Asbestos Related Diseases
Asbestos exposure has been proven to cause several diseases:
Asbestosis, a benign or non-cancerous pulmonary disease that can lead to breathing problems, especially in severe cases,
Lung cancer, and Mesothelioma, a malignant tumor affecting the lining of the lung or, less frequently, the lining of other organs.
Because exposure to asbestos is now understood to be dangerous, the importation or use of asbestos is now prohibited in many countries of the world.
Asbestos related claims
Depending on the circumstances of each case, people who contract asbestos related diseases may be entitled to varying types of compensation.
In many countries, illnesses contracted as a result of exposure to asbestos in the workplace are covered by workers’ compensation.
In some jurisdictions, victims of asbestos induced illness are also entitled to compensation from a company that distributed asbestos, or manufactured products containing asbestos, based essentially upon the company’s liability for placing a dangerous product into the stream of commerce.
In the United States, many companies involved in mining or manufacturing asbestos were faced with a huge number of lawsuits and claims filed against them, forcing the companies to file for bankruptcy protection under U.S. law. Within the framework of the bankruptcy proceedings, asbestos trusts have been established that essentially take the place of the debtor companies for purposes of addressing claims filed by people who develop asbestos induced diseases related to that company’s asbestos products.
Because some U.S. companies shipped asbestos or asbestos products outside the United States, it may be possible, under some circumstances, to obtain compensation from a U.S. trust for asbestos induced illness that develop outside the United States. Each case must be evaluated individually.
How can you prove an asbestos induced disease?
While each trust has its own standard for proving an asbestos induced disease, generally, each person must prove several things in order to prove that he or she has an asbestos induced disease.
First, the presence of an asbestos induced illness must be proven. For a malignant disease, this generally requires pathological or histological confirmation of malignancy after examination of tissue removed during surgery.
For asbestosis, proving an asbestos induced disease requires demonstrating certain changes in the lungs visible on chest x-ray or other radiological tests plus specific findings demonstrated during pulmonary function testing.
Additionally, one must prove in detail that he or she has been exposed to asbestos as well as to specific asbestos products.
Finally, because illness caused by exposure to asbestos develops only years after the actual exposure, one must prove that years have passed between the time of exposure to asbestos and the development of the disease.
What steps should I take?
If you or one of your family members has developed an asbestos related disease, please contact us as soon as possible for a no-cost, no-obligation, evaluation of your potential legal rights to compensation.
Wish to have more information about a possible asbestos claim?