What Are Mesothelioma and Asbestos? Why do I need an Asbestos or Mesothelioma Lawyer? How to Choose A Mesothelioma Lawyer?
What Is Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is a rare, deadly and aggressive cancer. It’s a type of cancer that occurs on the thin layer of protective tissues covering the lungs, abdomen, and heart. This type of cancer mostly affects those people who worked with asbestos and related products contains asbestos. According to the American Cancer Society, they record nearly 3000 new Mesothelioma cancer cases in the U.S each year. Treatments are available to control cancer growth, but researchers have not found any definitive cure for this type of cancer.
The signs and symptoms of Mesothelioma cancer depend on the cancer types. But the signs and symptoms of this types of cancer are still unclear because the forms of the disease are very rare.
The primary symptoms of Mesothelioma cancer may be,
Pleural Mesothelioma – affected the tissues surrounding the lungs.
- Chest pain under the rib cage.
- Painful coughing.
- Shortness of breath.
- Unusual lumps of tissue under the skin on your chest.
- Unexplained weight loss.
Peritoneal Mesothelioma – Affected the tissues surrounding the abdomen.
- Abdominal pain.
- Abdominal swelling.
- Lumps of tissue in the abdomen.
- Unexplained weight loss.
Pericardial Mesothelioma – Affected the tissues surrounding the heart
- Breathing difficulty.
- Chest pains.
Mesothelioma of tunica vaginalis – affected the tissues surrounding the testicles may show signs and symptoms like swelling or a mass on the testicle.
You should visit your doctor if you have Mesothelioma indicating signs and symptoms. Also, inform your doctor if you ever been espoused to asbestos.
What Is Asbestos?
Asbestos is the main reason of Mesothelioma cancer. It’s a natural mineral substance that widely used as an insulator for its heat, electricity, and chemical corrosion resistance characteristics. Also, used in cloth, paper, cement, plastic, and other materials to make them stronger.
US government recognizes six types of asbestos divided into two general categories in the Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA) of 1986. Here are six types of Asbestos US Environmental Protection Agency Recognized,
- Serpentine asbestos: Chrysotile
- Amphibole asbestos: Crocidolite, amosite, anthophyllite, tremolite, actinolite
Scientifically, other asbestiform minerals may be as dangerous as the recognized six types of asbestos. The legislation introduced in Congress in 2018, which would increase the definition of asbestos to include other amphibole minerals such as winchite and remitters.
However, since AHERA passed, the US government took several attempts to regulate asbestos but failed due to pressure from business interest. Though asbestos use is heavily restricted, the United States remains one of the only developed country in the world where asbestos is not banned.
At present, it is legal to include asbestos in almost all U.S. products until it has more than 1% asbestos.
However, many old buildings and machinery in the United States that manufactured before the new regulation came into effect still contain a high percentage of asbestos. Also, Indian and Chinese manufacturers are using asbestos regularly in their factory.
Asbestos remains a threat for the human health not only for the United States people but also for all around the globe.
Why Is Asbestos Dangerous?
Microscopic asbestos fibers cannot be seen, smelled and tested. It does not cause any instant side effect, and a person can easily inhale or swallow asbestos dust without realizing it.
Once the asbestos fibers are in our body, they never dissolve, and our body has extreme difficulties in expelling them. Over a long period, trapped asbestos fibers in our body can cause inflammation, scarring and finally genetic damage to our body’s cells.
Often it takes 20-50 years to develop the asbestos involved disease like Mesothelioma cancer. It means most cases diagnosed in the United States were caused by asbestos exposures happened before new safety regulation implemented.
The primary cause of asbestos involved diseases is occupational. The asbestos-related diseases can also develop in people who lived in a contaminated environment or used asbestos-containing products regularly.
Any amount of asbestos exposure is not safe. But asbestos usually has its worst effect when someone exposed to an intense concentration of it or exposed regularly for a long period of time. The more asbestos exposure means more asbestos accumulates in the body. There is no known way to reverse the cellular damage caused by asbestos exposure.
Why do you need an Asbestos or Mesothelioma Lawyer?
As you already know about the threat of asbestos exposure which is the main causes of Mesothelioma cancer and injuries related to asbestos. However, manufacturers were aware of the side effects of the asbestos and hide the risks involved in using asbestos to avoid their business losses. This has resulted in decades of litigations tied to injuries related to asbestos and a rare Mesothelioma cancer developed by asbestos exposure. These cases have been considered as among the most complex tort claims possible. As a result, choosing or appointing a Mesothelioma lawyer is essential to represent your Mesothelioma cancer claims case and negotiate a fair settlement effectively.
How to Choose a Mesothelioma Lawyer?
The patients and their family members become more concern about the medical treatment once the Mesothelioma diagnoses. But besides the medical care, the legal procedure and financial worries should address quickly. The patients and their family members should have the best Mesothelioma law representative on their side.
Mesothelioma law is a very specialized area of legal practice that focuses exclusively the diseases related to asbestos exposure. The cases can be complicated, and a Mesothelioma lawyer needed to identify the accused who are responsible for the asbestos exposure to start the lawsuit or settlement process. So, it is crucial to understand how Mesothelioma lawyers work and how to choose a Mesothelioma lawyer. Here are some tips below might help you find a Mesothelioma lawyer who suits your needs.
Before choosing a mesothelioma lawyer, you have to understand that you are going to fight with the companies who maintain a group of highly experience lawyers to handling same types of cases to avoid pay damages. In this case, the topic highly technical and involves coordinating, understanding, and presenting complex medical information.
So, you should appoint a lawyer or law firm who has prior experience in asbestos and mesothelioma litigation and understand asbestos trust funds. Also, an experienced asbestos and mesothelioma lawyer understand the illnesses well enough and communicate effectively with the specialists about the cause and impact of the diseases during the litigation process. They will do the necessary investigations related to this case and will closely monitor their client’s treatment. Of course, the prior experience impacts the power of a lawyer to implement this context effectively.
However, medical aspects are not the only obstacle of asbestos and mesothelioma cases. The case itself is quite complex. An asbestos or mesothelioma claim can be taken to a state or federal court, or result in a class action case (A “Class Action” case is a group of people of the same type or similar injury due to the same product or action sue the suspect as a group.) depends on circumstances and the parties involved.
So, an asbestos or mesothelioma lawyer is similar to other lawyers who are practices a specific area of Law. A significant amount of experience and technical knowledge has a huge impact on the case results.
Doing a little research especially online will help you reveal the lawyer track records and experience in asbestos or mesothelioma cases. Also, you can ask your former colleagues who exposed asbestos at the same time you exposed are suffering the same as you and already hired a lawyer for filing his/her case. If they get a good result from the lawyer appointed to represent their case may be the place where you can start. However, you may find some lawyers who are offering a free consultation to discuss your case and their qualification. Talk with some of them to understand what they can do for you which will also help you to choose the right asbestos or mesothelioma lawyer for your case.
Check the mesothelioma lawyer success history once before you decided to appoint any lawyer or law firm to handle your asbestos or mesothelioma claim settlement case. A mesothelioma lawyer success rate is also crucial here for handling this type of complex case besides their experience. Hiring an asbestos or mesothelioma lawyer with higher success rate can enhance your chances of winning and settle mesothelioma claim you deserve.
Read the testimonial, reviews what people are saying about them, why they are recommending and not recommending to hire them. You can search the anonymous reviews online in Google and reputed online lawyer directories as well as the lawyer or law firm website. This will help you get an overview on lawyer success rate and how helpful they are. Even some lawyer may give you the name and contact details of their clients who are satisfied in their services. Of course, they must have client permission to disclose their name and contact, but this can usually be arranged. It will be helpful to talk to someone who worked with the lawyer in a mesothelioma case that you are thinking to appoint for your case.
Find a National Firm
National Lawyers or law firms are basically bar certified in multiple states. A highly experienced national law firm or lawyer will case your file in the area where they believe you will get the maximum reward instead of filing your case where you live. A local mesothelioma lawyer or law firm may not have knowledge, experience or certification to do this.
The best mesothelioma lawyer will travel to meet their client at home. In here, distance should not be a problem. Many mesothelioma patients choose a doctor far from their home in order to find an experienced mesothelioma specialist. The same logic follows here in finding mesothelioma lawyer or firm. The best lawyer or firm may not be nearby, but their experience and success rate is high because they specialize in handling this type of case.
Fees and Expenses
Fees and expenses are another important consideration when choosing an asbestos or mesothelioma lawyer or law firm. Contingency fees commonly charged by the mesothelioma lawyer for their legal representation, and additional charges to prepare your case. A contingency fee is when a lawyer represents your case without any payment on the understanding that they will instead take a percentage from final settlement or reward. Mesothelioma lawyer fees in this situation usually around 30-40% of total recovery.
The best way is to contact several lawyers, making it clear that you will take time before signing any fee agreement. Your objective is to find a good and experienced lawyer who can represent you for 25-30% of your recovery instead of taking 33-40%. But remember, mesothelioma cases are very complex, and if you find any lawyer who is highly recommended, has experience in representing a lot of mesothelioma clients and has an excellent record of success, a few percentage points on a contingency fee probably will not be a big issue if you hire that lawyer.
A good lawyer will deduct costs off the top of the settlement or award such as filing fees and expert witnesses’ compensation before the money divided and the lawyer takes the agreed percentage. That’s mean you and the lawyer sharing the costs. They will give you receipts showing the costs that specifically related to your case. So, you’ll get a clear view that you are not paying any payments associated with their firm general operating expenses.
Choose a Good Communicator
Your lawyer should be a person you trust and communicate comfortably. When you choose a doctor for your treatment, you measure their bedside manner and staff quality. Similarly, you should have a good relationship with your lawyer and their staff as well. They should be easy going, can explain your case clearly and respond to you in a timely manner.
Ask any hard questions without any hesitation. If the lawyer or law firm failed to answer your question, or unavailable to talk with you, search another one who will.
An experienced asbestos or mesothelioma lawyer or law firm will have represented hundreds of mesothelioma cases and won millions of dollar for their clients. But you have to select the right mesothelioma lawyer for your case. We hope that the consideration discussed in this article for how to find the right mesothelioma lawyer will help you choose a lawyer who can handle your case successfully and get the highest amount of compensation possible. Good luck!