Posts Tagged ‘lanier law firm’

File a Mesothelioma Lawsuit

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011

Mesothelioma is a very challenging disease. Not only does the disease cause pain and suffering, it also can leave families in financial stress. By the time most people who have mesothelioma are diagnosed, the large majority is either retired or unable to work due to symptoms of the disease. Many mesothelioma victims are therefore left dealing with a lack of income combined with high medical bills, and many face the additional challenge of having no health insurance. As a result, many victims of mesothelioma seek legal settlements to take care of these expenses.

When considering pressing a legal suit against a company that made or handled asbestos products unsafely, many people question their right to legal compensation. Public knowledge of the dangers of asbestos has existed for hundreds of years, becoming very well publicized in the US in the 1920’s and 30’s. Unfortunately, the industries affected by mesothelioma include many companies who chose not to protect their workers, despite these risks. As a result, in many cases, mesothelioma victim’s rights also include legal compensation.

Many mesothelioma victims have never engaged in a legal suit. When seeking legal assistance, there are a few guidelines that will help greatly. When selecting a lawyer, make sure that the lawyer you are talking to will be the one handling your case, and not handing your case off to someone else. Be sure to check the lawyer’s track record with similar mesothelioma cases to confirm that they are consistently successful with this type of case. Also, the location in which you file your case can make a difference in the result. While some state laws are generally supportive of victims’ rights to compensation, others can be very restrictive.

A concern for many families when considering a law suit is whether they can handles the physical stress of legal appointments and court appearances. Fortunately, most lawyers who are experienced in these types of cases are very sensitive to the needs of victims and their families, and do their best to handle most things by phone. For more information about your legal rights, please contact us at 1-888-370-0121, or complete our online form.

 

Important Asbestos Facts

Wednesday, December 22nd, 2010

Knowing asbestos facts could be an important way to be prepared about their dangers.  The foremost fact we’re concerned with is its causal relation to mesothelioma.  The fact is, asbestos has a strong link to victims who have developed mesothelioma.  A (sadly all-to-common) tale is workers in the industries of construction and shipbuilding come in contact with asbestos and subsequently develop mesothelioma.  The question is, however, how are these linked?  How and why does asbestos cause mesothelioma?  We’ve compiled a few facts to help set the record straight.

Asbestos is a mineral that, when found in mines, is fibrous, almost feathery, and very lightweight.  Both of these factors—its extremely low density and its feathery attributes—make it a highly valued building material for a couple of reasons.  For one, due to its physical properties, it traps a significant amount of air in between its fibers.  This makes it useful as an insulation material.  It was not uncommon for asbestos to be used on ships to insulate boilers and pipes.  It was also used in construction, where it was often combined with concrete.  This created a stronger, lighter concrete that was easier to ship and work with.

However, this fibrous consistency is also a big reason why asbestos can be so dangerous.  When it’s disturbed (by workers handling the material, for example), particles of the mineral can become airborne, which makes them very easy to ingest or inhale.  From there, the fibers can embed themselves in the lining of your lungs, which, after a period of latency, can trigger the onset of mesothelioma.

There are, generally speaking, two forms of naturally occurring asbestos.  They are amphibole and sepentine asbestos.  It’s possible to further categorize amphibole asbestos into additional types, including amosite and crocidolite.

Asbestos is a mineral found the world over.  Particularly large asbestos concerns are located in South Africa, Australia, Canada, China, and Russia.  Historically, Canada has been the world leader of asbestos mining.

The Friable Asbestos Tragedy

Friday, October 1st, 2010

Today, asbestos is inextricably linked with mesothelioma.  However, for centuries (or even millennia), this mineral was widely used and considered profoundly valuable.  The change has to do with mesothelioma’s ravages.

Mesothelioma is an insidious and devastating cancer that afflicts the delicate lining around the stomach and the lungs.  (This lining is known as the mesothelium, which is how this disease gets its name.)  Mesothelioma can be caused by asbestos exposure, and that’s how the majority of mesothelioma cases in America are caused.  (The natural occurrence for mesothelioma is about 1 in 1,000,000, whereas the current rate in the United States is somewhere between 7 and 40 per 1,000,000 citizens.)

Asbestos exposure can happen for many reasons.  One primary cause is working with asbestos.  Although this mineral is rarely used anymore, it used to be employed with great regularity in many industries, specifically the construction and shipbuilding ones.  Asbestos was used so widely because it possessed many properties that were prized in construction and shipbuilding.  For example, when mixed with concrete, it made the concrete simultaneously less dense and lighter.  This meant that builders could ship smaller amounts and needed smaller volumes to achieve the same results, which cut down on both labor and transportation costs.  Since asbestos is so light and feathery, it is an excellent insulator and fire retardant, so it was used for those purposes as well.  In the shipbuilding industry, its extremely low density and efficiency as an insulator led to its widespread use in an area where every extra pound of weight counts.

Unfortunately, despite its many positive uses, asbestos, when inhaled in the lungs, can cause mesothelioma.  After being inhaled, it lays dormant for anywhere from 10 to 50 years.  Once it actively begins causing mesothelioma, victims of this mineral’s insidiousness begin to worsen rapidly.  The life expectancy of someone afflicted with mesothelioma is often measured in mere months.

Asbestos Updates In Africa

Friday, September 3rd, 2010

Use of asbestos in building materials such as roof sheet is banned in many countries, but this is frequently not enforced. However, according to a new report from AllAfrica Global Media, the government in Rwanda is making progressive steps forward. Their goal is to remove the mineral from the nation entirely.  These plans to safely banish asbestos could make Rwanda the first African nation to use no materials containing asbestos whatsoever.

Unfortunately, not every country intends to follow in Rwanda’s footsteps in eliminating asbestos, the dangerous cause of life-threatening illnesses like mesothelioma. In Ghana, construction of houses continues to involve the use of roof sheet containing asbestos. When asbestos is handled incorrectly or when its dust particles are accidentally inhaled, it sets the stage for mesothelioma and other deadly diseases, such as lung cancer.

A major issue with the roof sheet in Ghana is that rainfall actually washes the asbestos dust off the roofs and flows into major waterways. This water is then sourced for food preparation, introducing asbestos to the human population. Additionally, when roof sheet becomes old and cracks, previously dormant particles are disrupted and  released.

The chances of acquiring mesothelioma from asbestos exposure increase with length of exposure over extended periods of time. This means it is especially harmful to those individuals in the building construction industry.  Emmanuel Salu, a director of the Environmental Protection Agency in Ghana, recommends individuals contact a licensed asbestos inspection agency in the event that cracked, chipping or otherwise disturbed roof sheet is detected in the home or workplace.

Nations like Rwanda are setting an example for the rest of the world. Meanwhile, there is a worldwide trend toward increasing diagnosis of mesothelioma and other life-threatening illnesses caused by the various uses of asbestos. Advocating for government-enforced nationwide bans of the mineral is a proactive way to turn this trend around.

If you or someone you care about has been adversely affected by asbestos exposure, you might consider reaching out to a mesothelioma lawyer. Look for one with strong experience and a record of success in mesothelioma litigation, and feel free to simply ask for more information.

Asbestos Use Widespread In India

Wednesday, July 28th, 2010

The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists has been researching the global asbestos trade since 2009. As you are likely well aware, asbestos is the cancer-causing mineral that is a leading cause of mesothelioma, a devastating form of cancer. While asbestos is restricted in most industrialized nations, it is still distributed and somewhat aggressively marketed in developing countries.

In conjunction with BBC’s International News Services, the ICIJ launched an advanced documentation campaign in Brazil, Canada, China, India, Mexico, Russia and the United States to research and distribute information about the asbestos industry. In a new article published through “Dangers in the Dust: Inside the Global Asbestos Trade,” the project’s website, reporters addressed head-on the widespread use of asbestos in Indian construction and manufacturing today.

Sheets of asbestos are cost-effective for use in construction, and entire dusty factories in India are dedicated to producing this highly demanded, yet lethal time bomb of a product. Experts believe the foundation has been laid for an emerging epidemic for illnesses related to asbestos exposure, including mesothelioma and lung cancer, throughout India. The government is aware of these dangers, but it is against politicians’ best interest to interfere with a trade that provides needed materials and jobs in India’s rapidly growing economy. India now maintains the second largest asbestos market worldwide, behind China. Products containing asbestos bear no warning labels, and the lobbyists and activists fighting for change have had little success because the asbestos market legitimately serves the livelihoods of tens of thousands of residents, many of them poor.

Meanwhile, asbestos has been strictly limited or banned in 52 developed nations— its use is completely banned in the European Union. Believe it or not, the mineral is still utilized legally in the United States for the manufacture of designated products including car brakes and gun parts. For more information about asbestos exposure in consumer products and workplaces, and the ways mesothelioma develops via asbestos exposure, consider contacting a qualified  mesothelioma law firm.

Abestos in California State Rock?

Monday, July 19th, 2010

Asbestos had, from antiquity up through the 1970s, been prized for numerous properties.  For one, it’s incredibly lightweight.  When mixed into concrete, it makes that concrete lighter and increases its tensile strength, which makes it easier to transport and means construction companies don’t have to use as much of it.  It was also used extensively in other industries, including the field of shipbuilding, to serve as insulation for pipes, boilers, and throughout buildings, since it’s a very poor conductor of heat.  It’s also an excellent fire retardant.  It comes in two forms, serpentine and crocidolite.

Due to all these attributes, California lawmakers were proud of the possibilities of the mineral, of which it had considerable quantities.  In 1965, serpentine was named the state rock in order to help bolster the burgeoning asbestos mining industry.  Now, according to an article reported in AP, lawmakers are considering stripping serpentine of its privileged status.

It’s hard to disagree with the reasons put forth by Democratic state Senator Gloria Romero, the legislator spearheading the call.  According to her, California has the highest rate of death from mesothelioma in the nation, and it just doesn’t seem right to be celebrating a rock known for containing the lethal mineral.  Indeed, a large part of the reason why serpentine was originally designated the state rock was because of its asbestos content, so one can certainly see Romero’s displeasure at the current state of affairs.

Historically, the rock was crushed to release its asbestos fibers.  Doing so might release the fibers into the air, where they can be inhaled by workers or can settle on their clothing to be inhaled by someone in the home.  Once inhaled, asbestos fibers cannot be broken down by the body, leading, after a latency period of anywhere from 10 to 50 years, to uncontrolled growth of mesothelium cells.  Once this uncontrolled growth starts, the disease spreads rapidly and devastatingly.  After the onset of mesothelioma, victims’ life expectancies are often measured in months.

Mesothelioma Facts and Info

Monday, July 5th, 2010

Mesothelioma is an exceedingly rare type of cancer that usually attacks the lining of the lungs and stomach, which is referred to as the mesothelium.  How rare is it?  The rate of prevalence for contraction of mesothelioma is generally considered to be somewhere between seven and 40 people per million population, in the United States.

Though that’s (thankfully) a pretty low number, it’s still a heartbreaking figure.  That’s because, although there’s treatment available for mesothelioma, some of which may improve the quality of life of victims suffering from this disease, there is no cure for it, and life expectancy for those who who have this asbestos exposure-triggered cancer is often measured in mere months.

Due to the relative rarity of mesothelioma, information about it might be harder to find than for other diseases. Here, then, are some helpful tidbits of info about mesothelioma:

  • When considering mesothelioma cases, over 90% of them can be linked directly to asbestos exposure.
  • When handled improperly (such as when mining it or using it in an industry that employs it), asbestos fibers can be inhaled or swallowed.  Once it has entered the lungs or stomach, the fibers remain, unable to be broken down by the body.
  • Asbestos fibers lodged in the mesothelium will eventually cause cells making up the lining to divide rapidly.
  • After asbestos exposure, there is a latency period lasting anywhere from 10 to 50 years, during which no mesothelioma symptoms show up.
  • Once symptoms manifest themselves, the disease can spread quickly.  Common symptoms can include a lingering cough and chronic shortness of breath.
For more information about mesothelioma, speak to a resource person by calling 1-888-370-0121.  Alternately, consider contacting a mesothelioma law firm, one that has a wealth of information and experience on the matter.  They may be able to help secure compensation for those suffering from this devastating cancer.

Asbestos Risk Factors: Painters

Wednesday, June 30th, 2010

According to an article on the Mesothelioma News site, there’s a chance that people who have worked long careers in the painting industry might be more susceptible to mesothelioma exposure.  The reason for this is due to exposure to certain material central to the painting trade, which include texturing paint, drywall compounds, and block filler, some of which might have contained asbestos.  Painters are also often on construction sites, which can be a frequent site of asbestos exposure.

Painters coming in contact with these materials might only have had limited exposure to these materials; nevertheless, even a brief exposure to asbestos fibers that are inhaled might be enough to trigger adverse effects such as mesothelioma and asbestosis down the road.

These links might be somewhat tenuous and are not readily proven; after all, as the article source points out, asbestos can remain latent in the body for so long after initial exposure that it’s difficult to source where the exposure originally came from.  Nevertheless, there might be a correlation.

The painting trade is not the first industry to be linked to mesothelioma.  The construction and shipbuilding industries are more commonly associated with asbestos exposure.  Indeed, one of the more recent articles we referred to in this space was the Fincantieri mesothelioma case, which dealt with a verdict of “negligent homicide” decided against executives of a shipbuilding company in Italy.

There might be other industries affected by mesothelioma, ones whose correlations have yet to be unearthed.  Whatever the case, if you’ve been diagnosed with mesothelioma, it might be a good idea to contact a mesothelioma law firm with a long-standing record of experience and success with mesothelioma settlements.  Not only can they provide you with information about such cases, but they might also be able to more ably secure an award for the damages caused by the ravages of this devastating disease.

Vermiculite and Asbestos

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

Vermiculite and asbestos are two minerals used for similar purposes.  Both have been historically used as excellent insulators, since they have highly effective heat resistance properties.  They are also both wonderful fire retardants, which makes them useful in the construction and shipbuilding industries.

That could be where the similarities end, however, because vermiculite is generally considered to be harmless to humans who are mining or working with it, while asbestos exposure can lead to many life-threatening diseases.  These diseases include mesothelioma, which has no known cure and can kill someone with terrifying quickness once symptoms manifest themselves.

Vermiculite is mined all around the world, with particularly large concerns operating in China, Brazil, South Africa, the United States, and Zimbabwe.  Within the United States, the largest mines are in the Appalachian mountain range, especially around Virginia.  It resembles mica, another mineral sometimes used for insulation in electronic devices, and has a brownish, vaguely metallic and glassy hue.

Since vermiculite has some similar properties as asbestos, it is often associated with mesothelioma.  However, there does not appear to be any evidence linking the mineral with the brutal cancer, or with any other diseases typically associated with asbestos exposure.  The major causal association between vermiculite and mesothelioma, at least in this country, appears to have stemmed from the asbestos-tainted vermiculite mines of Libby, Montana.  The case of asbestos in Libby, Montana is a well-documented and devastating one which has affected the lives of many in the area.

Due to the fact that vermiculite is generally considered harmless, it’s still used for construction today.  However, vermiculite from the Libby mines is considered suspect, since much of the mineral mined there also contains traces of asbestos.  That isn’t considered harmless.  If you have been exposed to vermiculite from Libby, Montana, there’s a chance that you might have also been exposed to asbestos.  If that’s the case, it might be a good idea to contact a mesothelioma lawyer with a proven track record of success.

Mesothelioma Victims’ Rights

Thursday, June 17th, 2010

Since there’s so much at stake when one is diagnosed with mesothelioma, understanding mesothelioma victims’ rights can be an important part of dealing with the issue with dignity, understanding, and respect.

We often talk about the grievous physical damage mesothelioma inflicts on its victims because that’s the most visible aspect of the devastation it wreaks.  There are good reasons for that visibility.  First, mesothelioma attacks the body in a particularly cruel fashion, lying dormant for years or even decades before snapping out of its latency period and advancing with terrifying rapidity.  Along with that fearsome onset, there is no known cure for the disease, even though there are several treatments that might look promising out there.  After it’s detected, mesothelioma moves quickly, and the life expectancies of its victims are often measured in months, not years.

What’s talked about less often is the economic aspect of being diagnosed with this savage cancer.  Due to the quickly damaging impact mesothelioma has on the body, it often puts workers out of commission at the exact time money is most urgently needed.  Experimental treatments and expensive, exhaustive traditional ones can cost incredible amounts of money, financial burdens that are often compounded by the fact that many victims are already retired or might not have adequate (or any) health insurance.

When faced with all these unforeseen calamities all at once, it can be tough to face up to all of it.  A mesothelioma law firm might be just the help that victims need, especially if they’re qualified and experienced with similar cases.  The right law firm might be able to provide you with valuable information for securing a favorable mesothelioma settlement in less time than might be possible otherwise, which is an important consideration, especially when taking the brief average life expectancy of mesothelioma victims into account.