Filing a Mesothelioma Claim in Pennsylvania: What You Need to Know
Posted On behalf of Schmidt Kramer on Jul 19, 2017 in Asbestos & Mesothelioma Claims
Mesothelioma is a rare and deadly cancer caused by exposure to asbestos. This mineral was commonly used in many industries for decades, causing many workers and their families to become exposed and develop mesothelioma.
If you have received a diagnosis of mesothelioma, you may be entitled to file a lawsuit to seek compensation for damages. The Harrisburg mesothelioma attorneys of Schmidt Kramer have put together this guide to help you better understand the details of filing a Pennsylvania mesothelioma lawsuit to recover compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
For assistance pursuing legal action, please contact us today for a free, no obligation legal consultation.
Compiling Evidence of Your Diagnosis
You will need detailed evidence of your mesothelioma diagnosis for your claim to have a chance of success. This includes:
- Notes detailing when you first noticed symptoms
- Names and contact information for all physicians you saw to obtain a diagnosis, including specialists and any physicians you sought a second opinion from
- All medical records supporting your diagnosis, such as doctors’ notes, imaging and diagnostic testing results
- Notes describing the diagnosis process and whether you were initially misdiagnosed
Mesothelioma develops many years after asbestos exposure, which makes it difficult to pinpoint the time and location of your exposure. Additionally, asbestos was widely used for more than 100 years, so there are many possible exposure scenarios.
If you worked in any of the following industries or had a family member who did, you are at greater risk for developing mesothelioma:
- Factory work
- Plane construction
- Automobile manufacturing
- Textile manufacturing
How an Attorney Can Help with Your Claim
When filing a mesothelioma lawsuit, your attorney will work to:
- Identify the party or parties liable for your mesothelioma
- Determine what type of mesothelioma claim should be filed
- Compile supporting evidence
Compensation for Mesothelioma Lawsuits
There are many avenues for pursuing compensation for victims of mesothelioma, depending on the parties liable for your exposure. These avenues include:
A significant number of asbestos manufacturers declared bankruptcy several years ago. During the bankruptcy process, these companies were required to create trusts with funds for workers exposed to asbestos.
Our attorneys can analyze your employment and medical history to determine if you can apply for compensation from a bankruptcy trust.
Filing a lawsuit against the responsible party is another option. Personal injury lawsuits seek compensation for living victims, while wrongful death lawsuits seek compensation for the wrongful death of a loved one. Lawsuits may be filed against the following parties:
- Product manufacturers
- Asbestos-fiber makers
- Property owners
- Building designers or engineers
Under § 5524(2) of Title 42 of Pennsylvania statutes, victims have two years to file a lawsuit, starting from the date their mesothelioma or other asbestos-related disease was discovered. If more than one asbestos-related disease was diagnosed, separate claims may be filed for each.
If a victim dies of his or her mesothelioma, certain survivors may file a wrongful death lawsuit within two years of the date of death.
These may be available if your asbestos exposure occurred during military service. However, these benefits are only available if you did not receive a dishonorable discharge.
Pennsylvania allows workers to obtain workers' compensation benefits for occupational diseases like mesothelioma. However, you may forfeit your right to benefits if your claim is not filed within 300 weeks of the date you were last employed at the place where you were exposed to asbestos.
Contact Our Reputable Attorneys Right Now
The Harrisburg personal injury attorneys of Schmidt Kramer are knowledgeable in the laws surrounding a variety of cases, including mesothelioma claims.
We know that contracting mesothelioma from the workplace can lead to mounting expenses, including medical bills and lost wages, and cause endless pain and disruption to your life. We are prepared to pursue maximized compensation to help you manage all of the damages you and your family have suffered.
Consult with our lawyers right now. Your initial consultation is free and you are under no obligation to move forward with legal action. Should you decide to work with us, fees are assessed on a contingency basis, so we are only paid if we recover compensation for you.