To understand how asbestos attorneys work, it is necessary to understand the development of asbestos cases in the United States. Johns-Manville Corporation and Raybestos-Manhattan were the biggest manufacters of asbestos. In the early 1970's workers were developing illnesses that all seemed to be tied to asbestos in one form or another. It was discovered that Johns-Manville and Raybestos knew of the hazards and never notified their workers of these dangers. Asbestos cases started to be litigated in 1973.
One might wonder what asbestos is? Asbestos is a strong mineral with fibers that naturally develop. Asbestos withstands heat so it was the perfect insulation material. This material was used for insulation in everytning from houses to a thermos. It is estimated that in one way or another every person has come into some contact with asbestos.
There are basically two forms of cancer that come to mind when one hears the word asbestos. Mesotheliona is a rare form of cancer. The malignant cells are located in a sac which covers all of the internal organs. The other form is lung cancer. Both of these are caused by asbestos. Initially there were 16,000 asbestos cases. In the United States roughly 2,000 cases are filed each year. The disease does not show up until 20 to 40 years after exposure, which accounts for cases still being filed today.
If one suspects any of these illnesses, they should immediately contact a mesothelioma doctor or pulmonary specialist. Once it has been determined that the cancer is present, it is time to find an attorney. There are asbestos lawyers available and can be found through recommendation, phone book or the internet. The next step is to make an appointment with several attorneys.
The attorney will determine whether or not you have a case. If you have a case there are many important questions to ask to determine the proper attorney for you. They will ask questions and one should be prepared to ask a few of their own. Following are a few suggestions:
Ask about the attorney's personal experience.
Ask how many asbestos cases he has tried and how many were won, settled or went into a class action?
Ask how much this will cost and if payment is needed before they start the case or is payment made when the case settles.
The last thing to remember is to be sure to find an attorney who makes one feel at ease. Also, it is helpful to know if the attorney will handle the case personally, rathar than using other attorneys.