Many mesothelioma victims are concerned about the time and expense of filing an asbestos lawsuit. However, in many cases plaintiffs are able to reach a mesothelioma settlement without going to court. Dozens of companies have also established asbestos trusts to compensate victims of mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases.
In 2005, the Rand Corp. reported that asbestos settlements had grown significantly since the 1990s. A study published two years later found that the average asbestos settlement was most likely between $1 million and $1.4 million.
The amount of compensation that a mesothelioma plaintiff is entitled to will be determined by a number of factors, including:
While there is no way to guarantee a specific compensation amount for any plaintiff, some recent settlements have amounted to millions of dollars:
Many asbestos defendants have had to file for bankruptcy protection over the years. Fortunately, the U.S. Bankruptcy Code allows for the creation of asbestos bankruptcy trusts, in which a company sets aside funds to compensate victims of mesothelioma and other asbestos related diseases. According to the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), close to $17.5 billion has already been awarded to victims of diseases caused by exposure to asbestos from these trusts. An estimated $30-40 billion is still available for future cases.
While asbestos bankruptcy trusts are established on behalf of companies, the companies do not operate the trusts. That task of running the trust falls to a trustee, who processes claims under preset distribution procedures. Evidence needed to successfully file a mesothelioma usually includes:
Unfortunately, most asbestos trusts do not have enough money to pay all possible claims. Instead, mesothelioma settlements from a trust usually amount to a percentage of a claim. As of 2010, the median percentage paid from the 26 largest trusts was about 25 percent.
If you would like to learn more about asbestos settlements that might be available to those suffering from mesothelioma, Bernstein Liebhard LLP can help. To arrange for a free review of your case, please call (888) 994-5118.
Get the latest news and litigation updates about this case by following us on Facebook. Click the "Like" button below.