What To Expect from a Mesothelioma Lawsuit
Our attorneys will tailor the work process to meet your individual circumstances and needs. You can generally expect the following from a mesothelioma lawsuit:
- Regardless of where you live, one of our attorneys will travel to you within a few days after you’ve contacted us for an initial, informal interview. During this interview we begin the process of gathering and compiling information about you and your case.
- After getting a general idea of how you were exposed to asbestos, we begin to determine which solvent asbestos companies are responsible for causing the mesothelioma or other asbestos cancer. Since most people were exposed to asbestos for which many different companies are responsible, we may sue 25 or more different companies in a single case. Each company will settle individually for its own amount, depending on the strength or weakness of the evidence that its products caused the mesothelioma.
- A diagnosis of mesothelioma, alone, is not enough to get settlements from the asbestos companies. For you to receive fair settlements, our attorneys must locate companies that are either still solvent or have insurance that covers your claim. Once we learn where you were exposed to asbestos, our researchers will determine which manufacturers, distributors, and contractors supplied the asbestos. Before any of the asbestos manufacturers, distributors, and contractors will pay to settle your case, we must establish that you were exposed to one of their asbestos products. If you can’t remember all of the names of the asbestos products that were used on your job sites, our investigators will find this information. After this process is complete, we will determine the best court in which to file your lawsuit. California has laws that are favorable to asbestos victims. However, in some situations filing the suit in another state may be preferable. Regardless of where your case is filed, you do not have to travel there unless you want to. All of your involvement can take place in your home, or from the city where you reside.
- Once your mesothelioma lawsuit is filed, we enter the discovery phase. This is when we exchange all relevant information regarding your case with the defendants, including your medical, employment, and military records. During the “discovery phase” we can also direct written questions to each of the asbestos companies about your specific case.
The purpose of the discovery phase is:
Settlements with some asbestos companies are made very quickly. Due to our past cases, our office has developed extensive information about many of the asbestos companies, and because of this, they will often offer reasonable settlements quickly. Other settlement offers are made once the discovery phase is nearing completion. In many of the cases we have handled, most of the asbestos defendants settle before starting trial. In fact, we have agreed to multi-million dollar settlements from asbestos companies without ever starting trial. We will notify you every time a company makes a settlement offer, and either recommend that you accept or reject these offers, and explain why. The final decision is up to you. Even if you accept reasonable settlement offers from most of the asbestos companies, we can still go to trial against any company that does not make an appropriate offer.
Approximately three months after our initial contact, you will be deposed by one of our mesothelioma lawyers and by the attorneys for the asbestos manufacturers. Your deposition (testimony under oath, but out of court) will be videotaped, either in or near your home. One of our attorneys will travel to your home prior to your deposition to help you prepare. The actual length of the deposition can vary, depending on the complexity of your case, but usually lasts between one to five days.
If one or more defendants refuse to offer a fair settlement, you may choose to go to trial. For example, out of 25 asbestos companies sued, an average of 15 will settle prior to trial. Usually all but one or two of the remaining 10 companies will settle during the beginning of trial. We only go all the way to getting a jury verdict in about 10 percent to 20 percent of our cases; the rest settle with all of the companies before or during trial. A jury trial usually lasts from three to six weeks and we have been successful in getting large jury verdicts for many of our clients who did end up going to trial.
- to prepare for a jury trial and
- to gather information for settlement discussions between the lawyers for the asbestos companies and our office on your behalf.
Contact our experts in mesothelioma lawsuits today.