Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer, but in about 80% of cases, it is possible to clearly identify occupational exposure to asbestos dust as the cause of the mesothelioma. Most mesothelioma cases occur in people who have worked in industries such as construction and building renovation, mining, and shipbuilding or in their family members who were exposed to asbestos dust when it entered the household through the worker’s clothing. Symptoms of mesothelioma usually begin to appear decades after the asbestos exposure took place, which is why, even though industrial use of asbestos is much more restricted than it was before the 1980s, new mesothelioma cases continue to be diagnosed. If you have received a mesothelioma diagnosis and you are sure that you were exposed to asbestos at work, contact a Houma mesothelioma lawyer.
Why Do People File Workers’ Compensation Claims?
All employers except the smallest businesses must carry workers’ compensation insurance. When an employee gets injured at work, the employee can file a workers’ compensation claim with their employer, and the employer’s insurance will pay for treatment of the injury. In certain industries, workers’ compensation also pays for occupational diseases, which are illnesses where working in that industry is a risk factor. Mesothelioma counts as an occupational disease for jobs where workers are in contact with asbestos dust, even though the law also requires employers to provide protective equipment for workers when they must work near asbestos.
When you file a workers’ compensation claim, you do not have to show negligence on your employer’s part. Your employer cannot fire you or otherwise retaliate against you for filing a workers’ compensation claim.
When Occupational Exposure to Asbestos is Not Just Business as Usual
The bad news about workers’ compensation claims is that, once your employer files your claim, you cannot file a personal injury lawsuit against your employer for the same injury or illness. The other problem with workers’ compensation claims is that, since the employer is paying, the employer has the final say about which treatment you get. People who file workers’ compensation claims about chronic illnesses often find themselves arguing constantly with their employers about which treatments are necessary.
Living with mesothelioma, or any form of cancer, is stressful enough even if you get the best treatments and you can easily afford to pay for them. In a mesothelioma lawsuit, you can request damages in the amount of your total medical expenses and lost income, whereas in a workers’ compensation case, your employer gets to decide how much they will pay, and they often choose the least expensive treatment options instead of the most effective ones.
Contact the Law Office of Patrick H. Yancey About Paying for Mesothelioma Treatment
A mesothelioma lawyer can help you choose the best options for getting your mesothelioma treatment paid for, including but not limited to workers’ compensation claims and personal injury lawsuits. Contact the Law Office of Patrick H. Yancey in Houma, Louisiana to see if you have grounds for a lawsuit.