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The use of asbestos in products ended several decades ago, but it is still very possible that you may come across it, particularly in older homes or buildings. So the dangers of asbestos today still exist. It is very likely, for example, that any house built before the 1980s still contains some products with asbestos in them. Therefore, if you plan on completing work on your home, you should be aware of what to do in the event you come across asbestos.

Some Background on Asbestos

Asbestos was widely used in a significant number of products until the 1970s when it was publicly recognized that exposure to asbestos fibers was dangerous. While most products manufactured today do not contain asbestos, it still may be found in many places. Some of the products that asbestos was used in include, but are not limited to:

1. Steam pipes, boilers, and furnace ducts;
2. Soundproofing material that was sprayed on walls and ceilings;
3. Patching and joint compounds for walls and ceilings;
4. Resilient floor tiles, backing on vinyl sheet flooring, and adhesives used for installing floor tile;
5. Brake pads, clutches, mufflers and gaskets in older vehicles; and
6. Significant amounts of insulation material.

For victims of mesothelioma, obtaining compensation to help pay for medical treatment is a major concern. Fortunately, there are several ways in which compensation can be obtained. The Throneberry Law Firm has extensive experience in obtaining compensation for victims through each of the following means.

Meosthelioma Compensation – Bankruptcy Trust Funds

Many victims of mesothelioma developed the disease as a result of exposure to asbestos, often in relation to employment. Companies that used asbestos can be held liable through lawsuits. However, it is possible that these companies filed for bankruptcy, which provides them protection from being sued. But, in exchange for this protection, companies entering bankruptcy are required to set up trust funds that compensate victims who make successful claims.

There are many factors that contribute to how much compensation a victim will receive from a trust fund, such as the severity of the condition and the age of the victim. Approved claims are liquidated, which means they are assigned a monetary amount. The actual compensation received is usually a percentage of the liquidated amount. This is to help ensure that there will be enough funds in the trust to make all payments to future claimants.

The majority of mesothelioma cases never make it to a trial. Instead, it is often beneficial for both sides to agree to a settlement. A defendant may wish to settle to avoid the possibility of having to pay a large award if the case goes to trial. An injured person may find settlement advantageous because it allows faster recovery of compensation and avoids the potential of an unsuccessful lawsuit. The Throneberry Law Group has successfully negotiated for millions of dollars in settlements for the victims of mesothelioma.

How are Mesothelioma Settlements Obtained?

The first step towards obtaining a settlement is contacting an attorney with experience in mesothelioma claims. Your attorney will begin collecting materials to prepare for the filing of a lawsuit against the parties responsible for exposing you to asbestos. At this point, and any time after this, a settlement may be agreed to.

Exposure to asbestos fibers can lead to the development of mesothelioma which is a form of cancer. The most common form is pleural mesothelioma, which develops in the tissue surrounding the lungs. More than 2,000 people are diagnosed with this form of cancer each year.

It is possible to file a lawsuit against those responsible for your exposure to asbestos fibers. The possible modes of recovery include a settlement, winning the lawsuit, or, if the company has filed for bankruptcy, successfully making a trust fund claim. However, it is also possible that the development of mesothelioma will make an individual eligible for mesothelioma disability benefits.

Social Security Administration

The Social Security Administration (SSA) publishes a Listing of Impairments to aid in the evaluation of claims for disability. Under §13.15, there are two forms of mesothelioma listed under the category of impairments for mesothelioma disability benefits. They include:

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