an asbestos claim take?

The time it takes to resolve asbestos compensation claims depends on the claim type and the facts of the specific mesothelioma case. Lawsuits may take anywhere from several months to over a year. Asbestos trust fund claims may take under a year. VA claim decisions are often made within a few months.

Can loved ones of a mesothelioma patient file a claim?

Yes, family members of mesothelioma patients may be eligible to file asbestos claims. Different options may be available to file after a mesothelioma patient has passed away. A mesothelioma lawyer can explain these options to family members.