Choosing your mesothelioma attorney
When researching the right mesothelioma lawyer to work with, it is important to evaluate several factors like the firm's former track record for getting settlements, as well as their understanding of asbestos, asbestos laws, and mesothelioma treatment plans. An excellent mesothelioma lawyer gets the right mixture of drive, commitment, and determination to fight hard and get the best settlements possible, along with strong compassion and understanding for what you're going through as you work through the process together.
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How Asbestos Fibers Cause Mesothelioma & Other Health Problems
Asbestos is a group of fibrous, naturally-occurring minerals that were once widely used across the United States, until their regulation in the 1970s. Asbestos was used in a vast number of commercial products because it is inexpensive and has a number of desirable qualities, like its ability to resist heat and fire and the fact that it does not conduct electricity. Insulation, cement, automobile brakes, paint, ceiling and floor tiles and building materials were just a few of the types of products that contained asbestos. Asbestos fibers, depending on the type of asbestos, are thin and needle-like or curly. Because they are so small and fibrous, they are easily inhaled and ingested.
Asbestos miners and workers who deal directly with asbestos fibers or products containing asbestos are at the highest risk of inhaling or ingesting fibers, particularly considering that proper safety measures were not taken prior to the 1970s. These workers brought fibers home on their clothing, in their hair, on their skin and even on their shoes, tracking them into their homes and passing them on to their children and spouses. People living in the vicinity of mines and factories were also at risk of inhaling or ingesting airborne fibers that affected the air, water, plants, crops and cattle in the area.
Those suffering from asbestos-related health problems such as mesothelioma may be entitled to financial compensation from the manufacturer of the asbestos product or another at-fault party.
Some firms advertise for mesothelioma lawsuits but are not equipped to handle these complex cases, referring patients to other firms for a fee. At Napoli Shkolnik, we do not refer mesothelioma patients to other, more qualified firms. We are qualified, we are dedicated and we are prepared to litigate on behalf of workers, veterans and their families in order to seek the full and fair compensation they deserve. A mesothelioma lawyer at our firm can discuss your rights and options during a free initial consultation.
ASBESTOS & Mesothelioma
When asbestos fibers are inhaled or swallowed, they may become embedded in the mesothelium, the tissue that surrounds and lubricates the organs and cavities in the body, allowing the organs to move smoothly against one another or to expand and contract. The body cannot easily expel the fibers once they become lodged in the mesothelium, and they may remain there for decades, where they cause irritation, inflammation, scar tissue and eventually may lead to the development of cancerous cells. Mesothelioma is a rare and deadly form of cancer with only 5-10% of patients living more than 5 years past their diagnoses (according to the American Cancer Society).
Asbestos fibers that become lodged in the pleura, the lining of the lungs and chest cavity, may lead to pleural mesothelioma, the most common form of this cancer. Fibers lodged in the peritoneum, the lining of the abdominal organs and cavity, may cause peritoneal mesothelioma, the second-most common type of mesothelioma. Fibers that become lodged in the pericardium, the sac surrounding the heart, may cause pericardial mesothelioma, the rarest of these three types of mesothelioma.
Other Health Problems Linked to Asbestos
The inhalation of asbestos fibers may also lead to other health problems, primarily affecting the respiratory system.
Pleural Plaques Asbestos fibers imbedded in the lung tissue can lead to the development of pleural plaques, which are calcified deposits on the surface of the lung. Depending on their size and location, they may impair breathing, though the symptoms are not nearly as pronounced as in patients with mesothelioma.
Asbestosis Asbestosis is a non-cancerous respiratory disease that affects lung capacity. Inhaled asbestos fibers cause irritation when lodged in the lungs and may lead to shortness of breath, chest pain, fatigue and even cardiac failure in its advanced stages.
Lung Cancer Often characterized by shortness of breath, chronic cough, hoarseness, anemia and chest pain, lung cancer is the leading cause of death by asbestos exposure. People who smoke cigarettes are at a significantly higher risk of developing lung cancer from exposure to asbestos fibers.
Although asbestos is now strictly regulated, some people are only now experiencing the serious consequences of their exposure to asbestos fibers. The latency period for mesothelioma may range from 20 to 50 years or even longer in some cases. This means that some workers who inhaled or ingested asbestos fibers decades ago may only now be experiencing health problems.
This is a problem in the United States and worldwide. Even after asbestos was regulated by the U.S. government, people were exposed at work and in other scenarios. The American Cancer Society offers this information on their website:
In 2005, the World Health Organization estimated that 125 million people worldwide were exposed to asbestos at work, despite the known links to cancer and other lung diseases for more than 60 years.
When manufacturers, employers and other companies fail to properly implement asbestos-related guidelines and regulations set forth by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and all applicable state and federal laws, workers and their families may suffer the consequences. Our firm is here to help.
THE PRICE for a Mesothelioma Attorney
Some people may shy from the thought of a lawsuit, believing that it'll be costly. When identified as having a fatal disease like mesothelioma, the idea of paying for a lawyer together with procedures and other expenditures can appear overwhelming. With asbestos-related personal injury and wrongful death claims, our attorneys work on a contingency basis, meaning mesothelioma victims and their own families won't have to pay anything up front and are just accountable for legal fees if their attorney can help them receive compensation.
In case your asbestos exposure occurred on the job or due to something that contained asbestos in your home, it could be possible to sue the business responsible for the exposure. A attorney experienced in mesothelioma cases can describe the situations in which a lawsuit may be more likely to result in a settlement, an effective trial, or if you be eligible for a class action lawsuit.
If you or one of your family members have problems with mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease or condition, you may be eligible for receive settlement due to pain and hurting, lost wages, and medical expenditures. Your lawyer can describe the types of settlement available including receiving money from settlements and/or asbestos trust money.
Whether filing a complaint in a courtroom or submitting a claim to an asbestos trust finance, a mesothelioma lawyer can help you create sure your statements are properly ready, processed, and ultimately, paid.
Discuss Your Case with Asbestos & Mesothelioma Attorney
A mesothelioma attorney at Napoli Shkolnik PLLC can provide much-needed insight regarding your legal options and what party or parties may be held legally responsible for your or a loved one’s asbestos health problems. We know how to seek compensation in these complex cases, even if the manufacturer or employer is no longer in existence due to bankruptcy, a merger or an acquisition. Contact our New York City headquarters today. We have offices, and represent mesothelioma patients, across the country.