Mesothelioma is a rare disease; the US sees only about 20,000 cases of the disease each year. There are many myths and misconceptions going around about it and the compensation claims associated with it. Here, we will debunk some of those myths to help you and your loved ones develop a better understanding of this asbestos-induced cancer, know when to file a claim, and what to expect from the legal process.
Check out the myths
Myth #1: Asbestosis is the same as mesothelioma.
You can only develop mesothelioma if you are exposed to asbestos. However, not all cases of asbestos exposure result in mesothelioma. You can only file a mesothelioma claim if you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, not because you were exposed to asbestos.
There are many other types of claims that may have aspects of asbestos exposure. However, personal mesothelioma injury or wrongful death claims have to be about the disease, not the cause.
Myth #2: Melanoma is the same as mesothelioma.
There are cases where people have mistaken melanoma for mesothelioma and gone on to file claims for the latter. Both of them are types of cancer, but the confusion usually arises from the similarity in their names.
Melanoma is a skin cancer that has absolutely nothing to do with asbestos exposure and mesothelioma.
Myth #3: The number of mesothelioma compensation claims is on the decline.
Since some applications of asbestos were banned in the mid-70s, you could be pardoned for thinking there are fewer cases of mesothelioma now than there were 50 years ago.
That’s far from the case. Mesothelioma has a long latency period. Some patients don’t develop symptoms until up to 70 years after exposure.
Additionally, many buildings were erected before the ban was put in place. And although workplace exposure has been reduced significantly over the years, spillage of the chemical from degrading structures is still happening. Anyone working in or around such buildings is at an increased risk of developing mesothelioma.
Myth #4: You can file for a mesothelioma compensation claim if you have any pleural disease.
Pleural mesothelioma is only one of the many diseases that affect the pleura. Mesothelioma is only caused by asbestos exposure, which is mostly what compensation claims focus on.
Conditions such as pleural plaques and pleural thickening may worsen your mesothelioma, but, alone, they do not qualify you for a mesothelioma compensation claim. So, ensure you understand the type of pleural disease you have before filing a claim or lawsuit.
Also, due to the complexity of the subject of mesothelioma, from a legal standpoint, at least, pay attention to experience and familiarity when looking for a mesothelioma lawyer.
Filing a compensation claim is no easy feat. You have to go through lots of paperwork and technical terms and, sometimes, intimidation from the at-fault party’s insurance company. For mesothelioma patients, the process is even more taxing.
If you or your loved one is seeking compensation for asbestos exposure, make sure to involve an attorney. Law firms such as Bergman Legal are dedicated to helping asbestos victims. Their attorneys are very familiar with the subject and in a better position to determine if you have a case and guide you throughout the process.