I was recently involved in a car accident. Unfortunately, since it was my first accident, I was scatter-brained and anxious. What I did not realize at the time was that the actions you take immediately after the accident can affect a personal injury case and the outcome of that case. I wanted to find a way to share my experiences and mistakes with other. Since the Internet is so popular, I figured this would be a great way to do so. While you likely aren't planning on being in an accident soon, if you are, hopefully you remember some of the tips I share on this website.
Mesothelioma is a unique disease in that it does not typically take form until several decades after the individual has been exposed to asbestos. Consequently, some people do not receive a diagnosis until they become gravely ill or die from the condition. For families with family members in this group, there is still a path to justice for the deceased. Learn how you can file a claim for a deceased loved one.
Estate Representative Criteria
Filing a mesothelioma claim for a deceased person involves filing a wrongful death claim. In many states, only those individuals who can serve as an estate representative can file. Estate representatives typically need to be a spouse, child, or parent of the deceased. However, if an individual who is not an immediate relative can prove that they were financially dependent on the deceased, they might be able to obtain this title.
Relevant Information Collection
Collect as much information as you can that will highlight your loved one's exposure to asbestos, which typically includes a complete work history. You should also detail the type of work that the deceased performed, as it will help highlight their level of exposure. All medical records from a physician that show an official diagnosis before death or other relevant records that list the condition as the cause of death are also helpful. An attorney will use this information as a baseline to begin researching your loved one's case.
Latency and Statute of Limitations
Do not concern yourself too heavily with the standard statute of limitations laws in your state. Given the behavior of this disease, cases for mesothelioma typically qualify for a latency exception, in that the clock for the statute of limitations does not officially begin until the disease has been diagnosed. However, once the diagnosis is in hand, it's important to take steps to move forward to avoid the clock running down.
The type of compensation awarded for these cases varies greatly on the estate representatives related to the deceased. For example, for a spouse filing a claim, they might be entitled awards for pain and suffering, any medical bills left behind, and any loss of income sustained as a result of the death. On the other hand, a child might only be entitled to pain and suffering, unless they can prove that they are responsible for the remaining medical bills and that they are dependent on their parent's income.
Speak with a mesothelioma law firm if your family is facing this unique situation for further assistance.