What Should You Know Before Filing a Claim with the Asbestos Funds?
Asbestos trust funds are one of the means by which asbestos exposure victims can recover compensation for their injury. Find out more about these funds and how you can file a claim with one of them in this guide.
Who Created Asbestos Trust Funds?Before the 70's, many companies exposed their employees to asbestos although they knew how harmful it was. When people started to be aware of the health risks and the government issued laws that prohibited the asbestos use, many of these companies had to accept liability. By doing so, they were required to provide victims with financial compensation for their physical damage.
Consequently, some of the companies had to file for bankruptcy because of the high number of personal injury claims brought against them. The funds were created as part as of the legal bankruptcy procedure. Their purpose is to ensure that there is sufficient money for the victims to be compensated. Therefore, even if a company is no longer active, you can still file a claim for exposure with the correlated asbestos trust.
How Can I File a Claim With these Trusts?If you want to bring your claim before the asbestos compensation funds, you should contact a lawyer who's specialized in this type of claims. Although the legal procedure is not as difficult as filing a court lawsuit, gathering the necessary evidence can be demanding. And if you've been diagnosed with a severe condition like mesothelioma you should focus on your health, not on the paperwork. Also, each state has its particular regulations regarding the statute of limitations which stipulates how long you have before your right to file expires. This is another primary concern you wouldn't worry about if you get a lawyer.
As for the procedure itself, the basis of any asbestos claim is a proper diagnosis. Once you have this medical evidence, you can consult your lawyer to find out what further proofs are necessary. If you've been exposed on the job, you'll need to provide several work-related documents that make a connection between your employment and the contaminated environment or the asbestos containing products that you used.
How Will the Trusts Judge My Claim?Each trust evaluates claims according to their specific requirements. Your lawyer will be able to provide relevant information about these different conditions and make sure that you meet them. Before filing, your attorney will review once again your case to make sure that nothing is missing. After your claim is submitted, it will be assessed by the trust funds. If all the eligibility criteria are met, and your evidence is strong enough to support your request, you will start recovering compensation. The amount you get depends on the level of damage caused by the exposure and how much money the trust still has.
One more thing to keep mind is that the entire procedure might take several months from the moment you file until you start recovering.