Victims of mesothelioma and other asbestos-related illness often face excessive bills and expenses. Whether it’s mounting medical costs, the loss of income because of health, or any other circumstance, facing a life-threatening illness is costly and taxing. The good news, however, is that there are legal remedies in place that can help those suffering from mesothelioma seek compensation.
It’s highly recommended to retain legal services for your best chances of obtaining the highest compensation. We invite you to contact our experienced mesothelioma lawyers today for more information and for a free, confidential case consultation.
Mesothelioma Compensation Amounts
The amount of mesothelioma compensation will vary according to each case as well as the type of benefits you receive (see Types of Mesothelioma Compensation below). One case may be worth a relatively small amount when compared to the substantial amount of another case. Per recent statistics recorded by Mealey’s Litigation Report, the average compensation amount for a mesothelioma settlement is a little over $1 million, whereas the average mesothelioma trial compensation amount is a little over $2 million.
The amount of mesothelioma compensation you may be entitled to will depend on how long you’ve lived with an asbestos-related illness, the severity/progression of the disease, your work history, including how you were exposed.
If you’re filing for compensation for wrongful death, factors such as how long the victim lived the illness, loss of expected income, loss of support for dependents, loss of consortium, and several other factors are looked into.
Types of Mesothelioma Compensation
There are different ways plaintiffs can receive mesothelioma compensation, including the following:
Most mesothelioma lawsuits are settled outside of court with a settlement, eliminating the need to go to trial. There are advantages as well as disadvantages to settlements. On the one hand, a settlement will typically yield faster results than a trial, and in turn, plaintiffs will be compensated faster.
Also, attorney fees are usually less if a lawsuit is settled when compared to a trial. Furthermore, some people just do not want to go through the experience of a lengthy and/or are not willing to risk their chances of obtaining compensation. Trials can be taxing and overwhelming, and people who are living with a life-threatening may not have the mental or physical energy to go through such an arduous process.
On the other hand, settlement compensation amounts are typically lower than if the case went to trial. Also, if the settlement remains confidential, there is a chance that the responsible party will never be known to the public.
As mentioned earlier, some people are not willing to take their chances on losing mesothelioma compensation by going to trial. This is because, unlike a settlement negotiation, there is a chance that the defendant can be found not guilty and therefore, dismissed of liability. While a settlement is guaranteed once a negotiation is met, there are no guarantees of 100% success with trials. The verdict is generally in the hands of a jury. Even if you win, the defendants have the right to appeal the verdict, which can tie up the process even further, making it longer before receiving compensation.
The benefits of a trial, as previously mentioned, is that trials usually result in more substantial compensation amounts, and the guilty party’s name is generally open to the public.
Although most mesothelioma cases end in settlements, there are times when a trial becomes inevitable. For instance, if both parties cannot agree upon a settlement amount, the next step is going to trial.
Asbestos Trust Funds
Mesothelioma compensation can also come from asbestos trust funds, which are funds set up by companies who have an overwhelming amount of claims against them. To qualify for an asbestos trust, the manufacturers who supplied asbestos to your job site or the party who caused your illness must have an asbestos trust fund set up, usually mandated by a judge. There currently over well over 50 companies that have set us these trust funds, and the numbers are expected to grow.
While you can usually receive compensation faster via asbestos trust funds, the amount may not be as high as a settlement to trial. Right now the average payout is around 25% of each mesothelioma claim, but this will vary according to each case. However, once you qualify, you are guaranteed compensation, which can come in a lump sum or via monthly payments.
If you were injured by asbestos while serving in the military, you might be eligible for veterans’ compensation benefits. These benefits are calculated based on the severity of your injuries/disabilities and are typically paid out every month. For example, you must rank anywhere from 10% to 100% disabled to receive compensating. The lower the ranking, the less the benefit amount. Most people living with asbestos-related illnesses generally receive a high disability ranking once qualified.
It’s important to note that you cannot sue the government for asbestos exposure. However, along with veterans’ benefits, you can sue the manufacturers that were responsible for supplying asbestos or asbestos-containing materials to the military. Some people who served in the military were exposed to asbestos, especially during the World War II era, when it used heavily to build ships and in machinery and equipment.
Factors That Contribute to Mesothelioma Compensation Amounts
Several factors contribute to how much compensation you’ll receive, including the following:
- The location where asbestos exposure took place (different states have different laws)
- Where and how the asbestos occurred (at work, second-hand exposure, etc.)
- The amount of pain and suffering endured
- The types of asbestos and/or asbestos products involved
- All medical costs pertaining to the illness
- Lost wages
- For wrongful death, funeral and burial expenses
- For wrongful death, the number of dependents and the loss of support and care
- Transportation expenses (to and from medical appointments)
Additional Resources and Legal Assistance
Mesothelioma compensation can greatly help you with your expenses as well as hold the responsible party or parties accountable for their negligence. We encourage to contact our leading mesothelioma attorneys today for a free, confidential case consultation. We’ve helped numerous clients get the compensation they deserve and we’ll be happy to assist you as well.
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