01. Why Seek Legal Help
Why Should Veterans With Mesothelioma Seek Legal Help?
Veterans with an asbestos-related disease may be eligible for financial compensation. They may be eligible for a variety of benefits after receiving a diagnosis related to asbestos exposure during military service. Dedicated legal support from an experienced lawyer can help ensure veterans receive compensation and other benefits.
Family members may also seek help from an experienced lawyer. They may be eligible if a loved one has died from an asbestos illness related to exposure during their time of service.
A mesothelioma lawyer can help veterans and their families understand their compensation options. They can help eligible veterans with any claim option, from a mesothelioma lawsuit to a veteran disability claim.
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02. Benefits of a Mesothelioma Lawyer
How Can Veterans Benefit From a Mesothelioma Lawyer?
Mesothelioma lawyers have experience handling a variety of veteran asbestos claims, including disability claims. As a result, they can help ensure veterans and their loved ones receive the compensation they deserve. An experienced mesothelioma law firm can:
- Help veterans and loved ones understand their compensation options
- Help victims determine the option that best fits their unique situation
- Gather evidence to build a strong case before submission
- Provide support throughout the entire legal process
- Ensure claimants meet deadlines and eligibility requirements
Many asbestos lawyers have experience handling veterans’ claims. As a result, they are well-versed in eligibility requirements for each avenue for compensation.
Who Is Eligible for Compensation?
To be eligible for compensation, veterans must have a service-related disability. For asbestos cases, that disability is a diagnosis that resulted from exposure when serving in the military.
- In mess halls
- In living quarters
- Aboard Navy ships
- At naval shipyards
- On aircrafts
- At storage facilities
- In other areas of military bases
As a result of the wide use of asbestos, veterans from various branches of the military have faced asbestos-related illnesses. This includes members of the Navy, Army (and Army National Guard), Air Force (and Air National Guard), Marine Corps and Coast Guard.
Victims or their families must file claims within a certain time period after an asbestos-related death or diagnosis. These deadlines are referred to as statutes of limitations. Time frames vary based on state and type of claim.
A mesothelioma lawyer will review details of a veteran’s case to determine what types of compensation they are eligible for. Even if one deadline is missed, there may be other compensation options.
03. Compensation for Veterans
Mesothelioma Compensation for Veterans
The two most common options for veterans to receive compensation are asbestos lawsuits and VA claims. Many veterans choose to file for disability benefits through the government. Specifically, veteran disability claims go through the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Mesothelioma attorneys can provide insight into additional options and VA benefits.
Mesothelioma Lawsuits for Veterans and Families
Veterans with mesothelioma or their loved ones may be eligible to file a lawsuit for compensation. There are two types of claims:
- Personal injury claim: Filed by a patient diagnosed with an illness related to asbestos exposure.
- Wrongful death claim: Filed by a loved one after losing a family member to an illness related to asbestos exposure.
When veterans file asbestos lawsuits, they file against an asbestos company. Veterans can not sue the military or government for an asbestos injury.
Various companies produced asbestos products and sold them to various branches of the military. Examples include insulation, construction products and materials used in high-heat areas, such as boiler rooms. As a result, the asbestos manufacturers are responsible for veterans’ asbestos exposure. Many lawsuits result in an asbestos settlement. In some cases, lawsuits move forward to trial and result in a court verdict.
Can a Mesothelioma Lawsuit Limit Other Disability Benefits?
VA benefits are not affected by compensation awards through verdicts, settlements or trust fund claims. The VA does not consider these awards when reviewing VA claims. In other words, veterans can continue to receive disability benefits if they file a lawsuit or trust fund claim.
However, claimants cannot seek the same benefits twice from the government for the same illness. This is considered “double dipping.” Fraudulent claim activity could also bar claimants from certain benefits.
VA Claims for Veterans and Their Families
There are several different types of VA claims veterans and their families may be able to file. The type of VA claim will vary based on the specific case. Some legal claims are specific to members of the military who are still serving. Others are designated for service members post-service.
The three main types of VA claims are:
- Post-Service VA Claims
- Pre-Discharge VA Claims
- Special VA Claims
Successful veteran asbestos claims may result in different types of compensation. The four main types of compensation for veterans include:
- Disability Compensation
- Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC)
- Special Monthly Compensation (SMC)
- Claims Based on Special Circumstances
In many cases, veterans with mesothelioma file VA disability claims. The United States Department of Veterans Affairs provides more information about claim and compensation types.
Mesothelioma law firms are also experienced in different types of veteran asbestos litigation. They will be able to guide potential claimants through all of their options, including VA disability benefits.
Can Veterans File a Trust Fund Claim?
Veterans may be able to file a claim with a trust fund. This applies if the responsible party (company) has filed for bankruptcy and created an asbestos trust fund to compensate victims.
Claimants must meet certain eligibility requirements. Eligibility varies based on the trust fund. Mesothelioma attorneys can help veterans determine what trust funds they may be eligible for and gather required documents.
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- Limited time to file
- Settle before trial
- Free case evaluation
04. Other Veteran Benefits
Other VA Benefits for Veterans With Mesothelioma
Veterans with mesothelioma may be eligible for other benefits, such as personalized health care options.
There are treatment centers across the United States dedicated to veteran care. VA hospitals have experience treating veterans and can offer personalized care. Many doctors at VA health care facilities have experience treating asbestos illnesses, such as mesothelioma.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs also offers other housing and insurance benefits, such as:
- Specially Adapted Housing Grants
- Service-Disabled Veterans Life Insurance
- Veterans’ Mortgage Life Insurance
An experienced attorney can walk mesothelioma patients through all potential avenues for assistance. This allows patients and loved ones to focus on treatment and healing after their diagnosis, while exercising their legal rights.