Colon Cancer Due to Asbestos?
Colon or colorectal cancer is localized to the tissues of the colon and the rectum, and it is among the leading causes of death in U.S. cancer patients. While most asbestos-related cancers are localized in the mesothelium or lungs, some colorectal cancers may also be connected to asbestos exposure.
Asbestos and colon cancerFor the past decades, evidence of a significant link between asbestos exposure and colorectal cancer has been mounting. There is yet no absolute proof of the causation. However, a high correlation is indicated, and even causation is often suspected. Various studies, in the first and second half of the 20th century, have shown there appeared to be an increased risk of colon cancer in people regularly exposed to asbestos at their workplace.
Other studies, such as one conducted in the 1990s, pointed out there wasn't enough data to indicate a causal relationship between asbestos exposure and colorectal cancer. Not enough data, however, differs from no proof. A 2005 study under the aegis of Yale University pointed to an increased risk of colon cancer in men (especially smokers) occupationally exposed to asbestos. The mechanism the researchers suspected was in operation was ingestion of asbestos fibers and diffusion through the GI tract, eventually reaching the intestinal walls and stimulating the production of malignant cells.
Contradictory research has therefore not eliminated the possibility, and asbestos exposure seems to increase the risk of colorectal cancer.
If you were occupationally exposed to asbestos at any point and had been diagnosed with colorectal cancer, consider seeking medical and legal help finding out if you qualify for financial compensation.
Find out more about colon and colorectal cancers: https://www.elglaw.com/colon-cancer/
What are asbestos trust funds?Companies that found themselves unable to pay liabilities when sued for damages related to asbestos exposure usually filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, i.e. protection from further lawsuits. Once they are reorganized, these companies must create so-called Asbestos Trusts under 524(g), and to fund them to enough extent to cover current and future settlements. As compensation paid to plaintiffs has, generally, been substantial, so are these funds; asbestos trusts manage approximately 37 billion dollars.
The money you can receive from these funds varies depending on the type and severity of the injury. All claims must be filed with evidence of an asbestos-related injury. Expect serious examination of your medical and personal history before your claim is approved.
Learn more about asbestos trust funds: https://www.elglaw.com/faq/how-do-the-asbestos-trust-funds-work/
What do asbestos trust funds require as proof of eligibility?The first item on the list is always a medical diagnosis accompanied by detailed documentation. You must show diagnostics reports (pathology, radiology) to evidence your colorectal cancer and an asbestos-related underlying disease, such as asbestosis, pleural plaques, fibers in your lungs, etc. Your doctor must confirm the diagnosis in a written affidavit and explain the extent to which asbestos caused your disease or contributed significantly to it. The more severe your asbestos-related diagnosis, the more consistent the settlement you can expect. Sometimes the plaintiff could be asked to submit to more testing, such as a pulmonary function test, or the Trust might conduct B-readings on the plaintiff's radiology reports.
Next, you must show proof of asbestos exposure. Bring up employment records and witness testimonies to prove your workplace caused your injury by prolonged exposure to asbestos. Seek expert reports on the asbestos used in your workplace and document its toxicity. Document the use of asbestos at the workplace with as much proof as possible, such as invoices, witness affidavits, company or public records detailing the use of asbestos products, etc. Try to make the link between your exposure to asbestos and your colorectal cancer clear.
And don't forget, before everything else, to check on the statute of limitations. Usually, a time limit is to the claim, once you (or your loved ones) have been diagnosed. However, the problem with proper compensation for asbestos-related diseases is the long onset: asbestos-related diseases may develop symptoms years only after exposure has taken place. That is why, usually plaintiffs count the time (usually 1 to 2 years) from the moment they knew or should have known of asbestos-related injuries, such as, for instance, being diagnosed. The statute of limitations varies among funds and states, so it is advisable to talk to a lawyer, so you do not miss out on this window.
See our process: https://www.elglaw.com/process/
Other detailsSince payment out of these trust funds can take quite a while, as the processing might take up to a year or more, an expedited review procedure exists which will award damages according to a set payment schedule. That may be a useful avenue for those who are ill and do not wish to wait out the entire process. However, this amount will not be negotiable; if you can afford to wait, you will almost definitely be awarded a larger settlement, albeit spread across a longer while.
Another thing to remember is that awards cannot be reviewed down, but they can be reviewed up (the trueing-up procedure) if you were only paid a percentage of your claim. An upward review does not happen often.
The average settlement you can expect for the most serious asbestos-related disease is upward of $250,000. The amount, however, depends on several factors, not the least of which are the seriousness of your disease, and the strength and presentation of your case.
See recent settlements: https://www.elglaw.com/verdicts/