Over 100 years ago, the United States government first recognized an abnormally high rate of death among asbestos workers. Other serious negative health effects of asbestos were noted as early as 1933, when a German scientist discovered a related lung tumor. And yet, American industry continued to use the mineral in products ranging from construction material to household goods. Even today, while it is strictly regulated, the use of asbestos is not banned.
These are troubling facts for those who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, a rare and aggressive form of cancer caused by asbestos exposure. For years, careless manufacturers, employers, and landlords ignored the dangers, and, in some cases, they even actively covered up the risks. Their failure to protect the public in order to boost their own bottom line led to the suffering and even death of those with mesothelioma.
This behavior is neither morally nor legally acceptable. The attorneys at Shannon Law Group, P.C., have made it their mission to hold those people responsible and to seek the compensation that mesothelioma victims and their families deserve. From our Chicagoland office, our experienced legal team can help victims understand their rights, gather evidence to discover and prove their exposure risks, negotiate with responsible parties, and even make your case in court, if necessary. Call us today at 312-578-9501 to learn more about how we can help and schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.
What Is Mesothelioma, and How Is it Contracted?
Mesothelioma is a serious and aggressive form of cancer. The only known cause of mesothelioma is asbestos exposure. When a person is exposed, he inhales or swallows the tiny particles of the toxic mineral. Those particles settle in the soft tissue inside the body, where they are difficult to either expel or break down.
The symptoms of mesothelioma often appear as common symptoms of many diseases, so it can be difficult to diagnose. The symptoms include:
- Difficulty breathing.
- Chest pain.
- Weight loss.
- Nausea or vomiting.
- Fluid buildup in the lungs.
The prognosis for those diagnosed with mesothelioma is unfortunately very poor, as there is no known cure and diagnosis often does not come until the late stages of the disease. Invasive treatment options such as surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy are often used to address the symptoms.
Where Was I Exposed to Asbestos?
The only known cause of mesothelioma is asbestos exposure. Asbestos is a mineral that naturally resists heat, flame, electricity, and corrosion, making it a once-popular choice for a number of industries. The list of products, occupations, and manufacturing processes that involved asbestos at one time or another is staggering. Some of the occupations that have been at greatest risk for asbestos exposure include:
These are only a tiny sample of the many careers that have involved dangerous amounts of asbestos over the years. Additionally, even for those who did not work in a high-risk environment, exposure is still possible through secondary exposure or use of different products. For years, asbestos was found in high concentrations in many common goods, including:
- Ceiling and floor tiles.
- Adhesives and cement.
- Protective clothing (mitts, aprons, masks, etc.).
- Roofing materials.
- Hair dryers.
Even if you aren’t sure where or when you were exposed to asbestos, if you’ve been diagnosed with mesothelioma, an experienced attorney can help you investigate your rights. Call the Chicagoland office of Shannon Law Group, P.C., today at 312-578-9501 to learn more about how we can help.
The Dangers Asbestos Posed to Tenants and Employees Was Ignored
When the dangers of asbestos were proven, many companies ignored the risks and continued to expose their employees. Numerous business memos and other documents show how time after time, financial gain was put ahead of employees’ best interests. Use of asbestos was cheaper than other alternatives, so manufacturers and others purposely neglected their duty to protect the public and their workers. In a famous memo from 1966, one executive even noted that if an employee benefited from work with the use of asbestos in life, “why not die from it.” While not everyone was so callous, thousands of people were knowingly exposed to this dangerous mineral in their homes, schools, and workplaces. Today, 3,000 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma in the U.S. every year, and there have been over 31,000 mesothelioma-related deaths over the last 15 years.
How Our Chicago Mesothelioma Attorneys Can Help
A mesothelioma diagnosis is both serious and scary. Often, victims have many concerns and little experience with the justice system. While you and your family focus on your treatment plan and spending time together, the attorneys at Shannon Law Group, P.C., can worry about your legal rights. Those diagnosed with mesothelioma, and even the family members of those who have died, may have a number of legal options available to them, including:
- Asbestos bankruptcy trust funds. Many cases are related to businesses that operated years ago. Some have gone out of business or merged with other companies. Many of them, however, were required to set up trust funds to pay mesothelioma victims who have a claim against the company.
- Civil lawsuits. Victims can file a legal claim directly against the party that knowingly exposed them to asbestos, causing their mesothelioma. These cases can reach a settlement agreement or result in a trial.
- Department of Veterans’ Affairs compensation. Many mesothelioma cases stem from services performed as part of military duty. As such, victims can be eligible for benefits from the federal government.
As our previous clients can attest, the legal team at Shannon Law Group, P.C., understands the impact a legal case can have on your family, and we pride ourselves on getting the job done for our clients. Unfortunately, Illinois ranks among the top in the nation for the diagnosis of mesothelioma. Fortunately, these cases are often found in favor of the victim, and we want to help ensure that outcome for you and your loved ones. Let us protect and defend your legal rights, so you can take care of what really matters. Fill out our online contact form today, and you’ll get a prompt response from a member of our team who can answer your questions and schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.