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What Are Mesothelioma and Asbestos Trust Funds?

asbestos trust funds

Exposure to asbestos can result in many debilitating health issues, including mesothelioma, a rare type of cancer. Since many people do not show symptoms of asbestos exposure right away, it can be hard to pinpoint exactly what caused the cancer. Besides the health risks posed, treating mesothelioma is incredibly expensive.

Due to these extreme costs, trust funds have been set up by companies who exposed people to asbestos. These mesothelioma or asbestos trust funds are used to help people cover the astronomical medical bills they face.

Those exposed to asbestos may qualify for compensation from a mesothelioma trust fund, also known as an asbestos trust fund. A qualifying condition may include:

  • Mesothelioma.
  • Lung cancer.
  • Ovarian cancer.
  • Bile duct cancer.
  • Laryngeal cancer.

Treatments for these cancers may include chemotherapy, radiation, as well as complex surgeries. All related to an individual’s exposure to asbestos, the person may be able to collect some of the estimated $30 billion sitting in mesothelioma trust funds to help them cover their medical costs.

Which Companies Have Mesothelioma Trust Funds?

Not every company that exposed people to asbestos has set up a trust fund. However, many companies have, including ones that have gone bankrupt. Over 60 mesothelioma trusts exist. For more information, it is best to consult with a lawyer.

Severity of Your Illness

Many people may never even notice symptoms of mesothelioma. Other people may not develop any symptoms for a long period of time after their asbestos exposure. Also, not every asbestos exposure leads to mesothelioma.

While having mesothelioma may increase the amount of money you can collect, you can still get compensation from the trust fund for other ailments. Asbestos can cause difficulty breathing, for example, which can hinder your ability to work and participate in life events.

Amount of Medical Expenses

The medical care you require will depend on the type of asbestos-related medical condition you have. Mesothelioma and other cancers will cost more than other ailments. You will likely face medical expenses of varying degrees, which is why it is important to see if you qualify for compensation from a mesothelioma trust fund. 

Your Lost Income

Beyond medical bills, the more serious your asbestos-related illness, the more likely it is that you will not be able to work. Many people do not realize that they may be able to collect compensation for more than just their medical expenses.

Since asbestos exposure is the cause of your illness, you can try to get additional compensation to cover your lost income. Depending on your age, your profession, and how much longer you planned to work, the amount of lost income could be substantial. You may be able to get money to cover your lost income so you do not have to worry about paying your bills, above and beyond your medical expenses. 

The Amount of Money Left in the Trust

Not every person will be able to get the full amount of their claim. Many of these funds do not have enough money in them to cover all of the medical expenses and lost income of those exposed to asbestos.

As a result, many trust funds now offer a percentage of the claim value. Combined with insurance, this can still help people avoid shouldering the responsibility of paying their medical expenses out of pocket. Even if you cannot obtain the full value of your claim, it is still worth pursuing. Getting compensation can substantially improve your quality of life and make it easier for you to cover your medical care.

What Information Do I Need?

When you have an asbestos-related medical diagnosis, you need to start collecting information right away. This information will be crucial to your claim:

  • Medical records: Your medical records kept by your doctor will detail your medical diagnosis and include the information about your asbestos exposure. These documents will also include information about how your illness impacts your quality of life and your ability to earn a living and support yourself. Crucially, it will also state what future medical care you may need.
  • Notes: Besides the medical records, your doctor should provide you with a statement. This is often in the form of a letter and provides more details about your illness. It is also usually written in lay terms. Your doctor may detail how your life has been affected and your prognosis. This note can be invaluable evidence of your asbestos exposure and the value of your claim.
  • Asbestos exposure summary: To qualify for compensation under an asbestos trust fund, you need to show that your illness is directly caused by asbestos exposure. That is often best done through a summary detailing your work and exposure to the toxin. Information about when you were exposed, where, and how can help determine how to pursue a claim. Your claim should be filed against the trust fund set up by the company where you were exposed. Filing a claim with the wrong fund could lead to costly delays.

Do Not Delay

Asbestos claims have a statute of limitations, which is an amount of time you have to file your claim. In Pennsylvania, you have two years to file a claim, and the clock starts ticking the day you receive your medical diagnosis.

This is why it is crucial that you speak with a lawyer as soon as possible after your diagnosis. You have limited time to collect the relevant evidence and file your claim. If you do not file your claim in time, your claim will be barred, and you will miss out on your chance to collect compensation.

It is also important to speak with a lawyer as soon as possible because you may have additional legal options for recovery. If the company that exposed you to asbestos is still in business, for example, you may be able to file a claim or join a class action lawsuit against that company. You may also be eligible to file a claim against multiple companies. This will all be determined based on the specific circumstances of your case. 

Philadelphia Mesothelioma Lawyers at Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler Can Help You Determine if You Are Eligible for Benefits After Asbestos Exposure

If you have been exposed to asbestos, you may be able to pursue compensation from an asbestos trust fund. Our Philadelphia mesothelioma lawyers at Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler can help you with the process today. Call us at 215-569-4000 or complete our online form to schedule a free consultation. Located in Philadelphia, we serve clients throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania, including Delaware County, Chester County, and Philadelphia County.