Mesothelioma is a form of lung cancer that affects the outer lining of the lungs. This deadly disease has only one known cause: exposure to the fibrous material asbestos. Asbestos was used extensively in the past for building materials, insulation and other applications. When inhaled, it can lodge in the lungs and lead to mesothelioma. But it takes years, even decades, for the disease to progress and show itself. Today, even though asbestos is a known risk that workers are protected against, many are suffering from mesothelioma. The exposures that occurred in the past are only recently manifesting into fully-fledged cancers.
One result of this has been legal action. Those who were exposed to hazardous asbestos are now calling for those who may have caused the exposure through negligence or carelessness to account for allowing workers to inhale the dangerous material. To aid them, several attorneys and law firms have veered toward specializing in mesothelioma cancer legal cases.
While there may be a mesothelioma cancer attorney offering to assist someone who is seeking recourse, there are those out there who would scam people in order to profit from the lucrative nature of mesothelioma lawsuits. It is therefore important for patients to know what to look for if they have decided to hire a cancer attorney.
Patients will first want to know how many asbestos or mesothelioma-related cases the attorney or law firm has handled. It is important to know if mesothelioma cancer is a specialty of the attorney or law firm and if they have been successful in handling those types of cases.
Of course, expense is a crucial factor to work out when dealing with a cancer attorney. A mesothelioma case could take a very long time to actually resolve, and patients should be fully informed of the cost associated with seeing the case to a conclusion, as well as of the process itself. Patients who are about to undergo the legal process should know what to expect from the procedure.
Patients should also be aware as to whether the attorney they contact and speak to will be the attorney who actually handles their case, or if the case will be passed off to another attorney.
These questions can be a starting point for mesothelioma sufferers considering taking legal action. Unlike in the past, today there are laws protecting the health and safety of workers who may have been exposed to asbestos at any point. Many of those exposed through their workplaces were employed as construction workers, auto mechanics, building engineers, railroad workers and shipyard employees. All of these worksites are known today as being hotspots of asbestos exposure.
But less conventional locations could also have exposed people to deadly asbestos fibers. Even schools were an exposure risk as those built before 1970 likely were constructed with materials containing asbestos. In fact, many buildings, including public buildings and residential homes, can pose a threat, if they were built prior to 1970. Materials like insulation and roofing found on these types of buildings used to, and my still, contain asbestos. Additionally, seemingly innocuous, everyday items like hairdryers and cosmetics could be dangerous.
Sometimes, the families of workers exposed to asbestos become sick. In this case, they have the very same rights as the worker who was exposed to asbestos. Anyone exposed to the material for any reason could potentially seek out a mesothelioma cancer attorney to represent them.