Michigan Mesothelioma Lawyers
A mesothelioma is a rare form of highly aggressive cancer which gets its name from infecting the mesothelium – a thin lining that surrounds the lungs, heart, and gut protecting them when they move around each other. The ailment develops as a result of asbestos exposure. Mesothelioma occurs in several locations in the body, but the most common site is the pleura – the body cavity which surrounds the lungs. Swallowing or inhaling asbestos fibers sends them to the lungs where they are moved to the pleura body cavity by the immune system. Some of the top-rated mesothelioma lawyers represent victims of asbestos exposure. The immune system cannot destroy them. The infection then damages the DNA of healthy cells, turning them into cancerous ones.
Before the ban on the use of asbestos by the Environmental Protection Agency, it was a favorite staple in building materials. What endeared people to it was Its insulation properties that included high resistance to heat and electricity and thus made it extremely useful in construction materials. Materials used for things that involved high temperature, voltage, heat or fire such as high voltage wires, pipes, hot water heaters, etc., were usually lined with asbestos for insulation purposes. Construction of houses, commercial and public buildings, and even schools was generally built using Asbestos Containing Materials (ACMs) for insulation. The bad news about this is that the thousands of workers that were involved in the construction of these buildings are at risk of developing mesothelioma. The risk of exposure did not end at construction stage, the thousands of the buildings constructed then still have that asbestos insulation in their walls, ceilings, and tiles. Ordinarily, if left on its own, asbestos does not constitute a risk, but disrupting it in any manner – through renovation, repairs or demolition – can cause the fibers to be released into the air, immediately becoming a health risk.
Michigan is home to the key players in the country’s automobile manufacturing sector. Large American car companies like Ford Motors and GM, have their headquarters and a large bulk of their operations within the state. The automobile manufacturing industry is a enormous part of the Michigan economy and also that of the United States as a whole. There are some instances within automobile manufacturing where the risk of asbestos exposure existed for a very long time. Not only were asbestos used for the common standard purposes in manufacturing plants – for insulating or heat-shielding purposes – the noxious mineral was also used in automobile parts to resist the high heat and wear of intense friction such as brakes, gaskets, and clutches were all made with asbestos.
Michigan State History
Michigan is the ultimate rust belt state, although Ohio would be in the running as well. The boom of Michigan’s economy was at its apex during the mid-twentieth century, a time when steel production and auto production were good examples of thriving industries. Workers on the job sites of these industries were exposed to the asbestos insulation in the buildings and production lines where heat was employed.
In Detroit, Flint, and many smaller cities such as Dearborn the auto industry was thriving. One plant alone might have an assembly section, a paint shop, an engine building, even its power plant as GM did in Flint. The facilities available were massive, and so was the use of asbestos. The state hosted so many steel mills; Bethlehem Steel and Great Lakes Steel are two well known examples of facilities that epitomized the smoke stack era. This was the period when asbestos exposure in the workplace was at an all time high and the cases of mesothelioma that we have today were first developed.
Mesothelioma has a latency period of almost 50 years. This means it is of recent that the auto workers and steel workers from that era who are now retired are just now developing mesothelioma symptoms. Virtually all the great businesses in the state in that era were locations and source of asbestos fibers exposure. In Warren, both GM and Chrysler were manufacturing cars alongside other plants producing defense industry products.
Mesothelioma Cases in Michigan
Statistics from government research tells us at least 3000 people in he United States are diagnosed with mesothelioma every year. Mesothelioma is one of the worst and most aggressive of lung cancers, and being a terminal disease, patients die from it due to lack of the cure. Not less than 80% of these mesothelioma deaths can be traced to an asbestos exposure at the workplace.
The long latency period (of almost 50 years) between actual asbestos exposure and diagnosis or symptoms development is one major reason for misdiagnosis and difficulty in pinpointing the disease at an early stage.
Many of the industries and companies in the country already had knowledge of the noxious nature of the mineral, yet they did not discontinue its use. Previous plaintiffs have successfully unearthed thousands of documents that show beyond all doubt that these industries and their insurers were well aware of the destructive nature of asbestos to humans.
This discovery has convinced several juries of the liability of these companies to pay mesothelioma victims and their families compensation for their injuries, pain, and suffering as a result of developing mesothelioma from asbestos exposure at the company’s work site.
Legal Rights for Michigan Asbestos Victims
The statute of limitations allowed by Michigan’s legal system is three years after official diagnosis or a period one should’ve reasonably discovered the disease. During these three years, discovery and legal action relating to the personal injury must occur. The three years limitations law also applies to asbestosis, mesothelioma and other asbestos-caused afflictions. The three years statute of limitations also applies to the filing of a wrongful death (mesothelioma related) suit. Most plaintiffs in asbestos-related liability claims are widows or family members because the survival time after diagnosis is a very short one.
Are you a victim or the family member of one suffering from an asbestos-related disease? You should contact one of our experienced lawyers to discuss your eligibility for compensation. To find a lawyer who knows Michigan law along with the history of asbestos litigation in the state fill out the brief form on this page, and we will be in touch immediately. There is no charge for our consulting services. Read more about how to find the right Asbestos lawyer as well as recent Mesothelioma case settlements in addition to lawsuits for Mesothelioma.
If you wish to hire an mesothelioma attorney to help you with your mesothelioma lawsuit, now not later is the best time to do it. The reason is time will determine your eligibility to claiming compensation in such a trial as this. Personal injury cases are usually required to be filed within a certain period. The more time and experience your lawyer has to prepare your case the better off you will be.
In 2001 and 2002, a recorded number of asbestos-related cases were brought against General Motors, Ford Motor, and Daimler Chrysler. These cases were in such high numbers that the state of Michigan had to create the “inactive asbestos docket” to help increase the efficiency of handling the asbestos-related lawsuits. The practice then was first hearing the cases of patients who were most affected by the disease before healthier ones. This enabled speedy trials for sick patients who had an urgent need for the compensation to pay for various treatments and keep their families out of bankruptcy.
Contact Top-Rated Mesothelioma Lawyers in Michigan
There are some available resources you can take advantage of when trying to locate a mesothelioma lawyer. One example is an online directory; they are very exhaustive about the qualities and the records of various asbestos lawyers. Another example is focus groups for mesothelioma as many members of those panels are likely to have filed their lawsuit. If you come up blank using either of these ideas, you can then take a simple look through a phone book in your area will give you some names, addresses and phone numbers to look through.