How Long Does A Mesothelioma Settlement Take?
Were you or a loved one diagnosed with mesothelioma because of asbestos exposure? If so, you may be entitled to financial compensation. Mesothelioma cases are complicated. Each case, its claim eligibility, and compensation amounts are unique. Several factors determine when a case may be settled.
This guide will provide you with details about mesothelioma, how the lawsuits work, who is eligible, and more. Certain information (such as statutes of limitations) may be repeated in multiple sections. This exists to give you the option of going right to your points of interest in this guide.
How Much Compensation Can You Get for Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma compensation amounts vary. An out-of-court settlement ranges from $1 million to $1.5 million. If a case goes to trial, there is a possibility of a defense verdict. In that case, the victim would receive nothing.
For successful trial verdicts, mesothelioma cases have averaged $5 million to $11.4 million. The advantage of a settlement over a trial verdict is a guaranteed payout. Trials are also expensive and can take years to reach a trial date. A settlement may be reached in a matter of months. In most circumstances, settlement compensation is not subject to federal taxes.
How Long Will It Take to Get Compensation in a Mesothelioma Case?
Every case is unique. However, some mesothelioma cases receive financial compensation in 90 days. On average, lawsuits are resolved in 12 months from the beginning of the lawsuit until the payment is received.
Most mesothelioma cases settle out of court. This happens when the lawsuit’s defendant, the company that manufactured its asbestos products, offers to pay the plaintiff a settlement to avoid going to trial and possibly losing more money.
Several factors affect how long it takes to receive a mesothelioma payout. Some of those factors include:
- If the defendant settles the lawsuit
- Where the lawsuit is filed. Some states and jurisdictions are faster than others. Some locations bring mesothelioma cases in 12 months.
- If there is a trial date. Some companies will not consider a settlement until a trial date is near.
An attorney specializing in asbestos-related mesothelioma cases may be able to help you receive a compensation package. By negotiating with the defendant’s legal time and properly filing the associated paperwork with a lawsuit, a resolution might be faster.
Another option for a quicker settlement is through asbestos trust funds. A mesothelioma lawyer can assist you in obtaining your settlement from an asbestos trust fund. Asbestos-based product manufacturers established trust funds to compensate mesothelioma victims and their families.
Types of Mesothelioma Compensation
There are various kinds of mesothelioma compensation. Your case’s unique circumstances and eligibility will affect which kind you may qualify for.
Asbestos Trust Funds
A company that manufactured asbestos-based products may have filed for bankruptcy. Once the company is under Chapter 11 protection, it may have created a trust fund to compensate asbestos victims. These funds, called “mesothelioma trust funds,” are intended to give payouts to future victims of asbestos-related mesothelioma.
Understanding Mesothelioma trust funds:
- During the bankruptcy process, money is set aside in trust funds to compensate victims of asbestos-related mesothelioma.
- These victims may be able to draw from multiple trust funds.
- Mesothelioma is not the only disease for these trust funds. People with various asbestos-related diseases may be eligible.
An attorney who understands the asbestos trust fund process can manage your case by conducting a thorough investigation. Gathering evidence and proving your cancer was a direct result of asbestos exposure can make establishing your eligibility easier to do.
Who May Claim a Settlement from an Asbestos Trust Fund?
If you or a loved one was diagnosed with mesothelioma after asbestos exposure, you likely qualify to file a claim. Victims suffering from other asbestos-related diseases may also be eligible.
Eligible parties include:
- Workers who suffered asbestos exposure as part of their jobs
- Workers using products containing asbestos
- Workers’ family members who suffered secondhand asbestos exposure
- People exposed to asbestos in the environment
- Family members surviving the loss of a loved one due to asbestos exposure
Mesothelioma Trust Fund Compensation
Mesothelioma case settlements from trust funds have a wide range. Generally, the payouts start at $7,000, with $1.2 million as the ceiling. The average payout is $180,000.
A Mealey’s Asbestos Bankruptcy Report published in 2016 stated trust fund settlements were often $100,000 or more in the six figures (Page 3).
Several factors influence the amount of compensation from a trust fund:
- What kind of disease did the asbestos victims receive?
- What is the compensation payout schedule established by the trust fund?
- What is the trust fund’s set percentage per payout?
A trust fund’s compensation is based on a set “schedule.” Factors influencing this schedule include the compensation the company paid to plaintiffs before filing for bankruptcy.
Types of Mesothelioma Lawsuits
If you or someone you love is suffering from an asbestos-related disease, filing a lawsuit may provide your family with needed compensation. There are different kinds of mesothelioma lawsuit options. Which one you may choose to file will depend on several factors.
Personal Injury Lawsuit in an Asbestos Mesothelioma Case
Someone suffering from asbestos-related mesothelioma may file a claim against the company that caused their asbestos exposure. Asbestos liability usually comes from a company failing to warn consumers or workers that breathing in the toxins from asbestos is dangerous. A successful lawsuit means the plaintiff is compensated for damages stemming from their disease.
Wrongful Death Lawsuits for Asbestos-Related Illnesses
If a loved one died from an asbestos-related disease, the surviving family may file a lawsuit to seek compensation for medical bills, funeral expenses, and loss of income after losing a family member.
Related to this, if a person files a claim against a company for their asbestos-related disease and then dies, the surviving family can then continue the lawsuit. The compensation awarded in these cases goes to the deceased’s estate.
A mesothelioma settlement legally binds an asbestos defendant and plaintiff. Settlement discussions may occur before, during, or after a lawsuit reaches the court for a trial. Companies often offer to discuss a settlement for the trial date.
Choosing whether to accept a settlement can be a complicated process. A product liability lawyer can help you by explaining how the settlement process works in detail.
Who Is Eligible for Compensation from Asbestos Exposure?
There are certain requirements to be eligible for an asbestos settlement. The victims seeking compensation must prove asbestos exposure directly caused their disease. This asbestos exposure must be linked to the company’s products they have used before. Based on certain factors, some asbestos victims have claims against multiple companies.
The factors determining a victim’s eligibility for trust fund compensation include:
- Medical support documenting the diagnosis: Mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease should be established as the victim’s primary cancer. A board-certified physician needs to sign the report that describes the cancer cells and tissue. The pathology report should include X-rays, blood work, MRIs, CT scans, and other documentation to support a mesothelioma diagnosis.
- Establish asbestos exposure: You must prove your disease is a direct result of asbestos exposure from the products of the company or companies you are filing a suit against. Mesothelioma can be latent for years, meaning proving this connection may be challenging. A mesothelioma lawyer can conduct a thorough investigation to obtain needed documentation supporting your case.
- Filing your case before your state’s statute of limitations runs out: An asbestos lawsuit must be filed within the legally established time frame. This statute is generally one to three years from the initial diagnosis in most cases. When filing a wrongful death lawsuit, this window starts at the time of death. You can ask an attorney in your area to confirm how much time you have left to file.
Are Family Members Eligible for Compensation?
If a loved one has died from an asbestos-related disease, you may wonder if your family can file a lawsuit. Yes, surviving family members can file a wrongful death lawsuit if they meet certain criteria. However, not every estate will receive a settlement from a trust fund or other suit.
The three main factors for filing a mesothelioma wrongful death suit are:
The Case Was Not a Previously Paid Settlement
Companies are required to compensate the victim of asbestos exposure only once. If a person receives compensation while alive and then succumbs to their illness, the victim’s surviving family cannot hold the company liable.
A family may be able to file a wrongful death suit against other liable companies not involved in the original settlement. Consult a mesothelioma attorney to find out what your options are.
What Is Your Relationship to the Victim?
In most cases, the victim’s spouse, immediate family, or surviving dependents are the only family members who can file a wrongful death action. Because wrongful death beneficiaries vary in states, your eligibility may be different.
Certain states allow a parent of the deceased asbestos-related mesothelioma victim to file a lawsuit. If the victim was financially supporting a person before their death, the recipient may be able to file a lawsuit in some states.
What Is Your Statute of Limitations?
In most cases, an alleged victim has a time limit for bringing a claim against an individual or entity. This deadline is called a “statute of limitations.” The estate of an asbestos-related mesothelioma victim has from one to three years to file a claim. However, these limits are different depending on the state. Sometimes, a product liability lawyer who understands the law in detail can file a suit in a state that has a longer deadline.
Learn About Your Mesothelioma Compensation Options
It is good to understand what factors affect mesothelioma payouts. The amount of the award you receive depends (but is not limited to) the following:
- The kind of asbestos claim you are filing
- Where did you file your asbestos-related mesothelioma claim (venue or location)?
- What is your job history?
- Did you serve in the military?
- Where were you exposed to asbestos?
- What kind of asbestos were you exposed to?
- How much asbestos were you exposed to?
How to File for Compensation for Mesothelioma
Filing a mesothelioma claim is often complicated. Many laypeople do not understand the details or complexities of the law. An asbestos lawyer can help you file your lawsuit. Your attorney can give you a realistic expectation of what your settlement may be if your case is successful. A good lawyer can also answer your questions about the settlement process.
While the details may vary, the steps for filing a mesothelioma lawsuit are determining eligibility, establishing the type of claim, submitting the required documents, and waiting for your claim to be reviewed.
Know Your Eligibility Requirements
Because your eligibility depends on your case type, you may be held to different requirements. Generally, eligibility comes down to proving your asbestos exposure. You will then need an asbestos-related diagnosis. You will also need to file your claim before your state’s statute of limitations runs out.
Consult a Mesothelioma Lawsuit Attorney’s Office Today
As reported earlier in this guide, when asbestos-related mesothelioma victims receive their settlements can vary, although some receive theirs within 90 days. Several factors may impact the timeline of your compensation, so it’s important to keep this in mind. State laws, the number of asbestos manufacturers named in your claim, and certain regulations can influence a lawsuit. Many settlement negotiations can be hurried along with a skillful attorney.
Our network of lawyers helps victims who suffered injuries from defective consumer products, related materials, medications, or medical products. We connect victims with attorneys who can help them seek legal resolution. If you are interested in working with an attorney on your asbestos-related mesothelioma case, fill out the contact form today.