A mesothelioma lawsuit could provide money to cover the expenses of your illness. While the process can seem overwhelming and complicated, we strive to make each step easier for you. At Sokolove Law, our lawyers do the heavy legal lifting for you.
Filing a Mesothelioma Lawsuit
Mesothelioma brings a lot of stress to a family. Because this form of cancer is very aggressive, a loved one can become very ill or die in just a few months. Treatments can keep them living longer, but they are expensive. The patient or their loved ones may also have to leave their job to seek medical care.
Health should be your main concern if you or a loved one has mesothelioma. However, the cost of health care can also be a huge problem. Fortunately, a mesothelioma lawsuit can help families afford medical care.
Patients and their loved ones can file two different types of lawsuits depending on their case. A personal injury lawsuit can be filed by the patient diagnosed with mesothelioma. If the patient dies from their illness, a wrongful death suit can be filed by their family.
The term “lawsuit” can sound scary, but it does not have to be. Mesothelioma lawsuits are brought against big companies worth millions of dollars, not people.
In addition, 95% of mesothelioma lawsuits are settled out of court. This allows you to focus on your health without worry of making it to a trial. In the event that a case does go to trial, you will not have to physically go to court if you are too sick.
The potential rewards of a mesothelioma lawsuit are huge. Compensation from a lawsuit can help pay for medical treatments, supplement lost income or wages, and provide you and your family with financial security.
The sooner you take action, the quicker you can receive compensation.
However, since a lawsuit can take months or years to see through, it is important that you:
- File a lawsuit sooner rather than later. If you wait too long, you may not be able to successfully file a suit. Each state has statutes of limitations. These laws determine when cases can no longer be filed, and they vary by state.
- Work with an experienced mesothelioma law firm. These firms have the resources and knowledge needed to increase the chances of success.
Sokolove Law has over 40 years of experience in handling personal injury lawsuits. We have the resources to quickly and simply process your mesothelioma lawsuit. We have a national network of attorneys, the ability to file a claim in any state, and decades of mesothelioma legal information at our disposal.
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Steps for Filing a Mesothelioma Lawsuit
Each mesothelioma lawsuit we handle is unique, but the general steps when working with Sokolove Law is as follows:
- Contact a Mesothelioma Law Firm: Reach out to us today to see if you qualify to file a mesothelioma lawsuit. Our case managers will review your situation and help determine if you have a valid case.
- In-Person Visit: If your case is eligible, a Sokolove Law representative will meet with you at a time and place of your choosing (such as your home or hospital) to answer any questions you may have. We will discuss how a lawsuit could benefit you and request documents to build your potential claim. There is no cost for you to meet with us.
- Investigation: During this phase, attorneys obtain the evidence needed to try the case. Your claim will be assigned to a legal team tailored to your specific case. The team will evaluate your medical records and collect witnesses. If appropriate, they may retain experts to provide a further review of medical documents. They will also look into the asbestos-containing products that may have caused the disease.
- File the Lawsuit: Your lawsuit will be filed when your legal team has confirmed your mesothelioma diagnosis and believes they have identified the asbestos-containing products that may have caused it. In some cases, you may be asked to give your testimony. Should this be necessary, your legal team will meet with you on your schedule to take your testimony.
- Results and Outcome: Your team will advise you of the money offered and sign off only once you have agreed to the terms of the settlement.
What Happens after Filing?
After filing a mesothelioma lawsuit, the defendants (those being sued) typically have 30 days to respond. The defendants vary depending on the case but may include your former employer or companies that made asbestos-based products.
Most companies that made asbestos-based products have gone out of business or been merged with other companies. If the merger company still exists, it could be part of your lawsuit.
Today, most companies that manufactured asbestos-based products have established asbestos trust funds. A trust fund allows victims to receive financial compensation while protecting the rest of the company’s assets.
Once the defendants respond to the filing, the legal process continues.
During this phase, attorneys obtain the evidence needed to try — and win — the case. This evidence can come from documents, records, and depositions. Depositions are legal testimonies under a court of law.
Provided you are well enough, you may need to explain why the companies or products in question led to your illness. Medical experts, former company employees, and other people relevant to the case may be deposed as well.
With a settlement, both legal teams agree to a compromise without going to trial. A lump sum of money that is agreed upon will be paid out to you. 95% of all asbestos-related illness lawsuits are settled out of court.
A settlement in a mesothelioma case is very helpful, as it allows you to receive your money as soon as possible. If a settlement is not reached, the case will continue to the trial phase.
It is very rare that a mesothelioma lawsuit goes to trial. It only happens in a small percent of cases.
During a trial, both sides present the testimony and evidence they have gathered. At the conclusion of the trial, a jury will decide the outcome of the case. Typically, this amount is higher than what you would get in a settlement.
However, mesothelioma attorneys will only take the case to trial in rare cases. Trial can drag the legal process out for several more months, delaying your compensation. Even worse, if you lose the trial you get nothing.
The appeal system allows one legal party to overturn a verdict from an earlier case. An appeal can only be sought in certain situations. The appellate (the side appealing) must show there was a legal error during the case. Either side can seek an appeal from a higher court.
An appeal can be a major help or hurdle for your case. A successful appeal from the defendants can reverse a decision by an earlier court that sided with you. On the other hand, an appeal by your legal team could give you the compensation you deserve.
Why You Need an Experienced Mesothelioma Firm
Even though asbestos exposure has been proven to cause cancer and other incurable diseases, asbestos companies will not come right out and admit this. They will do everything they can to protect their company’s value and reputation.
Defendants could argue that your paperwork was filed improperly. This can damage or derail your case — even if everything else about it is valid.
During the discovery process or trial, defendants also could claim that your asbestos-related disease was caused by anything other than their products.
Other causes may include:
- A family history of cancer (if any)
- Genetic predisposition to cancer
- History of smoking
- Previous rounds of radiation treatment
Even if you can successfully win a lawsuit in a trial, some companies still might not give up. Larger companies could have the resources and experienced lawyers needed to defend and appeal lawsuits that are not in their favor.
Plainly stated, asbestos companies could fight tooth and nail against you. This can add stress at a time when you should be focusing on staying healthy. But by working with a mesothelioma law firm, you can reap the rewards with little stress.
Mesothelioma attorneys can help you file your lawsuit properly, build a strong case that shows your illness was caused by asbestos, and work to settle your case without the need for a trial.
Sokolove Law and Mesothelioma Verdicts
Every mesothelioma lawsuit is different, and there is no way to accurately predict the outcome of each one. However, most successful lawsuits follow the processes outlined above.
There is no way to guarantee that a mesothelioma lawsuit will award you with compensation. However, your chances are maximized when you work with an experienced mesothelioma law firm.
Pursuing a mesothelioma lawsuit by yourself is almost impossible. In addition, law firms that do not have experience with mesothelioma cases may not know how to build a successful case.
Sokolove Law has filed thousands of successful mesothelioma claims for people across the country. Our mesothelioma attorneys will work with you to properly file and pursue a lawsuit.
Here are some settlements that Sokolove Law has won for clients:
- $5.1 Million to an electrician diagnosed with mesothelioma after a long career at various residential, commercial, and industrial sites
- $5.3 Million to a 42-year old mother who developed mesothelioma from secondhand asbestos exposure
- $5.5 Million to a former insulator with mesothelioma who was exposed to asbestos at numerous industrial sites
- $8.2 Million to a man diagnosed with mesothelioma with a lifelong history of asbestos exposure through his family’s masonry business and other jobs throughout his career