The first lawsuits recorded against asbestos manufacturers were filed in 1929. From that time on, a lot of lawsuits have been brought to trial. Because of the asbestos litigation, and subsequently introduced asbestos alternatives, manufacturers sold off subsidiaries, and asbestos removal businesses started to mushroom. Asbestos legal action is one of the most expensive litigation acts in U.S. record wherein over 600,000 plaintiffs and 6,000 defendants were involved so far. Recent trends lead experts to believe an increased rate of people diagnosed with asbestos diseases in the next years. According to some analysts, the overall costs of asbestos litigation in the USA alone will sooner or later arrive at $200 billion.
Undeniably, filing an asbestos lawsuit is to some extent costly and complex but with the assistance of specialized legal professionals such as asbestos lawyers, the process is manageable.
Who can pursue a lawsuit?
Asbestos lawsuits can be filed by any person – or his family in case the victim has deceased – who was diagnosed with a disease or even died because of exposure to asbestos. It implies that individuals who had a direct contact to asbestos, and individuals who were indirectly exposed to asbestos, have enough legal grounds to prove that they have become victims of another’s party neglect or misconduct. Oftentimes the victim files the case, but there are also instances where a family member of the victim initiates the compensation lawsuit. The compensation that is being sought via the litigation, is supposed to cover for medical bills, loss of wages, and may also include punitive damages. If the victim had died, family members are entitled to charge for wrongful death.
Where and who to sue?
Initiating an asbestos court case needs more than just going to the law court, file a complaint and fill up the necessary papers. There are a lot of courts who can settle an asbestos lawsuit. A seasoned attorney can give advice on whether to file a case with federal court, state court or through trust funds. Thus, it is advisable to get the expertise of an experienced attorney as the whole process can become highly bureaucratic and complicated.
Identifying who to sue is also an essential part of the lawsuit course. If an individual has medical records, proving that he was diagnosed with any asbestos associated disease, he must determine when and how he was exposed to the material. In most cases, asbestos victims were exposed to asbestos in workplace, thus the liable party is the employer or the company itself. Determining who to sue, and who is in fact responsible for your health condition because of negligence, is a crucial component of the lawsuit and requires a thorough investigation upfront.
It is imperative to gather the evidence necessary to file a lawsuit. This can include re-tracing the complete work history of who you had worked for, the workplaces as well as collecting evidence of your exposure to asbestos, by identifying the products that you worked with. Then you need medical proof that conclusively indelicate that you have an asbestos induced illness.