This article briefly and simply describes settlement offers, trial and appeals in mesothelioma cases.
Mesothelioma Settlement offers
In some cases defendants decide that it is not in their best interest to go to trial. Usually in these situations, the liability of the defendant is clear. In these instances, the plaintiff may be presented with a money settlement. Any settlements will be provided to your lawyer who will present the settlement to you. Your attorney should advise you on whether it is in your best interest to agree to the settlement or go to trial. A large proportion of asbestos cases are settled before going to trial.
Setting a Trial Date in a Mesothelioma Case
How rapidly your case goes to trial will mainly depend upon the availability of the judge. It may be a number of months before a date is available. Nonetheless, an increasing number of courts are putting a hurry on mesothelioma cases that include a plaintiff who is still living.
The trial process in a mesothelioma case can vary based upon on where you file a law suit.If you cannot reach a settlement, the case will go to trial. Trials ordinarily take one to two weeks or more, depending on factors such as the number of defendants, witnesses, documentary evidence, objections, motions, delays, etc. You may or may not be a witness on your own behalf. If you win the case and the defendant does not appeal, you will generally start getting payments a few months after the trial. If the defendant appeals the win, your case is not over.
If you win following the trial, the defendant could choose to file an appeal. There is a specific amount of time, commonly between thirty days and up, to file an appeal. An appeal will delay any money award won, but the defendant will likely need to post a bond for the amount awarded while the appeal is pending. If the defendant loses the appeal, a plaintiff will start receiving payments after the time for filing any additional appeals has ended. If the defendant wins the appeal, the defendant may, with some hard negotiating, pay a smaller amount or may end up paying nothing.
An appeals court generally accepts any facts that the trial judge and jury found to be true. So an appeal is not a new trial. An appeal on deals with errors of law that may have occurred during the trial. For instance, an appeals court may be asked to decide whether the trial court correctly applied the law to the case. If an error was made, the appeals court may order a new trial or they may order the lower court judge to only re-examine a specific part of the trial. In some cases an appeals court can just correct an error without a new trial. An example of this would be where the amount of the award was calculated improperly. If your case is appealed, you should make sure that your attorney is qualified to handle the appeals process. The rules and procedures on appeal are different from the rules and procedures used in the trial courts.
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