As described by the Mayo Clinic, mesothelioma is an aggressive, deadly form of cancer. Asbestos—a toxic material that was frequently used in several industries in decades past—is the primary risk factor for mesothelioma. Far too often, companies put workers at risk, even though they knew or should have known better. However, many of these companies have long since gone out of business.
Dozens of asbestos trust funds have been established to provide financial support to victims and their families. This raises an important question: How do you get compensation from an asbestos trust fund? You need to prove both injury and liability. Here, our Buffalo, NY mesothelioma attorneys highlight three key aspects of a successful asbestos trust fund claim.
Building a Successful Mesothelioma Claim in New York
- Patient Diagnosis: Medical Records
All asbestos trust fund claims start with the medical records. Without comprehensive medical documentation, victims will not be able to access the compensation they deserve. As a general rule, this includes medical documentation confirming the diagnosis—either that the patient has mesothelioma or that they have another type of asbestos-related medical condition. Depending on the specific nature of the case, key medical records may also include things like pathology reports and computed tomography (CT) scans. Finally, most asbestos trust fund claims will include one (or more) supporting statements from licensed physicians.
- Exposure Occurred at the Covered Facility
It is important to understand that there is not simply one asbestos trust fund that handles all of the claims. Quite the contrary, there are approximately 60 active asbestos funds—and these funds are each responsible for covering claims related to specific facilities. When making a claim against an asbestos fund, a plaintiff needs to prove that the exposure actually occurred at a facility covered by the fund. Most often, this is done by providing evidence that the patient—meaning the person who is suffering from mesothelioma—worked at the site. Relevant evidence may include employment records, tax records, invoices, and witness testimony.
- Link Between Asbestos Exposure and Mesothelioma
Finally, claimants should be prepared to present evidence establishing a link between asbestos exposure at the covered facility and mesothelioma. How challenging this will be depends on the specific facts of the case. That being said, a mesothelioma diagnosis, by definition, strongly implies asbestos exposure at some point in the past. If an employee worked at a facility where asbestos was present and then later developed mesothelioma, it is likely that there is a link between the two phenomena.
Contact Our Buffalo Asbestos Lawyers for Help
At Richmond Vona, LLC, our personal injury attorneys have the skills, experience, and legal knowledge to handle mesothelioma claims. We will protect your rights. To schedule your free, no obligation consultation, please contact our legal team today. With an office location in Buffalo, we serve communities all around Western New York, including in Erie County, Monroe County, Livingston County, and Wyoming County.