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How to File a Mesothelioma Lawsuit Claim

If you were diagnosed with mesothelioma, you are likely also dealing with financial instability. Medical care is costly, and it may be difficult or impossible to continue working during treatment. You and your family shouldn’t have to deal with these effects at all, but you definitely shouldn’t have to face them alone. Whether your mesothelioma originated at work, in your apartment, or through a consumer product, an attorney can file your mesothelioma claim. They can also gather the relevant evidence to support your case.

Call Herschensohn Law to explore your options.

What Do You Need to File a Claim or Lawsuit?

To file a mesothelioma lawsuit or claim, consider hiring an attorney. They will review your case and determine which, if any, lawsuit you are eligible to join. If there isn’t an active lawsuit for the cause of your mesothelioma, they can file an individual claim or lawsuit on your behalf.

Once you begin working with an attorney, they will gather various evidence, such as:

  • Your medical records. To join a lawsuit, you will need an active diagnosis of mesothelioma. Your lawyer will also use a record of your treatment expenses and projected future costs to determine how much you may be owed.
  • Employment/housing records. If your mesothelioma originated from asbestos exposure at work or in your rented housing, your attorney will need to gather proof of asbestos at the time of your employment or residency.
  • Proof of product use. If your mesothelioma originated from a consumer product, your attorney could use remnants of the product itself or evidence that shows your history of using this product.

The burden of proof may be more difficult for those whose exposure to asbestos was many years ago. However, an attorney can gather the documentation and testimony needed to build a strong case for compensation.

Your Legal Options for Seeking Damages Following a Mesothelioma Diagnosis 

The path your attorney takes to pursue compensation will differ based on a few factors, including how long ago you were exposed and whether there are any active lawsuits. However, there are generally three different ways to secure a settlement or court award:

  • A mesothelioma claim. A claim is different from a lawsuit. In an insurance claim, your attorney presents information to the liable party’s insurer to show they are liable for your losses. Insurance claims typically have much shorter filing deadlines than lawsuits, though they vary per insurance company. An attorney can help you determine how much time you have to file a claim, as well as satisfy any other requirements.
  • A mesothelioma lawsuit. There are a few different reasons your attorney may choose to file a lawsuit. In one scenario, there is an active lawsuit against the party responsible for your mesothelioma. If this is the case, they will help you gather evidence of your eligibility to join. In another, you are eligible to file an individual lawsuit against the responsible party. Individual lawsuits differ slightly from larger class action lawsuits or mass torts, though your attorney can help you understand the important distinctions.
  • A workers’ compensation claim. Those who were exposed to asbestos at work may be eligible to collect workers’ compensation benefits. If so, you would be ineligible to file a lawsuit against your employer. However, if workers’ compensation benefits are insufficient to cover your costs, your attorney can help you determine other potential options for compensation. They can also file your workers’ comp claim, gather evidence, and negotiate your settlement or monthly benefits.

The legal process is complex because each client’s unique circumstances may lead them down a unique path. Whatever the case for your asbestos exposure and mesothelioma diagnosis, your attorney can assess your best options.

How Much Time Do You Have to File a Mesothelioma Lawsuit?

The deadline to file a lawsuit depends on your situation. If you are filing an individual lawsuit, the time limit will vary by state. In Washington, the time limit is three years from the date of the discovery of your illness, per RCW 4.16.080. However, many who suffer from mesothelioma are unaware that they may be eligible to file a lawsuit until the deadline has passed. In some cases, you may qualify for an exception. If there are larger class action lawsuits going on, you may have additional time to join.

An attorney can assess your case to determine which deadlines apply, including for those filing workers’ compensation claims. If there are any exceptions that shorten or lengthen the time you have, they will be able to act accordingly to avoid a missed deadline.

Wrongful Death Lawsuits

If you lost a loved one to mesothelioma, you could be eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Family members who survive ill loved ones may deal with financial instability along with their grief and personal suffering. Deadlines for these lawsuits are three years from the date of a decedent’s passing in Washington. This deadline may vary depending on the state.

Common Causes of Mesothelioma and Asbestos Exposure

If you’re unsure whether to file a claim or lawsuit, an attorney can assess your options. Your options will primarily rest on the cause of your mesothelioma. According to Penn Medicine’s Abramson Cancer Center, occupations more commonly associated with asbestos exposure include:

  • Factory work
  • Shipyard work
  • Mining
  • Construction
  • Manufacturing
  • Military
  • Mechanic work

These account for the majority of mesothelioma cases. Yet, mesothelioma can also develop second-hand (for those who lived with someone who brought asbestos home on their clothing), from living in old buildings, or from using a product with asbestos.

Contact Herschensohn Law to Get Started on Your Mesothelioma Lawsuit or Claim

At Herschensohn Law, our personal injury team commits to each client. We aim to pool our skills, knowledge, and experience toward successfully resolving your case. After all, the goal is to level the financial playing field after an injustice. During the process, we want to support your health and peace of mind. When you have questions, we will be available to answer them. If we miss your calls, we will return them. You deserve advocates who care about the final result of your case because they care about you as a person.

To learn more about how we can support your path to financial recovery, call (206) 588-4344.

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