What is the Legal Process for Asbestos Exposure?
Receiving news that you are seriously ill is devastating. And the news can be infuriating when you learn that your illness is the result of asbestos exposure. Lung cancer and other serious health complications from exposure to asbestos can cause both the victim and his or her loved ones to suffer, but the legal process for asbestos exposure compensation can be eased with the help of a good attorney.
The lawyers at Phillips Law Group understand that you and your family are suffering. We want to help you obtain the financial compensation you need to get the best healthcare for your situation. We also want to assist you in holding delinquent companies accountable for their negligence.
What To Do if You Fear You Have Been Exposed to Asbestos
Medical research and investigations have concretely linked asbestos to lung cancer and several other serious lung-related diseases. Therefore, if you worry that you were exposed to this dangerous material, you should not wait to seek attention from a doctor.
Doctors can employ various tests to determine whether your symptoms and discomfort are related to asbestos. For example, they can use imaging devices and tests such as chest X-rays and computerized tomography scans (also called CT scans). The physician may also have you blow into a machine that evaluates the functionality of your lungs and whether they are working properly.
Although doctors are currently unable to reverse the damage done to the lungs by exposure to asbestos, some treatments can help. The benefits of some of these treatments can include a reduction in the intensity of symptoms as well as a decrease in the speed at which the disease progresses and worsens.
In addition to the above, which is key to your health, association with a doctor can help your legal case as well. A thorough analysis of your condition and the subsequent documentation by these medical professionals can be critical in creating a firm legal argument in an asbestos exposure lawsuit.
Establishing Liability in an Asbestos Exposure Lawsuit
Liability in an asbestos case is when a company is found to be legally responsible for the physical harm done to a person by his or her exposure to asbestos. Primarily, exposure to asbestos is the result of occupational, or on-the-job, exposure.
People can also get sick from secondhand contact with this toxic chemical. Serious illness can also be the result of asbestos contamination through products that consumers purchase. One example of this is talcum powder.
It is key to establish liability by proving negligence in an asbestos-related lawsuit. In order to substantiate negligence, it must be proven that the company or employer had a legal obligation to protect the asbestos-poisoned victim. It must be made clear that the defendant failed to carry out this legal obligation.
In a legal case, the link between the defendant’s negligence and the plaintiff’s injuries is referred to as causation. In an asbestos exposure lawsuit, there must be clear evidence of causation – namely, that the disease of the plaintiff is the result of exposure to asbestos.
Understanding the Legal Process of an Asbestos Exposure Lawsuit
There is a pivotal first step in filing a claim to receive compensation for injuries suffered because of asbestos exposure while on the job. That first step is to contact a lawyer with knowledge and understanding of a legal case involving exposure to a toxic chemical. This is because the legal process of an asbestos exposure lawsuit can be complicated, confusing, and challenging.
Additional vital components in a claim connected to asbestos are your employment records and medical records. The employment records must make clear which tasks you performed that involved exposure to asbestos and how long you were employed. By means of these records, a legal team might be able to establish causation between your job, the asbestos, and your disease.
The legal process for this type of lawsuit can be time-consuming. Frequently obtaining compensation can take months and possibly a year. Additionally, persons with non-malignant diseases may have to wait longer. Victims with extremely severe asbestos-causing diseases often have their claims fast-tracked. This can postpone the claims of other victims.
Diseases From Asbestos Exposure That May Qualify for Compensation
Asbestos exposure can result in many health-related problems. The following is a list of diseases that can qualify for compensation once clear causation is established. These are:
- Lung cancer
- Pulmonary fibrosis
- Gastrointestinal cancer
- Colorectal cancer
- Esophageal cancer
- Pharyngeal cancer
- Laryngeal cancer
- Bronchial cancer
- Pleural plaques
- Lung scarring
In addition to the above, there are other conditions that can also be related to exposure to asbestos. However, the following diseases require screening to establish that asbestos fibers are present in the lungs:
- Chronic bronchitis
- Lung nodules
- Diffuse pleural thickening
- Rounded atelectasis
- Bladder cancer
Asbestos screening can be performed by a medical specialist who can identify diseases resulting from asbestos exposure. These specialists can use chest X-rays, blood and breathing tests, and other tests to ascertain whether there are asbestos fibers in your lungs.
Workers With the Highest Risk of Asbestos Exposure
The use of asbestos in manufacturing was widespread for some four decades. Even now, this toxic product can still be used by companies, although it is now regulated. Thus, many employees have been and still are susceptible to asbestos.
Nonetheless, there are specific types of work that have a heightened level of risk for workers. These are:
- Auto mechanics
- Factory workers
- Automotive workers
- Construction workers
- Aircraft workers
- Chemical plant workers
- Gas turbine system technicians
- Rubber factory workers
Companies With a History of Asbestos Use
As a consequence of its versatility in the manufacturing and installation of products, asbestos was used extensively prior to 1980. Thus, notable manufacturing companies in a variety of fields used asbestos.
Some of these companies include:
- General Motors
- United States Gypsum
- W.R. Grace
- National Gypsum Company
- Johns Manville
- Ford Motor Company
Veteran Asbestos Exposure
In addition to the above, the US government made use of asbestos in its production of necessary government equipment. Thus, veterans also have suffered illnesses from asbestos exposure.
Veterans from the following branches of the government have also been exposed to dangerous levels of asbestos:
- Air Force
- Coast Guard
Help for an Asbestos Exposure Lawsuit is Within Your Reach
Legal action cannot reverse a discouraging diagnosis of your health. Nonetheless, a lawsuit can be the means to ensure that you have the financial support your healthcare requires. Further, it can be the foundation for the continued financial security of your loved ones.
The lawyers at Phillips Law Group are poised and capable of taking on companies that have disregarded the health of their employees. We will strive to make sure that you get justice while you focus on your health and your loved ones.
Keep in mind that, when we take on your case, there are no upfront fees. Contact a personal injury lawyer at Phillips Law Group today for a free case evaluation at 1-800-706-3000.
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